Roland leaves the next day, giving his dead mule to Brown to eat. He reaches a way station and meets up with a boy named Jake Chambers. Jake was pushed in front of a car and died in his own reality and he ended up here in “mid-world” yet he does not remember any of it. Roland hypnotizes him to find out the details of his death and then erases his memory of it so Jake doesn’t repeat the violence and pain of the experience.
They leave the Way Station and come to a more lush area of land. Jake gets entrapped by “the oracle”. Roland rescues him and ends up having sex with the Oracle to learn of his quest and his fate. This incident has drastic ramifications towards the middle of the series.
Jake and Roland track “the Man in Black” into a cavernous mountain which they take an ancient mining car deep into the recesses of the mountain. They are attacked by “Slow Mutants,” once human monsters mutated by radiation. After surviving the attack, they catch up to the “Man in Black”; but Jake is dangling from the tracks and Roland must choose to either rescue Jake or go after his quarry.
The Man in Black attempts to stop Roland from seeking the Dark Tower by showing him how insignificant he is in the scheme of things, but Roland relents so the “Man in Black” casts a spell to put Roland to sleep. He awakens 10 years later on the edge of the Western Sea, a skeleton beside him whom he assumes is “The Man in Black.”