Sons and Daughters logo
    Written by: Ray Kolle   Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Gaye Arnold

At the country house, Tim and Donna are standing with David and Fiona in the kitchen. Tim asks if Spider and Jess are meeting them there at the house. David, though, explains that they're going straight to the church. There's suddenly a knock on the door and David opens it to let Beryl in. She's holding Robert, and Fiona smiles that he's going to be the centre of attention. She then asks Beryl, "Where's your brother and sister-in-law?" Beryl explains, "They couldn't make it. Helen rang this morning: one of the kiddies has gone down with the 'flu." Tim comments that they were going to be godparents, weren't they?" Beryl nods, "Yes. I said I'd ask you and Donna to stand in as proxies. Would you mind?" Tim replies that that's fine by him. Donna smiles, "Sure." Beryl turns to Fiona and continues, "That is unless you'll reconsider. I would like one of his real godparents to be there." Fiona says hesitantly, "I though you'd asked your sister-in-law." Beryl insists, "We'd rather have you." Tim tells her, "I reckon you'll make a great godmother." Donna adds, "You could even be godmother to our baby." David cajoles, "Come on, Fiona, you know we want you to do it." Fiona just stands there, looking worried, before eventually stuttering, "Er... I... I can't." With that, she runs out. David murmurs to Beryl that there is something wrong. Beryl follows Fiona into the lounge room. Fiona sniffs that she's so sorry. Beryl pleads, "Tell me... please... Irene is treating you for something." Fiona snaps, "Irene had no right to say--" Beryl interrupts and assures her, "Irene didn't say anything - but I'm not a a fool; I know there must be some reason why you won't be Robert's godmother." Fiona sobs, "I'd love to be." Beryl asks, "Then why won't you do it?" Fiona, though, murmurs, "Please, Beryl, don't push me. I can't talk about it - not yet." Beryl assures her, "I'll be here when you can. And we'd still like you to be Robert's godmother - whatever the problem is." Fiona murmurs, "Alright."

At Charlie's, Charlie is asking Alison impatiently, "Why can't you be satisfied with half of Woombai and part of the company? I know Gordon would play fair if you did." Alison retorts, "I want to make some money; it's as simple as that." Charlie asks, "What happens when James comes back and finds you buttering up Gordon?" Alison just tells her, "This is business, Charlie." Charlie sighs, "You're so cynical." Alison, though, snaps, "I can't afford to be sentimental; I was over David and look where that got me. Being fond of James isn't going to stop me doing what I want to do. I'm not going to be hurt again, Charlie - and if you've got any sense, you'll make sure you're not, either." Charlie growls, "There's no reason I should be." Alison, though, asks, "Isn't there? Tom is having an affair with your daughter and you don't think you're going to be hurt?" Charlie glares at her and cries, "There is no affair. He's far too old for her." She then snaps, "I wish I'd accepted the invitation to Robert's christening - then we could have all gone down to Melbourne and got away from your nasty little plans. I don't want to have anything more to do with them." She storms out.

Adam is lying on a sunlounger out by the pool when Charlie approaches him and asks where Tom is. Adam replies that he went for a walk. Charlie then asks how Sally was at the airport. Adam replies carefully that she was fine. Charlie asks him, "Do you know if there was some other reason why she went back to Melbourne - apart from her studies?" Adam suggests gently, "Look, why don't you just leave well enough alone?" Charlie, though, sighs, "You know, don't you?" Adam just looks at her and she says, "I'm going to find Tom." She walks off.

Tom is walking up the driveway towards the house when Charlie approaches him. He says a muted, "Hi." Charlie tells him, "I think we should talk about Sally."

A few moments later, Charlie and Tom are walking along the driveway together. Charlie is crying, "Sally's very young and inexperienced. I would have thought you'd know better. You've taken advantage of a girl young enough to be your daughter and made a complete fool of me." Tom, though, insists, "I didn't take advantage." He then murmurs, "Still, I'll leave this afternoon. The last thing I wanted was to hurt you, Charlie. Nothing happened between me and Sal; I want you to know that. It was just an attraction - we seemed to have so much in common." Charlie asks, "Do you want to see her again?" She then sighs, "Course you do." Tom suggests, "Perhaps it would be better if I didn't see either of you?" He then asks Charlie what she wants him to do. Charlie, though, retorts, "What do you want to do? It's not my decision." Tom tells her reluctantly, "I'll go - not to Sally; back to Melbourne." Charlie snaps, "If you want to go, just go." She turns away, looking upset. Tom heads off back towards the house. Charlie watches him, sadly.

Fiona, Jess, Spider, David, Tim, Donna and Beryl - holding Robert - are standing in the grounds outside the local church in Sunbury when a vicar walks up to them. Beryl introduces him to David, and the vicar comments to him that he hasn't seen him at any of the morning services. David blusters, "I've been trying to get along..." Beryl then introduces Tim, explaining that he'll be standing in as godfather as her brother couldn't make it. She turns to Fiona and introduces her as well, telling the vicar that she'll be godmother. Spider suddenly suggests that someone older and more responsible should stand in as godfather instead of Tim. Jess warns him to let Tim do it. Beryl, though, assures him that he and David would love him to do it. David asks Tim what he thinks, and he replies that it doesn't worry him. Everyone goes to head inside the church. As they do so, Spider tells Fiona that it's the senior cits' dance next week. Fiona, though, replies that she's been having a bit of trouble with her back, and she doesn't think dancing would be the best thing for it.

Charlie is sitting in her lounge room, crying. Alison walks in and asks in concern, "Charlie?" She goes and puts her arm round her. Charlie sobs, "I talked to Tom... he's going back to Melbourne." Alison insists, "It wasn't your fault." Charlie, though, cries, "But I lost him to my own daughter. Everyone's going to have a good laugh at Charlie, as usual..." She breaks down in Alison's arms.

A while later, Charlie and Alison are standing on the front doorstep as Tom packs his bags into the boot of a taxi. He then walks over to the two women and tells Charlie gently, "I don't know what to say. I'm sorry. You're a marvellous woman, Charlie." He goes to take her hand, but Charlie mutters, "Just go, Tom - please." Tom walks back over to the cab, climbs in and it drives off. On the doorstep, Alison puts her arm round Charlie and tells her to come inside. Charlie, though, murmurs, "I want to go for a walk. I want to be alone for a while." She wanders off. Alison heads back inside the house, looking concerned.

The christening ceremony is underway in Sunbury, and the vicar asks the parents and godparents if they're willing to give Robert help and encouragement by every means in their power. Beryl and David say together, "I am willing." The vicar looks at Fiona and Spider, who are standing together. Spider tells him, "I am willing - speaking for Beryl's brother, of course." All eyes turn to an upset-looking Fiona. After a few seconds, she murmurs, "I am willing." Beryl smiles at her, gratefully.

Back at Beryl's, later, Tim takes some food from a spread on the living room table. Beryl and Jess emerge from the kitchen, Beryl asking Jess as they do so if she's heard from her father. Jess replies that he 'phoned last night; he's settling in. She adds, "I told him I was coming today and he said to give you his love. I think he's still a bit hopeful that things might be a bit different when he gets back." Beryl, though, says warily, "Er, I have told him they won't be, love." With that, she joins the rest of the gathering by the table and tells everyone that there's plenty of food left. Spider suggests that he could take some of it home, if she likes. Beryl thanks him. Fiona is sitting on the couch, holding Robert, but she suddenly grimaces in pain and reaches round with one of her hands to her back. She quickly suggests to Donna that she take Robert, adding that it'll be good practice for her. Donna takes the child and Fiona stands up gingerly and leaves the room. Tim comments to David that he reckons Robert looks just like their side of the family. Beryl smiles, "That's funny: my mum thinks he looks exactly like my dad!" David remarks, "It's a pity they couldn't have made it." Beryl nods, "Yeah - dad's not up to the trip anymore." Out in the kitchen, Fiona tips a couple of pills into her hand and swallows them with a glass of water. Spider suddenly comes in and takes a beer out of the 'fridge. As he does so, he tells Fiona not to think she's not coming to that dance with him; he can be a very persistent bloke when he wants to be. Fiona, however, laughs , "I can be a very persistent lady, too!" The two of them head back into the lounge room. Beryl offers Fiona some more sausage rolls, but she declines, saying she's had sufficient. Spider tells her, "Come on, you need a bit more flesh for a man to hang on to." Fiona laughs, "If you think I am putting on weight just--" She breaks off as a wave of pain suddenly overwhelms her and she doubles over. Beryl stares at her in concern and mouths, "Fiona?"

A short time later, Beryl is sitting with Fiona on the couch. She asks her if she has her tablets with her. Fiona explains that she's taken a couple but they just haven't had time to work. David hangs up and tells her that the doctor will be here as soon as he can. Fiona insists that it's just a stitch or something. She adds, "Please, David, call him back; tell him I don't need him." She tries to stand up, but Beryl and Tim grab her arms and Beryl tells her that she's going to lie down. They help her out. Spider asks David what he thinks is up with her. David sighs, "I don't know, Spider, but I reckon it's a darn sight more than a bad back."

Alison is sitting in the lounge room at Charlie's when Charlie escorts Wayne into the room. He immediately says, "Dad's told me about your little surrender speech this afternoon. He might be giving you the benefit of the doubt, but no one else is." Alison retorts, "I can't help that. I was completely genuine. Of course, you wouldn't understand the meaning of the word." Wayne tells her, "I think you should know I have dad's Power of Attorney: that means I control the company." Alison warns him, "Not if Caroline and I join forces." Wayne laughs, "She hates you." Alison, though, retorts, "I don't think she's in love with you, either. She'll side with whoever suits her at the time, so I wouldn't look so smug, if I were you." Wayne warns her, "You pinched James from under her nose; I don't think she'll forget that too easily." Alison, though, reminds him, "She forgot that you let everyone think she disrupted Stephen's wedding."

David escorts the doctor into the lounge room at Beryl's and Beryl asks, "How is she?" The doctor replies that he's given Fiona an injection for the pain - but she should be in hospital. Beryl tells him that she was, a few weeks ago, but she said everything was clear. She asks, "What is wrong with her?" The doctor, though, just replies, "She knows what the problem is, Mrs. Palmer - and she is already under the care of another doctor; it isn't my place to say." Beryl accepts this. The doctor asks her to see if she can talk Fiona into going into hospital, adding that that's where she ought to be. Beryl says she will. With that, she sees him out. David starts clearing things away in the living room, but as he does so, Fiona walks through the kitchen doors and he asks her if she shouldn't be resting. Fiona insists that she's alright; there's no need to keep fussing. Beryl warns her the doctor wants her in hospital. Fiona, though, retorts that that's just too bad, because she's not going. David growls, "Whether you're going to or not, I think it's about time you stopped beating around the bush and told us what's wrong with you." Beryl pleads, "Please. We're your friends; we want to know." Fiona stands there uncomfortably before announcing, "I have cancer." Beryl and David look at each other in shock.

Spider is sitting in the kitchen as Donna and Jess clear things up. David joins them and Spider asks how Fiona is. David replies that she just needs a rest. He then asks Tim to drive everyone back to his place. He hands over the keys. He adds, "Fiona will be staying here tonight - and I'll hang around for a while." Spider asks what the doctor said. David tells him, "She just needs a good rest and a bit of peace and quiet." Jess suggests to Tim that he could just drop her and Spider at home. Donna, though, insists that she wants them to come back to David's, and Jess accepts. Spider suggests that they could still stop at the Campbell house so he can get the shirts for Donna to fix! With that, Tim, Donna, Jess and Spider head out the back door and David rejoins Fiona and Beryl in the lounge room. As he sits down, he says to Fiona, "Now, are you going to tell us the full story?" Beryl adds reassuringly, "You don't have to go through it alone, Fiona."

Adam wanders into the lounge room at Charlie's. Charlie is polishing the silver and Adam looks at her in surprise and asks what she's doing it for. Charlie mutters that she may as well do something. Adam asks her if she's spoken to Tom. Charlie retorts, "Yes. He's gone back to Melbourne." Adam tells her, "I'm sorry. A bloke his age should have more sense than to let things get out of hand." Changing the subject, Charlie says to her son, "Adam, I've been thinking: how would you like to go on a trip overseas?" Adam, looking surprised, asks, "Where to?" Charlie shrugs, "Europe, I suppose - unless you'd rather go somewhere else. I'd like to get away for a while and I'd love you to see Europe for the first time with me." Adam nods, "It's a good idea. You'd have to let me pay my own way, though." Looking thoughtful, he goes on, "I've got a bit of money packed away... I was going to take Leigh overseas. I could do with getting away for a while; everything seems to remind me of Leigh - even being up here." Charlie assures him, "After a couple of months away, you can come home and start afresh." Adam nods, "It's a good idea." Charlie smiles, "I'll start making the arrangements!"

In the kitchen at the country house, Tim puts a casserole in the microwave, and Jess comments that microwaves are great! She goes to put a pile of plates on the table, but a spoon that's balancing on top suddenly falls onto the floor. She bends down to pick it up. Tim does likewise, and for a few seconds, they find themselves staring into each other's eyes... The moment is interrupted by Spider suddenly coming in and saying he thinks he'll ring and see how Fiona is.

The 'phone rings at Beryl's. Beryl answers it and and Spider comes on and asks how Fiona is. Beryl replies that she's much better. Spider asks if they've found out what's wrong. Beryl tells him that it's just a back complaint. Spider asks to have a word to her. Beryl, though, replies that she's resting; she'll talk to him tomorrow. Spider accepts this and asks her to give Fiona his regards. Beryl says she will. She then tells him that she'll see him later and she hangs up. She wanders over to the living room table, where David and Fiona are eating, and tells Fiona that Spider sends his regards. Fiona says nervously, "They don't know what it is, do they?" Beryl assures her, "Of course not." David then tells Fiona, "You know we care about you." Fiona nods, "Of course." David pleads, "Then please... have the operation." Beryl adds, "We know that friend of yours had a similar operation and didn't pull through, but that doesn't mean you won't. It's a chance for life, Fiona; I've never known you to throw in the towel before." David tells her, "It's crazy not to have it." Fiona cries, "I can't." Beryl persists, "We know you're scared, but you've got to give yourself a chance to live." Fiona cries, "Please don't..." David insists, "We're not going to stand by and watch you die." Beryl adds, "It will only get worse, Fiona. We don't want to see you suffer. You can't do that to yourself; you can't do it to us. Just because you're scared of an operation..." Fiona sobs, "If I have that operation, I'll die." David snaps, "You won't." He then goes on more calmly, "If Irene has told you it's in its early stages and there's a good chance of getting it all out then she must know what she's talking about." Beryl adds, "Lots of people live perfectly normal lives with one kidney. Please, Fiona, we're begging you: have that operation." Fiona takes a deep breath and then, with tears in her eyes, says quietly, "It's better to go quickly than the other way." Beryl, though, insists tersely, "You're not going to go at all. You're going to have that operation and you're going to be fine." Fiona sits there, tears streaming down her face.


    Links:  Episode 710    Episode Index    Main Index    Episode 712