Janae calling Glenn aka. CuteGirlFromTassie™ telling her to stay away from Boyd
Steph telling Toadie she loves him
Elle tells Janae she's found Max and that he's living with another woman
Night time outside Max's new house
Janae walks up to the front gate of Max's new house and takes out a photo of the Hoylands. For some reason this photo only has Steph, Max, Charlie and Boyd in it, but no Summer. Hmm, I wonder why she didn't grab a pic in which Summer is there too considering she's Max's daughter and all so kind of important to the family? Janae puts a post-it saying 'Remember us?' on the photo and then I notice how she's wearing a watch that looks just like the one Lyn wore in 5050, except Lyn's was brown. (/random)
Opening the front gate, Janae quietly runs up to the front door to place the photo on the steps, but just then the lights inside the house go on so she quickly runs back out again, the gate slamming shut behind her. She hides around the corner, out of sight for MaxInPyjamas™ who walks out the door and out onto the garden pathway. MaxInPyjamas™ then walks back inside again when he can't see any trespassers and Janae tears up the photo.
Boyd walks out of the office without looking up and bumps into Stinger. Boydie nearly dropped the eggs and other random stuff he was holding, but luckily the clearly empty egg carton escaped unharmed which is good considering he needs them for some special Japanese custard whose-name-I-can't-pronounce that he's making Janae. Stinger points out that his sister's favourite meal is Aussie pizza which means Boydie must be trying to suck up to her if he's cooking her fancy stuff. Boyd says he and the wife are having a few issues at the moment. Stinger tells him to just call a pizza place to place an order next time he wants to suck up and Boyd says he'll keep that in mind and leaves.
NedInASuit™ is at the bar ordering some tickets when Pepper comes in and with his incredible radar for when things are wrong he picks up that something's going on with her. Pepper says it's just school stuff- she's helping Susan revamp the school newspaper since the guy who did it last year completely screwed up. Pepper wants to know why Ned's wearing a suit but he just gives an evasive answer and leaves.
Toadie's trying to get out of bed just as Steph comes in with Charlie in the pram. Steph reminds Toadie that the doc said he should rest but he says he needs to try it. He only gets as far as swinging the legs over the side of the bed before he has to lie back down.
STEPH: Not too much too soon, it's all about patience.
TOADIE: You want to talk to me about patience. I've had to put up with Mum and Dad 24/7!
Steph says he'll probably miss his parents now they've gone back to Colac and anyway, Angie's left Steph in charge so she'll make sure he gets better. She leans in to kiss him, but Toadie pulls away. Steph wants to know what's wrong and Toadie explains how it's driving him nuts the way his Mum cries all the time all the while his Dad just holds it all in.
The Home of the Kinskis and a Kennedy
Pepper's telling Susan about her ideas for the Opinion page in the school paper. They could let both students and teachers have a say on there. For example, Pepper would be more than happy to write several pages about the importance of fitness... There's a knock on the door and what do you know- it's FarmerKarl™ holding a cage with a rooster in it! Wow, that was waaay down my list of what would be there when Suse opened the door! Karl walks straight in and puts the cage on the kitchen table, gladly announcing that there are another three hens to come in as well.
KARL: Our living, breathing egg machines!
SUSAN: Where are we gonna put them?
KARL: In our brand new chicken dome of course!
SUSAN: Of course! Silly me!
With Susan and Pepper still in shock over the fact that there's now a rooster in a cage on the no. 28 kitchen table, Karl grabs the clipboard and pen Susan has been using to take notes about the school paper and draws a picture of what this new chicken dome is going to look like.
KARL: If you put chickens in a traditional square enclosure they tend to gang up and they'll pick the weakest chicken into the corner...
SUSAN: I know how they feel!
KARL: Now you put them in a dome, there are no corners... The hens are a lot happier and produce more eggs.
Wow, I never knew I wanted to know this much about hen enclosures, yet somehow I feel like my life is much more complete now! Thanks, Karl!
As if he has a certain quota of words that he needs to say each minute, Karl just keeps talking and mentions that today he's also sold one of the cars. They don't need the second car anyway plus this means they can change the heating system in the house to one based on solar power as well as them getting a new compost...
KARL: Why waste our waste?
That's what Susan and Pepper (and me!) are asking themselves right now as Karl takes the so far unnamed rooster (what's the betting it'll get a cheesy name before we know it just like all other animals) out to meet Chop. Pepper comments on how scruffy-looking Karl has become, but at least, she says, he doesn't smell yet. Susan reckons the latter issue is borderline though.
Stinger's come over to visit his cousin and tells Toadie and Steph about Harold giving Sky the cold shoulder. They realise she's been gone for quite a bit so Steph volunteers to go looking for her, giving the two cousins a chance to talk. Stinger picks up on Toadie being unusually quiet and wants to know if he's really feeling better after all. Toadie then admits that it's 'this thing' with him and Steph that's 'taking up real estate in his mind' (as Paul called it when Lyn was absent-minded at work, thinking about Susan and Karl's love dramas in 4976). Max has after all just been gone a couple of months and people are going to be talking a lot about Toadie moving in with Steph. Um, excuse me, Toad, but you've already lived at no. 32 before, I think people are going to care about you moving back in just as little as they cared when Karl moved back into no. 28.
STINGER: You love Steph! Who cares what other people think?
TOADIE: Yeah, maybe I do.
STINGER: Oh bull!
TOADIE: You know, I think it'd just be easier for everyone if I just backed off a bit.
STINGER: Easier for who?
TOADIE: The last thing Steph needs is a boyfriend in a wheelchair!
Just then Steph comes back in with Sky and Kerry in her pram. Stinger puts his arm around Sky and the cheers from the Official Skray Shipper Society (the OSSS) are so loud I can even hear them from here now. Toadie picks up on it and says he didn't know his cousin and Sky were an item. They both deny it as Stinger takes his arm down again, but all OSSS members know that's a blatant lie since they've been meticulously taking notes on the signs of SkrayLovin'™ for years now. The two non-lovers for now decide to leave the awkward situation they ended up in which leaves Steph and Toadie behind to talk about them. Steph asks what they should get up to now to entertain themselves- watch telly or do the quiz in the paper? Toadie's not really interested though and suggests Steph takes Charlie home and let him sleep instead.
The Home of the Kinskis and the Kennedy
FarmerKarl™ comes back inside, his shoes covered in mud, happily announcing to Susan that 'the chickens have been domed', yeah, as in they're now in The Dome™ out in the garden. Susan's not very excited though, but that's not because of the chickens but because she just cleaned the floor today and now it's got not-so-nice muddy footprints all over it. That thing Pepper said about Karl not smelling is also a thing of the past it seems since Karl has spent his time fertilizing the vegetable garden with manure and he now smells like it too. Susan hands him the floor cleaning detergent and tells him to clean up after himself, but he just has this gadget he needs to show her first- a 'voice recorder movement center' that will keep Audrey away from the chickens! Susan is a bit surprised since she thought they'd be safe in The Dome™, but Karl says it's just an extra precaution to ensure their protection. He plays the tape in the recorder which makes Audrey perk her ears.
"Audrey, step away from the chooks! Repeat, step away from the chooks!"
Susan's sceptical as to the efficiency of this. Karl reminds her about what Dr. Little said regarding Audrey and who she sees as the leader of her pack, so he wants Susan to record a message to make sure that it's one that Audrey will listen and adhere to. He presses the record button on the tape recorder and holds it up so Susan can record her message. Aaaaaaand, action!
SUSAN: Audrey, break into The Dome™ and make chicken nuggets! Repeat, make chicken nuggets!
This order makes Audrey jump off the couch and run out to the garden. Hehe.
Karl realises Suse isn't even trying to take this seriously but doesn't get a chance to do much about it because Steph comes around wanting to have a chat with Susan. Suse happily grabs little CharlieInClothes™ who's in his Mum's arms and excuses herself over the terrible smell in the house explaining how it's just Karl that's been playing with manure. Oh my, so many mentions of manure and not a single reference back to Sarah Beaumont! I guess the non-existing continuity department can be blamed for that one!
Steph says she misses Lyn a lot and having her to talk to. Susan picks up on Steph's need for sympathy and correctly guesses the problem is Toadie. Steph explains how distant Toadie has been towards her lately and says it's like he doesn't want to know her anymore. Susan reminds her that Toadie has a lot on his plate at the moment, especially with the tricky situation regarding his back. Steph says she thought he was going to be OK. Uh-oh, it seems Susie Q put her foot in it now. Steph picks up on the fact that Susan knows something that she doesn't and that it's serious.
STEPH: Susan, you've got to tell me!
SUSAN: It's not my place to say!
Yeah, like that's ever stopped you before! Excuse me Suse, but I think you need to be reminded of a certain letter that you wrote to Stingray telling him about the paternity of Sky's baby among other things. Geez, and people say Lyn and Zeke are bad at keeping secrets when you're almost as bad as them!
Karl steps in and explains how there's a fragment of a bullet still in Toadie's back which the surgeons didn't want to operate on since it's so close to the spinal cord. If that fragment moves then it might even cause Toadie to die. Steph doesn't quite know how to respond.
Ramsay Street in the middle of the night
A very loud cock-a-doodle-doo is heard and then there's a voiceover thing happening as we see a stock photo of no. 28 at night.
SUSAN: (groaning) Urgh, it's not even dawn!
KARL: (sleepily) He must be an early riser...
SUSAN: (suddenly interested) Oh. Oh, and he's not the only one...
OMG, such filth!
Cut to a stock photo of no. 30 with someone walking past a lit-up window.
PEPPER: Damn that dirty hippie!
Cut to a stock photo of no. 24 where the lights outside are suddenly switched on and Kerry is screaming.
HAROLD: Damn that rooster!
Cut to a stock photo of no. 24, 26 and 28.
SKY or JANAE (it's hard to tell who it is): Damn, Karl!
Kerry screams again.
Hmm, I guess the Robinsons and the Hoylands are all heavy sleepers that the rooster didn't wake them up then since their houses aren't even in the shot.
The road outside the Grease Monkey's and the Garage the next morning
Boyd and Janae are walking down the street hand in hand talking about Karl's rooster. Janae reckons he should seek a permit to be able to have it. Boyd says he didn't mind the early start though and reminds Janae that she didn't either. I guess that means Boyd's an early riser too then. *wink, wink, nudge, nudge*
They kiss and Boyd says he's glad they were able to sort things out the night before so that Tassie is now all behind them and Janae replies that Tassie's not even in their vocab anymore! Boyd reminds her that not many wives would be able to forgive and forget so easily. Janae says she knows Boyd was just confused over Max at the time so they should just leave it there. Erm, excuse me but don't you know you shouldn't say stuff like that since it always comes back to haunt you! I bet The Angst™ in the form of Tassie-related stuff is just waiting around the corner to announce it's comeback because this kind of stuff always happens. Plus, you're Hoylands, you should know by now that angst is something you can't ever escape from.
As they come up to the garage they agree to meet up for lunch later and just as Boyd's about to leave they notice some graffiti on the wall of the garage building. We don't get to see what it says, but apparently it's got something to do with Chris being gay and it's not something positive either. Boyd wonders who would write something like that and Janae says she's got a fair idea of who it is.
The Home of the Kinskis and a Kennedy
Susan arrives home with a big bag of groceries and FarmerKarl™ asks her how she went. She explains how Zeke hardly said a word, how they called Rachel who cried on the phone and that Katya is putting on a brave face even though she's very stressed. Katya's not the only one who's stressed though because so is Suse as well as having the added joy of being very tired thanks to her 4am wake up call. Karl says he's got something for her that might perk her up though and holds up a little jar with a yellow liquid in it (that looks a suspiciously lot like urine I might add) to her face.
KARL: The perfect specimen!
KARL: Yeah. Apparently you can drink it, it's very good for you!
SUSAN: That's not...?
KARL: (takes the lid off jar) Sure it is!
SUSAN: (worried) You're going to drink that?
KARL: Sure! If you don't want it?
Much to Susan's disgust Karl swallows the contents of the whole jar in the one go. Susan makes noises as if she can barely breathe now from the disgust (or maybe because she's covering both her mouth and nose with her hands, I'm not sure) and Karl says that the taste is 'oddly tangy, but nevertheless refreshing'.
SUSAN: Karl, the manure was bearable. The chooks are borderline. But that! That, that, that is just going too far!
KARL: (playing innocent) What are you talking about?
SUSAN: You, you, you drinking that!
KARL: What, apple juice?
Cue a very shocked Susan.
SUSAN: Was that apple juice?
KARL: (playful) What did you think it was?
SUSAN: (not amused and hitting Karl on the arm) *So* gone off you!
Karl is very amused though when Suse leaves in a huff.
The House of Bishops, Mangels, Lou-bears and Stray Ex-Nuns
Sky asks Stinger and Harold why things have to be 'so damn difficult'. Harold tells her to watch her language before going back to playing with Kitty™ (I can't remember the name of this little kitten) who's on his chest. Sky tells her Grandad that he's got no reason to tell her off since he said 'damn' last night. She further explains how her boss wants her to go away on a team building course in the bush for five days and now because of this she'll have to resign.
HAROLD: But you can't do that, you love that job! It's part-time!
Wow, great argument, Hazza! As if it's the only job ever that's part-time so that's the one factor that makes this job one for her to keep! LOL
It also suits her life style Harold adds, but Sky reminds him that she's got Kerry to look after. Stinger asks if she can't take Kerry with her but Sky reminds him that she's yet to tell her boss about that. She needs to fit with this job first, telling the people there about her daughter is for later. Harry then reckons he may have a solution to the problem.
Pepper's having a coffee all by herself in the hopes that some caffeine will get her through the day after her early wake up call. NedInASuit™ comes in and points out that she looks tired which is very nice of him. That man just has the subtlety and finesse of an ox, doesn't he? Pepper mentions Karl's rooster and Ned asks what rooster that would be. Miss Steiger tells him about 'the loudest thing on earth' and Ned then offers to buy her another coffee and full-cooked breakfast to put 'the pep back into Pepper'. Oh dear, now he's making lame jokes too. With so many not-at-all wonderful qualities it's no wonder he attracted the most boring chicks in the street last year! If I didn't know any better I'd also say that Neddy is trying to crack onto Pepper, but it's so hard to tell since his range of emotions and facial expressions is so limited.
Anyway, Pepper declines the offer for breakfast since Ned's unemployed but he pulls out a wad of cash (which looks like roughly ten $100 notes) out of a suit pocket. Pep then thinks she's got the answer to Ned's sudden wealth and reckons he's a gigolo and that he was up in Eden Hills visiting some old lady the night before which is why he didn't hear the rooster! Before Ned has a chance to reply, Janae barges in and marches straight up to Pepper, telling her that she's pathetic. Aww, what a lovely way to speak to your boss's daughter. Janae says what Pepper has done is just too low. Pepper has no idea what she's supposedly done though...
Outside the Garage
...Which is why Janae takes Pepper and NedInASuit™ down to the garage so that they can see for themselves. Pepper says her Mum doesn't need this and gets Ned to help her wash it off. As Ned goes to fetch some washing gear, Janae sees it fit to lay into Pepper accusing her of being responsible for the writings on the wall. Pepper says she's never do this to her Mum. Maybe not, says Janae, but Pepper still slags her Mum off and Chris is hurting a lot because of it. Ned returns and tells Pepper to reconsider her position towards her Mum now when she sees what Chris has to endure.
PEPPER: Unless you know what it feels like to have your mother suddenly to come out on you, I suggest you keep your thoughts to yourself!
Pepper tells Ned and Janae to go away and leave her alone which they then do.
Sky tells her Granddad how grateful she is for his offer to look after Kerry while she's away, but says she's not sure if she can go. Harold reminds her that with this job she'll be able to have some independence and to provide for Kerry so it would be good for her to keep it. Stinger reminds Sky that it's only for five days anyway and Harold adds that he could bring Kerry over every night so they can spend some time together for a few hours if she wants to as well. Sky asks Stinger for advice and he says it's all up to Sky to do what she feels is right.
The House of Newbies
Pepper opens the door only to find NedInASuit™ there and he's brought a bouquet of flowers for her as an apology for what he said before. What a disappointment for poor Pepper when Susan got a rooster! But maybe you need to advance to senior staff to get exciting and unusual gifts at the door so all Pepper needs to do is hang in there for a bit and then she too can get something unexpected! We'll just have to wait and see, I guess!
Pepper tells Ned she wants to apologise too and asks if he wants to stay for a swim. Ned he says sure but only if they talk. Pepper is fine with that until Ned says he wants to talk about Chris. When Pepper says that topic is not one she's willing to talk about Ned says he might go and see Katya instead because despite everything he still misses her. Pepper then broaches the idea of Ned being a gigolo again. After all, it does fit in with his new suit, the cash...
She's interrupted by the sound of horrible singing and strumming on a guitar coming from afar and decides to go out into the garden and do something about it.
PEPPER: That's it! No more tree hugging, hippie trippy stuff!!!
NED: Where are we going?
PEPPER: To make Karl's cock-a-doodle-doo a cock-a-doodle-don't!
The Garden of the Kinskis and a Kennedy
KARL: "...a broken heart to mend...Take me to a pla-eh-eh-eh-eh-ace...that's happy and gay...all through the day..."
Ah, the joy of FarmerKarl™ sitting by The Dome™ (which is basically a round enclosure shaped liked an igloo with chicken wire as walls with wooden beams going down from the 'ceiling' to the ground as well) in his garden singing to the chickens is just so, so... lost on Pepper and Ned, both of which pop their heads over the fence to tell Karl what's what.
KARL: Is there a problem?
PEPPER: Yes, there is a problem and the problem is you!
And just when you fear the worst in retaliation by Karl (which, you know, could very well be a 10 minute rendition of 'Free As a River'!) Susie Q comes to the rescue. I guess she used her ninja powers to sense that her boyfriend needed some help.
Suse asks Pepper if she's started writing about all those great ideas she had for the school paper yet. It turns out that she hasn't and now there's the problem of the noise in the neighbourhood which is making it hard to concentrate as well. Suse offers to take Pepper off the yard duty roster for the first few weeks since that'll give her some time to do it. Pepper agrees to that and Suse gives her a look that says something like 'thank you for letting Karl act like a crazy person'.
The youngsters head off and Susan squats down so that she can talk to Karl at his level.
SUSAN: Karl, the singing... Is it absolutely necessary?
KARL: Of course it is. It helps the chooks...(something is said here but it's drowned out by a very loud cock-a-doodle-doo)
SUSAN: Are you sure about that?
KARL: Of course I am. I can feel it.
And here we go again...
KARL: "In the river of my soul... a broken heart of dreams..."
Sky hands over two bottles of breast milk that she's pumped out for Harold and Stinger to give Kerry that evening and they ensure her that the baby will be in safe hands while she's gone. Sky thinks she's being a sook for finding it hard to leave her daughter behind, but Harold says she's just being a mother. Stinger reminds Sky that 'Kezza's nuts about Hazza' plus Sky will miss her daughter more than Kerry will miss her Mum. Sky tells Stinger he's a really great friend and then there's a lingering look there that I'm sure drives the OSSS wild because it could imply that there's some love there. I guess time will tell whether that's the case or not.
Janae's lost in thoughts but suddenly has a brainwave- Rex Colt! He could be the one who wrote that stuff on the wall at the garage in order to stop Chris from getting customers.
BOYD: Probably, I mean he's brain dead enough. Probably thinks people care about that.
Boydie's a bit distant himself which Janae picks up on. Turns out Boyd's been thinking about Max and he feels like he can see him everywhere around him. At least once a day he sees someone that's wearing a shirt that looks like one Max has or has similar body language and it makes his heart 'burst out of his chest'.
BOYD: I reckon if he died or something, at least then I'd know it was over. I'd be able to move on. But not knowing is killing me.
Janae finds it hard to sit still now since this is hitting a little too close to home for her.
JANAE: What if you'd found him and he'd moved on?
BOYD: Why would you say that?
JANAE: I'm just asking. I mean, he's been gone so long. What if he'd started a whole new life or something? Wouldn't that be worse?
Wow, how's that for a hypothetical question that makes it obvious that she knows something!
BOYD: Yeah, that would kill me too. But I think not knowing is even worse.
Toadie wakes up from his sleep only to find Steph there sitting next to his bed. Steph tells him that he should have told her about the bullet fragment and that it's no wonder he pushed her away knowing the risks involved with his injury. He says he'd rather not tell her than to have her pity, but Steph tells him that she doesn't pity him, she loves him. Him possibly becoming paralysed makes no difference to her.
TOADIE: I could die from it!
STEPH: No, no, we can't think the worst here!
TOADIE: Us being together is going to be hard enough as it is! Why do you want to take this on?
STEPH: Because I love you. (puts her hand on his head) For this. (moves her hand to his heart) And for this. Nothing else matters.
And at this point I'm sure all Stoadie™ shippers have safely settled into that big pile of mush they've turned into during this scene. Aww.
Steph tells Toadie that they should find a way to be together without hurting anyone since they do both want to be together. Toadie says that'll be a challenge and Steph replies it'd be too boring otherwise.
TOADIE: You make it sound like everything is going to be OK.
STEPH: That's because it is.
Oh noes, The Angst™ is just bound to arrive any time now with two Hoylands expressing their feeling that 'everything will be OK from now on' in this episode. When will you people ever learn not to say stuff like that so that you can stay angst-free?
The garden of Max's new house
MaxWithStubble™ is working in the garden and a fine job he's doing too, this garden looks really snazzy, I must say! Suddenly he hears a familiar voice behind him saying 'Hi, Max!' and what do you know, it's Janae that's come to see him. Shocked to hear someone say his name, he slowly turns around.
MAX: How did you find me?
JANAE: Doesn't matter. Don't worry, the others don't know you're here. That's because I care about them, not you.
MAX: So what do you want?
JANAE: Personally, I don't want anything. But the way you've moved into this house, living with another family... It disgusts me.
Max looks around as if to make sure that no one is watching him.
MAX: Look, you have no idea of what's going on here or what I've been through.
JANAE: You don't know what you've put your family through! Here you are happy as Larry when your real family is suffering!
MAX: I never meant to hurt them.
JANAE: Well, you did. You've got to stop being so selfish! You have to come home! Be with the people that love you best!
MAX: I don't know if I can.
JANAE: Come home anyway. Even if it is just to say a proper goodbye.
And with that Janae leaves Max to let him have a think about this.