In 1971, Army Ranger Beck Senecal is denied a third tour in Vietnam after being driven through a second tour by his rage and grief and a desire to avenge the KIA of his best and hometown friend, U.S. Marine Foster Odom. But, in so doing, he blindly broke his promise to return to his girlfriend, Marica. Now, Marcia is engaged to someone else and Beck has no closure. He reluctantly takes his Freedom Bird flight to California, is discharged, doesn't call home and decides on a long train ride to Mobile, Alabama, where an old high school friend surprises him and gives him a lift to their largely rural community of Fermata Bend, Alabama--back to the tradition, values and sense of being worthy of others that was imparted upon him from the community and the veterans that he, Foster and other boys grew up under, all epitomized by the older veteran leader and icon, Jared Snead, "The Teller of the Tales," who played an old piano, told American history, local history and other stories, ran the hunting club, held forth as the emcee at all the veterans' balls at the old town armory and led all the parades around the town square. Only, Jared Snead has died, too, and so has the legend he fostered. Beck comes home to a growing realization of a Disconnect--that all his rage and all he thought he had fought for has become futile, as well as his sense of place. He now enters a struggle with feelings of disorientation and loss. He is alone and anxious. He can't sleep unless he exhausts himself. He fights down urges to be violent. He isolates himself. His parents can't understand him. He avoids church and community while he rejuvenates his old hot rod in the shed and drives up and down the highway by old haunts and by his old girlfriend, Marica's, house. But he is no longer the teenager who lived in his room. The Disconnect becomes more exacerbated with his mother's growing fear of him and her nagging that he should get out and be seen; his father's wish that he begin working on the farm and march with the veterans in the Veterans' Parade. Beck refuses both. Then Beck is called out to see an old visiting school friend who is now a DJ in Atlanta and has brought along a freaky girlfriend. They reminisce and go on a drunken night spree to Jared Snead's deserted family home place. It ends badly and there is no beginning of closure for Beck until he confronts Marica, the one he had promised to come back to.