Lou ranting that he wouldn't have the pub anymore if the Bishops hadn't sabotaged the deal.
Madge celebrating Lou having to remove the banner advertising Lou's Place from the driveway of No. 24.
Lou telling Drew that the Bishops started it and he's going to finish it.
Driveway of No. 24
Madge and Harold walk down the driveway towards where Lou is standing with some brush-fence panels. Harold gasps at Lou:
HAROLD: What's all this, then?
LOU: All this is a *fence*, Harold – or it will be, when it's up.
MADGE: But we don't *need* a new fence.
LOU: I've chosen to enclose the metre-wide strip of property you stole from me.
Madge snaps that they did nothing of the kind. Harold adds curtly that they don‘t *want* the fence. Lou just shrugs:
LOU: Well too bad – *I do*. And guess what: you're paying for half of it!
MADGE (gasps): *What*?
LOU: That's the law, Madge: I want a new fence, you have to pay for half.
Madge and Harold look at each other in disbelief.
A short time later, as they head back into the house, Madge snaps furiously at Harold that she's got a good mind to go out there and put a match to the fence. Harold, however, warns her to calm down: the point of the exercise is for Lou to upset them, and she's playing right into his hands. Madge asks angrily what they're supposed to do. She adds furiously that Lou is gloating and she can't *bear* it.
Susan opens a cardboard box and takes out an antique blue vase. Karl just stares at it, clearly unimpressed, and remarks:
KARL: It's very... contemporary, isn't it?
Susan smiles that it's a stark contrast; it's in-your-face. She looks around and asks where the perfect place for it would be.
KARL: The garage?!
Susan, however, goes and places it on the coffee table, commenting that that's perfect. Karl muses:
KARL: It certainly is central.
SUSAN (sighs): You really don't like it, do you?
KARL: No, no, I didn't say—
SUSAN: Well, I think you'd better get used to it, because I love it. OK?
KARL (giving in): OK.
Karl then tells Susan that he's been thinking, and they should start playing tennis again. Susan, looking astonished, exclaims that she hasn't touched a tennis racquet since the kids were born! Karl replies that that's precisely why they should pick up from where they left off; it would be good for them.
KARL: We were a mean mixed-doubles combination. Remember the year we were runners-up?
SUSAN: Yeah – about the same year they invented the wheel!
Karl just smiles and asks Susan what she thinks. Susan shrugs:
SUSAN: Yeah, all right! Might blow the cobwebs away.
KARL: Excellent! What about a hit tonight?
SUSAN (chuckles): We haven't even got tennis racquets!
KARL: Which is why I went out and bought us a couple of new ones.
SUSAN (raising her eyebrows): Oh... confident, weren't you!
Susan then says, however, that she can't play tonight because she has the Regional Principals' meeting next week and has a lot of work to prepare for that. Karl remarks that surely she's entitled to take a break. Susan, however, tells him seriously:
SUSAN: It's part of the job, Karl. I took on a lot of extra responsibility when you and I split up. I wanted to stay busy; I can't just dump it now.
KARL (backing down): No, no, of course not. I wouldn't expect you to. We can play tennis any time.
With that, Susan heads to the bedroom, leaving Karl standing there looking disappointed.
Lance, Amy and Anne are sitting in front of the TV. The horse racing is on and Lance has the newspaper form guide in his hands. Amy asks in annoyance how long they have to keep watching the races for. Lance shrugs:
LANCE: ‘Til I find a winner.
At that moment, the horse Lance is following comes in first, much to his obvious excitement. Anne comments that it was beginner's luck. Amy asks if he had any money on it.
LANCE (indignantly): No!
Amy then asks if they can change the channel now. Lance, however, says quickly:
LANCE: No, no. You watch me pick another; I'll show *you* beginner's luck!
Amy sighs heavily.
Karl is holding Susan's blue vase, looking around for another place to put it. He moves it over to the shelf by the window, well out of sight(!), just as Susan emerges from the bedroom and smiles:
SUSAN: Anyone for tennis?
Karl looks at her happily and asks why she's changed her mind. Susan replies that she decided he's right: all work and no play... she's entitled to some fun. Karl tells her gently that he thinks it's important that they do things just the two of them. He heads off to get changed. Susan notices that the vase has gone from the coffee table. She looks around for it and spots it on the shelf. Raising her eyebrows, she moves it back to the coffee table and murmurs:
Lou is telling Madge and Harold that if they don't like the idea of a brush fence, he can change it to something else. Madge, however, retorts that they *all* know this is about *revenge*. She goes on curtly:
MADGE: Don't be silly. Just drop this whole stupid fence idea.
LOU: Oh, I'm sorry; I can't do that.
Drew starts to say that he's sure they can sort something out. Harold and Madge aren't interested, though, and they storm out. Drew sighs:
DREW: You're a shocker, Lou.
It's evening-time. Harold is lying on the couch, an ice pack on his head. He sighs at Madge that he can't take much more of this stress and tension: he's going to go down to the allotment in the morning and work if off. Madge tells him that *she's* going to work off her negative energy the *old-fashioned* way.
HAROLD (suspiciously): How?
MADGE: By getting my own back. Lou Carpenter thinks we're noisy, does he? Disruptive, does he? Well, he ain't seen nothin' yet.
Harold sighs heavily!
Karl and Susan arrive home from tennis, Susan gasping that she needs water and Karl groaning that he feels *so* old! Susan heads to the kitchen area to get a drink. Karl notices the vase sitting back on the coffee table! He picks it up surreptitiously and goes and puts it on top of the TV, saying as he does so:
KARL: Remember when we could play five sets and hardly bring up a sweat?
SUSAN: That was us!
KARL: Now we can't play *two*!
He arl sits down as he goes on:
KARL: All those teenagers running around, leaping over the net, rubbing our faces in it...
SUSAN: I felt like I was playing with a *cricket bat*!
KARL: You certainly hit a lot of sixes!
Susan crosses the room with the drinks. She notices the vase has been moved again and, as she picks it up and puts it back on the coffee table, she says:
SUSAN: Mind you, I must say that my *forehand* is still very strong...
She looks at Karl pointedly!
Anne, Lance and Amy are watching the horse racing, all cheering on the horse that's winning. It falls back to third, though, and everyone lets out a sigh of disappointment. Lance turns off the TV and remarks that his winning streak's over. Amy, however, tells him:
AMY: You know, two wins and a third: that's very good.
LANCE (shrugs): Well... like you said: beginner's luck.
AMY: I'm not so sure, Lance. I think you might have the touch. We should capitalise on that: the perfect way to raise money.
ANNE (warns): I don't think so...
AMY: I'm not kidding. I think you're stood on a goldmine here!
Anne muses that she can just see the school council encouraging them to raise funds on the Tote!
ANNE: You know: the headlines in the local rag: ‘School Captains' Betting Ring'.
Amy, however, retorts:
AMY: It's not school funds I'm talking about, it's personal funds. With Lance's help, I think we could all be rolling in it.
Lance sits there, looking intrigued.
Driveway of No. 24
Early the next morning, the engine of a leaf blower starts up, followed by that of a strimmer! Harold and Madge each get to work with the tools, large ear phones on to protect themselves. Lou comes out of No. 22 and glares at them. He yells:
LOU: What the hell do you think you're doing?
...but Madge and Harold can't hear him; Harold just points to his ear phones. Lou mouths that he can't hear himself think! Harold and Madge just smile at each other!
Karl emerges from the bedroom and joins Susan at the lounge room window, muttering:
KARL: I don't believe it. What *is* all this racket?
SUSAN (sighs): Harold and Madge having fun, by the look of it.
Karl groans that he needs his sleep: he feels like he's been beaten over the body by a rubber truncheon! Susan says:
KARL: Yes. And that bed: I was tossing and turning all last night.
Susan, changing the subject, tells Karl that she has to go to the theatre tonight – it's a long-standing arrangement; a fundraiser thing – and she'd like him to come with her. Karl asks why she didn't tell him earlier.
SUSAN: Because I wasn't sure if you and I were ready for a public outing. Is it a problem?
KARL: Yeah - I promised to cover for evening surgery.
SUSAN: Can't you change it?
KARL: Not really. It's a shame: I would've liked to have gone to the theatre.
SUSAN (pressing): Can't you even *try*? I mean, I managed to rearrange things last night...
KARL: But this is *work*.
Susan raises her eyebrows and Karl quickly apologises, saying he didn't mean it to sound like that. Susan insists that it's OK; she'll go on her own. Karl looks annoyed with himself.
Amy is standing waiting for Lance and Anne before they head to school. Anne emerges from the bedroom and, referring to the noise from next door, snaps:
ANNE: When are those freaks going to sort out their problems?
LANCE: Yeah – if I get woken up like that again, there's going to be trouble.
Amy, however, tells him to forget about them; they've got more important things to worry about. Lance asks irritably:
LANCE: Like what, Amy?
AMY: Well, I went through the form guide, got all the odds on the horses that you selected last night and worked out what you would have won if you'd bet on them.
She shows Lance a figure and remarks that that's just on three races calculated on a smallish bet. Anne chips in that it seems like a lot of effort for nothing. Amy shows her the figure and retorts that they could make a *fortune*. Anne, however, says:
ANNE: Get real! Everyone knows that gambling, it's a—
LANCE: It's a mug's game.
ANNE (nods): That's right.
Anne adds that only professional gamblers come out ahead, and even then they're just as likely to lose a fortune as win one. Lance tells Amy that, anyway, this is all hypothetical: you have to be 18 to put on a bet.
AMY: We could lie about our ages.
LANCE: No, forget it. We tried that with the table soccer, remember?
AMY: So what?
LANCE (tersely): I'm not getting caught underage in a betting shop; and there's no way that I'm going to risk my hard-earned money.
ANNE: Me neither.
Amy sighs there's big biccies out there just for the taking. She hands the form guide to Lance and tells him to just pick a few.
Drew asks Madge for a double-strength coffee, telling her that he needs it this morning. Karl, who's also standing at the counter, says curtly:
KARL: It was good of you and Harold to wake us up so early, Madge. There was no need, though: we *do* have alarm clocks.
DREW: Yeah, the sooner you get this feud sorted out, the better.
Madge apologises for the noise, explaining that they had to show Lou they meant business. Harold adds that they had no intention of upsetting anyone. Looking quite faint, he goes on:
HAROLD: I feel quite not right about it. I really am light-headed.
KARL: That's stress, Harold. You should watch that: it's an absolute killer.
Karl adds that Harold needs to step back and relax. Harold replies that he intends to spend part of his day on the allotment; there's nothing quite so relaxing as getting your hands into the soil. Drew says *he'd* like to grow some proper veggies, and Harold invites him to the allotment. Drew asks when's a good time. Harold replies that any time after lunch will be fine. Karl pays for his coffee, but Harold tells him that there's no charge today, to make up for the noise. Madge looks at him with a frown on her face!
Outside the Coffee Shop
As Karl leaves the Coffee Shop, his mobile rings. He answers it, listens and then smiles:
KARL: That's great news. Thank you. I'll repay the favour. Ciao!
He hangs up, just as Lou comes along. Karl stops him and sighs:
KARL: When are you going to stop all this shenanigans with Harold and Madge? That noise outside was horrendous this morning.
LOU (shrugs): You're talking to the wrong party, mate – but don't worry: I've got something planned that's going to cook their goose for sure!
Karl rolls his eyes. He then dials a number on his ‘phone and gets through to Susan. He tells her that he's got good news: he can go to the theatre tonight. Susan, however, talking on a ‘phone at the school, sighs:
SUSAN: Oh Karl... it's too late.
KARL: What do you mean?
SUSAN: Well I've already given the ticket to somebody else.
KARL (slightly annoyed): But I've arranged for Curtis to take my surgery.
SUSAN (sighs): I'm so sorry...
KARL (coolly): I specifically organised this so we could go out tonight.
SUSAN: Well I can't help that; it's done now. You should have said something earlier.
KARL (sighs): OK. I'll see you later. Bye.
He hangs up. Lou asks if it's bad news on the home front.
KARL: Just a bit of a rough patch. Just when I thought reconciliation was going to be easy...
LOU: *I* know all about *that*, mate – but don't forget: just keep calm, keep plugging away and it'll all come right in the end.
KARL (murmurs): I hope so.
Amy, Anne and Lance are heading upstairs, Anne sighing at Amy that Lance said ‘no'. Amy, however, holds out the newspaper form guide to Lance and insists that it'll only take a minute. Lance stops and snaps:
He then takes a pen from Amy, circles the name of a horse – apparently at random – and hands the pen and paper back to Amy, saying curtly:
LANCE: Now get rid of this thing. This is school, not Flemington. And I would have thought that, being School Captain, you should be setting a good example.
Susan comes along the corridor at that moment, spots Anne and Amy and asks if they can both come with her. She then tells them that Julie-Anne Harrington has had to drop out of the Youth Speaking Competition due to appendicitis; they have to put someone else forward... and as School Captains, they're the obvious choice. She adds:
SUSAN: I'll just leave it with you. Have a think about it and decide who it's going to be: Anne or Amy...
With that, Susan walks off. Anne and Amy look at each other.
Karl dashes into the house and goes and puts his briefcase down on the coffee table, next to the vase. He then picks up some magazines from the table and looks at them. Apparently unable to find what he wants, he goes to the kitchen counter, looks through some magazines and papers on there and takes one. He then goes and picks up his briefcase – but as he does so, he swipes it accidentally against the vase, which flies off and smashes into pieces on the floor. Karl stares at it and cries in annoyance:
Driveway of No. 24
Lou has set up a barbecue in the metre strip of the driveway that he claims belongs to him! Harold goes to drive his car into the driveway, but has to bring it to a sudden halt. Madge climbs out and snaps:
MADGE: Lou Carpenter, will you move that contraption before I kick it over?
LOU (just smiles): Peckish, anyone?!
Harold walks over and, looking horrified at all the meat, screws up his face as he cries that the smell is making him sick. Lou just picks up a large slab of meat on a couple of forks and, holding it out, beams:
LOU: Harold: nice piece of blood-rare steak?
Madge glares at him and snaps:
MADGE: Just you wait.
Lou chuckles to himself!
Amy is listening to a portable radio as she, Lance and Anne walk along the corridor. She exclaims that the horse Lance picked *won*! She tells him that he's a genius!
AMY: Lance Wilkinson, you are going to make us *so* much money!
ANNE: I still think it's beginner's luck.
AMY: Think what you like. *I* think it's a *winning streak*.
Changing the subject, Amy then asks Anne if she's had any thoughts who's going to replace Julie-Anne in the speaking comp.
ANNE: Yeah, yeah, I'm afraid *you're* going to have to do it, Amy. I've just got too much on my plate to start re-writing speeches.
AMY (excitedly): Really? Are you sure?
ANNE: Absolutely. It's all yours.
At that moment, Susan appears and asks Amy and Anne if they've made any decision yet. Amy replies that she'll be representing the school. The two of them head off to the office, leaving Lance to remark to Anne:
LANCE: What was that about having too much on your plate? It's news to *me*.
ANNE: Me too!
LANCE: So what's going on?
ANNE: Oh, I've just had enough arguments with Amy over this School Captain business.
LANCE: I thought you sorted all that out.
ANNE: We *have*. I just didn't fancy buying into another row.
LANCE: But didn't you want to do the speech?
ANNE: Look, it would have been a great experience, but I'd sooner keep Amy's friendship.
Amy, Lance and Anne are walking along after school, Amy declaring that the speech is right up her street: the subject is ‘Problems of Youth Today', and boy, does she have something to say about *that*! Lance is looking at the form guide again, and he says:
LANCE: ‘Broken Dreams' in the 4:30. What do you reckon?
ANNE: Don't ask *me*!
AMY: Don't listen to *her*, babe: you just keep picking them and we'll be in the money!
The three of them stop in their tracks as they notice Lou standing at his barbecue in the driveway of No. 24, with Harold standing next to him, playing his tuba, and Madge shaking a tambourine in accompaniment! Lance muses:
LANCE: This is getting beyond weird! Talk about ‘The Problems of Youth'? Look at *them*!
Susan heads into the house – and immediately notices that her vase isn't on the coffee table. She sighs out loud:
SUSAN: Oh Karl, how many times?!
She then starts looking around for the vase – but suddenly notices a piece of the shattered remains under the coffee table leg. She goes to the bin and finds the rest of the vase. Karl comes in at that moment and, realising he's been caught, says:
KARL: You found it...
SUSAN (coolly): Yes, I found it. Why, were you *hiding* it?
KARL: It was an accident. I wanted to replace it before you got home. I've been all over town and I couldn't find another one.
SUSAN: Well you *won't*. It's a one-off; it's a work of art.
KARL: I'm very sorry, Susan. I was in a mad rush; I hit it with my briefcase.
SUSAN: Oh well... you never liked it anyway.
KARL (tersely): What's *that* supposed to mean? Are you saying I did it *deliberately*?
KARL: You *are*, aren't you? Honestly, do you really believe I would do something as crass as that? Especially at a time like *this*: I am trying *so* hard to please you; I feel like I'm walking on egg shells.
SUSAN (muses): And *breaking* them, apparently...
KARL: Well is it any wonder? Everything around here has changed. I can't find *anything*. Where's that wedding photo that was beside our bed? And if it comes to that, why a different bed?
SUSAN (snaps): What did you expect? That nothing would *change* while you were away? That you would walk back in and find everything – including me – just as you left it?
KARL: No, of course not.
SUSAN (snaps): Because yes, the house *has* changed and so have *I*. I *had* to. Without *you*, I had to organise everything on my own and I did it in a way that suited *me*; and I have no intention of changing it all back just ‘cos you've returned.
KARL: So what: now I just do everything the way *you* want it?
SUSAN: Oh Karl, don't be silly.
KARL: Well that's the way it *feels*. I have to be extra careful with you, I have to be *especially* careful with Libby. I feel like I don't fit in here anymore.
SUSAN: Well you have to adjust. Things have changed.
KARL: I... I just want us to be happy.
SUSAN: You mean like we used to be?
KARL: I guess.
SUSAN: Well *I* want us to be happy too; only it won't be the way it was with you calling all the shots. And if you can't accept that, we might as well give up right now...