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    Written by: Ian Coughlan   Produced by: Posie Jacobs   Directed by: Mark Piper

Ginny gasps, "What are you talking about? No one can blow that much in just one deal." Wayne tells her, "You can if the deal was as big as this one." Ginny points out, "But you're rich and you've got a fantastic house - and your dad will help if he knows there's something really wrong." Wayne just grimaces, "This fantastic house will probably have to be sold to pay the debts. It wasn't just my money; it was dad's, too. God knows what I'm going to tell him." He walks over to the bar and pours himself a glass of scotch. Ginny murmurs to herself, "Boy... I don't believe it... all that work for nothing." Wayne growls, "You're not wrong: years of my life down the drain." Ginny asks, "What will you do?" Wayne tells her, "All my business records are in the computer. As soon as I get a chance I'll go through them; maybe I'll be able to salvage something." He then adds, "I'd better ring dad, too." Ginny comments, "You won't want me around. I'll get out of your way." Wayne tells her, "I'm sorry today had to end on such a short notice." Ginny mutters ruefully, "So am I." With that, she heads out. Wayne picks up the 'phone on the bar and begins to dial.

Ginny arrives back at Charlie's to find Alison sitting on the couch in the lounge room. Looking at Alison in surprise, Ginny remarks, "I didn't know you were back. How was your holiday?" Alison replies, "Successful." Ginny comments, "Funny way to describe a holiday." Alison muses, "Let's just say it did what all good holidays are supposed to do: recharged the batteries." Ginny comments, "You didn't get much of a tan." Alison explains, "I found better things to do with my time - indoors, mostly." Ginny mutters, "I'll bet." Alison looks at her and asks, "What are you so grumpy about? Glen not paying you enough attention?" Ginny sighs, "That's all over." Alison raises her eyebrows and asks, "His idea or yours?" Ginny just murmurs, "He wasn't ever serious." She then continues more curtly, "I'm sick of getting dumped on by men. From now on it's my turn - and I was doing really well, too, until just now..." Alison looks at her. Ginny explains, "The plan was to go after someone rich - and trust me to pick Wayne..." Alison asks, "He didn't go for it?" Ginny replies, "He was starting to, but some deal fell through and now he's flat broke." Alison muses knowingly, "Is that right...? What a shame I was away on holidays: seems I missed all the fun..."

In the lounge room at Caroline's, Caroline stares at Doug and says tersely, "Let me get this straight: are you saying that we've lost everything?" Doug tells her, "No. What I'm saying is: I've lost everything. Credit where credit's due..." Caroline sighs in exasperation, "Doug... What are we going to do?" Doug replies, "We've got enough to live on - for a couple of months, at least." Caroline says warily, "We do still own the house, don't we?" Doug nods, "Yeah. I managed not to let that go down the gurgler." Caroline comments, "That's the first thing we've got to do. How much will it get us?" Doug stares at her in surprise and retorts, "Nothing - 'cos we're not selling it. This place is yours." Caroline points out, "Only because you gave it to me - and if you're in trouble, I'll--" Doug interrupts and snaps, "No. I haven't sunk so low that I'll let our home be sold from under us. Besides - this sort of thing's par for the course for me. Happens all the time. I just need a couple of good money-spinning ideas to get me up on top again." Caroline remarks, "It seems to me that it was one of those got us into this in the first place." Doug shrugs, "You win some, you lose some. Next time I'll get out on top."

Susan is standing in the lounge room at Beryl's, staring out through the front window. She looks bored. After a few seconds, she wanders over to the armchair in the middle of the room. She looks at her watch, sighs heavily and then picks up the telephone.

The 'phone rings at Caroline's. Caroline is in the kitchen, making a cup of tea. Doug is in the lounge room. They both go to pick up the telephone in the respective rooms. Caroline speaks first and says to the caller, "Hello?" Susan comes on and sighs, "Oh, Caroline, it's me. I need to talk. I'm going off my brain with boredom." Looking around nervously, Caroline tells her, "Susie, it's not easy to talk at the moment - Doug's in the next room." Susan murmurs, "Oh. I'm sorry - but I really need to talk to someone." In the lounge room at Caroline's, Doug hangs up the 'phone, a look of surprise and annoyance on his face. In the kitchen, Caroline tells Susan, "I know it's hard on you, Susan, but you're the one who decided that no one else should know. You can't have it both ways." She listens and then says, "Yes, well, we've got some problems of our own, too, at the moment. I'll come and see you a bit later, OK? I'll buy you some books on the way... Alright... Bye." She hangs up. Doug says suddenly - and sharply - from the doorway, "Anyone I know?" Caroline turns to look at him in surprise. She then murmurs in realisation, "You heard." Doug tells her curtly, "I answered the other extension." He then adds, "Darling, I really would like to know what's going on."

A few moments later, Caroline starts explaining, "Susan wants everyone to think that she's dead. She's very mixed up after everything that Wayne has put her through. She needs time by herself, with no hassles." Doug asks, "Does Beryl know?" Caroline shakes her head and replies, "Only Susan and I." Doug murmurs, "That's what I thought." He then goes on, "How can you do that to her?" Caroline sighs, "Doug, this was not my idea. I found out about this by accident and Susan made me promise. If she doesn't want anybody to know, it's not up to me to tell them." Doug challenges, "Do you think Beryl's going to see it that way when she finally does find out?" Caroline retorts, "I don't like this any more than you do, but Susan is my friend, and I can't go against anything that she wants." Doug tells her, "You can at least let Beryl know she's alive. She's not going to run off to Wayne." Caroline, however, tells him, "Susan is not thinking clearly at the moment. If I betray her confidence, who knows what she's going to do? What's to stop her from running away? At least the way things are at the moment I know where she is and I know that I can help her." Doug insists, "Even if we don't say where she is, we should at least let Beryl know that she's alive." Caroline just tells him, "No. Please, Doug, leave it to me. I'm sure she'll come round; I just need a little bit more time." Doug sighs heavily and murmurs, "If that's what you want - but I don't know how long I can keep facing Beryl, knowing I'm keeping a secret like this..."

Wayne is sitting on the couch in the lounge room at Dural. Beryl is holding Robert as she stands and watches Gordon snapping at his son, "You committed us to this shonky deal without even discussing it." Wayne retorts, "It wasn't shonky - at least, not from my end. It should've just been a routine acquisition." Gordon demands, "Did you check the man's credentials?" Wayne snaps, "Of course I did. On the surface he was perfectly reputable." Gordon, however, yells, "Rubbish. I know you too well. You had a shady operation on the go and it backfired on you." Wayne insists, "That's not what happened. If you really want to know who's to blame, try Alison." Gordon asks tersely, "What's she got to do with it?" Wayne snaps, "Everything. I don't know how she did it, but she's the one who torpedoed this whole thing. I bet my life on it." Gordon asks, "You have evidence?" Wayne, however, stands up and snaps, "Oh come on, dad. You know Alison: she doesn't do anything without covering her tracks. She was supposedly away on some holiday and I was going to get it in a big way. Remember? The note she left with Charlie?" Beryl chips in, "Surely if this deal was so vulnerable to being torpedoed, you shouldn't have put so much money into it in the first place?" Wayne just glares at her. He then turns to Gordon and growls, "Can we talk privately?" Gordon, however, snaps, "No we cannot. Beryl is perfectly entitled to know what's happening. And she's right: the whole thing is your fault. Frankly, I couldn't care less, if it was just yourself you ruined, but you're going to bring everybody else down with you." Wayne insists, "We'll figure something out. We might even be able to get back the money we've lost." Gordon retorts, "The money you lost". Wayne just goes on tersely, "The important thing is: we work it out together. You and Beryl can stay here in the house while we decide what we're going to do." Gordon, however, growls, "Oh no, not on your life. I don't want to spend a moment longer than I have to with you. We'll stay at Seabreeze Towers and we'll discuss this mess you got us into tonight." With that, he and Beryl walk out. Wayne stands there, looking furious.

Alison is standing looking out through the french windows in Charlie's lounge room when Ginny walks in from the hallway. Alison looks at her and says, "I've been thinking about you. How would you like to earn some money?" Ginny nods, "Could be interested." Alison, however, tells her, "No 'could bes' about it. I want a yes or a no - because once I've told you what I've got in mind, you're in whether you like it or not. And if you dare say anything to anyone, I'll make you the sorriest person who ever lived. So, now we're clear on that point: are you interested?" Ginny pauses and then muses, "Could be..." Alison tells her, "I'll find someone else." Ginny says quickly, "I'm interested, OK?!" Alison smiles at her. She then explains, "Wayne didn't go crash entirely through his own stupidity. I helped him along a bit." Ginny growls, "Thanks a lot! I was doing great guns until--" Alison interrupts and sighs, "Alright, I didn't know about your little plan then, did I? Anyway, you'll do better out of helping me than you would from him." Ginny asks, "What do you have in mind?" Alison explains, "There's only one way Wayne can get back on his feet again: that's by setting up another crooked deal like the one he put over Charlie. But he's going to need all his computer files to do it." Ginny gasps, "You want me to steal them?" Alison tells her, "I want you to erase them."

A while later, Ginny is standing with Wayne in the front doorway at Dural. Wayne asks sharply, "She's back from her so-called holiday, is she?" Ginny retorts, "Alison is, yeah. Who does she think she is, anyway?" Wayne asks, "She over at the house now?" Ginny nods, "Yeah." She then goes on, "You know why she got mad at me? 'Cos I told her you and me spent a bit of time together and I reckon you're an OK guy. Boy, she really hit the roof. If that's what she's like, I don't want to know her. So, can I stay for a while or what?" Wayne stares at her and then nods, "Yeah, sure. Come on through. You know your way around." He then makes for the door. Ginny asks, "Where are you going?" Wayne just replies, "A few things I want to say to your 'friend', Ms. Carr..." With that, he heads out.

Alison is putting some dog food into a bowl on the floor in Charlie's lounge room. Isabella is just sitting there, staring at her, refusing to eat! There's suddenly a loud rapping on the front door. Alison looks at Isabella and grins, "Well, well, well, I wonder who that could be!" She stands up and goes to the front door, still holding the can of dog food. She opens the door. Wayne storms in and snarls, "One shred of proof, that's all I want, and I'll have you in every court in the country." Alison just says lightly, "I'm sorry. What seems to be your problem this time?" Wayne snarls, "You know damn well: you fixed that land deal to fall through." Alison shrugs, "You'll have to forgive me if I'm not up on all the facts - you see, I've been away on holiday. As I understand it, it was the sales agent who took off with the money. Even you can't hold me responsible for that." Wayne snaps, "And I'm supposed to believe it was sheer coincidence you sold all your shares just before it happened?" Alison tells him, "I simply tried to do the right thing by you: you always said you wanted me out of the company - so, I'm out." Wayne growls, "You save it for the courts. I'll get proof - and I'll get my money back." Raising her voice, Alison snaps, "Your money consisted mainly of what you ripped off Charlie, so don't look to me for sympathy. I didn't have anything to do with what happened - but if I had, I'd be feeling pretty pleased with myself." Wayne e glares at her. He then grabs the can in her hand and tries to push it towards her mouth, growling as he does so, "You've always wanted to be Top Dog. Maybe you should get used to the food." Alison just retorts, "You do that and see which one of us ends up in court." Wayne snatches the can out of her hand and throws it on the floor. He then threatens, "This is just one more score to be settled - and sooner or later it will be. Count on it." With that, he marches off. Alison shuts the door. She then looks down at the floor and a smile crosses her face as she spots Isabella sitting there amongst the spilled dog food!

Susan is making herself some toast in the kitchen at Beryl's. She hears Caroline calling suddenly, "Susan." Susan calls back, "Come in." Caroline appears in the back doorway - with Doug. A look of horror crosses Susan's face and she cries to Caroline, "You promised you wouldn't tell anyone." Doug, stepping inside, explains, "She didn't way anything, Susan: I overheard the 'phone call." Susan murmurs, "I'm sorry. I know I shouldn't have called but I get so lonely." Doug asks, "How do you think your mother feels? And all the other people who love you?" Susan tells him, "I know it must seem heartless, but I have my reasons. Please don't tell anyone." Doug assures her, "It's alright - I've already gone through that with Caroline." Susan insists, "I tried. I really tried. I called mum, but when she answered I just couldn't go through with it. I need a little more time, that's all." Doug nods, "Yeah. Well, I guess it's your business. Still, I am glad you're alive and well; I've got to admit that much." With that, he gives Susan a hug. He then looks down at a saucepan on the table and smiles, "You're really splurging on the food, aren't you?! You sure you can afford it?!" Susan replies quickly, "I like baked beans; I always have - ever since I was a kid." Doug suggests, "They'll keep for another time, won't they? Why don't I go down and get a decent meal?" Susan insists, "This is fine - really." Caroline chips in, "Susan's not broke - I can vouch for that: she won a packet on the races; the biggest case of beginner's luck in history!" A look of guilt crosses Susan's face and she murmurs, "I wish it was the same for the second time round." Caroline asks in surprise, "You've been back?" Susan nods glumly, "Yes. I lost every cent that I had." Caroline sighs, "Oh Susan--" Susan, however, interrupts and says quickly, "I guess everyone has bad patches. One more lucky streak and I can win it all back five times over." Doug says sharply, "Forget that. Gambling's for mugs - unless, of course, you're the one running the game!" Caroline muses, "He knows - believe me!" Doug then takes out his wallet and removes some cash. Handing it to Susan, he says, "This will keep you in something a bit better than baked beans for a while - and just stay clear of race courses." Susan tells him warily, "I don't know when I could pay you back." Doug just says, "Let's wait and see. Maybe I can offer you a job - when I get back on my own feet!" Susan stares at him and says, "How do you mean? I thought everything was going well for you." Doug murmurs, "It was until today..." Caroline suggests quickly, "Why don't we make ourselves a nice meal and we can talk later?" Susan smiles, "Yes, please. You don't know how I've missed just to sit and talk over a good meal." She then adds, "But there's no wine in the house; I'll have to drop down to the pub and get some." With that, she dashes out. Left alone with Doug, Caroline kisses him warmly.

A young man is sitting at a table in a pub, moving three upside-down plastic cups around in front of him. An older man is sitting to the side of him and the young man is telling him, "You've got eyes like a hawk, son, I can tell. You know exactly where the little veggie is, huh?" The second man nods, "I reckon." The first man stops moving the cups around and says, "Ten bucks says you don't." Susan walks over to them suddenly and says to a third man, who's watching, "Excuse me, do you know where the bottle department is?" The man takes her hand and says, "Sure, darling: right here. Come sit yourself down." Susan glares at him and growls, "I'm looking for the bottle department, not a scene. Mind letting me go?" The man with the cups calls over in warning, "Pete..." The man lets go of Susan and mutters, "Just having a bit of fun." The man with the cups then tells Susan, "My apologies. Pete's a good-hearted lad; just gets a little bit too playful sometimes." The older man points to the middle of the three cups suddenly and says, "That one!" The younger man lifts up the middle cup and reveals a dry pea underneath. The older man exclaims, "Ha ha!" He then picks up $10 from the table. Susan stares at them. The man with the cups comments, "No one can say that I don't run an honest game around here." He then adds, "The bottle department: straight down there on the left." He points ahead of him. Susan murmurs, "Thanks." She keeps looking at the cups on the table. The man who's controlling them asks her, "Fancy a quick wager before you go? Honest game. Good clean fun." Susan, however, murmurs, "I've got people waiting for me. Thanks all the same." She walks away.

It's evening time, and Tick is lying on the couch in the lounge room at Dural, the TV on at full blast in front of him. Wayne is sitting at the dining table, papers spread out in front of him. He calls over suddenly, sounding irritated, "Tick, can you turn that thing off? I'm trying to work. Go and use the set in the study." Tick climbs off the couch and turns off the TV. He then walks over to Wayne and asks, "What are you doing?" Wayne just retorts, "Don't bother me now, alright? It's not a good time. Go and use one of your computer games or something, OK?" Tick looks at him and then walks off with a heavy sigh.

In the living room at Beryl's, Caroline stands up from the dining table, saying to Doug as she does so, "I think we'd better have an early night. We've got a lot of serious thinking to do in the morning." Susan says to both her and Doug, "Thanks for stopping over. I've really enjoyed the company." Caroline smiles, "So did we." Doug chips in, "Have a think about what I said before - about telling your mum. You're going to have to, sooner or later. The longer you leave it--" Susan interrupts and murmurs, "I know." Everyone heads out into the hallway, where Caroline tells Susan, "I'll be in touch." With that, she and Doug leave. Susan closes the door and heads back into the living room, sighing heavily as she looks at the table that needs clearing. She then walks over and switches on the TV - but she turns it off again a few seconds later. She stands there and looks at her watch. Apparently making a decision, she then picks up her jacket and heads out of the house.

At the pub, Pete sits down with the man with the cups, handing the first man a drink. Susan walks over to them suddenly and the man with the cups smiles, "Hello!" Susan says uncertainly, "Hi. I've got a bit of time free. I was curious about the game you're playing." The first man, however, tells her, "Not game. Art. The ancient and noble art of the shells. Sit down and I'll show you how it works." He then picks up one of the three cups and says, "I've put the pea under the shell." He shows Susan the pea. He then puts the cup back on top of it and continues, "I shuffle them all around--" he does so "--and you choose which one it's under." Susan points to the cup to the far left and says - looking surprised at how easy it is, "It's that one, isn't it?" The man lifts up the cup to reveal the pea. Susan grins in delight! The man comments, "I see we have a natural, here!" He then tells Susan, "Of course, we always have a few dollars riding. It adds to the fun." Susan murmurs, "That's about all I can afford." The man smiles, "There's no limit here. Little or as much as you like." Susan nods enthusiastically, "Alright - I'll be in anything once!" She takes out some money and hands it over.

Wayne, Gordon and Beryl are all sitting in the lounge room at Dural. Gordon is holding a sheaf of papers in his hand and he comments sourly to his son, "You certainly did a thorough job. I didn't expect it to be half this bad." Wayne insists, "We can still trade our way out of it." Gordon retorts, "I need to see something more specific." Wayne tells him, "I did all the sums before you got here. They're in the study." He stands up and heads out of the room. When he's gone, Gordon says to Beryl sadly, "I can't pretend it's going to be very hopeful. I know you didn't expect to be marrying into the poor-house, so if you want to change your mind..." Beryl, however, tells him, "You're joking!" Gordon murmurs, "Sort of - but times are going to be tough. I don't want to hold you to anything." Beryl gasps, "I'm not marrying you for money - and you know what they say in the vows: 'For richer or poorer'." Gordon murmurs, "I just wish things could've been different." They suddenly hear Wayne shouting out in the hallway, "Richard!" Gordon looks at Beryl and they both dash out to see what's going on. Tick is running downstairs and he says, "Yeah, dad?" Wayne shouts at him, "You wiped all of my computer files. What the hell do you think you were doing?" Tick insists, "I didn't." Wayne just goes on, "The whole lot: hard disc, back-up file, everything." Ginny appears behind Tick on the stairs as the boy cries, "I didn't - honest." Wayne yells, "Who else? You're the only at the computer. You stupid little idiot. Do you know how much you've cost us?" A look of guilt crosses Ginny's face as Tick cries, "I didn't wipe anything. I'd know if I did." Wayne demands, "Who was it, then? Mr. Nobody?" Tick snaps, "I don't know. Stop yelling at me. It wasn't my fault." With that, he dashes back upstairs. Wayne yells after him, "Richard! Wait!" Tick just yells back, "No! I don't like you anymore!" Ginny stands there, looking worried.

At the pub, Susan lifts up one of the three cups from the table to find there's nothing underneath. The man who's conning her sighs, "Oh dear... I'm afraid we're going to have to stop." Susan, however, insists, "We can't. I know it's late, but I have to win that money back. It was given to me by a friend. It's all I've got." Pete points out gruffly, "All you had." The conman tells Susan, "It's not the hour, sweetheart, it's the sum. You see, you owe me $500 and that's my limit." Susan gasps in horror, "$500? That's impossible." The man shows her a notebook and says, "It's all written down here." Susan tells him, "You'll have to let me have more credit. One more game: double or nothing." The conman, however, says curtly, "No. I can't do that. Now, about that matter of settling the debt..." Susan murmurs, "That $80 is all I had on me. I'll have to get the rest to you in a day or two." The conman looks at her sharply. Susan insists, "I'm good for it. Really. You can trust me." The conman continues to look at her. He then murmurs nastily, "Yeah. I'm sure I can. OK, then, I'll see you in a couple of days." Susan nods, "Yes, you will." With that, she stands up and flees the pub. When she's gone, the conman says to Pete, "Tell Bruno to follow her and find out where she lives. If she proves to be difficult, I want to know when I can find her..."

Alison marches into the lounge room at Charlie's, followed by Ginny. Alison is saying, "You're sure you wiped everything - back-ups as well?" Ginny tells her, "I did exactly what you wrote down. He was yelling blue murder when I left." Alison asks, "He doesn't suspect you?" Ginny sighs, "No - he thinks it was Tick, the poor little kid." Alison muses, "Don't you worry about that. What you have to do now is stay there and work out what his plans are." Ginny gasps, "You want me to go back over there? What if he asks where I've been?" Alison shrugs, "Just say you've come back to pick up some clothes. He probably hasn't even noticed you've gone." Ginny murmurs, "I suppose not. There was a pretty heavy discussion going on with Beryl and Gordon when I left." Alison stares at her and says, "Don't just stand here - go back and listen in." She then grabs some clothes that are hanging on the doorknob and adds, "You can take these." With that, she bundles Ginny out.

Wayne, Gordon and Beryl are sitting at the dining table at Dural. Gordon is saying curtly, "What it comes down to is: we have a mountain of debts as big as Everest--" He breaks off as Ginny walks in and says 'apologetically', "Oh. Sorry. I didn't know you were still here. I just ducked over to Charlie's to get some gear." Wayne says, "You'll have to excuse us, Ginny. This is a private meeting." Ginny nods, "Sorry." She heads off back to the hallway. When she's gone, Gordon goes on, "As I was saying, we have a mountain of debts and absolutely no money to pay for it." Wayne suggests, "I thought we could lease out Woombai; that way it'll pay for itself." Gordon asks, "What about the income from the gym?" Wayne retorts, "The place is a dead loss. The shares aren't worth the paper they're written on." Ginny is standing out in the hallway, listening at the door, as Gordon says, "We still have a certain amount of property, but God knows how long we can hang on to that for. What we need is cash - and lots of it." Wayne says suddenly, "There is one way we can get back some of the money we lost." Gordon stares at him and says, "Don't make it a national secret. Tell us." Wayne explains, "The catch is there's someone who's not going to like it one little bit: Fiona."


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