Matt and Sharon discovering that Hilary is drunk from the cough medicine she's been taking - and Kenneth Muir has just arrived for dinner.
Hilary opens the front door. Kenneth Muir is standing on the step, holding a bunch of flowers and two bottles of wine. Hilary smiles at the flowers and slurs:
HILARY: Oh, Kenneth, are they for *me*?!
MUIR: They certainly are.
HILARY: Oh! And *two* bottles! Thank you! Come in!
The two of them head into the lounge room and Hilary, showing Sharon and Matt the flowers and wine, smiles that she's very lucky. She asks Sharon to put the flowers in water. Matt says he'll put the bottles of wine in the 'fridge, but Hilary stops him and says it would be very rude not to open them. Matt nods reluctantly. He and Sharon head to the kitchen and Hilary invites Mr. Muir to sit down. He heads over to the couch. Hilary does the same and smiles:
HILARY: Isn't this nice! So, tell me: how was your day?!
Mr. Muir replies that he came very close to herding the kids into the gym and throwing away the key! Hilary giggles and asks him what stopped him! Mr. Muir replies that it was cowardice probably: the thought of a thousand angry parents descending on him in a swarm is not a particularly attractive one. He adds:
MUIR: To be completely honest, it's expletive- deleted awful!
Hilary bursts out laughing and grins that he does put it perfectly! Matt and Sharon come back in and Matt asks what's so funny. Hilary giggles:
HILARY: It's Mr. Muir: I had no idea he was such a wag!
Mr. Muir sits there looking slightly bemused!
Mike is working at the table. Des and Jane emerge from the bedroom area, Des commenting that Jamie whinges about going to bed, but five minutes after his head hits the pillow he's fast asleep! He picks up the TV guide and asks what everyone wants to watch. Mike, however, says he doesn't care, as he's got some study sessions to plan. Des asks him when *Bronny's* coming round for her next study session. Mike, however, explains that she's decided not to study with him anymore. Des exclaims in surprise:
DES: What? After all the work you put in to help her?
MIKE (shrugs): Yeah, well, it's her decision. Nothing I can do about it.
DES: Still, it seems like a waste.
MIKE: Yeah, I know, but it was just taking up too much time, wasn't it.
There's suddenly a knock on the front door and Mike goes to answer it. He finds Paul and Gail standing on the step and Paul asks if Jane's there. Mike lets them in. Paul walks over to the kitchen area and tells Jane that he and Gail have been out for a meal and he's decided it's time for an apology. He goes on:
PAUL: Jane, I'm sorry I've been giving you such a hard time lately.
JANE: It's all right - I don't blame you. I was a bit out of line *myself* yesterday.
Gail puts her arms around Paul and smiles that that wasn't so hard! She adds that the cars have been recovered and Jane's off the hook. Paul tells Jane that Gail's celebrating by having a day off shopping tomorrow! The two of them turn to head out again. They pause by the door, though, Paul wincing suddenly in pain. Gail asks in concern what's wrong. Paul replies that it's indigestion. Gail muses:
GAIL: I'm not surprised, given how much you ate! [To Jane and Des] He's an absolute pig!
Sharon joins Matt in the kitchen. He asks how it's going in the lounge room. They suddenly hear Hilary giggling loudly again, and he sighs that he gets the picture. Sharon asks in concern what they're going to do. Matt suggests:
MATT: Serve the dessert. Maybe that'll help her soak up some of the wine.
SHARON (warily): That's not such a great idea.
MATT: Why not?
SHARON: Because dessert is trifle. *Sherry* trifle.
Matt sighs heavily. In the lounge room, Hilary and Mr. Muir are sitting at the table, Hilary saying she thinks it's *amazing* that Mr. Muir didn't like 'Gone with the Wind': the two of them must be the only people who didn't! She adds that that's one other thing they've got in common. She finishes a glass of wine and Mr. Muir offers her another. She smiles:
HILARY: No, I really shouldn't, Kenneth. Well... why not?! After all, I *am* amongst friends!
MR. MUIR: You are indeed. I must say, Hilary, you're a different person when you're out of school.
HILARY (giggles girlishly): Oh Kenneth!
Sharon comes in at that moment with the bowl of trifle. She places the dish on the table and Mr. Muir comments that it looks delicious. Hilary slurs that the answer lies in the sherry! She stands up, picks up the serving spoon, dishes up some trifle and goes to place it in Mr. Muir's bowl, which he holds out to her. Unfortunately, she misses, and the trifle lands on the table and splashes Mr. Muir's shirt! Hilary giggles:
HILARY: How did *that* happen?!
Matt comes in. Sharon looks at him and tells him to bring the coffee *now*- or even sooner...
Harold is sitting in an armchair, reading the newspaper. Henry emerges from the bedroom area, holding a mug of cocoa, and asks Harold if he'd like it, adding that it's only very slightly second- hand! Harold asks if *Bronwyn* didn't want it. Henry explains that she was sound asleep. Harold comments:
HAROLD: I am not surprised. With the hours she puts into her study—
HENRY: *Hours*? Come on! More like weeks... months... It's getting to the point where I can't remember when she did anything *but* study.
HAROLD: Oh well, it's all for a good cause.
Harold then says he *will* have the cocoa: it'll give him something to do while he's waiting for Madge. Henry suggests to him that he go to bed, but Harold replies that he won't get a wink of sleep until he hears Madge come through the front door. Henry muses that that's what Madge used to reckon when *he* was a teenager! Harold tells him that when you love someone, you never stop worrying about them - especially when you're apart. He adds:
HAROLD: I cherish the time I spend with your mother. I just wish she didn't have to do this nightshift. Still, it'll be all over soon, thank heaven.
HENRY (thoughtfully): So, you reckon it's really important to spend a lot of time together, even though you're married and everything?
HAROLD: Oh yes. The more time I spend with her, the more time I want to *be* with her.
Henry murmurs that that's the way it *should* be with two people. He goes on that all he wants is to be *close* to Bronwyn, but there seems to be this barrier between them, and the harder he tries to break it down, the bigger it seems to get. Harold suggests that perhaps he's trying too hard; sometimes the best way to keep someone close to you is to loosen the reins a little. Henry sits there looking thoughtful.
Sharon and Matt are standing in the doorway to the lounge room, looking at each other warily, as Hilary muses:
HILARY: Ah, Chopin... Chopin... Doesn't the word just go tripping, oh... off the tongue!
Mr. Muir sighs that some of the students will never be convinced that his name doesn't rhyme with 'shopping'! Hilary stands up and, heading to the piano, says she's going to play Chopin's 'Minute Waltz' in 30 seconds! Matt suggests quickly that they listen to a record instead, but Mr. Muir says he'd *love* to hear Hilary play: he understands she's quite accomplished. Hilary sits down at the piano and says brightly:
HILARY: Thirty seconds. Here we go: 1... 2... 3...
With that, she starts playing - but it doesn't take long before she starts hitting wrong notes, and she giggles:
HILARY: Oh, surprise! Surprise!
When she's finished, she stands up - and almost falls back into Matt's arms. She giggles again!
The next morning, Madge is on the 'phone to Charlene, asking her to let them know if there's anything they can do. She hangs up as Harold emerges from the bedroom area, wearing his tracksuit. He asks if there's any news on the house, but Madge tells him that apparently the truck did more damage than they first thought: it'll take quite a while to get things back to normal. She adds that she wishes she could go up to Brisbane to help. Harold tells her that Scott and Charlene are young: they'll be able to put things together again. Henry emerges from the bedroom area and smiles:
HENRY: Well, first chore of the day taken care of: breakfast in bed for Bron!
Madge smiles that that's very thoughtful. Harold says he's going for a good, hard walk at the oval, and he heads out. When he's gone, Henry asks Madge if he isn't taking this walking caper a bit too seriously. Madge sighs:
MADGE: Oh, you know Harold and his enthusiasm - but I'll tell you *one* thing: with *his* training and *me* doing nightshift for Ron, I don't know how we're ever going to *see* each other.
Henry mutters that that problem's got a familiar ring to it.
Hilary is sitting at the kitchen table, murmuring in horror:
HILARY: I *couldn't* have.
SHARON: Oh, you *did*. You would've fallen off if Matt hadn't caught you.
Matt hands Hilary a glass of water as Sharon says:
SHARON: There's worse! Do you, um, remember what you did with the trifle?
HILARY (warily): Ate it?
SHARON: Oh, you did in the end, yeah! - but that was *after* you'd sploshed half of it all over the table and Mr. Muir!
HILARY (groans): He'll never speak to me again...
Matt insists that it's all right: she can explain to him about the medicine - he'll understand. Hilary cries:
HILARY: Matthew, he thinks I'm a *drunk*.
Sharon says quickly that she was exaggerating: it wasn't *that* bad. Hilary, however, says:
HILARY: Don't make excuses for me. My behaviour was shameful. I'm going back to bed - for the rest of my life...
Matt looks at Sharon in concern.
Harold is taking the chairs down off the tables. Des is standing with him. He's holding some papers and Harold asks what exactly it is he's signing. Des replies that it's pretty much the same as the *old* lease, but a different mix of conditions. Harold asks if he can read it properly: he never signs anything unless he's read the fine print. Des nods that he'll bring it back later when Jamie's sleeping: Kerry can look after him. Harold asks in interest:
HAROLD: How are you getting on working at home and looking after Jamie at the same time?
DES: Oh, good. It's not as easy as I thought, that's all: Jamie is having a bit of difficulty getting used to my new schedule.
HAROLD: Oh? In what way?
DES: Well, I've divided up my time, you know: work... and quality time for Jamie; but *he* seems to think there's only one time: *his*! We're getting there, though!
Des adds that it's not *that* hard - and no harder than the effort Harold's making with the walking. Harold smiles that one does what one can with that. He adds that he called around to see if Des would sponsor him, but he wasn't home. Des quickly offers $2 a kilometre in sponsorship and Harold smiles that that would be wonderful. Paul - who's been working in the corner of the shop - comes over at that moment and asks Des if Harold has roped *him* in! The two of them head out as Mike comes in. He says to Harold that he realises it's a little early, but what's the chances of getting something for lunch? Harold nods that they're fairly good, as long as Mike helps with the chairs! As Mike starts taking chairs off the tables, he asks casually:
MIKE: Is, er, Bronny not in yet?
HAROLD: No, I gave her a late start. The poor girl, you know... she's quite exhausted with all that studying she's doing.
MIKE: And what about her and Henry? Things still a little rocky there, are they?
HAROLD: Oh no! No! As a matter of fact, this morning he gave her breakfast in bed. I call that very nice, don't you?
MIKE (looking annoyed): Yeah...
Gail is in a store in a shopping centre, looking at a dress. Madge comes over suddenly and comments that the outfits are gorgeous! Gail smiles that she's already spent more money than she should! She then asks Madge what *she's* doing there and Madge replies that she's window shopping, mainly. She adds that she's been meaning to say that she's so glad that car business got sorted out: Gail and Paul must've been worried sick. Gail muses:
GAIL: Paul especially - although it doesn't really seem to have made much difference. I don't know why, but lately he's been more uptight than usual.
MADGE: Oh, I wouldn't worry about that. Harold gets like that when he's got things on his mind.
GAIL: Yes, well, that's what I don't understand. I mean, everything's going reasonably well for him at the moment - he should be *happy*.
MADGE: Oh well - buy him a present; cheer him up.
Gail nods that that might also take his mind off the things she's bought for *herself*! She and Madge turn to a pile of wraps and Gail picks one up and looks at it. Madge asks her how she'd like to have lunch, but Gail says she's just made an appointment to have her nails done. She adds that she could meet Madge for coffee afterwards. Madge smiles that that's a good idea. Gail suggests they meet just inside the doors of the store they're in at about 2pm. Madge smiles at Gail that she'll see her then.
Hilary is talking on the 'phone to the school secretary, telling her that she's simply unwell - it must have been something she ate. She adds that she'll 'phone when she's feeling better. With that, she hangs up and groans:
HILARY: I simply want to die...
She goes and lies down on the couch. There's suddenly a knock on the front door, though, and she reluctantly gets up again and goes to answer it. She finds Mr. Muir standing on the step, and she stares at him in horror.
A short time later, Mr. Muir and Hilary sit down in the lounge room and Hilary apologises for her appearance, explaining that she's a little unwell. She then explains that she had a cough yesterday and didn't want it to spoil their dinner, so she took a cough medicine but didn't realise it was very strongly alcohol- based - and that, plus the wine... She sighs:
HILARY: I'm afraid I made a terrible spectacle of myself. You won't want someone of *my* type on your staff.
MR. MUIR (sincerely): Hilary, you really must *stop* this.
HILARY (insists): But I didn't do it *intentionally*.
MR. MUIR: I mean *resigning* every time you feel embarrassed. It simply won't do.
HILARY (grimly): Look, I was *drunk*. I was positively *sodden*.
MR. MUIR (smiles): Well, I did notice that you were slightly more cheerful than usual, but in all honesty I found you quite charming.
HILARY (looking surprised): You did?
MR. MUIR: I'm not nearly so stuffy as some people seem to think. And Hilary...
HILARY: Yes, Kenneth?
MR. MUIR: I hope we can have many *more* such pleasant evenings together.
Hilary smiles at Mr. Muir in relief.
Gail is in the shop, waiting for Madge. She's looking at a display of fine pens, picking up several to study them. She picks one out and then heads over to the counter to pay, but finds there's no assistant there to help. Looking around, she spots a perfume counter. She walks over to it, picks up a small bottle of perfume and sprays some onto her wrist. She smells it, but then suddenly starts sneezing. She puts her right hand - in which she's still holding the pen she picked - into her bag and takes out a tissue, leaving the pen in the bag... Madge dashes in suddenly and apologises for being late, saying she got stuck in a rotten bank queue. Gail insists that it's no problem: she can waste time *anywhere*! Madge smiles:
MADGE: Can we do it sitting in a café? Honestly, if I don't get off my feet I'm going to *expire*! All of this relaxation's absolutely exhausting!
With that, she takes some of Gail's bags and they head towards the café, Gail still sneezing.
Des and Jane are standing at the counter of the Coffee Shop. Harold hands Des the papers he's now signed and Des and Jane go to head out. As they do so, they pass Mike who's sitting at one of the tables, working. Des comments to him in surprise that he's there early. Mike tells him that his Year 11s have got an excursion. With that, Des and Jane head out. Henry comes in at that moment and says to Harold cheerfully:
HENRY: Where's Bron, Harold?
HAROLD: Er, she's out doing the banking. She might be some time. Do you want me to give her a message?
HENRY: No, no, no, it's not important. I'll catch up with her later. It's not important.
He goes to head out again, but as he passes Mike's table, Mike says coolly:
MIKE: Can't leave her alone for *one minute*, can you?
HENRY (sighs): Give us a break - I just came to see if she wanted a lift home.
MIKE: All adds up, though, doesn't it?
HENRY (retorts): Well, it's really got nothing to do with you.
MIKE: Yeah? Did Bronny tell you the *real* reason why she stopped studying with me?
HENRY: She—. Sorta.
MIKE: I bet she *didn't* - 'cos the real reason is she couldn't handle your jealousy. I reckon she's lost every chance of doing really well because of you.
HENRY: Look, I didn't tell her to give up studying with you.
MIKE: Not in so many words...
HENRY: All right. All right, maybe I made things a little difficult; I didn't mean to. I want her to pass her exams, so I reckon... she should keep studying with you.
MIKE (shrugs): Don't tell *me*, tell *her*.
Gail and Madge are walking out through the exit of the store, Madge asking Gail if she managed to get something for Paul. Gail nods that she managed to get him a gold pen: she'll have it engraved. Madge smiles:
MADGE: He'll love that! I bet it cost the earth, too!
A look of horror crosses Gail's face suddenly and she exclaims:
GAIL: Oh no...
MADGE: What's the matter?
GAIL: Oh my god. I've just done something so *stupid*. I've got to get back to the shop.
GAIL: The pen: I haven't *paid* for it.
The two of them turn to head back to the store, but they find a man standing behind them. He who says:
MAN: Excuse me.
MADGE (demands): What do you think *you're* doing?
MAN: Store security, ma'am. Would you mind coming along with me, please?
GAIL: Listen, I know I've got something I haven't paid for—
MAN (tersely): *We* call it shoplifting.
GAIL: Listen, I can explain, really I can.
MAN: I'm afraid you'll have to do that to the police - so will you come along with me, please?
Gail stands there looking worried.