EastEnders An Oral History 1985-2015

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  1. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    Stacey Slater: What did you do before [joining the army]?
    Sean Slater: This and that.
    Stacey: Like what?
    Sean: Just stuff. All sorts, really. It’s not important. I don’t really remember.

    Ruby Allen on Sean: He worked in a pub.

    D.C. Zachary Carson on Sean: He’s got form. Violent conduct. He says it was self-defence.

    Stacey: I missed my brother when he left. I missed him like mad.

    Sean: I thought about you all the time.
    Stacey: You didn’t get to a phone though, did you?
    Sean: It ain’t that simple.
    Stacey: It is to me. If you think about someone then you call them or you write to them.
    Sean: And say what, eh?
    Stacey: How about you went because you bottled it? That’s the truth, isn’t it? You couldn’t deal with Dad being gone, but me and mum, we had to deal with it, didn’t we?

    Sean: So I walked out, but you’ve been all right, and I knew you’d be all right with this lot [Charlie’s family]. Being brought up with the cousins, it was better for you and I knew they’d step in and look after you. I knew you’d be all right.
    Stacey: I was with Mum.
    Sean: No you weren’t, you were with ...
    Stacey: I was with Mum. I never saw them. I saw them a few times, but that was it. It was just me and her the whole time.
    Sean: It can’t have been.
    Stacey: You ain’t got a clue what it’s been like, what any of it’s been like, have you?

    Stacey: It's not like you were much help, Uncle Charlie. You stayed well away since Dad died.

    Sean: You left Stacey, an eleven year old kid, alone with my mother?
    Charlie Slater: It was difficult.
    Sean: She was on her own, Charlie. I’d have thought you’d step in and see this was family and all. How’d you leave her on her tod, eh?
    Charlie: You know how your mum can be. Jean wouldn’t have let us even if we’d wanted to have her. We had our own family problems.

    Stacey to Sean: All them years — running out, leaving me, a little kid, to deal with Mum — you did that to me.

    Stacey to Sean: When you’d gone, I used [to have] to climb in through the living room window. Mum locked me out.

    Stacey: My mum used to sit in front of the telly and pull her eyelashes out and lay them on a bit of paper. That's weird. She was neurotic like it was an Olympic sport, barking. She always was, most probably. It wasn't until after my dad died that it became really obvious.

    Jean to Stacey: Since the day your father died, you know I can’t eat, you know I can’t sleep and you know I can’t swallow. You torture me, just by breathing the same air. Always have. You make me worse, you. Always have.

    Jean: I watched you sometimes making my tea, standing on a chair so you could reach the cupboards. If he’d have known that you were going to have to reach them sooner than … I don’t think your dad would have nailed them up quite so high.
    Stacey: That nasty wallpaper, all brown and mustard and peeling at the corners.
    Jean: I told you you could never got to the supermarket on your own because of having to cross that big road. What was it I always said?
    Stacey: “Don’t argue. Mum knows best.”
    Jean: But you did, of course. Off you’d go with my handbag over your little shoulder. An hour or so later, you’d appear in the doorway with six, seven shopping bags in your hands, full of tins and things twice as heavy as you. Great big grin on your face, so proud. “Here you are, Mum …”
    Stacey: “… all set.” Bossy cow — I don’t know how you put up with me.

    Stacey: Stacey Slater, ice-skater — that's what I wanted to be when I was little. My dad used to take me down the rink and then he died [so] I just thought I'd be a gobby cow instead.

    Abby, Stacey’s friend: You always were a big mouth, Stacey Slater. A big mouth and you got nothing to back it up with.

    Stacey: I haven’t been down the [ice] rink in years.
    Jean: No, well, it was your dad, wasn’t it? He did all of that — life and soul. I couldn’t, not after he’d gone. I couldn’t even hold it together. All fell apart. I failed you. I ruined your life. Everything got lost.

    Stacey: I can’t face people.
    Charlie: I remember your mum saying that.

    Jean: One time, I decided I'd had enough. Couldn't see the point. I had a load of my pills. Was ready to neck the lot. I was going to do it — go to sleep and never wake up, get it over and done with. Do you know what stopped me? My daughter.

    Jean to Stacey: It was you that stopped me [killing myself]. Do you want to know why? Because if I had done it, you'd have beaten me and I didn't want to
    give you the satisfaction of thinking you'd won.

    Stacey to Jean: After Sean left, I used to pray that you’d die, just so he’d come home. I nearly put a pillow over your mouth just to stop all of that poison coming out.

    Charlie: There was a time I thought about [suicide], when I lost Viv. I thought my life was over. What was the point of getting out of bed even? I couldn't wash, I couldn't eat, I couldn't even listen to the radio.

    Shirley Carter: I’ve had so much crap in my life, but never once have I thought about topping myself. Do you want to know why? Because that’s the coward's way out. Because what you’re doing is you’re leaving all the people that loved you feeling guilty and that ain’t right. No person should be responsible for another one’s happiness.

    Sean: You never even went round to check on her [Stacey], did you? And you, always going on about your girls and all.
    Charlie: You were the one who did the disappearing act.
    Sean: I was a sixteen year old boy, Charlie. You were a fully grown man.

    Big Mo to Charlie: Listen, you old fool. You’ve never let me down, not once. When Viv died, I had nothing. I thought that was it for me and what was the point anymore? You took me in. You came to my rescue. Without you, Charlie, there wouldn’t be a Mo Harris.

    Charlie to Big Mo: I don’t know what I’d have done without you all these years.

    Big Mo, speaking in March 2010: It’s like I said to Fat Elvis, about ten years ago now, “Keep an open mind and you just might find yourself pleasantly surprised.”

    Kat: You had a horrible [sixteenth] birthday.
    Zoe: First one without Mum. I hated it.

    Zoe: Dad always said I should have stayed on at school.

    Syed Masood: When did my little bro get to be so wise?
    Tamwar Masood: I always have been. You just never noticed.

    Masood on Tamwar: A little boy who wouldn’t go to sleep until his father sat there and rubbed his back and went through his times table.

    Tamwar: Every child thinks their dad is a superhero up to a certain age. Syed, Shabnam, me — we had longer than most.

    Zainab: When Tamwar had his molar out, we told him he was going on an adventure.

    Shabnam: It’s my fault for reading too much Harry Potter as a kid.

    Shabnam: Reading the Koran with my mum standing over my shoulder.

    Zainab: Do you remember at [Tamwar’s] primary school when I went to see the head teacher and I said to her, “Tamwar needs more attention to be paid to him because he’s getting bored”? What did she do? She looked at me down her long nose and she said, “Tamwar is nothing special.” Well, I was right and she was wrong.

    Tamwar to Zainab: You [didn’t] have go to up the school and sort things out. The popular gang weren’t leaving me out, I was just a geek with glasses and a plaster and I left myself out every playtime, messing about on a calculator pretending to be a doctor.

    Zainab to Tamwar: Your brother was never any good at electronics except for his calculator. He used to write rude words using numbers - you know, when you turn it upside down. He used to write BOOB. Ironic, really, seeing as it was Syed.

    Masood on his mother: She always wanted to go to the London Eye.

    Stacey to Bradley: You’d already seen all the sights in London when you were a kid.

    Qadim Shah to his daughter Amira: You set fire to my Persian rug when you were thirteen years old, trying to get my attention.

    Amira: I can count on the fingers of one hand the people that have stood up to my dad.

    Linda Carter on hot flushes: My mum didn’t half suffer. She used to walk around upstairs in just her knickers. Mick took to coming into our room backwards.
    Mick Carter: Yeah, give her a bit of time to find that cardie. It was like watching a woman juggle a sack of spaniels.

    Linda: I had an old mate, learnt to meditate when her hormones gave out.

    Les Coker on his grandson: Paul was the master of making us wait. Do you remember when we first used to have him stay at weekends? Go and pick him up, he wouldn’t get in the car until he’d said goodbye to every cuddly toy in his room.
    Pam Coker: Laurie said he did it every day. It used to drive him round the bend.

    Lynne Slater speaking about herself in 2000: You're looking at the woman who spent her last three birthdays eating fish and chips on a street corner.

    Andy Hunter to Dennis Rickman: I never thought you'd make it past the age of twenty-five. I always thought you'd be dumped over some flyover in a bin bag.

    Alfie Moon: How many [men have you been with]?
    Kat: I don't know. You stop counting after the first fifty. Serious ones, that is.
    Alfie: How many serious ones were there then?
    Kat: Well, if you count serious as being with someone longer than two weeks, there was Mike. Then there was Colin the creep, that was a complete disaster. Then there was Kevin. He was mad.

    Kevin, Kat’s ex-boyfriend: We were so good together.
    Kat: For two weeks, yeah. I slept with you, Kevin. We're not joined at the hip.

    Charlie: I thought you finished with him [Kevin].
    Kat: I finished with him a million times.

    Kat on Charlie: He was never very good at doing angry, was he?
    Little Mo: He used to let Mum do angry.
    Kat: He was always better at quietly disappointed. And the amount of quietly disappointed he's given me.
    Little Mo: When you got your ears pierced, when you got your nose pierced, when you got your wotsit done and he caught that Kevin having a look!

    Kevin: Why didn't you tell me you were moving [to Walford]?
    Kat: Because I didn't want you to know, you plank.

    Charlie on his reasons for moving house after Viv's death: Mo wanted out and I felt guilty about letting [Viv] go, but when you wake up in the morning and look at the wallpaper that you chose together, well, after a while it kind of gets to you.

    Keith Miller: You’ve probably had a fair few homes in the past.
    Kevin Wicks: Yeah, and some don’t matter and some do.

    Sean: I thought about you.
    Stacey: I thought about you and all. Every day.

    Jean on Stacey: I brought her up to be a good girl. I tried. It wasn’t easy on my own.

    Johnny Allen, speaking in 2005: Ruby loves dancing. Five years ago, you couldn't see her for ballet shoes.

    Ruby: Mum had loads of pairs [of shoes].

    Tina Stewart, looking at old photographs: Remember that?
    Johnny: Barbados, wasn't it? That was in 2000.
    Tina: Best tan I ever had.
    Johnny: Do you remember that bloke that kept trying to chat you up?
    Tina: Which one? There were loads!
    Johnny: The one I nearly got arrested over.
    Tina: Only you could take a swing at an off-duty cop.
    Johnny: Yeah well, he was all over you like a rash, trying to drag you up on the dance-floor.
    Tina: Thing is, I liked that you had a go at him, protecting me like that. I think that's when I knew we were for keeps.

    Dean Wicks, looking at old family photographs: That’s Uncle Derek, that is Aunty Connie and that’s Aunty Connie’s mad mate Iris who burnt Connie’s house
    down making pancakes for the kids.

    Denise Fox to Chelsea: You [were] thirteen with stick legs, oily hair, towering over the boys.

    Denise on Chelsea: I’ve watched this straggly little thing grow up into a beautiful swan. You try your best, don’t you? You try and give them the best possible start in life but you don’t always get it right, do you? No matter how hard you try.

    Denise on Chelsea: I made her who she is. I taught her to always stick up for herself, never let anyone take advantage. Maybe I taught her too well. Whatever else I’ve fouled up in my life, whatever mistakes I’ve made, I always thought my kids would turn out OK.

    Denise: My girls, they’ve been brought up to know they deserve the best.

    Chelsea: I’ve been brought up to have standards, that’s all — a bit of time and care over how you look, not just flinging on the nearest bit of lipstick.
    Shirley: Uptight, you mean?
    Chelsea: Just dignified — show people you’re a lady and that’s how they’ll treat you.

    Cora Cross, speaking in 2011: Been a long time since anyone called me a lady.

    Chelsea: When did you like any of my boyfriends, Mum?

    Chelsea to Denise: When have you ever shown an ounce of pride in anything I ever did?

    Denise to Chelsea: You never stuck at anything for five minutes.

    Chelsea: I used to make [my] own lunch for school.

    Chelsea to Denise: I thought I was going to lose you. All that time you were with Owen, I was terrified that he’d ... I thought he’d kill you, Mum.

    Libby on Owen’s father: I would have loved to have met him.
    Owen: He’d have doted on you. My word, he’d have spoilt you something rotten. My dad was my hero. I wanted you to feel the same about me.
    Libby: I did.

    Denise on Libby: She lets her heart rule her head. She always has.

    Denise to Libby: [Owen] never care[d] about you. He’s only ever been around when it suited him.

    Owen to Libby: A lot went wrong between me and your mum.

    Libby on Denise: She’s nowhere near perfect, but she’s always tried to protect me.

    Denise on Libby: She’s my little girl. Whenever she’s called, I’ve gone to her.

    Denise: For years, all my life it feels like, I’ve been looking out for them, making sure they’re safe — my girls.

    Libby: When did you stop loving Dad?
    Denise: I stopped loving him when he changed, when he started hurting me.

    Owen on Denise: When you’re hitting the bottle like that, [she’s] not the sort of person you want around, reminding you how bad you’re screwing up.

    Denise on Owen: He said he’s changed before and he never does.

    Liz Turner to Owen: Bullied your own family, preyed on [Denise] for years, and you let me think it was just the booze. I never brought you up to do this.

    Liz: I’ve always stood by my boy even when it took everything I had.

    Denise on Owen’s apologies: You’re gutted, you don’t know what come over you, it will never happen again — I remember it all.
    Owen: I swear to you ...
    Denise: I remember that one and all.

    Denise: Am I supposed to forget being dragged up the stairs, am I? Getting my face smashed in?

    Kevin Wicks to Denise: [Owen] damaged you.

    Denise on Owen: He had me believing that everything was my fault.

    Denise: I used to think, with Owen, when things were bad, I thought if I didn’t do anything, if I didn’t [tell the police] that somehow it wouldn’t seem like such a big deal, that I’d feel better.

    Lucas: Owen played a big part in your growing up.
    Chelsea: That man, he made our lives hell.

    Chelsea on Owen: He hit me too.
    Denise: That was an accident.
    Chelsea: Why — because he was aiming for you?
    Denise: It was between the two of us. You should never have got in the middle. It was a mistake.
    Chelsea: Because it was the drink? Because he only got violent when he was drunk?
    Denise: Yes.
    Chelsea: He didn't know what he was doing?
    Denise: Yeah, that's right.
    Chelsea: Didn't even think about it?
    Denise: Yes.
    Chelsea: So how comes Squiggle never knew? How comes, in all that time, she never saw, never had a clue? All that alcohol, and he still knew to wait till she had gone to bed. Hadn't you ever thought about it?
    Denise: I don't ... I mean, I hadn't ...

    Lucas: Don't tell me [killing Owen] never crossed your mind back then — the bullying, the beatings. I mean everyone's got a limit, everyone's got a line. We're all human. Don't tell me you never listened to that voice in your head, knowing at any moment it might be Chelsea he took a swing at or Libby. I mean did you never think of your kids, about the danger they were in?
    Denise: Every day. Of course I did, every single day.
    Lucas: You expect me to believe you would then just stand by and watch?
    Denise: OK yeah, I thought about grabbing a knife from the drawer. I thought — but thinking, it ain't doing.
    Lucas: No, but you would have done. You would have done if you had to. You wouldn't hesitate, not for a second.

    Chelsea: We ran from Owen in the middle of the night so he was out of our lives for good. A new life — that was the idea. Didn't matter what I wanted.

    Libby to Owen: Mum took us because you battered her. That's your fault.

    Denise to Chelsea: The night he hit you, the night we left, and every day since, part of me thought he would find us. Part of me hoped.

    Owen to Denise: I never stopped [loving] you. Not for one second. Ever since we split up, I haven't even looked at another woman. No point, not interested.

    Eddie Moon on an old fruit machine: Had one of these in the [antique] emporium once. They’re murder to fix. It took me months how to figure out how these wheels work.

    Eddie: I had this box, not that big, just an ordinary, nothing-to-look-at box, but it belonged to a cabin boy, barely fifteen when he sailed with Lord Nelson on HMS Victory at Trafalgar. Kept all his worldly goods inside.

    Eddie on his antiques supplier: Gravy Davey hasn’t let me down yet.

    Sadie Banks: After Charlotte's dad left, I thought, "Well, that's it. I'll never find a man now," but then I met you. I was so scared you'd do a runner.
    Tom Banks: I'd already guessed you had a child. You kept saying "we" all night.
    Sadie: I hadn't realised!
    Tom: Then I thought, "Do I want to see a woman with a child?" And I looked at your face, the way it was in the candlelight, and I thought, "What the hell?"

    Sadie on ‘Cry Me a River’ by Mari Wilson: Mine and Tom's favourite song, the first song we ever made love to.

    Sadie watching her and Tom's wedding video: Look at this bit, this is my favourite moment. The usher filmed it. Look how Tom turns round, look at the expression on his face! It cracks me up every time.

    Tom on the fire service: Joined up [October 2000]. Never looked back.

    Tom: We got called to a gas explosion once. It was touch and go whether we'd get everyone out before the walls caved in, but we did. I went to check the back
    room. There was a baby in a cot, not a mark on him, stone cold dead.
    Mark Fowler: Smoke?
    Tom: [Nods.] And outside was a woman waiting with so much hope in her eyes. "You've got my baby. Where's my baby?" And I just ... I couldn't ... I just walked away.

    Sadie: You never were any good in the mornings.
    Tom: And you could never take a hint, could you?

    Sadie to Tom: You bought me presents, you whisked me off to places, you were great with Charlotte, but you never told me you loved me.

    Tom: We made each other miserable, didn't we? And it wasn't right for Charlotte, that atmosphere.
    Sadie: You were the weak one.
    Tom: It was bad, Sadie. It was bitter, it was horrible.

    Tom on Sadie: I lived with [a] psycho.

    Stacey on Jean's bipolar: I've lived with it for years. It's like a never-ending nightmare.

    Stacey on Jean: Trying to read her moods and hoping everything was all right. That used to be me.

    Stacey to Jean: When I was twelve years old, all my friends used to call you Freaky Jean. My childhood was like some kind of horror film, all these sleazy blokes coming in, giving me sweets to go in the next room. I could hear you through the wall, Mum. It was pathetic and disgusting.

    Stacey: I was on [a daytime TV show] once - "My Mum's Left Her Boyfriend But I'd Rather Live With Him Than Her." They cut half of it out in the end because there was language.

    Sadie on Tom: He had affair after affair right under my nose and each time he'd come crawling back looking sorry for himself — "I've been such a fool, Sadie" — and each time I took him back.

    Sadie on Tom: When I found out about all his affairs, all other girls he's had and there's been a hell of a lot, believe me, I was tempted [to leave him].

    Sadie on Tom: He left because he couldn't keep his hands off tarts.

    Sadie to Tom: You abandoned me, your wife. Left me
    alone with my little girl.

    Sadie: How could you ruin it all? How could you throw us back?
    Tom: I just couldn't cope. I let you down.
    Sadie: You decided you wanted your own family from scratch.
    Tom: No.
    Sadie: You could have had your fling. As long as you'd've come home to me, I'd have understood.

    Tom on Sadie: Once, not long after I left her, she phoned me up to say that Charlotte was injured playing games at school, [that she had] hurt her neck, she was in for tests but that she may be paralysed. Sadie was in bits. I drove round, held her — what could I do? She told me everything, even the consultant's name, and that we had to wait for the test results. I said, "I'll drive you to hospital," but she would not let go of me. Anyway, we ended up in bed. [It turned out] there was no accident. Charlotte was at a friend's house. She let me think that little girl was in hospital just to get me into bed.

    Kevin Wicks, speaking about Dean in 2006: Telling people I'm dead — he did that last time he ran away from home.

    Dean: Kids run away. I did it all the time.

    Anthony Trueman: Mum slogged night and day to buy [the B&B in Albert Square] and build it up. If she found a penny on the pavement, she'd pick it up and save it.
     
  2. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2001

    Belinda Peacock, speaking about her husband Neville in October 2001: You know the last time he took me out? His mother's birthday in March. Three hours listening to her breaking wind. [We haven't had sex] for months. That's why I bought the wig. I caught him drooling over Baby Spice on the telly. Thought he might fancy a change — blondes have more fun and all that.
    Kat Slater: Did it work?
    Belinda: He said I looked like Margaret Thatcher.
    Big Mo: That's enough to put anyone off.
    Belinda: No, it really turned him on. After he said that though, I just couldn't.

    Belinda speaking in 2001: I've recently taken up golf.

    Lauren Branning: Dad taught me [to play cribbage].

    Angel Hudson, gangster, on Paul Trueman: I got caught once [by] some cheeky shade. He won all my [poker] games with a marked deck.

    Anthony Trueman, speaking in April 2001: Where have you been? What have you been doing?
    Paul: For the most part, just keeping my head down, getting by. Till this morning.
    Anthony: So you'd never seen them before?
    Paul: No. Just jumped out from nowhere.
    Anthony: Have you been to the police?
    Paul: What, with my record?
    Anthony: So did these lads take much?
    Paul: Just about everything — wages, wallet, mobile.

    Kevin Wicks to Shirley: I never forgave you.

    Kevin: We [the Wicks family] don't hang around nursing old wounds.
    Pat: Who taught you that one — Brian?
    Kevin: No. My son, James. He was a special kid, Pat.

    Carly Wicks to Kevin: [Jimbo] was the apple of your eye.

    Carly on Jimbo: Dad loved him to bits and Deano worshipped him.

    Dean Wicks: I used to be good at sport as a kid.
    Carly: It was always swimming you was good at, weren't it, Dean?

    Carly on Dean: He used to be part of this team down at the sports centre and this coach said he could have competed and that.
    Pat: He didn't, did he?
    Dean: Once. I did once.

    Dean on Jimbo: Weeks he's been getting up with me, setting the alarm half an hour early ...
    Carly: Dragging him out of bed ...
    Dean: Counting my push ups ...
    Carly: Yeah and kicking you [Dean] up the backside!
    Dean: He was keeping me going, all for one swim race. Anyway, morning of the race comes and I am so wired. Jimbo goes, he goes, "I'll be there at the finish. Focus on me. Swim to me."
    Carly: Yeah, and he did, he did.
    Dean: I did. I swam to him and I trumped the lot of them. I come first.
    Carly: And he was so pleased.
    Deano: His eyes glistened — and Jimbo hardly ever cried. So I said to him, "You know only half of that was down to me, right, because that was us, working together." And do you know what he said? "We're making memories, bruv."

    Dean on Jimbo: He knew what it meant to feel alive.

    Kevin: [Dean] made a promise to Jimbo before he died that he was going to live the life his brother always wanted, the life he never had.

    Shirley: I always thought about them, Carly and Deano. I always thought about them.
    Kevin: James, our first born — you ever think about him?
    Shirley: Of course I did.
    Kevin: Well, that did him the world of good, your thoughts. He battled every step of the way, you know — my beautiful boy. He was a proper warrior. And I sat by his bed and I held his hand and I talked to him while he lay dying. I listened to him drowning in his own lungs. He was in such pain, it was almost a relief when he finally let go. And where were you, Shirley, when all that was going on, eh? Where were you, eh? In a boozer, getting lashed off your face?
    Shirley: Yeah, think I probably was.

    Dean on Shirley: She wasn’t there when he was sick, she wasn’t there when he died.

    Dean: Jimbo died in agony without his mother there. It was horrible, but we got through it because of my dad.

    Kevin, kissing Shirley just before his death in 2007: That's from Jimbo. Before he went. I swore I'd never give it you, but ... "It's for my mum," he said. "For my mum. She's my only mum."

    Pam Coker: I’ve dressed more [dead bodies] than I can count. Most you forget, faces in a crowd, but the ones that go before their time …

    Max Branning: How old was he, your boy what passed?
    Kevin: Twenty.
    Max: That's terrible.
    Kevin: Yeah, I know.

    Kevin: The twenty-seventh of April is the day Jimbo died.

    Kevin: You knew what happened to Jimbo?
    Shirley: Of course.
    Kevin: You knew. And you didn't even come to his funeral. Your own son.
    Shirley: He died. What was I supposed to do — die with him?

    Dean on Shirley: She didn’t even go to his funeral and we really needed her that day. I had a look for her. She wasn’t there. She was nowhere to be seen. She’s never been there when we needed her, not once.

    Shirley: Jimbo died and I didn’t even go back. Just lost meself in a bottle.

    Carly: Mum, all I ever wanted was you there.
    Shirley: But you had your dad.

    Kevin: The sky came down when my boy died. I couldn't see. There was no point. For a while, I was the meanest, angriest person alive, lashing out — even at people trying to be friendly. Months, years — I couldn't properly feel nothing, except on my own.

    Kevin on Jimbo's death: Carly took it hard. She was his second mother. Deano took it specially hard because Jimbo, well, they were best mates as well as brothers.

    Mick Carter: I always fancied having a little brother I could boss around.

    Dean: When I think back to when Jimbo died, all the times I could have done with a big brother — I’ve been so lost.

    Dean: After [Jimbo died], I couldn't bring myself to go down to the pool on my own. I had this timetable he'd writ out, but I couldn't go near the water without smelling that stuff they put in it and throwing up.

    Kevin on Dean: It's a funny thing, Pat, but up until then, he'd always been a bit quiet. Then overnight, Dean became "Deano" — to everyone else but me — and suddenly he was the life and soul. Carly and me thought, "Well, maybe he just can't grieve properly," but then you realise he's just doing it in his own way.

    Minty Peterson: How comes you know so much about the Bible?
    Kevin: You know what it's like. During hard times, we all look for meaning somewhere.

    Alice Lord, a family neighbour, to Tanya: Last time I spoke to your sister was ages ago and do you know what she said? "She's dumped me, Aunty Alice. She don't phone, she don't call, nothing."

    Tanya: Aunty Rainie — the one who's never sent [Abi] so much as a birthday card.

    Tanya to Abi: I remember when you used to be up at the crack of dawn on your birthday.

    Abi on a teddy bear key ring: I’ve had him since I was little and he’s lucky, I swear.

    Abi Branning to Tanya: You used to love this one [‘Where the Wild Roses Grow’ by Nick Cave & Kylie Minogue].

    Tanya to Lauren: Do you remember that karaoke bar in Cyprus? Your dad hated it.

    Tanya: Do you remember that time on holiday when Lauren wanted to swim out to that great big rock? I wasn't really taking much notice and you said you thought it was further than she thought and that she'd never make it back. She just pooh-poohed you didn't she?
    Abi: She told me to shut up.
    Tanya: Next thing you know, someone's done just that, had to be rescued.
    Abi: I just read the sign at the beach.
    Tanya: Yeah, because you're you — a sensible head on young shoulders.

    Abi on Lauren: I remember when I was little, wishing she was different, that she’d suddenly wake up one morning and be like, “Let’s talk about animals and dresses” and plait each other’s hair.

    Abi: This silly game we used to play when I was little — if I could count to a hundred without blinking, everything would be all right.

    Max to Abi: Do you remember when you was little? You used to sneak into our bed and lecture me about turtles and rainforests.

    Tanya to Max: That picture Abs did of you looking like an egg.

    Tanya to Abi: I remember this little girl, third day of school, who had to draw a bird in art. You came home. You weren’t happy with it. We thought it was fantastic. It went straight on the fridge, but no, you tore it down. You made me dig out the paints and clear the table. None of us were allowed to have our dinner, were we? Till you’d done it again and done it better. You’ll always be my baby, with her tongue out, painting a bird.

    Max: Abi, you look beautiful.
    Abi: You always say that, even when I had chicken pox.
    Max: Yeah well, I like a spotty kid.

    Max on Lauren and Abi: I used to take them to Barking Park, take one of them boats out. They used to love all that.
    Tanya to Max: Don’t fall in this time, eh? You had goose poo all down you!
    Max to Lauren: You used to beg me to take you over there.

    Abi: Nothing can beat the [burger van] outside Highbury. My dad used to take me there. He used to get me the works, like onions, cheese, can of cherryade.

    Mark Reynolds [Zsa Zsa Carter’s father] died 17.7.2001

    Shirley Carter on Mark Reynolds: He’s six foot under in Plaistow.

    Tina Carter: I made a right hash of it with Zsa Zsa.
    “Tosh” Mackintosh: You’re just saying that. I bet you were great.
    Tina: No. There were days when I would have done anything to stop her crying. Sometimes you just want to walk away, but you can’t because it’s a kid and you’ve got to worry about someone else and you’ve got responsibilities and it’s really hard.

    Tina: I had Zsa Zsa and I couldn’t cope. A kid with a kid, and I was on my own. I made a right mess of it.

    Linda Carter to Tina: You had a family. You screwed it up.

    Zsa Zsa Carter: My mum was useless.

    Tina: I was a terrible mum to Zsa Zsa. I mean, really awful. Because I wasn’t ready.

    Tina on herself and Zsa Zsa: We had matching outfits. We had to go round pretending to be the Queen’s Russian nieces. Got a few funny looks when we signed on at the social.
    Tosh: I used to want to be the prince.

    Mick to Tina: You’ve always been an airhead, a bit dozy, quite sweet with it.

    Zsa Zsa on Tina: She was just some sad self-pitying selfish excuse of a woman.

    Lucas Johnson on Trina: She’s never been much of a mother.

    Trina on her son Jordan: For years he was the last thing I thought about.

    Yolande Trueman on Trina: Was she a good cook?
    Jordan Johnson: I don’t think so. Don’t know. Can’t remember. Haven’t seen her since I was five.

    Lola Pearce: I always wanted to be a mum, like even when I was little. I used to play this make-believe game in Chatsburn House.
    Sharon Rickman: That’s the children’s home?
    Lola: Yes. Down the road, they had this little park with a climbing frame. I used to take all me dolls down there and pretend it was a proper home. I used to line them up and I used to feed them and read them a book and put them to bed. That’s the kind of mum I wanted to be.

    Nancy Carter: I used to love a playground. Saying that though, there were a time I proper face-planted off the monkey bars and then my dad bought me an ice cream so I wouldn’t tell my mum.
    Tamwar Masood: I was never much of a playground kid.

    Stacey Slater: My mum bought me one of those toys when I was a kid — you know, the head that you can style the hair on.
    Linda: I tried that one with Nancy. Shaved the hair off.

    Stacey: What’s all this I hear about you shaving the hair off a doll’s head when you were a kid?
    Nancy: I swear she [Linda] grounded me for a week.

    Linda on her children: I wish I’d enjoyed it more when they were little. At least when they were little, you chose who they played with. You knew where they was. Then if Nancy kicked off, you could throw her over your shoulder and take her home.

    Linda: Remember when they were little, when they had pushchairs and we’d take them to the park?
    Mick: Remember when Nancy got her big head stuck in the railings?
    Linda: At least they needed you.

    Mick on his children: How cute they were.

    Lola: Always wanted a younger brother or sister.

    Walter, Patrick Trueman's partner in a scam operation: Do you remember that guy's wife [in] Charlottesville? "Do something, Roger, do something!"

    Paul Trueman, speaking in 2001: You've been in Trinidad all this time?
    Patrick: South Tobago. Word used to get back about the two of you [Paul and Anthony].

    Pat: You never remarried?
    Patrick: No divorce, no — you see, her [Audrey] being a Catholic. Well, both of us.

    Patrick on Audrey: I didn't even get a chance to say sorry [for abandoning her and the children] before she passed away, God rest she soul.

    Paul: How did you know about [Audrey's death]?
    Patrick: One of your cousins on the island.

    Patrick on a woman he met on his flight back to England: Her husband had run off with the children's nanny. Boy, she cried on me shoulders all the way from Trinidad. I tell you, by the time the plane touched down, she drunk about seven miniature of rum. Lord God, I couldn't let her drive in that state, could I? So I went to get the car while she went to collect her luggage.
    Paul: She gave you her keys?
    Patrick: She must have liked me face, you see. But seriously though, time was getting on so when she wasn't at the door ...
    Anthony: You thought you'd do a bunk.
    Patrick: God forgive. I just couldn't afford to be late for your poor mother's funeral.

    Patrick: You see, I'd planned to be here for the funeral, but by the time I got through customs ...

    Kevin to Dean: This [silver tankard] was your granddad’s, then mine.

    Geoff Morton, giving Kate a brooch: Your mam wanted you to have it.

    Kate Morton on her mother: She got ill and then she died.

    Geoff to Kate: It's been so hard since your mam passed away. When I had me job, it wasn't so bad.

    Andy Hunter: Me old mum got ill, emphysema from the face. Her lungs were shrinking so she was slowly suffocating. It got so bad she couldn't do nothing for herself so I says to the wife, "Why don't we have her move in with us?" I didn't expect her to look after her. Said we'd get a nurse or something, but I just wanted my mum to be where she was loved, you know? The wife says, "No way." [So] I set her up with a nursing agency. She had twenty-four hour cover, some were better than others, and a couple of months later, she got an infection and they rushed her off in an ambulance, blue lights flashing.

    Dennis Rickman: Three days, three nights. I bought you a clean shirt. Sat in that little grey room with your mum — tiny, choking out what was left of her lungs. You must have held her hand for hours.
    Andy: Yeah well, someone's dying in your face, the least you can do is hold their hand, isn't it?
    Dennis: You sat, you waited and you hoped. You said there was always hope.
    Andy: She didn't visit me mum once, Bev. I mean, not even those last three days. She didn't come and sit with us once.
    Dennis: Always was more ornament than use, your ex.
    Andy: You fancy her?
    Dennis: Yeah.
    Andy: You should have said. She had a younger sister, you know.

    Andy: After that, me and the wife, we just drifted apart. I thought that was me finished with women.

    Tom Banks: My marriage to Sadie was over. That's why I decided to move back [to Walford].

    Andy to Dennis: You're like a yo-yo, bouncing from one thing to the next — care, prison, girls, us [The Firm].

    Dennis: I used to work for Jack Dalton.
    Den Watts: And what did you do for him?
    Dennis: This and that.
    Den: And what does that mean?
    Dennis: You know what it means. Nothing big, minor league - "tame nutter”.

    Andy to Dennis: It was always such a pleasure to watch you work. When someone don't care what happens to them, gives them the edge, don't you think?

    Jack Dalton to Dennis: You used to be a bright boy.

    Jack: You were always a good boy, Dennis.
    Dennis: I've no good memories of [those times].

    Dennis: I never [knew what I wanted to do]. I mean I've had jobs, loads of them ...
    Vicki Fowler: You've just never stuck with them.
    Dennis: I just couldn't hack it, I suppose — somebody looking over me shoulder all the time.

    Dennis: I can box. I used to do a bit out in Tottenham.
    Den: [You were a] scrapper, eh? Bit of a temper?
    Dennis: Yeah.

    Eddie Moon on Michael: He’s always had a bit of a temper.

    Anthony Moon on “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”: That’s my mum’s favourite [film], that is.

    Tyler Moon: They [his mother and Anthony] were close.

    Anthony: Dad’s worked so hard all his life and he’s given me and Tyler so many chances.

    Eddie: The times I’ve given these two [Tyler and Anthony] a good hiding.
    Tyler: Yeah, like when Anthony swapped your old Atmos clock for a BMX. It weren’t even a proper BMX. It was like one of them German ones, a Spricht or something.
    Eddie: I remember that. 1946, that clock was. I’d only had it a week.
    Tyler: He actually thought you’d be pleased!
    Anthony Moon: And it was pink!
    Eddie: Yeah, I gave you what for.
    Anthony: I tried me best, Dad.
    Eddie: Story of your life.

    Kate Morton to her father Geoff: Aidan Johnson, remember him? Remember kicking him half to death in the cells? You took early retirement — you didn't have much choice.

    Geoff Morton: I had a letter through from the force after what happened. They said I'd probably lose my pension.
    Kate: Well, that's the price you pay for being a bully.

    Geoff on his friends in the police force: They all disappeared afterwards. Didn't want to be tarred with the same brush.

    Frank Driver, policeman, mid-story: ... And then they kicked me back to uniform. Of course, it’s all a misunderstanding but mud sticks, doesn’t it? Ollie [Walters] was the only one that stuck by me. He’s a good copper.

    Jimmie Broome, lawyer: You were a police officer.
    Jack Branning: Detective Inspector, actually.

    Kate on her father's alcoholism: I watched my dad sinking for twenty years — always there to make sure he didn't go completely under, but never actually able to get him out of the water because only he could do that himself.

    Little Mo Morgan: When you were in the police, you must have worked with hundreds of women [who were victims of sexual assault].
    Kate: It was different. I was PC Morton. I had a uniform, it wasn't me.

    Kate on Dennis: I knew him. I knew him well.
    Phil Mitchell: Where did you meet?
    Kate: In a bar in Brighton.

    Jake Moon: You ever worked in a bar?
    Tina Stewart: Once or twice. Hopeless I was. I could never refuse a free drink. I should have [just taken the money], but I was too drunk by then.

    Dennis: The Kate I remember could drink anyone under the table.

    Kate on Dennis: He ran with a nasty crew.

    Tony Jamison: You're his [Jack Dalton's] blue-eyed boy.
    Dennis: I was once.

    Dennis: Jack helped me out.
    Andy: Once maybe, and then you went down for it.

    Dennis on Jack Dalton: He'd snap his fingers, I'd do some damage. That's how I got my sentence.

    Tony Jamison to Dennis: You helped him [Jack], we both did, and he hung us out to dry.

    Dennis: I took the fall for you.
    Jack Dalton: No, no, no. You got caught, which is something very different.

    Dennis to Kate: You were a risk taker — a policewoman with a weakness for bad boys. Very sexy.

    Dennis to Kate: There was something about you in that uniform I really liked.

    Dennis on himself and Kate: We liked each other a lot.

    Kate on Dennis: I liked him. I liked him quite a lot. We went out for a month or two when I lived in Brighton. We were never more than a casual fling.

    Kate: We were never compatible.
    Dennis: I seem to recall we were pretty compatible in the bedroom department.
    Kate: But that's about it.

    Kate on Dennis: I was never what you could call his soulmate. We had a mutual interest in sex and that was about it.

    Kate: We had a lot of sex, nothing much else and then we finished.
    Phil: So that was it, just sex?
    Kate: Yes. Just sex. Meaningless.

    Sean Slater: Do you know how many girls I’d had by the time I was [eighteen]? Four hundred and thirty five. No, hold on — three. Or was it twenty-six? Or it might have been none at all. I was on so many drugs at the time, I don’t really remember.

    Dennis: Our last night together — that was that flashiest hotel I've ever stayed in. We didn't sleep a wink.
    Kate: And you conveniently forgot to tell me it would be our last night.
    Dennis: That's why I wanted to make it so special.
    Kate: You just vanished into thin air.
    Dennis: I was trying to protect you.
    Kate: It didn't feel like it at the time.

    Kate on Dennis: That night that he stood me up in the hotel in Brighton, I thought he'd found someone or something else to entertain him. That had been his style.

    Kate on Dennis: After the way his mam treated him and living in care, he's [been] taught never to drop his guard.

    Dennis: You know me — here today, gone tomorrow.
    Kate: Where did you go?
    Dennis: I was sent down.

    Phil on Dennis: GBH, three years. Must have been a bit of a bad boy.

    Dennis: If I'd been caught for half the things I'd done, I'd still be in [prison], staring at the walls.

    Dennis to Jack Dalton: You said you'd always look after us.

    Dennis, speaking about Jack in 2003: The boss said he'd see us all right. He owes us twenty [grand]. That was the deal.

    Dennis: When we [himself and Tony] went down for doing that bloke, we never mentioned your name. Neither of us did.
    Jack: Of course you kept quiet, Dennis. It's the nature of the job.

    Buster Briggs: I ain’t been the most reliable of blokes, have I? In and out of nick most of me life.

    Dean: What were you inside for?
    Buster: Money laundering, bit of B&E and before that … I can’t remember precisely. I never did none of the things I did, neither. I was set up every single time!

    Derek Branning: I’ve been away, courtesy of Her Majesty.

    Jackie Bosch to Derek: I’d heard you’d been inside. Wasn’t really surprised.

    Michael Moon on Derek: There’s a reason he was banged up. You don’t get ten years inside for shoplifting.

    Derek: I’ve seen death, Patricia. Horrible it is, horrible.

    Derek: I know how to dump a body, believe you me, Max.

    Derek: I’ve done some very bad things. I’ve been in prison.
    Alice Branning: Joey told me.

    Carol Jackson on Derek: He'a spent most of his life behind bars — kids he never saw, endless lies.

    Derek: The nick changes a man.

    Shirley: I had a mate in the nick. The one thing she couldn’t cope with when she came out was that everything was normal. She thought everything would have changed but it hadn’t. Everything was exactly the same.

    Dennis on prison: Does your head in in there, thinking about the outside. You learn to keep your thoughts to yourself in there.

    Derek on his wife: I was in the nick for ten years and I never missed her once.

    Derek: When I was stuck away for all those years, I knew there’d be things I’d never get the chance to do, you know — family. That was all right. That was the life I led and I was OK with that.

    Cora on Derek: Ten years, a decade — that’s a long time, missing out at Her Majesty’s Pleasure, locked out, everyone carrying on without you. Derek told me he kept going all those years, ten years, hoping that one day he’d get a chance to make it up to you all [his family].

    Derek to Joey: I tried. I sent you a birthday card every year, didn’t I?

    Derek to Joey: Once a year on your birthday, I used to lie there and I’d close my eyes and I’d take myself back to that night [Joey’s seventh birthday]. Just once a year, I’d let myself remember what I’d left behind me on the outside, let myself grieve.

    Joey on Derek: Alice, he’s never so much as sent you a birthday card.
    Alice Branning: Yeah, and he sent you one every year.
    Joey: And we all know why. Just playing games.

    Derek to Carol: I did try to keep in touch from time to time, wrote letters. I even called, but do you know what? I got no reply.
    Carol: Yeah well, maybe it was my message to you, Derek — “Keep your nose out of my life.”

    Alice: I’ve never been to the dogs. Mum was never big on gambling.
    Derek: I love it.
    Alice: That’s why she weren’t big on it.

    Derek: I suppose your mum’s told you some pretty bad things about me.
    Alice: She’s said nothing, nothing good, nothing bad. She said whatever she thought about you was none of my business, that you were my dad and one day I could make my own mind up about you.
    Derek: That was very wise of her.
    Alice: Whereas Joey — Joey always said you were a waste of good air.
    Derek: He always did have a mouth on him, Joey.

    Alice to Derek: [Mum] said you was up yourself, quick-tempered, thought you was all that. She never said it to my face, but I could tell she hated you. She never to my face, but — I guess just in case you came back. You know where she is. Same place she’s always been. Same place I’ve been my whole life.

    Joey and Alice’s address:
    5 Melwood Place
    Barnet
    London
    EN5 4RQ

    Derek: You spend as much time as I have inside, you learn to spot a nut job at twenty paces.

    Derek: I label all my foodstuffs because when I was in the ... to stop scavengers nicking them.

    Derek: I haven’t slept past 6am in years.
     
  3. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2002

    Jack Branning, looking at a pop-up book about farmyard animals: My [daughter] Penny had one of these.

    Jack: Penny went through a phase of wanting to be a baker when she was about seven. Every Saturday we’d be baking cakes, for about six months.

    Max Branning: I spent years making cakes for the girls.

    Jack on Penny: I did a horrible job of bringing her up.

    Tamwar Masood: I’ve been cooking for years.

    Dexter Hartman on cooking: My mum taught me.

    Lauren Branning: Nan’s still got that same scary look that she had on my eighth birthday when she threw up all over my Happy Meal.

    Stacey Slater: I always did prefer the taste of somebody else’s chips to mine.

    Jean on Stacey’s eating habits: Breakfast, dinner and tea — always chips.

    Stacey: I’ve never liked chips.

    Stacey: I hate chips. You couldn't get a dinner round ours without chips in it when I was a kid. It didn't matter what you was having. I got to thirteen and I said to my mum, "You know, there is other things you can do with a potato. She said, "I pay the rent, you do what I say and you get what you're given." So I broke her peeler deliberately. I went into the kitchen the next morning, she's standing there with a cereal bowl full of chips and a pint of milk. And I'm going, "I don't do breakfast, Mum." And she said, "Oven chips. You think you're so clever, my girl, but there's always oven chips."

    Ruby Allen: We used to have an orange for breakfast, you know — cut in half like a grapefruit, in a bowl with a spoon, and then we had cereal and toast and a glass of milk, and Mum used to set the table out the night before to save time so we could spend ten minutes together in the morning. Dad just used to read the paper, but Mum said that was how families were supposed to spend the morning — you know, us four, together, for ten minutes.

    Stacey: Gareth Gates?!
    Ruby: I was only thirteen at the time.
    Stacey: I used to fancy Will Young. I was devastated when I found out he batted for the other side.

    Anthony Moon on Tyler: His closet door’s always been a bit ajar.

    Amira Shah: A girl did try and kiss me when I was at school. It was a dare.

    Linda Carter, speaking in 2014: I’ve been going to Mario [her hairdresser] for twelve years.

    Nancy on Linda: She used to have a right laugh with her hairdresser. She was always nosing in on his sex life.

    Alice Branning on “Snow White and Rose Red”: I used to love this [story]. It’s about two princesses called Snow White and Rose Red and I always wanted to be Rose Red because she had the dark hair, and there’s this bear that’s actually a cursed prince and evil dwarves. It was my favourite.
    Joey Branning: It’s the one I used to read you when Mum was at work, else you wouldn’t sleep.

    Chelsea Fox on herself and Libby: I still picture us with our little PJs on with Mum reading us a bedtime story — because she used to always read to us right up until Squiggle left primary school. I remember [Libby] wasn't very happy because a lot of the other kids thought she was really weird because she was always reading a book or off in her head some place and some days, in fact most days, I would meet you [Libby] at the school gates and you'd be crying your eyes out over something someone had said to you. So I'd go and sort them out, wouldn't I? Anyway, Mum had this one book. It was French but somehow it had the translations in it. It was about a little rabbit ...
    Libby: ... who felt like a misfit ...
    Chelsea: ... because he didn't fit in with all the other animals ...
    Libby: ... but his mum said he had to hold himself up high and be proud of himself ...
    Chelsea: ... because she loved him ...
    Chelsea and Libby in unison: ... just the way he was.

    Denise on Chelsea and Libby: Two scraggly little things.

    Heather Trott, speaking in 2007: I'm a professional checkout operative with five years experience.

    Heather: Most bosses I've had seem to hate me.

    Tanya Branning: Why'd you join the army?
    Sean Slater: See the world. Never good at staying in any one place too long.

    Sean: They always said, "The army'll straighten him out."

    Sean: I did a course [in electrics] in the army. I'm 16th edition qualified, me.

    Sean: I liked the army. It had rules and I like rules.

    Ruby: You were in the army?
    Al, a soldier in Sean's unit: Yeah.

    Sean: You and me were such good mates, Al — all our years together, all through basic training, passing out. You and me — over there together.

    Kevin Wicks: I imagine you travelled a lot in the army.
    Sean: I did, actually. I saw a fair bit of the world, but not the best bits. There's a reason why Iraq ain't a popular holiday destination.

    Stacey: You been in the thing — in Iraq?
    Sean: Yeah, I've been in the thing.

    Sean: The day I got my posting, it was the best day of my life. The Gulf, Kosovo — I was too young. This was my war.

    Sean: I didn't just want a war, Carly, I wanted a bloodbath.

    Sean on Iraq: I liked it there. It was the first place I felt at home in years.

    Bradley Branning on Iraq: How was it?
    Sean: Hot.

    Bradley on Sean: Iraq? What's he doing over there?
    Stacey: Laying in a desert working on his tan. What do you think?

    Tanya: Bit of a hero?
    Sean: I did my share.

    Sean: I screwed up when I was in the army.

    Sean: Two tours in Basra and nutters trying to blow you up at every opportunity.

    Sean: Been in the forces, have you, on a tour, waking up every day wondering, "Is this the day"?

    Sean: Pouring warm beer into pint glasses ain't work. Walking down the street, back against the wall, knowing there's a sniper in that building, hiding, waiting to put one right between your eyes — that's work.

    Sean: Was John Keats ever stuck on a checkpoint with mortars being lobbed over at him? Did John Keats ever have to scrape up the remains of a mate who'd been caught by an IED?

    Sean: I had this one mate, Lee, a Scouser. He was the only Scouser on the whole planet without a sense of humour. Hated everything. He hated the sun, he hated the flies, he even hated the army. Never ever stopped moaning. We used to go on patrol together, watch each other's backs. Then one day, one day, I got sick — food, water, I don't know. So I stayed behind. Lee's convoy got hit — IED. Lost both his legs above the knee. Pensioned off at twenty-three.

    Sean to Roxy: Did you ever think you'd have kids? Because I didn't. I've always tried to steer clear of family. No-one messes you up like they do. When I was in Iraq, you could always tell if someone had kids. They were different somehow — more careful, more cautious. This one night, we were on an ambush. We were just sitting waiting around. I got talking to this corporal. I can't even remember his name. He told me that he had kids. He said to me that the first time he held his newborn baby in his arms, when he looked down at his face, he said that he'd never been more scared in his life. We're talking about someone who'd spent years on the front line, and he was scared. I mean, he was really scared. He didn't want to die. He couldn't bear the thought of leaving this kid behind. You know what? It really got to me because it's never really bothered me much, dying.

    Stacey to Sean: You go half way round the world and risk getting blown to bits in some war that's got absolutely nothing to do with you, but you can't stay at home and fight for your own family — bleeding soldier boy. You never thought about me for one moment.

    Sean on Iraq: I liked it. The world made sense.
    Tanya: What, with people trying to kill you?
    Sean: That's the job, isn't it? You have a pop at them, they have a pop at you.
    Tanya: Yeah, but you never shot anyone, did you?
    Sean: Yeah.
    Tanya: Yeah, but you didn't kill them?
    Sean: You get hit in the head with an SA80, it's going to sting.
    Tanya: You killed someone? What did that feel like?
    Sean: It was straightforward. I was just doing my job, wasn't I? Didn't really feel like nothing.
    Tanya: No hate, no anger?
    Sean: No nothing — but that's good because if you're going to be killing people, you've got to be dead too, inside. That's what I was for years — dead.

    Kate Morton, speaking in 2003: A friend of mine died last year, heart attack. Saturday night, we were all down the pub having a laugh. The next morning, he got up to play football, Sunday league — bang — dropped down dead — no-one near him, just like that. He was only thirty-one. And what was the last thing I said to him? "With all that extra weight you're carrying around, Jeff, you're going to end up killing yourself." It was meant as a joke, you know, because he had a bit of a beer gut. Turns out he had a bit of a heart defect as well. This was one of my best mates, someone I went to primary school with, and all I ever did was wind him up and give him a hard time. I don't think I ever said anything nice to him. I certainly never told him how much I liked him and I never ever realised how much I'd miss him.

    Joey on Alice: I ain’t ever told her that I love her.

    Kevin: We always do something on Jimbo's birthday. It's tradition.

    Spencer Moon, speaking to Alfie and Nana in 2003: It was horrible not being together last year [for the anniversary of his parents' deaths].

    Carly Wicks: Every year, come the anniversary [of her brother's death], they [Kevin and Dean] go a bit funny.

    Carly: Every year it's the same. It's Jimbo's anniversary so Deano ruins breakfast.
    Dean: It's a tradition.
    Carly: It's only a tradition because you say so.

    Kevin on the anniversary: We get through [the] day as best we can and we look after each other.

    Dean on the anniversary: It's supposed to be our special day, something that we share together.
    Carly: It's not our day that we share. Do you know what I do? I watch you and Dad get so wasted that you can't even stand.

    Carly to Kevin: You lock yourself in some pub and pick fight with complete strangers and [Dean] causes chaos.

    Dean, mid-anecdote: … I mean, seriously! I said, “put your money where your mouth is,” stripped off, gave the chap a second head start …
    Lauren: You ran across town completely naked?
    Dean: Virtually, yeah!

    Carly to Dean: You pull your stunts.
    Dean: They ain't stunts.
    Carly: What do you call riding your bike off of Woolwich Pier then?
    Dean: You should have seen the people's faces!

    Dean: I ended up overnight in the cells. I only got a caution though.
    Carly: And who had to come and pick you up from the police station, eh Dean? Was it you, Dad? No, because you [Kevin] were down some pub picking glass out your head because you said to some brickie's wife that she looked like Kevin Keegan.
    Kevin: Well, she had the hair.

    Dean to Carly: I never asked you to pick me up.

    Carly to Dean: You go and do stupid dangerous stuff that makes me think you're going to go and kill yourself. That's what you do, and I just clean up after you. We don't talk to each other. We might as well be on our own because we are really. We don't share that day.

    Kevin: I dread that date coming past, the anniversary. The minute it's passed, I know it's going to come round again. You're just waiting. It don't get any better, any easier.

    Masood on Zainab's attempts to impress her friend Bushra: Like the time you told her [about] Syed's ten As at GCSE.

    Dennis Rickman: I've been educated at some of the finest establishments in the country.
    Sharon Watts: Wormwood Scrubs?

    Vicki Fowler: So real men do iron?
    Dennis: Yeah, prison laundry's full of them and you didn't take the mick neither.

    Christian Clarke: You’ve never used an iron?
    Amira: That’s what dry cleaners are for, isn’t it?

    Tyler Moon: You know how to cook, do you?
    Derek Branning: Well, if it’s the difference between sitting in a cell for a ten stretch or learning how to make a lasagne, it ain’t long before you’re pinnied up and standing in front of a cooker. I met this guy, a fellow con. Quite a funny story actually. I’d been in about a year, right, so I get a call up to the warden’s office. I walk in. He’s looking at me. He says, “I’m sorry, Branning. It’s a Dear John.”
    Tyler: Dear John? What’s that?
    Derek: It’s a letter you get from your missus when she’s informing you it’s all over.
    Tyler: Ouch.
    Derek: No greater ouch, mate. There’s nothing you can do about it on the inside. You see, the screws, they all read your mail so he knew what to expect. He’s looking at me. He goes, “Branning, you need the doctor.” Do you know what he gave me? Three sleeping pills. Three sleeping pills for a broken heart.
    Tyler: Did she give a reason?
    Derek: The pain of separation she put it down to. She should have tried it from my side. Anyway, a couple of days later, a geezer comes up to me. Heard I’d had a Dear John. He’d had one the week before.
    Tyler: This is your chef mate, yeah?
    Derek: Yeah. We used to sit in my cell planning our escape, how we was going to win our women back in a hail of bullets. And then we realised it was easier to have nothing on the outside. And that’s when he taught me how to cook.

    Shirley Carter: I got this mate that got a two year stretch and the only way to survive in the nick is to be prepared for anything. You keep your mouth shut. You don't grass, you don't boast. You show respect and you don't cry or show any fear or weakness at all. So then you don't become a target.

    Shirley: I had this mate once. She got nicked for shoplifting. Did three months inside. One night they gave her a new cellmate. Proper bag-head she was. She was rattling when she landed, but they bunged her in with my mate because they thought she might top herself on the ones. That night she was banging on the door, begging for methadone, anything that would take the pain away, but they were on a twenty-three hour lock up. The next day she was all curled up on the ground, banging her arms and legs on the floor because the pain, it hurt so much. A week it took. In that week — it weren't pretty, but she was clean by the end of it.

    Spencer Moon to Alfie: You know what Nan's cooking's like. That's the only thing in the nick that was an improvement.

    Alfie: I'd just done a [prison] stretch [before arriving in Walford].

    Nana Moon: Did they feed you properly in that horrible place? They didn't hurt you, did they?
    Alfie: No, no, no, no.

    Spencer: When Alfie got out [of prison], he'd lost over a stone.

    Kat Slater: What did you have [to eat] when you came out [of prison]?
    Alfie: Oh, I had a bit of fruit and a fry up, but I had this dream of a real big, home-cooked roast dinner. That was my absolute fantasy, that was.

    Zainab Masood on her son Syed: Aloo gosht, that was always his favourite, wasn't it?

    Masood Ahmed to Tamwar: Your mum's pakora, always been one of my favourites — usually wheeled out as comfort food like when I crashed the car or when she has some bad news.

    Ruby: My mum used to make [spaghetti bolognese].

    Johnny on Ruby: Her mum cooked the Sunday dinner.

    Tina Stewart: You never helped Stephanie in the kitchen?
    Johnny: Sometimes. It's just that Steph and the girls were more the washing up mob.
    Tina: And you sat around on your butt?
    Johnny: Just sort of fell into a pattern. Part of being a family, I guess.

    Heather: Mummy used to do all [the washing].

    Tanya: In all the years we were together I can count on the fingers of one hand the amount of times Max [loaded the dishwasher].

    Tanya: I'm no women's libber. I've never had the urge to put up a shelf in me life.

    Tanya on her daughters: Every minute of their little lives, I've watched them grow. I used to be full of hope.

    Wayne Ladlow: I got bitten [by a dog] when I was a kid.

    Johnny Carter to Nancy: You, forcing me to race you round Whippendell Wood.

    Ava Hartman: I tried to find you once. I was in my late thirties. I felt a bit lost.
    Cora Cross: What happened?
    Ava: Got scared.
    Cora: Worried I’d disappoint you?
    Ava: You rejected me once. Who’s to say you wouldn’t do it again?
    Cora: So you never tried?
    Ava: I decided the past was best left there.

    AJ Ahmed, speaking about his wife Aliyah in 2012: She’s been wanting to have kids for about ten years now. I’ve always been able to put her off, make her see that we don’t need kids to be happy.

    Stacey to Sean: Every bleeding year I kept waiting for a [birthday] card from you and I kept thinking, "Maybe this year he'll remember." How stupid could I be?

    Alfie on his life in Walford: This all started with me being chucked off the tube.

    Jimmie Broome: Would you say your job contributed to the breakdown of your first marriage?
    Jack Branning: You’d have to ask my ex-wife.

    Jack: When I was in the force, I always worked at Christmas. Kept me busy. Not a good time to be away from your family.

    Sean: Christmas is usually the blackest day of the year for me. The amount of Christmases I've spent wasted in a bedsit or the barracks listening to soldiers crying.

    2003

    Rose Cotton: He was in my ward, mixed it were. He kept me company when you rushed off to see your precious Aunty Gwen. You went and left me all on my own. He worked on the floor [of a] carpet factory on the Wirral, sweeping up the cuttings. He wasn’t married anymore.
    Dot: That made a change.
    Rose: He wondered if I’d like to come down here [Southend] and retire with him. He had grandchildren here and I thought, “Southend, sounds nice.”

    Sean on life as a squaddie: I was a paranoid mess. Anytime anyone laughed behind my back, I thought the joke was about me. I smacked them in the mouth.

    Zoe Slater: Stacey ain't had a very stable background.

    Stacey to her mother Jean: When you were tranqued up to the eyeballs, it was me who kept this place going. Not you, me. It was me who made sure you ate, me who made sure you had a bath because you were lying in your pit for weeks.

    Abby, Stacey’s friend: I’ve been round her [Stacey’s] house, right, and she’s got her mum in the bath and changing her clothes for her.
    Stacey: We used to be best mates, Abby.

    Mrs Cowan, Paula Rickman's next door neighbour: We were neighbours, not friends. I only got involved when I saw the milk piling up.

    Paula Rickman died 30/03/2003

    Dennis Rickman to Jack Dalton: I spent eighteen months in prison for you — eighteen months hard labour. Eighteen months of bullies and little Hitlers.

    Dennis on himself and Tony Jamison: We served our time. We kept our mouths shut.
    Jack Dalton: You never could take any lying down, Dennis, could you? I always said you had steel ones and I was right. You did your time without blabbing.

    Heather: Skip, my American fella.
    Shirley: He was on Death Row.
    Heather: He never loved me though.
    Shirley: Because you sent him a picture of Jordan and said it was you.

    Shirley on sex: You know what they say — it’s just
    like riding a bike.
    Heather: But I haven’t been in the saddle since May Bank Holiday, 2003.

    Stacey speaking about Jean in 2008: Do you know how many years she has been alone since my dad died and never even looked at another bloke?

    Rose Cotton, speaking in 2011: I often wonder about my Andrew. He hasn’t had a girlfriend for years, not that you’d care to remember. His last girlfriend was ever so sweet, but touched a bit by the ugly stick, poor thing.

    Andrew Cotton: I’ve never been like other blokes. I’ve never had much success with women. Never even know what to say to them.

    Dot to Rose: Andrew said that you had gentlemen friends from all over the world — France, Spain, Channel Islands.

    Dexter Hartman on Ava: Most of the time, it’s just been me and her. No one on the scene, really.

    Ava Hartman on romance: I gave up a long time ago.

    Heather on romance: It was all I ever wanted once.

    Big Mo: I had [standards] once.
    Jean: Yeah well, we all did — waiting in for the magic man. Years ago, I told myself, “I am not going to be alone.” Wanted a bit of comforting if I’m honest.

    Jean to Stacey: Since your dad, I’ve not ... well, not with my head in the right place or with someone that wasn’t just using me.

    Denise Fox speaking in 2006: My love life has been a pretty low priority these last couple of years.

    Owen Turner: Be honest with yourself, please. Has there ever been anyone else who made you feel like I do?
    Denise: Plenty.

    Danielle Jones: I’ve never had a proper boyfriend. No-one’s ever asked me out.

    Danielle on motorbikes: Gareth, my brother, had one of them.

    Andy Jones on a picture of Danielle with her school friends: They won the Year 9 relay. She was chuffed to little bits when they won. She was so proud of herself that day. I don’t think I ever saw her smile so much. She was so happy. Look at that smile.
    Ronnie Mitchell, looking at the picture: She’s wearing a locket.

    Dexter Hartman: No kid can get through that — growing up without a dad. Oh wait, I did.

    Ava to Sam: I never dissed you [to Dexter]. I only told him good things.

    Ava on Dexter: I brought him up. I was there. It was me who watched him score his first goal, standing on the sidelines with the other dads. It was me who stayed up all night in A&E the night that he broke his wrist.

    Johnny Carter to Linda and Mick: You two never even missed a sports day.

    Nancy on Linda: Do you not remember when she came to sports day even though everyone thought she had meningitis?
    Johnny: Yeah, but it wasn’t meningitis was it? It was an allergic reaction to her foundation.

    Nancy on Lee’s temper: You’ve been like this since we was kids. Do you remember the time I stuffed all my crayons in your Mister Frosty and broke it and you thought it was OK to do that to my arm [pointing to a scar]?

    Linda to Johnny: Fists and fighting, that’s always been the other two, but you, you’re the brains of the outfit.

    Linda to Johnny: It’s good to know I brought one of you up right.
    Mick: Of course, I had no part in bringing him up, did I?
    Linda: Yes, yes. We all know you’re the best parent in the world.

    Mick on Johnny: The boy don’t eat jam. He never has.

    Johnny: It’s not really my thing.
    Mick: He used to say the same about milk when he was a little boy.

    Linda on Johnny: He’s never failed an exam in his life. He’s never failed at anything. Even at primary school he was top of his class. He knew his times tables before anyone else and everybody’s always said it — “he’s going places.”

    Ruby: Scarlet got four As and four A stars [in her GCSEs].

    Bradley Branning: I went bowling for my sixteenth, me and a few mates.

    Mick to Lee and Johnny: I’ve been making these things [guys for bonfire night] for you for years.
     
  4. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2002

    Jack Branning, looking at a pop-up book about farmyard animals: My [daughter] Penny had one of these.

    Jack: Penny went through a phase of wanting to be a baker when she was about seven. Every Saturday we’d be baking cakes, for about six months.

    Max Branning: I spent years making cakes for the girls.

    Jack on Penny: I did a horrible job of bringing her up.

    Tamwar Masood: I’ve been cooking for years.

    Dexter Hartman on cooking: My mum taught me.

    Lauren Branning: Nan’s still got that same scary look that she had on my eighth birthday when she threw up all over my Happy Meal.

    Stacey Slater: I always did prefer the taste of somebody else’s chips to mine.

    Jean on Stacey’s eating habits: Breakfast, dinner and tea — always chips.

    Stacey: I’ve never liked chips.

    Stacey: I hate chips. You couldn't get a dinner round ours without chips in it when I was a kid. It didn't matter what you was having. I got to thirteen and I said to my mum, "You know, there is other things you can do with a potato. She said, "I pay the rent, you do what I say and you get what you're given." So I broke her peeler deliberately. I went into the kitchen the next morning, she's standing there with a cereal bowl full of chips and a pint of milk. And I'm going, "I don't do breakfast, Mum." And she said, "Oven chips. You think you're so clever, my girl, but there's always oven chips."

    Ruby Allen: We used to have an orange for breakfast, you know — cut in half like a grapefruit, in a bowl with a spoon, and then we had cereal and toast and a glass of milk, and Mum used to set the table out the night before to save time so we could spend ten minutes together in the morning. Dad just used to read the paper, but Mum said that was how families were supposed to spend the morning — you know, us four, together, for ten minutes.

    Stacey: Gareth Gates?!
    Ruby: I was only thirteen at the time.
    Stacey: I used to fancy Will Young. I was devastated when I found out he batted for the other side.

    Anthony Moon on Tyler: His closet door’s always been a bit ajar.

    Amira Shah: A girl did try and kiss me when I was at school. It was a dare.

    Linda Carter, speaking in 2014: I’ve been going to Mario [her hairdresser] for twelve years.

    Nancy on Linda: She used to have a right laugh with her hairdresser. She was always nosing in on his sex life.

    Alice Branning on “Snow White and Rose Red”: I used to love this [story]. It’s about two princesses called Snow White and Rose Red and I always wanted to be Rose Red because she had the dark hair, and there’s this bear that’s actually a cursed prince and evil dwarves. It was my favourite.
    Joey Branning: It’s the one I used to read you when Mum was at work, else you wouldn’t sleep.

    Chelsea Fox on herself and Libby: I still picture us with our little PJs on with Mum reading us a bedtime story — because she used to always read to us right up until Squiggle left primary school. I remember [Libby] wasn't very happy because a lot of the other kids thought she was really weird because she was always reading a book or off in her head some place and some days, in fact most days, I would meet you [Libby] at the school gates and you'd be crying your eyes out over something someone had said to you. So I'd go and sort them out, wouldn't I? Anyway, Mum had this one book. It was French but somehow it had the translations in it. It was about a little rabbit ...
    Libby: ... who felt like a misfit ...
    Chelsea: ... because he didn't fit in with all the other animals ...
    Libby: ... but his mum said he had to hold himself up high and be proud of himself ...
    Chelsea: ... because she loved him ...
    Chelsea and Libby in unison: ... just the way he was.

    Denise on Chelsea and Libby: Two scraggly little things.

    Heather Trott, speaking in 2007: I'm a professional checkout operative with five years experience.

    Heather: Most bosses I've had seem to hate me.

    Tanya Branning: Why'd you join the army?
    Sean Slater: See the world. Never good at staying in any one place too long.

    Sean: They always said, "The army'll straighten him out."

    Sean: I did a course [in electrics] in the army. I'm 16th edition qualified, me.

    Sean: I liked the army. It had rules and I like rules.

    Ruby: You were in the army?
    Al, a soldier in Sean's unit: Yeah.

    Sean: You and me were such good mates, Al — all our years together, all through basic training, passing out. You and me — over there together.

    Kevin Wicks: I imagine you travelled a lot in the army.
    Sean: I did, actually. I saw a fair bit of the world, but not the best bits. There's a reason why Iraq ain't a popular holiday destination.

    Stacey: You been in the thing — in Iraq?
    Sean: Yeah, I've been in the thing.

    Sean: The day I got my posting, it was the best day of my life. The Gulf, Kosovo — I was too young. This was my war.

    Sean: I didn't just want a war, Carly, I wanted a bloodbath.

    Sean on Iraq: I liked it there. It was the first place I felt at home in years.

    Bradley Branning on Iraq: How was it?
    Sean: Hot.

    Bradley on Sean: Iraq? What's he doing over there?
    Stacey: Laying in a desert working on his tan. What do you think?

    Tanya: Bit of a hero?
    Sean: I did my share.

    Sean: I screwed up when I was in the army.

    Sean: Two tours in Basra and nutters trying to blow you up at every opportunity.

    Sean: Been in the forces, have you, on a tour, waking up every day wondering, "Is this the day"?

    Sean: Pouring warm beer into pint glasses ain't work. Walking down the street, back against the wall, knowing there's a sniper in that building, hiding, waiting to put one right between your eyes — that's work.

    Sean: Was John Keats ever stuck on a checkpoint with mortars being lobbed over at him? Did John Keats ever have to scrape up the remains of a mate who'd been caught by an IED?

    Sean: I had this one mate, Lee, a Scouser. He was the only Scouser on the whole planet without a sense of humour. Hated everything. He hated the sun, he hated the flies, he even hated the army. Never ever stopped moaning. We used to go on patrol together, watch each other's backs. Then one day, one day, I got sick — food, water, I don't know. So I stayed behind. Lee's convoy got hit — IED. Lost both his legs above the knee. Pensioned off at twenty-three.

    Sean to Roxy: Did you ever think you'd have kids? Because I didn't. I've always tried to steer clear of family. No-one messes you up like they do. When I was in Iraq, you could always tell if someone had kids. They were different somehow — more careful, more cautious. This one night, we were on an ambush. We were just sitting waiting around. I got talking to this corporal. I can't even remember his name. He told me that he had kids. He said to me that the first time he held his newborn baby in his arms, when he looked down at his face, he said that he'd never been more scared in his life. We're talking about someone who'd spent years on the front line, and he was scared. I mean, he was really scared. He didn't want to die. He couldn't bear the thought of leaving this kid behind. You know what? It really got to me because it's never really bothered me much, dying.

    Stacey to Sean: You go half way round the world and risk getting blown to bits in some war that's got absolutely nothing to do with you, but you can't stay at home and fight for your own family — bleeding soldier boy. You never thought about me for one moment.

    Sean on Iraq: I liked it. The world made sense.
    Tanya: What, with people trying to kill you?
    Sean: That's the job, isn't it? You have a pop at them, they have a pop at you.
    Tanya: Yeah, but you never shot anyone, did you?
    Sean: Yeah.
    Tanya: Yeah, but you didn't kill them?
    Sean: You get hit in the head with an SA80, it's going to sting.
    Tanya: You killed someone? What did that feel like?
    Sean: It was straightforward. I was just doing my job, wasn't I? Didn't really feel like nothing.
    Tanya: No hate, no anger?
    Sean: No nothing — but that's good because if you're going to be killing people, you've got to be dead too, inside. That's what I was for years — dead.

    Kate Morton, speaking in 2003: A friend of mine died last year, heart attack. Saturday night, we were all down the pub having a laugh. The next morning, he got up to play football, Sunday league — bang — dropped down dead — no-one near him, just like that. He was only thirty-one. And what was the last thing I said to him? "With all that extra weight you're carrying around, Jeff, you're going to end up killing yourself." It was meant as a joke, you know, because he had a bit of a beer gut. Turns out he had a bit of a heart defect as well. This was one of my best mates, someone I went to primary school with, and all I ever did was wind him up and give him a hard time. I don't think I ever said anything nice to him. I certainly never told him how much I liked him and I never ever realised how much I'd miss him.

    Joey on Alice: I ain’t ever told her that I love her.

    Kevin: We always do something on Jimbo's birthday. It's tradition.

    Spencer Moon, speaking to Alfie and Nana in 2003: It was horrible not being together last year [for the anniversary of his parents' deaths].

    Carly Wicks: Every year, come the anniversary [of her brother's death], they [Kevin and Dean] go a bit funny.

    Carly: Every year it's the same. It's Jimbo's anniversary so Deano ruins breakfast.
    Dean: It's a tradition.
    Carly: It's only a tradition because you say so.

    Kevin on the anniversary: We get through [the] day as best we can and we look after each other.

    Dean on the anniversary: It's supposed to be our special day, something that we share together.
    Carly: It's not our day that we share. Do you know what I do? I watch you and Dad get so wasted that you can't even stand.

    Carly to Kevin: You lock yourself in some pub and pick fight with complete strangers and [Dean] causes chaos.

    Dean, mid-anecdote: … I mean, seriously! I said, “put your money where your mouth is,” stripped off, gave the chap a second head start …
    Lauren: You ran across town completely naked?
    Dean: Virtually, yeah!

    Carly to Dean: You pull your stunts.
    Dean: They ain't stunts.
    Carly: What do you call riding your bike off of Woolwich Pier then?
    Dean: You should have seen the people's faces!

    Dean: I ended up overnight in the cells. I only got a caution though.
    Carly: And who had to come and pick you up from the police station, eh Dean? Was it you, Dad? No, because you [Kevin] were down some pub picking glass out your head because you said to some brickie's wife that she looked like Kevin Keegan.
    Kevin: Well, she had the hair.

    Dean to Carly: I never asked you to pick me up.

    Carly to Dean: You go and do stupid dangerous stuff that makes me think you're going to go and kill yourself. That's what you do, and I just clean up after you. We don't talk to each other. We might as well be on our own because we are really. We don't share that day.

    Kevin: I dread that date coming past, the anniversary. The minute it's passed, I know it's going to come round again. You're just waiting. It don't get any better, any easier.

    Masood on Zainab's attempts to impress her friend Bushra: Like the time you told her [about] Syed's ten As at GCSE.

    Dennis Rickman: I've been educated at some of the finest establishments in the country.
    Sharon Watts: Wormwood Scrubs?

    Vicki Fowler: So real men do iron?
    Dennis: Yeah, prison laundry's full of them and you didn't take the mick neither.

    Christian Clarke: You’ve never used an iron?
    Amira: That’s what dry cleaners are for, isn’t it?

    Tyler Moon: You know how to cook, do you?
    Derek Branning: Well, if it’s the difference between sitting in a cell for a ten stretch or learning how to make a lasagne, it ain’t long before you’re pinnied up and standing in front of a cooker. I met this guy, a fellow con. Quite a funny story actually. I’d been in about a year, right, so I get a call up to the warden’s office. I walk in. He’s looking at me. He says, “I’m sorry, Branning. It’s a Dear John.”
    Tyler: Dear John? What’s that?
    Derek: It’s a letter you get from your missus when she’s informing you it’s all over.
    Tyler: Ouch.
    Derek: No greater ouch, mate. There’s nothing you can do about it on the inside. You see, the screws, they all read your mail so he knew what to expect. He’s looking at me. He goes, “Branning, you need the doctor.” Do you know what he gave me? Three sleeping pills. Three sleeping pills for a broken heart.
    Tyler: Did she give a reason?
    Derek: The pain of separation she put it down to. She should have tried it from my side. Anyway, a couple of days later, a geezer comes up to me. Heard I’d had a Dear John. He’d had one the week before.
    Tyler: This is your chef mate, yeah?
    Derek: Yeah. We used to sit in my cell planning our escape, how we was going to win our women back in a hail of bullets. And then we realised it was easier to have nothing on the outside. And that’s when he taught me how to cook.

    Shirley Carter: I got this mate that got a two year stretch and the only way to survive in the nick is to be prepared for anything. You keep your mouth shut. You don't grass, you don't boast. You show respect and you don't cry or show any fear or weakness at all. So then you don't become a target.

    Shirley: I had this mate once. She got nicked for shoplifting. Did three months inside. One night they gave her a new cellmate. Proper bag-head she was. She was rattling when she landed, but they bunged her in with my mate because they thought she might top herself on the ones. That night she was banging on the door, begging for methadone, anything that would take the pain away, but they were on a twenty-three hour lock up. The next day she was all curled up on the ground, banging her arms and legs on the floor because the pain, it hurt so much. A week it took. In that week — it weren't pretty, but she was clean by the end of it.

    Spencer Moon to Alfie: You know what Nan's cooking's like. That's the only thing in the nick that was an improvement.

    Alfie: I'd just done a [prison] stretch [before arriving in Walford].

    Nana Moon: Did they feed you properly in that horrible place? They didn't hurt you, did they?
    Alfie: No, no, no, no.

    Spencer: When Alfie got out [of prison], he'd lost over a stone.

    Kat Slater: What did you have [to eat] when you came out [of prison]?
    Alfie: Oh, I had a bit of fruit and a fry up, but I had this dream of a real big, home-cooked roast dinner. That was my absolute fantasy, that was.

    Zainab Masood on her son Syed: Aloo gosht, that was always his favourite, wasn't it?

    Masood Ahmed to Tamwar: Your mum's pakora, always been one of my favourites — usually wheeled out as comfort food like when I crashed the car or when she has some bad news.

    Ruby: My mum used to make [spaghetti bolognese].

    Johnny on Ruby: Her mum cooked the Sunday dinner.

    Tina Stewart: You never helped Stephanie in the kitchen?
    Johnny: Sometimes. It's just that Steph and the girls were more the washing up mob.
    Tina: And you sat around on your butt?
    Johnny: Just sort of fell into a pattern. Part of being a family, I guess.

    Heather: Mummy used to do all [the washing].

    Tanya: In all the years we were together I can count on the fingers of one hand the amount of times Max [loaded the dishwasher].

    Tanya: I'm no women's libber. I've never had the urge to put up a shelf in me life.

    Tanya on her daughters: Every minute of their little lives, I've watched them grow. I used to be full of hope.

    Wayne Ladlow: I got bitten [by a dog] when I was a kid.

    Johnny Carter to Nancy: You, forcing me to race you round Whippendell Wood.

    Ava Hartman: I tried to find you once. I was in my late thirties. I felt a bit lost.
    Cora Cross: What happened?
    Ava: Got scared.
    Cora: Worried I’d disappoint you?
    Ava: You rejected me once. Who’s to say you wouldn’t do it again?
    Cora: So you never tried?
    Ava: I decided the past was best left there.

    AJ Ahmed, speaking about his wife Aliyah in 2012: She’s been wanting to have kids for about ten years now. I’ve always been able to put her off, make her see that we don’t need kids to be happy.

    Stacey to Sean: Every bleeding year I kept waiting for a [birthday] card from you and I kept thinking, "Maybe this year he'll remember." How stupid could I be?

    Alfie on his life in Walford: This all started with me being chucked off the tube.

    Jimmie Broome: Would you say your job contributed to the breakdown of your first marriage?
    Jack Branning: You’d have to ask my ex-wife.

    Jack: When I was in the force, I always worked at Christmas. Kept me busy. Not a good time to be away from your family.

    Sean: Christmas is usually the blackest day of the year for me. The amount of Christmases I've spent wasted in a bedsit or the barracks listening to soldiers crying.

    2003

    Rose Cotton: He was in my ward, mixed it were. He kept me company when you rushed off to see your precious Aunty Gwen. You went and left me all on my own. He worked on the floor [of a] carpet factory on the Wirral, sweeping up the cuttings. He wasn’t married anymore.
    Dot: That made a change.
    Rose: He wondered if I’d like to come down here [Southend] and retire with him. He had grandchildren here and I thought, “Southend, sounds nice.”

    Sean on life as a squaddie: I was a paranoid mess. Anytime anyone laughed behind my back, I thought the joke was about me. I smacked them in the mouth.

    Zoe Slater: Stacey ain't had a very stable background.

    Stacey to her mother Jean: When you were tranqued up to the eyeballs, it was me who kept this place going. Not you, me. It was me who made sure you ate, me who made sure you had a bath because you were lying in your pit for weeks.

    Abby, Stacey’s friend: I’ve been round her [Stacey’s] house, right, and she’s got her mum in the bath and changing her clothes for her.
    Stacey: We used to be best mates, Abby.

    Mrs Cowan, Paula Rickman's next door neighbour: We were neighbours, not friends. I only got involved when I saw the milk piling up.

    Paula Rickman died 30/03/2003

    Dennis Rickman to Jack Dalton: I spent eighteen months in prison for you — eighteen months hard labour. Eighteen months of bullies and little Hitlers.

    Dennis on himself and Tony Jamison: We served our time. We kept our mouths shut.
    Jack Dalton: You never could take any lying down, Dennis, could you? I always said you had steel ones and I was right. You did your time without blabbing.

    Heather: Skip, my American fella.
    Shirley: He was on Death Row.
    Heather: He never loved me though.
    Shirley: Because you sent him a picture of Jordan and said it was you.

    Shirley on sex: You know what they say — it’s just
    like riding a bike.
    Heather: But I haven’t been in the saddle since May Bank Holiday, 2003.

    Stacey speaking about Jean in 2008: Do you know how many years she has been alone since my dad died and never even looked at another bloke?

    Rose Cotton, speaking in 2011: I often wonder about my Andrew. He hasn’t had a girlfriend for years, not that you’d care to remember. His last girlfriend was ever so sweet, but touched a bit by the ugly stick, poor thing.

    Andrew Cotton: I’ve never been like other blokes. I’ve never had much success with women. Never even know what to say to them.

    Dot to Rose: Andrew said that you had gentlemen friends from all over the world — France, Spain, Channel Islands.

    Dexter Hartman on Ava: Most of the time, it’s just been me and her. No one on the scene, really.

    Ava Hartman on romance: I gave up a long time ago.

    Heather on romance: It was all I ever wanted once.

    Big Mo: I had [standards] once.
    Jean: Yeah well, we all did — waiting in for the magic man. Years ago, I told myself, “I am not going to be alone.” Wanted a bit of comforting if I’m honest.

    Jean to Stacey: Since your dad, I’ve not ... well, not with my head in the right place or with someone that wasn’t just using me.

    Denise Fox speaking in 2006: My love life has been a pretty low priority these last couple of years.

    Owen Turner: Be honest with yourself, please. Has there ever been anyone else who made you feel like I do?
    Denise: Plenty.

    Danielle Jones: I’ve never had a proper boyfriend. No-one’s ever asked me out.

    Danielle on motorbikes: Gareth, my brother, had one of them.

    Andy Jones on a picture of Danielle with her school friends: They won the Year 9 relay. She was chuffed to little bits when they won. She was so proud of herself that day. I don’t think I ever saw her smile so much. She was so happy. Look at that smile.
    Ronnie Mitchell, looking at the picture: She’s wearing a locket.

    Dexter Hartman: No kid can get through that — growing up without a dad. Oh wait, I did.

    Ava to Sam: I never dissed you [to Dexter]. I only told him good things.

    Ava on Dexter: I brought him up. I was there. It was me who watched him score his first goal, standing on the sidelines with the other dads. It was me who stayed up all night in A&E the night that he broke his wrist.

    Johnny Carter to Linda and Mick: You two never even missed a sports day.

    Nancy on Linda: Do you not remember when she came to sports day even though everyone thought she had meningitis?
    Johnny: Yeah, but it wasn’t meningitis was it? It was an allergic reaction to her foundation.

    Nancy on Lee’s temper: You’ve been like this since we was kids. Do you remember the time I stuffed all my crayons in your Mister Frosty and broke it and you thought it was OK to do that to my arm [pointing to a scar]?

    Linda to Johnny: Fists and fighting, that’s always been the other two, but you, you’re the brains of the outfit.

    Linda to Johnny: It’s good to know I brought one of you up right.
    Mick: Of course, I had no part in bringing him up, did I?
    Linda: Yes, yes. We all know you’re the best parent in the world.

    Mick on Johnny: The boy don’t eat jam. He never has.

    Johnny: It’s not really my thing.
    Mick: He used to say the same about milk when he was a little boy.

    Linda on Johnny: He’s never failed an exam in his life. He’s never failed at anything. Even at primary school he was top of his class. He knew his times tables before anyone else and everybody’s always said it — “he’s going places.”

    Ruby: Scarlet got four As and four A stars [in her GCSEs].

    Bradley Branning: I went bowling for my sixteenth, me and a few mates.

    Mick to Lee and Johnny: I’ve been making these things [guys for bonfire night] for you for years.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
  5. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2004

    Charlie Cotton, Jr, speaking in 2014: Been here [London] the last ten years.

    Jack Branning: It was a case in Manchester — serial rapist. He’d drug girls in the club before he’d take them home. Five times, he’d been tried. Five times, the same scummy lawyer got him off. You see, what we needed was a confession. After he’d raped his sixth victim, they gave him to me. I got him to confess. Twenty years, he got. It’s called the Devil’s Bargain — you do what’s necessary, not what’s right.

    Michael Moon: You don’t know what Jack was like when he was Old Bill. He was crooked, he was completely bent.

    Max Branning to Jack: You made a fortune through corruption.

    Jack: Kenny Nelson — he was a drug dealer. We’re talking major league — you know, importing, exporting. Escobar of Essex they called him. The Met had been after him for years. He was running smack down the A12. Me and my partner Jonno, we were so far in his pocket he had us by the balls.
    Tanya Branning: You were bent.
    Jack: It was supposed to have been a one off, a bit of easy money, but one thing led to another.
    Tanya: You were meant to be the good guy. You were meant to protect kids like my sister from scum like him, not take a bung so he can carry on dealing out the smack. It’s lowlife like him, they destroy lives. They lounge about in their Chingford mansions while kids like my Rainie, they’re nicking off their own families so they can get their hands on some gear and ...
    Jack: I know what it’s like.
    Tanya: It didn't stop you, did it?
    Jack: By the time I wanted out it was too late.

    Jack on Kenny Nelson: Me and Jonno, we tried to keep him out the nick as long as we could, but there was this raid. I couldn’t tip him off in time. He got taken down in front of his kid and he blamed me.

    Jack on Kenny: I was the one that got him. I sent him down for twelve years. There was a load of press, a load of kudos. Oh, and I made sure everybody knew he was my body.

    Newspaper cuttings collected by Jack: “Local Drug Dealer Jailed For 12 Years”, “Police Arrest Drugs Baron”, “Drugs Villain Put Behind Bars”

    Newspaper headline about Jack: “HERO COPPER WINS TOP AWARD”

    Jack: We were at the station when the news came in. One of the lads went out and got beer because they were celebrating. That’s when I got the call. Selina and Penny were at the bus stop. A car mounts the pavement, mows them both down. Penny was eight. It was one of Nelson’s crew. They just drove right into them.

    Police Incident Report dated 21/03/04: “At approximately 13:34 on 21/03/04 Mrs Selina Branning (Mother) and Penny Branning (Daughter) were waiting at a Bus Stop near the corner of Wellington Street and Trent Avenue. When a Dark Blue car that was travelling north along Wellington Street from the direction of the Park Mounted the pavement and first hitting a Rubbish Bin that was next to the Bus Stop, drove at approximately 40 mph into both Mrs Selina Branning and Penny Branning. With Penny Branning taking the main force of the impact. Penny rolled up the bonnet of the vehicle, bounced off of the windscreen, and over the left hand side of the vehicle. Selina Branning was knocked sideways by the impact, falling into the bus shelter. There were no witnesses at the bus stop, or in the immediate vicinity of the incident. A passing driver (Mr T Davis) was the only person to see the incident. Mr Davis dialled 999 and reported the incident.”

    Newspaper cuttings collected by Jack: “Hit And Run Driver Injures Copper’s Kid”, “Police Officer’s Tragedy - Wife and Daughter Injured in Hit and Run Accident”

    Jack: It was some scrote who owed Nelson big time.
    Ronnie Mitchell: It was on Nelson’s orders?
    Jack: Yeah. Didn’t he make sure I knew it?

    Jack: Selina got hurt. She broke her arm, fractured her collarbone. But Penny, she severed her spine.

    Penny Branning: I wanted to be a dancer, but then after the accident ...

    Jack on Penny: She won’t walk again. Me and Selina, we stayed together at first — you know, just getting through it, day by day, but I’d catch her watching me. She’d be looking at me. I knew that weren’t love in her eyes.
    Ronnie: She can’t blame you.
    Jack: No, if I’d nicked Nelson, stood back, kept quiet — but no, Jack Branning, he can’t. He has to rub his nose in it, doesn’t he?

    Jack: I pulled Penny into my world back then. She paid the price for it. At least back then there was some twisted logic to what I was doing.

    Jack on Nelson: He was crazy.

    Tanya on Nelson: What happened to him?
    Jack: He’s still in the nick, if that’s what you mean.
    Tanya: Because of what happened to Penny?
    Jack: No. We couldn’t prove any of that.
    Tanya: So he just got away with it?
    Jack: Not exactly.

    Derek Branning to Jack: What did I teach you [about revenge]? Take your time and do it properly.

    Jack: Have you got any idea of the sort of people I’ve come up against? People who could hit back.
    Janine Butcher: So you’ve actually got rid of people, not just had them banged up?
    Jack: Don’t you think I’ve done a lot worse?

    Derek to Jack on having someone beaten up: You know how these things work because you’ve done them yourself, haven’t you, eh — worse, in fact, Detective Inspector.
    Jack: Yeah, I’ve done it to people who deserved it, lowlife scum.

    Derek: I know how to dump a body, believe you me, Max — and your brother [does]. Ain’t that right, Jack?

    Jack: I was a dirty cop, remember? And that ain’t just a phrase, it’s a way of life and it involves doing unpleasant things - unpleasant, violent things. I turned my back on that after Penny. After what happened I said, “Enough’s enough”.

    Ruby Allen on Johnny: All those years he was doing these things, he was coming home nights with a smile on his face like he’d been posting letters or delivering milk, and me and Scarlet, we never knew and we loved him so much.

    Selina Branning: What happened to Penny, it didn’t change [how we felt] - me loving you, you loving me, did it?
    Jack: No.
    Selina: It would have been better if it had.

    Ruby: I went on a school trip to Paris. I got [my boots] there.

    Mr Greely, Ruby’s teacher: You were studying for eleven GCSEs. Your predicted results were very good.

    Dot Branning: My poor dear Bradley, he buckled down. He got himself some O levels and landed himself a job in the bank.

    Bradley: I often thought I could have gone to university, something like that.

    Zainab: Last time [Masood cooked Lamb Karai] my jaw ached for days.

    Amira Shah: I never really was much of a cook. Never had to be.

    Zainab on Masood: He just asked [his] parents to stay. He didn’t even consult me.
    Tamwar: Yeah, and they stayed with us for months.

    Ruby: Mum and Dad were married for twenty-three years. She was only forty-two when she died.

    Ruby: Just before Scarlet died, we went on holiday. We all got on so well. It’s like we knew it was our last time together as a whole family. Everything was so normal back then. It was just an illusion.

    Ruby: Scarlet had a boyfriend. You'd grounded her for being lairy and she wanted to see him so we swapped [bedrooms] so she could get in and out of the house without having to pass yours and Mum's room so she could see her boyfriend without you knowing. If you'd gone in her room to check, I'd be in there asleep and you'd think it was her.
    Johnny: I didn't know she had a boyfriend.
    Ruby: She didn't tell you everything.

    Ruby to Johnny: I had an elder sister who talked of nothing else [but sex]. Maybe not in front of you.

    Johnny: There were only three things in this whole world that were really precious to me — one was my wife and and the other two were my daughters.

    Ruby on Johnny: He loved them, my sister and my mum, he loved them to bits.

    Jordan Johnson: I always wanted a big sister.

    Amira Shah: I always wanted a baby brother.

    Ruby: Mum died in March.

    Ruby: Mum and Scarlet were killed. They were killed because someone set fire to our house when we were asleep.

    Ruby: You always loved Scarlet the most.
    Johnny: You don't prefer one of your kids above the other. You don't choose between them.
    Ruby: You did. It was her room you came to when the house was on fire. It was her you came to get. That's a choice. That's real. You don't have time to think. You go on instinct. It was her you came to get and not me.

    Ruby: I remember it all. The room, it was full of smoke. And not being able to breathe and being dragged out of bed and having something put over me, a coat or something.
    Johnny: I didn't want her hair to catch fire.
    Ruby: And being carried out into the garden, and I could hear you saying, "It's all right, Scarlet. I've got you, darling." And when you pulled back that coat and saw it was me — the look on your face, Dad, the disappointment.
    Johnny: No.
    Ruby: You didn't even ask why I was in her room, why we'd swapped. You must have wanted to know, but you couldn't have asked without giving it away.
    Johnny: Giving what away?
    Ruby: That you loved her more than me, that it was her you wanted with you.
    Johnny to Ruby: No, no, no. I didn't even think about it. I thought your mum was going to save you. I just did what I thought made sense at the time.

    Ruby to Johnny: And then you looked back at the house and it was like you were thinking, "Can I go back and get the right one?" But you were too late and you walked away from me.

    Ruby to Johnny: I’m the one you saved, but I'm not the one you wanted.

    Ruby: Me and my dad got out, but my mum and sister didn't. All of the upstairs and most of the downstairs [was on fire], and me and my dad in the garden, and the roof falling in and loads of firemen everywhere.

    Johnny: I couldn't go back [inside the house]. The fire was ... everything was alight. I know what it's like to stand there, utterly helpless.

    Johnny: Dads protect their children, they look after them. And when [Scarlet] needed me the most, I wasn't there for her.
    Tina Stewart: What happened wasn't your fault, you know.
    Johnny: I failed to keep the people I loved safe. I deserve what I got.

    Johnny: The fire that killed Stephanie and Scarlet, it was started deliberately. It was an attack against me. They died because of me, because of the life that I lead. They paid for my sins with their lives.

    Peggy Mitchell on Johnny: That was his life. That’s who he was. It was only a matter of time before someone took revenge.

    Ruby: Someone hated us that much that they'd set fire to our house and want to kill us. People were talking, people who were around afterwards. That's the thing about me, people don't really notice I'm there so they say things in front of me — about the fire, why it happened.
    Johnny: What things?
    Ruby: Business rivals, that's what they said.

    Ruby: My mum died. Everything changes, doesn't it?
    Stacey: Yeah.

    Ruby: Ever since Mum and Scarlet died, I suppose my dad's way of coping is shutting down.

    Ruby on Johnny: Straight after it happened, he disappeared for a whole week. He dumped me at my aunty's and he left me there for a whole week.
    Tina: He didn't know what he was doing. He was broken. He couldn't bear for you to see him like that.

    Tina to Johnny: When you didn't think you could get through it, when you didn't know who you were going to turn to, how you were going to cope, who did you come to?

    Ruby on Johnny: The next time I saw him was at the funeral.

    Tina on Johnny: It took everything he had just to get to the funeral.

    Ruby on Scarlet’s boyfriend: He was at the funeral.
    Johnny: I didn't notice. I didn't notice much of anything — just two holes dug in the ground, that was all.
    Ruby: You didn't even notice me.
    Johnny: That's not true.

    Ruby on Johnny: Straight after the funeral, he sent me to boarding school like nothing had happened. He sent me away because he couldn't bear to talk about it.
    Tina: You should never have been sent away like that. I told him not to send you away. I told him to keep you close.

    Ruby: Why did you send me away?
    Johnny: Because you needed looking after. You needed security, stability, routine to get you back to normal. I did what was right for you.

    Johnny on Ruby's school: Cost me a fortune to send you there.

    Ruby: I was sent off to school because “it'll be better for me.” Dad carries on living in what's left of the house. It was being rebuilt.

    Johnny: The fire destroyed everything I had. It took away the people I loved and it ripped the family apart, but you know one of the worst things? It stole my memories. I don't mean up here [in his head]. I mean things — all the stuff that you collect over the years. You look at them every day and then one day you look at them and it's twenty or thirty years ago, but you remember some things so clearly. I lost all that in the fire too.
    Ruby: I lost my diaries, six years' worth.
    Johnny: No, I mean everything, darling — all the stuff that we'd saved mapping out yours and Scarlet's lives over the years — your first shoes, things you used to make at school, your little drawings.

    Ruby to Johnny: When I was at school, I was so scared that they [the people who set fire to the house] were going to come back, come back and get you and then come and get me. The police never got anyone for it. They got away with it.
    Johnny: You do something like that, you don't get away with it — ever. What goes around comes around.
    Ruby: I want them to suffer.
    Johnny: They did.

    Ruby on Johnny: That’s why he was so keen to send me away to school — to stop me finding out about [his criminal activities].

    Jack Branning: Doing the job I did, it puts a strain on a relationship. There’s no denying that.

    Jack: We couldn’t get past [what happened to Penny].

    Jack: When things went wrong between me and Selina, there was a lot of unfinished business, a lot of arguing, and that wasn't good for any of us, least of all Penny, so I agreed to her terms and I kept my distance.

    Phil to Jack: You walked out and left your own kid.

    Jack on Penny: I did a horrible job of bringing her up.

    Jack: I messed up being a dad.

    Extract from a letter to Jack: "Dear Mr Branning ... You will need to start paying maintenance payments ... backdated from the beginning of your separation ... 12th June 2004."

    Ruby on sleepwalking: I used to do it all the time at school. Everyone took the mick - "Zombie Allen".

    Ruby: I had enough of people thinking I'm screwed up at school.

    Johnny on Ruby's school: It was safe there.
    Ruby: I hated it there.

    Mr Greely, speaking about Ruby’s grades in 2005: Over the past year, they dropped quite dramatically. Quite understandable, given the circumstances.

    Patrick Trueman: You did a bit of Spanish at school, didn’t you, Chelsea?
    Chelsea Fox: Yeah.

    Chelsea: I got a diploma in waxing.

    Derek Branning: Good at school, were you?
    Anthony Moon: Did all right, yeah.

    Charlie Slater, reading Danielle Jones’ music certificate: “Grade 4 clarinet.”

    Tamwar Masood on Syed: A-Level in maths, physics, chemistry, biology, further maths.

    Zainab Masood: I was so proud when Syed got into university.

    Syed: Ishfaq from university, we used to share a house. I introduced Ish to his wife.

    Syed: That degree in economics does come in handy every now and again.

    Tamwar: The Year 9 disco. Major anticipation, loads of spade work and then the crucial moment — and Johnno Ship is giving Annie with the hair his fizzy bubble gum. I blame Mum for Year 9, for the bad jumper and the plaster on the glasses and standing outside the hall window knocking all night.

    Tamwar: I will always be the one with the crap glasses and the bad jumper in Year sodding 9.

    Tamwar: I actually got an award for full attendance at school.

    Tamwar: I don’t like football. I never have.

    Tamwar to Masood: I always thought that you managed to walk that line between the two worlds. I thought that you were the one person who understood what it was like growing up a Muslim in a non-Muslim society, understanding that for a woman to be pure, she doesn’t have to wear the hijab, she doesn’t have to avert her eyes.

    Ava Hartman: You know when people say they’re married to their job? Mine [as a head teacher] came with hundreds and hundreds of children.

    Stacey: My mate Kaley's dad moved this woman in for a bit and suddenly she's being forced to wear pink and tidy her own room.
    Ruby: So?
    Stacey: Kaley's a goth. You ever seen a goth in a clean room with a pink dress?

    Stacey: A mate of mine, she got pregnant at fifteen. Then she got married at sixteen. She had a great big belly out here. She wore red. That's not a good idea.

    Stacey on her sexual history: A couple of embarrassing fumbles with the first bloke that said I was special.

    Bradley: I’ve done it loads of times. Well, five. None of them were great. See, up here [points to his his head], tiger — but in reality, catastrophic. Furniture gets broken, but not in a good way. I once put my elbow in a girl’s eye.
    Stacey: What, on purpose?
    Bradley: No, accident. I wouldn’t do a thing like that on purpose, would I? Laura Mulvey - she had a shiner for weeks.
    Stacey: You might not have done it much before, but I have — loads.

    Kim Fox on her sexual history: Five guys my whole life — Christopher Stirk at school, Dexter, Costas in Magaluf, Costas’ brother, Dexter again so that don’t count, and Lewis. I’m, like, five drunken flings away from being a nun.

    Jean on Stacey: Always hid her boys from me, she did. Always sneaking them in, sneaking them out.
    Stacey: No, I never.

    Stacey: I’ve never done it with anyone who really mattered.
    Bradley: It’s not as if I’ve ever done it with anyone who really mattered either.

    Stacey: I’ve never told any boy that I love them.

    Jean: You ain’t ever loved, have you, Stacey? You ain’t never had no one want you — really, really want you, have you, Stacey?

    Chelsea: I wish I’d waited for someone special. Your first time is special because it’s your first time, but it’s hardly ever your best. Besides, it’s the practising afterwards — now that’s the fun bit.

    Bradley: Dad hasn’t exactly been a saint since he’s been with Tanya.

    Tanya to Max: My slate’s always been clean. It’s yours that got grubby.

    Tanya: This life, this home, this marriage that I left you and Mum for, ain’t always been what you think it is.
    Rainie Cross: You mean he’s cheated on you?
    Tanya: Just a bit!

    Tanya to Lauren: I brought you up to tell the truth, you and Abs, to be open and honest because most of the time, that is the right way. Most of the time.

    Tanya to Max: Lauren has been in the middle [of our relationship] since she was ten years old. Since she saw you with that woman, with that first woman.

    Lauren to Max: That girl — what was her name? Remember? The one I saw you with when I was ten and you first cheated on Mum. I remember her and you together, Mum’s face when I told her what I saw. Why has it always got to be me that knows — that knows your little secrets, that knows what you’re really like?

    Tanya on Lauren: Since she came to me, her mum, pulling on my dress, trying to get my attention, and told me, she has been in the middle and she’s the one that got hurt.

    Lauren to Max and Tanya: I have had to listen to you two just taking lumps out of each other my whole life, since I was little.

    Lauren: When I was little, I had a friend called Mandy and I used to go round her house all the time and her mum and dad were just great, so normal, and I used to say to myself, “Why am I so unlucky? Why can’t I have a mum and dad that are normal?”

    Tanya on Lauren: I did not raise my daughter to sit on her backside whinging when life gets hard.

    Cora to Lauren: You never went to Sunday school, did you?

    Stacey, speaking in November 2004: Do you like this top I'm wearing? I bought it last week and I wore it to the pub. I was only drinking orange juice. Ben, this boy down the street, he was there with a bunch of his mates. He starts laughing and he looks at me and he says, "What does she think she looks like?" And then they all joined in, all of them laughing at me. It was horrible.

    Stacey: We’ve been here before, haven’t we? You stick [your tablets] under your tongue and as soon as I turn around, you spit them out.
    Jean: They don’t make no difference, Stacey.
    Stacey: You always say that, but they do.

    Dean on drugs: Never tried them.

    Carly to Dean: You’ve never smoked.

    Stacey, speaking in November 2004: Mum's completely lost the plot. She's off her cake at the best of times, but I ain't never seen her that bad before. The way she was kicking and screaming, it wouldn't surprise me if they'd put her in some padded cell by now. They've carted her off to hospital, ain't they?

    Stacey, speaking to Jean in 2005: What you blaming your disability on this time, eh Mum? China dolls? Maps of Norfolk? Cupboard full of broom handles again, is it?

    Stacey to Charlie: You're the first person I thought of when social services asked me if there's anyone I could stay with.

    Jean to Stacey: The sacrifices I made for you and you just went off and left me. What did I do, eh? What did I ever do except give up everything — everything?!

    Tina Stewart, speaking in April 2005: We [herself and Johnny] have been pussyfooting around his daughter for the past six months.

    Jake Moon: I hate salsa. It reminds me of dingy basement clubs in Manchester with no windows and luminous green geckos painted on the walls.

    Johnny Allen to Jake and Danny: You were doing a simple job for me — deliver a package. Next thing I know, I've got these people in my face wanting to know where their money is and I'm stood there without a clue what anyone's talking about.

    Danny Moon on a bag he picked up: It was just there and - it was just there. They didn't look like they knew what they were doing so I just ...
    Jake: So what — you just took it? What were you planning to say when they came and found us, "Oh, sorry I nicked your drugs, but I thought you wouldn't mind"?
    Danny: I thought it was just money.

    Johnny: You should have come straight to me.
    Jake: I know. We weren't thinking. We were out of order.

    Danny, speaking in November 2004: I haven't eaten since Manchester.

    Pam Coker: I used to have a career. I was a hospital social worker and I loved it.

    Pam on her son: Laurie loved children. He gave up the funeral business to become a teacher. He would have been a great teacher, but his health was …
    Emma Summerhayes: So Laurie fell ill then?
    Pam: He was very ill. He wanted to go before the end and that’s what happened.
    Emma: He killed himself?
    Pam: Yes.

    Pam, speaking in November 2014: Our son Laurie died ten years ago this week.

    Pam to Les: We always said no-one must find out what I did.

    Pam: Some people thought I might have helped him.
    Emma: And did you?

    Pam: No. There was an investigation, questions. I loved my job but what with all the suspicion and the rumours, I gave it up.

    Pam: I got sick of it all so I quit and I’ve always regretted it.

    Dean: I shaved a mate’s hair off once. Well, when I say “mate”, I kind of mean, “girlfriend”. It’s not my proudest moment, alright? I was seventeen and in my defence, I was very drunk. And she cheated on me.

    Kevin on a Wicks’ New Year tradition: "Drinks Around The World.”
    Carly: From Christmas Island to Hawaii.
    Dean: The idea is that we start ten o’clock in the morning, New Year’s Eve.
    Carly: And then drink a toast every time the clock hits twelve somewhere different in the world.
    Dean: The idea is that we try and beat last year’s record.
    Denise: So what’s the record then — the furthest you’ve made it around the world?
    Kevin: I think I made it to the Eastern Seaboard once.
    Dean: Yeah, right!
    Kevin: Well, what would you know? You were hanging out the window shouting, “To infinity and beyond.”
    Dean: You passed out somewhere mid-Atlantic.
    Kevin: Did I?
    Denise: So you get pretty drunk then?
    Kevin: No, no we don’t go over the top.
    Dean: Absolutely ratted.

    Heather on herself and Shirley: We always see in New Year. It’s tradition.

    Carl White to Kirsty: Brighton beach, New Year’s Eve, huddled together, bells ringing, people shouting, fireworks going off, but all I could see was you. I didn’t feel the cold.
     
  6. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2005

    Dean Wicks: This one [New] Year, Dad got arrested. There’s me and Carly in the cop shop, five o’clock in the morning, New Year’s Day ...
    Kevin Wicks: Apparently, I gave my clothes to some rough sleeper.
    Dean: So we pick him up wearing nothing but an England flag wrapped round his fundamentals.
    Kevin: The whole England flag thing, it was a one off.

    Ronnie Mitchell: I once arranged my entire wardrobe into colours.

    Extract from a letter to Jack Branning: "Dear Mr Branning, This is to confirm that the transfer of your property Flat 12, 34-36, Slaypit Road, Chiswick, London, W4 6YH to Selina Branning will complete at the end of February 2005. You will need to start paying maintenance payments ... backdated from the beginning of your separation.”

    Jack Branning: It was a messy divorce.

    Bradley Branning: I had the winning question in a quiz once. I had to put all the Doctor Whos in the right order.

    Johnny Allen: You ran away from school. They called the police. And then there's the little matter of you assaulting a pupil.
    Ruby Allen: I didn't assault her.

    Ruby on phoning Johnny: I couldn't get a reply so I thought I'd just turn up.
    Johnny: At the house?
    Ruby: Yeah.

    Ruby on Johnny: He sold [the family house] without telling me.

    Ruby to Johnny: Why did you move without telling me?

    Johnny: I just thought we both needed a fresh start.
    Ruby: I stood there in front of my own home, staring at it.
    Johnny: I was going to explain everything to you when you came back home for the holidays. I knew you'd be worried.

    Ruby: The neighbours told me [Johnny had moved to Walford]. So I got on a train.

    Danny Mitchell on his mother Glenda: I’ve spent my whole life pretending for her. I used to stay awake at night waiting for her to come home. She was always angry — angry that she’d lost her girls, angry that she’d lost Dad, angry that she was left with me. You knew when you were in trouble because she’d come in smiling and she’d turn on the stereo full blast and sing the same song over and over and over until she snapped and then she’d lash out, scream. Guess it was contact at least.

    Glenda on Danny: The way he spoke to me — everything I said he would twist round and turn it against me. Well, I didn’t put up with it from Archie and I wasn’t going to put up with it from him.

    Danny on Glenda: I always knew she was totally screwed up about [Archie]. If I ever tried talking to her about Dad, she’d just yell at me as if it was my fault. I even thought that maybe it had been. Maybe something had happened that she was keeping from me.

    Glenda on Danny: The day he turned sixteen, I changed the locks. I chucked him out.

    Masood on the highlights of raising his children: Shabnam’s mood swings, Syed’s tantrums, the three years Tamwar was locked up in his room.

    Tamwar: I used to share [a room] with Syed’s socks.

    Tamwar: When parents are nice, there’s always a sinister reason. 2005, Dad took me to the zoo. He bought me an ice cream, a koala, a cola and a hat. And then he took me to the dentist and let them pull out my four back teeth.
    Afia Khan: How old were you?
    Tamwar: Fourteen.

    Tamwar, speaking in 2009: Syed had so many girlfriends at my age [nineteen].

    Zainab: Masood had his own company.
    Inzamam Ahmed: A chance to make something of himself. And we both know what he did with it.

    Masood: We were successful. We were an important part of the community.

    Zainab: Syed was the accountant.

    Syed: Dad’s never had a head for books.

    Masood to Zainab: Your little Syed was stealing from the company.

    Tamwar on Syed: He stole from us, from his own family.

    Syed: I made a mistake. The money I was taking, I was expecting it to come back tenfold. Twenty grew to fifty, became a hundred. Before I knew it, I’d spent thousands of pounds. I hadn’t a hope in hell of repaying any of it. I never meant to hurt our family.
    Amira Shah: As soon as you realised you were in trouble, why didn’t you just come clean?
    Syed: My parents had struggled all their lives. For once they were happy, proud of the business, me. The thought of bringing all that crashing down ...
    Tamwar: Which you did.

    Masood to Syed: You ruined our business.

    Masood on Syed: I challenged him, he admitted it, we argued and he left.

    Syed: Dad threw me out.

    Masood on Syed: He left because I told him to go.

    Syed: When Dad said I had to leave, he was furious.

    Syed: When I left for work that day, what was the last thing you said to me?
    Zainab: “Don’t forget the dhal.”

    Syed to Tamwar: [Zainab] might have driven me nuts, but it wasn’t easy to leave her — but leaving you behind, that almost killed me.

    Zainab to Tamwar: You were still Tambo when he left.

    Tamwar: I lost my brother, my big brother just like that. I didn’t know why or where he’d gone. "To make his mark," you said. What does that mean?
    Zainab: It didn’t mean anything. I didn’t know what to say to you.

    Syed: What did [Masood] tell you?
    Zainab: That you argued, that you left. There was to be no more contact. If I’d have known the truth, I’d have never played along. At the time I thought that you’d just lost your temper. I thought this would all be worked out within a week or two.

    Zainab to Syed: [You were] exiled like a leper.

    Masood on Syed: I thought he’d come back, maybe even return the money, but I was wrong about that too.

    Zainab: I lost a son.
    Syed: I lost my family.

    Zainab: When you [said you] took the money it was just so inexplicable to me, that you could do something like that.
    Masood: I explained why.
    Zainab: You didn’t have to lie.
    Masood: You didn’t have to believe.
    Zainab: Why would you lie?
    Masood: For you. I did it for you.

    Syed to Masood: I never asked you to take the blame. The minute you did that, you drove me away. I couldn’t come home to my family because I’d have to watch you play the secret martyr.

    Zainab: You were a young man. Young men make mistakes, but you didn’t have to stay away.
    Syed: I didn’t have a choice.

    Zainab on Syed: I never gave him any reason to cut me out. He was so cherished.
    Masood: Perhaps too much.

    Syed: I was in Leeds for three years. Never being able to phone home, being on my own for Eid. Have you any idea how that felt, Tam? Being cast out, rejected, thinking your whole family hates you. It was the worst time of my life.

    Masood on Syed: Not seeing him was the worst bit. There are some moments you never get back. They’re gone forever.

    Syed: It was hard, Mum. It was really hard.

    Masood: To be honest, there were times I was glad you were gone. I felt a little less like a stranger in my own home.
    Syed: If I’m honest, it wasn’t a totally negative experience for me either.

    Zainab on Syed: You sent him away, Masood. You didn’t let him come back home. He should have been here with us instead of mixing with God knows who for all those years.

    Syed on his homosexual experiences: [It happened] a couple of times. Four.
    Christian Clarke: One night stands — your choice or theirs?
    Syed: Mine.
    Christian: They OK with that?
    Syed: I didn’t ask.

    Syed: All my life, I’ve been running — from my family, from who I am.

    Charlie Cotton, Jr: All of my life, I’ve just been moving on. I’ve got no friends, no-one who knows me.

    Charlie: I haven’t exactly been brought up to believe in marriage.

    Charlie to Yvonne: Every girlfriend I’ve ever had, you just make up stories and you tell lies.
    Dot to Yvonne: Is that what you do?
    Nick Cotton: Every time he gets close to someone, every single time. She’s jealous. Always has been. If she hadn’t come between us [he and Charlie], maybe we could have been a proper family.

    Michael Moon on Eddie Moon: He’s scared of being with someone and of being alone. That’s why it never worked out with his second wife — because he couldn’t let her in and he couldn’t let her go. So she just walked.

    Tyler Moon on his mother: She walked out.
    Lauren Branning: How old where you when she left?
    Tyler: Seventeen.
    Lauren: Must have been really hard.
    Tyler: Dad said we had to show we could manage without her so we did.

    Eddie on his son Craig: When Colleen and I split up, I felt like I was ready to be a good dad to him.
    Michael: Yeah, you picked up where you left off, didn’t you?
    Eddie: I tried many times [to tell you about Craig], but everybody seemed happy. I didn’t want to destroy that. I tried my best.
    Michael: You did nothing.
    Eddie: I was able to make a fresh start, but you — your moods, your temper.
    Michael: All those years of me punishing you, no wonder you despised me. I’m a walking bad memory.

    Alfie Moon on Michael: He always reckoned he knew he was going to die young. Something he wanted, you know?

    Denise Fox: I didn’t bring my girls up to tell me lies.

    Libby Fox, speaking about Denise in 2006: She read my diary. I sussed that last year. Found a spot of nail polish in it. Now I keep two diaries — one for me and one for her.

    Archie Mitchell, speaking about his brother Eric’s boxing trophy in 2008: I had the original in pride of place in my display cabinet and three years ago I was burgled. They cleaned me right out, even [Eric’s] cup, so I had a copy made. I thought the sentiment was more important than the cup itself. I was just wanted to keep the magic alive. It was stupid of me.

    Carly Wicks to Nico Papas: When we started going out, we used to talk about stuff, make decisions together.

    Kevin on Carly and Nico: I had you up there with the greats — Romeo and Juliet, Cathy and Heathcliff, Peter and Jordan.

    Chelsea Fox: How long were you and this Nico together?
    Carly: Nearly a year.

    Sean Slater: I’ve been on stag dos that would make your eyes pop out.

    Kevin to Carly: I still remember the smile on your face when you walked down that aisle.

    Carly on her in-laws: I’m not good enough for their darling son, never have been.

    Anna Papas, Nico’s mother, on Carly: She never bothered to learn Greek. Never even tried.

    Kevin to Anna: Your boy was lucky to get my little girl.

    Kevin to Carly: [Nico’s] family, they’re up a bit up themselves, granted, but you didn’t marry his family, you married him.

    Carly, speaking in February 2006: For the past six months, you’ve been treating me like a slave.
    Nico: A slave? We were starting a business together.

    Anna: You should be supporting him.
    Carly: I did, but I expect some support to come my way.

    Dean, mid-anecdote: The next day, a few of us woke up on a boat in Portsmouth!

    Kevin on Dean: And to think Oxbridge turned him down. Broke my heart, that did.

    Bradley: I do have an A Level in business studies.

    Dean: Spurs against Man U, October 2005. It’s a classic Spurs goal. It’s incredible. The ball plays into the feet of Dafoe. Dafoe turns, only to be brutally hacked down on the edge of the box by Ferdinand. Up steps Jermaine Jenas, curls the ball round the wall into the top right hand corner, leaving van der Sar with no chance. It’s beautiful.

    Sean: Improvise, adapt, overcome — that’s what they teach you in the army.

    Sean: The army used to drum into us — it’s not what you do, it’s what you stop yourself from doing that matters.

    Sean: Blokes in my unit — once they’ve killed, it destroys part of them. I’ve seen it.

    Sean: You know what four years in the army taught me, Stace?
    Stacey: How to polish your boots?

    Sean: You think you know a bloke inside out. You think he’d do anything for you, die for you even. We all get it wrong sometimes. You never really know what someone’s like till the bullets start flying over their head.

    Al: You betrayed me.
    Sean: I never done her, Al, your bird. She put it on a plate for me and all and I never touched her. You know why? Because we were mates.

    Sean: You get some Dear John letter off of your bird and reckon offing me is going to — what? Make you feel better? You shoot your best mate in the back over some pig-thick fake-tan scrubber with plastic knockers? You do me, point blank range. It missed my heart by that much. That’s amazing when you think about it, but then you always was a crap shot, weren’t you, Al?
    Al: You deserved it. I know what you did. Yeah, I know and you deserved it.
    Sean: You know, even in the hospital, with tubes and drips coming out me arms and legs, I didn’t say nothing. With them standing around my bed firing questions at me, I kept quiet. Do you know why? Because I didn’t want the army sorting you. I wanted to sort you.

    Al: It was an accident. The investigation was ...
    Sean: Oh yeah, that — "extreme situation, nerves, safety catch slipped off by mistake, everyone debussing, getting out of the Saxon, could have happened to anyone.” You played a blinder there, Al.
    Al: I was cleared.
    Sean: Yeah, but you and me both know, don’t we?
    Al: Negligent discharge. There was enough witnesses in the section. I got fined.

    Sean: You must have been so hacked off when I didn’t die.
    Al: I weren’t. I was relieved.

    Jean Slater on her medication: They stopped giving it me. Doctor said I don’t need them anymore. Well, it ain’t worth the cash, is it? I said, “Fine, if that’s what you think, Doctor. You’re the professional.” Doctor, he said, “It was her, Mrs Slater, we both know that — your daughter, abandoning you, walking out on you when you most needed her, leaving you all by yourself — that’s what made you really ill. Selfish, spoilt, spiteful Stacey.” I said, “No, Doctor. She hasn’t left me. She’ll be back soon as she can. She won’t leave me. My little girl — I know what she’s really like. I’m her mother. She’ll come home. I know that.”

    Stacey on Jean’s boyfriend: He ponced all your benefits then naffed off.

    Stacey to Jean: You’re the one who asked for a smaller place [to live. The council] gave you money for changing to a smaller place.

    Jean: I’ve never had a one night stand, not when I wasn’t ... you know.

    Jean: I had all those fellas around.

    Abby on Jean: Down the pub, taking all her kit off, going round the men, “Do you think I’m beautiful? Do you think I’ve kept my figure?” Dancing around like she thinks she’s a stripper.
    Stacey: What, and no one stopped her? Everyone just let her do that?
    Abby: Yeah. They were laughing their heads off like it was the best joke ever. She was begging them, “Tell me you want me, tell me I’m beautiful." I’d lock myself up in my house and never come out if I put on a show like that. “Tell me you want me, Brian.” Ain’t she worked out your dad’s dead yet?

    Jean on the stigma of mental illness: You get used to it.
    Stacey: Like you did with them hoodies outside your house throwing bricks through your windows? And your neighbours calling you horrible names?

    Doreen, Jean’s neighbour, speaking to Stacey in December 2005: [Jean]’s got cardboard up the windows. I saw her in your living room last week — boarding them up, looks like. I goes to Michelle, I goes, “That’s past nervy, that is. That’s mental, isn’t it?” Kim’s been complaining, you know — “This used to be a nice area”, all that. I goes, “Kim, there ain’t nothing I can do about it, is there? Just because I live next door to the poor woman, what am I going to do?”

    Doreen to Stacey: It’s Bob. You know what Bob’s like, darling. He come out the bathroom last night. Your mum’s hanging out the upstairs in her undies shouting and Bob, he goes, “Jean don’t get herself sorted, I’m down the council because she wants to cover herself up. She wants an ASBO slapped on her," he goes. He goes, “What is the point of us looking into a mortgage? What is the point of uPVC windows and us thinking about decking when we’ve got her next door gone barking again? Because that don’t help your house price, does it?”
     
  7. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2006

    Kevin on Dean: I’ve been cleaning up after Handy Andy here for donkey’s.

    Kevin to Dean: You’ve had nearly twenty years of me wiping your backside.

    Kevin to Carly: For the past twenty odd years, I’ve worked myself stupid bringing the pair of you up and the only thing I had to look forward to, the only light at the end of the flaming tunnel, was the trip, my trip [around the world].

    Kevin on Dean: I told him I wanted him out of bed before noon, to get a job, to do something with his life.

    Kevin to Dean: I wasn’t having a go at you for the sake of it. I was just trying to make a man of you, to teach you that with manhood comes responsibility, that you’ve got to stand up and be counted, get out there in the world, make your mark.

    Kevin on Dean: He copped the hump and he left.
    Pat: He ran away from home?
    Kevin: Yeah.
    Dean: No, actually. He [Kevin] threw me out.

    Dean to Pat: I travelled halfway across London to wish you a Happy New Year. I had to hitchhike most of my way.

    Dean to the lorry driver who gave him a lift to Walford: Thought we'd be stuck on that slip road forever.

    Dean: I was kind of relying on Pat to sort me out with a bit of food, a shower, maybe some cash.

    Pat to Kevin: How did you know [Dean] was [staying at her house]?
    Dean: Carly grassed me up.
    Kevin: I knew he’d be safe so I left him to it.

    Kevin, speaking in 2006: Carly’s happily married in Cyprus and the mighty atom had slung his hook so I sold up.
    Dean: You sold the house? What about all my stuff?
    Kevin: Car boot. Eighty quid. It’s all right, I didn’t sell Fred the Ted. He’s in storage.

    Kevin: I was going to go off round the world, just a toothbrush, passport, open mind.

    Amira: Have you travelled to India too, Janine? Maybe we volunteered at same orphanage.

    Afia: I’ve never been [to Pakistan] without my dad.

    Heather Trott: For three years, I was awarded Employee of the Year, a still unbeaten branch record, and I got the Golden Trolley 2006 for Outstanding Customer Service.

    Kim Fox: I don’t want to brag, but Best Beautician three years in a row at my last job.

    Glenda Mitchell: In one of my past lives, I was a stylist to the stars.

    Alfie Moon on his cousin Michael: He used to work in restaurants. Well, he used to work while in restaurants.

    Bradley, speaking in February 2006: This time last month, I was working as a golf caddy.

    Bradley: The golden rule of caddying is, “Show up, keep up and shut up.” They always said it was the shutting up I had most trouble with.

    Bradley: It was one of the blokes I caddy for got me the interview [for an office job in the city]. Apparently, what swung it for me was when I said I liked a challenge. They like someone there who’s prepared to give it a go, even when the situation seems completely hopeless.

    Bradley: Mum made me bring some soya milk [when he moved to Walford].

    Max Branning to Bradley: Your mum. I was in Tring. I went to see her. Her neighbour said you’d moved out, gone to London to live with your granddad. I got to tell you, I was surprised — you looking up your granddad after all these years.

    Rachel Branning to Bradley: It’s a pretty lonely sort of life since you moved out.

    Babe Smith: I’ve lived alone for so long, rattling around that house on me own.

    Max to Bradley: I found the present I was going to give you when you were six.

    Bradley to Max: I haven’t needed you for thirteen years.

    Eddie Moon, speaking about his son Michael in 2011: We ain’t spoken for about five years.
    Roxy Mitchell: So what did you fall out about?
    Eddie: I wish I could remember.

    Carly: I hated it [in Cyprus]. I hated the way [Nico] made me feel, the constant phone calls from his parents.
    Kevin: I thought you got on all right with his family.
    Carly: Yeah, till they found out I had a mind of my own.

    Kevin: I taught you [to] stand up for yourself.
    Carly: It was standing up for myself that got me into this mess in the first place.

    Nico to Carly: You never gave [Cyprus] a proper chance.

    Kevin: Did you have a fight with Nico?
    Carly: Sort of. Not exactly.

    Nico: We were arguing about the restaurant. She didn’t want to wait on tables again, but we were short-staffed. She started chucking plates around. I made a grab for one and we collided. I caught her lip. Got [a black eye] in return.

    Kevin: I know you didn’t like living in Cyprus, but that ain’t a reason to leave someone.
    Carly: It wasn’t just that. His family started.

    Carly, speaking in February 2006: I’ve been called worse [than stroppy] this past week.
    Pat: Who by?
    Carly: Nico’s mum for one.

    Carly: Nico’s mum doesn’t shut up — I don’t wear the right clothes, I don’t cook the right food, I don’t behave like a proper wife should — and Nico just goes along with it all. They used to phone him every night and the next morning, there’d be some little criticism. He pretends that he’s thought about it all by himself — as if he can think about anything by himself.

    Pat: Why did you leave Nico?
    Carly: I don’t know. Lots of reasons. It wasn’t an easy decision.

    Carly: You really think I would have packed my bags without trying everything?

    Carly: I came back here [London] to get my head together.

    Shabnam Masood on making cakes: I learned at uni. Used to sell them to my mates. Most students’ way of thinking is, “Can’t cook, won’t cook.” Paid for nights out.

    Shabnam on her parents: If they knew half the things I got up to at uni, their hair would turn white — or fall out completely.

    Zainab to Tamwar: It’s all well and good being marginally academic and having a GCSE in maths, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to concentrate.

    Masood on Zainab’s attempts to impress Bushra: Like the time you told her Shabnam had met an American architect?

    Dawn Miller to Shabnam: You’ve got a degree, haven’t you?

    Liz Turner: Eight years [after her husband’s death] before I could even so much as glance at another fella.

    Owen Turner on sobriety: It was hell to begin with. Who wants to be faced with what I was? I did it all for you [Denise].

    Owen: I thought I was fine. I thought I had it licked. I’d gone months [without a drink].

    Owen to Denise: Do you want to know something? Shall I fill you in on a little fact? I never stopped [drinking].

    Denise to Libby: How did you get [Owen’s] number?
    Owen: She got in touch with my mum in Spain.
    Denise: When?
    Libby: We was doing that family history project at school.
    Denise: Why didn’t you tell me?
    Libby: You’d have gone off on one.

    Liz Turner to Denise: I encouraged him [Owen] to find you. If I’d known ...

    Libby to Denise: [Liz] never told [Owen] where we lived. That was me.

    Liz: Why didn’t you stay away from [Denise]?
    Owen: Because I convinced myself things could be different this time — for Libby. I just wanted to be a dad she could be proud of. I had to try.

    Chelsea: I only really took the job [at Walford Videos] because I wanted to move from me mum’s and there was a flat with the job.

    Anthony Moon, speaking in 2011: It was about four or five years ago, watching us beat Spurs 2-1 at the house. Remember that big argument about goal line technology, replays and stuff? Dad hates the idea — purist. It was me and you against him all through dinner. Do you remember?
    Michael: Sorry, mate, I don’t.
    Anthony: Benayoun got one [goal] in and Fletcher got the other one.

    Craig Moon: Frankie [his sister] went out with a footballer so she used to be a WAG.
    Michael: He played for Brentford, Craig. He’s hardly Renaldo.

    Michael on Eddie: What’s he told you about my mother?
    Anthony: Just that she died.
    Michael: Died how?
    Anthony: In a car accident.

    Anthony: Why did you never tell us [the truth]?
    Eddie Moon: Because it was the most painful and difficult period of my entire life.

    Anthony Moon on Eddie: This antiques fair — he’s been going every August Bank Holiday for years.

    Eddie: Those trips, those phone calls — there was never a lady friend. It was always Craig.

    Eddie: I was never ashamed of Craig.
    Tyler: So why have you been lying to us our whole life, Dad?
    Eddie: It didn’t set out that way. As time passed, it just got harder.
    Tyler: Because you knew if you told us we’d think you was a freak [for putting Craig into care].

    Eddie: I imagined it for so many years, the moment the boys met Craig.

    Tyler on Craig: What did you think we was going to do — laugh at him, call him names or something?
    Eddie: No.

    Anthony on Craig: Why didn’t he live with us?
    Eddie: He’s got his own life, his own routine, his own friends.

    Eddie: I know what it’s like carrying a family, lifting their spirits, keeping the peace. Takes a lot out of you. Sometimes you forget to have fun.

    Sean: You do me, point blank range. Six months later, you’re getting a medal for gallantry. What stirred you up to get that, eh? Guilt?
    Al: There was nothing to be guilty about. I was cleared.
    Sean: The Queen’s Gallantry Medal. That is something, mate. I mean, that is some souvenir to bring back with you. You must have done something really special to get this!
    Al: It was nothing.
    Sean: No, you showed your true colours. I just wish I’d had the chance to do the same.

    Ruby: So how comes you quit [the army]?
    Al: Done my stint. Had enough.

    Sean: It’s not like you left a forwarding address.
    Al: Yeah, well, didn’t know where I was going to be, did I?

    Selena Branning, speaking to Jack in 2008: We haven’t been living together for the past two years. That’s never stopped us [having sex].

    Tanya on Max: Him being distant, working late — that’s what he was like when he was having the affairs. That’s how it starts.

    Tanya to Max: When you were cheating on me, sometimes I’d create a family crisis, try and get your attention back.

    Tanya to Max: We were finished the first time you touched that woman, before we even came to the Square. I don’t even remember her name.

    Max: I strayed once in twelve years. I made a big mistake.

    Tanya to Max: You thought you’d get away with it.

    Max to Tanya: If being married to you all these years has taught me one thing, it’s that you’re easy to outsmart.

    Tanya: Where [did the affair take place] — hotel, her place? The house?
    Max: No, never.
    Tanya: Think of me, did you, or were you too busy concentrating?
    Max: You, all the time. I had your picture on the wall!
    Tanya: Must have been exciting. Twelve years of married life — things get routine, couple of kids, you know. Must have been exciting, a new girl in your bed.
    Max: Yeah. Otherwise I wouldn’t have done it, would I? All I can tell you is, it weren’t worth it.

    Tanya to Max: The hotel you took your little tart to on your grubby little weekend [Newitt Grange in Sussex]. Luxury hotel — sounded right posh. Must have spent a fair bit of money on her. I wonder what I was doing that same weekend? Probably washing your shirts, looking after your kids. Did it give you a kick, did it?

    Gemma Clunes, Max’s lover, to Bradley: I always wanted to meet you.

    Bradley to Gemma: Didn’t he tell you he left my mum for Tanya? No, I don’t suppose he did.

    Max: I had a bit of a ruction with the missus [Tanya]. I’ve been playing around and she found out and we had a row. She told me to sling my hook and I turned around and there was my little girl, Abi, she was standing in the doorway. She’d heard it all. She was scared, you know? My wife was still shouting at me and I took Abi upstairs and I told her it would be OK. I told her I would never leave and it just got me thinking, Bradley, because I told you the exact same thing all those years ago, and when I said it, I meant it.

    Lauren to Max: You hurt us since we were little girls.

    Gemma on Max: He only finished it [the affair] because he was scared.

    Tanya on Max’s affair: I told you then, didn’t I, what I’d do? I told you what I’d do if anything like this ever happened again.

    Max to Tanya: Babe, look. I learned my lesson. I realised how lucky I am to have you, all of you.

    Gemma to Max: You tried [to make a clean break] and you came crawling back.

    Tanya to Max: You betrayed me and I thought I’d forgiven you. I thought I’d got over it.

    Tanya: When Max first [cheated], it took me a long time to forgive him.

    Max, speaking in 2008: I’ll never let you down again.
    Tanya: That’s what you said the last time.

    Tanya to Max: What was it you said to me when you first wanted us to move to Walford? You said, “Give me a chance and I’ll show you I’ve changed. No more affairs. I’ll be a good dad, I’ll be a good husband.”

    Tanya to Max: I should never have given you that chance. I should never have given you that one last chance. I shouldn’t have. I should have just cut my losses and protected our girls from us. I didn’t, did I?

    Tanya to Max: What I’ve always wanted [is] just to relax, just to look across the room and know that I can trust you, that you’re not playing me like some dodgy client — just a bit of peace, you know, in here [points to her head].

    Manda Best: My husband had affair after affair. I know what it’s like to be cheated on.

    Minty: I don’t know how you did it, bringing [a son, Adam] up on your own. Must have been really hard.
    Manda: You muddle through.

    Manda: Adam’s at least half the reason I was single for so long. He just doesn’t think anyone’s good enough for me.

    Adam Best: What was it you always said to me?
    Manda: “It’s Adam Best, not second best.”

    Sean: The move [to Walford] must have been disruptive.
    Tanya: Yeah. The girls weren’t keen.
    Sean: So why’d you do it?
    Tanya: You know — time for a change.

    Lauren: Me and Abi leave all our mates, tramp halfway across London — for what?
    Tanya: It’s for the best, love.

    Max on Lauren manipulating Abi into choosing a smaller bedroom: I’m surprised Abi didn’t remember that trick from the last time we moved.

    Tanya to Max: You invested all the money from the old house in shares.

    Archie Mitchell: I invested in a few clubs, bars, got lucky and sold up.

    Manda on her flat: I’ve been in that place for years. I’ve put my heart and soul into it. I’ve got flower boxes in all of the windows and I painted little fish on the bathroom tiles.

    Manda speaking in 2009: I sold the old shop and now I teach art and pottery.

    Archie: I didn’t spend all that time down in Weymouth without learning a bit [about boats].

    Archie: Always loved them.
    Minty: What — boats?
    Archie: Yeah. Nothing like it is there, eh? Hands on the wheel, wind in your hair, spray in your face.
    Minty: Yeah, I used to have a car like that!
    Archie: That’s why I moved down to Weymouth. Got a lovely little thirty-two footer down there. Sleeps four. I tell you, when the main cylinder jib was set, you get the bug. Total freedom, no one to tell you what to do.
    Minty: Just you, the boat and the open sea.

    Danielle Jones: I always fancied doing a bungee jump.

    Tanya: Why did you leave [the army]?
    Sean: The food.

    Sean: Al, I was a good soldier and you took that away from me.

    Sean: I get fit again. I want to go back to the unit, but they’re having none of it. So they sent this regimental careers officer to come and see me for a little chat — he’s got this big old moustache like a walrus — and they offer me the post of steward in the officers’ mess, like it’s some big treat for me to go handing out the port and stilton. So I lamped him, smacked him right on his big tache. The army takes a dim view of stuff like that. Instant discharge. I lost my medical pension, but c’est la vie. I tell you what though, mate, on my life, he was the double of Des Lynam. Kept expecting him to go all “Countdown" on me, you know, “Three from the top please, Carol.”

    Sean to Al: You know, all our years together, all through basic training, passing out, you and me, over there together, we made in back in one piece. Well, kind of. Feels like a lifetime, doesn’t it?
    Al: Feels like two.

    Sean: You come out the army, you don’t know where you are. You can’t handle stuff. They give it this flash name — “period of readjustment”.

    Sean: Did you hear I was out?
    Al: Yeah, I heard something.
    Sean: How long have you been waiting for me to turn up, eh Al?
    Al: Long enough.
    Sean: Yeah, well I’ve been waiting too. I had a plan. I had it all figured out. I’d have been happy spending the next fifteen years of my life in the nick for you.

    Sean: Your mum and dad said you’ve been back about three months. I went and saw them. [That’s] how I tracked you down. Well proud of you they are. They got scrapbooks, photo books, the whole lot. Your mum took me through them.
    Al: She does that to everyone.
    Sean: She was a diamond, mate. She got me my tea, she let me kip over in your old room. She’s very tidy, your mum. Always polishing your photo.
    Al: Well, that’s mums for you.
    Sean: What about your dad, eh? Cor, he goes on. Don’t he go on?
    Al: Yeah, don’t he?
    Sean: Thinks he knows it all, telling me how he’d sort it out if he was over there. I tell you, what with your mum polishing your photo and him with his opinions ...
    Al: Makes you laugh, doesn’t it?
    Sean: No, not really. It did my head in. He’s a proper tosser, isn’t he?
    Al: He’s my dad.
    Sean: He told me all about your medal. Nice one.

    Sean: Do you want to see my souvenir — what I brought back with me? [Lifts up his shirt to show a small scar on his back] Entry, [and a larger one on his chest] exit. I’ve only got half a pint of my own blood sloshing around inside of me.

    Sean: I liked the army, Al. It had rules and I like rules and now I haven’t got any rules because of you. I’m skint, I’m living in the park.

    Sean on Iraq: You see, you hate it when you’re there, but you miss it when you’re back.
    Carly Wicks: What’s to miss?
    Sean: The adrenalin, just pumping through your veins. Getting out there, cracking heads.

    Sean on his reason for coming to Walford: I was looking for a mate.

    Stacey: Would you have come to the house [where they used to live] to look for me? Would you have tried to find me?
    Sean: Don’t know. In truth, I just don’t know.

    Liz Turner, Owen’s mother: When Owen called ...
    Denise: What exactly did he tell you?
    Liz: That he was in prison. He said there’s been some terrible misunderstanding. It can’t be anything to do with the booze because he gave that up ages ago. I just packed my bags and jumped on a plane.

    Liz on her missing purse: I used it to buy my ticket to London. Maybe I left it on the train.

    Michael Moon: I don’t trust banks. Never have done.

    Roxy: Dad always said a banker is just a thief in a suit, never give them everything.

    Archie to Roxy: I remember the bailiffs came knocking the last time you even applied for a loan!

    Ronnie to Roxy: You were the one who said, “[Let’s go to] Ibiza.” Look where that got us.

    Michael Moon: Ibiza, all the blokes putting it on you.
    Ronnie: Well, I may have had a few offers.
    Michael: Anyone special?
    Ronnie: No. I was always looking out for Roxy.
    Michael: You were there to sort her out?
    Ronnie: I was, every time without fail.

    Roxy: When I was in Ibiza, I was like the original party girl and I loved it, I really did.

    Roxy: I used to be the Queen of Ibiza.

    Charlie Cotton, Jr to Ronnie: I understand you were the Queen of Ibiza.

    Ronnie on Roxy in 2010: It’s the Ibiza dream — her own club, her own sound, her own record label. She hasn’t moved on in the last ten years.

    Christian Clarke to Roxy: You used to be a DJ.

    Ronnie on her and Roxy’s bar in Ibiza: It was never exactly the Ritz, was it?

    Roxy, mid-argument: No, no. His name was Jose and he got it [a lucky rabbit foot] off one of those El Brujo things.
    Ronnie: He was George and he got it off the market in Playa d'en Bossa.
    Roxy: Whatever his name was, we made a killing that night. We made two grand in our first night.

    Roxy on her lucky rabbit’s foot: We used to stick it on the till in Ibiza.

    Roxy, mid-story: So Ronnie grabs the bloke, right, and I grab, like — you know the big water spray behind the bar? So I’ve gone to spray …

    Dr Al Jenkins: I lived in Ibiza for a while. That’s actually where I learned my number one life skill. I learned to drink lager through my nose. It wasn’t easy.

    Roxy: When me and Ronnie used to run the bar in Ibiza we used to wear these wicked tequila girl outfits. The punters loved it.

    Ronnie on pouring a yard of ale: I used to do these all the time in Ibiza. There’s a knack to it.

    Ronnie: Paella — used to make it all the time in Ibiza.

    Craig Moon on Eddie: He made me dinner once. I was sick for days.
    Eddie: You asked for that paella.
    Craig: I asked for pie. I hate seafood.

    Stan Carter, mid-anecdote: … That’s the last time I ever drank ouzo!

    Tina Carter on a silver tankard: Dad won it in a darts match years ago. He was dead chuffed.

    Roxy on her skills as a darts player: They used to call me Hawkeye back in Ibiza, you know.
    Ronnie: Oh yeah, yeah. That was when you had that conjunctivitis, wasn’t it?

    Roxy on a blue-coloured cocktail: In Ibiza, we used to call this the Accelerator. Guaranteed to get any party started.

    Roxy: So we had [a stag night party] in Ibiza, right. There was a group of lads from Hull. 2am, they were on it and the stripper hasn’t turned up.
    AJ Ahmed: Why not?
    Roxy: Because it’s Ibiza and the stripper turns up, the stripper doesn’t turn up, it’s all the same to her, whatever. And these blokes are getting lairy. They’ve dropped, like, five hundred quid each on a weekend to Ibiza and they want their traditional stag night entertainment.
    AJ: So what did you do?
    Roxy: I gave it to them! They were going to go into town, they were going to leave.
    AJ: It’s a sound business decision. If you’ve got it ...
    Roxy: Flaunt it!
    AJ: So did you give them anything special?
    Roxy: A bit of this, a bit of that.
    AJ: A bit of the other?
    Roxy: Yes, for my big finish!

    Ronnie, mid-argument: It was not a stag do and I wasn’t drunk.
    Roxy: Yes, you were.
    Ronnie: And they didn’t keep us in [jail] because I was a little bit sick.
    Roxy: Yes, they did!
    Ronnie: No, they didn’t! They kept us in because you tried to bribe a police officer with half a bottle of vodka and a lipstick, Roxanne. That is why they locked us up all night.
    Roxy: Whatever. [The bribery] would have worked if you hadn’t puked on his shoes.

    Ronnie to Roxy: Do you remember that wedding? Antonio with the teeth and his mum. She kept banging on at us in foreign and she made us stand at the back because I had bare arms.

    Roxy, mid-story: Then you got locked out of the villa and you climbed over the gate.
    Ronnie: I got stuck halfway over. I was there for hours.
    Roxy: It was so funny!

    Roxy, speaking to Ronnie in 2007: When was the last bloke you had? When was that? God, I can’t even remember.

    Ronnie on herself: No husband. Never came close.

    Archie to Ronnie: Affairs of the heart, they never worked out for you, did they? Never really went anywhere.

    Archie: All her life, Ronnie has been looking for another Joel.

    Joel Reynolds, speaking in 2009: I had the snip about three years ago. I can’t have kids. We just decided that three was enough.

    Danielle: Why did you never marry?
    Ronnie: Same reason I never swallowed cyanide.

    Afia Khan: “I would rather die than get married.” That’s how I used to go on. Made speeches to anyone who would listen about how I wasn’t going to be somebody else’s slave. I was going to lead my own political party. Couldn’t understand the other girls, thought they were all totally brainwashed. I swear, you couldn’t have met a more cynical person.

    Yusef Kahn: Your mother’s dear friend Salma. Her niece Laila, you played together.
    Afia: I was just a little girl.

    Shameem, Yusef’s sister-in-law, on Afia: She’s always known her own mind, just like her mother.

    Yusef: Your mother was so beautiful. She would have loved to have seen you married, wearing her grandmother’s [engagement] ring, carrying on the tradition.
    Afia: What tradition?
    Yusef: This ring, it’s been handed down through the years.
    Afia: I never knew that.
    Yusef: So much she would have shared with you. We didn’t get the time, did we?

    Yusef on his wife: She loved a wedding.

    Linda Carter: I had dreams, Mick, of what Nancy’s wedding day would be like, bridesmaids’ dresses and choosing the flowers.

    Linda: All you ever do is test my patience. You’ve always been the same, having to be different, never liking anything I try and get you interested in. It’s like you do everything you can to try and upset and humiliate me.
    Nancy: I don’t.

    Johnny: Remember when you spilt engine oil on Mum’s new carpet?
    Nancy: Remember? Her screams still echo through my nightmares.
    Johnny: How long was it before she spoke to you again?
    Nancy: I don’t know — like, a couple of weeks and a lot of washing up.

    Nancy on Linda: All she has ever done is criticise me, Dad.

    Mick to Nancy: You’re treated exactly the same as your brothers. You always have been.

    Nancy to Mick: I’ve always been so proud of you — my dad, a cut above the rest, a proper gent.

    Ronnie on Roxy: She’s always been the same, even with Damien. Some bloke flashes a chequebook at her and she buckles.

    Ronnie to Roxy: Do you want another man like Damien in your life — controlling you, telling you how to live, what to do?

    Roxy on Damien, her fiancé: What a lowlife. I was little bit off the rails back then.

    Ronnie to Roxy: It guarantees a regular supply [of cocaine], doesn’t it — getting into bed with a dealer. That’s where it started with Damien, didn’t it?

    Ronnie on Roxy: Years back when we lived in Spain, she went AWOL. Five days she was missing. Then the police found her on some beach, off her face. Thought she was a corpse.

    Ronnie: You didn’t see what [cocaine] did to you. I would wait up nights on end, waiting to see if you’d come home. Sometimes you didn’t. I was worried that you ...
    Roxy: Yeah, and you came and saved me. Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, thank-you! How many more times?!

    Ronnie to Roxy: I have dug you out of a hole a million times.

    Damien to Ronnie: You’re the one buying into [Roxy’s] life, putting your few pathetic savings into my bar so you’ve got an excuse to stick around [in Ibiza]. I should never have agreed to that.

    Roxy, speaking in September 2007: This time last year, I was on the beach in my bikini.

    Shirley Carter’s address in 2006: Flat 7, 245 Poulter Cross Road, Dartford SE1 2PK

    Shirley: Last job I had was cash in hand.

    Shirley: The last boozer I worked in, some of the punters made Johnny Vegas look like James Bond.

    Stan: The crowd from my old boozer ...
    Babe: A bigger bunch of crooks and jailbirds you’ve never seen.
    Linda: The dregs of Canning Town.

    Stan: I used to have a lot of mates.

    Shirley on Stan: He never had any mates.

    Kevin to Shirley: You woke up one morning and realised you were on your own, that when you choked your last breath, there’d be no one to hold your hand, put flowers on your grave or shed a tear. So you thought, “Hang on, didn’t I have some kids once upon a time? I know, I’ll hook up with them again and then someone will miss me when I’m gone.”

    Dylan, an old friend of Kevin’s: We agreed after Kevin first called [arranging to visit him in Dorset] that I’d do the talking to start off with. You said you’d stay away until I laid the groundwork.
    Shirley: I didn’t agree to anything. You told me to stay away. I didn’t say yes. I came [to Dorset] for a reason.

    Shirley to Carly and Dean: I only went to Dorset because I knew you were going. I was curious to see how you turned out.

    Shirley: I just wanted to explain, say good-bye. It’s haunted me all these years.

    Roxy, speaking on Christmas Eve 2007: This time last year, I was in Ibiza off my face.

    Ollie Walters: When I’ve had a few glasses at Christmas, I have the odd crafty fag.
     
  8. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2007

    Hazel Hobbs: You and me, we ain’t seen each other for a while.
    Garry Hobbs: You’ve been busy, going on world cruises and that. Very exotic.
    Hazel: Being a waitress ain’t that exotic.

    Hazel on her fiancé Gerald: I met him on a cruise going round a Norwegian fjord. I was waitressing in the casino at the time. Took him a brandy. It was love at first sight. He was losing a fortune on craps and then I kissed his dice for him and he started winning. Calls me his lucky charm, his little hazelnut delight. I told him I was forty-two.

    Hazel: I knocked the cruises on the head. Started getting seasick after all these years. It was ruining me purse. I never used to get the tiniest bit pukey and now I only have to look at a boat and I’m woofing it up in me handbag.

    Anthony Moon: I was sick once in the back of a transit with a girl called Gloria and it was on a Monday!

    Syed Masood: I was thoughtless, irresponsible, selfish. I’ve been through a lot these past years, faced a lot of challenges. I had to take a long hard look in the mirror. I saw things there I wasn’t proud of.

    Zainab to Shabnam: When Syed left, your father couldn’t cope. He was just a bookkeeper. He tried to keep things going, but losing his son, the business just didn’t matter anymore. The truth is we were just in a mess.

    Masood: The stress of losing a business nearly finished me off.

    Zainab to Masood: You nearly destroyed this family.

    Masood on Syed: We [were] desperate. Where was he then? Nowhere to be seen.

    Shabnam: Uncle Inzamam?
    Zainab: Your uncle has been very good to us. Without him, I don’t know what we would have done. He found someone to take over the accounts, helped us sell up and move [to Walford].

    Inzamam, speaking in 2008: You’ve put on a bit of weight since I last saw you, Zainab.

    Zainab: Ever since we lost our business, we’ve been fighting tooth and nail to claw back our reputation.

    Heather Trott: Last Friday the thirteenth [April 2007], I scratched my ‘Careless Whisper’ twelve inch.

    Heather speaking in 2009: Last concert I went to, someone had a hundred George [Michael] deely boppers, especially made.

    Ronnie Mitchell: Me and my sister, we always said if something came between us, we wouldn’t let that happen. We’d walk away.

    Roxy Mitchell on Ibiza: Sun, partying — you never think you’ll get bored of it, but you kind of do, you know?

    Ronnie, speaking in 2011: Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if me and Roxy had never got that invitation to go to Phil’s wedding. Would we still be in Ibiza? Would I be happy?

    Roxy on Albert Square: We left Ibiza for this.

    Cora Cross: Pubs ain’t the same since they stopped letting you smoke in them.

    Lee Carter to Nancy: Remember Mum’s thirtieth birthday when they [Linda and Mick] went out on that massive bender?

    Cora: All these years you’ve been poisoning yourself, I’ve always defended you, Rainie.

    Cora to Rainie: The only commandment you ever cared about was the eleventh — “Thou shalt not get caught” — and you couldn’t even stick to that.

    Rainie, speaking in August 2007: I’ve been busted twice in the last two months, once for shoplifting, once for possession. We’re not talking just a ten pound bag either.

    Alice Lord, former neighbour of the Cross family, speaking in August 2007: What happened [on the Ainsworth Estate] a couple of months back - coppers milling about all over the place - I said to Mrs Wilson, “They don’t come out mob-handed just to arrest a tart.”

    Rainie: The Old Bill offered me a deal — testify against my dealer and they’ll only do me for shoplifting, six months probation instead of two years in Holloway. No-brainer.

    Rainie on her dealer: A bloke wearing a denim jacket and trainers. This guy’s in his forties — greasy hair, 'tache. He’s the reason I didn’t show up [at court]. Tuesday night, I get a call from Mr Denim Jacket & Trainers — do I like my face the way it is? So I phone the Old Bill - can they get me on Witness Protection? And they just laugh. So what’s a girl supposed to do? That’s why I never made it to court. After I got busted, I thought, “That’s it. Never again.” Went to see the doctor the next day, he got me a place on a programme.

    Rainie to Tanya: I had my mobile swiped. I only snuck back [to the Ainsworth Estate] to pick something up and [Alice Lord] is like waiting for me. Really funny. She says, “Your sister’s turned into a right stuck up cow.” I says, “You’re joking — you can take the girl out of the Ainsworth, but you can never take the Ainsworth out of the girl!”

    Glenda Mitchell, speaking about her china coffee cups in 2010: A little present to myself. Expensive, but I like nice things. Three years and I haven’t broken a single one.

    Afia Kahn on her father Yusef: He used to make my mum roar with laughter.

    Afia to Yusef: You promised me after Mum died that you’d never leave me on my own. It always been you and me since Mum.

    Afia on Yusef: He’s the one that took me shopping, he’s the one that helped me with my homework.

    Yusef on Afia: She’s been wanting me married off for years.

    Danielle Jones: I hated seeing my mum in hospital. She died just after my eighteenth.

    Andy Jones: When her mum died, Danielle cried for weeks.

    Andy on the photographs of Danielle’s mother pinned to her bedroom wall: She put them up after Lizzie died.

    Andy to Danielle: Your gran said it was probably quite tough on you when your mum first ... and thinking back, I can see her point. I know you had your dreams.

    Danielle: Mum and Dad told me I was adopted when I was five. It didn’t mean much to me then but when I got older I started to think about my birth mother more, but I never thought of trying to find her. I didn’t want to hurt my mum. Then when she died I decided to come to London — find this Veronica Mitchell, introduce myself.

    Julie Perkins, speaking in 2010: I did try and look for our son [Dan]. A few years ago it was, but you can only go so far these days and then they have to contact you, and as it turned out he didn’t want to. Not that I can blame him, of course.

    Julie, looking a letter: This is from the social about his adoption.
    Billy Mitchell: He knew our names.
    Julie: Yeah, but he chose not to find us.

    Lola Pearce, Dan’s daughter, to Julie: He hated you, you know. I wouldn’t worry, he hated a lot of people.

    Billy on Lola: She’s had so many people walk away from her.

    Phil Mitchell to Lola: Let’s not pretend you were brought up in the House of Windsor. There’s a reason you were brought up in care.

    Lola: I know exactly what it's like growing up in care. You feel like you're not wanted and you're not loved.

    Lola: They took us on a bus to Blackpool once, me and a load of the other care home kids, and I spent the whole day in the arcade and just sat on the pier — but all the people, they could tell that we were from care and looked at us funny.

    Lola: All the kids used to laugh at me, you know — Lola Pearce, the care home kid with secondhand scrunched-up clothes and no mum to iron them.

    Lola: I had this mate [Alexa Smith] in care and she was really smart and funny and always stuck up for herself.

    Lola to Alexa: I used to think you were someone to look up to.

    Alexa Smith: You used to be a mate. You used to be a laugh.
    Lola: I ain’t the one that left, am I? You are. You got fostered and you just left me in that stinking home.
    Alexa: Look how well that turned out for me. I ain’t been anywhere longer than three months.

    Alexa: I’ve had three [abortions]. Rather than than get stuck with a kid.

    Julie on Dan: I just really wanted to know how he turned out, if he’d made something of himself in spite of his start in life, if he was happy.

    Julie: What was he like?
    Lola: The Old Bill knew him better than I did.

    Paul Leese, Dan Pearce’s flatmate: He [Dan] was a thief, all right? A total klepto. He couldn’t help himself. He was chronic. He cleaned me out twice. He was one of those blokes who was always saying what he was going to be doing, but it didn’t seem to work out. We used to call him Flaky.

    Billy, looking at a photograph of Dan: Looks like Jamie, only if he ...

    Julie: A little while after the adoption people told me that our son wasn’t interested in meeting me, I got this job in an office, cleaning, and Roger, that’s Mr Green, my boss, he just seemed really lovely, sort of the son any mum would be proud of, and that’s when I decided ...
    Billy: To pretend he was your son.
    Julie: Yeah — only ever in my own little world, in my scrapbook and that. I never told him, of course, but I’d just do little things for him, like I’d get his dry cleaning and I’d bake him cakes and I’d tidy his office that little bit better than everyone else’s. I’d just look after him the way any mum would her son. He was the closest I was ever going to get, the closest I was ever going to get to filling the emptiness.

    Billy: Why did you do [follow Roger Green and take photos of him]?
    Julie: I don’t know. I think I just want to make [her son] real and see him.
    Billy: It’s not normal, Julie — inventing a son, putting photos in a scrapbook.
    Julie: I needed it — I needed something or someone — and I should have stopped it going so far, but I done it for me because I needed it and I didn’t hurt anyone.

    Damien, Roxy’s fiancé: I was worried sick. I thought something terrible had happened. I was steaming on the plane over [from Ibiza]. I came to find you.

    Kirsty Branning on herself and Carl: We were engaged.

    Carl White, speaking in 2013: Six years ago, me and Kirsty were supposed to get married.

    Carl on Kirsty: Irises, that was her favourite. That was what she was going to have for her wedding bouquet.

    Kirsty on Carl: He’s never bought flowers in his life.

    Carl: What was the song for the first dance going to be? ‘Cupid’, Sam Cooke — classic.

    Carl: September the third, that would have been mine and Kirsty’s wedding anniversary.

    Carl: I used to have an ex once. Always wanted money. I didn’t mind back then. Had it coming out my ears.

    Queenie Trott on her lovebirds: They split up. Pretty killed the boy bird.

    Heather on her savings: [Queenie] took it. There was over a grand, all the money I was putting away for my bottom drawer. She must have been getting one of her mates to take it out for her.

    Queenie on Heather: She always did bite the hand that fed her, not that you’d notice from looking at her.

    Queenie, speaking to Heather in September 2007: I expected that shopping three hours ago. After an hour waiting for you, I was happy. Do you know why? Because I thought you’d been run over.

    Zainab: When we moved here [Walford], we were already on our way down.

    Shabnam Masood: When we first moved to London, we didn’t speak to my brother Syed. It was about money, this business that he’d … If you’d seen my dad, he was so angry, so betrayed, so disappointed.

    Zainab: Where did you find this [removal] company?
    Masood: It was recommended by a friend of a friend of a friend, but you know, I heard they were really good.
    Zainab: Yeah, and cheap no doubt.
    Masood: It was the best quote I got.

    Bradley Branning, mid-story: So they arrested the real drug dealer and sent Uncle Jack in as a replacement wearing a wire, only there was a bent copper in the force who was sort of tipping them off. Uncle Jack had to jump out a three storey window. Broke his leg, his pelvis. He still caught them though. It’s one of the biggest drug busts this year.
    Max Branning to Jack: Keep some for yourself, did you?!
    Jack Branning: Yeah, would have been a nice retirement present, wouldn’t it? A lot better than the invalid package I got, that’s for sure. I got a heart murmur. Compulsory retirement.

    Suzy Branning to Jack: You’ve had a bad back before.

    Tanya: This thing with Johnno [being on the take], it was a one-off, was it?
    Jack: It went on for a while. That stopped the day I stopped being a copper.

    Jack on his violent past: I said I’d never go back to that.

    Zainab on Jalil Iqbal: He has just finished his masters in business studies.

    2008

    Kirsty Branning: I was lost once. I didn’t know who I was, what I was doing and worst of all, didn’t care. I was an addict. I was completely messed up. I told lies over and over.

    Carl White on Kirsty: She used to be a terrible liar.

    Kirsty, speaking in 2013: Five years ago, I’d have bitten your hand off for this.
    Max Branning: What — living in a B&B with a used car salesman?

    Max, speaking to Kirsty in 2013: I could never match up the woman I married to the one in all the stories, the one who used to get beaten up and go back for more.

    Carl: What do you think [I was in prison] for — nicking sweets?

    Carl: When I went down for five and a half years, even my own mum said it should have been ten.

    Kirsty on Nora, Carl’s mother: When did you last see her?
    Carl: Before I went inside.

    Nora White: My hip packed in.

    Carl to his brother Adam: I asked you to do two things while I was inside. One, look after Mum. Two, keep your eye on Kirsty.

    Kirsty to Carl: The world didn’t stop just because you went inside.

    Kirsty to Carl: If you’d never been sent down, we’d never have split up.

    Carl: It took me a long time to get over Kirsty.

    Kirsty on Carl: I got well away from him for a good reason.

    Carl to Adam: You and Dad, you’re both so weak. That’s why you put Mum in a home. Couldn’t handle her.

    Nora to Carl: You thought you’d got rid of me, didn’t you, locking me away in here? After everything I’ve done for you and that brother of yours.

    Carl on Nora: She had the hump. She didn’t want to be put in a home.
    Kirsty: That ain’t your fault.
    Carl: You try telling her.

    Carl: I met Derek [Branning] in prison.

    Carl: There was an earthquake the day they sent me down. Derek said it was the gods applauding my sentence. I thought it was a coincidence.

    Carl on Derek: He hated me at first on account of my liberal views.
    Alice Branning: So what changed?
    Carl: My liberal views.

    Carl: I had to go dry for quite a few years.

    Carl, speaking about himself in 2013: Five years, totally straight.

    Carl to Alice: Your dad gave me a black eye. I deserved it. I was cheating on a game of black jack. He called me up on it. After that, we set up a scam together. Took two hundred quid off one of the screws. Didn’t have a clue.

    Carl to Alice: Look, the truth is behind all the dodgy dealings and scams, your dad had a heart of gold. He used to look out for me. There was one guy, scary fella, he had it for me. Must have looked at him funny or something. Your dad wasn’t scared of him. He stuck his neck out for me, stopped me from getting a hiding.

    Carl on Derek: He looked after me, saved my life.

    Carl on Derek: So I said to him, after that, to thank him, I’d bring him something from the outside world — cigarettes, booze. You’ll never guessed what he asked for.
    Alice: Pickled herring?

    Carl: Derek talked about Alice so much, I wanted to meet her.

    Carl to Alice: Over time, he got to trust me and that’s why he said if anything happened to him, to look out for you. He wasn’t quite convinced Joey was up to it.

    Carl to Joey: I’ve heard a lot about you. Your dad said you’d be a good looking lad. He was very proud.

    Carl on Max: Derek said he was a bit of a player.

    Carl: Derek said he’d take me for dinner when I got out, anywhere I wanted.

    Suzy Branning on her relationship with boyfriend Ahmet: Got a bit messy actually. Well, very messy. Seven year itch. Felt I needed a change.

    Ahmet to Suzy: You [pretended to] be pregnant.

    Suzy on Ahmet’s gold bar: It was wasted on him. He didn’t know a carat from a carrot.

    Ahmet to Suzy: Always did have cojones, didn’t you? It’s just that it took me a little while to find out how big they really are.

    Suzy: I’ve been on my own for such a long time.

    Jack Branning on Suzy: I bailed her out the last time.

    Danielle Jones: Wasn’t much to do in Telford.

    Andy Jones on Danielle: She had everything she needed in Telford — job, family, friends.

    Danielle: When my mum died, everyone expected me to stick around, look after my dad and Gareth, but my heart told me to take a gamble — move to London, find what you’re looking for. I guess I wanted to find out more about myself.

    Danielle: Back home, we heard the East End’s where it’s all happening. It was going to be different there, find all the missing pieces — you know, land some flashy job, move into some trendy apartment with a gorgeous bloke to bring me breakfast in bed.

    Andy: My Dani went to London a normal happy girl.

    Danielle on London: When I first moved here I wasn’t sure I’d make any friends. All these people, but no-one ever seems to want to stop and talk.

    Danielle on Ronnie: She put her name on the [adoption] register. She tried to get in touch.

    Ronnie on her daughter: I tried to find her. I used to hope that one day she’d knock on my door just out of the blue. I would have been everything that she wanted me to be.

    Archie Mitchell: Why didn’t you just write [to Ronnie]?
    Danielle: Because I wasn’t sure what she was like. I wanted to have a look first so I came here [Walford].

    Stacey: You could have landed anywhere. Why poxy Walford?
    Danielle: Why do you think I came here? I was going to find [Ronnie] and I was going to tell her [who I was].

    Adam Best: We did an after school physics project, an old Fiesta, when I was in sixth form. We just stripped it down, turned it into a runaround, re-board the cylinders.

    Alice Branning: I got a netball in my face in Year 9.

    Alice: I had a friend at school called Sally.

    Dexter Hartman on how to open someone else’s mail: All you have to do is boil the kettle, hold it over the steam and then it opens. I used to do it all the time with my mum. Never no money in it though.

    Dexter: I used to get in trouble all the time. I stayed out late this one night. Mum didn’t know where I was. That didn’t stop her though. She was out there, kicking down doors. She tracked me down and when she did, she proper told me off in front of all my friends. Hated her after that.

    Ava Hartman to Dexter: I brought you up better than [to] behave like a thug.

    Ava: I’ve been through just about everything with my son. He was involved with a gang. It’s not easy.

    Dexter: My mum used to say the only reason she coped with me was by knowing when to take a break.

    Ava: I’ve made my own share of mistakes, you know. I remember one time I was really at the end of my tether. Dexter was only about thirteen. The kids he was hanging around with, the stunts they were pulling, I decided to drive him over to my mum’s. Four hours it took. All the way there, I’m telling him it’s for the best, it’s for his own good. Telling myself that, too. Cried so hard on the way home, it was like driving through a storm. Anyway, next day he was back. Found him sitting on the doorstep. Two trains, three buses, but he done it.

    Ava: I had a lot of rough days when Dexter was in that gang. I would have given anything for someone to say they could help me. Dexter was just boy — and now he wants to run with the big boys, making people scared as you walk down the street. The power — just confused young boys believing a lie.
    Bianca Butcher: How’d you make him believe you?
    Ava: Family, love.

    Ava on Dexter: It was me who fronted up to the local thugs when they threatened to beat him up because he didn’t want to be part of their crew, and that is when a knock on the door [from Dexter’s father] would have been so welcome.

    Ava: Kane and his gang used to hang around here [the Byron Estate community centre] all the time. No actual kids have been down here for years. They wouldn’t dare.

    Linda Carter on “Les Miserables”: The very first time I saw it, it was perfect.
    Babe Smith: How many times you seen it?
    Linda: Fourteen, on stage. On film, I’ve lost count, to be honest.

    Linda on “Mamma Mia”: I saw the film five times.

    Babe to Linda: Never saw the appeal of [musicals] myself. Hope you didn’t take Johnny too often. Would explain a lot!

    Archie speaking in July 2008: A friend of mine, fit as a fiddle, dropped dead over a bowl of muesli last week.

    Rose Cotton, speaking about her boyfriend in 2011: He died three years ago. Choked to death on a peanut.

    Danny Mitchell speaking in 2010: I’ve done a few things the last couple of years — bar work, managed a few gyms, even did a stint as "Butler in the Buff".

    Tyler Moon: I had a screen-test once to be Tom Cruise’s body double, but I was too tall, weren’t I?

    Eddie Moon on his son Michael: I ain’t seen him for a while. Leeds, I last heard.

    Zainab: You must have made a good living in Leeds?
    Syed: Yeah, I had a property company. Everything was great until the market crashed and then I was left with two top end apartments I couldn’t shift. I had to walk away.

    Christian Clarke on Syed: He was a conman. He sold properties that didn’t exist.

    Zainab: Everybody struggled. It was just bad timing.
    Syed: I made mistakes, got sucked into the herd. It was stupid, but I learnt from it.

    Syed: Managed to land a job with an estate agency down here [London].

    Syed: I was good at what I did.

    Masood: How did you two meet?
    Syed: I was delivering paperwork to her father’s house.
    Amira Shah: Dad runs a property company, Renovations, half a mil plus. Syed showed him around this bargain.

    Amira on her family home: Dad spent heaps doing it up. How cool is the swimming pool in the basement?

    Tamwar to Syed: Tell me, what first attracted you to the millionaire’s daughter?

    Syed on the estate agency he worked for: They let me go before Christmas [2008].

    Syed on Amira: Girls like her, there’s a certain level of expectation. Amira spotted these apartments. A great investment opportunity, apparently.
    Masood: You’d lost your job, Syed.
    Syed: I thought I’d lose her. I said I had quit my job, cashed up my assets to go it alone.

    Amira: You used me. You used me to get to my father, to back your pathetic scam.
    Syed: It wasn’t about the money. It was never about the money.

    Syed: I didn’t set out to deceive Amira. The situation just snowballed.

    Syed on his penthouse apartment: I never said it was mine.
    Amira: You never said you were renting it either.
    Syed: I didn’t want you think I was a failure. I did it with the best intentions.

    Masood: Syed’s been stupid but there was no malicious intent.

    AJ Ahmed on his marriage: Crazy big ideas, all hearts and flowers and dirty sheets — ba-ba-boom. Then there’s five years of fighting, five years of “I can’t be bothered to fight”, five years of “I’ve forgotten you even live here so who'd you think you’re fighting with?”

    Linda Carter to Nancy: You, throwing punches in Watford.

    Linda: Nancy comes out fighting because I taught her that, I taught her not to take any rubbish, but Johnny ...

    Zsa Zsa Carter: I kissed a girl once. Quite liked it.
    Shirley: Oh don’t tell me — it tasted like cherry chapstick.

    Zsa Zsa: Last time a bloke two-timed me he was scrubbing his number off every gents toilet this side of Tower Bridge.

    2009

    Andy Jones, speaking to Danielle in January 2009: We were all up the playing fields on Saturday. Of course, Gareth was playing for the first team. Lovely penalty. He was asking after you. Always does. Wants his big sister to be a bridesmaid. I said to him, “Your mother would have loved that.” You and him — she’d have been in there, doing the flowers, sorting it all out.

    Dr Al Jenkins: I didn’t really want to come back [to Walford] but Mum ain't so good.

    Amira Shah: Dad defrauded one of his clients. We’re not talking millions but it still comes down to the same thing — he committed a crime. He was charged with fraud.
    Zainab Masood: What kind of fraud?
    Amira: Nothing big.

    AJ Ahmed, speaking in 2012: What happened? It’s been three years, Mas. Not one call returned.
    Masood Ahmed: It’s not a one way street, Amjad. You’ve done your own disappearing.
    AJ: I wouldn’t disown you.
    Masood: Disown? Where did you get that idea?
    AJ: Inzamam. He said Zainab convinced you ...

    AJ: I’ve never assisted management.
    Masood: You’ve never assisted anyone.

    Shirley: How’s school?
    Zsa Zsa: I left.

    Tanya: Are you married?
    Ava: A few near misses.

    Kim Fox: I’ve never been short of marriage proposals, you know.
    Kat Moon: Yeah? Turn them all down, did you?

    Kim: I proposed to my ex-boyfriend Dexter. It was like I’d threatened him with a gun.

    Kim on Dexter: I got him these [indicating her breasts] for his fortieth. Wrapped them in a bow and everything. Three grand it cost me and for what? For me to catch him in the ladies with Dionne flaming Warwick. Calls herself a soundalike, but she was saying plenty of prayers when I finished with her though!

    Kim: They didn’t call me the Aretha of Leytonstone for no reason.

    Kim: Mate of mine, lost her job. One minute she's getting her teeth whitened and a Christmas mini-break to Tenerife, Next minute — I couldn't believe it — she's on anti-depressants, a key to a bedsit, acne breaking out ...

    Ronnie, speaking in 2010: You done Mad Sunday yet? It’s the mountain section of the TT.
    Danny: Last year.

    Nancy Carter, speaking after England’s defeat in the 2014 World Cup: That’s the first time I’ve cried in five years.

    Nancy: Lee, do you remember Johnny’s fifteenth?
    Dean: What happened?
    Johnny: Well, they decided to get me completely plastered. Then we played this very stupid game involving a funnel and a plastic tube, and Nance was making these cocktails.
    Nancy: Yeah, it was pretty lethal.
    Lee: Yeah, he was proper chucking his guts up all over the kitchen floor, mate!
    Johnny to Lee: You shaved my eyebrows off.

    Linda on Patrick Swayze: It was really sad when he died. I mean, not Princess Diana sad, but sad.
    Nancy: What was it of again?
    Linda: Cancer.
    Nancy: Ain’t you still got that book on him?
    Linda: No, I think I got rid of it. I’m not much of a reader, am I?
    Nancy: I’m pretty sure you kept that one.

    Babe, speaking about Sylvie in 2014: She’s got Alzheimer’s. She was diagnosed five years ago.

    Bushra Abbasi on Yusef and Afia Kahn: They only recently moved back to London.

    Zulekha Abbasi on Yusef: He was not happy about those boys — a load of nasty rough boys hanging around his little angel [Afia]. Well you know, you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you meet your prince and all that.
    Masood: And did she — kiss frogs?
    Zulekha: She could have whatever guy she wanted anytime she liked. So popular, so friendly and fun, but she never went out with any of them. I mean, she was never like an item.

    Masood: Your own father, he was never sure where you were, who you were with.
    Afia: I’ve never been with anyone, not in the way that you mean.

    Dexter: I’ve had plenty of girls, bruv. No one’s ever turned me down.

    Glenda Mitchell, talking about her council flat in early 2010: I had a big clear out a couple of months ago. You wouldn’t believe how cluttered this place was. I threw out boxes of stuff, boxes and boxes.

    Glenda to Ronnie and Roxy: I read the story about Archie’s murder and it mentioned Walford and that he’d left a widow Peggy. Well, it took me a moment to realise that it was the Peggy that I used to know — and it mentioned two daughters, my darling daughters, and I knew that you would stay close and support each other just like you always did.

    Danny: I wake up one morning, situation normal — me and Mum, same as it’s always been. A few days later two sisters pop up out of nowhere.

    Lee Carter: I don’t know [where I’m going]. I never have. That’s why I joined the army, something to do.

    Lee: The last time I ever see Mum react [hysterically] was when I signed up.

    Linda Carter to Mick: You think I pushed him [Lee] away.

    Lee: When I was out in the army, I thought about whether I wanted to be cremated or buried, just in case. When I was out there, I wrote a letter for Mum and Dad to have in case the worst happened. We all thought we were prepared for death, but you never can be really though, can you?

    Mick Carter to Lee: You took the Queen’s shilling, son.
    Stan Carter to Lee: Your dad’s right. You made your choice, not like in my day.
    Mick: It’s what you sign up for.
    Lee: You don’t know what you sign up for, not really. You see bits on telly, you hear stories in the regiment, but you don’t understand, not until you’re there.

    Linda: Lee going off to be shot at — I coped with that. It weren’t easy but I managed it.

    Lee on his family: I go away for months, come back and they’re all over me.
     
  9. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2010

    Zsa Zsa on Tina: She took everything.
    Andy, Tina’s boyfriend: Where did she take it?
    Zsa Zsa: I don’t know — with Miguel probably.

    Zsa Zsa: Every bad thing that ever happened to me came from planning ahead. Good ones came from bumping into someone random.

    Andrew Cotton: I used to run [a burger] van back in Southend back in the day. Good times.

    Detective Sergeant Crisp: Can you tell me who Ron Butler is?
    Andrew: He’s my mum’s ex.
    DS Crisp: Get on well, did you?
    Andrew: Not really.

    Andrew: Me mum’s ex, he used to be a bit handy with his fists. He put her in hospital twice. I couldn’t just sit back and let him treat her like that, could I? She’s me mum.

    DS Crisp to Andrew: You put him [Ron Butler] in hospital, didn’t you?

    Andrew on Ron Butler: I fractured his skull. He had ten stitches in his cheek. Had to have four teeth out. Ended up in intensive care for a couple of weeks.

    DS Crisp on Andrew: Ended up doing a stint at Her Majesty’s Pleasure.

    Mick: I’ve made a few mistakes in me time, a few enemies, but I’ve never killed no-one.

    Linda: Back in Watford, there was a punter who had a thing for me. One night, he went too far and had his hands all over me and Mick just lost it. He battered him. It took three of us to drag him away. Somehow I convinced this bloke not to press charges.

    Eddie Moon, speaking in 2011 about the last time he celebrated Father’s Day with his sons: I had to pay for the drinks myself, and finished up paying for Tyler’s new exhaust.

    Derek Branning on Alice: Seven GCEs, two of them Bs. Isn’t that right, sweetheart?
    Alice: Business studies and maths.
    Derek: Takes after her old man in the brains department.

    Lucy Beale: Did you ever meet any of Joey's girlfriends?
    Alice: One or two. When he was younger, he really liked this girl and he was always putting her hair behind her ear.

    Joey Branning to Alice: Subtle never was your thing.

    Dot Branning: How come a girl like you’s living in a hostel?
    Julie Perkins: Oh, I got behind on me rent, didn’t I?

    Craig Moon to Michael: Dad says you lived in Spain.

    Alfie Moon to Michael: I’ve not really thanked you for the way you looked after Kat when I was banged up, putting a roof over her head and shelter.

    Michael Moon: What we had, Kat ...
    Kat Moon, Alfie’s wife: We had nothing.
    Michael: It was good.
    Kat: It was one night. And even that weren’t that good.
    Michael: That wasn’t what you were saying when you were screaming my name, eh?

    Kat: I’ve seen the other side of you, remember? That night in Spain when you spoke about your mum.
    Michael: I was very drunk then.
    Kat: Doesn’t mean it wasn’t real. The next morning, it was like nothing had happened.

    Michael: I called you. I left messages. You didn’t get back to me. How come?
    Kat: It was one night.

    Michael to Alfie: I told you I’d be here [Walford].

    Aleks Kirovs, speaking in 2014: I came to this country four years ago. Marta, my wife, went from being my wife to, I don’t know, an envelope with her name on that I’d put money inside. I didn’t plan to stay here, but then I established a career.

    Marta Kirovs to Aleks: Four years you leave me, our daughter, while you live good here, London.

    Andrew Cotton, speaking in March 2012: Eighteen months ago, I came out of prison for committing GBH.

    Yusef Kahn to Zainab: When Afia told she had met a boy, when she told me his family name, I wondered, I hoped, because if it was you, I could apologise for what happened.
     
  10. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    2011

    Lydia Simmonds: It was only a fall. Only put Ricky’s name down [as next of kin] because [the hospital] wanted something on their precious form.

    Pam Coker, speaking in 2014: My friend April, she did tights on Spring Lane, she had a double mastectomy a few years back. Said she couldn’t bear the thought of the cancer coming back. Chemo knocked the stuffing out of her. Awful it was. She had to give up her stall in the end. They did a lovely reconstruction.

    Paul Leese, speaking in July 2011: Dan [Pearce, Julie Perkins and Billy Mitchell’s biological son] used to live here but he don’t anymore. He died three months ago.

    Julie Perkins on Dan: Liver failure, you said, yeah?
    Paul: Yeah. He used to drink a lot of booze.

    Julie: Our son hated me till the day he died.

    Paul on Dan: I took on his name [after he died] to carry on the tenancy.

    Cora Cross to Tanya: I was surprised to get your [wedding] invitation.

    Tanya Branning: You might have called, told me you were coming.
    Cora: I wanted to surprise you.

    Shameem, Afia Khan’s maternal aunt: As soon as I heard about the wedding [between Afia and Tamwar], I couldn’t wait to meet the man who’d stolen my niece’s heart — and his parents of course.

    Tyler Moon, mid-anecdote: So I’m standing on the window ledge wearing this thong and it ain’t doing the job of a more supportive undergarment, if you know what I’m saying. Anyway, the blonde, Sophie ...
    Eddie Moon: Sophie’s the blonde? I thought that was Gemma?
    Tyler: Oh, it could be. Well, anyway, she’s getting rid of her old man, right. We’re nearly in the clear when there’s this screaming. It’s the next door neighbour — thinks I’ve come to molest her!

    Tyler, mid-anecdote: ... And there she was, at the station with him. Smashed my heart like a dropped pint glass.
    Jodie Gold: Oh that is sad — but you did sleep with her sister.

    Tyler: Me and that hot brunette [from a lap-dancing club] got pretty busy, if you get my drift.

    Eddie to Tyler: First time I give you and Anthony some responsibility and look what happens.

    Tyler, explaining why he followed Eddie to Walford: I’ve been getting under Anthony’s feet and I miss me pops.

    Charlie Cotton, Jr: I had dreams once — being in a band, touring the country, a little festival or two.

    Lee Carter: Reading Festival, 2011. Me and you, kebab queue?
    Lucy Beale: I’ve never been to Reading.
    Lee: Shame. We’d have made beautiful music together.

    Linda Carter, speaking in 2014: How long have you known [you’ve had prostate cancer]?
    Stan Carter: Three years.

    Mick Carter, speaking in 2014 about an engagement ring he bought for Linda: Three years ago, I struck gold. Found it in a jewellers in Watford. It’s exactly like her Lady Di ring except the sapphire’s real. L, she’s like MI5 when it comes to sniffing out secrets so I made extra sure she couldn’t find it.

    Henry Mason, care home worker, to Billy Mitchell: I almost didn’t come [to meet you]. I had meself convinced you’d have a lynch mob. You know what these vigilantes are like. I suppose you heard about that ridiculous trial. You dedicate your whole life to the welfare of kids and that’s the thanks you get. Still, justice prevailed.

    Cora: I had a contretemps with a neighbour.

    Cora: This girl moved in next door and it all went downhill from there.

    Jude, Cora’s next-door neighbour: She [Cora] made my life hell. Music on every night, men around all hours. She poured bleach on my plants, glued my locks.
    Cora: I have nothing to apologise for.

    Cora on Jude: She got an ASBO.

    Local newspaper headline about Cora: “ASBO Granny in Dock”

    Cora: I got evicted. They’ve taken the flat off me. I packed what I could.

    Cora: You, Ava, you brought up a fine young man.

    Dexter Hartman to Ava: I was sorting out the boiler, sorting out the neighbours, all the things that [Sam] was supposed to be doing. Do you know how hard I tried for you to do his job?

    Dexter on his friends: Mum, you let Ash stay when he was getting grief from his mum and Reece when he got kicked out.

    Dexter to Ava: You said Ash’s mum was a mug for taking his dad back. Desperate, that’s what’s you said, no self respect.

    Ava: Dexter’s mate Jonno, they grew up together. Did everything together — girls, football. Then [Jonno] went and got himself some new mates.
    Bianca: And what happened to him?
    Ava: That’s his face on the post out there [a shrine on the Byron Estate].

    Dexter: When I used to live on that estate, [no-one] ever just “nearly” [died]. You go into hospital, you come out in a box. I’m not being dramatic. It’s a fact.

    Alexa Smith on Lola Pearce: When I knew she’d gone to live with her family, I was dead jealous.

    Andrew Cotton, speaking in August 2011: They run out of chicken [at the chicken-in-a-basket night at the Southend social club] last time.

    Carl White: When I was inside, they taught us to work through our problems — you know, write to someone, tell someone, work it through.

    Carl: I’d love to be an advocate for the prison system — rehabilitated, a shining example of their success process — but the truth is I just got nastier.

    Derek Branning: Ten years [in prison] does something to a man.

    Carl: I spent five years inside with screws going through my stuff like it was theirs not mine. No privacy, no dignity.

    Derek: When I got out [of prison, I wasn’t] sleeping at night. It’s the quiet. You know what I used to do? When I went to bed, I used to put the telly on and every night, I used to just turn the sound down a bit. That’s how I got used to it.

    Derek: When I got out, things had changed. Weren’t the same anymore. No respect. Streets crawling with Lithuanians — thought they were the boys, the top dogs, but we showed them a thing or two, me and Max, me and my brother.
    Carol Jackson: What have you done?
    Derek: Nothing. Just trying to earn a crust like we all have to.

    Max Branning: When Derek scooped me up, I was down. I was the lowest, lowest I’ve ever been. I was drinking. I was in a mess. That’s when I met [Kirsty]. She was in a mess and all.

    Tanya Branning: Exotic dancing, that’s your line, isn’t it?
    Kirsty Branning: Used to be.

    Kirsty: Life all went a bit wrong for me. Bad choices.

    Kirsty to Max: I didn’t think I’d get a second chance, but then I met you and I couldn’t believe it.

    Carol Jackson to Kirsty: You didn’t even like [Derek].
    Kirsty: I liked Derek. He introduced me to Max. We had our problems, but I loved him for that.

    Max: We were mates once.
    Kirsty: We were in bed after the first hour of meeting.
    Max: Well, that’s what I meant. That’s pretty friendly.

    Kirsty to Max: You always were a fast mover.

    Max: I’ve never had a first hour like that with anyone.

    Max on himself and Kirsty: We just sort of found each other, comforted each other. It just sort of went on from there.

    Tanya to Kirsty: You were just a fling, just a port in a storm.

    Kirsty to Lauren Branning: I’m not some sleazy home wrecker. Your dad was single. It’s like any two people who meet each other and that’s it.

    Abi Branning: Were you happy with Kirsty?
    Max: Yeah, maybe. I guess we had something.

    Max to Kirsty: Seriously, some of the best times I’ve had were in those months after we met.

    Tanya on Kirsty: You were in love with her?
    Max: I thought I was.

    Kirsty to Max: You’re the only man I’ve ever loved.

    Kirsty on Max: It’s like one of his party tricks — scooping up and rescuing. Has he bought you any pasta and a big chocolate cake? It’s like living with a feeder. Two months and I had to tell him I had cellulite on my ankles.

    Max on Kirsty: She wanted proof, she wanted a sign. I thought maybe if I took the plunge — because I was, I was involved with her.
    Tanya: How involved?
    Max: Enough to get married.

    Kirsty: As far as I knew, I fell for a single bloke and married him.

    Kirsty on herself and Max: We were in love. We were married.

    Kirsty on Max: This ring, he put it on my finger in a registry office.

    Max on Kirsty: I only married her because I was lonely and she was there. Stupidest thing I’ve ever done.

    Kirsty to Max: One minute we’re in love, married, shipping up to Manchester to start a new life, and the next thing I know, we’re done.

    Max on Kirsty: Things happened. I let her down, didn’t I? One minute I was there, the next I was gone. No phone call, nothing. I treated her badly.

    Kirsty to Max: All I got was a phone call, just one phone call.

    Kirsty to Max: Why did you let me down? Why did you do that to me?

    Kirsty, speaking about Max in December 2012: I ain’t seen him for a year. Over a year.

    Max: She had to handle things. She had to deal with things on her own.
    Tanya: What things?
    Max: All sorts, like flat and job. She had some difficult times and I weren’t there.

    Max on Kirsty: The last place she was staying was with her ex’s brother.

    Kirsty to Max: I was pregnant and you couldn’t even be bothered to speak to me. I was pregnant with your baby. Derek told you, didn’t he? Derek said you weren’t interested. I begged him. “Just get Max to call me,” I said. “Get him to call me.” I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know if there was any hope, if you wanted the baby, wanted the two of us to have a baby together. I was just holding on, just hoping. But I got nothing — just Derek, end of the phone, “He ain’t interested, doll. Get rid of it. Send me the bill.” So in the end, I did. That was our baby.

    Max: You lied to me, Derek. You lied to me about the baby.

    Derek: I was protecting you. I told you she was no good.
    Max: She had an abortion because of you.

    Linda Carter: Abortion’s not something I’ve had a view on. I’ve had mates who’ve had them and I’ve supported them. It’s just something I never thought I’d be doing myself.

    Kirsty: That [baby] was a chance for both of us and you didn’t even know.
    Max: I needed to get hold of the divorce papers. Derek said I should give you money. He said it was the best thing to do.
    Kirsty: You set Derek onto me, trying to scare me off.
    Max: I didn’t set him onto you. He said he’d talk to you. He said he’d deal with it.
    Kirsty: By paying me off? Is that the way you deal with it — a bit money in an envelope shoved through the door? Is that the way you finish with me, is it? You think a bit of cash and that would make up for what I'd lost — you, the baby?

    Alice Branning, speaking on December 23rd 2012: This time last year, it was just me, my mum and Joey.

    Johnny Carter on Linda: She thinks she’s openminded because she bought a Joe McElderry Christmas album.

    Linda: I can hold a tune.
    Johnny: No, Mum, you can’t.
    Linda: Yes, I can. What about at Christmas when I do my Bernadette Peters?
    Johnny: Yeah, that’s in the house. Just us.

    Nancy Carter on Linda at Christmas: She does this every year. She’ll have everything planned to the second, when you’re allowed to burp, when you’re allowed to fart …
    Linda: I just like everything to be perfect, that’s all.

    2012

    Stan Carter, speaking about Sylvie in 2014: How long have you been keeping her in that dungeon of yours?
    Babe Smith: She’s lived with me the best part of two years. I’ve been her carer, if you must know.
    Shirley Carter: You should have told us.
    Babe: You know why I kept her from you, don’t you? To protect you.

    Lee to Mick: The closest you and Mum have ever come to a debate is whether to watch ‘Pointless’ or not.

    Linda to Johnny: I can’t remember the last time you had a girlfriend.

    Johnny: I like women.
    Nancy: I know you do. I’ve seen you dancing to all their hits in your bedroom when you think no-one’s looking.

    Linda You’re soft, Johnny. I made you that way because I thought you’d meet a nice girl who’d take over, who’d look after you for me.

    Nancy, speaking to Johnny in 2014: You have just spent the last two years lying to [Mick and Linda]. Why would you do that if they weren’t trying to control you?

    Linda on Johnny’s sexuality: All this time you’ve been lying to me, making out like you’re one thing when really you’re someone completely different.
    Johnny: I didn’t mean to lie. I just didn’t want the fuss. I kind of hoped you’d guess. Didn’t you already have a hunch?
    Linda: No. I just thought you were my Johnny.

    Lee on Johnny’s sexuality: I think I’ve always known.

    Elaine on Johnny’s sexuality: I always knew, bless him. I didn’t think it was my place to say.

    Elaine: How about that nice guy, that little lad, the one you used to pretend you were just friends with, what was his name — Gavin?
    Johnny: We were just friends.

    Johnny to Nancy: You’re the only person I ever trusted enough to tell.

    Johnny: I always thought it would be my dad that would have the problem with me being … you know.

    Lee: I never did like showering on me own.
    Dean Wicks: Good job you had thirty geezers to keep you company then.

    Nancy to Lee: You know, when you left [for Afghanistan], I didn’t clock you’d gone because you look so much like the dog.

    Lee: Before I went out there …
    Mick: Afghanistan?
    Lee: … the boys wound me up, said the locals we were training were high on hash, a bunch of trigger-happy insurgents in waiting.
    Mick: You hear stories.
    Lee: Not the lads I was with. They ain’t the Taliban. There was this one lad, Kaseem. Same age as me, right laugh, got on like a house on fire — apart from him supporting Arsenal. Some stoner had given his dad a shirt in the seventies and Kassie had followed them ever since. So one day we’d been out cleaning this section of road, usual stuff, when Kassie spots something. Top lad — spot a section of disturbed land a mile off, proper talent. It was baking. We’d already dealt with four RARDs so at that point, we’re knackered, but Kassie, he insists. His call. So we all take a step back and watch him take the long walk. He bent down, brushed the earth away. Enough explosives to blow up a mastiff and he’s using little more than a paint brush. And I see this rock to his left. For some reason, my eyes keep … and I see his hand reach out to move it. And I knew. They put a secondary device underneath. Didn’t hear a thing. I’m just … I’m … suddenly, I’m on my back. There was so much dust in my eyes, in my mouth, and somebody screaming, “Nobody move!” because one of them’s already gone off, right, but I just want to get over to him, see if there’s any chance … Then the dust settles. You want to know what I see? Kaseem, half his body gone, but I weren’t going to leave him, not out there, so I pick him up and take him back to camp. My mate.

    Lee: Kaseem’s dad came to camp. Wanted to wash the body down before burial. I had to tell him. Try explaining that through an interpreter. He shook my hand. He was so proud.

    Lee: When I was out in Afghanistan, we all used to pretend we weren’t scared of dying. Used to say that if we get blown up at least we’ll be heroes. Even joked about what we was going to put on our tombstones, but when you see one of your mates get blown up right in front of you, just snaps you straight back to reality and that’s when the fear really kicks in.

    Lee: When I was out searching for mines, I couldn’t put one foot in front of the other sometimes. Just stood there, frozen to the spot, but it was the boys either side of me that got me through it.

    Dean to Lee: Have you ever killed anyone, shot them?
    Stan: He was in bomb disposal.
    Lee: Yeah, but if we were shot at, we shot back, cover each other and that.

    Lee: I’ve served alongside people who have [killed] and they’ve never been the same again since.

    Lee: We used to have these little sparring matches back at camp, nothing serious, just a few bouts in the ring. There was this one bloke, Craig — been winding me up all day, banter mainly, but he really knew how to push me buttons, you know? He started getting a bit mouthy so I just went for him. I hit him and I couldn’t stop. It took four blokes to get me off him.
    Linda: It’s the army that’s done this to you, everything they put you through out there.

    Stan to Lee: We used to follow your division on the news, find out what you were up to. Not ashamed to say I said a prayer or two for you.
    Dean: What about me? Ever pray for me?
    Stan: Been mentioned, time to time.

    Linda: I had this group of mates back in Watford and they understood when I needed to just blot it out [her fears about Lee’s safety].

    Linda: We used to have ladies’ nights all the time at my mum’s pub.

    Nancy to Linda: You had a week of parties for your thirty-fifth [birthday]. That’s not even a thing.

    Nancy: I never even got near a uni.
    Johnny: No, you couldn’t read the application forms.

    AJ Ahmed: My ex-wife, she really wanted kids. She’d been pushing me, wanting me to commit. She wouldn’t back off, but then I got scared. I can’t even take care of myself, let alone be responsible for someone else.
    Zainab Masood: So you ran away.

    Frank Driver on fellow policeman Ollie Walters: It’s enough to shake anyone up, isn’t it? I mean, you think you’re walking into a bog standard domestic, get there, you find one kid dead on the floor and the other one ... He does his best for them, but it’s too late. Their mum was a nutter. She just went off on one.

    Emma Summerhayes: I remember I did a police driving course once. It was a complete disaster. They took us down these country lanes …

    Sam James, speaking in December 2013: A year ago, I found out that my kidneys started to fail.

    Abi: How did you even know how to find us?
    Dexter, her biological cousin: The address was on the back of a Christmas card your nan gave my mum.

    Kirsty, speaking to Max in December 2012: Your lovely brother, he finally came through after all this time. After thirteen months, he finally told me where you were. I’ve had a long trip [to Walford] all on my own, Christmas Day in the dark.

    2013

    Linda: Mum usually makes [Mick’s birthday cake]. Always start the day with cake and bubbles, right?
    Mick: Yeah, then it gets double messy, don’t it, Lee? Remember that time a couple of years back? We come back proper slaughtered. I just could not get that key in the door.
    Lee: And by the time I did, you’d conked out on the doorstep.
    Linda: Not your finest hour. Mum thought you were burglars. Lucky you didn’t get a crack round the head with a cricket bat!
    Mick: Yeah. Still got a right-hander though, didn’t I?

    Ava to Sam: You had been on the transplant list since March.

    Ava to Sam: You knew that you needed a [kidney] transplant before you even came here [Walford].

    Ava: Please tell me that you didn’t just come to Walford to get your hands on my son’s kidney.
    Sam: I wasn’t thinking straight. I was ill. I didn’t know what else to do. I was scared that I’d never find a donor.
    Ava: You couldn’t just wait your turn like everybody else?
    Sam: I was running out of time.
    Ava: And then you remembered, “I have a son.” So you thought you’d just come and find us and take what you wanted?
    Sam: No. I knew Dexter could be a match, but I waited on that list as long as I could. Coming back here was the last thing I wanted to do.

    Sam, speaking in May 2013: My dad died. The funeral was yesterday. I haven’t slept. I’ve just been walking around thinking about everything, how he walked out on me, how I did the same [to my son]. It brought it home. I couldn’t get this voice out of my head and my heart. It felt like it was going to burst if I didn't see [Dexter].

    Sam to Dexter: It hit me — I had to be there for you even if you hate me.

    Tosh Mackintosh: Every year, I’ve spent the [fireman’s] ball sat with the lads pretending to flirt with them, just to get them in trouble with their missus.

    Carl White: I’ve just come out of a five-and-a-half year stretch.

    Carl: You come out from inside and everybody thinks they’ve got the right to judge you.

    Carl to his brother Adam: I asked you to do two things while I was inside. One, look after Mum. Two, keep your eye on Kirsty. I get out — Mum’s in a home, Kirsty’s married to someone else. You don’t even have the bottle to tell me when I get out.

    Adam White: I was going to meet you at the prison.
    Carl: I had to find out from the neighbour why there’s a family living in Mum’s home.
    Adam: Well, she wasn’t well and once she was out, the council ...

    Carl on £10,000 owed to him by Derek Branning: That money was my fresh start, a chance for me to start a new business.

    Carl: There I was, trying to get a hold of Derek, when my mobile rings. It’s a woman called Bianca.

    Nancy, speaking in 2014: Me and Wayne used to be proper friends and now obviously we’re not, and it was exactly the same with my boyfriend before that and my boyfriend before that.

    Nancy to Linda: You never liked Wayne.

    Linda to Nancy: You only went with Wayne to upset us.

    Linda on Nancy: She didn’t love [Wayne]. She never loved him.

    Tosh on Tina’s family: They’ve never liked me. They’ve pushed you [Tina] down. They’ve kept you the baby. “Let’s all have a laugh at Tina, the funny lesbian.”

    Shirley Carter, describing Tina when she was living with Tosh: Black and blue and looking for an escape route.

    Tina, speaking in February 2014: Six months ago, I had no-one.
    Shirley: Yes, you did. You had Tosh and a couple of black eyes.
    Tina: Yeah and I’d sit in that flat, get a call from Zsa Zsa every now and again …
    Shirley: I don’t know why she bothered.
    Tina: Because sometimes kids remember that they’ve got parents. I ain’t ever going to forget that day you turned up out of the blue.

    Shirley: I went out to get some fags. When I got back, I found Tina’s girlfriend getting a bit handy.

    Shirley: Who sorted out the mess with Tosh?
    Tina: Well, I did actually.
    Shirley: And who sat up with you all night when you’d been beaten up, when you were bawling?
    Tina: It was both of us. We fell out. I can get handy and all.

    Tina to Tosh: When we used to row, I used to think it was passionate.

    Linda: Do you know what I made your dad do last time we had a row? Sit with me and watch ‘Frozen’. He hated every second of it.
    Lee: Bet he cried though.
    Linda: I lost him at ‘Do You Want to Build a Snowman?’
    Lee: What a wuss!

    Johnny Carter: I could have got into loads of uni’s but I chose the one where I could live at home.

    Johnny on he and his mother: It’s like we need to be near each other. That’s why I didn’t go into halls. I was worried she’d be too upset.

    Mick, speaking in May 2014: If you’d have told me six months ago I’d be living with my old man …

    Mick on the Queen Vic: I wanted this pub because I want my sisters with me. I haven’t had that in years.

    Mick on the Vic: I was the one who hurried the sale through.

    Mick on the Vic: I spent me last bean buying this place.

    Linda to Mick: “A new start,” you said, “a new adventure.”

    Mick: Nancy has invited you [to her wedding], Linda.
    Linda: Only so she can throw a strop when I don’t go.

    Linda: We have given our daughter everything. Everything. And it still ain’t good enough. So what do we get back? Grief, dramas, Little Missy Hissy Fits.
    Mick: That’s not true.

    Lee: The whisky smuggled inside the shampoo bottles — genius! Best package ever. Who thought of sending that?
    Johnny: You had to have something to drink with your Christmas lunch, didn’t you? I was rinsing out bottles for ages.
    Linda: Did I send out enough socks?
    Lee: I could open up a shop, Mum.

    Lee to Mick: I take it the DVDs were from you then? Been passing them all round camp in a ‘Top Gear’ box. The boys were like, “Jeremy Clarkson’s got a lot bendier.”

    Mick: Christmas was terrible, mainly because your mum cremated the turkey. I missed watching the footy with you. And Mum, she really missed you and all.
    Nancy: One good thing about spending Christmas with strangers is they ain’t jumping down your throat every five seconds.

    Pam, speaking in 2014: My friend April, she did tights on Spring Lane, she died last Christmas.

    Linda: Working in my mum’s pub for twenty years, getting the Vic was like getting out of prison.

    Mick Carter to Elaine: We was getting on top of each other at the other place, you even said so yourself.

    Elaine to Linda: Mick found [the Vic] and before you could even sneeze, it was bags packed, out the door. The girls couldn’t believe it. They said, “After all you’ve done, sacrificed, brought up your family.” I thought, “No. It’s their chance to find their own home.” I just wish I’d known you were so keen to leave mine.

    Elaine to Linda: It really hurt. You abandoned me.

    Elaine to Mick: You stole all my bar staff when you abandoned me.

    Elaine on Linda’s lipstick: Pink Fizz? I wondered where that had gone.
    Linda: You said I could have it.

    Linda: Do you know how long it took me to clear out Nancy’s bedroom at the old place? You know I wanted to skip it. If it was down to me, I’d’ve binned the lot.

    Linda on Mick’s old leather jacket: I could have sworn blind it had been thrown out.
    Mick: Must have snuck its way back in.

    Mick to Linda: I did tell you to label the [moving] boxes, didn’t I?

    2014

    Mick Carter on Elaine: She’s been itching for an invite [to the Vic] since we moved in.

    Linda Carter: You know you’ve always been welcome.
    Elaine: I had to get through some stuff, Linda.

    Stan, speaking in July 2014: I did my time in [hospital] a few months ago.

    Mick on Lee’s army career: Four years’ good service.

    Mick, speaking in April 2014: How long you been back [from Afghanistan]?
    Lee: A week.
    Nancy: You what? You’ve been back for a week and you ain’t even called us? You realise every day we’re scared the phone’s going to ring?

    Linda to Stan: [Lee] was at yours and you never said?

    Stan on Lee: I didn’t make him come to me.

    Mick: Why d’you go to [Stan] and not me?
    Lee: I didn’t want to let you down.

    Lee on Stan: Don’t blame him. I made him lie. Me nut was all over the place.
    Linda: A whole week of your leave gone already. Why didn’t you want to see us?
    Lee: It was here [the Vic] — a boozer full of strangers asking questions. It was all I needed. I just wanted to sit down with a few beers in peace.
    Nancy: You didn’t think about what we needed?

    Mick: Lee, when you stayed the night at your granddad’s, did he wet the bed?
    Lee: No. Why?

    Mick on Lee: Him staying at me dad’s, it wasn’t because he needed time to himself. He was going to go AWOL.

    Stan on Lee: I’d never have helped him if I’d known.

    Pam Coker: We bought the lease on the charity shop.

    Pam: How could you afford Turpin Road?
    Les Coker: It cost us an arm and a leg, but a bit of compensation on the way …

    Charlie Cotton, Jr: My dad, he turned up out of the blue, just crashed back into our lives. For Mum especially, it wasn’t good, it really wasn’t good, but he’s still my dad. The police were after him.

    Dot on Nick: He got himself in some awful trouble with some gangsters and they was after him.

    Charlie on Nick: He was on the run. He turned up with all this money, stolen money and gold. Said he needed to get away.

    Nick: I was in a mess when I went back there this time.

    Charlie on Nick: He was desperate. I couldn’t not step in.

    Nick: I wanted to turn meself in and then Charlie, he came up with this idea I could take all the cash abroad.

    Nick: Charlie’s bright. He’s got the gift of the gab. He kept saying, “Fake your own death and vanish.”

    Carol Jackson: You pretend he’s dead?
    Charlie: That was his idea. I only agreed to help because I wanted rid of him. I thought, “If everybody thinks he’s dead, he can’t come back.”

    Dot: Whose idea was it that my son should fake his own death? Who decided that he should die?
    Charlie: It was me. I just wanted to give him a chance to turn his life around once and for all, to get him away from my mum.
    Dot: For whose sake was it then — was it for your father’s or your mother’s?
    Charlie: Both. He’s my dad and I love him and even though most the time he’s not been there, in all my life, I just wanted him to love me back. If he can’t even do that, then …
    Dot: Then what?
    Charlie: This was his chance — just leave it all behind properly and start fresh.

    Ronnie: And you pretended to be a policeman because?
    Charlie: Because Dad said people would believe everything that I told them.

    Charlie to Dot on pretending to be a policeman: I just thought someone in authority and you’d know that it had to be true. I needed you to believe Dad was dead so people wouldn’t ask any questions. I mean, the guys he did the job with, they were pressuring him to do more and the police were closing in and if he hadn’t got away, if he’d have carried on and got caught, with his record …
    Dot: What about the money?
    Charlie: I took a cut. My car. I shouldn’t have, but I grew up with nothing.

    Charlie to Nick: You agreed that you’d take your share of the money and go.

    Elaine: I didn’t say anything at the time, but I was really worried when you came to stay at mine.
    Linda: I was looking after you.
    Elaine: I had a sprained ankle. I wasn’t bedridden.

    Elaine to Stan: Came as a big shock when Linda told me you and Mick had reconciled.

    Elaine, speaking to Linda in October 2014: When Mick called, I thought it was a ploy to finally get me to come and see you.

    Elaine to Linda: The minute Mick said you had a migraine, I knew you were palming him off with a lie. I mean, you’re like me. Sprained ankle, migraine — you carry on like a trouper.

    Elaine: I was in that much of a rush to get here [the Vic], I forgot [my lipstick].

    Peggy Mitchell: “We can keep on doing this till the
    cows come home - going back over what's been done and dusted - but in the end, all that really matters is not what happened then, but what happens now ...”
     

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