The Vampire Diaries Season 5, Episode 7: "Death and the Maiden" Recap/Review

[10:05AM EST: Screencaps have been added, thought, apparently not only are photos/gifs not working in Google Chrome, but gifs aren't working in Firefox, either? So, I apologize for the lack of gifs, I sent feedback reports on both browsers to Blogger in hopes that they can fix it in time for the next recap! Thanks for your patience. :)]

HOLY. CRAP. This episode had some of The Vampire Diaries' best work, ever. It was so incredibly thrilling to watch, I don't even know what else I can say about it yet, so I'm just going to dig in, okay? Let's talk about "Death and the Maiden."

Previously, on The Vampire Diaries: Stefan is in love with Elena. Elena is in love with Damon. Silas is a raging dick who has the same face as Stefan, and used that fact to his advantage as he spent the summer impersonating him, after locking Steffo in a safe at the bottom of a quarry to drown over and over and over. Bonnie died bringing Jeremy back to life, and Elena, Caroline, Damon, and Matt just FINALLY found out about it, after Bonnie (as a ghost) convinced Jeremy to lie about it all summer. Since the Mystic Falls Gang is all about saving each other's lives, Damon fed Katherine's cure-imbued blood to Silas so that he would be a witch again, and thus, able to bring Bonnie back from the Other Side. Katherine didn't die from being exsanguinated, thank god, although she's dealing with some crazy post-cure side effects. Oh, and as it turns out, the anchor to the Other Side is Silas' ~one true love~ Amara, who didn't actually die 2,000 years ago! And after two millenia of not even a sip of human blood to sustain her, she's gone a little bit suicidal. This resulted in Amara stabbing him in the neck and draining Silas of his now-cure-imbued blood during their epic reunion. So, now the only thing keeping the Other Side in existence is the life of this now-mortal Amara, who REALLY wants to be dead, so the MF Gang needs to think fast. And now we're all caught up to the present!


Silas, who is either a little drunk, or is just getting off on fucking with people like the troll he is, is sitting at a bus stop and rambling to the couple next to him about love. Silas asked them if they've ever been in love, and when they confirm that they're currently in love, he starts to get into oversharing-creeper territory. "I love love, I do. Yeah, I have a soul mate, too. You know, that love-at-first-sight, want-to-live-forever, love-is-eternal kind of love? Amara--that's her name. See, the problem is that when I first met Amara, I was with another woman, so I kinda cheated on her. Which, to be honest with you, it really wouldn't have been that big of a deal, except that it turned out that the other woman was a raging lunatic. So, when she found out that I cheated on her, she freaked out and turned Amara into stone. Like, literally--Medusa-style."

The couple starts to get pretty concerned for Silas' psychological well-being, which, LOL. Silas is pretty offended by their reaction, and asks why they would assume a guy who has waited for 2,000 years to be with his ~one true love~ would automatically be crazy. They're like, "Uh, that whole 'waiting for 2,000 years for my girlfriend who was turned to stone' thing, maybe?" Silas clarifies that, duh, they were both immortal, then, and now they're not, which is how that all makes sense. The guy and the girl scootch over as far as they can on the bench to get away from him. Silas continues to babble about how he finally got to reunite with Amara, and she thanked him for awakening her by stabbing him in the carotid artery with a shard of glass and drinking most of his blood. He even pulls away the bandage to show the two lovebirds, but they're understandably not interested in his battle scars.

"Listen, you two, here's my advice: live it up! You know, enjoy this love while it lasts, because let me tell you something. Just a couple of days ago, I was psychic, I was immortal, I was in love. Now, my neck hurts, my soul is crushed, I'm sitting in a bus stop in frigging Delaware--" The dude interrupts to inform him that they're actually in Philadelphia, which Silas proclaims to be an even worse fate. The guy starts groaning in pain and throwing up blood, and we all automatically know it's Silas just being Silas. Somehow, the guy's girlfriend knew it, too, because it takes her about five seconds to figure out Silas is dropping some magic on him. She asks him wtf is happening, so Silas happily reveals that he's liquefying her boyfriend's internal organs. "Did I fail to mention I'm a witch?" She pleads with him to stop, but nah, Silas is on one of those butthurt, "I just want to watch the world burn!" tears that he's so fond of, and threatens to make her his next victim. She reflexively runs away, without a second thought to her BF, which makes Silas chuckle. "Look at that, unbelievable. Love is so damn fickle." He pulls the now-dead guy back up on the bench, takes his bag, and hops on the bus, which has just arrived to the bus stop. TITLE CARD!

Meanwhile, Stefan has been having nightmares about his time stuck in that safe, and tosses and turns in bed for a few moments until he's woken up by Elena. I love Elena, probably more than I love anyone else on this show, and she had some really high notes this week, but she also had some clunkers, and this scene was one of them. She offers him some coffee, and asks how he slept. He admits that he didn't sleep well, to which Elena cracks, "First night back in your own bed. Not as comfy as Tessa's couch, huh?" Yeowch, girl! Stefan's face is like, "So, is there bourbon in that coffee, or...?" but instead he just asks her why she decided to wake him from his restless slumber. She confesses that she has missed him, and she felt like she lost a friend when he lost his memories. So, basically, she wants to start fresh. Again. She introduces herself, but Stefan cuts her off.

"I was driving to Portland..." Elena is confused, but Stefan just continues without much attention to her. "The night I took Silas to the quarry. I said goodbye to Lexi, and then I decided to keep driving west." She's understandably puzzled as to how Stefan has any recollection of this, so he admits that Tessa had dropped by the previous night to restore his memories. "I can remember everything." Elena, who seems to have completely forgotten Stefan's life history, declares this to be an excellent new development and gives him a huge hug. So, yeah, I guess it's safe to say that self-loathing, guilty Stefan is back?

Downstairs, Damon quizzes Stefan on events in their past, as Elena watches. Apparently, in October of 1852, Damon broke Stefan's nose trying to teach him how to throw a right hook, though Damon insists that he didn't do it on purpose. Does being a vampire give you eidetic memory or something? If so, sign me up. When Damon asks how much Stefan paid for his motorcycle, Stefan reveals that actually, Damon bought/stole it for him. Damon is impressed, but also incredulous that Tessa would just give Stefan his memories without anything in return, so Stefan finally points out that, hello, getting back all of his memories of violently killing people and all of the other terrible shit that has happened to him wasn't exactly easy to deal with. You guys all know by now how much Stefan drives me crazy most of the time, but I mean, seriously? It baffles my mind how Damon and Elena could just assume that the return of his memories would be all roses and sunshine, especially considering he was literally TORTURED ALL SUMMER, and now gets to remember it in full detail. I'm inclined to blame this on bad writing, but ugh, this all just really bugged me. And I don't even like Stefan! Wtf is happening to me?

Anyway, Stefan gets a random flashback to being in the safe again, and is so panicked that he accidentally crushes his glass of coffee into smithereens. Damon gets the crazy-eyes and is like, "Whoa! Easy, buddy," while Elena worriedly asks him where he went in his memories. Stefan ignores them both and quips, "All that, and I still can't remember my own strength!" Knowing that there's no way he's fooling anyone with that line, he takes advantage of a noise from below them and asks them about it. They finally spill the beans about their newest doppelgänger situation, and take him downstairs to the cellar, where they're keeping Amara.

Her wrists are still bound, but she's standing and spinning in circles, like she's trying to get away from someone. "I don't know! I don't know! I said, I don't know!" Stefan asks wtf is wrong with her, but Damon really isn't positive. "Tessa turned her into a block of rock, left her in a box for 2,000 years. Probably went a little stir-crazy, like those deserted island guys who talk to volleyballs." LOL. Stefan is a little concerned about the fact that the fate of the Other Side rests on this girl, and Damon is pretty much in agreement there.

"Yep, she's the anchor. As long as she's alive, the Other Side exists, and we can keep trying to get Bonnie from over there." Stefan figures that shouldn't be hard, since he's immortal, and Damon's like, "Yeah, so, about that..." Since the cure now runs in HER veins, she's mortal, so they have to keep her "ordinary little heart beating" for as long as it takes to get Bonnie back. When Stefan asks how they plan on doing that, Damon explains that he and Silas pinky-promised to do a spell to bring her back, whenever the guy finally makes his way back to Mystic Falls from New Jersey (or, I guess, Philadelphia, now). Amara starts biting her wrists in an attempt to kill herself, so Damon has to abandon his conversation with his brother to grab her wrists and pull them away from her. He urges her to stop, but Amara is soooo not down for that. "Ahhh, no! No! Let me die! I want to die!" How depressing is it that we've seen every single one of the characters played by Nina Dobrev say something along those lines? Petrovas are doomed to live forever, I guess. Damon turns to Stefan and groans. "Let's hope love is blind, or at least deaf."

Upstairs, in the parlor, Bonnie is staring out of those glorious windows of Casa Salvatore as Jeremy approaches her. I love how even Bonnie pretty much lives at the boarding house, at this point. Jer gently admits that he thinks it's going to be harder than expected for the gang to keep Amara alive. Bonnie apparently already figured that out, because she's been brainstorming what comes next. "I wonder what will happen if she dies, and the Other Side gets destroyed. Do you think there will be, like, a white light, and then nothing? It won't hurt, will it? That would suck, if it hurt." Oh, Bon-Bon, just you wait, girl. Jeremy cuts in and informs her that he has something (or rather, three somethings) to tell her.

She forbids him to give her a goodbye speech, which Jeremy was expecting, because that was his first point--he knows that no matter where on the astral plane she is, she will always be here with them. His second point is that he is eternally grateful for her giving up her life for him. She stops him before he can tell her the third thing. "Wait, don't tell me. If you don't tell me, we'll have to wait until another time, which means there WILL be another time." Jeremy, like us viewers, isn't quite sure the show works that way, but Bonnie asks him to humor her. They each hold up a hand, and get as close to touching each other as you can get when you're a human trying to touch a ghost.

Over at Maxfield's lab, Wes is looking at Katherine's x-rays as she stands behind him. "So, what am I looking at here, hmmm? Blood clot? Tumor? What?" Wes bluntly informs her that her blood work is completely clean, but Katherine reminds him that the fact that her hair is turning gray and her teeth are falling out isn't exactly the definition of good health. Wes kind of hilariously turns on his recorder and states, "Patient is irritable. Not sure if this is a symptom, or personality." She grabs the recorder and smashes it on the ground, so I think we can all guess which one is most accurate. Finally, Wes breaks the news to her. "You're aging. You said you were turned into a vampire 500 years ago, give or take, and now that you're human, let's just say time is catching up with you." Katherine turns away from him and starts to panic, and asks what they can do to stop it. Wes, being the vampire/immortality hater that he is, is all, "Uh, you can't, because that's kind of how life works." He points out that at the rate she's aging now, she probably only has a couple of months left. Wow, your bedside manner really leaves something to be desired, bro. He leaves Katherine alone in his lab, and her eyes are quickly filling with tears. Poor Kiki!

Silas is sitting on the bus when he gets a phone call from Damon. "Well, look who decided to pick up the phone," Damon sasses. "Is your secretary out sick?" Silas points out that the preferred term is "administrative assistant," which he learned by listening to people talk on the bus. Damon is more than a little annoyed that Silas is on a bus, considering the time-sensitive nature of their Save-Bonnie mission, but Silas just starts touting the benefits of being on a bus with a bunch of strangers. Namely, being on the open road, people-watching, and eavesdropping on their conversations. "Did you know that gas is over $3.00 a gallon at the moment? It seems to really concern a lot of people." Bahaha, tell me about it, dude! Commuting sucks. Damon is not amused, and basically tells him to get over there and finish his end of their deal before his "nutter-butter soul mate" manages to actually kill herself and destroy the Other Side before they can bring her back.

Unfortunately, Silas would be more than happy for Amara to die, after suffering for as a statue and whatnot, and says that he is totally cool with them killing Amara, or Amara killing herself, so that he can then kill HIMSELF and they can both have their eternity of an afterlife together. "But listen, if you want to go ahead and kill her and save me the trouble, then please, by all means." Damon is nearly hysterical at this point, and yells, "Not 'til you bring Bonnie back, remember? Promises made, metaphorical hands shook?" In a totally predicted twist, Silas has decided to renege on that deal, both because Damon made fun of Silas' whole ~epic true love~/"the universe is working to put mine and Amara's doppelgängers together" spiel, plus he's just a dick who gets off on others' pain and wants Damon to have to get in hot water with his girlfriend. "So, I've decided not to help you, Damon, and I will see you soon. I'm looking forward to all of this being over. Bye." Damon realizes Silas has hung up, and is stunned that Silas the Dick would actually betray them. Unbeknownst to him, Bonnie is hanging out nearby, and has heard everything.

Over at Whitmore, Caroline is leaving her grillionth message for Jesse about missing their study sessions or whatever. As she's hanging up, she bumps into Nadia, who is so much like her mother, it's scary. "Well, that was pathetic." Caroline's like, "Uh, who are you?" so Nadia just continues. "Leaving a message for a boy who--what's the American phrase?--oh, is just not that into you?" She goes on to say that she's looking for Katherine, whom she heard was living there with Caroline, so she checked their room. Caroline is more than a little miffed at hearing this, and decides that everyone Katherine knows must be super bitchy. Nadia insists that Katherine isn't her friend, but of course, that's just when Katherine wanders over and sees them talking. "Are you kidding me?"

Nadia asks to speak with Katherine, and Caroline asks how they know each other. Nadia is just about to spill the beans when Katherine interrupts and lies that Nadia is her hairdresser. Caroline is understandably like, "Alright, I'm done," and totally peaces out. Nadia demands that Katherine sit and talk with her, as Katherine has been avoiding her, but it's pretty obvious that Katherine isn't interested. "Yeah, I've been a busy girl, doing busy things." She starts to walk away, but Nadia grabs her wrist and yanks her back as her face vamps out. "Sit!" Katherine reluctantly sits down, and inside, I think she's starting to regret knowing so many vampires over the years, now that she's a weakling human.

In the Casa Salvatore parlor, Stefan, Elena, and Damon are brainstorming what to do now that they've experienced this latest hitch in their plan. Elena figures they should buy themselves some time to bring Bonnie back by hiding Amara somewhere. Unfortunately, as Damon reminds her, Silas is a witch now, which means he's just a tiny locator spell away from finding her, no matter where she's stashed. Elena argues that they can't let him find her until they convince him to bring Bonnie back. Stefan points out that Silas already said he's NOT bringing her back, but you know Elena, she never gives up hope. She tells Stefan that now that his memories are back, he should know better than anyone that she's not going to drop it.

Old Stefan may be back, but he's kept New Stefan's brutal honesty. "You know what? You're right. I do know you. You put your hope in all the right places, and sometimes," he spots, as he glances over at Damon, "in the wrong people. Silas needs to die and put us all out of our misery." Elena echoes her aforementioned "holding out hope" sentiment, but Stefan's not here for that. "Well, as someone who just spent the last three months at the bottom of a quarry because of the guy, I wouldn't hold your breath. Pun intended. Silas needs to die, and I need to be the one to kill him, end of story." Stefan dramatically exits the room, like he does. While I don't want to defend Stefan, he does have a legit point. But, I'm also like Elena and REALLY want Bonnie back, so we all know what team I'm ultimately playing for.

Amara is still trying to get free from her binds, and Bonnie stands in the doorway watching her. Jeremy comes downstairs to give Amara some food, and he asks how their "mental patient" is doing. Also, the sandwich he brings her looks AMAZING. It's like a panini or something, and it is making me super hungry. Bonnie, like the rest of us, assumes that all of her years in a wooden crate has made her a liiiiittle unhinged. Jeremy walks in toward Amara, who immediately cowers in fear. Jeremy puts his hands up submissively and explains that he's just bringing her dinner. She stares at him curiously, and realizes she knows him. Jeremy tells her that's impossible as he unbinds her wrists, but she's sure of it. "You're the hunter." When Jer looks at her, puzzled, she elaborates. "I never forget a face. But, Silas killed you. You're dead."

Jeremy admits that he was dead for a while, but now he's alive again, which confuses Amara. "How? [beat] I said, how?" She notices Bonnie, and puts the pieces together. "It was you, wasn't it? You're a witch. You brought him back." Bonnie is absolutely shocked that Amara can see her, which is kind of hilarious to me, because that means Amara knew Bonnie was just staring and creeping on her that whole time. Amara is more than a little frustrated, and is like, "Of course I can see you, I'm not blind. I have eyes! Or are you dead?" She claims that she's having difficulty telling the ghosts from the actual people, now that she's not stone and actually interacting in the living world. Jeremy asks her if she can see people on the Other Side, too, and she's like, duh, Jeremy. "I AM the anchor to the Other Side. I can see everything." Bonnie goes to gently tap her on the shoulder, and actually makes contact, though Amara proceeds to freak the fuck out. "Don't touch me! Please, don't...don't touch me." Jeremy is pretty weirded out by this development, even after everything that has happening in this damn tv series, but Bonnie is pretty pumped, and thinks she has an idea.

Upstairs, Bonnie and Jeremy have convened with Damon and Elena to pitch their idea. "Amara could see Bonnie, and Bonnie could touch her," Jeremy explains. "They made physical contact. It's like Amara's got a foot on each side or something." Elena is stunned that she's in both places at once, and Damon quips, "Then she's not crazy-crazy, she's just talking to dead supernatural beings roaming around in our basement!" LOL, you guys really do have a lot of enemies, so that's not really shocking, is it? Bonnie leads Jeremy to explain the point of this discussion: if Silas won't bring Bonnie back, what if they could somehow make Bonnie the new anchor, so she could exist on both sides. Elena is totally game for this plan, and states that all they need now is someone willing to do the spell. Damon knows where she's going with this and is not happy about it, but Elena says it's a win-win-win. "Think about it. Silas wants Amara to die, and Amara wants Amara to die, so who, besides us, is the one person with the biggest stake against letting that happen?"

So, that leads us to Tessa's doorstep, where Damon has come to make a deal. When she answers the door, she is not excited to see him, especially since she had assumed that it was her Chinese food delivery. Oh, Tessa, your obsession with food makes me happy. She goes to slam the door in his face, but he wedges himself in so that she's forced to hear him out. "You remember Amara, right? Brunette, brown eyes, I'm surprisingly not in love with her?" BAHAHA. Oh Damon, you were kind of making eyes at her the first time you saw her, don't lie! Tessa's like, "Get to the point, buster," so Damon reveals that she's taken the cure and is currently wishing for death and being held at Casa Salvatore.

Tessa asks if she's still alive, and Damon confirms that she is, though not for long. "Silas is literally on his way to kill her. He's completely obsessed with destroying the Other Side so that he and Amara can live happily ever after in the great beyond." He totally has Tessa's number, though he had to learn it the hard way from pissing off Silas. Either way, that is why he made this totally genius move. "Man, you were right about these doppelgängers. They do always end up together. So, how does it feel to say, 'I told you so?'" Tessa: "Like I want to shoot fireballs at Silas and drown him in acid." Damon admits that he figured she would, which is why he thinks it will be mutually beneficial if they strike a deal.

Stefan is off fixing his hair or something in his room, when Elena confronts him about his intense desire to kill Silas. "Haven't you heard it's bad luck to kill your doppelgänger?" Uh, Elena, you really more or less killed Katherine (since becoming human is a fate worse than death for her, and now she's dying of old age anyway) and now she's perfectly happy, so I'm not sure this is the most accurate argument. Stefan counters that if Stefan doesn't kill him, Silas will win. Elena reminds him that witches aren't as easy to kill as they appear, especially not super smart ones like Silas. She doesn't want him to do anything crazy that will get him hurt, since they just got him back. Plus, they both know revenge doesn't help.

He confesses that when he was in that safe, there was a small window of time between when he died and when he woke up, where he would think about the best memories that he could think of in order to keep him sane until he was found, as a way to keep him from turning off his humanity. Unfortunately, over time, those happy moments were taken from him, because they were just reminders that he was stuck with no light at the end of the tunnel. Elena tells him how sorry she is that he went through this, so Stefan finishes his speech by admitting how often he gets flashbacks to being stuck in the safe, and he needs it to stop. "If I don't kill him, I'm gonna lose my mind, or I'm gonna turn off my humanity. Or both."

Back at the cabin, Tessa has made them both some tea, as the two talk strategy. This scene is so funny, and the dialogue is so snappy, I'm just going to transcribe it.

DAMON: "So, here's my pitch. In order to keep the Other Side in place, you need something to anchor the spell, right? Something powerful, like an immortal being-powerful. Now, Amara was obviously a great choice until she downed the cure. So, would you consider someone who's dead, but stuck on the Other Side, a viable candidate?"
TESSA: "An anchor swap?"
DAMON: "Because I've got a volunteer!"
TESSA: "I'd be making a ghost a human toll-booth between our side and the Other Side, giving her the power to interact with our physical world AND the supernatural purgatory."
DAMON: "So, what's the problem?"
TESSA: "I need a massive amount of power to do a transfer spell like that."
DAMON: "Fine! Name your poison."
TESSA: [brainstorming] "I need something to draw on...the moon's not full, I don't think there's a worthy comet for another couple billion years..."
DAMON: "Think hard. I have a girlfriend at home who misses her best friend, and a whacky stowaway on suicide watch. It's ridiculous."
TESSA: "...doppelgängers. They're powerful, mystical, naturally occurring..."
DAMON: "You want doppelgänger blood? I got doppelgängers coming out of my ears! How many do you want?"

LOL, Damon is literally like a used car salesman. Seriously though, there are like five doppelgängers total, if you include the progenitors, Silas and Amara. It really is fucking ridiculous. Damon's delivery in this scene was A++, get it Ian Somerhalder! I feel like we haven't really gotten to see much of him this season so far, with all the Stefan hubbub lately. Also, you know who I've been really missing? Matt! What's a girl gotta do to get some Pudding Pop up in this joint?

Nadia and Katherine are still hanging out in the common room in Caroline/Elena/Katherine's dorm. Kat's munching on a bag of pork rinds, which surprises Nadia, who already seems to know her mother quite well. "You hate junk food. You call it toxic poison." Since she's dying, Katherine isn't really all that concerned with toxins, but Nadia doesn't know that, so she just claims she's just living it up. "Now, may I be excused, scary vampire daughter?" Nadia is unhappy that her new-found mother has been avoiding her ever since they had their moment last week. Nadia insists that she knows Katherine felt their connection, too, and tells her it's been like she abandoned her all over again. Our dear Katerina begs to differ. "Okay, first of all, I never abandoned you. You were snatched out of my arms at birth, because my father thought that I was a knocked-up, shameful slut. And, second of all, it's been five hundred years, do we really have to do this whole mother-daughter bonding thing? Estrangement is so much easier, don't you think?" Yeah, it's way easier when you're dying and you don't want to get close to anyone. CUT IT OUT YOU'RE MAKING ME CRY.

Caroline walks in to join them at the table and turns to Katherine. "Sorry to interrupt the world's weirdest lunch, but...you, with the doppelgänger blood. Duty calls." Kat is not at all pleased to be constantly bossed around, now that she's all human and easily bruised, but when Caroline goes to grab her arm and pull her up, Katherine jerks away and assures her that she's coming, willingly. Nadia argues that they're not done talking, yet, but Katherine insists that they are. She walks away, but Caroline can't help but hang back and give Nadia a mean-girl smirk before she leaves. Careful, Caro! Nadia's been a vampire for like, 450 years, bb.

Damon has brought Tessa back to Casa Salvatore, and she looks around at the gorgeous boarding house as she cracks, "So, you live in this giant mansion with two doppelgängers that are destined to end up together? I swear, there's a sitcom in there somewhere. So, where's the ancient, boyfriend-stealing bitch?" Damon ushers her toward Elena, who takes her down to the cellar. As soon as Tessa walks in the door, she tells Elena that she's no longer needed, and closes the door between them. She walks toward Amara and glares. "Well, if it isn't the face that launched a thousand doppelgängers. A little birdie told me you aren't enjoying your immortal life." She grabs Amara's face and forces her to look her in the eyes as she asks her if she has nothing to say after all this time.

Amara stares at her and states, "I'm sorry." Tessa is so shocked, she thinks she misheard her, but she didn't. "I'm sorry. That is what you want to hear, isn't it? How I have suffered, how every moment of my life has been a living hell? It has! My sin was falling in love, and I've learned my lesson. You won. You won. Now, please, kill me. Please. Please, kill me!" Tessa smirks, and gets in her face as she assures Amara that once she replaces her with a new anchor, she will have no problem killing her. And, since she's not supernatural, (she's not TECHNICALLY a doppelgänger, she just spawned them) she will go wherever it is that human souls go when they die, separated from Silas for eternity. As you can imagine, Tessa is too thrilled for words that her 2,000 year old dreams are finally coming true.

Downstairs, Caroline drops Katherine off with Tessa. Kat waltzes in and informs everyone in the room that the cutest shadow has arrived. Tessa struggles to remember Katherine's name, despite the fact that she has been harboring a grudge for the Original Petrova from which she descends, so Katherine breaks it down for her. "Let's be clear: I don't care about Bonnie Bennett, or the Other Side, or Elena getting her best friend back." Tessa is literally, like, "You want something? I'm shocked." Kat reminds her that she had the cure that Tessa created running through her veins, and when Silas chugged it down, she started aging. Now, she's dying, and she needs Tessa to fix her. "You made the cure. Now, make me something that stops the aging. Otherwise, no blood for you!" Don't even try to tell me that you didn't hear that last line in the same tone as the Seinfeld, "No soup for you!" line, because that would totally be a lie. Anyway, Tessa promises to fix her up after they complete the ritual, and asks where the other two Nina Dobrevs are.

In some new room upstairs in Casa Salvatore that we haven't seen before, Tessa lays a book on a table and stands on one side, while the three Petrovas stand side-by-side on the other end. Amara asks what the book is, so Elena helpfully explains that it's Bonnie's grimoire. Amara isn't quite up to the hip terms of the day, since she's been trapped in a box since before the Biblical times, so she's like, "A grim--what?" Katherine snits, "It's a magic spell book," and then after a moment, stage-whispers, "Idiot." Tessa elaborates that the grimoire will be functioning Bonnie's talisman, since she can't physically be present for the ritual. Can I just point out how amazing Nina Dobrev is? Just looking at this picture, which is a wide-angle shot of them, you can easily tell each of the three characters apart, because she plays them so differently. I've noticed that it even looks like their heights are different, though that's probably because two of them are wearing boots. It also seems like they use pencils to make each of their eyebrows look different, too. I love it!

First, the three girls have to spill some blood on the grimore's pages. She begins with Amara, of course, and jabs a knife into her hand. When Amara winces, Tessa coos, "Sorry, love. Did that hurt?" Amara maintains that she's been through worse. Next is Katherine, who warns Tess to be gentle, since she's all delicate and human and whatnot. Then, she grips the knife and drips the blood next to Amara's. Last is our fair Elena, who takes the palm-slice like a champ and grins as she drips her blood next to the rest. Katherine mutters, "Showoff," but all three girls are overwhelmed when Tessa starts the spell. The blood pools and forms the triquetra, which is a Celtic symbol. The candles in the room start to blaze, and Bonnie appears in between Elena and Amara. The candles go out, and we can tell by the look on Tessa's face that it's not a good thing.

The wind starts to blow, and the girls are startled when the electricity flickers and light bulbs start exploding. When Elena asks wtf is happening, Tessa barks, "Silas is happening! SHOW YOURSELF, BASTARD!" The room goes completely dark, so Katherine asks if anyone can see anything. Damon comes in with a flashlight and informs them that the electricity is out in the whole house. Elena reveals that Silas has arrived, which is when the two realize that both Amara and Tessa are gone. She realizes that Silas has to be behind it, and immediately leaves the room to try to figure out how they can finish the spell.

Downstairs, we find that Tessa has sneaked downstairs with a lit candle to seek out her asshole ex. "That was quite the show, Silas." Silas thanks her, and asks if she's seen his ~true love~. "Nope. Maybe you shouldn't have turned the lights off, genius." She telekinetically launches an empty glass at Silas, but he easily evades it. Silas points out that she's had more than enough time to watch them suffer, and suggests that maybe she should just let it go. Tessa retorts that she just wasn't born that way, or whatever, and shoots another glass at him, but misses once again. "Honestly, I feel sorry for you. Hateful vengeance is for people without real love." Meow, dude! She magically lobs another glass, but he catches it. He throws it back at her, and she dodges it.

Unfortunately, Silas gets the upperhand by telekinetically shooting a fireplace poker into her shoulder. He adds insult to injury, literally, by smugging that she spent her entire existence waiting for Silas to die so he would be forced to spend eternity with her on the Other Side, despite the fact she knew he belonged to Amara. So, this means that her life has been a total and complete waste, otherwise, since she's done nothing else. She reminds him that she loved him, but he gives no fucks. "Yeah, well get in line."


Their smackdown is cut off when Silas gets a phone call from Stefan. Silas reluctantly answers and sasses that Stefan has the worst timing, but we all know Stefan is running on hate right now. He informs Silas that he has Amara outside the property line, and that he has ten minutes to come find them. Silas is all, "Yeah, whatever, too busy killing my psychotic ex-girlfriend, plus I want Amara to die anyway." That's some real ~true love~ you've got there, Silas. Stefan figured that Silas would say that, though. "I know that, which is why I'm gonna take her away, and I'm gonna keep her alive by any means possible, while everyone else hunts you down like an animal. You now have nine minutes." Silas just gets huffy and hangs up on him.

Katherine is sitting in a chair by the fireplace in the parlor, wincing in pain as she applies pressure to her hand with a tissue. Caroline asks her what's wrong, so Kat explains that Tessa's "stupid, non-surgical incision" won't stop bleeding. Caroline is awesome, so she bites her wrist and offers it to Katherine so she can heal. Kat wastes no time going to town on that vampire blood, but after a moment, she starts coughing it back up. Caroline is like, "What the fuck is wrong with you?" as Katherine proceeds to freak out. Apparently, another side effect of the cure is that she can't even be healed by vampire blood anymore. "Stupid universe. Find me that damn witch so she can finish that spell!"

Thankfully for her, Elena has been wandering around Casa Salvatore, and finally finds Tessa bleeding on the floor of the library, the poker still lodged in her chest. Elena is like, "Oh, hell no." Tessa is like, "Can't a witch rest in piece?" Our warrior princess will not accept that answer, though, and wrenches the poker from Tessa's shoulder as she spits, "It's a flesh wound. Get up!" This is from the girl who stabbed herself in the gut to manipulate Elijah into making a deal, stabbed herself in the thigh to avoid having to kill her boyfriend, and who LIT HERSELF ON FIRE WITH THE SUN to show the Salvatore boys that they couldn't just make her do whatever they wanted. "No pain, no gain" is basically her mantra. Also, we don't SEE her feed Tessa her blood to heal her, but I'm going to assume that she did, considering Tessa seemed to be pretty seriously injured, but (spoiler alert) won't be too hurt to continue the spell here in a bit.

Stefan has left Amara tied up against a tree in the woods, bound and gagged, which is where Silas finds her. He starts to untie/ungag her, and they just stare at each other and touch each other's faces. Despite not being a Silas fan, or a fan of his ~epic twu love~, this is actually a pretty touching scene. Paul and Nina have excellent chemistry. "I loved you," Amara begins. "I still do. But, I can't live any longer. Please understand." Silas totally gets it, and since he loves her, too, he gets out his knife so he can end her suffering. Get settled in, because I have a LOT to say about the suicidal tendencies of the characters in this show later on. He puts his knife against her neck and prepares himself to slit her throat, and Amara gets ready to die. He closes his eyes, but he can't bring himself to do it. When he opens his eyes, Amara is sobbing.

"Silas, please! I'm ready." He looks like he's about to cry, too, and goes to do it f'reals when Stefan comes out of nowhere and throttles him against a tree. Stefan's grip gets tighter and tighter as he growls at Silas. "Remember me? I remember you. I'm sorry, is it hard to breathe? Is your throat closing? Did the fear of dying start to creep in yet?" Unfortunately, as usual, the characters spend way too much time monologuing and not enough time killing, because Silas manages to whip out a witchy migraine that sends Steffy to his knees. Of course, Silas can't fight the urge to ruminate on how he's about to kill Stefan, either, and he starts to talk about how vampires' emotions are heightened and how his memories are probably eating away at him. Then, he asks Stefan what it's like to die, as he continues to give him constant aneurysms, since he doesn't know what dying feels like, and Stefan's technically died like a billion times.

Stefan drops all pretenses and begs him to stop it. "Stop it? I've spent 2,000 years alone in a tomb. You were locked up for what, three months? Look at you! You're a mess. The safe was the easy part, wasn't it? Being forgotten about, that's the real torture, isn't it?" Ding ding ding! We have a winner. Stefan's had enough, though, and lobs a knife right into Silas' chest, killing him. Thank god! Seriously, though, why didn't he just do that in the beginning? Amara frees herself from the rest of her binds to run over to him, but almost immediately groans in pain and doubles over, for reasons that will make much more sense in a minute.

Inside Casa Salvatore, Damon and Elena are regrouping; he informs her that Stefan and Amara aren't inside, but Elena has already figured out that Stefan took her, and urges him to go find Stefan and stop him before Silas kills him f'reals. Damon argues that he's just trying to finish his little revenge thing, and figures he'll be totally fine, but Elena knows better. "He's hurting, Damon. He's not thinking clearly, okay? Silas may have been the one who put him in the safe, but we were supposed to get him out of it. Please, go find him! We can't lose him again." Damon loves Elena and Stefan with nearly equal measure, even after everything, so it's not too hard for him to do what she says. As he leaves, we see Tessa continue to do the transference spell.

Amara, who has been kneeling by Silas' body, pulls the knife out of his chest and points it toward her stomach. She whispers, "Our eternity starts now," and stabs herself in the gut JUST as Damon approaches her. He runs over to her and catches her as she falls to the ground. He bites his wrist and offers it to her, but she starts choking it up, too, since she's got the cure in her veins. Damon begs her to stay with him a little longer, and tells her to look at him. Amara gasps that she's been in hell for 2,000 years, but Damon is desperate, here. "What's another five minutes, huh? Hey!" She tells him to let her die, and then she goes quiet.

Tessa continues to do the spell under Elena's watch. Downstairs, Bonnie sadly approaches Jeremy to say goodbye. Jeremy is confused, since Tessa is doing the spell, but Bonnie already knows what's up, and admits that Amara is dying. "No, that's impossible! Damon--" Aw, it's so cute to me that Jeremy likes Damon enough now to fully trust that he'll make things happen. Gah, I love them. Anyway, Bonnie interrupts him, and tells him to quit arguing, because they don't have much time. Upstairs, Tessa is still chanting in a language I am guessing is ancient Greek until told otherwise, and even Katherine is curiously watching them to see if it works.

Damon is still clutching Amara's body and trying to shake her awake. After a moment, he finally accepts that Amara is dead, and stops, though he still looks devastated. We cut back to where Tessa is doing the spell, and the blood knot on the grimoire is magically set ablaze.

In the parlor, in front of the fireplace, which is a historically Damon/Elena place, Bonnie urges Jeremy to tell her the third thing. Jeremy protests, but Bonnie eventually makes him. He tells her he loves her, and she tells him she loves him, too. Jeremy is so sad, and adds that he's not ready to let her go. I start crying. He reaches a hand to her face, and stunned, exclaims that he can feel her. Bonnie confirms that she can feel him as well. Caroline and Elena walk into the room, but stop dead in their tracks.


Elena gasps, "Bonnie?" Caroline is in shock. "Please tell me this is real?" Bonnie cannot believe that they can actually see her. Jeremy smiles a beautiful smile and proclaims that the spell actually worked. The girls run over to Bonnie and give her the tightest group-hug ever and chirp about how amazing it is that she's actually here. Caroline, of course, can't help herself. "Oh my god, oh my god! And we can be roommates, 'cause we have that extra bed, and we can clear out half the closet--" Bonnie and Elena simultaneously tell her to STFU for a moment, which cracked me up, and Caroline confesses that she's just so happy that she's here.

Later, Jeremy walks back into the room to see Bonnie kneeling at the fireplace. "I miss this. I miss feeling warm. I never felt warm on the Other Side." Man, I bet Kat Graham is so pumped not to have to wear the clothes that Bonnie died in any more. Jeremy grabs her hand in his and admits that he missed holding her hand. He pulls her close, and whispers, "I am never going to let you go again." GOD I LOVE THEM SO MUCH. HELP!

Katherine stomps into that drawing room where Tessa did the spell, and finds her standing in front of the fireplace. Kat tells her to hop to it, since she finished the spell, which means Tessa needs to cough up her end of the bargain. "You. Right. You want me to stop the aging? I'd find a drugstore cream." Kat's all, "Ha, that's a funny joke. Seriously, though, come on." Tessa admits that altering lifespans was what got her into this epic mess, so she's not going to make that mistake again. Shocker, she went back on her word! No one could have possibly predicted that outcome, right? Katherine is so not liking this one bit, and goes to argue with her, but Tessa doesn't care. "I won. Amara's gone, and Silas is waiting for me on the Other Side." Katherine approaches Tessa and realizes immediately what's going on--Tessa has dropped what looks like a shard of glass onto the floor, and we can see that her arms and hands are bloody. She decided to kill herself to start her eternity of torture for Silas, and right before she goes, she mutters, "True love prevails...the universe be damned." She collapses, and Katherine starts futilely screaming for help so she can be kept alive, but ultimately, she dies. Damn, three characters in a row! Good to see these story lines ending, though, they were beginning to drag. Onto the next one!

Bonnie's alone in the library when Tessa approaches her from behind. She startles Bonnie as she says, "You're the anchor, now." Bonnie didn't hear her come in, so she asks her where the fuck she just came from. Tessa looks a little smug as she informs her of her new duties. "I'm dead. As I pass through you, you'll feel my death. You'll feel every death. Every supernatural that passes over to the Other Side will pass through you. Sorry--that's gonna hurt like a bitch." She touches Bonnie's arm, and Bonnie immediately doubles over in pain and screams. Somehow, none of the vampires/humans in the house heard a thing. That is such a crazy twist, though! Tessa is stone cold for leaving that part out, it's obvious she knew that fact would probably make Bonnie reconsider her options. Although, isn't Bonnie Tessa's descendant? Why doesn't Tessa seem to acknowledge their shared family? Bah. Hopefully now, the gang will maybe take it a little easy on killing all those supernaturals to prevent her from any unneccessary pain? Also, this totally explains why Amara freaked the fuck out when Bonnie touched her, as well as why she was crying out in pain after Silas died. Yikes!

Stefan has a shovel in his hands as he stares at Silas' body, before he buries him. Elena comes up behind him and says, "So, he's dead. It's over." Remember earlier when I was talking about Elena's clunker scenes this week? This is the other one, because SERIOUSLY, GIRL, WTF ARE YOU DOING. Stefan admits that it's over, so Elena asks him if he's okay. When Stefan tells her he's fine, Elena wants clarification. "Look at me and tell me that killing Silas worked. That you'll be okay now." Stefan, pretty frustrated by this point, asks her wtf it matters her, so Elena gets super brutally honest.

"Because I know how much he stole from you. [...] And because while you were suffering in that safe, grasping onto hope, fighting every second so that you wouldn't lose your humanity...I was happy. I got everything that I wanted, Stefan. I got to be in love, I got the summer of my dreams, I got Bonnie back. So, I need to know that this worked. I need to know that this is gonna take away all your suffering. I need to know that you're going to be okay." Yikes, girl! These are these that you keep to yourself and to your diary, bb. These are not things you actually say to people without being asked. Stefan sees Damon approaching them, and admits some feelings of his own. "I wanted it to be you. When that safe finally opened, and somebody found me...I wanted it to be you. I wanted it to be both of you." Elena looks back at Damon, who has just joined them, and then back to Stefan, looking guilty and remorseful.

Back over at Whitmore, Caroline is cleaning up their dorm in preparation for their newest roommate when Katherine joins her. Caroline tries to kindly break the news to her that since Bonnie is moving in with them, as previously planned, but Katherine gets the hint. She assures her that she'll pack up her stuff, but she still looks pretty sad. Caroline thanks her, for what she did for them today, but Kat's not up for bonding. "Enough! I killed you once. Don't forget. We still hate each other, okay?" Caroline gives her a small smile, and admits. "Yes, you did. And yes, we do." Katherine reaches under the bed for her bag, but she can't find it. When she asks where her bag went, Nadia appears in the doorway and informs her that she already packed it up for her. Kat is not pleased to see her, but Nadia's got an offer for her.

"I'm leaving, Katherine. I'm heading back to Prague, and I'd really like it if you came with me. We can go to Bulgaria, retrace our lives..." Katherine shuts that shit down right quick, because she's totally freaking out right now about the aging thing. "I don't know what kind of a twisted fantasy you have about us, but that's all it is--a fantasy. I would rather rip my own heart out than do more mother-daughter bonding with you. [beat] And, I'm human now, so it wouldn't really be that easy. I don't want to know you." Caroline realizes that Nadia is totally Katherine's daughter, and immediately puts the pieces together before going back to pretending like she's not totally eavesdropping on her. Katherine looks her daughter in the eyes and reminds her that Kat is doing her a favor, because she can't be there for her. She advises her to take a good look, and states they'll never see each other again. She grabs her bag from Nadia's shoulders and stomps away.

In the woods, Stefan is burying the asshole who shares his face, and starts to get a bunch of flashbacks to when Silas stabbed him in the gut and locked him in the safe. As he continues to shovel dirt onto Silas' body, he starts getting hit with more memories of drowning and waking up and drowning, his last conversation with Elena, etc. He eventually collapses onto the ground and gasps for breath. "No. No. It's over, it's supposed to be over." Oh shit, looks like that last bit of trauma was the straw that broke the camel's back. I am kind of excited for this New-Old Stefan, tbh.

NEXT WEEK: Bonnie deals with the unfortunate side effects of being a corporeal ghost, and hopefully gets some action, for once. Jesse somehow gets free, and the girls throw a party.

Click HERE to read my recap of the next episode of The Vampire Diaries!

[screencaps via KissThemGoodbye!]

NOTES/SPECULATION:
-So, am I the only person who is getting increasingly uncomfortable about how often the characters reach the point where they're trying to commit suicide? I mean, I totally get why these characters would be super depressed, they're constantly being shit on and losing loved ones, so it's understandable. And having several mental illnesses myself, I am a big fan of seeing it portrayed accurately on television and in movies. But seriously, three characters died this week after killing themselves/committing suicide by proxy. There are already so many people in this show's target audience who are dealing with really intense stuff and killing themselves as it is, and I just don't think that this kind of idolization of suicide should be yet another voice that is telling them that suicide is a viable option. There are a lot of different ways that these story lines can be dealt with, without basically saying that it's okay to commit suicide in certain circumstances. We need more stories of people who have been beaten down and still rise to overcome it, you know? I feel like I'm not articulating my feelings about this in a very eloquent way, but yeah, I found this to be really uncool. And that's not even getting into how triggering the scene of Tessa self-mutilated hands/arms were for a lot of people. I had really hoped they had learned from last season, when Caroline was compelled to cut herself over and over again. Bah, sorry! /rant

-I am really interested to see how Bonnie deals with being the anchor. Will she still have magic? How will the fact that she and Jeremy both can see dead supernaturals play into the story? I AM SO HAPPY SHE'S BACK.

-I am really excited to have Matt back next week, it has been way too long since we've had some of his blue-eyed goodness on our screen.

-I am very concerned about Katherine, tbh, and I really don't want her to die, but it appears that getting vamped again will probably be out of the question, so I don't really see a way out of this for her, unless someone magical intervenes. What do you guys think?



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