Jennifer died three years ago. Mark Campbell blames himself. Mark is in debt. His brother, Kyle, thinks he is irresponsible. Kyle's wife, Risa, thinks Mark is crazy. Only Bear believes there is another side to Mark, but Bear is an enigma. Three feet tall…white fur…slightly chubby from too many sodas and chocolates…and very few people can see him.
Kyle and Risa find Mark in the debtor's prison on Pueblo Station. Mark has a cellmate's rough prospector map of the mining colony of Flare. In an attempt to save his dilapidated ship, Mark convinces them to try one last prospecting run. But things go wrong. Flare's records don't quite fit the planet…the sun is entering its flare cycle…and as Bear is fond of saying, “You don't get something good for nothing.”
Flare is being mined by the Lom Corporation and they don't like intruders. There are rumors of exotic weapons research involving artificial intelligence…rumors of what lies among the thousands of abandoned and wrecked starships from years of wars…rumors of things called dragnaughts…
Mark is faced with several problems. He has one chance to run and save himself…but that would mean leaving someone behind. Bear has disappeared, and an annoying little creature has stowed away on his ship, and the little group is running out of time as the deadly flares are about to begin. And Mark has to figure out how you go about learning to forgive yourself…because he has run out on people before.
He ran out on Jennifer.
And there is Taffles who is not having a very good day.