Days victoria konefal SEE RICHARD

Photographer: Yasmine Kateb; Hair: Sarah Ault; Makeup: Anton Khachaturian

“I’m not the type of person who likes to limit myself,” says the actress.

Nobody was more surprised than Victoria Konefal when she suddenly found herself one half of a Days of Our Lives supercouple. “I had no idea it would take off like that,” she admits. “I had an inkling that Ben and Ciara might become popular, just because the recipe was perfect. He’s a bad boy, she’s a good girl from a legacy family.

“So I expected there might be something there,” she continued, “but I never imagined it would go as far as it did.”

It’s also not something Konefal takes lightly. “Supercouple status is not easily achieved, so to be deemed that is really an honor,” she says. The fact that she and co-star Robert Scott Wilson (Ben) became so popular despite his character’s complicated past makes it all the more stunning. “Headwriter Ron Carlivati and the producers had faith in us from the beginning, so we just sort of ran with it and hoped for the best. And against all odds, the best ended up happening.”

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Laughing, Konefal says that unlike Ciara, the whole reformed-serial-killer thing would probably be a deal-breaker for her. “Ben’s target murder victims were women, and given everything that Ciara has gone through, and with her being such a feminist, you wouldn’t think that she would go for a man like that. As much as I love them as a couple, realistically, I would have given it a second thought before marrying the guy!”

Ciara and Ben finally have their wedding night on Days

Konefal admits that she didn’t necessarily like that upon falling for Ben, Ciara lost her identity to a certain extent. “To be fully honest, I don’t like that it’s always ‘Ben and Ciara’ or ‘Ciara and Ben,'” she shares. “You know, I did work on that character for eight months before Ben came to town. Ciara was more her own person and was dealing with her own drama. She was more independent.”

That said, the actress also acknowledges that her alter ego was “sort of lost before Ben came along. She did a lot of growing with him. When they met, she was a lost teen. She stepped into womanhood with him.”

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Although Ben is now mourning his lost love, the audience remains convinced that Ciara is out there, somewhere… and hoping that Konefal might decide to return. “I have gone back to tape episodes, as viewers have seen,” she says, adding that she’s open to the possibility of “coming back every now and again.” In fact, Ben and his missus will share a bit of a holiday reunion, as indicated by the show’s winter preview.

In the meantime, Konefal is testing the waters to see what other opportunities might await. And while there’s long been a certain stigma attached to actors who work in daytime, that doesn’t worry her a bit. “I just am who I am,” she shrugs. “I’ve never labeled myself as a soap actor. I’ve always been an actress. I started in theater when I was 7, so I rebuke that stereotype.”

When it comes to auditions, “I just have to show them what I can do, and they can see that my work speaks for itself.” If anything, the show helped hone the skills she’s been developing for years. “I went to a performing-arts high school in Manhattan, and I feel like I’ve learned more on Days of Our Lives than I did during those four years of professional training.”

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Although a whole lot of people are anxiously waiting to see what Konefal will do next, she denies feeling any real pressure. “Acting is what I want to do and it’s what I love, so I’m just excited to see what else I can do,” she says. “I like to remain humble, so I don’t really think about it too much.

“But when I do sit back and look at what I’ve accomplished in such a short amount of time,” she adds, “I’m really proud of myself, you know? That just fuels my motivation even more to see what else I can accomplish. Whether it happens for me now or in the next year or in the next 30 years, I’m never going to stop, and my hunger will never die.”

What kind of project would you love to see Konefal take on next? Hit the comments with your thoughts, then visit the gallery below in which the actress shares behind-the-scenes stories about everything from her first day on set to Ben and Ciara’s wedding.