Hollyoaks spoilers follow.
Hollyoaks actress Eva O'Hara has shared details of how her character Verity Hutchinson will react to Shaq Qureshi's declaration of love to her this week.
Verity is currently in a relationship with Sami Maalik (Rishi Nair), while Shaq is dating Theresa McQueen (Jorgie Porter), but it has become clear that Shaq has another woman on his mind. Despite previously denying to Verity that he had any feelings for her when she confronted him, he will admit to her this week that he was lying.
But how will Verity react to Shaq's revelation? Actress Eva has told Inside Soap that her character will have rather mixed feelings about the situation.
"Verity is shocked in the moment – this is a less than ideal situation," she said. "But it's also that satisfaction of hearing that from the person you're starting to fall for. They do start to bond over certain things, and there are really delicate moments of connection between them. Verity is delighted when Shaq says that."
Following Shaq's admission, he and Verity almost share a passionate kiss, which raises the levels of tension between them – particularly as Verity now lives with the Maalik family and is around Shaq constantly.
While things don't go any further between the pair for now, there's clearly a lot of romantic tension between Verity and Shaq, and Eva says that she can understand the dilemma that her character is in when it comes to having feelings for both Shaq and Sami.
"Verity has always had such a sweet romance with Sami, but I think it's that kind of 'forbidden feelings' thing that often happens in a relationship, where you risk something that's good for the possibility of something that's exciting and new," she said.
"Sami's adoring, and always has been, but he's very safe. I think Verity's missing having to fight for someone's affection, like she always did with her father, and Shaq's the bad boy. So those feelings are slowly creeping in for her, and she really quite enjoys the chase."
Of course, not only is Verity keeping her attraction to Shaq from Sami but she is also hiding things from Shaq, keeping quiet about her knowledge of Shaq's true parentage. With Verity keeping so many secrets, does she feel any remorse?
"Verity has lied to Sami before. So she is used to a bit of manipulation, whether she means it or not. And she does feel guilty," Eva said. "But with the situation of whether or not Sami and Shaq are brothers, it's not Verity's family, so she's trying to stay out of it!"
It looks like things could be about to get even more complicated for the Maalik family...
Hollyoaks airs new episodes from Mondays to Fridays at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first-look screenings at 7pm on E4. Selected omnibus episodes are available via Amazon Prime Video.
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