Ben Mears, a successful writer who grew up in the town of Jerusalem's Lot, Cumberland County, Maine, has returned home following the death of his wife. Once in town he meets local high school teacher Matt Burke and strikes up a romantic relationship with Susan Norton, a young college graduate. Ben plans to write a book about the “Marsden House”, an abandoned mansion that gave him nightmares after a bad experience with it as a child. The Marsden House was the home of '30s Gangster Hubert Marsden. Hubert, or "Hubie" was a hitman who specialized in rather unsavory hits. Hubie's profession intersected with his personal life and after his suicide, it was discovered he was responsible for the deaths of several children. Unbeknownst to Ben and his new friends, the Marsden House is about to be inhabited by the vampire Kurt Barlow. It is later revealed that Hubie Marsden had in fact communicated with the erstwhile Barlow, and that in the course of their correspondence Marsden may have extended to Barlow the necessary invitation to come to 'Salem's Lot.