Why Maura West Finds General Hospital's Austin Holt 'Irresistible'

On "General Hospital," Ava Jerome (Maura West) has finally confided to mafia kingpin Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) that she killed her ex-husband Nikolas Cassadine (Adam Huss), and his body was taken by Mason Gatlin (Nathanyael Grey) on behalf of his mysterious crime family. Her lover and literal partner in crime, Dr. Austin Gatlin-Holt (Roger Howarth) –- who initially helped her hide Nik's body — is Mason's cousin, and this unknown criminal organization has threatened her family if she doesn't pony up certain information about Sonny's criminal dealings. But no worries, Sonny has sworn to protect her, Austin, and their family. Because Ava and Austin are now thick as thieves, they slept together, becoming de facto lovers.

West previously worked with Howarth when he played reformed serial killer Franco Baldwin on the soap, and the actors' chemistry was palpable. Now playing Austin, their chemistry continues to shine through. It's a weird dynamic between them because she's somewhat attracted to him, but he's also part of Ava's life now since he's aided and abetted her. West told Soap Opera Digest, "[Ava's] stuck with him because he knows what he knows. When somebody knows a dark secret, in her words, you either have to kill them or you're sort of at their mercy. I mean, those are her options. And she's sort of at his mercy. And at the cousin's too; she's at Mason's mercy."

Austin is a mystery to Ava

"General Hospital" fans have lovingly come up with a nickname for Ava Jerome and Austin Gatlin-Holt's relationship: Jolt. Maura West admitted to Soap Opera Digest that she giggled when she first heard the term, explaining that Ava "Was not expecting that [roll in the hay]." She then remarked that not only was Ava not looking to hook up with Austin, she probably isn't in the right place in her life to start a new relationship after Nikolas Cassadine and may not even want one. She amended that statement by saying, "But, you know, there's something irresistible about that Roger Howarth that comes through into Austin!"

While Ava is best friends with Sonny Corinthos' fiancée, Nina Reeves (Cynthia Watros), she could really only tell her that she slept with Austin, not daring to reveal that she murdered Nik. "Yeah, there is no one she can discuss that with, and it is really complicated," she stated, adding that Ava doesn't really know who Austin is or his motivations. West pondered, "Why is he the way that he is? How is he beholden to Mason? All that stuff is still a mystery to her, and there is something about that, about the mystery of it, that's kind of a turn-on for sure."

Although Ava and Austin are an unlikely pair, fans love seeing them together!