- Grant tells Mackenzie she has a half- brother and sister, and asks her to visit them with him
- Shane's annoyed when he learns Dipi loaned Ned money so he could buy Yashvi a graduation present
- Shaun suggests that Emmett take part in his holiday learning programmes at the school
- Elly wants to help Emmett, but looks disappointed when David says Shaun's already tutoring him
- On his lunch break from holiday school, Emmett encounters bad boy Louis at Grease Monkeys
- When Shaun returns to the classroom, he finds it trashed and Emmett in it, as another kid runs off
Erinsborough High School
David and Shaun are interrogating Emmett in the trashed classroom. He has admitted the other kid was involved, but claims he doesn't know if he goes to this school, and that he didn't get a good look at his face.
SHAUN: You didn't bring him with you?
DAVID: He's not your friend?
EMMETT: *I* didn't do anything.
DAVID: Emmett, if he's your friend, you need to tell us.
Shaun tells David he'll have to report this to Marie Bermingham, the vice principal, who may call the police.
EMMETT: No, don't call the police, please! I did it, okay? That kid just came in here cos I was making so much noise.
DAVID: Emmett, you didn't do all this. You need to tell us exactly what happened.
EMMETT: It was me, all of it. I trashed the room - no-one else.
David looks sceptical.
Elly is having a coffee outside the pub, when Terese turns up. Elly seems keen for the company and asks Terese to join her, but she's super-busy as usual. Terese notices Elly's looking a bit lonely.
TERESE: Listen, I know it's tough, having little people around who aren't always up for a chat.
ELLY: Yeah, it has its moments!
Terese recalls that the best thing she did when her kids were young was join a mothers' group, and suggests Elly would benefit from being able to talk to people in the same boat. Terese says one such group was operating at the Community Centre while she was at the Sonya Foundation. Elly decides to check it out.
Shane is struggling to stay awake as he works, and calls himself a 'drongo'. Dipi overhears him and asks if he's talking to her!
SHANE (muttering): No, I reckon you'd know if I was!
Mackenzie comes in, just back from her trip with Grant to meet her younger half-siblings. She tells Dipi and Shane it was surreal meeting them, but that it went really well, and Grant was glad Mackenzie was with him. Now all the family stuff is resolved, she can focus on her gender affirmation surgery, which is tomorrow.
SHANE: How are you feeling?
MACKENZIE: Nervous, excited - mostly excited.
Dipi says it's a shame Grant can't be here, but Shane defends him, and we learn that he wanted to be here, but Mackenzie encouraged him not to take time off work to be here, as she didn't want a huge fuss as it would make her more nervous. She's asked Auntie Trish to stay away as well, for the same reason. But she's glad she'll have Dipi and Shane there to support her.
Mackenzie asks Shane and Dipi to update her on Yashvi's graduation from police academy, mentioning the expensive sunglasses Ned bought her that she's seen in the pictures. This immediately sparks bickering between Shane and Dipi about her having lent Ned money to buy them.
MACKENZIE: Have I missed something?
DIPI: No, nothing important.
Mackenzie gets to showing them pictures of her new surprise siblings.
In the garden, Emmett is sitting glumly by the pool, listening to music through his headphones. Nearby, David and Aaron discuss his behaviour. Aaron doubts Emmett is really responsible for trashing the classroom, as he doesn't think he'd risk doing anything to be moved again; David's not sure either way.
DAVID: But if he did, maybe it's our fault for pushing him too hard with the tutoring.
AARON: We didn't push him that hard. Today was fun!
DAVID: Dad would disagree.
AARON: Excuse me - could you please get your dad out of your head, and stop second-guessing what we're doing with Emmett? Because I think we're doing a pretty good job.
They go over to the pool together to talk to Emmett. When asked why he trashed the classroom, his response is 'just because'. Aaron points out that they know there was another kid in the room, and encourages Emmett to tell them if he was involved or pressured him. But Emmett insists he's solely to blame.
EMMETT: I don't know what else to say. Just punish me and get it over with.
While Shane continues to work, Mackenzie is being filled in by Toadie on the cause of Dipi and Shane's arguing: it's not just about the money Dipi lent to Ned; it also goes back to the money Shane lent to Grant. But Toadie tells Mackenzie not to worry; they'll get over it.
MACKENZIE: It's just, they're the reason that Dad and I are in such a good place. If they hadn't gotten involved, maybe they wouldn't be fighting now.
TOADIE: Their stuff is their stuff. It's got nothing to do with you.
MACKENZIE: I just want to help.
TOADIE: Okay. You've got more important things on your plate than worrying about them right now. You hear me? This is selfish time right now.
MACKENZIE: Fine! I'll be selfish.
Elly is telling Shaun that she's been to the Community Centre to read up about the mothers' group, and is going to join them for a session this afternoon. Shaun thinks this is great. Their chat is interrupted by a call Shaun receives from Marie Bermingham at the school. It's evident she's giving Shaun a telling off, and once the call ends...
SHAUN: Apparently I'm not the sort of staff member she wants at Erinsborough High (...) I just got fired.
In the garden, David and Aaron are discussing potential punishments they can dole out to Emmett. They settle on limiting his screen time, but argue over who is going to break it to him. Aaron thinks David is the one he respects so should do the deed, but...
DAVID: I'll cave as soon as I see his sad eyes!
AARON: Hey, come on. You know you're better at this than I am.
DAVID: What, so I have to be bad cop and you get to be good cop?
AARON: What? No! I'm just sporty cop, and you are smart cop! And sporty cop does not have the authority that this situation needs.
They eventually agree to do it together, and go into the sun room to talk to Emmett. Spotting his new games console on the table, they decide that banning him from that is the way to go. They summon him for a talking-to, saying they have to accept his claim that he trashed the classroom alone.
DAVID: So until we feel that you can be responsible with other people's things, we're taking the console away.
EMMETT: What? No, but I just got it! I've barely used it yet.
DAVID: You can get it back, but you'll have to earn it.
Emmett apologises and pleads with them, suggesting various chores he could do as a punishment instead. But David and Aaron won't be budged. However, they add...
DAVID: We know that you struggle with expressing your frustration.
AARON: And, hey, we understand you've been under a lot of pressure lately, too.
DAVID: So we'll ease up on the tutoring and the extra study.
AARON: We'll make sure we find a way to help you out that's not loading you up too much, okay?
EMMETT: Can I go now?
Emmett walks inside, looking distressed.
The mothers' group is setting up by the lake, and Elly is lurking nearby, debating whether to go and introduce herself. Terese turns up, and Elly tells her about Shaun losing his job. Elly admits that she's kind of relieved, and asks if that makes her an awful person. Terese is sure Shaun would understand.
Elly wants to use Shaun's firing as an excuse to spend the day with him, but admits to Terese that she's really just chickening out of the mothers' group. She's worried they'll be very close-knit and says she's not sure she remembers how to make friends anymore. But Terese recognises the head mother, Celia, from the Community Centre and offers to introduce Elly to her.
Elly agrees, and they head over and chat to Celia, who Elly's already emailed saying she may come along. Terese leaves them to it. Celia explains that another mum, Fiona, is on her way and is keen to meet Elly; it'll just be the three of them today.
Shaun has come round and is telling Aaron and David about having been fired over allowing the classroom to get trashed. They are very apologetic for Emmett's role in it, and offer to talk to Marie Bermingham to try and smooth things over. But Shaun says Marie's mind is made up.
SHAUN: And she's right. I could've handled things better.
However, Shaun says he's more worried about Emmett; he doesn't want him taking on the blame, and asks to speak to him. Aaron and David agree, and Shaun goes over to chat to Emmett who is playing with a basketball.
Shaun explains to Emmett that he won't be at school after the holidays, because 'some things have come up'. However, he'll still be Emmett's private tutor and there for him if he ever wants to talk. Emmett quickly guesses that Shaun has been sacked because of the trashed classroom.
SHAUN: I was on trial. There was always a chance they weren't going to keep me.
EMMETT: But me trashing the classroom didn't help.
SHAUN: We all make mistakes. The important thing is that we learn from them.
Despite Toadie's advice, Mackenzie is staging an intervention with Shane and Dipi, and asks them to sit down together.
MACKENZIE: Tomorrow is gonna be a big day for me (...) You're the reason that Dad and I are in such a good place, but now you're in a bad place. And I don't wanna go into surgery knowing that I'm part of the reason why you guys are so unhappy.
Dipi tells Mackenzie she's not to blame for their rough patch; and Shane tells her they'll work it out, so she doesn't need to worry.
MACKENZIE: I do, because we're family.
She takes out a diary and turns to an entry she wrote yesterday, before giving them some space to read it.
DIPI (reading): I'm so lucky. I've got so many people who love me - not just Dad and Auntie Trish, but Shane, Dipi and Yashvi. In the past, if someone pushed me, I'd fall over because I had nobody behind me. Now I feel supported. I can take on going to hospital - the biggest thing I'm ever gonna do. I don't know how to tell the Rebecchis just how amazing they are. They've shown me what it is to make someone feel loved, and protected, and accepted. They've given me something to live up to.
Elly is sitting on a picnic blanket, chatting to mums Celia and new arrival Fiona. They're initially talking about baby stuff like feeding, but when Elly mentions she had to stop breastfeeding early on, Celia and Fiona exchange a glance. Elly senses something is wrong.
CELIA: We weren't going to say anything, but we're not exactly the best actors. So I might as well admit - we've read 'The Devil You Know'.
ELLY: That's a shame. I can assure you the truth is nothing like what's written in that book.
Fiona says Elly's story 'seemed horrific', but is clearly hungry for gossip from the horse's mouth. Elly says it was all very traumatic, but she's keen just to move on. They talk a little about Shaun, and Elly emphasises how different he is to Finn - he's an amazing dad, she explains.
Shane is outside the café clearing his head, when Dipi comes out to speak to him.
DIPI: It's pretty humbling, isn't it? Hearing how Mackenzie sees us.
SHANE: Kind of makes you want to live up to her high expectations!
DIPI: I wasn't trying to upset you by helping Ned out, or get back at you for giving Grant all that cash.
DIPI: Alright, lending.
SHANE: Felt like you were.
DIPI: Maybe it was in the back of my mind. I was just so angry, Shane. I know you did it to try and help Mackenzie, but you went behind my back.
SHANE: You didn't give me a fair hearing. You'd already made up your mind.
DIPI: Actually, we had agreed. And even if we disagree, doesn't mean you can lie to get your own way.
SHANE: Yeah, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done that.
DIPI: And I'm sorry for not telling you about the money for Ned.
Dipi has written a limerick for Shane, in an attempt to call a truce! She passes it to him, and his eyes widen as he begins reading!
SHANE (reading): There once was a man called Puff, who liked to put... Well, this should come with a parental guidance warning, shouldn't it?
DIPI: I wasn't planning on sharing it with the kids!
SHANE: There's a couple of things in here I'm finding a bit hard to imagine, love.
DIPI: Oh, that's okay. I can give you a full demonstration when we get home!
SHANE (laughs): Good.
DIPI: We are pretty lucky, aren't we?
SHANE: ... Yeah. We've got a lot going for us. Vee's graduation...
DIPI: Mackenzie's dream coming true...
SHANE: We're very lucky.
They smile at one another.
Elly is telling Celia and Fiona more about her chequered history! They make supportive noises, telling her how strong she must be to have got through it all - and conversation turns back to more mundane baby talk, as they share their experiences as mums.
After the meeting, Elly is reporting back to Terese on how sympathetic the other mums were on hearing her story, and how nice it was to swap baby advice. Terese is pleased it went well.
ELLY: Now everything's out in the open, I think they realise I'm no different to them.
TERESE: Well, good for you. Sounds like you've found your tribe.
ELLY: Yeah, I have!
Meanwhile, outside the pub, Shaun, David and Aaron are catching up for a drink to discuss Emmett. They agree he must be feeling angry, embarrassed and isolated at school. David wonders if Emmett might be acting out as an in-road to impressing other kids. Shaun thinks it's possible, and suggests they keep an eye on who he hangs out with.
Nearby, Emmett is sitting in the courtyard playing on his phone when a random girl from school, Zoya, approaches. She says that Louis wants to know why Emmett hasn't dobbed him in to the teachers yet for trashing the classroom.
EMMETT: I'm not a snitch.
ZOYA: You copped all the blame?
EMMETT: I can handle it.
ZOYA: Tough guy! I'll let him know you've got his back. Catch you around sometime, Emmett.
Zoya seems impressed at Emmett's anti-dobbing ethos, and walks off, leaving Emmett smiling.
Mackenzie is pleased to see Shane and Dipi getting on well again, and Shane proposes they have a big party when she's fully recovered from her surgery. They thank her for her intervention earlier.
DIPI: You reminded us that we actually do like each other.
Toadie is still hanging out at the café and congratulates Mackenzie on a job well done mediating between Shane and Dipi.
TOADIE: Is there anything you *can't* do?
He's so impressed, indeed, that he offers her more regular work experience shifts at the law office, once she's recovered from her operation. Mackenzie is very keen, and thanks him.
TOADIE: How are you feeling, on the nervous/excited scale?
MACKENZIE: Thirty percent nervous, and seventy percent excited.
TOADIE: Well, that is not a bad ratio!
MACKENZIE: Yeah. Well, whenever it starts going in the wrong direction, I just remind myself that the rest of my life starts tomorrow.
Elly joins Shaun in the garden, who's looking for new jobs. Elly can't resist telling him how relieved she is that he got fired! For some reason, this makes him laugh.
ELLY: Sorry, does that make me the worst person on earth?
Yes, Elly - yes, it does. But Shaun is forgiving, telling her she's allowed to be human.
Elly gets a message from Celia at the mothers' group. It's bad news.
ELLY: She said that they don't want to add another person to the group (...) She said that the other mothers don't want a murderer in the group.
Coming up on Neighbours
- Levi tells Yashvi to focus on the evidence, not what she thinks she knows
- Paul tells Levi and Yashvi that his solicitor will come down on them like a tonne of bricks
- Sheila tells Roxy that wherever she goes, trouble follows for other people
- Kyle queries why Sheila can't stop interfering in his life yet has barely been involved in Levi's
- Pierce gives Paul a warning; Paul angrily asks Pierce not to tell him to calm down