Ryder Jackson (Lukas Radovich) has been walking on air since becoming involved with newcomer Jade Lennox (Mia Morrissey), but next week his conscience causes him to get on the wrong side of her—and it seems that’s not a good place to be.
Arriving in Summer Bay four weeks ago, Jade first had her eyes set on surfing instructor Dean Thompson, but when his loyalty to Ziggy proved to be impenetrable, she eventually settled for Ryder who was smitten from the moment he first saw her.
After helping her score a job at Salt, the new friends spent some time hanging out and partying before kissing in the storeroom at work.
Ryder’s Aunt Roo has already witnessed a different side to Jade, being at the receiving end of Jade’s snideness as she turned down Roo’s invitation to dinner. When this caused Jade to drop out on her planned date with Ryder, he angrily confronted Roo who explained that she was simply trying to be friendly.
Luckily for Ryder, Jade changed her mind and when he went back to her van, she invited him in for the night and he lost his virginity to her.
However reality starts to set in for Ryder next week when he spots her pocketing $50 during a shift at Salt. Questioning Jade she tells him that it was a tip, but Ryder remains unconvinced.
When Mackenzie queries the till being down at the end of the evening, Ryder covers for Jade by pulling out a $50 note and explaining that he’d put it in his pocket during a busy period, and Mackenzie is none the wiser.
When Ryder again questions Jade about the money, she deflects by inviting him to spend the night in her van again, and Ryder follows like a lovesick puppy.
Speaking to Australian magazine TV Week, Lukas Radovich said “This is Ryder’s first real relationship out of high school. He’s being led down a path that’s exciting for him but also daunting.“
“He thinks Jade could be his great love,” Lukas continued. “That overpowers his intelligence and maturity in the situation.“
As Ryder basks in the afterglow the next morning, he still can’t let it go. When Jade angrily asks whether he’s accusing her of stealing, he says that it could just have been a mistake on her part.
Jade reacts by throwing him out of the caravan before he’s even had chance to get dressed.
“You certainly can’t trust everything that comes out of Jade’s mouth, no matter how genuine it might seem” Mia Morrissey told New Idea magazine.
“Jade wants to have fun and money to spend, but she doesn’t want to have to work for it” she continued. “She’s gotten by with people giving her things – with people handing things to her because she’s so charming. And she’s not about to make an exception now. She doesn’t see taking the money as a big deal.”
Unwilling to allow his illusions to be shattered, Ryder later goes back and asks why she stole the money—surely she must have a good reason?
She initially blows him off by saying he wouldn’t understand as he’s just a child. But later on she tearfully tells him that she is sending money back home to her unemployed mother and little sister.
A concerned Ryder says he’ll help out by asking Alf to give Jade an extension on her caravan rent, but is Jade just playing him….?
See below for a video slideshow for next week’s episodes, together with the full set of synopses.
Monday 17th February
Willow and Ziggy hold off telling important news to Dean, with disastrous consequences. Bella feigns sickness in order to manipulate Colby.
Tuesday 18th February
Willow gets to the bottom of Dean’s negative reaction to her relationship news. Bella continues to play the “sick” card and Maggie and Roo agree to home-school her.
Wednesday 19th February
Ryder discovers Jade isn’t as precious as she seems. Tori’s road to recovery hits a pothole. Everyone tries to limit Dean’s self-destructive behaviour.
Thursday 20th February
Justin faces an impossible choice over Tori’s transfer. Jasmine and Robbo believe moving Tori is a risk. Ryder discovers a different side to Jade, but is she playing him?
Friday 21st February
Summer Bay prays for a miracle as Tori’s medical team attempts to bring her out of the coma. John and Marilyn renew their commitment to their marriage.