Beth kisses Brad and tells him that she'll be late for work. Brad offers to give her a ride and Beth smiles that she'll be ready in a flash.
Philip is telling Jim that he can't seem to think past getting away from Julie: she's a mess and she's bringing him down with her; he can't go through that again. Jim exclaims:
JIM: But to just *abandon* her?
Philip insists that he has to think what's best for the kids, too; sometimes he thinks she'd be better off in a nursing home or something. Jim, however, retorts that it would be better if he and Helen were to keep an eye on her. He goes on tersely that Julie should move into No. 26 as soon as possible - it's certainly a better option than hospitalisation. Philip tells him that it's only until Julie sorts herself out. Jim asks if they should go and talk to her now. Philip replies:
PHILIP: If it's all the same to you, Jim, I'll do this alone. I think she'll take it better coming from me.
With that, he heads out, leaving Jim looking worried.
Debbie and Rick are walking to school, Debbie sighing that it's awful: her mum's upset all the time and her dad's always mad at her, and she's taking loads of tranquilisers. They suddenly spot Wayne running towards them and Rick laughs at him and asks if he can get him oxygen or a wheelchair! Wayne just retorts that Rick won't always be 16 and skinny. Looking slightly put out, Rick insists that he's the ideal physique for a sprint swimmer. Wayne comments that he supposes Rick's looking forward to the school swimming carnival. Rick grins that he's already cleared space on the shelf in his room - for the medals! Wayne, however, tells him that there's no swimming carnival for him unless his chemistry marks improve. He runs off, leaving Rick looking annoyed.
Annalise - dressed as Mrs. Hartley- Jones - pays Cathy in small change and goes and sits at a table. Benito comes into the shop and Cathy smiles at him:
CATHY: How are you, you handsome devil, you?
Benito immediately asks her suspiciously what she wants! Cathy tells him that she was thinking that it would be wonderful if they could take a few weeks off and go to Italy for a holiday. Benito, however, retorts that they can't afford it - and he can't just up and go and leave the car yard with Lou away. Cathy asks him if he wouldn't like to catch up with Marco and see all his relatives. Benito asks who'd look after Rick. In response, Cathy asks Benito if he'll agree to the holiday if she can organise something for Rick. Benito gives in and says he supposes so!
Julie is vacuuming the lounge room vigorously when Philip comes in. She turns the machine off and asks him in surprise why he isn't at the office. Philip tells her that he's been across at her father's; they've been talking about what to do. Julie says brightly:
JULIE: I'm much better today; much clearer in my mind.
PHILIP (dubiously): How long's *that* going to last?
Julie doesn't respond. Philip takes her arm and says:
PHILIP: Julie, things can't go on the way they've been.
JULIE: I know - but I'm making a real effort to change.
PHILIP: This is taking a toll on everybody; on *me*. I think we need some time apart.
JULIE (gasps): What do you mean? You're *leaving* me?
PHILIP: I think it's best if I stay here - it would be easier on the kids. Jim and Helen will take you in - they can give you the support you need.
JULIE (horrified): You're throwing me out?
PHILIP: No. I'm trying to salvage something from this mess that our marriage has become.
JULIE: By splitting up? Philip, don't you *love* me anymore?
PHILIP: I'm very confused at the moment.
JULIE: You're *confused*? [Angrily] Well, there's no way I'm moving out of my own home. Do you hear me? No way. If you want some time out, fine: *you* take the time out.
With that, she storms out of the room, leaving Philip looking worried.
Brad is driving along a street and Beth asks if they're going the scenic route, as she'll be late for work. Brad pulls his car into the side of the road, picks up a bunch of flowers from the back seat and tells Beth that she's been hijacked! Beth asks about work, but Brad tells her that his dad's in on it. He goes on that them getting engaged wasn't very romantic, so he wants to make up for it by them spending a special day together. Beth laughs:
BETH: We're going surfing?!
BETH: So where are you taking me, then?
BRAD (enigmatically): Up!
Roof of a tall tower in Melbourne
Sometime later, Brad and Beth are standing next to a table adjacent to a swimming pool on the flat roof of a tall building. Beth smiles that it's amazing; she's stunned! They sit down and Beth asks Brad how he organised all this. Brad tells her that the caretaker's a regular at the Waterhole - he helped with the tables and chairs and the greenery. He then pours two glasses of smoothie(!) and says to Beth that he hopes she likes Japanese. He hands Beth a glass and smiles:
Debbie, Rick and Michael arrive home from school, coming in through the back door. Philip joins them in the kitchen and tells Debbie and Rick that they need to talk. Rick leaves them to it. The three Martins sit down and Debbie asks if something has happened. Philip says:
PHILIP: As you both probably know, things have been a bit rocky lately between Julie and I. It seems best if we give each other a bit of space.
DEBBIE (horrified): No!
PHILIP: It's nothing permanent, Deb - I just need some time away from her.
MICHAEL: She's been giving you a pretty rough trot.
PHILIP: Well, yeah. I suggested she move in with Jim and Helen until she's better, but she's knocked that on the head - so *I'm* the one that's going to be shifting out.
MICHAEL: You going to stay at Lassiter's?
PHILIP: Probably. [To both] I know you love Julie, and I don't want to put pressure on you to choose between us, but you're welcome to come with me if you want.
Debbie says she wants to stay there - school and Rick and all that! Michael adds that he'll stay as well: Julie needs all the help she can get. Debbie tells her father that everything will be OK. Philip, however, murmurs:
PHILIP: I don't know, Deb. I just don't know.
No one notices the delighted grin on Michael's face...
Sometime later, Philip is standing in the lounge room with a packed bag, telling Julie that Jim and Helen will keep an eye on her; in an emergency, she can get him at the hotel. Julie pleads with him and asks if they can't talk it through. Philip sighs that they *have* talked and they keep going round in circles. Julie cries:
JULIE: Please. *Please* don't go.
PHILIP: Sorry - I need some time out.
With that, Philip heads to the front door.
Roof of a tall tower in Melbourne
Brad and Beth clink glasses and kiss. Beth smiles at Brad that only he could come up with sushi and smoothies in the sky; it beats champagne and caviar any time! She beams that it's the best surprise she's ever had. Brad then takes a small jewellery box out of his pocket and hands it to Beth. She opens it to reveal a ring, and she exclaims that it's beautiful - but he's already given her an engagement ring. Brad tells her that that one wasn't too flashy; he thought she deserved something more mind- blowing. He then gets down on bended knee, takes the ring back and says that now he's got the proper ring, he figures he should do the whole proposal bit as well. He places the ring on Beth's finger and the two of them kiss passionately.
Julie is sitting at the kitchen table with Jim, crying that Philip doesn't love her anymore. Jim insists gently:
JIM: Of course he does - but he's been under a lot of stress lately, and you haven't helped.
JULIE: I know, I know, it's my fault. I don't *mean* to keep doing these things.
JIM: And I'm sure Philip understands that. As soon as you pull yourself together, he'll come back.
JULIE: How am I supposed to *do* that? I don't know what's *happening* to me. Why am I driving my husband away? I *love* him.
JIM: And he loves you, too, darling; he's just a bit confused and very frightened.
JULIE (leaping up, angrily): So am *I*. *I* don't know what to do.
Jim gets up and puts his arms around her, telling her he'll do everything he can to help. He then suggests that maybe she needs someone qualified - someone who knows how to handle emotional problems. Julie stares at him in horror and asks if he means a psychiatrist. She then snaps:
JULIE: I'm not crazy. I don't *need* a psychiatrist. All I need is Philip.
Rick is sitting at a table, studying for the Chemistry exam. Cathy hands him a free milkshake and tells him that if he does well in the exam, she might have a surprise for him. Debbie is over at the jukebox and Rick turns to her and suggests they get on with studying. Debbie, however, says distantly:
DEBBIE: I just can't believe it's happened, you know?
Rick points out that she did say her parents have been fighting heaps. He adds that he heard Julie got pretty wasted at the wedding. Debbie comments that she's never been like that before; she's just gone right off the rails. Rick remarks that it must be really weird. Debbie then says, looking worried:
DEBBIE: Dad said he wasn't going to put any pressure on us, but if they get divorced I'll have to choose which one I live with.
RICK: That would be your dad, right?
DEBBIE: Well... Julie's been around since I was eight. I guess I *love* her. I hate having my family all wrecked.
RICK (smiles): Yeah. Oh well, Mike'll be cruising through, wouldn't he?
DEBBIE: Oh no - he's just as upset as I am.
Michael is walking over the bridge and bumps into Wayne, who asks how things are going. Michael smiles:
MICHAEL: Cruising, Mr. D, just cruising.
They both go their own ways, but Michael isn't looking where he's going and he bumps into Annalise, dressed as Mrs. Hartley- Jones. She drops her room key. Michael recognises her straight away and remarks that she looks very posh. He picks up her key and asks suspiciously how she can afford to stay at Lassiter's since Lou gave her the flick. Annalise retorts:
ANNALISE: That's none of your business, is it?
MICHAEL: No... but it's my dad's. I think I may ask him.
ANNALISE (quickly): No!
MICHAEL (smiles): You're in a bit of an awkward situation here, Annalise, running up hotel bills you've got no way of paying - and here's me, ready to blow the whistle on it. But I'm a reasonable guy: I'm sure we can think of something.
ANNALISE: Like what?
MICHAEL: I want you to be nice to me - *very* nice.
ANNALISE (mutters): I'm not that desperate.
MICHAEL: Aren't you? Well, dad should be in his office about now. I think I'll go see him.
Annalise sighs heavily and gives in. Michael tells her that they'll have dinner tomorrow night - in *her* room.
Debbie is testing Rick on Chemistry, but he's struggling to remember everything. He sighs that it's hopeless. Debbie, however, points out that he wants to be in the swimming carnival, doesn't he? She adds that all it takes is a little hard work: he'll amaze everyone - especially Mr. Duncan.
Julie is sitting at the kitchen table. She tips a tranquiliser tablet into her hand and takes it with some water. Michael arrives home from school and Julie asks if it's that time already. He sits down with her and asks her if she's OK: he's been worried. He suggests that maybe she should get some help. Julie retorts that there's nothing wrong with her. Michael says:
MICHAEL: Why fight it? Breakdowns happen to a lot of people. The way *I* see it, the best thing is to admit that you *are* sick. There are plenty of good places you can go. It's not like they're going to lock you in a padded cell or anything.
JULIE (insists): I'm all right.
MICHAEL: Sure you are. If I can make things easier...
JULIE: Talk to your father. Ask him to come home - *please*.
MICHAEL: Don't worry - I will.
With that, Julie stands up. Michael asks her where she's going and she tells him that she thought she'd soak in the spa and try to relax. Michael asks her if she's taken her tablets. Julie nods that she thinks so - just before he came in. Michael, however, tells her that he didn't see her; she'd better have one now, just to make sure. Julie smiles gratefully:
JULIE: I'm glad you didn't go with your father. It helps knowing you're here to look after me.
MICHAEL: Any way I can, mum...
Benito walks into the shop and asks Cathy for a cappuccino for the conquering hero! Wayne is sitting at the counter and Benito tells him and Cathy that with Lou away, he's finally getting a handle on the business. He then notices Rick and Debbie studying and comments that he's truly amazed. Wayne smiles that it's wonderful what a bit of incentive can do!
Over at Rick and Debbie's table, Debbie is testing Rick on chemical symbols. He answers all the questions correctly. Debbie then moves on to atomic structure.
Brad and Beth arrive back at No. 24 and Beth thanks Brad for an outrageous day! She adds that she was happy with the *first* ring he gave her - but she's not complaining! The two of them sit down on the couch and Beth goes on that getting married is serious stuff: you have to be a bit responsible and think about *saving* money instead of spending it. Brad comments that they're not exactly mortgaged- out yet. Beth tells him that the sooner they start saving for their future, the better off they'll be in the long run; it's called 'forward planning'. Brad smiles:
BRAD: Yeah, well, I've got a forward plan to go for a dawn surf tomorrow morning!
Beth tells him that they should be putting some money in the bank; they could open a joint bank account - it'll be neat! She then tells Brad that she loves him.
Sitting at the counter, Benito is telling Cathy that he's learned a lot, running things on his own: you have to be tough - buy cheap and sell dear. Cathy remarks that it doesn't sound ethical. All of a sudden, Cathy spots Annalise - dressed as Mrs. Hartley- Jones - walking towards the door. Cathy yells after her that she hasn't paid. Benito runs to the door and grabs Annalise, removing the hat she's wearing. He exclaims in astonishment:
Philip comes in at that moment and asks what's going on. Benito tells him that Annalise tried to eat and run; she owes Cathy money. Philip suggests curtly to 'Mrs. Hartley- Jones' that they need to have a little chat.
Back yard of No. 32
Julie is lying back in the spa, looking woozy. Her eyes are closed. Michael approaches the edge of the spa and calls:
MICHAEL: Mum. Mum?
JULIE (coming to, vaguely): Mmm?
MICHAEL: You know if dad left any money for me?
JULIE (distantly): Mmm?
He grins at Julie, smugly, clearly waiting for her to pass out and sink into the water completely...