Mike telling Jamie coldly that Henry might just lose Bronwyn if he's not careful...
Henry is in the kitchen as Madge and Harold sit at the table, Harold folding up the kilt he bought. Madge remarks that he won't have much chance to wear it again. Harold tells her that he intends keeping it for sentimental reasons. Madge asks him:
MADGE: Are you sure you're not *too* disappointed about all of this?
HAROLD (shrugs): I'm coming to terms with the situation. I've very happy to be put in touch with my past - and the mere fact that I am related to noble blood is really quite satisfying!
With that, Madge says she might head outside for some sun, and she walks out the back door. Harold goes to put his kilt in the bedroom. Bronwyn emerges from *her* bedroom and Henry asks:
HENRY: Speaking to me, yet?
BRONWYN (mutters): Just...
There's suddenly a knock on the front door and Bronwyn opens it to find Mike standing on the step. Henry looks at him in annoyance and then murmurs that he's sorry about before. Mike tells him to forget it. He then turns to Bronwyn and says she's got her exams coming up soon, and if she wants to do well he thinks she should step-up the study sessions. Henry stares at Mike. Bronwyn comments to Mike that he's got better things to do with his time, but Mike shrugs that he hasn't at the moment, so if she's free tomorrow... Henry says quickly:
HENRY: Bron, hang on a sec. Sunday's the only day we both have off. I was thinking we might be able to *do* something. One day isn't too much to ask, is it?
Mike shrugs that that's cool, and he tells Bronwyn he'll catch her on Monday. With that he heads out. Bronwyn turns to Henry and says she hopes he realises that since she's missing out tomorrow, she's going to have to work all the harder *today*. Henry tells her to go for it. Bronwyn heads back to her room, leaving Henry sighing heavily.
Toby and Katie are playing cards at the kitchen table. There's suddenly a knock at the front door and the two of them dash to answer it. A man is standing there and he says:
MAN: Doctor Marshall.
KATIE: No, I'm a bit too young to be a doctor, but she lives here!
The man explains that he's *got* something for Dr. Marshall. Katie says she'll take it, and the man hands her a box about a foot long. He then heads off. Katie turns to Toby and says she bets it's from Jonathan Whiting: he keeps on sending Beverly presents. A yapping suddenly emanates from the box and Katie puts it down and opens it to find a Chihuahua inside. She picks it up and starts cuddling it lovingly. Toby finds a note in the box and reads:
TOBY: 'Something smaller as requested. Love Jonathan.'
Katie sighs that she wishes they could keep him but Jim tells her she's got too many pets already. Toby suggests that they could keep him at *his* place and hide him in the storeroom: Joe and Jane hardly ever go down there! Katie agrees to this. She puts the dog back in the box. As she does so, Toby asks:
TOBY: What do we call him?
KATIE: I don't know. How about 'Cujo', like in the movies?!
TOBY: That's a top name!
With that, Katie tells Toby to walk in front of her and they'll carry the box between them.
Bronwyn is trying to work at the kitchen table, but is distracted by Joe talking to Henry by the counter. She stands up and mutters that she might study in the bedroom for a while. She walks off, leaving Joe to ask Henry what's wrong. Henry sighs that he's in the doghouse. He goes on that he can't figure it: Mike's some sort of hero and *he's* the biggest villain in the world because he wants to spend time with his girlfriend. Joe insists that it won't last forever. Henry heads through to the lounge room as Harold comes into the kitchen. Joe smiles at him:
JOE: Hello, Harry! Getting used to having me as a son-in-law?!
HAROLD: Well... somewhat! Although I would be much happier if you bought Kerry an engagement ring.
JOE: Oh, fair go, I *offered*.
HAROLD: Oh ho ho yes, I can imagine. What: something out of a cereal packet, eh?
JOE: Look, I'm the innocent party. Kerry won't have a bar of it: she reckons she'll feel like a branded cow.
HAROLD (coolly): How very convenient - for *you*.
With that, Harold heads out the back to join Madge. Joe marches through to the lounge room and rants at Henry:
JOE: It's like that, is it? I think I've been very good about this, Henry, very good indeed - but being called a cheapskate by a tight-fisted turkey like the Bishop... Oh well: Kerry's getting a ring whether she wants one or not!
With that, Joe marches out!
Kerry is potting-up some plants at the table as Mike sits at the kitchen counter, playing with one of Jamie's rattles. He's clearly annoying Kerry, though, and she suggests he go and play some music, or go out, as he might find some mates at the Waterhole. Mike mutters:
MIKE: Fat chance of *that*.
Kerry sighs that whatever problems he's having with Des and Jane have got nothing to do with *her*, except she's sharing the house and she'd like to speak now and again without getting her head bitten off. Mike tells her:
MIKE: I'm just still annoyed about the engagement, I guess.
KERRY: Well, life goes on. Find *another* focus for your emotions.
MIKE (muses): You know, I think I might've just *done* that...
KERRY: Yeah? New girl?
KERRY (smiles): Well, come on, tell me about her. Who is she? Where did you meet her? When are you going to be an item?!
MIKE: Slow down! It's just someone I know - but there could be a few problems.
KERRY: Big ones?
MIKE: Nothing I can't handle, I don't think.
KERRY: That's good. Positive attitude: I like that.
Mike stands up and says he might take Kerry up on her suggestion and go to the Waterhole. As he heads to the door, Kerry tells him to hang in there where that girl's concerned.
Toby and Katie come in through the back door, Toby saying Cujo can have a run round in the backyard whenever his dad's at work. Katie asks warily if he'll get on with Bouncer, but Toby insists that they'll be great mates! Joe arrives home at that moment and tells the kids:
JOE: Come and have a gander at *this*.
He goes and sits at the table and shows Toby and Katie a ring in a case. Katie stares at the ring and exclaims that it's ginormous! She suddenly hears Cujo barking outside, but to cover the noise she starts coughing herself. Joe looks at her and tells her to take it easy. Katie asks if she can try the ring on. As Joe hands it over, Toby says:
TOBY: I've never seen Kerry wear a ring like *that* before.
JOE: That's 'cos she's never been *engaged* before, you wombat!
TOBY: Do you reckon she'll like it?
JOE: Look, how could she *not* like that? It's a work of art. I reckon I might take it over to her right now.
With that, Joe stands up. As he heads out, Cujo starts barking again, so Katie coughs loudly to cover it. Joe goes and gets her a glass of water, saying she sounds terrible. He heads out, leaving Katie to sigh at Toby that that was close.
A short time later, Kerry is staring down at the ring, an upset look on her face. She tells Joe seriously:
KERRY: Joe, you shouldn't've.
JOE (grins): That's what they *all* say. Means you love it!
KERRY: No - not exactly. I mean it's lovely, but—
JOE: What's the problem? The rock's big enough, isn't it?
KERRY: Joe, I don't *want* it.
JOE: But just—
KERRY: Don't start. I told you before: I don't believe in symbols of ownership.
JOE: I *know* that. It's just that everyone's starting to make me feel like a goose: Hilary... your old man...
KERRY: What's more important? What *they* think or what *I* think?
JOE: Well... *you*!
Kerry smiles that they know they love each other, so why do something against her principles just to please other people? Joe sighs heavily.
Bronwyn is sitting studying at the kitchen table. Henry walks over slowly and apologises for disturbing her before. Bronwyn doesn't look interested. Henry starts to say:
HENRY: He's getting Kerry an engagement ring.
Bronwyn, however, explodes suddenly:
BRONWYN: For Pete's sake, Henry.
HENRY: What? What did I do?
BRONWYN: You're driving me *crazy*.
HENRY: I didn't *mean* to.
BRONWYN: You've been at me *all day*: in and out of Des's... hassling Mike... you won't let me study with him tomorrow and you're not going to let me concentrate *now*.
HENRY: I'm *sorry*, all right? It's just that we never seem to have any time together lately: you're always off with Mike.
BRONWYN: He's only trying to help...
HENRY: I know. It just makes me feel worse because I'm not smart enough to.
There's suddenly a knock at the front door and, looking irritated at the interruption, Henry goes to answer it. He finds Kerry on the step and she asks if Harold's at home. Henry tells him that he's out the back. She heads through. When they're alone again, Henry says to Bronwyn gently:
HENRY: These exams of yours... they're really important to you, aren't they?
BRONWYN (nods): They mean a lot to me. I'm not *totally* insensitive. I'll try and spend some more time with you, even if it does mean missing out on some study. OK?
With that, she kisses Henry on the head and then returns to her books
Back yard of No. 24
Kerry is standing with Madge, who asks if she and Harold can borrow Sky this evening, as Harold's still a bit down and it would do him good. Harold joins them and the three of them sit down at the garden table. Kerry then says bluntly:
KERRY: Dad... did you tell Joe to buy me an engagement ring?
HAROLD: No, of course not! Well... perhaps I did *hint* a little...
KERRY: Well, he's gone and done it - and I'm not very happy about it.
KERRY: Well, we'd been through the whole thing in great detail. He knew how I felt.
MADGE (pointedly): And how Joe felt about it didn't matter, I take it?
Kerry looks down as Madge presses:
MADGE: Well, did it?
KERRY (admits): No, I suppose it doesn't.
Madge tells Kerry that in a relationship - and particularly in a marriage - it's a matter of compromise: you have to consider the other person's point of view. Harold tells his daughter that she'll never establish a fully loving marriage if Joe thinks she's all take and no give. Kerry sighs:
KERRY: I know - but for *me* it's a matter of principle.
MADGE (shrugs): Maybe it is for Joe, too.
Harold points out that Madge didn't want to up stakes and move to Scotland, but she was willing to leave her friends and family because she knew how happy it would make *him* - and to *his* way of thinking, that's what real principles are all about.
Kerry sits there looking thoughtful.
Toby and Katie are sitting stroking Cujo at the kitchen counter. Katie asks Toby if he reckons his dad will miss the plate of meat they're feeding the dog, but Toby tells her that he never really notices what's in the 'fridge. The two of them hear the front door bang suddenly, and they dash and hide Cujo and the plate of meat in the cupboard under the kitchen sink! Joe comes in and says:
JOE: I'm calm, OK? I'm not happy, but I'm calm. I didn't come straight home because I didn't want to take it out on you - it wouldn't've been fair - so I walked around the block a couple of times.
Toby asks if Kerry didn't like the ring. Joe sighs that you'd think he'd asked her to wear a pair of handcuffs! A scratching sound starts up suddenly and Joe asks what the noise is. Toby and Katie tell him that it's mice, probably. Joe says they've got a trap. He goes to head under the sink to get it, but Toby says quickly that it's in the laundry. Joe heads out there to look for it. As soon as he's gone, Katie and Toby head under the sink and Toby tells Katie to take Cujo to *his* room.
Mike rides up the street on his motorbike. As he climbs off, Henry dashes over to him from No. 24. He says:
HENRY: About earlier: I, er, I was just sort of, you know...
HENRY: I keep forgetting how important Bronny's education is to her, and I get a bit selfish about her time. She really does need to study tomorrow - if your offer's still open, that is.
MIKE: Yeah, well, it is.
HENRY (exclaims): Great! She'll be stoked! And you're doing a great job too, mate. She really feels like it's all coming together.
Mike tells Henry that Bronwyn should come over at about 10am. Henry smiles that she'll be there. With that, he dashes back off to No. 24, leaving Mike standing with a sly smile on his face...
Joe is looking in the 'fridge when Kerry appears at the back door and asks if she can come in. She tells him that she's been doing a bit of thinking. She goes on:
KERRY: There are certain values that I hold pretty special.
JOE: Tell me about it!
KERRY: But I was beginning to think that *my* values were more special than anyone else's...
JOE (sarcastically): Go on...!
KERRY: I don't approve of wearing engagement rings - but I can see how important it is to *you*.
JOE: Look, I don't want to *own* you, mate; I just want you to be proud of marrying me.
KERRY (softly): Oh, I *am* proud. I know I've got to compromise sometimes...
JOE: I'll drink to that!
KERRY: So... I'll wear your ring.
JOE (beams): Fair dinkum?!
KERRY (nods): Fair dinkum!
Joe takes the ring case out of his pocket and places the ring on Kerry's finger - only to find that it's a bit loose. Kerry suggests that maybe she shouldn't wear the ring until it's sized. Joe, however, grins:
JOE: Barely got it on you and you're trying to take it off again!
He then says more seriously that he's got the house to himself tonight. Kerry tells him that Madge has asked to take Sky. Looking pleased, Joe suggests they have a romantic, candle-lit dinner for two. Kerry asks:
KERRY: What have you got in the 'fridge?
JOE: A humungous steak! Well, I *did* have - it's gone west.
Kerry smiles that she'll pop down to the shops and get some fresh veggies. Joe says:
JOE: If it means eating with *you*, even vegetables sound good!
Kerry asks if she can take the ute, and Joe tells her that the keys are by the 'phone. She heads out. Joe then returns to the 'fridge and looks inside. He murmurs to himself:
JOE: Surely Toby's not eating raw meat?!
It's evening-time. Harold is sitting with Sky on the couch, reading her a story while Madge does some sewing. Harold smiles at Madge that he'd have *missed* Sky if they'd gone to Scotland. Madge tells him that everything happens for the best. Harold, however, says:
HAROLD: No, not everything: I'm afraid I may have lost my place in the church choir.
MADGE: Not necessarily: Reverend Sampson doesn't even know we're staying on, yet.
HAROLD: True, true, yes.
MADGE: We can sort it all out tomorrow.
HAROLD: Oh I hope so, Madge, I really do.
Joe is pouring a glass of wine for Kerry as he tells her that a bloke *needs* red meat: it's important! Kerry retorts that, nutritionally, it's irrelevant. Joe, however, insists that, since the dawn of time, when cavemen used to go out and hunt their food, men have needed meat! Kerry takes a casserole dish out of the oven and puts it on the table. She takes off her oven gloves and then lifts up Joe's plate with her left hand. As she does so, though, Joe asks:
JOE: Where's your ring?
KERRY (looking at her hand): What? I had it *before*.
JOE: I only gave it to you a couple of hours ago.
KERRY: Well, it must be around here *somewhere*.
JOE (mutters): Flamin' careless.
Joe goes to look in the oven for the ring as Kerry retorts that he *knew* it was too big, but he insisted that she wear it. Joe looks in the freezer and the 'fridge as Kerry tells him that it'll turn up. Joe, however, says curtly:
JOE: Oh yeah? What if it doesn't? I mean, it's very convenient for *you*, isn't it, considering you didn't want it in the first place.
KERRY (aghast): I didn't throw it away or anything.
JOE: Oh, I wouldn't put it *past* you.
Kerry glares at Joe and snaps that she's sure that ring cost him a lot of money and means *more* to him than money - but when it comes down to it, it *is* only a piece of jewellery: just metal and rocks. Joe snaps back:
JOE: That's all your *wedding* ring's going to mean to you, is it? Just a bit of metal and rock?
KERRY: Come on, Joe, let's not argue—
JOE (angrily): Look, if this is the way you think about it, I think we should reconsider this whole marriage caper.
KERRY: You're damn *right* we should. But just remember: it was your idea in the first place.
With that, Kerry storms out of the kitchen, slamming the door behind her. Joe yells after her:
JOE: Yeah, well, I'm starting to think it's not one of my *better* ideas.
He stands there, an expression of disbelief on his face.