I never hated Shelle, but I’m starting to.
Why is Phillip stranded in this wretched triangle?
To wrap it up, I’d like it to be revealed that Phillip was only wooing Belle for revenge. He lures her into some compromising situation, forcing her to burn her bridges with Shawn, and then dumps her heartlessly (I think this would be interesting for Belle’s character also, if she lost both Phillip and Shawn and was thrown back onto her own resources).
He needs be be shown as a ruthless businessman, Victor’s true heir. I know Days has absolutely no interest in business-related storylines, but a storyline that involved Phillip and Lucas wresting control of Titan from Victor would be a nice use of all three characters. Scenes with Billie and Lucas would establish Phillip’s softer side, but his experience with Belle should leave him cynical about women. I’d like to see Phillip get involved in a short-term no-strings-attached relationship with someone who is the opposite of Belle. How about, after playing cat-and-mouse across the country, Phillip finally finds Lauren once again. She taunts him about his son, he contemptuously points out that she’s running around the country staying at women’s shelters. Tempers escalate, and an angry, impulsive hookup ensues.
Back in Salem, I’d like to see Phillip and Stephanie interact. Days used to do the chemistry test storyline, when two characters would be paired, but not in a no-going-back romantic way. For Steve and Kayla, this was the Andrew kidnapping story. For Jack and Jennifer, it was the baby Hannah story. I’d like to see one for Phillip and Stephanie, so if the chemistry isn’t there, there’s no loss.
Stephanie has her plate full right now with Jeremy and Max and going to college (and dealing with her back-from-the-dead father). She also has some growing up to do before she could be paired with Phillip. But a small chemistry test storyline could go something like this:
Jeremy skips town and is staying at a homeless shelter under an assumed name. Increasingly desperate for money, he attacks a prosperous looking gentleman with a limp (Phillip), intending to rob him. (Phillip is at the shelter on Lauren’s trail—though this might complicate the timeline for the Lauren hookup). Phillip turns the tables on Jeremy and pins him and prepares to call the police just as Stephanie approaches and beans him on the back of the head. She is horrified to discover that this is Phillip Kiriakis, and even more horrified when she realizes that Jeremy was the process of robbing him.
Jeremy naturally has to take off again now, and when Phillip regains consciousness Stephanie asks if she can make it up to him. Semi-hostile banter ensues, until she agrees to pose as a homeless woman and pump Lauren for information. She does so, and passes on to Phillip the clue that the baby is “right under his nose.”
Back in Salem, Stephanie goes to visit her parents, who are cooing happily over Pocket. Steve makes a comment that the mother who abandoned the baby “doesn’t know what she’s missing.” Close-up on Stephanie with an expression of realization and dismay.