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
When Seth, Leander, and Callum pulled Char’s limp body from the Kaa’s pit, Seth steeled himself against the sight. Moments before, she’d been firing the assault rifle still dangling from her shoulder. She was alive.
“Take this.” Leander ripped the rifle from Char’s body and handed it to Jesse.
Seth quickly assessed Char’s thermal-clad form and prodded at her legs. “Both broken,” he said to Leander.
A wail echoed up the tube and washed over them.
“Quickly!” Venn hissed.
Seth and Leander met eyes. “I’ll take her,” he said.
Seth threw Char’s arm over his shoulder and flipped her into a fire-fighter’s carry.
Suddenly a Kaa burst from a burrow in front of him—a long sinewy, eel-like body and a toothy, sucking mouth, about four feet long.
Leander fired a burst into it. It flopped to the ground.
Seth felt Char twitch and stir.
“That’s a small one,” Venn said. “Go!”
They plunged forward, winding their way through the dens. Another Kaa, twice the size of the first, launched itself into the air a few feet in front of them. It flipped in mid-air as all seven soldiers open fire. Fur and slime splattered the ground before the creature landed with a heavy thump.
A moment later another one, much smaller, sprang from the burrow right in front of the unarmed Jeff. Venn swung Jeff around by the handcuffs, putting himself between them and the Kaa, and flipped into a graceful kick. He drove his boot into the Kaa’s head and, anchored by Jeff, swung himself around and caught the Kaa again with his other foot.
The creature landed hard on the ground, and Callum leapt forward and jabbed his knife into it. Its teeth let loose of the leg and it fell, streaming pale fluid.
“Go!” Venn shouted. He dragged Jeff forward.
They pressed on. Finally they reached the slick, rocky slope of the mountains. Seth stumbled under the load of Char’s light weight. Callum caught him from behind and boosted him up. They climbed up to a small plateau and stopped. As they did, a splat of thick, oily moisture hit Seth’s face. He had no free hand to wipe it away. Another hit his nose, and in a moment a steady rain of fat drops were falling.
“Is that rain?” Marlene asked. She dropped to her knees and fumbled for a vial in her pack.
Seth laid Char down. She stirred and opened her eyes, snapping to alertness.
“Woah, no, no. Don’t sit up.” He pressed her back against the slick rock. “We’re across the valley.”
“My legs are broken,” Char said.
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