Mike about to lay into Derek Morris for sleazing onto Jane.
Office of the Daniels Corporation
Derek Morris smirks at Mike and taunts:
MORRIS: On a bond, are we, son? Well, don't let *that* stop you.
Mike takes a step back. Morris goads him:
MORRIS: You know what I think *you're* looking for? You're looking for an easy way out. You're one of these people who talks big and does nothing about it. Would that be right, eh?
As Morris smiles nastily at Mike, he's taken completely by surprise as Scott suddenly grabs his lapels and punches him in the stomach. He bends over in pain and collapses to the floor. As he staggers to his feet again, Scott says coldly:
SCOTT: You see, Morris, you forgot about one thing, right? I'm *not* on a bond.
MORRIS (threatens): You *will* be, son, you *will* be.
JANE: Yeah, well, if *he* is, then *you* are as well.
Morris tells Jane to keep out of it. Jane, however, warns him that if he can have Scott charged with assault, then she can have *him* charged with sexual harassment. Morris tells Jane to think hard about what she's saying. Jane retorts that she *has* – and Mike and Scott know what they saw. Morris mutters that he doesn't need lawyers to fight his battles. He staggers back to his desk and orders Scott and Mike to get off the premises quick- smart. Turning to Jane, he adds:
MORRIS: And you – anything that's yours, take it with you. You're fired.
SCOTT (exclaims): You can't do that!
JANE: Why am I fired?
MORRIS: *I'm* in charge. Now get out.
MIKE (snaps): Will you just shut up? – or I'll thump you, bond or no bond.
MORRIS (threatens): You just try it, son...
Jane suggests to Scott and Mike that they should go. She adds that she doesn't have to take this. They walk out, Scott slamming the office door behind them. Morris yells after them:
MORRIS: You're all banned from the hotel – the three of you.
He then winces in pain from where Scott punched him.
Helen is vacuuming the lounge room when Nick emerges from his bedroom and tells her that he thinks he's done everything for his grandma's funeral. He shows her a list he's made and she nods that they're the usual things. She adds that his grandmother would be very proud of him. Nick mutters:
NICK: Do you reckon? A cheap government funeral?
HELEN (gently): Nick, she was very ill – and now she's at peace. The funeral isn't so important.
NICK (snaps): Look, how do you *know* she's at peace? Who knows *anything* about dying or being dead?
He goes to march off to his room. Helen stops him, though, and explains that she was brought up to believe in certain things – that's all she can rely on. Scott calls out suddenly from the back door and asks if anyone's home. He heads into the lounge room and apologises if he interrupted something. He tells Nick that he was sorry to hear about his grandmother. Helen tells Scott that Nick has arranged the funeral all by himself. Nick just retorts:
NICK: Look, she was *my* relative.
With that, he marches off to his room, leaving Helen sighing at Scott that Nick's holding things in. She then asks Scott what she can do for *him*. Scott explains:
SCOTT: Derek Morris just sacked Jane – for no reason.
HELEN (gasps): What?
SCOTT: I was there. You would not believe what a jerk that guy can be sometimes. Anyway, we are not going to wear it, so we've organised a meeting at the Ramsays' at 7:30 – and I thought that because you run Home James you might be interested in coming along.
HELEN: I certainly *am*. What's the plan of action?
SCOTT: Well, we're not sure, yet – our options are going to be pretty limited – but we're going to think of *something*, that's for sure.
Office of the Daniels Corporation
Gail is sitting at her desk as Morris sits at *his* desk, telling her that he's writing down exactly what happened. He adds that, for Rosemary's sake, he'd rather keep it out of the courts, but if that's what happens, his recollection will be clear and written down straight afterwards. Gail insists:
GAIL: Jane has always been very good at her job. Are you sure you didn't sack her for some *other* reason?
MORRIS: I don't know what you mean.
GAIL (tersely): Derek, we've got more work than we can handle. Jane is loyal and we *need* her.
MORRIS (retorts): I fired her and she *stays* fired.
Gail presses that they *need* a secretary. Morris tells her:
MORRIS: Yes – and until somebody is trained, *you'll* fill the position.
GAIL (exclaims): *Me*?
MORRIS (taunts): Oh, too menial for you, Gail? It's all hands to the pumps in a crisis.
Gail snaps that there a hundred *other* things she should be doing. Morris just shrugs that it's an interim measure – she'll still have her name on the door. With that, he announces that he has an appointment at the hotel. As he goes to head out, Paul comes in and asks Gail if she's ready. Morris says to him coolly:
MORRIS: I thought I told you to keep off these premises?
PAUL: No law against picking up your wife after work, is there?
MORRIS (mutters): Wait in the car park in future, got it?
With that, he walks out. When he's gone, Gail tells Paul about how Morris sacked Jane and wants *her* to take her place as secretary. Looking upset, she adds that she'd quit right now, except they built this place up and that would hand it to Morris on a silver platter. Paul gasps that Jane is practically indispensible. Gail tells him that something's not right. Paul puts his arm round her and says:
PAUL: Yeah, you're damn right it's not. Listen, I want you to hang in there, though. He won't fire *you* – Rosemary knows your capabilities.
GAIL: I wish I knew what on earth his game is. I mean, firing key staff just doesn't make sense. There'll be outright rebellion.
It's evening- time, and Madge is addressing Helen, Scott, Paul, Gail, Mike, Sharon, Henry and Jane, who are all seated or standing in the lounge room. She's telling them that the most important thing is that nobody becomes emotional over this very difficult situation; they must all stay cool, calm and collected. She goes on:
MADGE: We all know that the latest thing is that Derek Morris has sacked Jane. What you *don't* know is that, er, the rest of the staff at Lassiter's are in full sympathy with us. In fact, they're even prepared to go on strike if they think it'll do any good. They don't like being terrorised any more than *we* do. So, that's what we've got to consider.
Madge then asks Paul what comes next, and he tells her that they could canvass the alternatives. Madge just asks if there *are* any. Scott suggests getting a petition together and sending it to Rosemary, but Henry says it would take too long to organise. Helen suggests that Gail could try reasoning with Derek. Gail, however, replies that she's tried, but the man is totally beyond reason. Jane suggests that Helen could ring Rosemary and tell her about these wholesale sackings. Helen, however, points out that new managements *often* sack people. Gail says:
GAIL: I agree with Helen. Rosemary sent Derek here to do a job. At this distance, she'd *have* to back his judgement.
HENRY: So, when it's all boiled down, here's what's left in the pot: Rosemary's too busy and too far away. If anyone's going to stand up to Derek Morris, it's gotta be the rank and file – so you know what *I* reckon? I reckon we go on with the strike.
MADGE: I agree. What do you think of *that*, Gail?
Gail tells the others that she'll have to leave: she's part of the management team, and officially she can't support a strike. She takes a step backwards. Paul tells Madge quickly to ask Gail about it *un*officially. Madge looks at Gail, who says:
GAIL: Unofficially, all I can say is that it would cause Derek a lot of problems – and it would certainly make him take note of your grievances, so...
With that, Madge smiles and tells all those in favour of strike action to raise their hands. Everyone in the room put their hands up. Madge grins:
MADGE: Good! Now, I will get onto the rest of the staff as soon as possible. I think that if we all stick together, everyone's going to get a fair go!
There's a round of applause and cheering from the assembled Ramsay Street residents!
The next morning, Scott is in the kitchen with Nick and Helen, handing Nick one of his suits to wear to the funeral. Nick thanks him and heads off to his room to put it on. When he's gone, Scott asks Helen how Nick's handling things, and Helen sighs:
HELEN: As if he has to do it all by himself.
There's suddenly a knock on the back door and Gail comes in. She tells Helen that she's sorry to bother her, but she's come to ask a favour: now that Morris has sacked Jane, can Helen come and help in the office? She adds that it'll only be until the strike's decided. Helen, looking wary, comments that she does have friends and relatives involved in the strike; it might seem disloyal. Scott, however, tells her that she'll be protecting Jane's job – and *he'll* make sure everyone understands. Gail tells Helen that she really would be very grateful. Helen smiles eventually and says she'll start this afternoon, after the funeral. With that, she heads off to get ready. When she's gone, Scott says:
SCOTT: Um, Gail, I think there's something you ought to know, actually.
GAIL: Yeah? What's that?
SCOTT: I rang Rosemary in New York.
SCOTT: Zilch, I'm afraid. She's got faith in Derek.
GAIL (sighs): That's what I would've expected.
SCOTT: She said she's got more important things to worry about than us. Who are those people called Asbo Developments?
GAIL: One of our major competitors. Why?
SCOTT: Well, she was in a real flap – something about the Daniels Corporation losing a big property deal.
GAIL: Mmm, I heard. Someone leaked confidential information.
SCOTT: Mmm. Well, she doesn't give a damn about *us*, that's for sure. You know, this strike is starting to worry me: I think she might turn around to Derek and say ‘fix it any way you can'...
Driveway of No. 26
Nick and Helen are walking down the driveway, wearing their outfits for the funeral. Helen tells Nick that there's no need for him to go through all this. Nick, however, insists that it's *his* grandmother and he wants it done right. They reach the car. Sharon walks over suddenly and tells Nick gently that his suit looks really nice. Nick thanks her. Sharon then says:
SHARON: Could I come with you to the funeral?
NICK: Sure. Why not?
Helen asks about school. Sharon replies that Jane was going to make her go, but she explained about the funeral: you've got to support your friends – and she remembers what it was like when her mum died. Nick opens the car door for her.
Madge climbs up onto a box outside the offices of the Daniels Corporation. She addresses a crowd of Lassiter's staff, including Jane, telling them that for the first hour they're *all* going to be picketing, then they're going to split up into two groups, one hour on, one hour off. She adds that she's contacted the newspapers and television and they'll be there either today or tomorrow. She then starts up a chant of ‘Justice for workers... Justice for workers...' The other staff join in. Across on the bridge, Paul is standing with Scott and Mike and he comments:
PAUL: No doubt about Madge, is there? She's like an old iron kettle: takes a while to boil, but once she does...!
Mike says he'd better get back inside, as the lunchtime rush is about to start. He heads off. Derek Morris emerges from the office suddenly and, walking over to Madge, says to her tersely:
MORRIS: I told you this morning: forget it – I will not negotiate.
MADGE: Well, this picket line's going to go on until you *do*.
Morris turns to the chanting workers and, indicating Madge, tells them:
MORRIS: This woman is a troublemaker.
The chanting ceases. Morris goes on:
MORRIS: Now, I want you all to go back to your jobs in 15 minutes or you won't have jobs to go back *to*.
The chanting starts up again and Morris shrugs that if they want to play hardball, that's fine by him: they can all be replaced. He walks over to where Paul's watching with Scott, and muses:
MORRIS: Dress circle for the show?
PAUL: Yep! Could be a long production, too!
MORRIS: You know, you must be pretty desperate, Robinson, to organise *this*.
PAUL (lightly): *I* didn't organise *anything*. Mind you, sooner or later, Rosemary *is* going to be asking some questions.
MORRIS: Then they'll be answered.
Morris then picks up a packet of sandwiches on the table next to Paul and says coldly:
MORRIS: Enjoy your lunch. Coffee Shop will be closed within a week.
With that, he walks off.
Office of the Daniels Corporation
Gail is sitting at her desk, listening to the chanting outside, when Helen comes in and remarks that Madge has practically got the whole staff done up in war paint! Gail tells Helen that Derek is a lot more rattled that he's letting on. Helen asks if he knows about *her* working there. Gail replies that she told him, and he wasn't too pleased, but there's not much he can say about Rosemary's mother helping them out. The ‘phone starts ringing suddenly and Gail picks it up. She listens and then tells the caller that Mr. Morris isn't in at present. She takes a message and writes down the number, telling the caller that she'll get Morris to call them back. As she hangs up, a thoughtful expression crosses her face. Helen asks:
GAIL: That was New York.
GAIL: Does the name ‘Brockton' mean anything to you?
HELEN (frowns): ‘Brockton'? No, I don't think so.
GAIL: It sounds familiar; I—. There's only one way to find out.
With that, Gail picks up the ‘phone again and dials the number she just wrote down. When the call is answered, she listens to who speaks before quickly hanging up again and saying:
GAIL: Just as I thought: Mr. Brockton works for Asbo Developments.
HELEN (exclaims): That's Rosemary's opposition.
GAIL: Mmm. That's right.
HELEN: Why would they be calling Derek?
GAIL: Good question...
Sharon and Nick are walking across the park, Sharon telling Nick that it was a nice funeral – and the people were really nice as well. She asks Nick if he's got any plans for this afternoon, but Nick just retorts:
NICK: Shouldn't you be at school?
SHARON (softly): Not today.
The two of them sit down on a bench, and Sharon says:
SHARON: I do know what it's like, you know.
NICK: No, you *don't*.
SHARON: When my mother died, people said I'd get over it – but I haven't. They say it goes away – you know: how you feel? But it doesn't – not really.
NICK (murmurs): No.
SHARON: That's why I came to the funeral.
Nick reaches into his jacket pocket and takes out his wallet. He then hands it to Sharon, showing her a photo of his grandma which he keeps in it. He says:
NICK: She seemed really big when I first went to live with her: this big, strong lady. She seemed like that for a long time – and then... just these last couple of years... she started getting smaller... and older... and I couldn't do anything about it. She just kept getting smaller... and older... Now she's dead...
Sharon leans her head against Nick's, in sympathy.
Office of the Daniels Corporation
Helen is saying to Gail that Derek Morris might know Brockton *socially* – there could be any *number* of reasons for the call. Gail replies:
GAIL: There *might* be. Here's what *I* think: see, Rosemary lost a big deal recently because somebody leaked information to Asbo Developments. Now, I'd say that that leak came from Derek.
HELEN: But would he have *had* that information?
GAIL: Probably. And there's another thing: if he's working for the opposition, that explains why he's stirred up so much trouble *here*. It all fits.
HELEN: It certainly does in theory, but you don't have any proof.
Gail says she's got an idea about that and needs to contact Rosemary. She asks Helen to intercept all calls, in case Brockton rings back, and Helen nods that she'll do her best. Gail goes on that she's heading over to the hotel, and if Derek comes in, she needs Helen to keep him there. As Gail goes to head out, Morris comes in. He thanks Helen tersely for helping out there, but adds that they *will* need to train a new secretary. Gail heads out, leaving Helen to comment to Morris:
HELEN: I was surprised to hear that you dismissed Jane. I've always found her work exemplary.
MORRIS: Yes, well, she had a couple of friends in here behaving like thugs – one of whom was your grandson.
HELEN: Nor does that sound like *Scott*.
MORRIS: I was *here*, Helen – I know what happened; and out of deference to you and Rosemary, I didn't call the police. Obviously, the situation couldn't continue.
Changing the subject, Helen tells Morris that she had to come in anyway because she has a problem with Home James – and *he* might be able to help with it...
Henry, Jane and Madge head into the Coffee Shop and hand Mike a list of lunch orders for the picketing staff. Paul is sitting at one of the tables and calls over that those are on him. Madge insists that he doesn't have to do that, but Paul tells her that he's pulling rank – and they're all in this together. Mike asks how the picketing's going, and Jane smiles that morale's really terrific. Gail dashes in suddenly and exclaims to Paul breathlessly:
GAIL: Thank heavens I've found you.
PAUL: What's up?
GAIL: I've found out something. We've gotta let Rosemary know and I think *you* should make the call.
PAUL: Slow down – what's the problem?
GAIL: Paul, take my word for it: we haven't got time. We've got to get over the hotel.
With that, Gail grabs Paul's arm and drags him out, leaving Mike, Henry, Jane and Madge looking taken aback!
Reception area at the Daniels Corporation
Helen is sitting typing at the reception desk when Derek Morris emerges from the office and announces that he's got work to do at Anson's Corner. He asks where Gail is and Helen replies that she shouldn't be long. She then indicates a pile of a letters on the desk and tells him quickly that they need his signature. Morris mutters that they'll have to wait until he gets back. He opens the door – just as Gail is about to come in. Morris says snidely:
MORRIS: About *time* you graced us with your presence.
GAIL (lightly): I've had a few important things to do.
Paul follows Gail into the reception area and Morris snaps at him:
MORRIS: I want *you* off these premises *now*.
PAUL (grins): I'm sorry, Derek, but I'm going to disappoint you. You see, we know that you're working for Asbo Developments.
A brief look of surprise crosses Morris's face before he bluffs:
MORRIS: What's this? The latest tactic to discredit me with a smear campaign?
GAIL: Rosemary knows. It's the truth.
PAUL: See, I called Rosemary and she rang Asbo; spoke to a ‘Brockton'. Said she got the truth out of *you* and tore strips off *him*. Well, Brockton couldn't help himself. Came clean. Thought it was a *great* joke.
GAIL: ‘Til he found out the joke was on *him*.
PAUL (smiles): But, Derek, old mate, especially on *you*.
MORRIS (mutters): This is a bluff – and it's not going to work because it's not true.
Gail holds out a sheet of paper and tells Morris that it's a fax from Rosemary: he's been dismissed and Paul's been reinstated. Paul grins at Morris:
PAUL: And you know what *my* first act is? I want *you* off the premises – right now.
Morris looks at the fax and then at Paul. He mutters that he'll talk to Rosemary. Paul smiles:
PAUL: Sure – there's a ‘phone at the Post Office. I doubt if she'll take your call, though. Now – on your bike.
MORRIS (warns coldly): Don't think you've won, Robinson.
PAUL (gleefully): But I have already!
With that, Morris storms out, leaving Gail, Helen and Paul sighing in relief. Helen comments that she doesn't think she's ever disliked anyone quite so much – but at least he's gone. She offers Paul her congratulations. Paul, however, tells her that *Gail* is the one who deserves all the credit. He puts his arms around his wife and gives her a loving kiss.