The Emeralds (1)

Last year I started a rewatch of Steve and Kayla’s first run, and then I let it slip through the cracks. I think now is a perfect time to pick up that thread again. I left them in Stockholm with the omelet dinner and what happened afterwards. My last post was on this adorable scene.

That brings us to one of the best mini-storylines Steve and Kayla ever had, the emeralds storyline. This is similar in structure to the arc of the failed date. The show teases us by inching forward, then slaps us down very painfully, then bounces us back up again to dizzying heights. Ah, I didn’t appreciate the drama of a well done storyline back then. I was too busy being played like a violin as the show jerked my emotions around. (And I mean that in the best way possible.)

This story marks the last time Steve does — well, almost does — something criminal. There will be times that he’ll be suspected of doing something bad (like shooting Harper Deveraux), but this is really the last gasp of “thug” Steve.

One thing that jumped out at me this time is how delicate and complex their dynamic is. We all remember Determined Kayla, but even here, when she was at the height of her confidence, she wasn’t always in pursuit mode. She often took steps back, in large and small ways. And Steve wasn’t always running away — he reached out, he hung around, he kissed her. It’s a delicate dance that shifted the power back and forth and kept things from being too one-sided.

The show was very careful to make it clear that the big step forward in this storyline — that kiss — doesn’t erase their problems. (And oh, to have such clarity about what their issues actually are!) In fact, as we’ll see, their kiss seems to happen almost in spite of themselves, and raises the stakes of their issues without resolving them.

Let’s get started:

Emeralds 1

(To view the clips, you have to be part of my Google+ circle! If you haven’t already, go here and leave a comment and I’ll add you!)

This is the “inching forward” part — ah, they really knew how to tantalize us back then. Steve’s monologue at the outset is hilarious. I love that he teases her about her “Sound of Music” wardrobe.  One thing I love about Steve and Kayla is how much they obviously enjoy each other. Sometimes with these “opposite attract” couples it’s not clear that these people would really have anything to say to each other after they get together. That’s not true for these two. There is a sheer enjoyment of each other’s company that goes way beyond chemistry.

Back to the scene. When Steve realizes he’s talking to an empty room, he panics. Kayla shows back up right away, but panic and danger are always a good excuse for a desperate hug: “if anything happened to you …”  (Thanks, Orpheus! Maybe you can work your magic again now!)

When Kayla tells Steve he looks nice, his reaction, his obvious surprise and pleasure, his attempt to deflect — “it’s just a shirt and a pair of pants” — is really kind of heartbreaking. Then — one of the small steps back I was talking about above — she gets shy about her new dress and tells him to “forget it.” In reaction, Steve reaches out — he grabs her as she turns away and says “go put the dress on.”

While Kayla is changing, Steve actually primps a little, and goes the mirror for a Steve-in-the-mirror scene: “you’re good looking, yes you are,” he says. “Keep telling yourself that,” he half-sneers, hitting the mirror, but he laughs and fails to reach his usual levels of self-loathing. He’s too happy for that right now.

She comes out, and there’s so much unresolved sexual tension when he zips up her dress – and the looooong look while he touches her face. As we all scream at the TV “Just kiss her, you fool!”


It doesn’t happen … but things are going so well, surely it will be soon, very soon …

At dinner, Steve warms up a little and actually manages to give Kayla a compliment. “You look so pretty.” He also accepts one, when Kayla tells him he has “a lot of nice qualities.” Steve aims for a sleazy comeback but trails off. “What, no punchline?” Kayla says, smiling, watching him intently. Barriers are falling all over the place. Then the crucial exchange:

K: Underneath that tough exterior, there’s part of you I always knew was there. Someone who is good, caring, loyal …

S: If you see it, baby … you’re the only one who’s ever believed it.

This is key — he doesn’t believe it. But he’s starting to bask in that belief of hers. Kayla sees that, sees him softening. Maybe it’s enough that she believes? I think they are both toying with the idea that it is. Kayla’s confidence is at an all time high here. Remember she’s only recently decided to openly pursue him. And really, it’s been going rather well. We viewers have been lulled into a false sense of security too.

And that’s when Steve’s old friend comes in with his emeralds.

So their night is busted up. Steve yells at Kayla. She runs away. And he takes the emeralds.

Okay, not good. Now we’re nervous. But, it’s not immediately clear that this is going to be fatal:

Emeralds 2

Back at the hotel, they fight it out. We’ve gotten spoiled in Stockholm – even their fights have mostly been productive. Kayla’s mad, but she ends up pressing him again, that (over?)confidence again on full display: “I can make it happen, Steve.” All he has to do is “let it happen.” Steve wavers — saying hoarsely, “How?” — but remembers the emeralds and backs off and pushes her away again. All right, but … he’s done that before. And the next morning he’s happy, teasing and flirtatious, and he orders breakfast for them both — making up for their ruined dinner the night before. Reaching out again! And he’s still got time to change his mind, right?

Emeralds 3

Their game of “Ask Me Anything” after breakfast is wonderful. Does it get better than this? More playful sparring, more sexual tension. But under the guise of the game, they both ask what they’ve been dying to know. For Steve, “What do you see in me?” (And oh, his tremor, his look of vulnerability, as he brings out the question!)

For Kayla: “Are things going to be different when we get back to Salem?” Is he going to back away again, as he has so many times before? Is this step forward finally going to stick? Steve hesitates, but then answers. “Oh yeah.” How can he make that promise, look into those eyes, and still smuggle the emeralds?

Answer: he can’t. He leaves the emeralds behind, in his jacket. And we breathe a sigh of relief …

… but then Kayla, helpful Kayla, grabs the jacket on her way out.

And we’re off.


28 thoughts on “The Emeralds (1)

  1. Ahhh what great memories! Yes, it was soooo hard back then all of the waiting, but having the pleasure of knowing what’s to come makes these so enjoyable on a different level now. Not that they weren’t then, but it’s just different. As always, thank you for the fantastic flashbacks!

    • I agree! It was so hard back then to wait – sometimes I wonder how I could stand it. Waiting through the weekend for Monday… now even when I can go on to the next clip I still have a hard time!

      But I can really appreciate the structure of it all now, how good it was. Stringing us along, torturing us, but then the big payoff. So well done.

  2. Oh Mary….you know my weak spot—Stockholm !! Oh, how I loved that place—wished they had gone there on their honeymoon–oh well, I digress ! These scenes are just amazing—the sexual tension is at an all time high as her pursuit of him is on full display. Remember when he stayed in her room that night & she asked if he wanted to get his pajamas ? Him watching her walk across the room to turn down the lights…not saying anything…just looking–omg ! Of course, the next morning when she hops into bed & gets a “peek” & then he asks her if she is afraid of him—-when she says “Sometimes”, you could hear his heart break ! The breakfast scene is great, when he tries to get up & she tells him to “Sit down” & then reels off the things she sees in him—woohoo !! Now, their first kiss…..back then, when I was all of 17, I was actually disappointed ! After all their near misses,(my personal favorite being when he helped her out of the wet clothes & he was “helping” her get warm by the fire in the blanket), I wasn’t too happy with the execution of that all important first kiss. However, looking back, it was exactly as it should have been–when he mutters “Kayla” on her lips..I swooned ! I always LOVED that she wanted to go to bed with him right then & there—girl was seriously into him ! Quick question Mary…about a week or so after the first kiss, when Kayla gets Steve to admit that he cares about her (more great scenes–“you’re making a big mistake turning your back on me because I am the best thing that ever happened to you–ooh cocky Kayla..loved it)—I have always believed that he was really telling her that he loved her—thoughts?

    • That’s do interesting that you were a bit disappointed back then! I do love the scene after the storm drain, that would have been a great first kiss (except Steve’s orange vest, lol). I actually didn’t get to see the setup to the first kiss back in 86 – there was a preemption and they went back to the show when S&K were in mid-kiss. Talk about traumatic.

      I love the scenes in the bed when she peeks under the covers … so fun and flirty. And Ask Me Anything is just perfect – fun, sexy, serious. One of my favorite scenes ever.

      And yes, I think Steve was telling her he loved her in that scene — I think he’d been in love for a long time. “Care about” is as close as he could come to saying it. And even then it sounded like it was being ripped out of him.

  3. I LOVE LOVE their Ask Me Anything scene. I just love Kayla for asking what his favorite fantasy is. Also the little scene in the bed. SN is so funny here.
    Later the scene at Blondies when Kayla agrees that maybe they aren’t right for each other. Breaks my heart. MBE always breaks my heart.

    >>Now, their first kiss…..back then, when I was all of 17, I was actually disappointed ! After all their near misses,(my personal favorite being when he helped her out of the wet clothes & he was “helping” her get warm by the fire in the blanket), I wasn’t too happy with the execution of that all important first kiss. However, looking back, it was exactly as it should have been–when he mutters “Kayla” on her lips..I swooned !<<

    One thing I remember most about their first kiss is the music. I remember being very surprised it wasn't the usual romantic piano tune that often plays during their romantic moments. Instead it was the more darker background music played iirc, during the more forbidden moments between them. I didn't like it at the time but looking back it makes sense considering how long they still had to go. Or should I say how far Steve still had to go before he was ready.
    I also remember most Kayla's reaction after the kiss. "Steve' with a look of heaven on her face.

    • I love how Steve loses his nerve and just asks about her favorite food. Ha ha. Nice going, Mr. Sleaze.

      Yeah, I’ll talk about this more next time but I think the show made it really clear that the kiss isn’t as much as a step forward as it seems like a kiss should be — they really undercut it (in a good way) by making it happen the way they did. But I’ll talk about that more next time.🙂

      • Mr. Sleaze lol !!! I always wanted Steve to make her one, you know, after they had gotten together—that would have been a HOT scene. One request Mary….don’t make us wait too long for the next post!🙂

  4. Agree with LJ, Mary, please do not wait too long :0) I always enjoyed Kayla’s naughtiness it seemed to catch Steve off guard at times.
    I was up so late trying to find some fave clips from @patchandkayla IG so many good things have been removed from youtube. Enjoying your Google+ but would luv some more that I can download!

      • oh, yes, def. the first kiss and the first time, you know… Steve signing/singing The Rose, patch removal, and, if you’ve got it from the 2nd run, when Kayla sees Steve at the cemetery (she gives him a great kiss to see if that helps him remember🙂 ) and what I call the Kiss of Life when K dies. Too much?? There are soo many.. but just want to have a few that i adore.

    • I can recommend a great place for S/K clips. Every clip in fact. She makes them in to hour videos. Go to Google + and search TrueXena. You just have to request entry. Her channel was deleted from YT so she’s had to begin over so right now she’s in the middle of 1988 and also re uploading from the very beginning.

      • Thank u Mary for posting the kiss scene via Dropbox…🙌 I just watched it and am amazed how much story was packed in there. The memories, the kiss, the sad ending when he makes her go.

        I saw a scene from another soap and the guy says something very similar to Steve when he said ” why wouldn’t I want you Kayla”. It was so similar, I just really think they were influenced by S&K story. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?. 🙂

  5. Love the old S&K storyline and scenes and of course your analysis MP is always so perfect.

    one thing I like from these scenes (#2) is when Kayla gives him the I can make it happen speech hugs him and says to him he doesn’t have to be alone and Steve almost starts cyring. Was there anything better then Steve’s one eyed teary look to break your heart???

    You think he is going to open up and then says a tortured “Kayla…..a leopard doesn’t change his spots” and bam Kayla is right back to confused and off balance.

    LJ – I also loved the first time Kayla breaks thru to him and Steve says he cares for her. It was such good drama when he finally admitted it to her and then says “you are real proud of yourself aren’t you?” MP that would be a good 2 or 3 scenes to upload. Shows so much.

    I think he then waits for her outside the fish market because she was with her family because Marlena died? I always thought that was so sweet he just waited for hours in the cold so he could walk her home.


    • I love those scenes where he finally says he cares about her. Definitely will be posting about those.🙂

      It breaks my heart when he says “how?” (when she says she can make it happen) — he sounds so desperate, he wants to believe so much. But then having in the emeralds in the back of his mind gives him the perfect reason to turn away. It’s all so well done.

      • I know so well done – just makes me frustrated that the show today can’t even build a story half this good. Not to get off topic on the “classic days” but I have actually enjoyed (enjoyed maybe too strong of a word LOL) the show more this week. Just simply things like some scenes with Sonny & Chad and Gabby & Rafe, I love the friendships and family interaction.

        Let’s see where it goes.

  6. Hi Mary—a request for an upload, but only when you get the chance. I honestly have only heard this scene on audiotape. I met this girl back in April ’87 at a Stephen Nichols/Drake Hogestyn event–we were crazy nuts about S& K !! Back then, we had no internet…we just talked on the phone for hours–analyzing everything S & K did..from how they kissed to how they held hands. She sent me an audio tape of scenes I had never seen, as I got into their storyline around November ’86. Okay, it is before their first kiss. Steve walks Hope & Kayla home…..makes a smart aleck comment to Kayla who puts him in his place by saying she knows he thinks of her as a “friend” (yeah right) when he asks how she knows that, she says “you’d risk your life for me”–boom !! I remember the music changing ’cause Steve was speechless. Do you have that scene and the one soon after when he spots her on the plane–love when she says “Hi”. BTW, listened to those tapes constantly…don’t ask me how I remember all this stuff—can’t remember anything from Chem or Trig class, but I remember dialogue–LOL !!! Thanks Mary🙂

      • Oh Mary…how can I ever,ever thank you ? How absolutely amazing to finally be able to see this scene !It did not disappoint–the look on his face when she shot that line back at him——LOVED it !! Never realized, with the audio, that Kayla inched up next to him, only to get the brush-off, yet again. Their chemistry is off the charts. I truly believe…if they had really executed a better storyline when Stephen came back over a year ago…we could have had scenes like this one, with the same feeling of angst between them. Again, from the bottom of my heart–thanks—have already watched it about 10x !!! BTW, Steve in his sweater…TOO CUTE !!🙂

      • You’re welcome! I noticed his sweater too. I like it!

        I was thinking while I was watching this what it would be like to have only the audio. Their body language adds so much! Thanks for reminding me of the scene.🙂 I agree that they do longing so well … wish they had more chances to do it. The show doesn’t seem to do the slow burn love stories anymore.

  7. Okay, I was out of the loop so long that this is probably a dumb question, but… Where the hell are the writers that wrote all the good stuff and why can’t DOOL get them back?

    You are the absolute best Mary. Thanks so much for taking your time to upload the clips.

    • Agreed ILoveMySnK——-they are bastards for taking down those clips ! As for the writers from way back when, perhaps they can put a WANTED poster up in Burbank😉 Always good chatting with you🙂

      • You too LJ! Are you on twitter? Would love to talk more with you! I’m mostly a night time tweeter/poster but hey, I take what I can get. @ILoveMySnK —

  8. Hey there ILoveMySnK..sorry , I don’t tweet !😉 I, too, am a night owl—once i get the kids to bed, love to decompress & talk to some old friends with similar likes ! Am looking forward to the next blog !

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