EastEnders" Kat Moon is set for a dramatic return to Walford when residents are told she has died.
Jessie Wallace is to reprise her role as the mouthy market trader in the near future, but it won't be without incident as her Albert Square pals are led to believe she has passed away in an "emotional" upcoming storyline.
A show insider told The Sun newspaper: "Kat's return has caused a lot of excitement, but it won't be quite what everyone's expecting.
"Rather than her friends and family rolling out the red carpet the residents are told she has died. It's set to be a very emotional storyline - but that's probably fitting for Kat.
"It won't all be quite as it seems and the writers have some further twists and turns planned."
Kat's death will appear legit to the Walford residents when her grandmother "Big Mo" Harris - played by the returning Laila Morse - organises a wake for her outspoken granddaughter in the Queen Vic pub, complete with a talent show and a meat raffle.
A sign placed above the pub door will read: "RIP Kat Slater. Tonight at the Queen Vic - Entry £10.
"Meat Raffle, Auction, Walford's Got Talent. Entry only if you're wearing leopard print!"
Jessie recently confirmed she is returning to "EastEnders", and admitted she is "incredibly excited" about show boss John Yorke's plans for her on-screen family.
She said: "I am thrilled to be returning to "EastEnders" next year and knowing what John Yorke has in store for the Slaters is incredibly exciting.
"I love Kat and Walford dearly and I cannot wait to get started - watch out Walford, Kat's coming home."
Viewers last saw Kat in spin-off show "Kat and Alfie: Redwater" - which told the story of the popular couple heading to Ireland to find her secret son - when she was involved in a potentially-devastating boat accident.
The series ended with the fates of Kat and husband Alfie Moon (Shane Richie), who has a brain tumour and was last seen in hospital, unknown.
Laila confirmed earlier this week that "Big Mo" will be back in Walford "soon".
She wrote on Twitter: "Big Mo will be back soon... Not too long to wait now! #EastEnders (sic)"
Gillian Wright, who plays Kat's sister Jean Slater, is also due to return to the soap.