- Michelle Kim turns up to see Paige, desperate for a place to stay
- Daniel tells Imogen that Paul bribed Sue Parker to secure the Freestyle development
- Imogen goes straight to the police, leading Sue Parker to be dragged in on corruption charges
- Belinda punches Paul in the face
- Suspended from work because of her affair with Steph, Belinda accuses Toadie of reporting her
- Toadie denies it, but Belinda says he's made himself an enemy he didn't want to have
Toadie is ranting and raving to Sonya about Belinda's behaviour, and she encourages him to calm down. He's also stressed about his operation today, and is worried he could be paralysed forever – but Sonya tries to get him to think positively.
SONYA: Do not doubt the decisions we've already made. We knew this surgery was gonna be risky, we talked about it again and again, and we've weighed up the pros and the cons.
TOADIE: Those cons are pretty big, though.
SONYA: Yeah, but with a very small chance of them actually happening. And if they do then we'll deal with them. Like we've dealt with everything else.
TOADIE: Yeah, you're right.
Toadie kisses Sonya, and they head off to the hospital.
Paige is telling Nate and Aaron about her wedding plans, while Mark is on the phone in the background.
PAIGE: Ice- cream truck and taco van. Catering sorted.
AARON: Salmonella – sorted.
NATE: Bold move, eating a taco in a wedding dress.
PAIGE: I am not wearing a wedding dress.
AARON: What, so you're gonna go and wear shorts and a singlet, are you, princess?
PAIGE: No – I just want everyone to have a big party and have fun, that's all.
Mark comes in, finishing up his call, which sounds work- related, and says he has to leave. Paige gets a text from Michelle, beginning with: ‘Freaking out, could do with some…'
MARK: Who's Michelle?
PAIGE: You know. Michelle Michelle.
MARK: You're texting Michelle?
PAIGE: Well, she's texting me. But yeah.
MARK: The woman's a criminal, under my protection. Not a buddy to hang with!
PAIGE: Yes, I know that, but I thought if I was texting her, I could find out what she's really doing.
MARK: That's my job!
PAIGE: Okay. Maybe I'll text her and invite her to our wedding.
Mark grabs her phone.
MARK: Not if I confiscate this, you won't! Which I will, if I catch you texting her again.
Paige is not pleased, and quietly demands that Mark return the phone. He relents, and heads off to work. Brad comes in with some stuff for breakfast, but Paige says she's not hungry.
Paul is being dragged towards the police station by a couple of cops. They pass Terese, and Paul shouts to her to confirm to the police that Sue Parker was acting as a consultant for Lassiter's! Terese just watches, perplexed, as they cart him into the police station. Mark is leading Daniel towards the station, too, and Daniel's protesting that he has no useful information. Shay turns up.
TERESE: What is she doing here? That woman broke into my house and went through confidential work files. She's a company spy.
TERESE: Yeah. I asked HR to look into it, but we haven't been able to resolve anything because it's Christmas. But you can't believe a word she says.
MARK: Yeah, I'll be the judge of that.
Mark continues to take Daniel towards the station. Terese asks him if Shay has something to do with the issues with Paul.
MARK: We can talk about that inside. As operations manager, you'll need to be interviewed as well.
Belinda is walking past outside, when Sonya rushes to catch up with her. She tells her that Toadie had nothing to do with reporting her to the hospital for having an affair with Steph. But Belinda simply replies that Toadie is a controlling bully, and that no- one else knew or had a motive.
SONYA: He's not lying. He's a good man that just cares about Steph.
BELINDA: You think I don't care about Steph? I love her.
SONYA: Well, then, why did you go to Paul?
BELINDA: Because I'm genuinely worried about her.
SONYA: Well Jarrod is genuinely worried about her. That's why he's involved in all of this.
BELINDA: No. He wants Steph out of my world and back in his. He's a selfish manipulator who can't stand someone else being close to her.
SONYA: You don't even know Jarrod! You don't know what you're talking about! I'm telling you, he's not lying!
BELINDA: I'm telling you he is. I've lost my girlfriend, possibly my career... I'm not gonna let him get away with it.
Belinda walks away.
Erinsborough Police Station
Mark is interviewing Paul, who is claiming that Sue Parker received her house on the Freestyle development as payment for consultancy work for Lassiter's – and not for fast- tracking the development through council.
PAUL: It's very similar to the arrangement I had with Terese Willis. She'll confirm that.
We shift to Mark interviewing Terese.
TERESE: That's correct. There was an arrangement in place whereby the house in Ramsay Street was part of my employment package at Lassiter's.
MARK: Right. But did he put the house in your name?
TERESE: The lease was in my name.
But Mark asks her to confirm she was never given the property, like Paul is claiming Sue Parker was. We shift to Mark interviewing Daniel.
DANIEL: Yes, I was asked to put Sue Parker's name on one of the properties.
MARK: Right. And what sort of business did she do to earn the house?
Mark is now interviewing Shay.
SHAY: I have no idea.
MARK: So after working at Lassiter's, and looking through all the files, you can't say what Sue Parker was contracted to do for the company?
SHAY: But that's it. She wasn't contracted.
MARK: There was no official record?
Mark is now asking Daniel if Sue Parker's work was in fact to get the Freestyle development through council.
DANIEL: I don't know the details.
Paul tells Mark that the fact Sue Parker signed off on the permits for Freestyle doesn't mean there was anything untoward going on, but Mark points out there's a clear conflict of interests. We flit to Shay's interview.
SHAY: Well, when someone's consulting and getting paid a stipend as large as a house, you'd expect to see paperwork pertaining to it.
Mark continues to question Terese.
TERESE: Well, Paul often works with people outside my management.
MARK: Well, yeah, but if he's paying these people, surely there's a paper trail.
TERESE: No, not necessarily. Sometimes the deals are worked out privately.
MARK: What information is valuable enough to earn a free house – and yet you, the manager, knows nothing about it?
Mark asks Daniel if he saw any evidence that Paul bribed Sue Parker. Daniel claims not, so Mark asks if he's heard anything.
Back in Paul's interview, Mark tells Paul the police can interview his employees without a search warrant – ‘so there's no time to run off and line up your ducks in a row. Falsifying and backdating documents won't be possible.' Mark also tells him that if he's charged with bribery his assets will be frozen. Mark hands over to the (non- speaking) detectives from the anti- corruption unit to continue the interview.
Suite 1 Eclipse Apartments
Paul tells Daniel the police have nothing concrete on him. Terese storms in, saying Paul ought to have given her the heads- up sooner so she could have been prepared for the police interview. Paul then asks Terese to help him get paperwork in place to corroborate his story.
TERESE: I am not breaking the law for you, Paul. Anyway, it's too late.
She explains that a bank representative is downstairs; the bank has been tipped off about the investigation and is calling in all loans, despite the earlier reprieve.
PAUL: So that means they can just sell this place out from underneath me?
TERESE: Well, I'm afraid it's actually worse than that.
PAUL: What do you mean? What could possibly be worse than that?
TERESE: They've already got a buyer for the hotel and the penthouse. I'm sorry, but you don't own them anymore – effective immediately.
Paul demands to know how they moved so fast, surmising the bank must have been in negotiations with someone already. He accuses Terese of tipping them off. He then says he won't even get the money from the sale, since he put up the equity against the development loan - so it already belongs to the bank.
PAUL: That means I have lost everything!
Toadie is in a bed, awaiting his surgery. He's worried about Belinda potentially taking her anger out on Sonya while he's in hospital, but she insists she'll be fine and tells him to focus on himself. Karl comes in, relaying opinion from the surgeon, to the effect that Toadie's mobility will be ‘hugely improved' once the bullet is removed.
Sonya goes to get a drink, and outside in the ward, Karl reassures her of the surgeon's excellent reputation. She admits she's worried because of some problems they've been having with Steph, but Karl tells her just to forget it and focus on Toadie.
Erinsborough Police Station
Paige comes in, and asks to speak to Mark. He says he can only spare a few moments.
PAIGE: I don't like the way that you've been treating me lately – like I'm immature. You know, you've always done it, but I just feel like now that we've decided to get married, it's just gotten worse.
MARK: Deciding to get married hasn't changed anything for me.
PAIGE: Well, you told me off like a child this morning in front of Aaron and Nate.
MARK: No, I wasn't telling you off.
PAIGE: Yeah, you were. And it was embarrassing.
MARK: Well I'm sorry it came across that way. It's just ‘cause I'm worried about you.
Paige reminds Mark of how she looked after herself when Joey Dimato came after her, but Mark says he won't stand by and let her become friends with criminals.
MARK: That's just dumb!
PAIGE: So I'm dumb?
MARK: I didn't say you're dumb, I said that's dumb.
PAIGE: Well it's the same thing.
Mark is itching to get back to work, so Paige strops off.
Suite 1 Eclipse Apartments
Paul, Terese and Daniel are each on the phone, in damage limitation mode. Paul is assuring someone that he's not under investigation, while Terese is firefighting on behalf of the hotel, and Daniel is assuring someone their deposit for a Freestyle property is safe. Shay waltzes in.
PAUL: Who gave you permission to come up here?!
SHAY: I don't need permission. I own the building. Or at least, my family does.
TERESE: Shay Ann.
SHAY: You finally remember.
TERESE: Your stepmother brought you to Perth Lassiter's for a conference once. Fifteen years ago – that's when the photo was taken.
SHAY: Back when Lassiter's and Quill were friends.
PAUL: Hang on, what's going on here?
TERESE: She's Julie Quill's stepdaughter.
SHAY: I've been using her maiden name as my surname.
PAUL: Quill. Of course – why didn't I see this coming?
SHAY: My stepmother has a long memory.
PAUL: So, you took a job here as a spy, for her?
SHAY: You were so smug when you got the hotel back. But turns out, all we needed to do was sit back and wait for you to mess things up yourself.
PAUL: So it was you who tipped off the bank?
SHAY: We'd already made a strong offer on the hotel. It just took that little nudge for them to accept it. And now I'm here in my capacity as interim manager for the changeover.
TERESE: You broke the law by sneaking into my house and going through personal files.
DANIEL: Where do you get off accusing my uncle, when you've been dishonest yourself? We can have you charged with fraud.
PAUL: Yeah. Or breaking and entering – we can sue, you know.
SHAY: Well right now, the only legality you need to concern yourself with is the fact that you're on my family's property. So my first job as interim manager is to order you to vacate the premises. Immediately.
Paige is moping around, and gets a text from Michelle – asking her to meet her on Gower Drive, as she needs a friend. Brad turns up, and asks what's wrong. Paige explains she and Mark had a fight, and that he called her dumb. Brad gets all uppity, saying Mark shouldn't speak to her like that. He offers to talk about it, but Paige says she has to go and meet a friend Mark would disapprove of.
BRAD: I'm glad you're not letting Mark control you. It's important to hold onto your own views, and a strong sense of who you are.
Mark whines to Aaron about Paige coming to have a go at him at work. Aaron points out that Mark did patronise her this morning, but Mark says he knows from experience that people like Michelle aren't to be trusted.
MARK: Ever since Kate died, I'm not taking any more risks with the people that I love.
Aaron encourages Mark to explain it to Paige like that, then leaves. Mark takes a phone call.
MARK: Constable Brennan… Paul's what?!
While Brad is at the counter, Paige texts Michelle, saying she's on her way to meet her now, then leaves.
Steph turns up at the hospital with flowers for Toadie, who Sonya explains has just gone in for his premedication. Steph mentions about Belinda being investigated by Bendigo Hospital since someone reported her for her affair with Steph.
SONYA: Yeah, I know, I know. She's blaming Jarrod.
STEPH: Was it him?
SONYA: No. No, it wasn't. And you know what, she really freaked me out earlier. She wouldn't believe anything I had to say, and she made threats against Jarrod.
STEPH: Look, I will talk to her. But she's just a very passionate person when she gets fired up. She just – she sees red.
SONYA: Yeah, I know, I got that. Which is why we're worried she might try to do something to hurt us.
STEPH: No, no, Sonya, she'd never go that far.
SONYA: Well how do you know? Look at the lengths she's gone with you! I mean, Jarrod and I, we don't need this stress right now. We just want her to stay right away.
Steph promises to track Belinda down and let her know that Toadie had nothing to do with the complaint against her. She leaves, but Sonya doesn't look convinced.
Suite 1 Eclipse Apartments
Paul is shouting furiously at Tim Collins on the phone.
PAUL: Don't give me that! … How can you say it's not personal when you're the one heading the consortium?! … Tim? Tim!
Paul flings the phone down, and explains to Daniel that Tim Collins ‘and a few of my other associates' have bought up the rest of the Freestyle development.
PAUL: Well, it's official. I have nothing left to lose. Well, I'm not leaving this place.
DANIEL: It's too late, isn't it?
PAUL: No, it is not too late. This is my home, and… You know, I have been double- crossed out of everything. Everything I've worked for, everything I've sacrificed.
DANIEL: I'm sorry.
PAUL: Oh, it's alright, it's not your fault.
DANIEL: It is. I leaked your files online.
PAUL: No, Aaron did that. He's already admitted it.
DANIEL: Aaron sent the first email to the Star. But it was my idea to do the rest. I swear, I didn't mean for this to happen.
PAUL: … Really?! Then what did you expect to happen?!
DANIEL: Paul, I was disappointed in you, okay? After your cancer scare, you swore that you would be a better person. And then you just slid back into doing the wrong thing.
PAUL: Where do you get this jumped- up sense of self- importance?! Is it your mission in life to punish me?
Daniel gets tearful.
DANIEL: I did not think that it would blow up like this, okay?
PAUL (shrieking): Which is why you should have just left it alone in the first place!!
Mark comes in, with two cop extras.
PAUL: What do you want?
MARK: We've been informed that you are refusing to vacate the premises.
PAUL: Yeah, you've got that right.
MARK: Well, the best thing you can do is just take your stuff and leave quietly.
PAUL: No, no – I'm fighting this.
MARK: Well you're gonna have to fight it from somewhere else.
PAUL: Nope. I'm staying right here.
MARK: Then we'll have no choice but to forcibly evict you.
Paul stares thunderously at Daniel.
Paige is waiting to meet Michelle, and begins to call out for her. There's no response, so she texts Michelle and asks her where she is – unaware that a mysterious figure is lurking behind a nearby building, watching her.
Toadie is all prepped and drugged up for theatre, and sees Karl smiling down at him.
KARL: Good luck, Toad.
A nurse then puts a breathing mask over him, and he begins to lose consciousness.
Paige awakens somewhere, in darkness. Her head hurts, and she touches it, finding blood there. She whimpers, terrified.
Paul is bundled out of the lift with a handful of files, by Mark and the police officers. Daniel, looking guilty, is following him. Terese, who's in reception, watches as they escort him from the premises.
Paige turns on a torch on her keyring, and shines it around her, still terrified.
Mark and his colleagues are marching Paul out of the exit, and the two police extras shove him, so that his files fall all over the floor. Shay appears, watching smugly.
PAUL: Don't think this is the end. Because you will never get away with this. Oh yeah, I'll be back – you can count on that.
Shay seems unmoved, as Mark, Terese and Daniel watch in bewilderment.
Paige is crying, and starts banging on a surface above her. We see she's locked in the boot of a car.
PAIGE: Let me out, please! Michelle! Michelle!
The car speeds away, with Paige still yelling inside.
Toadie is starting to pass out from the general anaesthetic.
KARL: You'll be nodding off soon. Mr Lee's just getting scrubbed up, so I'll leave you in the hands of the nurses.
But before he passes out, the last thing he sees is Belinda looming over him.
BELINDA: Hello, Jarrod. My name's Belinda.
A panicked Toadie starts breathing heavily.
BELINDA: Don't worry, I'm gonna be taking good care of you today.
Toadie passes out.
Neighbours returns on 4 January
- Belinda watches in her scrubs, as Toadie flatlines
- A panicked Sonya rushes past a nurse
- Now in a storeroom, Paige begs an unseen captor to let her go
- Lauren sees blood on the pavement
- Nate walks past Mark, who looks at him curiously
- Nate admits to Aaron that he's done something really bad
- Amy and Kyle are worried as Jimmy appears to have gone missing
- An unknown woman in sunglasses looms over a frightened Jimmy
- Susan lies unconscious in the middle of a road
- Paul tells Daniel he's no longer his nephew
- Imogen asks Daniel if he still loves her
- Tyler gives Piper a flower; she asks ‘do you love me?'
- Piper smiles as she picks petals from the flower
- Tyler and Piper kiss
- Josh warns Tyler never to mess with Piper again
- Steph's son Charlie turns up in Ramsay Street
- Sheila asks an unknown girl if she can prove she is who she says
- Aaron has an awkward moment with Karl and Susan, clad in doctor and nurse outfits!
- A woman slaps Lou
- Sheila slaps Lou
- Paul is shocked to see Lyn Scully turn up at The Waterhole
- Steph tearfully tells Lyn ‘I'm his mum!'
- Amy poses for Kyle on the bed in a sexy outfit
- Mary Smith is back, all dressed up
- Karl, Susan and Sonya all dressed up too
- Aaron divebombs into the pool, while Tyler and Imogen watch
- Imogen and Aaron laugh by the pool, eating lollies
- Imogen gets hot and bothered while watching Tyler spray something on his bare chest
- Some kind of altercation involving Brad, Josh, and Steph and Paul in suits
- Kyle rushes into the garden to find Sheila passed out on the lawn
- Karl takes a picture of a smiling Sonya and Nell
- Brad saying to Lauren, ‘with all my heart, I know our time starts now'
- A pair of wedding rings
- Lauren smiling
- Brief shots of someone unidentifiable a wedding dress
- Terese, at home in a dressing gown, says to a surprised, fully clothed Paul, ‘are you coming?'