So where did we last leave Shayla? After Kim walks in on their first kiss, Kayla basically turns tail and runs. She tells Shane the kiss was all a big mistake, and she moves out of the mansion. She tells Kim that if she wants to be with Shane, don’t let one “misunderstood kiss” stop her.
But, she and Shane are still working together at the lab. And, while Kim was in LA, she made a friend: Lawrence Alamain. She didn’t know who he was, and as soon as she did, she broke things off. But now that they are both in Salem, he would like to revive their friendship. Shane and Kayla walk in on their little tete-a-tete:
(First of all, doesn’t Kayla look gorgeous? Wow! I love that color on her!)
Villains are always such great truth-tellers, and Lawrence is no exception. He gets a nice shot in at Kayla when he tells her that she and Shane are hurting Kim more than he ever could.
I also like the conversation between Shane and Kim. It’s the first time they’ve discussed their relationship since Kim came back, and it’s clear Shane feels a lot of anger and bitterness toward her, and that those feelings are still fresh — especially when he throws what happened with Cal in her face. I think this supports the theory that Shane prefers Kayla right now precisely because of his continuing hurt over Kim. I think his feelings for Kayla are genuine, but I think he is deliberately turning away from Kim because it’s just too painful.
Then, finally, it’s perfectly soapy that Kim makes a peace overture to Kayla, by asking her to dinner, and that Kayla can’t make it because she has to work with Shane. It shows that no matter how much they both try (and they do keep trying), there is a divide between them that won’t be easy to bridge.
But the most interesting thing about this is what happens afterward, when Kayla tells Shane that seeing Kim with Lawrence makes it even more clear they shouldn’t be together:
Kayla tells Shane that he should go back to Kim, so Lawrence won’t be able to get close to her and Kim will be safe. It’s a perfectly unreasonable request, but exactly the kind of thing people do on soaps all the time. Of course, it comes close to Steve Johnson “playing God” territory. I like how Shane calmly points out all the flaws in her scheme, that it wouldn’t be doing Kim a favor to be with her when he doesn’t want to. Seldom are soap characters this logical!
If Kayla were to really borrow a page from Steve’s playbook, she would pretend to hate Shane and otherwise try to manipulate him into going back to Kim. I like to think one of the reasons she doesn’t is because of what happened to her, when Steve broke up with her for Jack.