Sons and Daughters logo
    Written by: Peter Pinne   Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Pino Amenta

Gordon looks round as someone walks into the lounge room. Beryl tells him, "It's Caroline." Gordon looks at Caroline and smiles, "It's been a while since we've seen each other." Caroline nods, "Yes." She then goes on seriously, "There's something I have to tell you - and Beryl - or, should I say, something I have to own up to. I wrote the book My Sister My Love. I'm sorry, Gordon: if I'd known it was going to cause all this trouble, I'd never have put pen to paper." Gordon stares at her and gasps, "Do you honestly expect me to believe that? The things you wrote about and you didn't stop to think there might be some kind of repercussion?" Caroline cries, "I wasn't thinking clearly at the time." She then explains more calmly, "I started the book in prison. I felt so bitter against Wayne and Alison, I thought this was one way I could get back at them. When I got out, I put it all together and set it to a publishers. They took an option on it. I didn't think it was going to come to anything; in fact, I'd forgotten all about it 'til I got that letter last week saying they were going to release it, and by that time it was too late to stop it." Gordon demands, "Where did you get your information?" Caroline replies, "A lot of the more recent history I knew..." Gordon snaps, "And before that?" Caroline explains, "David told me - not knowingly, of course. Sometimes, we'd sit down at night and have a few drinks and he'd talk about how the two families got back together again after all those years - and I got a lot of details about the companies from financial sections of the newspapers." Gordon snaps angrily, "Ten out of ten for research." Caroline says earnestly, "I am sorry, Gordon - honestly." Gordon mutters, "You said that before - but it's not going to help, is it? The damage is already done." Caroline insists, "I had no idea the impact it was going to make." Gordon yells, "Didn't you give any thought to the people you might hurt - other than Wayne and Alison?" Caroline retorts, "I didn't think; that's the trouble. You have every right to be angry with me." Gordon yells, "You're damned right I have - me and a dozen others. What you did was unbelievably stupid." Caroline stares at him, guiltily.

Alison is talking on the 'phone in the lounge room at Charlie's, saying, "Thanks for letting me know, Gordon... Yes... Bye." She hangs up. Charlie comments from the couch, "Sounded very important. What was it all about?" Alison says, "Guess who our best-selling author is." Charlie muses, "Not whom you suspected?" Alison tells her, "Caroline!" Charlie gasps, "I don't believe it!" Alison replies, "She's just confessed all to Gordon and Beryl. Apparently, she got the idea while she was in jail and wrote the book shortly after she was released." Charlie raises her eyebrows. She then remarks, "It seems you owe Fiona an apology." Alison sighs, "Yes - and a trip to the moon!" Charlie suggests, "The first thing you have to do is stop any plans to pull the mansion down; there's no reason now Fiona wasn't behind it." Alison nods, "Gordon said exactly the same thing; Janice must have been telling tales out of school. I'll get onto that in the morning - but at the moment, what are we going to do about Caroline...?"

Caroline is back at home. She walks into the lounge room and joins Doug, telling him, "I'm sorry the dinner isn't ready yet - I had to go out for a while." Doug, who's holding a large cardboard box, replies, "That's alright. I had to wait for the new T-shirt examples, anyway. Wait 'til you see 'em - they're fantastic!" He opens the box and pulls out a white T-shirt, which has a large pair of red lips printed in the centre. He tells Caroline, "Go on: press." Caroline presses the lips and a metallic voice says, "Hi, lover. Give us a kiss!" Doug bursts out laughing as he says, "It's gonna go through the roof! We are going to make a fortune!" He puts his arms round Caroline and gives her a hug. Caroline responds only half-heartedly, though, and Doug asks, "What's wrong?" Caroline sighs, "I've done something I am not very proud of." Doug smiles, "Haven't we all! What is it?" Caroline tells him, "When I was in prison, I got the idea for a book - and I wrote it. It's just been published and it's selling very well. The only problem is I based it on two families that I know." Doug asks, "What's wrong with that?" Caroline explains, "The Hamiltons and the Palmers." Doug comments, "As long as you haven't used their real names, who cares?" Caroline replies, "They do." Doug asks, "Why?" Caroline tells him, "They say that it's a bit close to the bone - which I suppose it is." She then suggests, "Maybe you should read it; you can see why they're so upset." She hands him a copy of the book.

At Dural, Susan shows Alison into the lounge room, gasping as she does so, "Why would Caroline do it? What did she hope to gain from it?" Alison replies, "Revenge - and a lot of money if it worked." Susan sits down and comments, "Sinking pretty low." Alison retorts, "That wouldn't worry her. What does surprise me is she had the talent to put more than two words together in the one sentence." Wayne walks in from the hallway and says to Alison sharply, "If you don't mind, Alison, I'd like to have a quiet word with my wife. Alone." Susan snaps, "Whatever you have to say, you can say in front of Alison. What is it?" Wayne pauses. He then says, "I'm going to Melbourne to be at dad and Beryl's wedding." Susan stands up and glares at him. She then snaps, "You are not. You'll ruin the day for everyone." Wayne retorts, "I've made up my mind." Susan snaps, "I don't care. You can just forget it." Wayne growls, "He's my father and I'll be there if I want to." He goes to walk out. Susan, however, grabs his arm and snaps, "I'm warning you, Wayne: if you go, I'll pull all my money out of the company." Wayne looks at her. A smile crosses Alison's face. Wayne then says to Susan, "You do what you like. It's your money. Getting back with dad is more important." Susan growls, "Do you really expect me to believe that? You just want to go so you can make trouble." Wayne replies calmly, "No I don't - but you can think that if you want to. I'm still going." With that, he heads out of the room. Susan turns to look at Alison. She cries, "How do I stop him?" Alison, who's still smiling, just muses, "Oh, I'm sure we can come up with something!"

A while later, Susan is escorting Alison out to the hallway. Alison asks her, "Happy?" Susan replies warily, "I think so." Alison insists, "Believe me - it'll work." Susan comments, "I don't doubt that." Alison asks, "Then what's the problem?" Susan explains, "I know you could get away with it; I'm not sure I can." Alison, however, tells her, "If you believe you can do it, you can't go wrong." Susan sighs and nods, "Alright - I'll give it a good try. I don't want anything to go wrong for mum on her big day." Alison spots Wayne approaching and she whispers to Susan, "Go for it, kiddo. Good luck." With that, she heads out. Susan turns to look at Wayne. He heads into the lounge room, growling at Susan as he does so, "If you think I've come to tell you I've changed my mind, I haven't." Susan follows him and says, "I have. I've had a good think about it and I think it's a good idea that you go to the wedding. If we want to appear as a happily-married couple, we should be seen together." Wayne hisses suspiciously, "What's the catch?" Susan insists, "There isn't one." Wayne comments sourly, "It's not like you to change your mind so quickly." Susan tells him, "I'm just being sensible. There's no way I'm going to stop you from going - so we might as well make the best of it." Wayne nods warily, "Yeah, I'll go along with that..."

It's the next morning, and Alison is standing in front of the mirror in the lounge room at Charlie's, checking her appearance. Charlie is standing next to her. Alison says, "Do you realise how long it is since I've seen the twins?" Charlie nods, "Two years." Alison replies, "At least." There's a knock on the front door. Alison heads off to answer it. She opens the door - to find Rob standing there. She mouths in surprise, "Rob!" Rob looks at her and asks, "Patricia?" Alison replies, "Yes... Yes. Come in." Rob steps inside and heads into the lounge room. He smiles at Charlie and gives her a warm hug. He tells her, "Good to see you." Charlie beams, "It's lovely to see you, too." Alison joins them and demands of Rob, "Where are John and Angela?" Rob turns to her and retorts, "They're not coming." Charlie asks, "Has something happened?" Rob tells her, "No. They just thought it was all rather pointless." Looking crestfallen, Alison asks, "Why?" Rob explains, "They had no interest in seeing you - and quite frankly, they didn't like the way they were told they'd have to come." Alison mutters, "I didn't order them." Rob points out, "It's what it sounded like." Alison tells him, "I simply thought after all this time it would be nice if we could bury the hatchet." Charlie murmurs to Rob, "She's been so looking forward to seeing them." Alison, however, mutters, "Forget it, Charlie." Looking at Rob, she goes on, "Don't they realise people change? I have - a lot. If they were here, I could prove it to them." Rob, however, retorts, "You may have a new face, but I am sure that, underneath, you're still the same." Alison grows, "That's original." Rob shrugs, "Just stating the obvious." Alison mutters, "A talent the Keegan family seem to specialise in. I've a good mind to go up there and front John and Angela myself." Rob tells her, "It would be a waste of time - they'd only slam the door in your face." Alison growls, "They could try - but I'd make damn sure that they listened to me if it's the last thing they do." A smile crosses Rob's face and he comments, "That's more like the old Patricia we know and love. I knew she'd still be in there somewhere." With that, he turns and heads out. Alison stands there, looking annoyed.

There's a knock on the front door at Dural. Susan emerges from the lounge room to answer it. She finds Rob standing on the step, and she exclaims in delight, "What are you doing down here?!" They hug each other and Rob tells his niece, "I was just passing-by and thought I'd drop in!" Susan smiles, "It's so good to see you! Come in!" They head into the lounge room. Susan then tells Rob seriously, "I'm so glad you're here. I'm so glad you weren't here while all that business with the wedding was happening. I don't want to go through that again: everyone taking sides... having opinions... it was terrible. Rob nods, "I can imagine." He then asks, "How are things now?" Susan replies warily, "Alright..." Rob looks at her closely and then says, "I think you're fibbing. What's wrong?" Susan says hesitantly, "I'm just not sure if I'm doing the right thing." Rob offers, "Want to talk about it?" Susan gives him a hug and nods gratefully.

Alison is sitting at the desk in Fiona's room at the mansion, adding up some figures on an adding machine." The door to the room opens and Michael pokes his head around it as Alison snaps, "Damn it!" at the machine. Michael steps inside and says, "Hello. I didn't know you were here." Alison explains, "I crept in. Catching up on unpaid rent." Michael, handing her some notes, says, "You can cross me off your list." Alison adds up some figures again and repeats, "Damn!" She then sighs, "It's not my day. That's the third time I've tried to add up that column of figures. I make a mistake every time." Michael says, "I think I should leave you in peace. I'm sorry to have interrupted." He goes to head out. Alison, however, tells him, "It's not you, Michael. The day didn't start too well. I was all keyed-up, looking forward to my son and daughter arriving. They didn't come. Instead, I get my son-in-law, who relayed the message that neither of them want to see me." Michael murmurs, "Sorry." Alison says, "It's not your fault." Michael suggests, "But I could do something about it. Make up for calling in my dues yesterday." Alison asks, "Like what?" Michael tells her, "Take you out for a while. Have a bit of fun." Alison asks,"Would your patients have something to say about that?" Michael explains, "I've got the afternoon off." Alison looks at him. She then smiles, "Why not, then?!" She stands up and asks, "Where to?" Michael replies, "I thought we might go to the beach, for a start."

Doug is at Beryl's. As Gordon shows him into the lounge room, he says, "Beryl's out shopping and Debbie's helping her choose a wedding dress." Doug smiles, "I suppose you're babysitting!" Gordon, however, laughs, "Oh no, they took Robert with them. They wanted me to go as well, but, frankly, it's not my piece of cake! I thought perhaps a couple of holes of golf!" Doug comments, "Sounds good to me." They head into the kitchen and Gordon puts the kettle on. Doug then says, "I really came over to apologise to you and Beryl on behalf of Caroline. I read most of the book last night and I can see why everybody's so upset. I don't blame you." Gordon nods, "It was a bit of a hit below the belt." Doug goes on, "I didn't know anything about it 'til yesterday - and when I read it, even I was angry." Gordon tells him, "Don't be surprised if Caroline gets a defamation suit on her hands. Beryl and I won't press it, but the others might." Doug shrugs, "I'm aware that could happen - but we'll cross the bridge when we get to it." Changing the subject, he then asks, "How's the job-hunting going? Any offers?" Gordon sighs, "No, none. I miss out every time 'cos of my age; they want somebody younger." Doug asks, "What about your experience?" Gordon tells him, "Comes under the general heading of 'Over-qualification'." Doug mutters, "That's ridiculous." Gordon, however, sighs, "No, that's business - and the sad thing is that, as an employer, I was guilty of the same sort of discrimination myself." He sits down at the kitchen table. Doug does likewise - and says suddenly, "Hey! I just had a brilliant idea! Why don't you become my partner in my new business venture?" Gordon warns, "I don't want charity..." Doug, however, insists, "It's not charity. I've been thinking about expanding and, quite frankly, I need somebody with your track record." Gordon asks, "Are you sure you're not doing it because you feel guilty about what Caroline's done?" Doug assures him, "No. I could genuinely use you." Gordon pauses only momentarily before declaring, "Alright. We'll give it a go." Doug grins broadly, holds out his hand and says, "Partners." Gordon shakes his hand and replies, "Partners." He then continues, "Now that we are, I suppose I should know what this new venture of yours is." Doug tells him, "It's a goldmine: talking T-shirts." Gordon looks at him and raises his eyebrows! Doug insists quickly, "It's better than talking underpants!"

Caroline is laying out some breakfast things in the lounge room table at her house when the front door opens and Doug walks in. He says, "Good morning." Caroline turns to look at him and says, "I went out early to get some things for lunch. I thought we might make up something different." Doug comments, "Trying to butter me up?" Caroline replies quickly, "Not really." She then says warily, "You finished the book, did you?" Doug retorts, "I read enough to know that I was disgusted with what you've done. I know there's a vicious streak in you - I've seen you use it with Alison, and with very good reason - but how you could write such a vindictive book that's going to hurt a lot more people than the two you aimed it at is beyond me. You've shown a side of yourself I've never seen before - and I'm not sure that I like it." Caroline insists, "I only wanted to hurt Wayne and Alison, not the others. I'm going to do everything I can to make it up to them." Doug growls, "That's all very well, but I doubt you'll ever make up for the trouble you've caused." Caroline cries, "You know why I did it. I explained; can't you try to see it from my side?" Doug retorts, "No! Not when a lot of those people are supposedly your friends. Gordon's particularly cut-up, and I don't blame him when you throw dirt in his face." Caroline asks, "Have you seen him?" Doug tells her, "I went around there to apologise on your behalf." Caroline, her mouth dropping open in fury, snaps, "I don't need you to do that. Any apologising that's got to be done I can take care of myself, thankyou very much." Doug retorts angrily, "It's a pity you didn't have the guts to face me this morning and tell me that." With that, he turns and storms out. Caroline stands there, looking annoyed.

Susan emerges from the kitchen at Dural and, walking across to a seated Rob, smiles, "There you go: scones just like your mother used to make." Rob takes one and comments, "Sure smell like the real thing." Wayne, who's seated in an armchair, reaches out his hand to take a scone - but Susan puts the plate down on the coffee table, ignoring him." Wayne reaches out and takes one, remarking as he does so, "We should have visitors more often. First time we've had homemade scones for ages." Susan smiles sourly, "Mr. Hard-done-by." Rob bites into his scone and smiles, "These taste great." Susan pours some coffee for everyone. She then puts milk into the cups. Wayne glares at her and growls, "You know I'm having it black at the moment. Trying to lose weight." Susan looks at Rob and says, "More scones?" Rob murmurs, "I'm alright. Ta." Susan looks at her husband and says coldly, "What about you, Wayne?" Wayne just mutters, "I think I've had enough. I've got something to do." With that, he heads out of the room. When he's gone, Rob looks at his niece and says in concern, "Susie, you asked for my advice before, right? I reckon you're making a big mistake. I know you've got a score to settle with Wayne, but you keep going like this, you'll end up the loser. You're no match for him - believe me: you're not that hard and calculating." Susan cries, "I know what you're saying is right, but he's been so awful to me. I want to get back at him." Rob pleads, "Just forget it. Come back up-north with me - or go to Melbourne; stay with your mum and Gordon. Just get away from him. You're asking for trouble if you stay here." Susan sits there, looking upset. Neither of them realises that Wayne is standing in the hallway, listening...

A short time later, Rob is telling Susan, "You could enjoy it up-north. John and Angie have never been happier; they don't ever want to come back to the city." Susan, however, sighs, "I don't know, Rob..." Rob goes on, "Let's face it: if it hadn't been for the money, you wouldn't be here - so if the money's the problem, get rid of it: give it away to charity... go on a world trip... just get away from Wayne." Susan cries, "It's not that easy." Rob, however, retorts, "It's as easy as you want to make it." Susan insists, "I need more time to think. I'll let you know at mum's wedding." She then asks, "Are you going straight down?" Rob nods, "Yeah. Why?" Susan explains, "I was hoping that you'd stay here with me and that we could all go down together." Rob smiles, "I suppose Gordon and Beryl could hold the fort for a couple of days!" Susan gives him a quick kiss and says a warm, "Thanks!" She then heads off to the kitchen to put some hot water on. As soon as she's gone, the lounge room doors open and Wayne walks in. He says to Rob coldly, "I couldn't help overhearing a couple of things you've been saying." Rob raises his eyebrows and comments, "You know: somebody's going to stick a key in your ear, one day." Wayne just replies, "Funny. I get the feeling you want to split me and Susan up." Rob retorts, "Too right I do. She was an idiot to come back to you in the first place." Wayne warns, "Stay out of it, Rob - it's none of your business." Rob stands up and snaps, "She made it my business when she asked for advice. The sooner she drops you, the better; you're only hanging around because she's got money." Wayne growls, "True - and she knows that. And the reason why she's hanging around is to see me in hell: I get the money, she gets to watch me burn. It's a very happy marriage: we both get what we want - and you've got Buckley's chance of splitting us up, mate."

Alison and Michael are standing just inside the front doorway at Charlie's. Alison smiles, "Would you like another cup of coffee?!" Michael, however, smiles, "No thanks! Three cappuccinos is enough for one afternoon!" Alison says earnestly, "Thanks for a great afternoon - it's just what I needed." Michael tells her, "I could say the same. We must do it again sometime." With that, he heads out. Alison closes the door and walks into the lounge room, where Charlie is sitting on the couch, fussing over Isabella. She comments to Alison with a smile, "You look a lot happier than when you walked out of here this morning!" Alison, sitting down, explains, "I have spent a very agreeable afternoon with a very attractive young man." Charlie asks, "Who was it?" Alison replies, "Michael." Charlie smiles, "I thought I recognised the voice!" Alison tells her, "It was his idea to take me out and cheer me up. That's exactly what he did: we started out at the Northern Beaches and ended up book-browsing in the city. Then we found this wonderful little coffee chop and stuffed ourselves with pastries." She then asks, "What did you do?" Charlie muses, "Nothing as interesting as that. I went to the hairdresser... bought Isabella a new toy--" Alison, looking miles away, interrupts and comments, "I must say, he was very good company." Charlie muses, "So I gather!" Alison, however, goes on, "I found out a lot about his work, but nothing about him. Every time I asked him anything faintly personal, he quickly sidestepped, and I gave up in the end." Charlie asks, "Do I detect a hint of interest?" Alison smiles, "I must say: I am a bit intrigued... Yes, I think I'd like to find out more - especially about the personal side..."

It's evening-time. Caroline has laid out the dinner table at her house. Doug walks into the lounge room and comments, "You didn't have to go to all this trouble." Caroline explains, "I just wanted you to understand how sorry I am about the book. Believe me: if I'd been able to stop it at all, I would've done; I was just too late when I found out about it." A hint of a smile crosses Doug's face and he shrugs, "Fair enough." Caroline asks, "Kiss and make up?" Doug puts his arms round her. There's suddenly a knock at the front door, though, and he sighs, "Perfect timing. Must be a Tasmanian comedian!" He goes to answer the door. He finds a middle-aged man standing there. The man tells Doug, "I'm looking for Caroline Morrell. Do I have the right address?" Doug nods uncertainly, "Yeah." The man goes on, "I'm a publisher. I wonder if I could disturb her for a few moments." Doug tells him, "Come in." The man steps inside and heads into the lounge room. Caroline looks at him and exclaims, "Mr. Edwards!" Edwards says, "Sorry to interrupt, but I have some pretty exciting news: we have an American publisher who's very interested in your book. They're offering a deal to publish in the States and with a very sizeable advance. It's an offer that's too good to refuse." A broad grin crosses Caroline's face and she gasps, "The United States! That's marvellous!" Edwards nods, "Yes, it is. It isn't often the boys over there come up with a deal like that for a local book - and what's more, they're very interested in your writing a sequel." Caroline exclaims, "You're joking!" Edwards tells her, "It's true!" Caroline smiles, "This calls for a little celebration." She turns to Doug and says, "There's a bottle of champagne in the 'fridge, Doug." Doug, looking worried, murmurs, "I'll get it." Caroline says to Edwards, "Sit down. About this sequel: let's talk about it. I've got lots of ideas. Should I start writing?" Edwards replies, "By all means. Let's go for it. If that's what the public wants, let's give it to them!" Caroline sits there, beaming broadly.


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