The next morning, Beryl is standing in the corridor at the hospital.
Irene emerges from a room nearby and tells her that she can see
Fiona now; she's just given her the pre-op. Beryl heads into the
room, where Fiona is lying in bed. She asks Irene how bad the
scars will be. Irene, though, insists that they don't want to
talk about that. She then comments, "You know, I
cannot get over the cheek of Alison coming to your party?"
Fiona, though, asks, "Who cares?! It was a wonderful
party!" Beryl says, "Personally, I think Wayne
was the one with the cheek." Fiona suddenly grasps Beryl
and Irene's hands and says, "You will take care
of everything for me, won't you?" Beryl assures her that
everything will be fine. Fiona, starting to become groggy, begins
to murmur, "You know, it's funny... I thought Johnny would
have come to see me... dear little Johnny... those cards that
fell out... that ace of spades... it's not a very nice
card..." A nurse suddenly comes in with some flowers and
tells Fiona that they're from David. Fiona murmurs, "Darling
David is sitting at the kitchen table at the country house, looking
worried. Tim, Donna and Spider are sitting with him. Spider is
looking at the newspaper: there's a photo of Sarah in there, captioned
'Missing: Sarah Palmer'. Spider comments that it's in a good spot,
and he asks if there'd been any reaction. David shakes his head.
He then asks to be excused, saying he's got some work to do. He
heads out. Spider asks Tim if he knew David was offering a reward
to find Sarah. Donna suddenly recalls that David was supposed
to pick some carrots for dinner, and she heads out to remind him.
When she's gone, Tim asks Spider, "How's Jess?" Spider,
though, doesn't respond, instead saying he might do some digging
around himself. Tim persists, "What time does she
normally finish school?" Donna comes in as he asks this,
though, and she gives him a look. He quickly heads off outside,
to help David. Spider murmurs to himself that if he had a crack
at David's $500, he'd get back the $200 he lost on the coffee
business and still make a profit...
At the hospital, Beryl and Irene are watching as Fiona is wheeled
off to surgery. Beryl says to Irene, "It's not going to be
easy, is it?" Irene murmurs, "She's
left it late." She then adds, "She's got a will like
there's no tomorrow. I reckon she'll be giving us all the help
she can." With that, she heads off to scrub up. Beryl murmurs
to herself, "I'll be praying..."
A while later, Beryl is playing with Robert in Fiona's flat.
She puts him in his high chair as someone knocks on the front
door. She goes to answer it and finds a young woman standing there.
It's Janice. She explains, "I'm looking for my aunt: Fiona
Thompson." Beryl invites her in. As she steps inside, Janice
comments, "I'm surprised you know her." Looking
surprised, Beryl asks, "Why?" Janice tells her, "Two
of her 'friends' - a scruffy-looking young man and a blind girl
- came to see me yesterday. They said she was due to have an operation;
is that true?" Beryl nods that it is, and she asks Janice
if she'd like to stay and wait for news from the hospital. Janice
looks at her watch and says she can stay for about twenty minutes.
Beryl mutters, "That's very generous of you." She offers
Janice some tea. Janice asks curtly, "Have you got any brown
sugar?" Beryl mutters, "I imagine so."
At the hospital, Fiona is lying in bed, unconscious, back in
her room after the operation. As a nurse injects the contents
of a needle into her drip, Irene says quietly, "You hang
in there, my girl."
At Fiona's flat, Beryl is in the kitchen. Janice wanders round,
looking at things in the lounge room. She heads over to the bar
and pauses. She then looks at a pulp romance novel on the floor.
Turning to Robert, she sighs, "What sort of life are you
in for...?" Beryl emerges from the kitchen as she speaks
these words and asks her if she said something. Janice
asks, "Why would a nice woman like you have anything
to do with my aunt?" Beryl retorts, "Fiona is the most
generous, kindest person I know." Janice, though,
mutters, "Don't try and whitewash her - I've seen her in
the flesh." She then asks what cake it is that Beryl's brought
through. Beryl explains that she found it in the kitchen. Janice
remarks sourly that it was probably left over from that orgy last
night. Beryl glares at her and snaps, "It was not
an orgy - I was here myself." She then asks Janice
how she knows about it, and she explains that she
was there too - briefly. Beryl tells her, "For your
information, that was Fiona's way of proving that she's determined
not to give in. She's a very brave lady." Janice growls,
"The minute I walked in the door last night, some drunken
woman made a pass at my father - and it wasn't hard to recognise
my aunt, parading around like an old Delilah in a ridiculous dress."
Beryl glares at her and snaps, "Now you listen to
me: I am not standing here to hear my best friend being
insulted." The 'phone suddenly starts ringing and Beryl goes
to get it. Irene comes on and tells her, "She's pulled through
the op, but she's still one very sick lady." Beryl asks if
it's been successful. Irene replies that they won't know that
for a few days at least. Beryl says she'll come over. Irene, though,
explains that Fiona will be out for hours. She then adds that
she has to go, and they hang up. Beryl turns back to Janice and
sighs, "Obviously you heard all that: she's come through
the operation but she's still a very sick woman. Now, if that's
what you came to find out, I suggest you leave right now."
Janice asks indignantly, "What about afternoon tea?"
Beryl retorts sarcastically, "You'd better not eat it; you
never know what you might catch." Janice murmurs
that she'll keep in touch. Beryl snaps, "Fine. Goodbye."
With that, Janice walks out.
Tim and David are working in the grounds at the country house
and Tim says he might go and get some more fertiliser. David points
out that he won't need it 'til the end of the week. Tim, though,
tells him that they can start on the new bed and it'll put them
a couple of weeks ahead of planting. David accepts this and offers
to come with him. Tim, however, insists that he'll be alright.
He asks David for the car keys. David hands them over and warns
him to drive carefully. Spider suddenly wanders over to David
and tells him that he's after the reward; he's got a few clues
as to how to find Sarah. David tells him, "If you're quick
enough, you can get a lift with Tim." Tim, though, quickly
climbs into the car and drives off.
A short time later, Tim pulls up outside Jess's school. He watches
as she walks down the path with one of her friends. He calls to
her and the friend comments, "Been keeping him tucked
away, haven't you?" Jess blushes, "I hardly
know him." She starts walking over to the car. Tim
smiles at her.
A few moments later, Tim and Jess are both sitting in the car,
but Jess is snapping that she felt like a real idiot; it'll get
around that he came there. Tim sighs, "I had to see you,
Jess. I told you before that I never felt this way about anyone.
I guess I love you." Jess looks at him and comments,
"No one's ever said that to me before." Tim tells her,
"I'm saying it now - and I mean it." Jess sighs, "It's
impossible, though. You're married and I'm still
at school and it's my last year and I want to do well." Tim
insists, "You will. I wouldn't hassle you, I promise.
I've just got to see you every now and then." Jess
asks about Donna. Tim tells her, "She won't know." Jess,
though, tells him, "I don't want to have to hide every time
I see you." Tim says, "I don't know what I'll do if
I don't see you, Jess." Jess looks at him earnestly
and replies, "I really like you, Tim - but I like Donna,
too, and I just couldn't do it to her. We just have to face facts:
it can't happen."
Spider is walking along a footpath and approaches a building
with a sign over it saying 'Harrison House'. A group of down-on-their-luck
old men is sitting outside and another man emerges from the building
and tells them that it's pumpkin soup today. Spider joins them
and says to the man, "I was wondering if you could help me."
The man assures him, "We'll help anyone who needs it, mate."
Spider goes on, "Actually, I was looking for a woman."
The man retorts, "I don't think you're in the right spot
- and quite frankly, I don't find it very tasteful at your
age." Spider, though, quickly shows him the photo of Sarah
in the newspaper and explains that he's looking for her.
The man says he hasn't seen her. Spider asks him if he's sure,
and the man replies that he's sorry. Spider goes to walk off.
The man, though, quickly invites him to have a meal with them.
Spider thanks him and heads inside.
In the kitchen at the country house, Donna hears a car door slam
outside and she comments that it sounds like Tim's home. David
heads out and asks Tim curtly where he got to. Tim tells him,
"I had a bit of trouble with the car: it stalled a few times."
David remarks that it's been alright with him. Donna
goes and stands by the back door as Tim snaps, "I'm back,
alright?" David comments that he's a bit moody all of a sudden.
He then announces that he's going to do some more work and he
walks off. Donna emerges from the kitchen and asks Tim if he'd
like some afternoon tea. He mutters that he hasn't got time, and
he heads off back to work, leaving Donna looking worried.
Irene is standing with Beryl in Fiona's flat at the boarding
house. Beryl is telling her, "I had the most peculiar visitor
before: Fiona's niece - Andy and Kelly tracked her down. I'm beginning
to wish they hadn't." Irene asks what's wrong with
her. Beryl replies, "For starters, she's just plain rude
- and she's got it into her head that Fiona's some dreadful tart
of a woman who deserves all she can get." Irene comments,
"How charming!" Beryl goes on, "First of all, I
nearly laughed at her - until I realised she was serious.
I'll tell you what: if she comes round again, I'll give her a
piece of my mind. She is the last person Fiona needs
at the moment."
The door to Fiona's room at the hospital opens and Janice creeps
in. Fiona is still lying in bed, unconscious. The nurse follows
Janice and asks if there's something she can do. Janice whispers,
"It's alright - I'm her niece." The nurse tells her,
"Perhaps if you left it a few hours...?" She then takes
a bunch of flowers that Janice is holding and goes to put then
with several others. She comments, "Popular lady, your aunt."
Sounding surprised, Janice murmurs, "Looks like it - a lot
of people must care about her." The nurse replies, "Of
the little I've seen of her, I'm not surprised. I really hope
she makes it - the world could do with a lot more people
Spider has arrived back at the country house and Donna comments
that he looks pale. Spider explains that he thought Sarah had
gone to one of those refuge places - and they thought he was after
a handout everywhere. Tim grins, "I bet you had something
to eat at every one of them!" David asks how many he went
to. Spider tells him, "Four or five. The last one was me
downfall - the food wasn't fit for pigs!" David suggests
to Donna, "I suppose you'd better call Jess and tells her
what's happened to him." As Tim looks on in concern, he adds,
"She might as well come round here for dinner now."
Later that evening, Jess arrives at the country house. As Tim
lets her in, she tells him that she didn't really want
to come; she was just worried about Spider. Tim assures her that
he's OK. Jess asks if he's inside. Tim stands in front of her,
though, and tells her that they've got to talk. Jess murmurs that
she doesn't think they should. Tim, though, insists that they
have to. He adds that he'll try and make some arrangements
later for them to be by themselves. Jess, however, pleads, "Please,
Tim, we can't." Donna suddenly comes into the kitchen
and Jess asks her if Spider is any better. Donna replies that
he's alright. Jess heads off to the lounge room to see him. Tim
quickly says to Donna, "You got enough wood for the fire,
Don - to cook dinner?" Donna, though, just says, "She's
a nice-looking girl, isn't she?" Tim murmurs, "I suppose."
Donna growls, "What do you mean 'you suppose'? Haven't
you noticed? Any normal guy would've." Tim murmurs
guiltily, "Yeah, I guess she's pretty." Donna continues,
"It'll be great when I've had the baby - I'll be
able to get my figure back again." She adds, "I don't
blame you for looking at someone else; I mean, I'm just
such a lump at the moment." Tim sighs, "Donna,
I don't know what you're thinking, but whatever it is, it's wrong,
OK? I don't want to talk about it." With that, he heads out
to get the wood.
Fiona is sitting up in her hospital bed, reading her get-well
cards, when Irene and Beryl come into the room. Irene smiles at
her, "Well look at you!" Beryl asks her how
she's feeling. Fiona replies, "Very bruised..." She
then adds, "I'm just glad I'm still here - I think I might
go and celebrate for a whole week!" Irene, though, warns
her that it's going to take her a lot longer to get over than
if she'd had the operation earlier. Fiona asks, "How did
it all go - really?" Irene smiles, "I think
the general feeling is we're going to have you round for quite
a few years to come!" Fiona says weakly, "That's good
- 'cos I've still got an awful lot I have to do." She then
changes the subject and says, "By the way, who's the comedian?"
She indicates one of her cards. Irene asks, "Eh?" Fiona
explains, "The comedian who sent me this - supposedly from
my niece, Janice. None of my family would send me a card,
let alone flowers. I don't know this 'Janice' - I've
never clapped eyes on her. Come on, 'fess-up." Beryl
tells her, "Actually, it is from your niece: she's
been in touch; she knows all about you."
George Reid - wearing a vicar's dog collar - and Janice walk
round the corner of the corridor outside. The nurse is coming
the other way and Janice stops her and asks how her aunt is. The
nurse replies that she's conscious, but she's got someone with
her at the moment. She adds that they can go in if they like,
but they should keep it short. She then walks off. George suggests
to Janice that it would be polite if they waited until Fiona's
other visitor left. Janice looks at him and smiles, "You're
wonderful, you know, coming to see her? I know what a difficult
decision it was." George points out, "I could hardly
call myself a Christian if I didn't." Janice tells
him, "She does need our help. She's sick:
physically and spiritually. I'm sure we can put her back
on the right path." At that moment, Irene emerges from the
room and walks straight past the two of them. Janice comments
to her father, "Well, it's time for you to meet her again."
In the room, Beryl is standing next to Fiona's bed as Fiona laughs
that she can just imagine Janice's face when she saw her in that
dress! There's suddenly a knock on the door and Fiona calls, "Come
in." As she sees the two people who enter, she exclaims,
"My God..." George mutters, "I see you still have
no respect for the Almighty, Fiona." Janice says to Fiona,
"Hello, Aunty. I'm your niece, Janice. I thought it was only
right to bring dad, knowing the trouble you're in." Beryl
introduces herself to George. George then says to Fiona, "I
can only pray that your illness has brought some light into your
life and made you think about repentance. I'm aware of your financial
problem, and although I can't be any direct support because of
my family commitments, I will be able to recommend you
to several charitable organisations - although, as I understand
it, what you need most is spiritual guidance, and I'm
more than willing to provide that, as I always have been. I can
only hope that you're willing to accept it." Fiona glares
at him and then cries, "Stop being so sanctimonious. You
haven't changed one scrap, have you, in how
long is it? I'm not dead yet, George, and quite frankly
I wouldn't give a damn how desperate I was; I certainly
be turning to you for help." George snaps, "Typical.
You haven't changed either: the same foul mouth... the same lack
of common decency..." Fiona gasps, "Common decency?
That's grand, that is. You've been sitting up there in
your ivory tower, spouting words at people for the last 25 years,
and that's all they've ever had out of you: words. Well
if I had as much get-up-and-go in me as you do, George,
I would have been dead - a long time ago. You're just
like a dried-up old dishcloth and just about as useless!"
Beryl pleads with Fiona to calm down. George murmurs, "I
shouldn't have come. There are some people you simply
cannot save." With that, he walks out. Fiona yells after
him, "Being saved by you would be like OD-ing on Valium!"
Janice glares at her and snaps, "If you weren't such a sick
woman, I'd tell you exactly what I thought of you, and it wouldn't
be nice. Still, I can see someone has to get through
to you; it might as well be me. I'll be back when you've had time
to give it some thought. I'm going to help you find a righteous
path whether you like it or not." With that, she leaves.
Beryl and Fiona watch her go, incredulously. Fiona then chuckles,
"Well, I'll say one thing for the girl: she's got
a bit of spunk! I hope she does come back!" Beryl
warns her, "In your present condition, I don't think that
would be wise." Fiona, though, asks lightly, "Why not?
It would be a lot of fun. She is going to convert me?
Oo, I like a challenge. We'll see who converts who!"