Bernard is struggling to cope with getting down to menial but essential tasks for his book shop, such as the accounts when a chance meeting with a customer, Manny, helps him out. Meanwhile, the owner of the shop next door, enlists the help of Bernard and his customers to find out exactly what an object from her shop is and in doing so misses an important appointment.
Bernard wakes up to discover that he has a new employee for his book shop, who infuriatingly has great skill at selling books. While Bernard is reluctant to keep him on, Fran makes her feelings clear on the matter.
Manny stays up watching 'The Sweeney' and is mistaken for a policeman after chasing a handbag snatcher. Fran and Bernard exchange stories about their previous day, Bernard recalling a disastrous dinner party with old friends who blanked him and Fran telling him about blanking her boyfriend after catching him with another woman.
Following a burglary Bernard buys a sophisticated alarm system which results in Manny getting locked inside the shop and Bernard stuck outside in the rain. Fran is no help as she took her phone off the hook to listen to the sexy man reading the shipping forecast.
Manny finally gets fed up with Bernard's constant abuse and demands on him so he leaves for a better life. However, he doesn't get far when he meets a man at King's Cross station who wants to make him a star. Meanwhile back at the shop Fran and Bernard are arguing more and more about Manny's departure.