Charlie chose Tracy over Maria, but Maria’s the one sobbing by his deathbed, explains Coronation Street star Samia Smith.

Why?!
“Maria’s been in a state of shock since she heard about Charlie. She goes to the hospital because she feels it’s where she should be. Jason’s there, too. And neither of them really believes Tracy’s story that she only attacked Charlie in self-defence. Maria just doesn’t believe he’d have hurt Tracy and sitting by his bed she feels incredibly sad at what’s happened.”

But didn’t Maria hate Charlie for the way he treated her?
“She was in love with him once and that’s the overwhelming emotion she feels now. Yes, she hated him when she found out he’d been stringing her along, but seeing him lying there – literally at death’s door – she finds she doesn’t hate him any more. She also has an instinctive feeling Tracy tried to kill him. Holding Charlie’s hand, Maria
talks to him hoping he can hear
her through his coma. She says
she thinks Tracy’s mad and Charlie squeezes her hand as if to agree. Maybe he’s telling her something! But Maria doesn’t have time to act on this as Charlie suddenly goes into cardiac arrest. He has a heart attack and dies! Maria’s devastated…”

But isn’t there guilt there too? If she believes Tracy deliberately killed Charlie she must also know
it was finding out about Maria and Charlie’s affair that would have been Tracy’s motive for murder?

“Maria can’t help feeling partly responsible. But she never thought it would end like this. In some ways she regrets the affair, but in other ways she doesn’t. It wasn’t just a quick fling for Maria. She cared deeply for Charlie.”

So she wants Tracy to be punished?
“Maria desperately wants Tracy to pay for what she’s done. And I want her to get her comeuppance too. I didn’t want Charlie to die although I’m probably the only person in the country who didn’t!’
No you’re not Samia… we didn’t want him killed off either!