As with all of his stories, long, short, or epic, King weaves a tale that is hard to put down.
A black cloaked figure walks away from an Old Buick in a Pennsylvania gas station and never returns. The stranger bears a strange resemblance (at least in my mind) to Roland Deschain of Gilead the fictional character and the protagonist of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series. Or, it could be his nemesis Walter o’Dim in the same series who is also R. F. or Randall Flagg the Dark Man.
The car “was a ’54 [Buick], according to Tony Schoondist, Curtis Wilcox, and Ennis Rafferty. Sort of a ’54. When you got right down to it, it wasn’t a 1954 at all. Or a Buick. Or even a car. It was something else.” It plays the central and antagonistic role in the story. Most of the tale is told looking backwards as the State Troopers of Troop D tell the teenage son of a deceased trooper about the car they keep in Shed B.
The car seems to be an E.T. of some kind or a portal into another word which brings things from there and sucks people from here. Another oddity is:
“The Buick had been sitting miles away in Shed B, fat and luxy and blameless on whitewall tires that wouldn’t take dirt or even the slightest pebble in the treads but repudiated them each and every one, right down to (as far as we could tell) the finest grain of sand.”
The only drawback to the story I could find was that it could be repetitive and long winded, but I attribute that to the conversational way in the story is brought forth. It’s a fine story. No complaints from me.
Anyway tomorrow is my birthday, July 2, and I’ll be 61 but I feel 25 in my mind.
Sandy Dearborn, the commander of Troop D, is the main narrator of the story. I’ll leave you with his words on our perception of our own age:
I think it’s a mistake, a clerical error which will eventually be rectified when brought to the attention of the proper authorities.
It is impossible, I think, that a man who still feels so profoundly twenty-five can look so happast fifty.
The mistake was believing that the twenty-five-year-old guy who seemed to live in my brain was real.