is hardly through begging Big John to release him from watch duty on the roof,
assuring the boss that there is no one in sight, when he suddenly fires his
rifle and hollers the rallying cry, "Injuns!" As the men roll the
buckboard across the ranch entrance and get into position for a fight, they
watch in wonder as a lone Indian races toward them. Hot on his trail are three
white men. As the Indian and horse fly over the fence into the ranch, he is shot
by one of his pursuers and falls to the ground. Before the three can reach him,
Big John is pointing his rifle.
Reno, asking for relief from watch
Buck sends Alacran on his way.
|Lije Driskill introduces himself and his two
companions, Faro and Bleeson. Bleeson explains that he had staked a claim on a
glory hole of a gold mine in Los Animas Canyon and was innocently working it
when the Indian came along and shot at him. John tells him gruffly that the
canyon is on his land, and that if he catches Bleeson working the claim or on
any other part of High Chaparral land, heíll be buried there. While Mano and Blue help the Indian mount up, John
instructs Mano to tell the brave, Alacran, of his message to Cochise - he is going to
bring peace to the Apaches if he has to break Cochiseís neck to do it.
Mano takes some liberties with his
translation. Vaquero leads John and Buck to the entrance of the
mine. John wants it blown up. While Buck offers that gold can be a
good thing, John insists that it has a way of fouling up the land.
|Back at the ranch, Victoria and John, addressing
each other as Mr. and Mrs. Cannon, have begun supper without Buck and Blue.
Victoria asks her husband if he could perhaps persuade his brother and son to
take a little of their dirt off before they come to the table. Just as John
assures her that heís already spoken to them and she doesnít have a thing to
worry about, the missing pair arrive, covered from head to toe in dirt and dust.
Buck cheerfully illustrates how dusty they are by blowing a large cloud on
to the table. Victoria shouts that she will not stand for it and rushes from the
Buck and Blue arrive at the
caked in dust.
|After listening to Johnís
lecture, Blue storms out to eat in the bunk house where no one is
particular about how a man smells. Shortly Buck, and then Mano, join
him, leaving John to finish his meal alone.
Victoria refuses to take
orders as if
she were hired help in her own house.
|John goes to Victoria. He wants a clear
understanding that she does not have the right to tell his brother and his son
what to do in his house. While he has told the pair that they were in the wrong,
he will not take them to task in front of a woman. And furthermore, she has to
learn to live with his rules. Victoria explodes, calling him a brute of a
husband. She is the mistress of the house and demands to be treated like one.
And until he can learn to do so, he can just keep his distance.
Once outside, Victoria is more upset
than angry. Buck passes her warily, then stops and apologizes.
Even the bunkhouse men had teased him about his dirty
appearance. Victoria confides in him that she doesnít think John
likes her very much. When Buck tells her that Blue thinks she is
the best and that he himself thinks the world of her, Victoria
kisses him on the cheek, saying that she sometimes wishes her
husband was more like him.
|The next day, Victoria is going into Tucson. John
not only tells her that he was wrong, but that she looks pretty. When an
obviously hung-over Buck complains about having to go along, Victoria tells him
that she wouldnít go without him, perking him up considerably. While Victoria is shopping for some very gaudy
shirts for Buck and Blue to wear to the supper table, Buck and Sam go into the
saloon. Driskill, Faro and Bleeson follow them in, leaving their Indian
companion, Black Dog, outside.
Buck prepares to take on
|Buck offers to buy
drinks for the house, but Driskill announces loudly that they donít drink with Injun lovers. Buck
prepares himself for an enjoyable fight. The bigger man, Driskill soon sends him
sprawling into the street. But Buck returns and knocks him out with a whiskey
bottle over the head. "I want them dead," Driskill growls to Black
Buck protects Victoria
are under fire.
|On the ride home, Sam informs Buck that they arenít
alone. Black Dog has brought more Indians who are heavily armed. Hiding in the
entrance to the mine, they are out numbered and almost surrounded. But Sam draws
their fire while Buck prepares the blasting powder purchased in Tucson. The
explosions scatter the Indians. Victoria embraces Buck and gives him another
heartfelt kiss on the cheek. That night, while Reno strums his guitar and
sings, Buck is deep in troubled thought. Sam asks him whatís wrong, even
offers him a "knock" from a jug that he has stashed. Heís more than
a little surprised to be turned down, but leaves Buck to his thoughts.
Pedro fires a shot from the water
tower and Ira rushes into the house with the news. Apaches
are running off one of the canyon herds. Big John instructs
Buck to stay with Victoria while he and the rest of the men
ride off. An Apache is inside the fence and he sees the pair
hiding. When he fires a shot through the window at them,
Buck fires back and kills him. Victoria kisses him in thanks
for saving her again.
|Inches from her face, Buck
hesitates for a second, then moves to give her a real kiss. She pulls away in
surprise, telling him no. She asks him gently what heís doing. Buck says he
doesnít know, that sheís got to tell him. Heís never back shot a man and
when itís his own brother . . . . Victoria apologizes that sheís led him to
believe she wanted more than friendship from him. Buck says "adios"
and she realizes he means it for good. He babbles on uncomfortably about keeping
in touch and says heíll blow up the mine on his way. Then he rushes from the
Buck starts to kiss Victoria.
|Big John and his men find an
Indian with arrows in his back. But the arrows are Pima, not Apache. He
realizes then that itís a trap, and sends Blue home to tell Buck that
"the three yahoos" are going to try to stake out the mine.
Blue promises to bring Buck back.
|Victoria has the sad task of telling Blue that
Buck is gone and not coming back. She says it was all her fault Ė a
misunderstanding. She asks Blue to go after him and tell him that everything is
all right and that she begs him to come back. Surprised by her intensity, Blue
tells her that heíll get him.
Victoria pleads with Blue to talk
Buck into returning.
There are Indians on the mountain overlooking the
mine when Blue arrives, but he doesnít see them. He is immediately overtaken
by Driskill, Faro and Bleeson. They string him up by his heels from a tree, and
start a fire under his head. "Thatís pure Apache," says Bleeson.
Surely Big John will think that Cochise is to blame. But Buck sees
it all. "Blue Boy, how can you forget everything your Uncle Buck has
taught you?" he wonders out loud.
Alacran acknowledges Buck
after rescuing Blue.
|When Blue is roasting over an open flame,
Buck fires, scattering the trio. The Apaches ride in and release Blue.
One of them is Alacran, the Apache they protected earlier. He and Buck
acknowledge each other.
Big John, Mano and Sam see an explosion in the distance. As they reach the mine,
Buck and Blue are adding crosses to the graves of the claim jumpers. John wants
to know why Victoria thinks Buck is leaving the High Chaparral. Women never get
anything right, says Buck. They worry too much. Letís go home, says John.
|Back at the ranch, its supper time again and Blue
is wearing his new shirt and a tie. Buck appears on the landing, so
uncomfortable in his new brightly colored shirt and tie. He nervously picks at
imagined dirt, is not quite sure what to do with his hat. His hair is parted
neatly in the middle and slicked back. John manages to turn his laughter into a
cough. Blue and Mano are not so successful. But Victoria gets up and welcomes
Buck back, taking his arm and kissing his cheek. As John pulls out a chair for
his wife, they begin their civilized meal.
Back for supper in new, clean
by Ginny Shook)