There comes a point in many women’s lives when it doesn’t matter how dreamy the hair, how chiseled the abs or how charmingly oblivious a dude seems to be: If he’s keeping you a secret, he definitely doesn’t deserve you.
Devi Vishwakumar comes to that realization in Episode 9 of Never Have I Ever‘s sophomore season, in which she informs Paxton Hall-Yoshida that if he doesn’t want to be her boyfriend in public, he no longer gets to make out with her in private.
When TVLine spoke with series star Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, we wondered whether Devi would have had the wherewithal to send the popular swim-team stud packing. “Definitely not!” she said. “I actually really love that scene, because to me, that’s the first time Devi stands up for herself and really sticks her ground.”
Devi’s declaration, of course, leads to more heartache. Paxton says his hesitation stems from not wanting to look like a fool by openly dating the girl who two-timed him with Ben, then was involved in his getting hit by a car, which ended his swim career. And Devi understands, but reiterates that he’s going to have to stop sneaking into her bedroom after dark, as well then. (Read a full recap of the finale.)
“There are many times where Devi can be too nervous to say what’s on her mind, though she is a very confident girl in other ways,” Ramakrishnan added. “But here is the first time we’re seeing her stand her ground and saying, ‘OK, you know what? This is not going to work out. I’m sorry.'” She laughs. “Just like [series narrator] John McEnroe says, ‘I’m proud of the kid!'”
If you watched Season 2’s final episode, you know that Paxton eventually has a change of heart and shows up at the winter formal, where he makes it clear to the entire school that Devi is his girlfriend. For the record, Ramakrishnan says, she had no clue how Devi’s romantic hijinks were going to play out (“We only know a little bit in advance”) — but what she likes best about the finale’s big dance scene has nothing to do with Ben and/or Paxton and everything to do with Devi’s friendship with Fabiola and Eleanor.
“My favorite thing about that is when the three girls are together, because they’re just enjoying each other’s company,” she said.
Go here to see what Ramakrishnan’s co-star Jaren Lewison had to say about Ben’s season-ending heartbreak, then hit the comments with your thoughts on Season 2!