- Harlow realises that Jesse is Julie Quill's son
- Terese confronts Jesse over his corporate espionage, and fires him, scuppering Paul's revenge plan
- Harlow worries that Terese will never forgive her and Paul for hiding the truth from her
- Chloe wakes up minus her clothes at the winery
- Chloe tells Nicolette that she may have slept with Leo, but he later confirms they didn't
- However, the news comes too late - Nicolette has packed up and gone
- Levi speaks to Nicolette on the phone, and tells David and Aaron she's not coming back
- The blame game begins, as Aaron holds Chloe responsible for dragging him and David into her lies
- Leo tells David everyone knew Nicolette was bad news; he picked the wrong person to have his baby
- Furious, David punches Leo in the face
Leo drags his suitcases in, accompanied by Paul and Terese. Nursing a swollen lip, Leo's in disbelief that David punched him, but Terese berates him for his lack of sensitivity in telling David he should've never trusted Nicolette. Leo plans to go and stay at the hotel, but Paul says he's family and insists he stay here. Leo takes his cases upstairs to the spare room.
TERESE: What were you thinking? Dragging Leo into your scheme!
PAUL: We were just trying to protect David from Nicolette.
TERESE: Yeah, well, David's now lost his baby, and has disowned his brother.
Terese goes to take a phone call, as Paul looks contrite.
David has hurt his fist from hitting Leo, and Aaron puts an ice pack on it.
AARON: David, you were scary before.
DAVID: Leo deserved it.
AARON: Hey, listen, I'm upset with him too, alright? But this - this just isn't you. You out of all people know how dangerous a punch to the head can be. I think you should go and talk to him.
DAVID: I'm not apologising for what I did.
AARON: I didn't say you had to forgive him.
DAVID: Why are we even still talking about him?! We should be focused on finding Nicolette. Nothing else matters!
AARON: Okay. What do you think we should say to her when we do find her?
DAVID: I can think of a few choice things to say... What do you want to say?
AARON: Well, there's this part of me that just wants to scream at her for putting us through this. I mean, especially after all the times that she promised us that we could trust her.
DAVID: (...) But we can't just blame her. This is on all of us.
AARON: David, she has run off with our baby.
DAVID: Because our family made it unbearable for her to stay here. I should've done more to protect all of you from my father. And we definitely should've done more to keep Leo from Chloe.
At reception, Roxy asks Terese why Leo has moved in at No 22.
ROXY: You didn't even ask if I mind sharing a bathroom!
Terese explains about Leo and David's falling-out, so Leo's staying for a few days. Roxy explains Amy has sent her over to report that a couple of the chairs from The Flamingo Bar are broken. Terese is busy, so Harlow, who has just appeared, offers to call the carpenter to get the chairs fixed. Harlow says she'll look after things here while Terese goes home to manage the family crisis. Terese agrees.
Jane is on the phone to Byron, who we learn from her subsequent conversation with Chloe is Nicolette's brother. Jane tells Chloe that Byron hasn't heard from Nicolette. Chloe has just come to get some things to take back to the hotel, but Jane suggests she stay here.
CHLOE: You have enough going on without having to see me right now.
JANE: Oh, Chloe, stay. This is your home - you have every right to be here (...) Besides, I could use your help in looking for Nicolette.
Jane explains she's ringing round the extended family, and suggests Chloe make a list of any places that Nicolette may ever have mentioned wanting to visit. Chloe says she will. David and Aaron turn up, and offer to help with the ringing round. Chloe notices David's hand is hurt, and Aaron admits it's because David punched Leo. David doesn't want to talk about it.
Chloe heads out, claiming she's going to chase up her own list of possible Nicolette leads. Clearly still annoyed with her, David mutters to her to let them know if she finds anything.
In fact, Chloe heads straight to the pub to meet up with Leo. Leo's still got a sore lip from the punch.
CHLOE: I can't believe David actually hit you.
LEO: Yeah. Well, his anger's not about me, it's about Nicolette (...) He's never been betrayed like this before. He's lashing out.
CHLOE: Some of us deserve it. I'm the reason she left.
LEO: Come on, you know this isn't all on you (...) Chloe, I don't blame Nicolette for being upset at the thought of losing you. But she made the choice to run off without a word. This is on her, not on you. So don't let anyone tell you otherwise, okay?
He puts a friendly (or maybe more-than-friendly) arm on Chloe's shoulder, and she thanks him.
Harlow is at reception when Mackenzie turns up. They'd had a coffee date planned but Harlow's forgotten - she explains she's trying to sort out a rostering issue for Terese, but is struggling with the computer. Mackenzie tells her not to stress, and asks how Aaron and David are doing. Harlow says they're 'freaking out'.
Roxy comes in to follow up on the request for a carpenter to fix the chairs, saying Amy needs it done urgently. Harlow realises she's forgotten to call them, and is about to go and find the number. But at this point, Jesse shows up.
HARLOW: What are you doing here?
JESSE: I'm not here to cause trouble. I just need to grab my things from my locker.
HARLOW: Do you really think I'm stupid enough to let you past reception?
JESSE: I don't think you're stupid.
HARLOW: Then turn around, and walk back out! I'll have whatever's in your locker packed up and sent to you.
Jesse reluctantly leaves.
ROXY: Damn, Harlow.
MACKENZIE: That was cold.
Mackenzie assumes Harlow's mad with Jesse because he cheated on her with Curtis. But while Harlow goes to call the carpenter, Roxy fills in Mackenzie on the real story with Jesse...
Chloe and Leo are out for a walk; Chloe's regretful of having spent that drunken night at the vineyard, rather than just going home. But Leo points out that Chloe would still be unhappy in her relationship, even if things had gone differently.
CHLOE: Better me than everyone else.
LEO: Hey, umm... how much do you actually remember from that night?
CHLOE: You mean, do I remember you laying some Feelings™ on the line? Yeah. It's literally the last thing I heard before everything went to boozy static.
CHLOE: What did I say back?
LEO: Nothing. You had a sip of wine, and then you reached for the bottle, knocked it over and started giggling. I didn't bring it up again.
CHLOE: Smooth Chloe!
LEO: ... What *would* you have said?
CHLOE: Honestly, I don't know. But there's a reason why I believed something happened between us. And it wasn't just the wine, or waking up in your jacket.
LEO: Where does that leave us now?
CHLOE: ... Nowhere. We shouldn't even be talking about it.
Chloe starts to walk away.
LEO: Where are you going?
CHLOE: My fiancée's missing. Even if everyone I love hates me right now, I need to help them find her.
Harlow's in the office when Mackenzie comes in. Mack explains Roxy has told her all about Jesse, the fake relationship, and his spying for the Quills. Harlow says she was genuinely planning to tell Mackenzie everything at their catch-up today.
HARLOW: I'm sorry. You must be so mad at me for keeping it a secret.
MACKENZIE: It's okay. I get it. You were in a weird situation. The more people who knew what you were up to, the more likely it was to get out.
HARLOW: Mackenzie, nobody's this chill.
MACKENZIE: That just shows how long it's been since we've hung out properly. I'm cool as a cucumber, baby!
Jane is on the phone to her ex and Nicolette's dad, Victor. After ending the call, she tells David and Aaron that Vic hasn't heard from Nicolette either.
JANE: He's going to ring his side of the family for us. She has some cousins that she may turn to. But she will be back. I know she will.
AARON: But what if she isn't, Jane?
JANE: We cannot think like that.
DAVID: Levi said she was pretty clear.
JANE: It was said in the heat of the moment. She didn't mean it. Nicolette knows how much this baby means to you both. She's not gonna ruin your plans over a misunderstanding with Chloe. She will come home once she has time to clear her head. I know that she will.
Paul and Terese turn up; Paul asks if they can do anything to help.
DAVID (bitter): Haven't you done enough already?
Aaron, Terese and Jane decide to head to the City to look for Nicolette there. Paul suggests Leo could help, but David tersely says that Leo 'isn't involved in this'.
AARON: We could use the help, come on.
DAVID: We don't need anything from him.
PAUL: David, I know you're upset with him, but right now you need your family around you.
DAVID: I have family around me.
PAUL: David -
DAVID: Don't push it, Dad! You're lucky you're let inside this house (...) You started it all. You couldn't leave Nicolette alone - you had to keep picking at her, insulting her, using people against her. And now Aaron and I are missing a child. You and Leo can have each other.
Mackenzie helps Harlow with her computer woes in the office, then asks her how things are going with Brent.
HARLOW: Great, actually. He's settling into the army, and I think this experience has been really grounding for him.
MACKENZIE: Mm-hm. And how's the sexting?
HARLOW (smiles): No comment.
Harlow then gets an email from the estate agent who's handling the dodgy piece of land she and Paul were trying to trick the Quills into buying. It turns out the Quills have actually bought the land, despite Jesse knowing Lassiter's was onto him.
HARLOW: I don't get it! Jesse must've known that it was a set-up, so why is he letting his family purchase it?
Paul tells Jane and Terese that it was Pierce who suggested Leo keep tabs on Nicolette, not him. Jane is hurt that Paul was plotting against Nicolette, but Paul says it concerned the safety and wellbeing of David's family.
PAUL: Jane, I know that I have never made any bones about how I feel about Nicolette, but all I want is for her and the baby to be home safe.
David and Aaron come back in, and Paul tells everyone that he has hired private investigator John Wong to search for Nicolette, so that they'll be able to put it all behind them and 'move forward as a family'.
DAVID: Your idea of family is very different to mine.
David heads back out to keep looking for Nicolette himself, and Aaron follows him.
Jesse turns up to meet Harlow, who asks him why he let his family buy the land when he knew it was a 'dud'.
JESSE: It's my way of apologising to you and your family. I figured I should let Shay and Tom go bankrupt - they deserve it.
HARLOW: So you've turned on them now. After you've been doing their dirty work for weeks?
JESSE: It's been more than a few weeks, Harlow. I've been trying to impress my step-family ever since Mum married us into it. We got along when we were kids, but when Mum went to jail, things were never the same. Nothing I do makes them happy. Which I've started realising is a good thing. They're terrible people, Harlow. I don't want anything to do with them.
HARLOW: Do you think they'll realise that you screwed them over?
JESSE: Oh, yeah. I give it about a week (...) If I'm lucky, I'll be out on my backside. If I'm unlucky... but hey. It's worth it.
Chloe comes in; Aaron tells her Jane and David are out looking for Nicolette, with Paul and Terese. Aaron is searching Nicolette's social media for clues, even though she seldom uses it.
AARON: Where have you been?
CHLOE: With Leo.
AARON: Chloe, can you please tell me that you're not actually that callous?
CHLOE: He got punched in the face. I wanted to make sure he was okay.
AARON: Okay, and that is more important than looking for your own fiancée? Is it? No, no! What about me and David? Do you care that we're not okay?!
CHLOE: Of course I care, but you guys won't even talk to me!
AARON: I can't believe you're actually doing this again! Like, how many times are you going to self-destruct and take everyone down with you, Chlo?!
CHLOE: I don't do that!
AARON (shouting): No, you do, Chlo - that's bull! What about the time Mum had to remortgage her own house to cover your debts? Or the time you slept with your own brother's fiancée? Right? Or what about the time when you rushed into marriage with Pierce, only to torture him for months and months and months about whether you actually wanted to start a family with him?
CHLOE: Stop! (...) I didn't mean for any of this to happen! Look, I know you and David are perfect, but normal people in relationships have doubts, and they make mistakes!
AARON: No, no - normal, well-adjusted people, Chloe, they talk to each other. They don't just blow everything up behind them and then expect other people to clean up your mess! And you know what the worst thing is? Mum was so proud of you before she died. She actually thought you'd changed, she thought you grew up. I'm glad she isn't here to see this.
Aaron walks out, and Chloe looks upset.
Harlow and Mackenzie are having coffee and cake. Harlow admits she's feeling a little sorry for Jesse after what he told her about his family. Roxy turns up and sits down with them.
ROXY: What are we talking about?
ROXY: Eww. Why?
Mackenzie and Harlow explain he let the Quills buy the dodgy land, ostensibly to try and do the right thing. Harlow wonders whether he's 'not actually that bad of a person'.
ROXY: Do not let Auntie T hear you say that. She has had enough of that family for a lifetime.
But Harlow looks conflicted.
It's montage time again, with the same song from Wednesday. Aaron is cleaning in the kitchen as David comes in. Evidently having had no success looking for Nicolette, David flings his keys down angrily.
Paul is on the phone to John Wong, asking him to keep searching.
Chloe is at the gazebo. She's looking at a photo on her phone of her with her mum, Fay, and crying.
The Flamingo Bar
At the fire pit, Leo looks at his phone pensively, before walking off.
Aaron and David sit side-by-side on the sofa in silence, both looking despairing.
Leo comes to meet Chloe at the gazebo, and sits down with her. He assures her Aaron wouldn't have meant what he said to her, but Chloe's convinced he did.
CHLOE: Aaron's lost it at me for the stupid things I've done before, but... he's never looked at me like that.
LEO: Tensions are just high right now, okay? As soon as Dad's PI finds Nicolette, everything will calm down.
CHLOE: He's never gonna forgive me for putting him through this. And I'm never gonna get those words out of my head. I don't think you're the only person who's lost a brother today.
LEO: I guess we'll just have to look out for each other then, hey?
CHLOE: Makes sense, no-one else is going to.
She rests her head on his shoulder.
CHLOE: It's you and me against the world.
LEO: There's worse people to be universally hated with.
Chloe smiles, and doesn't back away as Leo slowly begins to lean in for a pash...
Coming up on Neighbours
- Levi and Ned get increasingly competitive around Amy - she tells them to 'play nice'
- Karl tells Susan that they can't just sit on the information they have
- Susan tells Sheila it's a difficult situation and 'Toadie should not be bothered with it'
- David tells Aaron, 'I really think she knows something'; he replies, 'Did she tell you that?'
- Chloe tells someone, 'When you feel ready, we can move past this'