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Thoughts about Chad by Annk

Word Count 2,320

Story photo by Marilyn Handt


Episode tags for  Chad,   Dream Of Falcons,  Chase A Wild Horse

Dream of Falcons is probably one of the least favourite Lancer episodes, but it  raises some questions and has led me to imagine what is going through the lead characters’ minds. Why is Johnny so fond of Chad and why don’t we see Scott with Chad? Why isn’t Chad mentioned or seen again after this episode?

Also, Johnny asks Murdoch to go easy on Chad, but he is a lot easier on him than he was with Johnny. He is also much more understanding when Chad asks for time off than he was with Johnny in Chase a Wild Horse. Scott isn’t seen at all in Dream of Falcons and his absence is not explained, although he is around because, at one point, Teresa says he is just coming into dinner. This story explores what Murdoch, Scott and Johnny think about Chad and what Chad  is thinking. 



Oh, Chad, what am I gonna do with you? I can fight your corner with the Old Man, and the boys in town, even with Scott, if I have to, but you have to help yourself. Why don’t you try to fit in more? Why do you spend so much time looking up at the sky or looking at pollywogs turning into frogs instead of doing your work?  I’m not surprised the Old Man is angry with you.  I’m angry with you sometimes.

I like you, Chad, I really do. And I know you look up to me. That is a nice feeling. I like having a ‘little brother’ to look after.

I love Scott and I would die for him without thinking but sometimes I get tired of being the one’ with the smarter  brother. I get fed up being the uneducated, wild Lancer boy.  The one that has to be held in check, kept out of trouble, explained away and watched out for.  The Lancer boy with the dark past who you can never be quite sure about.

Having you around, Chad, takes that pressure off.  You are now the Lancer boy that no one is sure about. The one who needs taking care of, the one who doesn’t fit in. But you can fit in if you want Chad, I did, so you can too.

I asked the Old Man to ease up on you and to give you time off so you can help build that flying machine even though I don’t know why you would want to. I know it’s something you just have to do, and I know that feeling, I understand. 

It was easier to argue for you than it was to argue for me.   Even Scott can’t argue for me with the Old Man and he can normally argue 2 and 2 is 5 and make folks believe him.  The old man isn’t as hard on you as he was on me.  He told you to take as much time as you needed.

How I wished him to say that to me in the early days after I messed up. If he had I wouldn’t have left with Wes. But if I hadn’t left I wouldn’t have come back and spent that wonderful day chasing horses with my father. After that day he did give me as much time as I needed and we began to understand each other better. I knew he was just trying to put me back ‘on that right road’. And Wes? well he would never have made it to thirty whatever he did. He didn’t have anyone like my father looking out for him

But that don’t matter now. I’m pleased the Old Man told you to take as much time as you need. I will have your back because you need me, but please, Chad learn to ride a horse properly, stop gazing into thin air, take notice of what the Old Man says because he is always right, play the tune he calls, and try to get to know my brother because he is one of the good guys and a good friend to have. He really is. 


When Johnny asked me to go easy on Chad, I couldn’t help but smile inwardly. My younger son  is a very kind and caring man.  Who would have thought he used to be a gunfighter?

I have never gone easy on Johnny, or on Scott for that matter.  To his credit, he didn’t remind me of all the mistakes I made with him. Perhaps he doesn’t want to be reminded of those early days, of the broken, complex, emotional young man that he was and the hard, unyielding father that I was.

Right from the beginning, I have expected my sons to give their arms, legs, guts and yes hearts to Lancer.  I expect all the ranch hands to work hard, but I expect so much more from my own boys. And they have delivered time and again. 

Those early days were hard and I cringe when I think about how hard I was on Johnny at the beginning.  He pleaded with me to ease up on him and give him time, but all I said to him was I couldn’t, that maybe it takes twenty years to make a rancher and perhaps it would never be the right life for him. How could I have said that? How could I have said he was only due twelve dollars? It was cruel and I knew I was hurting him, but it was only because I loved him and I was scared. I wasn’t sure then if he was more Madrid or Lancer and neither was he.  I could have lost him. I almost pushed him away forever because my expectations were so high, but I always cared.

He is probably a better rancher than me now. He is definitely one of the most hardworking and loyal. As is Scott, they are both a credit to me. If I had thought about it properly they always have been..  

It’s different with Chad. Johnny always cared, right from the very beginning, even if he pretended he didn’t. I could see the pain in his eyes when I almost drove him away. He craved acceptance and love, he knew he belonged here, and so did I. I knew he would be a good rancher and an even better son. That’s why I was so hard on him, still am sometimes, I guess. I expect so much from him because I know he can give it.

Chad doesn’t care and to be honest neither do I, not really.  He lives in a different world.  It doesn’t really bother him when I admonish him for staring at the clouds or deep into water instead of doing his work, he just agrees with me then carries on looking at the clouds or into the water.  It always bothers Johnny, when I criticise him. I can see it in his eyes. Even if, unlike Chad, he usually bites back, he cares and he listens. What I say matters to him. Johnny loves this land and this family. Chad doesn’t.  Johnny belongs here.  Chad doesn’t.

So yes, I will go easy on Chad and give him time to chase his dreams because Johnny asked me to and I want to make my son happy.  But I know, as Chad knows, that however hard or easy I am on him, he is not a rancher and never will be.  I will go along with the pretence for my son, for Johnny,  But I know sometime soon he will leave and find his own way somewhere else. Because unlike my sons, he will never call Lancer home.


I know my brother is a kind man. Some people may see him as a hardened ex gunfighter, but I know better. I have seen the softer side of him. He likes helping waifs and strays.  Whether it’s Jelly and his orphaned boys, someone calling themselves Mrs. Lancer squatting on our land, the little girl who only eats acorn mash, the feisty  girl who loves horses or the kid who wanted to avenge his father, he can’t walk away from someone who needs help.

But why did he have to adopt Chad? Especially as a few weeks ago, Chad tried to kill him.

I already have a little brother and I certainly don’t need another. The one I have is enough for me.  We belong together.  We may disagree sometimes, but we know that we will fight to the death for each other if we have to. We have been through so much together. We’ve fought together, ridden together, been yelled at by Murdoch together, laughed together and even robbed a train together. We’ve shared hotel rooms and jail cells, played poker and checkers together, been to saloons and shared a drink or two.  We have saved each other’s lives more than once and ridden together to protect our father. I can’t imagine doing any of that with Chad.

I don’t need another brother or a cousin. And certainly not Chad. He is nice enough, he has some interesting ideas, he wants to know how the world works, and I understand that. I think one day someone will build a flying machine that works. But not yet.

Chad can’t explore the world here on the Ranch, he doesn’t belong here. He isn’t even happy here. Everyone can see that except Johnny.

I will speak up for him with our father because Johnny asked me to, but I don’t see that I will need to as he is a lot softer on Chad than on us.  I don’t think he ever really gets mad at Chad, not the way he has with us.  Chad  isn’t scared of him the way we sometimes are. And Chad has never had to suffer that hard stare that our father uses on us when we say we don’t want to do something he has told us to do. 

If my brother wants Chad to be part of this family, I will accept him. If it makes Johnny happy, I will try, maybe I will  spend more than five minutes at a time with him, but he will never be my brother. 

And brother mine, I won’t tell you this because you won’t want to believe it, but you should be prepared because even though I know you want it, I don’t think Chad will stay here long.


I couldn’t believe it when Callie told me I was a Lancre. I spent my whole life hating the Lancres, then she said  I am one. That means Johnny is kin.  That makes me feel good. I likes Johnny, he saved me in the saloon, he is strong n brave,  the type of man folks like.  Callie liked him too she thought he was the prettiest thing in pants  she had ever seen. 

After Callie said I was a Lancre. I didn’t know where I belonged.  Johnny said I belonged with the Lancers and Mr. Lancer agreed. So I stayed.  But I don’t belong. Not like Johnny, he belongs. I can see this place is in his blood. He loves this land the same way his brother and his Pa do.

I likes the House.    It’s bigger’n anything I  ever seen..  Callie  kept on talking about our old home in Kentucky, going on and on  about what we had. That was before she saw Johnny’s home.  It even had carpets upstairs.

The Lancer land means nothing to me though, not in the way it does to Johnny, Scott and their Pa.

I likes Teresa, she is kind and she can sure cook, but she’s  not Callie. She don’t know how to be around me. She remembers I wanted to kill all the Lancers. 

Johnny loves Scott so I try to like him.  Mainly Scott stays away from me,  he is always polite  but he don’t joke with me like he does with Johnny. I don’t know what to say to him or how to be around him. I can’t understand what he says sometimes, so mainly I just keep out of his way.

And  Mr. Lancer. He pretends to be like a Pa to me, but he don’t fool me.  He chews me out when I don’t do my work and is kind and caring when I am feeling down, telling stories to make me feel better, but It’s not how he is with Johnny and Scott. He orders them around more than he does me, and he yells at them more, but he asks for their advice too. He trusts them, he jokes with them, he puts his arms around them and they joke with him. He doesn’t do that with me. Johnny, Scott and Teresa even tease him sometimes. I can’t do that,  it would never feel right. 

Johnny says I should give it time but no time will be long enough for me to fit in.  I told Johnny I ain’t no  rancher and I was  right. I can’t ride a horse, I don’t  want to. I don’t like horses and I don’t like cows. I don’t like putting in fence posts, fetching water, or mending barns.  I like thinking, watching the world go by and trying to work out how everything works.  

This ain’t my life.  Lancer ain’t my home. I ain’t no Lancer. Tomorrow I will tell Johnny I am moving on to find my own way in my own time as a Beauford, the name of the only man I ever called Pa  He was a good man and he meant more to me than any Lancer or Lancre ever will. I’m going back to my real home In Cumberland, back where I belong.

August 2020


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10 thoughts on “Thoughts about Chad by Annk

  1. Thank you. I really don’t like Chas and Dream of Falcon’s is not a great episode. I wanted to have a little fun with try and make a little more sense of it.
    I’m glad you enjoyed it


  2. I liked this. good explanation of everyone’s thoughts. My favorite was the end and Chad leaving. He did not fit in for sure


  3. I’m glad you found a good way to get rid of Chad. No matter his name, he could never be one of the Lancers.


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