Charity Sharma has never been one to miss out on an opportunity to gain from any situation in Emmerdale in all the years she has been in the village, but she is set to reach new low’s this Christmas when she tries to frame her own cousin for arson!
Fans of the hit ITV soap will know that Charity (Emma Atkins) is on a mission after discovering that her husband Jai (Chris Bisson) fathered a baby after a one night stand with Rachel Breckle (Gemma Oaten) behind her back.
At first Charity was furious and walked out of her marriage, but after realising that she loved Jai too much went back to him and tried her best to be OK with the new situation.
It didn’t last long, however, and after an impulse to mow down Rachel and her baby with her car she realised that she wasn’t quite doting step-mother material and so issued Jai with an ultimatum – her or baby Archie.
After a failed attempt to stay away from his only son, Jai eventually made the choice to lose Charity in order to maintain a relationship with Archie, leaving Charity feeling isolated, humiliated and ever so slightly resentful.
Charity has never been one to let bygones be bygones, but her plan of revenge will see her do something we never thought her capable of – betraying her own family….
On Christmas Day Charity finds herself caught up in Declan Macey’s meltdown as he sets Home Farm on fire risking the lives of everyone inside, but once the drama has fizzled out with the flames, Charity comes up with a plan that will protect Declan, and also score a really big point against Rachel – Framing Sam, who is Rachel’s partner AND Charity’s cousin, for arson, as Emma Atkins who plays Charity has been explaining to Digital Spy!
On what state of mind her character is in leading up to the fire, Atkins revealed:
“Charity is pretty devastated about it all. She’s trying to put on a brave face, but she’s extremely hurt and I think there is a point where she decides, ‘Enough is enough, I cannot sit here and weep over this because it’s never going to go away – now I can seek revenge somehow’.
“Charity goes into this turmoil of seeking revenge and this vengeance plan starts to bubble in her mind. Obviously Debbie picks up on it and wonders what she has planned. Debbie says, ‘Just leave it and move on with your life’, but as stereotypical as it sounds, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. There’s a lot to come with the scope of where Charity can go with vengeance.”
Discussing the Christmas Day events, she went on:
“Jai has taken Noah for Christmas Day, but later Jai turns up in the pub and Charity demands to know where her son is. Noah is curled up watching a DVD – she knows deep down that he’s absolutely fine and he’s safe, but she’s being provocative. She’s even more provocative when Jai says, ‘Well it’s a good job I’ve not brought him in the pub, seeing you lording it up with Declan’.
“Charity responds by saying, ‘Right, I’ll get you back for every little snide comment you’ve ever made’. She turns to Declan and says, ‘I’ve changed my mind, you’re not getting me a drink, we’re going back to yours’. Again, it’s that provocation of, ‘I will make Jai regret everything he’s done’.
“There’s no real urge for Charity to sleep with Declan – it’s actually more that she’s quite lonely on Christmas Day and she knows that the idea of sleeping with Declan will make Jai go crazy, so she gives the illusion that it’s what’s going to happen. Once they’re at Home Farm, Charity realises how lost Declan is – he’s drunk, he’s maudlin, he’s quite on the edge of a breakdown. I think Charity realises this and then obviously Declan has a real go at Charity for using him.
“Declan says, ‘You’ve only done it to get back at Jai, so shall we go upstairs and sleep together and get it over with?’ Charity is so shocked at his behaviour, but of course Declan is just goading her – he’s goading anyone because he’s had enough of life after losing the business and everything going so financially wrong.”
Charity storms out of the house, but changes her mind and returns later, on which Atkins explained:
“I think Charity genuinely sees Declan as a lost soul and feels quite sorry for him, as he has no-one else to turn to. Declan is sat in Home Farm with his coat on alone in a very cold house because they’ve turned the gas off. It’s just quite a horrendous situation, so I think Charity pities him and feels sorry for him and goes back to talk him out of his depression, really.
“When Charity arrives back, she sees Declan holding a can of paraffin and he’s about to torch the house – and himself. I think Declan has just had enough and he feels that he could end his days quite happily just there and then. He’s lost his daughter, he’s lost his business, he’s lost his wife Katie and he feels that Home Farm has a very negative energy. Declan starts to bring up the past and how many people have died there, and that proves too much for him.”
On her thoughts behind the arson set-up, she continued:
“Well it’s a weird thread that is woven. At first Charity feels that this Christmas is the worst ever, but then a weird twist of fate happens – the Home Farm fire. Again, cogs are whirring and Charity starts to think, ‘Could I turn this to my advantage?’ She has an imagination and she uses it much to her advantage when it’s needed. The circumstance of this fire is what Charity uses to gain power again.”
Emmerdale continues tonight at 7pm on ITV1 / ITV1 HD