- Jane and Terese enlist Susan's help to prepare their pitch for the Education Department
- Krista tells Paul that Reece has appointed her as the Sinclairs' representative at Lassiter's
- But Krista is experiencing nausea and lightheadedness, and we later see she's taking pregnancy tablets
- Byron gets a letter and a gift from Reece, informing him of her decision to end their relationship
- Byron tells Holly that Mackenzie has told Haz she has feelings for him
- Haz tells Byron that he wishes he'd known that Mackenzie felt this way about him
- Holly is annoyed when Mackenzie presents Haz with a homemade scarf for Christmas
- Later, Haz finds the scarf ripped to shreds and assumes Trevor's responsible - but Holly looks guilty
Terese and Toadie discuss how well Nell's beach party went.
TERESE: Burying you in the sand was the highlight.
TOADIE: Yeah, I got sand in crevices I never knew existed.
Jane turns up to work on the presentation for the council with Terese, so Toadie leaves them to it. Jane explains that Susan is working on the separate presentation for the Education Department. Jane's worried about the council presentation as they've reduced their allotted time for the pitch from 90 minutes to 45. But Terese tells her not to worry.
TERESE: We're passionate, we're prepared - and most importantly, this idea is brilliant. We've got this.
Holly is sitting in a chair looking anxious, while Mackenzie nurses the remains of the scarf she made for Haz - who soon comes back into the room.
HAZ: Well, Trevor's in time- out, having a good think about what he's done.
HOLLY: I hope you weren't too hard on him?
Haz shrugs, and asks Mackenzie if the scarf can be salvaged. She says she's still on her knitting 'L plates' so isn't sure. Ever the optimist, Sadie thinks Mack can fix it, and Holly chimes in with a similar sentiment. At this point Byron comes in, putting on his best Santa voice, and hands out presents for everyone. He quickly detects the funereal atmosphere, and Haz and Mack explain what happened.
Mackenzie says she'll do her best to fix the scarf but if not, she'll make a new one from scratch. Haz says he feels really bad given all the time she spent making it, and Holly looks very guilty now...
Paul is working late when Leo shows up in the office, suggesting to his dad that it's 'whisky o'clock'. But Paul is preoccupied looking at the contract for the Sinclair investment, hoping to find a loophole by which he can block Krista's new position. He hasn't come up with anything, though, and says they're stuck with her for now.
LEO: Or here's a wild idea. Why don't you give her the benefit of the doubt, just like you did with Chloe, and myself for that matter?
PAUL: Well, yeah, of course we'll tell the Sinclairs that. In the meantime, I'm gonna be watching her like a hawk.
LEO: Your HR manager's away on Christmas leave, right? (...) And Chloe's busy planning the wedding. Why don't I show Krista the ropes tomorrow?
PAUL: Why, you're not an employee?
LEO: Yeah, but I know the place inside out. I can help her settle in.
PAUL: Leo, why are you going out of your way to help her?
LEO: David's only sticking around because he's Krista's sober companion. Supporting her is supporting David.
Paul admits that David being in town isn't really helping him, given he's still treating him like a stranger.
LEO: Maybe try focusing on him instead of focusing on yourself. That way David gets a fresh start, and a chance to enjoy his old home. Isn't that worth having Krista at Lassiter's?
PAUL: Yeah, maybe. Time will tell, I suppose.
Paul looks thoughtful as Leo leaves him to it.
Morning, and Paul is having a furtive conversation with an unknown guy in a suit, though we can't hear what they're saying. David, Krista and Leo come in. Paul grimaces as he sees Krista, and suggests to his acquaintance that they wrap up - they shake hands and both make their exit.
KRISTA: He's really nailed that resting angry man face.
LEO: Yeah, he's just getting used to having you around.
Leo says Krista will get a formal induction soon, and no doubt a briefing from the Sinclairs - but for today, he'll give her a quick intro and a hotel tour. Krista's keen for a lowdown on the day- to- day running, as well as marketing and events. David reminds her to go at her own pace, and say if it gets too much. Krista says she may be inexperienced on paper but spent a lot of time with her dad and his team.
LEO: Yeah, well, Reece has obviously put her faith in you, so we will, too.
Krista goes to take a phone call, and while she's gone, Leo gently chastises David for being 'a bit negative'. David replies that he's just making sure Krista is being careful - that's what she's paying for. Leo understands, but says Krista really needs this, so suggests David try to be more encouraging. Krista rejoins them following her call.
KRISTA: That was my lawyer. It's Eden - he wants to see me.
Leo and David have accompanied Krista back to her room, where she is stressing about Eden.
KRISTA: I don't want to see him again, ever.
DAVID: It's okay, you don't have to.
He encourages her to sit down and think about the mindfulness exercises she learned at the rehab centre. She tries counting her breaths, which seems to help calm her down. She thanks them for their support. Leo tells her that if she'd rather relax today, that's fine - but Krista's keen to get back to the tour.
Mackenzie tells Byron and Holly that she's worked out a way to fix the scarf. Evidently still feeling bad, Holly offers to help if she can, but Mackenzie says it's a one- woman job. Haz comes in with Trevor, talking very slowly as if this is going to help Trevor understand what's going on!
HAZ: Mackenzie, Trevor has something he'd like to say to you.
Mackenzie kneels down and fusses over Trevor, who puts a conciliatory paw out. Mack gushes about how 'adorable' he is.
BYRON: That dog is better at apologies than most people I know.
MACKENZIE: I forgive you, Trevor!
Haz sends Trevor off again. Holly remarks that all is well now that Trevor has learned his lesson and Mackenzie has worked out how to fix the scarf.
HAZ: Oh, it's not that simple. I've been looking into professional behaviour training for him.
HOLLY: Aren't those expensive?
HAZ: Yeah, yeah. But I can't have him wrecking stuff. I thought he'd turned a corner, but he's clearly got a long way to go.
Still wracked with guilt, Holly whispers to Byron that she needs to talk to him outside, so he follows her into the garden. She offers a breathless explanation, telling Byron how the coffee tamper gift she ordered for Haz hadn't turned up, so she was forced to give him socks as a present instead.
BYRON: Socks! Oh, socks are no good.
HOLLY: Yeah, I know. And then the scarf that Mack made for him was amazingly, infuriatingly thoughtful.
BYRON: Yeah. I saw it. Well, what's left of it.
HOLLY: And Haz loved it. He wore it all day, even though it was way too hot.
BYRON: You got a bit jealous.
HOLLY: Yeah. I just couldn't stop thinking about how awful my gift was. And then I just - I wasn't thinking straight. And then I...
BYRON: You killed the scarf!
BYRON: And you're letting Trevor take the blame for it!
HOLLY: Well, I feel like a terrible person. I've just... I've been losing it because I know that Mackenzie and Haz are both lying to me!
BYRON: Hols, you've got to calm down.
Holly's panicking as she still doesn't know what Haz meant when he told Byron he wished he'd known about Mackenzie's feelings, and tells Byron about walking in on the 'moment' between Mack and Haz at Harold's.
HOLLY: I already feel like I'm losing him, and now, I've just gone and made things so much worse!
Indoors, Haz is looking up dog training courses online, but tells Sadie and Mackenzie it seems weird that Trevor has done this - previously, Trevor had ripped things up in response to separation anxiety but in this case, Haz was only outside in the garden. Sadie suggests they check the 'dog cam' to see if there are any clues as to what set Trevor off. Haz thinks this is a good idea!
Back outside, Holly is still in confessional mode with Byron.
HOLLY: Sometimes I feel like I'm outside my body, watching myself do all these crazy things. And the worst part is, I know why - I just can't stop.
BYRON: This is just a guess, but maybe you're feeling a little bit insecure.
HOLLY: How would he forgive me for this? He's so sensible and level- headed.
BYRON: He's also a nice guy, who's understanding.
HOLLY: He makes me feel like I could be the best version of myself. And I've just gone and blown it. If he does have feelings for Mackenzie, I've just given him the perfect excuse to ditch me.
BYRON: Okay, first things first - just come clean. You and I both know Haz. He'll appreciate your honesty.
In the house, Haz is looking at the footage from the dog cam on his phone. He's horrified to see Holly ripping up the scarf, while Trevor sits innocently nearby! Seeing the look on his face, Mackenzie asks what's happened. At this point, Holly comes back in.
HAZ: Holly - what the hell?
Nicolette is lounging on the couch, and Byron sits down next to her, eating snacks. Nicolette says she's been thinking about him and Reece, admitting that when she broke up with Kiri, she was a mess. The only thing that kept her sane was keeping it together for Isla.
BYRON: Is there a point coming soon?
NICOLETTE: Yeah. Find something to focus on. Take up hiking, learn Hungarian. Whatever works. Just keep yourself busy.
Jane emerges from the bedroom, in what we might call a rather conservative outfit, and asks Byron and Nicolette for their thoughts. Byron's about to fake a compliment but Nic doubles up laughing, which makes Byron laugh too.
BYRON: You look like a headmistress.
JANE (annoyed): I *am* a headmistress.
Terese comes in.
TERESE: Oh, Jane! Why are you dressed like a librarian?
Nicolette and Byron snigger some more.
JANE: Alright, fine! The outfit's awful. What do you suggest?
Shortly afterwards, Terese and Jane emerge from the bedroom - Jane is now in a rather glamorous costume, and she twirls in slow- motion to an upbeat underscore, which cuts out promptly as Jane recalls a prior makeover!
JANE: I just had the strangest sense of déjà vu.
BYRON: Mum, you look dangerous.
JANE: You think it's... not too much?
But Terese says it's perfect, adding that it's 'showtime'!
Holly is explaining herself to Mackenzie and Haz, the remains of the scarf lying on the table in front of them.
HOLLY: I know how awful it is. But you don't understand - I've been freaking out for days.
HAZ: About what?
HOLLY: About you two! I know that you told Haz that you had feelings for him. Why have neither of you talked to me about it?
MACKENZIE: ... I am so sorry. It was a stupid moment, and it didn't mean anything.
HAZ: Exactly. We didn't think it was worth upsetting you over.
HOLLY: Well, I am upset. And I don't buy it - you're still not being honest. At least I was gonna come clean about the scarf. You never had any intention of telling me the truth.
HAZ: Holly, I'm really sorry about keeping you in the dark. But we just... it wasn't a big conspiracy or anything, I promise. We just didn't think it was a big deal.
HOLLY: Then why did you tell Byron that you wish you'd known?
Mackenzie's expression shifts. Haz asks if Byron told her that, and Holly confirms he did, before asking why Haz said it.
HAZ: I was confused. And Byron should've kept that to himself.
HOLLY: He told me because he's my friend, and because he can see that I'm in love with you.
HAZ (startled): I... didn't realise it was that serious between us.
HOLLY (upset): Well, now you know. I feel like an idiot. I still want to know what you meant.
HAZ: ... I - I don't know how to explain it.
HOLLY (sad): That's all I need to know.
She gets up and walks out, leaving Mackenzie and Haz lost for words.
Erinsborough High School
Various members of Erinsborough City Council (and Toadie) are gathered in the classroom for Terese and Jane's presentation on the proposed joint high school and Eirini Rising retirement village site. Terese explains that by bridging the gap between the young and old in the community, they can change Erinsborough, and lives, for the better. Toadie gives her an encouraging grin from the back of the room.
Leo takes Krista into the office, followed by David. Leo tells her she'll have her own office soon (I'll believe it when I see it) but that for now they can use Paul's computer to show her the ropes. Krista tells David he can leave them to it if he wants, so he heads off. Leo has set up a profile and email account for Krista, and goes on to show her the booking system.
Krista soon starts feeling sick again. Leo offers to call David back, but Krista says it will pass. Sitting her down, he suggests calling Remi instead, or the rehab centre.
KRISTA: Okay, will you drop it? ... Sorry. Shouldn't have snapped.
LEO: Don't apologise. I just want to know how I can help you.
Krista's feeling even more unwell now, so Leo decides to call David. But Krista again asks him to stop.
KRISTA: I don't need David or Remi, okay? It's not withdrawal. It's morning sickness. I'm pregnant.
Shortly afterwards, Krista explains to Leo that she found out she was pregnant while in rehab.
LEO: Must've been a shock.
KRISTA: Yeah. At first I was terrified. And then I just suddenly felt clear - like I finally knew what I wanted. Maybe for the first time ever. To raise a new little person in a life full of love, and protect them from all the things that messed me up.
LEO: What about your family?
KRISTA: I want to keep them as far away as possible. That's why I asked Reece for the job here, you know - I want this baby to have an ordinary and happy life.
LEO: Does, umm... does Eden know?
KRISTA: No. He'd use the baby as a weapon. That's why I freaked out when I heard that he wants to see me. And I know I'll have to deal with him soon, just... not yet.
Leo asks if Krista's considered telling David - as her sober companion he might be able to offer support. Krista says she'll tell him soon, once she's got used to the idea herself. Leo confirms he'll keep it 'just between us' for the time being.
KRISTA: Thanks. I'm really lucky to have you on my side.
She touches his hand and they smile meaningfully at one another.
Erinsborough High School
Terese and Jane's presentation continues; they reveal that a shared library between the school and Eirini Rising will enable students who struggle with literacy to practice by reading aloud to 'non- judgemental older people' who will 'thrive on socialising with the students'.
JANE: Hopefully we have demonstrated to you just how much Erinsborough stands to gain from this unique and exciting proposal.
The councillors give a round of applause (once Toadie has led them in), and Jane opens the floor to questions. Councillor Gillian Byrne has one.
COUNCILLOR BYRNE: This all sounds great in theory, but how feasible is it? Even if we approve, it won't fly without the Education Department on board.
But at this point another audience member, Councillor Anthony Marin, intervenes. We've seen him before - it's the guy Paul was chatting to in the café earlier in the episode!
COUNCILLOR MARIN: If I may, it's an excellent proposal. It's true, the Department will need to approve, but they'll be seeking input from us. They're likely to be won over if we are strongly in favour. Which I must say, I am.
JANE: Well, thank you, Councillor - we really appreciate your support.
TERESE: And at the end of the day, we're both passionate about one thing, and that's community.
Terese wraps up and thanks everyone for attending. As the others file out, Councillor Marin congratulates her and Jane on their 'great work' and promises to do all he can to make their plans happen. Once he's gone, Terese and Jane squeal excitedly.
Toadie pops the cork on a bottle of champagne, as Terese, Jane, Aaron, Nicolette, Byron and David gather to celebrate the successful council pitch. Jane says that Councillor Marin is apparently 'very influential'; and it's all the more impressive as he's usually quite conservative when it comes to infrastructure and development, Terese reports. On that note, Toadie raises a toast.
TOADIE: To Terese and to Jane. May they never become lawyers, cos the rest of us hacks wouldn't stand a chance.
Everyone clinks glasses, and Jane tells Nicolette that she doesn't think any of this would have happened if it weren't for the protest.
NICOLETTE: Well, it didn't go exactly as planned.
JANE: No. But still, thank you for never giving up.
Jane declares how she loves having everyone together, hugging Nicolette and Byron. Byron adds that Mike and Sam will be home soon too.
JANE: Yeah. And then we can properly start our next chapter together as a family.
Nicolette raises another toast to that. But Byron moves aside to look at a text message he's received, from someone called Tamara. 'Hey stranger, just flew in,' it says. 'Catch up? Miss your handsome face! xx'
Byron looks conflicted.
Looking apprehensive, Byron meets up with the mysterious Tamara outside the pub, kissing her on the cheek by way of a greeting.
TAMARA: You came.
BYRON: Of course. To be honest, I wasn't expecting to see you again.
TAMARA: What, you thought I sank to the bottom of the ocean after you left Cape Town?
BYRON: No, but I never heard from you.
TAMARA: Because I heard on the grapevine that you'd retired.
BYRON: It's true.
TAMARA: Any chance you could be persuaded to change your mind about that?
BYRON: What exactly are you proposing here?
TAMARA: I am about to go on an open- ended trip to Tahiti. Gorgeous house, amazing meals, days by the pool, and... nights in your arms. If you're up for it.
She takes his hand, but he doesn't immediately reply.
TAMARA: Is there something holding you back?
BYRON: No. No, I, uh, can't think of anything.
TAMARA: Then maybe this could work out well for both of us.
They smile at each another.
Coming up on Neighbours
- Jane crosses her fingers as Terese takes a call from the council
- Nicolette warns Byron that he's going to break Jane's heart
- Nicolette invites herself to join Tamara at a table in the café
- An annoyed Haz tells Byron he's kept a lot of his secrets, but that it 'clearly wasn't a two- way street'
- Paul tells Melanie she's in the perfect position to 'make this right for both of us'