Only the Valiant (1951) Script

My name is Joe Harmony.

This is my stamping ground.

I'm a scout for the Army.

Had my work cut out for me for a long time.

Behind that pass there is the whole 'Apache nation.

They used to come swarming out of that pass killing everything in sight.

Then we built a fort.

Fort Invincible.

Plugged up the pass just like a cork in a bottle.

Things was fine for a while.

But them 'paches is pretty smart.

One day the bottle blew the cork plum apart.

Just as I figured.

That's Tucsos.

He's the boss of all the Apaches, the fella that started this whole business.

You step aside, Corporal.

The Army doesn't shoot prisoners, Joe.

I'm a civilian.

We'll take him back to Fort Winston with us.

You crazy? This ain't no common injun.

He's just about as near to a god as a fella can get.

If you shoot him now, things will quiet down.

Without Tucsos stirring them up, the rest of them injuns would get reasonable just as fast as they can.

If you take him in alive, you'll have every Apache in the territory coming after him.

We had three years of this.

You can stop it right now.

We'll take him back to Winston, Joe.

Suit yourself, Dick.

Come on.

Lieutenant Underwood. Yes, sir.

Detail the men to return to Fort Winston.

Have them inform Colonel Drumm that we're bringing Tucsos in.

Yes, sir.

And put a burial detail to work.

I want this place looking like a cavalry post before we leave.

Yes, sir.

That's all he ever cares about:

Leave it looking neat.

Cavalry post.


Eyes... right!

Present arms!

Send the prisoner over to the guard and dismiss the detail.

Yes, sir.

Detail dismount!

I tell you, I ain't never saw the likes of it.

Mike, rack that up for me.

There were 16 million Indians.

16 million of them, I tell you!

And they're running through that pass like a bunch of crazy jackrabbits.

Oh, stop that noise.

And right there stands this fella Tucsos, waiting to be shot.

Just waiting to be shot!

And what does our captain do?

He says, "Men, I want this place cleaned up and looking like a cavalry post the first thing you do!"

And that's all he said.

By golly, it's enough to drive a man to drink.

This is the last time I ever go anyplace without this.

Did he have any orders to go through the pass or to shoot Tucsos?

How do I know?

Well, if he didn't, he wouldn't.

Orders was made to be broke, Rutledge.

Not with Captain Lance.

I ought to know that better than anybody.

What's the matter with Saxton?

Oh, that one.

He's tired of tooting his bugle.

Wants a carbine.

You should have seen the poor lad up there.

Shaking in his boots he was.

It was his first time.

Ah, first time.

I know all about that.

Listen, you either got it, or you ain't got it, and he ain't got it.

No, sir.

Why, you...

Did you want to say something?



Two cards, please.

Hello, Captain Lance. Mrs. Drumm.

The Colonel's in his room.

Thank you.


Sit down, Captain.

Thank you, sir.

So you got him, Richard.

And they're all dead up there...

Selden, all of them.

Yes, sir.

That's horrible.

It can be worse.

There have been a few times in my life, Richard, when I regretted having to obey orders.

This is one of them.

I almost wish you'd killed Tucsos up there instead of bringing him in.

As it is, you saw these settlers on the parade ground.

They've been coming in for three or four days now, looking for protection, but it's blasted little protection they've got.

We're under-strength.

The relief column won't be here for at least ten days.

They're sending 400 men, which is enough to handle anything.

But if the Apaches make a sortie to free Tucsos, as they undoubtedly will, this can be another Fort Invincible.

We've got to get Tucsos up to Fort Grant right away.

The first thing tomorrow morning.

Yes, sir.

Have the adjutant write out orders for a detail.

I'll... I'll leave it in your hands to choose an officer and...

and have him...

Will you please go now, Captain?


No, thank you, dear.

Bill? No, thanks.

I'll answer it.

Hello, Dick. Come in.

I was wondering where you were.

I got the same treatment, Dick, so don't feel too proud.

I gather it was pretty grim at Invincible.

It was pretty grim.

What do you think happened?

Selden forget to put out pickets once too often?

No. Tucsos cut off their water supply.

All he had to do then was wait.

That's a smart one, that Apache.

How about a little whiskey, Dick?

No, thanks, sir. Not right now.

Come on, Dick, have one. It'll relax you.

Besides, it tastes mighty good.

I'll bet it does, but I got work to do tonight.

That's the trouble with you, Richard Lance.

You're always working.

Do this, do that.

10,000 things to do.

And when you finally get around to me, it's for three minutes.

If Bill treated me like that...

If Bill was a captain and I was a lieutenant, he could make out the reports and I could get here first.

Thanks. I like everything just the way it is.

Not that you can't come and visit us when Cathy and I are married, but...

Bill, don't talk like that.

Haven't I told you? I'm going to propose to you tonight.

See? I got here first.

I asked for the pleasure of the company of the beautiful daughter of Captain Eversham.

Lo and behold, I got it, so I'll thank you not to make any overtures.

Don't worry, Dick.

I'll see that they don't stay out too late.

To tell you the truth, Ed, I'm going to get a lot of sleep tonight anyway.


I'm taking Tucsos up to Fort Grant first thing in the morning.

No. Who wished that on you?

The Army. Who do you think?

That's a mighty dangerous detail the way things are.

It's not as dangerous as keeping him around here.

Now, the beautiful daughter of Captain Eversham, that is why I have to sleep tonight.

Good night, Cathy. Good night, Bill.

Good night.

Dick, will I see you before you go?

If you get up real early.


You're enough to drive a woman insane, running off like that.

Show me how much you're gonna miss me.

That'll take a lot of showing, Cathy.

No, it wouldn't. Try.

That's how much I'm gonna miss you.

You better stop or I'll go over there and shoot Tucsos and never leave at all.

I'd like that.

Good night, Cathy.

Hey, Simpson. Yeah.

Calhorn. Right.

You're on a patrol tomorrow. 5:30. How nice.

I thought you'd like it.

Where's Kebussyan?

Probably tagging along after Lieutenant Holloway.

I suppose you're right.

Thanks, Gilchrist.

I've done nothing for you, Murdock.

You brought Tucsos back.

Lance is taking him back to Fort Grant tomorrow.

You going with him?

What do you think?

Well, the country's beautiful this time of year, Mr. Murdock.

Be just as easy if the whole patrol committed suicide tonight.

Save the Apaches a lot of trouble.

And if Lance don't wanna shoot himself, I'll be glad to do it for him.

I wouldn't mind having that pleasure myself.

But I'll say one thing.

If there's anybody can take Tucsos up to Fort Grant, it's Captain Lance.

I hate his black heart, too, but he's still the best officer I ever served under.

Didn't the captain really wanna shoot him?

Well, he... Sure.

But he wants to do it all neat and proper, according to regulations.

The way he should have shot you, Onstot.

Except deserters get hung, unless they're lucky.

Hi, Dick.

Hi, Joe.

Thought you'd be in bed.

I've got too much to do.

I don't like what you're gonna do tomorrow.

I don't like it at all.

Neither do I, but it's gotta be done.

I'm telling you straight.

Any detail leaves here with Tucsos maybe ain't gonna come back.

I just rode out a couple hours.

Them hills is full of Apaches.

I could feel 'em.

They'll be coming after him.

Well, I got my orders.

I figured that's what you'd say.

I'll walk a piece with you.

I've gotta be getting back, Bill.

You still haven't answered me.

Yes, I have, by not answering.

You mean it's no.

Dick's the one?

How long have you known it?

I don't know.

I do.

I guess I always have.

You know, when I think of your future, I tremble.


He'll beat your children and break your heart.

Every day?

Every single day.


Yes, he will be wonderful, Cathy.

Has he asked you yet?

Not yet.

Do you know what he's gonna do when you say yes?

No, what?


Good night, Joe.

See you in the morning, Dick.

Lance, I was over in your quarters looking for you.

The Colonel wants to see you.

Where's Holloway?


Come in.

Good evening, Captain. Mrs. Drumm.

If you'll excuse me.

You sent for me, sir?

I certainly did, Richard.

What do you think you're doing?


I told you to assign an officer to the detail that is taking Tucsos back.

I didn't say assign yourself.

You didn't say not to, sir.

I thought you'd have more sense than that.

You know we've got nothing but a cadre here.

And you should know if you don't that you're the only officer I have any faith in.

I'm a sick man, Richard, despite what Jennings tells me.

I'm in no position to handle the post.

You're the only person here I can depend on.

I don't want you taking Tucsos up to Fort Grant.

Too many lives depend on your being here.

Well, the orders are out, sir. You can't change...

I can change any orders I ever gave, and I'm changing those right now.

I want you to wake up the adjutant and tell him to put Lieutenant Holloway in charge of the detail that is taking Tucsos back.


He's a good man, isn't he?

Well, yes, sir, he's one of the best, but...

Then he's the officer commanding the detail.

I've never argued with you about an order bef...

Then don't argue with me now, Captain!

That's the way I want it.

Yes, sir.

Anything else?

That's all, Richard.

Lance... Save it.

The minute they started, we knew we had 'em.

And it was a slaughter.

High watermark of the Confederacy, they called it.

Come in.

Hello, Dick. Not asleep yet?

You're taking over the Tucsos detail, Bill.

I'm sorry.

You're joking.

I wouldn't joke about a thing like that.

No, of course you wouldn't.

Looks like tonight's my unlucky night.

That's funny.

First time I remember an order being changed around here.

Like rewriting the Bible.

Well, it's the one time I don't mind making it easy on the captain.

Do I, Cathy?

And I guess I'm the one who needs sleep now.

Good night, Cathy.

Dick. Good night, Bill.

Good night.


That was a cruel thing to do.


Why did you do it?


I don't know what you're talking about, Cathy.

You're not fooling me.

I've lived in an army post all my life.

Dad's right.

Orders don't get changed unless someone goes to an awful lot of trouble to change them.

Cathy, believe me, it's just the way things are.

I was planning to go myself.

Until you saw Bill kissing me, and then you went directly to Colonel Drumm.

I never...


I don't know what it's all about, Dick, but whatever it is...

Well, good night.

Prepare to mount.


Good luck, Bill.

Thanks, Dick.

Good luck, Joe.

Back to you, Dick.

Forward... ho!

He's been standing at that wall the last three nights.

Wonder when he sleeps.

What makes you think he can?

Halt! Who goes there?

Corporal of the guard! Post number three!

I brought back a friend of yours.

Bill Holloway. What's left of him.

Put him in the guardhouse.

You done a wrong thing, Dick.

Wanna take a look?

Just as well.



Take care of him, soldier. Yes, sir.

Aren't you going to tell me how it happened?

I guess you've got a right to know.

They jumped us about three hours after we left here.

Me and them two soldiers only got away 'cause we was riding rear guard.

They took Bill alive.

Me and the two soldiers rode circles the next three days, trying to catch up with 'em.

He was headin' back here this afternoon when we found him.

Was he still alive?

I guess you might call it alive.

They was sending him back deliberate as a warning.

When are those 400 men coming?

Another week.

That's what I figured.

I didn't think Tucsos would be sending us a warning unless he was dead certain he could wipe us out.

Now he's gotta get even with us for capturing him.

My guess is they're up there behind a pass beatin' their war drums right now.

Is that a guess or is that a sure thing?

I lived with the Chiricahuas for ten years.

You can learn a lot about injuns in ten years.

When do you think he's coming?

That's hard to say.

Might be three days, might be less.

Only thing sure, he ain't gonna wait for that relief column to get here.

Another thing's for sure, Tucsos got a look at this place.

Right this minute, he knows our strength better than the sergeant major.

Let me know what you decide, Dick.

Thanks, Joe.

Captain Lance, they want you back at the gate, sir.

I'm sorry about Lieutenant Holloway, sir.

There wasn't a finer officer.

We know what he was to you.

Thank you.

He was a good officer and a good man.

And I say the Army ain't got too many like that.

Give me a hand with these boots, Rutledge.

If it wasn't for Lance, Holloway would still be alive, and he'd be dead.

That's what's wrong with the Army.

The wrong guys always get killed.

First time in four days those toes have seen daylight.

Yeah, I'm gonna miss Lieutenant Holloway.

That's a lot of talk, Murdock.

If the truth were known, you're probably glad that Holloway got killed.

It just gives you another chance to apply for a commission.

I'll never get a commission as long as Lance is around.

And would you say that was his fault or your fault?

Or maybe they were afraid they might not find another sergeant.

Shut your mouth, you dirty Reb.

Well, I'll say this much for the captain.

He can tell the difference between a soldier and a tramp, and if you can do that, you're a good officer.

I'll leave it up to you, Rutledge.

You went to West Point.

And Lance had him kicked out.

Well, is it Lance's fault if Rutledge does something, and is foolish enough to get caught at it?

Rutledge must love him.

He come way out here to serve under him.

Sure, that's what it is, love.

You're all sore because he knows you for what you really are:

A bunch of flea-bitten bellyachers.

And you talk about bellyaching.

What did you do when the captain took away your liquor ration?

What did I do? Well, I quit drinking.

I'm just wanna ask you one question.

Suppose you found yourself in a dark alley one night with Captain Lance.

What would you do?

What would I do?

I'll tell you what I'd do.

I'd sneak up behind him, and I'd put up my hand and grab him by the throat, and I'd whirl him around, and I'd say, "Captain, have you got a drink on you?"

Spit and polish, that's all he is.

If it ain't in the books, it's wrong.

Get him in a bad spot and he'd run.

Yeah, run just like a dirty Reb.

You no good, dirty son of a Yankee mule.

Come on down, Rebel.

I came out here to fight injuns, not sergeants.

You come out here because you were sent from a Union prison.

Well, what about it?

Then you deserted after you got here.

You'd still be running if Lance hadn't have caught you and brought you back.

That's right, I would.

Are you coming down, Rebel?

I got no call to fight with you, Sergeant.

What, I gotta drag you down?

Let it alone, Murdock!

Leave me up on my feet.

Why don't you get up, Onstot?

Murdock, you wanna twist somebody's leg?

I ain't occupied for the next few minutes.

Use mine.

If Lance had hung you, I could forgive him a lot.


Where's that Arab?

The captain threw him in the guardhouse.

Ain't you heard him yellin'?

No, I ain't.

The crazy gorilla.

He can't stand the guardhouse.

Just makes him crazier.

Burial formation for Lieutenant Holloway in 40 minutes.

Any man missing gets three hours latrine duty.

You got it?

Yeah, sure. Sure.

All right, hop to it.


Aim! Squad!


Aim! Squad!


Order arms!

"Man dieth and wasteth away.

"Yes, man giveth up the ghost, "and where is he?

"Though the root thereof wax old in the earth, "and the stock thereof die in the ground.

"Yet, through the scent of water, it will bud

"and bring forth boughs like a plant.

"As the waters fall from the sea, "and the flood decayeth and dryeth up, "so man lieth down and riseth not

"till the heavens be no more, "they shall not awake, nor be raised out of their sleep."

All right.

Let's take Harmony's word for it.

Let's assume Tucsos is going to attack.

That means he'll do it before the relief column gets here.

And that way, we don't stand a chance.

Before he attacks, he'll have to assemble west of the Flintheads.

That means he'll have to come through the pass to get here, so I'd like to take a patrol out to Fort Invincible and try and hold him off up there.

No, I can't spare you, Richard, and I can't spare the men.

I only need a small patrol, six or seven men.

Six or seven men?

Tucsos will have hundreds.

He can still only get through that pass a few at a time.

It didn't look so invincible last time you were up there, did it?

The way I figure it, you can hold Invincible with a small party, but only for a short time.

If I can hold Tucsos off up there until a relief column gets here, we'll be out of trouble.

What about the water supply up there?

Well, we can carry enough to last two or three days.

If we're up there any longer than that, we won't be needing any.

When would you want to leave?

Right away. Tomorrow morning.

All right, Richard.

I guess it's that or nothing.

I'll give you the best men left on the post.

I'd rather pick 'em out myself, sir.

Certainly, take anyone you want.

Have the adjutant write out the orders.

Thank you, sir.

I... I want to apologize for my attitude last time we spoke.

I wasn't myself.

Well, I'm glad to see you looking better, sir.

It's merely the calm before the storm, I'm afraid.

Good night, Richard.

Good night, sir.

I'm... I'm sorry about Holloway.

Well, I guess he knows that.

All right, kids. Gather round. Gather round.

What's the good word tonight?

Read it and you'll see.

Excuse me, gentlemen.

"The following enlisted men will form at 5:40 AM, "fully equipped for a combat patrol to be commanded by Captain Lance.

"First Officer, Troop A, Fifth Cavalry.

"Senior Sergeant Murdock, Corporal Gilchrist, "Trooper Kebussyan, Trooper Onstot, "Trooper Rutledge, Trumpeter Saxton.

"Second in command will be First Lieutenant Winters, "♪. Harmony will act as scout.

By order of Colonel Drumm."

Well, that lets me out. Me, too.

Let's get back to the card game.

That's a mighty ugly body of men.

Looks like he picked the men he hated the most.

Or the ones who hated him the most.

I don't figure it. Why me?

Why any of us?

Well, now, what are all you old hens clucking about this time?

You ain't seen this order.

No, my little hero, I ain't seen this order.

But I can see this board, I'll bet ya, just about as good as anybody.

He must figure I'm having too good a time around here tonight.

Wants to get me away some place where it's dry as boot leather.

T'aint no matter how dry it is... if you're dead.

I ain't gonna be dead.

I'm coming back.

Like Holloway, maybe? I hope.

Say, the Arab's still in the guardhouse.

You reckon he's gonna turn him loose to go with us?

If I ever put him in the guardhouse, I'd never take him out on patrol.

Let me out! Let me out!

Let me...

You gonna keep this up all night?

Let me out, effendi.

So you can kill the captain?

So I can kill the captain.

I don't mind you doing it, Arab, but you gotta do it on your own time.

Let me out. Let me out!

Get me... out!

Corporal of the guard, post number eight!

What's the matter?

Look what that loco Arab done.

I wouldn't have believed it.

Well, I got orders to let him out anyway.

He's on patrol tomorrow.

Just as well.

I don't think he likes it in there.

No, I guess not.

All right, Arab. Come on. Get out.

You're on patrol tomorrow morning with Captain Lance.

He asked for you especially.

He asked for me?

That's right.

So, he asked for Trooper Kebussyan.

So... he meet a trooper named Death.

Don't do nothing that'll get you back here.

We gotta keep this guardhouse in one piece.

There's always time.

Always place.

Think he'll do it?


What do you want?

I have to talk to you, Cathy.

There's something I want to tell you.

There's nothing you have to say that will do any good.

Not after what you've done.

And I wouldn't want to listen to anything that you might have to say.

You probably want to tell me you're sorry, that you didn't mean what you did.

Or perhaps you're gonna say it wouldn't happen again.

Maybe you want another chance.

Or were you gonna say that love made you do it?

Well, you're not gonna say anything to me.

Not about love or Bill or what has been or will be or what might have been... because I'm not gonna listen.

Because, to me, you're as dead as Bill is.

More dead... because I'm gonna remember him.

I've put you out of my heart.

Do you hear me?

Now leave me alone.

Get out of here.

Get out!


Jenny, you're an angel for doing this.

There'll be a reward in heaven for girls like you.

Well, there better be a reward right down here.

There's only enough here to last me three or four days, darling.

You know I'll be back as soon as it's gone.

Will you?

Have I ever lied to you, Jenny?


Oh, Jenny.

You start talking like that, and I'll think you don't love me anymore.

Bye, gotta go. I gotta go.

Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

Just one sip to point the way for the rest of this.

Now you be a good girl while I'm gone, or I'll bash your pretty little head in for you.

Now give us a kiss.

Tis whiskey, not glory.

That makes a man happy I'd trade all my medals...

Now, now, now. None of that.

Don't you worry your pretty little head.

I'll be coming back to ya all right.

Now give us a kiss.

That's better.

You just remember, darling, I'll be thinking of you, and only you, every minute of the time.

Yes, every minute, darling.


Prepare to mount.


Forward... ho!

What about the cistern?

Dry. Bone dry.

How about the acequia down below?


You gonna tell the soldiers?

They'll find out soon enough.

If you say so.

I think I'll take a look at the other side of the pass.

There's something I can't catch quite.

When he's coming.

That's what I can't catch.

Sometime tomorrow, maybe.

Afternoon. Night.

Maybe not till dawn the day after.

On the other hand, he might show up an hour from now.

You start trying to calculate that fella to do something at the time you calculate, then's the time to figure for just the opposite.

See ya, Dick.

Prepare to dismount.


Close it up. Close it up.

Gilchrist, take Kebussyan as a detail and close the gate.

Bring the ammunition and put it up on the fire step.

Sergeant Murdock, I want you to locate suitable quarters for all of us, and see that the spare canteens and the packs are placed in whatever quarters you choose for me.

Also detail someone to corral the horses.

And Saxton, I want all calls sounded.

Lieutenant Winters, you'll accompany me on an inspection of the walls.

You have your orders.

All right, fall to.

Just a minute, Onstot.

The horses seem to like you better than any of the rest of us.

You take care of them.

Where you going with them canteens?

You heard the captain.

Just leave mine be.

I never saw you get so hot about water.

Never mind what you never saw.

Give me my canteens.


I can take care of anybody that questions my rank, Lieutenant.

You'll get the same water ration as everyone else.

Understand, Gilchrist?

Yes, sir.

Now get back to unpacking that horse.

Carry on, Sergeant.

Yes, sir.

Well, that's one way to handle it.

He'd been drinking. Gilchrist, I mean.


In this country?

You need any, you can come around to my quarters.

I'll take what you ration the men, no more.

Speaking of quarters, you're entitled to share mine, wherever they are.

I'll get by, thanks.

Suit yourself.

Let's take a look at these walls.

Captain, this is mighty thirsty work.

Most work is.

Now, to sum up, the wall's in pretty good shape.

It'll stand up all right under rifle fire.

Yes, sir.

After all, they can only come through that pass a few at a time.

We can bring enough fire to bear to take care of that situation.

Wasn't taken care of last time, and there was half the troop up here.

Well, maybe we got a couple of tricks up our sleeves.

Captain Lance?

Yes, Sergeant.

Sir, I put the men in the old barracks.

They can fix the lean-to against the wall.

Put Lieutenant Winters in the QM building.

Good work, Sergeant.

And I figured the best place for the captain was in the guardhouse.

Very good, Sergeant.

Go there. I'll join you directly.

You better get some rest.

I'm gonna take some men up to the pass tonight.

You'll be in command here.

In command of what?

The horses.

Hey, Captain...

Yes, I know. It's thirsty work.

Mighty thirsty work.

Go easy with that.

More of it in there.

What is this stuff, Captain?

I don't want anybody in here unless I'm here, understand?

Yes, sir.

There's something I'd like to discuss with the captain, if he's got the time.

What is it, Sergeant?

There's a vacancy, sir.

On account of Lieutenant Holloway being killed.


Well, sir, I'm the senior non-commissioned officer in line...

Your application for commission's been in three times.

Each time I asked that it be turned down.

I figured maybe you did it.

But seeing the way things are, you know, if anything should happen to the captain, there ain't many of us coming out of this.

Maybe only one or two.

Maybe only one.

That's quite possible.

But it'd be interesting to see which one it is, won't it, Sergeant?


I want a fatigue detail tonight.

Half an hour after mess.

Laddie, I've learned two things in my life.

One of 'em is that you can't even up a fingernail by biting it.

And the other is that you can't drink a quart of whiskey every day of your life and stop it just like that.

It ain't healthy.

Every day of your life?

Well, no, not quite.

Just since I was three years old.

Maybe you better go back to water, hmm?

Water? That's for fish.

Go get me a new pick. That one's dull.

Yes, Corporal.

The holes are drilled for the dynamite, sir.

A couple here in the pass, and one halfway between the pass and the fort.

You think you can handle this stuff all right?

Yes, sir.

You remember hearing them tell us about it at the Point?

Yes, sir.

You've got a good memory, Rutledge.

All right, take it.

Turn that up a little brighter, Onstot.

Yes, sir.

Captain, sir.

If you'll pardon the liberty, sir, have you got a cigar I can have?

Thank you, sir. Thank you.

When's Joe Harmony coming back here?

When he's ready.

I suppose so.

Hey, these things make you thirsty, don't they, Captain?

Well, don't smoke 'em, then.

So far I can't do nothing around this outfit.

Gilchrist. Yes, sir.

The rest of us go back to the fort tonight, you stay here on guard duty.

First shift.

If the Apaches should put in an appearance, all you have to do is touch off the dynamite.

Yes, sir.

Me with a 20-year thirst.

Captain Lance.

What is it?

Lieutenant Winters. I came up to relieve you.

Get back to the fort or I'll put you under arrest.

I'm tired of being put on the shelf by you.

Go on back. I'll take over here.

You fool, you haven't even got the strength to stand up straight.

You think I'm so sick, why'd you bring me here?

You're drunk.

And what if I am? Where'd you get it?

There's a whole river of it running right through the middle of the fort.

Well, there won't be for long.

Sergeant Murdock.

Yes, sir. Form the men.

All right, pick up your equipment.

Rutledge. Rutledge. Yes, sir.

Hurry it up. Be right down.

Fall in.

All right, look alive. Get in there.

When we get back, consider yourself under arrest and remain in your quarters.

Look out!

Come down here.

A thousand pardons, effendi.

The rock fell.

It might've kill you.

It must've been the will of heaven.

You can see for yourself.

No man can move that rock.

Get it out of the way.

Alone, effendi?

Get it out of the way.

Get it out of the way or I'll have you shot.

Now take your place.

All right, straighten it up.

You did that on purpose.

It was the will of heaven.

Detail, atten-hut.

Right face.

Forward... harch.



Go to the devil.

More, effendi. I'm big man.

That's not my fault.

Hey, that ain't enough to wet my teeth.

You old enough to have teeth?

Yeah, I'm old enough.

Then you're old enough to get up in the pass and relieve Gilchrist.

Right now? Right now.

He's done two hours.

He'll tell you what to do up there.

You don't look thirsty.

Rebs don't need water anyway.

Give me some of that horse water.


Come to think of it, it ought to suit a deserter.

What about the extra canteens?

Captain's saving them for tomorrow.

Sure ain't saving us.

Don't it seem funny to you there's no news of Joe Harmony?

Nothing seems funny to me.

It's because you got no imagination.

Maybe you got enough for both of us. Maybe I have.

Got enough to be nervous anyway.

How's the Lieutenant? How do I know?

He put me out there to die.

That's why he gave me the carbine.

Stay where you are.

What's the trouble, Captain?

Somebody fired a couple of shots in here.

It was not I, effendi.

I have no carbine.

Are all the others accounted for?

As far as I know, sir.

Well, check on it.

Yes, sir.

I came to watch over you, effendi, see no harm come to you.

That was very thoughtful of you.

Everything all right up at the pass?

Yes, sir. Saxton's on guard.

You better tell him what happened.

He's liable to get jumpy hearing those shots.

And check on this man's story.

Yes, sir.

All right, Arab, get moving.

Captain Lance!

Captain Lance!


It's him that took those shots at you, Captain.

I guess he got scared when he seen Joe there, and I can't find Rutledge.

Worry about that later.

Come on, on your feet. On your feet!

Dick, can you hear me?

Yeah, I can hear you, Joe.

You should have let me shot him when we had a chance.

Now it's too late.

He's coming, Dick.

Yeah, I know, Joe.

You better let me help you.


You remember that something I couldn't catch hold of?

I finally got a hold of it.

Tucsos knows everything.

He's in no hurry, Dick.

It makes no difference if the relief column does come.

Yes, Joe?

Because he knows the whole relief column was made up of only 31 men.

Just 31... men.

All right, Kebussyan.

For the moment, I think we can assume that by this time tomorrow some of us will be dead.

I never permitted men to risk death in a combat detail under my command without explaining why.

Also, I'd like to straighten out any misapprehensions you may have as to why you were picked for this detail.

In each case, my only consideration was the defense of Fort Winston.

The fort is under-manned, and I picked the men that I thought could best be spared.

I'm prepared to give you my individual reasons if you want them.

If not, the detail is dismissed.

Very well.

Sergeant Murdock.

As for you... your record as a noncom is full of nothing but bullying and brutality.

That's why you haven't been offered your commission.

The result is you're a malcontent.

Your absence from Fort Winston is no loss.

Yes, sir.

Trooper Onstot, a man who will desert once is a man who will desert again, given the slightest opportunity.

Here there won't be any opportunity.

The desert would be a much worse enemy for you than any Apache you might have to face.

Trooper Rutledge, you came 2,000 miles to serve under my command with only one motive: Revenge.

With your intelligence and your training, you should have been promoted many times.

But your record shows nothing, good or bad.

At Winston, they need men who are more than adequate.

Yes, sir.

Trooper Kebussyan, the reason for your presence on this detail won't be found on any record book.

It's impossible to transcribe the feelings that a man carries in his soul.

Here the dark thoughts that you carry will be less harmful.

I don't think any other explanation is necessary.

No, sir.

Trumpeter Saxton, you have long and publicly made known your wish to trade your trumpet for a carbine.

Last night I gave you one.

However, both you and I know that you're a coward and have no such wish.

No, sir.

Corporal Gilchrist, yours is a record of drunkenness, brawls, and destruction of Army property that is unequaled in the United States Cavalry.

Somehow you've managed to keep your stripes.

But in the event of an attack on Winston, the proximity of the fort's whiskey would see you end up inevitably in front of the firing squad.

You've omitted me in your analysis, Captain.

Your rank entitles you to privacy, Lieutenant.

I wish to know why I was included in the detail.

Very well.

You're here, Lieutenant, because you're an extremely ill man.

I needed an officer.

There was nothing to lose by selecting an off...

You see what I mean.

Any questions?

Yes, sir.

What is it?

I'm sure we all appreciate having our little faults and weaknesses pointed out to us, sir.

But I imagine the captain has a reason for being here, too.

You think so?

Yes, sir, I think so. We all think so.

And just to even things up a little bit, I'd like to have the pleasure of telling the captain what I think that reason is.

Go ahead.

You were supposed to take Tucsos up to Fort Grant, but you had the orders changed.

Lieutenant Holloway went out and got himself conveniently killed in your place.

Then you began to feel guilty about it, so you figured out a suicide mission and fixed it so you could take every one of us that you hated along with you.

That's all, Captain.

That's the way it is.

So that's the way it is.

Yes, sir.

Detail. Ten-hut!



Yes, Captain.

You disappeared for a while last night.

Where were you?

I went down to the corral to take a look at the horses.

You're lying, aren't you?

That's an enlisted man's privilege, Captain.

Any sign from Onstot?

No, sir. He hasn't showed himself for about 15 minutes.

You better go out there and see if he's all right.

Yes, sir.

You think you can handle a carbine now without getting careless?

I think so, sir.


Thank you, sir.


Don't I get any?

No. Do you want to know why?


Indians are on the other side of the wall, Corporal.

Why didn't you shoot, you fool?

I thought better of it.

Shoot him, we'd all be done for.

He's the only man can keep this outfit going.

Where are you, Onstot?

This is Murdock.

Five years I've been in the Army, and I get captured on account of a dirty Reb.


What is it?

There's Murdock coming back.

Wait a minute, Captain. That's Murdock.

No trooper ever carried a carbine that way.

There'll be coming now. Fire at will.

Hold your fire!

Let them carry back their wounded.

Winters, do you know the trail to Arahawa Rim?

I do.


Yes, I know it. Why?

Well, as near as I can figure it, the relief column ought to be at the Rim sometime tomorrow.

I want you to ride out there and tell Captain Conrahan to get here as fast as he can.

Do you really mean that?

I just said it, didn't I?

You might be dead when I get back.

I'll take my chances on that.

How do you know I'd ride to Conrahan?

How do you know I wouldn't ride for the fort?

It would solve all my troubles, you know.

Yeah, I know.

And I also know that whatever your faults are, you're still an Army man.

You can take my horse if you want to.

No, thanks. I got a good one.

Good luck, Dick.

Good luck to you, Jerry.

How big a column does Conrahan got?

400 men.

Nice round number.

Cease firing!

All ready, Captain.

Kebussyan, open the gate.

You all right, Saxton?

Yes, sir. Fine, sir.

I'd like to try to get through, sir.

Arab, what do you think about when you're thirsty?



Sometimes melons.

You're a great help, a great help.


Yes, sir?

Sometimes blood.

You got a cigar, Corporal?


I said, have you got a cigar?

Yes, sir, in my saddlebag.

Go get it.

And take the pennant off the guide-on and put this on it.

Well, sir... you're going to surrender?

No, Corporal.

We're going to have a little talk with Tucsos.

But what's the cigar got to do with it?

You just go and get it, and you'll find out.

And take that pistol off your belt.

Yes, sir.

A charge of dynamite is under the rocks.

All you have to do is light the fuse with your cigar when I give the signal.

Yes, sir.

If you have any trouble, call my name out once, then get back to the fort immediately.

Yes, sir.

Time short, hard one.

Why you come out under pale flag?

I came to offer you a chance to surrender.

You have strange courage, dog soldier.

Do you command mighty party that you can speak such words?

Or is it because you think no army but your army, no warriors but yours?

By waiting half day, I capture your men with bag of water.

Your warriors have great thirst, hard one.

My terms are simple.

Your men will lay down their arms and come through the pass on foot.

Scout I send back to you, he able to speak before he die?

He spoke.

Still, you make terms to Tucsos?

You heard.

Help you have sent for will do no good.

1 and 30 men.

Our chieftains have promised 400 men.

It is not their way to promise much and send little.

I know what I say is true.

You're a liar.

There is no more to hear.


I do not speak foolishly or surrender.

I have brought with me strong medicine, medicine that will make these mountains tremble and leap from the earth.

I can destroy this pass and all of your warriors with it.

Watch. You will see.

All right, Corporal!

Captain Lance!

Very well, Corporal, go back to the fort.

This medicine is controlled from the fort.

Soon you will see.

You lie, hard one.

Your medicine fail.

You who know all things know nothing.

Tucsos is growing old and foolish.

No more time for talk, dog soldier.

Return to fort, soldier.

With no water, you will soon be as dust under hooves of our horses.

What happened? I don't know, Captain.

The fuse was gone and that little cap thing, too.

Somebody tampered with it.

That's what I'd say.

Looks like the fuse was gone out of that demonstration charge.

That's funny.

I could have sworn I put it in.

Makes me wonder about the charge up in the pass.

Maybe the fuse is gone out of that one, too.

Well, Captain, why don't you take a run up there and see?

Why did you do it, Rutledge?

We're all of us caught up here together.

Where did you expect to go?

With you, Captain.

And just remember this.

I'm not committing suicide.

I'm killing you.

No, Rutledge, you are committing suicide, because I'm going back up in that pass with a new fuse the first chance I get and blow it sky-high.

And whatever you think, I didn't bring this patrol up here to get every man killed.

I'm going to get out every one alive that I can... and especially you, Rutledge.

I'm going to get you back to Winston and have you court-martialed.

I'm going to have you hung with the strongest length of rope in the whole New Mexico Territory.


Leave it alone.

Leave it alone.

I'll need some bandages from my quarters.

Yes, sir.

This what you wanted, Captain?

It was in Rutledge's pocket.

Yes, exactly what I wanted.

If I can reset these fuses, this mission may still be a success.

Judging from the ruckus I hear out there, our red brothers are too busy at the moment to pay much attention to us.

I'll need somebody to cover me.

I'll go, Captain.

I am ready, effendi.

No, you can't go with that shoulder, Kebussyan.

I will not let anyone else go.

All right. Come on.

Before they kill me, I'd like to get my hands loose for just five minutes.

Yeah, it looks like you're gonna get your wish, Reb.

You always had me tired with your dirty Yankee stripes!

Why you fight so soon before you die?

Because he's a no good son of a Yankee mule.

Your hate is strong, dog soldier.

Yeah? Turn me loose and I'll show you how a dirty Yankee soldier ought to die.

I've waited a long time for this, Sergeant.

Just don't run away, Rebel.


Hurry! Hurry, effendi!

Go. Go, effendi.

Saxton, anything moving?

No, nothing.

Everything's quiet, Captain.

Well, Corporal, looks like they cut us down a bit.

Yeah, I kind of figured they would.

Next time they come, they're gonna cut down the rest of us.

Looks that way, don't it?

You tried to shoot me, didn't you?


Aimed your carbine at me the other night.

Well, I...

I guess I got nothing to lose now if I admit that that idea might have flitted through my head a little.

Why didn't you do it?

I can't rightly answer that, Captain.


Unless maybe I got the sudden notion that it might kind of spoil things for you, not going down in the line of duty, which you're so fond of, so to speak.


You're a soldier, Gilchrist.

A professional one.

You may be creation's worst mule son of a soldier, but that's what you are.

That's why you couldn't do it.

I knew that.

That's why I didn't have you shot five minutes after I saw you point the muzzle of that thing at me.

You could've had me shot for what I did to them canteens.


In both cases, I didn't have enough men for a firing squad anyway.

I knew that, Captain.

Meanwhile, I wonder if you'd do something for me.

Anything you say, sir.

Down in my quarters, you'll find my loose tobacco and cigarette papers.

I'm not quite certain where I left them, but they might have been under one of those canteens, you understand?

I need a smoke, Corporal.

It may take you a few minutes to find the makings.

No longer.

Yes, sir.

Sorry you didn't get to find out how it was with me sending Holloway off, Joe.

Tis whiskey, not love.

Brings you here at this hour.

Oh, Barney, dear Barney I can't let you in.

From the look in your eye...

Sir, I forgot.

I couldn't find your papers and your tobacco, sir.

I didn't think you would.

But I looked, sir. I did...

Captain Lance, they're coming again, sir!

What are they doing out there, sir?

Doesn't matter much what they're doing.

We only got about 40 cartridges left between us.

Come on, you beautiful creatures!

Come on, you red-chested devils!

I'm waitin' for ya!

They'll be coming, Corporal.

Nothing like hurrying 'em up a little bit, sir.

Corporal, come down here!

You come up here, Captain!

The grade up here is different!

I can see where they're going!

Hundreds of red devils all over us!

Barney, dear Barney I can't let you in.

From the look in your eye.

You're gunning for trouble.

To your spoutings, go back where...

There's more to be seen than the floor of a tavern.

Merely slipped, Captain. That's... That's all.

Hey, Captain. Listen.

I got me an accompaniment.

Cease firing!

Sergeant Thompson, take over.

We're about ready to go, Lance.

Feel fit to ride?

Yeah, I'm all right.

Just taking a look at this new weapon of yours.

Really something, eh?

Call it a Gatling gun.

350 rounds a minute.

They were talking about it my last year at the Point.

Does the work of a regiment.

That's why they gave me only 31 men.

All I need.

That gun's going to revolutionize war.

Yeah, I believe it.

Are you sure you're all right?

Get me that orderly.


Tis whiskey, not love.

You want me, Captain?

We're leaving.

Where's my captain? Captain.

We got everything packed, everything you got, Captain.

Except... Except the canteens.

They were empty.

Yes, sir, so we didn't bring 'em.

Did we? No.

Mount up!

Move out.

Yes, sir.

Tis whiskey, not love.

Brings you here at this hour.


Barney, dear Barney I can't let you in.

Conrahan, take over the detail.

Yes, sir.

Detail, forward ho!

Hello, Doc.

Didn't expect to see you back.

I did.

Well, be that as it may, under the circumstances, I prescribe a drink.

No, thanks. I haven't got time.

I'm sorry.

I've got a report to make.

To whom? Colonel Drumm.

He isn't here.

I sent him back myself yesterday.

Ordered him, as a matter of fact.

Told him I wouldn't be responsible if he didn't go.

He's had two bad spells.

A third time you have one with a cerebral hemorrhage, you don't have another.

You can make your report to the mirror.

You mean...

I'm acting in command of Winston?

Till they send out another colonel, or some chowder-headed major.

But if you insist on making a report to flesh and blood, I'd suggest Cathy Eversham.


She knows now that she was wrong.

She's sorry.

And she's in love with you, Dick.

Believe me, she is.

Now, take it easy. You've had five hard...

That's doctor's orders!

They say that this world.

Is more wide than a barrel.

And crowded with women delightful to see.

But the facts of the matter, alas, is that women.

Are always most happy bedevilin' me.

If I was a human instead of a soldier I'd go to my captain and speak to him true.

I'd say, "Me poor bucko, you're heading for trouble".

"Captain, dear Captain, it's trouble for you."

Well, if what he says is true, I'm gonna take him out and have him shot.

He's safe.

It's not me own self that I'm thinking of, Captain.

Captain, dear Captain, I'm thinking of you.