Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: The Lone Ranger
Show: Trouble at Rafter H
Date: Jul 09 1954

written by Betty Joyce

made available courtesy of WRKS Radio Theatre and Arizona TheatreWorks 1998

The Cast
The Lone Ranger
Announcer
Tonto
Marshall Jack Forbes
Thunder Martin
Clarabelle Hornblow

(The Lone Ranger theme music)

 

(Sound of horse running; gunshots)

 

Lone Ranger:

Hi-yo Silver!!

Announcer:

A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty, "Hi-Yo Silver!". The Lone Ranger.

(Theme music swells)

 

Announcer:

With his faithful Indian companion, Tonto, the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains led the fight for law and order in the early western United States. No where in the pages of history can one find a greater champion of justice.

(Sound of horse galloping)

 

Return with us now to those thrilling days of yester-year. From out of the past come the thundering hoof beats of the great horse, Silver! The Lone Ranger rides again!

Lone Ranger:

Come on Silver! Let's go big fella! Hi-yo Silver, away!

(theme music again)

 

Announcer:

Late one afternoon, the Lone Ranger's Indian friend, Tonto, entered Marshall Jack Forbe's office in Copper City in northern Texas.

(Sound of footsteps and door opening)

 

Tonto:

How, Marshall Forbes.

Forbes:

Yeah, who's that? Well, I'll be a two toed grasshopper! Tonto!

How in the world are ya?

Tonto:

Oh, me fine.

Forbes:

Where's the Lone Ranger?

Tonto:

Oh, him in hills, north of town.

Forbes:

Well I reckon the two of you come to this part of the country to see your old friends Clarabelle Hornblow and Thunder Martin.

Tonto:

No, we not come to see Clarabelle and Thunder this time.

Forbes:

Oh?

Tonto:

We come this way look for crook named Shelby.

Forbes:

Shelby? Shelby... I never heard of the critter.

Tonto:

Well, him wanted for murder in Kansas. We trail him long

time.

Fobes:

You must have, if you followed him this far.

Tonto:

We lose trail two day ago. Masked man hope find killer strayin hills. Him send me here to tell you be on lookout for feller with big scar cross forehead.

Fobes:

Uh-huh. Where'd you lose his trail, Tonto?

Tonto:

On north side of Sunflower River.

Forbes:

Haven't been able to pick it up since, huh?

Tonto:

No.

Forbes:

Well, if he's a killer, the sooner he's captured the better.

Tonto:

That's right.

Forbes:

I'll tell my deputies to be on the lookout for this Shelby feller. Then I'll ride to the Lone Ranger's camp with ya. All three of us will look for the rat's trail...

Tonto:

Uh-hmm, that good.....

Forbes:

...just give me time enough to talk to the boys and I'll be right with you, Tonto.

(interlude music)

 

(sound of horse galloping)

 

Thunder:

Whoa there! Whoa! (cough)

Announcer:

Meanwhile, Thunder Martin drew rein at Clarabelle Hornblow's kitchen door and hurried inside.

(sound of Thunder walking, opening and then closing door)

 

Announcer:

The ex-mule skinner's face was flushed with excitement.

Thunder:

Say, Clarabelle! Clarabelle, I'm rich! I've struck it rich!

Clarabelle:

Whaddya say?

Thunder:

I found gold, Clarabelle. My lucks changed! I'm through workin' f or wages. I'm gonna be a millionaire!

Clarabelle:

Hold on Thunder, now take it easy!

Thunder:

It's the greatest thing that ever happened to me. When I saw that gold, I...

Clarabelle:

Will you quiet down you mutton-headed idjit!

Thunder:

Huh? What's wrong?

Clarabelle:

A feller named Shelby came to the door a little while ago askin' for a place to rest and a meal. He lost his horse and gear crossing Sunflower River.

Thunder:

Where is he?

Clarabelle:

In the next room, ya big jughead. I'll bet he heard every word ya said.

Thunder:

Well, doggone. You shoulda warned me!

Clarabelle:

I would've if I'd had a chance. Now, lets step outside so's we can't be overheard.

Thunder:

Yeah.

(sounds of footsteps and door opening and then door closing)

 

Thunder:

He won't hear us talkin' out here.

Clarabelle:

Now, where'd ya find the gold, Thunder?

Thunder:

Down by the crick about five miles from here.

Clarabelle:

You don't know a doggone thing about prospectin'....

Thunder:

Huh?...

Clarabelle:

...but if you're right about this; if your really have found gold, you'd better keep quiet about it.

Thunder:

Don't worry. I'm not gonna risk losin' the strike to a claim jumper.

(Music begins softly, then growing louder as the next lines end)

 

Thunder:

I'll put my horse in the corral.

Clarabelle:

Good. I'll go inside and put supper on the table.

(Music continues for a very short time)

 

Announcer:

When the food was on the table, Thunder roused Shelby. The killer came to the table and wolfed his meal in silence. Then when Thunder left the house to take care of chores outside, and Clarabelle cleared the kitchen table, the killer drew his gun.

(sounds of Clarabelle doing the dishes during the end of the Announcer's last two sentences)

 

Clarabelle:

Hey! What's the idea......

Shelby:

Don't make a sound or I'll shoot!

Clarabelle:

Have you gone loco?!

Shelby:

Sit down in that chair by the table and be quick about it!

Clarabelle:

But......but....(as she is being pushed into chair)

Shelby:

Do as your told! And don't try to call for help, because if Thunder Martin walks in here, I'll shoot him!

Clarabelle:

Why you no good, ornery skunk! This is the thanks I get for takin' ya in and feedin ya......

Shelby:

Shut up!

(sound of chair moving as he grabs her to tie up her hands)

 

Shelby:

Now put your hands behind the chair. I'll tie 'em.

Clarabelle:

You won't get away with this, you..Oh! My arm!...

Shelby:

Keep quiet!

Clarabelle:

Oh! aagh! (sigh, as he finishes with her hands)

Shelby:

I'm gonna gag you with this towel...

Clarabelle:

Oh no, ya don't! (muffled continuation, but the gag is in her mouth now)

Shelby:

I told you to shut up. That'll keep ya quiet.

Clarabelle:

(muffled grunts from behind the gag)

Shelby:

Now I'll tie your feet.

(sounds of Clarabelle kicking her feet)

 

Shelby:

Hold still! Now whether you like it or not, you're here to stay.

(sound of door opening and closing)

 

Thunder:

(from a little way off) Well, the chores are all done, Clarabelle...

Shelby:

Get your hands up, Thunder!

Thunder:

Hey.....what's the idea?!

Shelby:

Get your hands up or I'll shoot the woman.

Thunder:

Alright! Don't hurt Clarabelle!

Shelby:

Leave your hands high till I get your gun. (sound of him getting gun) ...that's it.

Thunder:

Well what are you after?

Shelby:

The gold you found today.

Thunder:

Huh!?

Shelby:

You're gonna show me where it is.

Thunder:

Then you over heard me when I came into the kitchen, huh?

Shelby:

That's right. I needed a meal, so I decided to wait awhile before pullin' a gun.

Thunder:

You'll never get away with this.

Shelby:

If you'll lead me to the gold, you won't get hurt. If ya don't, you'll stop lead. Get goin!

(Scene change music swells, then fades)

 

Announcer:

Meanwhile, the Lone Ranger, Tonto and Marshall Forbes found Shelby's runaway horse quietly nibbling grass a short distance from Sunflower River. After examining the animal's tracks, the masked man and Tonto realized just what had happened. Soon afterwards, they found Shelby's trail heading south on foot. Darkness was falling when they set out to follow it.

(sounds of horses galloping)

 

(music.....)

 

Announcer:

Some distance south of the man hunters, Thunder Martin tried desperately to think of a way to escape Shelby.

(sounds of horses galloping which continues throughout the following)

 

The creek where he had accidentally struck gold was west of the ranch, but Thunder headed east, hoping to meet a rancher or friend who could help him. After nearly two hours travel, Dade exclaimed:

Shelby:

That gold can't be this far from the ranch!

Thunder:

Now how do you know where it is?!

Shelby:

I think you're stallin'...and what's worse, maybe tryin' to lead me into a trap.


Thunder:

You wanted me to lead ya to the gold, didn't ya?

Shelby:

I know a sure way to find out where it is. We're goin back to the ranch.

Thunder:

For what?

Shelby:

You and Clarabelle Hornblow stepped out of the kitchen so you could tell her more about the gold without bein' overheard. You must of told her where ya found it....

Thunder:

No! Clarabelle doesn't know where it is!

Shelby; I think she does! She'll talk too...to save your hide. Turn that critter around, we're going back to the house.

(scene change music starts and grows through next two lines)

 

Thunder:

Get around.....

Shelby:

Come on! Get around... Get!...


(music swells and the sounds of the horses galloping grows louder and then fades)

 

Announcer:

In the ranch house, Clarabelle had been struggling with the ropes that held her. By rocking her chair back and forth, she managed to move it close to the stove. Twice, she burned her wrists painfully against the hot metal, but at last the singed rope broke as she strained at it.

(sounds of Clarabelle struggling and finally freeing herself accompany the narration)

 

When she finally got her hands free, she took the gag from her mouth.

Clarabelle:

Now.... now if I can untie my feet....

(music swells slightly)

 

Announcer:

As soon as her feet were free, she hurried to the corral.

(sounds of Clarabelle walking outside....night noises, also)

 

Announcer:

Her favorite horse was gone.

Clarabelle:

Well, that no good, theivin' poke head must have it.

(sounds of Clarabelle saddling a horse..... horse whinny)

 

Announcer:

Clarabelle quickly saddled another horse.


Clarabelle:

Steady! Easy! The sooner I get to Marshall Forbes, the better. Get up! Get up there!

(sound of horse galloping away as scene change music comes up)

 

Announcer:

Clarabelle traveled cross country to save time, and more than once regretted being without her Palomino.

(sound of horse galloping)

 

Clarabelle:

This critter's as skittish as a two week old calf. Get up! Get up there!

Announcer:

As she neared the main trail, it was necessary to descend a steep slope.

Clarabelle:

Easy! Easy, there! Easy!

Announcer:

The sleek, black horse balked!

(sound of horse balking)

 

Clarabelle:

Come on! Get up! Get up there!

Announcer:

Clarabelle coaxed, cajoled and scolded. Finally, the horse started down hill.

(sound of horse galloping)

 

Announcer:

Then, without warning, the animal lost it's footing!

(sound of horse falling)

 

Clarabelle:

Oh mercy! Oh!Help!

(music starts and noises continue)

 

Announcer:

Thrown from the saddle, Clarabelle pitched head long to the bottom of the rocky slope, where she struck her head against a small boulder and lay still.

(lone ranger theme music swells)

 

(sound of horse galloping)

 

Tonto, Lone Ranger and Marshall : Whoa! Whoa!


Announcer:

A short distance away, the Lone Ranger signaled a halt and spoke to Marshall Jack Forbes and Tonto.

Lone Ranger:

Jack, did you hear someone call for help?

Forbes:

I thought I did...

Tonto:

Me hear it. It sound like woman.

Lone Ranger:

Come on, we'll investigate. Come on Silver!

(sounds of horses galloping and scene change music swells)

 

Announcer:

A few minutes later, the Lone Ranger, Tonto and the Marshall approached the still figure lying at the bottom of the slope.

Tonto, Lone Ranger and Marshall:

Whoa there! Easy fella... slow down...(etc.)

Lone Ranger:

Why, it's Clarabelle.

Forbes:

Lyin' unconscience. Looks like she took a header down the slope.

Lone Ranger:

She must have struck her head when she fell.

Tonto:

Bad cut on forehead.

Announcer:

The masked man reached for Clarabelle's wrist to take her pulse. He saw the burns she had suffered freeing herself from the ropes.

Forbes:

How bad's she hurt, mister?

Lone Ranger:

I don't know, Marshall. Her wrists have been burned. It looks as though they've been tied.

Forbes:

Well...she coulda fractured her skull.

Lone Ranger:

I don't think so... but she may have suffered a concussion.

Tonto:

Me bandage cut on head.

Lone Ranger:

Bandage her wrist, too.

Tonto:

Me fix 'em.


Forbes:

I don't savvy what she's doin' out at this hour of the night. Travelin' cross country over places you ought to have more sense than to tackle. She's not as young as she used to be.

Tonto:

Kimosabe, maybe it be better a doctor come. Him know how bad Clarabelle hurt.

Lone Ranger:

I think you're right, Tonto.

Forbes:

The "Rafter H" isn't far from here. I'll go there and ask Thunder Martin to bring a wagon so she can be moved.

Lone Ranger:

Good idea, Jack.

Forbes:

Whoa! Easy, there! Easy...What about the doctor?

Lone Ranger:

Tonto will ride to town to the doctor's.

Forbes:

I'll be back soon with Thunder. (to horse) Get up now, get up!

Tonto:

Me hope Clarabelle not hurt bad.

Lone Ranger:

I'll stay with her till you return, Tonto.

Tonto:

That good. (to horse) Get 'em up Scout!

(sound of horse galloping away)

 

(music..)

 

Announcer:

While Tonto rode toward town, and Marshall Jack Forbes toward the Rafter H, Thunder Martin and Shelby approached the ranch from the opposite direction.

(sounds of horses galloping)

 

Announcer:

The scar-faced killer kept Thunder covered and watched him closely.

Thunder and Shelby:

Whoa! Easy!

(horse galloping stops)

 

Announcer:

They dismounted at the back door and entered the kitchen.

(sound of door opening and footsteps as they enter kitchen)

 

Shelby:

Inside. Don''t try a fast move, Thunder.

Thunder:

Don'''t worry, I...hey! Clarabelle's gone.

Shelby:

Gone?!

Thunder:

She got away.

Shelby:

Here are the ropes I tied her with. Yeah....somehow she managed to burn 'em off.

Thunder:

I bet she's gone for help. That means your scheme to get my gold won't work. You'll be in real trouble.

(distant sound of horses approaching)

 

Shelby:

I hear a rider.

Thunder:

Yeah.... headin' this way. (Laughing) I told ya Clarabelle went for help. Maybe that's Marshall Forbes comin' to get you.

Shelby:

I'm not caught yet!

(sound of Thunder being struck with gun barrel)

 

Announcer:

As Dade spoke, he swung his gun barrel to the side of Thunder Martin's head. The big man slumped to the floor, unconscience.

Shelby:

I can't watch you and that rider too, so I'll tie your feet and gag ya. That way you'll not make trouble.

Announcer:

Shelby worked fast. He tied him down, gagged Thunder, and dragged him into the next room seconds before Marshall Forbes took reign in the moonlit yard.

(sound of horse whinnying and galloping stops)

 

Forbes:

Whoa!

Announcer:

From a place near the open door, Dade watched the lawman dismount. Suddenly, the moon light glinted on the star pinned to the Marshall's vest. Thinking Clarabelle had told the law about him, the killer cursed softly. As the Marshall hurried to the kitchen door, he fired!

(sound of a gunshot)

 

(sound of Marshall Forbes crying out as he is shot)

 

(scene change music swells, then fades)

 

Announcer:

At the bottom of the slope where the Lone Ranger waited with Clarabelle Hornblow, the bucksome ranch owner groaned softly.

Clarabelle:

Oh!...ohhh...

Lone Ranger:

Take it easy, Clarabelle.

Clarabelle:

Wha....?....Where am......

Lone Ranger:

We found you here a short time ago.

Clarabelle:

Wha?....Mister? Is it really you?

Lone Ranger:

Yes, Clarabelle.

Clarabelle:

Why, I thought I was dreamin'

Lone Ranger:

Tonto, Marshall Forbes and I found you. What happened to your wrists there?

Clarabelle:

I burned ?em tryin to get the ropes off. Well, you sure turned up at the right time, mister. Thunder and I need your help bad.

Lone Ranger:

Who tied you?

Clarabelle:

A scar faced critter who came to my place a foot, askin for a meal. I didn't want to turn a feller away who's down on his luck, so....

Lone Ranger:

Hold it! A scar faced man? Is the scar across his forehead?

Clarabelle:

Say.....how'd you know?

Lone Ranger:

He's wanted for murder.

Clarabelle:

Wha.....Oh, great sakes alive!

Lone Ranger:

Tonto and I have been following him for some time.

Clarabelle:

He's at my place now...or somewhere around the place. He captured Thunder and me. And if he's a killer....!!! Ohh...poor Thunder!

Lone Ranger:

Tell me, did he rob you?

Clarabelle:

He wants to steal Thunder's gold claim. Mister you gotta do something! Please! Please save poor Thunder!

Lone Ranger:

Marshall Forbes is on his way to the ranch now.

Clarabelle:

Oh, this critter's smart. He might be able to fool the Marshall. Fool him long enough to get the drop on him, and then kill him!

Lone Ranger:

Clarabelle, I... I don't want to leave you. Tonto went to town to get the.....

Clarabelle:

I'm not feeling first rate, but I'll be a whole lot better if I know you're on your way to the ranch to help Thunder. I'll be alright here.

Lone Ranger:

Do you have a gun?

Clarabelle:

No.

Lone Ranger:

I have a spare one in my saddle bag. I'll leave it with you.

Clarabelle:

Then you'll go to the ranch?

Lone Ranger:

Yes. Tonto will return with the doctor soon.

(scene change music swells slightly)

 

Announcer:

By the time the Lone Ranger reached the "Rafter H", Marshall Forbes had managed to free Thunder Martin. The big mule skinner was bandaging the lawman's wound when the masked man dismounted at the back door. As briefly as possible, Thunder explained what happened.

Thunder:

I'd planned to go after that rattler as soon as I finished fixin' the Marshall's wound, mister.

Forbes:

Shelby gunned me and then rode away from here as if the devil himself were after him.

Lone Ranger:

He has good reason to hurry away. He'll hang if he's caught.

Thunder:

He's tryin' to reach the border.

Lone Ranger:

I'll go after him.

(sound of footsteps as he walks to door)

 

Thunder:

(calling after Lone Ranger) He's ridin' Clarabelle's Palomino.

Forbes:

(grunts as Thunder finishes bandaging his wound)

Thunder:

There. That takes care of your wound, Marshall. I'll go with the Lone Ranger.

Forbes:

I don't think he'll need help, but Clarabelle does, Thunder. She's been hurt. Thrown from her horse. We'll have to take a wagon to the bottom of Dead Man's Slope to get her.

(Music begins under the last line)

 

Announcer:

Torn between his loyalty to Clarabelle and his desire to see Dade Shelby captured, Thunder reluctantly agreed to harness a team to a buckboard.

(sounds of horses being harnessed)

 

A few minutes later, he and the wounded lawman left the ranch.

(galloping horses and music)

 

Miles to the south of the ranch, the Lone Ranger's great white horse raced across the fields after Shelby. The outlaw's trail was clear and easy to follow in the brilliant moonlight.

Lone Ranger:

Hi-yo Silver!

Announcer:

The powerful stallion responded with a sustained burst of speed, maintaining a speed that brought him closer and closer to the fleeing killer. Presently, the masked man saw Dade ahead. The mighty Silver began to close the gap separating them. Dade heard the thundering hoofbeats and turned to look over his shoulder.

Lone Ranger:

You're finished Dade!

Announcer:

Dade recongnized the masked man as the Lone Ranger. In a sudden panic, he snatched his gun from his holster.

Shelby:

Turn back or I'll kill ya!

Lone Ranger:

I've followed you all the way from Kansas!

Shelby:

You asked for it!

(sound of a gunshot)

 

Announcer:

The frightened killer fired hastily. His shot was wide.

Shelby:

I'll get you!

(sound of two more gunshots)

 

Lone Ranger:

Not unless you stop to take aim.

(two more gunshots, and then another one)

 

Announcer:

The Lone Ranger counted the shots. When the killer's gun was empty, he brought the racing Silver close to the Palomino. Then he grabbed Shelby!

Shelby:

(cries out as the Lone Ranger grabs him)

(sound of two men falling to the ground)

 

Announcer:

Both men hit the ground as Silver and the well-trained Palomino slowed to a halt, The Lone Ranger leaped to his feet.

Lone Ranger:

On your feet, Dade!

Shelby:

I'm unarmed. I'm out of ammunition.

Lone Ranger:

I have a new score to settle with you, killer.

Shelby:

What are you talkin about?

Lone Ranger:

Clarabelle Hornblow and Thunder Martin are friends of mine.

Shelby:

Friends?!

Lone Ranger:

Yes, that's right. Clarabelle's wrists are burned. She suffered a fall....

Shelby:

Now wait a minute, mister, I didn't know.....

Lone Ranger:

You're due for a beating!

Shelby:

No!

Announcer:

The killer's mouth gaped. He stepped back as the Lone Ranger stepped forward.

(sound of Lone Ranger punching Dade in chin)

 


Announcer:

His fist hit the point of Dade's chin.

Lone Ranger:

That's the beginning. A minute ago you were going to kill me.

Shelby:

Aw! I've got no gun!

Lone Ranger:

Use your fists!

Announcer:

Forced to fight, Dade swung.

Shelby:

Ummph! (As he swings at L.R.)

Announcer:

The killer swung. The blow missed the masked man's chin and struck his shoulder.

(fight sounds throughout the following fight)

 

Announcer:

Then the killer threw a jab that hit its mark. Then, before he knew what happened, the Lone Ranger drilled a fist into his stomach. As Dade slumped forward, another blow hooked his chin. The killer went down.

Lone Ranger:

Now. While you're unconscience, I'll tie your hands and make sure you're disarmed. Then we're going back to the "Rafter H."

(scene change music)

 

Announcer:

It was nearly daybreak when the Lone Ranger reached the ranch with his prisoner. Doc Simpson was there with Clarabelle, Marshall Forbes, Thunder Martin and Tonto. The masked man offered to help the wounded lawman take Dade to jail.

Forbes:

Well, I could sure use the help, mister. Doc's goin' with me and if you'll travel as far as the edge of town with us.....

Lone Ranger:

I'll be glad too, Marshall. Clarabelle I'm sorry you had all this trouble. I hope you'll soon be well enough to bake some of those fine apple pies you always serve Tonto and me.

Clarabelle:

Say! Now that that rattler's been caught, mister, I feel good enough to start a couple of pies right now. They'll be ready by the time ya get back from town.

Lone Ranger:

(Laughing) I'll hurry back. See you later, Tonto.

Tonto:

Me wait here, kimosabe.

Lone Ranger:

All right, get goin' Dade.

Shelby:

I'm goin'.

Thunder:

I hope they hang that scog.

Tonto:

Clarabelle say him try to steal gold from you.

Thunder:

That's right, Tonto! I struck it rich! Say!...I have a little gift for you and the Lone Ranger.

Tonto:

Oh? What that?

Thunder:

I want you two to have the first of the gold I took from my claim. I've got some right here in my pocket. I didn't show it to Clarabelle because I wanted to give it to you and the masked man.

Tonto:

That plenty nice, Thunder.

Thunder:

Well, here ya are. This is for you and the other's for our masked friend.

Tonto:

Hmmm...you think this gold?

Thunder:

Course it's gold. Look at the color of it.

Tonto:

No...no. This not gold.

Thunder:

Huh!?

Tonto:

Me see this stuff many times. Lone Ranger say it's iron or copper. Pyrites.

Thunder:

Pyrites ?!

Clarabelle:

Fool's gold, Thunder!

Thunder:

Thunderation! I...

Tonto:

Me sorry, Thunder...you maybe not wanta take my word for it.

Clarabelle:

Why, you know a doggone sight more about it than he does, Tonto.

Thunder:

Fool's gold? Aw, no, well I....


Clarabelle:

Don't feel so bad, Thunder. That killer was a bigger fool about it than you were.

Thunder:

Huh?

Clarabelle:

He was plannin' to jump a worthless claim. And all he got for his trouble was a trip to the gallows...thanks to the Lone Ranger!

Lone Ranger:

Hi-yo Silver! Away!

(theme music swells)

 

Announcer:

The Lone Ranger, a copyrighted feature of The Lone Ranger Inc. is produced by Arizona TheatreWorks. The part of the Lone Ranger was played by_______________.

I am your announcer, __________________________.