Madge asking Henry how she can tell Gloria that her son's ashamed of her.
Office of the Robinson Corporation
Kevin buzzes through from reception to tell Gail that he has a call from a Jane Harris in London. Gail takes the call and asks how Mrs. Mangel is. She listens and then remarks that at least she's making progress. She asks Jane when they're likely to see her again. She looks disappointed at the answer. Jane asks who the guy was who answered the 'phone and Gail tells her that it's just a temp. After passing on her regards, she says her goodbyes and hangs up. Paul asks immediately:
PAUL: So how *is* Mrs. Mang--; Mrs. Worthington, I mean?
GAIL: Well, she's off the danger list, but it's going to be a couple of weeks before she'll be discharged, so we won't see Jane until then.
Paul then asks Gail why she told Jane that Kevin's 'just a temp'. Gail retorts that Jane is looking forward to coming back; she can't tell her that someone else has taken her job. Paul, however, insists that Jane has still *got* a job - especially if Gail is cutting down her hours. Gail points out that Jane ran the whole business while they were away; she won't be happy making cups of tea. There's suddenly a knock on the door and Kevin comes in with some tenders for the air conditioning. He then announces that he's going to get on with the insurance valuation. Paul reminds him about the drinks at his and Gail's place later, and Kevin smiles that he'll be there. He heads out, leaving Gail to mutter:
GAIL: Yeah, I *bet* he'll be there: no show without Punch.
Paul points out to Gail that she can't deny Kevin isn't doing a good job. Gail doesn't look impressed.
Outside the Coffee Shop
Sharon and Nick sit down at a table and Bronwyn walks over and asks her sister what she's doing there: isn't she supposed to be grounded? Sharon retorts that she's only grounded when she gets home from school and it's going to take her *ages* tonight! She picks up a menu and smiles that she'll let Bronwyn know when she's ready. Bronwyn glares at her and walks off. When she's gone, Sharon snaps at Nick:
SHARON: She's so smart, pinching my job. *I'll* teach her a lesson she won't forget in a hurry.
Nick asks Sharon if she isn't going a bit overboard, but Sharon retorts that *she's* not the one who *started* it. Nick suggests that Sharon be an adult and *finish* it, but Sharon insists that she's going give her dear sister a really hard time over this one. She asks Nick if he's with her, but he retorts that it's gone past a joke. Sharon then spots Ian and Linda - two guys from school - walking across the complex and tells Nick that *they'll* help her.
Harold pours Madge another coffee and Madge smiles that he's a wonder! She adds that she was so thrilled that they could lend Henry that money. She then sips her coffee, staring into the distance, and Harold asks if something's wrong. Madge explains about Dean being ashamed of Gloria and Rob, and being worried about Gloria embarrassing him. She adds that, in a way, she can see Dean's point of view. Harold says he knows Rob can be a bit abrasive and Gloria can be a bit rough around the edges, but you should 'honour thy father and thy mother'.
MADGE (grimly): Yeah, well, I think Dean's quite prepared to honour them as long as they stay at home.
She then looks at her watch and sighs that she promised she'd talk to Gloria. She tells Harold to wish her luck.
Paul is sitting in the comfy chairs in the reception area. Gail emerges from the main office and Paul remarks to her that the air conditioning tenders are a bit more expensive than he expected - even the lowest one. Gail just shrugs that it has to be done. Paul then walks over to Gail and puts his arms around her, asking how she feels. She sighs that she's felt better: it's nerves, she thinks, waiting to see if she's pregnant or not.
PAUL: I bet you anything by this time next week that you'll be getting morning sickness.
GAIL: I hope so. I don't think I can take too many more disappointments.
The two of them head back into the office and Paul suggests that they take an early mark and go and get things ready for the party at home. Gail muses that she wouldn't worry about Kevin tonight: she's sure he'll ingratiate himself with anyone who can help him up the corporate ladder. Paul, however, insists that Kevin is worth his weight in gold - and when Gail's results are positive, *he's* going to need somebody who can deliver the goods while she's out of action.
GAIL (sighs): Fair enough. I won't say another word.
She doesn't look convinced, though.
Madge is preparing some afternoon tea as Gloria enthuses that all the firm's bigwigs are going to be there. Madge asks her if she's sure she and Rob aren't going to be disappointed tonight, but Gloria asks why they'd be disappointed. Madge suggests that it could be very boring, with those stuffy old fogies and their toffee-nosed wives.
GLORIA: Oh, no worries *there*. I'll get a kick just out of seeing my boy hobnobbing with them types - 'cos he's as good as *any* of them.
Madge says quickly that she wouldn't disagree for a moment - but she asks carefully whether Gloria thinks it's a good idea to mollycoddle him. She adds that it might be a better idea to let Dean handle the party on his own. Gloria, however, chuckles that Madge doesn't have to be worried about that: it'll be Dean's night; she and Rob would be the *last* ones to try and upstage him.
MADGE: Oh, I know you wouldn't do *that* - [more quietly] not *intentionally*, anyway...
Gloria says sincerely that she and Dean have been working to get Dean into a good law firm for years; she can't miss out on his moment of glory *now*. Madge then says warily:
MADGE: If I may just make a suggestion, though...: that outfit: do you really think it's appropriate?
GLORIA (aghast): Have you got any idea how much it *cost*?
MADGE: Oh I'm sure it didn't come cheap.
GLORIA: *None* of it come cheap, let me tell you.
With that, Gloria announces that she has to leave, and Madge goes to the door with her. Gloria heads out and Madge murmurs to herself:
MADGE: I tried, Dean. God knows I tried...
Outside the Coffee Shop
Bronwyn heads over to the table where Sharon is sitting with Nick, Ian and Linda. Sharon, however, stands up and announces that she has to rush. She walks off and goes and hides behind the side wall of the Coffee Shop as her mates ask for the made-up ice cream flavours Strawberry Roman Fudge Delight and Passion Fruit Banana Surprise. Bronwyn writes the orders down, looking puzzled. She then heads back inside and Sharon marches back over to her friends, demanding to know if that's the best they could come up with. Ian assures her that they're just starting to warm up. The three of them head over to the window of the Coffee Shop kitchen and giggle as Bronwyn unloads the freezer. Nick remains at the table, looking less than impressed. Bronwyn comes back outside and Sharon hides again. She tells Ian and Linda that they seem to be out of the flavours they asked for.
IAN: How slack.
LINDA: What sort of shop *is* this?
Nick gets up and walks off, looking disgusted. He passes Sharon and glares at her, but she clearly doesn't care.
Paul welcomes Mandy - a member of the hotel staff - to the party and offers her a drink. Madge is talking to Gail about how she wished she never got involved in the situation with Dean and Gloria. Gail nods that she can see Dean's point of view to a certain extent - but then he *can* be a bit of a snob when he wants to be. Paul joins them and offers them a refill. Madge accepts. Paul then comments that he thought Kevin would've been there by now, but it looks like he's going to be the last to arrive.
GAIL: Maybe the man likes to make an entrance...?
Mandy calls over that there was a message at reception: Kevin will be a bit late because whatever he was doing was taking longer than he expected. Paul looks pointedly at Gail and remarks that at least Kevin's conscientious enough to finish the job at hand.
Outside the Coffee Shop
Sharon watches from her hiding place as Bronwyn serves Ian and Linda with a new order. Linda looks in her sandwich and asks where her cucumber is. Bronwyn tells her that she didn't *ask* for any, but Linda retorts that she asked for *extra*. Ian tells Bronwyn that there's salt all over his sandwich, but he asked for pepper. Linda bites into her sandwich and snaps that she asked for butter and the sandwich has got margarine in it. Harold emerges from the shop as Bronwyn cries that she can't have got *both* their orders wrong: she followed exactly what was in her book. Harold asks Bronwyn if everything's all right. Bronwyn nods that it is - sort of. She then tells Ian and Linda that she'll do their sandwiches again, if it'll make them happy, and she heads back inside. Sharon walks over to Ian and Linda, smiling that they were brilliant.
LINDA: I think she is starting to crack.
SHARON: You're not wrong. A bit more of this and she'll be really sorry she ever pinched my job.
Outside Lassiter's Hotel
Harold is passing the entrance to the hotel when he passes Kevin emerging from the building. He comments to Kevin that Paul has got him hard at work, and Kevin explains that he's just doing a valuation. Harold remarks that *he* used to do valuations once, too, in another life: farms... stock... machinery... part of the job was to put a value on all the different properties that came onto their books: very interesting work. Kevin nods that *he* likes it.
HAROLD: Even if it does take you out of the social whirl, eh?
KEVIN (blankly): Eh?
HAROLD: The cocktail party: I understood it was more or less on your behalf.
KEVIN: Yeah, I guess so. I'll be heading off there shortly. I, er, don't think I'll add much joy to the proceedings: unfortunately, I've got some bad news for them.
With that, Kevin walks off. Harold stands there looking surprised.
Paul opens the front door to find Gloria on the step. She heads inside and tells Paul that Rob is running late as usual so she thought she'd come by and show off her frock. She walks over to Gail and asks what she thinks. Gail stares at the short dress covered in bows and flowers and says hesitantly:
GAIL: It's... it's very you, Gloria, but I would've thought people dress a bit more conservatively at that type of function.
GLORIA: *They* might, but I never do *anything* conservatively. It's just another word for 'boring'!
Madge points out that she doesn't want to take the glory away from Dean. Gloria, however, insists that she and Rob will just get a glass of bubbly, and maybe she'll get into the boss's ear and talk him into making Dean a junior partner! With that, she goes to get herself a drink. Madge murmurs to Gail that they're not going to talk her out of going. Gail suggests that they could at least see if they can do something about the dress. The two of them walk over to Gloria and Gail tells her that she really thinks the dress would suit her better without all the trimmings: the bows and flowers. Gloria, however, insists that she likes it the way it is: it sort of makes her stand out in a crowd.
MADGE: Yes, well that's just the point, you see: it *is* Dean's night, and you wouldn't want to em—
She breaks off as she realises what she's started saying. She sighs as she concludes:
MADGE: ...embarrass him.
Gloria stares at Madge and asks what's going on. Madge admits reluctantly that she's been talking to Dean at the Waterhole. Gloria cries:
GLORIA: He don't want me to go, does he? ... He doesn't think I'm good enough.
Tears start to well in her eyes as she sobs:
GLORIA: He's *ashamed* of me.
With that, she rushes for the front door and heads out. Madge and Gail look at each other in concern.
Bronwyn is working in the kitchen when Harold walks in and asks what that kerfuffle was with that young lot before: he got the distinct impression that there was a mix-up with the orders. Bronwyn sighs that she doesn't know how it happened: she thought she wrote down exactly what they wanted. Harold pleads with her tersely not to make mistakes: if the customers go away unhappy, they're not likely to come back again.
Nick is sitting throwing stones into the lake when Sharon walks over and comments that it's not like him to pike out. Nick retorts that he's not interested in giving Bronwyn a hard time. He adds that it's time Sharon faced a few facts: she blew it with the job. With that, he stands up and walks off.
Gail asks Madge sympathetically what they can do about Gloria. Madge shrugs that they should just be there if she needs them. She adds that she could wring Dean's neck for involving her in this. At the front door, Paul is letting Kevin in, and he asks for everyone's attention. He then says:
PAUL: I'd like to introduce our newest member of staff, Kevin Harvey.
KEVIN: Hello everyone.
PAUL: Kevin's going to be working directly with Gail and myself, and I'm sure you'll all be as impressed with his work as we are.
Gail rolls her eyes! Paul then tells everyone to carry on enjoying the food and drink and he'll bring Kevin round to introduce them formally. As those gathered start talking again, Kevin takes Paul to one side and asks if they can have a little chat before they start shaking everybody's hand. Gail joins the two men out in the kitchen area and listens as Kevin says:
KEVIN: When I was doing the valuation today, I ran into a bit of a problem.
Paul asks him if he means the damp.
KEVIN (looking surprised): You know about it?
PAUL: Yeah, yeah, I've been meaning to get it looked at.
KEVIN: Well you better hurry, mate: it's pretty serious.
PAUL: It's not *that* bad, surely?
KEVIN: Look, what you've got is a bad case of concrete cancer. Because of the water penetration, the whole structural system is, well, to say the least, suspect.
Gail asks Kevin if he isn't exaggerating just a touch. Kevin, however, retorts that he isn't: they can call in a structural engineer if they like, but he'll say the same thing. He adds:
KEVIN: You've got a major problem on your hands, Paul, and it's going to cost you a fortune to fix it.
Paul looks at Gail in concern.
Bronwyn is putting plates away in the kitchen cupboard, loudly, when Sharon walks in airily and asks if something's wrong. Bronwyn retorts that Harold just got stuck into her for messing up some orders; it wouldn't normally bother her, but it did - she's been really careful. She heads out into the main shop and Sharon follows her, saying:
SHARON: I'm sorry if they gave you a hard time. I didn't mean for it to go that far; I—
BRONWYN (turning and glaring at her sister): You didn't mean *what* to go that far?
SHARON (meekly): Well... I kind of organised for some of my—
BRONWYN (angrily): Are you saying this was some kind of *joke*?
SHARON: It just seemed like a good idea at the time...
Bronwyn explodes at Sharon that she can't believe her, sometimes. Sharon retorts that it wasn't very loyal of Bronwyn to take her job. Bronwyn, however points out that Sharon had already been *sacked*; it was a *vacancy*. She goes on bitterly:
BRONWYN: The only *other* vacancy in this shop is between your *ears*.
SHARON: That's not very nice.
BRONWYN: No, you messed it up. Now stop blaming everyone else and wear it - and in the meantime, don't bother calling yourself my sister, because as far as I'm concerned you're not. I don't want anything more to do with you, Sharon.
Sharon stands there, looking astonished.