Ziggy Astoni (2017-present)
Date of Birth: 30th March 1998
Occupation: Waitress; Garage Admin/Apprentice Mechanic
Ziggy first appeared running into the toilet at a community centre in the city and asking Brody to hide her. It turned out the person she was hiding from was her father Ben, who had had the police in touch saying Ziggy had stolen a neighbour’s car. Ben had covered for her but was frustrated to learn that Ziggy and her boyfriend Jarrod actually had taken the car for a joy ride. Ziggy had refused to go to uni after leaving school and been fired from a job as a waitress for hitting a customer that she insisted had groped her. Ben and her mother Maggie decided the family needed to go and visit Maggie’s mother Diana. Ziggy tried to refuse to go but acqueised when Ben threatened to tell the burly Mr Anderson what she had done to his car.
Ziggy met Brody a second time when they stopped at Summer Bay, filling him in on her situation. When the car broke down, they were forced to stay at the caravan park. Ziggy dragged her sister Coco out to Salt and stole Kat’s wallet to pay for their meal, only to be arrested when it turned out Kat was a police officer. She was let off with a warning. Ben had to stick around for a week to repair a water tank he had damaged and, eager to avoid one of Diana’s lectures about the proper way for a lady to conduct herself, Ziggy voted to stay with him.
Ziggy was less than thrilled when Maggie insisted she and Coco join her on a tour of the town with John and Marilyn, especially when she found out John had recently been convicted of arson. When Ben and Maggie decided to stay another week and Jarrod failed to answer her calls, Ziggy stole the Salt van to get to the city, unaware Brody was asleep inside. When he woke up, he refused to drive her to the city or let her hitch-hike but did cover for her with Kat and talked her into going back to the Bay. With the rest of the family wanting to stick around for the rest of the school holidays, Ziggy accepted she could go a bit longer without seeing Jarrod and went for a swim with Brody.
When Ben and Maggie announced they were buying the farm house and moving to Summer Bay, Ziggy refused to stay with them and asking Brody to drive her to the city. She planned to stay with Jarrod but found him in bed with another girl so returned to her parents. She spoke with Brody about a job at Salt and, when he tried to tell her about his past, said it didn’t matter and kissed him. However, when Ben and Maggie told her Brody had a drug problem, she agreed to stay away from him, although she objected to Coco spying on her. After Mason questioned her cutting Brody dead, she told Brody she couldn’t get past his drug use. Nevertheless, she went to the hospital on hearing he had been in a car crash but he sent her away. She befriended Olivia after opening her car for her when she locked the keys inside, then began spending time with Brody as a friend despite his drug relapse.
She made a half-hearted attempt to find a job then stole Ben’s credit card to go for lunch with Olivia, Hunter and VJ, ending up at odds not just with her parents but also Coco, who had a crush on VJ. The incident caused her to try and grow up, presenting her CV to local businesses and getting a part-time admin job at the garage. She immediately annoyed Ash by promising a car would be fixed but pointed out he’d forgotten to put it in gear. She was then approached by Brody’s old dealer Will Zannis, who ended up kidnapping her. He took her to a motel where she was threatened into luring Brody there so he could be captured too. Zannis planned to kill them both with drug overdoses and make it look like an accident. They were rescued by Kat and Robbo, but the experience prompted Ziggy to distance herself from Brody again.
However, she began having panic attacks and flashbacks. She told Ben and Maggie she was going to get counselling but instead talked it over with Brody and then kissed him before consummating their relationship in her car. She confided in Irene and Olivia, also helping Olivia set up her design website by acting as a model, and continued seeing Brody in secret. They were then caught out by Justin. Brody told her they needed to tell Ben and Ziggy asked for a week to lay the groundwork. She kept putting it off but Ben and Maggie worked it out anyway and a blazing row resulted in Ziggy leaving the house and spending the night at the Morgans’. She was willing to stay away from home until Ben accepted them but Brody refused to break up a family and ended their relationship.
When Coco tried to get the family to air their feelings, Ziggy was unable to be honest then went to her room and looked at clippings about Maggie being attacked years earlier. Irene tipped her off to the fact Brody was in court over thefts he had committed during his addiction and she went there to support him. After he got off with a suspended sentence, she suggested they be friends again but he felt it was best they keep their distance. She was furious with Raffy when she gave Maggie a scare at school, making Coco suspicious. Coco forced her to admit that she was one of a group of students that had broken into their old school after hours and it was her then-boyfriend Pete who had injured Maggie; however, she emotionally blackmailed Coco into keeping quiet.
When she learned that Coco was hiding something from their parents and Leah knew, she used it to apply more pressure, then learned the secret was that Coco was bulimic. Coco told her that keeping quiet about what she’d done had put more pressure on her and she wasn’t going to do it anymore, prompting Ziggy to skip town. She ended up in a bar in the city where a stranger, Curtis, spiked her drink. She refused to leave with Olivia when she tracked her down, then Curtis took her into an alley to assault her. She was rescued by Brody but when Ben saw her in a state he punched Brody, resulting in both him and Curtis being charged. Ziggy finally confessed to her parents about her role in the break-in. She wrongly blamed Brody when Ben was charged with assault. Ziggy explained the situation with Maggie to Olivia and hit on the idea of buying an olive tree for her on the grounds she’d need lots of branches. They arrived home to find Mick Jennings in the house but Ben threw him out. She and Maggie then bonded by planting the tree together.
She immediately had to deal with Diana turning up, having to give up her room. She tried to help Ben organise an anniversary surprise for Maggie despite Diana constantly pre-empting them and helped Mason out at the garage by fixing a loose exhaust, then found money hidden in the car. She wanted to keep it until they also found a gun, at which point she convinced Mason to put it back and let the customer, Judy Lawson, take it, although Justin ended up finding out about the money. She received a scare when she was approached by an erratically behaving Mick, knocking him down and running to the Diner. She was horrified when Diana planned to move to Summer Bay and begged Coco to stop her, having to give Coco her iPad and do her chores in return.
She had a cooking lesson with Brody, which Mason and Raffy ended up gate-crashing, and helped Brody fix the oven at the Diner with him volunteering to cook dinner for her family as a thank you. Despite being tense, the incident earned Maggie’s approval and helped convince Justin to give her a job as an apprentice. Then Jarrod turned up and Ziggy arranged for him to hide at the motel. He convinced her to take Willow’s old Triumph for a “test drive” with him but she pulled away when he tried to kiss her. Olivia confessed that she had cheated on Hunter with her boss Axel Boyd, and when Ziggy learned that Hunter was planning to propose to Olivia, she threatened to tell him if Olivia didn’t. Olivia responded by ending their friendship and when Hunter asked her to take part in the proposal video he was planning, Ziggy simply told him they’d had a falling out. She avoided Jarrod but was frustrated by her lack of choice in relationships, and tipped Coco off to the fact that Ryder liked her. Shetried to get Olivia to be honest with Hunter before he proposed and let Jarrod accompany her to the re-opening of Salt but told him nothing would happen between them, having realised she loved Brody. After she helped Brody get the party going after Hunter’s failed proposal, Ben gave his blessing for them to be together.
After spending the night with Brody, she learned Maggie had been taken to hospital and needed a biopsy. When she learned Hunter still wanted to marry Olivia, she told him about her cheating. She and Coco guessed that Maggie had cancer after a day on the beach. She paid Ryder and Raffy to take Coco out so Ben and Maggie could get the test results on their own, then joined the rest of the family in accompanying Maggie to her first chemotherapy session. After taking her and Coco home, Brody asked her to move in with him and she said she’d think about it. He wanted the two of them to rent the Diner flat together so Ziggy got Ben to reject his application, although she later admitted she wasn’t ready to move in with him. She and Coco were forced to face up to how serious Maggie’s condition was after a chat with Raffy.
She helped Brody and Coco organise a birthday breakfast for Maggie in Ben’s absence, then learned Ben was due in court for the assault on Brody. She agreed to keep it from Maggie and accompanied her to a hospital appointment while Ben was in court. She gave Coco fashion advice before her first proper date with Ryder and made a point of telling the rest of the family about it. She also made up with Olivia. She helped Brody look after Ava for the day but was thrown when he told her she’d make a great mum. When she challenged him about it, he told her he wasn’t looking to have children but would in a few years. She then helped Ben apply for a labouring job.
She spent her birthday with Brody, guessing her family were preparing a surprise party. When she arrived home to find the house empty, she believed she was wrong until she found everyone waiting to surprise her in the back garden. On being told Maggie needed a stem cell transplant and she was a possible match, she immediately agreed to be tested. While having injections to stimulate the stem cells, she was hospitalised with food poisoning but recovered enough to give the donation. She also convinced Coco to go to a camp for children of cancer sufferers. When Ben got drunk after his first day at work, Ziggy had to get him home and she and Brody made him and Maggie a special dinner after he missed Maggie’s attempt.
She was left alone running the garage when Justin disappeared off on lunch and never returned and gave Ebony Harding permission to take her car after a service. When Ebony apparently crashed into a tree after her brakes failed, Ziggy worried she had missed something. She handled the clippers when Maggie decided to shave her hair off and learned Ebony was suing the garage over her apparent injuries, helping Justin and Brody work out a strategy. When Maggie was hospitalised again, it was discovered that the stem cell transplant didn’t work and Ziggy blamed herself.
She shared a girls’ night with Coco while their parents were away, but on their return found some letters Maggie had written for them all in case she died. She read hers and learned Maggie was worried about not being at her wedding. With help from Marilyn and Coco, she proposed to Brody with a banner outside the surf club. Brody initially accepted but was put out when he overheard Maggie asking her if it was because of the letter. He initially called the engagement off but later changed his mind and unveiled a banner outside the surf club accepting the proposal. She agreed to everything Maggie suggested for the wedding until Ben convinced her to make it more personal, at which point she asked if she could arrive in a hot rod and came up with several other ideas. She decided they should get married in two weeks during Maggie’s break from chemo and had a shock when she temporarily lost the wedding money (which had actually been stolen by Willow and replaced by Dean). She learned Maggie had given up treatment and considered calling off the wedding, but eventually decided to go ahead with it and hope she could talk Maggie around afterwards.
She had a sedate hen party with Maggie, Coco and Olivia, before she and Olivia walked in on Brody being used as a stripper’s prop at Salt. Ziggy simply filmed the encounter but later admitted to Maggie she was having jitters. However, a text from Brody next morning dispelled her doubts and she went ahead with it.
Brody surprised Ziggy with a honeymoon on a houseboat but she disliked his plans for a hiking trip, preferring to remain on the boat together, so removed the fuse from the engine only to accidentally drop it overboard. She then heard that Maggie was in hospital and Ben had to rent a small boat to collect her, where she helped convince Maggie to resume treatment. She was furious when Diana wanted to send Maggie away for a medical trial and challenged her over it. Brody moved in with her but she was reluctant to make room for his things, insisting on keeping a surfing trophy she won at a camp on display rather than his framed review. She cleared the air with Diana after Maggie was found a donor and was given a $5000 holiday voucher. However, she and Brody decided to wait to use it since it would be months before they knew if the stem cell donation was a success. She took it upon herself to coach Coco before her first date back with Ryder and learned she was considering sleeping with him. She began befriending Dean, convincing Willow to talk to him and talking him out of using some forged credit cards. She also cleaned up the house prior to Maggie coming home. Dean protected her and Brody when Brett Dwyer’s gang tried to rob Salt by hiding them in the storeroom.
She accepted that she and Brody needed to move out of her parents’ place but was unimpressed when he suggested they move into a dirty and dilapidated flat in the Morgans’ garden. However, when Ben and Brody prettied it up for her, she instantly fell in love with it. Despite thinking it was terrible, she happily accepted a painting Maggie had done as a housewarming present. She upset Brody by staying out most of the night convincing Dean to take a job at the garage, where she was impressed by his car knowledge. When Brody cancelled a picnic to do work at Salt, she got drunk with Dean at the garage. Brody took her home but she drunkenly called him suffocating. She refused to forget about it the following morning, saying he expected her to fit in with his plans. They accepted they needed to compromise.
When the family had a meal to celebrate Maggie’s cancer markers being down, Ziggy was impressed to learn Brody played the guitar and he explained his mother Kate taught him, although Ziggy was unable to help with the conflicted feelings it produced and he snapped at her again after giving the family cooking lessons. Justin told her that Brody had witnessed their parents’ murder and Ziggy spoke to Brody, convincing him that cooking and playing guitar was honouring Kate’s memory. She and Maggie organised an online promotional campaign for the health food dishes at Salt which resulted in a reviewer, Stephen Brown, turning up just after the stove had blown up. Ziggy stalled him while Brody and Maggie cooked the food at the Diner. She accompanied her family to hospital when Maggie had a bruise but it resulted in her getting the all clear.
On learning Brody had missed out on appearing in Coastal Breaks during Maggie and Raffy’s medical difficulties, Ziggy arranged for Leah to feature him in her vlog. She tried to cheer up Maggie with a surprise champagne breakfast but only managed to stress her out more. Coco then summoned her to deal with Ben and Maggie destressing by coming up with crazy plans for their future. She and Leah convinced Brody to do another vlog showcasing recipes for epileptics but this managed to upset Raffy because of them making her diagnosis public. She helped delete the video of Raffy having a fit from her account. She was highly critical of Justin telling Willow to stay away from Dean. Annoyed that Dean had quit the garage, she told him he had a job at the board shop without clearing it with Ben although Ben eventually agreed. However, when Ben left Dean in charge of the shop for the day, Ziggy spent all her time hanging around keeping an eye on him only to find both Ben and Alf agreed with his ideas.
She agreed to stop giving Willow a hard time when Brody told her she had nearly started gambling and upset Maggie by trying to get her to tell her cancer story for a vlog advertising a fundraiser. When Willow told her she felt guilty for misunderstanding Justin’s intentions, Ziggy told her she was right to be angry with him, prompting a furious reaction from Justin which in turn prompted a furious reaction from Ben. Ziggy ended up arguing with Brody about her getting involved and made him sleep on the sofa. Ben reminded her she wouldn’t let anyone criticise her family, by which time Brody was spending time with fellow food enthusiast Simone Bedford. Ziggy became jealous of their friendship, struggling to trust Brody. She was unhappy to find them happily trying out recipes after being locked in the store room together and tried to set Simone up with Mason to take her mind off Brody. When that failed, she decided to befriend Simone herself. However, she soon clashed when Simone ignored her hints to move on and was found to have a photo of herself with Brody on her phone. She was further concerned when Dean agreed there was something going on but eventually decided to trust Brody and withdrew her objections to Simone working with him. She felt guilty when Simone left anyway and Brody was left short-staffed, helping him out at Salt. However, Brody sent her to Colby and Chelsea’s wedding reception.
On her return, she reminded him it was the one year anniversary of Ben giving them permission to be together. Brody seemed reluctant to mark it, only agreeing to a walk on the beach and bailing on her when she suggested a swim. She was thrown to find Simone was still in town and Brody had offered her a job. With Brody claiming he was busy, Ziggy ended up joining Maggie on the second lap of a charity marathon only to collapse from heat stroke. She soon recovered but was bothered that Brody kept avoiding her until he surprised her with a dinner.
She reciprocated by arranging a date night and was pleased to learn Simone had quit Salt only to find Maggie had given her a job as a support teacher. Ziggy was annoyed, seeing it as giving Simone an excuse to stay in town. Brody asked her what she saw as their future and she suggested it was time for them to buy their own house. She cashed in the honeymoon vouchers in order to use the money for a deposit and was supportive of Tori when she revealed she was pregnant. She helped Dean borrow one of Ben’s power tools to break into a letter box to retrieve a letter he’d posted while sleepwalking. She mentioned to Brody that she wanted a family one day but then found Brody and Simone in a state of undress in her caravan. With Brody choosing Simone, Ziggy moved back home.
She initially refused to see Brody when he showed up at the farm but, after chatting with Dean, she went to the cottage. However, she was left frustrated again when it became clear Brody had given up on their marriage and there was nothing she could do to save it. She was convinced to go back to work despite tension with Justin, who had kept quiet about the affair. When she saw Brody having a picnic with Simone, she punched him and tried to convince Maggie to sack Simone, although the fact that Justin let her keep her job at the garage saw things start to thaw between them. She wasn’t up to spending time with her family on her birthday but accepted Dean’s offer of beers at his caravan. She tried to seduce him only to be left humiliated when he rejected her. Willow took her home but next day Dean’s attempt to clear the air ended in a shouting match. However, she admitted the truth to Ben and Maggie and defended Dean when Brody had a go at him for being rude to Simone, repairing their friendship.
She used Dean finishing community service and Willow qualifying as a personal trainer as an excuse to go out clubbing and ended up drunkenly bombarding Brody with texts and selfies showing she was having a good time, which she regretted in the morning. However, she continued spending most of her nights out drinking. Justin sent her home from work when she turned up drunk and Maggie suspected her of vandalising Simone’s office door at school, writing “HOMEWRECKER” (although it turned out Bella was responsible). Against Ben, Maggie and Dean’s advice, she spent the day with a group of youths staying at the caravan park. When one of them, Mark, propositioned her, she turned him down but he refused to take no for an answer and Dean had to step in. Next morning, she learned the youths had beaten up Dean in retaliation. She tended to his wounds and tearfully apologised. Dean bought her a wreck of a car to do up in order to give her a distraction.
She received another jolt when she learned Brody had put Salt up for sale in order to leave town with Simone, having repeatedly put it before her, and then asked her to discuss a divorce. She initially refused, then suggested simply splitting their joint account 50/50. Brody offered her half of the sale of Salt but she refused, instead taking all the savings and leaving him the Salt money. Maggie gave her information on a charity car rally, suggesting she enter next year, but she instead decided to enter that year’s rally, despite only having two days’ preparation, roping in Dean, Colby, Willow and Bella to help get the car ready and asking Dean to partner her. She took Bella stowing away in their car in her stride and soon developed a rivalry with another couple, Paul and Tanya, learning during a night chatting to them that Paul had terminal cancer. Dean kissed her but she failed to respond. Their journey the next day was awkward until they found out Paul and Tanya had left seafood in their engine. While getting cleaned up, they ended up having sex and decided to stay on and do the rest of the rally.
Things became awkward when they got back to the Bay and Ziggy confided in a visiting Coco before going to see Dean and renewing the relationship although they had to get through Bella’s opposition. They spent the night together at hers while her parents were away in the city and continued to have secret liaisons at the house. When Brody told her he and Simone were moving to Melbourne, she refused to accept his offer of their wedding album or discuss it with Ben, Maggie or Dean. She eventually admitted to Dean that, despite everything, she was upset at Brody going and accepted Maggie taking possession of the album. When Dean stayed the night with her, Ben and Maggie insisted they all have breakfast together the next morning.
She accidentally exposed Maggie’s plan to trick Ben into having dinner with Justin but did convince Ben to forgive him as she had done. She was stunned to find a bag full of cash in Dean’s van and he explained it had been a pay-off from his father, Rick Booth, to stop anyone finding out Dean was his son. She then learned new Salt owner Mackenzie was Dean’s half-sister and encouraged him to get to know her. She was told by Justin that she had passed her Tafe course and was now a second year apprentice and volunteered to work at the board shop so Ben had time to work on a large board order at home, taking part in a council to discuss speeding up the process.
Dean confided in her that Mackenzie was blackmailing Rick over him, although she was frustrated that he wouldn’t let her meet his mother Karen. She convinced Dean to spend time with Rick and they went out to his launch together. However, she became mistrustful of Rick when he tried to convince her to keep Dean away from Mackenzie, letting Dean know. Ben was then arrested for drug trafficking after a third party used his boards to transport drugs. With Rick threatening to charge Dean with assault, Ziggy convinced Dean to give in to his terms.
She tried to broker peace between Ben and Maggie and also between Dean and Mackenzie. When Bella was having a hard time coping with her assault, Ziggy joined Willow in taking her to the farm and talking her round. She tried to motivate Ben but was left shocked when he made her a new board only to smash it in frustration when she fell off it. She then learned Ben had moved out to the caravan park after an ultimatum from Maggie; she went to see him but he told her he needed space. She convinced Maggie to ring a depression helpline to find out how best to help Ben. She learned Dean’s mother Karen was back in town and had an awkward first meeting with her, although they slowly began to bond. She defended Karen when Dean accused her of faking a faint and was bemused when, before leaving town, Karen gave her permission to have her grandchildren. However, it freaked out Dean who told her he was never going to have children, since he was too worried of inheriting Karen’s schizoaffective disorder. Ziggy told him that whatever happened she’d stand by him.
Ziggy tried to cheer up Ben and help Dean start up his surf school business by getting Ben to give free lessons, but he saw it as charity. She was concerned when Maggie promptly gave him an ultimatum but Ben agreed to see a doctor and Ziggy and Maggie accompanied him to the hospital. She booked several surf lessons for Dean without telling him, causing him to lose his temper with her. She didn’t help matters by then cancelling his shifts at Salt so he’d have free time. She joined the rest of the family in celebrating when the charges against Ben were dropped and helped set up the board shop when it reopened. When Dean gained a new student, Jade Lennox, Ziggy was worried about how flirtatious she was and asked Dean to drop her. Dean agreed and Ziggy was pleased that he took her concerns seriously.
She heard back from a job she’d applied for months earlier with a race track pit crew, offering her a trial. She spoke to Dean but he told her it was her choice so she went. She was given a hard time by pit boss Kurt but was encouraged by driver Alana Bentley, who turned out to be Kurt’s wife. However, she was horrified when Dean turned up unexpectedly. She quickly backtracked and asked him to wait until lunch but he decided to leave and she rang Ben to ask him to keep an eye on him. Shortly after her return, she learned she hadn’t got the job. When she discovered Dean hadn’t wanted her to go, she claimed to be happy with the outcome. However, when she was offered the job after the other candidate dropped out, she automatically accepted it, which she kept from Dean. She planned to tell him over a romantic meal but he didn’t turn up and was dismissive when she phoned him. She was due to leave town the next day and went to the caravan park to tell him, only to learn he already knew. He ended the relationship and she drove out of town.
After a visit from Ben and Maggie, Ziggy tried to phone Dean but a woman, Carla, answered his phone so she went to a party. She invited another mechanic, Joe, back to her motel room and kissed him but instantly regretted it. She quit her job and went back to Summer Bay, but Dean was unhappy when she told him what had happened. On learning of the hostage situation at the hospital and that Dean was there, she went to join Willow waiting for news outside.