Beauty and the Beast: The Love Story of Patch and Kayla

By Mini Leahey and Jody Reines

Soap Opera Digest, July 12, 1988


Chapter 1:  THE ONE-EYED BUM

When Patch Johnson first appeared, no one guessed a sensitive heart was lurking beneath his hostile, leather-jacketed exterior.  He was a one-eyed, hired thug – and part-time pool-hustler – in super-mobster Victor Kiriakis’s employ.  His main objective was revenge against Bo Brady and no one knew why.

It was a long story.

In the beginning, Bo Brady and Steve Johnson were best friends.  They met during a stint in the Merchant Marines, and shared a rebellious streak a mile wide.  They were like brothers, and it looked like they would stay that way, even when an attractive, undercover agent named Britta Englund entered the picture.  She became Bo’s lover and Steve’s friend and convinced the men that the three of them should get tattoos as a sign of their loyalty to each other.  So, each one of them was permanently marked with a design of a dagger.  At the time, they never suspected that the knives were the clues to the location of hidden treasury bonds.  But before they could find out, Britta tricked Bo into delivering government secrets to the Soviets, then she seduced Steve behind his back.  Bo discovered his best friend entwined with Britta and attacked Steve, putting out is eye – permanently.  Johnson vowed revenge as he donned his trademark, a black-leather eye-patch.

Chapter 2:   A HIRED GUN

Years later, a beautiful opportunist named Savannah Wilder came to Salem, Bo Brady’s home town, with a video cassette business that was a cover for a drug-smuggling operations headed by Victor Kiriakis.  Patch was hired by Savannah to kill Bo, who was now a private investigator working to expose Savannah’s drug ring.  Patch lurked on the docks, stalking Bo, brandishing his switch blade.  But there seemed to be a reluctance on both sides to strike out.  Instead, Patch repeatedly taunted Bo.  “You need me, dude,” he’d sneer, reminding Brady that he was the only person alive that could clear his name of espionage charges.  It all went back to that fateful, rainy night in Stockholm when the way Steve looked at the world changed forever.

About the same time, Victor launched a hunt for “the purse, the pawn and the power.”  Still in his talent-pool, Patch was sent after the purse – a hundred-million-dollar treasure hidden beneath the ocean I Florida.  There, aboard Victor’s yacht, Patch and Savannah located Bo, Hope and the treasure.  Flashing his knife, Patch tied up the Bradys and promised to kill them.  Resourceful Bo and Hope freed themselves moments before their rescue team arrived.  Steve was shot and fell into the water.  The yacht exploded and the treasure was lost forever.  Just then, Bo reached into the water and pulled a half-conscious Patch to safety.  Ungrateful, Johnson spat at Brady, “You’ll live to regret this.”

Next, Victor hired Patch to find Britta and bring her to Salem, where she testified and cleared Brady’s name.  Britta and Patch picked up where they left off romantically, until she abruptly left town.  And Patch swore off romance forever.



Meanwhile, Kimberly Brady’s infant son, Andrew, had been kidnapped.  While Kim and Shane searched for him, Shane’s first wife, the deranged Emma, schemed to make sure the child was never found.  She secretly arranged for the child to be adopted.  Ironically, the doctor Emma had chosen to handle Andrew’s placement was nurse Kayla Brady’s boss.  When Emma learned this, she panicked.  Fearing that Kim’s sister Kayla might see some of the baby’s paperwork and become suspicious, Emma hired Patch to torment and frighten the young nurse.  Patch agreed, asking no questions.  Emma instructed him to scare Ms. Brady back to Salem.   After some heavy breathing into the phone, patch escalated his campaign of terrorism and broke into her apartment.  When he heard her returning home, he hid in a closet and saw his victim for the first time.  He was immediately overwhelmed by her beauty and innocence.  Transfixed, he watched blond, blue-eyed, Kayla undress.  For a moment he wanted to abandon his orders, but he didn’t.  Love at first sight wasn’t enough  to stop him.  Revenge was the strongest emotion he knew and uppermost in his mind.  He trashed her apartment, and Kayla returned to Salem.


Patch couldn’t forget Kayla. They were brought together again when Patch brought an injured Bo into the Emergency Center where Kayla was now working.  Touched by Patch’s concern for her brother, Kayla took an interest in him, in spite of his insolence.  Innocent Kayla never suspected that this was the same man who had harassed her, and they exchanged a few meaningful glances. 

Still in victor’s employ, Patch was badly beaten for not following orders.  But Kayla found him on the pier and couldn’t ignore his plight.  Though he resisted her, she helped him to his room and dressed his wounds, while he stayed suspicious of her motives.  But she asked no questions and begged him to trust her.  In spite of his misgivings, he did.

While Steve trembled, she gently removed his eye-patch and washed his bloodied face.  He had never permitted anyone to unmask him before, but somehow, he couldn’t say no to Kayla.  That night, she stayed with him, ignoring his demands to be left alone.  Finally, he stopped fighting her and she stubbornly camped out on a chair next to his bed.  After she fell asleep, Patch struggled against the pain of his wounds, and pulled a blanket over Kayla’s sleeping body.  Try as he might, he couldn’t figure out why she would go out of her way for a one-eyed bum like him.


Patch and Kayla became involved with runaways, Max (who refused to speak) and Frankie, homeless kids who were living on the street.  Patch hid the boys in his apartment until a concerned Kayla found the brothers a home together – with her parents.  Patch was touched by Kayla’s selfless involvement pp and the impulsive kiss she placed on his cheek.

Kayla’s budding romantic feelings were tested when she discovered Patch’s old love, Britta had spent the night with him.  Kayla’s cheeks burned when she saw blonde, svelte Britta, emerge from the bathroom wearing only a black teddy.

Britta had tracked Patch down for her own sinister purposes.  She wanted to photograph Steve’s tattoo because she had become aware of its value.  So Britta got Patch to go to bed with her, but it was over between them, and they knew it.

A few days later, a crazed drug addict held Kayla and Max hostage at the Emergency Center.  Max managed to escape and bring Patch back to rescue Kayla.  But she had been stabbed during the ordeal and asked him to help her bandage herself.  Taken aback by her request, he hesitated. Then, seeing her wound, he did what she asked.  “I’m not hurting you, am I, sweetness?”  he asked.  “You have very gentle hands,” Kayla told him, surprised by his tenderness.  After that, Kayla found herself dreaming about Steve.

Chapter 6:  ON THE RUN

When Britta was killed, things took a turn for the worse.  Patch was the prime suspect in her murder, even though he was innocent.  Panicked, he went to Kayla for help.  But as usual, his timing was rotten.  Within minutes, the cops arrived to arrest him – and Kayla as his accessory.  After they had been handcuffed together, Patch realized the police were phony.  He had been set up.  So, he and Kayla staged a loud argument, knocked out their guard and escaped from the barn where they were being held.  “You’re stuck with me, baby,” Patch told her as they checked into a nearby hotel, pretending to be newlyweds.  Her feelings ran the gamut:  first she hated him, but eventually, she grew to trust him.  And when his name was cleared, she was relieved.  In fact, she even flew to Stockholm to be with him when she learned he had been shot trying to discover Britta’s real murderer and the meaning of the three knives.

Chapter 7:  THE FIRST DATE

After Max talked for the first time, Patch and Kayla wanted to celebrate.  They both had something to do with the little boy’s breakthrough, and wanted to have something more to do with each other.  Kayla went all out and prepared a romantic dinner, but Patch got cold feet.  He lost his confidence when Bo confronted him on Kayla’s doorstep.  “You’re no good for my sister,” Brady told him.  “She deserves better, and you know it.  Stay away from her.”  Patch turned and left, dropping a bouquet of yellow roses by her door.  Instead of explaining what happened, Patch decided Bo was right and tried to alienate Kayla.  She didn’t understand what was happening.  All she knew was that Steve had already won her heart.

Chapter 8:  TO THE RESCUE

 But Patch couldn’t hide his real feelings when Kayla was kidnapped by the nefarious Orpheus, her brother Roman’s worst enemy.  Frantic, Patch tracked down the yacht where she was being held captive.  Meanwhile, a traumatized Kayla believed Steve was dead, killed at the hands of one of Orpheus’s henchmen.  She was crying softly to herself when Patch found her.  After they swam to safety, Kayla helped him locate the bonds in Stockholm.

Before they left Sweden, Patch was approached by one of his old associates, a jewel smuggler named Werner, who asked Steve to take some emeralds into the States.  At first, Patch accepted the deal, but later changed his mind and made arrangements to leave the emeralds behind in his jacket.  However, Kayla, trying to be helpful, grabbed the coat and brought it onto the plane.  Steve noticed the jacket just before they were about to land in Salem, but it was too late.  They were arrested for smuggling the gems.  Without telling anyone, Kayla quickly stashed the emeralds and they were released.  But Werner stabbed Steve when he couldn’t produce the stones.

Chapter 9:  THE FIRST KISS

Once again, Kayla found Steve on the docks, bleeding and angry.  They went back to his apartment where she bandaged him and ignored his crude remarks.  “Just stay out of my life, Kayla,” he screamed.  Fed up, Kayla retrieved the emeralds and threw them at Steve.  “I can’t.  I just can’t stay away.  Now what am I supposed to do about that?” she demanded.  There was only one way to answer her.  He took her in his arms and kissed her.  Later, he told her one kiss wouldn’t change anything, but she knew it already had.


But Patch couldn’t stay away from Kayla.  He found himself in her arms, and he liked it there.  The night they were finally ready to make love, the tragic news that Marlena Brady had been killed jarred their romantic plans.  She knew she wanted Patch, but once again, he pulled away.

Christmas provided an opportunity for them to reach out to each other.  He surprised her by giving her a necklace that had belonged to his mother, and she gave him a cookbook which contained an inscription about love (which he was to read over and over).

Chapter 11:  NEW YEAR’S EVE

When Steve finally decided to accompany Kayla to the party at Neil Curtis’s house, he wore a tuxedo, and he looked better than ever.  But, after a lingering kiss, they decided to spend a quiet evening alone at Kayla’s loft.  Patch pulled her into a passionate embrace, but the moment was broken when a rock came crashing through the window.  Patch raced outside to investigate and a messenger appeared with papers for Kayla.  She opened the package and was stunned to read a report which named Patch as the man who had stalked her!  Kayla was in shock.  Patch tried to explain, but Kayla wasn’t listening.  It took time, but Steve was able to win her understanding and forgiveness.

Chapter 12:  THE JOHNSONS

During the next few months, Steve was reunited with his family, and was haunted by his memories of them:  His drunken father, Duke, abusing his loving mother, Jo; being put up for adoption along with his little brother, Billy; and being separated from Billy when a home was found for his little brother.

Steve vowed to protect Jo and his younger sister, Adrienne, but was unable to stop Duke, who found his way to Adrienne one night and raped her.  In self-defense, she shot her father, but was too traumatized to remember it.  To protect her, Steve confessed to the murder.  He blamed himself for what happened since he had wanted to put Duke out of commission only days earlier and had allowed Kayla to talk him out of it.  When Adrienne got her memory back, she cleared Steve, but this event had widened the gap between Patch and Kayla.  “We don’t see eye to eye, baby,” he told her.  But Patch got over his anger when he and Kayla were trapped together under the rubble following an explosion in Mike Horton’s laboratory.  “Don’t die, baby, I love you, Kayla,” he cried as she drifted in and out of consciousness.  After several days, they were rescued by Jack Deveraux, a handsome young cancer patient who was an old friend of Kayla’s.

Chapter 13:  ON THE RUN AGAIN

Meanwhile, Senator Harper Deveraux moved into town with his family.  He planned to get to the bottom of the sabotaged of the research lab, but he wasn’t alone.  Unbeknownst to Patch, a man posing as the senator – not the senator himself – hired Steve to stage and assassination to unearth the criminals behind the bombing.  But Patch was the fall guy and shot Senator Deveraux for real.  Once he fired the gun, Patch knew he had been set up and went on the run.  Kayla followed him, helping him to hid out in a barn, and eventually jumping freight trains with him in a cross-country adventure to elude the police.  Their escape included a plane crash which left them stranded in the wilderness.  While Patch fought off bears, Kayla cavorted in a hot spring, and Steve joined her for some steamy kisses.   “I’ve wanted you for so long, Kayla,” he confessed, as a helicopter circled overhead.  A snake bite slowed Steve down, so they moved on to a honeymoon hotel for shelter.  But they were spotted, and after shots broke through the windows, they joined forces with Adrienne and her boyfriend, Justin Kirakis.  The foursome unearthed evidence which linked the lab explosion to a conspiracy at the hospital.  But they still didn’t have enough proof to clear Steve.

Chapter 14:  UP ON THE ROOF

Because he was still wanted by the police, Steve hid in the secret room at the Curtis mansion and at Kayla’s loft.  He insisted that sleeping on the roof would be safer for the both of them.  They tried to stay away from each other, but the attraction was too strong to be denied, finally, the oppressive heat of the summer night and her own inner fire brought Kayla to the rooftop.  “Thought you’d never get here, baby,” Patch said softly when he saw her.  He took her in his arms and, at last, they made love under the stars.

The next morning, Kayla asked if they really had made love.  “Yes, we did,” he replied.  “It was wonderful,” she remembered dreamily.  “Do you know why?” he stammered, his eyes filling with ears.  “Because I love you, Kayla,” he managed.  She looked at him and smiled.  “I love you, too,” Kayla said tenderly, and she knew it would be forever.


Patch was walking on air.  He was in love and the town had finally recognized his heroism.  He had been cleared of all the charges in the shooting of Senator Deveraux and had managed to save Alice Horton’s life when she was held hostage at the hospital.  He had bought Kayla a beautiful engagement ring with his reward money and was planning to propose.  His future looked bright for the first time in years, but a shocking discovery overshadowed his dreams.

For weeks, Kayla had been working as a private nurse, caring exclusively for ailing Jack Deveraux, who had fallen hopelessly in love with her.  In fact, Kayla was the only happiness he could see in what seemed destined to be his short life.  While Kayla was fond of Jack, she clearly loved Steve.  But Jo was aware that both her sons loved Kayla, and finally confessed to Steve that Jack was actually his little brother, Billy.  The news coincided with Jack’s relapse and Steve decided to put his proposal to Kayla on hold.  Then seeing how much Jack/Billy adored Kayla, Patch remembered his childhood promise and decided to give up the woman he loved to save his brother’s life.


Because Patch wanted Kayla to make his brother happy, he couldn’t tell her the truth.  Instead, he pretended to revert to his old ways.  Her referred to their love-making as a one-night stand and paraded other women in front of her.  Kayla was devastated, but Patch gave the performance of a lifetime, shocking Kayla right into Jack’s willing arms.  Deeply hurt, Kayla decided to marry Jack.  On the night before her wedding, Patch dropped off a gift for the couple – a silver rose.  Holding the rose, Kayla was confused, but by now she was angry enough to go through with her marriage plans – in spite of her memories.

Once they had said their vows, Jack expected Kayla to “be a real wife.”  But she just couldn’t bring herself to make love to her husband.  At first, Jack was patient but as time went on and Kayla still resisted his advances, he became increasingly frustrated.  In addition, Harper disapproved of his son’s bride.  Fearing that Kayla knew Jack’s real identity, the senator began to slowly poison her.  As time went by, Jack went into remission, but Kayla was on the verge of death.  Although doctors assured her she would recover, Steve felt something was terribly wrong.  After sneaking into Kayla’s room, he gathered her up in his arms and took her away from the Deveraux household.  While Kayla lingered in a coma, Steve sat by her bedside, praying for her recovery.  When she regained consciousness, they couldn’t deny their feelings any longer and Steve told her everything.  They declared their love for each other, but they faced several problems.

First, they had to find out who was trying to kill Kayla, and secondly, Kayla had to end her marriage to Jack.  Neither proved to be easy.  Jack wasn’t about to let Kayla go.  He still loved her.  But then he saw photos of Kayla and Steve together – evidence that they had been carrying on behind his back – and Jack snapped.  He demanded an explanation, Kayla told him that she was still in love with Steve, but Jack reminded her that he, not Steve, was her husband.  Then he raped her.

Chapter 17:   VOWS

Kayla wanted to run away.  Instead, Patch took her to a deserted cabin in the nearby woods and, on a snowy plateau; he got down on his knee and asked her to marry him.  Right there, right then.  Together, they knelt in the snow and pledged their love for each other.  That night, Kayla was unable to make love.  After Steve discovered her bruises, she tearfully admitted that his brother had raped her.

When they returned to town, Jack confronted Steve on Kayla’s roof.  The battle ended when Jack fell to the ground, seriously injured.  Near death, Jack needed a kidney transplant to survive and Patch donated the organ.  Jack was unaware that it was his brother who was saving his life.  The surgery was harder on Steve, who lapsed into a coma.  But in his unconscious state, Patch saw his life – both past and future – pass before his eyes, and he found a new meaning in the day-today struggle for happiness.  He awoke determined to commit his life to Kayla.

True to his word, Patch helped Kayla overcome the trauma of her rape.  His patience and understanding gradually gave Kayla the strength to admit to the world that she had been abused by her husband – even though he was now a prominent politician.  She regained her self-esteem and with Patch’s help organized a new Community Center for the kids on the waterfront.  This Riverfront Community Center became Jack’s new target.  By defaming and destroying the center, he hoped to discredit Steve and Kayla and cause them great unhappiness.  Instead, he merely strengthened their love.

Chapter 18:  THE FUTURE

That love was to face a new and even harder tests in the future, as they waited for the divorce to become final, they dreamed about their wedding day.  But, for a time, it seemed that day would never come.  Kayla was attacked in the basement of her building by the vicious Riverfront Knifer, the serial killer who had been terrorizing Salem.  As she struggled to escape his grasp, a can of gasoline overturned, causing a fire and an enormous explosion, although Steve braved the flames to rescue an unconscious Kayla, she was seriously hurt in the blast.  When she came to, she could neither hear nor speak.  Patch was determined to help a courageous Kayla cope with her deafness.  With Kimberly’s help, they both learned sign language.  Patch wanted nothing to interfere with their closeness and insisted that their marriage take place, exactly as planned.  There would be only one change:  instead of speaking their vows, they would sign them. 

When the day of the wedding finally arrived, their problems faded into the background and all they could see was each other.  The years of separation and pain vanished as they stood in the sunshine, smiled and looked at each other with tear filled eyes.  Then, they started to make the gestures which constituted their promises to each other…..

It had taken them a long time to arrive at this moment, Steve and Kayla Johnson were ready for any challenge  — at least, they were together.