- Ben and Xanthe are surprised to see Piper and Tyler kissing
- Piper is upset when Terese refuses to accept her being with Tyler
- Sonya and Toadie are embarrassed when they interrupt Steph and Mark TITTNL™
- Sonya tells Toadie that Steph and Mark should exercise more self- control
- Mark tells Sonya that things seem tense between her and Toadie
- Amy advises Madison to pursue her story, without realising that she may be part of it
- Madison is shocked to discover pictures of Amy (‘Anika') as a sexy maid
We continue from where we left off; Amy asks to use Madison's laptop to check her emails, but Madison, not wanting Amy to see the sexy maid pictures of herself, slams her laptop shut suddenly – claiming that the article she's writing is confidential. Madison suddenly imagines Amy in her maid outfit and looks worried! But when she looks back again, Amy's in her normal clothes.
Paul arrives – Piper has let him in. He asks Madison how the scoop he gave her is progressing, but she's unwilling to discuss the fact that it's about Amy's old cleaning firm in front of her, so drags Paul into the other room.
MADISON: Did you know any of the girls that worked there?
PAUL: No, course not!
Madison gets a text from Penny, the editor, hassling her for the story. Paul suggests she get to work.
The titles roll.
Sheila is discussing cleaning arrangements with Ryan. As they go outside, Aaron comes in, and goes over to where Madison is sitting, to talk to her about the cleaning company story. Aaron hints that Madison needs to pull the story, as it could hurt some good people. Madison soon realises that he knows about Amy's past involvement in the cleaning firm, and shows him the pictures she found.
Aaron is horrified to learn that the pictures of Amy are on Ryan's website, and again insists that Madison has to kill the story, as it would ruin Amy's life if Jimmy found out.
Ben is giving Xanthe some maths tutoring.
BEN: Hey – are you into surprises?
XANTHE: Are you asking me that for the reason I think you're asking me that?
Ben says it's something to do with the formal, and Xanthe quickly guesses that it's about her corsage.
BEN: No more spoilers. You'll find out soon enough.
XANTHE: This is gonna be the best night ever!
Tyler and Mark come in after a jog. Mark wants to know why Tyler is so perky at the moment – but Tyler isn't telling. Mark is shocked to see someone he recognises walk in – it's Belinda Bell, Steph's ex- girlfriend. Tyler wonders if Steph knows she's in town…
Outside No 22, Terese asks Piper what she'll be wearing to the formal. Piper hasn't thought about it yet, so Terese suggests they go and pick her out a vintage dress from a special shop she's read about. She tells Piper that formals are supposed to be special, recalling her own formal which she says was a total disaster. Terese tells Piper it's a smart move, her going solo to the formal.
TERESE: I'm really proud of you, Piper, for being so independent. Nobody needs a boy to complete their night.
Piper looks worried.
Madison is meeting her editor Penny, who wants to know where her lingerie cleaning story is. Madison tries to fob Penny off with an alternative pitch, about parents going into debt so their kids can go to formals.
PENNY: We want to excite our readers, not put them to sleep. Let me see the cleaning exposé.
MADISON: I don't have it. Once I looked into it, I realised that there wasn't much of a story there. Plus, it's like we're kicking these women while they're down. It's not like any of them go into this kind of work out of choice.
PENNY: Our job is to report the news. Not express personal opinion.
MADISON: … I'm sorry, but I can't.
PENNY: Then someone else will. I don't think this is gonna work, Madison. Don't bother coming in tomorrow.
Madison looks heartbroken.
Erinsborough High School
Piper is filming a vlog about the formal, interviewing Ben and Xanthe about their preparations. Xanthe hugs Ben and proclaims him ‘the hottest date ever'.
PIPER: Are you excited about the big night, Ben?
BEN: Absolutely! I can't wait to get my hair and nails done, and it's gonna be, like, totes amazing.
XANTHE: Is that supposed to be me?
XANTHE: I haven't said ‘totes' in, like, six months!
Resident mean girl Alison Gore appears. She starts bragging about how she organised the formal and her hot date from the football team – but when Piper makes it clear she's not interested, Alison taunts her for having no date to the formal. Xanthe's about to announce that Piper is going with Tyler, but Piper stamps on her foot to shut her up!
Alison sarcastically says she's sure Piper will have an ace time anyway, and leaves – Piper, Ben and Xanthe making fun of her as she goes.
Mark comes to see Steph. He tells her that he saw Belinda at Harold's – Steph insists she had no idea Belinda was back in Erinsborough. She's not surprised Belinda hasn't told her she's back, explaining to Mark that Belinda finds it painful to be around Steph since they broke up. In which case, Mark asks, why is she back in town? Steph has no idea.
Belinda is having a meeting with Toadie. She says it's great to see him walking again. They're meeting to discuss her attempts to get her nursing ban lifted; Toadie is going to be representing her case with the nursing board. Belinda doesn't understand why Toadie suddenly offered to help her; he explains he didn't instigate it.
TOADIE: You have an anonymous benefactor. Someone has agreed to pay all of your legal costs.
BELINDA: Is this Steph? Is it some kind of guilt thing?
TOADIE: I can't actually say who it is.
BELINDA: How is Steph, anyway?
TOADIE: Yeah. She's doing really well. She's seeing a nice guy, she's working really hard –
BELINDA: She's seeing a guy?
TOADIE: I'm sorry, I shouldn't have brought that up.
BELINDA: No, no – it's fine.
Terese and Ryan are discussing the details of the new cleaning contract. He's apparently been laying it on thick, and Terese tells him he can tone down the charm.
RYAN: I wasn't trying to charm you; I just like the way you operate. Sorry if I offended you.
TERESE: No offence taken.
RYAN: Good. I appreciate someone who doesn't beat around the bush. It's refreshing.
Terese looks mildly flattered as she leaves. Once she's gone, Madison approaches Ryan, introducing herself as Amy's cousin. Madison explains that the West Waratah Star is going to do a story on his lingerie cleaning service, and that they'll be milking it for ‘every sleazy headline they can come up with'.
Madison suggests that if he doesn't want to lose the Lassiter's contract, he should remove all the sexy maid images from his website. Ryan thanks her for the warning.
MADISON: Didn't do it for you. I did it for Amy.
Belinda turns up to see Steph. Steph explains that Mark saw Belinda in the café earlier, and Belinda flinches at the mention of Steph having a boyfriend. She explains she's back in town so that Toadie can help her get her nursing registration back. Steph says that's great; Belinda's a great nurse.
STEPH: So are you seeing anyone at the moment?
BELINDA: No. I'm not really in the market. Just getting used to the idea of being single.
STEPH: You'll meet someone. You're amazing.
BELINDA: Yeah, I don't know about that.
Steph gets a picture message from Charlie, and Belinda's thrilled to learn that Steph has access to her son again.
BELINDA: I'm really happy for you. For all of you.
But Belinda also looks sad not to be a part of it.
Erinsborough High School
Ben tells Xanthe and Piper how he's going formal- shopping with Susan, to sort out the surprise for Xanthe. She's still super- excited as he leaves.
XANTHE: You know how sometimes his hair just falls in front of his face? Like he doesn't even have to do anything – it just happens!
PIPER: You are so far gone!
Xanthe asks Piper why she didn't want to tell Alison before that Tyler is taking her to the formal. Piper says it's because they're trying to keep it a secret – but her plan is to bond with Terese when they go dress- shopping together, in order to get her to agree that Tyler can be her escort.
PIPER: And I've decided that at the end of the night, I'm gonna go all the way with him.
XANTHE: What did Tyler say?
PIPER: We haven't talked about it yet. It doesn't need to be perfect, it just – it needs to be him.
Xanthe is excited for Piper.
In the garden, the three Brennan brothers are playing a game of hoopla, throwing rings into a stand in the middle of the pool.
TYLER: It's all in the wrist.
AARON: You leave your personal life out of this, Gertie!
Mark admits he's spoken to Steph about Belinda being back. He initially claims not to be worried about it, but he clearly is.
MARK: We've spoken about her and Belinda. But that was when it was theoretical.
TYLER: You really think she's competition?
MARK: I dunno. I mean, Steph switched sides because of her. They were gonna move in together. They were pretty serious. Do you think that someone who's been same- sex attracted could – you know – switch themselves off like that?
AARON: It's not that cut- and- dried. I mean, for me it was. But some people are a little more fluid than that.
TYLER: Yeah. And one problem with society is how heteronormative it is. You know – everything in the world isn't black and white.
Mark and Aaron look at Tyler, gobsmacked!
AARON: Did you just eat a thesaurus or something?!
Shrugging it off, Tyler asks Mark what he's going to do about Belinda. Mark says nothing – Steph's made her choice, and she's with him. He looks far from convinced, though.
Tyler and Piper are hanging out together in Hermione the car. They've each made the other playlists.
PIPER: Is it just me, or is it kind of amazing that we both made each other playlists at the same time?
TYLER: That is nothing. Today I used ‘heteronormative' in a conversation. Didn't even know I knew that word!
PIPER: Get out of here! You are one of the smartest guys I know!
TYLER: No, I'm not. But you make me smarter. All the things we talk about.
They go in for a kiss, but Piper suddenly spots Sheila walking through the car park, and starts cranking down the car seat so she's below Sheila's line of sight! Tyler doesn't care if she sees them together, but Piper says she doesn't want everyone in Erinsborough talking about them. So Tyler does the same with his seat. Now totally invisible, they get on with the pashing.
Terese comes in to find Madison crying.
MADISON: I've been fired. They wanted me to do a story that was unethical, and people were gonna get hurt. People that did nothing wrong.
Terese tells her she's done the right thing, but Madison's worried that her dad Scott will be disappointed that she dropped out of uni only to lose her cadetship in a matter of days. Terese says he'll understand when she explains it.
MADISON: You don't know what my dad's like with my writing. He was so happy that I followed into his footsteps.
TERESE: Okay – what if you sold it to him like it was a change of direction, and not a failure?
Terese tells Amy and Paul that Madison is her new assistant at Lassiter's! Paul is appalled that she's giving up journalism for this, but Madison says she's been fired. Paul's about to call Penny to have a go at her, but Madison insists that Penny was right to let her go.
MADISON: I don't want to exploit people's misery for other people's entertainment.
Paul changes his tune, saying the hospitality industry needs some bright young talent. Ryan appears, and asks to talk to Terese outside ‘about a business matter'. Amy and Madison both look worried.
Outside, Ryan turns on the charm again. He tells Terese he's concerned about the tension there was between them earlier.
RYAN: I think we should talk about it, over a drink.
TERESE: You work for me. I don't think that's such a good idea.
RYAN: If you don't enjoy yourself, just fire me.
RYAN: You don't realise how incredibly attractive you are, do you? You're strong, you're in control – you know what you want, you're not afraid to get it. So what do you say?
Meanwhile, Toadie is coming out of the law office when Steph approaches. She wants to know why Toadie didn't tell her that Belinda was coming back. He says it was a last- minute thing. Steph asks what chance Belinda has of getting her nursing licence back. Toadie says he can't guarantee it, but she has a strong case. He asks Steph to write a testimonial for Belinda, and she agrees.
Piper comes in, to find Terese in a good mood – and decides to bite the bullet.
PIPER: I'm not going solo to the formal. I have an escort. But he's not coming as a date – he's coming as a friend.
TERESE: I see. So who's this friend?
PIPER: It's Tyler, okay. But before you say anything, you need to know that we're all going together. Like, me and Tyler, Ben and Xanthe – it's a group outing. It's not a date.
TERESE: Well, of course it's a date. And the answer's no.
PIPER: Can't we just negotiate?
TERESE: The answer was no last week, and it'll be no again next week.
PIPER: Okay, but maybe if we –
TERESE: It's not up for discussion, Piper.
PIPER: Fine, then I'm not going.
TERESE: Don't be ridiculous! You can go and have a good time with your friends without him!
PIPER: Yeah, well I don't want to. So either I go with Tyler, or I don't go at all.
TERESE: Well, I guess you're not gonna go, then! And remember this – it's your decision. Not mine.
PIPER: Oh, don't worry, Mum. I'll remember how you ruined what was supposed to be the best night of my life (…) I will never forgive you for this. Like, ever.
TERESE: Well, we'll just add that to the list, shall we? (!)
Piper storms off upstairs.
Toadie is having another meeting with Belinda. He tells her that Steph isn't the one who's covering her legal expenses. Paul turns up.
BELINDA: If it's not Steph, then who is it?
PAUL: Well, I see my timing is impeccable, as usual. (…)
BELINDA: You're the anonymous benefactor?
BELINDA: Why are you doing this?
PAUL: Because Steph has become very special to me. And also I feel guilty about what I did when she first returned to Erinsborough.
BELINDA: You mean drugging her and trying to send her mad?!
TOADIE: I'm gonna get us some drinks.
Toadie goes to the bar, and Paul sits down with Belinda.
BELINDA: What do you want from me?
PAUL: Nothing you wouldn't want for yourself. Look, Mark Brennan is unworthy of Steph in every possible way. And I just want her to be happy.
BELINDA: So do I.
PAUL: Well, at least we're on the same page, then. So, what I want you to do is get back together with Steph, and break them up.
- Steph admits to Mark that she and Belinda had something special
- Belinda asks Steph if Mark's the right guy for her
- Mark looks on jealously as Steph and Belinda talk
- Tyler tells Mark about how great his new relationship is
- Piper and Tyler kiss by the pool
- Tyler tells Brad that he doesn't think the way he feels about Piper is wrong; he's not ashamed
- Jimmy is on his bike, when Charlie shouts to him to watch out