Kirsten Gannon 2007-2008
Kirsten Gannon Nikola Dubois
Born: c. 1981
Children: Michael [Mickey]
Family Tree: Gannon
Occupation: Hairdresser, Barmaid & Waitress, Lassiter's Receptionist, Trainee Duty Manager
Growing up in Oakey, Kirsten Gannon fell pregnant after sleeping with boyfriend Ned Parker at their year 10 formal. Soon after, her parents died and she was taken in by her grandparents, who helped to look after her and her baby boy, Michael. When Mickey was eight years old, Kirstenís grandparents both passed away and she slowly began to realise that she couldnít cope on her own. Kirsten returned to Oakey to look for Ned and, after getting his address in Erinsborough from his brother, Stuart, she went to pay him a visit. After explaining everything, Kirsten introduced a shell-shocked Ned to his son, before announcing that she needed some time alone, to grieve for her grandparents, and would return to collect Mickey in a few days. Unable to contact Kirsten, Ned was unsure if she really was coming back, but she kept to her word and returned a few days later. However, her return was brief and, after taking Mickey to the park for the day, she explained to Ned that she needed more time to get herself together and, for the time being, it was Nedís turn to care for their son.
A couple of months later, Kirsten was back in Erinsborough, unsettled to hear that Mickey was now living with Ned and his girlfriend, Janae Timmins. Worried that she might lose him completely, she visited lawyer Toadie Rebecchi, who tried to explain to her that the courts would probably give temporary residency to Ned, since Mickey was now settled with him, but when Kirsten found out that Toadie was a good friend of Ned's, she warned him that he couldn't break the lawyer-client confidentiality, or she would sue him. Realising that Kirsten might be about to snatch her son back, Toadie tried to get a message to Ned but failed to get there in time, and Kirsten was already telling Mickey that they were going to be leaving Erinsborough, to go on a little adventure.
As Ned and Janae arrived home, Toadie's girlfriend Steph turned up to warn them of Kirsten's intentions, but they were all surprised to find Mickey at the house, as he'd come back to collect his dog, Jake. Ned headed down the street, where Kirsten was waiting, and she assured him that she had no intention to snatch her son away, so naive Ned agreed to mother and son going off for a drive together, but returning home for dinner. As Ned watched Kirsten and Mickey drive away, Janae ran out to join him, having learnt that Kirsten had a flat and job in Adelaide and was planning to return there. But, as Mickey became concerned as they got further and further from home, Kirsten had a change of heart and realised that she couldn't take him under those circumstances, so they returned to Ramsay Street. She had another trick up her sleeve, and, after speaking to lawyer Tim Collins, Kirsten got some time alone with Mickey at the park and mentioned to him that Ned wouldn't really miss him that much, as he had Janae, whereas she had nobody and would be lonely on her own. Swayed by this, Mickey announced to his dad that he wanted to go and live in Adelaide, but after spending the day saying goodbye to his friends in Erinsborough, Mickey was confused to see both Ned and Janae crying. He told Janae what Kirsten had said to him, and before Kirsten knew what was happening, Ned had announced that she clearly didn't have her son's best interests at heart and that his son would be staying with him.
Kirsten wasn't quite prepared to give up that easily, however, and arranged a birthday party for him in the park. When she noticed that Ned seemed to have forgotten his son's big day, she mentioned it to Tim, who encouraged her not to say anything, as it would be a much-needed black mark against Ned and Janae. As Ned arrived at the park with Mickey, he quickly realised his mistake, but luckily Janae had noticed the date in her diary, and arrived laden with gifts just in time. Still looking for something to hold against Ned, Tim then turned his attentions to Janae, realising that her short temper might help them out. Kirsten easily managed to provoke Janae, saying that Mickey would always be her bond with Ned and that Janae was nothing but a criminal, like the rest of her family. Janae snapped and threw a glass of water over Kirsten and it got worse when Mickey found out, and turned on Ned and Janae, telling them that he hated them, only hours before they were all due at the hospital, to see the family court psychologist for an assessment of Mickey's temporary custody.
The morning meeting with family court psychologist Paula Beeman went well and Kirsten was in good spirits as she met Tim for lunch. Unfortunately, as she thanked him for all of his help, she misread the situation and tried to kiss him, only to be rejected. Back at the hospital, things got worse when Kirsten learnt that Mickey had decided that he'd rather stay with Ned and Janae, and that Paula would be suggesting them for custody, with shared access. Left alone with Mickey for a moment, Kirsten finally snapped and ran from the hospital with him. Whilst waiting at some roadworks, Kirsten realised that Ned and Janae weren't far behind, and ended up running a red light to get away from them, before heading to a travel agent, where she booked bus tickets to Brisbane. Mickey managed to get word back to Ned and Janae about where he was and, before long, they were at the bus station, where Mickey begged his mum to change her mind, as he wanted to stay in Erinsborough, with his dad and Janae and his new friends. Kirsten broke down, realising that she'd gone too far and later apologised to everyone. She decided that she needed some time to sort her head out and so would return to Adelaide for a while, before making a permanent move to Erinsborough, so that she could still be close to her little boy.
Some weeks later, with a job finalised and a room at a friend's place, Kirsten returned to Erinsborough, immediately causing trouble by turning up a few days early, before Ned had had a chance to inform Janae. Immediately threatened, but desperate to make the situation work as Kirsten ingratiated herself with the Parkers, Janae quickly managed to help when Kirsten's job fell through, by finding her a job at Charlie's bar. Though Kirsten was grateful, she soon became upset as she realised that Ned and Janae no longer trusted her to be alone with Mickey, after what had happened last time she was in town, and she'd have to work hard to win their trust back. Annoyed by their attitude, she started talking to Tim Collins about reopening the custody case and later, as she picked up Mickey from cricket training, Janae spotted them and mistakenly believed that Kirsten had again kidnapped her son. Janae contacted the police, before Ned came home and explained that he'd given Kirsten permission to collect Mickey, but had forgotten to mention it to Janae. When Kirsten then found out that Mickey had been trapped in a chest a few weeks earlier during a game of hide and seek that had gone wrong, and Janae had told him not to say anything to his mum, she was furious. When Kirsten then demanded equal access to her son, and said that Janae teaching him to lie was demonstrating bad behaviour, Ned pointed out that her kidnapping and manipulation were hardly positive traits and warned her that he wasn't going to give in to her demands.
Meanwhile, having found herself regular work at the bar, and a flat of her own, Kirsten invested in some furniture so that Mickey could have his own room, but struggled to put the flat-packed pieces together, asking Ned to stop by and help. As the pair reminisced about growing up in Oakey, spurred on by the upcoming high school reunion, Kirsten started flirting with Ned, and Janae, who had come by to see why Ned was taking so long, overheard. Later on, Janae visited Kirsten alone and asked her if she was planning to try and win Ned back. Kirsten admitted that she still had feelings for Ned, but assured Janae, somewhat half-heartedly, that she would never act on those feelings as long as he was already in another relationship. Janae struggled to take that as any kind of reassurance, particularly when, due to work commitments, she was forced to stay in Erinsborough, while Kirsten headed off to Oakey with Ned and the rest of the Parkers. In Oakey, Kirsten and Ned quickly found themselves the targets of gossip as many old friends believed that their arrival together was proof that they were finally a proper couple. That evening, they were making their way to the reunion when his car ran out of petrol on a back road and, as they talked about old times, Kirsten leaned in and kissed Ned, much to his horror. When they finally arrived at the reunion, Ned was shocked to find Janae had changed her mind and flown up to Queensland to be there, while he and Kirsten were ushered onto the stage and crowned as king and queen of the event. Believing that she'd been taken for a fool, Janae ended up pushing Kirsten into a drinks table.
Back in Erinsborough, Kirsten kept her distance as Christmas approached, but realised that Ned and Janae were having problems moving on. As she walked home one evening, Kirsten saw lights on at the garage and could hear someone crying inside, but when she got to the window, she spotted Janae in a clinch with another man. Janae spotted Kirsten running off and realised what had happened, but things took an unexpected turn when word came through that the roof had collapsed at a rave being held illegally in a warehouse, and many local teens, including Mickey's cousins Riley and Bridget were trapped. As Janae waited for news, Kirsten pestered her with text messages, telling her that they needed to talk, and eventually Janae went to see her. Kirsten warned Janae that if she didn't admit everything to Ned, then she'd do it herself. Realising that the revelation would not only destory her and Ned's relationship, but also that of Darren, the guy she's impulsively kissed, and his girlfriend Libby, Janae tried to make Kirsten see sense. Kirsten, however, saw a chance to manipulate things and announced to Ned that she'd be taking Mickey for a holiday in Queensland, with Janae given little choice but to support her over Ned. However, once Ned and Mickey were out of the room, an argument broke out, only for Ned to suddenly return and hear the end of it, leaving Janae with no choice but to confess that she kissed someone else. Upset by all of the lying that had been going on around him, Ned angrily put a ban on Mickey's trip up north with his mum, and as a result, Mickey ran away, turning up at Kirsten's. As Kirsten returned Mickey home, she was clearly relishing seeing Ned and Janae's relationship in turmoil.
Janae left town soon afterwards and, while Kirsten focused on making enough money at the bar to keep a roof over her head, she started up an innocent conversation with Lassiter's hotel manager Paul Robinson, which soon led to flirting. Though Paul was already involved with Rebecca Napier, he was feeling increasingly useless at home and was flattered by Kirsten's attention. The next day, as she complained about scraping together the money to buy food, Paul impulsively offered her a job at the hotel, telling her to bring him her C.V. Grateful for a chance to move her way up the food chain, Kirsten continued her flirting with Paul and they arranged to meet for a drink that night, only for Kirsten to be left sitting on her own in the bar when Paul had second thoughts and stayed at home to watch the cricket. However, when Kirsten turned up for her training, and the pair ended up along in a hotel room, Paul lied that his relationship with Rebecca was over, and Kirsten ended up sleeping with him. Believing that it was the start of a relationship, Kirsten was devastated when Paul told her that it could go no further. Believing he was still getting over Rebecca, she accepted this, but was furious when she spotted him and Rebecca embracing in the General Store. Kirsten quickly went over to introduce herself, making Paul squirm in the process, and it wasn't long before the two women bumped into each other again, bonding over bringing up their sons alone. When Rebecca told Paul about her conversation with Kirsten, and asked him to go easy on her, he went down to the hotel and offered her money to keep her mouth shut.
Though tempted to accept Paul's hush money, Kirsten had fun for the day, letting Paul think that she was about to tell Rebecca everything, before inviting herself to dinner at number 22. Once alone with Paul, she ripped up his cheque, telling him that she never wanted to be in a position where she had to accept it, but instead wanted him to train her and teach her how to become a success, so that she could be a better mum to Mickey. Backed into a corner, Paul announced that he was very impressed with Kirsten's work and would be training her up immediately to be a duty manager. Though Rebecca and Kirsten were thrilled, Paul's daughter Elle was suspicious. Meanwhile, Paul did his best to put Kirsten off the job, working her until the small hours, but she made it clear to him that she knew what he was doing, and she wasn't about to give up on this opportunity. Working together closely proved difficult for Paul and Kirsten, as their attraction continued to simmer and, when they found themselves alone outside an empty room, they gave in and had sex again. The next day, Paul gave Kirsten a pendant, but they were interrupted by Elle, who immediately spotted the gift box from Yuri Fujiyama, one of her favourite designers. Paul quickly lied that it was a gift for Rebecca but later, as he gave the pendant to her, Elle immediately spotted that it was a cheap rip-off. Paul was again forced to lie, claiming that he couldn't afford a genuine Fujiyama piece, so had put a cheaper necklace in the box. Elle was unconvinced and confronted Kirsten, asking her outright if she was sleeping with Paul. Kirsten denied it, but Elle soon spotted the Fujiyama pendant around Kirsten's neck and told her to pack up and leave Erinsborough immediately, or she'd tell Rebecca, Ned and Mickey everything.
Though Kirsten and Paul continued to deny their affair, they couldn't resist each other as they found themselves alone, inspecting rooms. After another illicit sex session, they both agreed that their liaisons would have to stop, but started to kiss again, just as a suspicious Elle let herself into the room and caught them. Though Elle was determined that Rebecca needed to know the truth, she found herself unable to get the words out as she met with her father's girlfriend, and both Paul and Kirsten were relieved that, at least for the moment, their secret was safe. Meanwhile, when Ned was late picking him up from school, Kirsten ended up looking after Mickey whilst at work, and her son soon picked up on the tension between her and Paul, asking her if her new boss was her boyfriend. Kirsten denied this, but it was quickly forgotten as news arrived that Ned had been injured during voluntary SES work. Kirsten was left worried with how Mickey would cope if Ned didn't make it out alive, and everyone rushed to the hospital when word came through that he'd been found and would be fine. As he recovered, Ned suggested that he join Kirsten and Mickey on their planned trip to the theme parks of Queensland, then took Mickey to meet his family in Oakey afterwards. Kirsten was delighted, but was left with a dilemma when Paul came to her, explaining that he was going on a business trip to Europe and wanted her to join him in Paris. After thinking it through, Kirsten agreed to go, planning to join Paul while Ned and Mickey were in Oakey.
A few weeks later, Elle phoned her dad's mobile, only for Kirsten to answer. She quickly hung up, but Elle called back and angrily told Kirsten exactly what she thought of her and her lies. Kirsten tried to explain that she just couldn't keep away from Paul, and nobody was supposed to know about it but later, when Paul went to collect the car, Kirsten contacted Elle and agreed to end the relationship for good. When Kirsten made a sudden return from Europe, without Paul, she headed straight to 22 Ramsay Street, where she told Elle that she was going to come clean to Rebecca about the affair. Once inside, however, she couldn't bring herself to tell Rebecca the truth and quickly made her excuses about having laundry to do, and left. The next day, Rebecca found Kirsten at Lassiter's and again asked her to come over for dinner. Kirsten accepted, but was then approached by Elle, who explained that the hotel board would like her to complete her hotel management diploma - involving a two-year course up in Queensland, and if she refused, they'd have to fire her. Kirsten was horrified, but during dinner, sadly mentioned that she'd been sacked, prompting Rebecca to get her son, Oliver - Elle's boyfriend and Lassiter's manager - to sort the matter out.
As Paul returned from France, Rebecca asked Kirsten to help arrange a welcome home party. Paul was shocked to see Kirsten in his house when he walked in, and made her promise that she wasn't going to tell anyone about the affair and, later in the evening, everyone was surprised when Paul and Rebecca announced their engagement. The next day, things grew more complicated when Rebecca received some photos from a security camera of Paul and Kirsten in an embrace. Paul managed to intercept them and, believing it was Kirsten's attempt at blackmail, he asked her how much money she wanted. Realising that she wasn't responsible, Paul began to worry about who else knew about the affair but was given some breathing space when Rebecca went to Sydney to visit a sick friend for a couple of weeks. Meanwhile, as Kirsten, Paul and Elle realised that a security tape was missing and it could be in the hands of one of a number of people, Kirsten was determined to go to the police, until it was pointed out that Ned would then find out. It wasn't long, however, before the blackmailed revealed herself as disgruntled receptionist Yasmine Murphy, who was annoyed at doing all the work while Kirsten got an easy ride. Yasmine was quickly paid off, but when Paul then received a threatening text, with Yasmine sitting right in front of him, it became clear that there was a second blackmailer at work. And things only got worse for Kirsten when, the next day, a blackmail letter arrived at Ned's, saying 'ASK KIRSTEN ABOUT HER AFFAIR WITH PAUL'. Though she managed to intercept it, the guilt became too much and she showed Ned, telling him everything that had been going on. Ned was surprised, and Kirsten admitted that she just didn't want Mickey to know what she'd done, but reminded Ned that he had no right to be jealous as they were no longer a couple. Meanwhile, the second blackmailer was revealed to be Paul's disgruntled ex-wife Lyn Scully, who had heard from Yasmine and decided to get her own back on Paul - he agreed not to go to the police if she said nothing to anyone about the affair.
With that matter behind them, Kirsten and Ned continued to grow closer, and Mickey was determined to bring his parents together, organising a romantic dinner at the General Store, and Kirsten then supported Ned when Steve was charged with murdering Chris Knight and sent to prison. But the past quickly came back to haunt Kirsten when Rebecca found out about the affair. She found herself sacked from Lassiter's, and even pushed out of the Parker family by Miranda, who sided with her close friend Rebecca. As Rebecca confronted Kirsten, she accidentally let slip that she'd been in Paris with Paul, which only made matters worse. Things started to pick up when Steve was let out on appeal, and given a fine and community service, and Kirsten managed to get compensation from Lassiter's when she threatened to sue, but fate had worse in store for Kirsten when she, Ned and many others from Ramsay Street were helping out with clearing fire paths in the national park when a bushfire broke out. Not wanting to leave Ned on his own, Kirsten raced off to look for him, only to be overcome by the smoke and trapped as the fire passed through, with Paul, the only person to see her, believing she was dead and driving off to save himself. After the fire had passed through the area, Ned found Kirsten, seriously hurt, having lost most of the skin on her body in the heat. At the hospital, she immediately suffered a cardiac arrest, but was saved. The whole terrible experience made Ned realise that he still loved Kirsten as he helped her through her ordeal, while Paul visited her and admitted to leaving her to die, with Kirsten accepting his apology. When the possibility of specialist treatment in Perth was mentioned and Paul offered to pay for it, Ned turned him down, not wanting to accept charity, but instead made plans to have Steve and Miranda buy him out of number 26. When this plan fell through, everyone tried to convince Ned to ignore his pride and take Paul's offer, eventually deciding to simply disguise it as a reward cheque for helping to capture Jay Duncan, the man who'd started the bushfire. Unable to continue saying no, Ned accepted, the transfer forms were complete and Ned took one final look around Ramsay Street before he, Kirsten and Mickey set off for Perth; a family at last.
Episode 5237: Kirsten's Arrival
Episode 5509: Kirsten's Departure
Biography by Steve