- Kyle demands to know why Levi is stalking Mitch and Nelson, his childhood attackers
- Somebody has left a toy train on the Cannings' doorstep, and Levi looks worried
- Yashvi tells Levi and Kyle that Sgt. Rodwell is speaking to the Hastings police about it
- Nicolette tells Pierce to butt out of her relationship
- But he retorts that she didn't listen when he asked her to stay out of his marriage
- Nicolette tells Pierce he's jealous that she's having a baby with Chloe
- Pierce points out that it's David and Aaron's baby, not Nicolette and Chloe's
- Pierce tells Jane that he thinks Chloe deserves to know what Nicolette said
- Paul offers Leo his old job back so they can work together; Leo says he'll think about it
- But Leo later turns him down, explaining he's buying Pierce's winery instead
Paul's incredulous at Leo's news about buying Pierce's winery. Leo explains he'd read about the sale a couple of weeks ago, and that it's too good an opportunity to pass up.
PAUL: But my offer isn't?! You know, full marks to you for keeping me in the dark while you weighed up your options.
LEO: I didn't want to mention it until I'd decided to sign the deal.
PAUL: Oh, so I was just the fallback, was I?
Leo says working for Paul would've been a bit of a backwards step for him; he's keen to embrace his experience in hospitality. Terese and Paul highlight the differences between running the Back Lane Bar and a boutique winery, not least because Leo isn't a winemaker. But he says he plans to focus on expanding the restaurant and reception facilities.
LEO: I'll make a killing from events, and I'll be able to sell the grape harvest to wineries.
But Paul is clearly unconvinced, and disapproving.
David and Chloe are talking to Nicolette about her telling Pierce that the baby was hers and Chloe's.
NICOLETTE: Things got heated and I was trying to one-up him. I didn't mean it. No doubt he'll try to use it against me to make you doubt me.
CHLOE: Are you trying to blame him for this?
NICOLETTE: No, I'm just saying, as bad as it sounds, it was a stupid mistake.
DAVID: Well, we can't just wave this off.
NICOLETTE: David, you've got nothing to worry about.
DAVID: I appreciate you telling us, but I'll have to talk to Aaron about it.
CHLOE: If you know lashing out at Pierce always ends badly, why do you keep doing it?
NICOLETTE: I don't mean to.
CHLOE: I know you don't, but you literally can't help it! I am so sick of you butting heads with him.
NICOLETTE: I'm sorry.
David leaves to contact Aaron, and Chloe goes with him to get some air. Jane, who has been hovering in the background, comes to join Nicolette. Jane says Pierce is looking for Chloe to tell him herself. Nicolette's at least got there first, but even so, it's clear to Jane that it didn't go well.
A road somewhere
Hendrix is having a driving lesson with Pierce, while chatting about his cookery ambitions. He's planning a dégustation for Pierce with fresh crayfish, venison and truffle oil from an upmarket food supplier in Eden Hills.
PIERCE: You've come a long way since two-minute noodles and hash browns.
Pierce explains what's going on with Nicolette; he seems to have heard from Chloe that Nicolette has already told her about what she said to him. Hendrix is unimpressed that Pierce is still picking fights with Nicolette, reminding him he'd promised to leave her and Chloe alone.
PIERCE: I didn't break any promises. I wasn't looking for trouble. Nicolette just blows up at me out of nowhere.
PIERCE: So, the guys and Chloe should know what she said.
HENDRIX: Why's it up to you? Just leave it to them.
PIERCE: (...) Chloe, David and Aaron can handle things however they want. But if I see a red flag, I'm not just gonna sit there and let people get hurt.
Hendrix accepts this. Pierce's phone rings - it's Leo, presumably wanting to catch up about the vineyard sale. But Pierce declines the call, saying they can meet up later.
HENDRIX: Are you sure?
PIERCE: Absolutely, mate. I want to hear more about this menu.
Levi is on the phone at the bar, while Sheila is clearing glasses. She moans to Yashvi and Kyle, who are at a table, about how Roxy has been swiping all her limes for The Flamingo Bar. Levi sits down at the table too.
SHEILA: Oh, love, what can I get you? Maybe a lime and soda - without the lime?!
We learn Levi's been on the phone to Sergeant Rodwell. He's spoken to Mitch and Nelson, but apparently they had an alibi for the time the toy train was left at the door. As for the shipping warehouse they were seen at, Mitch and Nelson work there as packers. But Levi still thinks it's dodgy that they were there after hours, and that they're covering.
Kyle says they should continue to keep all this from Sheila; she doesn't need the worry with her heart problems.
YASHVI: And it's a good thing that you told Sarge.
LEVI: Was it? I've annoyed him and wasted his time, while he's still deciding whether I should be back at work. And we've got zero proof these guys are up to anything, and no way of getting them off our back.
Paul has come round to moan to David about Pierce having 'enticed' Leo to buy the winery so he would 'desert' Paul. Terese is here, too, and says she's sure Pierce didn't do it to get at Paul. Paul thinks otherwise.
PAUL: if he's that keen to get into business with Greyson, it's his mistake to make.
Leo comes in, and asks everyone what they're doing this evening, suggesting dinner. Paul abruptly says he's busy, so Leo suggests tomorrow - his shout. Paul falls into a petulant silence, so Leo leaves the room again!
DAVID: You know there's another way to look at this.
PAUL: What, that I'm gonna have to bail Leo out in three months?
DAVID: No - that he'll be here. The whole reason you wanted him to take your job was to encourage him to stay.
PAUL: Yeah, and he threw it in my face!
TERESE: Oh, right - yes, this comes down to your bruised ego. You are so predictable, Paul.
PAUL: Well, thank you very much for the sympathy.
TERESE: Hey, I've tried - I've tried. But you need to acknowledge why you're so upset.
Leo is doing sit-ups in the workout area, when two men approach - it's Mitch and Nelson, his childhood attackers.
MITCH: Levi Canning - long time no see. We're overdue for a catch-up.
NELSON: Lucky you're an easy guy to find.
MITCH: (...) We just came to say thanks for sending your boss to check up on us.
LEVI: I don't tell my boss what to do.
MITCH: Oh, you sounded pretty worried about us.
NELSON: We've got the local cops looking out for us, too.
LEVI: We had nothing to report, so there shouldn't be anything to worry about.
NELSON: We're not done.
MITCH: One check-up was more than enough.
NELSON: Save the concern for someone else.
MITCH: Cos I'd hate for something bad to happen to you again, like when you were a kid.
NELSON: And from what your boss said, someone's already got their eye on ya.
MITCH: (...) He mentioned something about a train on a doorstep. It's a weird present for a grown man.
NELSON: Could be a warning. If I were you, I'd listen to it.
LEVI: Here's what I'm thinking. The less we see of each other, the better.
MITCH: Ah. Exactly.
Levi walks away from them, breathing a sigh of relief as they remain where they are.
Chloe is sitting pensively in the courtyard. Leo sees her, and approaches.
LEO: Bad day?
CHLOE: Two words - girl trouble.
LEO: Oh. The least fun of all the troubles. I know it well.
Leo manages to make Chloe laugh, and tells her he's happy to listen if she wants to vent. But she says she'd prefer a break from thinking about it. Leo gets a message, and reveals to Chloe that he's buying Pierce's winery, her former wedding venue. Chloe congratulates him, and advises him that he can bluff wine expertise simply by saying 'tannins' a lot!
LEO: Making the stuff might be out of my comfort zone, but I certainly know a lot about drinking it.
CHLOE: I think this will be a really good fit for you.
LEO: Thank you.
Leo has to go and meet Pierce to sign the contracts. Chloe assures him she'll be okay, and thanks him for checking in.
From nearby, Nicolette and Jane have witnessed the interaction. Nicolette is upset at how miserable Chloe seems; Jane says Chloe just needs some breathing space, but Nicolette's concerned by how she always ends up driving Chloe away.
JANE: Please don't take this the wrong way, but... is there any chance that Pierce might be right? Even just a little bit?
JANE: It's not the first time that you've overstepped the mark about your place in the baby's life.
NICOLETTE: No, Mum... that was word vomit. That's what's so infuriating about it. I literally had no good reason to say it, but he just drives me nuts (...) You know, I hate people in relationships who control who their partner sees. That's why, when Pierce did it to Chloe, it was so agonising to watch.
JANE: Because it stopped her from seeing you?
NICOLETTE: Well, yeah. Chloe can make up her own mind about who she spends time with.
JANE: So what are you gonna do?
NICOLETTE: I've said everything I can say. I just have to hope that it's enough.
Levi rushes in and is about to tell Kyle about his encounter with Mitch and Nelson. But Sheila appears, interrupting.
SHEILA: I think I just saw a couple of blokes that I haven't seen for a million years.
KYLE: ... Okay, well, who do you think it was?
SHEILA: You know what? I must've imagined it. Either that or I need my eyes checked.
Sheila walks away again, but Levi confirms to Kyle that her eyes are fine.
LEVI: Mitch and Nelson were just here.
Pierce is praising Hendrix having sampled his 'fantastic' cookery skills.
PIERCE: I think you've found your sweet spot with cooking.
HENDRIX: Thanks, Dad.
Leo turns up, and Hendrix introduces himself, before welcoming him in. He leaves Leo and Pierce to their business talk; Pierce gives Leo a contract he's drawn up. He asks if Leo has seen David and Aaron, explaining he had a run-in with Nicolette and wanted to check if they were okay.
PIERCE: You're David's brother, so you should probably know that I've got my concerns about Nicolette.
LEO: Well, she is your ex-wife's new girlfriend, so...
PIERCE: We never got along, but since I've come back, I noticed she's pretty unstable (...) I don't trust her. This should be on your radar.
As they exit the hotel into the courtyard, Terese tells Paul that she thinks David is right about Leo.
PAUL: Of course I'm glad that Leo has a reason to stay. I just don't know where I stand with him (...) Offering him a job was a means of bringing him in and making us closer. But he's just keeping me at arm's length.
TERESE: Well, at least he wants to keep rebuilding your relationship.
PAUL: Actions speak louder than words, don't they?
Nearby, Yashvi, Levi and Kyle are talking about Mitch and Nelson; Yashvi hasn't been able to locate them around the car park. Levi thinks they must have deliberately gone out of their way to make sure Sheila saw them.
LEVI: They tried to rattle her, the scumbags.
KYLE: You don't think they'll hurt her?
LEVI: Well, they're not too shy about making threats (...) They were hellbent on shaking me up. Whatever they're planning, it's massive.
YASHVI: I know you're frustrated, but you've got to chill.
LEVI: Come on, I can't just sit around and do nothing.
KYLE: Maybe it's time we go and tell your boss, eh?
LEVI: That might be tough. They didn't really say anything that could incriminate them.
KYLE: So we keep an eye on Gran.
LEVI: Yeah. And we make sure she doesn't know they were really here, okay? We don't want her to worry.
Nicolette calls round and is welcomed by Leo. David's out, but Leo says it's fine for Nicolette to wait. Nic is delighted when she hears Leo is buying Pierce's vineyard.
NICOLETTE: Once that is signed, he'll be back to Sydney!
NICOLETTE: Sorry, you're probably BFFs?
LEO: Nah, it's all good. We're not that close.
David comes in; he's spoken to Aaron about what Nicolette said about the baby, and says it doesn't sit well with either of them. Nicolette reassures him again that she didn't mean anything by it - she just plucked it from thin air.
DAVID: To hurt Pierce.
NICOLETTE: Sad but true. We are on the same page about this baby - she's got two daddies, and Mum is just the supporting act. You should never have to doubt that.
Nicolette leaves, and David sits down to chat to Leo. David says Paul's a bit upset about Leo buying Pierce's vineyard.
LEO: Trust Dad to make it about himself.
DAVID: Yeah, I think he took you turning down his job as a personal rejection.
LEO: But I told him I want things to be good between us.
DAVID: Well, you might have to keep telling him that.
LEO: Hey, this stuff with Nicolette seems pretty intense, bro. Are you sure you're okay?
DAVID: I am. It must sound bad from the outside, but there's a complicated history. What Nicolette said is unnerving, but to turn it into a bigger deal would only cause more damage.
Leo asks to hear more about this 'complicated history'.
Chloe is looking pensive again, with a glass of wine. Jane appears and sits down with her.
JANE: I hope you don't mind me saying, but... Nicolette is really kicking herself over what happened.
CHLOE: Sounds about right. I know she's sorry.
JANE: But a simple apology isn't gonna wipe this away, is it?
CHLOE: Nope. Peak Nicolette is incredible. When she's on her game, she's the most caring, supportive partner I could ask for. But sometimes it's just like she's the complete opposite of that person.
JANE: Yes. I know what you mean.
CHLOE: That side of her doesn't feel very good to be around, and lately that's all I've been getting.
JANE: She will bounce back.
CHLOE: I've done the 'Pierce vs Nicolette' rollercoaster. When Pierce and I were together, his insecurities about Nic just pushed him to his worst extremes.
JANE: (...) I just hope that you remember that... the good in her, it does outweigh the bad.
Yashvi is sitting on a bench when Levi appears, and tells her that Sergeant Rodwell is letting him come back to work, but that he got a 'grim vibe' from him - and Levi's been put on desk duty and warned to stay clear of Mitch and Nelson.
LEVI: And he told me I had to go and see a counsellor.
YASHVI: You know, that's not a bad idea.
LEVI: Vee, how is talking to someone about my problems gonna protect my family? I have to do something.
LEVI: You know it's true, okay? You know that they're planning something. We just have to prove it.
YASHVI: How? If Rodwell sees you looking into this, you're done (...) I can keep an eye out for you and let you know if I find anything.
YASHVI: But like I said, you've got to chill about this. If I tell you something, you have to stay out of it. These guys have taken too much from you. I don't want to see you lose your career because of them, too.
Levi nods in agreement.
Chloe is having a coffee, and Pierce is sitting with her. She tells him she has a handle on the Nicolette situation; he doesn't need to worry about it. Nicolette herself comes out of the bathroom, and Pierce promptly gets up and goes to the counter. Nicolette sits down with Chloe.
NICOLETTE: I know things have been off for us since Pierce got here, and I'm not saying it's his fault - it's all on me (...) I want to do better, so that whatever life throws our way, I'm done with being the wild-card girlfriend.
CHLOE: Thanks. We'll figure it out. Together.
Pierce watches them from a distance...
Leo and Paul are chatting at the bar.
LEO: Me wanting us to be close again is partly why I've gone solo on business.
PAUL: Call me crazy, but wouldn't spending more time together help us get back on track?
LEO: Not if we're arguing and stressed all the time. Look, we're bound to get along better if we keep business out of it. It'll be good for us.
PAUL: Yeah, alright, then. And listen, I'm sorry that I threw sour grapes your way. Excuse the pun. But, no, I think being successful enough to afford a vineyard - that's no small thing, you know? (...) To rebuild your finances as quickly as you have, that takes smarts and hard work. And I am proud of you, son.
They clink whisky glasses. At this point, Pierce appears next to them. Leo thanks him for the heads-up about Nicolette.
LEO: When she apologised to David, she knew all the right things to say. Sold on every word, hook, line and sinker.
PIERCE: I've just been witness to her weaving her magic with Chloe. She's amazing.
Paul is annoyed when he learns about Nicolette referring to the baby as hers and Chloe's.
PAUL: I have told them a million times that she is a problem.
PIERCE: I can't count the number of times I've warned Chloe.
LEO: Is this you two agreeing on something?
PAUL: Yeah, don't get used to it.
LEO: Look, if she's as dicey as you both think, we have to do something.
PIERCE: There's not a lot we can do, mate. I'm about to leave, and Chloe won't listen to me. Seems David hasn't paid much attention to Paul.
LEO: Doesn't sound like I'll have any luck getting through to them, then.
PIERCE: Hang on a second. Maybe there is something we can do to keep an eye on things, and watch out for David at the same time. And I'm betting Nicolette won't like it at all.
Pierce smiles, and Leo and Paul look at him with interest...
LEO: I'm listening.
Coming up on Neighbours
- Amy tells Toadie, 'You've really hurt her feelings'; he calls himself an idiot
- We hear Chloe saying, 'Nic and I are going through some stuff'
- Leo tells Chloe to think about something; she says she won't be able to think of much else
- Nicolette tells David she wants rid of Pierce, not hanging over their heads all the time
- Pierce smiling at Chloe, prior to them sharing a hug