The events in the book by Joyce Carol Oates, focus on Connie, a lady who is obsessed with the way she looks. She keeps looking herself in the mirror behavior that her mother does not like. He hates the way her mother keeps giving unfair comparisons with her elder sister, June. Her sister is 24 years and lives with her parents. Their family is far from perfect as her father is emotionally absent.
Connie loves June. When June goes out with her friends, he tags Connie along as well. That makes Connie happy. All of them often flirt with boys when they go out. During a dinner with a friend called Eddie, Connie encounters a man with a convertible which is gold in color. The man jokingly vows he will get Connie.
At one time, the family goes to a barbeque. Connie is left behind to clean her hair and listen to music. She is brought back to her senses when she hears noises from a car outside. When she checks, she finds out that the driver in the man she met on the day of the dinner with Eddie.
Connie notices that the man’s name is Arnold. Though Connie does not want to talk to him, he insists that they should be lovers. Arnold was with another man called Ellie. Arnold insists that Connie should get into the car. She notices some strange things about the man and begins fearing for her life. Moreover, the man claims that they are Connie’s age mates, although Connie notices that they look way older than what he says.
From her voice, Connie can tell she has heard the man on the radio. Though Connie tells then to leave, they insist on going with her. Because of fear, Connie becomes Dizzy. Arnold also insists that Connie should be his lover. When Connie says that she will call the police, Arnold threatens to harm her family. The threats make Connie even more fearful considering the man gives precise details of the whereabouts of her family.
In an attempt to dial the phone, Connie grows weak. It is said that she is stabbed several times mercilessly. She begins to sweat profusely. After that, Connie obeys all the instructions from Arnold. She now knows that she may never see her family members again. Connie follows Arnold towards a vast land, and she immediately knows that is where she is headed.