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    Written by: Ray Kolle   Produced by: John Holmes   Directed by: Graeme Hodgson

Inside, in the lounge room, Leigh spins round and shows off a white mink coat that she's wearing. She asks Alan, who's sitting staring at her, what he thinks and he replies that it's stunning. Leigh tells him that she said she'd have one some day, and it didn't take her long. She adds that, of course, she'd never be able to afford it herself; it's wonderful that someone could be so generous...

Out in the hallway, Gordon closes the front door after letting Charlie in. She tells him that, of course, she was absolutely shattered - to go all that way and find out-- Gordon interrupts her and says he still doesn't understand how she knew where Patricia was. Charlie hesitates and then explains that Patricia wrote to her; they were best friends and Patricia knew she could trust her. Gordon opens the door to the lounge room and he and Charlie head in there. Leigh immediately indicates her mink coat and asks, "Like it?" Gordon smiles that it's beautiful, before adding that, if it's hers, he's obviously paying her too much! Leigh explains that, actually, Charlie brought it back from Rio. She adds, "Isn't she marvellous?" and she runs and gives Charlie a hug! Charlie stands there with a look of bemused shock on her face. Leigh goes on that she supposes Charlie thinks she has to keep in good with her, now that she's moved out, in case she gives away any of her little 'secrets'. Charlie laughs and exclaims, "What nonsense! I just love buying presents, that's all - and the coat was so 'you'..." Gordon comments to Charlie that she's very kind. Leigh agrees, "Isn't she? I was just telling Alan: it's wonderful to know someone who's so generous." She smiles at Charlie. Charlie smiles back, stiffly.

Out in the hallway, Wayne and Karen are coming downstairs, dressed for tennis. Karen looks miles away, and Wayne asks her if she's going to be like that for the rest of the day. Karen comes back to earth and asks, "What?" Wayne tells her that she hasn't been with it for the last few hours. He adds that she's not worried about the business, is she? - the company's in pretty good shape. She doesn't respond, and so Wayne queries, "Well...?" Before she can answer, though, Alan hobbles out of the lounge room and asks how the park was. Karen, looking relieved to be changing the subject, replies that it was very pleasant, and she asks him how he's doing. Alan assures her that he's fine. Karen warns him not to overdo it. They suddenly hear Gordon laughing in the lounge room, and Wayne asks what's going on. Alan replies that Leigh's on a real high - she's just got herself a mink coat. Wayne comments that that's a bit extravagant, isn't it? Karen, looking stony-faced, asks if she said where it came from. Alan tells her that Charlie gave it to her, apparently. He adds that they must get on better than he thought. Karen agrees distantly, "Yes, they must..." Wayne remarks that Leigh is a nice kid. Karen just agrees, "Charming..." Wayne asks her if she wants to see this coat, but Karen retorts that Leigh can show them later, and they head out.

Gordon is standing behind the bar in the lounge room, but he comments that it looks like they're out of ice, and he heads off to get some from the kitchen. Leigh offers to get it, but Gordon tells her that he can't allow a lady in a mink coat to fetch and carry! He gives her a mock bow and walks off. Alone with Leigh, Charlie immediately demands, "Alright. Where did it come from?" Leigh smirks, "Karen, of course. Who do you think? As soon as I showed her a copy of Mitch's letter, she was more than willing to give me a small gift." Charlie points out haughtily that blackmail is a crime, but Leigh retorts that so is helping a murderer skip bail. Charlie warns Leigh angrily that she's heading for a fall - sooner or later, it's all going to come out. She then asks her what she'll do if Mitch turns up, but Leigh replies that he won't: Amanda is about to write him a long letter and she'll tell him never to come back. Charlie asks, "What if Mitch knows her handwriting?" Leigh tells her that there are a few of Amanda's postcards lying around; she thinks she can copy her handwriting pretty well. Charlie comments sourly, "You really are a little angel, aren't you?" Leigh retorts that everyone thinks so. Charlie points out that they may think again if she keeps spending large amounts of money. Leigh, though, assures her, "But I won't." She goes on, "Most of Karen's money is tied up in the business - but she can afford a couple of hundred at a time. So it looks like dear Aunty Charlie will keep on giving me lots of wonderful presents - at least, until I can land myself a rich husband. I think Alan would do quite nicely; don't you?" Charlie glares at her and tells her that getting her claws into him mightn't be as easy as she thinks. Leigh, though, retorts that, yes, it will - he gets ideas every time she looks at him. Charlie asks bitterly, "Has something happened to make you so nasty or were you simply born that way?" Leigh retorts that she likes having nice things; what's so strange about that?

In Fiona's flat at the boarding house, Cheri is on the 'phone, talking to Andy, and she tells him that it's lovely to hear from him. Andy apologises for him and Amanda not being there when she turned up, but Cheri assures him that that's OK - Fiona has been terrific. She adds that she rang Irene in London and Irene said she could use her apartment until she got back; she's been using his bedsit since she got there, but Fiona said he wouldn't mind. Andy assures her that of course he doesn't. He then goes on that it'll be nice to get back, as he and Amanda have been in each other's pockets for the last few months; it'll be nice to have a bit of privacy for a chance. Cheri tells him that she can understand that. She then asks when he's coming up to Sydney, and Andy replies that it'll probably be a week or so - he doesn't want to leave Barbara yet. Cheri replies that Fiona told her; by the sounds of things, Barbara needs to see a doctor. Andy agrees that she does, but the trouble is that he and Amanda can't convince her. He then tells Cheri that he'll keep in touch and let her know how things are going. Cheri thanks him for ringing and they hang up. At Fiona's, Cheri comments to Fiona that Andy sounds awfully worried about Mrs. Hamilton. Fiona says she just can't believe that Barbara would get herself hooked onto pills; she's always been such a strong woman. Cheri comments that she'll need all her strength to give them up without a doctor. Fiona says she'd say that, if Barbara is determined to go it alone, she probably will. Cheri murmurs that she'll need all her determination - she's seen people go through it, and the withdrawal symptoms can be as bad of those of hard drugs; that poor woman must be going through hell...

In the lounge room at Toorak, Amanda is sitting with Amanda, and she holds out a glass and offers, "A little more?" Barbara shakes her head, but Amanda tells her that she thinks she's dehydrated. Barbara mutters that if she has any more she'll only bring it up. Andy tells her that she should see a doctor, but Barbara snaps, "No - he'll stick me in a clinic." Amanda asks if that wouldn't be better for her, but Barbara insists that she can do it by herself. Andy tells her that she's been on them too long, but Barbara snaps, "Well then I can try." Amanda asks, "What if I get Gordon to visit--" Barbara interrupts and snaps that that's the last thing she needs; she doesn't want him to see her like this - she does have some pride. Amanda suggests that perhaps now is the time-- Barbara cries, "I don't want him to know about it. Now please, no doctor and no Gordon, alright?" She then announces that she thinks she'll go and lie down for a while. She stands up, unsteadily, but as Amanda goes to help her, she insists that she's alright. Andy offers to help her upstairs, but Barbara assures him that she can manage, and she staggers out. When she's gone, Andy says to Amanda, "Well, if she wants to do it the hard way, all we can do is give her moral support." Amanda looks worried.

Gordon and Charlie head out of the lounge room, into the hallway, at Dural, Gordon closing the doors behind him. Gordon tells Charlie that it's good to see her again - and he really is sorry about Patricia. Charlie agrees that it was very upsetting. She then asks him if he's sure he doesn't mind having Leigh there; after all, he has got a lot of people in the house now. Gordon explains that that's why they need her - he's sure she'll look after them very well. Charlie asks her if he thinks Leigh is really suitable for the job; perhaps an older person... someone with more experience...? Gordon insists that Leigh is fine. Charlie says, "It's--" She breaks off as Leigh comes out of the lounge room, and quickly says it's nothing; she really must go. Gordon goes to the door to open it for her. Leigh smiles at Charlie nastily and says, "Bye..."

In the lounge room, Wayne is on the 'phone on the bar, and he tells the person at the other end that he appreciates them ringing. He hangs up and Karen immediately asks if it was the police. Wayne nods, and Karen asks what they wanted. Wayne smiles and replies, "I'm off the hook. They've stopped looking for Mitch's body and they're not going to lay any charges. They figured I must have been imagining things." Karen smiles broadly and points out that she told him everything would be alright. She gives him a hug. Leigh comes back into the room and immediately says, "Oh, I'm so glad for you both. Looks like you have nothing to worry about now." Karen curtly agrees, "No." Leigh asks how the game was, and Wayne replies that Karen won - she was too good! Karen admits that a five-game head start helped! Leigh asks the two of them if they'd like another drink. Karen replies that she'd love one, but there's no orange juice in the bar 'fridge; Leigh will have to go to the kitchen. Leigh asks Wayne if he'd like a drink and he accepts, too. Leigh walks off to the kitchen. Karen turns back to her husband, smiles at him and says, "Well. Now your conscience is clear, what about those couple of days at the Barrier Reef? We never did get our honeymoon." Wayne smiles back and asks, "Why not? Gordy's got Leigh to look after him." Karen muses, "Yes... she'll be here."

Fiona and Cheri are having afternoon tea at Fiona's flat. Jill comes out of her bedroom and says to Fiona that she doesn't mind looking after Fee, does she? Fiona assures her that of course she doesn't. Jill goes on that she could be a while - she wants to go to the hospital before she sees Alan. Cheri asks her if she has a friend in hospital and Jill hesitantly explains, "Robin. He was hit by a car nearly a year ago now. He's still in a coma." Cheri comments sympathetically, "How awful." Jill continues that they keep giving him physio, hoping he'll recover, but he just gets worse and worse. Cheri remarks, "It's sad. It must be dreadful to be trapped in a useless body." Jill goes on that she hasn't seen him nearly as much as she should have, lately - it really upsets her to see him going downhill. Fiona asks her why she goes and sees him at all, if it makes her feel that bad; he doesn't even know she's there. Jill retorts, "I have to. You know that." Cheri suddenly asks, "Would you like me to come with you?" Jill, looking slightly surprised, admits that she wouldn't mind the company. Cheri stands up and says she won't take long to get ready, and she heads to her room. When she's gone, Jill comments to Fiona, "That was nice of her." Fiona nods and comments, "Mmm. She's a nice lady."

Robin is lying in his hospital bed. Tubes are sticking out everywhere, and a machine next to his bed is helping him breathe. Jill and Cheri are standing looking at him, and Jill explains to Cheri that they had to put him on oxygen. Cheri tells her sadly that she'd say there's no hope of him improving; he's too far gone. Jill cries that she can't even remember how he looked before the accident; she tries, but... all she can see is the way he looks now... Cheri puts her arms around her and assures her that once he's gone, she'll remember him the way he used to be; it'll all come back. Jill looks upset.

A short time later, Jill and Cheri are walking in the hospital grounds, and Jill suggests that maybe those people who said he'd be better off dead were right; she didn't want to believe it at first, though - she kept hoping he might come out of it, but the doctors say there's no chance of that now. Cheri comments that they could keep him alive for years with that equipment, but Jill cries that she hopes not; there's no point it it anymore - he's not really alive. Changing the subject, Cheri says she thinks she might go and do her shopping. Jill looks at her and tells her that she's sorry she dragged her-- Cheri interrupts her assures her that it's alright - she's a nurse; she's used to that sort of thing. Jill tells her that she'll catch her later, and Cheri replies that she'll see her back at Fiona's. Jill walks off.

A few minutes later, Cheri is back in Robin's room, standing next to his bed, looking down at him...

Andy is sitting on the stairs in the hallway at Toorak. Amanda comes down and Andy asks her if Barbara is alright. Amanda replies that she finally fell asleep. Andy asks what she was yelling out about, and Amanda explains that it was like she was delirious. She adds that it was awful... Andy comments that she was yelling out to Gordon at one stage, and Amanda tells him that most of it was about Gordon. She goes on that she doesn't think anyone's ever realised just how much it hurt Barbara when she found out that Gordon loved Liz. Andy says he knows Gordon has never stopped loving Barbara; he'd be there in a flash to help her if they let him know. Amanda, though, points out that that would only make Barbara more upset. Andy comments, "If only she'd see a doctor. She must know she's making it hard on herself." Amanda stares at him and then exclaims, "That's what she is doing: she's punishing herself." Andy, looking surprised, asks, "For what?" Amanda replies, "For being weak. For letting herself get involved with Ross. For getting hooked on pills." She adds, "You know what Aunty Barb's like - she can't stand weak people; and now she's seeing herself that way, she's really putting herself through it." Andy retorts that that's crazy, but Amanda tells him that she wouldn't say Barbara is thinking rationally at the moment; would he? Andy admits, "No. Still, I reckon she needs more help than you and I can give her." Amanda points out that that's what they promised: no doctor, no Gordon; just them. Andy looks worried.

Leigh is dusting the shelf behind the bar at Dural. She turns around and, a sly look on her face, walks over to Alan, who's sitting in an armchair, and says to him that she isn't bothering him, is she? Alan queries, "Hmm?" Leigh goes on, "Working in here when you're reading..." Alan asks her what she thinks... Leigh tells him that she's sorry they were interrupted last night - but at least they'll be able to see a bit of each other now; that's why she was so glad she got the job there. She leans in and starts kissing him, but there's suddenly a knock at the front door, and they pull apart and Alan comments that they're not having much luck. Leigh goes to answer the door - and finds Jill standing there. She asks if Alan is there. Leigh smiles that he is, and Alan hobbles out into the hall and invites her in. She kisses him and he tells her to come into the lounge room. They head in there and Jill closes the door behind them. Alan asks where Fee is, and Jill explains that grandma is looking after her. Alan asks how she got over the party, and Jill asks if he means Fiona or Fee! Alan laughs. Standing out in the hallway, listening, Leigh is stony-faced.

A few minutes later, Jill and Alan are sitting on the couch, and Jill thanks Alan for what he did yesterday, adding that Fee loved it and so did she. Alan tells her that it was fun. Jill comments to him that he doesn't mind so much about Fee, now, does he? Alan smiles and asks how he can when she's the spitting image of her mum! Jill, looking relieved, tells him that she thought she was always going to be a problem between them. Alan muses that that was just him being stupid; he's sorry. Jill suggests that, seeing as there's no problem now, she thought maybe they could move into a flat together. Alan, looking surprised, comments half-heartedly that she doesn't believe in wasting time, does she? Jill tells him, "I just thought--" Alan interrupts her and says, "Don't get me wrong--" Jill interrupts him and assures him that she didn't mean to push-- Alan interrupts again and tells her that he cares about her; he's just not ready to settle down yet, that's all. He goes on that, for one thing, he'd like to learn to get along without his crutches first. Jill reminds him that the doctor said it's a miracle that he's as good as he is now, but Alan replies that he's going to see a few more miracles yet. He asks for just a little bit more time, and Jill agrees, "Sure." The 'phone suddenly starts ringing and Jill goes to answer it at the bar. Fiona comes on and says it's her. Jill asks her if she wants to speak to Gordon. Fiona hesitantly replies, "No..." She pauses before saying, "I'm sorry, darling, but I've got some bad news for you." Jill anxiously says, "Fee's alright?" Fiona quickly assures her that Fee is fine - it's nothing at all to do with her. Jill stands there, looking worried.

Leigh is sweeping the front step when a cab pulls up. Jill and Alan come out of the house and Jill tells Alan that she's sorry she's got to rush off. Alan asks her if she's sure she doesn't want him to come with her, but Jill assures him that she'll be alright. He kisses her and walks over to the cab. As she does so, Leigh asks her if she's alright, as she looks a bit upset. Jill explains that a close friend of hers just died, and Leigh sympathises that that's awful. Jill goes on that he hasn't been very well for a while - he's been in a coma. Leigh recalls that she thinks Charlie told her about him. Jill gets in the cab.

Cheri is back at Fiona's, some shopping bags in her hands. She asks, "Did they say why he died?" Fiona shrugs and replies, "Just that his heart stopped beating." She adds that the hospital did seem very surprised that it happened so quickly. Cheri says quietly that she thinks it's better to die quickly and painlessly, and Fiona says she couldn't agree more. She sits down and continues sadly that Jill was hoping for so long that there would be an improvement. Cheri quickly tells her that there couldn't have been; she saw that immediately - he was too far gone. She then asks if Jill was very upset, and Fiona replies that she was alright on the 'phone, but she doesn't think it had had time to sink in at that stage. Cheri sits down as well and says she hopes she can make Jill see that it's for the better - there's no point in prolonging life like that; it just leaves a person without dignity. Fiona comments to her that she must have seen a lot of suffering, being a nurse. Cheri agrees that she has. She goes on that she saw her mother die in slow agony; ever since then, she's felt it better that people die quickly and peacefully. Fiona nods sadly and remarks, "There's almost a case for euthanasia, isn't there? - although quite honestly I'd hate to be the one who had to make the decision." Cheri tells her that if life isn't worth living, people should have a right to choose to die; even God wouldn't deny them that. Fiona looks at her, and she explains that, when her mother was so ill, she found that prayer helped; it made her more aware of God. She adds that she hopes she can make Jill see that Robin's death is for the best.

Gordon is talking to Amanda on the 'phone on the bar in the lounge room at Dural, and he asks her why she didn't get in touch with him before. In the lounge room at Toorak, Amanda explains that it was because Aunty Barb didn't want them to - but she felt she had to do something. Gordon tells her that he'll get down there as quickly as he can. Amanda says she hopes they've done the right thing by telling him, and Gordon assures her that they have. He adds that he'll try and get a flight tonight and they hang up. In Melbourne, Amanda turns to Andy, sighs heavily and says, "Well. Done it." Andy tells her not to look so worried - if anybody gets through to Mrs. H. about seeing a doctor, Gordon should; she obviously still loves him. Amanda nods but points out that she might also just flip when he gets there; she could hate them for ringing him. Andy reminds her that they had to do something. Amanda asks, "What if it makes her worse?" Andy just shrugs.

In the lounge room at Dural, Gordon tells Leigh and Alan that he's sorry to go dashing off when Karen and Wayne are away for a few days, but Alan assures him that they'll be OK, and Leigh adds that she'll look after him! Gordon looks at his watch and says he's got an eight o'clock flight; he'd better shake a leg. Leigh asks him if he needs a hand packing, but Gordon assures her that he can manage and he walks off. When he's gone, Leigh comments to Alan that it looks like they're going to have the house to themselves for a while, and she suggests that she cook them both a really nice dinner. Alan tells her that he won't be able to make it - he's meeting Jill tonight. Leigh suggests that surely he could have dinner with her, first...? Alan looks at his watch and tells her that she'll have to make it fairly soon. Leigh smiles at him and assures him, "That's OK. It won't take me long to whip up something nice..." She walks off, leaving Alan with a smile on his face.

Jill is sitting on the couch at Fiona's, looking upset, and she cries that she feels so guilty. Fiona puts a comforting hand on her shoulder and asks gently, "Why on earth should you?" Jill points out that she's hardly been to visit him lately, and then today she said that maybe he would be better off if he died...; it's like she wished it on him. Fiona tells her to come on... that was only sheer coincidence - it's nothing for her to go blaming herself about. Cheri tells Jill that Robin's death was a blessing; she must be able to see that? She goes on that, when there's no hope, life becomes intolerable, and there was no hope for Robin. Jill muses sadly that she supposes she's right. Cheri adds, "And he went so peacefully..." Jill and Fiona both look at her in surprise, and she quickly adds, "Well, he would've, I'm sure - his heart just stopped beating and now he's at peace. Don't you think it's what he would've wanted?" Jill smiles awkwardly and says she supposes so. Fiona, changing the subject, says she'd better go and check on dinner, and she asks Jill if she thinks she'd feel like eating something. Jill nods and Fiona gets up and heads to the kitchen. When she's gone, Jill says to Cheri that the nurse said the odd thing was, his eyes were shut. Cheri looks guilty as Jill adds, "Like someone had closed them for him." She then suggests that it must have been some sort of reflex action when he died. Cheri just agrees, "Mmm." Jill tells her that those staring eyes used to haunt her; she couldn't stop thinking about them. Cheri assures her that that memory will fade and she'll soon remember him the way he used to be. Jill says she hopes so. She adds that she just can't get over how they were talking about it and it happened. Cheri says to her that she does see that it was for the best, doesn't she? Jill nods and tells her that death's always a shock, but she's right: in Robin's case, it was a blessing; it would have been awful if he'd lingered on for years. She then says, "Thanks." Cheri asks, "What for?" and Jill replies, "Helping me put things in perspective." Cheri tells her that that's what life's about: helping people. Jill nods. Cheri then tells her that she mustn't sit around and mope too much, but Jill assures her that she won't - Alan's coming over.

At the dinner table in the living room at Dural, Alan tells Leigh that that was great - he had no idea she was such a good cook. Leigh replies that she can be - when there's someone around to make all the trouble worthwhile. Alan looks at his watch and says he'd better ring up Jill and tell her that he's going to be a little late. Leigh comments that Jill was in a strange mood when she left today. Alan points out that she'd just found out that that friend of hers had died, but Leigh explains that it was what she said; the way she put it. She then quickly adds that it probably didn't mean anything. Alan tells her, "No - go on." Leigh says she shouldn't have mentioned it. Alan, though, looking interested, asks what she said. Leigh tells him, "That Robin has gone, but at least she still has you - like you and Robin were sort of the same. I mean, it's silly - Robin was in a coma; you're only--" She breaks off. Alan suggests that Jill probably wasn't thinking straight, and Leigh muses that she guesses not. She adds that Jill must be a really nice person - she seems to want to care about people she feels are helpless... She then says she'll get the coffee, and she stands up and goes, leaving Alan sitting at the table, looking thoughtful.

Gordon has arrived at Toorak, and Andy lets him in. Amanda comes and gives him a kiss and tells him that it's good to see him. Gordon asks how Barbara is, and Amanda replies that she's a bit better at the moment - some times are worse than others. She adds that Barbara said she'd get up and try and eat something soon. Gordon asks if they didn't tell her that he was coming, and Andy explains that they weren't too sure how she'd take it. Gordon says he'd like to talk to her alone when she comes down, and Amanda tells him that they'll make themselves scarce. Andy says he's just glad to feel something is being done about it. Amanda warns him that Barbara will probably get upset when she sees him, but Gordon assures her that he'll handle it. The three of them head into the lounge room.

Alan is sitting on the couch at Dural, looking glum. Leigh walks over to him with two glasses of port and tells him that she hates seeing him like this. Alan asks her what she cares, but Leigh replies that of course she cares; she thought he realised. She then tells him, "I'm in love with you, Alan." Alan looks at her in surprise, and she goes on, "I've never felt this way about anyone before. I can't help it - I just want to be with you all the time. I want you to sleep with me. Be the first..." Alan smiles nervously and tells her, "Leigh, you're a nice kid. I don't want to take advantage of you." Leigh assures him, "You wouldn't be. I'm asking you." Alan points to his crutches and asks if they don't bother her. Leigh tells him, "Of course not. I told you: I love you; nothing else matters. I can't stop thinking about you." She moves across so that she's lying on the couch on top of him and they start kissing passionately. The 'phone suddenly starts ringing, but Leigh tells Alan not to answer it. Alan says it'll be Jill 'phoning up to find out where he is, but Leigh retorts, "Then let her." They return to their passion... At Fiona's, Jill tells Fiona that there's no answer. Fiona suggests that perhaps he's on his way over. Jill says she thought he'd be there ages ago; she hopes he's alright...

Gordon is sitting in the lounge room at Toorak when he hears a noise out in the hallway. He stands up and heads out there. He looks shocked when he finds Barbara holding onto the rail bannister, trying to ease her way downstairs, step-by-step. Barbara stops in her tracks when she sees him and murmurs, "Gordon?" Gordon tells her, "Don't ask me to leave, Barbara. The last four months have been hell without you. I need you. I love you." Barbara begins to burst into tears and she makes her way slowly down the remaining stairs and into Gordon's arms, sobbing, "Oh, Gordon. Help me. Please help..."


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