Paladin: "With the aid of the Lord, the twelfth day of Tammuz in the year 5639 from the creation of the world, to the beloved Mr. Paladin, beacon of learning, defender of the orphan, lover of peace and... hired killer. May his light shine for one hundred twenty years. In the first place, may I say that I am well, praise be the Almighty."
Viola: Is that a telegram, or one of the lost scrolls of Isaiah?
Paladin: With the aid of the Lord, the message will follow very shortly. Nathan Shotness is a man who likes to do things in a proper style.
Paladin: Nathan! What a way to greet a friend!
Nathan Shotness: Excuse me. My eyes are so bad. I can't tell a guest from a rustler.
Paladin: Hmmm, you carrying a gun, now am I that late for the wedding?
Nathan Shotness: Wedding--What wedding? I thought you were that low life, Billy Buckstone. You remember him?
Paladin: Buckstone? I thought your testimony got Billy Buckstone hung six months ago.
Nathan Shotness: Oh, yes. The judge was an honest man. He sentenced him. But there was a higher judge--and I don't mean the Almighty. He left Billy go free for insufficient evidence and five thousand dollars cash.
Paladin: What about the bridegroom?
Nathan Shotness: A young man of sense, but a golem, a fool. Anything Rivka wants is all right with him. Fine way to start a marriage.
Paladin: Sounds like an excellent way to me.
Nathan Shotness: Since when are you such an expert?
Nathan Shotness: Eat, eat your soup, the Law won't get cold.
Faivel Melamed: You've actually killed people with that?
Paladin: When I had to.
Faivel Melamed: How did you feel afterwards?
Paladin: Very bad, at first.
Faivel Melamed: Ah. But after that, it became easy, no?
Paladin: No, it's never easy.
Faivel Melamed: I'm glad to hear you say that.
Rivka: Mr. Paladin, will you teach him?
Rivka: Why not?
Paladin: Because I don't believe in a man having to imitate his neighbors in order to justify his existence. Especially when he has neighbors like you people have.
Faivel Melamed: Excuse me, please. (takes Paladin's gun) May I see this? (starts target-shooting) You use a lighter grade of oil on the trigger assembly than on the hammer stud. That is interesting.
Paladin: Any sign of Buckstone?
Nathan Shotness: They'll come all together from up there. A small bunch on high ground can dominate a whole company of infantry. Even in the Czar's army, may a black year take him, they taught us that much.
Paladin: Well, a dominating position's not much use without a covered line of retreat--even at West Point, they taught us that much.
Reb Elya: Perhaps you will take this off until after the ceremony.
Paladin: Reb Elya, you have a lot of faith.
Reb Elya: Not enough, not nearly enough. Faith seems to come only when we have no other choice.
Paladin: Well, they say that no choice is also a choice.
Reb Elya: You have a good head. If you gave up your unfortunate profession and grew a beard, who knows what great things you might yet achieve?
Paladin: Well, they also say that a head with no beard is better than a beard with no head.