Series 16 Episode 12:
Written by Maurice Bessman

Max watches as Amanda takes Ben to a drugs rehabilitation clinic. He approaches Amanda as Ben goes in, but she won’t talk to him; she’s still angry about him giving drugs to Ben, and lying to her. She goes back to his place and starts packing. Max tries to talk to her but she says she’s going and she doesn’t want to see him again. He goes to work. Charlie sees him and asks what’s wrong. Max tells him he and Amanda have split up. Charlie advises him to try again, to make her listen. Max says it’s pointless but Charlie tells him he has nothing to lose. He tells Max to phone her. Max says he will, and goes to his office. Later Jan comes up to Charlie, asking if Max is in yet; Charlie says he isn’t but he’ll let her know when he arrives. When Jan has gone he asks Patrick why Jan’s looking for Max; Patrick suggests she’s working her way through the department. Not amused, Charlie asks him if he’s told Jan about what Max did for Ben. Patrick admits he did, saying somebody needs to sort him out, as he contravened hospital policy.
Brian Todd is brought into A&E after a fall. He has a bad injury to his leg, which is weeks old; some of the flesh is dead and will need to be removed. After checking up on his notes, the staff realise he has had a succession of injuries to his right leg, all of which are suspicious, and Brian keeps asking them to take off his leg so the injury won't kill him. Eventually Max diagnoses a condition where a person physically hates a part of their body, feeling it doesn't belong to them. Brian is relieved that someone has found out what's wrong, and asks Max to amputate the leg. Max agrees to do so. Patrick objects that the leg could be saved, but Max justifies his decision by saying that Brian is of sound mind and it will save the health service money as Brian won't keep injuring himself.
Jack and his brother Tony are sparring in the gym. Jack tries to persuade Tony to apply for a job as security guard in A&E. He says there are loads of cute girls working there; Tony says that wouldn't interest him and Jack replies that they could give him make-up tips. He brings Tony to A&E and asks Charlie if he can give Tony the job. Charlie says it's out of his hands, but agrees to put in a good word for Tony.
Dillon sees Spencer throwing up in the toilets; Spencer says he's OK. Later, however, he suddenly vomits blood in reception. He is taken to resusc where tests are done. Dillon, hearing that Spencer used to be an alcoholic, believes that this has happened because he's started drinking again, but Patrick believes that Spencer hasn't drunk since he started his job. Jack offers to call Spencer's relatives, but Spencer says there's no one to call. However, Jack tries to track down Spencer's wife Shirley, and eventually manages to contact her and persuade her to come in to see him. She comes in, and Spencer is pleased to see her. He tells her how long it is since he had a drink, and that he's doing his job well. She seems impressed. Patrick comes to do a test, and she says she'll wait around for him. She goes to ask Dillon what's wrong with Spencer, and Dillon mentions that it could be caused by Spencer drinking again. She says it's the same thing happening again - Spencer swearing he'd given up the drink but carrying on - and leaves. Later the results come through from tests - it's nothing alcohol-related. Dillon tells Patrick he made a mistake, and apologises, but Patrick says it's not him he needs to apologise to. Patrick goes to tell Spencer the news - that it's just a tear in the oesophagus, caused by retching. Spencer says he wishes Shirley had stayed around to find out that he really isn't drinking. He says he wanted her to see that he'd changed, but that there's not much chance of that now.
Comfort has been trying to bring Josh and Colette closer, asking questions and dropping hints. Eventually she resorts to less subtle means, and with Chloe's help, gets them both in a room together and leaves them to talk. They agree to give things another go, and kiss, to the delight of Chloe and Comfort who are watching.
Teenager Marice Devereux has been brought into A&E with abdominal pains. Her mother Elle arrives, and Lara tells them that Marice has appendicitis and needs an appendectomy. Elle refuses to give consent for surgery, eventually admitting that Marice had a brother who died during a routine operation. Duffy tells her that Marice is likely to die without the operation, as the appendix could burst soon. She eventually manages to convince Elle to sign the consent form. However, just as she has done so, Marice's father Paul arrives. When Elle tells him she's given consent for Marice to have surgery, he tears up the form. They argue about it at Marice's bedside, until she suddenly shouts to them to stop it. She asks if she can sign the form herself, and Lara says that even though Marice is underage, in her opinion she is capable of making the decision, and so can sign her own consent form. Marice tells her parents that what happened to her brother was terrible, and she still misses him, but she doesn't want to die. She signs the form.
Charlie goes up to Max's office. Max has phoned home but there's no answer; he thinks Amanda must have left already. Charlie tells Max about Spencer collapsing but can't break the news about Patrick telling Jan. Throughout the day he tries to tell him but Max is too busy. Eventually Charlie is just about to tell him when Jan comes down and asks Max for a word. They go up to his office. Jan tells him she has no alternative but to put him on special leave, with immediate effect. Max walks out of his office, and tells Charlie, who was waiting outside, that he's been suspended, adding that he'll call him. Jan asks Charlie why he didn't tell her Max had arrived. He says he needed Max. Jan says she likes Max too. 'But rules are rules, eh?' asks Charlie. Jan says yes, they are, and walks off.
Jason turns up in reception asking to see Chloe. He asks her if she'll entertain his friend tonight, but she says she's working. He says there's no one else to do it and she agrees to do it. She asks Charlie if there's any chance of her finishing early, but Charlie says there's no chance. He adds that her performance has not been up to scratch lately, and she should seriously consider whether this is the job for her. Chloe tries to persuade Anna to take her place with Jason's friend, pretending to be her. Anna is reluctant but eventually agrees to do it. She meets Lenny, Jason's friend, and is very nervous. He wonders what's wrong and she eventually admits that she's not Chloe. Lenny doesn't seem to mind and says that since she's not Jason's bird he doesn't have to be on his best behaviour. He suggests they go on to a club afterwards. Anna says she needs the loo; she leaves the table but doesn't return. Lenny finds her outside and asks why she didn't come back. He suggests they give the club a miss and go back to his hotel. He tries to kiss her but Anna pushes him away and runs off, terrified. Lenny finds a shortcut and suddenly turns up in front of her and grabs hold of her...

Episode first broadcast Saturday 1st December

Additional Cast
Tony Vincent          Lee Warburton
Jason          Henry Ian Cusick
Brian Todd          Huw Higginson
Bobbie          Eddie Osei
Marice Devereux          Gemma Padley
Elle Devereux          Moira Brooker
Paul Devereux          Michael Shaw
Lenny          Nick Miles
Dave Schofield          Alasdair Harvey
Lisa          Liz Hume Dawson
Julie          Ashley McGuire
Phil Rogers          Ben Forster
Shirley          Chrissie Cotterill

Pictures provided by Chris Leader