1883 (2021) s01e03 Episode Script


Come on.
Easy, boy.
Hey, don't push from there, get to the back! Get to the back! Death is everywhere on the prairie.
In every form you can imagine.
And a few your worst nightmare couldn't muster Death hides in the creek beds possesses animals It hides in tall grass, waiting Ow! With every death, our father moved camp a little farther away.
As if death was not the result of accidents and disease, but death was its own disease.
And carelessness was contagious.
But of all the perils awaiting us, sickness and snakes, bad horses and bandits, there was one thing above all that sent terror through both man and beast.
There was one word so feared it was never spoken.
And barely whispered River.
You're not moving a wagon across that.
- We'll take them east.
Use the ferry in Denison.
Denison's the wrong direction.
We gotta head west somewhere, may as well be here.
West Texas is rough.
It's all rough.
How far west we gotta go to get a better crossing? You're going a ways.
Hundred miles or more.
And where it runs shallow it's boggy.
Real boggy.
- We'll head east.
Use the ferry.
- You do what you want.
I'm heading west.
I said east.
I don't give a shit what you said.
I don't work for you.
- They won't make it.
The country's too rough.
No water.
There's bandits in every canyon, and there ain't no wall around that reservation, neither.
I ain't asking your permission, I'm telling you my decision.
And my decision's west.
Denison puts us two weeks behind.
I'll worry about winter when it comes.
I'll drown them if we cross here and they'll die of thirst if we head west.
They're dying pretty good as it is, Captain.
And we ain't even left Texas yet.
We need to keep winter in our minds, 'cause it's coming I don't know where to cross 'em, but I ain't here and I know it ain't east.
If we head west we're crossing the Brazos.
Ain't no good options, Captain.
Just know that winter is the worst option.
And slow as these folks move, we're biting off a decent chunk of it already.
We gonna cross here? To the West.
West, where? I don't know yet.
Cowboys are headed back to their camp.
Need a few boys to help hold the herd.
Well, pick some.
Been tryin'.
Most of 'em they don't speak English and the ones that do say they can't ride.
Well, they gotta learn some time.
I don't disagree.
Just not sure keeping our food from running off is the time.
Sure could use y'all.
I can saddle Lightning.
You ain't going by yourself.
You're coming.
- No, I'm hunting.
We need meat.
I'll catch Poco too.
Take care of your son.
You're gonna ride herd? Tired of getting my teeth rattled by this wagon.
My choice is to sit on that log, sit in a saddle, I'm gonna sit in a saddle.
How am I supposed to sneak up on something with a five year-old? Teach him to be quiet or find a dumb deer.
I can be quiet.
Well, I guess we're about to find out, ain't we? Shit.
It's better to double the latigo with him.
Girl I've forgotten more about horses than you'll ever know.
Ready? Let's get after it.
Ain't much of a team player.
Yeah, but he's capable.
I don't like him questioning us.
Not much we can do about it.
He ain't on the payroll.
When there's two leaders there ain't no leader.
Know what I'm mean? Need to figure that out.
She the one whose husband got run over? Bandits killed her husband.
These damn horses They're just thirsty.
Before you do anything else, you tend to your horses.
I'll take 'em to drink.
Then I'll show you how to hobble 'em so they don't run off You need a fire.
It's too hot for fire.
Fire ain't just for warmth.
Keeps bugs away.
Snakes won't go near it.
And from way up there You can see 'em.
The more fires folks see, the less chance they come to our camp seeing what else they can find.
When's the last time they drank? I don't know.
You got any other family here? You are married? No.
I can be a wife for you.
I don't want a wife.
My boys are good boys and I can be a good wife.
I can be a good wife.
- Stop.
- Please don't go.
- Quit.
I don't want a wife.
I'll help you.
I'll help you with your horses.
I can help you set your camp.
With your boys I had a wife, and I ain't looking for another one.
You understand? I will get you to Oregon.
You have my word.
Then what? What in Oregon is for me? - I don't know.
Maybe you find a husband there.
Maybe you farm the land yourself.
I don't know - I don't know to farm.
I don't know.
- Maybe you learn.
- Maybe you teach me.
Maybe you teach me.
I won't be there to teach you.
What happened to her? She wants to marry me.
Guessing you said no.
Or you said yes and she already regrets it.
No time for jokes, Thomas.
She's having a hard time of it.
Hard times is the only kind out here, Captain.
Laughing through 'em is how you get through 'em.
And I ain't joking, she's lucky as hell she ain't marrying your sour ass.
See how I did that? A joke on top of a joke.
Real funny.
Let me show you how to hobble these horses.
See, now they can still walk to water, they just can't run off on you.
Just place 'em around like this, in a figure eight.
You know, figure eight? You know what I mean? You try this one.
What's your name? Noemi.
When you get to Portland, some handsome farmer's gonna spot you in town, and take one look in them big eyes you got and he's gonna chase you down the street with flowers and candy.
You watch.
Don't want to be marrying out of fear.
You'll get by out here just fine.
We'll get you by.
Then let a man earn your love instead of you trading him for it.
And trust me, that crusty bastard over there? Happiness runs from him like a scalded dog.
No, ma'am, you don't want no part of the Captain.
No part of the Captain.
What have you got for food? You don't have any supplies? They took them.
Who took them? What the fuck for that? This is what the fuck.
Get everything that was hers.
Nothing was hers, it was his, and he's a thief Get everything that was hers.
- They're gypsies! Everything When I speak and you don't do what I say, you get hurt.
That's the pattern here and it don't stop until you do what I say or you run out of face.
No, no, no, no, no, no, no! - How can we travel? - You can't.
Not with me.
If you steal, you will stay where you stole.
Ya, go on! Ya, ya, ya, ya! Ya! Go east.
Go south.
Go any way but my way.
If I see you again, I'm gonna kill you.
I thought you were in charge.
I am in charge.
- Then act like it.
Police your people.
These are not my people.
I don't control them.
No one does.
If you don't control them then you aren't in charge.
I will find someone else.
You don't decide these things.
This is a free country.
That's a free country.
That is Comanche land.
Beyond it is no man's land and that's where we're going You ain't free yet.
You all right? Peachy.
That wasn't very peachy.
Captain Shea.
These folks here gots to trust us.
If they don't trust us they won't follow us Trust us? They can't even trust each other.
It's a bad way to start the trip.
The trip's already started, and it's been bad from the beginning.
You having second thoughts? You're gonna tell me you ain't? Yeah, I'm having 'em But I figure maybe if one of their kids has a kid and that kid does something something that The world's better 'cause that kid's in it.
Know what I mean? World ain't getting better, Thomas.
No matter how many kids are in it.
One for me.
One for you.
Think that one's taken.
And her husband don't look too fun to fight.
I'd keep that in mind when you're chasing his daughter.
Well, good looks run in the family, I see.
Good manners don't seem to run in yours.
We should push these cattle to water, then hold 'em tight for the night.
That's the plan.
Just waiting on the cowboys to do it.
Then you are all out of excuses.
Guess this outfit's got a new cow boss and it ain't us.
She could boss the President.
The President could probably use it.
Nothing sharp to say today? I used my one snappy line and it got snapped back at me.
That's all it takes to rattle you? My gosh, you're forward.
Look who's blushing now.
Are you saying I made you blush? Maybe you made me blush.
Well, you have terrible taste in men.
You ain't a man.
You're just a boy.
I'm man enough.
Just a boy.
Guess I have terrible taste in boys, too.
You know, this flirting thing is fun! - So She was she was flirtin'.
Kinda mean the way she does it, but she is flirtin'.
Woo-hoo! Am I being quiet? - Well, you were being quiet.
Now you're talking.
It's okay.
Do you see anything? Shhh.
Can we whisper? We can't talk at all 'cause they'll hear us.
They can't hear the horse? - They can hear the horse.
They're just not scared of it.
How come? Well, 'cause horses don't shoot deer.
But we're on the horse and we shoot deer.
Well, that's why we gotta be quiet.
But can't deer see us on the horse? They can see us on the horse, they just don't understand it.
They don't understand we're sitting on a horse? They don't understand why we're siting on a horse.
If they understood why we're sitting on a horse, they would head for the hills.
'Course, we're in the hills so that wouldn't do 'em much good.
- Dammit, John.
Be quiet.
Sshh! Goddammit.
Son Shh There's a Look, deer.
- I see it.
All right.
Lay down right beside me.
Lean in here.
You see him? Yes, sir.
All right.
Put your finger beside the trigger.
Not on it.
Till I tell you.
Is it going to kick? - It's gonna kick.
And it's gonna hurt.
But you won't remember the kick in a week.
All you'll remember is the kill.
Look through there.
Put the cross hairs right behind his shoulder.
Yes, sir.
Is it there? Yes, sir.
Put your finger on the trigger.
Pull slowly.
You got him.
I got him? You got him, son.
Let's go get him.
Watch your step, son.
He's huge.
Yes, sir, he is.
He'll feed us for a week.
Now, come here.
It's your first kill, so I gotta blood you.
There we go.
You took a life to give us life.
So now we say thank you.
To who? To the deer.
- But the deer's dead.
He can't hear us.
Well, we say thank you anyway.
How do we say thank you? We just say it.
Thank you.
When you kill a thing, son, it makes you a little less man, a little more animal.
Now we try to find the balance between them.
That's all life is.
You understand? I didn't either first time I heard it.
Hey, we got work to do.
Took the liberty of stoking it.
Got your water boiled.
Well, I appreciate you saving me the time.
You hungry? - Never turned down fresh meat.
John, get washed up.
If I take them east, it adds three weeks to the trip the way they're moving.
Puts us at South Pass in October.
November even West is the way.
Gotta cross the Brazos.
I'll take my chances with the Brazos.
- You said you'd help and you're not helping.
My wife and my daughter are out there right now babysitting their goddam cattle.
The only hope these people have is following without question.
Doing exactly as I say.
Without question.
I don't disagree.
You questioned.
You questioned my authority and I cannot have it.
I questioned going east and now we're going west and I was right to question.
Let's get one thing straight, I don't work for you and I ain't one of your patrons.
The only family out I give a shit about is mine.
You've made that clear.
I hope so.
I'm going to hold up here for three days.
Give you a head start.
So I can flush out every bandit between here and West Texas? You go first, and I'll follow you with the herd.
Fair enough.
Come here, John.
Take that to the tent.
Think I'll jerk the rest.
I always thought of mothers like nervous chickens, too worried about their clutch to ever hunt for a worm.
In my mind, my mother was a banker, hoarding my freedom like money.
I never once thought of her as a woman with desires and dreams and passion, though passion is the thing that made me.
I lie awake at night and my dreams for this life burn inside me as if I'd walked to the campfire and tried to eat it.
I watched my mother and I felt foolish for thinking the notion of eating fire was mine alone.
It was hers first.
Then she gave it to me.
I watched her ride and I didn't see my mother.
I saw a woman.
And the woman was magnificent.
- He beat me.
Destroy my wagon.
Strand me here, for what? For some gypsy whore! You stole from her.
I stole back what her husband took.
And now he's in the ground.
Where he belongs.
What do you want me to do? We don't need them.
We go north to mountain, west to ocean.
We don't need guide for that.
- We need him.
We need him for protection.
- Who he protect? Huh? Not Stefan, not David, not Luca.
Alexandria, Daria? No Just the whore.
She's a mother.
We can find the way without them.
Only thing they have of use is guns and horses.
Then come take 'em.
Take three steps to the right.
Why? So I don't kill the woman standing behind you.
Hope you had a chance to practice with that.
You ready? You want my horse, take it.
Let's go.
Come on! I can't make it much easier than that.
During the war we fought a battle at this place called the wilderness, 'cause there was nothing around but wilderness.
I fired my rifle so many times the barrel melted, just drooped like rotten fruit.
So, I killed with my pistol.
And when I ran out of bullets I killed with my sword.
And when my sword broke I killed with my boots and bare hands.
When the battle was over and I looked behind me, the wilderness was gone.
Not a tree left standing.
Chopped down chest-high by bullets.
We killed five thousand men that day.
When I say killing you means nothing to me, I mean it.
Killing you means nothing.
What did I say I'd do the next time I saw you? What did I say? I said I'd kill you, didn't I? It's what I said This is your only chance to make a liar out of me.
I said it to you, too.
You can police yourselves or I can do it for you.
Now you've seen how I do it.
Choice is yours We leave tomorrow.
We head west.
Water will be scarce.
Take what you can carry from here.
And boil it first.
I don't think you're gonna win a medal for wagon boss.
Let's keep her wagon up front.
We can take turns driving it.
You think they'll come after her? I think they're going to go to Fort Worth and get drunk and talk about all these wagons heading north, find some men a whole lot tougher than they are, and then come back for all of us.
Maybe you should have just shot 'em.
I absolutely should have shot 'em.
My daughter was one of those kids who could've made the world better.
Yes, she was.
We're doing this for the same reasons, Thomas.
Tired? No, ma'am.
Pretty proud of his voice to be hollering it across the valley.
It calms the herd.
No different than me singing to you in the cradle.
They're, uh, they're bedded down pretty good.
We can handle it from here.
Y'all get some sleep.
Thank you for the help.
Ready? I was thinkin' I'd just Let's go.
You don't trust us to babysit cattle? It's the world I don't trust.
I do worry about your gun fighting skills, though.
It's been a while since you tore into some pistoleros.
Watching over us.
Yes, ma'am.
- Just to be sure.
- Mm-hmm.
How'd our baby girl do? Our baby girl's turning into a woman.
I know it.
She rides good.
No fear.
But not reckless.
She rides like you.
She has her eyes on this cowboy and he's eyeing her right back.
Well I'll shoot him first thing in the morning, honey.
I'm serious.
There's no gentlemen where we are and none where we're going.
I'm worried it's not fair.
Did you marry a gentleman? I did not.
Worked out all right for you.
- Oh, yeah.
It worked out great.
Just like I dreamed it.
What would you change? Not a thing.
I mean I wouldn't mind a house.
A big one.
If you don't mind.
I'm gonna build you a house so big, you get lost in it.
How come we ain't going? We're going to follow the herd.
Why? A little too crowded in the front.
Get up on their flank along the tree-line.
Yes, sir.
If you want to court my daughter, you can.
Court her? You can do it.
Not sure what it means.
Well, son, it means you can talk, and talk and go on rides and talk We've kinda been doing that.
You know the drill, then.
You break her heart or get handsy you and me are gonna have a problem.
Define handsy.
It was a joke.
And a bad bad time to tell it.
Sorry sir.
Goddamn, boy.
Looking back, there were two journeys.
One was filled with danger and death and despair, the other, adventure and wonder.
Woop! Woop! Woop! I was on the latter.
And I loved it No, way, grab those shoulders! I didn't know enough to know they would collide.
I didn't know enough to know how cruel and uncaring this world can be.
The world doesn't care if you die.
It won't listen to your screams.
If you bleed on the ground, the ground will drink it.
It doesn't care that you're cut.
I told myself when I meet God it will be the first thing I ask him: why make a world of such wonder then fill it with monsters? Why make flowers and then snakes to hide beneath them? What purpose does the tornado serve? Then it hit me: he didn't make it for us.

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