Gunsmoke - Season 21

 

 

Episode 647:CHANCES

 

WRITER: Amanda

 

CAST:

 

Matt Dillon Ė U. S. Marshal

Kitty Russell Dillon Ė Long Branch owner

Doc Adams Ė Dodge City physician

Festus Haggen Ė Deputy U. S. Marshal

Augustus Hill Garland Ė U.S. Attorney General

Jacob Madison Ė Secretary to the U.S. Attorney General

Cutler Townsend Ė Representative from U.S. Attorney General

The Boy Ė Madisonís son

 

 

 

TEASER

 

FADE IN:††

 

EXTERIOR SHOT: STREET SCENE OF NEW ORLEANS, HOTEL MONTELEONE

 

CUT TO INTERIOR SHOT: HOTEL ROOM IN NEW ORLEANS.CLOSE SHOT ON A HAND WORKING AT TYING A STRING TIE AT THE NECK OF A WHITE SHIRT.THE HAND IS FAMILIAR, LARGE AND LONG-FINGERED.WE NOTICE A RING SHINING ON THE THIRD FINGER.THE SHOT PULLS BACK TO REVEAL ANOTHER HAND AND EVENTUALLY MATT TYING THE TIE.WHEN IT IS SECURE, HE BENDS TO LOOK INTO A VANITY MIRROR AND RUNS A HAND THROUGH HIS HAIR TO TAME IT SLIGHTLY.WITHOUT CHECKING TOO CLOSELY, HE TURNS AND TUGS A GRAY COAT OFF THE BACK OF A STRAIGHT CHAIR.

 

MATT:Kitty, you coming?

 

KITTY: (OS) In a minute.Takes a while to get beautiful, you know.

 

MATT:I donít see how you can get any more beautiful than you already are.

 

KITTY: (OS) You keep that up, mister, and we wonít be going downstairs at all.

 

MATT:Promise?

 

KITTY EMERGES, LOOKING STUNNING IN A FASHIONABLE GOWN Ė MATT SMILES APPRECIATIVELY AND PULLS HER INTO HIS ARMS.THEY SHARE A HEATED KISS FOR A LONG MOMENT.

 

MATT: (looking down at her) You know, Iím not that hungry.

 

KITTY: Not that hungry?You just told me you were ravenous.

 

MATT: (nuzzling her neck) Not for food.Or havenít you noticed?

 

KITTY: (head falling back to give him better access to her neck) Oh, Iíve noticed.I have definitely noticed.

 

THEY GIVE IN TO ANOTHER DEEP KISS AND JUST WHEN WE FIGURE THEY MIGHT NOT BE GOING DOWNSTAIRS AFTER ALL, THEY PULL AWAY, BREATHLESS.

 

KITTY:(having trouble focusing) Our reservations are for eight oíclock.

 

MATT: (hoarsely) Yeah.

 

KITTY:(caressing his cheek) So, weíd better go.

 

MATT: (leaning down to nuzzle more) Umm hmm.

 

KITTY:(giving in) But I guess we can always order in.

 

MATT:Umm hmm.

 

KITTY:Like weíve done the past three days.

 

MATT:(bending and scooping her into his arms) Okay.

 

KITTY: (gasping, and wrapping her arms around his neck) Okay.

 

HE KISSES HER AS HE WALKS TO THE BED, BUT BEFORE HE CAN DEPOSIT HER THERE, WE HEAR A KNOCK FROM THE ROOM DOOR.MATT FROWNS AND GROWLS A LITTLE.KITTY SIGHS.

 

KITTY:Ignore it.

 

MATT:Okay. (He starts to lower her to the bed.)

 

KNOCK SOUNDS AGAIN.

 

OFF STAGE VOICE:Marshal Dillon?Marshal Matt Dillon?

 

KITTY:(exasperated) Why am I not surprised?

 

 

DISSOLVE TO MAIN TITLE

 

FADE OUT

 

 

XXXX

 

 

FADE IN:

 

ACT ONE:

 

INTERIOR MEDIUM SHOT:BACK IN HOTEL ROOM WHERE WE JUST LEFT THEM.WE HEAR THE KNOCK AT DOOR AGAIN AND THE CALL FOR MATT DILLON.

 

MATT:(suddenly wary Ė lets Kittyís legs drop so she is standing now Ė quickly reaches for gun belt on coat rack and steps to the door, gun held up)Who is it?

 

OFF STAGE VOICE:My name is Cutler Townsend, Marshal.Iím from the Attorney Generalís office.I have my credentials out, if you want to look.

 

CLOSE ON KITTY, WHO LOOKS WORRIED.

 

CLOSE ON MATT AGAIN, WHO GRIMACES IN DECISION, THEN UNLOCKS THE DOOR AND EASES IT OPEN.WE SEE A SLIGHT MAN, A BIT BOOKISH-LOOKING, HOLDING UP A SET OF PAPERS FOR MATTíS PERUSAL.STILL HOLDING THE GUN IN POSITION, MATT SCANS THE PAPERS.WE SEE THE GUN SLOWLY DROP.

 

CLOSE ON KITTY, WHO SIGHS IN RELIEF.

 

MATT:Iím sorry Mister Townsend.In my line of work, you canít be too careful.

 

TOWNSEND:Oh, I quite understand.Yes, indeed.Your line of work is my line, too.

 

BOTH MATT AND KITTY LOOK A LITTLE SKEPTICAL.

 

MATT:Well, what can I do for you, Mister Townsend?

 

TOWNSEND:Iíve come with a message from the Attorney General.

 

CLOSE ON KITTY, WHO LOOKS IMPRESSED AND SURPRISED.MATT DOESNíT SHOW ANY REACTION.

 

MATT:That so?

 

TOWNSEND:Yes, sir.

 

MATT:Can I ask you something, Mister Townsend?

 

TOWNSEND:Why, certainly.

 

MATT:How on earth did you find me?

 

TOWNSEND:Well, I telegraphed Dodge City several days ago, trying to get in touch with you.Yesterday, I received a telegram back from a Doctor Galen Adams that you were out of town and not expected back for at least two weeks.I just knew that was too long and the Attorney General wouldnít be pleased.

 

CLOSE ON MATT, WHO LOOKS AS IF HE COULD NOT CARE LESS IF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL WAS PLEASED OR NOT.

 

TOWNSEND:So, then, I telegraphed back to Doctor Adams and allowed as how it was of extreme importance that I reach you and that the Attorney General himself was trying to make contact.He was wise in seeing my argument and told me where I could find you.

 

CLOSE ON MATT, WHO IS FROWNING.WE SEE THAT DOC WILL HAVE SOME EXPLAINING TO DO WHEN THEY RETURN TO DODGE.†††††††††

 

MATT:(irritated) Did Doctor Adams also happen to mention that Iím on my honeymoon?

 

TOWNSEND: (surprised and a little chagrined) Oh my.Oh, no, he didnít.Oh, Marshal, my abject apologies for having interrupted such a time.(Turns to look at Kitty) Oh my.Madam, I assure you I would never Ė well, if it werenít the Attorney General, but, of course, since it is Ė

 

KITTY:(with a bit of long-suffering) Itís okay.Iím used to it.

 

MATT WINCES BEFORE HE TURNS BACK TO TOWNSEND.

 

MATT:What it is the Attorney General needs, Mister Townsend?

 

TOWNSEND:I donít know.

 

MATT:(exasperated) Then what are you Ė

 

TOWNSEND:He needs to talk with you himself.Told me to bring you back to Washington as soon as I found you.

 

MATT:(stops short, surprised) What?

 

KITTY: (placing a hand on his arm) Matt?

 

TOWNSEND: (apologetic) I know this is a bit of an inconvenience Ė

 

MATT:A bit, yeah.

 

TOWNSEND:But the Attorney General insisted.Of course, he didnít realize you had married.Iím sure he will not have any problem with Mrs. Dillon accompanying you.

 

MATT:(dryly) Thatís generous of him.

 

TOWNSEND:Iím not sure you understand Ė

 

MATT:Oh, I understand, Mister Townsend.†† You can tell the Attorney General Ė (glances at Kitty, who is smiling warmly at him, encouraging him Ė he sighs) You can tell the Attorney General, that my wife and I will accept his invitation to go to Washington.

 

TOWNSEND:(looks relieved)

 

MATT:(not finished) In another two days.

 

TOWNSEND:(starting to protest, but backing away at the look in Mattís eyes) Well, Iím sure Ė Iím sure that will be fine.Iíll tell him.You two get back to Ė (colors)- well, back to, uh, what you were doing Ė goodbye.

 

DISSOLVE TO:

 

INTERIOR SHOT: RESTAURANT Ė LOOKS FANCY.WE SEE CHANDELIERS AND WAITERS IN FINE SUITS IN THE BACKGROUND

 

CLOSE SHOT:MATT AND KITTY ARE SEATED AT A TABLE, PLATES AROUND THEM, GLASSES PARTLY FULL SO THAT WE SEE THEY ARE JUST ABOUT FINISHED EATING.THEY ARENíT CONCENTRATING TOO HARD ON THEIR FOOD, THOUGH.THEY CANíT SEEM TO KEEP THEIR EYES OFF EACH OTHER.

 

 

MATT: (still looking at Kitty and smiling) Thatís about the best meal I think Iíve ever had.

 

KITTY:(smirking) Really?

 

MATT: Yep.

 

KITTY:Even better than when I cooked for you?

 

MATT: (smile faltering a little) Uh Ė

 

KITTY:No, I understand.I just wonít worry anymore about making you eat my food.That horrible fried chicken.And those awful peach pies.(clicks her teeth)How did you ever put up with it before?

 

MATT:(realizing heís been caught) Now, Kitty Ė

 

KITTY:(holding up her hand) Oh, donít worry.I wonít make you suffer that way anymore.

 

MATT:Kitty, I Ė

 

KITTY: (smiling to let him off the hook) Tell ya what, Cowboy, I have a way you can make it up to me.

 

MATT: (relaxing and giving her a heated look) Yeah?

 

KITTY:Oh yeah.

 

MATT:Howís that?

 

KITTY: (grinning now) Take me shopping.

 

MATT: (face dropping) Oh.

 

KITTY: (patting him on the arm) Donít look so horrified.It wonít take long.

 

MATT: (grimacing) Thatís what you said last time.

 

KITTY:And it didnít take long, did it?

 

MATT: I could have ridden to Hays and back on Moss Grimmickís sorriest mule in that amount of time.

 

KITTY: (purposefully changing the subject) Matt, what do you think the Attorney General wants?

 

MATT:(shrugs) I donít know, Kitty.

 

KITTY:Do you know him?

 

MATT:Iíve met him once or twice.

 

KITTY:(brow raised Ė sheís impressed again) Do you think we ought to go ahead and leave for Washington?

 

MATT: Why?

 

KITTY:Well, the Attorney General Ė

 

MATT:-- can wait.I told Townsend that.

 

KITTY:I know, but --

MATT:Kitty, Iím in New Orleans with my wife Ė

 

KITTY SMILES WARMLY AT THAT COMMENT.

 

MATT:And nothing is going to take me away from her right now.

 

KITTY:Cowboy, you sure know how to sweet talk a lady.

 

MATT:Yeah? Are there any rewards for sweet talk?

 

KITTY: (seductively) Oh, there are rewards.There sure are.

 

MATT: (eyes focused hard on her) When might I collect those rewards?

 

KITTY: When do you want to collect them?

 

MATT: (turning and waving a hand) Waiter! Check, please!

 

 

FADE OUT

 

 

XXXX

 

 

FADE IN:

 

ACT TWO:

 

EXTERIOR SHOT: WHITE STONE BUILDING, WHICH IS CLEARLY IN WASHINGTON, D.C. Ė CARRIAGES PASS DOWN THE STREET.WE SEE A CARRIAGE PULL UP.MATT STEPS DOWN.HE IS WEARING HIS GRAY DRESS COAT, BUT NO GUN BELT.AS HE ENTERS THE BUILDING, HE REMOVES HIS HAT.

 

SWITCH TO INTERIOR SHOT: OUTER OFFICE.WE SEE A DOOR WITH NAME ON OUTSIDE: UNITED STATES ATTORNEY GENERAL.A MAN BETWEEN 25 AND 30 IS SEATED AT A DESK.HE LOOKS UP WHEN MATT ENTERS THE OFFICE.CAMERA SHOT FOLLOWS THE LOOK AS HE STARTS AT MATTíS BELT AND RISES UP THE TALL BODY BEFORE RESTING ON HIS FACE.

 

 

SECRETARY: May Ė may I help you, sir?

 

MATT: I have an appointment with General Garland.

 

SECRETARY: May I ask your name, sir?

 

MATT:Matt Dillon.

 

WE SEE INSTANT RECOGNITION AND AWE IN THE MANíS EYES.HE STARES AT MATT FOR A MOMENT BEFORE MANAGING TO FUMBLE FROM HIS DESK TO KNOCK ON THE INNER OFFICE DOOR.HE DISAPPEARS INTO THE INNER OFFICE.MATT LOOKS AROUND AT THE CERTIFICATES AND PICTURES ON THE WALLS.A FEMALE WORKER STEPS INTO THE ROOM.WE SEE HER EYE MATT APPRECIATIVELY, HER SMILE INVITING.HE NODS POLITELY, BUT WITHOUT REAL INTEREST.HER SMILE FADES, AND SHE PLACES AN ENVELOPE ON THE SECRETARYíS DESK AND LEAVES, THROWING ONE MORE GLANCE TOWARD MATT.

 

THE SECRETARY COMES BACK OUT INTO THE OUTER OFFICE.

 

SECRETARY: You can go in, now, Marshal.

 

MATT:Thanks. (starts to walk in, but secretaryís voice stops him)

 

SECRETARY: Marshal Dillon?

 

MATT: (turning back) Yes?

 

SECRETARY:(nervously) Itís Ė itís an Ė an honor, sir.To meet you.

 

MATT: (a little taken aback by the hero worship) Well, thanks.Whatís your name?

 

SECRETARY: Jacob.Jacob Madison, sir.

 

MATT: (extends hand for a shake) Nice to meet you, Mister Madison.

 

MADISON: Oh, Iíd be pleased if youíd call me Jacob, sir.

 

MATT: (smiling politely)Jacob.

 

THEY SHAKE.MADISON STILL LOOKS STUNNED.

 

INTERIOR SHOT: ATTORNEY GENERALíS OFFICE.

 

IT HAS A DARK WOODEN DESK WITH THE APPROPRIATE KNICK-KNACKS.A MEDIUM-HEIGHT MAN, MORE ROUND THAN THIN, WITH GRAYING DARK HAIR STEPS TOWARD MATT, HIS HAND EXTENDED. THEY SHAKE.

 

GARLAND: Well, well, Marshal Dillon.Been a while, hasnít it?

 

MATT: A couple of years.

 

GARLAND: I hear from Townsend youíve married.

 

MATT: Yes, I have.

 

GARLAND: (carefully) Miss Russell?

 

MATTíS EYES WIDEN.WE SEE HIS SURPRISE THAT EVEN THE U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL KNOWS ABOUT KITTY AND HIM.THEN HE NODS IN ACCEPTANCE.

 

GARLAND: (smiling wider now) Well, now, thatís fine.Just fine.Congratulations! (reaches up to pat Matt heartily on the shoulder)

 

MATT:Thank you.

 

GARLAND:Iím awful sorry to have pulled you away from your honeymoon.

 

MATT: Youíll understand then, why Iím anxious to settle our business, whatever that might be, and get back to my wife.

 

GARLAND: From what Iíve heard about Miss Russell Ė or Mrs. Dillon, now, it is Ė I can certainly understand your anxiousness.

 

MATT: (stiffens, not sure what Garland is implying) Sir?

 

GARLAND: (realizing his comment has been misinterpreted) Iíve heard sheís quite a woman.

 

MATT: (relaxing a little) She is that.

 

GARLAND:You staying at the Willard?

 

MATT:Yes.Your office was very generous.Thank you.

 

GARLAND:Oh, my pleasure.My pleasure.You know, quite a few Presidents have stayed there.President Grant, President Lincoln.All the way back to Zach Taylor.

 

MATT:(not particularly impressed, but being polite) That so?

 

GARLAND:Indeed.

 

MEDIUM SHOT ON BOTH.THEY STAND A LITTLE AWKWARDLY FOR A MOMENT, MATT WONDERING WHATíS GOING ON AND GARLAND CALCULATING WHAT HEíS GOING TO ASK.

 

GARLAND: (sighing) Well, shall we get down to it?

 

MATT: All right. (His expression tells us heís anxious to get this over with.)

 

GARLAND OFFERS MATT A SEAT, WHO REMAINS STANDING UNTIL THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TAKES ONE HIMSELF.THEY SIT IN STIFF CHAIRS, BOTH LOOKING RATHER UNCOMFORTABLE.

 

GARLAND: May I offer you a drink, Matt?Uh, may I call you Matt?

 

MATT: No thanks.And, Mattís fine.

 

GARLAND: (a little disappointed that Matt doesnít want to drink Ė we can see the AG would like to imbibe)Well, the reason I asked you to come today is that I wanted to thank you personally for the years of unequaled performance in the service of the United States Marshals Division of the War and Justice Department.

 

MATT: (nods warily) Thank you.

 

GARLAND: (sincerely, leaning forward) My God, man, I canít even begin to tell you what a legend you have become.Surely you know that.

 

MATT: (blushing and clearly uncomfortable with the praise) Iíve just done my job, General Garland.

 

GARLAND: (laughs) Youíve just done your job better than any other man in the service.And for over twenty years now.

 

MATT:Really, General, itís just Ė

 

GARLAND:Ė your job.Right.I think you really believe that.

 

MATT: (fidgeting, obviously wishing he were somewhere else) General, I donít want to seem ungrateful for your recognition, but Ė

 

GARLAND:Of course, of course.Well, Iíll just lay it out, then.The President and I have been talking about you.

 

CLOSE ON MATT:HE IS CLEARLY SURPRISED TO HEAR THIS.

 

GARLAND: (continuing without noticing Mattís expression) There is no other U. S. Marshal whose deeds and name are recognized as yours are across this country.Youíve devoted your entire adult life to the service, and we feel that itís time you are rewarded for those years.

 

MATT: Are you offering me a raise?

 

GARLAND: (laughs) You might say that.A substantial increase in pay would be included in this offer.

 

MATT: (shifting in his chair) What exactly is the offer?

 

GARLAND: (after a dramatic pause) I am prepared to extend to you the position of Deputy Director of the United States Marshalsí Service.

 

CLOSE ON MATT: HE IS ASTOUNDED.THIS IS OBVIOUSLY A SIGNIFICANT POSITION AND A COMPLETE SHOCK TO HIM.RARELY HAVE WE SEEN MATT DILLON TAKEN SO UNAWARES.WE HEAR NOTHING FOR A LONG MOMENT.NO ONE SPEAKS.††

 

CUT TO GARLAND, THEN BACK TO MATT. FINALLY Ė

 

MATT:Could you Ė could you repeat that?

 

GARLAND: (smiling, pleased that his announcement has garnered such a reaction) The President of the United States wants to appoint you as Deputy Director of the U.S. Marshalsí Service.Thatís the second highest position in the service, you understand.

 

MATT:(shocked still) Yes, I Ė I understand.

 

GARLAND:Are you accepting, then?

 

MATT:(swallowing and regrouping some) General Garland, are you sure you really want me?

 

GARLAND: (puzzled) Why wouldnít we?Youíre the best we have.

 

MATT:Iím just a territorial marshal.Iíve never worked in the main office or been in charge of any personnel except my deputies.

 

GARLAND: Youíve been in charge of all of Kansas, plus some, for twenty years.Youíve tamed the wickedest town in the West.Youíve established a reputation for courage, skill, honesty, and fair play all over the country.Youíve upheld the law all the way from Mexico to the Dakota Territory.I canít think of anyone who could even come close to your qualifications.

 

MATT:(staring, not quite able to believe that this has been offered to him) Iím not sure Ė what to say.

 

GARLAND:Iíd be happy if you said yes.And I can assure you that the President would be, too.This is the chance of a lifetime, Matt.

 

MATT: (sighing) This, uh, this isnít a decision I can make by myself anymore.

 

GARLAND: (confident) I understand, son.I understand.

 

MATT:(smiling a little Ė this man has called him son, but he is probably only about 10 years older than Matt) When do you need to know?

 

GARLAND: Oh, take your time.Take your time.Tomorrow will be fine.

 

MATT:(rises from the chair with brow raised Ė tomorrow is too soon in his thoughts) Well, itís been Ė interesting, General.(extends his hand, which the AG takes in a firm shake)

 

GARLAND: Would you and your wife be available to join me for dinner tonight at the Willard?

 

MATT: Iím sure Kitty will enjoy that.Thank you.

 

GARLAND: Seven oíclock, then?

 

MATT: Thatís fine.

 

GARLAND: (a little hesitantly) Marshal?

 

MATT: (turning from where he has walked toward the door) Yes?

 

GARLAND:Youíve paid your dues, Matt.Isnít it time to let the system give a little back to you?

 

MATT:(frowns Ė not sure what he means)

 

GARLAND: And your wife.What do you think sheíd want?You canít tell me sheís too happy about the constant risks you take and the danger youíre in.Youíll not want to be leaving her a widow.

 

MATT: (We see the pain on his face as Garland has struck a nerve.)General Ė

 

GARLAND:This is an opportunity of a lifetime, you know.

 

CLOSE SHOT ON MATT.WE SEE HIM REALIZING THAT THIS IS THE CHANCE FOR HIM TO MAKE KITTY HAPPY, TO GET OUT OF THE DANGER OF BEING A U.S. MARSHAL IN THE FIELD.BUT WE ALSO SEE THE CONFLICT.DOES HE REALLY WANT TO GIVE THAT UP?

 

MATT: (sighs and nods tightly) Yes, I know.

 

GARLAND: (smiling) Well, I look forward to working with you Marshal Dillon Ė or should I say Director Dillon!

 

MATT SMILES AND GRIMACES AT THE SAME TIME.

 

GARLAND: Please give Miss Russ Ė Mrs. Dillon my regards.

 

MATT:Yeah, I will.

 

THE CAMERA FOLLOWS MATT AS HE EXITS.MEDIUM SHOT ON SECRETARY, WHO CONTINUES TO SMILE CONFIDENTLY AT THE DOOR THAT HAS CLOSED BEHIND MATT.

 

 

FADE OUT

 

XXXX

 

FADE IN

 

ACT THREE:

 

 

INTERIOR SHOT (DAY): FANCY HOTEL ROOM THAT WE ASSUME IS ONE OF THE WILLARDíS BEST SUITES.MATT AND KITTY ARE LYING IN THE BED.THE COVERS ARE PULLED UP OVER THEM, BUT WE SEE THAT MATT IS BARECHESTED AND KITTY WEARS A SILK GOWN.KITTYíS HEAD IS RESTING ON MATTíS SHOULDER, HER HAND RESTING ON HIS CHEST.HIS ARM IS AROUND HER.

 

KITTY:Whatís the title again?

 

MATT:Deputy Director.

 

KITTY:Of the entire United States Marshalsí Service?

 

MATT: Yep.

 

KITTY:My goodness.

 

MATT:Yep.

 

KITTY:What are you going to do?

 

MATT: What are we going to do, you mean.

 

KITTY: (smiling) Yeah.I still canít believe this.

 

MATT: What part of it?

 

KITTY:Any of it.All of it.The job offer, the trip to Washington.(snuggling up closer) Being married.

 

MATT:I canít quite believe the part about being married, either.Figured youíd have left me long ago.

 

KITTY:I did, quite a few times.

 

MATT:(quietly) Iím glad you came back.

 

KITTY: (just as quietly) Me, too.(She sits up, then, serious.)Matt, really, what are we going to do?

 

MATT: (We see the conflict on his face.)Itís a big promotion.Means lots more money.

 

KITTY: Youíve never worried about money before.

 

MATT: Before it was just me.Now Ė

 

KITTY: We donít need to worry about money, Matt.The Long Branch is prosperous.

 

MATT: I probably wouldnít get shot at so much.

 

KITTY:Now, thatís something to think about.

 

MATT: (nods, but his heart isnít in it) Yeah.

 

KITTY: When did you tell the Attorney General youíd decide?

 

MATT: I didnít, really, but I figure heís hoping to know by tomorrow.(He turns to look closely at her.)Is this what you want, Kitty?

 

KITTY: (She searches his face briefly.)What do you want, Cowboy?

 

MATT: I wish I knew, Kitty.Iím just gonna have to think about it, I guess.

 

KITTY: (She leans down and kisses him gently.)We still have some time before dinner.While youíre making up your mind, what about a little non-thinking activity?

 

MATT:Now thatís something I donít have to think about at all.(He pulls her to him as he turns her in his arms and kisses her hard.)

 

DISSOLVE TO EXTERIOR NIGHT SHOT OF WASHINGTON, D.C.CHANGE TO INTERIOR SHOT: THE WILLARD HOTEL DINING ROOM.MATT AND KITTY ARE SITTING WITH GARLAND AT A TABLE.THE ROOM IS FILLED WITH DISTINGUISHED-LOOKING PATRONS. WAITERS BUSTLE BACK AND FORTH.

 

GARLAND:So, what do you think of Washington society, Mrs. Dillon?

 

KITTY: Well, General, itís a little busier than Dodge, but not quite as unpredictable.

 

GARLAND: (laughing) Thatís probably true.Not too many gunfights here recently.I canít imagine a lady like you enjoying the roughness of the West.My goodness, some of what I hear makes me shudder just to think these things go on in the United States.

 

MATT: Itís a big country, General.The West is still being settled.

 

GARLAND: Oh, Iím sure youíre right.I just canít quite imagine Mrs. Dillon fitting in out there.

 

MATT: (smiling in pride at his wife) Kitty can fit in just about anywhere.

 

KITTY SMILES BACK AND PLACES HER HAND OVER MATTíS.

 

GARLAND: (watching the two) I just know that there are amenities we have here in the East that perhaps a lady doesnít have access to in Dodge City.Fine clothing stores, European-style restaurants, symphonies and operas.They would be at your disposal if you lived here.

 

KITTY: That is certainly tempting, General.Most of the fine things I own have been ordered from Saint Louis or New York.It would be lovely to have them right there at my fingertips.

 

CLOSE SHOT ON MATT, WHO IS WATCHING HER.HE PRESSES HIS LIPS TOGETHER AND WE SEE THAT HE REALIZES WHAT SHE HAS MISSED BEING IN DODGE CITY.

 

GARLAND: Absolutely!See, Marshal, this is just meant to be.Like I told you before, itís the chance of a lifetime.Youíll be an important man in Washington, and Mrs. Dillon will be the belle of the social register.I can tell already!There are parties at least twice a month.Youíll be rubbing shoulders with senators and ambassadors, and even the President.

 

KITTY:(smiling) Very impressive, General.

 

CLOSE SHOT ON MATT.WE SEE NOW THE DECISION BEING MADE IN HIS HEAD.HE IS THINKING ABOUT WHAT THE MOVE WOULD MEAN TO KITTY.

 

GARLAND: And thereís the bonus of you not being the target for every outlaw and gunfighter that comes along, Marshal.Iím sure thatís going to be a relief.

 

MATT: (managing a polite, but forced smile) Yeah.

 

GARLAND: (rising) Well, I have business to attend before I head home to my own missus.Enjoy your evening, Marshal.Mrs. Dillon.I look forward to your decision tomorrow.†† (He disappears past the far tables.)

 

MEDIUM SHOT ON MATT AND KITTY.KITTY IS SMILING AND LOOKING AROUND, APPARENTLY CHARMED BY THE FINERY OF WASHINGTON.MATT WATCHES HER, HIS EXPRESSION SHOWING THAT HE IS RESOLVED TO DOING WHAT HE THINKS KITTY WANTS.

 

MATT: You like it here, Kitty?

 

KITTY: (turning to him) Oh, Matt. Itís wonderful. This has been a marvelous honeymoon.New Orleans and then Washington.What a treat!

 

MATT: Iím glad.

 

KITTY: But now, I think itís time to go back to our suite and celebrate in a more private manner.

 

MATT: You think?

 

KITTY: I think.What about you?

 

MATT: (turns and raises his hand) Waiter!Check, please!

 

FADE OUT

 

XXXX

 

FADE IN

 

ACT FOUR:

 

INTERIOR SHOT OF THE SAME OUTER OFFICE MATT VISITED BEFORE.JACOB MADISON, THE SECRETARY, SCRAMBLES TO STAND AS KITTY WALKS IN AHEAD OF MATT.THE FEMALE WORKER WHO HAD EYED MATT BEFORE WALKS THROUGH AGAIN, STILL TAKING OBVIOUS NOTE OF HIM.THIS TIME, KITTY GIVES HER A CLEAR WARNING GLARE.THE WOMAN LOOKS STARTLED AND HURRIES OUT.

 

MADISON: Good morning, Marshal Dillon.(nods head at Kitty)Mrs. Dillon?

 

KITTY: (smiling) Yes.Good morning.

 

MATT: Good morning, Jacob.

 

MADISON: (surprised that Matt has remembered his name.)Yes, sir!(We see him glance hesitantly across the room)

 

CLOSE ON SMALL BOY, NO MORE THAN FIVE.HE IS DRESSED IN A WESTERN-STYLE VEST WITH A WIDE-BRIMMED HAT.A SMALL GUNBELT WRAPS AROUND HIS WAIST AND A CARVED WOODEN .45 PISTOL RESTS IN THE HOLSTER.THE BOY IS STARING UP AT MATT.

 

MADISON: Marshal, this is my son.I hope itís okay.He wanted to meet you, so when you sent the message that you were coming back this morning Ė

 

KITTY:(bending a little to look the boy in the eye) Well, hello there.Whatís your name?

 

BOY:My nameís Matthew, maíam.

 

KITTY: (glances at Matt before she looks back at the boy) Matthew?I know someone named Matthew, too.

 

BOY:Yesím.(letting his eyes soar up Mattís tall body)Wow!Are you Marshal Dillon?

 

MATT:I sure am, son.

 

BOY:How many bad guys have you killed?

 

MADISON:Matthew!(turning to Matt)Iím sorry, Marshal.

 

MATT: Itís okay.(leans down)Iíve killed more than I wanted to kill, but they were all bad guys, Matthew.They had killed other people.

 

BOY: My daddy says youíre the fastest man that ever drawed a gun.

 

MATT:No, son.Iím afraid Iím not.

 

BOY:(looking disappointed) Oh.

 

MATT: But Iím not too bad.

 

BOY:Yeah?

 

MATT:Yeah.

 

BOY: Know why my nameís Matthew?

 

MATT:(smiling patiently) Why?

 

BOY:Because of you.

 

CLOSE ON MATT.WE SEE HEíS STUNNED BY THIS.CUT SHOT TO KITTY, WHO LOOKS EQUALLY SURPRISED.MEDIUM SHOT ON MATT, KITTY, MADISON, AND THE BOY.

 

MADISON: (a little embarrassed) I hope you donít mind, Marshal.Youíre sort of a Ė well, a legend around here.When Matthew was born, I figured I couldnít pick a better namesake for him to grow up to be like.

 

KITTY: (tearing and placing a hand on Mattís arm) Oh, Matt.

 

MATT: (swallowing) I Ėuh Ė I donít know what to say.

 

BOY: Can you show me your fast draw, Marshal?

 

MATT: (shrugging) I donít have my gun on, Matthew.

 

BOY: (frowning) Phooey.

 

MADISON: (tentatively) There are belts and guns in the ordinance room.

 

MATT: Well Ė

 

BOY:Please!

 

MADISON: (not waiting for Matt to decide) Iíll be right back.

 

MEDIUM SHOT ON ROOM.DOOR TO INNER OFFICE OPENS AND THE ATTORNEY GENERAL ENTERS OUTER OFFICE.

 

GARLAND:Well, I thought I heard voices.

 

MATT:General Garland.This is my Ė wife Ė Kathleen Ru Ė Dillon.

 

KITTY: (flashing him a mock-annoyed glare) Better get used to it, Cowboy.

 

GARLAND: (taking her hand) How very delightful to meet you, Mrs. Dillon.I told the Marshal here heís a fortunate man.A very fortunate man.

 

HE LINGERS A LITTLE TOO LONG OVER KITTYíS HAND, AND MATT CLEARS HIS THROAT.GARLAND CHUCKLES AND STEPS BACK.MADISON RETURNS WITH A GUNBELT.

 

MADISON:I had to guess your size.Hope it fits.

 

GARLAND: Whatís going on?

 

BOY:The Marshalís gonna show us his quick draw!

 

MATT: (flushing, a little embarrassed now that the AG is there) Well, I said maybe Ė

 

BOY:You promised!

 

GARLAND: (smiling) Canít go back on your promise, now, Matt.Iím a little curious, too.

 

KITTY:(shakes her head)

 

MATT:(sighing, knowing heís defeated) Iíll need an opponent.How about you, Matthew?You ever drawn down on anybody?

 

BOY: (open mouthed) Oh, no, Marshal!I canít outdraw you!

 

MATT:I dunno.You look pretty fast to me.Thatís a mighty fancy outfit you got there.

 

BOY: (beaming) My pa got it for me when he went to Kansas City.

 

MATT:(securing the belt around his waist) You look like Wild Bill Hickock.

 

BOY:Wow!Did you know him?

 

MATT:Sure did.

 

BOY:Wow!

 

MATT: (with a mock-frown) You gonna stand there talking all day or are we gonna draw?

 

BOY: (gulping and getting serious) You say when.

 

MATT: (taking his gun fighting stance, legs apart, arms to his sides) Iíll count to three.

 

BOY: (nods, gulping again)

 

MATT:One.

 

THE BOY MIMICKS MATTíS STANCE, HIS EYES SQUINTING.KITTY OBSERVES THE SCENE WITH AN AMUSED SMILE.GARLAND AND MADISON LOOK ON ALMOST LIKES KIDS THEMSELVES.

 

MATT: Two.

 

CLOSE SHOT ON MATTíS GUN, THEN CUT TO THE BOYíS GUN.

 

MATT: Three!

 

MATT MAKES A MOVE FOR HIS GUN.THE BOY GRABS HIS WITH IMPRESSIVE QUICKNESS FOR A FIVE YEAR OLD.WE CAN SEE MATT SLOW HIMSELF DOWN LONG ENOUGH FOR THE BOY TO CLEAR HIS HOLSTER AND THRUST THE WOODEN WEAPON OUT AS IF HE IS FIRING.MATT CLUTCHES HIS CHEST WITH HIS LEFT HAND AND GRIMACES, STAGGERING BACK.

 

MATT:You got me!

 

BOY:(rushing to Matt) Gee, Marshal, Iím sorry!I didnít mean to.(He wraps his arms around Mattís thighs, which is as high as he can reach.)

 

MATT: (laughing and touched, bends down and picks the boy up into his arms)Iím okay, Matthew.Youíre fast, though.Outdrew me by a good tenth of a second.

 

BOY: (realizing Mattís okay) Really?

 

MATT:Really.

 

BOY:Wow!

 

MADISON:(something close to awe in his eyes) Marshal, I canít thank you enough.

 

MATT:(putting the boy down) You have a fine, boy, there, Jacob.

 

MADISON: He wants to be a marshal just like you.

 

CLOSE ON MATT.HE JUST NODS, EYES A LITTLE SAD.CLOSE ON KITTY.HER EYES MIRROR MATTíS.

 

GARLAND:Mrs. Dillon, I canít tell you how pleased I am about all of this.Why, Matt Dillon is a legend, not just in Kansas, but all over the country.Thereís not a man who can hold a candle to him in skill or in courage.Iím sure you agree that we canít afford to keep him on the front lines anymore.

 

KITTY: (casually) My husband is certainly an amazing man.(casts a pointed look at Matt, who blushes.)

 

GARLAND:(glances between them, then clearing his throat) When can I tell the President youíll be starting?

 

MATT:(opens mouth to speak) I should be able too Ė

 

KITTY:(interrupts) General Garland Ė

 

GARLAND TURNS EXPECTANTLY TO HER.MATT LOOKS AT HER IN CONFUSION.

 

KITTY:General, Iím terribly sorry that youíve gone to all this trouble, but Matt wonít be taking the job.

 

CLOSE ON MATT.HEíS SURPRISED.

 

MATT:Kitty Ė

 

KITTY: (not looking at Matt, but still at Garland) You said it yourself.Matt Dillon is a legend.Thatís because heís good at what he does.One of the reasons heís so good is that it was what he was meant to be.

 

CLOSE ON MATT, WHOSE EYES ARE LOCKED ON KITTYíS FACE.WE SEE HIS LIPS PRESS TOGETHER TIGHTLY.

 

KITTY:You see, General Garland.Matt Dillon is a man who has to do things his way.(She smiles ironically at Matt.)Heís told me that for twenty years and Iíve finally realized what he meant.This is an incredible opportunity, Iím sure.And Iíd like nothing better than to have Matt as far away from some outlawís bullets as possible.But he would be miserable.And maybe I would be, too.

 

GARLAND: (unbelieving) But the President Ė

 

KITTY:Tell the President we are honored, but Matt Dillon and I are going back to Dodge City where we belong.Right, Cowboy?

 

MATT: (staring at her Ė he finally manages to smile and nod, then turns to Garland) Iím sorry, General.I have my orders.

 

HE OFFERS HIS ARM TO KITTY, WHO TAKES IT.THEY WALK OUT OF THE OUTER OFFICE DOORS.MADISON AND THE BOY STARE AFTER THEM, GRINNING.GARLAND STARES IN SHOCK.

 

 

FADE OUT

 

 

XXXX

 

 

FADE IN :

 

EPILOGUE:

 

EXTERIOR SHOT (DAY):

 

STAGE STOP OUTSIDE THE DODGE HOUSE IN DODGE CITY.A CROWD HAS GATHERED TO WELCOME MATT AND KITTY HOME.DOC AND FESTUS ARE IN THE FRONT.THE STAGE PULLS UP.AFTER A MOMENT, THE DOOR OPENS AND TWO STRANGERS STEP OUT BEFORE WE SEE MATT CLIMB DOWN AND TURN BACK TO EXTEND HIS HAND TO KITTY.THE DOG THAT HAS TAKEN UP WITH MATT GREETS THEM HAPPILY, HIS TAIL WAGGING.MATT GIVES IN AND PETS THE DOG.

 

MEDIUM SHOT ON DOC, FESTUS, MATT AND KITTY.

 

FESTUS: (shaking Mattís hand vigorously) Welcome back, Matthew.I done figgered you and Miss Kitty werenít never cominí back.Seemed like you wuz gone long as my Ainít Cleveland stayed off a-nursiní Cousin Crick fer the mountain fever.Why, she wuz Ė

 

DOC: (interrupting and pushing past Festus to break his hold on Mattís hand) Oh, for Peteís sake, nobody cares about your Aunt Chicago Ė

 

FESTUS: Cleveland.

 

DOC: Nobody cares.(gives Kitty a hug and shakes Mattís hand, but not as long or hard as Festus has)Welcome home.Was it a good trip?

 

KITTY: (grinning) Amazing, Doc.Just amazing.

 

DOC: (blushes) Okay, well, thatís about all I need to know.(turns to Matt)Oh, say, Matt, right after you left there was a telegram from somebody named, uh, Townsend.Said he was from the Attorney Generalís office.I sent back to let him know youíd be gone for a while, but he was mighty set on finding you.I figured it might be important, so I, uh, well, I telegraphed him back and told him where you were.(a little worried) I hope that was all right.

 

MATT: It was all right, Doc.

 

DOC: Whatíd he want, if ya donít mind me asking?

 

MATT: Just marshaling business, Doc.Thatís all.

 

CLOSE ON KITTY, WHO LOOKS UP AT MATT AND TAKES HIS ARM.THEY LOOK AT EACH OTHER FOR A BRIEF, BUT MEANINGFUL, MOMENT.THEN, KITTY TURNS TO THE CROWD.

 

KITTY: Whatís everybody standiní around for?Letís go to the Long Branch.Drinks are on the house!

 

LONG SHOT ON THE CROWD.THEY CHEER AND HEAD TOWARD THE SALOON.CLOSE SHOT ON MATT AND KITTY.HE BENDS DOWN AND KISSES HER GENTLY.

 

MATT: Youíre a pretty amazing woman, Kathleen Russell Dillon.Have I ever told you that?

 

KITTY: (bounces her eyebrows once) I believe you told me that just last night.

 

MATT: Iíll probably tell you again tonight, if you give me the chance.

 

KITTY: We have lots of chances, Cowboy.Tonight and tomorrow and the next day and the day after that Ė ††

 

MATT SMILES AT HER AND KISSES HER AGAIN, A LITTLE MORE DEEPLY THIS TIME.WE HEAR SOMEONE CLEARING HIS THROAT.MATT AND KITTY PULL APART TO SEE DOC STANDING NEAR THEM.

 

DOC: You two going to join the party, or are you having a private party of your own?

 

KITTY: Weíre coming, Doc.You just hold your horses.

 

DOC: (looking pointedly at Matt) Itís not MY horses Iím worried about.

 

MATT: (flushing) Doc!

 

DOC SMILES AND SWIPES A HAND OVER HIS MUSTACHE, TURNING AROUND AND LEAVING THE COUPLE ALONE AGAIN.THEY SMILE AT EACH OTHER ONCE MORE.KITTY SLIPS A HAND INTO THE CROOK OF MATTíS ARM.

 

KITTY: Itís good to be home, isnít it?

 

MATT: It sure is, Kitty.It sure is.

 

LONG SHOT: MATT AND KITTY HEAD TOWARD THE LONG BRANCH AS THE STREETS OF DODGE RESUME THEIR NORMAL ACTIVITY.

 

DISSOLVE TO CREDITS

 

FADE TO BLACK: END OF EPISODE

 

 

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