Bridger is a dystopian serial story about Charlane, a disgraced career soldier leading a security team at a remote research facility. When Char encounters a humanoid creature who claims to come from another world, she sees a chance to save her career—and the dying earth.
Char, a strong, career-driven woman, is fighting to overcome crippling self-doubt after she lost everything in a military scandal. She’d given so much to that career, including her marriage. Now she is starting over. Char doesn’t know that her value as a person doesn’t change based on what she accomplishes. Can she accept the unconditional love of those who care for her?
Our social media and celebrity culture has placed enormous value on beauty, fitness, and lifestyle. Our work culture pressures women to continually rise up the ranks and press for better jobs. All of these are worthwhile things, but they are not markers of personal value. A person is valuable because of who they are, not what they produce.
Rated PG-13 for language
By eight in the morning, Char had heard nothing from Erwell, so she called her on the comm.
“Any word from the higher ups?” Char said into the device. She sat on the edge of Seth’s bed with his pillow clutched in one arm. She was glad Erwell couldn’t see her. Better she think they were still on the other side of a messy divorce.
Erwell didn’t answer for almost a minute.
“Nothing definite.” The director’s voice sounded strained.
“How are the Na’odani?” Char fingered the seam of the pillowcase.
“I have them talking to some of my scientists,” Erwell answered. “That will keep them quiet for now.”
“Keep me posted,” Char said.
“Okay,” Erwell replied, slightly crackled by the comm.
Char sighed and clipped the comm to her belt. She slipped out into the hall, grabbed some thermals from her room, and went outside.
She found Linc in a corner tower, pacing to keep warm.
“Hey, Boss,” Linc said as she climbed onto the platform. “How’s it going?”
“I’m jet-lagged,” she answered dryly. “Listen, Linc. Did you do what I asked?”
“Yeah.” Linc stood closer to her. “I went to go see the Na’odani.”
“They asked me some strange questions.” Linc’s eyes narrowed. “Like about my range of hearing, and the material the compound is made of.” He grinned. “Concrete was hard to explain.”
“Huh,” she mused. “Go peek in on them at noon, will you?”
Linc gave her a sloppy salute. “I’ll report when I do.”
Char climbed down, but paused at the base of the ladder. “Hearing? Materials?” she muttered. She rubbed her gloved hand over the back of her neck and blew out her breath.
She broke into a jog toward the compound, drawing up short by the door.
There was a fifty-fifty chance Erwell would have the Na’odani killed for their kemzog. If so, she would never see Leander, Seth and the others again. But if it came to that, it would mean powering the fading American cities—probably save millions of lives.
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