Scott Carey, a divorced website designer living in the town of Castle Rock, finds himself affected with a strange condition; he gradually loses weight every day. Despite this weigth loss, he shows no physical changes, has a good appitite, and actually feels better than ever. Even stranger; he weights the same even when fully dressed and holding heavy objects.
Scott confides in his friend Bob Ellis, a retired doctor. He urges Scott to seek professional help, but Scott wants to finish a big project first and has no desire to become a medical curiosity. He keeps a calender on which he marks the day he expects to reach 0 pounds (which he names "Zero Day").
Scott’s new neighbors are a lesbian couple named Deidre McComb and Missy Donaldson. They run a small restaurant named Holy Frijole, but face bankrupcy since the summer is comming to an end, and the locals refuse to eat at their place due to the prejudices the community has against lesbians. Even though Scott gets off on a bad foot with 2 ladies due to their dogs defacating on his lawn, he eventually decides to stand up for them, although not everybody in town appreciates his decision, and Deidre actually warns him to stay out of the matter.
Deidre, who is an experienced runner, signs up for the annual Thanksgiving Turkey Trot 12K run to promote their restaurant, and Scott does the same, knowing his weight loss will give him an advantage. He makes a wager with Deidre that if he wins, she and Missy will come to have dinner at his home so they can talk things over. When they reach the finish, a heavy rainstorm starts and Deidre falls, but Scott helps her back on her feet (during which Deidre experiences a moment of weightlessness) and allows her to finish first. This act is largely featured in the news the following day, and finally gives the restaurant the promotion it needs. In the following weeks, the restaurant is booked full pretty much every evening, and as a result, the townspeople gradually warm up to Deidre and Missy.
Scott's good sportmanship also earns him the respect from Deidre, and she decides to have dinner at Scott's anyway despite having won the wager. Scott also invites Bob and his wife Myra, and tells all of them about his condition. This sparks another small discussion weater or not Scott should seek medical aid, but it's concluded that they best keep this information secret since it's unlikely anyone can help Scott, and he has made peace with his fate.
As Zero Day approaches faster and faster, Scott's decreasing weigth and corresponding weithlessness begin to hinder him in his daily activities. Even simply walking around already becomes a chore since his muscles are still used to his old weigth, so he keeps launchin himself into the air or running into objects. He begins to make arrangements for his appraoching end, like having someone take care of his cat and ordering a wheelchair with chest harness. He also has one last dinner with Missy, Deidre, Bob and Myra, where he asks Deidre to help him with his final request.
Then Zero Day arrives and Scott becomes completely weightless. At his own request, Deidre takes him out onto the lawn, and releases him from his wheelchair. As Scott floats away from the Earth and into space, he fires a SkyLight as a final goodbye to his friends.
References to other works by King
- The collapse of the Suicide Stairs, an event seen in Gwendy's Button Box, is mentioned.