Tall in the Saddle (1944) Movie Script

- Have a nice trip?
- Yes. Very nice.
- Expecting someone?
- I guess not.
Say, where's the stage office?
Right over there, back of the depot.
Thank you.
Doggone your hide, Blossom. Look at that.
Look what you went and done.
I am telling you, Blossom,
that makes you...
the most aggravating female
I ever had a despise for.
I ought to poison you.
- Howdy.
- That the stage for Santa Inez?
Leaves in a minute. We've just got...
a couple passengers
to pick up at the hotel.
Santa Inez, $17.50.
- Your name?
- Rocklin.
Mind if I ride alongside the driver?
It's all right with me
if it's all right with Dave.
He's mad. It's his last trip.
Had a row with Harolday, the boss.
Old-timer, Dave.
- Grumpy old cuss. I can remember...
- I like grumpy old cusses.
Hope to live long enough to be one.
Here's your mail, Dave.
And one more passenger.
Mind if I ride here?
- Where's them women?
- Up at the hotel.
Why ain't they here?
This is the stage depot, ain't it?
You can pick them up there.
It's just up the street.
"It's just up the street. "
And they can't walk it?
What's the matter?
Don't easterners have legs like other folk?
Hold tight when you get
in the mountains, mister.
When he gets riled, you can hear
the passengers praying for miles.
Where are them women?
Waiting for you to carry them out?
Hey, Dave.
Will you tell Arly Harolday
her saddle ain't ready yet?
I ain't telling that crazy female nothing.
Last time I see her, she threatened
to rip the hide off me...
and bat me dizzy with it.
Say, mister, will you tell the agent
at Santa Inez...
to tell Miss Harolday
her saddle ain't ready yet.
- I'll say that.
- Thank you.
- This trunk go?
- Yes, it goes.
By next year, madam, we expect to have
a bathtub on every floor.
Don't drop it!
At your age,
you best not be lifting things so heavy.
Maybe you're young enough
to hoist it up there your own self.
Dave will have his little jokes.
Staring as if you've never seen
a man before in your life.
I hope you have a nice trip, ladies.
If we get there.
Wouldn't surprise me if we didn't.
You wait till I get you on the road.
- Ever ride with Dave before, mister?
- Nope.
Then try and hold him down.
He'll scare the women to death.
I never feel sorry
for anything that happens to a woman.
Wonder why a young fella
who don't have to...
wants to come into
this dad-blamed country.
You mean what you said back there
about women?
Then you're smarter than most.
Maybe I've seen more of them than most.
Shouldn't be surprised.
Shouldn't be a little mite surprised.
All the same...
Have a snort.
Whisky and women.
You ever think how much alike they are?
They both fool you, but you never figure
how to do without them.
- Have another.
- Not just yet, thanks.
- Well, here's to her.
- Who?
The next one that fools you.
- Want me to spell you for a while?
- Nope.
I've had a couple of snorts,
but that don't make no difference.
Leastwise, never has.
Don't ever get old and wore-out
and useless like me.
- Who says you are?
- Boss Harolday, for one.
I ain't bellyaching.
I reckon he's entitled to his opinion...
but him and me never did see eye to eye.
- What's wrong?
- It's constitutional, I reckon.
He's too darn sane,
believing in law and order.
What's wrong with law and order?
That depends on who's dishing it out.
I never was much on taking orders myself.
And as for the law...
you'll find out what that means
around these parts.
- Driver, what's the matter?
- Nothing. Resting the horses.
You can get out
and stretch your legs if you like.
Resting horses? What for?
I can see with my own eyes it's downhill.
Are you in such an all-fired hurry, lady?
Certainly we're in a hurry!
Then, we'll hurry some.
Now what's the matter?
Why are you stopping again?
Why do we stop here?
- Somebody say something?
- I did! Why do we stop here?
If you want to eat and stretch your legs.
Will you please stop referring to my legs?
You got some, ain't you?
- You two-legged old sidewinder.
- Howdy do, ladies.
- How about something to eat?
- If it won't take too long.
Right this way.
You know, Zeke, this is my last trip.
'Cause Harolday won't take back
what he said.
No? What did he say?
"You're fired. "
Here you are, folks.
Just dig in and help yourself.
Ain't you gonna eat, mister?
I'll have some coffee.
- Supper, Dave?
- No. I'm drinking mine.
Set them up.
Young man, our driver's had
all the liquor he can take.
Has he?
You know he has.
You're not a complete fool, are you?
The rudeness of people in these parts
is appalling.
Mighty nice aroma of veal around here.
Doing yourself pretty well
these days, Stan?
A friend of mine was by,
sold me a quarter of beef.
Same friend that sold you that hide...
Bob here found hidden away
in your barn yesterday?
Hide? What hide?
One that might send you
to the penitentiary.
- What did you do with it, Stan?
- I never had no hide hidden out.
I saw it yesterday under the hay.
- It must still be there.
- No, it ain't. We looked.
Where is it?
- I tell you...
- What is all this?
Afternoon, ma'am. Miss Cardell, ain't it?
- Martin. Miss Martin. This is Miss Cardell.
- Pleased to meet you, miss.
Been expecting you down at Santa Inez.
I'm Sheriff Jackson.
- What's going on with him?
- Just a little matter of the law.
- Rustling.
- A thief.
- I tell you...
- Save it!
Matter of fact, Bob here says
the hide he saw yesterday...
had the KC brand on it.
What do you intend doing about it?
The law's pretty harsh around here
on cattle thieves.
Of course, we don't want
to make no mistake with an old-timer...
How about the owner of that beef?
Might he not have something
to say about it?
- Meaning?
- Red Cardell.
He's the owner of the KC, isn't he?
You're way behind the herd, mister.
Red Cardell died three weeks ago.
- Was murdered, you mean.
- That's right.
Shot in the back not far from here.
Maybe he was getting onto things...
about the cattle that's been missing
from the KC lately.
- I tell you, I never had no hide.
- You got beef.
Yeah, and I got a bill of sale for it, too.
Suppose you let me see that bill of sale.
Sure. It's right out here.
Like I said, I wouldn't want to
make no mistake with an old-timer.
That's her. The old one.
- She ain't got no legs.
- Hold your tongue!
And you.
Stop staring as if we were monsters.
We have to have another drink.
- Where's Stan?
- He's inside, explaining away a hide.
It seems they're eating stolen beef.
Somebody's loco.
Stan might give house-room
to a little dead beef...
but he'd never be fool enough
to leave the hide laying around.
How about it, Zeke?
That's the way it is, Dave.
- It's you, huh?
- Yeah, your old pal Bob Clews.
Get away from me,
you two-timing horse thief.
Them's fighting words, partner.
Stan, don't let them hang nothing on you
you ain't done.
They're just a couple of four flushers,
the pair of them.
- Everybody knows that.
- Crazy drunk.
Sure I'm drunk.
That's why I'm telling the truth.
I'm drunk, and I'll say what I think.
I'll say what I know.
Don't act up this ways, Dave.
There's women watching.
- Take your dirty paws off me.
- What he needs is a short lay-down.
Me and Bob will look after him.
Come on, Bob. We're his friends.
Take your hands off me.
I can take care of myself.
Careful, now. Don't hurt him.
How are things standing now
between you and the law?
All right, I reckon.
I guess this bill of sale kind of winded him.
Lucky you saved it.
- We laid him down. He went right to sleep.
- Good.
Sorry to have a ruckus like this
in front of you ladies...
but Dave's an ornery old cuss
when he gets going.
Too drunk to drive on, I'm afraid.
Don't worry, ma'am.
Bob here will take you on in.
He knows every inch
of the road, don't you?
- You bet.
- I'm driving.
But if anything was to happen
to the ladies, I'd feel to blame.
- Did they do it?
- They hit him with a pistola.
His friends, eh?
What happened this time?
- Bumped his head.
- Where? On Iron Mountain?
Where's the best chance of a cheap room?
Cap's place across the street,
the Sunup Saloon.
- Saloon?
- Saloon.
- Where's the hotel?
- Up the street a piece, lady.
Are we expected to carry our bags
this time of night?
- Do you want to drive them on up?
- Nope.
I'll pick up my saddle tomorrow.
Hey, Doc, customer.
Take my hand, Shorty.
What happened here?
- Bumped his head.
- So I see.
Looks like he's going to need
a couple or so stitches.
You better get him up to a room.
I'll get a key.
- Book me for one, too.
- I'll help you with him.
He'll be all right.
How about a little snort?
- Don't mind if I do.
- Come along.
- Will he make it?
- Sure he'll make it.
You can't kill off an old jug-wallow
like Dave that easy.
You're right.
I reckon Saint Peter's getting
mighty weary...
dusting off that doormat for him.
- What'll you have?
- Whisky.
- By the way, how'd you say it happened?
- I didn't.
That's right. You didn't.
The reason I ask,
there were a couple of fellas in here...
that said that Dave was kicking up
quite a ruckus up at Stan's place.
Sheriff Jackson it was, and Bob Clews.
Tough customers, those Clews boys.
It don't pay to start nothing with them
you don't intend to finish.
Say, Doc, they tell me
George is getting out again.
Yes! That's Bob Clews' brother.
Just did a stretch in the penitentiary
for horse stealing.
They string them up for that
where I come from.
Too bad they didn't string Clews up
while they were about it.
- Here's how.
- Mud.
That's a good hand.
What did I tell you?
They got to be big to beat me.
Clint Harolday's luck is good tonight, huh?
They're certainly running for him.
It's about time.
He's taken a beating this last week
that would shake a better man.
Include me out.
- Come on. Can't you take it?
- Not with that kind of luck, I can't.
Besides, I only sat in to oblige.
Come on, Doc.
I still got to take something from you.
No more tonight, son.
How about you, sir? Care to sit in?
I must warn you
that our young friend here...
is holding phenomenal cards.
- Don't mind if I do.
- That's fine.
- This is Pat Fosler.
- How are you?
- Ab Jenkins.
- How are you?
Shorty Davis, and Clint Harolday.
My name is Garvey. Judge Garvey, sir.
I don't believe I got yours.
- Rocklin.
- How do you do, sir? Please sit down.
Anybody got any change?
You won't need any change
in this game, mister.
- I'll let you have some, sir.
- Deal, Ab.
I'm up.
Your bet.
It's open for $3.
- I'm out.
- Raise you $20.
- I'm out.
- Beats me.
Call you for $6.
- Table stakes, Clint.
- Not if he wants to dig.
Got you beat.
- Cards?
- One.
One for me.
That queen is dead.
- Or I can take it if I want it.
- Sure, if you want...
but you got to beat my hand
with four cards.
I'm playing these, mister.
I'm not setting in.
Why don't you boys split the pot?
I'm not splitting. I'm betting.
You calling?
I'm raising.
Let me have some money.
You're in deep enough already, Clint.
I have called for all I've got.
Full house.
Kings up win. That third queen is dead.
Mister, get away from that table
and get out of here.
Maybe from now on you'll know...
a full house beats two pairs,
you four-flusher.
He wasn't armed, Clint.
I don't like to tell men how to play cards
when I'm not sitting in...
but maybe I ought to have spoken up.
That queen was dead, Clint,
and you know it.
When anybody plays poker with me,
they play my game or not at all.
If I was you, I'd hightail it out of here
before he comes back.
- Comes back.
- He's the kind.
I've come for my money.
I guess I was wrong about that queen.
Cap's an old gambler,
and he says you were right all the time.
I'm willing to take Cap's word for it
because, as I said, he...
Good night, gentlemen.
Funny thing about that card.
Why, if I'd known for sure
it was dead like Cap said...
He's gone to bed, Clint.
Who are you?
- How are you feeling?
- Fine.
Nice place you got here.
This isn't my place. It's the Sunup Saloon.
See you later.
I knocked, but I guess you didn't hear me.
What do you want?
Looks like you kind of stirred things up
around here last night, stranger.
- Is that what you came to say?
- Nope. Got a message for you.
Somebody wants to see you out front.
Why don't you go down and find out?
I will.
- What's going on over there?
- Arly Harolday's on the warpath.
I just talked to him.
He ought to be down any minute.
Here he comes now. Watch the fun.
- Your name Rocklin?
- Yes, ma'am.
You took some money
from my brother last night.
- Did I?
- You took it at the point of a gun...
and I'm taking it back the same way.
- You're Arly Harolday.
- Dig!
I was told to say
that your saddle isn't ready yet.
Stop or I'll kill you!
Turn around. Turn around!
You lied to me, didn't you?
Don't think I'll forget this,
making a fool of me...
in front of the whole town.
I'll see you at the ranch.
Was that a close shave.
Why, she'd just as soon hit you
as miss you.
You don't know how lucky you were, son.
Why do you think I need this?
Say, that was the funniest thing
I ever saw.
That Arly is madder than a loco heifer.
- You sure get the...
- Get out of here!
You broke it!
That calls for one on the house.
Come on. Come in here.
Who handled Red Cardell's business?
- Judge Garvey.
- Know where I could find him?
He rooms behind his office
across the street over there.
He doesn't usually raise the blinds,
though, until about noon.
- See you later.
- Thanks.
Boy, has somebody come to town.
Come in.
Mr. Rocklin, good morning.
Come in, sir. Come right in.
That was quite a poker game
we had last night, wasn't it?
- Yes.
- Excuse me. I'll get my coat.
Yes, sir, that was
quite a little poker game.
What can I do for you, sir?
I understand you were
Red Cardell's lawyer.
- I was. Yes, that's right.
- You know anything about this?
"Dear Rocklin, glad you have
made up your mind to come.
"Enclosed find train fare
and $150 advance on your wages. "
I don't quite understand.
I don't know why Red
should have wanted to hire you.
Why not?
I don't know.
It's true that he did
a lot of peculiar things...
but I don't know
where he could have used you.
Of course, if you'd like to go on
as an extra hand...
Excuse me.
- Good morning, ladies.
- Judge Garvey, I presume?
- Yes, and you are?
- I'm Miss Martin.
- This is my niece Clara Cardell.
- How do you do?
Come in, please, and sit down.
You arrived at
a very opportune moment, madam.
As the new owner of the KC Ranch,
I'm sure you'll be interested to know...
that this gentleman claims
to have a letter...
"Claims to have"? You read it, didn't you?
Has a letter, shall we say, then,
from the late Mr. Cardell...
engaging him to work on the KC.
You can't hold us to account
for every promise made by that man.
Everybody knows he wasn't responsible
for his actions half the time.
And if you think I'd have you work
on the ranch in any capacity...
Lady, I'd rather walk for somebody else
than ride for you.
What impudence!
The only reason I came here today...
was to pay back the $150
Red Cardell sent in advance.
- No.
- Don't interfere, Clara.
Of course he must pay it back.
As far as the railroad fare is concerned...
I reckon we can check that off
to time lost, call it quits.
But, mister, I...
- I'm sorry. I don't know your name.
- Rocklin, miss.
It isn't fair for you to pay anything back.
I'd prefer it that way, if you don't mind.
I have a message for you.
- About what?
- Wait a minute.
I just heard they let George Clews out
of the penitentiary...
and you can tell him
if he sets foot on the Topaz Ranch...
I'll shoot him on sight.
But, Miss Arly, I don't know
why you should...
want to deliver your message through me.
- You have mutual friends.
- If you're referring to Sheriff Jackson...
- I am.
- But that's absurd, Miss Arly.
The fact that he employs
one of Clews brothers...
doesn't make the other his friend.
Have it your own way, but warn him.
I mean it.
Miss Harolday, this is Miss Cardell.
- How do you do?
- Hello.
And Miss Martin, her aunt.
- Hello.
- How do you do?
I think you should know each other,
seeing that you're going to be neighbors.
Miss Harolday runs the Topaz Ranch
for her stepfather.
She's a famous horsewoman
in these parts.
I saw you ride into town this morning.
You looked lovely.
Harolday wants to see you
down at his office.
What about?
He's got a proposition to make
about riding for him.
- $60 a month.
- That's foreman's wages.
I wouldn't give you a red cent,
but it's his money.
The way things are shaping up
around the ranch...
maybe we could do with somebody
as mean as you.
I warn you, Miss Harolday,
you're making a great mistake.
Do you want the job?
Lead the way.
Why did you have to say that?
I simply don't understand you.
But I understand you.
You should be ashamed,
throwing yourself at a man like that.
Why, I...
- You must excuse her. She's young.
- And inexperienced.
Young people must be protected
from themselves at times.
- Don't you agree?
- Exactly.
- He following you?
- Not following me. He's with me.
He's always with me.
- Just an old friend.
- Best friend I've got.
Wait here.
I just hired a man named Rocklin,
said you made me do it.
$60, and he'll earn it, while he lasts.
Arly, you know we don't need
any more help.
- Why did you do it?
- So I can fire him.
I hate him.
Clint and he quarreled last night.
Clint lied about it...
and I made a fool of myself.
- He's outside.
- Arly, wait.
Come in.
- Howdy.
- Howdy.
Mr. Rocklin, what happened
between you and my stepson last night?
About this suggestion,
you working for me...
- It was your suggestion, not mine.
- Yes, that's right.
$60 is big money.
- If you've changed your mind, I...
- No. Wait a minute.
I take it you've had the experience.
- Enough for Red Cardell to hire me.
- Red Cardell hired you?
Yes, but I won't ride for the new owner,
so it leaves me open.
I see. Were you a friend of Red's?
Rock, George Clews is in town.
He seen what you done to Bob
and he's looking for you.
Tell him I'll be outside in the street
in front of the saloon.
Get them children out of here.
Get out, Joe. There's going to be trouble.
Clear the street! Hurry up, everybody!
I'm gonna get his ears.
You, George Clews.
Rocklin said if you don't come out,
he's coming in here to tear you apart.
That was my beer, you know?
If he comes in again, I'll throw you.
- I'm gonna get his ears.
- His ears are outside.
- Come on.
- How about those drinks?
Pay him.
Pardon me, ladies.
Would you mind stepping inside?
Inside? Why?
- I think it might be safer.
- Safer?
Touch that gun and I'll kill you.
Did you want to see me?
Why, you...
I saw you! I saw you strike that poor man!
Yes, ma'am, just as hard as I could.
Hey, you. What you been up to?
I just laid the gun barrel across the head
of a drunk friend of yours...
like you did yesterday.
- I don't know what you're talking about.
- You're a liar.
You look here, young fella.
You keep on talking like that...
and you'll find yourself
in a heap of trouble.
Don't say you ain't been warned!
- Say, that was...
- What were you saying about Cardell?
You being hired by Red Cardell
only confirms what I'd suspected.
- He was getting ready to fight.
- Fight? Who?
Organized rustling.
At least, that's my belief.
Red was no friend of mine.
He was too fond of...
taking the law into his own hands.
But he had my sympathy.
He'd been harder hit than any of us.
To top it all, he lost his foreman.
You mean he quit on him?
No. He was shot.
Shot in the back by a bullet...
from the same caliber rifle as got Red.
Got any ideas?
No, except the man you just
pistol-whipped is in on it somewhere.
It's a pity you didn't kill him
when you had the chance.
Say, it doesn't sound like
it's going to be so easy...
on those women at the KC.
Want to go back and work for them?
And I'm not jumping
at this offer of yours, either...
'cause I don't hold
with working for women.
You mean my stepdaughter?
Don't worry. She won't interfere with you.
Rocklin, I figure we've been losing cattle
over a place called Tabletop.
It's the back way into the Topaz Ranch
and a perfect route for rustlers.
I'm going to send you up to the line camp.
Don't mind working a lone hand, do you?
- I like working that way.
- Good. How soon can you move out?
As soon as I can get my gear together.
You bring it here,
and I'll see it gets up to the ranch.
Now, Pat, I'm giving you first call
on my services.
There's a lot of other folks
looking for a good man, too, you know?
So if you want me,
better hurry and speak up.
I ain't got no time to...
Excuse me. I'll be right back
to find out when to start.
Where you heading for?
- Riding for the Topaz.
- What?
- Have you gone plumb loco?
- It's good money.
There ain't money enough
to make it worthwhile...
to work for that woman.
When she gets going, she can be meaner
than a skillet full of rattlesnakes.
She ain't gonna forget
the way you made a fool out of her...
in front of the whole town.
- Dave!
- Yeah, I'll be right there.
- It's poison, that's what it is. Just plain...
- Dave!
What do you want
to hang around here for anyhow?
$60 a month.
Be right with you.
- How do you do, Mr. Rocklin?
- Howdy.
It's a lovely afternoon, isn't it?
I reckon it is pretty nice.
- So you're moving in on the KC?
- Not exactly moving in.
- You see, we're...
- Clara, do you have to discuss...
our private affairs with every ragtag
and bobtail cow person we meet?
Just passing the time of day, ma'am.
We can do very well without it, thank you.
Besides, you're keeping
your lady friend waiting.
I thought maybe
you'd changed your mind again.
Tala will show you the bunkhouse.
I'll talk to you about your duties
in the morning.
How far is it to the line camp at Tabletop?
10, 15 mile.
I'll be moving up there
first thing in the morning.
Harolday's orders.
Care to show me the way?
I will show you.
The trail is straight ahead.
You'll find everything you need
in the cabin at the top.
Tala, it appears you don't like me.
- That's right. I do not.
- Why?
Permit that I offer you a cigarette.
It is not your fault
that your shadow is black.
But you will only bring unhappiness
to my Arlita.
I do not blame you...
but I feel I must hate you.
- Hi, there.
- I see you found a new job.
Yeah. I haul freight for old Pat Fosler.
Got a letter here
for that crazy galoot Rocklin...
from that little Cardell gal.
You know, she seems to be
mighty took up about something.
Made me promise to deliver it personal.
- But Rocklin is not here.
- You ain't telling me he's quit already?
- He's on the way to Tabletop.
- Doggone it!
And I've got a whole load of stuff
to deliver to Gopher Flats.
Maybe you can take
the old road to Tabletop?
- Is it still open?
- Yes, I think so.
Here I go, then. So long.
Have you seen Arly?
No, sir, I didn't see Miss Arly today
but I seed her last night...
and she sure was mad.
Plenty mad.
Morning, Clint.
You must be feeling pretty good
this morning.
Say, Arly, about that poker game
night before last...
- Forget it.
- Forget it?
- Well?
- Say, what is this?
- What do you mean?
- What do I mean?
Good morning, Arlita.
Good morning, Tala.
You have made yourself very pretty today.
See what I mean?
Have my horse saddled
and sent around right away, will you?
And have that Rocklin bring it.
Well? What are you grinning at?
Rocklin is not here.
He quit?
- He has gone to the line camp at Tabletop.
- What?
It was Mr. Harolday's orders.
Why do you make your heart heavy
with thoughts of him, little one?
- He's not for you.
- Be quiet.
He has made the choice, Arlita.
With your own eyes, you saw it yesterday.
And she, too, has opened her heart to him.
Already she has summoned him to her.
What do you mean?
Dave of the white beard
carries a letter to Rocklin. It is from her.
How did you know that?
I met Dave, and he tell me.
So now he rides to Tabletop.
- Little one, why don't...
- Leave me...
Good morning, Arly. Good morning, Tala.
Say, fetch my briefcase, will you?
It's on the desk.
Get it.
Looks like we're getting that land
we were wanting along the river bottom.
I bought the mortgage
on the Hardman ranch.
It's due today. I'm on my way
over there now.
Did you send that Rocklin to Tabletop?
- Why, yes, I did.
- Let's get things straight.
This place was my mother's,
now it's mine and Clint's.
You've helped out,
but the way things are going...
we'll be able to pay you back
every penny we owe.
Meanwhile, I'm running this outfit,
and I expect to give the orders.
You generally do.
Why did you send Rocklin to Tabletop?
It seemed like a good idea,
what with all this rustling going on.
Who'd be driving cattle over Tabletop
unless they were crazy?
Now, I don't agree with you.
At any rate, if you must have it...
I'd no intention of engaging a man
at foreman's wages...
just to gratify the whims
of a jealous woman.
You take care what you're saying.
No, it's you
who should take care, my dear.
There's one man that you can't rawhide
into jumping the way you want.
You made a fool of yourself over him once.
You better watch out
you don't do it again.
Thanks, Tala.
Darn funny, that storm quitting
about the time I get here.
No funnier than you slogging through,
to deliver a letter from a woman.
The older I get, the dumber I get.
When we gonna get around to reading it?
Thought I'd wait till morning.
Might be bad news,
and I wouldn't be able to sleep.
"Dear Mr. Rocklin...
"forgive me if this letter
seems a trifle incoherent...
"but I am terribly worried and unhappy. "
Who wouldn't be,
living with that old screech owl?
Go ahead, go ahead. I can't read anyhow.
"I am desperately in need of help
and advice...
"from someone whom I feel I can trust.
"I heartily dislike and distrust
Judge Garvey. "
Smart gal.
"But my aunt seems to have suddenly
revised her opinion of him...
"and now wants me to place all my affairs
in the Judge's hands and return east.
"Such is certainly not my wish. "
Kind of looks like
she's formed an attachment.
For the locality, I mean.
"I wanted so much
to give ranch life a trial...
"but fear circumstances are against me.
"Especially in view
of the recent Indian trouble. "
Indian trouble? Why, there isn't been
no Indian trouble around here...
You want to hear the rest of this?
Might as well. Come this far.
"I want to apologize
for what took place this afternoon...
"and I am returning the $150...
"because I feel it is rightfully yours.
"You must take it.
Faithfully yours, Clara Cardell. "
Well, what do you make of it?
Somebody's sure busting
to get her off the ranch.
Indian trouble.
Got to admit, though,
I feel a mite sorry for that young 'un.
Nice little tyke.
Too nice for this country.
She sure is a pretty little thing.
Dave, what do you know
about Garvey and Cardell?
Cardell? Salt of the earth.
Cantankerous old cuss,
but a real tall man, believe me.
He was a big feller,
tall in the saddle, like yourself.
Fact is, you could pass for blood relation,
come to think of it.
- Were Red and the Judge friends?
- Yeah, that's what you'd say.
They were regular drinking partners,
played poker together most nights.
Red always got the worst of it.
Red was a gambler.
Oh, yeah. A mighty poor one, I reckon.
Still, you'd have to say
him and Garvey were friends.
Anything ever happen
to make you think they weren't?
Rock, I'm going to tell you something
I ain't told nobody before.
Sure you can trust me?
Last time I seen old Red
was the day he died.
It was in town.
He just come out of the stage office.
Tried to book passage for Garden City,
but couldn't on account of I had a full load.
Sir, he took me aside
and read me a printed piece of paper.
It was from one of them
Chicago sporting firms...
explaining how to manipulate
trick playing cards.
- Marked cards.
- Yeah.
Seemed Red found the cards
and this paper...
in the pocket of a coat
he borrowed from a friend once.
- Whose coat was it?
- Now, that's just what I asked.
All he said was
it belonged to a good friend.
He said he wasn't waiting
for the next stage...
but riding over to see the district judge
about it alone.
And that's when they got him?
Yeah. Just a mile or so from Stan's place.
A bullet in his back, pockets empty.
How come you never told anybody before?
Who was I going to tell? Sheriff Jackson?
How about what's-his-name, Harolday?
He's no friend of Garvey's, is he?
Hates his guts.
Sure riles him to see young Clint
hanging on the Judge's coattails.
All the same, I decided to keep
my mouth shut and my eyes open.
Even if it was Garvey
that Red was talking about...
don't follow that he killed him.
No. General opinion is, it was rustlers.
You all right?
Doggone it! I will be if I ever get dry.
- Hey, Look at that!
- Get down!
Jumping Jeremiah! Look at that!
Come on.
My team.
That's not your team. Come on.
You can't run him down afoot!
Maybe he'll double back.
Not bad shooting.
You think I did that?
Cutting it mighty close, though.
Good thing I haven't got brains enough
to fill it.
It's too bad you had to come up here
through that storm for nothing.
I haven't minded a bit...
because I came up here to fire you!
I see.
Harolday does the hiring...
and you do the firing.
I own the Topaz, not Harolday.
Now get out of here
and don't ever come back!
Mind if I wait for Dave?
He'll be along any minute.
Be funny if he winged
that shadow of yours.
If you mean Tala, you're loco.
He's not even up here.
You came up alone?
Then who was that we took out after?
Whoever shot at you.
- Who was it?
- I don't know.
- You mean you won't tell.
- I mean I don't know!
Why should I lie to you?
Reckon you forgot something.
You just fired me.
Rock, he got away, but guess...
You guess.
For a man that's got a despise for women,
you sure do get all snaggled up with them.
- You work for Harolday?
- Yes.
Here's one of his horses.
That's my saddle. I'll pick it up in a minute.
I thought I sent you up to Tabletop.
- That's right.
- What happened?
This, for one thing.
I told you, you should've killed him
when you had the chance.
What's the matter?
Don't you think it was him?
Well, I've been figuring...
and it don't seem reasonable...
that Clews was in a condition
to take that sort of a chance alone.
Besides, how would he have known
I was up there that soon?
George Clews is not the only one
I've run contrariwise to in this town.
There's that shadow
of your stepdaughter's, for instance.
Then there's... him.
Hello, Clint.
I just heard that Rocklin was...
- Was what?
- Was shot at last night.
Yeah, Mr. Rocklin
was just telling me all about it.
You haven't any idea
who might have done it, have you?
Not me.
You ain't trying to pin it on me?
Because if you are,
you're in for a big disappointment.
I was over at the Sunup...
playing poker with the Judge
and the boys till early morning.
If you don't believe me, ask for yourself.
I believe you.
But that don't mean you couldn't tell
a thing or two as would help...
if you wanted.
- What do you mean?
- Yeah, what would Clint know about it?
How about this?
Ever see it before?
Go on, speak up.
Did you ever see it before?
No, of course I didn't.
Quit riding me. I don't know, I tell you!
Just because I had a run-in with you
over a game of cards...
that don't mean I'd sneak up on you
in the dark and...
By the way...
I was fired last night...
by the boss.
Clint, I don't know
what I'm going to do with you.
You cause me nothing but trouble.
The way you lied about that pouch
wouldn't have deceived a 6-year-old.
- I was...
- My advice to you...
is to get out of town for a while,
till this thing blows over.
You'll find some money in my safe
at the ranch.
Take what you need, and put the key
back in the desk drawer. Go ahead.
Mr. Rocklin, I'm so glad I found you.
I feel perfectly awful
running after you like this, but I...
You got troubles?
Come on in.
It's all right.
- Now, what is it?
- My aunt found out I wrote you.
She made a terrible scene.
You haven't signed everything
over to that Garvey, have you?
No, but because I refused...
she said she's sign an affidavit
saying I'm still underage.
And as my guardian,
she can do whatever she likes.
You got anything to prove
you're not underage?
Mr. Garvey has a letter that will prove it.
My aunt wrote it before we came out here.
You suppose we could get it?
He'd never give it to me.
- Wait here.
- Please, you...
You won't go getting yourself into trouble,
will you?
I mean, I'd rather give up everything
That takes care of that.
All we have to do is make the affidavit...
and everything will be just as we want it.
I certainly hope so. Of course,
it's not myself I'm concerned about.
Of course. Now, let me see...
"I, Elizabeth... "
Mr. Rocklin, this is indeed a surprise.
I understood
you were riding for the Topaz.
That's right.
Miss Martin, perhaps we can finish
our business at some later date.
Would you excuse us, please?
I came for that letter.
- Letter?
- The one Miss Martin wrote...
from back east,
saying the girl was of age, remember?
No, I don't believe I do.
Mr. Rocklin, let me ask you a question.
Just what is your interest in this letter?
My only interest is getting it.
You realize what this is, don't you?
It's robbery.
Armed robbery, at that.
I'm afraid you're going to be disappointed.
- Open up.
- There's nothing there that concerns you.
I'd like to make up my own mind
about that.
All right, I'll open it, just to convince you
that I'm not hiding any letter.
- What's the idea?
- These cards.
Is there anything unusual about a man
having a deck of cards in his possession?
Depends on what kind they are.
Especially when they're under
lock and key.
- You're taking them with you, I presume.
- That's right.
- Now you look here...
- You're the one that better start looking...
for a way out for killing Red Cardell.
Red Cardell?
He found out about these
and you killed him.
And you believe a story like that?
I will till I hear a better one.
The district judge at Garden City
might be very interested in these.
Give me a hand here, boys.
Say, looks like you two
had a little disagreement.
- He isn't dead, is he?
- Not permanently, I don't reckon.
- What happened, anyway?
- Nothing! Nothing at all!
You must have found out something.
Come on.
- What's the matter? Are you hurt?
- Shut up!
Don't you talk to me like that!
I'll have you...
Find out who owns
that tobacco pouch yet?
Nope, but get Clint Harolday.
- Clint? Is he in on it?
- I don't know, but get him.
Bring him up to my room.
So now you know the truth.
Think you can steal him away from me,
you're welcome to try it.
Did you get it?
Nope, but I don't think it matters much.
You go on back to the KC,
and I'll come out in the morning...
pick you up and take you
over to Garden City.
I hate putting you to that trouble.
It's nothing at all. I'm going there anyway.
You look like you've been fighting.
What are you doing here?
I was just telling Miss Cardell...
about you and me.
What about you and me?
- I think I'd better be going.
- Just a minute.
What all has she been telling you?
Really, I'd rather not.
Go ahead. Tell him.
And I dare him to deny it.
Deny what?
That she was with you last night
in the cabin in the mountains.
Why should I deny it?
- Didn't you make love to me?
- Make love?
You didn't kiss me, I suppose.
Do you expect me to deny that, too?
You see?
Maybe you ought to hear
what I have to say.
Please, you needn't explain.
After all, it isn't any of my business, is it?
- Why, you little...
- That's right. Start swearing.
Just like a man.
If there wasn't a lady here,
I'd do more to you than swear.
Mr. Rocklin, I can't thank you enough
for trying to help me, and I...
I really appreciate it ever so much.
She's lovely, isn't she? So sweet, honest...
but helpless.
It's a pity you didn't fall in love with her
instead of me.
You might as well know right now...
that no woman is going to get me
hogtied and branded.
Don't be so sure.
I don't think I'm doing so badly.
Don't you?
Don't you know?
I know there isn't anything
you wouldn't do to get what you want.
I always get what I want.
See? Bye.
Whatever is to become of you?
Have you no pride, decency?
Throwing yourself at that wretch
like any shameless hussy.
I thought we were done with him...
but, no, you had to run and tell him
all about our business.
Don't you dare deny it.
You know very well you told him
about that letter I wrote to Mr. Garvey.
Didn't you?
Tell Miss Martin
I'll take care of everything.
You'll take care of everything.
Get down. Tie them up.
All right.
Come in.
Get in. Get in.
Here he is, Rock.
Caught him just in time near the Topaz.
Heading for out, I'd say. Here's his gun.
How about you going down
and having one on me?
Tell Cap to charge it.
But if you need me, holler.
What's this all about?
Now, there's no use you getting
all het up and excited, kid.
I just want to ask you a few questions.
Sit down.
I told you, I don't know
who owns that pouch...
and I don't know who shot at you.
Forget it. That's not what
I wanted to talk to you about anyway.
What do you want to talk about?
Come on! Get it over with!
Clint, I want you to tell me
why Garvey murdered Red Cardell.
- You know, don't you?
- Me? No.
You do, and you're
going to tell me all about it.
I don't know anything about it!
- Talk.
- I don't know anything!
I would...
Look at this. Where's Doc Riley?
What's the matter? What is it?
Somebody better fetch Harolday.
Better get Arly, too.
- She was over at the hotel.
- I'll get her.
What's going on? Gangway.
Here, what's the trouble?
And I warned you, didn't I?
Guess that's the last trouble
you'll cause in this town.
- Hand over that gun.
- Now, just a minute.
I know it looks bad, but I didn't kill the kid.
I believe you.
When I come in, his gun was laying
right over there...
No, it wasn't. It was right here in my hand,
like it is now.
Yeah, if you didn't kill him, then who did?
I don't know, but I'm going to find out.
Where's my boy?
- I didn't do it, Harolday.
- Who did, then?
He had a gun in his hand
when we came in.
Bet it's the same one that killed Clint.
What do you say to that?
- He's right.
- You admit it.
That still doesn't say I did it.
- Why'd you do it?
- I didn't.
He admits it was his gun that shot him.
But you didn't fire it?
That's right.
- What happened?
- Clint and I were having a little argument.
What about?
About whether he was going to help
clear up a few things...
that have been bothering me
and some other folks around here.
Who killed Red Cardell, for instance.
- Cardell?
- And the KC foreman...
and who it was took that shot at me
at Tabletop last night...
and why certain people are so anxious
to get rid of that Cardell girl.
How would Clint know about all that?
He's lying. He's covering up
for killing my boy.
Don't be a fool. You know you
can't get away with a yarn like that.
Why don't you save yourself
and everyone else some trouble...
and just surrender to the Sheriff here?
After all, it's not a crime in these parts
to shoot a man in self-defense.
- Self-defense?
- Yes.
Everybody knows how Clint was.
He probably lost his head and pulled a gun
like he did that night in the poker game.
Wasn't that it?
No, that wasn't it...
and until I do what I've got to do,
I'm not surrendering to anybody.
I wouldn't exactly care
to be shot in the back...
in a framed-up jailbreak.
If someone was going to kill you,
why didn't they do it just now?
Why'd they have to kill Clint?
I don't know, unless
they wanted to get Clint, too.
See, doing it this way, they get us both.
Clint first and me afterwards,
just like I said.
Quit the fancy talk. Who's they?
I might be able to answer that
for you later.
No, you won't, because
you're coming along with me.
Am I? Get back.
After him!
Sheriff, you ought to be congratulated.
Look, Mr. Harolday,
you seen what happened.
Let's go to Garden City,
that's where he's headed.
- Are you sure?
- I'm positive.
Come on.
You are crying, Arlita.
There is no need to cry.
Rocklin did not kill your brother.
I saw it all.
Then why didn't you tell?
Who was it?
You will know him
when you see me kill him.
Want I should spell you awhile?
Doggone you. I might have known
you'd do something like this.
- What are we doing?
- Heading for the KC.
For the KC? Isn't that
a little like hanging yourself?
You better get out of this country fast,
I'm thinking.
- I'll do the thinking.
- Yeah.
Name is Clews, ma'am.
Mr. Garvey sent us out.
Said you were expecting trouble
with that Rocklin.
I am. I'm wondering if you're up to it.
I notice you didn't fare so well
with him yesterday.
- He was drunk.
- Yeah, but I'm sober now.
See that you stay that way.
Don't worry, ma'am. I'm just waiting
to get even with that saddle tramp.
We'll be close by.
Yes, ma'am.
See anybody riding hard for Garden City?
Been on the road all night.
Ain't seen a living soul.
Probably took the cutoff
through Jawbone Canyon.
After that storm, he won't make it.
Only one other place he could've gone.
That's KC.
- You think so?
- I'm positive.
- That's what you said before.
- To the KC, men!
- Take me through the canyon.
- It is dangerous, Arlita.
- We've got to beat them to the KC.
- It is dangerous.
I will go through from here alone.
We're going through together.
Hey, George. George, get up.
You ungrateful thing, running away
like a deceitful sneak thief.
Yes, I'm running away,
and it's all your fault.
You're been deceitful and sneaking.
Don't think I don't know your intensions.
Don't think I don't know your intentions.
I don't care! Nothing you can say or do
is going to stop me.
You little fool, you go to Garden City
with that man and you'll lose everything.
But why? Why are you being so evasive?
If you know, why don't you tell me?
All right, I'll tell you.
Rocklin is the nephew
of the late Mr. Cardell.
As next of kin,
he stands to get everything...
because you're not Cardell's niece,
you're only his grandniece.
Rocklin turned up unexpectedly.
- You and Mr. Garvey knew the truth?
- Yes!
And you knowed the truth all the time,
too, didn't you?
No wonder you stuck around.
Well, of all the...
I'll take care of her.
Come on.
I heard one of them
tell my aunt not to worry...
that he was just as anxious as she was
to get even with you.
It's the only way I can handle her.
The Clews are around here someplace.
Garvey sent them.
You bet we're around.
Untie her.
Now tie him up.
I'll take part in this, you hairy beast.
And here's something I owe you.
Help me get her on the bed.
Take those two to Mr. Garvey,
tell him I want to see him at once.
Put them in the wagon and get our horses.
We'll dump him in the Judge's lap.
- Hadn't we better tie him, too?
- Get some rope.
Get rid of those guns.
- What's the matter, Arly?
- Get rid of them!
Now get down off that wagon.
Look, Arly...
Better get out of here as fast as you can.
They're headed this way.
Where'd you get this?
That belongs to the man
that took that a shot at me on Tabletop.
Dave found it.
Cut him loose.
Put that gun away.
We got to stop him.
He's got to get away. Get the team!
Rocklin, you got to get out of here!
Do something. If you can!
Doggone it, Rock! I'm on your side!
Then, come on. Let's get the Cardell girl.
You haven't time. They're coming.
Don't you believe me?
- Go get him.
- He's as stubborn as an old mule.
You're putting a rope around your neck!
Mine, too, maybe.
Get him out of sight and follow me.
- What will we do with the old lady?
- Do whatever you like.
I'd like to poison her.
Come on.
Howdy, ma'am. Sorry to bother you...
Mr. Garvey, I'm so glad you're here.
The most awful...
- What are all those men doing here?
- We're looking for Rocklin.
- Has he been here?
- Yes, here and gone.
- What?
- Gone?
Yes. The two men you sent took him
and that old man back to town.
- The Clews?
- Funny, we didn't see them.
- Something must have gone wrong.
- For once, I agree.
Let's fan out and see what's going on.
Don't leave, Mr. Garvey. I want
to talk to you privately. It's important.
We'd better go ahead
and meet you in town.
Possibly that would be better.
I'll see you in town later, Sheriff.
- We'll leave your horse here for you.
- Thank you.
Tie Garvey's horse up.
You're positive he knows everything?
Absolutely everything!
He was standing right at the window.
If you were to ask me...
I'm not asking you, and stop bothering me
with your silly little questions.
We've got to do something else
besides talk.
You have to do something.
This was all your idea, remember?
My idea? That's all you know about it.
If there's anybody else in on it,
Judge, speak up.
Well, I do declare!
- Why, I...
- Not you!
You ever see this before?
Drop that gun!
No, Judge.
He was just getting ready
to finish you off through that window.
You seem to like to do business
through windows, Harolday.
You didn't shoot Clint, by any chance?
By one bad chance. Tala saw him do it,
and that pouch is his.
Tala made it for him a long time ago
when he made his own, didn't you?
Why did you kill Red Cardell?
Harolday wanted the KC
the same as he wanted the Topaz...
and the Hardman place
for his land scheme.
He planned on breaking up the ranches...
into smaller holdings
and selling them to dirt farmers.
He pretended to be on the outs with me...
so that I could gain
the confidence of Cardell.
Then, of course, when Red caught me...
with that deck of marked cards
and threatened to expose me...
Harolday shot him.
Why did he kill Clint?
It was an accident.
That shot was meant for you.
You see, we knew who you were.
We even tried to locate you...
not to inform you of your legacy,
but to eliminate you.
Naturally, when you arrived here in town...
and without any knowledge
of your relationship to Cardell...
it seemed you were playing
right into our hands.
I was hoping you'd think so.
Harolday intended to kill you at Tabletop.
Once you were out of the way,
it was our intention...
to have me handle
the business affairs of the women.
And do us out of everything!
It would have been much simpler.
Everything would have been...
You vile, wicked, despicable...
When he wakes up,
we'll have to get everything put on paper.
And you'll have to do the putting,
because I can't write.
I think Auntie's out of her mind.
She's in her room laughing.
What that old pelican needs
is a good spanking.
I bet you're just the one that can do it.
Yeah, I believe I am.
I know I am.
I guess there's no hurry
for you to get to Garden City now.
No, I...
I don't suppose there's any rush.
If I were like her, I'd stay in the west.
Does that mean you're going back east,
Cousin Clara?
It's where I belong. I know that now.
I reckon it's good to know
where you belong.
Wish I knew.
I can tell you.
Hey, Rock!
Rock, where are you?