Sons and Daughters logo
    Written by: Don Battye   Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Julian McSwiney

James snaps, "Get me up." Wayne retorts, "On one condition." James snarls, "Just pull me up." Wayne, though, asks calmly, "If I do haul you up, what's to say you'll keep your word?" They suddenly hear a vehicle approaching. Irene is the driver, and she pulls the car to a halt and stares up at the top of the fire tower as James snaps at Wayne, "Just get me up."

Barbara walks into the lounge room at the Woombai homestead, holding a photo. Gordon asks her where she's taking it, and she explains, "I'm hiding it. I don't see why James should have a photograph of your father." She puts it in a drawer in the dresser, adding, "We can take it when we leave." Gordon sighs that it's appalling, the way things have turned out. He goes on, "I know why James has given Wayne that job: to come between us: anything to get under my skin - not that Wayne is making it too hard for him." Barbara tells him, "Darling, I am sure that Wayne is perfectly loyal to you. In fact, I'd say he's doing his damnedest to stop James taking over Woombai." Looking surprised, Gordon asks her if she thinks so. She replies, "Yes, I do. Regardless of what's happened between you, he loves you more than anyone." Gordon just sighs, "Who knows?" He then announces that he thinks he'll go into town, as he needs to see Clarrie Watkins. Barbara queries, "What, the stock and station agent?" Gordon points out, "The farm still needs attending to. I need to keep working, don't I?" Barbara smiles, "Give me five minutes and I'll come, too."

Wayne hauls James up onto the fire tower. Irene climbs out of her car to watch what's happening. At the top of the tower, Wayne growls at James, "Boy, are you lucky." James retorts, "That's usually the way it is, son." He then adds, "You're going to have to try harder if you want to get rid of me." Wayne mutters, "I'll remember your advice." With that, James steps onto the ladder and starts making climbing down. Irene yells, "Do you want me to come up?" Wayne, though, yells back, "No, he's alright." He then adds, under his breath, "Unfortunately..."

A short time later, Irene is helping James into the lounge room at the homestead; he has a bandage wrapped round the top of his right leg. She looks around and comments that she wonders where Barbara is. Wayne suggests that she and his dad might have gone into town. Irene asks him to pop out and get her bag for her. He goes. Irene then tells James that he's a lucky bloke: she doesn't think his leg is even going to need stitches. James, though, mutters, "I'm half-killed; you call me lucky?" Irene points out, "You're still alive, aren't you?" James goes on, "What are you like at putting bones back in place? I reckon Wayne almost pulled my shoulders out of their sockets." Irene laughs, "Stop complaining! I half wish he hadn't hung onto you at all!" James retorts, "I reckon Wayne more than half-wishes he hadn't..." Irene suggests curtly, "Perhaps you should take it as a sign from above: Him up there ain't too keen on people who are lousy to their brothers!" James glares at her and then asks if he's going to need a tetanus shot. Irene asks him how long it was since his last one, and he mutters that it's a year. Irene tells him that he's safe. James then comments that it's pretty lucky, having a medico on hand. Irene, though, tells him, "The reason I'm here is Gordon, not you. That poor bloke's heart's in no condition to take any more knocks." James says softly, "You know, you're amazing, coming all the way up here, just to look after him." Irene retorts, "Some people are worth it. Gordon's the sort of bloke who cares a great deal about others." James asks, "He do you a favour, did he?" Irene, though, snaps, "Nothing in particular. But I can't think of anyone who knows him who wouldn't want to give him a helping hand - and Lord knows, he deserves it."

Mary is sitting on the couch at Fiona's, with Fiona, continuing with her reading. She sighs heavily, though, that Fiona's wasted so much time on her since she's been there... Fiona, however, assures her that she doesn't call it a waste of time; it's a pleasure to help her out. There's suddenly a knock at the front door, and Mary starts to get up to answer it. Fiona, though, pulls her back, and says she'll see whoever it is and get rid of them. She goes and opens the door to find a man standing there. It's Colonel Bainbridge. She quickly goes to push the door shut, but the Colonel barges in and demands through gritted teeth, "Where's my son?"

A few moments later, the Colonel is standing in the flat, snapping, "Where's my son? I haven't got all day. Where's Chris?" Fiona retorts that she hasn't seen him. The Colonel snaps the he knows he lives there. Fiona retorts that she said she hasn't seen him and she hasn't; not today - but she could ring his bedsit-- She goes to the telephone, but the Colonel blocks her way and snaps, "Oh no you don't. You're not ringing the MPs..." Fiona quickly assures him that she wasn't going to; she's sure Chris will want to see him. The Colonel, though, retorts, "Oh you are, are you? He hasn't bothered up to now. I don't see why he'd change his mind." Fiona asks, "Are you having a little time away from the hospital?" The Colonel just roars, "They can't keep me there. I don't do anything I don't want to do. Now where's my boy?" Fiona growls, "If I knew, I would tell you." The Colonel suddenly takes a threatening step towards her. Mary tries to intervene, crying, "No, leave her alone!" The Colonel, though, grabs her and pushes her onto the couch. He then snaps at Fiona, "No one will get hurt - if you tell me where he is." Mary says she'll see if he's in his bedsit, and she dashes out. Fiona glares at the Colonel.

A few moments later, Mary runs up to the door of Chris's bedsit and knocks on it frantically. Chris answers it and asks what the panic is. Mary cries, "Please, you've got to come to Fiona's. Your father's there. He's acting really strange." Chris exclaims, "My father?" Mary pleads, "Quickly!" They head off down the corridor and run into Fiona's flat. Fiona is standing there, a look of shock on her face. Mary asks, "What happened? He was so angry." The Colonel is lying on the floor, not moving. Chris approaches him and says gently, "Dad, it's alright. Stand up." Fiona says nervously, "He suddenly quietened down and then he backed off and he crawled over there." Chris helps his father to his feet and says, "I'll get him back to the bedsit. Call the hospital and let them know where he is." With that, he leads the Colonel out. When they've gone, Mary says to Fiona, "What a strange man. What's wrong with him?" Fiona just stands there and puts her hands to her face, looking shocked and upset. Out in the corridor, Chris tells his father, "Take it easy, OK? I'll just go and make a 'phone call and we'll get you back to the hospital." The Colonel is looking around him, a puzzled look on his face, and he asks, "Why are we here? Who are you?" Chris, looking anguished, tells him, "Don't worry, dad. We'll take you home."

Inside Fiona's flat, a short time later, Fiona sits down as she tells Mary, "So, I decided to publish the diaries. I never realised how much trouble they'd cause. All I wanted to do was the right thing by a soldier who needed to tell the truth. But when I look at that man, I wonder what effect it's had on the others; I mean, if he's in a mental home..." Mary suggests to her that she must have felt people had a right to know what happened. Fiona sighs, "Yes, I felt I was right to publish... but I wish I'd never seen those diaries; never had to make that decision... it caused more trouble than almost anything in my whole life - and I have a strange feeling it's not over yet..."

Outside, Chris leads his father to his car. The Colonel is still looking as if he's miles away, but he suddenly turns, stares at the boarding house and orders gruffly, "Get ready for evacuation, boy. Don't stand there; move! Where's 'A' Platoon? Under cover?" Chris takes his arm sadly and tells him to take it easy; he's safe now. With that, he helps the Colonel into the car.

Later that day, Mary is walking along the street, carrying a bag of shopping as she approaches the boarding house, when Chris's car pulls up next to her. He turns off the engine and climbs out. Mary asks him how his father is and he replies, "His doctors think he came round just to see me. I've seen him once since I got out of hospital myself; I suppose Fiona told you what happened?" Mary nods. Chris goes on bitterly, "I feel real proud of myself; I should have been around there to help him." He continues, "They also said he's been cheating on taking his tablets; they're supposed to keep him calm. Perhaps he might have improved if I'd gone around a few times a week." Mary asks him if he's going to now. Chris replies, "The psychiatrist thinks it might help if I take him out a bit; get him away from the hospital." Mary, looking concerned, says, "He's not going to be moving into the bedsit, is he?" Chris, though, tells her, "I don't think they mean more than a couple of days: weekends, that sort of thing. It'll be good for him." He then adds in concern, "I can't see Fiona having a bar of it, though; not after what happened this morning."

A few minutes later, Fiona is unpacking the shopping in her kitchen. Mary is with her, musing, "I wonder what's really going on inside his mind." Fiona, though, retorts that she doesn't want to talk any more about the Colonel. Mary comments, "He obviously wants to see Chris; it's a pity he couldn't come out at weekends." Fiona mutters, "I'm certainly not having him here, I can tell you." Mary muses, "That's understandable. I mean, the diaries and everything would be there in front of you all the time." Fiona retorts, "Yes, I suppose that's one thing. But I'm really more concerned about the people living here; I'd feel responsible for their safety. I couldn't possibly take the risk of that man having some sort of an attack; goodness only knows what he could be capable of." Mary points out that, if he's going to get back to normal, he's got to mix with normal people. Fiona just snaps, "I said I didn't want to talk about him anymore."

James is pacing the floor in the living room at Dural as Wayne and Irene sit staring at him. Irene tells him to sit down, as he's not doing his leg one bit of good. James, though, asks her to nip outside for a minute, as he wants a word with Wayne. Irene smiles, "Boys' talk, huh?" James just nods, "Yeah." Irene gets up and goes. When they're alone, Wayne says to James, "Going to fire me, right?" James muses, "You always go on the defensive." Wayne mutters, "No, but after today--" James interrupts him and asks, "That's what you would've done, eh?" Wayne replies, "Probably." James tells him, "Just shows you're not too much like your uncle." Wayne insists, "I don't mind if you fire me." James, though, growls, "I'm not going to fire you. We've got more important things to sort out besides work and business. What are you really made of, eh? What sort of a man are you?" Wayne retorts, "I thought you would've known by now." James tells him, "Oh yeah, you've given me a few clues - but that's not the way I'm used to finding out. Where I come from, when two blokes can't get on together, they clear the air. Know what I mean?" He then challenges, "Come outside and show me what sort of a man you are." Wayne smiles, "Have to wait until your leg's better. Wouldn't want an advantage." James, though, growls, "I'm not going to fight you with my leg; I'm not into that karate stuff. Come on - outside. Now." A look of concern crosses Wayne's face as he stands up reluctantly and murmurs, "OK."

Outside, Barbara and Gordon are climbing out of their car, Barbara telling Gordon as they do so that it might be a good idea if he went up and had a rest for a while. Gordon, though, insists that there's a lot of fight left in him yet; certainly enough to take on James. Barbara says she's sure there is, but she'd still like him to have a rest. They start walking towards the house but stop in their tracks as Barbara exclaims, "What on earth is going on?" James and Wayne are standing outside the homestead, sparring with each other. James lays a punch in Wayne's stomach and he collapses to the ground. He manages to stand up again, though, and the two of them carry on fighting. Irene runs out of the house and tells James to cut it out or he'll open his wound again. James, though, snaps at her to stay out of it; he's just teaching Wayne a few lessons about what it's going to be like in the Boardroom. Irene snaps, "I beg your pardon?" James, still grappling with Wayne, retorts, "He's going to have to learn; he's going to have to shape-up a bit." Barbara asks incredulously, "You're going to box in the Boardroom?" James retorts, "You never know. But he's going to have to learn to fight with more than just words. The men I mix with like to express themselves physically wherever possible." As Wayne stands there, looking beaten, James adds, "You never know. He might make it." He then suggests to Wayne that they go and get cleaned up, and he pushes him towards the homestead. Barbara stares at Gordon, but Gordon just says, "Don't ask me."

That evening, James is sitting in the lounge room, reading, while Barbara and Irene clear the table after dinner. Irene comments that she hopes Wayne's able to write properly after this afternoon. James mutters, "He didn't get enough punches in to hurt his hands." Gordon comes into the room, carrying a walking cane, and he hands it to James, saying as he does so that he knew it was hidden away somewhere. James muses that it was the old man's; he remembers getting beaten with it more than once. Gordon smiles and James growls, "You think that's funny, don't you?" Gordon, though, sits down next to him and replies, "No, not particularly. It just reminded me of the way you used to fly off the handle. You had a go at me a few times, looking back." He then sighs, "Look, James, all I know is that he cared about both of us a great deal. OK, you were the rebel - he was a bit harder on you - but everything always had to go your way, didn't it." James points out, "But I didn't often get what I wanted, did I?" Gordon tells him, "No, you didn't, but the point is, neither did I." James, looking at the cane, sighs that it used to hurt; he can still feel it. Gordon remarks, "It's better than the lump of wood I got behind the knees one day." James sighs, "Well, today nearly put paid to that, didn't it?" Gordon comments that it must have been very alarming. James laughs bitterly, "God, you always manage to make everything sound so small, don't you?" Gordon asks him, "In what way?" James snaps, "You'd have been jumping out of your skin tonight, if I'd fallen out of that tower." Gordon stares at him and then asks, "Do you honestly believe I could wish you any harm?" James points out, "It would solve all your problems, wouldn't it?" Gordon, though, growls, "And how would I have felt? Have you considered that? Whatever you think of the relationship we each had with dad, do you seriously believe I could wish you dead?" James points out, "You didn't exactly break your neck keeping in touch, did you?" Gordon snaps, "You were the one who left home, not me - and I did try to stay in touch; I told you that." James laughs sarcastically, "Oh yeah, I'm sorry, I forgot that." Gordon goes on, "I was very angry with dad after he died. I don't know... somehow guilty about the way he treated you. You didn't give me a chance to make it up to you." James snarls, "Well you certainly made it up once I got back, didn't you?" Gordon sighs, "Alright, I admit I tried to cheat you - or rather, I didn't speak out against it. But when it comes down to it, neither of us can claim infallibility when it comes to being honest with each other. We both played games: you and your strippergram... making me wait for you to arrive... it's all rather juvenile, when you consider it. And the fact that you could think I want you dead only proves how juvenile you still are. You haven't changed, James, not one iota since the day you left home. It's all rather sad..."

The next morning, Irene is out running in the grounds when she suddenly comes across Wayne, standing outside the homestead, lifting some weights. She smiles at him and asks, "Well, well, well, what have we here?!" Wayne glares at her and tells her, "You look pretty stupid, too. Since when have you been a jogger?" Irene retorts, "Since the age of good sense. Since when have you been Mr. Universe?" Wayne gives her a look, and she smiles, "Since the barney with James? Getting ready for the Boardroom eh?" Wayne snaps at her her to go away. Irene, though, just smiles, "Weightlifting's OK, but it's not as good as jogging - the heart and lungs." She adds, "I really reckon your ego's been more bruised than your body!" With that, she runs off. Wayne glares at her as she goes.

A few moments later, Irene runs into the lounge room, where James is sitting with a chess set in front of him. She tells him that she's off to have a shower. James, though, asks her to hang on a minute, as he wants to give her something. He reaches into his pocket and takes out a coin. Irene asks what it is: a tip for getting him breakfast?! James, though, explains, "Nope, that is my lucky penny. It was there one day, on the footpath, when I was down to my last cent. After that, things started looking up. I want you to have that - for saving my life." Irene laughs that it was only a cut on his leg! James, though, tells her that if she hadn't have come along when she did, he'd have been a dead man. Irene points out that Wayne was there. James retorts, "Exactly. I would have been a dead man. He was going to let me drop - another thirty seconds, I would have been crows' feet." Irene, looking shocked, exclaims that she can't believe that. James tells her, "I don't give my lucky penny away lightly." Irene murmurs, "In that case, thanks for the thought." She then asks if that was the reason for the show of strength earlier on and James nods, "Yeah." Suddenly appearing to think of something, she quickly checks in concern, "You haven't told Gordon, have you?" James retorts, "Not yet." Irene pleads, "James, don't. He's a sick man." James just gives her a look, and she cries, "James, please--" She breaks off as Gordon comes into the room at that moment and asks Irene if she's collected the papers yet. Irene says she hasn't. Gordon heads again out to get them. When he's gone, Irene says to James, "Promise me?" James, though, asks, "Why should I worry about what he thinks or what it's going to do to him? He's a stuck-up snob." He goes on curtly, "Do you know, I don't think I've ever seen a man with cleaner fingernails? It wouldn't do him any harm to get some dirt on his hands. He should be in Canberra with the rest of the fat cats." Irene suddenly stares at him, a look of realisation crossing her face, and she exclaims, "That's what it's all about, isn't it: you don't hate him; you're just using him as an excuse. You're the one you hate. You didn't make it yourself, so the easy way out is to have a bash at someone who did, and who better than your own brother? Makes you feel justified for being a failure, doesn't it?" James stares at her as she then announces that she'd better have that shower. Indicating the penny, she adds, "Thanks. I won't spend it - I promise." She walks off, leaving James looking downcast.

Wayne is still lifting weights outside. Gordon walks up to him, carrying the newspapers. Wayne stops him to talk to him, but Gordon then starts replying to his son animatedly. James suddenly appears by the corner of the homestead and watches them for a few seconds before heading back inside.

A short time later, James is sitting back on the couch, playing chess by himself. Gordon comes in with the newspapers and hands his brother one of them. He goes to walk out again, but James asks him if he can have a word with him. Gordon stops in his tracks and James tells him, "I've been thinking about what you said last night. I think it's about time we were honest with each other." Gordon, going and sitting down, insists, "I've always believed in being honest, no matter what you might think." James pleads with him not to come the holier-than-thou gumph. Gordon mutters that he's not. James then says, "I have to admit something. It's not going to be easy." Gordon replies, "I'm listening." James tells him, "I held a hell of a grudge when I came here. You know, that goes back to when we were boys, I think." He then sighs, "Who am I kidding? Of course it goes back to when we were boys." Gordon insists, "There was never any reason." James murmurs that he knows. He then continues, "You know, whether you believe this or not, I always looked up to you; you were the hero. That doesn't mean that I didn't try hard. Nothing's changed. I've been doing that ever since I came here." Gordon tells him, "James, we're still the same as we were all those years ago. The only difference is we don't have dad as a referee." James smiles, "Yeah, well, he wasn't a bad ump, was he?" Gordon muses, "A bit quick on the whistle, but fair." James sighs, "Yeah, well, there's something else that you should know: Wayne's been playing up to me. He wants to change my mind about taking Woombai back. He's trying to win the place back for you. I think it's important that you know that." Gordon nods, "It is. Thankyou." James continues, "On the fire tower, yesterday, he would have let me drop - for your sake." Gordon, looking shocked, asks, "You serious?" James nods. He adds, "Of course, he pulled me back up again - for your sake, too. He's quite a lad." Gordon stares at his brother and tells him, "Yes, well, so are you. Couldn't have been easy." James agrees, "No, it's been damned hard." Gordon pauses and then smiles, "It's good to think we're friends again." James smiles back at him and tells him earnestly, "More than that, mate. We're brothers."


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