Comanche Station (1960) Script

Suit yourself.


Get on your feet.

Do like I tell you.

Now get on that mule before he decides to use that Winchester.


All right, lady, what's your name?

Mrs. Lowe. Nancy Lowe. From Lordsburg?

Yes. I should have known.


Mind gathering some sticks, ma'am?

No, not at all.

Now, that's gonna be kind of hard to do, sitting up there.

Mr. Cody, you said you should have known who I was.

What did you mean by that?

A month ago, Comanche jumped your coach halfway to Lords, butchered the whip and shotgun and took you alive.

I suppose most everybody around here knows about that.

Then my husband didn't send you for me?

No, ma'am.

Well, how... Talked to a tame Indian up Casa Verde way.

Said the Comanche were holding a white woman. Holding her for trade.

So you came after me? Yes, ma'am.

Why? Seemed like a good idea.

You could have been killed.

Yes, ma'am. Come morning, we'll swing south.

Two days will put us into Lordsburg. Good night, Mrs. Lowe.

If you'd had a woman taken by the Comanche and you got her back, how would you feel, knowing...

If I loved her, it wouldn't matter.

Wouldn't it? No, ma'am. It wouldn't matter at all.


Comanche Station.


Station man likely rode the eastbound to Casa Verde.

Doubled back on the Lordsburg run. I'll grain and water the animals.

Mr. Cody, I could take the stage on to Lordsburg from here.

I've been enough trouble.

I started taking you back to Lords, and that I full intend to do.


Much obliged, Cody. We needed that extra gun.

Dobie! Get up on that rise.

Make sure them devils don't lay out in the weeds and wait till dark to come killing.

Yes, sir.

Frank!

Yeah.

You the station man's woman?

This here is Mrs. Lowe.

Well, now, how about that?

Hey, Frank, this here is Mrs. Lowe.

We've been looking this country clear over for you.

You've been looking for me? Yes, ma'am.

Just about every man in the territory's been out beating the brush.

You've got a worth, Mrs. Lowe. Ain't that right, Frank?

Might of figured you'd beat me to it, Cody.

Frank, better catch up to your partner, and you and him drag them dead Indians up on that hill with you.

Do like he says.

Lane. Hello.

Those bucks, they had paint on. So?

Couldn't be you're carrying Comanche hair on those mules, could it?

We ain't scalp hunters, Cody. You know that.

Do I?

You'd do anything for bounty.

Look, me and the boys rode in to Ransom Canyon, same as you did.

Thought Mrs. Lowe here was still up for trade.

They come at us and we run. It was worth a try, though.

Ain't every day a man gets a chance to make that amount of money.

Don't you know how much your husband is offering the man who brings you back, Mrs. Lowe?

Didn't he tell you?

$5,000.

Can't say as I blame him.

Pure shame you beat me to her, Cody.

Yes, sir, pure.

I've heard about men like you. Comancheros, I think they call them.

Well, it won't be necessary for you to take me on to Lordsburg.

And I'll see to it my husband pays you your bounty.

Now, hold on to him, boys. We got him.

All right, here goes.

That liniment will do it.

Get him, Dobie.

Oh, get away from me, you mule!

Come on! Come on, Dobie, grab him!

I'm trying!

That's it, Dobie, don't be scared of him.

Hold him, Dobie!

He don't seem hurt too bad.

The bullet just creased his hide.

Nothing like jackass liniment.

That'll cure anything.

Been a long time, Cody.

Last time I seen you was... Fort McKavett.

That's right. The day you busted me out of the army.

I never could figure why.

Killing Indians, that's what we were there for.

Was it?

Seems like we've been over this before.

I heard you'd given up the critter soldiers.

I kind of figured you'd stay with it, being a major and all.

Command was wiped out at McKavett.

Yeah, I know.

Least they can't blame me for that. Can't they?

I was doing my job!

You overran a village of tame Indians.

I didn't know. You're a liar.

That's what you said at my court-martial, didn't you?

Had my way, they'd have hung you.

You said that, too.

"Overland Stage.

"The Lordsburg run leaves...

"Overland Stage, the Lordsburg run leaves

"Casa Verde, sunrise.

"Team change Comanche Station, sunset.

"Weather...

"Weather permitting."

I didn't know you could read, Dobie.

Well, I ain't much with books and newspapers, but plain words, you know, like signs and wrappers and such, I do pretty good.

Which one's Comanche?

Right there.

Dang!

You planning on taking the coach to Lords, are you, Mrs. Lowe?

Yes, I am.

Wouldn't suppose you'd hold kind to that, Cody.

The lady here says she's going to take the coach to Lords.

I'm not a prisoner anymore, Mr. Lane.

Aren't you?

Lane. Hello.

There's plenty of light left.

If you were to leave now, you could cover a good amount of ground before night.

We say anything about going anywhere, did we?

I didn't. No close town around.

Now that's a fact. Nothing but empty between here and Lords.

No, I think we'll stay around for a while.

Me, I get a kick out of watching that coach come in, waving to the people.

Don't you, boys?

That is unless you have any objections, Mr. Cody.

I don't really see that it's any of his business.

Now, you took the words right out of my mouth.


Mr. Lane. Yes, ma'am?

That stage should have been here by now, shouldn't it?

The driver likely saw war signs, laid over the night at Casa Verde.

I see.

Your husband is a fortunate man, getting you back.

I guess you'll always wonder, though, why he didn't come after you himself.

I don't mean to low-grade him, mind you.

After all, he did put up $5,000.

That's love of a sort, I suppose.

Were you mine, I'd come looking to find you even if I had to die in the doing.

Good night, Mr. Lane.

That stage don't get here come morning, me and the boys'll be obliged to see you to Lordsburg.


She's something, ain't she?

Did you mean that, Ben, about us taking her on into Lords?

Why not?

Cody won't like that.

Country's crawling with Comanche. He's gonna need all the help he can get.

He ain't about to give up that 5,000.

That's right.

We could kill him.

Did that, that woman would witness against us. Ain't that a fact, Ben, huh?

If she was alive.

What?

They said that Mr. Lowe fellow...

They said he'd be willing to pay even if a man brought his wife in dead.

Why would he do a fool thing like that?

Claims just knowing for sure would ease his loss.

Well, that's crazy. That's the way he looks at it.

You mean, the woman?

5,000.

That's a lot of money.

I heard what Lane said about your husband. He's wrong.

Rode out to find you, he'd have likely got you both killed.

Is that all, Mr. Cody? No, ma'am. That...

That money offered to get you back, I...

I suppose you're going to tell me that you didn't know anything about that.

I didn't know.

I don't believe you.

I didn't think you would.


Frank?

Were you awake?

Yeah.

Frank, you ever get the feeling we ain't along?

Well, with Ben.

What?

Well, the way he treats us.

You know, "Do this, do that."

He says, "Jump," and we say, "Which way?"

So?

So, we might as well not even have a head.

Well, if you want to ride, Dobie, you can go. Ben's not gonna stop you.

You come along, too, would you?

You mean break with Ben?

No, I guess not, huh?

Well, it's nothing personal, it's just that a man sort of gets used to a thing.

Sure hope I amount to something.

What?

My pa, he used to say, "Dobie, no matter what you do

"or who you do it to, "be sure you amount to something."

Well, what did he mean by that?

Oh, a lot of things.

Like what?

Well, like Cody.

Cody? He does.

He does what?

Amount to something.

How do you know?

Well, he was Army. Had braid on him.

Yeah, but not anymore, he hasn't.

That don't matter. A man does one thing, one thing in his life he can look back on, go proud.

That's enough. Anyway, that's what my pa used to say.

He talked all the time, didn't he?

Yeah.

He was a good man.

Sure is a shame.

Shame?

Yeah, my pa,

he never did amount to anything.

Good night, Frank.

What do you think, Ben?

I think we ought to get out of here.

Cody. I see them.

Dobie. Yes, sir?

Go catch up the animals.

We'd better get on to Lords before they decide to scald us out.

We'll wait for the stage from Casa Verde.

If that was coming, it would have been here by now.

Frank's right.

They might have got cut off, forted up at some swing stop along the way.

You sure you don't have scalps on those mules?

You think I'd do something like that?

I know you would. Look, Cody, I...

Ben! Man coming out here!


Stage turned back to Casa Verde.

Had to get back. Take care of my...

Take care of my animals.

Scalp-hunters raided a village up near Mesa.

Killed the women and small ones.

They caught them.

Caught them?

Yeah. Two no-goods from Verde, killed them both.

That didn't stop the Comanche, though.

Been butchering the territory one end to the other.

You'd better head and clear out.

Go on to Lordsburg before...

My horse.

Gotta take care of my horse...

We'll take care of him.

Frank, give Dobie a hand.

We're all going to Lords.


It's amazing what an Indian will give up for a Winchester rifle and a bolt of red calico.

Mrs. Lowe, she's sure a handsome woman.

See one like that, a man gets to thinking about taking a wife and settling down.

You?

Well, I admit, I never had much luck when it comes to women.

Oh, I've run with a few. Nothing you could call serious.

Except maybe that little gal down in Sonora.

She said right out she loved me. Wanted to marry me.

Told everybody. Everybody but her husband.

Oh, he came within that of doing me with a scattergun.

That taught me a lesson, though.

Always check the brand to make sure you ain't driving another man's stock.

Lane. Hello.

Back there at the station, what I said about your mules carrying Comanche hair, I...

Forget it. Everybody's entitled to a mistake.

Now, you take that there Mr. Lowe.

Offering all that money to get his wife back, that's a mistake.

That amount of money has a way of making a man go all greed inside.

Such as?

Makes them get to thinking of doing things he might not otherwise do.

You know, it's a long way to Lordsburg.

It wouldn't surprise me if somebody didn't try to take that woman away from you.

Like you, for instance?

Like me, in particular.


Wait here.


Come on across.

Come on. Dobie, straighten out those horses.

Come on, come on, let's get going.

We'll follow the river as far as we can.

That'll put us a full day out of the way.

If you're in a hurry, you can travel open country.

Nobody's stopping you.

We'll ride along with you.

Figured you would.


Better slip into this.

Couple of more miles, you'll be plumb out of that.

Mr. Cody, I think I owe you an apology.

No matter the reason, you did save my life.

Hadn't been me, it would've been somebody else.

Lane told me you've brought more whites out of Comanche country than any other man in this territory.

Why, Mr. Cody?

They traded you for $5 worth of goods and a Winchester, Mrs. Lowe.

Figure it out for yourself.

We'll be staying here long enough to grain the animals.

And if you've a mind to wash, there's a hole back around the bend of the river.

Sure is a waste.

Having to do the woman.

If she was only ugly, it wouldn't be so bad, but pretty like she is, it's an out and out waste.

Maybe we won't have to.

I don't see any other way.

We could string along with Cody till after he gets the money, and then we could... It won't work.

Why not?

Well, because that'd be just asking for a hang rope.

We're gonna have to do him in, anyway.

And everybody's going to think the Comanches got him.

I never thought of that. I still don't like it.

My folks brought me up to be kind to a woman.

You know, "Yes, ma'am. No, ma'am." Open doors for them, give them my chair.

Not go around killing them.

Well, you think I like it any better than you do?

No, I guess not. You wanna go to work, do you?

Work? Making an honest living?

Oh, no, I don't think I could do that.

I'd cowboy some. Well, what will that get you?

You work yourself to death for somebody, and likely they have to take up a collection to bury you.

Frank!

Ain't that pretty? Yeah.

Frank, take a ride up river and see if they crossed ahead of us.

If they cut our track, it's gonna put us between a rock and a hard place.

You can say that.


How long is that woman gonna take? Sit down. She'll be back in a minute.

Frank! Frank!


We're getting out of here.

You're not going to leave him like that? Yes, ma'am.

That ain't right, Mr. Cody.

Not talking about right, talking about staying alive.

I'll turn those stage horses loose.

They can take care of themselves from now on.

Mr. Cody, you can't leave here until we give that man a proper grave.

You want to end up again belonging to a Comanche buck?


We'll rest here.


We'll turn Frank's horse loose. He'll eat his way to Lordsburg.

Yes, sir.

A saddle and a shirt. That's all Frank had.

Sure ain't much. Sure ain't.

Wasn't his fault, though. No?

No.

He never knew anything but the wild side.

Man can cross over any time he has a mind.

It ain't that easy. It ain't that easy at all.

How old are you, Dobie? I don't know. Young.

Family know you're running loose in this country, do they?

No, sir.

Fever got them.

Nobody to answer to, so you threw in with the likes of Lane.

Me and Frank were riding together up near DeValdie way.

Frank was alone, same as me.

We heard about this fellow who was looking for some young guns.

Been with him ever since.

You'll end up on a rope, Dobie. You know that?

Yes, sir. You could break with him.

I've thought about that. I've thought about that a lot.

Frank said it.

A man gets used to a thing.

Dobie, when we get to Lordsburg, you can ride along with me a ways.

A man gets tired being all the time alone.

You'd do that for me? Think it over, son.

Hold it. It's only me. Get down to the river, Dobie.

You see anything, sing out. Yes, sir.

Here.

Ben? Hello.

We get to Lords, we ought to see if we can hunt up some of Frank's kin.

They should be told.

Yeah, we'll do that.

I'm sure gonna miss...

Miss him.

That Dobie kind of runs on the gentle side, don't he?

Maybe too gentle.

For what?

This is a hard country, Cody. Man's called on to do a lot of things.

Things that take spine.

Like Mrs. Lowe's husband.

It took a lot of nerve to send another man out to bring his woman back.

No, I mean it.

How does he know what's gonna happen, throwing two together like that?

I knew me a fellow once, wife was taken in a raid.

A good-looking woman.

Kind of made you go lonely just being around her.

Hearing her say words.

Seeing her move.

Come to think of it, she's a lot like you, Mrs. Lowe.

Anyway, he lost her and he sent a gent out to find her and he did.

Of course, at first, they didn't get on too good, her thinking he'd traded her for a profit and him making out like he don't care this way or that.

Now, all the time, they're getting closer and they never even knew it.

About the second night out, she got to thinking on it.

Got to feeling all grateful inside.

What with this fellow risking his hide to save her while her own man stayed home, doing who knows what.

Well, the next thing you know... Lane.

I was only gonna say that, that husband never did get his woman back.

Now losing them to a Comanche, that's one thing.

Losing them to a white, that's something altogether else.

'Course, in this case, there's the money.

Sure would put a man to the test having to decide between you and $5,000, Mrs. Lowe.

I'm sure glad it ain't me.

Lane. Hello.

Any luck, we'll break out of Comanche country sometime tomorrow.

That happens, I want you gone. Now, you'd like that, wouldn't you?

Then you could have Mrs. Lowe here all to yourself.

Mr. Cody.

It wasn't necessary to do that for my sake. I didn't.

Hi. I couldn't sleep.

I'm glad.

Nothing as lonely as the night.

Dobie... Yes, ma'am?

How long have you known Cody? Since Comanche Station.

You didn't know him at all before that?

No, ma'am. Not face on. I'd heard about him.

How he's all the time alone, all the time in Comanche country, looking.

Seems long ago he lost his woman to the Indians.

Been hunting to find her ever since.

Every time he hears of a white woman up for trade, he packs a mule and goes.

Don't matter where.

'Course, there's them that tries to tell him his wife's dead.

But he goes right on looking.

You'd think he'd give up, it being so long and all.

But he don't.

I guess he never will.

Sure must've been a love between them two.

Funny thing.

I guess Ben don't, but I do like Mr. Cody.

Mrs. Lowe, there's something you ought to know.

Ben and me...

Well, sometimes he figures we got to do things that...

Things that just ain't...

What I'm trying to tell you is, that no matter what happens between here and Lords, you stick close to Cody, and just as close as you can.

Yes, Dobie. Yes, I will.


Ben. Hello.

Maybe we ought to think again about Cody and the woman.

Now, I know it's a lot of money, but...

You got any idea how long it would take us to make that amount of money, Dobie?

Three years? More.

Well, losing Frank and all, that only puts us two against one.

Now, a man like Cody, that ain't good odds, Ben.

That ain't good odds at all. I know.

We can't come straight at him. We wouldn't have a chance.

We're gonna have to figure us a plan and... I have.

You have? When do we do it?

Soon.


If they catch us in that open, it's gonna make the hill higher to climb.

What do you think, Cody?

Stand your animals.

When I reach the other side of the clearing, come on across.

What if you don't reach it?

Circle high around. Cody.

Here.


Dobie, stay with the woman.


I thought I told you to circle high around.

I couldn't let them do you without a chance, Cody.

You would have had the woman.

I never could've enjoyed spending that 5,000 if I'd done you that way.

I'll go catch up your horse.

Now, hold still. My leg's all right, Mrs. Lowe.

You got any whiskey? No, ma'am.

But Ben's got some of that jackass liniment. Claims it'll cure anything.

It was a foolish thing to do, riding out on that open alone.

It's a wonder they didn't kill you. They tried.

Here it is.

But you ain't gonna make him drink it?

It's gonna hurt.

Followed that war party about a mile. They won't be back.

No? They picked up their dogs and squaws.

Means they've headed back into the hills. They're done with killing. For now, anyway.

Then we should be in Lordsburg by tomorrow with no trouble at all.

Yes, ma'am. No trouble at all.


We're just taking a look around before we bed down for the night.

So was I. Man can't be too careful. Yeah.

Which reminds me of a story.

Another fellow was bringing in a wife for bounty.

Some no-goods fell in with him, rode along. Plain what they were planning.

Just a matter of when. So?

So he told them. Told them?

They shouldn't try. But they didn't pay no heed.

Should have. He buried them.

That's a very sad story, Cody.

Didn't have to be.

This fellow, how did he manage it, doing all of them that way?

Comanche got one. What happened to the other?

Let's just say he had a way with a gun.


Don't mind if I do. Don't mind at all.

Thank you, ma'am.

You cook good, Mrs. Lowe. A woman should cook good.

I'm a pretty good cook myself.

Mrs. Lowe, I'm gonna miss you.


Would you like some coffee? Thanks.

We'll be in Lordsburg for sure tomorrow, won't we?

Yes, ma'am.

Mr. Cody, I'm frightened. Frightened?

I have a feeling things will never be the same.

You'll forget.

You haven't.

Dobie told me about your wife. Did he?

You must have loved her very much.

Will you be staying on in Lordsburg? No, ma'am.

I was hoping you would. Make things easier somehow.

Mrs. Lowe, what Dobie told you, it's been 10 years ago, that happened.

Knowing you is the first in all that time I've ever been able to forget, even for a little while.

I'm obliged.

Get up.

Toss them on that blanket.

Now get on your animals and get out of here.

What?

I lay eyes on you two between here and Lords, I'll kill you.

You got no call to do this, Cody. Don't I? Move.


You know something, Ben? What's that?

I'm glad it's over. Glad we didn't have to go through with it.

What would we have done with all that money, anyway?

Different if we had a purpose. You know, owned something of our own.

Something we could put it to, like land or cattle or something like that.

But the way we are, I'm glad.

I bet you are, too, huh, Ben?

Dobie. Yeah?

Remember me telling you I had a plan?

Yeah. Well, I've still got it.

Well, this is it.

Laying out here with a long gun waiting for Mr. Cody to come riding into range.

But, Ben, we ain't got a long gun.

Ain't we?

The only way into Lordsburg, along there, over them rocks, or past here.

All we gotta do is wait.

Better get them animals back out of sight.

Ben. Hello.

I want no part of it.

Where do you think you're going?

When I thought it was over, Ben, I felt good. I felt good inside.

I haven't felt like that in a long while.

You wouldn't be thinking of doubling back to Cody and the woman, would you?

I've been obliged to know you, Ben.

Dobie! Dobie!

Wait here.


Lane, he's got a gun.


I'm gonna work high around. See if I can come in behind.

You see him, start shooting and don't stop.


Lane!

Hello.

Drop the gun.

Do that, I won't have a chance, Cody. As much as Dobie did.

That was a fair fight. He was killed from behind.

He was a fool. Depends on how you look at it.

Don't seem right we can't work this out with words, Cody.

Hadn't been for me, you'd be in the ground in that canyon back where the Comanche jumped you, remember?

I remember. I figured you would.

Drop the gun.

If I spin and do you, I'll get the woman, Cody.

I wouldn't try. Got to.

Come too far to turn back now. Don't do it, Ben.

It's a pure shame, ain't it?

How a man'll push himself for money.

Yes, sir. Pure.


Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!

Nancy?

Yes, John, I'm home.

Go help your father.

You never told me.

If you knew my man, you'd understand he'd have to have a reason not to come after me.

Yes, ma'am. I always figured there was.

Thank you, Mr. Cody.

Hello, sweetheart.