- Lauren reluctantly agrees for Brad to move back in with Terese to look after her while she recovers
- Brad tells Lauren it doesn't change the way he feels about her
- Daniel asks Paul if he had anything to do with the school closure, but he denies it
- Daniel, Aaron and Nate decide to publicly expose the USB evidence of Paul's corruption
- Paul is dragged over the media coals as his underhand behaviour is made public
- Steph listens tearfully as Vanessa tells Toadie and Sonya she thinks Steph is mentally unstable
- Vanessa tells Steph that Toadie's faith in her is the only reason she still has a job at the garage
- Steph feels like somebody is watching her at the garage
Steph keeps hearing strange laughter, but is relieved when she sees Tyler arrive. He admits he's struggling to concentrate on work as he's worried about Ben having run away; he's offered to help with the search but has been told it's all covered. Steph asks if Tyler's heard from Vanessa and Lucas, but he hasn't; Steph admits she saw Vanessa last night, and didn't make a good impression.
Tyler asks Steph if he has a reason to be worried, and she insists not – so he promises to tell Vanessa there's no problem if she asks. Steph thanks Tyler, but still looks worried.
Imogen admits to Daniel that it feels good to have Brad home, but that he's still in a relationship with Lauren so she isn't getting her hopes up. Conversation moves onto Piper; Imogen's worried she might not even be with Ben, but somehow gone back to Canada.
As Daniel and Imogen approach the hotel, Paul comes out in his mayoral robes, followed by Aaron in his bodyguard getup. Paul explains he's going to the council to tender his resignation following the news that he stole the petition becoming public.
PAUL: If it was just the burglary and theft charges I could probably push through them. But these leaked files have really smeared my name. I have to jump before I'm pushed. Maybe if I keep low- key and make a clean exit, I might live to run another day.
Aaron and Daniel look guilty as he's talking, and once Paul and Aaron have gone, Daniel expresses his guilt to Imogen. She reminds him that all he did by leaking the USB files was to tell the truth, but Daniel is worried that as Paul's family, he did the wrong thing.
Mark is on the phone to his sergeant, talking about the search for Ben and Piper. Once he's done, he mentions to Paige that he spoke to Brad and Terese earlier, and that they said Piper seemed comfortable with the idea of hitchhiking, after her experiences in Canada. Paige seems less interested in her sister's disappearance and more concerned with what ‘vibe' Brad and Terese were giving off, and whether they'll be getting back together.
MARK: Honestly, I think they're just really focused on finding the kids.
Mark rushes off to get back to the investigation. Paige looks worried.
Tyler and Steph are working at the garage. A female customer (credited as Cecilia Saint) turns up with a young, blonde- haired boy (credited as Harrison Saint). Steph, seeing the resemblance to her own son Charlie, immediately says she has a son of her own – before suggesting ways the boy could amuse himself while she works on their car.
The woman specifically asks for new brake pads, as well as a general service on her car. Steph says they can pick the car up at two – but her heart breaks as, while walking away, the woman refers to the young boy as ‘Charlie'…
On a bench, Imogen asks Daniel how his job search is going, but he isn't having much luck so far. He says he'll know his dream job when he sees it. Paul and Aaron come back from the meeting; Paul explains that the council wouldn't accept his resignation, and instead fired him as mayor there and then, and launched a full investigation into his conduct.
PAUL: Not exactly the sort of publicity I need for the housing development, is it?
Paul explains he has a prospective buyer coming to the penthouse. He tells Aaron he won't need him for this, as it wouldn't look good him meeting the buyer with a bodyguard.
Suite 1 Eclipse Apartments
Daniel follows Paul up to the penthouse, and offers to help with his meeting. Paul says it'll be nice to have someone around who's on his side – but adds that, now the school is staying open, there'll be less demand for luxury housing, making the sell a harder one. To this end, he's had a model of one of the luxury houses built, which is now in the penthouse in preparation for the meeting.
Daniel suggests Paul mortgage his apartment to free up some cash. Paul dismisses the idea but asks when Daniel became such an authority on finances. Daniel explains he's been reading up since the Off Air bar fell through, which impresses Paul.
Paul takes a call from Tim Collins, and afterwards, tells Daniel that the bank has called in all his loans – apparently he's now an ‘unacceptable risk'.
DANIEL: So what are you gonna do?
PAUL: What I'd like to do is get my hands on the scum who dumped my files. But what I have to do is figure out a way to sell these things off plan and fast, to generate some cash. Otherwise I could lose everything.
Daniel looks guilty.
Nate and Aaron come in; they're spending some time together since Paul gave Aaron a few hours off. They quiz Paige about why she and Mark didn't have breakfast together this morning; Paige claims they just didn't have time, as Mark had to get back to looking for Ben and Piper. Aaron jokingly tells her that Mark and Paige's honeymoon period must be over.
AARON: Classic Mark. You know, as soon as he gets comfortable, he goes straight back into workaholic mode.
NATE: The romance died for him and Naomi after a few months too.
Paige tells them that's not what's going on.
NATE: Yeah. Don't listen to him. His idea of romance is giving me a drawer.
AARON: Hey! You love the drawer!
Paige looks perturbed as the boys leave.
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Paul's prospective buyer has arrived. It's none other than Dale Lancer, last seen in Episode 6802, when Mason Turner cocked up a Lassiter's events pitch by inadvertently telling him about Sonya and Toadie's exploding wedding marquee. On this occasion, Lancer seems equally difficult to please, demanding that Paul knock $100,000 off the asking price, given that Erinsborough is a disaster- zone!
Daniel interrupts, making an impassioned defence of the suburb.
DANIEL: Look, what I know about real estate you could write on the back of a postage stamp. But one thing I do know is that this place is amazing. It's got heart. And that can't be manufactured – a place either has it, or it doesn't.
LANCER: What about the school fire? I don't wanna invest in hoodlum- ville!
DANIEL: Don't judge a place on one tragedy. Judge it on the way the community responded. Thanks to their outcry, the school was saved. That's a community you want to live in – raise a family in. It's a place I want to live in.
LANCER: Have you got a contract?
Triumphant background music begins as Paul hands Lancer a pen. Daniel smiles.
Tyler and Steph are still working. Tyler admits he's still struggling to concentrate as he's worried about Ben being missing. Steph says that when she's worried, getting her head under the bonnet is the best thing for her. Tyler says she does a good job, and that she's good with the customers too – including the kid that was here before.
TYLER: I should probably take some pointers from you.
STEPH: Don't let Vanessa hear you say that.
Since they have some time to spare, Tyler suggests they should get on their bikes and go and look for Ben. Steph agrees.
Imogen, Nate and Aaron are outside The Waterhole having lunch. Mark tells Imogen they've accessed Piper's bank details, and that there's no indication she's booked flights to Canada as Imogen feared, meaning the odds are they're still in the area – and they've got lots of manpower on the case. Aaron says that this means Mark can get back to attending to Paige, teasingly saying that Paige thinks Mark doesn't have time for her.
NATE: The romance is dead, dude.
AARON: Yeah, what he said.
Imogen puts the boot in too.
IMOGEN: Okay, has she increased the amount of reality television she's been watching lately?
MARK: Maybe just a little…
IMOGEN: Oh no, this is not a good sign.
MARK: Okay, well you've shared the problem. How do I fix it?
AARON: Let her know how important she is to you.
IMOGEN: Yeah. Just play to your strengths. Whatever they are.
NATE: Just do something.
Mark looks disconcerted as he walks away.
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Daniel continues to sweet- talk Dale Lancer as he completes the deal with Paul, then bids them goodbye. Once he's gone, Paul asks Daniel where he's been hiding his sales skills – and asks how he'd feel about taking on selling the rest of Paul's housing portfolio. Daniel says he has no experience, but Paul tells him he has an instinct for people, and he can teach him the rest. Daniel agrees to come on board.
Steph and Tyler have returned, having been unsuccessful in their search for Ben and Piper. Cecilia, the female customer from earlier, is back; Steph hands her her car keys, and an invoice for the work.
CECILIA: Why have I been charged extra?
STEPH: What do you mean?
CECILIA: I only asked for a service.
STEPH: Oh yeah, but then you asked for the new brake pads.
CECILIA: No… That didn't happen.
STEPH: What are you saying, I made it up?
Steph gets angry as the customer is blatantly lying, but Tyler takes the customer's side and says the garage will pay for the difference as it was ‘our mistake'. Once Cecilia has gone, Tyler tells Steph she can't treat customers like that.
STEPH: Are you kidding me? She called me a liar and you've agreed with her!
TYLER: She didn't call you a liar.
STEPH: I know what I heard, Tyler – she asked for new brake pads.
TYLER: She said she didn't. And I didn't hear her say it, so…
STEPH: Don't do this. Why – why are you doing this to me?
TYLER: I'm not doing anything. I'm just trying to be reasonable.
STEPH: And I'm not?
TYLER: I'm just saying it's not a good idea to argue with customers. It's probably just a misunderstanding.
Seeing how upset she is, Tyler tells Steph to knock off early today and ‘regroup'.
Paige is following a series of cryptic text messages she's received from Mark, which has brought her to the row of trees by the nursery. There, Mark leaps out and shows her the surprise he's set up for her – a romantic evening in a yurt! Mark explains he's been so caught up with work lately that he hasn't made enough time for Paige – but Paige is just thrilled by the romance of it all, and kisses him. They go inside the yurt…
Steph is still rattled by the incident at the garage, and takes Nate's innocent enquiry about her day the wrong way. Steph apologises, saying she's been ‘misunderstanding people a bit' today. She rushes off – not noticing as she leaves that Cecilia, the customer from the garage, is also in The Waterhole.
CECILIA (on the phone): I did as instructed… She lost it! … And my payment?... Pleasure.
Daniel turns up, and tells Imogen about his new job as Paul's estate agent. Imogen doesn't seem convinced it's a good move, as it's hardly Daniel's dream job – but he admits he got a real buzz when he hooked in a buyer today. Imogen says she's very happy for him, but admits she's worried there's a lot could go wrong, since he and Paul are only just rebuilding their relationship.
DANIEL: I hear what you're saying. But I might actually be good at this. And I kind of owe Paul, after everything I've done.
IMOGEN: Then I'm with you all the way.
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Paul is on the phone, presumably to Tim Collins, saying Daniel has sold one of the houses already and that the contract is on its way over. Once he's done, he opens a parcel that has arrived for him in the post – and is horrified to find there's a dead rat inside it!
Mark and Paige are asleep in the yurt. Paige awakes to the smell of smoke from the campfire they've lit, and the sound (in her head) of a fire alarm. She has flashbacks to being stuck in the lift with Tyler during the school fire. She rushes out of the yurt, clearly traumatised. Mark comes out to comfort her, and she says she can't stay here.
- Mark questions Tyler about what happened in the lift during the school fire
- Tyler tells Paige of Mark's worries, and they argue about Tyler deciding they can't be friends
- Mark tells Susan that Ben could be locked up
- Still on the run together, Ben and Piper appear to have found accommodation
- On the hunt for the mystery rat- sender, Aaron questions Josh, who says it could be anyone in town
- Aaron is on the phone, saying he knows ‘exactly who that is'