Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 6, Episode 1 - Friend's Pay-Off - full transcript

Badly wounded, Matt's old friend won't identify the man who shot him, but does say he expects the gunman to return to finish the job.

Starring James
Arness as Matt Dillon.


I wish there was some way
of sticking things together

without using glue.

If a person would set
right in a chair to begin with,

and not like it
was a piece of iron,

why, they wouldn't always
be a-crumbling down.

- Mister?
- Guess I got to go around

fixing up after everybody.

- Hey, mister?
- Don't bother me now, boy.

I'm-I'm working.

I'm looking for the marshal.

Yeah, well, you come
to the right place...

This is where he lives...
Only he ain't here right now.

I got a message for the marshal.

Well, you can't give it to
him if he ain't here, can you?

It's on this paper.

Well, all right,
here, give it to me.

No. I had to swear to
give it to him personal.

Well, you can't give it to
him if he ain't here, can you?

When will he be back?

Well, look, boy,
I don't go around

checking up on the marshal.

You want to give me
the message or don't you?

I ain't to let loose of
it to nobody but him.

Fine. All right.

Suit yourself. Suit yourself.

Here. Uh, tap that
for me, would you?

Ah. Yeah.

All right.

Now this one.

Hit that one, right there.

Hit it. Hit it.

There. Now, that ought to do it.

If I can just get it to
stay there for a spell.

Oh, Mr. Dillon, the kid
there wants to see you.

Well, what can I do
for you, young fella?

Got this message,
if you're the marshal.

Well, I'm the
marshal, all right.


What is it?

Ab Butler.

Chester, this is from
an old friend of mine

- I haven't seen for ten years.
- What does it say?

He says he's lying
out near Cotton Wells,

and he's got a
bullet in the back.

You better go get Doc.

Well, he ain't here, Mr. Dillon.

He won't be back till tonight.

He went out to
the Simpson place.

Should I ought
to get the horses?

And we'll need a wagon, Chester.

Well, th...


Any sign of him, Mr. Dillon?

No, but he's got to be around
here somewhere, Chester.

Hold it right there!



Matt Dillon.

Ab, what's happened to you?

I was riding...
riding up from Texas.

I got ambushed.

I got a bullet in my
back two days ago.

Tried to make it to Dodge.

I just couldn't go no further.

Ab, do you think
you can move now?


I don't know.

That bullet...

it just didn't do
me no good at all.

All right, just take it easy.

Chester, see if you can
bring that wagon a little closer.

Yes, sir. Hyah!

Ab, now, don't
worry about a thing.

We're gonna have you back
to Dodge in no time at all.

You know, Matt...

I sure planned a different
kind of reunion than this.

Doc, what do you
think about his chances?

Well, I don't know. He's
lost so doggone much blood.

Must be made of iron, or he
wouldn't have lasted this long.

Sure is a terrible thing

to shoot a man in
the back like that.


- Is it all right to talk to him?
- Yeah, go ahead.


What are my chances?

Well, you're gonna be just fine.

Now, don't fool me, Matt;
you've know'd me too long.

Am I gonna make it?

Doc says he's not sure.



I got to stay hid.

Ab, who was it that shot you?


I can't tell you.

But one thing I know for
sure, he'll be looking for me...

for as long as I'm alive.


you're planning to keep
him here a while, aren't you?

Well, sure. I got to
keep an eye on him.

Uh, there'll be people
coming in here?

Well, sure, there'll be people.

Well, he... he wants to
keep out of sight, Doc.

Well... only thing I can do is
put him in the back room there.

I'll have to get
it ready, though.

Chester, will you
give me a hand?


You know, Ab, I'd
like to help you if I can.

You want to tell me
what happened out there?

Well, I can tell you this:

I didn't do nothing wrong.


that fellow who's after me...

well, it's a personal matter.


Uh... you believe me, don't you?

Ab, if you tell
me, I believe it.



you know I wouldn't...
I wouldn't do nothing

to put you in a bad spot.

Ab, you're gonna
be all right here.

Doc's gonna take
good care of you.

Nobody's gonna bother you.

I knew I could count on you.

We were mighty good
friends, weren't we?

We still are.

You're ready to
get some sleep now.

- Hello, stranger.
- Howdy.

- Got grain here?
- Sure I have.

He's had a hard ride.

I'll take good care of him.

What's the best hotel in town?

Uh, the Dodge
House down the street.

Did you ever hear of
man named Ab Butler?

Is that you?

No, it ain't me.

No. No, I never heard of him.

What are you, a
lawman or something?

Just take good care of my horse.

Oh, sure, sure, I will.


Well, howdy.

Do you live here?

Yeah, I guess
you could say that.

You must know almost
everybody in town, don't you?

Reckon so.

I'm looking for a man,
mister... It'd be worth

a couple of bucks to me if
you could help me find him.


Friend of mine.

We got separated on the trail.

His name's Butler.

Ab Butler.


Do you know him?


Ab Butler.

No, I... I don't think I do.

Well, much obliged.

If-if he should turn up, who
should I say is looking for him?

If he turns up, I'll find him.


Good luck.

Mr. Dillon?

There he is, Mr. Dillon,

standing down
there by that post.


Chester, you better stay here.


What's your name?

My name's Joe Leeds, Marshal.

I understand you're
looking for Ab Butler.

Word sure gets
around fast, don't it?

What do you want him for?

Well, I'll tell you, Marshal,

I'm not in the habit of
asking help from the law.

Well, I'm not offering any;
I've asked you a question.

It's a personal matter, Marshal.

Strictly personal.

You gonna answer me?

When I find Ab Butler...

it'll be no concern of yours.

It'll be between him and
me, just the two of us.

Three of us.

Well, I sure admire a
man who cottons to his job

the way you do, Marshal.

If you want to find out just
how much I cotton to my job,

you make one false
move around this town.

That's the only warning
you're gonna get.

Find out anything?


Say, I think we better
get on up to Doc's.

I want to tell him about this
so he can keep an eye open.

In fact, I think
it'd be a good idea

if you stayed
around up there, too.


This ain't gonna put Ab
Butler at his ease, is it?

Well, we aren't gonna
tell him about it; not yet.

- Well, Ab.
- Matt.

So, you're up and around, huh?

Yeah, I... I got kind of tired

of looking at the
four walls in there.

- Where's Doc?
- Oh, he just went out.

He said he'd be back directly.

How are you feeling?

Well, I'm... I'm gonna make it.

Doc ain't worried no more.

Yeah, I know. I saw
him this morning.

Ab, I'm, uh, gonna leave
Chester here with you for a while.


Is something wrong, Matt?

No... No, just in case
you need anything.

Well, now... you
don't have to, Chester.

Oh, I don't mind at all.

Keep me in out of the sun.

Well, I'll, uh,
I'll see you later.

All right, Mr. Dillon.

There you are, mister.

Doc, I'm from
up in that country.

Well, I don't care
whether you are or not.

Name of the river
is the Purgatoire.

We always call
it the Picket Wire.

Well, that's not its
name; it's the Purgatoire.

Picket Wire's a
lot easier to say.

Well, I can't help that.

Awful lot of folks who
can't pronounce the name

called it a lot of silly things,

like the Purgatory
and things like that.

How do you know
all of this, Doc?

Well, I'll just tell you.

When I was a young
fella, back in the '20s,

I did a little bit of knocking
around up in that country.

I was with the Hudson Bay
Company Trapping Company

for a while, and we
were all through Colorado

and Yellowstone
and all through there.

I'll tell you something else,

there was a lot of real
men up in there then.

There was the Carson family

and the Sublettes and the Bents.

I know that.

Hiya, Doc.

How are you?

Good, Kitty, how are you?


You've been kind of a
stranger around here.

I've missed you.

- Yeah?
- Yeah.

Well, I tell you, I, uh,

I don't mean to
stay away from here,

but I've been kind of busy.

- Oh, you're always busy.
- That's just an excuse.

No, no, an awful lot;
I'll tell you the truth.

I been pretty busy.

Got a sick fella
up in my office.


Well, I don't think
you'd know him.

What's he sick with?

Sick with a bullet.

In his back.

You know who did it?

No, I don't.

That's something for
Matt to worry about.

And I better be
getting back there.


it's the Purgatoire.

What you going out
the back way for?

Oh, I'm going
by the post office.

Don't stay away so often.

I'll see you.

Have another, mister?

No, no more.

Can you tell me where
the doc's office is?

Why sure, right down the street.

You'll see a sign;
go up the stairs.


What's the matter,
Matt? You know him?

Yeah, I know him.

He's gunning for
a friend of mine.


I wouldn't worry
about him, Marshal.

Not just now anyway.

Why not?

Well, he's sick or something.

He just asked me
where the doc's office is.

He what?

That's right.

I'll see you later.


Stay where you are, Marshal.

You're not going in there.

You ain't stopping me.

You should've let
me do it, Marshal.

Shoot him in the back again?

He had it coming.

Ab must have been
telling you some lies.

What do you mean?

He's got the money.

What money?

Bank money.


We robbed it together.

Ab shot the teller,

then he run off.

Are you telling me the truth?

Ain't no odds for me to lie.

Not now.

Find that money, Marshal.

Find it...

Do you suppose that
he was telling the truth

about Ab, I mean?

I don't know.

Well, Ab sure don't have
no money on him now,

that's for sure.

Well, he could've buried
it out there somewhere

where we found him.

Yeah, I reckon so. Yeah.

Ab ain't a bank robber.

I don't like to think that.

Well, maybe he
didn't do it, Mr. Dillon.

Him saying so
don't give it no proof.


I think we better ride
out there and find out.

Would you get the horses?

Yes, sir.

Find anything, Chester?

No, I didn't find nothing.

Suppose he was able to dig a
hole and bury it somewheres?

Well, it hasn't
rained lately, Chester.

You know, if he'd
have buried it, why,

we'd probably see the
loose dirt around somewhere.

Well, I scoured
the whole hillside.

- Looked everywhere that I could.
- You know something,

I'm beginning to think
there never was any money.

Well, that's what
I kind of think.

You know that Leeds
could have been lying.

He wasn't no good anyway,

shooting a man in
the back like that.

Yeah, then again, what
reason would he have

to lie when he was dying?

Well, I just don't
think that Ab Butler's

a kind of a feller
would turn bank robber.

I've known him for
a long time, Chester.

I never would have
thought so either.

Well, maybe you should
have just sort of asked Ab

about the money
and let it gone at that.

Maybe you're right.

Well, might as
well get back, huh?

Wait a minute.

Sure is a lot of money
there, Mr. Dillon.

Of course, by getting
it all back like we did,

maybe it won't go so hard on Ab.


Chester, there's just
one thing you're forgetting.

- What's that?
- Ab murdered the bank teller.

Ar-Are... are you
gonna tell him that?

About finding the money, I mean?

Yeah, might as
well get it over with.

I'll have some coffee
for you when you get...

Here you are, Ab.

Now, that's not
much of a dinner, Doc.


Well, I'll do a little
better for you tonight, Ab.

Glad to see you're
hungry, though.

That's a good sign.

Well, I ought to be able to
get out of here tomorrow.

Don't you think so, Doc?

Well, I don't know about that,

but you're on the mend.

You got nothing to
worry about, anyway.

Yeah, nothing at all.

Except that Leeds fella.

Ab, you never did tell
me why he was after you.

Well, he never
said neither, did he?

No, I don't think so.

According to Matt, he was...
he was dead when he fell.

Yeah, well, let's just
leave it at that, huh, Doc?

All right, Ab.

Hello, Matt.



You want to tell
me about it, Ab?

Tell you about what?


What's bothering you, Matt?


He told me the whole
story just before he died.


I didn't want to tell
you till I made sure.

Well, now, just
how'd you make sure?

Rode out, found the money.


I was hoping to keep
you out of this, Matt.


why don't you keep the money?

Send it back; tell
them I got away.

I'll be riding out of
here pretty soon,

and I promise I won't
never come back.

Just let you go, huh?

Well, sure.

We're friends, ain't we?

Now, who's gonna know?

Look, Chester, he's not
gonna talk, if you tell him.

Doc, well, Doc's on my side.

Ain't you, Doc?


they'll hang me down there.

I killed a man in that bank.

Yeah... I know.

Doc, when can
I take him to jail?


You just unbuckle
your gun belt real easy.

Ab, you're a fool.

Just do what I tell you.

I'll just come after you.

No, you won't.

I'm gonna kill you, Matt.

I gotta do it.

I don't trust you no more.

All right, now let me
tell you something.

Maybe you'll get a
bullet in me, sure.

But I'll get one in you, too,

before I die.

You'll never make
it out that door.

Oh, I just got no choice.

I'm sorry about this, Matt.


Yeah, I plumb forgot about you.

You sure did, Ab.

You see...

Doc's a friend of mine, too.

Well, there's another bullet
there that's got to come out.


just leave it in.


Where it'll make it easier...

when they hang me.