- When Toadie tells Alice that Sonya has been behaving strangely, she offers to keep an eye on her
- After engineering a fall for Sonya at the nursery, Alice reports back to Toadie that she seemed dazed
- Karl tells Chloe that she's tested positive for the Huntington's gene
- Chloe decides not to tell her family about the diagnosis until after Aaron's wedding
- Aaron and David toss a coin to decide who will be the biological donor for when they have a child
- Elly moans that The Department™ has blocked her becoming acting principal
- Elly is surprised to learn that the role has been awarded to Jane Harris instead
Erinsborough High School
As their awkward conversation continues, Elly tells Jane to let her know if there's anything she needs.
JANE: I'm sure I'll be fine.
But just as she's about to leave, Dipi comes in, and is thrilled to see that Jane is now the acting principal. Elly feels left out as Dipi and Jane catch up. Dipi admits Kirsha's worried about coming back to school after the cyanide incident. Jane assures her the entire site has now been cleared of contamination, and that she'll be bringing in extra counsellors to help the affected pupils.
ELLY: That's a great idea. Susan had the same plan.
JANE: … Your students will really be wondering where you are by now.
Elly slinks off sheepishly, while Dipi and Jane continue to catch up.
David and Aaron come in, and announce to Mark and Chloe that they've decided who will be their donor when they try for a kid. Chloe immediately goes into a panic.
CHLOE: Well, it's a no- brainer – has to be David!
But they reveal that Aaron will be the donor. Mark is ‘rapt' for them both, but…
CHLOE: It can't be you! I mean, David's a doctor – and he's funny, and hot, and you… you've only just had the wedding! Why are you even talking about babies? It's too rushed!
Aaron tells Chloe to ‘cool her jets' and she realises she's said too much, before turning back to the washing up and looking worried.
Toadie and Susan are talking about her attempted murder charge. Toadie assures Susan it's a ridiculous charge, which hopefully won't even get to court after he's spoken to the prosecutor.
SUSAN: Thank you for everything. I don't know what I'd do if I didn't have you.
TOADIE: Well, just thank me when all this over. In the meantime, do not speak to the police without me.
SUSAN: I won't, I won't.
As Toadie leaves, Chloe turns up, looking for Karl. Susan explains he's Not In This Episode™, and asks if there's anything she can help her with. Chloe says not, and leaves.
Alice offers Sonya some porridge – and when she politely declines, ladles some out anyway, being sure to cover it with her special codeine dusting! Sonya is clearly high as a kite already.
SONYA: I mean, all I know is I'm feeling just more calm and centred than I have in a really, really long time. I'm just sleeping so well!
Sonya grabs Alice's hand.
SONYA: You know, you're really making such a difference in our lives, Alice. In my life. Thank you.
Alice encourages her to eat the porridge, which she does…
Chloe comes in, and apologises to Aaron for ‘weirding out' about his baby plans, saying it caught her by surprise.
AARON: I thought you'd be happy for us, Chlo.
CHLOE: I am! So happy! I'm an idiot.
AARON: Yes, you are an idiot.
CHLOE: You guys will be awesome parents.
But she continues to not- so- subtly try to talk Aaron into considering David as the donor instead – claiming it makes sense for Aaron to be the stay- at- home dad given David's salary etc, and that she read an article that said that if one partner was the biological parent and the primary caregiver, then the other partner might not bond with the child properly.
AARON: Are you saying that David should quit his job?
CHLOE: Either that, or flip things around. Make him the donor.
Aaron falls for it, and resolves to have a chat to David about it.
Toadie comes in and finds Sonya snoozing on the couch. She admits she decided to work from home today as she slept in again – and Toadie voices concern that she's been very sleepy lately. Sonya woozily hypothesises that it's because Hugo is sleeping through the night more now, which has given her a chance to catch up on lost sleep. Toadie doesn't look convinced.
Sonya asks how the search for Andrea's mother is going, but at that moment, Alice comes in. Aware of their decision not to talk about it in front of her, Toadie takes Sonya into Hugo's room to discuss it. However, the baby monitor has been left on, and Alice hears everything…
TOADIE: Piper's made her way through the list of known aliases, and still no luck yet.
SONYA: Is it time to call Paul?
TOADIE: Yeah, I think we'll have to get his PI on the case. It's gonna cost a bit.
SONYA: It'll be worth it, though, if we find Andrea's mother. Cos how much longer can we be responsible for her care?
Alice is shocked listening to all this…
Paul and Jane are chatting about her role as acting principal at the school. Jane explains she was recommended by a friend of hers at The Department™. She explains she was briefly a principal in the UK only to have to give it up six months later when her gran, Nell Mangel, became ill. She'll be in the new role at least till the end of the year.
JANE: Tell me, Paul – what do you know about Elly Conway?
PAUL: Well, she's Susan's niece, and she's got terrible taste in men.
JANE: Hmm. Yes, it's always tricky when you have two members of the one family in a place like a school.
PAUL: Mm. Yes, and Susan does have a history of nepotism.
Says Robinson! Anyhow, at this point, Dipi appears. Jane asks if she and Shane would be free to come along to a PTA meeting she's organised after school. Dipi is keen to air a few issues, so agrees to come along; Jane says she has some strategies she'd like to put in place, for which she could use Dipi's support. Dipi seems enthusiastic – as does Paul, as he watches Jane leave the café!
David and Aaron are talking about what they'll tell their child about how they were conceived. David proposes honesty – that they tell them they tossed a coin – as they are never lying to their child. Aaron kisses him.
AARON: You're going to be the best dad ever.
DAVID: Oh, well, that's the plan.
Aaron raises the topic Chloe brought up earlier, about the non- biological parent struggling to bond, and asks if David is sure he won't feel left out. But David dismisses this idea as nonsense.
DAVID: It doesn't matter which one of us is the donor. We're gonna both love this child more than anything in the world.
They kiss again, and cement the plans for Aaron to be the first donor. David jokily suggests they don't call on their families (I.e. Chloe) for further advice. They kiss again.
Elly is filling Susan in on the latest at the school, and Jane Harris being the new principal. Susan's pleased to hear that Jane had the same idea about bringing in counsellors for the kids following the unfortunate cyanide poisoning incident.
SUSAN: Although from what I've heard about her, she doesn't suffer fools.
ELLY: Especially this fool!
Elly explains how Jane caught her running late, and is worried Jane thinks her lazy and incompetent.
SUSAN: Oh, I'm sure she doesn't!
ELLY: First impressions…
SUSAN: … can and will be changed. She'll come round, once she sees your passion for the job.
Meanwhile, Toadie meets up with Paul.
TOADIE: That private eye you used to track Andrea down – did he ever mention her mother? I'm looking for a name, or a hometown.
Paul doesn't recall, but agrees to call the PI on Toadie's behalf.
Erinsborough High School
Susan arrives to see Jane in her office.
JANE: Mrs Kennedy…
SUSAN: Oh, Susan, please!
JANE: You shouldn't be here.
SUSAN: No, I know – and I'm not staying. Elly's filled me in – we had a quick lunch at the pub.
JANE: … (!)
SUSAN: Well, you know, she's my niece.
SUSAN: She's so committed to the students – I'm sure you'll really enjoy working together (…) If there's anything I can do to help…
JANE: Mrs Kennedy, given your recent arrest and suspension, I must insist that you leave.
SUSAN: … Of course. I didn't mean to make you feel uncomfortable.
Susan leaves – and on the way out, notices her framed picture of her and Karl, which Jane has relegated to a filing cabinet in the corner. Susan looks annoyed as she leaves.
Alice has brought Sonya some of her evil shortbread while out on a walk with Hugo in his pram. She also uses the opportunity to probe Sonya for info on the search for Andrea's mother, explaining that the baby monitor was left on earlier and that she overheard their conversation. Sonya says that reconnecting Andrea with her mum is ‘just an option' at this stage.
ALICE: Yes, that's terrific – but I mean, what if this woman has problems of her own?
SONYA: Well, we've considered that.
ALICE: Yes, but she could make things more complicated for you both – and poor little baby Hugo. I mean, what do you even know about her?
SONYA: Well, not much. But given the way that Andrea's turned out, I don't think she was a very good mother.
Alice's face darkens with barely concealed rage.
ALICE: Exactly. I mean, you really have no idea who you're dealing with!
But Sonya says she thinks that finding her is worth the risk. Alice looks angry as Sonya goes to help a customer.
Erinsborough High School
Jane thanks Shane, Dipi, Elly and assorted extras for attending the PTA meeting. She explains how she attended this school herself many years ago, and that she wants parents to have the same level of involvement they did back then.
JANE: It's just a shame that things have gotten so far off track.
Elly looks sheepish.
JANE: It's time to promote excellence at every level… starting with the dress code.
ELLY: Oh, we've actually just updated our school uniform policy.
Jane glances pointedly at Elly, in her insubstantial bare- shoulder top!
JANE: Well, I'm not talking about the students.
ELLY: Who are… Are you talking about me?!
JANE: We could discuss this later.
ELLY: No- one's ever had a problem with what I wear.
JANE: Well, it's a matter of tone (…) Bare shoulders and tight skirts are not appropriate at a place of learning.
Keen to impress Jane, Dipi chips in obsequiously with her support – saying that if the kids have to wear uniforms, it makes sense to talk about rules for the staff too.
JANE: I'm asking every member of staff to set the bar higher. And I can count on you, can't I, Miss Conway?
Elly forces a smile.
ELLY: Sure. Whatever you want.
Aaron runs into Chloe, who quickly asks if he sounded out David about her donor advice. Aaron says they spoke about it, but that they've decided to proceed with Aaron being the first donor, as originally planned. Chloe starts getting worked up again, and Aaron asks why.
CHLOE: I just want you to make the right decision!
AARON: We're gonna stick to our plan, and that's that.
Aaron leaves, and Chloe looks very worried. Breathing heavily, she sits down and starts using her phone, looking panicked and tearful. Elly comes in, and immediately sees Chloe's distressed.
CHLOE: I just had a bad day at work.
ELLY: That was my day – this is much worse! Are you in trouble again?
CHLOE: I'm not.
ELLY: Okay, then just talk to me about it.
CHLOE: You don't understand. It's too much.
ELLY: What's too much? … Okay, then talk to your brothers. Mark won't turn his back on you again.
CHLOE: He is the last person I can tell!
ELLY: Whatever this is, whatever you're holding onto, just tell someone.
Toadie greets Alice, who is walking through the courtyard with Hugo in his pram.
ALICE: You look very happy! Have you had some good news about Karl's wife?
TOADIE: Something else I'm working on, actually – let's just say I'm hopeful.
Piper emerges from Rebecchi Law to talk to Toadie. Alice listens with interest.
PIPER: Paul called. So it turns out his guy actually does have information on that person that we're looking for.
TOADIE: Well, when does it get here?
PIPER: They couldn't get it here before close of business, so they said they'll just slip it under the door.
Toadie thanks Piper for her work, and heads back into the office, while Alice watches Piper walk the other way. She looks angry/worried.
Elly tells Mark that she's just found Chloe in the pub, very upset about something. Aaron and David are present too; and at that moment Chloe herself walks in, still upset. Thinking he must have hurt her feelings by ignoring her donor advice earlier, Aaron apologises. Mark asks if it's about Pierce.
CHLOE: Enough! I have something I need to say to you all. Something I've been keeping a secret. But… it won't be easy to hear… I have the gene for Huntington's disease.
General murmurs of concern and enquiry.
CHLOE: I'm fine – for now. At some point, I will start to… deteriorate. It's like motor neuron, mixed with Alzheimer's. And there is no cure.
MARK: I am so sorry.
AARON: Chlo, we will do anything we can. Everything.
CHLOE: There's more.
DAVID: The gene is hereditary.
CHLOE: (…) It means you guys could have it too. And so could any children you have.
Everyone looks worried.
Paul and Jane are chatting about her successful PTA meeting. Jane is confident that she is changing the school for the better – but says she'll still be helping with the Face of Lassiter's campaign. Paul says Amy, Terese and Leo can cover for her.
JANE: It's the reason they flew me out here – I will not let them down!
Paul goes to take a call, and Sheila, who is behind the bar, remarks that ‘Moneybags' has left Jane to pay the bill! While Sheila processes her payment, Amy – who has been lurking at a table nearby – calls Jane over, and congratulates her on the principal job.
AMY: Does this mean you'll be sticking around? Who knows, maybe you'll end up putting down some roots here again?
JANE: I haven't really thought that far ahead.
SHEILA: Oh, well – you are the first person to put a smile on His Majesty's face in weeks! So if you want to keep him in line, we would love you to stick around!
JANE: … Has something been troubling Paul?
Sheila realises she's said too much, and bustles off.
AMY: Thanks, Sheila(!)
JANE: Why do I get the feeling that I'm missing something?
AMY: Dad's been in a bit of a bad mood lately. But he's turned a corner. And Sheila's right – having you around, it's really seemed to cheer him up.
Paul returns from his call, and he invites Amy to join them, but she says she'll leave them to it – smiling as she leaves, watching them.
It's after dark, and Piper dodges some passing skateboarders in the courtyard as she chats to Terese on the phone. She's on her way home with takeaway, she says, but is just grabbing something for Toadie from the office first. Looking through the door, she can see an envelope on the mat – the information from Paul's PI.
Piper unlocks the door and goes to turn off the burglar alarm – but as she's entering the code, she's hit on the head from behind with crowbar. It's Nanny Alice – who grabs the envelope triumphantly before leaving, as Piper lies unconscious on the floor…
Coming up on Neighbours
- Toadie asks Sonya to calm down and talk rationally; she yells at him not to patronise her
- Ned jokingly takes a journal from Bea; Bea gets angry and demands it back, while Yashvi watches
- Paul and Jane appear to be about to kiss on the penthouse balcony