Danni kissing Luke after the gig at Chez Chez. Stonie taunting Steve that it looks like the best man won.
The Kennedy kids sucking up to Karl and Susan!
Alan McKenna telling Mal and Darren that they're not getting any work at the school.
It's evening- time. Karl hands Susan a cup of tea and tells her that Libby has made some chocolate- slice and Mal has done the vacuuming! Susan comments that it'll make up for the day she's had: the staff room is buzzing about her delinquent kids. Karl starts massaging her shoulders as he comments that they don't *force* them to associate with the dregs of society. Susan exclaims that he can't call Melissa Drenth the dregs of society. Karl admits that Billy and Melissa are probably as innocent as they claim - but Shona and Darren...
Luke is sitting playing his guitar when Danni comes in and smiles that he's practicing for his next gig at Chez Chez, huh?! She adds that he was great! Luke, however, retorts that *he and Stonie* were great; he'll wait until Stonie gets back from Tassie before he goes on stage again. Danni exclaims in astonishment that it'll be bad for her mum's business if he doesn't show up - but Luke retorts that he's nothing on his own. Danni insists that he doesn't need Stonie. Luke just tells her that she's not the one who's going to fall flat on their face in front of a room full of people. Danni presses:
DANNI: You've got to me more assertive; more likeó
LUKE (mutters): Steve.
DANNI: No. I was going to say more like your old self.
She adds quickly that she doesn't mean before he had cancer. Luke tells her:
LUKE: I'm sorry I'm not the person you want me to be.
DANNI (sighs): There you go again. I *love* you, Luke. I just want you to be happy.
LUKE: I *am*. I've got you - and that's all I need.
They hug, but Danni looks worried.
The next morning, Mal is having breakfast at the Holy Roll when Darren sits down with him and tells him that they need the school job so he can start paying back his mum. Mal shrugs that it's not *his* fault Darren still owes her money. Darren retorts that if they didn't have the money, they wouldn't have the business - and Mal just went and made things a whole lot worse: they had a future employer and Mal just blew it. Mal mutters that it's amazing that Darren can twist any situation to suit himself; he's always blamed everyone else for the fact that he's a loser - or his mum has bailed him out. Darren snaps back that this is sweet coming from the son of a doctor, who's had such a hard life. Mal retorts:
MAL: I'm not going to apologise for not having stuffed up *my* life, Darren.
DARREN: Fine. Fine. Look, that doesn't solve any of our problems with McKenna, does it? You can cry in your coffee all you like; I'm going to go do something about it.
Steve is trying on a shirt that Danni made for him, smiling that it looks great - just what he asked for. Luke comes into the house and Steve smiles at him that he was really pumping the other night. Steve then tells Danni that he loves the shirt - and he turns to Luke and says he sees big things for her; international success - she could be the next Chanel. Turning to Danni, he adds:
STEVE: If you had the right encouragement, you'd already be on your way!
LUKE (coolly): Are you saying I'm *not* encouraging Danni?
STEVE: Hey, I'm not criticising. I know how hard it is pushing someone to break out - especially when you want them all to yourself.
LUKE: Oh, I'm not holding Danni back. *I'm* not the one making her feel like she's missed the boat. No, Danni's doing just fine as she is.
Danni doesn't look so convinced, though...
Darren walks into a classroom, where Mr. McKenna is cleaning the blackboard, and tells him that it's about the job. Mr. McKenna retorts that he doesn't want him working in the school. Darren, however, says:
DARREN: I don't think you realise just how important this is for me and Mal. We've invested a lot of money into this business on the strength of getting this contract.
MCKENNA (snaps): Well, you should've thought about that before you took a student away from a school activity.
Darren insists that what happened on the weekend has nothing to do with their professional performance. Mr. McKenna, however, asks why he'd hire two boys who have proven to be unreliable and irresponsible - plus there's the question of whether the girls in the school would be safe. Darren growls:
DARREN: I beg your pardon?
MCKENNA: You heard. You're bad news, young man. A crim.
Darren suddenly pushes Mr. McKenna up against the blackboard and snarls:
DARREN: Listen, mate. You are nothing but a jumped- up nobody who picks on his students and probably his wife and anyone else who can't take care of themselves. Well, mate, you have just picked on the wrong person, because I *can* take care of myself.
MCKENNA (coolly): Is that a threat?
DARREN: Just watch your back, mate...
Back garden of No. 28
Karl is practicing his golf chip shots when Mal comes out with a coffee for him. He comments to his father that he's chucking a sickie, is he?! Karl, however, insists that he isn't - and he adds that Mal's the last person who should lecture *him*. Mal sighs that he knows he's stuffed his career: the job at the school was *theirs*. Karl tells him not to be too hard on himself: taking the blame for Shona's flask showed some degree of loyalty. Mal, however, points out bitterly that loyalty doesn't pay off debts. Karl smiles and muses:
KARL: Maybe the surgery job would help...?
MAL: Are you serious?! You'd give it to us after all this?
Karl tells Mal that he's satisfied that after this little adventure, he's grown up a bit. Mal says he'll line Darren up. Shona walks over suddenly and smiles at Mal:
SHONA: You *are* here!
Mal asks her what she's doing there and she replies:
SHONA: What *else* am I to do when I'm suspended? Spend every minute with *you*, of course!
KARL: Which could be viewed as a punishment in itself!
Danni is telling Steve and Luke about the problems she's had with a button for the shirt. She goes to find another one. Left alone in the room with Steve, Luke says to him coolly:
LUKE: Opportunities are passing her by?
STEVE: I'm simply letting her know that the opportunities are hers for the taking.
LUKE: Yeah, well, she's tried that, and so far she's been ripped off, let down, put out of business and God knows what else.
STEVE: That's probably because she didn't have someone like me advising her before.
LUKE: No, they're *all* like you. Her *friends* have helped her realise that she's got to slow down, get experience and wise- up to get where she wants to be - so back off, all right?
STEVE (taunts): You make *all* Danni's decisions for her, do you?
LUKE: I just don't want to see her get hurt again.
STEVE: You don't want to see her succeed - that's the way *I* see it.
LUKE: You can say what you like - but I'm not going to stand back and let you set up Danni for another fall. She can do without the likes of *you* in her life.
Danni comes in and overhears the end of the conversation. She snaps at Luke not to speak to her friends like that - he's her boyfriend, not her mother. Luke glares at her in disbelief before storming out.
Mal is tinkling on the piano as Karl makes some coffee and Shona lectures him that he shouldn't drink too much of it as it's bad for you. Karl comments wearily that she's an expert on these matters, is she? Shona tells him:
SHONA: I picked up a few things from my father over the years. Perhaps you've heard of him: Professor Munro?
KARL (exclaims in surprise): Not *the* Professor Martin Munro?
Shona nods and smiles. Karl goes on:
KARL: But that would make your mother *Karen* Munro - she's one of the greatest legal minds in the country.
SHONA: That's them!
Karl turns to Mal and asks him why he didn't tell her who Shona's parents are! Turning back to Shona, he adds that he doesn't imagine her parents are too happy about her suspension. Shona replies that they're away - they don't know yet. Karl suggests throwing herself on McKenna's mercy.
Sometime later, Shona is standing in front of Susan and Mr. McKenna in a classroom, telling them that the thing is, she doesn't even *like* alcohol; it was just for show. She goes on that she's never been popular and doesn't have any friends, and she thought that if she looked tough, people might like her. Mr. McKenna listens and then muses:
MCKENNA: You expect me to *believe* this tale of woe, do you?
SHONA: It's the truth.
McKenna comments that even if by some stretch of the imagination it is, he can't turn a blind eye to what she did. Shona insists that she's learnt her lesson and she asks for a second chance; she knows what she did was wrong and she's ashamed of herself. Mr. McKenna tells her that he'll reduce her suspension to one week. Shona asks if she can't just have a lot of detentions so that she doesn't miss out on any work. Mr. McKenna, however, tells her that she brought alcohol onto the premises and he has to send a message to the other students. Shona thanks him reluctantly and leaves the room. When she's gone, Susan says to Mr. McKenna coolly:
SUSAN: Well, I hope you extend the same leniency to *Libby*.
MCKENNA: No, I'm afraid not.
SUSAN (sarcastically): Oh, *that's* fair.
MCKENNA: Well, Shona at least had the courage to come in and explain things openly and honestly. I haven't seen *Libby* coming through there.
SUSAN (snaps): Libby would have too much self- respect to come in and put a performance on like that.
She turns and walks out.
Shona is back at No. 28, telling Karl and Mal that she apologised, confessed everything and they gave her a lighter sentence. Susan arrives home and Karl smiles at her that they're just hearing from Shona about her meeting at the school. Susan, however, turns to Shona and snaps:
SUSAN: You might have fooled McKenna, my girl, but *I* didn't fall for that act for one second.
MAL (sighs): Mum...
SUSAN: You better watch yourself, because you slip up one more time, I will come down on you *so* hard...
Shona gets up and she and Mal walk out. Karl asks Susan in astonishment what that was all about. Susan retorts that he should have *seen* her, twisting the story and bunging on an act to get her own way. Karl comments that perhaps she meant every word she said: once you get to know her, she's quite pleasant. Susan remarks in surprise that he's changed his tune since breakfast. Karl asks her if she knew that Shona's father is Professor Martin Munro. Susan rolls her eyes and snaps:
SUSAN: You're so *easy*. All it takes to suck you in is so- called good breeding, a pretty face and the ability to flirt.
She walks off to her room muttering at Karl that he's a jerk!
Shona and Mal sit down at a table and Mal apologises to Shona for his mum. Darren walks in and sits down with them. He comments that he heard Mal was looking for him. Mal tells him that the surgery job's a goer if they want it. Darren points out that they *need* it. Mal says:
MAL: So we're not getting the school job?
DARREN (hesitantly): Uh... no, not exactly.
MAL: I thought you said you were going to sweet- talk McKenna into changing his mind.
DARREN: Yeah, well, the guy's a slimebag.
SHONA: What did you say?
DARREN (admits): I told him to watch his back.
Mal exclaims at Darren that he can't go throwing his weight around like that; he'll give their company a bad name. He adds that he doesn't know if he can *work* with Darren anymore. Darren mutters:
DARREN: Fine. You back out and I'll get someone else in - 'cos *I'm* not doing the walking here, buddy; you can't get rid of me that easily.
Darren emerges from the coffee shop and walks across to Chez Chez. Luke's standing outside, holding a beer and looking glum. Darren asks him what's wrong, and Luke sighs:
LUKE: Where do you want me to start?
Darren asks him if Danni's giving him a hard time. Luke comments that no matter how much you give her, she always wants more; he's not saying there's anything wrong with being ambitious - he just wishes she'd learn to appreciate the simple things in life, like being loved. Darren says he thinks she *does* appreciate that - as long as she can have everything else as well. Luke goes on that this Steve guy is putting big ideas into her head; he thinks she's leaving *him* behind. Darren tells Luke not to let her go, but Luke says he doesn't think he can stop it. Darren shrugs:
DARREN: If that's the way you think, I don't *blame* Danni for wanting more.
LUKE (bitterly): Thanks!
Darren tells Luke that he has one hell of a defeatist attitude; who'd want to live with *that*? He adds that Luke has to give Steve a run for his money. Luke retorts:
LUKE: Money... He's got more money than I could *ever* have - and power. Danni *loves* those things.
DARREN: He believes in himself. That's what Danni admires. You mightn't *like* the guy, but at least he's *doing* something.
It's evening- time, and Luke is rocking around the lounge room with his guitar, when Danni comes in and asks him in surprise what's wrong with him! Luke grabs her hand and spins her around as he beams that he's *alive*: everything's his for the taking! Danni comments in surprise that he's hardly the same person who walked out of there this afternoon! Luke tells her:
LUKE: Steve said I was holding you back - and in a way, I was. See, I want you to be successful, but I thought that meant leaving me behind; but I realise now that doesn't need to be the case.
DANNI: What - so you're accepting Steve as my friend?
LUKE: Not exactly. I'm not jealous of him, but I still don't like what he stands for. See, Darren told me that it's not the money and the power you're attracted to, but his fighting spirit. Now, I'm not completely convinced of that, yet...
DANNI: Yeah, but Steve could help me reach my goals.
LUKE: Yeah, and if that's all it is, great - but you've got to admit that you've always been taken in by the guy with the bucks and the big promises.
DANNI: Yeah, and he's not one of them.
LUKE: OK, you might be right - but will you at least promise me that you'll think about what I just said?
DANNI (nods): Yeah, I'll think about it.
LUKE (relieved): Good.
Darren is sitting with Mal at the bar, snapping that *he* owns the majority of the business; Mal can't force him to go. Mal points out that without him, there's no Handy Sam's, no surgery job, there's nothing. Darren asks him if he's going to do the surgery job on his own. Mal retorts:
MAL: I just can't trust you as a business partner. It's nothing personal.
DARREN (snaps): The hell it isn't.
He goes on that he knows Mal has got a lot to be angry about, but he's sorted himself out. Mal, however, says:
MAL: Mate, I don't reckon you'll *ever* sort yourself out. The partnership's off, all right? From now on, I do things on my own.
MAL (yells): I'm sorry, Darren, but that's the way it is.
With that, he turns and walks out, leaving Darren looking annoyed.
Luke serves up some dinner. He asks Danni what she's working on and he looks over her shoulder. He then comments in surprise that she's designing invitations. Danni replies hesitantly that it's for a fashion parade next month. Luke asks why she didn't tell him. Danni retorts:
DANNI: Because Steve's lined up the whole thing and I wasn't in the mood for another one of your lectures about his low moral standards.
Luke tells her that they've *been* through this: she's her own woman. Danni points out that he also gave her a speech about how Steve's a conman and she's an idiot to even trust him. Luke insists that he didn't say that; he can see through Steve and she can't because she doesn't want to. Danni says:
DANNI: You're just worried that he's going to try and crack on to me.
LUKE (admits): All right, there might be a bit of that - but I'm concerned for your welfare.
DANNI (sighs): You haven't changed at *all*, have you? You still want me to do things your way, and you're disguising it with concern for my welfare?
LUKE: Well, whose way do you prefer? Mine or Steve's?
DANNI: Look, Steve is a great guy, and with his help I could make my big break into the fashion industry.
LUKE (snaps in disbelief): All right. Done. Decision made. Thanks very much.
DANNI: What are you saying? That I have to choose between you and Steve?
LUKE (shrugs): Maybe I'm saying that if you stick with Steve, I can't see our relationship surviving. If it *did* come to the crunch, who would it be: me or Steve?
Danni stares at him in astonishment.