- Paul tells Leo he wouldn't object if he found more ways he could spend time with Terese
- Xanthe begins to regain consciousness, and says Elly was driving the car when it hit her
- Mark tries to convince Gary that Elly is innocent, but Gary isn't having it
- In the shipping container, Elly begins to lose faith that anyone will ever find her, Bea and Susan
- Mark and Karl use an app to track Susan's phone – but it's way further north than it should be
It's late at night, and Mark has been unable to sleep, so he's come to see Karl to find out if there is any news on Susan and Elly. Karl still hasn't heard from them, and the police are refusing to file a report until they've been missing for 24 hours. Susan's phone is now showing as being in Mildura, which Mark points out is over 300 km from Maryborough.
KARL: Maybe Patrick has family in Mildura, and they went there after the wedding?
MARK: Yeah. If there was a wedding.
Mark goes to make some tea, and Karl points him in the direction of the box that Bea and ‘Patrick' gave to them.
KARL: The thing is, I don't really know anything about this guy. Bea was reluctant to share. In fact, he probably knows more about us than we know about him, thanks to Bea.
He's not wrong: Mark has been busy studying the tea box with curiosity, and has found the hidden camera inside!
KARL: Why would he want to spy on us?!
The following morning, Xanthe is asleep while Gary sits by her bedside. Piper and Cassius arrive to see her. They've heard that Xanthe said Elly was driving the car that hit her, and Piper asks if she remembers anything else. Gary explains she's a bit confused – she thought Susan was on the scavenger hunt with her, rather than Chloe.
GARY: The main thing is, she's back with us.
We close in on Xanthe, who's still sleeping, but suddenly has a flashback. She and Chloe are walking along the road on the scavenger hunt, when Elly's car appears behind them. As it rushes towards Xanthe, she wakes up with a start. She seems to be in pain, and Gary wants to go and get a nurse, but she says it's okay.
XANTHE: I keep having these dreams, and I (…) really just don't know what's real.
Piper and Gary reassure her that that's normal, what with the accident and the medication she's on. Cassius goes to wait outside, while Gary and Piper remain with a troubled- looking Xanthe.
Terese is having a meeting in her office with Paul and Leo, discussing the plans for the hotel's Christmas in July event. Terese is distracted, and admits she's worried about Xanthe; Piper's keeping her updated, but she's finding it hard to focus. Paul ploughs on with the meeting, suggesting Terese could source a supplier for some Christmas baubles. Leo offers do it, but Paul says Terese has it.
Paul also suggests Terese draw up a list of charities they could raise money for as part of the festivities. Terese distractedly says she's onto it, but Leo looks concerned, and a bit annoyed at Paul for putting everything on her…
Apartment of Evil™
Karl and Mark are searching Bea and Finn's apartment again, to see if they missed anything the other day in light of the secret camera Mark found at No 28. They haven't turned up any monitors or recording equipment, but Mark thinks it was probably being streamed to a phone or laptop.
KARL: What do you think the endgame here is? Are they trying to capture passwords for our internet banking or something?
MARK: No, no, it doesn't have that feel.
Mark lifts the chair that Karl missed the other day, and finds the red top identical to Elly's, that ‘Elly' was wearing in the CCTV footage.
MARK: We need to have another look at that footage.
Karl still isn't having any luck calling Susan or Bea, while Mark reassesses the footage. He notices when ‘Elly' walks past the postbox in the video that she's too short to be Elly – it's Bea after all.
KARL: You think this is some kind of set- up by the both of them?
MARK: I don't know what this means.
KARL: Well, if Bea was driving the car instead of Elly, did she decide to deliberately run down Xanthe?
MARK: Xanthe – or maybe Chloe was the target? Or maybe this is all about Elly. We have to find out more about this boyfriend. Patrick is the unknown.
KARL: Yeah, but Yashvi says he's in a wheelchair. He's hardly likely to be able to pull something like this off.
MARK: Well, maybe that's why he got Bea involved. Karl – two guys, both in a wheelchair, both named Patrick? We have to find out who this guy is!
KARL: Yeah. I know where we can start.
Mishti and Dipi are with Piper in Xanthe's room at the hospital. They're all discussing whether Xanthe could be confused about having seen Elly behind the wheel, though Mishti points out that Elly's alibi doesn't stand up – plus she has history with running Finn down in Sydney.
We close in on Xanthe again, who is dozing and having the same flashback as before. The car speeds towards her and Chloe – but this time Xanthe sees who was really behind the wheel: Finn Kelly! She wakes up and screams for Gary repeatedly. Mishti runs out to find him.
Newland Pharmaceuticals Office
Mark and Karl are talking to Javier, the colleague we saw ‘Patrick' chatting to previously. Javier says he didn't really know ‘Patrick'; he always had his head in his research.
KARL: The research I was accused of falsifying.
JAVIER: We had one decent conversation.
MARK: About what?
JAVIER: His girlfriend. She reminded him of an ex.
Karl and Mark look perplexed – until Javier hands them an ID badge for ‘Patrick Ashton'. The face on the badge, however, is Finn Kelly!
We're back with Xanthe, who is frantic and in tears. She explains she's remembered who was driving the car – it wasn't Elly, but Finn. Gary tells her it might just be her memory playing tricks, or the painkillers. But Xanthe is adamant – and then Dipi remembers something.
DIPI: I saw him, too. Not on the day of the accident – it was a couple of weeks back. I didn't say anything cos I thought I was imagining things, but – he's still in jail, though, right?
MISHTI: I'll go and find out.
Erinsborough Police Station
Mishti is on the phone to someone about Finn, asking for a current address. Karl and Mark come in, just as she's finishing up.
MARK: Bea's boyfriend ‘Patrick' is Finn Kelly!
MISHTI: I know.
Mishti explains how Xanthe regained her memory of the hit- and- run.
MISHTI: He was released from prison a few months ago.
MARK: It's revenge on her and Elly. He's even put hidden cameras in Karl and Susan's house! He's been watching them for weeks!
Karl explains that Susan's phone is in Mildura, at the post office according to the map. Mishti promises to check on that, and call her colleagues in Mildura to put out an alert. Mark and Karl rush off to go and look for Susan and Elly; Mark isn't keen on Karl coming, but Karl isn't taking no for an answer.
Terese, Paul and Leo are still talking about the Christmas in July plans. Terese gets a call from Piper and rushes out of the room, asking how Xanthe is; and Leo uses the opportunity to give Paul a telling- off.
LEO: I thought you were trying to prove yourself to her!
PAUL: What are you on about?
LEO: This whole meeting, you've been piling on task after task (…) She needs our support!
PAUL: You think I don't know what Terese is going through right now?
LEO: Well, if you did, you wouldn't be working her into the ground!
PAUL: Working is what helps her. That's something that Canning never understood (…) When she had cancer, he was always trying to get her to take time off, but that's not how she ticks.
LEO: Yeah, well, maybe when it's her own crisis. But Xanthe's like another daughter to her.
PAUL: So, what, you're suggesting that I get her to go and dry up Gary's tears, is that it?
LEO: Do you really think there's any chance of her going back to him now?
LEO: Then show her how sensitive you can be!
Piper is in the Canning house, looking out of the window at Cassius, who is taking photos with his phone in the garden, including one of the shed. Piper smiles curiously, and goes to join him in the garden. Now he seems to be taking pictures of Sheila's gnomes! Cassius says he's taking some shots of Xanthe's house to put around her hospital room, so she feels more at home.
Piper thinks that's a lovely idea, but says it's going to be really difficult for Xanthe to cope knowing it was Finn who ran her down.
CASSIUS: What's the story with this Finn guy?
PIPER: Absolute psycho.
PIPER: He used to be a teacher at our school. And he just latched onto Xanthe. Total predator. And he did all this crazy stuff to try and take Susan's job, too.
Cassius seems uncomfortable.
CASSIUS: Maybe he was just caught up in a bad situation.
PIPER: No. Like, he lived in my house. I know the guy. He tried to steal my pain medication – he is a pathological liar.
CASSIUS: I'm sorry.
PIPER: Oh, yeah, and he just tried to kill Xanthe!
Cassius looks even more uncomfortable, and doesn't respond to this – but goes into the house to take some more pictures there. Piper looks perplexed by his reaction.
Terese returns from her phone call, having also been for a walk. She's been rattled by the news that Finn was behind Xanthe's hit- and- run. Leo says it's good that Elly has therefore been cleared, but Terese explains Elly and Susan have now gone missing. Taking Leo's advice, Paul snatches Terese's work folder away from her and tells her she's going home – they'll organise all the event stuff.
TERESE: Oh, no, Paul, honestly, I'm fine!
PAUL: It wasn't a request. You need to go and show your support for them, hey?
TERESE: Well, I guess I would feel better checking up on Gary and Karl.
PAUL: There you go, see?
TERESE: Thank you, Paul – I really appreciate it.
PAUL: Give them my best, won't you?
TERESE: I will. Thank you.
Leo smiles at Paul as Terese leaves.
Somewhere between Maryborough and Mildura
Mark and Karl are driving towards Mildura, discussing whether Bea is in on Finn's evil plan. Mark says she strikes him as a good kid and that Finn's probably manipulated her. Karl's sure he tampered with the MS trial data, too. Karl admits he's embarrassed he considered the possibility that Elly could have run over Xanthe.
MARK: The evidence was pretty damning.
KARL: Sure, but you stood by her. Thank you for that.
Mishti calls (Mark's mobile is on hands- free, so she won't need to arrest him later!) She explains that Susan and Elly's phones have been found – they've been posted to fake addresses in Mildura and are in the sorting office!
MARK: What, so Mildura was just a distraction?
KARL: What about Bea's phone?
MISHTI: We've tracked it to the national park, not far from the hit- and- run site (…) The [other] phones were mailed from Maryborough, and according to Susan's call history, the last one placed was to her voicemail. That was also in the Maryborough area. It's a stab in the dark.
Mark turns the car around to head for the national park. Mishti says they're sending out a team to search, but Mark wants to help, so she agrees to send him the coordinates.
MISHTI: Just don't do anything stupid!
KARL: This'll be like looking for a needle in a haystack!
MARK: Yeah, well, we've got to try, Karl.
Piper is in a deckchair, flicking frustratedly through The Girls by Emma Kline – part of the Mystery Underliner™ reading list – almost as if she's looking for clues as to Cassius's strangeness earlier, but hasn't found anything.
Terese arrives home, explaining that Paul saw how worried she was about Xanthe and let her go for the day. Piper remarks that this was ‘strangely considerate of him'! Terese has bought ingredients to cook a dish for Gary, and take it to the hospital for him.
Terese asks if Piper would feel safer living at the hotel for a few nights until Finn's been caught. Piper says she's fine, but admits she had a weird moment with Cassius before.
PIPER: It's just, like, every time I feel that we're getting close, he just withdraws into himself. I'm starting to doubt everything.
TERESE: It is early days, sweetheart.
PIPER: Yeah. But I know it's because there still is a big part of me that hopes Tyler will change his mind (...) You know, maybe he's secretly hoping that I'm waiting for him. I just wish I read the letter.
TERESE: … Do you want to read it?
PIPER: … I told you to get rid of it! Mum?
TERESE: … I kept it for this very reason. Do you want me to go and get it?
Piper nods, suddenly emotional – and we shift into a scene of her reading the letter.
TYLER (voice): Piper – I'm sorry you're still hurting. I thought I was doing the right thing by telling you I didn't love you – by sending you away from the jail. But, of course, I was lying. I loved you then, and I still do now. But we can't go on like this. We need to move on.
Piper is telling Ned about the contents of Tyler's letter.
PIPER: Well, it started off pretty good. He apologised. But then he told me I had to move on, and it quickly turned into another rejection.
NED: Oh, I'm sorry, Pip.
But Piper says it's helped clear up a lot of things. She explains how brutal Tyler was in dumping her when he first went to jail – as if he wanted her to hate him.
PIPER: I always knew he didn't mean the stuff that he said. But writing this, he had time to think about it. And he's right – we need to move on.
NED: Still hurts, though.
NED: What made you change your mind about reading it?
PIPER: I don't think things are working out between me and Cassius. We had this very minor disagreement before, and he just totally shut down.
NED: Was it about politics? Cos you can be a little scary!
PIPER: No! I'm just – I'm not used to being with a closed book.
NED: Well, exactly. He's not Tyler.
PIPER: Yeah, I know that.
NED: So don't compare. I mean, how can he possibly compete? You and Tyler were together for ages. You can't know what's going on inside Cassius's head already.
PIPER: Yeah, I… Sometimes when we talk, like, about books and stuff, we have this amazing, deep connection. But then it's like trying to get blood out of a stone, trying to get anything personal out of him.
NED: Look – if you are ready to move past Tyler, then give you and Cassius a little bit of time to get there. He'll open up eventually.
Terese brings a grim- looking Gary a hot chicken tikka wrap she's made for him. He's not really hungry, but Terese reminds him he needs to take care of himself as well as Xanthe.
GARY: Turns out I haven't been looking after Xanthe at all. Finn could've killed her, Terese. I didn't have a clue that he was back, and this happened.
TERESE: Yeah, but nobody knew! You can't be blaming yourself for that.
GARY: But I should've kept tabs on him (…) I know the system. I should've known he was out. It's my job to look after my kid. I'm a joke when it comes to being a dad.
TERESE: No, no – Gary, you're not. You're not at all.
Terese awkwardly tries to maintain an upbeat conversation, but Gary's mind is obviously elsewhere.
Mark and Karl arrive at the location Mishti's provided. Karl is surprised that Susan would have got out of a car in the middle of nowhere, especially after what happened on the camping trip. Mark says the police have searched all the major roads for Susan's car. Karl suddenly hears a banging coming from the trees. Mark also notices silver paint on a telegraph pole – the colour of Susan's car.
The pair follow their ears into the trees. We cut to a shot of the shipping container, wherefrom we can hear Susan and Elly banging and yelling for help.
Piper catches up with Cassius, who's printed out the photos from No 26 for Xanthe. Piper flicks through them, impressed, and helps him choose which ones to give her.
CASSIUS: I don't mind these gnome ones.
PIPER: (…) What made you think of doing this?
CASSIUS: I've done it before (…) a few years ago. I knew someone that was sick. The only thing that I could think of to do was to take photos of places that meant something to her. It just… seemed to lift her spirits.
Piper smiles. She says they can definitely discount the shed photo, as Xanthe has bad memories of being trapped in there with The Snake™ until Clementine the cat chased it away.
CASSIUS: I'm with The Snake™!
PIPER: I cannot believe that you are genuinely terrified of cats!
CASSIUS: Don't say cats.
PIPER: Oh, alright, I won't.
Piper then teasingly throws her arms at him, catlike, and he flinches. They smile at one another.
Two non- speaking nurses are helping Xanthe to walk to the toilet, when Gary comes in and starts fussing. He wants to help, but Xanthe is clearly in a low mood, and tells him to stop.
XANTHE: Can you just come back later?
GARY: Course. I'll leave you to it.
Apartment of Evil™
A frustrated Gary kicks open the door and starts wrecking Finn and Bea's apartment, knocking over furniture and smashing vases…
Coming up on Neighbours
- Amy is surprised to find Sindi holding the fort at the Flametree Retreat
- Toadie is surprised to learn from Shane that Lyra has been keeping tabs on the family!
- Clive tells Sheila it's her guilt speaking, and not what Xanthe needs. She tells him to butt out
- Paul says to Sonya that they both know where it will end ‘if you tell him about this'