Rainie Highway, a fan of EASTENDERS, has learned that her husband Stuart Highway has breast cancer, but when he goes missing in upcoming scenes on the BBC soap, she may be forced to consider her own future on the Square.
Since her first appearance in 2007 as the troubled sister of established character Tanya Branning, Rainie (played by Tanya Franks) has been a pinnacle of the EastEnders community (Jo Joyner). Since then, she has been at the center of several major plotlines on the BBC soap, including her drug addiction, sleeping with Ian Beale (Adam Woodyatt) on the night his daughter was murdered, marrying her brother-in-law Max Branning (Jake Wood), and now being the wife of former villain Stuart Beale (Ricky Champ). Though the undertaker has had a difficult few months since learning he has breast cancer and refusing to tell his wife because he didn’t want her to be concerned. However, it appears that she may lose him anyway, and, unable to bear the thought of living her life without him, she may decide to leave Walford.
Stuart’s secret was finally revealed on Friday night’s episode after he accused his wife of having an affair with Mick Carter (Danny Dyer).
The undertaker realized he was completely wrong in front of the entire pub, and his argument with Rainie spilled out into the Square.
Rainie stated that she felt her husband had been distant from her for some time and demanded to know what was going on with him as they confronted each other.
Stuart admitted the truth with the help of Sonia Fowler (Natalie Cassidy), and his wife embraced him, promising to stand by him through the next stage of his journey.
The former villain, on the other hand, will vanish into thin air, leaving Rainie heartbroken because she has no idea where he is.
Speaking about the upcoming scenes, the actress who plays Rainie, Tanya, explained how she does feel she is “running out of time” to help her husband.
The soap star said: “She has no idea where he’s gone, he’s literally done a runner. He’s all over the place at the moment and she’s trying to keep tabs on him.
“He’s scooting out from under her nose and she can’t predict what his next movements are going to be. She knows that he wants to avoid this surgery.
“Her biggest fear is the more he runs, the more time they’re losing. It’s about him but it’s also about him being a father to a child that they are having.
“It’s the bigger picture here. She’s petrified. Let’s not forget what she’s going through right now.”
“She doesn’t know where Abi is in the world, she’s got a baby growing inside a woman that she doesn’t see and she’s now possibly losing the father of that baby and her husband who she loves more than anything in the world,” Tanya continued.
“She’s got three massive losses facing her right now,” the actress explained and so Rainie is going to be struggling to deal with her emotions.
When Rainie was younger, she would have turned to drugs when she was depressed, and she would have gone down a very dark path.
However, in the last four years, the beloved character has grown significantly stronger, and she will need to flee the situation to protect herself.
Stuart’s death could be the final straw, as she realizes she can’t keep torturing herself if he isn’t going to return.
As a result, she could inform Callum Highway (Tony Clay) that she is going to see her surrogate, Bernadette Taylor (Clair Norris).
Knowing that the young woman is currently living with her brother Keanu Taylor (Danny Walters) outside of Walford, Rainie may see this as an ideal opportunity to visit her baby.
Unfortunately, Stuart could return just as she leaves and inform his brother that he is ready to begin his treatment with his wife by his side.
Callum would have to explain that he’s too late because he caused his wife so much grief that she had to leave the Square to concentrate on herself.
Will Rainie ever return? Could this be the end of the beloved couple as Stuart’s actions cause a huge rift between them?
Tanya has also spoken about how it felt for her alter-ego to learn the truth about her husband’s secrecy and the pain he has been in.
The actress said: “It was a definite shock but I think her first port of call was understanding and caring for him.
“Because Rainie knew that he must not have known how to tell her. So initially yes shock, but very quickly back to being there for him and consoling him.
“Her thoughts also went to them as a family, they’ve got a baby on the way. It’s very much looking after the family unit.”
Talking about Rainie’s biggest fear, she added: “She’s completely fearful as his wife.”
“She’s fearful for him, for the whole family unit, she can’t bear the thought of the potential of him not being around,” the actress added.
“She’s frightened to death. She quickly realizes that he must remain the strong one, guiding and coaxing him into moving forward and seeking treatment.”
Stuart finally told his wife the truth about his secret on Friday night, leaving viewers in tears, with Michelle writing on Twitter: “What an incredibly moving and heartbreaking scene. I wanted to hug Stuart and Rainie, bless their hearts.”
Melissa made the following comment: “I couldn’t stop crying. Guys, you did a fantastic job acting. As a breast cancer survivor, I understand how difficult it is to break the news to your loved ones. Especially since the patient is a man with breast cancer. EastEnders has a fantastic storyline.”
“Gosh, @RickyChamp1 @TanyaFranksRuns, you were both outstanding tonight,” Emma continued, “I just want to give Stuart a big hug right now #EastEnders.”
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