The West Enders, Episode Nine: Chinese New Year of the Fire Rooster

It’s almost the end of January, but it’s also the beginning of a new year, the Spring Festival, and the Chinese New Year of the Fire Rooster! As with many Chinese students abroad, Kurhn talks to her family via Skype, bringing them up to date on her studies, where she is going to apply to do medicine, and catches up with her family’s activities. But then, there are all the things that she doesn’t tell them…

sg208487Kurhn is really excited! She is taking voice lessons after school with Nicole, who is incredibly encouraging and tells her she has a wonderful voice. Nicole urges Kurhn to debut publicly at the Saint Valentine’s Day Ball, the biggest event in the dolls’ lives after Christmas. Jake will be playing piano to accompany a jazz singer, but Nicole assures Kurhn that she can do a couple of numbers as well. Kurhn is both ecstatically excited and terrified. She’s also feeling a bit of guilt about not telling her family how much she wants to study music instead of medicine.

sg208486It’s a quiet Saturday afternoon at the George. Barbie and Sandra are enjoying a couple of the George’s famous martinis and catching up.

“You look so pensive, Sandra, what’s up?” asks Barbie.

“Oh, I just told Steven that I would go to the ball with him,” replies Sandra. “And I don’t know why. He’s been so persistent, constantly asking me out, and I guess I finally just gave up and said yes. But all he does is talk about himself or when he talks about me, all he talks about is how beautiful and sexy I am. He seems to have absolutely not the slightest interest in me as a person.” She sighs.

“I wondered when you turned up with him on New Year’s Eve,” says Barbie. “Kevin says the George is going to put on an ‘All the Single Ladies’ party. Maybe you should have opted for that.”

In the corner, Liam and Sam are enjoying a pint and also discussing romance.

“You’re looking happy – or is it smug?” says Liam.

“I am happy. And a bit nervous. I’m going to ask Midge to marry me.”

“Oh, man! That’s terrible! You can’t get married!”

“And I think I’m going to look into converting to Judaism.”

“WHAT? You aren’t even religious, and Midge doesn’t seem to be. Are you nuts? Do you even believe in God?”

“I don’t actually know,” confesses Sam. “But Midge will want our children to be raised as Jews and I want to be a part of the lives of my children.”

“For crying out loud, you haven’t even asked her yet and you’re going on about children. I don’t know mate, I think you’ve lost the plot.”

“You’re just jealous, kid, ’cause you can’t even get lucky.”

“Yeah, well, you got me there,” says Liam.

“Have you ever thought of asking a woman out for meal, or even a cup of coffee, instead of just hanging around in the pub waiting for someone to fall all over you?”

“Aw, now you’re getting personal!” They both laugh.

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Back at the house, Momoko and Yuki are also catching up.

“You and Nick seem so happy, Yuki,” says Momo. “I’m so jealous.”

“What? How can you be jealous? What are you talking about!”

“Well, I know you spent the night with him and not just that once. I keep trying to seduce Ryan but deep inside he’s still got so much of the monk in him. He keeps putting me off, and talking about the Buddhist view of sensual pleasure, craving, and desire. I tell him I have no problem with craving and desire – I desire him!” She laughs.

“I know what you need,” says Yuki. “You need my nightgown.” She tells Momoko about her night with Nick and her sexy nightgown. Momoko is intrigued.

“Okay, let’s make a Valentine’s Day dinner for our boyfriends, and I’ll go upstairs afterward and get into the magic nightgown,” says Momo. “You can send Ryan upstairs and we’ll see what happens.”

“It’s a plan!” says Yuki. “After all, you know what it says on the wall behind you – Shy bairns get nowt!”

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Later that evening, Mira makes dinner for Tommy to celebrate the new year before they head to Chinatown for the parade and fireworks. They’re really enjoying each other’s company and Tommy wastes no time inviting Mira to the ball.

In the meantime, Emma is scheming about how to get Sutton to invite Monique. Monique would be furious if she knew! Don’t miss the next episode when we keep track of Emma’s matchmaking efforts.

The West Enders, Episode Eight: January

January – a new year, resolutions, and back to work and school. Of course, the first thing you have to do when you return to work after the holidays is have a good gossip session to catch up on anything you might have missed over the break. Lara and Esmée arrive at the Medical Centre before Pierre and immediately start to talk about him.

Esmée: Boy, did you miss it by going to the party instead of the pub! Liam was all over Kevin’s wife, can you imagine! And Yuki! Pierre didn’t even look at her. All he did was dance with Nicole – and like an octopus! Eight arms and hands everywhere. I thought Yuki was going to start crying right there.

Lara: Well, I know what happened afterward. My brother found Yuki crying in the kitchen and next thing you know… Lara raises an eyebrow.

Esmée: No!

sg208475Suddenly they hear the door open. Esmée asks Pierre if his ears are burning. She’s giggling.

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Pierre: Knowing how much you like to gossip, Esmée, I presume you were talking about me. And Nicole. And Yuki. I want to get this straight now. Yuki and I were never more than friends. I only realised that it was more serious for her than that when she tried to kiss me. I was shocked. Yuki is just a kid – much too young for me. But Nicole – what a woman!

Pierre suddenly realises what he’s said and stops before he goes any further. Lara is thinking that her brother is about the same age as Pierre and he doesn’t think Yuki is too young!

sg208455In the meantime, Yuki and Nick have settled into a cosy relationship. Nick is so glad that Yuki understands the stress he is under. He’s working part time in a veterinary surgery while trying to analyse his PhD data and finish his degree at the same time.Yuki seems happy to paint while he works. She’s doing a portrait of him.

sg208457Of course, there are occasional distractions…

Barbie and Ken are glad to have their bedroom back.

sg208461Emma has come home from a long day at work to find that Midge, Sasha, and Monique’s younger brother, Corbin, are in the kitchen along with Marvin. Midge has walked Viviane home from school and stops for a cuppa. Corbin has come from university for a visit and brought a friend, whom he introduces as Zayn. Emma thinks how nicely dressed Zayn is and wonders, not for the first time, why Corbin always looks so – well, slovenly. Doesn’t he own anything except a hoodie and jeans? She doesn’t dare say anything, though, because Marvin loves his cousins and will call her “Madame Bourgeoisie” or “Mrs Snobbo.” So she keeps her mouth shut.  sg208459Seeing Corbin reminds her of Monique, however. Emma is an inveterate matchmaker and Monique’s single status is fuel to her fire. She remembers seeing that nice young man, Sutton, alone at the New Years Eve party. He looked so nice – yes, quite handsome in that suit. She’ll have to invite him for dinner when Monique is home. That’s it!

Emma might not be quite so enthusiastic if she could see Sutton hanging all over Merida in the pub and definitely not wearing a suit.

sg208471In fact, the George is heaving! Didn’t these people hear about Dry January? It’s happy hour and the place is packed.

sg208463After their terrible New Years Eve row, Steffi and Kevin have vowed to work harder on making their marriage work. The pub is making so much money that Kevin has agreed to try and hire someone to help Yvette and to spend more time with his family. He and Steffi have signed up for one of Mira’s yoga classes.

sg208453Going out together means finding a babysitter and Skipper isn’t thrilled that she’s once again the obvious choice. Since Steffi looks after Layla while Esmée is at work, Skipper is looking after her as well as her nieces and nephew. At least she has Rikki and Hari to keep her company. Sometimes the two of them lapse into talking in Japanese to each other since Hari’s English isn’t as good yet as Rikki’s is. Skipper feels very left out when that happens. She thinks Hari is pretty cute but doesn’t want to feel jealous of her best friend.

sg208473Back at the George, Yvette is struggling to keep up and hopes Kevin will hire someone very soon. And who’s this blonde that Tommy’s got his hand on? Something fishy there! We thought he was seeing Mira!

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Don’t miss the next episode! Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day are coming soon and we’ll find out if Tommy and Mira are still together…

The West Enders Episode Seven: The Holiday Special Part Three, New Years Eve

It’s New Years Eve and all the dolls are celebrating. Barbie and Ken are throwing a party in the house and everyone there is all dolled up.

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Emma and her husband Marvin, Mira and her date Tommy, and Barbie and Ken are dancing in the front room while Charlotte, who doesn’t have a date and doesn’t care, looks on. She knows that the only man without a date is Sutton, who is downstairs in the kitchen, and she knows how enthralled with Merida he is. At any rate, he’s not her type and last time she saw him, Francie, Barbie’s cousin, was talking to him. Charlotte just enjoys watching her brother Ken dance, and chuckles inwardly watching how graceful Mira is even though Tommy doesn’t seem to know what to do with his feet.

sg208412At every party, no matter how fabulous the atmosphere in the main room, there are always those who must congregate in the kitchen. Francie, Sutton, and Sam are chatting away while Midge talks to Sandra and Steven. Everyone is surprised to see Sandra arrive with Steven. Can she have finally succumbed to his persistent pursuit of her? Or did she just have nothing better to do on New Years Eve?

sg208429Nick’s luggage has never arrived and he’s feeling somewhat desperate for lack of clothing. He’s also still struggling with jet lag and offers to look after the children while their parents are downstairs. He’s starts off by reading a book to Viviane and Sasha but soon becomes very tired.

sg208430Sasha and Viviane are gleeful when he falls asleep in the chair; now they can stay up until midnight!

sg208431Nick manages to stir himself long enough to stagger to the bed and lie down, “Just for a minute,” he tells himself.

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Eventually, his young charges wear themselves out and fall asleep too.

sg208418Next door in the yoga studio, Luna and the Dolls are playing in an alcohol free party for the younger dolls. Merida has joined her sister to sing and the band is rocking the house down. Of course, Kurhn and Jenny are there to hear their boyfriends perform, and Hari, Skipper, and Rikki are dancing the night away. Lottie begged to go too, and promised she could definitely stay awake until midnight, so Lara and Josh have brought both their daughters. Lottie is dancing away and Alexandra is watching shyly.

sg208420Of course the George is full of activity tonight. Yvette is fascinated with Marcelo, who arrives in quite the outfit. She can’t stop checking out those abs. But what’s up with Kevin? He’s gesticulating angrily and looking very perturbed.

sg208421Oh, that’s why! Despite the fact that there are three single beautiful women dancing wildly behind him, Liam has singled Kevin’s wife Steffi out for his attentions. Steffi is happy to be out for a change, and finds it amusing that Liam is trying to flirt with her. She would never dream of cheating on Kevin, but he pays so little attention to her that having someone act as if she is attractive is just a little bit fun.

sg208422Yuki is the DJ tonight and after a long heart to heart with her best friend Momoko, she’s borrowed one of Mo’s outfits to wear tonight. She’s not completely comfortable with how revealing it is, but Mo assured her that Pierre wouldn’t be able to take his eyes off her when he saw how sexy she looks in it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to work as planned.

sg208423Pierre doesn’t seem to be able to keep his hands off Nicole.

sg208424Yuki is gobsmacked. Pierre hasn’t even glanced her way. She’s feeling more and more miserable as the night passes.

sg208434Midnight comes and 2017 arrives. The parties begin to break up and Emma and Midge go upstairs to pick up Viviane and Sasha. Although Midge is not very pleased to find Nick sound asleep, Emma thinks it’s a bit funny. Midge had forgotten that Emma was Nick’s girlfriend when they were at university together with Lara. Lara was doing medicine, Nick was doing veterinary medicine, and Emma was doing design. The three were inseparable – until Emma met Marvin.

sg208440Nick is about to be rudely awakened because the pub has closed and Kevin and Steffi are having a major row underneath him in the front room. Kevin is furious because she didn’t brush Liam off when he was flirting with her. Steffi loses it, shouting, “So what? So what? A man finally pays attention to me! How awful! My husband can’t be bothered to ever come home, or ever pay attention to me when he does. You’re lucky I don’t have an affair!” The shouting goes on and on.

sg208435Nick finally wakes up as things begin to quiet down throughout the house. He realises that he’s feeling quite hungry and decides to head down to the kitchen to forage.

sg208441As Nick opens the refrigerator door, he notices that there is a woman sitting at the table, sobbing softly. It’s Yuki.

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Not knowing what else to do, he offers her some of his leftover burritos from the Mexican takeaway he had earlier. As she looks up, he is struck by how beautiful she is and how extraordinarily sexy she looks. To his surprise, she says yes to the burritos and he sits down.

sg208444They hit it off immediately. Yuki stops crying and she and Nick start to talk. Nick can’t believe how easy it is to talk to her. Not only is she beautiful, but intelligent and perceptive as well – she isn’t even bored when he tells her about his PhD research! Now that’s a change. She actually seems interested! And she’s an artist, a student at the same university where he is doing his degree. The hours pass until dawn. Then Nick is completely staggered when Yuki asks him if he’s using the bedroom upstairs. When he answers yes, she says, “Do you mind if I sleep with you tonight? Well, I guess it isn’t night anymore. Don’t worry, I don’t want sex, I just don’t want to be alone. I have a nightgown somewhere. Please let me stay with you.” What can Nick say except yes?

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Yuki climbs into bed and immediately falls asleep. Nick, on the other hand, has never felt less like sleeping.

sg208446Eventually, Nick just gets up and sits watching Yuki sleep, thinking that he must be dreaming. When she finally awakens, she thanks him for his kindness and then asks him if she can kiss him goodbye before she goes. Nick doesn’t hesitate for a minute.

sg208448Yuki can’t believe how different it is to kiss Nick than it was to try and kiss Pierre. He always seemed so cold and uninterested no matter how she tried to entice him. But Nick is another story.

sg208450It looks as if 2017 is off to a flying start for Yuki and Nick. But what about the rest of the West Enders? Don’t miss the next episode!