GH mashup nikolas ava austin
Credit: ABC Screenshots

But something tells us there’s even more going on! 

The minute General Hospital‘s Nikolas threatened to steal Avery away from Ava, we knew he’d made a big mistake. Worse, he compounded it by then turning his back on her, leaving him unable to see the fire shooting out of her eyes… let alone the statue she then beaned him on the head with.

Now, it seems Nikolas has paid the ultimate price for his foolishness… or so it seems. Ava apparently single-handedly dragged her husband (who was never a small guy, but recently got even bigger when Adam Huss temporarily stepped into the role) into the stables and then, when discovered by Austin, pretty easily convinced him not to go to the police. Why?

GH austin ava

More: GH says goodbye to another actor

Danged if he could explain it. “I’m not really clear on that, but it feels right,” he said. Then, perhaps thinking about his troublemaking cousin Mason, added, “Families are complicated.” (Heck, maybe Jimmy Lee’s son figures if he ever needs Ava to deal with Mason, he can blackmail her into it!)

But if you’ve been watching carefully, something’s been slowly but surely percolating between Ava and Austin. Many fans never really took to his now-defunct pairing with Maxie, and Ava seems to be newly single (R.I.P., Nik!) and ready to mingle. Austin and Ava have done little more than exchange a few witty remarks and some (including us) are ready to jump on board the newly-launching ship.

The fact that Austin promised to help Ava keep the truth hidden from not only Victor, but Laura and Spencer as well, indicates that the two will be spending an awful lot of time together in the future. What better way for the show to see just how well the characters work together?

Nikolas bursts in GH

More: Nikolas’ former portrayer has good news/bad news

Other fans, however, are upset not at Nikolas being killed, but at the increasingly dark path the show has taken him down over the past year or two. As @thebinmasterpt2 tweeted, “Nikolas Cassadine has been a dumpster fire of a character for the last decade, but threatening to snatch up Avery is probably the worst. They’ve decimated him.”

More: Who will be next to die?

On both Twitter and Facebook, many agreed with that assessment, while others criticized the way in which the character was killed.

Not that most believe he’s actually dead. For some, it was impossible to believe that the writers would so cavalierly dispose of Laura’s son and Spencer’s dad. For others, it was simply that few soap characters actually “die-die” these days. And as @madylowell pointed out on Twitter, both Finn (a doctor) and Liz (a nurse) declared Peter dead and… well, we all know how that turned out!

As we ponder Nikolas’ true fate, check out the dark, twisted history of the Cassadine clan via the gallery below.