In Freeridge, both Gloria and Ines fall for the same boy, Rusty, who is hired by their uncle, Tonio, for a secret purpose. Michael Solomon plays Rusty.
Gloria and Tonio are put in a difficult situation where they are arguing over who will tell Gloria and Ines’ father, Javier, that he has cancer.
Gloria thought Tonio had pushed this responsibility onto her, but he reveals the plan he has for this. He introduces Gloria to Rusty, a young boy he has hired as his assistant. Rusty, a complete stranger, will be the one who will tell Javier about his cancer.
Gloria already knows Rusty from school. He accidentally missed a ball at school, and that ball hit Gloria while she was about to break the record for the bent-arm hang test.
Rusty will stay until he tells Javier about his cancer, and Gloria and Ines will be the ones paying him as they already owe Tonio a lot of money.
Rusty understands Gloria and Ines’ situation like no one else. He observes the emotional baggage Gloria carries when she reiterates their father’s condition to Tonio because he brings a cake for Javier with ‘Congratulations, you have cancer’ written on it.
Javier then enters the room and reveals that his daughters don’t have to carry the weight of telling him about his cancer because he already knows he has it.
Rusty’s true identity
Tonio continues to keep Rusty around despite the fact that his job is done. He intends to have Rusty take care of his nieces until Javier is in full remission.
Gloria suspects who Rusty is and what exactly he wants. Cam assumes that Rusty is looking for nothing but a job. Ines, on the other hand, did a lot of research on Rusty. He is new at school, a junior transfer, and has no social media.
Ines likes to think that he is either a psychopath or better than all of them. One thing she can’t deny is that she does have a crush on him. Even Gloria starts getting along with Rusty when they discover that they both love bullet journals.
Many notice that Rusty has quite a familiar face. They believe they have seen him somewhere before. Rusty’s identity is exposed at a backyard punk show, where Gloria and Demi indulge in a fight.
The crowd notices Rusty and calls him Trusty Rusty. They encourage him to sing his song. In order to stop Gloria and Demi’s fight, Rusty starts singing and the crowd joins in.
Rusty was a child star who worked in a PBS show called ‘Rusty & The Manotaur’, starring him and a man dressed up as a minotaur man.
Why did Rusty take Tonio’s job?
While driving Gloria and her friends back home from the backyard punk show, Rusty revealed that desperate times forced him to take Tonio’s job.
Rusty’s show was a hit, but the network didn’t pay him enough. He needs Tonio’s job because he wants to take care of his grandmother. He later tells Gloria that his mother took away all the money he earned from the show.
Rusty doesn’t know what his mother is doing with that money. It’s just him and his grandmother now.
The Rusty, Gloria, and Ines drama
Gloria starts to like Rusty slightly. Rusty helps her notice the mistakes she is making for the bent-arm hang test and encourages her to work hard. He makes the first move and asks Gloria out, but she says no to him.
Rusty continues to be good toward both Gloria and Ines; he even gets to have a moment with Ines where he comforts her when she breaks down at a party.
Gloria has a moment of her own with Rusty during a party at their house. Unfortunately, it’s Ines who takes Rusty to bed, as Gloria gets lost when she finds her father’s will. Rusty stops Ines before they could get intimate and clarifies that he has feelings for Gloria, not her.
A heartbroken Ines then lies to both Rusty and Gloria in order to make sure they don’t end up together. Gloria and Rusty do patch up when Rusty shows up to support Gloria while she breaks the record for the bent-arm hang test.
Gloria disowns Ines and starts focusing on her relationship with Rusty, which gradually starts growing.
The secret behind Rusty’s job
Ines is devastated after realizing what she has done. While using Tonio’s laptop, she learns a secret both Tonio and Rusty have been hiding.
It turns out that Tonio hired Rusty to have him flirt with Gloria and Ines in order to distract them from their father’s cancer. With a heavy heart, Ines eventually tells Gloria, but she sees this as her sister’s second attempt to break them apart.
When Rusty is asked about the same during Thanksgiving dinner, he admits that Tonio hired him to have him flirt with Gloria and Ines. He then confesses that he has true feelings for Gloria because he stopped taking money from Tonio the moment he fell for her.
A shattered Gloria doesn’t pay heed to his explanations and storms out of the room.
Who does Rusty end up with?
Mariluna sits down to talk with Gloria about Rusty. She asks her to look at the bright side and notice how good Rusty has been to her, no matter what. Gloria agrees that she needs to stop being judgmental and get a bit vulnerable.
Meanwhile, Ines and Rusty fight. Rusty blames her for creating this mess because she is still into him. Ines attempts to prove that she is not into him by kissing him. Moments later, they kiss again, this time passionately, until Gloria arrives.
Gloria doesn’t know that Rusty and Ines were just kissing. She forgives both of them. All three of them are in a complicated situation. Ines and Rusty haven’t told Gloria about their kiss, and the question remains when and how she will find out about it.