Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries S02E07 - Blood at the Wheel

Warning: Contains spoilers!
Tonight episode kicks off with Miss Gertie Haynes leaving the VAA Lounge. The valet gives her her car keys and tells her to drive safely. She says where the fun in that.She jumps into her car and drives away as another car in the car park follows after her. As Miss Haynes drives her wheel becomes lose causing her to crash her car into a tree and killing her. The car following her stops to survey the scene.

Credits roll

Phryne, Mac and a group of ladies are playing billiards at the Adventurers Club. Phryne gives Ailsa Wilton a contribution for the rally on the coming Saturday and says it is sponsorship for the ladies team. Millie runs into the club and up to Ailsa who is her mother telling her Gerty has had an accident. 

Jack arrives at the accident scene. Hugh greets him and asks him if he has done the right thing calling him there as motor vehicle accident aren't Jacks department. Jack apprehensively goes over to the body which is covered and after removing his hat uncovers the body. He asks who it is and Phryne tells him it is Gertrude Haynes. Hugh says Phryne had called int he accident and asked for Jack's attendance. Jack is annoyed and asks Phryne if she was just passing by. Phryne tells him her club were sponsoring Gerty. Phryne tells Jack that Gerty was an excellent driver and the car was impeccably maintained wheels don't simply fall off. Jack says that depends on how recklessly the car is driven. Phryne shows Jack Gerty's scarf which is caught in the car door. She says if Gerty had been driving with it like that it would be filthy and yet it is clean. Phryne is frustrated that Jack won't entertain the idea of foul play and Jack is agitated that Phryne won't listen to his opinion. Jack asks for the next of kin and Phryne tells him it is Gerty's brother Claude. 
Phryne is at the rally when Jack arrives. She tells him they needn't have taken separate cars as he could have come with her but Jack says on police business he takes the police car. Phryne finds Claude who had just driven his car back round to his tent. Phryne introduces Jack and Claude says he won't shakes hands as he caught his under the bonnet and is hurt. He asks if Jack is checking paperwork but Jack tells Claude he isn't there about licenses and he has some bad news.

In the tent after Jack has given Claude the news. Claude is shocked and asked how the accident happened Jack tells him about the wheel and Claude says that's impossible as Gerty's car was top of the line. Jack says the police mechanic will check the vehicle over. Lachlan Pepper, the AA president arrives and introduces himself, he tells Claude he has heard the bad news and says he sponsors Claude. Jack introduces himself and says he believes they are on Mr Peppers property. Mr Pepper says he thinks the ladies will probably pull out of the race now. Phryne says and Claude too most likely but Mr Pepper seems to think Claude won't let emotions get in the way of racing as the race is important to him. Phryne says that the race was important to Gerty too but Mr Pepper says that woman are biological unsuitable to drive. Phryne asks him which part of women's biology exactly gets in the way and says she handles her Hispano-Suiza without too much trouble. 
Mr Pepper says he is standing for parliament and when he gets elected will make it the law that women may only drive in the company of a licensed male. Phryne wagers that if the women win the race then ladies can become full members of the AA. Mr Pepper agrees but says it will never happen. 
Hugh is with Dot and Millie who are watching the police mechanic inspect Gerty's car. Millie asks why it is taking so long and Hugh says engines are complex so the mechanic must be thorough that why he is working on the 'underneath bits' Millie asks if he means the gearbox, the drive shaft etc and Hugh looks confused. Millie walks away and Hugh says to Dot he's glad she doesn't drive. Dot tells him Phryne has offered to teach her as it gives a woman a glorious sense of freedom but Dot says it gives her a bad feeling in her stomach. Hugh says it is difficult, far more difficult than Dot's sewing machine and Dot says she like to see Hugh manage the sewing machine.

In the office of the mechanics Phryne asks Ailsa if she has any idea where Gerty was headed the night before. Ailsa says she thinks she went to the VAA club. Phryne asks if Gerty was meeting someone but Ailsa said she left in too much of a hurry to tell her. Ailsa says she and Gerty had had a few words as they had ordered a twin carburetor and Gerty had forgotten to pick it up and by the time she had got to the docks it had disappeared. Phryne asks if it was stolen and Ailsa says either that or one of the other teams had got wind of it and decided to take it. Millie arrives to say if they work all day and night they might get the car ready in time to race. Ailsa says even if the car was ready they don't have a driver. Phryne says Gerty would not want them to give up and they can fix the car just in case.

Dot is at the club questioning the doorman. She asks him  if Gerty was accompanied by anyone the night before and he says not that he saw. Dot asks the doorman to show her where Gerty's car was parked and Phryne attempts to sneak in but the doorman catches her and tells her she cannot go in as ladies require the invitation of a member. Phryne asks who had invited Gerty and the doorman says it is private. Phryne admits that Gerty was their friend and she believes Gerty was murdered and the doorman says there was a car that left after Gerty. It was too dark to make out the kind of car but it had a broken tail light. Phryne inspects the guttering where Gerty's car was parked and finds a wheel nut. 

Phryne and Dot return to the garage and show the wheel nut to Ailsa who says it is the same as the ones on Gerty's car. Millie says Gerty should have known and checked her wheels as the other racers are always pulling pranks on them. Ailsa says the men don't like it when they win and Phryne says they'll like it even less when they win again but Ailsa says she won't drive. Millie volunteers to drive but Ailsa says she hasn't got her license. Millie storms away and Dot follows her. Phryne tells Ailsa that if she cannot bear to drive she will step in. Phryne then asks Ailsa who could have signed Gerty into the VAA lounge. Ailsa says Gerty always had a few men on the go but Antony Rose was her latest toy. Ailsa says Antony had proposed to Gerty but Gerty turned him down. 

Phryne then goes to speak to Antony Rose. Antony shows Phryne Claude's twin carburetor. Phryne then asks Antony about his and Gerty's relationship and he says it was just a fling and he had proposed as a joke. Phryne asks if he was with her at the VAA lounge the night before but he says he wasn't there. 
That night at her house Phryne asks Mr Pepper if she can stand in for Gerty but he wont agree as he says she has too many speeding offenses. Phryne tells him that she knows his team resorted to sabotage to try to put the ladies out of the race but Mr Pepper says he had no part in any sabotage. Phryne says that may be so but it still wouldn't look good for his political career but Mr Pepper still won't agree.

That night Phryne goes to the police station to tell Jack about Claude taking the carburetor and shows him the wheel nut that was taken off Gerty's car. Jack tells Phryne that according to the coroners report Gerty was strangled and the scarf was used to cover it up. Phryne notices Jack has been drinking and asks if they can be friends again despite her driving. Jack tells her she drives too fast and is reckless. Phryne says ordinarily she would let him apologize by buying her a drink but she sees Jack has already drank a whole bottle as she finds his empty bottle in the bin so she says she will settle by him letting her sit in the interview with Claude. Jack tells her his shift finished an hour ago and bids her goodnight.
The next morning Jack and Hugh interview Claude. Jack says that Gerty regularly beat Claude in races which must be humiliating and not impress his sponsor Mr Pepper but Claude denies this. Jack asks Claude what he did to his hand and Claude says he shut it in a door. Jack pulls him up on this as he had previously stated he shut it in the bonnet of his car. Jack says he injured his hand installing the stolen carburetor but Claude denies it so Jack asks if the carburetor is not sitting in his engine now. Claude admitted it was in his car but says he did not steal it. He said he had a deal with Gerty and she was going to throw the race as her father had cut her off saying she needed to settle down so Claude paid her to throw the race. Jack asks Claude why he would need the carburetor if Gerty was going to throw the race and Claude says Gerty loved to win and he didn't trust her not to try to win.  Claude show Jack a note Gerty had signed to their agreement but tells him if he thinks Gerty's death was murder then Ailsa would have killed Gerty if she found out about the agreement they had.
Phryne goes to the garage to see Ailsa and Millie and tells them she spoke to Mr Pepper who won't let her race. Jack and Hugh arrive and ask Ailsa to accompany them to the station for questioning. Millie panics asking if her mother is under arrest and says her mother would not kill Gerty. Millie admits to removing the wheel nut and they go to the station. 

At the station Millie says she heard her mother and Gerty arguing about Gerty going to the VAA lounge and taking the car so she went to the lounge and removed the wheel nut hoping that it would scare Gerty into coming back to the garage. Jack is angry but Phryne tells Millie Gerty was killed after the accident so it is not her fault and asks if she saw anyone else at the lounge. Millie says all the racing drivers were there. She says she saw Antony's car and Mr Peppers.
That night at Phryne's house Phryne and Jack are playing draughts and she tells Jack that Antony had said he wasn't at the lounge but his car was there. Jack asks what Antony's motive would be and Phryne says that  Gerty turned down his proposal. Jack seems distracted and Phryne wins the game easily. She tells him that he is usual much better at the game and Jack tells her when he heard about the accident all her heard was Miss Fisher and a crashed motor car. He assumed that it was Phryne in the accident. Phryne says she is still there and Jack says no thanks to her driving and leaves. The same night Mr Butler is filling out a driving license for Dot whilst Cec and Burt watch on. Cec says Phryne will be pleased and Mr Butler asks if they are sure it is a Russian drivers license but they say no on will know. 
The next morning Phryne is back at the rally with Dot who is dressed as a racing driver. Phryne tells Dot she looks great and she only has to play the part until the race begins. Phryne finds Mr Pepper and introduces Dot as twice champion of the Siberia to Shanghai classic Miss Valentina. Mr Pepper asks for her credentials and they present them. Mr Pepper reluctantly agrees and then after some fake Russian Phryne tells Mr Pepper that Miss Valentina insists on seeing the track and want him to show her. 
Phryne then heads to see Antony Rose but finding her is not with his car she searches it and finds a scrap of paper and Gerty's bag. Antony catches her in the act and Phryne says such as what happened to his tail light. Antony says some idiot smashed it. Phryne tells him that's what happens when he parks on the street at the VAA lounge and asks why he lied but Antony says he didn't he wasn't there. Phryne says his car was. Antony says he was going to go in but a young lady came up to him and asked him for his autograph and he took her to a hotel. Phryne asks how Gerty's purse got in his car and Antony says he has no idea. Antony creeps up to Phryne but she hits him in throat.

Jack is questioning Antony at the station and Antony says he doesn't know how the purse got in his car. Antony says someone must have been using his car. Phryne shows Jack the note which she found in Gertys purse which says 'Gerty we must discuss this. Do not act in haste. If you do no hear me out I promise you will regret it' Antony says he did not write it and shows a sample of his handwriting that doesn't match the note. He says the Gerty turned him down because someone better came along and she was going overseas. 
Claude is talking to Dot in her disguise as Valentina. Phryne arrives and asks Claude to show Valentina around. When they are gone Phryne brings Cec and Burt over to take the carburetor out but it has already gone. Phryne looks for it but just finds a note from Pepper and some gloves. Mr Pepper comes to her house that night and accuses her of skulking around his marquee and tells her to return the carburetor as the race is the next day and it is time to be serious. Phryne tells him her team do not have it and shes heard about the kind of hi-jinx that go on in racing circles. Phryne asks him about the parties and so forth that go on in racing circle but Mr Pepper says he doesn't have time for things like that with work, his presidency of the VAA and his political aspirations. Phryne says she is confused considering the note he sent Gerty. Mr Pepper states it is a forgery but Phryne tells him it matches his hand exactly. Pepper accuses her of blackmail and says they had a fling but it meant nothing. He tells Phryne what he told Gerty 'she'll get no money from him' and leaves. 

Jack arrives as Mr Pepper leaves and Phryne asks Jack how he found out Pepper wrote the letter. Jack says he went to the VAA lounge and saw it was Pepper that had invited Gerty in. He says the bartender saw Gerty and Pepper arguing. Jack says he asked the hotel manager who says Antony's story checks out as he thinks he saw Antony but he intends to question Pepper. Jack leaves as Phryne is looking through a scrap book of Gerty's achievements. She stops on an article about Gerty's return to racing after a 6 month hiatus.
Phryne takes Mac and breaks into the morgue. Mac inspects the body and agrees with the murder. Phryne asks if the post-mortem talks about operations etc. She says the coroner references a abdominal scar that could be a hysterectomy. Mac says it was more likely a cesarean as Gerty had stretch marks. 

The next morning Phryne goes to the station and tells Jack about Gerty's pregnancy. Showing his the scrap book. Phryne says thats why Gerty would have been blackmailing Pepper as they have an illegitimate child together and this would affect Peppers political career. Phryne then dashes off to the race and Jack looks over the scrap book. He notice the scrap of paper from Antony car that Phryne had been using as a bookmark and calls births, deaths and marriages to confirm the birth. 
Phryne is at the race. Dot is in the car with Burt how drives her out onto the track leaving Phryne alone with Ailsa in the garage. Phryne questions Ailsa about Gerty's comeback and says she knows Millie is Gerty's daughter. Ailsa says Millie has been her daughter since the day she was born as Gerty had a choice and chose racing. Phryne ask why Ailsa had argued with Gerty and Ailsa says Gerty wanted to use Millie to get to Peppers money and she wanted to take Millie away overseas. Phryne tells Ailsa Millie had overheard there argument and so undid the wheel nut as she thought they were arguing about Gerty taking the car. Ailsa says Millie didn't kill Gerty and she was furious at the thought of Gerty taking Millie away. She said she went to the VAA to talk to Gerty but Gerty sped off so she followed in Antony's car and when Gerty crashed she strangled her and made it look like an accident then she took Millie's birth certificate and destroyed it. Ailsa says she want to explain everything to Millie and asks Phryne to turn her in after the race but at that moment Jack arrives. Phryne tells Ailsa to leave and holds Jack up. Jack goes to follow Ailsa and Phryne quickly changes. 

Mr Pepper announces two minutes to the race and Dot looks worries Burt tells Miss Valentina she has forgotten her goggles and Dot/Valentina goes to get them. She dashes into the women's marquee and finds Millie dressed ready to race. Dot asks where Phryne is but Millie says she doesn't know and someone needs to race so she goes to the car. Phryne bursts into the tent but Dot tells her Millie has already taken her place so they go to watch the race. At that moment Claude dashes in to tell them Antony had taken the twin carburetor so Phryne tells him she will race for him. The race starts and Phryne overtakes Antony on a corner. They come to a large puddle and Phryne skids her car to a halt blocking the path  of Antony and allowing Millie to win the race. Ailsa is at the finish line to congratulate her.

Later at the police station Jack and Ailsa exit the interview room and Phryne and Millie are waiting for them. Millie runs to Ailsa and Ailsa says she is sorry. Phryne says she will make sure Millie is looked after. Then Mr Pepper walks in and says he wants to lodge a complaint for unlicensed driving and driving under false pretenses. He says the women's team is disqualified and tells Phryne she has lost his wager. Phryne tells him he could use the opportunity to admit his daughter as the first female member of the VAA.

That night Jack goes to visit Phryne and returns a stocking that Phryne had stuck in his exhaust pipe to slow him up. Phryne says although they have some contention they enjoy working together. Jack tells her that when he thought it was Phryne in the accident he found it unbearable. Phryne says she cannot change and Jack says he will never ask her to change. So asks if he is giving her up. She says if he did that she would feel as if it were him lying in the wreckage and asks him to think about it. Jack says he will and leaves. 

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