58-“Treasure Trail”

Directed by Richard Whorf, Written by Albert Aley.

BRUCE GORDON as Decker
PETER ADAMS as Craig Wilson
HARRY DEAN STANTON as Stoneman
WILLARD SAGE as Gale

Wilson, I told you I’d travel a long way to catch up to you.
Your little treasure hunt has cost three men their lives.
Don’t force me to make it four.

PALADIN
Ten minutes after 7:00. Well, poker does make the evening go quickly, doesn’t it, mr. Wilson? Would you care for a night cap? Or, perhaps more accurately, I should say an eye opener?

CRAIG WILSON
No thanks. 600 dollars. You want to count them?

PALADIN
That won’t be necessary. Too bad the cards were running against you.

CRAIG WILSON
If you’ll get me a pen, I’ll…

PALADIN

No, mr. Wilson. No checks, cash.

CRAIG WILSON
I don’t carry that much on me.

PALADIN
The banks will be open in about three hours. I’ll be very happy to accompany you. “a wise gamester takes the dice as they fall “and pays down quietly rather than grumble at his luck.” Sophocles.

CRAIG WILSON
You can hardly expect a man to enjoy losing $1,400.

PALADIN
Particularly when he doesn’t have it.

CRAIG WILSON
I’ve had enough of this. You wouldn’t honor my check and now you accuse me of cheating. You can just wait for your money.

PALADIN
I’m not in the habit of waiting, Mr. Wilson. No one forces a man to gamble. He comes to the table with his eyes open, and he’s expected to honor his losses immediately.

CRAIG WILSON
I- I’m not a welcher. I’ll pay.

PALADIN
I’m sure you will.

CRAIG WILSON
It’s just that I’m a…A little short right now. It’ll take me a few days.

PALADIN
This morning, mr. Wilson.

CRAIG WILSON
Well, I just took…I’ll make a deal with you, paladin.

PALADIN
$1,400, cash on the line.

CRAIG WILSON
I’ll give you twice as much, $2,800…$3,000?

PALADIN
You’re very generous with money you don’t seem to have.

CRAIG WILSON
But I’m going to get it. Look. Here.

PALADIN
Ah, don’t tell me, Mr. Wilson, This is the map to a hidden treasure.

CRAIG WILSON
Part of a map. There are three other pieces. When they’re fitted together, you can pick up $25,000.

PALADIN
I can?

CRAIG WILSON
That’s the deal, paladin. I’m supposed to meet the men who have the other pieces Day after tomorrow. I want you to go in my place.

PALADIN

Why?

CRAIG WILSON
Frankly, I don’t trust them.

PALADIN
And do I also look like a complete fool, Mr. Wilson? You play poker with money you don’t have. Offer me part of a treasure you don’t have, And then ask me to find it for you. Did you really think I’d even consider it?

CRAIG WILSON
You don’t have any choice, Paladin. It’s $3,000 or nothing. Your gun won’t even get it for you.

PALADIN
It might get me a lot of satisfaction.

CRAIG WILSON
$3,000 worth?

PALADIN
Mm. Who are the other men?

CRAIG WILSON
Well, they’re former partners of mine.

PALADIN
Who obviously trust you as much as you trust them. Where are you supposed to meet them?

CRAIG WILSON
In the Tuscaroras. Decker’s setting camp in the valley, 20 miles west of Blue Springs.

PALADIN

Decker?

CRAIG WILSON
He’s one of my partners. This was all his idea.

PALADIN
And whose $25,000?

CRAIG WILSON
What difference does that make?

PALADIN
I’m somewhat particular about accepting stolen money.

CRAIG WILSON
Oh, it was stolen allright. But a long time ago. And from so many different places, You couldn’t possibly return it.

PALADIN
Hm?

CRAIG WILSON
Oh, no. Not by me. By a couple road agents, Operating in and around northern colorado. We got the map from one of them.

PALADIN
And what happened to them?

CRAIG WILSON
They were killed. Trying to escape.

PALADIN
Well, that’s very neat. Very concise. Can you give me one reason why I should believe it?

CRAIG WILSON
Well, as I said before, Paladin, It’s $3,000…Or nothing.

PALADIN
Mm. Well, those are convincing odds. Now, mr. Wilson, If you should be trying to make a fool of me, I’ll travel a long way to find you.

EXT. ON THE TRAIL – DAY

PALADIN
Pull the trigger. Cost you $25,000. Now ask your partner to come out, too.

99
00:06:27,269 –> 00:06:28,319
Stoneman.

PALADIN
Hardly what I’d call “western hospitality.”

101
00:06:31,356 –> 00:06:33,257
What do you want? What are you doing here?

PALADIN
The carbine, Mr. Decker, please. Thank you. My name is paladin. Your partner, Wilson, is a client of mine.

105
00:06:40,965 –> 00:06:43,801
Somebody steered you up a blind trail, Mister. We don’t know no Wilson. We’re just riding through.

PALADIN
Oh? Well, this is hardly worth anything, then, is it? Right where you are, Decker.

110
00:06:58,767 –> 00:07:00,518
It’s burning up!

PALADIN
It’s a scrap of paper, not the map. Not worth burning your fingers over. Now, gentlemen, We all know what we’re doing here and why. And whether we like it or not, we need each other. So, let’s try to get along peacefully, at least until our business is concluded.

116
00:07:18,754 –> 00:07:20,154
Why’d wilson send you?

PALADIN
Just to play the fourth piece to your puzzle.

118
00:07:22,858 –> 00:07:24,092
Let’s see it.

PALADIN
I’ll produce it when the proper time comes. Which I imagine will be fairly soon.

121
00:07:43,245 –> 00:07:46,214
Decker. Stoneman.

122
00:07:46,315 –> 00:07:48,049
Who’s this?

123
00:07:48,150 –> 00:07:50,117
His name’s Paladin. Wilson sent him.

124
00:07:50,219 –> 00:07:52,119
Took you long enough to get here, Gale.

125
00:07:52,221 –> 00:07:54,655
Don’t talk to me like that. You’re not in the barracks now. Just leave me alone. Let’s get this over with.

PALADIN
Well, this is a nice, friendly partnership. Shall we get down to business, gentlemen?

129
00:08:10,605 –> 00:08:12,540
That’s it. The whole trail from here. Will take us about a day and a half. Maybe two. We’ll leave in the morning.

PALADIN
If you don’t mind, I’ll keep my part of the map myself.

133
00:08:20,549 –> 00:08:22,950
Listen, maybe wilson didn’t tell you, But I’m the one who figured out this whole deal. I’m top hand.

PALADIN
He told me. But there’s a very good reason for dividing this map. None of you trust the others. And that reason still holds.

138
00:08:33,194 –> 00:08:36,463
How do you expect me to follow a trail with the map split up like this?

PALADIN
Simple. Mr. Gale has the first part. He leads until stoneman’s part. Stoneman leads until my part, and so forth.

141
00:08:42,437 –> 00:08:44,972
For somebody who don’t belong, you give a lot of orders.

PALADIN
Not orders, just suggestions. Not a bit like the old army days, is it? By the way, did you three get honorable discharges? Or did you climb over a stockade wall?

EXT. CAMP – NIGHT

146
00:09:54,309 –> 00:09:55,409
Cut it loose!

PALADIN
You always do his dirty work Or is this your idea of reveille?

EXT. ON THE TRAIL – MORNING

149
00:10:30,295 –> 00:10:32,930
What do you think you’re doing, Gale?

150
00:10:33,031 –> 00:10:34,932
I’ll tell you when to stop.

151
00:10:35,033 –> 00:10:37,134
It’s the end of my part of the map.

152
00:10:37,236 –> 00:10:39,470
That’s right, here’s the stream.

153
00:10:39,571 –> 00:10:42,874
Pick a point. Mount up, Gale, or we’ll leave you behind.

PALADIN
No hurry, Gale. They’re not going far without me. Just get out of the army?

157
00:10:53,852 –> 00:10:55,969
Almost a year ago. On a straight discharge.

PALADIN
Oh, that was for decker’s benefit. He just finished his hitch?

161
00:11:02,744 –> 00:11:04,312
Couple weeks ago. Stoneman, too.

PALADIN
Must’ve been a bad time for them, Wondering if you and wilson would beat them to the money.

164
00:11:09,184 –> 00:11:12,069
Why do you suppose he divided that map into four parts, And kept the last part for himself? He wasn’t taking any chances. Told us to wait until our hitches were up.

PALADIN
Strange he didn’t keep the whole thing himself.

169
00:11:20,679 –> 00:11:21,812
With three witnesses? We had enough against him To put him in the stockade for life.

PALADIN
You were in
the same company?

173
00:11:28,286 –> 00:11:30,554
He was a corporal. Treated us like a colonel.

PALADIN
Still, he was smart enough to figure out four cavalry men, Who suddenly came up with a lot of money would be suspected.

176
00:11:37,246 –> 00:11:38,980
They’re getting too far ahead. I didn’t wait this long to lose out now.

EXT. ON THE TRAIL – DAY

PALADIN
Decker.

179
00:12:46,899 –> 00:12:48,198
What happened?

PALADIN
I don’t know, I found him here.

 

Dead?

PALADIN
Broken neck.

182
00:12:52,771 –> 00:12:54,104
Must’ve been thrown.

PALADIN
A cavalryman?

184
00:12:55,741 –> 00:12:58,442
He was with you last we saw. Maybe you know different?

PALADIN
He was trying to catch up with you. What are you doing back here?

187
00:13:03,765 –> 00:13:06,033
We got tired of waiting. We came to shake you up.

188
00:13:06,134 –> 00:13:07,401
Could’ve been an accident. Mount stepped in a chuck hole, what difference does it make?

PALADIN
About $2,000. Difference between a third and a fourth.

191
00:13:14,510 –> 00:13:16,811
Hey, that’s right.

192
00:13:21,767 –> 00:13:24,735
Like the colonel used to put on the citations, “he didn’t die in vain.”

194
00:13:40,018 –> 00:13:43,253
This is the last time I’m gonna eat any beans. No more beans for the rest of my life.
After this, I’m gonna eat real fancy food. In fancy cafes. Chicken, wild duck.

PALADIN
Veal Marsala, and try Chateau Briand.

200
00:14:00,171 –> 00:14:01,555
Huh? Yeah. I’m gonna travel, too. I’m going to see places like Philadelphia, back east. You know, New York. Hey, Decker, how much is my share again?

205
00:14:12,600 –> 00:14:13,700
Shut up.

206
00:14:13,801 –> 00:14:16,937
Come on! What’s $25,000 divided by three?

PALADIN
Over $8,000.

208
00:14:18,606 –> 00:14:21,808
Eight thousand dollars? And there might be more, too, you know? Hey, decker, how much the colonel say was in that payroll?

211
00:14:28,316 –> 00:14:29,516
Shut up, decker!
All right, all right.

PALADIN
Decker. You worried?

215
00:14:38,260 –> 00:14:40,594
What have I got to worry about?

PALADIN
That’s exactly what I was wondering. You’re the only one who knows where that money is. You’ve got the last part of the map. You ought to be safe.

220
00:14:48,069 –> 00:14:49,502
What do you mean?

PALADIN
Gale outlived his usefulness showing us the first part. Stoneman finished his part this afternoon.

223
00:14:56,794 –> 00:14:57,661
Huh?

PALADIN
And by tomorrow noon, I will have finished my job. You won’t need anybody. You’ll be self-sufficient.

227
00:15:07,739 –> 00:15:11,075
I won’t need you, that’s for sure.
Hey, now, wait a minute. Gale, he was an accident.

PALADIN
He was a very profitable accident for somebody.

231
00:15:21,937 –> 00:15:24,488
That includes you, paladin. You were alone with him. Me and stoneman were together.
That’s right, we were…

PALADIN
Every second?

234
00:15:29,828 –> 00:15:31,361
Yeah.

235
00:15:31,462 –> 00:15:32,663
Hey, wait a minute.

236
00:15:32,764 –> 00:15:34,865
I rode ahead once and you laid back.

237
00:15:34,966 –> 00:15:36,366
To wait for him! You could’ve circled around. You sure came back fast!

239
00:15:39,171 –> 00:15:41,005
I was looking for you!

PALADIN
“for his mind had grown suspicion’s sanctuary.” That’s just a passing remark. A fellow named Byron mentioned it one time. Well, if we’re going to get an early start in the morning.

244
00:16:05,347 –> 00:16:10,150
This ground’s pretty hard. I’m gonna move up a’ways.

PALADIN
Well, decker. Half a share’s even better than a third, isn’t it?

246
00:16:30,688 –> 00:16:32,989
I’ll start digging a hole for him. You better hobble the other two horses here. We’ll pick ’em up on the way back.

PALADIN
Not yet, decker. Put that carbine back where it was.

251
00:17:22,991 –> 00:17:26,459
It’s where I want it. I’ll take your piece of the map, Paladin.

PALADIN
That carbine’s giving you a false sense of security.

253
00:17:29,347 –> 00:17:31,866
Give me the map. Hand it over.

254
00:17:35,236 –> 00:17:37,137
Now turn around and start riding.

PALADIN
Oh, you don’t want to get rid of me yet.

256
00:17:39,808 –> 00:17:42,342
I’ve been wanting to get rid of you since we started. And I ain’t waiting no more.

PALADIN
Don’t you want to take a look at that map first?

259
00:17:51,185 –> 00:17:53,187
Where is it?

PALADIN
You coming?

261
00:18:19,030 –> 00:18:21,198
What are you looking for?

PALADIN
It’s your honor, decker. Lead off.

263
00:18:25,837 –> 00:18:27,471
You first.

Decker pushes Paladin down a cliff. Rides off. Paladin recovers, climbs up the side of the cliff, retrieves his horse and rides off. Gunshots are fired. Paladin finds Decker shot dead.

PALADIN
Leave it where it is.

CRAIG WILSON
Paladin!

PALADIN
I told you I’d come a long way to find you.

CRAIG WILSON
Wait a minute. Give me a chance. Let me explain.

PALADIN
Alright, explain Gale and Stoneman and decker.

CRAIG WILSON
What do you care? I didn’t do anything to you. Did I?

PALADIN
Only because you thought Decker had done the job for you.

CRAIG WILSON
Look, there’s $25,000 here! We can split it, right down the middle.

PALADIN
I told you, I’m particular about accepting stolen money. Especially an army payroll, and your ex-colonel Is gonna be interested in your explanation of that.

CRAIG WILSON
We didn’t take it. That’s the truth. We were sent after the men who did. Instead of bringing them back, Decker shot them and took the map. It was all his idea.

PALADIN
Except the end. And you hang for that.

CRAIG WILSON
I’ll give you more than half, paladin. I’ll give you $20,000. All of it!

PALADIN
You’ll give it back to the army.

CRAIG WILSON
All right!

shots fired by . Paladin shoots him.

CRAIG WILSON
The money.

PALADIN
Hi, hey boy.

INT. HOTEL CARLTON

HEY BOY
How you like table, mr. Paladin?

PALADIN
That’s fine, hey boy, just fine.

HEY BOY
Oh, what’s this? Bird’s nest?

PALADIN
No, it’s a rat’s nest. Pack rat nest, to be exact.

HEY BOY
Oh, gee, new money.

PALADIN
It used to be. The rat’s destroyed almost $15,000 to feather that nest. The army managed to salvage the rest. Put it someplace, will you?

HEY BOY
Where? Gee, be hard to dust.

PALADIN
Sorry, it’s gonna have to be here in the room. It’s a permanent reminder to be careful in choosing my poker partners. Alright, set it down there.

HEY BOY
Oh, in my country, this makes delicious soup. Great delicacy.

PALADIN
Mm, well, in my country, too, hey boy.

HEY BOY
Oh.

PALADIN
Put it down.