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    Written by: Lyn Ogilvy   Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Alister Smart

Beryl cries, "You're mad. Both of you." Tracy, though, ignores her and snaps at her, "You're going to do me a little favour: call Leigh. Get her over here." Beryl shakes her head and murmurs, "Oh no." Tracy says, "Convince her, Judge." Holding out the metal pole, Judge threatens, "It would be a pity if me hand slipped..." Beryl murmurs in terror, "Alright, alright, I'll call her - but her baby's sick; she might not want to come." Tracy growls, "Just get her over here; understand?" As Beryl picks up the 'phone, Judge adds, "And no funny business. If she calls her cop mate, all three of you will be in strife. That clear?" Beryl just glares at him.

Adam and Leigh are still sitting on the couch at Beryl's, Adam with his arm around Leigh. Leigh murmurs that it's not right. Adam asks, "What's not?" and Leigh tells him, "You and me. We shouldn't have started it - I'll be going to jail in a few months." Adam tells her, "I'll wait for you." Leigh, though, sighs, "No you won't..." She then asks, "What about your mates? A lot of them are cops. How are they going to feel about staying friends with someone whose girlfriend's a crim?" Adam tells her not to think like that; they've both got to believe it'll work or they'll put the mockers on it before it's even started; they'll take every day as it comes. They start kissing passionately, but are suddenly interrupted by the 'phone starting to ring. Leigh curses, "Dammit." Adam tells her, "Let it ring," and they resume their kissing. Leigh, though, sighs that she'd better answer it - it might be important. She goes and picks it up and Beryl immediately comes on and says, "Leigh, it's Beryl. Can you come over to David's?" Leigh, looking surprised, asks why. Beryl tells her, "Brett's got a surprise for you." Leigh groans, "Can't he tell me on the 'phone?" Beryl, though, insists, "No, it's very important to him, Leigh. Please?" Leigh asks if it has to be right now. Beryl replies, "Yes - and look, don't worry about Shane; you can leave him next door." Leigh, suddenly looking puzzled, points out, "Shane's in Queensland." Beryl tells her, "Yes, I know, but I'm sure Victor and Muriel won't mind having him for a couple of hours." Leigh asks suspiciously, "Beryl, what's going on?" Beryl, though, tells her, "Don't argue, Leigh. Just come on your own." Leigh tells her, "Adam's with me. Can I bring him?" Beryl smiles, "Yes, terrific. We'll see you when you get here. Bye." With that, she hangs up and Judge tells her, "Well done." At Beryl's, Leigh hangs up as well and then says to Adam, "That was weird. Either something funny's going on... or Beryl's off her head!"

At the country house, Tracy taunts Beryl, "I'm going to enjoy this. Can't you just see her face?" Brett suddenly starts groaning on the floor. Judge immediately grabs him and hauls him onto one of the chairs at the kitchen table. He tells Tracy to get rid of the dog and then see if she can find some rope somewhere. Tracy picks up Isabella and heads outside with her. Beryl asks Judge angrily, "What do you want with us?" Judge, though, tells her, "I don't want anything with you - you just got in the way. But Leigh, and this one here..." - he shakes Brett's head, roughly- "... have been causing us a bit of trouble. I'm going to teach them a lesson." Beryl stares at him in horror.

Spider and Rod have turned up at Beryl's, but as Leigh escorts them into the lounge room, she tells them that Beryl isn't there at the moment. Rod explains that he wanted to apologise for Jess's behaviour at lunchtime, that's all. Leigh murmurs, "Right," and she glances at Adam. Rod looks at the two of them and asks if something's wrong. Leigh explains that she's just had a call from Beryl - she's over at David's; apparently, Brett has got some sort of surprise for her and Beryl asked her to go straight over. Spider asks her what she's doing at Beryl's, then. Leigh tells him, "She said not to take Shane. She also said to come by myself, but said 'yes' when I asked if Adam could tag along." Adam explains that they've been trying to figure out what it means. He then says to Leigh that, this afternoon, Beryl was saying how it was a good thing that Judge and Tracy couldn't get at Shane because he was up with her mum; maybe she was trying to warn her? Leigh asks, "About Judge and Tracy?" Adam nods, "Yeah." Rod, looking worried, asks him if he means Brett and Beryl could be in trouble. Adam nods that it's possible. Rod suggests quickly that they should get over there, then. Adam, though, points out that last time they tried to handle things on their own, they made a mess of it, and he says he'll call the cops. He goes to the 'phone. Everyone else heads outside.

Tracy returns to the kitchen at the country house and Judge asks her what she did with the dog. Tracy replies nastily, "Leigh's not going to trip over it when she turns up..." Brett snaps that Isabella wouldn't hurt anyone. Judge, though, snarls, "The stupid ball of fluff was getting in my way." He then tells Tracy to get some kero. Looking shocked, Brett asks him what he's going to do, but Judge retorts nastily, "Give you a big lolly for your birthday!" Tracy starts hunting through one of the cupboards and finds a plastic container full of kerosene. She asks Judge what he wants her to do with it, and he replies, "Spread it around the floor - especially around him." He indicates Brett. Tracy cries in shock, "You're not going to burn the place?" Judge just stares at her. Beryl gasps, "You wouldn't..." Judge, though, tells her lightly, "Terrible things, fires. You know the worst thing about them? No one ever seems to know how they got started." Beryl stares at Tracy and pleads, "Tracy, please... you're not in that much trouble yet. He'll only make it harder for you." Brett pleads, "For heaven's sake, Tracy, you can't help this maniac." Judge glares at Tracy and orders, "Do it." Tracy stares back at him for several seconds and then takes the lid off the container of kerosene and starts splashing it over the floor. Brett and Beryl stare at her in horror.

A few minutes later, Beryl asks Judge if he can't see he's only making things worse for himself. Brett adds that Beryl hasn't hurt him; why can't he let her go? Tracy suddenly runs in from the hallway and cries to Judge, "A police car's just pulled up." Judge glares at Beryl and yells furiously, "You bitch!" He goes to strike her with his metal pole, but Tracy grabs him and tells him that they've got to get out of there. Judge struggles with her briefly, but then calms down, hands her the pole and orders, "Watch them." He then runs out into the hallway. Tracy stands there with Beryl and Brett, looking worried.

Outside, a police car is parked a short distance from the house. Judge suddenly yells from the property, "Stay away, coppers. We've got two of your friends here. One move and they're dead." Another car pulls up and Adam, Leigh, Spider and Rod climb out. Adam runs over to his police colleagues and asks what's happening. One of the officers replies that Judge has threatened to harm his hostages if they get too close. Adam replies, "He will, too. He's vicious." The officer glares at Adam and snaps, "Then why the hell did you bring this lot with you?" He indicates Leigh, Spider and Rod. Leigh cries that they want to do what they can for Brett and Beryl. Adam tells them to get back in the car, and Spider and Leigh reluctantly head back to the vehicle. Rod, though, tells Adam, "Mate, if you think I'm going to sit in that bloody car while Beryl's in there, you've got another think coming." Adam sighs, "Alright - but do exactly what we tell you and stay out of the way as much as possible." Judge's voice suddenly rings out again, yelling, "I mean it: come any closer, I'll kill 'em both."

In Sydney, Charlie and Alison are sitting in Charlie's lounge room, and Charlie is saying that she really must be getting back to Melbourne; Isabella will be pining for her by now. She shows Alison a pink dog jacket that she's bought and asks her if she thinks Isabella will like it. Alison murmurs, "She should do." She then tells Charlie that she wishes she wouldn't go to Melbourne. Charlie points out to Alison that she doesn't need her, anymore: Roger's dead... his murderer's been found... she's as safe as houses. Alison mutters that she knows. Charlie suggests to her that, if she wants a break, she should come with her - and who knows? - David could be back any time. Alison, though, says she won't - there are a few things she still needs to do in Sydney. Charlie asks, "Mary?" Alison nods, "I need to spend more time with her." Charlie warns her that she can't tell her she's her mother - and the more time she spends with her, the more likely she is to make a slip. Alison protests that she can't just walk away from her; not yet, anyway. Charlie says dubiously that she still thinks it would be better if Alison came with her.

Samantha is standing with Fiona in Fiona's kitchen as Fiona prepares some lunch. Fiona tells her that Chris has taken Hung to the movies, and Samantha comments that that was nice. Fiona remarks that he's really trying to make an effort to get over his prejudice. Samantha asks her when she'll hear from the Immigration Department. Fiona just sighs, "The sooner the better." She adds that she'll dread it if they decide to deport him, but at least they'll know where they stand. She then invites Samantha to stay for dinner and Samantha accepts. There's suddenly a knock at the front door and Samantha goes and answers it. Irene and Andy come in, all dressed up, and Irene calls to Fiona in the kitchen to ask her if she's ready. She then suddenly notices place mats on the table, and she reminds Fiona that they're eating at the Hamiltons'. Fiona, though, explains that she can't go: she's having a visitor who's got some news of David. Andy asks where from. Fiona replies that he says he's from South America; he called her this afternoon. Irene asks if David is alright. Fiona tells her that the guy wouldn't say on the 'phone. Andy muses that he wonders if David is any closer to finding Patricia. Fiona suggests, "Hopefully, it won't be too long before we find out."

In Sunbury, Adam is standing with his police colleagues, behind the police car, and he points out the kitchen window. One of the other officers suggests that what they've got to do is get over to the house without being seen. Rod joins them and, pointing out a car parked right next to the house, asks whose it is. Adam replies that it's Judge's. Rod asks why they don't nobble it. Adam points out that Judge will see them from the house. Rod, though, mutters that they've got to stop him escaping somehow. With that, and before anyone can stop him, he runs off across the grounds, round behind some trees and over to Judge's car. One of the police officers murmurs in surprise, "I think he's got away with it..."

Inside the house, Tracy runs into the kitchen and tells Judge that the other car looks like the one Adam was driving at Judge's brother's place. Judge asks her if she can see Adam. Tracy replies, "No - but Leigh and Spider are in it." Judge mutters that they'd better make a move. Tracy cries, "How? The police are probably outside the door by now." Judge, glaring at Beryl, snarls, "Then we'll use mum for protection, won't we?" He runs over to Beryl and grabs her. She cries, "What are you doing?" Judge, though, just indicates his metal pole and snarls, "You see this? If you don't behave yourself, I'm going to use it, OK?" Brett snaps at Judge, "Let her go." Judge, though, ignores him, instead ordering Tracy, "Get some matches. As soon as me and mum are out the door, light one and drop it. That should keep everyone off our tails for five minutes." Tracy asks, "What if they just ignore it?" Judge snarls nastily, "Poor Brett..." Tracy cries, "We don't have to go that far." Judge, though, starts dragging Beryl across to the door, ordering Tracy as he does so, "Just do it, Tracy. Soon as you've started the fire, you can follow me and mum - and stick as close as you can." With that, he pushes Beryl outside. Tracy takes a match out of the box in her hand. Brett pleads in horror, "Tracy..."

Just outside the back door, Judge yells to the gathering outside, "I'm coming out. I have the woman with me. Try anything, she gets it." Inside, Tracy stands there, shaking nervously. Brett pleads, "Tracy, don't. Please..." Tracy takes out a match and goes to strike it. Judge calls, "Tracy... hurry up." Brett cries to her, "Don't listen to him." Tracy strikes the match and it lights. Brett cries again, "Tracy, don't do it." Judge yells, "Tracy, what the hell are you doing in there?" Tracy stares at the lit match and then blows it out and drops it and the box on the floor. Brett sighs in relief. Tracy runs out and joins Judge and Beryl. Beryl cries, "No... Brett..." Judge starts pushing her forward, across the grounds. Adam and his colleague run out from behind the police car, but Judge yells, "Keep away or she gets it." Adam yells back, "You let Beryl go, you'll stand a much better chance." Judge yells back, "Do you guys think I'm stupid?" He then pushes Beryl over to his car. Tracy takes the keys out of his pocket. Judge turns back to Adam and his colleague and, indicating Beryl, yells, "If you try and follow, she's not going to look too pretty." Neither he nor Tracy notices Rod climbing stealthily along the roof above them. He pushes Beryl towards the car, but Rod suddenly leaps down from the roof and lands on top of him. He pushes him up against the car and then starts laying punches on him. Adam and his colleagues run towards them. Adam goes after Tracy while one of the other officers runs up and grabs Judge, placing handcuffs on his wrists. Leigh and Spider dash up to them and Leigh throws her arms around Beryl in relief. Looking horrified, Beryl just cries, "Get Brett. He's in the kitchen. They set fire to it." Tracy, though, admits, "No I didn't. He's OK." Judge snarls at her, "You'll keep." Tracy appeals to one of the police officers, "It'll help me in court, won't it? That I didn't set fire to the house?" The officer just retorts, "Your type make me sick."

That night, at Dural, Barbara serves canapés to Andy, Charlie and Irene in the lounge room as Irene tells Charlie to give her love to Melbourne and to Isabella. Charlie says she will. She then asks Barbara to say goodbye to Gordon and Wayne for her. Barbara comments that it's a pity they had a rotary dinner. She then suggests that Charlie could stay for dinner. Charlie says she couldn't, but Barbara assures her that they've got enough food: Fiona was coming too - well, until this afternoon. Looking concerned, Charlie asks if she isn't well. Andy, though, explains that some guy turned up from South America: he wanted to drop around and see her. Charlie asks if she had any news of Patricia. Irene suggests that they'll probably hear in the morning. Charlie muses, "I expect so." She then stands up and says she won't say - she's got a million things to do and hasn't even started packing. Barbara wishes her a good trip. Charlie says goodbye to everyone and Barbara goes to see her out, but Charlie tells her to stay with her guests, adding that she knows the way! She heads out to the front door and opens it - to find a middle-aged-looking man standing there. She gasps, "Oh." The man just stares at her and so Charlie asks, "May I be of assistance?" The man laughs, "Strewth! Trust Gordon to marry a grade-A society matron!" Charlie looks at him in shock and says, "I beg your pardon. Just who do you think you are?" The man tells her, "I'm James. The long-lost brother. I've come to claim my rights." He leers at her.

A few moments later, Barbara is standing with Charlie and James in the hallway, and James is telling her, "You're not what I expected, either." Barbara invites him curtly to head into the lounge room, adding that she'll be with him in a minute. James asks if Gordon is home, but Barbara retorts, "Not at the moment. We thought you'd never arrive; in fact, we were giving up hope." James smiles, "Starting to hope, don't you mean?" He then walks off, leaving Charlie to comment to Barbara, "What an awful man. What was he talking about?" Barbara retorts, "Just being offensive, I imagine." Charlie mutters, "Fancy treating you like that. I mean... calling me a 'society matron'. He's not exactly the answer to a maiden's prayers himself!" She adds that if she was Barbara, she'd show him the door. Barbara, though, retorts that she can't - he's Gordon's brother; she has to be polite. Charlie says, "Rather you than me." She then goes. After shutting the door, Barbara takes a deep breath and heads into the lounge room.

A short time later, Charlie is back home and Alison is ranting at her, "I can't hear news of David second-hand. I'll have to go over there." Charlie asks her what she's going to say to Fiona. Alison just retorts that she'll think of something. She adds, "I miss him. I want to know if he's alright. Get a message to him, if this man has an address." Charlie gasps that she can't send him a message; she'd have to admit who she really is. Alison, though, retorts that she can get around that; what matters is finding out where he is; if she can work out some way of contacting him... Charlie wishes her warily, "Best of British. Hope the news is good." Alison muses, "So do I. I love David, Charlie. There must be some way we can finally... I don't know... settle down. Convince people to leave us alone."

In the kitchen at Fiona's flat, Fiona thanks Samantha for helping with the dishes. Samantha thanks her for the meal. She then says she'd better go home - she'd like to see a bit of her mum; she's still upset. Changing the subject, she comments on the vase of flowers that Fiona is holding and asks if they're from a secret admirer! Fiona, though, laughs, "No such luck!" She then asks, "Did you enjoy yours from your not-so-secret admirer?" Samantha stands there, a blank look on her face, and Fiona reminds her, "Your flowers - from Chris." Samantha, though, replies that she didn't get any flowers from Chris; in fact, he hasn't spoken to her for ages. Fiona quickly says in embarrassment, "I must have got it wrong..." Samantha, though, suggests, "You might as well tell me." Fiona shrugs, "He just said they were for someone special. Sorry." Samantha muses, "He's probably got a new girlfriend. I can't blame him - I couldn't accept him the way he was. It was my own fault." There's suddenly a knock at the door, and Fiona exclaims that it'll be her visitor from South America. She goes to open the door - and looks surprised to find Alison standing there. She remarks to her sourly that she wasn't expecting her. Samantha heads out, telling Fiona she'll see her later. Alison then says to Fiona, "I hope you don't think I'm rude, but I heard you're expecting someone who's been in Brazil, with David Palmer." Fiona nods that that's right. Alison goes on, "I was wondering if you'd let me stay and talk to him." Fiona tells her, "He doesn't know Patricia." Alison accepts, "No - but if she gets in touch with me any time, I'd like to have some news to pass on." Fiona sighs, "Come in."

Beryl is sitting on the couch in the lounge room at the country house, looking weary. Spider hands her a glass of brandy, but Beryl retorts that she doesn't even like brandy. Rod comes in and hands her a cup of tea. Beryl takes it. Rod suggests to Spider that he nick out and see how young Brett is getting on, as he might need the brandy. Spider accepts this and shuffles off. When he's gone, Rod asks Beryl if she's sure she's OK. She murmurs, "Thanks to you." She asks how Brett is, and Rod replies that he's alright - just a bit of swelling and grazing. Beryl murmurs that she's glad it's all over. Rod sits down next to her and takes her cup of tea from her hand. He then tells her gently, "When I saw you in so much danger this afternoon, I realised something." He takes her hands in his and continues, "I realised that I really do care for you. Really. And I was wondering if, one day, you could ever feel the same way towards me." Beryl stares at him and then says hesitantly, "Er... I, I, I do think a lot of you, Rod. You've become important to me." Rod realises, "There's a 'but' in there somewhere, though." Beryl looks down and asks, "What about Jess? She's made it perfectly clear she doesn't want me anywhere near you - and quite honestly, I'm very happy as I am. I don't know that I want to give up a comfortable life to be living one where I'm always at someone's throat and they're always at mine. I don't need it." Rod assures her that Jess will come around. Beryl, though, tells him that you can't force people to like each other; Jess will either accept her or she won't. Rod assures her, "She will in the end." He goes on, "The problem is, even though her mother's been dead a long time, I've never had a serious relationship with anyone. She's just not used to it, that's all. Anyway, she'll be grown-up and gone in a few years; then what I am supposed to do? Live a lonely life, just so she can feel comfortable for a few years?" Beryl stares at him and then says, "I don't know how to answer that, Rod. I only know I don't want to put myself through a life of misery, or anyone else, just because we think there might be a possibility of us having a good life together." Rod murmurs that he's sorry - he'll leave it for a bit. He adds that he won't be giving up, though; after all, she's just admitted that she cares for him a little bit. Beryl smiles, "I suppose I have!" Rod kisses her gently on her forehead and tells her, "That will do for starters."

Out in the kitchen, Leigh is mopping the floor. Spider hands Brett a glass of brandy and has one himself. Adam comes in and says, "I buried her - round the back." Leigh stands there, suddenly looking upset, and she starts to cry, "How am I going to tell Charlie? She adored that dog."

Fiona's South American visitor has turned up at her flat, and as Fiona invites him to sit down, he tells her that there are a lot of 'F. Thompsons' in the book. Alison, ignoring this, asks bluntly, "How's David?" The man replies, "Fine, last time I saw him." He then turns to Fiona and adds, "He gave me a letter for you, but I lost it. Sorry." Alison asks tersely how that happened. The man replies that it's a long story - they were in a bit of a tight spot and it was hard getting out. Fiona stares at him and asks, "David's in the middle of a war?" The man, though, laughs, "No! He's probably out by now. A guy like that knows how to look after himself. He gave me the letter just in case." Alison looks at Fiona. The man tells them not to look so worried - it's not as bad as it sounds; they lost touch just before he got out, and things were a bit of a scramble and he left all his luggage behind - and the letter, of course. Alison snaps at him, "You tell us not to worry and then you tell us you had to run for your life. David could be dead by now." The man, though, laughs, "No, no, he'll be right. The authorities didn't like me very much, but they won't after him." He then adds, "Actually, I'm a bit surprised he's not home already." Fiona stares at him wide-eyed and asks, "He's coming home?" The man nods, "Trying to, yeah. He's probably having trouble getting a passport." Alison points out, "He already has one." The man, though, tells her, "Not for him. For his new wife." Alison and Fiona suddenly stare at him in shock and Fiona murmurs, "His what?" The man smiles, "Yeah, they tied the knot about three weeks ago. Great little sort, too. I reckon you'll like her." Alison sits there staring at him in horror.


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