Sons and Daughters logo
    Written by: Ysabelle Dean    Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Brian Phillis

Alison stands there, looking thoughtful. James eventually laughs, "Say something - the suspense is killing me!" Alison replies that she can't really think of anything. She starts walking again and as James follows her, she says sadly, "It wouldn't work - not in a million years. We're too different." James points out, "We both started with nothing. We both take big risks." Alison reminds him, "And we both hate losing. We'd be at each other's throats if it didn't work. That's one risk I don't want to take." James comments, "You're worried I'm going to turn on you like David, aren't you?" Alison replies, "No. But now you come to mention it, even if he never wants me back, I'll always care about him." James reminds her, "You said you wanted new horizons." Alison, though, insists, "James, I don't want to hurt you. Marriage could ruin things for us." James tells her, "We could make each other very happy, as well." Alison, though, retorts, "No, it's too big a risk." James comments that that sounds final. Alison replies that it is. James sighs, "You stubborn female! I'm going to keep on asking you until you give in. That's the only way you'll shut me up!"

Inside, in the hallway, Wayne is talking on the 'phone, saying, "She could have at least let us know what was happening. Are you sure she didn't leave a message with David Palmer?" Samantha, at the other end, replies, "All he could tell me was mum's on her way back to Sydney. I'm scared she's got bad news." Wayne suggests, "Maybe she's got no news?" He then asks Samantha to get Caroline to ring him when she gets back, and Samantha says she will. They hang up and Wayne goes and joins his father in the lounge room. Barbara calls over from the dinner table to ask if James and Alison came in yet. Wayne mutters, "Don't tell me she's here?" Barbara explains curtly that she's staying for lunch. Wayne mutters, "Then I'd better go out." Gordon warns him that they'd better get used to it: James is rather taken with Alison. Wayne growls, "After all the lousy things she's done to us..." Gordon says, "Hopefully, he'll wake up to her eventually, but at the moment, he's suffering from an acute attack of gratitude!" Barbara, though, snaps, "She's only interested in his bank balance." Wayne suggests to his father, "You'd better have a talk to James about giving you half of Woombai. Get it all on paper before Alison talks him out of it." Gordon comments, "I doubt he'd renege on his promise." Wayne, though, tells him, "Don't you believe it. Miss. Moneygrabber's after his dough. None of us is safe."

Outside, Alison is saying to James that she's not denying she's attracted to the thought of having money and influence again, but she married his brother for what she could get and look how that turned out. James laughs, "That's different: he's not your type!" Alison muses, "True. Being married to Gordon is about as exciting as Lunar Park when all the rides are closed!" James says sincerely, "I promise it's not going to be like that with me. Alison... I need you." Barbara suddenly calls out from the house, "Lunch, you two!" James sighs, "That woman's got appalling timing!" Alison just tells him, "Come on, let's get this meal over and done with."

Fiona is at Beryl's, sitting with Beryl and playing with Robert. She laughs, "I just can't get over how big he seems. Little Fee was a featherweight by comparison!" Beryl tells her that he eats like a horse. Fiona chuckles, "Takes after his father, I suppose. Johnny was the same: 'Bottomless Pit Palmers', I used to call them at mealtimes!" Suddenly looking serious, Beryl asks, "How is David?" Fiona replies that he doesn't give much away. Beryl comments that it'll take him a long time to get over Leigh. Fiona suddenly says brightly, "I know: why don't we go out to lunch - somewhere swish, just you and I?" Beryl replies that she'd love to, but she can't leave Robert. Fiona asks if Muriel can't care for him for the afternoon. Beryl, looking thoughtful, agrees that she probably could. She then laughs that Fiona enjoys her little treats, doesn't she?! Fiona agrees, "Yes indeedy!"

Dessert is being eaten at the dinner table at Dural. Wayne says tersely to James, "I don't suppose you've found time to contact your solicitor?" Gordon warns him to leave it. James, though, tells his brother that Wayne is just anxious to protect his interests. Wayne retorts, "It's dad's interests I'm concerned about. You've mucked him around long enough over Woombai." James agrees, "Quite right. But you've got nothing to worry about. I've arranged for my solicitor to come out to the house this afternoon. Everything's going to be finalised." Gordon comments, "I must admit, I'll be glad when it's all sorted out." James smiles, "Yes, won't we all..."

Charlie is talking on the 'phone in her lounge room, saying, "Thankyou, Marsha. See you tonight, darling. Bye!" She hangs up as the front door bangs and Alison comes in. She asks where everyone is. Charlie explains that Tom has taken Adam and Sally out shopping for the party. She then recalls, "Oh, I meant to ask you to get some hors d'oeuvres recipes from Barbara - she's a wonderful cook. What did she give you?" Alison replies, "Curry, mostly - as spicy as she dared - with Gordon trying to keep the peace!" Charlie laughs that that must have been fun. She asks if it was worth going over for. Alison, sitting down, tells her, "Yes, it was, actually. James asked me to marry him." Charlie gasps, "Darling, he didn't! I suppose you've said 'yes'?" Alison, though, muses, "No, not yet - but it is tempting." Charlie comments, "It must be - he's a very wealthy man." Alison, however, tells her, "That's not the main attraction. I'd be Mrs. James Hamilton, not Patricia Palmer hiding from the world to avoid jail." Charlie asks, "Do you love him?" Alison replies, "I'm fond of him - and I wouldn't want to see him hurt." Charlie smiles, "That's enough. Marry him, darling. At least you don't have any secrets from him. But you'd better make up your mind soon; James isn't the sort to sit around pining." Alison muses, "I suppose I've always been prepared to take risks before; it would be stupid to get cold feet now, wouldn't it?"

A while later, Alison is back at Dural, kissing James passionately in the hallway. As they pull apart, James smiles, "I knew you'd change your mind. Come on, let's tell them the good news." Alison points out, "It'll ruin their day!" James, though, tells her, "We've already made them pretty uncomfortable. Let's go and do the job properly!" With that, he opens the doors to the lounge room and he and Alison head inside. Barbara glares at Alison and asks curtly, "Did you forget something?" Alison replies brightly, "No, not exactly." James tells Barbara, Gordon and Wayne, "We've got some good news. I'm sure it's going to make you all very happy. Alison has just agreed to marry me." Everyone stares at them in shock!

Sometime later, Alison and James are at Charlie's, and Charlie pours some glasses of champagne and proposes a toast, "To the happy couple!" After they've sipped their drinks, she asks how Gordon and Barbara took the news. Alison replies that they were still picking themselves up off the floor when she and James left! Charlie insists that they'll get used to it. She then changes the subject and says to them, "You are coming to the party tonight, aren't you?" James nods, "Of course." Alison asks if next door have been invited, and Charlie replies, "Yes." Alison tells her, "Don't be surprised if they don't turn up. I don't think they'll feel much like celebrating right now..."

In the lounge room at Dural, Wayne is ranting, "I can't believe he'd be so stupid. Alison's a golddigger; it sticks out a mile." Barbara comments, "As long as the Woombai business is settled sometime today..." Gordon points out that James isn't married yet; he's got time to come to his senses. Wayne, though, snaps, "Huh! She's probably working on him right now to sign some sort of contract." Barbara growls, "If he wants to put his head into a noose, that is his business. As long as the Woombai papers are signed this afternoon, I don't care what Alison does with him."

Spider is standing with Jess and Tim in the grounds at the country house. Jess is looking awkward and Spider asks what's up. Jess points out, "You haven't introduced us." Spider quickly says, "Oh sorry." He then tells Tim, "This is me little granddaughter, Jess." Tim shakes Jess's hand and says, "Hi, Tim Palmer." Spider adds that Jess is staying with him while her father's away. He then asks if Fiona is around. Tim, though, explains that she's gone out. He asks if he can give her a message. Spider, though, says he'll hang around until she comes back. He then says he'll go and have a yarn to David, and he asks Jess if she's coming. Jess, however, looking at Tim intently, smiles, "I think I might stay here..." Spider tells Tim, "Put her to work - the exercise might do her good!" With that, he walks off. Tim says to Jess that he hopes she doesn't mind if he keeps going, as he's got a lot of work to do. Jess assures him, "That's OK. You can dig and talk at the same time, can't you?" Tim muses, "Only if I concentrate..."

Beryl and Fiona arrive back at Beryl's. Beryl comments to Fiona that that French wine must have cost her a fortune! Fiona, though, laughs, "What does it matter?!" She then adds, "Tell you what: why don't we really make it a day to remember? We'll go out this evening; go to a nightclub or something!" Beryl, though, insists, "No, I couldn't leave Robert all night as well." Fiona tells her that Muriel wouldn't mind. She adds, "Please? It'll do us both a world of good." Beryl muses, "As long as he's OK. I must admit, I enjoyed letting my hair down!" She then heads off to the kitchen, saying she'll make Fiona some strong coffee! Fiona follows her, telling her, "I'll give you a hand to--" She suddenly breaks off and grimaces in pain. She puts her hand to her back and starts groaning in agony. Beryl dashes over to her and asks in concern, "Fiona, what is it?"

A short time later, Fiona is sitting in an armchair, holding a glass of water and Beryl asks her if she's feeling better. Fiona insists, "It was only a stitch or something. It serves me right for having eaten trifle at lunchtime!" Beryl comments to her that her painkillers seem to have done the trick and she asks her if she always carries them. She adds that they seem a bit strong for a doctor to prescribe for indigestion. Fiona sighs, "OK, Sherlock Holmes. I've been getting a few back twinges lately. They're painful while they last, but it's nothing serious." Beryl asks her if Irene has had a look at her. Fiona tells her, "She's been over me with a microscope - and apart from a creaky old back, I am perfectly sound in mind and limb, so will you please stop fussing?!" Beryl retorts, "On one condition: that you go back to David's and rest." Fiona exclaims indignantly, "What about our night on the tiles?" Beryl, however, snaps, "No way. You're not in any condition to go gadding about." Fiona insists, "I'm fine, really. If you don't come with me, I'm going on my own." Beryl gives her a look.

Jess is watching Tim intently as he digs over a patch of soil in the grounds at the country house. She asks him if he likes working outside. Tim nods, "Yeah. It's hard, but." Donna suddenly runs over to them and Tim turns to look at her. She says, "Hi," to Jess and Tim introduces Jess as Spider's granddaughter. Donna says to Jess, "Hi, I'm Donna - Tim's wife." Jess's face drops, and she comments to Tim that she didn't realise he was married. Tim tells her, "We haven't been for long." Jess looks at Donna's bump and remarks, "Long enough, I'd say. Congratulations." Donna then tells Tim that she needs his help for a minute: she wants to do some sewing, but the machine's too heavy for her to lift onto the table. Tim asks in annoyance, "Can't it wait a while? I sort of want to finish up here first." Donna insists, "It won't take long." Jess chips in, "I'll do it, if you like." Donna thanks her. She then tells Tim, "I'll be making a cup of tea shortly. I bet you'll come inside for a piece of cake!" Tim laughs, "That's different!" With that, Donna and Jess walk off towards the house. Tim watches them go, looking thoughtful.

A short time later, inside, Jess lifts the sewing machine onto the kitchen table and then, lifting up a pattern, asks Donna if it's what she's making. She adds that it looks nice. Donna grumbles, "It's alright for a maternity dress, I suppose. If I had the money, I'd much rather just go out and buy one." Jess muses, "I know what you mean. All those gorgeous dresses in the shops. Way beyond my price range, I'm afraid." Donna comments, "At least you know you can fit into them. I feel like a blimp." Jess points out, "It's only for a couple of months." Donna mutters, "Yeah, thank goodness. Tim's probably forgotten I even had a figure." Spider suddenly comes in from the hallway and goes to the 'fridge to take out a couple of beers. As he does so, he remarks to Donna that he didn't know she could sew. Turning to Jess, he adds, "You should take notes - then you would be able to look at that shirt I asked you to mend!" Looking at Donna, he goes on, "If I bring it over, it wouldn't take you a minute..." A shocked Jess warns, "Spider..." Donna, though, insists that she doesn't mind. Spider goes to walk out, smiling, "You're a darl!" When he's gone, Jess warns Donna, "Now you've done it!" Donna muses, "It's only one shirt." Jess, though, tells her, "It's only the first one, you mean. He's about to make you his personal tailor!"

The 'phone rings in Irene's examination room at the boarding house. Irene answers and Kelly comes on and tells her that Beryl Palmer is on the 'phone for her. She puts Beryl through and Irene asks her how she is. Beryl replies that she's fine. She then explains, "I'm calling about Fiona. I don't want to be an alarmist, but, well, we went out to lunch today, and when we got back she had some sort of attack. She insisted it was nothing and she was OK after she took a couple of painkillers. I don't want to overreact or anything, but would you know anything about it?" Irene asks if Fiona is still there. Beryl, though, explains that she made her go back to David's for a rest. She adds, "But she's insisting we go out again tonight, to a nightclub. She seems to want to live as if there's no tomorrow." Irene doesn't respond, and so Beryl asks, "Is there something wrong with her? She told me you gave her a thorough going-over." Irene sighs, "I can't discuss my patients, Beryl. You know the rules." Beryl comments, "She is hiding something, isn't she?" Irene laughs weakly, "You're jumping to conclusions." Beryl insists, "Irene, Fiona and I have been friends for years. If there is something wrong, I would like to know about it." Irene, though, tells her, "I'm sorry - it's up to her." Beryl accepts this reluctantly and she says she'll talk to Fiona again. She hangs up.

At the Morrell town house, Caroline is sitting with Samantha, who's sobbing, "I can't believe it..." Caroline tells her grimly, "Darling, I identified the body. There was no mistake." Samantha sobs, "We were too late. After all this time, bumping into Bill and knowing she was alive, we were too late?" Caroline insists, "We did everything we could." Samantha, looking shocked, cries, "You sound so cold about it? Don't you care?" Caroline tells her, "Of course I do." Samantha yells, "Then don't talk about her as if she was someone we hardly knew. She was your daughter, mum." Caroline snaps, "How do you think it feels to lose someone who's part of you? It's like part of me has died, too." Samantha turns away and murmurs, "I'm sorry." Caroline puts her arm around her as she goes on, "I just can't believe we're never going to see her again. I was so sure you'd find her..." Caroline tells her gently, "So was I."

A while later, Samantha hangs up the 'phone and Caroline asks, "How did he take it?" Samantha replies, "Not very well. Whatever you think of Wayne, he really loved Amanda." Caroline mutters that she's sure he'll be happy that he doesn't have to fork out any more money to have Bill watched. Samantha, though, tells her, "Apparently, that fell through. This afternoon sometime, the detective saw two men bundling Bill into a car and they drove off somewhere." Caroline muses, "Well, well, well. Stan Jenkins doesn't let the grass grow under his feet." Samantha looks at her in surprise and asks who Stan Jenkins is. Caroline tells her, "He's the man the police think was responsible for the abattoir fraud at Woombai - not that they'll ever prove it." Samantha comments, "He must have been the man Bill was hiding from." Caroline replies, "Yes - and he was very grateful when I rang him up from the airport and gave him Bill's address..." Samantha stares at her and mouths in shock, "Mum, you didn't...?" Caroline, though, retorts, "Amanda went through hell because of him. I wasn't going to watch him just slip away, free as a bird." Samantha cries, "Why couldn't you just call the police?" Caroline, though, asks, "What could they do? There was nothing to prove that Bill had anything to do with Amanda's death." Samantha gasps, "Oh mum, do you realise what you've done? Whatever happens to Bill will be your fault." Caroline, though, growls, "He deserves it. You didn't see her lying on that slab in the morgue - but it's something I'm never ever going to forget..."

In the lounge room at Woombai, James signs some papers as two men look on. When he's done, he stands up while the two men sign to say they've witnessed his signature, and he goes to the bar to make a 'phone call. He looks up a number in the index and then dials. The call is answered by Alison. James says, "Hi, it's me. Can you come over?" Alison asks, "Finished with the solicitor?" James replies, "Yep - and I've got a little surprise for you." Alison asks reluctantly, "Couldn't you bring it over to Charlie's? I'm sure the Hamiltons would consider three visits in one day a little more than they can stand." James, though, insists, "They won't give you any trouble. And I want 'em to see what you're getting." Alison muses, "Sounds ominous. Well, I never could resist a surprise! I'll be over in five minutes."

A few minutes later, Gordon, Barbara and Wayne cross the hallway to the lounge room and James apologises for keeping them out for so long. He goes to open the front door to let the solicitors out. One of them shakes his hand and says, "Congratulations, Mr. Hamilton. I think you've organised your business affairs very neatly." As they walk off, Alison appears in the doorway, and James, looking at his watch, comments, "You're thirty seconds early!" He invites her into the lounge room, where Wayne growls at her, "We were about to have a private business talk." Alison smiles, "Hello to you, too!" James explains to everyone, "Alison is here because I've asked her to come. I've got a surprise for all of you." Everyone stares at him. He goes on, "Firstly, Gordon doesn't have to worry about losing Woombai anymore: I just signed the necessary papers. We own it between us." Gordon nods at him, gratefully. Still looking at Gordon, James continues, "And as compensation for all the worry I caused you, I've just arranged to give you half my interest in the company." Gordon comments, "That's a very generous offer, but--" James interrupts him and tells him, "Wait until I've finished, Gordon." He then announces, "I also arranged for an appropriate wedding present for Alison." Wayne mutters sourly, "I don't think we're going to like this..." James continues, "I'm no businessman, as you all know. I don't want to fall down on my responsibilities towards Woombai and the company, so I've signed over my control of my assets to Alison. That as good as makes her your partner." The shocked Hamiltons stare glumly at a grinning Alison...


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