the countess
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The Lone Writer  

The Countess Full Episode – Bonanza, Season #03, Episode #09

Ben Cartwright’s former flame, Lydia, now known as Lady Lydia Chadwick after inheriting wealth and widowhood, returns to Virginia City with a determined agenda. Her target? The Ponderosa, and specifically Ben, in hopes of rekindling their past romance. However, Ben proves resistant to her advances. Undeterred, Lady Lydia devises a plan: she aims to financially ruin Ben, believing that this will compel him to accept her love and support. In this episode, The Countess, features a cast including Maggie Hayes as Lady Lydia, John Alderson as Montague, and Dan Sheridan as Kelly. Penned by William Cox and William Powell (not to be confused with the famous film star), this episode originally aired on November 19, 1961.

For further insights into the plot and some intriguing trivia, feel free to delve into the full episode below.

Watch the Full Episode of The Countess

Watch the Full Episode of The Countess:

Main Cast

In addition to the primary cast, “The Countess,” the ninth installment of Season 3 in Bonanza, showcases a range of recurring and guest-supporting actors. The following personalities make notable appearances in this episode:

  • Lorne Greene as Ben Cartwright
  • Pernell Roberts as Adam Cartwright
  • Dan Blocker as Eric ‘Hoss’ Cartwright
  • Michael Landon as Joseph ‘Little Joe’ Cartwright
  • Margaret Hayes as Lady Linda Chadwick
  • John Alderson as Montague
  • Dan Sheridan as Kelly
  • Dick Whittinghill as John the Banker
  • Orville Sherman as Sam
  • Norman Leavitt as Telegrapher
  • Michael Ross as Runyon
  • Robert Ridgely as Surveyor
  • Victor Sen Yung as Hop Sing
  • Fred Aldrich as Ranch Hand (uncredited)
  • Noble ‘Kid’ Chissell as Ranch Hand (uncredited)
  • Bob Miles as Clete (uncredited)
  • Phil Schumacher as Ranch Hand (uncredited)
  • Jack Stoney as Ranch Hand (uncredited)

Full Story Line for The Countess

Returning to Virginia City, Lady Linda Chadwick, once romantically involved with Ben Cartwright, seeks to reignite their past flame. However, Ben remains disinterested in her advances. Undeterred, Linda devises a cunning scheme to financially sabotage Ben, hoping to force him into accepting her affection and financial support.

Full Script and Dialogue of The Countess

(fanfare plays)

Whoa.

You managed to
beat the stage in, Pa,

but my back may
never be the same.

Whole half minute to spare.

Hoss, glad to see
you're still with us.

Kind of lost you in
that last cloud of dust.

Pa, I know my neck
will never be the same.

This dad-burned collar.


There.

Now, don't forget, you're
about to meet royalty.

Well, she's not exactly royalty.

Lady Chadwick's a countess.

Yeah, that kind
of worries me, Pa.

How do you talk to a countess?

Just... just remember to
mind your manners, that's all.

MAN: Hyah!

Come on, yah!

Hey, here comes the stage.

Yeah.

Whoa, there!

Whoa!

Thank you.



(sighs)

Lady Chadwick?

Linda?

Ben?

Ben, how wonderful to see you.

- I didn't...
- It was such a surpri...

(both laugh)

It was so good of you
to come and meet me.

BEN: Well, I almost didn't.

Your letter didn't arrive
until yesterday morning.

Ben, you haven't changed a bit.

(British accent): I say
there, my good man,

do be more careful with
that crate, if you please.

And that is Montague, my
late husband's business agent.

Mr. Montague.

Linda, these are, these
are two of my sons.

- Lady Chadwick...
- How do you do?

Joseph and Hoss.

- How do you do?
- Hi.

It's a great pleasure
to meet both of you.

But someone's missing.

Your eldest son...
Adam, isn't it?

Yes.

He's away on business.
He'll be back shortly.

But, Linda, you've
quite a memory.

Yes, yes, I've quite a memory.

Well, the, uh, the boys
will take your luggage

back by the wagon.

Perhaps Mr. Montague
can ride with them,

and we'll go back
in the carriage.

Wonderful. It's
a delightful idea.

Uh, we'll-we'll see
you later, ma'am.

Is that any way to
talk to the countess?

Well, I meant, uh,
Your Royal Highness?

(laughter)

(theme music playing)

What you've been saying about
England sounds fascinating.

You know, I-I must get
there myself one day.

Yes.

I hope you're going to be
able to stay with us for a while.

Well, I've planned about two
months for my American visit.

Two months?

Mm-hmm.

Linda, you couldn't
properly tour

the Ponderosa in two months.

Ben, I'll forgo
the rest of my trip

if you promise me we can
spend these two months together.

(laughs)

Oh, that's part of the
main Ponderosa herd.

Part?

Your cattle holdings
are truly enormous.

And those, uh, those
hills straight ahead,

they contain some of
the richest silver deposits

in-in the world, I guess.

Not all ours, of course.

(chuckles)

And over there...

Linda, there's enough
timber in those woods to...

well, to shore up the universe.

Do I sound very
proud of all this?

I am.

Oh, I can well understand.

You love it, don't you, Ben?

Yes.

Very much.

You have every
right to be proud.

You've carved a kingdom
out of a wilderness.

And you've raised
three fine boys.

Thank you.

This is really
in trust for them.

A trust to the future.

That's all very well,

but what about the
future of Ben Cartwright?

Well, right now,
he's got all he can do

to take care of the present.

(both chuckle)

Here you go.

Dad-burn, I never
seen so much baggage.

Well, we better
get these two next.

Yeah.

Hey, wait a minute, wait
a minute, wait a minute.

You're-you're all
out of balance there.

I don't want you
to hurt your back.

- Thanks a lot.
- That's it. That's it.

Now you're in balance.

(imitating Montague):
Now, I say, my good fellow,

do be careful with that
baggage, won't you? Mm.

Joe, how come that feller
speaks such funny English?

Oh, I don't know.

They all seem to speak
that way in England.

Yeah.

Hey, Hoss, I don't seem
to remember the countess.

Well, you shouldn't;
you wasn't even born yet.

I was just a little
shaver myself.

Aw, come on, you were
never a little shaver.

You reckon what's
in this outfit, anyhow?

Feels like part of
the countess's castle.

Got it?

It's beautiful.

Whoa.

Welcome to the
Ponderosa, Countess.

Thank you, Little Joe.

Oh, I see my luggage.

Where's Montague?

Oh, Hop Sing is
showing him to his room.

I-Is that Hoss?

Yes'm.

(Ben and Linda laugh)

Well, that's Hoss all right,
but what's that in front of him?

Now, don't be curious, Ben.

We'll save that for later.

Boys, would you mind putting
that in the living room for me?

Certainly.

(whistles)

It's lovely here.

Lovely.

Shall we go in?

I... (sighs)

I feel like I've come home.

Now, Linda, I'm sure you know

that we're all eaten up
with curiosity about, uh...

LINDA: You mean you
don't know what it is?

No.

It's my gift to you, Ben.

You... you mean,
you-you brought that

halfway around
the world j-just to...

Just to give it to you.

And it was worth
all the trouble.

Boys, do you mind
opening it for me?

- Not a bit.
- Pleasure, ma'am.

You know it wasn't necessary.

Thank you.

Ben, you used to
do better than that.

"To all those endearing
young charms," remember?

Yes, I remember.

I do hope you like it.

I did it from memory.

BEN: Well, L-Linda,
it's... it's beautiful.

(chuckles): W-What a surprise.

Oh, Ben, it's-it's
really not that good.

Oh, but it is, it
is, it's wonderful!

And I'm very impressed.

I didn't know you
were an artist.

Oh, is that you, Pa?

I mean, Lady Chadwick
still looks the same.

(laughs)

You look through these.

(footsteps approaching)

Well...

Well, don't we look
ravishing today.

Why, thank you, kind sir.

(laughs)

Ben, you haven't forgotten,

you promised to show
me the beautiful lake?

No, I have not forgotten.

Hoss, would you mind
hitching up the buckboard?

Oh, yeah, Pa, right away.

Ben, it's-it's magnificent.

I don't know when I've ever
seen anything to equal it.

Well, I suppose, compared
to what you knew in England,

this is just so much wilderness.

Perhaps, but
magnificent wilderness.

Let's sit down and enjoy it.

You know...

the Ponderosa always
puts on her best dress

when she greets
a beautiful woman.

You're so kind, Ben.

But then, you always were.

And you were always beautiful.

Thank you.

Ben... I wish that...

We live not as we
wish, but as we can.

I shouldn't have
rejected you, darling.

"Rejected" is a harsh word.

Nevertheless...

that's what I did,
and I'm sorry.

What's past is past.

We can't change it.

Ben, can't we correct a mistake?

Oh, yes, I...

I suppose some
mistakes can be corrected.

Sometimes it's too
late to correct them.

Well, I'm a very stubborn
woman, Ben Cartwright,

and I've waited 20 years,

and I can wait a few more.

(both laugh)

Here you are, Ben.

Thank you.

Well, Linda, you're lending
an unfamiliar elegance

to the Ponderosa.

We never stopped for tea before.

It's one of the many things
I loved about England.

4:00 tea is very refreshing.

Don't you think so, Hoss?

Oh, yes, ma'am.
It's sort of weak,

but it's good, it's good.

(galloping hoofbeats
approaching)

Can I see you a
minute, Mr. Cartwright?

Something's come up.

I'll be right with you, Kelly.

The mine foreman.

A little business. Excuse me.

Go right ahead. I have to
see Hop Sing about dinner.

We're planning a surprise.

Well, what is it, Kelly?

We got trouble at the mine, sir.

What, an accident,
somebody hurt?

No, no, no. It's the men.

Now, what's back of all
this? Come on, out with it.

They want to get paid every day.

Every day?

Every day? What are they, loco?

What's got into them?

Now, look, you go back
there and you tell them

that they'll get paid, as
usual, when the time comes.

We've never missed
a payroll in our lives.

I don't know, Mr. Cartwright.

I'm gonna have a hard time
holding those men together.

Well, I suppose I'd
better ride out with you.

Look, I'll... I'll send Little
Joe along in the morning.

He'll back you up.

Well, I'll do my best, sir.

Eh, don't worry,
Pa... It's probably

just a couple of
troublemakers up there.

What the heck?
Payday's just next week.

What do you think?

Oh, well, uh...
I'm no art critic.

Yeah, well... what
is it, your ladyship?

Oh, Hoss, can't-can't
you recognize a...

barn and a tree
when you see one?

Little Joe, you're
not quite right.

There's a school in
Paris now that's all the fad,

it's called Impressionism.

Uh, who are they trying to
impress with a barn and a tree?

- (Linda laughs)
- That'll do, Hoss.

(door opens)

Ah, Mr. Cartwright.

I was outside enjoying some
of your good Western air.

One of your men rode up
and asked me to give you this.

Oh. Thank you.

♪♪

What is it, Pa?

(sighs) There's trouble
at the lumber camp now.

This better not be serious...

We need that timber
cutting right now.

- HOSS: You bet we do.
- Trouble, Ben?

Hm? Oh, uh... (sighs)
yeah, just a little.

I understand what the Ponderosa
means to you and the boys.

I understand what it
means when it's threatened.

Montague, why
don't we go outside

and get some of that
fresh air that you mentioned.

You better get over there
first thing in the morning, Hoss.

How bad is it, Pa?

Well, Slim says the cutting
crew quit cold this afternoon,

every last man.

Morning, Hoss.

Am I glad to see you.

Morning, Slim.

What's this all about?

Well, they're saying
the Ponderosa scrip

is no good anymore.

They want to be paid
in cash from now on.

What good's cash
way off up here?

(chuckles quietly)

Men, listen to me a minute.

Now, I don't know what
your complaint is, or why...

but since when isn't
the Ponderosa scrip

good for cash any
day of the week?

Pete. Morgan.

Everybody got the lockjaw?

We ain't trusting the
Cartwrights no more, fat boy.

No cash, no work.

I don't think I've
seen you before.

Name's Runyon, fat boy.

I don't know this one...

but I do know the rest of you.

Seems pretty clear to me

that he's a loudmouthed
troublemaker.

Don't listen to his lies.

Now... you wouldn't
be calling me a liar,

would you, Cartwright?

I reckon I just did.

Fat boy like you
calling a man a liar...

(grunting)

(panting)

It's fellers like him that
keep me from getting fat.

Now, does any of you
want to change your mind?

You heard him. What about it?

We all know Hoss can fight,
but can his old man pay off?

You're dad-burned right he can.

When you go back to
work, you'll get your cash.

Now, Ben, wait, I
understand your problem,

but I've got to tell
you one more time,

money has never been
as tight as it is right now.

Now, I'd like to help you,
but what you're asking

- is out of the question.
- Out of the question?

After all the years we've
been doing business.

Especially now when I'm in
such a desperate situation, John.

I'm sorry, I told
you how sorry I was,

- but my hands are tied.
- Your hands aren't tied.

John, do you realize I've
never been turned down

- for a loan before?
- And our cash reserve

has never been called up before.

Ben, I couldn't float
a dollar if I wanted to.

Now, if you could
hold on for two weeks...

If I could hold on
for a couple of weeks

do you think I'd be
here begging for money?

I'm really sorry, Ben.

Wait. I'll have a
meeting of the board.

Maybe they can find a solution.

Well, thank you, John.
Thank you very much.

I ask for immediate cash,

and you give me a
meeting of the board!

Oh, Joseph, I've been waiting.

Well, what's the situation?

(sighs): We had a long argument,

and I tried to convince them.

You didn't succeed?

No.

They want their money every
day when the work's done.

We've got contracts
to deliver that ore.

I just don't understand it.

Lumber camp, bank, mines.

It just doesn't add up.

Well, it adds up
to a lot of trouble.

Good morning.

Morning, Linda.

Well, you both
look awfully sullen

for such a fine morning.

Well, we...

Did you have a
good night's rest?

I slept wonderfully, thank you.

- The air is indeed a tonic.
- Yes, it is.

Uh, I'll have Hop Sing
prepare your breakfast.

He already has. He
brought it to me in my room.

- He's spoiling me terribly.
- (laughs)

(door opens)

Pa, I need to talk
to you right away.

It's about the men up
at the lumber camp.

Morning, Lady Chadwick.

Nice day, ain't it?

Beautiful day, Hoss.

- Will you excuse me?
- Certainly.

Joseph, I'd like to ask your
advice about something.

Yes, ma'am.

I was wondering where
I was going to hang

my wonderful masterpiece.

Whether we should
keep it in here,

or whether we should
put it in your father's study

over the desk.

Well, I think you
ought to ask Pa.

He was a handsome
man, wasn't he?

Yes, he was.

He still is a handsome man.

That was before... he
married your mother.

You know, Joseph, if...

well, if... if I had
married your father,

you might have
been my son, Joseph.

You would've had
your hands full, ma'am.

But I think you
could've handled it.

♪♪

Hey, Pa! Hoss!

Here comes Adam!

Ah, hello, son. Good
to see you home.

Howdy, brother. How goes it?

LITTLE JOE: And
it better be good.

Well, what's wrong
with everybody?

You look like you just
lost the Ponderosa.

If that's a joke,
it's not funny.

Well, what's he mean, Pa?

Well, how did things
go in San Francisco?

Everything went
fine... I got the boat

to carry the lumber,
we set the rates,

and they're waiting
for the first shipment.

Mm, well... I'm
afraid we can't deliver.

What do you mean,
we can't deliver?

We've got to deliver. I've
already chartered a ship.

Let's go inside.

Adam... you remember
Linda Lawrence?

From New Orleans.

Yes, of course.

I wasn't certain for a moment.

Adam, how very
nice to see you again.

Linda's now Lady Chadwick.

Yes, I remember... you,
uh, you went over to England

to get married.

- And I was about 11 at the time, wasn't I?
- Mm-hmm.

Well, almost 11.

(Adam chuckles)

Ah, something new's been added.

Yes, a gift from Lady Chadwick.

Linda did that herself.

Quite an artist,
don't you think?

Yes, quite an artist.

Do you have a moment, my lady?

Oh, Montague, would
you come down, please?

This is my eldest son, Adam.

Mr. Montague, Lady
Chadwick's business agent.

- Well, how do you do, sir?
- Hello.

I have some papers for
your signature, my lady.

Would you take them
to my room, Montague?

I'll be along in a moment.

Montague represents
the tyranny of trivia.

It was nice to see
you again, Adam.

Excuse me.

Let's go.

The Countess of Chadwick.

Little bit different
from that girl

we knew in New
Orleans, isn't she?

Look, Adam, I'm not
gonna hold anything back.

We're in more trouble
than I can ever remember.

HOSS: Aw, Pa, we've...
we've weathered lots of storms.

Well, just what
is all this about?

(sighs) Well, we knew we
were overextending ourselves

a little when we contracted

for both the ore and
the timber deliveries.

And as Hoss says,

we've weathered
such storms before,

but this time, it's...
it's a little different.

I don't think we
can make delivery.

For some reason, the...

the men working for us have
the idea that we're flat broke,

so they refuse to work unless
they get paid in cash every day,

instead of Ponderosa scrip.

Well, the bank has
no cash reserves

to loan us, so... stalemate.

Bad as all that, huh?

Yeah, as bad as all that.

We have all these
contracts to meet,

and that means that somehow

we're going to have to
meet the men's demands,

ridiculous as they may seem.

And time is running out on us.

MONTAGUE: Oh, Mr. Cartwright?

Lady Chadwick
wishes to see you, sir,

at your earliest convenience.

Well, I'm rather busy
right now, Montague.

Is it anything important?

Oh, I... I wouldn't know, sir,

but I do know her ladyship
minds being kept waiting.

(Ben sighs)

All right.

(Hoss sighs)

Well... let's go over
these contracts again.

Maybe there's still a way out.

I don't know, Adam.

I ain't never seen Pa this
worried. Have you, Joe?

No.

Well, he never
had a better reason.

(music box plays whimsical tune)

(knocking)

Come in.

♪♪

Hmm. It has been so many
years, I'd forgotten about this.

You gave it to me for Christmas.

I'll never part with it.

I, uh... I imagine

you've received...
more expensive gifts.

It wasn't the money.

(box clicks shut, music stops)

I've learned a great deal
about money these last years.

Yes, I'm... I'm learning more
about money every day myself.

Montague said you wanted
to see me about something.

Yes.

Ben, my womanly
intuition tells me

that you're in trouble
and need help.

Well...

your womanly intuition
was never more correct.

But, uh, everything
will be all right.

We'll be... we'll be all right.

Ben, I'm a very wealthy woman.

I've got money, you need it.

It's as simple as that.

Well, Linda, that's very...
very generous of you,

and very kind and
thoughtful, but...

And thoughtful and very gen...

You make me the happiest
woman in the world.

It's very generous
of you, but...

I insist, Ben.

Linda... thank you,

but we've always been able to
manage on the Ponderosa, and...

and I'm sure we will now.

Thank you.

Very well.

If it was another woman,
I'd know what to do.

It seems that my
rival is this ranch.

Well, I never quite
thought of it that way, but...

(laughing):
perhaps you're right.

Fire!

Why, the timber's on fire!

Boys?! Hoss? Adam?

Northwest slope is on fire!

BEN: Well, you've all
been very helpful, men.

We're all very grateful to you.

Certainly caught this thing
before it did any real damage.

There'll be a
bonus for all of you.

- Slim?
- Hmm?

Got any notion
how this fire started?

Runyon's been
missing several hours.

I hate to accuse the man,

but he was seen before
we saw the smoke,

now he's gone.

Well, he better have
gone a long way.

Can I...? Is there any
word about the pay?

They'll be paid when
they're supposed to be.

I'm afraid I can't
get 'em back to work

without something
more than that.

Slim, you just keep 'em going
until we can work something out.

Well, they might
stick around, but...

they're not gonna work,
not till you pay them.

We'll find a way, somehow.

They're good men.

It's this Runyon.

You know, he's got them
convinced you're broke.

(Ben sighs)

We'll just have to
unconvince 'em.

Come on, boys, let's ride.

Sure would like to get
my hands on that Runyon.

Adam, go into town
and see the sheriff.

Maybe he can pick
up Runyon's trail.

He should have some
interesting information.

On my way.

Excuse me,
Mr. Cartwright, for busting in.

What is it this time, Kelly?

Well, some of the
men are threatening

to flood the shafts at the mine.

Those shafts ever get flooded,

it'll take months
to pump them out.

Looks like troublemaker
Runyon's moved over to the mines.

Let's go, Kelly.

MONTAGUE: Oh, Mr. Adam?

You perchance
going into town, sir?

Yes.

Oh, I'd appreciate a ride.

Business details, you know.

Well, come along.

Good day, gentlemen.

(door closes)

Ben, are you going to take me
for the ride you promised me?

Oh, yes, I did, didn't I?

Well, Linda, Hoss and I have
been discussing some problems,

and would you mind
terribly if we postponed?

Well, I... I am
disappointed, but, uh,

perhaps we can do
it some other time.

Of course.

Oh, Pa, why don't you...
why don't you go on?

You need a little
fresh air anyhow.

Ain't nothing we
can do around here

till Little Joe and
Adam get back.

- I know...
- Ben, the ride'll do you good.

Come on.

All right.

That water is so blue.

Oh, it's beautiful!

No wonder you love it so much.

(Ben chuckles)

There I go talking
about my rival again.

(laughter)

Are you feeling better, darling?

- Much better.
- Good.

Well, I shouldn't give the lake

or the Ponderosa
all the credit for that.

I think the company had
something to do with it.

- Flatterer!
- (laughter)

But then you always were.

Still the same Ben Cartwright

I fell in love with
in New Orleans.

Now, Linda, that's
all in the past.

There's one thing
I can never forget.

Those engravings.

I don't recall any engravings.

(sighs)

It's a woman's memory, darling.

The engravings
on the invitations.

On our wedding invitations.

What is it?

Some strange men.

Better get over there
and see what they're up to.

(birds singing)

Howdy.

Oh, hello there, Mr. Cartwright.

How are you, sir?

Say, doesn't your
property line extend

from right about
here down to the lake?

BEN: Yeah, it does.

I believe there are some old
markers along the way. Why?

Well, someone just bought
that parcel of land over yonder,

and I wouldn't want
to make a mistake

about your property line.

Somebody bought
that piece of land?

Oh.

You know who that might be?

MAN: Gosh, I don't know.

My company just sent me
out here to survey the line.

That's all I can tell you.

Well, thank you.

Thank you very much.

(birds cawing)

It's a beautiful
piece of land, Ben.

I'm surprised you
never bought it yourself.

So am I, Linda.

So am I.

Hey, you have a good time?

- Hoss.
- I had a lovely time.

Hoss, uh, where are
Adam and Little Joe?

Pa, they ain't got back yet.

That's funny. I expected
them back by now.

Come on, Jennie.

Remember, Ben, my
offer still holds good.

Don't forget it.

(hoofbeats approaching)

Joseph, what happened?

Well, we stopped them
from flooding the shaft,

but the men quit.

All of 'em?

Yeah, all but a skeleton crew.

They can't do that!

I can't understand it, Pa.

- I don't know what it all means.
- (hoofbeats approaching)

Well, Adam, what
did you come up with?

(Adam sighs)

Well, this fella Runyon's
been seen in town,

but nobody's able to find him.

Well, did you
talk to the sheriff?

Yeah, but I don't think
Runyon's our main problem.

- What does that mean?
- (Adam sighs)

Pa, they're working
awfully close to home.

We might as well face it.

Might as well face what?

When did it all start?

Now, think back.

When did it all really
begin to happen?

I think Adam's
got something, Pa.

If you've got something
on your mind, out with it.

We know there are problems

to running a ranch the
size of the Ponderosa.

But all of these
things happening

one right after the other...

It has to be part of a
well-organized plan.

Yeah, well, that thought
sort of crossed my mind, too.

But whose?

(Adam sighs)

I can think of somebody.

The Countess.

Don't be stupid.

Pa, it has to be.

She wasn't here
for more than a week

when we had that trouble
with the... with the timber crew.

Then we had to shut down
the mine, and then the fire.

She has to be the one
behind this operation.

It's ridiculous!

Even if it turns
out to be the truth?

Pa, they could be right.

Let's just stop all
these insinuations.

- Pa, we know how you feel...
- Be quiet!

(Little Joe sighs)

All right, what do
you want us to do?

First thing I want you to
do is stop those insinuations,

and the second thing
is, get some facts.

I think I know
where we can start.

We'll find out who
bought that piece of land

right next to the Ponderosa.

Somebody bought
some land nearby here?

Yeah, yeah, on
the southwest line.

Saw the surveying crew
when I was out riding with...

with Linda.

Well, land titles must
be filed in the land office.

Someone's name must
be on those papers.

All right, let's get to
the land office then.

Well, I'll attend to that.

Hoss, you ride
into town with me.

We can have another
look for Runyon.

Boys, before we jump
at any conclusions,

let's get some solid facts.

So, mind your manners
with Lady Chadwick.

(Little Joe sighs)

What's she have to gain, Adam?

What does she want?

(Adam sighs)

Pa.

She wants him.

She's out to get him.

What other reason does she need?

- Mike, howdy.
- What can I do for you, Hoss?

You want to send a telegram?

No, no, thank you, Mike.

Mike, I'm looking for a
big feller named Runyon.

A great, big, noisy guy.

He's about, oh,
six, six or six, seven.

Weighs about 265, 270.

Oh, he's a fella
about your size, eh?

Yeah, little bit taller.

Was he dressed, uh,
rough in caulk boots and all?

Yeah.

Well, he must be a friend
of that, uh, Englishman

that's been
visiting with you-all.

Montague? Him and
Montague know each other?

Well, I don't know.

The English fella
was just in here

sending off telegrams to banks
in San Francisco and New York,

then Runyon came in
and they left quick-like.

Where'd they go?

Oh, across the street.

Where across the street?

Well, the old livery stable.

The one that Hank Purdee
quit running last month.

They left just a minute ago.

Thank you, Mike.

Hey, Pa, I just found Runyon.

Hoss, the boys were right.

You know that-that property
that was sold next to ours?

Name on the... on the
land title: Montague's.

Linda's behind the whole thing.

She's been using
Montague as a front.

Pa, Montague and Runyon
are right now in the stable.

Right there.

Come on. Come on!

I say this ain't enough.

Why, if they'd have
caught me setting that fire,

I'd have been lynched.

I want more, and if I
don't get the money,

I'm going to go to the sheriff
and tell him the real story.

I...

Remember me, fat boy?

Hoss.

Take him to the sheriff.

I just couldn't believe it.

And then I saw your signature

on that deed in the land office.

Ah, yes.

I knew that purchase
was a mistake.

Have to sign the
thing, you know.

British Land Corporation.

Belongs to Lady
Chadwick, doesn't it?

That is none of your
business, Mr. Cartwright,

if you'll pardon my bluntness.

Anything that affects the
Ponderosa is my business.

Now, shall we go
to the sheriff's office?

Oh, no.

Afraid I can't accommodate
you there, old man.

That's not in our plans at all.

Montague...

I could drop you
where you stand.

But I won't.

I must say, that's very
sporting of you, Mr. Cartwright.

You know, quite a few
things have surprised me

in this new country of yours.

I accept your challenge.

It's only fair to
warn you, though,

I still hold the advantage.

You are older than I.

Well, don't let that deter you.

(grunting)

I've about had it, you know.

Would you say I fought my best

and didn't welsh
on you, old man?

Yeah, I think I could
certainly say that.

Point of honor, you know.

Montague.

I want you to...

I want you to tell me the
truth about Lady Chadwick.

And about yourself.

Great.

(door closes)

Ben.

You've finished
dressing at last.

Oh, Ben, I'm so happy

that you've decided to
accept my offer of help.

Well, I merely said
we'd talk about it, Linda.

Oh, just you wait.

I wonder where Montague
is with the papers.

Well, he'll be here.

It was so nice of you
to invite him for dinner.

Well, as you said, he knows more

about your business
affairs than you do.

Oh, Ben, it's all going to be

so wonderful here
at the Ponderosa,

with you and the
boys just all together.

The Ponderosa is
just the beginning, Ben.

Oh, I've never been
so happy in all my life.

Oh, we've been waiting for you.

And what a handsome lot you are.

Well, gentlemen, I...

I propose a toast to
our... our lovely guest.

You're all very sullen.

I wonder where Montague is.

Oh, he'll be here.

- Hoss, will you help me?
- Yes, sir.

To... our beautiful guest,

who's brought color and life

to a lonely bachelor's
establishment.

No longer lonely, darling.

And, uh, what's more,

has brought us intriguing
memories of the past.

To Linda Lawrence,
Countess of Chadwick,

the most charming

and most conniving
witch I've ever known.

What did you say?

I said you are the most charming

and most conniving
witch I have ever known.

Ben, you're not serious.

Linda, why did you come here?

Why?

Ben, you... you know why.

To recapture something
we lost 20 years ago.

No, to recapture
what you had lost.

And when I refused
to roll back the years,

you tried to use your
Chadwick influence

and money in
some willful attempt

to break the Ponderosa
and force me into a marriage.

No.

No, Ben, you're wrong.

It's a lie. It's a
monstrous lie.

You had all this
planned very carefully

long before you
arrived, didn't you?

No.

Boys, please, he's wrong.

I told him he was wrong.

I tried to save the Ponderosa.

Save it by wrecking it?

I offered you money.

Did you really think
I'd accept your money?

Why not?

I thought you'd accept
anything to save this stupid ranch

that you've substituted
for a woman.

Linda, I would never
put the Ponderosa

above the love of a woman.

But you're no longer
a woman, Linda.

I'll show you the kind
of woman I can be.

Where is Montague?

Montague!

Montague.

You knew he was
there all the time.

Montague, come
down here at once.

I said, "Come
down here at once."

It's no good, my lady.

Montague's right.

It's no good.

You may be able to buy out

the cash reserves of a
small bank, Countess,

but you cannot
buy out my friends.

I can buy anything, anybody.

You cannot buy everybody.

This afternoon, the
stockholders of the bank

voted me all the money I need

from their own
personal accounts.

Money... I'll show you
what money can do.

Montague, carry out my orders.

Wire the shippers
in San Francisco.

It's no use, my lady.

I had to tell them the truth.

Your plans are finished.

I'll do it myself.

I'll break you if it's
the last thing I do!

BEN: Linda, stop it!

Must you destroy
everything you can't have,

everything you can't possess?

You'd destroy your
own happiness.

Happiness? What do you
know about happiness?

You clodhopper, you farmer!

My lady, you're
demeaning yourself.

I hate you!

I hate you, Ben!

(sobbing)

Pack our things.

For the first time in her life,
she needs someone to help her.

LINDA: Montague.

There's a place for
you here if you want it.

LINDA: Montague!

Yes, my lady.

(door closes)

We're sorry, Pa.

Well, I... I guess we've
learned something.

Almost losing all this,

maybe we can appreciate it more.

Why don't we all
go outside and try

some of that good,
clean Western air

Montague was talking about?

Yeah, never smelled better.

Behind the Scenes of The Countess

During their carriage journey at the outset, Ben occupies the seat to Linda’s left. However, Ben finds himself seated to her right upon their arrival at the Ponderosa.

Looking for More Bonanza Episodes?

Bonanza provides wholesome entertainment suitable for individual enjoyment or family gatherings. The Countess is the 75th episode among the series’ total of 430. Produced by NBC, Bonanza graced their network from September 1959 to January 1973, encompassing 14 seasons.

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