Little House on the Prairie (1974–1983): Season 6, Episode 2 - Back to School: Part 2 - full transcript

Nellie is less than willing to go into the hospitality business, but gives it her best go when, in an effort to impress handsome young Almanzo Wilder, tries cooking dinner. Only thing is, Laura volunteers to cook instead and makes Nellie's meal the hottest dish in town. Later, Nellie learns that Laura is studying to be a teacher and volunteers to help her study ... but conveniently forgets to tell her that the study material won't help her one bit. An angry Laura confronts Nellie and the two get into a huge fistfight that leaves both girls very muddy. Almanzo breaks up the fight and takes her back to his place to clean up and cool off ... then Charles steps in and thinks that the much-older Almanzo is taking advantage of his 15-year-old daughter.

Well, what are you
dressed for,

a wedding or a funeral?

Oh, I just thought
I should look nice

the first day
back to school.

That's not the reason,
and you know it.

- It is too.
- Mm-mm.

He's so sure that the new
teacher's going to be pretty,

he's in love
with her already.

That's dumb.

No dumber than
wearing a tie to school.

Welcome, class.

I am miss Wilder.

It is kind of hot
to wear a tie.

Oh, we're ready!



This is for you.



have you ever seen a kitchen like this?

And the stove,
have you ever seen such a stove?

It's a majestic.

It's a majestic

Who's going to do
the cooking?


I said,

who's going to
do the cooking?

Laura, this is
my brother, almanzo.

Pleasure to meet you,

My friends
call me mannie.

Pleasure to meet you,


voice-over: If I had a remembrance book,

I'd Mark down this day
as very special.

Though I didn't know it
at the time,

I'd just met the man
I would some day marry,

almanzo Wilder.

Lord have mercy.
What's this thing weigh?

About 900 pounds.

All the way up.


How do you feel?

Like I got hit
by a millstone.

How long is he going
to be laid up, doc?

Well, that's
hard to say,

but he's not gonna be doing
any milling on this harvest.

I can guarantee
you that.

Here we are! Pancakes.

Anything else, now?

From the looks of these,
I could use a poker.

Oh, well,
it's an old family recipe.

Crisp pancakes.

Is your family
all blacksmiths?

Oh, well, if you don't want them,
don't eat them.

You wait right here,

These are our friends,
our neighbors,

people we have as guests
in our own home.

I'm not going to have
you serving them

and then waiting around
the table for a tip.

Somebody once said,

there's no reason to
be ashamed of any job

as long as you do
your best.

What idiot said that?


I'd like to, Mrs. Olsen,
but I just can't.

Oh, I do wish that you would
change your mind, Mr. Wilder.

Accept Nellie's

She's a wonderful

I'm sure she is, but
I just don't have the time.

All right.
All right.

If you can't come

how about
sunday night?

we're not open sundays.

Mrs. Oleson, I do not work on sunday,
and that is final.

Oh, for
heaven's sake!

I promised zaldamo
cinnamon chicken!

Well, I'm afraid you'll just
have to make it yourself.

Well, I don't know how!

I could do it, ma.


What a dear child.

Oh, Caroline,
please let her.

Well, Laura, if you
really want to.



She was here! I swear,
Laura did the cooking!

It's all right,
Nellie. I got to be going.

Oh, zaldamo!

Good night.

What, are you
leaving already?

But it's early yet!


Mrs. Oleson:



- That's very good, Albert.
- Thank you, ma'am.

who would like to take the next problem?

Excuse me,
miss Wilder.

Mrs. Ingalls.

I hate to interrupt
the class,

but may I speak
to Laura for a moment?



I just found out what
happened last night.

Oh... the mistake?

The mistake.

Am I to suppose that this label
came off this can by mistake?

No, ma'am.

How could you do such
a thing deliberately?

I'm sorry.

I'm not
the one to tell.

We'll discuss your
punishment later,

you're going to apologize to Nellie.

Yes, ma'am.

Here, Nellie.
The tea will help now.

I don't want any!

Darling, please
stop crying!

I can't stop.
I'll never stop!

Mrs. Oleson.


What is that
child doing here?

Laura has something to say to Nellie,
Mrs. Oleson.


I'm sorry, Nellie.

I'm sorry
for what I did.

Then it was
on purpose!

Yes, it was.


What a cruel
thing to do.

If you were my child,

I'd have you horsewhipped,
young lady,

within an inch
of your life!

Laura will be
appropriately punished,

Mrs. Oleson.

Ahh! Well,
I should hope so,

Mrs. Ingalls.

Come on, Laura.

I'll get even
with her.

You'll see.

Can I go back
to school now?

No, you may not.
First you have

another apology
to make...

To almanzo.

Oh, no, ma. I can't.

You can,
and you will.

I won't.

I won't!



Albert, I think
you best turn in.

Can't I stay up
a little bit longer, pa?

No, it's late,
and you got school tomorrow.

Your ma and I will stay up
and worry about your sister,

you get yourself
up to bed.

Yes, sir.

- Good night, son.
- Good night, pa.

Good night, dear.

Where could she be?

She'll come home.
Don't you worry.

I just
don't understand.

I just wanted her
to apologize.

I know,
and she should have.

It's all right
to worry about her,

but I don't want you
feeling guilty about it.


Come here.

She sure ran a long way
from home, didn't she?

Why don't you put some
water on for tea? I'll go get her.

Well, what do you have to say for yourself,
young lady?

I'm sorry.

I can't hear you.

I'm sorry.

And you should be.

I thought the one thing
my little girl could face up to

would be
her punishment.

I'm not afraid of
being punished...

And I'm not
a little girl.

Why does everybody have
to keep calling me a little girl?


Hey, come on,
there's nothing to be that upset about.

Yes, there is.

Ma wanted me to
march right over

to apologize
to almanzo...

Like a baby.

Well, I'm not
a baby anymore.

I'm a woman.

I... I know
you're not a baby,

but you're hardly
a woman yet, half-pint.

You see? "Half-pint."

That's a name you give
to someone who's little.

I've been calling
you that ever since

you were little.

But I'm not
little anymore.

Almanzo doesn't
call me half-pint.

Oh, almanzo, huh?


He calls me Beth.

It's a woman's

Oh, I see.

You never called Mary
by a silly name like that.

Well, I never thought
it was a silly name.

Besides, Mary's
older than you are.

Not that much.

Honey, Mary is married.
She's a teacher.

I'm going
to be a teacher.

All right. When
you're a teacher,

I'm sure everybody will
treat you like an adult.

But in the meantime, you're my
little girl and you live in my house,

and as long as you do, you're going
to do what your ma and I tell you...

Starting with
apologizing to almanzo.

Is that understood?

Yes, sir.

But let me do it
alone, please.

I don't want ma with me like I'm
not big enough to do it by myself.

All right.
I'll talk to your ma.

Go in the house.
We'll have a cup of tea.

- Pa?
- Mm-hmm?

What you said about me being
an adult when I'm a teacher,

did you mean that?

You bet I did.

Come on, boy.

Well, at least now we know
what all the fuss was about.

Laura's in love.


She's in love.

Ha ha! Oh, come on,

She never said that.

It's as plain as
the nose on your face.

Well, that's
ridiculous. I mean,

how old is he? The
man must be in his 20s.

She wouldn't be the first
girl to fall for an older man.

Oh, it's just
puppy love.

Surprised she'd even
like a man that old.

Why do you suppose
he calls her Beth?

I don't know.

Maybe she seems
older to him.

Now, that is

There'd have to be
something wrong with him.

Charles, I believe
you're jealous.

I'm not jealous.

Just a concerned father who's
worried about some old man

hanging around
his daughter,

calling her Beth
and stuff like that.

I don't think
it's funny.

Charles, almanzo Wilder
is just a nice young man

who's being nice.
That's all.

Well, it darn well
better be all.

It is.

Now, go to sleep.

All right.

- Good night.
- Good night.

How old do you
suppose he is?

Charles, go to sleep.

Charles: Beth.

I just don't understand
why he calls her Beth,

it's not even her name.

He ought to call her

Laura: You call me, pa?

Caroline: No, dear. Your
father's just having a nightmare.

Miss Wilder?

Yes, Laura.

How would I go about
taking a test

to get a teacher's

When the time comes,

an examiner will
come to walnut grove

and give you
the test.

It's as easy as that?

Well, it's easy
to take it.

It's not that easy
to pass it.

Well, do you have to be
any certain age?

Wilder: No.

How soon could I take it?

Well, you'd have to get
your school certificate first,

but there's
no hurry.

I should think
after another year.

Oh, no,
ma'am. I want to do it as soon as I can.

I can give you the school certificate test.

It's a two-hour

It would help if you spent
some time preparing for it.

- Two weeks?
- Ha ha!

That's not
much time.

It'll be enough.

I can see your
mind's made up.

All right. The test will be
comprised of vocabulary,

and history.

Thank you, ma'am.
I better get to work.

Willie, why
have you stopped?

There's no more room.

Then erase it
and begin again.

Yes, ma'am.

Good afternoon, Beth.


I was afraid you'd be angry
at me about the other night.

I'm sorry.

So it wasn't
an accident. Ha ha!


Why'd you do it?

I, uh...

I meant it
as a joke on Nellie.

I figured she'd taste
it first and find out.

I never expected
you'd be eating it.

Oh, I see.

Well, I don't expect I'll ever be
looking at cinnamon chicken again

without my eyes watering.

I really am sorry.

Forget it.
To be honest, I wanted

to be getting
home early anyway.

You did? Honest?



See you!

See you!

Thanks for not being mad.

I love you!

I just think
it's a mistake.

What's the big
rush to graduate?

Well, as soon as I graduate,
I can take my teaching exam.

- Your teaching exam?
- Mm-hmm.

And who are you going
to teach?

You'd have students
older than you are.

miss Wilder said there's no age limit.

children don't teach school. Adults do.

you said that as soon as I was a teacher,

I'd be an adult.

You're not old enough
to be an adult.

you said that you were out of school

and working
when you were 12,

and that it made
a man out of you.

Didn't pa say that,

- Yes, you did...
- Albert, you're not in this conversation.

Yes, sir.

When I was talking about
going to work when I was 12,

that was different.

I was the man
of the house,

I was supposed to go out
and support the family.

It's not
the same with women.

Now, just a minute.

I do think it's a little early
for Laura to be teaching,

but not because
she's a woman.

I know it's
a sore spot with you,

but a woman is supporting
this family right now.

That is true, pa.

Albert, please.

All I want
is a chance.

I thought you'd be proud
of me trying to better myself

instead of
discouraging me.

Laura, we're not trying
to discourage you.

Then let me try.
That's all I ask. Please.

It's a difficult test.

I have two weeks
to study.

You don't even have your
final year's books yet.

How are you going to study
something you don't have?

There's no way we can
afford them right now.

Nellie took the test. She has the books.

I could ask her
to loan them to me.

You'd go begging
to Nellie?

I would
if I have to.

I want to be
a teacher.

All right. I think
it's a mistake,

but I won't deny
your right to try.

Thanks, pa.

And another thing... when
we're around other folks,

could you call me
Laura or Beth

of half-pint?

Certainly, if that's
what you want.

Thanks, pa.

Of course, right now we're
not around any other folks, so...

I want you to finish
your Greens, half-pint.

Ha ha ha!
Yes, sir.

I can't believe you've
come to me for a favor

after what you did.

I know what I did was wrong,
and I'm sorry, Nellie.

Sorry isn't
good enough.

Well, you want me
to beg you?

Yes, go on.

Beg me to forgive you.

Nellie, I...

I beg you to forgive me
for what I did.

You are forgiven.

Now can I borrow
the books?

I shouldn't let you, but I will.

in the house.

I won't be long,
Mrs. Ingalls.

Can you get
along without me?

I'll do my best,

Come on, then.

The books are
right over here...

and mathematics.

What about

Miss Wilder said
there'd be history.

She did? It's not
true, you know.

- What?
- About the history.

They told me that, too,
and there wasn't any.

I spent months studying, and
there wasn't one question.

Well, why would miss
Wilder say it if it wasn't true?

Ha! Oh, you are
naive, Laura.

She's a teacher,
that's why.

I don't understand.

Miss Wilder knows you
want to be a teacher.

You think she wants
some young girl

coming along
and taking her job?

If you don't pass the test,
you won't be a teacher.

Simple as that.

I can't believe a teacher
would do such a thing.

I couldn't believe it
when it happened to me.

That's really why
I'm helping you.

It gives me a chance to
get even with teachers.

I got to go.
Thanks, Nellie.

Oh, Laura.

Vocabulary. That's where
they try and get you.

Thanks a lot,

You're welcome, Laura.

Carrie, put on
your bonnet.

- Yes'm.
- Laura, it's getting late!

Caroline, give me a hand
with these suspenders, will you?

Mm-hmm. You sure you
want to go into town?

Oh, yeah. I'm going out of
my mind sitting around here.

I haven't seen the mill run yet.

Sure you don't want to
try riding in the wagon?

Nope. Too bumpy.
I'll be fine.

Well, it's a big day.

- It sure is.
- You nervous?

- A little.
- Well, you certainly studied hard enough.

Now all you can do
is do your best.

Ma's right.
Good luck.

- Thanks, pa.
- You kids run on ahead,

it's going to take me a
little while walking into town.

Yes, pa.

- Have a good day!
- Thanks, pa.


Kids: Bye, ma.

- Carrie!
- Carrie!

Sorry, ma.

You go ahead.
I'll catch up.

- Hi, manly.
- Good morning, Beth.

I'm taking
my test today.

I know. My sister told me.

As soon as I take this one,
I can take my teacher's exam,

and then I'll be
a teacher.

Hey, now, one
test at a time.

I know.
Wish me luck.

I'll do better
than that.

Almanzo Wilder's
kiss of luck.

Never wipe
that off.



Something must
be wrong with my eyes.

I thought I saw you kiss
that little girl.

For luck. She's
got a big test today.

Oh, yes.
She'll need luck.

I'm making some
oatmeal cookies today,

I could bring you some
at lunchtime.

Oh, that's real
nice, Nellie,

but after I deliver this load,
I'm heading on home.

Well, that's all right.
I'll see you there.

Like mother,
like daughter.



- Good morning, Jonathan.
- Caroline.

- How are you doing?
- That ain't important,

- how are you doing?
- I'm doing great, feeling better every day.

I better get over to Nellie's.

All right.
I'll come by

as soon as I visit here awhile.

See to it that he
doesn't lift anything.

I'll look after him,

I'll be
up there soon.

I got her all fixed up
upstairs. You want to see it?

You bet I do.

A big day
for Laura today.

She's taking
her graduating exam.

Andy told me. She's growing up so fast,

They all are.

All right, Laura.
It's 10:00.

The test will be
over by noon.

- You may begin.
- Yes, ma'am.

I want the rest
of the class

to continue
working quietly.

Yes, Laura?

The test.

There's a lot
of history on it.

I told you
there would be.

These tests
always have history.

You'd better
get started.

Mmm! They smell so good!

Oh, they're very simple to make.

I'd be happy
to show you.

Oh, I'd love
to learn.

Maybe some other time.

I just want to take some
of these to a sick friend.

Be back soon.


Hello, Nellie.

I brought your cookies.
They're still warm.

Well, thank you. Why don't
you put them right down there?

Why don't we go in the
house where you can try one?

Well, I got
a lot of work to do.

Besides, I haven't
eaten lunch yet.

I'll have them later.

But they're
still warm.

You wouldn't want to hurt my feelings,
now, would you?

Well, of course not.
I'll tell you what,

why don't I keep working
here while you make lunch?

I got some nice,
fresh kidneys inside.


Yeah, I love them.

And I bet nobody can cook
them up the way you do.

Cooked kidneys?

Oh, good heavens,
the time!

I don't know
what gets into me.

I've got all those lunches
to prepare at the restaurant.

I'll just leave your
cookies right here.

All right.


All right, class.
You may all go to lunch.

Time's up, Laura.

You don't have to
bother grading me.

I know I failed!

How'd you do on your test?


Why, Laura, dear,
what a surprise.

Almanzo and I were
just having lunch together.

How did you do
on the test?

It was all history.

You're joking.

Miss Wilder says
they're always all history.

Well, now that
I think back,

maybe there was more
history than I thought.

I hope you're not angry.

Why should I be?

It wasn't
on purpose, was it?

Of course not.

Well, neither is this.

- Don't hurt me!
- You bet I will!






Whoa, whoa!



Come on.

Get up there!


Now, Beth,
that's enough!

All right,
now. That's enough!

Look at me!
Just look at me!

I'm all covered
in dirt!

You ought to be! You've
got a face like a can of worms!

You'll be sorry!


Hold it! Hold it!

Let me go! Let me go!

Come on, now.
That's enough.

It's going to be
all right.

Come with me.
We'll get you dried off.

Almanzo: Giddyap!

- Caroline?
- In the kitchen!

- How you doing, darling?
- Good.

There's some pie
left. You want some?

I'd love it.

You're not gonna have to
twist my arm, Caroline.

Ha ha!
You seen Laura?

No, I haven't seen her.

Albert came over
at recess.

She ran off.

I guess she didn't
do well on the test.

We told her it was
going to be hard,

she just
wouldn't listen.

Mrs. Oleson:
Caroline Ingalls!

In the kitchen!

I want you to come here
and look at my daughter!

You think this is
funny, do you? Ugh!

Your Laura did this!

- What?
- She did.

Nellie: She attacked
me! Tried to kill me.



Because I saw her and
almanzo Wilder kissing,

and I told her
I would tell.

You saw them

She's with him now.

They rode off
in his buckboard.

D-Drove off
in a buckboard, huh?

Towards his place.

Towards his place.

I need a ride.

Charles, don't do
anything in haste.

Haste? Oh, no,

I'm not gonna do
anything in haste.

I'm gonna take all
the time in the world

while I beat
almanzo Wilder

an inch of his life!

Mm, mm, mm!

I got your clothes soaking
in the tub out back.

Here's some
hot chocolate.

No, thanks.

Doctor's orders.

Well, you want to
talk about it now?


It'll make you
feel better.

No, it won't.


You can't feel
any worse.

Give it a try.

It was the test.

Nellie told me there
wasn't any history on it...

And it was all history,
and she knew it.


So you didn't do
too well then, huh?

I did awful.

Well, it's not
the end of the world.

You can take
the test again.

My sister had to take her
teaching exam 3 times.

3 times!

She did?

Yes, and
she felt bad,

but she didn't
give up.

She kept right on
working till she got it down.

That's a good
test for people

to find out what
they're made of.

You look like
the kind of person

who wouldn't give
up no matter what.

Am I right?

You're right.

Now, a little smile?

There we go.
That's my Beth.

Well, I don't think
that's Nellie coming.

- Pa!
- Now, you just stay out of this!

- Pa, stop it!
- I told you to stay out of this!

- Come on, Wilder. Get up!
- Charles, that's enough!

All right. Maybe you'd
like to explain to me

what my daughter's
doing here in your robe.

Maybe you'd like to
explain that to me, huh?

Pa, I got in a fight,
and I got wet.

Almanzo was
just being nice.

I suppose he was being nice
when he kissed you today, too, huh?

On the forehead
for luck on my test!

For what?

Yes, sir.

You don't think
that I...

Why, Beth's just
a little girl.

Mr. Wilder, I...

I really owe you
an apology.

I'm very sorry.

Yeah, so am I.

My wife told me
to not act in haste.

I guess I should
have listened to her.

I understand. If
I had a little girl,

I'd have probably
done the same.

Laura: Will you both
stop it?

Stop calling me
a little girl,

and talking about me
like I'm not even here!

I'm a woman!

A woman!

And I hate
all of you!

Looks like it's my day
for messing up.

Again, I'm sorry,
Mr. Wilder.

I'll see you later,

Caroline: Charles!

I couldn't stay at work.

What happened?

I acted in haste.

Oh, no.

I've already apologized to Mr. Wilder,

he was very nice
about it.

And Laura ran off
towards home.

That's where
I'm heading now.

Come on. I'll tell
you on the way.


Oh, ma, it was awful.

Your pa told me.

First, me failing
the test...

And then pa
hitting almanzo...

And then the two of them
calling me a little girl.

It was just so awful!

Well, aren't you?

Aren't I what?

A little girl. Aren't
you a little girl?


Then stop acting
like one.

Come on. Sit up.

Blow your nose.

I don't think the test
is worth talking about.

It's not the first
test you've failed,

and it certainly
won't be the last.

Failing is
a part of trying.

If you don't try something,
you can't fail.

It may make life a lot easier,
but it's very dull.

About what happened
with your pa and almanzo...

I think you're
very like your pa.

You're a girl trying
to act like a woman.

He's a man
acting like a boy.

Only difference is,
your pa would be the first to admit it.

But it's different
for me.


Answer me.

How is it different for you?

Because I love almanzo.

I know that.

You do?

Of course I do.

And your pa
loves you.

But that's no excuse
for either one of you

to act as you have.

You want almanzo to
think of you as a woman?

Start acting
like one.

It may take time.

It may not
work out at all.

But it certainly won't
happen if you just sit here

your nose run.

Blow again.


Now, I've got to
get back to work.

Your pa's out in the yard
feeling pretty bad himself.

Might be nice if you
had a word for him.

Laura: Ma?


I'm going to make almanzo
see me as a woman someday...

Because I love him.

I think you will.

But I wouldn't tell
your pa that just yet.

Ha ha ha! I won't.



Neither one of US had too good a day,
did we?

No, I guess not.

I really am sorry.

Me, too.

You got nothing
to be sorry about.

It was all my fault.

It was
both our faults.

It was more my fault
than it was your fault.

it was my fault before it was your fault.

I had the fight
with Nellie,

but that was
her fault.

Well, then it's neither one
of our faults. It's Nellie's fault.

Yeah, it's
Nellie's fault.

Oh, I love you.

I love you, too, pa.

- Have you had lunch?
- Uh-uh.

Me neither. How about if I make
US a picnic, and we go fishing?

Yeah, that
sounds good, Laura.

to you, pa.

Sounds good, half-pint.

Laura, voice-over: I took ma's
advice and didn't say anything more

about almanzo.

I guess I knew I'd
always be half-pint to pa,

but I was just as sure I'd
someday be Laura Ingalls Wilder.