This episode features the guest appearance of Amanda Mealing as cardiothoracic surgeon Connie Beauchamp. Then a regular character on Holby City, she would later become a regular character on Casualty in March 2014.
The events of this episode take place on 8 September, as they follow the same events as the previous episode. The first episode of the series focuses on Toby's day, whereas the second focuses on Charlie's.
In resus, Tess wakes Charlie up after he fell asleep whilst keeping Jo Andrew company. In NICU, he urges Nathan to appoint a replacement for Selena and take control of the department. Nathan silently gives him a letter, and Charlie thanks him. On his way out of the building, Tess asks Charlie to show the new F2s around the department before dropping them off with Maggie and Guppy, but he claims that he is "sick of the sight of this place". He begrudgingly returns to reception and introduces himself to Ruth Winters and Toby De Silva.
After he gives the two doctors a tour of the department, Josh leads him to the staff room where his colleagues congratulate him for his 35 years of service in the NHS. Unfazed by their show of goodwill, Charlie introduces them to Toby and Ruth and leaves. Josh follows and confronts him about his dismissive attitude, and Charlie shows him the letter of commendation he received from Nathan for his years of service. He angrily asserts that, when he started his first shift in a hospital, he wanted to fight and not let "them" win, but he feels that he has failed, and he points out that he thought that it was just a typical working day. Josh then finds Charlie outside the department in his car and suggests apologising to his colleagues. In cubicles, Charlie pulls Maggie aside to apologise, but Toby forgets to cap off the tube while fitting a line into a young woman, causing her to bleed profusely and scream in horror. They rush over to help her, and Charlie brands Toby as a "moron" who is "painting the walls with patients' blood".
On his way home, Tess calls Charlie and informs him that a major incident has been declared on Hesketh Road, and Holby City Hospital is the designated hospital. He initially tries to avoid helping out by claiming that he is tired, but, as he is closer to the site than the ED, he subsequently asks her to put him on the medical team. Once he arrives at the scene of the explosion, Dixie requires his assistance inside the destroyed shop. Inside, Greg tries to calm a young girl named Angela down, but she continuously demands to be freed. He gets Charlie to talk to her, but he admonishes her into silence instead. Outside, Nell asks for his help, but he is irritated to find out that she wants him to treat a dog and leaves them.
In the Casualty Clearing Station, Angela expresses her disdain for Charlie, and he tells her to "join the queue". Despite Denny's offer of assistance, he insists on moving all of the walking-wounded out of the tent. However, when Russ - a man whose intestines have been eviscerated - starts calling for his friend Scotty, Denny commands him to temper his behaviour and not "disgrace his regiment". Russ complies and weeps in pain. Charlie thanks Denny and suggests accompanying Russ to the hospital, claiming that the walking wounded are welcome if they are "on [their] side". Nearby, Fareeda, who lost a leg and her scalp in the explosion, is comforted by her father Saeed who begs to be allowed to accompany her to the hospital with her; Josh grants him permission. While Maggie takes Christine to an ambulance, Toby tells Charlie that he needs to find Rayne - a casualty who requires urgent medical attention; Charlie lends him the keys to his green Morris Traveller. As he sadly watches as Nell desperately tries to save the dog, Maggie informs him that they have been relieved of their duties. He tries to apologise to her for his behaviour in the morning, but Cyd asks him if he is boarding the ambulance.
In the ED, Tess struggles with the lack of a Clinical Lead and available doctors, and she complains to Charlie about the outdated majax policy and the room earmarked as the temporary mortuary being full of building materials. He assures her that they will survive and goes to the staff room to get changed. Kelsey and Nadia ask him about the possibility of a second bomb in the hospital, but he spots a woman on the mezzanine and greets her. She introduces herself as Margaret Stubbs, one of Louis' primary school teachers, and claims that she was hesitant to leave the hospital after it was cleared as her son had arranged to meet her there. Charlie finds her a chair and agrees to return with some pain relief. In cubicles, he asks Guppy to write up a prescription for codeine and diclofenac, but he appears disengaged and comments on Ruth correctly diagnosing his patient. Upstairs, Margaret thanks Charlie for the pain relief and contends that he should be prioritising the victims of the bombing, but he posits that "sometimes, procedure can go whistle".
In cubicles, Nell refuses to be treated, and Charlie apologises for not helping the dog. He explains that, although there are dogs that he likes better than some people, he is obliged to treat people, but she does not waver. An uplifted but dirty Toby returns, and Charlie sends him away to get cleaned up. Ruth confronts him about a nurse failing to keep regular obs on a patient and increase their analgesia and asks if that level of conduct is expected in an emergency department, but she quickly turns her attention to Guppy as Charlie tries to answer.
As Tess requests senior medical staff, Fareeda arrests and is rushed into resus. Russ arrives at reception and becomes hysterical when he finds Scotty dead in a body bag. However, Connie Beauchamp emerges from the lift and demands Russ to let go of him. She announces that the department is now running the majax procedure "to the letter" and asks for the dead to be moved into cubicles until an alternative is found. In resus, Fareeda is pronounced dead, and, as Christine's condition worsens, Connie fears that Matt's amputation may have been for nothing. Ruth introduces herself to her and asks if she could shadow her, citing her desire to become a surgeon. In another bay, Toby returns Matt's watch, and Charlie orders him to go on a break. Guppy asks for Ruth, but Connie informs him that she will be commandeering her for the duration of her stay. Charlie jokingly tells her to "play nice", and Connie remarks about him dismissing Toby. Ruth is surprised that "Dracula dare show his face" as he "only had to look at the MI patient, and she died"; Charlie realises that she is referring to Jo.
Outside resus, Charlie asks Denny to console a grieving Saeed and Nadia where Toby is. He soon finds Toby with Margaret who has gone into anaphylactic shock due to the painkillers. He instructs Toby to retrieve the necessary equipment, but he does not know where they are. Charlie returns to resus for the supplies and asks Connie if she can assist. However, she later reprimands him for giving Margaret unprescribed and asks what is the matter with him. In the lift, Charlie loses his temper and repeatedly hits and kicks the walls. Back on the ground floor, Tess tells Charlie that she does not want him administering medication or treating category red patients and directs him towards cubicles. Denny asks Charlie if he is alright, and Charlie leads him outside so he can smoke his cigarette. By the entrance, Charlie spots Abs taking Dixie inside to have her asthma treated and warns her to be wary of tripping over any bodies. Denny suggests that he appears comfortable with the situation, and Charlie claims to have "a fair amount of experience" with major incidents. Denny asks if there is anything troubling him, and Charlie explains that him being a nurse for 35 years means "absolutely nothing", and, as a result of him having to "switch off" from people suffering and dying in order to do his job, he is unable to deal with strong emotions such as joy, passion and injustice.
Back in the department, Charlie finds Nell as she collapses onto a chair, and he takes her into resus. There, Connie finds that she has a heart murmur as well as suspected eczema on her hands and asks for chlorpheniramine, but Nell refuses all medication. As Charlie escorts Nell to X-ray, Tess asks him to speak to Nathan about moving the dead to a secure location, but he asserts that it would be pointless and suggests designating a room as a temporary mortuary. In resus, Maggie believes that Christine is tamponading and prepares for pericardiocentesis. However, as she attempts to aspirate the fluid, Christine arrests as a result of a cardiac tear, and Maggie and Ruth encourage Connie to perform an anterolateral thoracotomy. A terrified Matt calls for his mother, and Charlie tries to calm him down. As Connie performs the procedure, Charlie spots Nell, whose hands and mouth have gone numb, resisting treatment. He takes her into resus and returns to Christine's bay. Kelsey finds that she has no output, and Connie decides to stop, but Maggie insists on continuing and performs cardiac massage. To everyone's shock, Christine's heart begins beating again, and an amazed Connie assures Maggie that she will do everything she can to help her on Darwin.
Nadia enters resus with Nell's X-ray, and Charlie asks Maggie to review it. Ruth points a piece of metal in her chest that has strayed away from the entry point, and Maggie explains that it was caused by cerebral emboli from a penetrating foreign body and atrial septal defect, and it has resulted in her having a stroke on her left side. Fearing that it can damage her right side and kill her, the medics insist on removing it as soon as possible, but Nell states that all drugs used in British hospitals are tested on animals and argues that "man does not have dominion over the animals". As she confirms that she wants to be allowed to die, she claims that she "never meant for this to happen".
Outside the room, Maggie suggests that they ignore Nell's wishes and confronts Charlie about his willingness to follow procedure and "[sacrifice] herself unnecessarily", but Ruth informs them that Nell has no history of eczema, leading them to believe that she has chemical burns. Maggie sternly asks if they are going to make a decision, but Charlie tells her to shush and explains that it was a peroxide bomb. Maggie urges him to hold off from alerting the police until they are sure that she has been handling explosives and argues that she is not a threat in her condition, but Charlie posits that there may be more bombs. In resus, they confront Nell, who is rapidly deteriorating, and Charlie asks her to squeeze his hand once if she has been handling explosives. She squeezes it once, and he asks her if there are any more bombs. However, an enraged Russ berates her and threatens to kill her if she does not die soon. Maggie examines Nell's pupils, and she concludes that both sides of her brain have stroked out. Charlie confirms that she did not answer the final question and insists on contacting the police.
At reception, Tess assures Maggie that evacuating the ED will be the last resort, and Charlie explains Nell's situation to Denny. He points out an abandoned bag and claims that Nell was carrying one. The department is promptly evacuated, and Maggie instructs Charlie to stay with Nell until the team from ITU arrive. Tess tells him that there is no sign of Toby and asks him to search the department for him. When Charlie sarcastically asks if anyone will notice his absence, Tell tells him that they "need [their] Charlie back".
As he walks around the department calling for Toby, he assures Maggie that the ED is clear. However, he soon finds Saeed and Denny in resus and discovers that the latter has removed all of her leads to respect her wishes. Charlie realises that both Denny and Nell were responsible for the explosion, and Denny avers that the bombs were intended for an animal testing facility. However, a furious Saeed threatens Denny with a scalpel, and Denny insists on killing himself so he is not responsible for "turning [him] away from [his] god". With Charlie's encouragement, Saeed relinquishes the weapon. Feeling as though he cannot cut himself, Denny decides to jump off the hospital roof, and Charlie tells him to make sure he does not land on anyone. However, Charlie quickly reconsiders and tells him to follow him.
He leads Denny to the staff room which is filled with bodies and tells him to count them. He highlights the cake Maggie baked for him to celebrate his 35 years in the NHS and explains that, in those years, he has learned that it is "the people left behind who do the suffering" and asserts that they will want to watch him spend the rest of his life "rotting" in prison. Denny is resolute on not going to jail and orders Charlie to leave so he can slit his neck, but he tells him that, as a nurse, he will immediately resuscitate him. Suddenly, Toby wakes up in the corner of the room, and Charlie grabs Denny's arm. Denny threatens to kill Charlie, but he is sure that he will not and claims that he knows "in [his] heart" what he needs to do now; Denny reconsiders and lowers the scalpel. On their way out of the ED, Toby collects the suspicious bag. Outside, Denny surrenders to armed police, and Charlie informs Tess and Maggie that it was a false alarm. As the ED is refilled, Ruth asks Charlie what she can do to help, and he instructs her to learn all of the nurses' names as well as "some manners". Elsewhere in Holby, Toby shows Charlie the damage to his car, and he invites him to the pub for "a pint of O-neg"; Toby jokingly claims he prefers rhesus positive.
- Derek Thompson as Charlie Fairhead
- Matthew Needham as Toby De Silva
- Suzanne Packer as Tess Bateman
- Susan Cookson as Maggie Coldwell
- Georgia Taylor as Ruth Winters
- Amanda Mealing as Connie Beauchamp
- Ian Bleasdale as Josh Griffiths
- Jane Hazlegrove as Kathleen "Dixie" Dixon
- Kip Gamblin as Greg Fallon
- Joanne King as Cynthia "Cyd" Pyke
- James Redmond as John "Abs" Denham
- Elyes Gabel as Gurpreet "Guppy" Sandhu
- Janine Mellor as Kelsey Phillips
- Ben Price as Nathan Spencer
- Daphne Alexander as Nadia Talianos
- Nigel Terry as Denny Davidson
- Emily Corrie as Nell Mendez
- Kate McNab as Jo Andrew
- Scarlett Rose Patterson as Nikki Munro
- Bonnie Hay as Angela Cavendish
- Tehmina Sunny as Fareeda Khan
- Samuel James as Russ Golden
- Amerjit Deu as Saeed Khan
- LLlewella Gideon as Christine Girven
- Akemnji Ndifornyen as Matt Girven
- Beryl King as Margaret Stubbs
- Sean Frances as Chief Fire Officer
"My First Day" and "Charlie's Anniversary" were originally two parts of an episode titled "One Extreme to Another".
Early in production, the episodes' plot had to be altered after it was blocked by the BBC's editorial guidelines department as they believed it could have perpetuated stereotypes of young Muslims in Britain. Originally, the episodes depicted a radical Islamist blowing himself up at a bus station and another whose suicide vest had to be carefully removed after it failed to detonate. A spokeswoman for the BBC stated, "Originally I think there was storyline discussion on suicide bombers and they spoke to editorial guidelines. With any storyline process, there are lots of ideas that get put forward which don't make the series. The aim of Casualty is to highlight the work of professionals in these extreme situations." Consequently, the script was revised to have the Muslim characters replaced with animal rights extremists.
The scenes of the explosion were filmed on Redcliff Street in Bristol.