Last of the Dogmen (1995) Script

I'd say most of what I'm tellin' ya is true, and the rest... well, the rest is The West.

Now of course, I didn't believe it either, when Lewis first told me, not right off, I'm no damn fool, and Lewis Gates, he knows not to take me for one.

Lewis, hell, he's the kind of fella, tells you a story...

Well you want to keep one eye on him, and the other over his shoulder looking out for anyone comin' to settle with him.

And you'd better keep your hand on your drink, too, 'cause Lewis has carried a considerable thirst around the last few years.

Now I told my own share of stories, and I heard lot, too, but this one... this one Lewis told me, I never heard the like.

Wherever they get to, all good stories begin and end in the same place... and that's the heart of a man... or a woman.

Now, we'll get there in a little time, but this is a Western story... at least it starts and ends in the West.

So it begins the way all Western stories ought to... with outlaws.

You boys have any luck?

Does the phrase "needle in a haystack" ring a bell?

Try down there by Buck Creek, they mighta got that far.

10-4.

I want those bastards found!


- Do you have a right head count? All the way up.

Sheriff, they killed one of the guards, they cut his throat.

Jesus!

- Ya gotta give me a hand. Ease up!

What do you figure they'll do?

Keep running, make for the border, buy a little condo on a lake somewhere and live happily ever after.

There's only one thing standing in their way...

4,000 square miles of the roughest country God ever put on a map.

There's not a road, not a town... hell, there's places out there that haven't even seen a footprint.

Sheriff?

Who are those guys?

Find Gates.

Lewis Gates? But I thought that you... Just find him.

Yes, Sir!


Rise and shine, Lewis.

What are you looking at?

You were supposed to stop me after 3, remember?

What am I, your mother?

Lewis!

I don't think Lewis ever took that damn hat off for nothin'... ever.

I hope you remember where we parked, 'cause I sure don't.

I don't know what it was that it really meant to him, but let me tell you this, I never saw him wear that hat before he got married, and after she died, well, well, I never saw him without it.

He wore it proud.

Kind of the way a woman'd wear a wedding ring.

Lewis!

I didn't do it and whoever said I did is a liar.

A busload of State prisoners went off the highway near Logan Pass last night.

Three escaped.

They're headed straight into the Oxbow.

I don't do that kind of work anymore.

Lewis, wait!

The FBI showed up.

Lewis, they need one brought out alive.

Deegan himself sent me to find you!

Tell Deegan he can kiss my ass.

You're gonna have to do that yourself.

Briggs...

Just talk to him, otherwise he'll chew my butt. Lewis, please!

Deegan, I'm telling you what I told your deputy, not interested.

Now you listen good, I need you on this one.

Drunk or sober, you're still the best tracker in the State.

You always were a charmer.

Briggs, is that mangy dog of his there?

Could use a bath, Sir.

Well, I just got a complaint that he'd been chasing deer again.

Now, I want you to take Mr. Gates down to the County lockup.

Fifteen days for wildlife harassment, and failure to obey the leash law.

Leash law?

You shouldn't provoke him, Lewis.

Hell, I shouldn't do a lot of things I end up doing.

You going in after them... convict fellas?

Yeah, it appears I am.

My cousin walked into them mountains 20 years ago... never come out.

Any message in case I come across him?

Yeah, tell him I run off with his wife.

Come on, Zip!

Where'd they go in?

Bottom of the ravine, the dogs lost the trail at the north fork.

Armed? More than likely.

A 12 Gauge pump and a .357 are still unaccounted for.

That'll be 4,000 cash per man plus expenses.

You'll get what you're always paid, and not a dime more.

Come on, Zip. I guess we're going to jail.

Sheriff?

Gates!

I don't give a shit about the other two, Sears comes out alive.

If there's one scratch on him you don't even get horse feed.

I'll treat him with kid gloves.

There was real trouble between Lewis and the sheriff... family stuff.

The kind that runs deeper than any wound.

Why, every time the sheriff saw Lewis, he remembered the loss of his daughter.

He loved her, and he blamed Lewis for that loss.

But no more than Lewis mourned the same loss or blamed himself, he hated himself for it.


What are you waitin' for? Go on, get to work.

Over here, boss!

Good boy, Zip.


Looks like we weren't the only ones who got thirsty.


Four legs or two?

Go on, check it out.

Damn it, Zip!

I almost let the air outta ya.

Make some noise next time, will ya!

Hey, it's my hat, ya know?

Howdy, boys.

Aw, relax, they ain't going anywhere.

We'll go up and grab them at first light.

Besides, I'm beat.

Tomorrow we cash in, Zippy.

Maybe we'll finally get that log cabin built.

You think you can handle a real roof over your head?

Of course this ain't such a bad roof either.

What happened next, Lewis told me was like a dream.

Coming at you all at once, everything happening at the same time.

And damned if he didn't think it was a dream, at first anyway.

Huh, huh. Huh! Schwinn, shhhhh...

What is it?

Somebody's out there.

And the kid?

Leave him.


He won't be back.

Hell no, not with a gut full of buckshot.

What the hell was that?

Hey! I'm gettin' out of here.

Arhh! Arhh! Goddamn it!

C'mon!

Shit!

Who are you?

Who are you?

Ughh!


Holding that arrow in his hand, he knew he wasn't dreaming.

It was more like he had finally woke up and there was finally something straight and simple pointing the way.


I was beginning to wonder about you.

Sears give you any trouble? No trouble at all.

Ya know, we never talked about what happened... we should've.

There's nothin' to talk about, my daughter's dead.

Now, where's my man?

You want the rest of him, you ride in and find him yourself.

What the hell is this? It's all that's left of your runners.

What? They're dead.

All of them?

- What the hell happened? I don't know.

What do you mean, you don't know?

Goddamn it, don't play games! I don't know!

I was moving in, everything was fine, then I heard gunshots.

When I got to where they shoulda been, all I found was that shirt, and enough blood on the ground to paint this office.

No bodies, nothing.

You expect me to believe this cock and bull story?

I don't give a damn what you believe.

All I know is that I've wasted 4 days, and I'm out 12 grand.

Where you going? - Sheriff!

I need a drink. Sheriff, Gates is... just leaving. - I'm not finished with you.

I want some answers! Well, that makes two of us.


I'm looking for professor Sloan. Over there.

Where's professor Sloan?

Uh, over that way.

Excuse me, I'm looking for professor Sloan.

Excuse me.

Where the hell is professor Sloan?

And please don't ask me to go over there.

I've already been there, and over there, and over there.

Who wants to know?

Give me a break, lady.

It took me three and a half hours to drive up here to meet this guy.

I'm about ready to sic my dog on somebody.

You call that a dog?

Could somebody just point out the old fart?

L.D., Lillian Diane.

You're not the first person to make that mistake Mr....?

Gates, Lewis Gates.

Gates...

All right, take this to Sandy and have her clean it up by tonight, okay?

Good work.

So, Mr. Gates, what can this old fart do for you?

You don't really look like a professor.

So where'd you find this? In the Oxbow.

The Oxbow? Wasn't that just in the news?

Something about convicts?

Yeah, I'm the guy they hired to find 'em.

Bounty hunter?

Please, uh, civil servant, it sounds a little less...

Barbaric?

I tracked 'em for four days, and the trail ended in a meadow 20 miles in.

Somebody got to those men before I did, there was blood everywhere and that.

It's quite a story.

Do you know what this is?

I'd call it a wild guess, uh... an arrow?

Cheyenne arrow. Dog Soldier to be exact.

Dog Soldier?

Within the Cheyenne tribe, there used to be a military society made up of the strongest and bravest men.

They were fierce fighters, unyielding.

They called themselves Hotamétaneo'o... Dogmen.

The Cavalry called them Dog Soldiers or Suicide Soldiers.

They often acted as rear guard, sort of... sacrificial decoys, so the rest of the tribe could escape.

You see?

What does it mean? Nothing.

Except maybe another one of your civil servants beat you to those men.

So what about this? An authentic reproduction.

About $15.00 in any tourist shop.

I saw something in that meadow.

What... exactly? I don't know.

It's just that later I found horse tracks.

And what's so unusual about that?

They weren't shod.

I checked with the forest service and nobody's running stock up in that country.

And nobody rides unshod horses except...

Indians. That's what you're implying, isn't it?

Well...

You don't seriously believe Cheyenne dog soldiers are running around loose in the Oxbow, do you?

No, of course not. I'm just...

I'm not a nutcase, okay?

I'm sorry I can't help you, but...

Come back here!

Drop that bone! Drop it!

Get back here.

Is that your dog?

Give it back to him, Zip.

The group from the institute's here, Doctor.

I'll be right there.

Mr. Gates, it's been... entertaining.

Drive carefully.

Somebody killed those men, Doctor.

It wasn't me and it wasn't another bounty hunter.


Zip!

I'm sorry.

Are you always this persistent?

I got halfway home before turning back.

Call it gut instinct.

And what's this gut instinct of yours telling you?

You're not telling me everything.

You want something to drink?

I thought you'd never ask!

Well, I'm not hiding anything you wouldn't eventually uncover.

Gimme that! Let go! Let go!

Zip!

So I'm willing to satisfy your curiosity if you... promise not to bother me again. Deal.

Mineral water, it's good for you!

Here we are.

By late 1864, many tribes were raiding settlements, stealing horses, making a general nuisance of themselves.

But one of the few Cheyenne chiefs really trying to make peace was Black Kettle.

He and his people were instructed to make camp at Sand Creek near Fort Lyon.

They'd been promised protection, so that night they had a feast with dancing and games to celebrate peace.

The following dawn, November 29th, was freezing.

A group of Colorado volunteers known as The Bloodless Third surrounded the camp.

They were instructed to take off their coats.

Strange, huh?

Black Kettle will immediately raise the American flag and the white flag of peace.

People were rushing around in great panic and fear and he kept calling out not to be frightened they'd been promised protection, there was no... danger...

Suddenly the troops attacked.

Now, two-thirds of these Indians were women and children.

It was total chaos. It was... a massacre.

Blood froze instantly on the bodies.

And then looting began, scalps were taken, fingers and ears, noses cut off, babies were cut out of the wombs.

Women had their uteruses cut off, and the soldiers wore them on their hats.

As a matter of fact, when they put their clean coats back on they paraded through Denver with body parts decorating their uniforms and horses.

Jesus!

Among the few that escaped Sand Creek were 20 men, women and children led by Lone Wolf, leader of the Dogmen.

The soldiers chased them northward through two states, right up into the mountains of Northwestern Montana.

A blizzard forced them to... turn back and they left the Indians for dead.

Here, Lone Wolf.

There...

Now you know everything there is to know.

It's late. I'm tired. Good night.

Wait a minute. Don't you see? It all adds up.

What?

Just suppose, what if by a fluke or a miracle... what if Lone Wolf and those Cheyenne did survive?

Isn't it possible their descendants could've remained hidden in the Oxbow?

They didn't survive. How do you know?

They were starving in a hostile environment, Winter, only the clothes on their backs... they didn't survive. You're sure of that?

If there were Indians in the Oxbow, don't you think someone would have seen them by now?

Not necessarily! You are a nutcase.

No, no, look at the wolf.

Now, we know wolves exist in the Oxbow, okay?

I've found their tracks, I've heard their howls, I even found the spot where one watched my camp for half a day.

But I've never seen one! That's not the same.

It is the same! It's not the same!

Look. Elvis is dead, the government isn't hiding UFO's, and there are no Cheyenne Dog Soldiers living in the Oxbow.

Why are you being so goddamn pigheaded?

Because I'm goddamn good at it!

Look...

I know you saw something out there you can't explain it, I do believe that.

But I can't invest all this time and energy in pure fantasy.

I rely on facts.

Now, we're both tired. I'm going to bed.

You're welcome to the couch, but, uh... I should warn you, I... tend to walk around naked in the morning.


These files contain copies of every issue we ever published.

Ninety-three years worth.

There you are, son, happy huntin'. Thank you.


"Half-starved..."

"nicknamed Jacko."

"Doesn't speak a word of English"?

Good morning. Hi.

How you doing today, Mr. Hollis?

When they gonna put some goddamn fish in this river?

Oh... ya know, I talked to the game warden, and he assures me that this river is full of fish.

Well, he's a liar, why, when I was a kid we'd come down here...

Mr. Hollis, this is Mr. Gates.

He's gonna visit with you for a while.

Full of fish, my ass.

Who the hell are you?

Wonder that myself sometimes.

Hand me one of them night crawlers, will ya? Yes, sir.

Well, I understand you used to work for the railroad.

Not just any railroad, son, the Great Northern Pacific, 53 years.

Mr. Hollis, tell me about Jacko. Jacko?

Well, I'll be damned.

You remember, then? I Remember.

I caught the little runt!

What happened?

Been a helluva lot of years since I thought of that.

'35, I think it was, me and old Ed Valet, we was headed up to Coopney, the spur line needed some work.

Sometime past noon, we spotted somethin' runnin' 'cross the tracks.

At first, I thought it was a deer, then I seen it was a boy!

Well, Ed stopped the train, we lit out after 'im.

Hey, there he is!

We chased him a ways and finally cornered him down along the river.

Soon as we got up close, we seen he was an Indian!

Didn't speak English, just sort of grunted.

What did you do with him?

Well, me and Ed didn't know WHAT to do with him.

He was cold and tired, so I wrapped him in my shirt.

We brung him down to Sheriff Case, he stuck him in the cell, 'cause he didn't have no other place to put him.

We nicknamed him Jacko, 'cause his face kinda looked wide-eyed and scared, like a Jack-o-lantern.

Next morning, he was gone, we figured he squeezed out through the bars during the night.

Well, that was the end of it, nobody ever seen him again.

Of course, the sheriff contacted some of the local reservations, but nothing ever come of it.

Seemed like nobody knew who the boy was nor where he'd come from.

Where do you think he came from? Hell, I don't know.

But you tell me, what's an Indian boy who don't speak a word of English doing way out in the middle of nowhere, sixty miles from the nearest town?

This photo was taken just after these Cheyenne girls arrived at the Indian school in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

The same girls, fourteen months later.

Their hair was cut, they were given Christian names, and forbidden to speak in their native tongue.

So began the government's policy in dealing with the conquered Plains Tribes.

The policy of... uh... the policy of assimilation... both religious... and cultural.

We need to talk.

Look at this.

Seventeen people disappeared in the Oxbow since 1898.

Seventeen people, doesn't that seem a little odd?

Do you always wear that hat?

There's more.

1935, a young Indian boy was found on the edge of the Oxbow, didn't speak a word of English.

I talked to the man who caught him.

An Indian boy who doesn't speak English and vanishes without a trace. Explain that one.

You rely on facts, isn't that what you told me?

Well, these are the facts.

What do you want from me?

I'm going back in.

If my hunch is right, I don't wanna end up on that list.

I need someone along who speaks Cheyenne.

One of your students? No... uh... hmm...

All I'm asking for is a few days, we ride in, we take a look around, we ride back out, three days.

If they're out there, I have to know.

And goddamn it, so do you.


Mornin'.

Folks, I'm in a bit of a rush, so, c'mon, c'mon.

- I got a bad feeling about this. Oh, relax, he seems capable enough.

I don't trust him.

Let's mount up, we got a long ride ahead of us.

Good luck, Doctor.

Excuse me, what the hell are you doing?

I'm checking the stirrup.

Oh, no. No way! Hey, kid, get back down here!

Don't listen to him, John, I'll see you in 3 days.

You go on now.

Like you said, "If they're in there, I have to know".

This ain't going to be a picnic, lady.

I've seen this country reduce grown men to tears.

Ain't no place for a woman!

You really are a cowboy, aren't you?

What is it you fellas say? "We're burnin' daylight."

Talking about her, and he talked about her a lot, he always called her Lillian, kinda formal, like he wanted to keep his distance.

Oh, he knew her, by instinct, he knew her, and she knew him the same way.

Wanderers, both of 'em, or searchers.

Now they had something particular to look for, and there was a chance they'd each of them, find what they'd always been looking for.

Maybe we should rest. If you're tired.


It smells, uh, interesting, what is it? Lewis Gates Wilderness Stew.

Uh-huh, and what's in Lewis Gates Wilderness Stew?

Anything that ain't nailed down.

You know when I was a kid, I hated the idea of camping out.

I mean anything that crawls or buzzed, scared me to death.

So what do I do?

I choose a career that keeps me outdoors 80% of the time.

You know, it's funny how things turn out.

Now I find being in the wilderness so... invigorating, life-affirming, really.

Jesus, Wonder Woman.

I've got some aspirin.

I don't need any aspirin, thank you.

Boy, aren't we in great mood?

Hey, look, just because I let you ride along doesn't mean I have to like it!

Now stop treating me like a child. I didn't realize I was.

Thank you.

A.G.?

Abraham Gates, my grandfather. You really hang on to things.

Some things.

Well? Not bad... if you don't mind the taste.

All right, I heard that!

From now on you cook your own supper, how's that?

Is he always like this?

Good night, Gates. G'night, Doc.

You're not going to walk around naked in the morning, are ya?

I'll try to restrain myself.

This is... uh... where I found the arrow and the tracks.

I guided elk hunters in this far, but never went beyond that ridge.

And that's the direction where the tracks are headed.

I wonder how long this weather'll keep up.

80% chance of rain through tonight, clearing by tomorrow.

Really?

An old Indian trick? KQRP All News Radio.

Ah!


Be careful of this damn shale. Watch your footing, and I mean it.

If your horse goes down, you don't go with him.

Thanks for the tip.

Whoa, whoa, whoa!

Don't even move!

I told you to watch your step! You're not in a classroom!

Out here one little mistake'll get you killed!

Feel free to take charge, Mr. Gates.

You see that rope?

Yeah.

Well, let go and grab it with both hands. What about you?

Don't worry about me, just do it.

Ready? Yeah.

On three.

One... Two... Three!

Zip! Zip!

Lead the horse.

Good boy!

That's it! Good boy! Now pull her up.

Take her up.

You okay? Yeah...

It's just a little... disconcerting to realize... the smartest member of our expedition is a dog.

Saddle up, we still got two hours of daylight left.

Zip, do you wanna taste?

Wanna taste, hmm?

Let me get you...

Is that good? Is that good? You want more?

Jesus. Okay.

You're really in your element out here, aren't ya?

I like the solitude.

Lately... it seems like the only time I'm at ease is when I... got a hundred dollar miles between me and the rest of humanity.

Sounds like you were born a century too late.

Yeah... that's what my wife used to say. Used to?

She died a couple of years ago. I'm sorry.

Was she ill?

Uh-uh... we were riding in the back country, making a river crossing, and the horse spooked and bucked her.

I went in after her, the current was too strong.

One second she was there and...

Her dad still blames me to this day.

What more could you have done?

Drowned.

What about you, ever been married? Only to my work.

Don't get me wrong, there've been plenty of men.

Some worked out and some didn't.

It just always had to be on my terms.

Lady, if I was born a century too late, you were definitely born a century too early.

Russell and his wife came across it berry picking.

Mrs. Burton said Lewis was in The Chronicle the other day, he spent three hours going through old copies of the newspaper.

What the hell are you up to, Gates?

Oh, you wanna drink? Love one.

Whiskey, it's good for you.

I'm curious about one thing:

Why Indians?

Well, because I admire them.

And because we owe them a tremendous debt.

How's that?

Well, they gave us romance, myths, legends, they gave us... they gave us a history.

The Indians shaped the character of our entire nation.

We picked a helluva way to say, thank you, didn't we?

What happened was inevitable.

The way it happened... was unconscionable.

Would there be any whiskey left?

My head feels like a punching bag thanks to you.

I got some aspirin.

Oh, great! Something's chewed a hole in my sleeping bag.

Aw... tracks?

What? On the ground, how many toes?

Four.

Ah, it's probably some little chipmunk. Chipmunks, muskrats, squirrels... they all have four toes in front, five in the back, all the others got five and five.

Now, weasels, though, they're a different story, They tend to walk on the balls of their feet. Balls of their feet.

Look, we've been riding for a week, I agreed to three days.

I think we should head back.

It was a romantic idea... Indians in the Oxbow, I admit I got caught up myself.

But... we have better things to do than go traipsing around these mountains looking for ghosts.

If anyone in my department knew what I was doing out here they'd have me committed!

I don't know why I let you talk me into this.

I have classes to teach, I have a life! As soon as we're packed up we're heading back, understand?

Gates, have you heard a word I've said?

You wanna go back? Yes! I'm an anthropologist, not Daniel Boone!

Have you... have you seen my canteen?

Where's the canteen?

I hate camping!

Gates?

What is the matter with you?

Well, here's your damn canteen.

Get down!

Don't!

No-ha! No-ha!!

Napi-aht-hopt-net.

No-ha!


My god!

Very slowly... toss down your pistol.

Uh-uh. Do it.

Now don't move. Does breathing count?

Look at them.

What are they saying?

I'm not sure...


What are you telling him?

I told him we come in a good way, in peace.

I also told him you were a great warrior who wasn't afraid to fight them all single-handedly.

You gotta be kidding. The Cheyenne admire bravery.

Let's just hope they don't put you to the test.

If they do, I'm comin' after you first!

Zip! Just don't move!

No!

Hang on, boy. Hang on.

Zip?

No, no, no, they'll kill you.


You were right, they're Cheyenne Dog Soldiers.

In my life... I never would have believed.

And yet here we are, a step back into history.

My god, I feel privileged.

Lillian!


I'm sorry.

I guess I'm not so tough after all.

Like hell you're not.


She can't walk any further, she needs a horse.

A horse!

She's weak, she has to ride! Lewis, I'll be fine.

Listen, asshole, either she rides, or you're gonna kill both us right now!

You may not understand my words, but you get my meaning, don't you?

What's it gonna be?

Twenty years she'd spent wanderin' the country, lookin' around the world, teachin' and workin' and doin' good in places just off the far edge of the map.

Tryin' to find somethin' that was a whole lot closer than she thought.

Now, Lewis, he never went as far as Lillian.

But these last few years, even when he was right next to ya, he was always lookin' far off.

Now the faraway was comin' awful close to them both, and both had to hope it'd be as good and as safe as their dreams.


What every one of us looks for, what damn few of us gets to see... that's what's just over the far horizon.


The trick is to know it when you see it.

An even bigger trick, know what to do about it.

Let me take him.

Please, you're exhausted. Come on.


Whatever you said, I hope it's friendly.


Unbelievable.

Yeah, unbelievable.

It's no use, the Indian predates the Boy Scouts, the knots are solid.

What are they gonna do with us? I don't know.

You're the expert, remember?

Well, they could kill us.

But traditionally, many Cheyenne prisoners were just absorbed into the tribe.

Absorbed?

Yeah, they treated their prisoners so well, they often refused to go home even if they had the chance.

Yeah, well, the hospitality overwhelms me!

Well, you can't blame them, really, they're afraid of us.


His name is Zip.

Lillian, how do you say thank you?

Nyow-ish. Nyow-ish!


The way Lewis figured it out, Yellow Wolf was near bein' chief and sure to be chief when old Spotted Elk died.

They were cut loose on the old man's say-so.

Otherwise Yellow Wolf woulda done a helluva lot more than tie 'em up.

He wants us to follow him. I'm not leaving my dog.

You don't have a choice.


What?

This is Spotted Elk, the last surviving son of Lone Wolf.

He wants to know if we've come to return him to the House of Iron Bars.

Seems when he was a small boy he was captured by some white men and put in a cage.

Jacko.

You get a line on Mr. Personality here?

His name's Yellow Wolf.

He's leader of the Dog Soldiers, next in line to be chief.

I guess it takes a real man to shoot a dog.

You should be happy they didn't eat him.

Oh, didn't I tell you?

That's the other reason they're called Dog Soldiers.

This is where we stay.


He tells of many Cheyenne killed... of his father's flight, and the white soldiers.

There was a great storm... the Indians were lost and starving.

A wolf appeared and led them to this valley.

The wolf spoke... telling them to remain here... hidden from the white man... forever.

They survived.

This was during the moon, when the deer shed their horns...

a hundred and twenty-eight winters ago.

What's goin' on over there? I don't know.

My god.

They were hunting when his son got separated.

He was shot by three white men.

Yellow Wolf and the Dogmen killed them.

He's burning up, the infection must be spreading.

Lillian, tell me what he needs.

Why don't you try and convince them, and I'll ride.

He says the decision's not his.

It's good you offer, but his people survived all this time without the white man's help.

To ask for it now might make something bad happen.


Penicillin, as much as you can get.

Isn't that hard to come by without a prescription?

Use your imagination. Right.

Tell him I need my pistol.

Now my knife.

Lewis, I don't think it's... The knife.

Oh, one more thing.

What the hell are you doing?! That's for Zip.

No-ha.

That was stupid.

Well, I'm sorry, Lillian, before I do somebody a favor, the score has to be even, that's just the way I am.

He'll ride with you part of the way. Be careful.

If you don't come back, I'll be killed.

It's just the way he is.

And Yellow Wolf, he was willing to give up anything, bein' chief or anything else, just to save his boy.

Lewis, he figured he was gonna help Lillian, but he had to know that he was riskin' more himself than just gettin' caught.

He was riskin' a dream.

And I'll tell ya somethin' about Lewis Gates...

Lewis Gates is just no good at givin' up.

Damn it!

Okay, girl?

He had to whip up, he had to make time for that boy.

Now he knew nobody cared a damn about him, and nobody'd be lookin' for him. But he knew that everybody'd be lookin' for Lillian.

He didn't wanna be around when they did.

It was the first time in years he could remember that he wanted somethin'.

Somethin' that shoulda been easy.

He just wanted to get there... get away... get back.

Whoa... whoa, whoa, whoa.

Easy, easy, whoa.

Easy, girl, easy.

Easy.

Whoa! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!

Whoa girl! Oh! Ah! Uh!


You did good, girl.

With ya in a minute.

I said I'd be...

That's the problem with this country... nobody works anymore.

5-2-Formosa, roger, 22 will handle.

6-1-1, 6-1-1, silent alarm at Canmore Drugs, 213 West Main.

Don't do it, buddy, I've got grandchildren.

Relax, will ya? Penicillin, you got that?

Bag it up, go on.

Halt!

Briggs.

Don't try anything, I already called for backup.

Now, why'd ya go and do that?

3-9-6, 3-9-6, all units, robbery in progress.

Now you just stay right where you are.

Suspect is armed.

Put that away before you hurt somebody.

No more games, Lewis. I'm takin' you in.

Stop that man! He just robbed me!

Rule number, Briggs, never take your eyes off the suspect.


Lewis, pull over! You pull over!


Get out of the way!

What the hell are you doin', Lewis?

They thought puttin' that hat out'd bring Lewis up short.

But that's just about as dumb as showin' your red flannel covered rump to a Mexican fightin' bull.

See, like I said, Lewis Gates is just no earthly good at givin' up.


Sheriff, look at this.


You think he's gonna make it?

It's too soon to know.

Ow!


Okay.


Lewis Gates Wilderness Stew.

Good! And it's good for you, too. Here, try that.

Aw, come on! Hey! Well, you try then.

You don't know what you're missing!

That's very nice, but really, I couldn't.

This their way of showing thanks, to refuse a gift is to insult them.

Nyow-ish, nyow-ish, very beautiful.

Naf-ki-ahn-ish.

Lillian, what am I gonna do with all this stuff?

Well, what all rich, eligible bachelors do... find a wife and settle down.

Yeah, funny, very funny.

The sheriff just couldn't get over the idea that Lewis had cost the life of his daughter.

He was mad, and he couldn't get over that either.

He refused to allow Lewis to have any peace.

And if he thought he'd found some... well, that sheriff would do whatever was necessary to take it away from him.


Jesus.

Are you shocked? You've known about this?

For a while. Spotted Elk brought me here.

He was curious about some of the things.

When game's scarce, they're forced to hunt outside the Valley.

That's when they run into white men.

They hide from most, but... those that venture too close... end up here.

Wouldn't you kill to protect your family and your way of life?

Oh, he wants to know about the silver bird with the long white tail.


I just told him man walked on the moon.

He just called me a wonderful liar!

What is it?

He wants to know about other Cheyenne, how they're living.

What are you gonna tell him? The truth.


No!


Do you hear that?

I've waited all my life to hear that.

Ya know something, Lillian?

We can't let anything happen to these people.

No one must ever find out.

No one.


Deegan.

Who? My father-in-law.

I covered my back trail, how did they find it?

How much time do we have?

They're three miles from the waterfall, half a day, maybe less.

Damn him!

Spotted Elk wants to leave the Valley and travel deeper into the mountains.

But Yellow Wolf says there is no time, they should stay and fight.

Jesus, they'll get slaughtered. The Cheyenne, or the troopers?

What if we created a diversion?

Maybe it'd buy 'em some more time.


From this time on, do not mistreat the Cheyenne.

Think of us in a good way.

All of us are your relations.

You exchange gifts in the ceremony.

Lillian, they've already got everything I own.

Ahhh...

From this time on, you are one of the Like-Hearted People.

You are Cheyenne, go in a good way.


What?

I'm just thinking how much I'm gonna miss your... Wilderness Stew.

Knock it off, Lillian, saddle up.

I'm afraid this is another journey you're gonna have to make on your own.

I've asked Spotted Elk if I can stay with them.

Get on your horse, Lillian.

No, my work's just begun.

I want a living record set down, a memorial, to the last of their kind.

Have you lost your mind?!

I've spent half my life teaching others.

Now, out here, with these people, I'm the student, I'm... living it.

I belong with them.

I'm staying.

Damn it, Lillian.

Why don't you admit the real reason you're upset.

You'll miss me.

Let's go, Zip.

Looks like it's just the two of us.

Zip.

Oh, not you, too.

I don't believe this!

Well, I guess I always knew a woman'd come between us.

You're better off here anyway.

I got a feelin' I'm headed for trouble.

Take care of her.


He likes to sleep with it.

Nyow-ish.

Nyow-ish yourself.

This oughta help.

That looks ancient, is it still good?

Dynamite, it's like wine, it only gets better with age.

Jesus!

Easy, easy!

You see this?

Over time it sweats.

Nitro, big boom!

Oh, God!

Well... this is good-bye.

Lil...

Can you promise me somethin'?

No matter how bad it gets, no matter what happens, don't let them eat my dog!

I promise.

Say... do you really walk around naked in the mornin'?

Do weasels really walk around on the balls of their feet?

What would you say to a goodbye kiss?

I'd say it's about time.

What the hell was that? You call that a kiss?

Well...


Better.

I'm a good student.


Finally he knew what he had and everything he had to give up to keep it.

And they say you never know what you got 'til it's gone, but Lewis knew. He could take the full measure of it, just one last time.

To hold it in his heart forever.

And it wasn't only the memory he meant to keep alive, he meant to be sure that no one else ever could touch what he'd come to love.

Make dead sure of it, if he had to.


Howdy, Bill.

Lewis.

That too tight? Nope.

I'm sorry about the cheap shot back in town, nothin' personal.

There's a cave halfway up, it goes all the way through the waterfall.

All right, men mount up. Deegan!

You're makin' a mistake.

You do this, you're gonna get these men killed.

All right, men, let's move out. Hyah!


Drop it!

I'll kill you where you stand!

Drop that damn gun!

Do it now!

Put it down Gates!


He's hurt bad!

What do we do now, deputy?

We're goin' back!

Come here, gimme a hand! I need some help here!

They did send out after Lillian, of course, search parties all over the Oxbow.

At least 'til the snows shut 'em down.

And I don't know for certain what Lillian found with those Cheyenne, and I can't say she found anything.

But I figure that once she got among 'em, at least she came upon a better idea about what she was lookin' for.

Maybe some piece of an old world in the new... a better world.

A better one for her, anyway.

They tell me that you saved my life.

You did for me what you couldn't do for my daughter.

I wish to God it was the other way.

I'm tired of hatin' you, Lewis.

When you're ready, I think maybe it's time we have that talk.

Well... nobody around here, including me... wants to see you put away for stealin' some penicillin, for Christ sake.

So, we're droppin' the charges.

But there's something I have to know.

In that tunnel... just before the explosion...

I thought that I saw...

What's out there?

What do you think is out there?

Okay... fine.

Whatever you're protecting... I hope it's worth it.


And for him, maybe, too.

He bought me a drink, told me what was in his heart, as near as he knew it, and then he rode off to reckon with whatever he might find.

I don't know if anyone's ever lucky enough to come on the same dream twice.

But sometimes in the twilight, I look up toward the Oxbow... try to see past the mountains... straight into the heart of the West, where maybe Lewis Gates has got to.

Of course, I can't.

But that don't mean he hasn't found it.

Sometimes you gotta put your plain faith in what you can't see.

Sometimes you just have to believe in what you wish.

Put your hope somewhere it's safe... like somewhere I hope Lewis Gates is.