Ange is concerned when Fletch turns down the opportunity of a night-out and becomes distracted by the arrival of a locum, but she quickly realises that the locum is Drew Nicholson-Heath. Jac is forced to postpone a day out with Emma to perform a heart transplant, but Emma wonders what she will be doing in the meantime. Ange asks Drew what he is doing in Holby, and he claims to be "slumming it". On Keller, Sacha is disturbed to find Essie delighting in cancelling her gym membership and standing orders and believes that she is giving up on life. Dominic empathises but assures Sacha that no one is "giving up", but Sacha is not convinced.
News begins to spread around the hospital about Drew's arrival; Drew is infamous for head-hunting the best surgical staff at hospitals and has gained the nickname "The Poacher" as a result, but he also can instinctively weed out incompetent doctors. On Keller, a woman named Cathy Thompson, who has stage-four peritoneal cancer, is set to be transferred to St Eustace's Hospice, but Cathy would rather go home. Essie informs Sacha that she has asked Frankie to come in to notify her of her cancer before she informs Children's Services. Cameron treats Geoff Walmsley who has glass shards embedded in his upper arm, but Ange takes over before Cameron has the opportunity to impress Drew. Meanwhile, Ric and Donna are forced to treat an inebriated woman named Sheena who is due to get married.
Sacha fears that Frankie has been taking drugs and believes that it is too soon to return Isla to her, but Essie reminds Sacha that she does not have much time left. Outside, Jac finds Kian keeping Emma company and assures him that he does not have to babysit her, but Kian claims to be doing "what feels natural" and continues playing with Emma. On AAU, Cameron suspects that Geoff has mesothelioma that has been caused by exposure to asbestos, but Drew refuses to give him hints and assures Cameron that he is "better than they think [he is]". Cameron laments the stigma surrounding his "privileged" upbringing, but Drew offers more sarcasm than sympathy. Nicky arrives for a CT consult and disagrees with Cameron's diagnosis, arguing that it is more likely a lymphoma; Drew is won over by Nicky's diagnosis and charisma. Jac informs Kian that she needs to oversee Chloe performing a thoracic outlet syndrome operation, but Kian volunteers to take over so Jac can spend time with Emma. Quietly, Kian calls Sarah Jane and asks for more drugs. On AAU, Ric diagnoses Sheena with a simple fracture, and Sheena laments her boring relationship with her fiancé.
On Keller, Cathy agrees to a risky procedure that could potentially allow her to return home, but Sacha notices Frankie on the ward and takes her to Pulses for a catch-up. Donna approaches Nicky about the money Zav lent to her but drops the subject when Nicky tells her that she has been busy trying to settle other debts. Frankie tells Sacha that she has been clean for three months and has secured a flat in Birmingham, but Sacha is concerned about her feverishness and asks her to undergo a few tests, claiming that Isla has been recovering from a bout of chickenpox. As Kian prepares for theatre, he takes some of his tablets. On AAU, after telling Sheena that she will soon be free to go, Ric offers himself up for a quick waltz but accidentally falls and injures his head. Cameron and Nicky stand by their respective diagnoses, but Ange ultimately sides with Nicky and gives her the opportunity to perform a laparotomy with Drew. Max decides to have Ric assessed and calls him an "idiot". In theatre, Chloe struggles to deal with a subclavian arterial bleed, but Kian quickly helps take control.
On Keller, Frankie realises that Sacha is testing her blood for drugs and insists that she is clean. In theatre, Cameron takes issue with Nicky "rubbishing" his diagnosis in front of Ange and Drew. Nicky apologises but claims that her life is "all over the place" and that work is one of the only things going well for her. While operating, Cameron is jealous when Drew offers Nicky the opportinuity to perform a small bowel anastomosis. Outside, Essie is thankful to Frankie for giving her the opportunity to be a mother and tells Frankie that Isla needs her real mother now. Meanwhile, Frankie's test results show that she was telling the truth. Drew is impressed by Nicky's surgical skills, and Cameron feels humiliated to be left with Geoff's aftercare. Sacha apologises to Frankie for doubting her and desperately asks her to leave Isla with Essie for a while longer. Frankie refuses and insists that she is ready to look after Isla.
In an attempt to devalue Nicky's work, Cameron secretly cuts Geoff's sutures to loosen the drain. Geoff's condition deteriorates, and Cameron blames Nicky for making the sutures too tight. Outside, Frankie changes her mind and allows Sacha and Essie to keep Isla for another three weeks. In their office, Jac tells Kian that she is tired of being "self-sufficient" and decides to be honest about her feelings towards him. After Kian assures her that he is coping without pain medication, the two share a kiss in front of Emma. Nicky does not understand how Geoff's drain came loose, and Cameron claims that she is pushing herself too hard. In the wake of Frankie's departure, Essie is exasperated, but Sacha assures her that she will be able to cope with looking after Isla. To help alleviate the pressure Nicky is under, Cameron gives her £20,000 to pay back her debt to Donna and get herself back on her feet. Dominic confronts Sacha for his behaviour and argues that Sacha is only acting in his own best interests. Sacha apologises to Cathy for abandoning her mid-consult and assures her that she could probably do whatever she puts her mind to.
At Albie's, Drew tells Cameron that he is head-hunting young and talented surgeons for wealthy hospitals in Dubai; he claims that Nicky rejected his offer of a recommendation, and he believes that Nicky was not responsible for the loose drain. Cameron asks about taking Nicky's place, but Drew immediately turns him down. As Sheena leaves the hospital, Ric speaks from experience and tells her that, just because her fiancé asked to marry her, it does not mean that she has to "settle". Drew commends Nicky's loyalty to the hospital and her colleagues but warns her to "watch [her] back" around Cameron, but Nick dismisses his concerns. Outside, an indignant Cameron keys Drew's car with a pair of scissors. On AAU, Max shows Ric a scan which shows that he has a trapped temporal horn. Ric is thankful that the tumour has not returned, but Max warns Ric that his condition could be fatal without surgical intervention. Max is deeply concerned about Ric's chances of a complete recovery from the surgery, but Ric is confident that he will be fine.
- Dawn Steele as Ange Godard
- Alex Walkinshaw as Adrian "Fletch" Fletcher
- Jaye Jacobs as Donna Jackson
- Rosie Marcel as Jac Naylor
- Ramin Karimloo as Kian Madani
- Belinda Owusu as Nicky McKendrick
- Nic Jackman as Cameron Dunn
- Bob Barrett as Sacha Levy
- Kaye Wragg as Essie Di Lucca
- David Ames as Dominic Copeland
- Hugh Quarshie as Ric Griffin
- Jo Martin as Max McGerry
- Amy Lennox as Chloe Godard
- Darcey Burke as Emma Naylor-Maconie
- Rachel Lumberg as Sheena Cummings
- John Barrowman as Andrew Nicholson-Heath
- Ania Marson as Cathy Thompson
- Gwynfor Jones as Geoff Walmsley
- Sophie Harkness as Frankie Rendell
- During a scene on AAU, Drew playfully addresses Max as "Doctor". This is likely a reference to both Barrowman and Martin's roles in the 12th series of Doctor Who, where the former portrayed Captain Jack Harkness, and the latter portrayed an an incarnation of the Doctor.