This article includes discussions of terminal illness that some readers may find upsetting.


Emma Harding (Patsy Kensit) finally backed down in tonight's emotional EastEnders (Thursday 16th March), after seeing how devoted Jay Brown (Jamie Borthwick) is to her terminally ill daughter Lola Pearce-Brown (Danielle Harold).

With her traumatic past, Emma was wary of Jay when she thought she saw him getting close to another woman, and Lola ended up telling Jay to leave their home in the aftermath.

As the BBC soap returned, Jay came home after staying the night at Ben Mitchell (Max Bowden) and Callum Highway's (Tony Clay) place – but Emma warned him away as an exhausted Lola dismissed him, too.

But Honey Mitchell (Emma Barton) intervened when she heard Emma saying that men like him were all the same. Honey insisted that Jay wasn't the kind of man Emma thought he was, but Jay was left with no choice but to leave once more.

At the café, Jay was unimpressed with Ben and Callum, blaming them for inviting him out in the first place. But when Ben mentioned Lola's scan at the hospital that day, Jay couldn't believe that Lola hadn't told him what was going on with her fragile health. Honey encouraged him to head to the hospital, promising to get Emma alone so he could be with Lola.

When Emma tried to interfere again, Honey spoke up, and Lola told her mum that she needed to speak to Jay. Sitting in the waiting room, Jay expressed his frustration over Emma, and asked why Lola hadn't kept him in the loop.

He added that being without her was torture, not being able to hold and comfort her, and Lola admitted that was what she wanted, too. She finally explained that the chemotherapy may have stopped working, but insisted that she must stay positive until after the scan.

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Jay then made it clear that nothing would ever have happened between him and another woman, but poor Lola confessed that she had been reminded that he could move on after she's gone. Jay was heartbroken as Lola was called in for her scan.

When Lola returned, tearfully explaining that she had to wait a week for the scan results, Jay wrapped her in his arms as she sobbed. "You're my life, you are," he told her. "My whole life.

"This love that we've got, it's never going anywhere. Never. You speak about after, but it's not after – it's always. And it's always, always, always you."

At The Vic, meanwhile, Honey told Emma that she understood why she might be worried for Lola, after her abuse at the hands of late husband Dan. But she repeated that Jay was the most faithful, lovely man who was besotted with Lola.

Awkwardly, Honey revealed that she had also dated Jay, and yet she still lived alongside him and Lola without any issues. Emma was, understandably, wrongfooted by this news and made a dig about their age gap. She then admitted her fears over being a mother, adding that she had been hurt by a string of men over the years.

Honey urged her to back off a bit and offered her support, and later, Emma asked Honey to teach her about motherhood. Honey reminded her that it's all about learning on the job, and as Lola and Jay arrived, united once more, Emma apologised for doubting Jay when she barely knew him before giving them some space.

Is this a sign that Emma will learn to stop being so overprotective?

For more information, help and support on matters associated with this storyline, head to Macmillan Cancer Support or Brain Tumour Research.

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