Tall in the Saddle (1944) - full transcript

When a stranger arrives in a western town he finds that the rancher who sent for him has been murdered. Further, most of the townsfolk seem to be at each other's throats, and the newcomer has soon run contrariwise to most of them.

Have a nice trip?

Very nice.

Expecting someone?

Well, I guess not.

Say, where's the stage office?

Right over there,
back of the depot.

Thank you.

(Train whistles)

(Train engine chugging)

Doggone your hide, blossom.
Look at that.

Look what you went and done.

I'm telling you,
blossom, that makes you

the most aggravating female
I ever had a despise for.

I ought to poison you.


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?


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 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?

Well, 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 folks?

Hold tight when you get

in the mountains, mister.

When he gets riled, you can hear

the passengers
praying for miles.


Whoa! Where are them women?

Waiting for you
to carry them out?

Man: Hey, Dave. Say, 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.

Man: 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'd
never seen a man before

in your life.

Well, 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?


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.

Hey, you mean what you
said back there about women?


Ha ha ha! Then you're
smarter than most.

Maybe I've seen
more of them than most.

Uh-huh. Uh-huh. Yeah.

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.


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.

Aw, I ain't bellyachin'.

I reckon he's entitled
to his opinion,

but him and me never
did see eye to eye.

What's wrong?

Aw, it's constitutional,
I reckon.

He's too durn 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, ha!

You'll find out what that
means around these parts.

Dave: Whoa.


Driver, what's the matter?

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!

Well, then, we'll hurry some.




Dave: Whoa!

Now what's the matter?

Why are you stopping again?


Dave: Whoa. Whoa.

Buenas tardes, señor.

¿Que tal, chico?

Muy bien. Ha llegado
temprano, señor.

Si. Tuvimos suerte
en Haber llegado.

Mira ese viejo.

(Boy laughs)


Woman: 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?

(Man singing drunkenly)



(Zeke laughing)

Dave: 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."


(Zeke and Dave laughing)

Here you are, folks.

Just dig in and help yourself.

Ain't you gonna eat, mister?

Rocklin: 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.

Well...Mighty nice aroma
of veal around here.

Doing yourself pretty well
these days, huh, 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?

Stan: Hide?
What hide?

Bob: One that might send you
to the penitentiary.

What did you do with it, Stan?

Stan: I never had
no hide hidden out.

I saw it yesterday
under the hay.

Well, it must still be there.

No, it ain't. We looked.
Where is it?

I tell you--

woman: What is all this?

Afternoon, ma'am.
Miss Cardell, ain't it?

Martin. Miss Martin.
This is miss Cardell.

Sheriff: Pleased
to meet you, miss.

Been expecting you
down at Santa Inez.

I'm sheriff Jackson.

Miss Martin: What's
going on with him?

Sheriff: Just a little
matter of the law.

Bob: Rustling.

Oh, a thief.

I tell you--

Bob: Save it!

Matter of fact, Bob says
the hide he saw yesterday

had the kc brand on it.

Well, 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, but--

Rocklin: How about
the owner of that beef?

Mightn't he have something
to say about it?

Sheriff: Meaning?

Red Cardell. He's the owner
of the kc, isn't he?

Ha ha ha!

You're way behind
the herd, mister.

Red Cardell died 3 weeks ago.

Miss Martin:
Was murdered, you mean.

Sheriff: That's right. Shot
in the back not far from here.

Bob: Maybe he was
getting onto things

about the cattle that's been
missing from the kc lately.

Stan: I tell you,
I never had no hide!

Sheriff: 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.
Ha ha ha!

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 got to have another drink.

Where's Stan?

He's inside
explaining away a hide.


It seems they're eating
stolen beef.

Ah, somebody's loco.

Stan might have give
a house room

for a little dead beef,

but he'd never be fool enough

to leave the hide
a-laying around.

How about it, Zeke?

That's the way it is, Dave.

Oh, it's you, huh?

Yeah, your old pal Bob Clews.

Get away from me,

you two-timing
horse thief.

Well, them's
fighting words, partner.

Hey, Stan, don't let them hang

nothing on you you ain't done.

They're just a couple
of fourflushers,

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.

Sheriff: Don't act up
this ways, Dave.

There's women watching.

Take your dirty paws off me!

What he needs is
a short laydown.

Sheriff: Yeah.

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.

Bob: Dave...

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.


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.


Oh, don't worry, ma'am.
Bob here will take you on in.

He knows every inch
of the road, don't you?

Bob: You bet.

I'm driving.

Huh? But if anything
was to happen to the ladies,

I'd feel to blame.


Boy: Señor.

Mira. Aqui.


Did they do it?

Si, señor.

They hit him with a pistola.

His friends, eh?

Well, what happened this time?

Bumped his head.

Hmm! Where?
On iron mountain?

Where's the best chance
of a cheap room?

Cap's place across the street,
the sunup 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.

Well? Well?! Well?!

Hey, doc.


Take my hand, shorty.

Well, well.
What happened here?

Bumped his head.

Huh? Oh.
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 go get a key.

Book me for one, too.

I'll help you with him.

(Babbling incoherently)

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 might weary

dusting off that
doormat for him.

What'll you have?



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.

Oh. 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.

Well, here's how.


Man: That's a good hand.

(Men clamoring)

Well, 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.

Well, it's about time.

He's taken a beating
this last week

that would shake a better man.

Include me out.

Oh, 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.

Man: How about you, sir?
Care to sit in?

I must warn you, though,
that our young friend here

is holding phenomenal cards.

Don't mind if I do.

Man: That's fine.

Oh, 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.


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.

Man: Deal, ab.

Different man:
I'm up.

Your bet.

It's open for 3.

(Singing softly)

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.

(Money rustling)



One for me.

Rocklin: 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 4 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.

Yo, 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 fourflusher.

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 there--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.



(Door opens)

Who are you?!

Oh. Oh.

How are you feeling?

Oh, fine.
Fine, yeah.



Uh-huh. Yeah.

Nice place you got here.

This isn't my place.
It's the sunup saloon.

Saloon? Saloon.


See you later.


Ha ha ha!

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.


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?

Well, I--

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?

Ha ha ha!

Say, that was the funniest
thing I ever saw.

That Arly is madder
than a locoed heifer.

You sure get the--

get out of here!

Aah! Ow!

You broke it.

You broke it!


well, that calls for
one on the house.

(Men muttering in agreement)

Come on.
Come in here.

Who handled
red Cardell's business?

Judge Garvey.

Know where I could find him?

Cap: His room's
behind his office

across the street over there.

He doesn't usually
raise the blinds, though,

until about noon.


(Coin jingles)

See you later.


Boy, oh, boy, has somebody
come to town.


(Knock on door)

Come in.

Oh, Mr. Rocklin, good morning.

Come in, sir.
Come right in.

Say, that was quite
a little poker game

we had last night, wasn't it?


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?

Well, 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--

(knock on door)

Uh, excuse me.

Oh, 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?

Well, 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's 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.

Miss Martin: Ah! What impudence!

The only reason
I came here today

was to pay back the 150
red Cardell sent in advance.

Oh, 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: 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 for me

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 the Clews brothers

doesn't make the
other his friend.

Have it your own way,
but warn him. I mean it.

Oh, miss Harolday,
this is miss Cardell.

How do you do?

And miss Martin, her aunt.

Arly: 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.

Clara: 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.

Miss Martin: I warn you,
miss Harolday,

you're making a great mistake.

Well? 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--I...

You must excuse her.
She's young.

And inexperienced.

Young people must be protected

from themselves at times,
don't you agree?

Exactly. Exactly.

He following you?

Not following me.

He's with me.
He's always with me.

Oh. 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.



Uh...Mr. Rocklin, what happened

between you and my stepson
last night?



About this suggestion--
you working for me--

well, it was your suggestion,

not mine.

Oh, yes, that's right.

$60 is big money.

Well, if you've changed
your mind, I--

no, 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.

Oh, I see. Were you
a friend of red's?


(Door opens)

Hey, 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.

Uh-huh. Yeah.

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.

Hey, you, George Clews.

Rocklin said
if you don't come out,

he's coming in here
to tear you apart.

Ha ha ha!

Hey, 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? Ooh!

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 a 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 looky here, young fella.

You keep on talking like that,

and you'll find yourself

in a heap of trouble.

And don't say you
ain't been warned!

See, they say that was--

now, what were you
saying about Cardell?

Oh, well, you being
hired by red Cardell

only confirms
what I'd suspected.

He was getting ready to fight.

Fight? Who?

Organized rustling.

Well, 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?

Nope, and I'm not jumping

at this offer of yours either,

'cause I don't hold

with working for women.

Oh, 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 I start.

Well, where you headin' for?

Riding for the topaz.


Have you gone plumb loco?

It's good money.

There ain't money
enough in this town

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 today

in front of the whole town.

Man: Hey, Dave.

Yeah, I'll be right there.

It's poison, that's what it is.

Just plain poison.

Man: Hey, Dave!

Well, uh...
What do you

want to hang around
here for anyhow?

60 a month.

Be right with you.

Clara: How do you do,
Mr. Rocklin?


It's a lovely afternoon,
isn't it?

I reckon it is pretty nice.

So you're moving in
on the kc, eh?

Well, not exactly moving in.

You see, we're--

Clara, do you have to discuss

our private affairs
with every ragtag

and bobtail cowperson we meet?

Just passing the time
of day, ma'am.

We could 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.

(Rooster crows)

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.


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.

Hey, 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.

Well, 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.

(Arly singing)

Say, Arly, about that poker game
night before last--

forget it.
Forget it?

Arly: Tala!


Say, what is this?

What do you mean?

What do I mean?

Tala: Good morning, arlita.

Good morning, tala.


You have made yourself
very pretty today.

See what I mean?

* and was from mad dinah's
quilting party *

(Clint continues singing)

Have my horse saddled
and sent around right away,

will you?

(Clint whistling)

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.


It was Mr. Harolday's orders.

Why do you make your heart heavy

with thoughts of him,
little one?

He's not for you.

Oh, 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 just met Dave, and he tell me.

So now he rides to tabletop.

Little one, why don't--

oh, leave me Al--

good morning, Arly.
Good morning, tala.

Fetch my briefcase, will you?

It's on my desk.

Get it.

It looks as though
we're going to get

that land we've been wanting

along the river bottom.

I didn't tell you,
Arly, but 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,

and now it's mine and Clint's.

It's true you've
been helping out,

but the way things are going,

we'll soon 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 to me,

what with all this
rustling going on.

Who'd be driving
cattle over tabletop

unless they were crazy?

No, 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.

I'm afraid 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.

(Hoofbeats receding)


Darn funny-- that storm quitting

about the time I get here.

No funnier than you
slogging through it

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.



Ah, dinero.

"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."

Ha...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 ain'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 that ranch.

Indian trouble. Ha!
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?

Salt of the earth.

Cantankerous old cuss,

but a real tell 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.

Oh, red was a gambler, eh?

Oh, yeah. A mighty poor one,
I reckon.

Still, you'd have to say
him and Garvey was friends.

Anything ever happen

to make you think they weren't?

Rock, I'm going to
tell you something

I ain't never told
nobody before.

Sure you can trust me?

Last time I seen old red
was the day he died.

'Twas 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.

Well, 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 one night.

Whose coat was it?

Well, now, that's
just what I asked.

All he said was it
belonged to a good friend.

Then 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?

Uh-huh. 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? Bah!

Well, 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.

Well, even if it was Garvey

that red was talking about,

it don't follow
that he killed him.

No. General opinion is
it were 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.

(Horse neighs)

My team.

(Different horse neighs)

That's not your team. Come on.

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 way up here

through that storm for nothing.

I haven't minded a bit,

because I came up here
to fire you!

Oh, 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?


Well, then who was that
we took out after?

Whoever shot at you.

Well, 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.

Dave: Hey, 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?


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?

Well, this, for one thing.

I told you,
you should have 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?

You know, 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.

Harolday: 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

I was over at the sunup

playing poker with the judge

and the rest of 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

nothing about it, 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.

(Door closes)

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 just now

wouldn't have deceived

a 6-year-old child.

Well, 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.

(Door closes)

Mr. Rocklin, I'm so
glad I found you.

I feel perfectly awful

running after you
like this, but I--

you got troubles, eh?

Well, I...

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

that she's signed an affidavit

saying I'm still underage.

Then as my guardian,

she can do whatever she likes.

You got anything to prove
you're not underage?

No. 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...

Well, I'd rather
give up everything


That takes care of that.

Now all we have to do

is make out 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...


well, Mr. Rocklin,

this is indeed a surprise.

I understood you were riding

for the topaz.

That's right.

Uh, miss Martin,

perhaps we can
finish our business

at some later date.

Would you excuse us, please?

Rocklin: I came for that letter.


The one miss Martin
wrote from back east

saying the girl
was of age, remember?

Garvey: 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 in that drawer

that concerns you.

I'd like to make up
my own mind about that.

All right, I'll open it for you,

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.


You know, 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 ain't dead, is he?

Not permanently, I don't reckon.

What happened, anyway?

Nothing at all!

You must have found
out something.

Come on.

Oh! Oh-oh!

What's the matter?
Are you hurt?

Shut up!

Don't you talk to me like that!

I'll have you--well!

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.

Uh-huh. Yeah!

Arly: So now you know the truth.

You think you can
steal him away from me,

you're welcome to try it.

Did you-- 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

and pick you up and take
you over to garden city.

I hate putting you
to that trouble.

Oh, 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--

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?

Rocklin: 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...Well, 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.



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?

Didn't you?

Didn't you?!

You can tell miss Martin
I'll take care of everything.

You'll take care of everything.


Get down.
Tie them up.

All right.

(Knock on door)

Come in.

Dave: Get 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 the cap to charge it.

Uh-huh. Yeah.

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.

Clint: I told you once,

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.

Well, 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.

Sure you do, and you're going
to tell me all about it.

I don't know anything about it!


I don't know anything!


Well...I would--


Man: Look at this.
Where's doc Riley?

(Excited conversation)

Doc: What's the matter?

What is it?

Somebody better fetch Harolday.

Man: Better get Arly, too.

She was over at the hotel.

I'll get her.

Sheriff: Whoa.
What's going on?

Gangway. Here,
what's the trouble?

Well, I warned you, didn't I?

I guess that's the last trouble

you'll ever 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,

just 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.

Harolday: Where's my boy?

I didn't do it, Harolday.

Who did, then?!

He had a gun in his hand
when we came in.

I bet it's the same one
that killed Clint.

What do you say to that?

He's right.

You admit it, huh?

That still doesn't say I did it.

Why'd you do it?

I didn't.

Man: 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.

Sheriff: Cardell?

And the kc foreman

and who it was took that shot
at me at tabletop last night

and just 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
trying to cover 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
a lot of trouble

and just surrender
to the sheriff here?

After all, it's not such
a crime in these parts

to shoot a man in self-defense.


Yes. Everybody knows
how Clint was.

He probably lost his head

and pulled a gun on you

like he did that night
in the poker game.

Now, 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!

Well, sheriff,

you certainly ought
to be congratulated.

Look, Mr. Harolday,
you seen what happened.

Never mind that. Let's get
going to garden city.

That's where he's headed.

Are you sure?

I'm positive.

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 stay awhile?

Doggone you.
I might have knowed

you'd do something like this.

What are we doing?

Heading for the kc.

For the kc?

Ain't that a little
like hanging yourself?

You better get out of this
country fast, I'm thinking.

I'll do the thinking.


Name's Clews, ma'am.
Mr. Garvey sent us out,

said you were expecting trouble

with that Rocklin.

Miss Martin: I am.

I 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.

Must have taken the cutoff
through jawbone canyon.

After that storm,
he'd never make it.

Garvey: There's
only one other place

he could have gone.
That's the 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.

Tala: 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 the one that's been
deceitful and sneaking.

And don't think I don't know
what you intend doing.

Don't think I don't know
what you intend doing.

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 something,
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.

And you and Mr. Garvey
knew the truth all the time?


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.

And 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.

Dave: It's the only way
I could handle her.

The Clews are around here
someplace. Garvey sent them.

George: You bet we're around.

Untie her.

Now tie him up.

I'll take part in this,

you hairy beast.

Now here's something I owe you.

(Bob laughing)

Ooh! Help me

to get her on the bed.

Take those two to Mr. Garvey

and tell him I want
to see him at once!

Put them in the wagon
and get our horses.

We'll dump them
right 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!

Arly: Now get down
off that wagon.

George: Aw, 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 shot
at me on tabletop.

Dave found it.

(Muffled shouting)

Cut him loose.

(Muffled shouting)

Put that gun away.

We got to stop him.
He's going to get away.

Hey, rock!
Get the team!

Rocklin, you got to
get out of here!

Do something...
If you can!

Doggone it, rock!
I'm on your side!

Well, 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.

(Knock on door)

Howdy, ma'am.

Sorry to bother you like this--

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?

Oh, yes, here and gone.


Yes. The two men you sent out

took him and that horrid
old man back to town.

The Clews. Funny.
We didn't see them.

Something must have gone wrong.

Harolday: For once,
I agree with you.

We'd better fan out
and see what's going on.

Don't leave, Mr. Garvey. I want
to talk with you privately.

It's very important.

We'd better go ahead
and meet you in town.

Yes. Possibly
that would be better.

I'll see you in town
later, sheriff.

We'll leave your horse
here for you.

Thank you very much.

Tie Garvey's horse up.

You're positive
he knows everything?

Absolutely everything!

He was standing
right at the window,

the scoundrel. If
you were to ask me--

Garvey: I'm not asking you,

and stop bothering me with
your silly little questions.

We've got to do
something else besides talk.

You mean 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.

Miss Martin:
Well, I do declare!


Miss Martin: Why, I--

Dave: Not you!

You ever see this before?

Arly: Drop that gun!

Dave: Hello, 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?

Arly: 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?

Rocklin: Why did you
kill red Cardell?

(Horse neighs)

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, well,

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
apparent knowledge

of your relationship
to Cardell, it seemed

that 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 these ladies.

And do us out of everything!

It would have been
so much simpler.

Everything would have been--

you vile, wicked,

(Door slams)

Well, 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.

(Door opens and closes)

Mr. Rocklin,

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.

Uh-huh. Yeah, I believe I am.

I know I am.

(Door opens)

Well, 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.

Well, I reckon it's good
to know where you belong.

Wish I knew.

I can tell you.

Dave: Hey, rock!
Rock, where are you?