Henry trying but failing to tell Bronwyn how he feels about her.
Joe is in the hallway with Jane, trying to fix the burglar alarm. He asks her if she's sure his mum's been setting it up properly. Jane nods that she's been checking herself every time it went off. Mrs. Mangel joins them and asks Joe if it's all fixed. Joe replies that he'll have another crack at it tomorrow; right now, he's got to get down to the real estate office before it shuts. Mrs. Mangel exclaims in horror that she's just finished mopping up under the refrigerator; she simply can't have the power off for another night. Joe tells her:
JOE: It's no problem – I'll turn it back on.
MRS. MANGEL (coolly): You do and as sure as eggs that dreadful thing will go off in the middle of the night again.
JOE (sighs): Oh, what the hell. I hate house- hunting anyway.
Mrs. Mangel looks at her son in surprise, and Jane explains to her that the place he's been living in has been sold, so he has to find somewhere else to live. Mrs. Mangel remarks that that shouldn't be too difficult, surely. Joe, however, retorts that most of the prices at the moment are a joke. Jane tells him that it would be cheaper if he shared. Mrs. Mangel says to her son:
MRS. MANGEL: It's a pity you couldn't move in *here*, but there are the girls: there really isn't room.
JOE: Mum, we'd drive each other mad! Before too long, you and me would be blueing over every little thing!
MRS. MANGEL (indignantly): We would not!
She tells Joe that she'll just have to look for something close- by. Jane points out that No. 30's up for rent. Joe, though, says it's right out of his price range. Mrs. Mangel tells him that he'd save on living costs: she'd do his washing and ironing – although she'd expect a few little odd jobs in return; and he could have all his meals there; they'd see each other every day. Joe mutters:
JOE: Sounds lovely. Look, I'll think about it, all right?
MRS. MANGEL (demands): What's to think about? And what about my burglar alarm?
JOE: It needs some new wires. I've got to catch the electrician before he shuts up shop.
MRS. MANGEL: I'll come with you.
JOE (mutters): Oh, suit yourself – as usual.
With that, he and Mrs. Mangel head to the front door. Joe heads outside. Jane asks her nan not to go on at Joe about No. 30: he obviously doesn't like the idea. Mrs. Mangel just replies:
MRS. MANGEL: Not yet, perhaps – but he will!
Mike hangs up the ‘phone as Bronwyn walks past with several mugs in her hand, which she tells him were in *his* room... Mike shrugs that he forgets to bring them out! He then asks if Henry has gone. Bronwyn nods:
BRONWYN: Yeah. Don't quite know what he was on about. He was trying to tell me something, but he just suddenly decided it didn't matter.
MIKE (pointedly): Yeah, well, that's Henry for you: his mind jumps from one thing to another.
Changing the subject, Bronwyn asks how Jackie was. Mike shrugs that she's OK. He then tells Bronwyn that he knows she doesn't *like* Jackie, and it was partly due to the way she treated Bronwyn that they broke up – and he was pretty insensitive about the whole thing... He goes on:
MIKE: Look, I know when we went for the bike ride you said there was no possibility of us getting back together again, but if I promise to be more sensitive about your—
BRONWYN (coolly): Mike, we talked it out. Just leave it at that.
MIKE: So there's no chance of giving it another go?
BRONWYN: No. We'd only hurt each other all over again.
Mike sighs that the way he's feeling right now, he's not exactly jumping for joy. Bronwyn tells him that most people find the right person eventually. Mike, however, retorts:
MIKE: Maybe – but even when you do, you can't guarantee that they're going to feel the same way about *you*, huh?
With that, he walks off, leaving Bronwyn looking slightly upset.
Henry is in the kitchen with Scott, preparing dinner. Scott tells him that he's going to have to tell Bronwyn sooner or later. Henry, however, says he reckons he'll just try and forget about her. Scott teases:
SCOTT: It looks like Romeo Ramsay's lost his nerve!
HENRY: It's *different* with Bronny. I mean, here I am, wrapped up in a chick I've never even kissed. She'd probably just *laugh* if I told her how I felt.
The front door opens suddenly and Madge and Harold come in, Harold enthusing about Mrs. Perkins' donated free- range chickens making a wonderful third prize for the raffle! Madge, however, sighs:
MADGE: Harold, I am really thrilled that you've been asked to organise the church fête, but right now I could use some help organising dinner.
She heads through to the kitchen, where Scott tells her that dinner's all under control. Harold asks Scott if he spoke to Beverly, and he nods that she said she'd be happy to do the first- aid demo – and *he* volunteered to give her a hand! Harold beams that that's splendid. He then turns to Henry and says:
HAROLD: Well, Henry – what about *you*?
HENRY (glumly): What *about* me, Harold?
HAROLD: Oh, come on – everyone else is doing something for the fête.
HENRY (in a posh voice): Well, splendid! Then you don't require *my* services, do you?
With that, he walks off, leaving Madge to comment that she's seen *that* look before: either he's in love or he's coming down with a bad bout of the ‘flu. Scott tells her that it's definitely not the ‘flu. Madge rolls her eyes!
Joe and Mrs. Mangel are walking through the complex, Joe telling his mother tautly:
JOE: I am not moving into No. 30 and that's final – so do us both a favour and stop harping, will ya?
MRS. MANGEL: Oh, but Joe, I was only—
JOE: Mum – shut up.
He quickly apologises. Mrs. Mangel admits that perhaps she shouldn't have pushed him – although it would have been a great comfort to her in her twilight years to have her son living next to her; but if the thought is so repugnant... Joe insists that isn't; it's just that... He breaks off as they reach the Waterhole and he suggests that they go and have a drink. Looking shocked, Mrs. Mangel exclaims:
MRS. MANGEL: Certainly not!
JOE: Look, a lemon squash is not going to kill you.
MRS. MANGEL (tersely): I am not in the habit of frequenting public bars.
JOE: Well, we can sit outside on the verandah. Come on, mum, I'm doing my best to meet *you* halfway; can't you do the same?
MRS. MANGEL (sighs): Very well.
The two of them go to head into the Waterhole – just as John Worthington emerges. He smiles:
JOHN: Hello, Nell.
MRS. MANGEL (awkwardly): Mr. Worthington. How are you?
JOHN: Fine, thanks. And you?
MRS. MANGEL: Yes, thank you.
Mrs. Mangel then introduces John to Joe, explaining to Joe:
MRS. MANGEL: This is Mr. Worthington – a... friend of mine.
John tells Mrs. Mangel that it was good to see her again. He walks off, leaving Joe to comment to his mother that he seemed like a decent old bloke. Tears well- up in Mrs. Mangel's eyes as she watches John go. She sobs:
MRS. MANGEL: Yes... a *very* decent bloke...
JOE (gently): Mum, what's wrong?
MRS. MANGEL (cries): Joe, let's go home. Please, just... just take me home.
A short time later, Mrs. Mangel is sitting in the lounge room at No. 32. Joe joins Jane in the kitchen and asks what in the hell is going on. Jane explains:
JANE: She and Mr. Worthington had a bit of a ‘thing' going for a while, there. It didn't quite work out and I guess she's not quite over it.
JOE: You're telling *me*! He seemed like such a nice old codger, too.
JANE: He is. He was really keen on nan, too, but you know what she can be like. He saw her at her worst a couple of times and it sort of scared him off.
JOE: Oh, no one's perfect. He could've given her another chance.
JANE: He gave her a *couple*. It's funny: after that, nan would always be on her best behaviour for a couple of days. It's a shame, really: she was a different person for a while.
JOE: I mean, she *can* be a pain – no one knows that better than *I* do – but underneath all that pickiness and prying into everyone's business, she *has* got a heart of gold.
JANE (dubiously): It took you twelve years to find that out, and I doubt Mr. Worthington would've hung around for that long.
JOE: Ah, well, she's better off without him. I'm not going to give him the chance to upset her again – I'll make sure of that.
JANE: He's as embarrassed about it as nan. I don't think he'll be showing his face in Ramsay Street again.
JOE (mutters): Yeah, well, he'd better not.
John Worthington is sitting at the kitchen table at No. 24! Harold is sitting with him, telling him:
HAROLD: That's very kind of you, John – we need all the manpower we can get!
John smiles that he might be more of a help than a hindrance when it comes to setting up stalls – he might leave that to the youngsters. Harold, however, comments coolly that, unfortunately, youngsters nowadays are too wrapped up in their *own* concerns to worry about church fêtes. Henry, who emerges from his room at that moment, mutters at Harold to put a sock in it. As she begins to serve dinner, Madge comments:
MADGE: We haven't seen you in church lately, John.
JOHN (hesitantly): No... No.
Harold tells John that they miss his strong voice. Scott murmurs that when Mrs. Mangel's on the organ, you need all the strong voices you can *get*! John says:
JOHN: How *is* Nell Mangel these days?
MADGE: Oh, just the same as usual, really: still sticking that nose of hers into everybody's business.
HAROLD (warns): Madge...
MADGE: Sorry, Harold!
Harold retorts that Mrs. Mangel's a very fine woman; it's a pity a few more people didn't realise that. John murmurs:
JOHN: Yes, fine woman...
Harold then tells him that Mrs. Mangel is managing one of the stalls, and he suggests to John that he pop over and see if she needs a hand. John, however, comments that if he knows Nell, she'll have everything already arranged. With that, he stands up and says he mustn't hold them up from their meal. Madge invites him to stay for dinner, but he declines and heads out. When he's gone, Harold remarks to Madge:
HAROLD: Isn't he an odd chap? One minute he's falling over backwards trying to help, the next minute he's lost all interest.
MADGE: No, Harold, I would say not. He has not lost interest. I would say, looking at him, that Henry's not the only one in the street suffering from a broken heart.
Scott warns Harold that, whatever he does, he mustn't make Mr. Worthington one of the cake bake- off judges: if he doesn't give the blue ribbon prize to Mrs. Mangel, they'll *never* get back together – *ever*. Harold picks up a notebook and looks in it. He then comments that Mrs. Mangel hasn't put her name down for the bake- off; he'll pop over later and remind her. He turns to Madge and adds that he doesn't see *her* name, either. Madge mutters that she's far too busy to be entering silly competitions. Harold insists:
HAROLD: Madge, I really do think we should set a good example; show a little enthusiasm for this sort of thing.
Madge ignores this and instead looks at Henry, who's sitting at the table glumly, and tells him to snap out of it. Harold adds that there are plenty of fish in the sea for a strapping young lad like himself. Henry just murmurs:
HENRY: Yeah. Pity fishing's lost its appeal...
It's dark outside, and Mrs. Mangel's burglar alarm is going off again. Joe is in the hallway, trying to fix it. Harold is standing with Mrs. Mangel by the front door as Joe gives the alarm box a thump and silences it! He smiles that it was a minor malfunction, fixed in a jiffy! Mrs. Mangel invites Harold in and they head through to the lounge room and sit down. Mrs. Mangel asks Harold what she can do for him and he tells her:
HAROLD: Well, I was wondering if you'd remembered the bake- off competition.
MRS. MANGEL: Oh yes. I shan't be entering.
HAROLD (exclaims): But you always did so well!
MRS. MANGEL (smiles): I won first prize ten times running!
HAROLD: Yes, and, er, you were pipped at the post by Madge last year, if I recall.
MRS. MANGEL (coolly): Yes.
HAROLD: Oh, what a pity: our two best contestants not entering.
MRS. MANGEL (perking up): She's not entering either?
HAROLD: Well, I am disappointed, naturally, but I understand that you're both working women with households to run—
MRS. MANGEL: On the other hand, the church fête is only once a year. It's up to each of us to find an extra leg, as it were.
HAROLD (smiles): Then you *will* enter?
MRS. MANGEL: Yes, of course, Mr. Bishop!
Harold exclaims that that's wonderful! He gets up to leave – but then adds that there was one other thing:
HAROLD: John Worthington called around this afternoon to volunteer his services – and he, um, asked after you.
MRS. MANGEL (quickly): Did he?
She then adds that it's strange: she saw him herself today, at Lassiter's. Harold tells her:
HAROLD: Madge is still convinced that he holds you in very high regard.
MRS. MANGEL (slightly embarrassed): Oh, I doubt *that*, Mr. Bishop
HAROLD: Time will tell, Mrs. Mangel, eh? Time will tell!
With that, Mrs. Mangel sees Harold out. In the hallway, Joe – who's overheard the conversation – sighs heavily, looking annoyed.
Jane is sitting at the table with Bronwyn, telling her:
JANE: All you have to do is read out these commentaries while I model the clothes. Are you *sure* you don't mind helping me with this fashion parade?
Bronwyn is miles away, but she comes back to earth and says of course she doesn't. Jane asks her if she's got something on her mind. Bronwyn explains that she's just feeling a bit guilty about Mike; they had a good talk before, though, and she thinks he understands she just wants to be friends. Neither of them notices Mike emerging from the bedroom area behind them as Jane says:
JANE: Mike can be a bit persistent sometimes.
BRONWYN: Yeah. Well, there's no chance of us going out again and that's that.
Mike walks over at that moment snaps that he got the message loud and clear this afternoon; he had no intention of asking her out again, anyway. He adds that he doesn't think he'll hang around while he's the topic of conversation; he's going to the Ramsays'. He marches out, leaving Jane to tell Bronwyn not to worry: Mike just doesn't like people feeling sorry for him. She adds that it's really funny: Mike is the most considerate, kindest person she knows, yet he has such a hard time with girlfriends; then there's someone like Henry Ramsay who's got *hundreds* of them! Bronwyn says:
BRONWYN: Hey, don't knock Henry! In his own way, he's just as kind and considerate as Mike.
JANE (smiles): Maybe Sharon was right! She *told* me you were keen on Henry. *Are* you?
BRONWYN (shrugs): I don't know. I'd *like* to be, I suppose – if I knew he felt the same way.
JANE: Have you talked to him about it?
BRONWYN: Have you ever tried to have a serious conversation with Henry about *anything*?! Though sometimes I think he'd *like* to open up; be himself more. I'm sure he was trying to tell me something before when he was over, but... I don't know... a lot happened and he must've been put off.
JANE (muses): Talk about opposites attracting! You and Henry make a pretty weird couple!
BRONWYN (warily): You think we're too different?
JANE (shrugs): Stranger things have happened!
Bronwyn sits there looking confused.
Henry is sitting in the lounge room, watching TV, as Mike tells Harold in the kitchen that he could develop the prints on the cheap in his dark room, but he'll probably have to get the church to pay for the film. Harold says he's sure Reverend Sampson would agree to *that*. Madge calls across from where she's standing by the sink to ask Mike if he's just going to go around to the stalls and ask if anyone wants their photograph taken. Mike nods that that's what he thought. Harold beams that it's an excellent idea. Scott emerges from his bedroom holding a record, and he asks Mike if he's got time to listen to that album. Mike mutters that he's in no rush to get back home: Jane and Bronwyn are having a girly talk. Henry calls over:
HENRY: Comparing notes about *you*, you reckon?
MIKE (coolly): Yeah, well, as a matter of fact they *are*, Henry.
Scott asks Henry if *he* wants to listen to the album. Henry, however, just gets up and turns the TV off and says he's going to bed. When he's gone, Mike asks if it's something he said. Madge just tells him not to mind: Henry gets in these moods. There's suddenly a knock on the front door and Scott goes to answer it. He finds Mrs. Mangel standing on the step and she asks if she can have a word with Mr. Bishop. Scott invites her in and she heads through to the kitchen, where she tells Harold that she's there to collect an entry form for the bake- off competition. Harold picks up a form from the table and hands it to her. She smiles and then says to Madge:
MRS. MANGEL: Such a shame that *you've* decided not to enter, Mrs. Bishop.
MADGE: Well, a little bird told me that you were very put out when my cake won last year!
MRS. MANGEL (chuckles): Oh, I wasn't bothered! – although Reverend Sampson did say to me afterwards the judges weren't as thorough as usual.
MADGE (darkly): Oh, did he just?
She then marches over to Harold and demands one of the entry forms, adding:
MADGE: Mrs. Mangel has just convinced me that I've got a good chance of winning – again!
HAROLD (smiles): Ah, that's the shot! A little old- fashioned competition, eh? Does us all the world of good!
Madge turns and grins at Mrs. Mangel!
A short time later, Joe is sitting in the kitchen at No. 32 as Mrs. Mangel snaps:
MRS. MANGEL: The nerve of that woman!
Joe, however, tells her to come on and admit it: the only reason she entered that bake- off was because she thought Madge wasn't going to be in it – then she had to go and stir her up. Mrs. Mangel retorts:
MRS. MANGEL: I did no such thing! Well... perhaps she misinterpreted a chance remark I happened to make.
Joe roars with laughter. Mrs. Mangel just asks him indignantly why he isn't fixing her alarm. Joe replies airily that he'll do it in the morning. Mrs. Mangel looks at him in horror. He tells her that he knows what the problem is; he just hasn't got the right bits. Mrs. Mangel suggests that he'd better go home, then. Joe heads out. Mrs. Mangel, who's sitting at the table with a book of recipes, comes across one and smiles to herself:
MRS. MANGEL: Ah ha! I'll show *you*, Madge Bishop!
In the kitchen, Madge is working out what ingredients she'll need for her cake as Harold notes them down. She mutters:
MADGE: How dare she? Did you hear what she said to me?
HAROLD: To be quite honest, I really wasn't listening, love – but if this contest is going to upset you that much, I really wish I hadn't suggested you enter.
MADGE: Oh, I'm so glad you *did*, Harold! Nothing will give me greater pleasure than to see that nasty smile wiped off that old biddy's face!
The next morning, Henry is packing gear into Bertha when Jane walks over and tries to make conversation about the bake- off. Henry, however, just mutters that he couldn't care less about it, and he climbs into Bertha and drives off. Scott then joins Jane, who asks him what's up with Henry: she's never seen him so grumpy. Scott muses:
SCOTT: Neither have I. Must be the real thing this time. It's got him bad, too!
JANE: Is he sick?
SCOTT: Well... sort of! He's in love – only the girl in question doesn't know, and he's too chicken to tell her!
JANE: Poor Henry!
Scott muses that all they can do is pray he finds someone else real soon! Jane asks if it wouldn't be better to tell whoever it is how he feels. She adds:
JANE: Who *is* it, anyway?
SCOTT: Um... well... you may not believe this, but it's Bronwyn – and I don't think it would do any good because he reckons she's not interested, so—
JANE (smiles): She is! She told me last night!
SCOTT (grins): You mean to say Bronwyn's interested in Henry and Henry's interested in Bronwyn and neither of them know?!
JANE (nods): The big question is what are we going to do about it?!
Bronwyn is sitting at the table, playing with Jamie, when Mike emerges from his room. Bronwyn asks him what time his exam is, and he replies that it's at 10am. Bronwyn tells him that Des left while he was in the shower and said to say good luck. She then stands up, walks over to Mike and tells him that she's really sorry he overheard Jane and her talking last night: they only did it because they *care*; she'd hate to see him hurt. Mike murmurs:
MIKE: I guess I should be flattered, eh?
There's suddenly a knock on the front door. Mike answers it to find Scott standing on the step, but he asks if it can wait ‘til this arvo. Scott, however, explains that he wants to see Bronwyn: Harold wants him to round up a few more volunteers for the fete. He walks over to Bronwyn, who tells him that she's already booked to help Jane with the fashion parade. Scott, however, points out that that's not going to take all day; all they need is a patient for Beverly's first- aid demo. Bronwyn gives in and sighs that if it's for Beverly, she can't really say no. Scott looks at the expression on her face and tells her that it's not going to be as bad as she thinks it is! Bronwyn sighs:
BRONWYN: Yeah, I know. I'm sorry for being a wet blanket – I've just got a few things on my mind, that's all.
SCOTT: is there anything *I* can do?
BRONWYN: There's nothing *anybody* can do. That's the trouble.
Scott stands there smirking slightly!
John Worthington has turned up at No. 32. Standing by the front door, he comments to Mrs. Mangel that he must be the *last* person she was expecting. As the two of them head through to the lounge room, Mrs. Mangel replies:
MRS. MANGEL: Mr. Bishop did mention that you were asking after me, but I must confess, I—
JOHN: Oh Nell, I feel I've behaved very badly towards you.
MRS. MANGEL: Not at all, John.
JOHN: I've wanted for so long to make amends; even got as far as picking up the ‘phone to call you, but I was so sure you'd want nothing more to do with me. Can you forgive me?
MRS. MANGEL (smiles): There's nothing to forgive. All I want is for us to be friends again.
John holds out his hand and Mrs. Mangel takes it as he says:
JOHN: Friends it is. I've missed you, Nell.
MRS. MANGEL: And *I've* missed *you*.
The front door bangs suddenly and Joe marches in, saying he's got those bits he needs. As he heads into the lounge room, Mrs. Mangel asks him if he remembers Mr. Worthington. Joe just glares at John and snaps:
JOE: Yeah, I remember – and if you're not out of this house by the time I count to ten, mate...
MRS. MANGEL (looking shocked): Joe, for heaven's sake, what's got into you?
JOE: You shouldn't've let him in, mum. He's got no right after the way he treated you.
MRS. MANGEL: Joe! Stop this!
JOE: One... two... three...
JOHN: Now, look here, young man!
JOE: ... four...
MRS. MANGEL: Joe!
JOE: ...five... six...
John and Mrs. Mangel look at each other in astonishment.