days mashup kate fish tripp wendy eric nicole sloan xander chloe
Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI (5)

When it comes to some of Days of Our Lives‘ most popular — if currently separated — pairings, headwriter Ron Carlivati reminds viewers that sometimes, the road to true love is a rocky one. “Hey, if every couple was together and happy, there wouldn’t be much reason to watch, would there?” he laughs.

So as we head into May sweeps — that period when soaps tend to kick things into high gear — things don’t look great for some couples. But that doesn’t mean viewers should give up!

Who’s The Daddy?

Take, for example, Eric and Nicole… whom you can’t discuss without also mentioning their current romantic partners, Sloan and EJ, respectively. Throwing a baby into the mix is only going to complicate things. “Obviously, Nicole doesn’t know who the father is,” reminds Carlivati. “It’s important for the audience to remember that Nicole and Eric didn’t mean to cheat. We used the drugged biscuits as something of a loophole to allow these two people who have a complicated history to sleep together.”

A half naked Eric and Nicole deeply kiss, wrapped in each others arms.

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Ultimately, it is Nicole’s past which dictates her next move. “She realizes there’s a good chance she won’t be able to carry this child to term, as has been the case in the past,” explains the scribe. “With that being the case, she thinks to herself, ‘Why am I going to tell anybody anything at this point?'” Look for Anna to become an important ally.

Full House

Is there anything more entertaining than when a bunch of rich folks — all of whom should be able to afford their own mansion — live together under one roof? That’s what’s happening at the DiMera mansion, where a newly reunited Stefan and Gabi find themselves butting heads with Nicole and EJ. “Nicole’s edges have been softened over the years,” says Carlivati. “But with Gabi, the claws come out!”

Days gabi stefan EJ

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Meanwhile, although Megan is currently behind bars, we all know that won’t last. “To see her stride into the DiMera mansion, ready to take her place and claim her birthright, is going to be fun,” he previews. And don’t be surprised if as the DiMeras get their time in the spotlight, another member of the family emerges from the woodwork!

All In the Family

Now that we know Colin is Sloan’s sister, it’s only a matter of time before his connection to Talia and her criminal activities is revealed. “Colin has been pulling the strings, but Talia’s been taking the actions, which puts her in a tough spot… especially since her sister is getting suspicious!” previews Carlivati.

In the Sweet Bits kitchen, Chanel looks at her phone. Talia peers over her shoulder. A few feet away, Jada looks on.

“We’re going to see that Talia has basically been indoctrinated by this guy. She loves him, and he’s told her that Paulina and Chanel are terrible people. But she’s starting to see that maybe that’s not true, and the question becomes whether she can break free of his influence.”

Romance Roulette

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: Chad is into Stephanie, who may still have feelings for Alex, who got involved with Gwen, who still pines for Xander, who is moving in with Chloe now that she’s pushed Brady away and…

Alex runs into Stephanie in the park.

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Yeah. There’s an awful lot going on where these crazy kids are concerned. And things will only get more complicated as the lines are blurred between friends and lovers. “Chad is getting to the point where he’s ready to move past his grief,” says Carlivati. “At the same time, because Kayla is alive, meaning that Alex’s actions didn’t cause Stephanie to miss those final moments with her mom, there might be an opportunity for forgiveness there. Yes, Alex still did what he did, so the breakup stands. But… “

For Chloe and Brady, meanwhile, the issue is his temperamental daughter, Rachel. The distance between the would-be lovers has created an interesting situation for Chloe and Xander. “We like to remind people that he is someone who left Chloe in the hands of a Mexican drug lord. And yet they’re starting to find commonalities.”

In their wood paneled motel room, a shirtless and intense Xander holds Sarah's hand.

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Now call us crazy — you wouldn’t be the first — but it sounds as if maybe the timing is almost right for a Sarah return? “She is floating around out there,” agrees the writer, “and we know she is pregnant. And Xander is holding out hope that one day, he can find a way to earn her forgiveness!”

In Other News…

“We thought it would be a fun callback to put Kate on a boat chopping fish, the same way we saw the character when Lauren Koslow first took over the part,” laughs Carlivati. “Now, we’re going to pull a lot of other characters into this story as we explore who has her and why.” • Wendy is getting closer to Tripp but still has lingering feelings for Johnny. “She’s going to make a choice, and we’ll then explore what happens to the odd man out. Is there somebody out there for him? We might also be throwing somebody else into the mix!” • Look for a “big story that is going to rock Abe and Paulina’s world and turn their relationship upside down,” warns Carlivati.

Want to see the real-life romantic partners of your favorite Days of Our Lives stars? Of course you do, so check out the photo-filled gallery below!