- Paige realises that Michelle and Dimato have framed her for the recent burglaries
- Sheila enrols Xanthe at Erinsborough High
- Paul turns on the charm with Lyn, in a bid to get her to sign over the shares he once gave her
- But Lyn humiliates him, telling him (post- foot massage) that she's given the shares to Steph
Steph is on the phone, while Lyn listens intently. Once she finishes the call, she tells Lyn she's just been told that her shares in the mining company are worth $70,000!
LYN: I thought they must have been worth a lot, given what Paul was willing to go through!
After a little exposition about why Lyn never clocked how much they were worth, Steph whoops with joy at her newfound riches!
The titles roll.
Steph is bemused to learn how Paul tried to seduce Lyn in order to get his hands on the shares. But Lyn tells her to focus on the money - this is Steph's nest- egg for her and Charlie's future, and she needs to figure out what to do with it.
Sheila is seeing Xanthe off for her first day at school. Piper comes over and the two girls set off walking together. Xanthe offers to treat Piper to brekkie, with the money from the party that Mark failed to confiscate. She's worried about how everyone at school will react to her as the new girl - but Piper reminds her it's not as bad as everyone thinking you burned the school down!
XANTHE: And did you?
PIPER: Technically, no.
XANTHE: Well don't let details get in the way of a good story. Let that fire be your statement piece.
Piper whinges about her continuing social media ban, saying she wishes she could vlog the horrors of her return to school. The girls agree that they'll compare notes on how bad their day has been once it's over.
Paige brings Paul a free macchiato, in exchange for some advice on how to deal with the stolen goods. Paul's gobsmacked when he learns Paige has stashed it all in Lauren's shed until she can return it to its rightful owners. He points out how bad it will look if she's caught in the act of returning the items.
Paul also quickly dismisses Paige's suggestion that she should confess all to Mark, saying that he's unlikely to be understanding after all the times he warned her about Michelle.
PAIGE: I have to get rid of the stuff.
PAUL: Mm. And I'd do it ASAP.
Paige doesn't know what to do, as it's her hen's party today, but Paul says she needs to prioritise - if she doesn't ditch the stolen goods soon, she could land up in jail.
Erinsborough High School
At the entrance, Xanthe and Piper are reading a notice explaining that some classes will be taken outdoors, since there aren't enough classrooms back in action since the fire. They joke about Piper winning the 'worst day' competition so far.
Resident mean girl Alison Gore approaches, demanding Xanthe give her back the money she paid to get into the party at the showhome, given that the promised drinks and celebrities never emerged. Xanthe claims the police raided before the celebs could get there, and Piper reiterates that Alison can't have a refund.
Susan turns up, welcoming Xanthe on her first day. Alison starts sucking up to Susan immediately, and Susan tells Xanthe that in future, she shouldn't come to school with make- up on - and asks her to go and wash it off. Xanthe's about to argue, but Piper drags her off to comply.
Paul is litter- picking on his community service duty, when Steph confronts him for trying to trick Lyn into signing away her shares.
PAUL: I wasn't trying to trick her - I was trying to seduce her.
STEPH: Ugh. And for money, which makes it even more disgusting!
Steph asks Paul if losing everything hasn't given him a bit of perspective about how to treat others - but Paul says it was an opportunity he couldn't pass up. He adds that the shares are wasted on Steph, whereas he could have turned them into big bucks by investing them in the rundown Erins Burrow motel and turning it around.
PAUL: But thanks to your mother, it'll sit there till someone else with vision comes along.
Steph looks mildly curious, as Paul walks away.
In the garden shed, Paige is loading all the stolen goods into bin bags, when Mark appears on the patio. Quickly tying the bags, she tells him she's just doing some spring cleaning. Mark reminds her that the hen's party is looming, and offers to give her a hand to take the bags to the charity bin. She protests, but he won't take no for an answer - and picks up two of the bin bags and walks off!
Paige looks panicked.
Steph, Lyn, Karl and Toadie have met up to discuss how Steph should handle her $70,000 windfall. Sheila hovers around intrusively, telling them all about Xanthe and her first day at school.
SHEILA: It took a crowbar and a cranky kelpie to get her out of bed today, let alone out the door!
KARL: Just the latte, Sheila.
With Sheila gone, Steph explains to the group about Paul's plans to reinvigorate the Erins Burrow motel. They're all dismissive of the idea, but Steph explains it got her thinking about how to turn the shares into something more substantial - especially now she's going to have to pay for representation in court to contest Charlie's adoption by Philippa.
Toadie says he'll represent Steph for free, but she says there will be a lot of associated costs which won't be covered by her Waterhole wage. She says all she cares about is getting custody of Charlie, but Toadie points out that she needs to think about what will happen afterwards. He, Lyn and Karl all agree that investing the money in a house would be a sound idea.
Steph says she'll take a look at the houses that they've found online for her to consider buying, and will talk to one of Toadie's mortgage broker friends, but doesn't look convinced about the idea.
Erinsborough High School
Susan is holding an English class outdoors, and asks everyone to welcome Xanthe. They start to talk about the set text the class has been reading, and Susan asks if Xanthe will stand up and read from the first chapter. Xanthe's very unwilling, but eventually relents - and stumbles over the words as she reads. Some of the extras start making fun of her, and Alison jibes that she's in the wrong grade.
Susan gives Alison a warning, then takes pity on Xanthe and says she can sit down. Xanthe looks humiliated, and Susan is concerned.
Mark and Paige arrive by the charity bin to drop off the bags. Mark asks what's in the bags, but Paige says it's just rubbish. As they load them into the bin, a bracelet falls out of one of the bags. Mark asks who bought it for her, as it doesn't look 'very you' - she doesn't elaborate, and he says he's sure someone else will appreciate it.
Toadie comes off the phone from his mortgage broker mate. It's bad news; Steph might struggle to get a loan because of her 'complicated history'. So she considers other options, starting with selling the shares - but this would mean being hit with capital gains tax, and losing up to 30%.
Steph's convinced the remainder won't be enough to 'build a future' for her and Charlie. She decides she needs to turn the shares into more than they're worth now.
Erinsborough High School
In the yard, Alison (flanked by mean girl extras) is still teasing Xanthe about her struggling to read the book out loud earlier. Piper stands up for Xanthe.
PIPER (to Alison): You know, I would set you on fire but I don't think you'd burn for very long. There's not enough oxygen in your brain. And besides, plastic melts.
An argument breaks out, as Piper and Alison fire insults at one another. The raised voices attract Susan's attention and she comes over. Susan demands to know if the row has anything to do with what happened with Xanthe in English, but no- one speaks up. So Susan gives all of them after- school detention.
Susan is talking to Sheila about what happened at school with Xanthe. She asks if Sheila's aware of any learning difficulties Xanthe might have, as she seemed rattled in English, but Sheila points out that she barely knows her.
Sheila adds that she'll try to get more out of Xanthe about what happened when she gets home. They both agree to tread carefully for now, Sheila admitting that being super- strict with her daughter Naomi never paid dividends - so she's keen to try another approach.
As Susan leaves, Steph comes in - with Paul. She asks him to explain to her how he'd turn the Erins Burrow motel into a cash- cow, and he outlines his thoughts about the motel's good location, and the fact that it's now the only alternative to Lassiter's in the area since the West Waratah Inn closed. Paul says he wants to create a boutique hotel, to see off competition from the 'soulless chains'.
PAUL: That place has got great bones. It just needs a facelift - it's all purely cosmetic.
He starts going on about the money from the shares being ideal to help him realise his motel dream. Steph points out that she's not going to just hand over her money; but Paul says if she invested, she could be an equal partner in the business, with equal say over decision - and would at least double her investment.
Lyn is incredulous when Steph talks to her about Paul's proposal, warning Steph he can't be trusted. Steph points out that Paul's a hotel expert, and that a dearth of other prospects as an ex- con and former psych patient means that she has to consider this seriously.
LYN: That man will try every crooked trick in the book to get that motel off the ground!
But Steph says Paul wouldn't risk doing anything dodgy, as being caught again would land him in jail. She's not saying yes to Paul yet, she insists...
STEPH: But it does seem like it's my only option.
Lyn looks highly concerned.
Piper and Xanthe are walking home from school, arguing over who had the worst day. They decide they both won - or lost. Sheila comes out of No 26, telling them she's heard about the detention.
SHEILA: But, I went to Harold's and picked up a cake. So would you like to come in and have some?
XANTHE: What?! No yelling?
SHEILA: Just cake.
SHEILA: This time... But if there's another time, you will hear me yelling all the way back to Burpengary.
Xanthe is pleasantly surprised she's gotten off so lightly, and they all go inside for cake.
Steph, Lyn, Toadie, Karl and Susan are gathered around. Steph is looking at the photo of Charlie, and says she's desperate to get her life back on track so she can fight Philippa's adoption of him. She says she doesn't have any options other than investing in Paul's business plan.
LYN: Of course you do.
STEPH: No, Mum. I'm not allowed to see Charlie. I'm not even allowed to speak to him on the phone. I need something really big to show that I'm back on my feet.
Lyn continues to argue that going into business with Paul is a bad idea - so Steph goes to fetch Lyn's bag, signalling it's time for her mum to leave! While Steph's out of the room, Susan suggests Lyn should give Steph more credit - she won't be duped by Paul any more than Lyn was. Nonetheless, Lyn asks them all to look out for Steph while she's gone. They all promise, and then go to see Lyn off.
Paige is heading towards The Waterhole for her hen's party, when she runs into Paul. She tells him she's taken care of the stolen goods.
PAUL: Do you want to say that a little bit louder? Maybe the police might hear you as well (!)
But he's flabbergasted when he learns that Paige is planning to call the police to make an anonymous tip- off, and tell them that the stolen goods are in the charity bin - and that, what's more, she allowed Mark to help her take the bags full of loot to the bin in the first place!
PAUL: Oh, you really are stupid!
PAIGE: I didn't tell you so you could have a go at me.
PAUL: Oh, Paige, I'm trying to help you. Now think about it for a minute. An anonymous woman rings the police with a tip- off about some rubbish bags. Mark gets wind of it, he puts two and two together, and then what do you think's gonna happen, eh?
PAIGE: I've got to get that stuff back to them!
Paige rushes off back to the charity bin, as Paul shakes his head in despair!
When Paige gets back to the charity bin, she finds that the stolen goods have already been collected. She begins to panic...
- Lauren asks if Paige is upset about something, as she's not herself
- Mark tells Paige she can talk to him about anything
- Piper is jealous when she sees Tyler taking a selfie with barmaid Courtney
- Amy says to Kyle: 'So you don't wanna get married, huh?'
- Imogen and Daniel admit that they still have feelings for one another
- Brad appears to be asking Lauren something of great import