Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 6, Episode 31 - Bless Me Till I Die - full transcript

Vengeful former convict Nate Bush sets off a tragic series of events when he informs Matt that well-liked new arrival Cole Treadwell is actually Cole Trankin, an escapee from the Arizona Territorial Prison.

Starring James
Arness as Matt Dillon.

Whoa, whoa, whoa.

Well, I reckon this is it, Beth.

And you're awful
tired, aren't ya?

Be good to lie down, all right.

Well, no sense you climbing down

till I see if we got
ourselves a room.

Hey, you.

We don't want no nesters here.
You get that wagon out of town.


Ho! Ho there!

Don't you push me.

What's the matter
with you anyway?

Give me that gun.

Take the gun and lock him up.

- Now wait a minute.
- Come on!

You law here?

Yes, my name's Dillon.
I'm the marshal here.

My name's Cole Treadwell.
Thanks for your help.

This is my wife.

How do, ma'am?

Marshal, uh, you wouldn't
mind staying here just a minute,

I'd appreciate it.

Oh, not at all.

Good. Thank you. I'll
be back in a minute.

Ma'am, you, uh,
you travel far today?

Since before dawn today.

We wanted to reach
Dodge, no matter how late.

We started in Arizona.

Well, I'm certainly sorry
for what's happened here.

Nate Bush never was any good.

I don't want my husband
to have trouble here.

Well, there's no
reason why he should.

What's his line of work?

He's going to be a doctor.

A doctor?

He never had the
proper schooling,

but he's studying now
whenever he gets a chance.


Well, if you don't mind
my saying so, ma'am,

Dodge seems like kind of a funny
place to be studying medicine.

Oh, we stop off wherever we can.

We're in no hurry.

But by the time
we get to St. Louie,

he'll be ready for
a proper school.

That's fine, ma'am. That's fine.

I got us a room, Beth.
Everything's fixed.


There you go.

Thanks again, Marshal.

Thank you. Good night, Marshal.

- Good night, ma'am.
- Good night.

I'll get you settled and
then get the wagon in.

By golly, you know, breakfast
is gonna taste awful good.

You're hungry, huh?

Gosh, I think I can probably put
Chester to shame this morning.

How long we been out anyway?

Oh, an hour, an hour and a half.

Why, you tired too?

Oh, no. Gosh, I'm not tired.

Just that if I'd have
known we were gonna ride

halfway over to Ford County
before breakfast, I'd a...

Well, I would have liked

to been a little bit
better mounted.

What do you mean?

Moss says that's the best
ride in the whole stable.

This ain't exactly a rocking
chair, I'll tell you that.

You know, Doc, you
haven't told me what you think

of this old boy yet.

- I believe I'd buy him.
- I think maybe I will.

Say, you know, there's
one thing, though,

- you ought to be sure of.
- What's that?

Well, you know, you want
to know if a horse'll tie.

Oh, he's gonna tie good enough.

Well, you can't be
sure, and you just don't...

Well, you don't want
to take any chances.

Now here, whoa. I got an idea.

You see, we're right
here at Delmonico's.

Why don't we tie up right
here and then we'll go in

and have breakfast?

And if he's still here when
we get back, you know he ties.

Mm-hmm. You are
hungry, aren't you?

You betcha. Come here.

Come on right up here.

Whoa, Joker.

- Well, good morning, Chester.
- Morning, Miss Kitty.

- Here, I'll help you down now.
- All right.

You need some help there, Doc?

You just mind your own business.

By golly, Miss Kitty,

don't tell me you've
been out riding

this early in the morning.

Ooh, I sure have.

Doc, I haven't seen you on a
horse in pert' near two years.

I'm surprised you're
still in one piece.

I've done some
horsebacking in my time.

I wanted to get Doc's opinion on
this saddle horse I'm gonna buy.

You want to get an
opinion on a horse?


Why didn't you go to somebody
knowed something about horses,

like Mr. Dillon or me?

- You?
- Yeah, me.

Good heavens.

I've forgotten more
about horseflesh

than you ever will know.

Well, that kind of
proves it, don't it?


Well, I always did say
that you was a horse doctor.

Now listen, you two.

I'm not gonna wait out
here while you decide

which one of you
is the smartest.

You were the one
that was so hungry.

I am.

Come and have
breakfast with us, Chester.

- Oh, I just et, Miss Kitty.
- Good.

Well, have some coffee.

Well, I sure would.

I'd love to have
some coffee with you,

but I've got to go over
and turn a prisoner loose.

Well, that's a terrible thing.


My gosh, Matt works hard
apprehending criminals,

and he doesn't get much
pay for what he does.

Then you sneak in
early in the morning

after they've all been
securely locked in jail

and turn 'em loose.

Mr. Dillon told me to do it.

I'll see you later, Chester.

Mr. Dillon said you
can get out of there.

'Bout time.

Yeah, well, come on. Let's go.

Back to your dark and evil ways.

I don't need no sermon
from you, Chester.

Ain't you forgetting something?


A big tough man like you
wouldn't walk out of here

without this, would you?

I'm gonna tell you
something, Chester.

All I remember about last night
is you throwing me in jail. You.

Yeah, well you deserved it.

You, you're the
one that done it,

and I ain't forgetting it and...

Why don't you go do your
bullying somewheres else,

'cause I ain't interested.

Oh, another thing.

How come I didn't get
no breakfast this morning?

Well, we just don't feed common
ordinary drunks around here.

But if you'll go out and
get yourself arrested

on a murder charge, well,
we'll give you a whole banquet.

Maybe I will, Chester.

- Yeah.
- Maybe I just will.

Well, hi there, Cole.

- Hello. -Chester. Marshal.
- How you do?

Well, what do you got there?

Oh, I just got a few
books from St. Louie.


You think I'm too old
to be studying, Chester?

Oh, I forgot. You gonna
be a doctor, ain't ya?

Yeah, with a little bit of luck.

Cole, you ought to have
a talk with Doc Adams.

I bet he could help ya.

He's coming over to
dinner tomorrow, Marshal.

We got a little house out the
edge of town the other day.

Well, that's wonderful.

Yeah, and I better get out there

- and get to work right now.
- You go ahead.

I want to stop by the milliner's
and pick out some ribbon...

Beth, look, I don't want you
walking around Dodge alone.

Well, all right. I'll come
home with you then.

Your work's more
important than any old ribbon.

Well, wait a minute.
I mean, if you

don't mind, ma'am, I'd be
glad to walk you to the store.

Got nothing else to do.

Why, that's very
kind of you, Chester.

You sure it's not
putting you out any?

Oh, no, heavens.

Well, I'll walk her clear
on home if you want me to.

May cost you a cup of
coffee when you get there.

He'll get a piece of pie, too.

Well, then, let's get
started, Mrs. Treadwell.

All right. You go
home and study now.


Well, I got some
mail to pick up.

See you later, Cole.

The trouble with this town

is we just don't have
enough women like you

come here, ma'am.

Why thank you, Chester.

If we did, the place would
be a little bit more civilized.

Most of the men
just act wild, raw.

- You know what I mean.
- Well, I think I do.

Hey, you, Chester.

Chester, come here.

Just keep walking,
Miss Treadwell.

Don't pay him no mind.

Now, wait a minute.

Don't you try to
run off from me...

Now listen, Nate.
Now, leave me be.

Can't you see that
I'm with a lady?

You finally got
yourself a woman, huh?

Why don't you go back
in there at the trough

and get yourself another drink.

I promised I'd fix you, Chester,

and I'm gonna do it.

What kind of a man
are you anyway?

Trying to start a fight right out
here where there's a woman.

- Now, look...
- You catch me sometime

when I'm alone and I'll
fight ya any day of the week

with one hand tied behind me.

But I ain't fighting now
and neither are you.

So just go someplace
and sober up

before I lose my temper.

Come on, Miss Treadwell.

Go on, run.

Run, you coward.

You can't hide behind
a lady's skirts forever.

I'm gonna get you alone

and I'm gonna break your neck.

You'll see.

Well, say, that was a fine
dinner, Miss Treadwell.

It's a pleasure
to have you, Doc.

Well, thank you.

And thanks for all
the advice too, Doc.

Oh, well that just
makes me feel important.

You know, if I'm gonna
drop you by that store,

- we better be on our way.
- Beth...

I don't like the idea of
you coming home alone.

Doc, Nate Bush, you
heard what he did yesterday?

Yes, I did. I heard about it.

Now, Cole, he
wasn't bothering me.

It was Chester he was after.

Probably never see him again.

Chester told me he
never stays in town

more than a week at a time.

Now, you get in
there and get to work,

and quit worrying.

Well, he's not gonna
bother you with me around.

- I'll tell you that.
- Well, all right.

The only enemies
I have in this town

are the people that owe me
money and they all go run and hide

when they see me coming.

You didn't tell me about
that part of doctoring.

Well, I just thought it
might be kinder to let you

find that out for yourself.


Beth, don't be long.

You just keep your nose in
the book, you'll never miss me.

No, that's not likely.


Box of shells, Jonas. 44s.

Be right with ya.

Hurry up with
them shells, Jonas.

Well, you wait a minute.

Say, I seen you
somewheres before.

I'll just take that
package now, Mr. Jonas.

I remember.

You're the woman was
with Chester yesterday.

Will you just put it
on my bill, please?

Now, wait a minute.

Nate Bush, get out of her way.

What's the matter with you?

- Shut up, Jonas.
- May I get by, please?

Well, now, you're
not gonna run out

just when we're started
to get acquainted, are you?

Now you listen to me, Nate.

Nobody talks to Mrs.
Treadwell that way.

Mrs. Treadwell. Is that a fact?

You know, you're beginning
to interest me, Mrs. Treadwell.

Looks like somebody's trying

to protect you all the time.

Now, there must be a reason...

I, uh, got a little
worried, Beth.

I, I couldn't wait.

- Who are you?
- Take me home now, Cole, please.

- Now, hold up here a minute.
- Now, Cole.

You caused just about enough
trouble, haven't ya, mister?

He sure has. He ought to be
taken out and horsewhipped.

I think I seen you
somewhere before, too.

About ten days ago you
tried to spook my team.


Oh, you're her husband, huh?

That's right.

Well, you better
watch out, mister.

I seen her out yesterday
with another man.

Be careful, Bush.

I was just about to ask her
out to buy her a drink myself.

And she probably would
have taken me up on it

if you hadn't busted in here.

Cole, what does it
matter what he says?

What are you anyway,

a preacher or something?

Let's go, Beth.

Now, wait a minute. I
ain't through with you yet.

Oh, yes, you are.

Good. Good for you, Cole.

He had that coming.

All right now, you
hold it right there.


I don't carry a gun, Bush.

No, no.

A coward like you, you wouldn't.

But I'm gonna shoot you anyway.

I'm gonna shoot you
right through the leg.

I'm gonna make a
cripple out of you.

Don't do it, Nate.

Shut up, Jonas.

I'm gonna blow you in two,
you don't put that gun away.

This is buckshot, Nate.

It'll cut you right in half.

You put that thing down.

You'll be the first
man I ever killed, Nate.

I ain't gonna mind a bit.

Now, you calm down, Jonas.

You start walking out
that door and keep walking.

Go on!

You be careful; that
thing's gonna go off.

You don't know
what you're doing.

I know what I'm
doing, all right.

- Now, on your way.
- I'm going!

But I ain't through
with you yet, mister.

You insult my wife or even
come near her again, I'll kill you.

Keep moving, Nate,
on out that door.

I'm awful sorry this happened
in here, Mrs. Treadwell.

Okay, I'll walk you home.

Here you are, Mr. Dillon.

Now you be careful with
that because that there's hot.

- I mean it's hot.
- Thanks, Chester.

Made a little bit
close to the fire.

You're making better
coffee these days.

Well, maybe that there's

because I put an
extra pinch of salt in it

right there at the end
along with the eggshells.

Or it could be that I
ain't been using none

of the old grounds over
again at all anymore.

Well, that sounds more like it.

I noticed our coffee
bill's been doubling here.


you get just exactly what
you pay for, Mr. Dillon.

That there's what I always say.

The way you say it make it sound

as though you're the
one that thought it up.

No, no, heavens, I
didn't think it up at all.

You know who thought that up?

Old feller I used to know,
lived down on a river,

used to trap
muskrats for a living.

Yeah, that there's a truth.

There was a lot of people
that used to trap muskrats

for a living down there.

Nate, what are you doing here?

Don't worry, Chester. I ain't
after you, not today, anyway.

Well, if you ever are, you
know where you can find me.

Look, I got more on my
mind than knotheads like you.

Look, Nate, I'm getting a
little bit tired of all this talk.

- All right, Chester.
- Well, Mr. Dillon,

I ain't afraid of him.

Ain't scared of you neither.

You mind if I sit down?

What's on your mind?

Look, Marshal,

you know this fella,
Cole Treadwell?


I run into him today,

and I've been thinking
about him ever since.

I've been thinking about
him for the past two hours.

Now, I knew I seen
him somewheres before.

I don't mean the night
I hurrahed him a little.

I was a little too
drunk that night,

but then I finally remembered.

Marshal, his name
ain't Treadwell.

It's Trankin,

Cole Trankin.


Well, Trankin is a wanted man.

He's a murderer.

Oh, I don't believe that.

I don't believe no part of it.

Look, I served some time once

in Arizona Territorial Prison.

This Trankin was there.

He busted out of that prison.

Now, this is the man.

I'd swear to it.

You say you saw him today?

That's right.

Where'd you get the black eye?

So, we had a little scrap.

I knew I was wasting
my time coming here.


when are you planning
on leaving Dodge?

I ain't decided.

Well, I have.

You're leaving tonight.

Now look, Marshal...

You've caused enough
trouble around here.

You're going to be
sorry about this, Marshal.

You don't believe
him, do you, Mr. Dillon?

I don't know, Chester.

Well, I wouldn't
believe anything

that a person like that told me.

No, but I'm afraid
I'd have to believe

what the Arizona law told me.

Well, you don't have to check
with them, do you, and find out?

I'm afraid I do.

Hello, Cole.

Well, hello, Marshal.

How are you?

Fine, thank you.

Cole, uh... how-how's Beth?

She's just fine.

In fact, I think she's
got a pot of coffee on.

- Would you like some?
- No, no, thanks.

Matter of fact, I was kind of
hoping I'd catch you alone.

Got something here
I'd like you to read.

The answer to a telegram
I sent off yesterday.

Nate Bush said he
knew you up there.

I sure don't remember him,

but I guess I
shouldn't have hit him

the other day, should I?

You, uh...

You're gonna have
to take me in, huh?

Yeah, afraid so.

Marshal, Beth,
she-she doesn't know.

She comes from gentle people,

and I just never could tell her.

I never could.

Well, she's gonna
have to know now.

I know that. I know that.

Look, Marshal, give
me a half an hour.

Let me tell her alone.

If it comes from
you or anybody else,

it'll kill her; I know it will.

I'll be in your office
in a half an hour.

I swear that.

All right.

Thank you.

Don't try to run, Cole.

I won't.

I'll be there.

I, uh...

I didn't tell her, Marshal.

I-I couldn't.

It'll kill her.

Cole, I think you're
making too much out of that.


all I ever wanted was
to be a doctor, that's all.

My dad, he had a
different idea for me.

He taught me how to use a gun.

Soon as I was old
enough, he taught me.

It wasn't till I
busted out of prison

and I met Beth that I
was able to start studying.

It was because of her mostly,

her believing in me.

So you see, Marshal, I...

I don't mind the prison so much.

It's Beth knowing
just what I am.

Why can't you just tell
them you made a mistake,

that I'm not Cole
Trankin after all?

I wish I could, Cole.

I came here like I
promised, didn't I, Marshal?


Well, I always
do like I say I will.

You believe that?

What are you getting at?

You're gonna let Beth and
me leave Dodge tonight,

soon as it's dark.

Now, Cole...

Now, wait, you listen to me.

I swear to you if I get caught,

I won't tell a soul that
you knew anything about it.

Now, I swear that to
you, and you can tell them

you got that telegram
after I was gone.

You're not making
any sense, Cole.

You know I can't do that.

She's not gonna know, Marshal.

That's all.


You gonna stop me?

Now, Cole, put the gun down.



Don't tell her.


you make up a story.


Promise me that.

Well, hello, Marshall.

Hello, Mrs. Treadwell.

Cole's gone into
town for a little while,

but he'll be back
soon. You come on in.

I'll make you some coffee?

Now, Mrs. Treadwell, uh...

I just ought to tell you this.

There's been an accident.


Something's happened to Cole?

I'm afraid so, ma'am.

How bad... how bad is he?

He's dead.

You see, well,

he came over to see me,

and I was cleaning my rifle.

I was putting the
bullets back in it,

and the gun went off
accidentally, ma'am.

I... Cole was right in the way.

I'm terribly sorry. I...

You don't have to lie to me.

How long you been using guns?

Ten years?


And you put a
bullet in the rifle

and pointed it at him?

You found out, didn't you,

about Cole being in prison?

Had to shoot it out with him.

Why did he make you do it? Why?

He did it to keep you
from finding out, ma'am.

I knew about it before
we were married.

It's the only thing
Cole ever kept from me.

And it was the one thing
I wanted him to tell me.

I hoped,

I prayed he'd tell me.

Then everything would
have been all right.

Now, he'll never tell me.