DISCLAIMER: The characters herein are not mine and belong to Trilogy and MGM. This is provided at no profit for fans of the television show, "The Magnificent Seven." -------------------------------------------------------------------------- THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN "Outrageous Fortune" by KATHY B. October 23, 1999 Episode 7 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN "Outrageous Fortune" TEASER FADE IN: EXT. A SMALL RANCH - DAY INSIDE An elderly woman, LIDDY, is in her nightgown, sitting up in bed. NETTIE fluffs her pillows. LIDDY This is awfully good of you, Nettie, coming all the way out here to help me. NETTIE Nonsense. What are friends for? Casey can manage on her own for a few days. LIDDY Could you do me a small favor? Could you straighten that picture? I just couldn't get well if I have to look at that picture all crooked. Nettie gets on a stool to adjust the picture. The stool rocks ominously...She reaches up to straighten the picture... We see the outside of the ranch house and hear a CRASH followed by a GROAN. LIDDY(v.o.) Oh, that stool wobbles, dear. EXT. STREET - MORNING NATHAN passes CASEY in front of the hotel. She's waiting for the stage. NATHAN Hey, Casey. How's Nettie's back? CASEY Gonna be staying with Liddy for awhile. She sent for my aunt to stay with me. NATHAN That who you're waitin' for? CASEY (nodding) I ain't seen her since I was little. She's on my ma's side. Nettie wants me to mind her while she's here. The stage pulls up and passengers disembark. AUNT ADELAIDE steps out. She’s a stern-looking, imperious widow, dressed in black. Her expression clearly shows her impression of the town and its people, none of it good. CASEY Aunt Adelaide? AUNT Casey? Casey! Well!...My! Look at you!... She studies her like a bug under a magnifying glass. Do you always dress like that? Well, never mind that now. I have a surprise for you. A handsome young man, obviously comfortably well-off, gets off the stage. He grins warmly at Casey. Casey stares back. CASEY Caleb? AUNT I know you haven't seen each other since you were children, but you remember Caleb Barnes? CALEB Hello, Casey. END OF TEASER ACT 1 FADE IN: EXT. STREET - MORNING Casey, Aunt Adelaide and Caleb Barnes are standing in front of the stagecoach. Aunt Adelaide and Caleb Barnes have just arrived in town. AUNT When Caleb heard I was coming all this way to see you, he simply insisted on coming along. Isn't that nice? CASEY (echoing) Nice. CALEB I wouldn't hear of your aunt travelling all this way out here unescorted. AUNT (to Caleb) Why don't you get settled in at the hotel? You can see Casey later when she's at her beautiful best. CALEB She looks beautiful now. AUNT (dryly) Indeed...Come along Casey. I assume you have a carriage nearby... CUT TO: INT. - NETTIE's - DAY Aunt Adelaide is settling in for a lengthy stay as she puts away her own clothes in the closet. She begins searching through Casey's wardrobe, as if on a mission. AUNT (rummaging through the closet) Don't you have any dresses at all? CASEY (pointing) Sure. It's right there. AUNT "It?" That's all? CASEY What would I do with a bunch of dresses? AUNT Where's your everyday dress, your traveling clothes, your party dress...? All young ladies have dresses. CASEY I guess I ain't much of a lady, then. AUNT We'll soon fix that. It's a good thing I'm here. I can't imagine what Nettie was thinking, letting you run around like that. She studies the dress before handing it to Casey. This will have to do until we get others. Get undressed. Off Casey, who has a look of dread at what may be in store for her. CUT TO: INT. SALOON - EVENING EZRA takes a seat beside BUCK, a flyer in his hand. EZRA Have you seen this? BUCK (reading) Talent contest. Fifty dollar prize. EZRA The paper and the Ladies League put up the money. They believe that introducing culture to this burgeoning metropolis will lure and retain the proper element. BUCK (grinning) What're you gonna do? Sing? Dance? EZRA I was thinking of a recitation of Shakespeare. And I wasn't thinking of me. I was thinking of you. BUCK Me? I ain't no actor! EZRA I am aware of that. That is why I am fully prepared to coach you in your prize-winning theatrical debut. BUCK For a fee. EZRA Naturally, for a share of the prize money. Say, sixty-forty? Buck glares. Oh, all right. Forty-sixty. BUCK Why me? EZRA Perhaps you didn't read it carefully. "Judged by members of the Ladies'League?" All ladies love an actor. And you're in exceptional standing with most of the women in this town. BUCK Except the Bartholomew twins. Ooooh, that was unpleasant. You know, you can't tell 'em apart lest they're together– EZRA Be that as it may, do we have a deal? BUCK An actor, eh? Like John Wilkes Booth... EZRA I think you mean Edwin Booth. CUT TO: EXT. STREET - DAY Casey and her aunt leave the dressmaker's nearby. Both are carrying boxes. Vin and Nathan are standing outside the hotel. They both straighten as the sight of Casey in a dress gets their attention. VIN Will you look at that! NATHAN Casey lookin' like a girl for a change. Wonder what JD'll think of that? VIN (nodding) Won't take long to find out. JD has spotted Casey from across the street and approaches her in his usual, cheery manner. JD (teasing) Casey, hi! What's with the dress? Run outta clothes? CASEY Aunt Adelaide, this is JD–er, John Dunne. This my aunt, Adelaide Caldwell–. AUNT How do you do, Mr. Dunne. She looks at him and glances at the boxes in her hands. JD quickly takes them from her. CASEY JD helps keep the peace in town. At that moment, THREE ROWDY COWBOYS ride through, hell for leather, whoopin' and hollerin', and kickin' up dust. AUNT (dryly) Indeed... She brightens immediately as she spots Caleb Barnes approaching. Good afternoon, Caleb! Why don't you join Casey and me for dinner tonight for a nice, home-cooked meal? CALEB I'd be delighted. That dress really becomes you, Casey. AUNT Wonderful! We'll see you tonight then. Good day, Mr. Dunne. Caleb takes the boxes from JD with a triumphant smirk only JD sees. JD watches them walk away. Vin and Nathan move to stand beside him. VIN C'mon, JD. It ain't so bad. He'll be gone afore you know it. JD Yeah? NATHAN Sure. You've tasted Casey's cookin'. They leave JD standing there, alone, as he watches Casey disappear down the street. CUT TO: INT. NETTIE's - AFTERNOON Casey sets the table as Aunt Adelaide tries to put on a shine on the silverware. CASEY Aunt Adelaide, why is Caleb here? AUNT I told you. He offered to come. In fact, he insisted. I welcomed the company, being as I am now, a widow travelling alone. And he was very anxious to see you again. CASEY How long is he staying? AUNT Sit down for a moment, dear. I think we should talk. Casey joins Aunt Adelaide at the table. AUNT (cont'd) Your Aunt Nettie is getting on in years. Now with this accident, you must start to consider her health. CASEY She'll be fine. AUNT But for how long? It's time you started thinking about your future. Wouldn't it be a wonderful surprise for her to come home and find you're provided for? CASEY I suppose... AUNT She's done a great deal for you, you know, taking you in after your mother passed away. Goodness knows, if we'd you were living in the wilds like this, we'd have taken you in ourselves. Now with your uncle gone, it's too late. CASEY >Well, me and JD– AUNT That Mr. Dunne? what kind of work did he say he does? No, my dear. Now, what about someone like Caleb Barnes? CASEY I barely know him! AUNT You can get to know him at dinner tonight and for as long as he's here. I barely knew your Uncle Frank when I married him. CASEY You mean you want me to...marry Caleb Barnes? AUNT Casey, dear, I'm just asking you to consider your prospects, not marry Caleb. He hasn't asked you...yet. CUT TO: EXT. HILLS - EVENING Casey and Caleb are taking a walk after dinner. CALEB Dinner was wonderful. Thank you. CASEY Aunt Adelaide did most of the cooking. CALEB Well, I’m sure your cooking is even better. Did I surprise you, coming here? CASEY >Yeah, you did. CALEB After you left and came to stay out here for good, things were just never the same. CASEY I only saw you whenever I was staying with Aunt Adelaide and Uncle Frank. That was years ago. He stops and turns to her, getting very close. He touches her hair, tracing her cheek with his hand. CALEB (softly) It was a lifetime. I've missed you so much, Casey. I always knew I'd see you again. I always felt we belonged together. You used to say that, don't you remember? I want us to be together always. (suddenly embarrassed) You probably think I sound foolish– CASEY Oh, no! No one's ever said things like that to me before. He takes her hands in his. CALEB Then I'll say more. It's as if I'm dreaming you now. I'm so afraid I'll wake up... CASEY (teasing) Want me to pinch you to make sure? CALEB (suddenly) Remember that big old apple tree we used to climb? CASEY I remember climbing higher than you so I could chuck apples at you. CALEB We carved our initials in it. It's gone now, you know. Lightening. He glances around for a moment. C'mon. He leads her by the hand to a large, sturdy tree and takes out a pocketknife. CASEY Oh, Caleb, don't. That's for children. He studies her a moment then pulls her to him. CALEB And this is for grown people. He puts arms around her and gives her a long, lingering kiss. She stiffens at first, resisting, then slowly melts against him. CUT TO: INT. STORE - MORNING The CLERK is behind the counter. Caleb walks in. CALEB I'm interested in that music box you have in the window. The clerk retrieves it from the window and makes the sale. CLERK Yes, sir. An expensive model, but it's made by skilled craftsmen way over in Europe. Do you collect fine music boxes? CALEB It's a gift. For Miss Wells. Can you wrap it? CLERK (smiling) Certainly. "Miss Wells?" That'd be Casey Wells? Ah, she's a sweet girl but a bit of a hellion, eh? Almost like a boy at times. In a flash of rage, Caleb reaches over the counter, grabbing the clerk with both hands. CALEB Miss Wells is soon to be my fiancee. And as such, she's a lady. I expect you to show her some respect. CLERK Yes, sir! I didn't mean anything by it! Like I said, Casey-er-Miss Wells is a sweet g–lady! Barely satisfied by this, Caleb releases the clerk. His whole body is stiff with rage as he picks up his package and leaves. The clerk watches him go, adjusting his collar and glad to still be alive. OUTSIDE Caleb bumps into JD, of all people. JD Excuse me. CALEB Ah, Mr. Dobbs, isn't it? I'm glad I bumped into you. I wanted to ask you a question. JD Dunne. JD Dunne. What do you want? CALEB (showing him the music box) What do you think of this? JD looks at it, knowing it's something he couldn't afford on a dollar a day. As much as he doesn't like Caleb, he tries to be cordial. JD Looks expensive. CALEB It is. JD (shrugs) It's nice, I guess. CALEB Glad you like it. I hope Casey does. I think she will, don't you? JD looks almost as if he's been slapped. (with a triumphant smile) Good day. Caleb walks away. JD watches him go, then heads for the jail. CUT TO: EXT. JAIL - DAY BUCK and CHRIS are out front. JD walks up, looking very unhappy and perhaps a bit lost. BUCK Now, Chris, have you ever seen a fella look so low? You look like your best girl ran off and took your best horse with her. JD Sorta. CHRIS (amused) What? JD I mean that Caleb Barnes. Casey's been seein' him since he got here. Now he's bought her this real expensive present. BUCK What do you aim to do about it? JD What can I do? Even her aunt likes him. And she sure doesn't like me. CHRIS (warningly) Buck... BUCK Well, stake your claim! Casey's your girl, ain't she? You seen her first. JD Not quite. He's known her since- BUCK You can't let another man jump your claim. You gott fight for what's yours. It ain't right– CHRIS Buck, will you shut up? BUCK (to Chris) Now just hold on. This is about romance. My domain. (to JD) You gotta be a man about this. You can't let him just sashay on in here and steal your girl. JD No? BUCK No sir! It's...it's downright un-American is what it is! JD (his ire rising) You know, you're right. And I'm gonna do somethin' about it– JD starts down the street with determined strides. Buck smiles. He's rallied the troops. BUCK There ya go. Whoops! Gotta go. Rehearsal, y'know. Chris looks at Buck in surprise as Buck leaves. CHRIS (echoing) Rehearsal? CUT TO: EXT. STORE - DAY JD is just coming out of the door. He spots Josiah coming down the boardwalk. JD Josiah! Am I glad to see you. Would you come in here for a minute? Josiah nods and quickens his step a little. INSIDE JD Look, I hate to ask, but can you loan me some money? I wanna buy Casey that bracelet there. JOSIAH For Casey? JD, does this have anything to do with Mr. Barnes? JD Can't a guy buy his girl a present if he wants to? JOSIAH JD, you can't buy the affections of a girl like Casey. JD I'm not tryin' to! JOSIAH Then what are you doin'? JD I told you. I'm just buyin' her a present. JOSIAH Uh-huh. To show up that Barnes fella. JD, you know Casey better than that. (giving him a pat on the shoulder) She'll make the right choice. Josiah leaves. JD (to himself) That's what I'm afraid of. CUT TO: EXT. STREET - DAY Casey is walking down the street. Just as she passes an alley, we see an arm suddenly reach out and pull her into the alley, out of sight. She starts to fight but immediately stops when she sees who it is. CASEY JD! What are you doin', grabbin' a person like that? JD I wanted to talk to you. CASEY Well, why didn't you just say so? JD I didn't want anyone to see us. CASEY You mean my aunt. JD She doesn't like me, Casey, and you know it. She likes Caleb Barnes...How do you feel about him? Casey studies him. We can see she knows this is a rare opportunity to make JD jealous. CASEY Actually, I think he's kinda sweet. JD You do? CASEY Mm-hmm. Kinda handsome, too. And he pays a lot of attention to me. Not always hangin' around with Buck... JD Now, Casey, that ain't fair. CASEY He's charming, too, and polite. JD (getting angry) Really! Is he now! Well, maybe he's a better man for you than I am! This is not the reaction she'd hoped to get. CASEY JD! JD Maybe you oughta hang on to this one! Another one like him make not come along! CASEY (getting angry herself) Are you sayin' he's my only chance? That I couldn't get another good man if I wanted? JD I'm sayin' I think you oughta marry this one! CASEY Maybe I will! She turns back toward the street. STREET - Aunt's POV. We see Casey storm out of the alley and continue down the street. JD emerges moments later, angry and looking even more miserable than before, if that's possible. END ACT 1 ACT 2 FADE IN: INT. CHURCH - DAY Buck is greeted by Ezra as he enters the sanctuary. EZRA Mr. Wilmington. At last. I have carefully selected your recitation for you. Right here. BUCK (reading) 'But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? It is the East, and Juliet is the sun. Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon, who is already sick and pale with grief–' You call this romance? EZRA I assure you it is one of the most romantic and famous speeches in the history of theatre. BUCK 'Kill the moon? Sick and pale with grief?' This'll make 'em stampede for the door. EZRA Mr. Wilmington...Buck...Romeo here is comparing the love of his life, Juliet, to the heavens. BUCK Just tell me this. He doesn't get the girl, does he. EZRA He does. Then he dies. BUCK (snorting derisively) Figgers. With words like that. She kill 'im? EZRA (fighting for control) No! She kills herself. BUCK Figgers. EZRA Would you please just study the speech for now? We'll work on it again later. And I can see we have a lot of work ahead of us. CUT TO: INT. JAIL - DAY Chris is cleaning his Colt as Aunt Adelaide enters. AUNT Are you Mr. Larabee? I'm Adelaide Caldwell, Casey Wells's aunt. CHRIS Ma'am. AUNT I understand that Mr. Dunne works for you. CHRIS No, ma'am. He doesn't. He works for the town. AUNT I'll come straight to the point. I've heard you have some influence on him. I'm asking you to discourage him from trying to court Casey. CHRIS Seems to me that should be up to Casey. AUNT Casey is too young and impressionable to know what's best for her. I found her here practically living like a savage. She finally notices he's cleaning a gun. AUNT (cont'd) If it isn't too personal, Mr. Larabee, do you have a family? CHRIS Yes, ma'am, it is. And no, I don't... They're dead. AUNT I'm sorry...Then you understand my position on this matter. A man who makes his living by a gun is better off unmarried. CHRIS We may agree on that, but it seems to me this is between Casey and JD. AUNT Casey is seeing Mr. Barnes now, a proper young man for her, and I expect to formally announce their engagement very soon. So you can see that Mr. Dunne's persistence is at least...inappropriate. CHRIS I'll tell him. AUNT Do I have your word you'll discourage him then? CHRIS You have my word I'll tell him. CUT TO: EXT. THE HILLS - AFTERNOON Casey and Caleb have taken a buggy to a remote spot in the hills for a picnic together. Caleb helps her out of the carriage. CALEB I have a little surprise for you. He presents her with the music box, unwrapping it for her. Like it? CASEY (looking slightly puzzled) A music box? CALEB What's wrong? CASEY Nothing. It's beautiful, but...what would I do with it? There is a pause. Suddenly, Caleb turns and hurls the music box against some rocks, smashing it to pieces. Casey stands there in stunned silence. CALEB (calmly) Nothing now. His temper is gone as abruptly as it came. He sees her reaction and takes a step closer to smooth things over. CALEB (softly) Casey... I love you so much. I only want the best for you, don't you know that? If you don't like something the least little bit, then as far as I'm concerned, it's not worthy of you. And it'll always be that way, my love. He takes her hands in his to kiss them. Afraid to meet his eyes, Casey stares past him at the broken music box on the ground. CUT TO: INT. SALOON - EVENING EZRA is dealing cards to JD, NATHAN, BUCK, and VIN as CHRIS walks past them to the bar. Moments later he returns with a bottle of whiskey, sits next to JD, pours a drink and pushes it in front of JD. CHRIS Here. You may want that. BUCK Must be real bad news. CHRIS (to JD) Just saw Casey's aunt. Told me I should keep you away from Casey. JD What'd you tell her? CHRIS There's more. She told me Casey's marryin' Caleb Barnes. This gets the attention of everyone. VIN You sure about that? Maybe you heard wrong. NATHAN What does Casey want? EZRA Does it matter? We've all seen Aunt Adelaide. Trust me, gentlemen, that matronly widow will have her way. JD bypasses the glass, takes the bottle and tosses back a big swig. CUT TO: EXT. NETTIE'S - DAWN We see JD approaching the house, trying to keep from making any noise... too late. The door opens and Casey steps out onto the porch. CASEY JD! What're you doin' here? If my aunt sees you here- JD I don't care! I had to come here. Is it true? You're gonna marry that Barnes fella? Casey hesitates. It's enough. JD (cont'd) It's true, isn't it! Casey, you can't. It's not right. It's un-American, is what it is! CASEY What? What are you talking about? JD Never mind. We have an understanding, you and me. Don't we? CASEY Do we? JD Well, of course we do! CASEY But, well, my aunt...Caleb...they're making all these plans. And Caleb loves me... It's for the best... For Nettie. JD Nettie? Look, I don't know the best way to put it into words, but Casey, I...I don't wanna lose you. CASEY You don't? JD (impulsively) Marry me instead...I mean...Marry me. Right now. Today. CASEY Marry–? JD (swallowing hard) Yeah...Casey, would you marry me? CASEY Oh, JD-! She puts her arms around him and they kiss. It's a long, lingering kiss as if they could stay that way all night, perhaps forever. CUT TO: EXT. HOTEL - DAY Vin is outside the hotel leaning against a post as JD and Casey approach. JD Vin, have you seen Josiah? We went over to the church and he wasn't there. VIN He left out at first light. He's gonna try to borrow a costume from a fella he knows in Vista City for Buck to use in the talent contest. JD Great. That's just great. Do you know when he's comin' back? VIN A day or two, maybe. Somethin' important? CASEY JD? JD (to Casey) We'll just have to wait till he gets back. A couple of days all right with you? CASEY But Caleb– JD Well, without a preacher here, he can't marry you any sooner than I can. And Judge Travis ain't due through here for weeks. VIN Married? JD Don't say nothin' to anyone yet, please, Vin? Casey, promise me, as soon as Josiah gets back– CASEY All right. JD C'mon. We'd better get you home before your aunt notices you've gone. CUT TO: EXT. NETTIE'S - DAY Through the curtains inside Nettie's, we see JD and Casey walking towards the house, hand in hand. They share one last kiss before JD leaves. Casey walks slowly toward the house. We see a curtain drop into place and Aunt Adelaide turning away from the window. She does not look pleased. END ACT 2 ACT 3 FADE IN: EXT. SALOON - DAY Buck, Vin, Ezra, and Nathan are outside the saloon. JD walks up to them with a huge grin on his face. JD Guys, next round's on me! BUCK Now why's that? JD Well, Buck, I'm finally gonna do something you never have. BUCK Now, kid, that ain't possible. JD Wanna bet? VIN Easy, Buckley. EZRA Mr. Tanner is right. First rule of gambling, Mr. Wilmington: Never make a bet until you've seen your cards first. (with a long look at Vin) You know something, Mr. Tanner. VIN (to JD) Tell 'em. JD I'm gettin' married. BUCK Gettin'–You?..Casey? Oh, this definitely calls for a round. This one's on me, kid. The guys go into the saloon. Chris enters a few moments later. BUCK Chris! JD's marryin' Casey! Chris doesn't react. CHRIS (to JD) You plannin' on hangin' up your guns, too? JD (with a laugh) Of course not! He moves closer to Chris, still within earshot of the other guys. JD (cont'd) I'd...I'd like it if you'd be my best man. I-that is- we'd be honored. CHRIS No, thanks. Chris turns to leave. JD But– CHRIS Forget it, JD! Chris strides out of the saloon. Buck follows Chris, and JD follows Buck. JD, afraid he may have insulted Buck by choosing Chris, tries to smooth things over with him. JD Buck, you understand. I didn't mean that you– BUCK (warmly) It's all right, kid, I know how you feel. If it was me, he'd have been my first choice, too. If you want, I'll be your best man until Chris changes his mind. JD Thanks, Buck. Buck leaves to catch up to Chris. OUTSIDE BUCK Chris! Wait up! What's wrong with you back there? Casey's a nice girl. CHRIS It's because she's a nice girl. BUCK I don't follow. CHRIS This line of work - it makes widows, not wives. BUCK Maybe you oughta put a little more faith in the boy. CHRIS What if she gets hurt or killed because of him? Because of what he does? BUCK Now you're talkin' about you and Sarah. CHRIS I'm talkin' about buryin' someone you love. Neither of them should have to go through that. BUCK That ain't up to you. He just wants you to be happy for them. It matters to him. CHRIS Well, I can't. Buck watches as Chris walks away, then turns and continues in the opposite direction. CUT TO: INT. CHRUCH - DAY Ezra is walking around impatiently. He appears to be alone. EZRA Come along, Mr. Wilmington! BUCK (O.S.) No! I'm not wearin' this. Josiah can just take it back to whoever he got it from. EZRA Let us at least take a look at it. Buck emerges from Josiah's room dressed in a long-sleeve shirt covered by a tunic that reaches past his hips. He's wearing a scabbard for a dagger and...slightly baggy tights. Overall, it's not a pretty picture. BUCK Aw, Ezra...how can I romance the ladies when I'm dressed like one of 'em? EZRA Never mind that. Let's just hear the lines. BUCK "Hark! What's that light in yonder window there? Why, it is Juliet, looking like the sun-" Ezra is nearly aploplectic. For a moment, his mouth moves but no words come out. EZRA Wh-what was that? You re-wrote the lines of one of the greatest English writers of all time? Enough is enough. Buck is out of patience. BUCK (almost shouting) Don't talk to me about English. I know English. I speak English! That ain't English! How're all these ladies supposed to understand what I’m sayin'? EZRA All right, all right! We'll compromise. Do the lines as written and I'll do something about the...accoutrements. BUCK And the tights. CUT TO: EXT. HOTEL - EVENING Chris is sitting outside. Vin joins him, characteristically leaning against a post. VIN Buck says he'll be JD's best man...lest you change yer mind. CHRIS Not likely. VIN He looks up to you. In some ways, he's like you. Stubborn. I seem to recall you tellin' me-or maybe it was Buck-how Hank was opposed to you marryin' Sarah. CHRIS Yeah...he was. But we were young and in love and you couldn't tell us nothin'. VIN Any regrets? CHRIS No. I'd do it all over again. We knew right, even if Hank didn't. Chris knows what Vin is getting at. Vin gets up to leave. CHRIS (cont'd) Vin?...I'll think about it. Vin nods and leaves. CUT TO: INT. SALOON - DAY JD, Ezra, Vin, and Nathan are at a table in the saloon when Buck pops his head in. BUCK JD! You know Josiah's back? You ready? JD I'll find Casey and meet you at the church. (looking at the others) You comin'? They all get up to follow. Buck grins at them as they begin to file past him, out the door. BUCK Might as well come along. Maybe you all can be bridesmaids. EZRA I won't settle for anything less than maid of honor. CUT TO: EXT. NETTIE'S - DAY We see Casey leaving the barn, leading a horse, a small travelling bag attached. Aunt Adelaide sees her from inside and starts out the door, but stops when she sees... Casey mount up, ride a short distance from the barn, and join JD, already on horseback. He leans over and they kiss before riding off. Aunt Adelaide disappears inside the house, and returns immediately, putting on her shawl as she heads for the carriage. CUT TO: EXT. STREET - DAY Aunt Adelaide stops her carriage at the hotel, frantically looking for Caleb. He comes out the door just as she's rushing in, breathing hard. Caleb takes her by the shoulders. CALEB What's wrong? Are you all right? Where's Casey? Is Casey all right? AUNT Caleb, I'm afraid Casey may be on her way to do something foolish! CALEB (shaking her, his panic rising) What's happened? For God's sake, tell me! AUNT I think she's running off to marry that JD fellow! All our plans– Caleb releases her shoulders abruptly and she sinks into a chair. As he bolts out of the hotel, he pulls out a gun and checks it. END ACT 3 ACT 4 FADE IN: INT. CHURCH - DAY Buck, Vin, Nathan, and Ezra are already there, as JD and Casey join them. Both are trying unsuccessfully to hide their nervousness. JOSIAH The boys tell me you've decided to get married. You sure you're ready to do this? "Married in haste, we may repent at leisure." JD Josiah, we know all that. We're ready. CASEY Please, Josiah... JOSIAH All right. But I couldn't let you get married without at least trying to counsel you first, but if you're sure this is what you want... JD We're sure. JOSIAH Boys, you want to step up here? Ezra stands next to Casey, Vin next to Ezra. Buck stands next to JD. Nathan stands next to Buck. JOSIAH (cont'd) Friends, we are gathered here in the sight of God to join this man and this woman in holy matrimony. JD, do you take Casey to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or worse, in sickness and health, to love, cherish, and to obey, till death us do part? JD Yes, I do. JOSIAH Casey, do you take JD to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or worse, in sickness and health, to love, cherish, and to obey, till death us do part? There is a pause. Ezra nudges Casey gently. EZRA (stage whisper) You're supposed to say 'yes.' Vin elbows Ezra. There is a long, heavy silence. CASEY (suddenly fighting back tears) JD, I can't. JD Casey, what–? JOSIAH I think we need to leave them alone for awhile. Everyone but Casey and JD quietly leave so the two can talk. JD Casey? What's wrong? I thought we'd decided. CASEY JD, it's not you. She sits in a pew. JD sits beside her, watching her anxiously. CASEY I want to JD, I really do, but not like this. Nto to get away from Caleb and not to spite my aunt. This is forever, JD. And I want it to be right. I want it to be the right thing for the right reasons. (touching his face) Can you understand? JD (squeezing her hand gently) Yeah...yeah, I understand. Casey, will you promise me one thing? (a pause) When it is right, and it's for the right reasons, we'll try this again, you and me? CASEY Oh, JD... They hold each other for a long time, comfortable with a new understanding between them. As JD and Casey come out of the church, Caleb appears. He stops in front of Casey and JD, looking at them in a cold fury. Chris also appears to witness this exchange from across the street. CALEB You've done it, haven't you? You've married him! He suddenly slaps Casey and, as JD attempts to intervene, he punches JD, knocking him to the ground. The Seven, including Chris and Josiah, start towards them, but Caleb grabs Casey, his arm around her upper body. Caleb holds her tightly against him, her back pressed against his chest. He pulls out a gun and points the barrel against her temple. The guys have slowly fanned out in a wide semi-circle around Caleb and Casey. CALEB (to the guys) Just stop right there!! Everyone freezes. CASEY Caleb, please! CALEB (in a low, threatening voice) Do you have any idea how long I waited for you? Years! We belong together, you and me! Isn't that what you said? Isn't it?! CASEY Caleb, we were children! CALEB I don't care! I never forgot! You said we belonged together! You promised! Josiah takes a step toward them. JOSIAH Son, if you really love her– CALEB Get back! Don't you understand? She's mine! She always was mine! She promised! And she's gonna keep that promise! Aunt Adelaide arrives just in time to watch helplessly from across the street. CALEB (cont'd) I'll kill her before I let anyone else have her. Everybody just stay where you are. We're gonna leave now... BUCK Can't let you do that. Caleb fires at Buck. Buck grabs at his thigh and falls. CALEB Anyone else? Casey sinks her teeth into Caleb's arm. He angrily shoves her to the ground and turns the gun on her, his arm outstretched. He pauses only an instant, preparing to shoot the only woman he's ever loved when... JD lunges at him and he and Caleb struggle. The gun goes off, winging JD. JD drops to his knees. Caleb points the gun at him when... Chris shoots Caleb, mortally wounding him. CALEB Casey...? He dies. Casey runs to JD. They hold each other tightly as if they were the only two people in the world. There is an obvious bond there everyone can see, especially Chris and Aunt Adelaide. CUT TO: INT. NATHAN'S - DAY Buck is on a cot. Nathan is propping up Buck's bandaged leg. NATHAN That's a nasty wound. You lost a lotta blood. You're gonna have to rest up a few days. BUCK But the contest is tomorrow! NATHAN Guess you're just gonna have to miss it. You gotta give your body time to heal, Buck. Buck starts to get up, but Nathan grabs his shoulders and pushes him back down. BUCK But the ladies'll be disappointed! And they've all been lookin' forward to it. I can't let 'em down. Somebody'll have to go on in my place. How about you go? NATHAN Me! I can't get up in front of a bunch of people. Look, I'll try to find you someone, all right? BUCK (settling back against the pillow) Long as it ain't Ezra. I swear, that man has no sense of romance. You shoulda seen what he wanted me to say... Buck closes his eyes to drift off to sleep. CUT TO: INT. MEETING HALL - DAY We see a meeting hall crammed with people, slightly more females than males. Every seat is filled. Even the standing room is filled. There is a low buzz of voices. A Ladies League MATRON is on the small stage. MATRON Now, everyone, for our last contestant. We had a last-minute entry when one of our contestants became...indisposed yesterday. Introducing... Mr. Nathan Jackson. Nathan quietly steps onto the stage. He produces a small paper from his pocket NATHAN Mr. Wilmington told me you might like to hear some Shakespeare, so I picked out this poem. I didn't have time to memorize it, but I hope y'all like it. (reading) 'As an unperfect actor on the stage, Who with his fear is put besides his part, Or some fierce thing replete with too much rage, Whose strength's abundance weakens his own heart; So I, for fear of trust, forget to say The perfect ceremony of love's rite, And in my own love's strength seems to decay, O'ercharged with burden of mine own love's might. Oh, let my books be then the eloquence And dumb presagers of my speaking breast, Who plead for love and look for recompense, More than that tongue that more hath more expressed. Oh, learn to read what silent love hath writ: To hear with eyes belongs to love's fine wit.' The room is dead silent, spellbound by his very moving reading. Suddenly there is thunderous applause. Nathan smiles. CUT TO: EXT. HOTEL - DAY Aunt Adelaide and Casey are standing in front of the hotel just as the stage arrives. Aunt Adelaide is dressed for travel, her luggage by her side. AUNT Well, Casey, I'm glad Nettie is coming home, though I must say that was fast. CASEY I got the wire here if you want to see it again. AUNT No, dear. Are you going to be all right alone for a few days? CASEY Yes ma'am. I've got JD to look out for me. And his friends. AUNT Yes, you do. I'm sure you'll be in good hands. At least until you're married... There is a long pause. We can see Aunt Adelaide has something on her mind. Casey, I'm...sorry about Caleb Barnes...I just want the best for my niece. CASEY I know. Casey suddenly gives her aunt a quick hug, the first time since Aunt Adelaide's arrival. AUNT Is that Mr. Dunne a prospect? CASEY (smiling, with a shrug) Could be. Aunt Adelaide is the last one to board the stage. It's time to go. She looks out the window. AUNT That will be nice. (calling, as the stage pulls away) Be sure to invite me to the wedding! Good-by, Casey! CASEY Good-bye, Aunt Adelaide! Casey waves, watching the stagecoach until it's out of the sight. The moment it is, she turns and waves to the TELEGRAPH OFFICE CLERK. He waves back, then disappears inside. Casey turns into the nearest alley and rips off her dress. Underneath we see she's wearing the familiar jeans and shirt. She shoves the torn dress into a barrel and walks away, smiling. CUT TO: EXT. SALOON - DAY Chris, Vin, and Ezra are sitting or standing outside. Buck is sitting, his leg propped up. JD approaches, a huge grin across his face. VIN That smile can only mean one thing. Dear Aunt Adelaide left town? JD Sure has! Stagecoach just left. Josiah and Nathan join them, also grinning. EZRA Gentlemen. Where's my money? VIN Your money? EZRA My share of the prize money, of course. I arranged and recruited for that performance slot. BUCK Now, Ezra, you said that was a coaching fee. VIN And you didn't give Nathan no coaching. JOSIAH Nathan did fine on his own. NATHAN Thank you, Josiah. Buck, ain't you supposed to be resting? BUCK I am. Right here. Buck grins. Nathan just shakes his head. EZRA Now look here. I had plans for that money. NATHAN So do I. Half of it goes toward a new clinic. And since Josiah here did the coaching, helping me pick out this poem, the other half goes to him. JOSIAH And that half is going toward the church. How about a drink, Brother Jackson? NATHAN I'd like that, Brother Sanchez. Nice try, Ezra. Nathan and Josiah go into the saloon, followed by Ezra. EZRA Could you at least name the clinic after me? Chris, Buck and JD lag behind. CHRIS JD...you asked me somethin' awhile back... BUCK Before ya say anythin'–Kid, I'm surrenderin' my title as best man. Heck, we all know I am, so it ain't necessary to advertise. Buck grins and limps into the saloon. CHRIS If you still want to do this thing with you and Casey, I'd be willin'. That is, if you still want me to. JD wears a grin that takes over his whole face. JD Thanks, Chris. And someday I'd really like that. Not now. But definitely someday.
Chris smiles as the two of them join the others in the saloon.
FADE OUT: THE END