> Guest Character
Jess Fielding Elisha
[Jess] Fielding 2001
Jess joined the year
12 class at Erinsborough High with a huge chip already present on her shoulder. She arrived at a time when
Tad was just returning after making the decision to quit school and work as a builder. Tad quickly believed
he stood a chance with the new girl, but she made it clear that she was no pushover, speaking back to her
teachers and making a firm enemy of Susan Kennedy. Although Susan was at first eager to help Jess with extra
classes, it was obvious that Jess had no interest in academic success.
When Jess finally agreed
to a date with Tad, it quickly became clear that it was on her terms. The pair were assigned a piece of work
to do together and Tad was shocked when he went to Jess’ home and realised how wealthy her family were. While
Tad and Jess got closer, the reasons behind her erratic behaviour emerged. It seemed that her sister, Mary,
had recently given birth and her parents were pretty much ignoring her and spending all their time with Mary
and the new baby. As Jess grew in confidence at the school, her behaviour worsened and when the school received
a bomb threat, Jess was immediately a prime suspect. The following week, a bomb actually went off in a bin on
the school playing field and Jess found that Susan was straight on her case about it. Even Tad and Paul were
suspicious about why Jess hadn’t been around that day and had been making suspect phone calls, but the truth
later came out when it was revealed that Flick’s stalker, Colin Rogers, had actually been behind the incident.
Jess was angry at everyone
who had accused her and, a few days later, she ended up in a physical fight with Mrs Kennedy. When Susan gave
her a C+ in an assignment, Jess felt hard done by and confroned the teacher in front of everyone. Susan was not
riled however and, after the class, she took Jess aside to ask her about her behaviour. Jess got more and more
worked up, until she violently lashed out at Susan and, as Susan put her arm up to defend herself, Jess fell
to the ground. The troublemaker quickly made sure word got out about the attack and her mother threatened to
file a complaint. With the investigation under way, Susan was suspended, while Tad tried to get through to Jess,
desperate to know why she was pursuing a threat which could ruin Susan’s career. In the end, Jess was forced to
admit that Susan wasn’t to blame and she dropped the complaint, meaning Susan could be reinstated.
Shortly afterwards, Jess turned
up at number 30, where Tad was staying while Harold was in Paris, asking to stay. It seemed that she’d had a huge
bust-up with her parents and was determined to go home. Under pressure from Toadie and Dee, Tad talked Jess into
phoning home and she managed to patch things up. However, it seemed that she was now becoming too serious for Tad
and he realised that he couldn’t cope with someone so problematic, so he ended their relationship once and for all.