- Mark ends his relationship with Paige, effectively telling her she's better off with Jack
- Paige asks Jack if they can ‘start from the beginning'
- Impressed with Yashvi's football talent, Toadie suggests an AFL placement for work experience
- Tim Collins forces Piper into an interview, but she says too much about her anger at Terese
- Gary threatens Tim Collins into dropping the story, but TC promises Gary will ‘regret this'
Gary comes to see Terese in her office, to tell her about Piper's interview with Tim Collins, and everything she said about being angry with Terese for putting Tyler behind bars. Gary says that Piper regrets how much she let slip, but Terese is still upset, thinking she'll be all over the papers tomorrow. But Gary explains that he threatened Tim Collins to stop him running the story.
TERESE: Hey, I love that you're trying to protect me. But Tim does not respond kindly to threats!
Yashvi has come to talk to Jack about her work experience, and explains that she wants to do it with an AFL team. Jack says he'll speak to Elly, but says AFL is pretty competitive – Yashvi would have to go above and beyond. She promises she's learning fast, so Jack says he'll see what they can do.
Yashvi leaves just as Paige arrives to drop off Gabe. Jack and Paige smile at each other a little shyly, and agree to meet up later on. Jack leans in and kisses Paige on the lips. Paige smiles.
Paige arrives home, and tells Terese about the kiss she just shared with Jack. Paige doesn't know what will happen between them, saying she just wants to take things slowly for now. She heads off to check on Piper next door.
Gary comes in, with a copy of today's West Waratah Star – there's no sign at all of the story about Piper, or any kind of revenge piece about Gary either. Gary hopes it means Tim Collins has done the right thing for once and dropped it altogether; but Terese is still worried he could target Gary, and hurt that Piper was angry enough to say everything she did to Tim Collins in the first place.
Paige arrives to see Piper – she's picked up some books for her from the book exchange. Piper immediately goes to look for evidence of her ‘mystery underliner' – the book exchange user who seems to have the same taste in literature as her – but Paige has already checked, and there isn't any.
Piper asks how things are with Paige and Jack; Paige says they're good, but wants to talk about Piper instead. She says Piper could still speak to Jack confidentially as a counsellor, and that he wouldn't tell Paige anything. But Piper insists she's fine.
Aaron comes in, and is surprised to see Paige there.
AARON: I thought it was my shift?
PAIGE: Oh, I'm sort of like a floating resource.
Confused by this, Piper asks what they're talking about, and Aaron explains about the friend roster that Xanthe set up to ensure that Piper was never on her own. Piper seems amused.
PIPER: Sounds like a chore wheel!
AARON: No, it's not a chore!
Terese turns up to see Piper. She tells her that Tim Collins didn't print the interview, because Gary intervened – and that it could yet backfire on him.
PIPER: I didn't ask him to do that.
TERESE: Yeah, but he did it anyway because he cares about us.
PIPER: Well, if it means anything, I'm glad that they didn't print it.
TERESE: You know, I really thought that we were making progress.
PIPER: Mum, I don't want it to be this way either. But I can't help the way that I feel, and I can't just forgive and forget.
TERESE: Well, when you're ready to try, you know where I am.
Terese leaves. We cut to Aaron looking thoughtful.
Toadie shows Mark the season pass to Wrestlemania that Izzy gave him for his fake twenty- first birthday, and suggests Mark come with him to a match to take his mind off Paige.
MARK: I can't believe that Izzy gave you a season pass!
TOADIE: Yeah! I guess she's just trying to get people on side by flashing the cash. Or in your case –
MARK: Yeah. Don't remind me, okay? And to be busted by Karl!
TOADIE: Yeah, I know. I feel for ya.
Mark admits he felt gutted when Steph told him that Jack and Paige went out for dinner the day after Mark and Paige split up; he'd hoped there would be some sort of buffer. Toadie says this explains Mark's decision to get busy with Izzy!
Yashvi turns up; she wants Toadie to go over the rules of AFL with her down at the lake, in preparation for her work experience. Toadie agrees to meet her after he's been to the nursery to drop off some paperwork – and suggests Mark should come to the lake too to take his mind off things. Mark says he will come, as Yashvi won't learn much about AFL rules from an Essendon fan!
The Flametree Retreat
Piper is apologising to Gary for him getting caught up in the situation with Tim Collins and the interview. He says it's okay, but suggests that Piper go and try to sort things out with Terese. She replies that she has to get back to work, and leaves.
Steph emerges – she's had a visit from the council after they received a food hygiene complaint about the retreat, and they found rat droppings in the kitchen! The council has shut down their food service until they can re- inspect, which won't be for four weeks.
STEPH: I tried to get them here sooner but they're giving me the runaround.
GARY: That, or they're working for Tim Collins.
Shortly afterwards, Gary and Steph have examined the kitchen, and found it spotless – leading Gary to believe it's a stitch- up by Tim Collins. Steph isn't surprised, saying that's what you get when you mess with TC.
STEPH: He always hits people where it hurts the most. And now I'm collateral damage!
Steph says that Tim Collins has Mayor Jones in his back pocket; the council won't budge on the re- inspection date. Gary apologises, but Steph is upset because she has a client expecting a function today, and now they can't provide it. Gary promises he'll think of something; Steph says it had better be fast…
Toadie comes to sort out the aforementioned paperwork with Piper, who is working a shift. We get an update on Sonya's movements in the US – her sister Zoe's chemotherapy has finished and she's doing well, but Sonya has agreed to stick around for a bit longer to support her dad, Walter. Toadie misses her but the upside, he says, is that Nell is loving all the extra time with Jade and Callum.
Piper looks glum about one of the plant orders that has come in – it's from Lassiter's. She explains she's not super- keen on seeing Terese, so jokingly suggests she'll just sneak in and out with the order without anyone seeing her. But Toadie reminds her to be professional!
Terese is on the phone to Gary, apparently about the health inspection at the retreat. Terese promises to ‘reach out' to her contacts at the council on Steph's behalf.
Piper comes in, to deliver the pot plant that has been ordered. Terese is confused, as she didn't order a plant – but Piper says reception told her Terese had ordered it for her office. Piper assumes it was a ploy by Terese to get her here, so they could talk. Terese denies this, but Piper doesn't believe her.
PIPER: I get that you're sorry, and I want to forgive you. But only this morning, the postie came and delivered more unopened letters from Tyler. And it's just – it's still really raw, and I'm not ready yet, okay?
PIPER: … Are you still going to AA meetings?
Piper leaves abruptly.
Gary is begging Dipi to help him with the catering for Steph's function. Dipi says she can't cater for that many people in advance, but says that Shane bought a food cart online a while ago, and probably wouldn't mind lending it to Gary. Gary rushes off to ask Shane.
Meanwhile, Jack and Paige are at a table, talking about Piper. Paige is keen for Jack to reach out to her and offer his counselling expertise – particularly since Louise McLeod's kidnapping trial is coming up, which could get tough. Jack grabs Paige's hand in solidarity (or because he has other things than Piper on his mind), but Paige draws away and looks around furtively.
PAIGE: Sorry. I just thought we were going to be a little more discreet.
JACK: We are. But I can't help it if I want to touch you.
PAIGE: I want this. You know that, right? It's just – we need to take this slowly, and be respectful for the people we're hurting.
JACK: I get that. But we're building our family, which is such a beautiful thing. And I can't keep the brakes on forever.
Yashvi comes in and invites Jack down to the lake to join her for a kickabout. He says he'll come down after he's finished his drink, and she promptly exits again. (How did she know he was there?!) Jack and Paige continue their conversation.
JACK: People will get used to us sooner if we don't hide.
PAIGE: We just… we just have to be very sensitive – especially around Mark and Steph.
JACK: Yeah, of course. But you and me – it's not a crime.
PAIGE: I know.
She holds his hand, and they smile at each other.
Mark and Toadie are trying to explain the rules of AFL to Yashvi. Mark goes quiet when he sees a grinning Jack and Paige approaching with Gabe's pram. Looking awkward, Jack tries to get out of being involved with the kickabout, but Yashvi says they need him so they can play two- on- two. Mark tries his best to be conciliatory, and encourages Jack to stay too. Jack agrees, but neither is thrilled.
Aaron is having a juice at a table, while Piper works. Piper has received another order from Lassiter's, for another pot plant! She starts whining to Aaron about how Terese is forcing her to make plant deliveries so she can spend time with her. Aaron looks awkward and says that a bit of time with Terese might be good for Piper. Piper disagrees.
PIPER: I can't believe she's completely ignored what I said! This is just so typical Mum!
AARON: Piper – I'm sorry. It was me. I placed the orders.
PIPER: What?! Why?!
AARON: I thought a bit of facetime would be good for you guys. I hate seeing you fighting – especially with everything that's going on with Ty.
PIPER: Aaron, I'm still upset with her! Don't you get that?
AARON: Honestly, I don't. At the end of the day, Ty is where he is because of his own actions. He's gonna be gone a long time. And you – you're gonna need all the support you can get. Sure, your friends are great. But nothing compares to your own mum. Trust me – I missed out on a lot of time with my mum because I was angry with her. It's not worth it.
The Flametree Retreat
Gary, Steph and Terese have gathered for a crisis meeting about today's function. Gary explains his vision of a raw food banquet served from Shane's food cart, so that the guests don't even need to know the retreat's kitchens have been shut down.
Terese explains that Lassiter's recently bought the licence for the coffee hut at the Pavilion, so they have a standing permit to serve food there. She can just hire Gary as a subcontractor to cover the event. Steph is impressed, and agrees to go along with it. But Gary has one more person to convince…
Gary is trying to get Dipi to agree to share her kitchen space so that he can prepare the food. She's unwilling, but Dipi eventually agrees. Cue a musical food prep montage in which Gary repeatedly annoys Dipi by getting in her way. Afterwards, Dipi tells Gary that he can thank her by making sure that they never have to share a kitchen again!
Piper comes in with a large vase of flowers for Terese, and gets her to sign for it – admitting that it was someone else who ordered them. Piper asks if Terese got a text this morning from her other daughter, Imogen.
TERESE: About the fact that she's been working late every night this week?
BOTH: Total humblebrag!
They smile at one another. Terese asks if there's anything Piper wants her to bring back from her trip to London.
PIPER: Not unless you can bring me back London Grammar.
TERESE: Might be a little bit tricky getting them through customs.
They get chatting about the London trip, as upbeat music implies their relationship is starting to get back on track…
Yashvi, Toadie, Mark and Jack are playing footie by the lake. Mark takes a break to chat to Paige, who is sitting on the grass watching, and to say hello to Gabe.
MARK: I really miss this little guy.
PAIGE: You know you can come and see him whenever you want. How are you going?
MARK: Fine. You and Jack seem happy. Guess that means we made the right decision, hey?
PAIGE: Listen, this has been really hard. And you've been incredible. Thank you.
MARK: It's fine. I feel like I've already moved on. I had a fun afternoon with someone else the other day!
PAIGE: … Wow. That's – that's great to hear. Are you gonna see her again?
MARK: Probably not. I think it was a one- time thing.
PAIGE: That's not like you.
MARK: Yeah, well. I thought I'd try something new. What I was doing before obviously wasn't working.
PAIGE: Well, as long as you're happy.
But neither of them looks happy.
Terese and Gary are serving food to Steph's customers, and everyone seems happy with how the function has turned out. Steph is particularly impressed, and says that the guests are talking about booking their next function with her too.
To add to the good news, Terese gets a text from her contact at the council, saying that they've manage to expedite the re- inspection of the kitchens at the Flametree Retreat, bringing it forward to tomorrow. Everyone celebrates.
STEPH: Actually, Gary, it reminds me – when you took this job, it was on a three- month trial, and the three months is up now. So I'm just hoping maybe you'd want to make it permanent?
Gary agrees, and there's more celebrating.
Paige and Jack are sitting on the grass with Gabe, while Mark continues to play with Toadie and Yashvi. Paige tells Jack that Mark is pretending he's okay with their break- up, but that she thinks it's all an act. Jack suggests they should maybe leave, and Paige agrees – so they load Gabe into his pram and pack up their things. Mark watches them enviously.
As Mark continues to coach Yashvi while watching Paige and Jack flirt with one another as they fold up the picnic blanket, he gets increasingly grouchy. He then shouts towards Jack, asking whether he's playing or not. Frustrated, he kicks the footie hard in what he thinks is Jack's direction – but his aim is off, and instead it flies towards Gabe's pram!
We enter slow- motion territory, as everyone turns with horror in the direction of the flying football. It hits Gabe's pram, which promptly topples straight into the lake! Paige and Jack start to rush frantically towards the pram, and a horrified Mark does the same…
Next week on Neighbours
- Mark looking guilty as Jack and Paige salvage the pram from the lake
- Paige screams at Mark, asking what the hell he was thinking
- Karl has arranged a surprise in The Waterhole for Susan's birthday
- Izzy has turned up, but Karl tells her it's a private party and that she needs to leave
- David introduces Paul to Rafael
- Sue Parker says, “if he's got dirt on Paul, I want to know”
- Rafael says he's getting sick of waiting for the police to do something about Paul