Transcript: The Escape

Airdate: 31 December 1968
Directed by: William Hale
Written by: Anthony Spinner

Guest stars:
Dan J Travanti as Dan Cassidy
Lynda Day George as Sarah Cassidy
Wayne Rogers as Jed Lewis
Robert Biheller as Ric Hardy
Joe DiSantis as Doc Hilldenbrand


Scene 1
It’s night time, we see silhouettes of three men on horseback. They seem to be looking at the Lancer hacienda, which is pretty well lit up.

Inside, Teresa, dressed in a long robe, enters the Great Room carrying a tray.

Teresa: Coffee’s brewing, it’ll be ready in a minute.

Scott is sitting on one of the sofas, we are behind him, can see some papers resting on the back of the couch. He is wearing one of his beige shirts. He asks her: What time is it?

Teresa sets the tray down on a table behind him. Nodding towards it, she says: Well, you can consider that your breakfast.

SL: That late, huh?

T: Uh hmmm

SL smiles and gestures with a pencil in his hand: All right, all right, I’m gonna knock off in a few minutes.

T: Oh, I’m not gonna give you the satisfaction of bawling you out again. I’m gonna let your father do it when he gets back tomorrow with Johnny. But I should tell you though that—-

SL interrupts her: Now you’ve already told me, uh (pause, then finishes in an ironic tone) I’m working too hard.

She gives him a big smile, and then turns to leave the room.

SL: Teresa (he pronounces it Te-RAY-sa)—–don’t worry about that coffee; if I still want it, I’ll get it myself. Now you go to bed. I’m gonna turn in in a few minutes, I promise you.

(Several minor changes in the dialogue from the script. Most notable, the script has Scott call Teresa “Terry”.)

She leaves the room. He gets up and reaches over the back of the couch towards the tray and plate. Sleeves of the famous beige checked shirt are partially rolled up. Shirt is rather form fitting. Sandwich plate in the right hand, book in the left, he walks over to a blue easy chair, sets the plate down on a side table. There is a nice lamp on the table too, with crystal pendants hanging from the shade. He leans back, resting his head on the back of the chair (neck stretch?), smiles to himself and shakes his head a little, then opens the book, pencil in hand.

Scott is seated with his back to the door, we see a stranger enter behind him! The man has a gun.

Stranger: Scott Lancer?

SL reacts, turns his head, sees the man, rises from the chair with a concerned expression.

SL: Jed Lewis, isn’t it?

We can see that Lewis is wearing a cavalry type hat.

Lewis: That’s right. You remembered. It’s been a long time since Vicksburg.

SL: What the devil are you doing here? What’s that gun for?

Scott has a serious expression, he’s calm, not scared, but clearly is perplexed as to why this man is here and is pointing a gun at him.

Lewis: Take you to see an old friend, he’s waitin’ just outside of town. His name is . . . Cassidy.

SL reacts at this, very slightly. Lewis continues: That’s right, Lieutenant Cassidy. Shall we go?

(The script refers to Cassidy as a “Captain”.)

Instead of answering, Scott tries to make a move, and another man rushes in through the glass doors, gun drawn.

Lewis: You remember Ric Hardy, dontcha? Now come on, nice and easy, no fightin’, no shoutin’. Let’s go.

Scott holds the ledger book in both hands, looks at it, thinking for a moment. Then he tosses the book onto the seat of the blue chair and walks off camera towards the glass doors. Lewis holsters his gun, looks around the room. He’s impressed with what he sees. He reaches over and picks up Scott’s sandwich and walks out the door while taking a big bite out of it. The glass door doesn’t close completely behind them.

A moment later, Teresa walks in, carrying a coffee pot. She looks around, doesn’t see Scott. She sets the silver coffee pot down on the table near the blue chair, closes the door tight.

Scene 2
Scott is on horseback, not his usual horse, this one has a solid brown face. Rick Hardy is beside him, holding the reins of the horse Scott is riding. Camera pulls back and we can see that Jed Lewis is on the other side, riding to Scott’s left. At first it appears that Scott’s hands might be tied, but evidently not, since in the next moment he makes his escape . . . .

Next shot, we can see all three riders at a distance, the pace is picking up. Scott goes for Hardy first, knocks him off of his horse with a strong uppercut. Hardy lands hard on the ground. Then SL immediately goes for Lewis-tackles him. Lewis and his horse go down, with Scott right after him. Lewis is on the ground with Scott on top of him. Then SL gets up and jumps onto a horse that is on the ground-Lewis’? The horse rises to its feet with Scott on board.

Lewis rolls over, Hardy is also getting up, both are drawing their guns and Scott rides away. Hardy and Lewis fire at him, Hardy is a bit in front of Lewis. We can see Scott from the back-he reacts as if he’s been shot!!! He leans to the right, but stays on the horse and keeps riding.

Hardy and Lewis mount up.

Lewis tells Hardy: You follow Scott, I’m gonna go back and get Cassidy.

Scene 3 In Town

We see a man looking at a watch. He is wearing a white shirt and vest, has dark hair and a mustache. He walks over to an armoire, removes a gun belt.

A door opens, a blonde woman wearing a white nightgown comes out of the next room saying: Dan? Dan? Dan, where are you going?

Dan Cassidy: Just out to Jed Lewis’ place, he’s got a farm nearby he wants to show me. Dan is buckling on his gun belt as he says this. Then he adds: People may want to sell out and move on.

Sarah Cassidy: Dan, do you know what time it is?

DC: Uh hmmm. It’ll be dawn before I can get there. (He kisses her cheek.)
You get some sleep, honey, I’ll—

The door opens and its Lewis. Dan looks angry.

DC: Are you crazy or drunk or what . . .(No reply from Lewis) Told ya I’d meet ya.

Lewis: I couldn’t wait, ya understand? He got away . . .

Sarah Cassidy reacts to this announcement. Dan looks grim.

SC: Who got away? What’s going on? Dan?

It is obvious that neither man wants to clue her in.

SC, with realization in her voice: Dan? (she shakes her head a bit) Oh no.

Sarah turns and goes to the other room.

DC to Lewis: You idiot.

Lewis: Aww . . she was bound to find out sooner or later anyway.

DC: Get out of here, wait for me downstairs.

He opens the door, but Lewis does not obey instantly, he’s still looking in the direction of Sarah’s exit.

DC: I said, get out!

Lewis leaves and Dan shuts the door.

In the next room, Sarah is sitting on the bed, hand on the bed post, pained expression on her face.

(Dialogue cut from the 7/18/68 script:

DC, softly, sincerely: It had to be this way, Sarah. It had to be.

SC: All your promises. . . and for this. (shaking her head in disbelief) To come three thousand miles to kill a man.

DC: He’s not a man. . . Scott Lancer hasn’t got the right to be called a–

SC, cutting him off: It’s no good Dan, I won’t listen . . I’ve heard it all . . for five long years, I watched you in that military hospital . . I watched you and I told myself, made myself believe that when you finally got out, you’d be so grateful just to be able to walk, you’d forget all of this. . that it wouldn’t be hard for us to start over. . . build a new life. . . .(the script description of Dan Cassidy mentions that he walks with a noticeable limp )

DC: What kind of life can we have, Sarah, if we build it on the graves of sixteen men . .

SC: Give it up, Dan. For my sake . . because you love me and I love you. . give it up, because we both deserve better. . . please!!!)

DC: Sarah, listen to me, try to understand. When I said we’d come out here, buy a farm, settle down, forget the past, I meant it.

Close up of Sarah, big blue eyes.

DC: We will. We will. Just as soon as I clean the slate. The only time I ever lied to you Sarah was the day I told you why we were coming to Morro Coyo. (close ups of each of them) Can’t you trust me this one last time?

SC: I don’t want you killing Scott Lancer. Is that clear, Dan? I want you to give this thing up, here, tonight, now. Do it for us, Dan, for us!

DC: Not for us, Sarah, for you. I gotta do what I believe is right. And until it’s done, we don’t even exist.

She looks very sad to hear this. Sad music plays. Sarah gets up and walks away from him. Turning back to face him, she says: Dan . . . when you kill Scott Lancer, you’ll be killing us with the same bullet.

Close up of Dan Cassidy as he thinks about what she has just said.

Scene 4
Two riders on horseback pass beneath the Lancer arch, we watch them move on to the front of the house.

Teresa comes out the front door and under the arches there, she is running, calling “Murdoch!” She is wearing a blouse and form fitting pants.

Murdoch rides up on his large white-faced horse and stops in front of the hacienda. He asks: What happened? Johnny is somewhat behind him on Barranca. Another man on horseback rides towards Johnny, they stop to exchange a word. A man in a wide-brimmed sombrero-type hat comes up to hold Murdoch’s horse as he dismounts.

Teresa: Scott’s gone! He disappeared, his bed hasn’t been slept in, his horse is still here, but nobody’s seen him, nobody!

Johnny rides up and dismounts while ML stands facing Teresa. Johnny is wearing his usual pink embroidered shirt.

Teresa: He was working late last night and I . .I brought him something to eat, and then, well, I’d thought he’d gone to bed, but, well, when he didn’t come down for breakfast . . . .

Johnny: Scott’s missing?

Teresa nods her head, she is still very upset. She says: Uh hmm

JL: Take it easy.

T: Well, I sent Miguel and some of the other men out to look for him about an hour ago.
Reaction shot of ML and JL side by side. The resemblance is striking!

ML: Where is Miguel now?

T: On Oak Ridge. They’ll fan out south from there.

ML to JL: You’d better take the rest of them and meet us up there.
Johnny turns to leave.

ML to Teresa: You go back in the house. He walks over to his horse, the man in the hat is still holding it. Murdoch keeps talking: And don’t worry about Scott. He’s a big boy, he can take care of himself.

Murdoch rides away, Teresa stands watching him, her hands at her extremely slender waist.

Scene 5
We see a horse, riderless, standing near a pool of water in a rocky area. As the camera lowers, we see Scott lying on the ground, arms crossed holding onto his injured shoulder.

In the distance, there are three men on horseback-at the sound of a horse, Scott stirs a bit, looks up and sees the three men-it’s Lewis, Hardy and Cassidy! Scott gets up and, while trying to stay low to the ground, goes over to his horse. He leads the animal behinds some rocks, still trying to hold his injured shoulder. He stands there, leaning against the horse and waits.

The three riders look around. We catch glimpses of Scott peering around the edge of the large boulder, but they don’t see him.

One of them says: Just falling rocks, let’s go.

They ride away. Scott gets on the horse and heads off in the opposite direction.

Scene 6

In the Lancer Great Room. Teresa is sitting in the blue chair, Johnny is standing behind her with his hands resting on the back of the chair. Mrs. Cassidy, in a white blouse and dark skirt, is talking to Murdoch.

Sarah Cassidy, speaking forcefully: . .he’s dead, don’t you understand that? If you don’t find him . . .

ML: You’ve made that very clear, Mrs. Cassidy. I want to know why. What’s your husband got against him?

SC: Scott never mentioned him, the name Cassidy?

ML: Means nothing to me,–of course . . . my son, there’s a lot of things about him I don’t know.

SC: Well, how much do you have to know to go out there and find him?

JL: Ma’am, we’re lookin’ for im. Just tell us why . . .

SC: My husband and your son spent a year together in a Confederate prison camp. My husband planned an escape; Scott was to be second in command. The night before they were to go, my husband fell sick, and . . Scott led the escape. (close up of ML with a grim expression) My husband could hear the shots from his bed in the hospital. (camera on JL and Teresa as they take this all in)

SC continues with the story: An hour later, the camp commandant brought him the report. Sixteen men, every last man, except your son, had been killed before they even reached the wall. It wasn’t until months later, on the day the War ended, that Dan knew for sure that your son had survived. He was still in the hospital, more dead than alive, and he saw Scott, and he warned him then that he’d come after him.

ML: And he believed Scott sold out the escape.

SC: He’s believed that every minute of his life for the last five years. I think that’s the only thing that kept him alive during those first few months, when the doctors said he wouldn’t make it. He means it when he says that he’s going to make Scott pay for every one of those lives.

JL: He’s got help?

SC: There’s one man that I know of, Jed Lewis. He was in my husband’s company before they were captured. And then after the war, he looked Dan up again. His brother was one of the men who was killed in the escape. I don’t know, there may be others. I know Dan wrote some letters before we came out here.

During this last speech, she paces a bit. She is holding a purse in both hands in front of her. There are also repeated shots of ML looking grim, with a furrowed brow.

SC: Don’t you see, you’ve got to find him, you’ve got to find him before they do. Get him out of here, anywhere!

ML: Assuming he’s all right, where would you suggest I send him where your husband won’t find him?

SC: I don’t care what you do with him. I came here for Dan. I didn’t come here to save him.

Camera goes to Teresa and Johnny, JL looks down at this.

SC: I don’t want to see Dan end up at the end of a rope.

JL: Or facing our guns?

SC: Or facing your guns. No, I don’t know where Dan is, and if I did, I wouldn’t tell you. I’m not trading his life for anybody’s. . . . . I’m going now.

She starts towards the door. JL moves ahead of her, apparently to open it for her. She turns back to face Murdoch.

SC: Mr. Lancer. Take my advice, you’ve got money, use it. Use it to send your son away from here, across the world if you have to. I don’t care. Maybe someday Dan will forget.

She reaches the door, Johnny opens it.

ML finally speaks: Some day’s a long time, Mrs. Cassidy. Too long. If you want to do something for your husband, tell him to get out of this territory before its too late for all of us. She leaves and JL shuts the door.

Camera shifts to the sunshine filtering through the treetops. Camera lowers to a rider in silhouette. We see Scott on horseback, he’s clearly having difficulty staying upright. Ominous music plays and we go to commercial.

Scene 7
Scott is riding into town, he isn’t doing very well, leaning in the saddle. There are people in the street looking at him, but no one does anything. We see a close up of a sign, “Veterinary Doctor”. Evidently there are no “real” doctors in Morro Coyo.

Scott dismounts with difficulty. He puts his right hand inside his shirt, it’s his left shoulder that is hurting. He falls over, taking a barrel with him.

Inside, the vet, Doc Hilldenbrand, hears a noise. He’s an older man with a beard, wearing a hat, white shirt and black string tie, suspenders. He goes outside, sees Scott on the ground, bends down next to him.

SL: Sorry, Doc, but . . .

Doc: You can talk later. It is a bullet, isn’t it?
Scott makes affirmative sounds. He keeps trying to put his hand to the wound, the Doc moves his hand so that he can see it. There is a ‘bloodstain” on Scott’s shirt, but no noticeable bullet hole.

Doc: Well, you know, I’m no doctor, Scott, but I’ll do what I can.

SL, with effort: Maybe you’d better hide my horse first, some men are after me.

Doc: Sorry, your horse is gonna have to wait. (He helps Scott to his feet and half carries him inside. Scott’s shirt and pants are noticeably dirty.) I hope it wasn’t over nothing trivial.

(In the script, Doc H adds: I hope you didn’t earn it.)

Scene 8
(Script: Murdoch has a cigar clamped in his mouth, fumbles for a match, doesn’t find one, then flings the cigar away and stares into the dead fireplace. )

Back at the ranch, the Lancer Great Room. Murdoch is standing and looking out the glass paned doors. He turns and walks over to a table with a decanter on it, pours himself a drink. Teresa speaks to him.

T: Somebody had to stay here, in case Scott showed up.

ML says nothing. He doesn’t even look at her.

T: Well, he couldn’t have done it, not what that woman said.
ML takes a drink.

T: Well, we both know that, I mean, they’ll find him, everything will be all right.
ML stares at his drink, grim faced, doesn’t look at her.

T: Everything’s gonna work out.
She stops talking, and he drains his glass.

ML speaks without looking at Teresa: I’m going back out. (He reaches for his gun belt) If Scott shows, tell him to stay out of sight. I’ll send a hand back. You can use him to get in touch with me.

Murdoch starts to move past Teresa and she reaches out, clasps his arm.

T: Whatever you believe, Scott didn’t do it.

ML: Do you think I’d be out of my mind trying to find him if I thought he did? No, Teresa. No son of mine could do a thing like that, that’s one thing I’m still sure of in this life.

He heads for the door, taking his hat off of a dining table chair as he moves past it. ML exits.

(What the script says here: His words are strong, but the haunted expression is still in his eyes. A split second as their gazes remain locked. Then, fearing Teresa can see through the bravado of his words, can see that he hasn’t quite sold it to himself, he pulls away, hurries to the door. Hold on Teresa staring after him)

Scene 9

Back at the hotel, the Cassidys’ room. Sarah Cassidy is seated at a table, writing. She is wearing a dark colored blouse. Dan Cassidy comes through the door, removing his hat. She turns to look at him.

DC: No, we didn’t find him yet. Yes, Jed Lewis is still lookin’. I’m beat, I’m gonna lie down for a little while.

He goes towards the bedroom, ominous music plays. He sees her trunk, it’s packed. DC turns to Sarah and starts to ask a question

DC: What do you think you’re—-?

SC: I’m leaving on the four o’clock stage-I’m going home Dan.

He looks stunned.

SC: I—I was just writing you.

DC: You were writing me . . .After ten years, you were writing me. You’re my wife, Sarah, you’re my wife!

She walks into the bedroom. For much of the following conversation, she is behind a screen with see through fabric.

SC: I’m sorry, Dan, uh, I— I, just can’t stay here and watch you do this.

DC, chuckling: Oh no, no, you can’t use my love for you to twist my arm. You’re a strong woman, Sarah, but not that strong.

SC: I don’t understand you, Dan. Maybe I never did, but if I’d been you, I’d of—

DC: You what, you’d have walked away?

SC: I’d have had enough of killing, enough of hate.

DC, angrily: do you think I enjoy this? Scott was like my own brother. There are nights I pray I’ll wake up and find he’s been struck down, that the burden’s no longer mine. How can I run away, Sarah, when I know I can’t forget?

(References to God in the script have been removed here: There are nights when I pray to God I’ll wake up and find that He’s struck Scott down . .)

SC: What if Scott Lancer wasn’t responsible? What if it was someone—

DC: Someone else? There wasn’t anyone else.

Sarah Cassidy now comes around the screen to look at Dan more closely.
SC: Dan. Come with me. It won’t be like running away, it’s going to something better. Please come with me.

He glares at her. She starts to speak again: Dan-and he comes up behind her, puts his arm around her.

DC: No. No. Nobody’s going anywhere, not until this thing is done.

SC: You’re wrong, Dan. I’m leaving on the four o’clock stage and there’s nothing in the world you can do to stop me.

She leaves his embrace, he looks stricken.

DC: All right, then go. Go. And be damned.

Scene 10
Scott is lying in a bed. We hear the sound of horses. SL sits up, looks around. He rolls out of bed, clearly trying not to move his left arm. He looks out the window.

Out in the street, we see Lewis and Hardy galloping up. They stop in front of the vet’s office and dismount. Inside, downstairs, Doc H looks out the window. Lewis and Hardy enter.

Lewis: How ya doin’, they tell us you do the doctorin’ around here.

Doc doesn’t answer-shift to shot of Scott upstairs, sitting on a bed and listening.
We hear Lewis asking the doctor a question: You, ah, you wouldn’t by any chance be treatin’ a wounded man would ya?

Back downstairs, we see the Doc standing and facing Lewis, holding his hat in his hand. Hardy is in the foreground, looking around.

Doc: Mister, I treat dogs, cats and horses. Now if you’ll excuse me— (He walks away from Lewis)

Lewis: You don’t mind if we take a look around, do ya?

Another shot of Scott upstairs listening. We can hear the Doc answering, loudly: I told ya, there’s nobody here. Scott gets up and goes over to the dresser.

We hear Lewis’ voice off camera: I said, we’ll check! Hardy—Evidently he is telling Hardy to look around. Then Lewis continues speaking to the doctor: Ya know, if you’re lucky, we’ll be out of here in no time.

Scott finds a gun, then he moves to the window and tries to open it. He appears to be having a hard time. When he turns, we can see that he has been bandaged up.

Back downstairs: the Doc tries to leave the office and Lewis stops him.
Lewis: Hey, where do you think you’re going?

Doc: Look. I don’t know who you think you are, mister, pushing your way in here, if you’re looking for somebody –

Lewis: Aw, shut up.

Upstairs again, we see Rick Hardy enter the bedroom, gun drawn. He takes a good look at the rumpled bedclothes. Scott is outside the window with a gun of his own. Off camera, Lewis is calling Hardy’s name. Hardy exits the bedroom.

Back downstairs, Lewis is talking to the doctor who is standing with his arms folded across his chest.

Lewis: Maybe you’re tellin’ the truth, if ya are, ya got my apologies.

Hardy: Save ’em Jed! He was here all right. Bed all messed up, blood on the spread. He was here.

Lewis: How long ago? Where’d he go?
The Doc just looks at him without speaking.

Lewis: Come on, old man, talk, if you wanna come out of this in one piece.

Hardy, drawing is gun: One second, Mister-

Doc: I don’t know! I swear, I don’t know!

Lewis: All right, he couldn’t have gotten far in his shape, come on, let’s go.
Lewis and Hardy go to the door, Lewis turns back to speak to the Doc once more: Not a word about this to anybody, or we’ll be back ta finish the job.

They leave, we see them outside mounting up and riding out. Scott is still near the window.

Scene 11
We see a town street, a covered wagon goes by. Johnny Lancer is standing talking to a cluster of men. He’s wearing his pink shirt. He looks down the street, Dan Cassidy has just exited a building. Johnny taps the arm of one of the men he was speaking with and then walks over towards his horse. A distance away, Cassidy approaches his own animal and mounts up. JL gets on board Barranca. Cassidy is riding down the street, Johnny wheels Barranca and is riding ahead of him. Then Johnny turns so that he is blocking Cassidy’s path.

JL, soft drawl: Mr. Cassidy

Dan Cassidy reacts-very slightly-to his name being known.

JL: My names Johnny . . . . Johnny Lancer.

At this, Cassidy’s right hand edges towards his gun.

JL: I wouldn’t do that.

DC puts his hand back on the pommel of his saddle.

DC, with a slight smile: My business isn’t with you, boy.

JL: Well, that must mean you haven’t found Scott yet.

DC, eyes narrowing: Not yet.

JL, still in a quiet, calm and menacing voice: Well, you never will, Mr. Cassidy cause you and me are gonna take a little trip to the railroad depot at Cross Creek, we’re gonna stop the train, put you on it, and ship you back East.

DC: You’re foolin’ yourself boy, cause even if you do get me on that train . . .

JL: You can come back? If you do, it’ll be the last trip you’ll ever make. Let’s go.

They ride slowly down the street, DC is in the lead. They come around a corner, JL has to duck under some tree branches. The two of them look down the street, there is Ric Hardy, he sees them and draws his gun. Jed Lewis gallops up behind DC and JL. JL keeps his face expressionless. DC reaches over and snatches Johnny’s gun out of his holster. During this scene, we can see that there are people who are in the background watching!

DC: Where’s Scott?

Lewis: That’s how come we came back to get you.

Hardy, off camera: We almost had him. Some fool vet lied his head off long enough for him to get away.

Johnny is carefully listening to this and then he suddenly backhands DC and tries to ride away-he’s heading directly at Lewis, whose horse rears up on his hind legs, dumping Lewis onto the ground. DC rides up behind JL and hits him on the back of the head, sending JL to the ground, where he lands face down.

Lewis gets up, gun in hand, points it at Johnny who is still lying on the ground, motionless.

DC is on horseback, gestures to Jed, saying: He’ll keep. Just as he is. All right, let’s get back.

Lewis: No, you go back, Take Hardy with you. I’m gonna keep lookin’ for Scott.

DC: How long, til you fall over with exhaustion? Now come on, we gotta-

Lewis: No, you gotta!! But not me! I don’t quit til I pay him back for what he did to my brother!

(Interesting notation in the script that has Wayne Rogers name on it–he played Jed Lewis. Handwritten question: So why not kill Johnny?)

Lewis walks off. He mounts up and rides off in one direction while Cassidy and Hardy go in another. JL starts stirring around on the ground, picks up his head a little, just enough to let us know he will be okay.

Scene 12
Scott’s hand, followed by a beige checked shirt sleeve clad right arm, slams against a wall. The camera travels along the arm to his face. He is not doing well. He’s in the hotel, we can tell because there are numbers on the doors. Scott stops to listen at one, takes his gun in his right hand (from his waistband, he’s not wearing a gun belt) and opens the door.

Inside the room, Sarah Cassidy turns and looks at him. He gestures at her to keep quiet and walks haltingly over to the closed bedroom door. When he gets there he looks warningly at her again, gestures with the gun. He opens the door and extends his gun into the room.

SC: He’s not in there either.

SL: All right, where is he?

Scott is leaning on the door frame, with furrowed brow and gritted teeth. His breathing is labored.

SL: When’s he coming back? (He holds his gun with the barrel pointed across his torso, not at her.) I didn’t come to kill him. I just want to talk to him.

SC, skeptically: You want to talk.

SL: Look, I know what he probably told you, but I’m not a killer . .and I’m not a traitor.

(in the script, Scott doesn’t get to say the word “traitor”; Sarah Cassidy cuts him off.)

SC: It doesn’t matter what you are or why you came here. The point is, he’ll kill you on sight. (nodding at his wound) I should think that would be proof enough.

SL, with labored breathing: Lady, your husband and I are gonna face this out once and for all. Now, you tell me when he’s coming back.

Scott walks over to the table, closer to the door, which is still open. He leans on the table, then wipes his brow with his shirt sleeve.

Sarah Cassidy walks over and closes the door.

SC: I don’t know when he’s coming back, I don’t know. Look, Mr. Lancer, get this through your head, there is nothing you can say, nothing you can do that will change his mind. I know, I’ve tried. Now if you stay here, one of you is going to die. If you go now, I promise you, I won’t say anything to him.

Scott looks down, there is a tiny smile on his lips. SL: Even if I trusted you . . (he turns) even if I trusted you . . . (drops gun to the floor).
Scott collapses into a chair, keeps speaking: I don’t think I could make it to the lobby.
(He sits with his eyes closed.) So it looks as if I’ll be staying for a while.

(Script: “Sorry ma’am. . . but I’m staying.)

He puts his hand to his wound, she looks at him and then turns and starts towards the door. He quickly gets up out of the chair and reaches for her, forces her to face him.

SL: Where do you think you’re going?

SC: I’m going downstairs to get some whiskey and some fresh bandages.

SL, slight smile: Oh, you’re very kind, but I said I was staying and I’m not gonna be. . tricked out . .or dragged out (he starts to collapse)

Sarah eases Scott into the chair. She pours him a glass of water, hands it to him and he takes a drink. She kneels by the chair.

SC: If it weren’t for you, if you’d never existed, I’d have a life today. Now you take five minutes, and you get out, you understand, you have five minutes. (He is resting his head on the back of the chair with his eyes closed.)

Camera shifts to outside, where Cassidy and Hardy are riding up, dismounting and hitching their horses to the rail in front of the hotel. They head inside.

In the hallway outside the Cassidys’ room, DC finds that the door is locked. Hardy is standing behind him. Cassidy says his wife’s name and knocks on the door. Inside, we see Sarah and Scott standing in the room, they react to the sound.

Out in the hall, Cassidy yells for Sarah again. Then he notices some blood on the doorframe, he checks and finds it’s damp—-fresh.

DC, to RH: Break it down! Move!. Hardy complies, kicking in the door and they burst in, Hardy with his gun drawn. Sarah is just helping Scott into the bedroom. They both turn to face DC and RH.

DC: New friend of yours, Sarah? Looks like you’ve saved me a lot of trouble.

Scott goes for his gun, DC says: Hold it.

Cassidy pulls his gun from the holster—–not smooth, his jacket gets in the way. Cassidy holds his gun on Scott and tells Hardy to get him out of here. Hardy comes over to get Scott, reaching for his bad arm, and Scott hits Hardy’s hand away, whereupon Hardy pulls his gun out again.

SC: No, Dan.

Hardy escorts Scott to the door.

DC: I’ll talk to you later, Sarah.

SC: Dan!

DC: I’m going to look forward to hearing you explain . .

SC: Dan, don’t do it!

DC: It’s done.

SC, holding his arm: Dan, you kill him, and you’re killing an innocent man!

There is a reaction shot of Dan Cassidy; Scott and Hardy pause in the doorway.

SC: It was you, you were the one who betrayed the escape, do you understand me, it was you!

This statement is followed by reaction shots of Dan, Scott and Rick Hardy. DC reaches out and grasps a handful of his wife’s hair.

SC: I didn’t want to tell you.

DC: Do you know what you’re saying?

SC closes her eyes and nods. He is still holding her hair.

DC, partially turning towards Scott: Is that what he told you to get him to help you?
(the actor misspeaks here, but either no one caught it or no one cared!)

SC, shaking her head: No, Dan.

DC: He told you a bunch of lies and-

SC: No. He didn’t tell me anything. Dan, you were sick, you were delirious, the night before the escape . . .

DC: I don’t want to hear his lies, Sarah. He releases her hair, shakes his own head.

SC: Oh, Dan, you couldn’t help it! You couldn’t help it. You didn’t know what you were saying . . a hospital orderly overheard you.

DC: Lies, all lies!!

SC: No, Dan, the Army knows. (Close up of Hardy and of Scott. SL looks sideways at Hardy) They told me. They knew you weren’t responsible, so they closed the book on it. Just to protect you. Like I’ve tried to do. Dan, I never wanted to tell you. I was afraid of what it might do to you.

DC says nothing, just holds his gun up in his left hand, looks hard at it.

SC: I thought you’d forget Scott.

Close up of Rick Hardy, we see him start to leave.

SC: I was wrong, I was so wrong. If I had told you, none of this would have happened.

DC still holds his gun close to his face.

SC: Dan, forgive me.

He turns away from her, pulling himself out of her grasp. Scott is leaning against the door frame. Cassidy walks away from Sarah, back to Sarah and Scott. Cassidy removes his hat, wipes his forehead with his jacket sleeve.

(the script gives Cassidy a much more dramatic reaction: Suddenly, in a paroxysm of shock and pain, Cassidy wheels and with a backhand sweep of his hand, he flings his gun blindly away, staggers to the window, flings his hands to his face in horror. )

Scott, to Sarah: Get some whiskey.

Dan: I don’t need a drink, I’m all right. (to Scott) I’m sorry-for you, for me.
He pauses, looks at Sarah, but doesn’t speak to her.

(in the script, Dan says’ “I’m sorry, boy . . .for you. . for me.”)

DC: Well, I guess somebody better tell Jed. Hardy? (He goes to the door) Hardy?
He yells out into the hallway: Hardy!!

Scott is leaning against the wall just inside the door. He closes his eyes briefly. SL: I see you know what it means, Dan. That’s right, Hardy’s gone to tell Jed. . . . And now you’ll be the hunted.

DC stares at Scott, who doesn’t look at him while he speaks.

DC: Will I?

Reaction shot of a stricken Sarah, she knows he’s right.

SL nods: You see, Jed’s brother was all he had in his life, and now he’s gonna have somebody to take my place.

DC: And you take pleasure in that, don’t you?

SL: Oh, well, I don’t have much time for that. We’d better get out to the ranch, cause if you wait for the stage, you’re liable to wait too long. If you try to ride out of town, you’re not gonna get very far. The only place that’s going to be safe for the both of you is with us.

Scene 13
Thundering horses riding to the ranch, with the Lancer theme playing. Teresa comes out of the front door of the hacienda, while eight riders pass by. Murdoch is last, he looks unhappy. He dismounts.

Next we are inside and see him entering the front door, Teresa behind him. He removes his hat, slaps the dust from it, then stretches/rolls his shoulders.

Teresa: Would you like something to eat?

ML: No . . no thank you darling.

They hear a sound, both turn towards their right. ML moves to the glass paned doors and looks out. We see a buckboard wagon, the Cassidys are in front, with Scott in the back.

ML: Scott!

He quickly exits, followed by Teresa. Dan is helping Scott.

ML: Let’s get him in the house.

Two ranch hands appear and escort SL, who is wearing a black sling.

SL: You’d better set up some look outs-some men may be coming . .for him. (nods his head in Cassidy’s direction)

ML faces DC.
(the script says that Johnny and “some others” move into the scene, but as filmed only Murdoch and the Cassidys are on screen once Teresa and the hands escort Scott inside.)

DC: Name’s Cassidy, Mr. Lancer, Dan Cassidy.

ML: Cassidy? Why you’re the one-(He gestures towards Sarah Cassidy who is standing in the back ground listening to the exchange)

DC: Who traveled three thousand miles to kill your son, for something I did. That’s right, Mr. Lancer, I was the one who betrayed the escape. And it’s me the others will be coming for now.

Music plays and ML looks confused.

Scene 14
Back in town, Ric Hardy escorts a hotel clerk out into the street.

Hardy, to Lewis who is on horseback: All he says he knows is that they checked out an hour ago.

Hardy pushes the clerk towards Lewis.

Lewis is seated on his horse, has his gun drawn and is staring at the animal’s neck.

Clerk: Look, mister, I’m only the room clerk here. I . . I try to mind my own business.

Lewis points his gun at him: Go on. You tell me how ya minded ya own business.

Clerk: Honest, Mister, I don’t know where he went. The last time I saw Cassidy, he was leaving here in a buckboard with . .with his wife and Scott Lancer.

Lewis: Hardy, mount up. (to clerk) Ya sure he went out with Scott Lancer, huh?

In the script, Lewis’ lines is “He left with Lancer?!”, to be delivered “in sharp reaction”, followed by a command to Hardy to “Mount up! Let’s go!”. Wayne Rogers’ handwritten question here is arrowed towards the “sharp reaction”: “Why? he knows what Hardy told him! Namely that Cassidy did it–” here we see that the line was changed from the script and the Clerk is given the additional line below)

Clerk: Scott Lancer, that’s right.

Lewis holsters his gun, says: Hardy, let’s go.

They ride away and the clerk goes back into the hotel.

Scene 15
In the Lancer Great Room, Johnny is standing, leaning with both hands on a small table. He turns to speak to Murdoch.

JL: Look, I know what Scott’s trying to do, but if Cassidy stays here any longer, there’s going to be trouble.

Murdoch just sits there a moment, grim-faced, then poses a few questions: Kick him out? Let him be gunned down?

JL: Scott’s got a hole in his shoulder, and Cassidy had it put there and I nearly got the same. You’re askin’ a lot if you want me ta forget about it. Tell me somethin’-would you have let him stay if Scott hadn’t of talked you into it?

ML looks at Johnny for a moment before he responds: I’d like to think that I have as much compassion as my own son.

JL rubs his face with his hand: But you’re not sure, are ya?

ML makes no reply. JL looks away.

JL: All right. Maybe you’re right, I hope so, cause a lot of that . . that help out there, they’re friends of mine. (Behind Johnny, we see Cassidy in the entryway) They’re friends of mine, I don’t wanna see’em get hurt.

Johnny walks away, past Cassidy, reaches for his hat by the door and exits.

(In the script, Johnny finishes the above lines then starts for the door before Cassidy enters the scene. As he nears the door:

Murdoch: Johnny. (as Johnny turns, Murdoch continues) No matter what you say—I think in my place or Scott’s, you’d do the same thing.

Johnny looks at him, then without answering, he throws open the door, exits, passing Cassidy about to come in. A split second as they exchange glances and then Johnny continues out.)

Cassidy comes partway into the room, then stops and addresses Murdoch.

DC: I take it that was about me.

ML gets up, walks off camera without speaking, Cassidy moves a few steps after him.
DC: I’d feel the same way. So much so Mr. Lancer, that I’ve decided to go.

Shot of ML by his desk, in front of the large window. He turns and looks at Cassidy.
ML: Go where? Where could you go tha-

DC: I didn’t come to argue-just to ask if my wife can stay on until its safe. Look, when I came here, I wasn’t thinkin’. I was in a panic.

ML, sighs: Ah . . Mister . . Mr. Ah Cassidy, it’s been a long day, I’m tired. He stands, puts one hand in his pocket. ML: Dinner’ll be in an hour, why don’t you go upstairs and freshen up or have a drink . . or something. If you want to discuss this further . . .

(Script: Cassidy starts to protest and Murdoch continues speaking: “You want to fight, Cassidy, I suggest you take it up with Scott. You’re his guest!

A long beat. Then Cassidy, nodding in understanding, gratitude, turns swiftly and covering his emotions, leaves. Murdoch stares after him for a half beat, then crosses wearily to a decanter, pours himself a drink and the scene changes as he gulps it down.)

Cassidy walks out without speaking.

Upstairs, Sarah Cassidy is unpacking, placing items on the dresser. Dan comes in the door and just stands there.

SC: Dan, why don’t you lie down and get some rest, you must be exhausted.

DC: Do me a favor, Sarah, stop being so solicitous. Right now, it’s hard enough for me to stay in the same room with you.

Throughout the next exchange, Sarah is slightly disheveled and close to tearful while Dan alternates between an angry expression and a bitter smile.

SC: Dan, what do you want me to do? I can’t make it up to you in one day.

DC: What if I’d killed him, Sarah, what if I’d killed Scott Lancer? I know, you wanted to help me. Who wanted that kind of help, Sarah? Who can afford to pay that kind of price? What did you think I’d do if you told me the truth, Sarah? Kill myself? Did you think that little of me?

SC: there was no reason to tell you until we came out here, no reason to hurt you that way. I thought—

DC: You’d just sweep it under the carpet and it’d all go away. Only it didn’t go away, did it, Sarah? Because of you-(gestures with his fist)

SC: I know people have been hurt, and more people may be, but I can’t change it Dan, I can’t change it can I?

DC: No, no, you can’t change it Sarah. All we can do is hope that Scott’s wrong, that Jed never shows up. All we can do, Sarah, is hope that nobody dies because of how wrong you were.

She turns to the mirror. We see her reflection in it, with Dan standing behind her.

Scene 16
Outside, it’s growing dark. Rick Hardy is on horseback, looking at the Lancer hacienda and the arch. He rides up a hill to talk to Jed Lewis.

Hardy: Guards all around. Cassidy’s in there all right. It ain’t gonna be easy, Jed, not like last night.

Lewis: Well, hard or easy, we’re gonna get’em outta there, both of ’em.

Hardy: Lancer AND Cassidy?

Lewis: That’s right.

Hardy: But his wife, she just said that he—

Lewis: I don’t care what his wife said. I can think of a lotta reasons why that woman’d would want her husband outta this. (he sighs) “Fore this night’s over, one of ums gonna be dead.

Dramatic music.

Scene 17
Scott is in his room, he’s in bed, his eyes are closed. The door opens, it’s Murdoch. Scott’s eyes flutter open, he turns and looks.

ML: I’m sorry, Scott, I didn’t mean to wake you up. How’re you feeling?
He closes the door.

SL: A little stiff, but all right. I heard some riders before, some talk. What was that all about?

ML blows out the lamp on the bedside table.

ML: Nothing for you to concern yourself with, you go back to sleep.

SL: I asked you a question.

ML: Well, a hand came back who said he saw a couple of riders over at the south range.

He walks across the room towards the window, where there is another lamp, he extinguishes this one too.

SL: Jed Lewis? I had to bring Cassidy here, you understand that, don’t you? I couldn’t just—

ML: Let him be slaughtered? There’s nothing to be ashamed of there, Scott, as a matter of fact, I’d feel kind of proud.

(again, the script calls for Scott to be referred to as ‘boy”, rather than by name
Murdoch is standing near the window, he looks out and sees Sarah Cassidy running across the yard. He watches her for a moment. Murdoch leaves the room.

Scene 18
Camera is outside now. Sarah Cassidy mounts a horse. Murdoch is there to stop her, his hand on the gate.

ML, to SC: Can I guess? You’re going to Jed Lewis. Won’t do any good, just as it didn’t with me this morning. There are times when talk is not-

SC: Get out of my way!

ML: Mrs. Cassidy . .

SC: What? What am I supposed to do? Just sit here and wait for them to come and kill him?

ML: He’s safer here that he would be any place else-

SC: –for how long? A week, a month, maybe? Or are we gonna be your permanent houseguests? I know Jed Lewis, I can talk to him, make him see ….

ML: The only thing you’ll be giving him is a hostage, the lever he needs to force your husband out into the open.

He is still standing looking up at her; she is still on horseback.

SC: I’ve got to try, I owe it to Dan, to everybody. If it wasn’t for me . . .

ML: Well, maybe that’s a lot of the problem, Mrs. Cassidy . . .Maybe you’ve done too much for him. Now come on down.

He helps her off the horse. Once she is on the ground, she looks up at him.

SC: What did you mean by that?

ML: Let’s go back to the house.

They start walking, but then Sarah Cassidy stops.

SC: Can’t you understand, I’m just trying to help Dan, I have always tried to help him.

ML: Yes, Mrs. Cassidy, I . I can understand that, but sometimes a woman in doing that destroys everything she loves in a man and leaves him with nothing.

SC: I lied to protect him.

ML: To protect him from what—from himself, because you didn’t have enough faith in him to believe he could face the truth? And now here you are, about to go off and do it again.

SC: It’s for his own good.

ML: For his own good . .well, Mrs. Cassidy, I’m not going to let you go out there under any circumstances. But I can’t believe that you would want to, that you would want to cripple him any further, at least until he had a chance to stop punishing himself, to stand on his own two feet. (pause) I guess it all boils down to one thing—how much do you love him?

Music begins to play. Sarah Cassidy responds with: Very much.

ML: Well, then, let’s go back to the house.

They walk to the door and go inside. In the shadows, we see Dan Cassidy holding a rifle. He must have heard most of what they were saying. He sets the rifle down and walks away.

Scene 19
In Scott’s bedroom. Johnny is standing back to us, facing the dresser. There is a tray on the top of the dresser. JL pushes his hat off of his head so that it hangs down his back. The hat string catches on his ear and he has to move it. We can see Johnny’s face in the mirror; also behind him Scott is lying in bed, with bandages, propped up on pillows.

(the script does not include this opening, has this scene start with Johnny seated on the edge of the bed holding the cup of broth)

JL: Teresa made up a little gem for ya, Scott. (He lifts the cover off of a small bowl on the tray) She guarantees it’ll cure any kind of croup ya got, bullet wounds, nastiness . . .
He turns towards Scott and carries the bowl in both hands, walks over and sits on the edge of the bed. Scott is smiling, he must be feeling better. Johnny carefully hands the bowl to him.

SL: What’s happening out there?

JL: Well, if Jed Lewis and his boys are still around by mornin’, we’ll find ’em.

SL takes a sip, furrows his brow, sighs: Think that’ll solve all the problems?
He hands the bowl to Johnny.

JL: No, but its good for a start.
Johnny is holding the little bowl in one hand, takes a sip himself!

(the script does not say anything about Scott handing the bowl back to Johnny, let alone direct JL to take a drink!)

The door opens, Murdoch walks in, he still has his hat on. ML: I thought that Dan Cassidy might be in here. Have you seen him?

JL bows his head, rests elbow on knee, he’s still holding Scott’s bowl. JL: Not for the last half hour or so.

ML: Johnny, could I see you for a moment? JL hands the bowl to Scott, who takes it in both hands.

SL: What’s the matter?

ML: Nothing, nothing . . . (He is NOT very convincing!)

Johnny goes around the bed and out the door ahead of Murdoch, who then exits as well, closing the door behind him.

(script has Murdoch exit first, then Johnny who looks back at Scott and shrugs before leaving.)

SL sits for a moment, then places the bowl on the table beside him. With a determined look on his face, he starts to get up out of bed.

Scene 20
Sarah Cassidy is standing outside, holding Dan’s rifle, the stock end near her face. Murdoch and Johnny come out of the house and around the wall.

ML: Well, if he was there, he heard everything we said.

JL: He went after Jed Lewis?

ML: Most likely.

SC, in a resentful tone: Why, what could he prove?

ML: Prove he could stand by himself, maybe in a funny way that he loved you . .

JL: What now?

ML: The two of us go after him.

Murdoch walks to the right, with Johnny behind him.

SL: The three of us.

Scott is in the doorway, left arm in a black sling, right hand resting on his gun.

ML: Oh, now, Scott, you’re not strong enough.

SL: No, I’ve been in the middle of all this since the beginning (he walks forward and stops) And now, one way or the other, I’m going to be in on the end of it.

Scene 21
In the woods, Hardy and Lewis are on horseback. They dismount.

Lewis: Listen, you take care of the guards down by the wash out. I’m gonna try to make it through the draw.

Hardy: You really think we got a chance?

Lewis: I don’t care if we got a chance or not, when you feel like I do, you just grab’em by the throat and squeeze.

They hear a rider approaching and back up to hide behind some bushes. The camera switches to Cassidy, who is entering the clearing on horseback. He dismounts and ties his horse’s lead.

DC: Jed? Is that you? Jed? Is that you?

Lewis comes out into the open.

Lewis: That’s right, me an’ Hardy.

DC: I heard you were out by South Range.

He has removed his hat and is holding it in his hands.

Lewis: Hardy here heard a few things too-

Hardy steps out and extends his gun, pointed directly at Dan Cassidy.

DC: Yeah, well, that’s what I came ta talk to ya about, Jed.

He steps towards Lewis, gestures with the hat in his hand.

Lewis, holding up his hand in a halting motion: Well, it couldn’t have been too serious, I mean, you’re not wearing your gun.

DC: I didn’t think one would do me any good. (close up of Dan)

Lewis: I’ll say one thing for ya, Lieutenant, when you’re right, you’re really right. Go ahead, let’s hear what ya got to say.

DC: Jed, for five years now, I’ve thought about only one thing, you know that. My whole life wrapped itself around it. Sarah tried to help, but all I thought about was revenge on one man. And now, for the first time, I know who that man really is. Believe me, Jed, I never knew . . . until Sarah just told me.

Lewis: Yeah, well, it seems to me like your Sarah’s been doing a lot of talking. First off, she warned the Lancers, then she tells you some wild story that stops you from killing Scott.

DC: Wild story?

Lewis: That’s right, Lieutenant, a wild story. You think about it. You don’t know what really happened, all you know is what she told you. And like you say, she’s been tryin’ ta get you out of this from the start.

DC: Well, sure, Jed . .

Lewis: Maybe she just got you twisted around a little bit, you know, cause a . . . cause if you really believed that story, you wouldn’t have come out here alone, not without a gun.

Shot shows the two men standing and talking face to face, with Hardy in the middle, background, his gun still drawn.

DC: Oh, Jed.

Lewis smiles: Now, Lieutenant, ah, I know you been through a lot, but you and me, we both really know who did it, don’t we? We know it was Lancer and all you’ve got to do is realize now that your wife was tellin’ you a lie and we’ll all be back together again.

During this speech he has walked around behind Dan Cassidy. Cassidy shakes his head.

DC, to Lewis who is standing behind him: I can’t. I can’t Jed.

Lewis: What do you mean, can’t? Don’t be a fool, you didn’t come out here just to get yourself killed! Now you think about it Lieutenant! (Lewis walks away from Cassidy, close up on Cassidy’s face) You just say the word and everything will be like it was.

DC: It’s too late, Jed. Even if what you said is true, which it’s not, I couldn’t. I’ve run with the hunted now, I can’t go back with the hunters.

Lewis, in profile: That’s too bad, Lieutenant. (He slowly turns, drawing his gun.) Last chance.

Intense moment, close ups of each. Lewis cocks his gun; we can see that Hardy is still standing there with his pistol pointed at Cassidy.

Suddenly, there is a shot, Jed Lewis goes down! Dramatic music.

The Lancers come onto the scene, first Murdoch, then Scott in the black sling, then Johnny. Hardy stands with gun at his side.

ML: You got off lucky this time, Lewis. Next time they’ll hang you.

Cassidy stands looking down at Lewis. ML looks at Hardy, then addresses Lewis once more: Now, get off our land.

Scott is standing with his gun still in a ready position. JL has his gun hand at his side. Hardy holsters his gun, helps Lewis to his feet and over to his horse. Lewis mounts with difficulty, assisted by Hardy, while the Lancers and Cassidy watch. ML and JL then walk away, and Scott holsters his weapon and approaches Cassidy.

SL: Are you all right? (Cassidy does not answer except for a slight nod.) Is there anything I can do, to help?

DC glances at Scott and then looks away again: Thank you, no, Scott. I don’t think I need any help any more.

Scene 22
Murdoch is coming out of the house, he is wearing a white shirt with a crossed lines pattern and a black string tie. He comes around a team of horses as he speaks to the Cassidys. Dan is helping Sarah into a wagon.

ML: If ever you decide to buy and settle down around here, let me know.

Scott is standing in the foreground, still in the black sling, he’s beside the team. Teresa and Johnny are in the back ground on the far side of the wagon.

DC: One day, maybe.

He offers his hand to Murdoch and they shake.

DC: Thank you, Mr. Lancer. But, right now, I’ve got a lot of forgetting to do, I figure it might be easier if I start somewhere else.

Cassidy turns to look at Scott, then approaches him.

DC: Scott . . There’s a special picture of the Company, the way the 83rd looked before it all started, I’ve got tucked away. When we settle in some place, I want to send it to you.

SL: I’d like that very much.

DC shakes Scott’s hand: Thank you.

ML, JL and Teresa can be seen in the background standing together. Cassidy climbs up onto the wagon seat.

DC, to Scott: Or maybe some day we can find a time to talk about the good things.

(In the script, Dan says: “Maybe one day, a long time from now, there’ll be a reunion. Maybe then we can talk about some of the good things.”)

SL, smiles and nods a bit: I’d like that too.

Cassidy snaps the reins and gets the horses in motion. Long shot of the Cassidys as they drive away. Final image of the Lancers, Scott watching in the foreground and the other three behind him.


%d bloggers like this: