Amy brings baby Milo to see everyone on her way home; Tina describes her replacement on reception (Monica) as "Godzilla". Sunny keeps going on about the fact that he delivered Milo.
Josh’s face is a mess; he tells Penny that he fell over as he was going home drunk from the party, but she does not believe him. The guys who came to him at the party arrive at the ambulance; Josh drives away but they follow and cut in front of the ambulance, forcing it to stop. Josh gets out of the ambulance; they tells him time’s up but he says he hasn’t got the money and asks for another week. They leave him. He tells Penny he owes them £3000; he says it just mounts up; you think the next bet’s going to be a winner so you can pay them off. He says as he didn’t have it today, they’ll take it. He and Penny go to check his place. They find that the guys have taken his car and ransacked the house. They have smashed the frame of Josh’s only photo of his family (the others were destroyed in the fire). Penny tries to persuade him to tell the police but he says he doesn’t want them involved. She tells him he has a problem. Josh goes to see Charlie and tells him he’s been gambling and borrowing money from loan sharks. Charlie says he has to sort himself out and agrees to let him stay with him until he gets back on his feet.
Max talks to Mark about training to be a doctor. He says Mark should be sure about it. Mark has told Charlie but not George. Max tells him, "I gave everything to my job; I took my family for granted. Now here I am with sweets for comfort." He says his son’s a junkie and thinks it might not have happened if he’d had a different job. He says he regrets the consequences of becoming a doctor but he wouldn’t have done it any other way - that’s what’s seen him through. Mark says "Then that’ll see me through."
George asks Mark if they can talk; she says they’ve been acting like long lost lovers all over Christmas but now he’s hardly talking to her. Max lets it slip to George that Mark is going to retrain as a doctor. She’s angry and hurt. Mark explains what’s made him decide to retrain. He says just because he’s leaving it doesn’t have to be the end of them. She says it does, if she’s in Holby and he’s God knows where studying. Mark says they can work something out; George replies, "Like Baz and Charlie have, no thank you."
Mark talks to Mr. Nichol, an old man who’s playing the mouth organ in reception. He tells Mark there’s nothing wrong with him apart from a broken heart. He says he’s meeting someone at four o’clock. After four, Mark finds him sitting in a cubicle, with a bunch of flowers on the trolley, playing the mouth organ. Mr. Nichol tells Mark that his wife died there three years ago at this time, and he comes back every year. He regrets that he never took her to Venice.
Ray and Heidi Dean, a young couple, are in reception. Ray has cut his leg on his inside upper thigh; they are desperate that it doesn’t scar, as he is "a would-be Chippendale" as Charlie puts it. He suddenly gets a bad headache and starts vomiting. Sean takes him into resusc; he thinks he has a brain haemorrhage. They take him for a CT scan. Heidi is finding it difficult to take in. She says he doesn’t really need his brain in his line of work.
Ryan Schrader parks his car at the side of a road. His two children Lenny and Olivia are in the back, asleep. He puts a envelope on the dashboard, with "Read this" written on it. He gets out, opens the back door to kiss his children, then walks away. Lenny wakes up, sees the note and gets up to pick it up. He steps on the brake, releasing it, and the car rolls down the hill, crashing into some rocks. The emergency services arrive. One of the cars held up is driven by Eve’s friend Gerry, the minister. Josh and Penny arrive. Lenny is almost unconscious; Olivia is conscious but is bruised from her seat belt. They are taken to Holby A&E and treated.
Frank Gallagher talks to Alison Connell on the steps of a church shelter for the homeless. He asks about her baby, as she was pregnant last time he saw her. She shows him her baby, which she’s carrying around in a bag. She did not have him in hospital. Frank persuades her to go to hospital but she is not keen, as she thinks they’ll take him away from her. She eventually goes, but she does not go in and leaves the baby outside in its bag. When she gets back and tells Frank he phones the hospital and tells them. Duffy finds the baby and takes him into resusc. They treat him; he would be taken up to the special care unit but there is no space there so he stays there for now.
Eve is helping at the shelter, along with Marius Lupescu, a Romanian. Ryan Schrader arrives and goes in. Gerry arrives, apologizes for being late and tells her about the accident. Ryan hears him. He tells Gerry that he drove past the car on the road today. He says his wife walked out on their kids, now he’s done the same. He looks at a photo of his children. Alison sees him and starts talking to him, saying they’ve both lost their kids. She takes his photo out of his wallet while he’s not there. He gets back and finds it’s gone and turns the place upside-down looking for it. He finds the wallet on Alison’s bed and goes looking for her.
Eve finds Frank in the toilets about to take some drug. She and Gerry are about to throw him out, but Marius persuades them to give him another chance. He says Frank’s as desperate as the people they helped in Romania, but in a different way. Gerry makes Frank do the washing-up. Alison joins him in the kitchen, looking at the photo. She says she misses her baby and wants him back. Ryan comes in and grabs Alison, asking for his photo back. Frank tries to get him off her; Ryan grabs some scissors and stabs him in the chest. Josh and Penny arrive and Josh recognises Frank and tells Eve he’s Max’s son. (They find out that she’s been in Romania for the past few weeks). Eve goes to looks for Alison; she finds Ryan is holding on to her in the toilets. She has asthma and he’s covering her mouth. He says he’s going to kill her unless Eve takes him to the airport; his wife is leaving going on holiday soon with another man; she left him, he’s lost his job and the kids had no Christmas. Eve agrees to drive him there in the charity van but instead goes to the hospital for Alison. He refuses to let her go and says he’ll kill her if Eve doesn’t take him to the airport. Josh and Penny come up; he says he’s got twenty minutes to get to the airport; they tell him they won’t make it but Josh says he’ll take him in the ambulance if he lets Alison go. Ryan agrees to this. Penny and Eve take Alison inside. Josh and Ryan get in the ambulance but Josh says he’s changed his mind about taking him. When Ryan threatens him, saying he has nothing to lose, Josh says he hasn’t anything to lose either. Ryan tells him what happened, saying he has killed his children. Josh realises who his children are and tells him they aren’t dead. He takes Ryan inside. Olivia is passing on her way up to the ward. He hugs her before being taken away by the police.
Alison is taken to resusc. Her asthma is bad and she is not responding to treatment. She is opposite her baby and recognises him. She later stabilizes and asks how Frank is. As they are about to take the baby up, she tells them to stop, saying it’s her baby. Eve asks if Frank’s the father; she says he isn’t but she wishes he was.
Chloe tells Charlie that they’re bringing Max’s son in. Charlie tells Max, who insists on treating Frank himself. Josh and Penny bring him into resusc. Max calls the cardio-thoracic surgeon. He arrives and tells Max he’ll have to assist as he operates. They operate in resusc then take him up to theatre. Charlie later gets a phone call saying he’s out of theatre; the operation went smoothly, now they’ve just got to wait and see.
Tina is all over Sean; he tells her to take it easy but she won’t listen. He tells Sam he thinks she can hear wedding bells - that’s not what he wants. He tells Tina he doesn’t want to make a song and dance about it; she says they can’t keep it quiet forever; he asks her to until the case is over.
The team have a quick leaving do for Mark. Heidi comes in to say thanks for what they did for Ray and gives them a poster of him. Sam sees it and realises what he’s missed. Charlie is just beginning a speech when Monica comes in and tells them there’s an RTA on the way. Everyone leaves. Mark slowly makes his way out. Sean wishes him luck and Mark thanks him, saying if it hadn’t been for him he wouldn’t have taken the plunge. George walks past and he follows her. He tells her he doesn’t want them to split up; she says she does. He excluded her; he says that’s him all over. She agrees and says he won’t change. She wishes him luck then walks away, before turning and saying, "I could have loved you." "I should have let you," he replies. She goes.
Duffy talks to Max at Frank’s bedside. She tells him it’s not his fault. He says he got it so wrong; she says he never abandoned Frank, he never gave up on him. She says maybe today they give their kids too much; what they really need is something to fight for. Max says all he ever wanted was to love him, and he made a total mess of it. He says he has never told Frank that he loves him, and now he may never get the chance.
Episode first broadcast Saturday 26th December 1998
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