The Big Valley (1965) s01e12 Episode Script

Night of the Wolf

Oh, boy, smell that honeysuckle.
Night like this always reminds me of a girl I once met in a little place called Willow Springs.
Her name was Jean.
Jeannie Price.
She had hair the color of that moon there.
Willow Springs.
Thas, uh, down around Napa, isn't it? - Uh- - Little farming town.
Quiet and peaceful.
Trees all around.
Thas how I met her, you know, falling out of a tree.
Falling out of a tree? Next to a church.
She had climbed up to watch the dance that was going on inside.
And she lost her balance, landed right at my feet.
I asked her if she'd like to dance with me.
But thought her dress wasn't good enough.
I did get to walk her home though.
And there was another big tree sittin' right outside of her place.
Had one of those chair swings hangin' down from it.
You know what I mean? - Yeah.
- We sat there for hours andjust held hands and talked.
Is funny.
I knew Jeannie for, oh, just a couple of weeks but it seemed like we'd known each other forever.
Guess it always seems that way when you're only 18.
Did you ever go back and see her again? No, no, I thought about it, but I just never had the time.
What was that? Wolf? None like I ever heard.
Must smell like wolf.
I'm gonna tie down that stallion before he breaks loose - and takes the bunch with him.
- I'll tighten down the stakes.
Thas it.
Heath! - You hurt bad? - I don't know.
A wolf doesn't usually attack when there's a fire, unless- - Rabid? - Rabid.
We gotta get that cauterized quick.
Go ahead.
Get to it.
- How does it look, Doc? - They're deep but I don't think I need to take any stitches.
- How quick did you cauterize it? - Right away.
Well, thas the main thing.
In fact, a salve and this bandage is about all that I can do.
Doc, we rode all night to get here.
There's gotta be more.
There is no medicine that will stop rabies.
Not yet anyway.
Not yet? What do you mean, not yet? Oh, there's some talk in Europe of a serum.
But so far thas all it is, just talk.
Now, the main symptoms are headaches and fits of rage.
These will help with the headache.
Well, then you're saying there isn't anything we can do.
Just wait and hope.
Hope? Hope for what? Rabies has a 60-day incubation period.
If you're still alive after that, chances are you'll stay that way.
You know anyone that stayed alive, Doc? No.
But there have been cases on record.
Sixty days.
- Want a drink? - No.
Listen, Nick.
He doesn't know everything.
We'll get home, see Dr.
Oh, come on, Heath.
Les not kid each other.
The medical profession has run clean out of miracles.
Besides, I don't want anybody at home to know about this.
- Not even the family? - Nobody.
Nick, you're gonna need all the help they can give.
Help? For 60 days, I'll have my ups and downs.
For the next 60 days I'm gonna die.
I don't want the rest of the family dying with me.
I want your word on that, Heath.
Your word.
You've got it.
Is anything wrong with your soup, Nick? What? Oh, no, no, nothing.
Is fine, Mother.
- Would you prefer something else? - No.
You know, I think he just got too used to that bullfrog stew of Heath's.
Isn't that it, Nick? Scorched to perfection over an open campfire.
Believe me, after two weeks of that, civilized cooking takes some getting used to.
Did I hear my cooking mentioned? Not mentioned, my boy, cursed.
Plain jealousy.
Sorry I'm late.
That new stallion kicked part of the corral fence down.
- Did you get it fixed? - Partly.
- What do you mean, partly? - Well, it had to be reinforced.
The boys are working on it.
- Oh.
- Thas quite a horse, Nick.
- He's gonna be rough to break.
- Yes, you know, considering that he's not broken don't you think you paid a trifle too much for him? Trifle too much? That horse has some of the best breeding in this state.
Well, I'm sure he'd sire a fine line, provided he doesn't have to be gelded.
- Gelded? - If you can't break him, thas a possibility, isn't it? - Are you trying to tell me I'm not a good judge of horse flesh? - Of course not, Nick.
Look, Jarrod, if you don't like that stallion, you take him back - and the mares with him.
- Nick.
Whas the matter with him? He's been acting like a stranger ever since he came back from that trip.
Well, I suppose it could have been my fault.
! Phil.
! Get that stallion! - How'd that stallion get loose? - He jumped the fence.
Why didn't somebody stop him? Are you blind? That stallion's too valuable to be lost.
- Nick, it was only an accident.
- When I want your back talk, I'll ask for it.
You know, Heath, once when Nick was 16 years old he got trapped in a mine shaft.
I was up in San Francisco studying law.
I woke up in the middle of the night, and I started writing.
And I didn't stop writing until I got home.
Nobody had to tell me my brother was in trouble.
I just knew it.
The way I know now.
You know, Heath silence doesn't spare the people you love.
Sometimes it hurts 'em worse.
There's nothin' I can tell you, Jarrod.
Come in.
- Hello, Mother.
I was waitin' for ya.
- We just got back from town.
- Silas tells us you're going to Vallejo.
- Yeah.
Well, I thought the yearling sale wasn't until next week.
I thought I'd go up a little early.
Look the stock over a little ahead of time is all.
- Oh.
- I'll get my gear.
No sense in both of us going.
I'm just gonna be picking up a couple head.
Well, I'll have Silas pack some food in your saddlebags.
Why, Nick? Because of what happened this afternoon? I could have killed you this afternoon, Heath.
You know that.
I thought of it.
For a split second there, I could have split your skull with the nearest rock.
- Next time I just might do it.
- Maybe there won't be a next time.
Oh, come on, Heath.
We agreed not to kid each other, remember? Besides, thas only a part of it.
Well, whas the other part? The last few weeks of my life should count for something.
I mean, besides cattle and horses and makin' money.
It should count for something special.
I don't know what it is, but I know I gotta go look for it.
Maybe is something I passed somewhere along the way without noticin'.
And if you don't find it? Well, at least I've looked.
So, you gotta go look.
But where? Anywhere.
Willow Springs maybe.
- Willow Springs? - Yeah.
Kinda like to see whetherJeannie's hair is still as yellow as ever.
And you stick with that stallion, you hear? Silas put the bags on your horse.
Uh, have a good trip, Nick.
Thanks, Mother.
Mother, where is Nick going? - I don't know.
- When's he coming back? I don't know that either.
- Hi.
- Hi.
Is your mother home? Well, I'd like to speak with her.
Mister, thas my swing.
Well, do you, uh, mind if I use it for a minute? - Afternoon, ma'am.
- Afternoon.
I'm, uh, looking for a friend of mine.
A girl named Jeannie Price.
Does she still live here? Oh.
Could you tell me where she does live? - Have you tried the saloon? - I don't think you quite understand, ma'am.
Her family runs the dry goods store.
There isn't any.
Prospectors lean more toward wet goods.
Prospectors? What about the farmers? This used to be a farming town.
Oh, that was a long time ago, before they started mining.
Well, ma'am, I've come a long way, and, well I wonder if you know anybody that might tell me where I can find her.
Well, the ones I know don't live anyplace more than a few months.
Uh, you might try the graveyard.
Graveyard? Oh, about seven years ago, right after the miners started coming they had a typhoid epidemic.
They say it almost wiped out the whole town.
Oh, I see.
- Thank you.
- Hey, mister.
I sure hope you don't find her.
A bottle.
Thall be three bucks.
Take what you need.
Who's there? Get out of here! Hey, mister.
Oh, mister.
Do you think you can stand up? Come on.
Come on, try.
Come on.
Come on.
You awake, mister? Mom told me to stay here and watch you till she got back from the store.
You- You're the one I saw at the door, aren't you? She said you wasn't to try to move.
She's right.
I'm watching you, mister.
He's awake.
Oh, fine, Tommy.
Now you go out and get some firewood.
Go on.
- Mornin'.
- Hi.
How do you feel? I've had a lot of hangovers in my day, but whew.
You had more than a hangover.
Two men tried to rob you in the front yard last night.
- Oh, why don't I- - Hey! Hey, take it easy.
Did you, uh- - And this? - It was Po's.
I was mending it.
He's my boss.
I work in the Chinese laundry.
- And, uh- - Look, there was no choice.
The doctor's out of town.
Funny the last thing I remember buying a bottle.
- Are you hungry? - Oh, no.
Well, you've got a bad gash on your head.
Last night I wasn't sure you'd make it.
I'm- I'm much obliged for you taking me in, Mrs.
, uh- Is Miss.
Julia Jenkins.
Tommy's my son.
- My name is Nick Barkley.
- I know.
You did a lot of talking last night.
You were delirious.
I've been a lot of trouble to you, ma'am.
And I'd like to pay you for it.
I'm used to trouble.
But there is something you can do for me.
I mean, if you really wanna pay.
I do.
I've lived hard.
Guess you can tell that.
I made a lot of mistakes in my life.
Tommy's father was one of them.
I met him in a saloon in Tucson.
He was a pretty talker.
You know what I mean? A real pretty talker.
But he had two things he didn't mention- price on his head and a wife.
He was hung when Tommy was a year old.
Since then, I-I've been driftin'.
Takin' whatever job I can get as long as it isn't in a saloon.
Pretty soon I'll have enough money to take Tommy back to Massachusetts to my folks' farm.
He'll grow up decent there.
Make a good life for himself.
But I want him to start even, like other kids with a clean and proper name.
I don't want him to get old enough to hear the whispers.
Thas why I'm asking you to marry me.
Marry you? Oh, look.
I know you don't wanna.
I mean, I know what I am.
I'm an ex-saloon girl.
But that doesn't change what I want for my boy.
But why me? Because even a saloon girl can't shame a dying man.
I must have done a lot of talkin' last night.
Now look.
Ill be a strict bargain.
Your name for my care.
I'll stay with you right to the end.
I'll give you a decent burial.
Anything else you want.
A decent burial.
No, thanks.
You said you wanted to pay.
The price is too high.
I still can't pay.
Well, I had to try.
Guess I didn't expect you too.
I'll get you some coffee.
Heath, supper's ready.
Be right there.
When are you gonna let me try him? Well, now you know Nick doesn't want you ridin' half-broken stock.
A lot he cares.
He didn't even say good-bye.
- Mom! - Nick, you shouldn't be up.
If I stay in that bed one more day, I'm gonna sprout roots.
No, no, no help.
I gotta work on getting my sea legs back myself.
- Which reminds me, where are my boots? - I'll get 'em.
I wanna thank you for sewing my shirt.
Looks almost like new.
Is a special stitch that Po taught me.
Well, now, will you look at this? All shined up.
Boy, you sure are good to me.
They were kind of dusty, so I shined them.
- Uh-huh.
- Shined your spurs too.
- Well, look at those.
- Want me to put your boots on for you? No, no, not right now, Tommy.
But I do want you to have these.
Gotta have spurs to ride a cuttin' horse, you know.
A cuttin' horse? Mine.
I want you to exercise him for me.
Will you do that? Whas the matter? Well, I ain't never rode a cuttin' horse.
Well, don't you think is about time you learned? Well, yeah, but- Well, who's gonna teach me? I will.
Just as soon as I can get those boots on by myself.
- Honest, Mr.
Barkley? - Honest.
- You promise? - I promise.
- Can I show them to Mr.
Po? - Oh, sure.
Barkley, you can use my swing.
He's never had a man around before.
It means a lot to him.
Yeah, I- Nick? Nick, what is it? Nick! Whas the matter? Let me help you! Nick! Nick.
Oh, Nick.
Are they always this bad? Getting worse.
What is it, Audra? Chicken creole- Nick's favorite.
Wouldn't you think he'd at least write or something? I mean, he's been gone for weeks.
Oh, he'll be back soon.
The yearling sale ended yesterday.
- Didn't it, Jarrod? - Yes.
Yes, it did.
When he comes home, I'm not even gonna talk to him.
Excuse me.
Well, anyway, if he thinks he can just- Audra, eat your dinner.
Excuse me too, please.
Well, honestly, whas the matter with everybody around here? I wish you wouldn't leave, Nick.
Is been nearly two months, Julia.
The end could come at almost any time.
That last attack made me realize it.
The offer of care still goes.
No charge.
As soon as Tommy forgets me, the better.
Oh, he's full of plans.
He thinks you're gonna stay.
He'll forget, as soon as you get him to Massachusetts.
! Where you goin'? Come here, son.
I'm leavin', Tommy.
- But- But I thought you liked it here.
- I do.
- Are you comin' back? - I can't.
Well, wasn't you even gonna say good-bye? I was gonna let your mother say it for me.
Well, I guess I won't be needing these no more.
No, no, no.
Wait a minute.
I gave them to you.
I want you to keep them.
There ain't much use for spurs in Massachusetts.
- Bye, Tommy.
- Bye, Nick.
Bye, Nick.
You said you'd teach me how to ride a cuttin' horse.
You promised, Nick.
You promised.
You promised! Nick! Nick! Are you gonna stay, Nick? Are ya? For just as long as it counts, Tommy.
For just as long as it counts.
Heath, I'm gonna ask you a question, and I want a straight answer.
You know something about Nick you're not telling us.
What is it? Heath, you can see what this is doing to us.
You can see that is tearing Mother and Audra to pieces.
All right then.
Can you tell me this? Do you know where Nick is? - I think so.
- Then you give him a message for me.
You tell him that whatever trouble he's in his family has the right to share it with him.
That is our duty to help him if we can, and is his duty to let us.
And that he doesn't have the privilege to change that.
Do you understand? You tell him to come on home.
Tell him Pappy says so.
- Good evening.
- Good evening.
I'm Nick Barkley.
Ah, Miss Julia's told me about you.
I am Po Hsien.
Yeah, she mentioned you too.
Told me about the scholar's cap and how you used to be a Taoist priest.
That was a long time ago.
Now I am a laundryman.
A laundryman that reads Tennyson.
- Life changes.
- For all of us, I'm afraid.
Miss Julia tells me you have changed it most pleasantly for her and Tommy.
They've done the same for me.
Then all three have found rare gift.
- Tennyson? - Lao Tzu.
Po, I left the last tub to soak.
In the morning I'll- - Well, Nick.
- I came to take you home.
Oh, well, you needn't bother.
Is kind of late for you to go wandering about the streets by yourself, isn't it? Thanks.
- Good night, Mr.
- Good night, Mr.
Very nice meeting you.
Same here.
See you tomorrow night.
- Good night, Po.
- Good night, Miss Julia.
All right.
Hold it right there, both of you.
- What do you want? - That wad of bills thas in your pocket.
Now you just drop them back over your shoulder real easy like and nobody will get hurt.
Julia? Julia.
! Po.
Po! Get a doctor, quick.
- Nick? - Yeah.
My turn to have a hangover.
- How is she? - Bad.
I can't save her.
- You sure? - I wish I weren't.
- How long? - An hour.
Maybe less.
I'm right here, Julia.
I'm right here.
I have a bad one, haven't I? A real killer.
Right? Right.
Funny, I didn't feel a thing.
Nick, you take him back to my folks.
- Will you? - I promise.
Only one regret- a name.
I didn't get him a name.
Yes, you did, Julia.
Yes, you did.
Is there a preacher in this town? - A circuit judge? - He won't be back until next week.
Is there anyone who can marry us? You're sure? This is very important to her.
I'm sorry.
Po, as a Taoist priest you do have the authority, don't you? In parts of China, yes, but not here.
Could you perform a marriage ceremony? I mean, one similar to ours? Yes.
But it would not be legal.
That doesn't matter.
What does matter is thatJulia believes.
Po, she deserves to die feeling her son has a legitimate name.
Very well.
Excuse me.
Po's gonna marry us.
In my country, long ago a wise man spent his life in search of truth.
His name was Lao Tzu.
He has said that if a man and woman pledged themselves with honor and sincerity their spirits are one.
For truth lies not in words but in the heart.
If you, Nick, and you, Julia pledge with true hearts I pronounce you man and wife.
Thanks, Nick.
Thank you, Mrs.
- Barkley.
- Heath! Oh, what are you doing here? - Nick! - How'd you get here so quick? - What do you mean so quick? Well, I just sent a wire an hour ago.
Oh, Tommy, this is my brother Heath.
- Hi, Tommy.
- Hi.
- Whad you wire about? - Well, is about Tommy.
I promised his mother I'd get him back to Massachusetts.
I'd kinda like you to do it for me.
- Oh, no, you take him.
I don't like long trips.
- Now you know I can't.
Haven't you been counting? Boy howdy, is been 65 days, Nick.
- You're sure? - I've sweated every one of them.
Whas he mean? Whas he talking about? I'll tell you what he's talking about, Tommy! He's talking about a long trip to Massachusetts! And I'm gonna take you to that farm personally! Oh! Whoa! Oh, Tommy! To Massachusetts!