The Jaunt – a short story by Stephen King

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+615 – One of King’s most haunting stories IMO. Only 16 pages, it could seem longer than you’d expect though. 😀 [The Jaunt PDF](https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B5Mew0gEo47xMVRwcF95TzFXZ3c/view?resourcekey=0-EGl_v407u0kK7gLm1uYoFg)

2022-04-03 23:07:50

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43 Comments
  1. It’s eternity in there

  2. > only 16 pages…

    Longer than you think!

  3. Ohhhh this story fucked me up when I first read it!

  4. This is a really great story. Really memorable for so few pages;

  5. This one always fucked me up, and Skeleton Crew is my favorite of his books. I did always wish there was some sort of film adaptation of it but the sound of the last line in my head is probably scarier than anything.

  6. Longer than you think, dad!

  7. Oh man I love this one. This and the Long Walk are my two fav SK short form stories

  8. Yknow there’s a podcast I listen to that was just mentioning this story…

  9. I think about this story somewhat frequently. This and Mrs Todd’s Shortcut have stayed with me since I was a kid.

  10. Creepiest short story i’ve ever read. I can’t wrap my head around that shit and the longer i think about it the more it freaks me out.

  11. My favourite short story ever. By any author.

  12. Skeleton Crew was such a good book! Survivor Type is another good short story from it.

  13. SK later solidified Randall Flagg’s origin story in one of the Dark Tower books, but at the time this short story was published that wasn’t true.

    I always wondered if **R**udy **F**oggia–the murderer who volunteered to take The Jaunt wide awake, and went insane–might have been a stealth origin story for Flagg.

  14. This story is being adapted.

  15. Stephen King’s best impression of an Asimov story

  16. It has haunted me for 40 years

  17. This is the absolute pinnacle of worst fates in fiction for me, easily beating out the 500 Million Year Button and White Christmas episode of Black Mirror.

    I think about it more than I should- if a year passes I’ll wonder what that year would have been like in the Jaunt, try to wrap my mind around it and break it down into stages and still fail. And that’s just one year out of billions.

  18. Also I’m pretty sure this story is one of the ones listed bold in the newer editions because it’s dark tower related

  19. Ohhhhhh this short story is fucking terrifying!

  20. My favorite King short story with The Mist coming in at #2.

  21. Such a great story, I remember reading this as a teenager. One thing I found funny was that in it he referenced Gary Hart as president, who was the Democratic forerunner for the 1988 presidential election, but then dropped out due to allegations that he was having an extra-marital affair with Donna Rice. I thought it was kind of cool that he left it in there as kind of an alternate universe thing.

  22. One of my favorite short stories.

  23. Thank you for sharing! Lots of spelling errors in here though

  24. Awesome, I have this saved to read when I can’t sleep. Thank you!!

  25. My absolute FAVORITE Stephen King story! Such an interesting and creative concept.

  26. I love the meta-ness of all the comments saying that if the story is adapted, it needs to be short because making it too long would ruin it.

  27. I hate how much I love how fucked up this story is 🙈

  28. I remember reading something about this one being one of King’s earliest works, and got heavily criticized by a famous sci fi author.

    Which is fine because the science fiction aspect is bad. Great horror though.

  29. Just read this today! Pretty solid short story. Didn’t know how it would end

  30. Good choice.

  31. I recommend this story to people every chance I get. I think it would make great short film or episode of Black Mirror.

  32. One of my all time favorite stories, let alone short

  33. This is my favorite Stephen King short story. I’m shocked it hasn’t made it’s way to the big screen

  34. If only read one thing from him. This is the one you read.

  35. Fucked me the fuck up when I was 13, still scares the piss outta me

  36. I remember getting this hyped up to me and then being really disappointed. Maybe it’s just his style of writing but I thought it was so full of itself

  37. It’s also a Randall Flagg story

    And the place he goes is probably the todash darkness from the dark tower

  38. *The Jaunt* is pretty much a direct adaptation of Arthur C. Clarke’s 1937 short story *Travel By Wire.*

    Though King put his amazing horror spin on it and came out with a superior story.

  39. Also his hair turned white just like looking into the deadlights on pennywise belly.

    The todash darkness

  40. Makes me think of Shadow of the Torturer by Gene Wolfe and Severian’s act of mercy.

    Great story. I once dated (one date) a girl who lived next door to King in Bangor. She was cute and fun, I was in over my head.

    It was longer than you think ago, dad.

  41. Pretty terrifying stuff. Still remember it perfectly. And if you want a King story your mother can read, give her Mrs. Todd’s Shortcut – shows that he can write, and leaves the darker stuff out for once.

  42. Stephen King has a standing licensing agreement that student filmmakers can adapt any of his short stories, royalty free.

    [This is one such adaptation of The Jaunt](https://vimeo.com/268219796)

  43. I still have the paperback (Skeleton Crew) that I first read this. This was/is still one of my favorite short stories.

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