The Vampire Diaries Season 5, Episode 10: "Fifty Shades of Grayson" Recap/Review

So, I've gotta be honest with you guys--I am kind of meh about The Vampire Diaries right now. My BFF and fellow TV superfan, Kathleen, were talking about it, and we realized that the second act of a season of TVD is usually the worst of them, at least in our opinions. Think about it--Season 1, there was the tomb vampires, in Season 2, there was the whole Sun-And-Moon-Curse/Vampire-Werewolf War thing, in Season 3, we had Alaric's evil alter-ego and all the people he accidentally killed, plus Stefan being a huge, humanity-less dick. Then, last season, we had the whole cure thing, which was a total snooze.

BUT, after the second act, everything usually gets back to the show's awesome self, and I'm hoping this season is no exception. I am just not enjoying Wes and his mad-scientist cult behavior. However, there are still some good parts that I am enjoying a lot, and I'm going to try my best to keep my downer-ness out of these recaps. So, let's talk about what happened in "Fifty Shades of Grayson," 'kay?

Previously, on The Vampire Diaries: Katherine is dying of old age, and the realization of her impending death, in addition being told to fuck off by her daughter, led Katherine to try to kill herself by jumping off a clock tower. Thankfully, Stefan found her and caught her before she could hit the ground. Then, she totally got it on with Stefan after a day of immersion therapy to try to help his PTSD. Damon was formerly an Augustine Vampire in the 1958s, which no one except Elena knows about. Wes managed to get the jump on him with vervain, and now he's back in the cell in which he spent five long years. Elena, naturally, went to find him when she realized he was missing, but got caught in the process and locked in a cell of her very own, where she learned Damon's story. Part of that story was that he met a friend, Enzo, whom he was forced to leave behind or risk burning to death. When Elena was taken upstairs to be experimented on, she found out that Enzo was still alive, and still a test subject. OH SHIT.

We begin more or less where we left off, with Damon freaking out in his cell about the fact that Elena has been taken upstairs to be experimented on by Wes. He frantically punches at the wall with all his strength until a decent-sized piece of rock chips off and falls to the ground. As he reaches down to grab it, we briefly flashback to the previous episode, when Aaron had found them down in the basement of Whitmore House. Aaron's hands were shaking nervously while he loaded his gun with wooden bullets, and he accidentally dropped one onto the ground. "Slick hands, cowboy," Damon had snarked. In present day, Damon sees the dropped bullet still laying on the ground and reaches for it. After a few moments of struggling, his fingertips finally graze the end of the bullet enough that he was able to pick it up.

Damon pulls himself onto his feet and gently pushes the bullet in the keyhole of the gate to his cell. He then takes the rock in his hand and slams it into the lock of the gate, which makes the bullet explode. He pushes at the gate, but it remains locked. Overwhelmed with frustration and worry, he yells, "COME ON!" and furiously kicks the gate until it pops open. Wow, that was actually really smart! Get it, dude. As he makes his escape, we cut over to the TITLE CARD!

Katherine wakes up in Stefan's bed, after their night of sexy times, and smiles when she remembers the previous night. She turns over, and is even more pleased to see that Stefan is still in bed next to her. She snuggles up behind him and is about to put her arm around him when she finds a long, gray lock of hair that has fallen out of her head and onto the comforter. Kat picks up the piece of hair and stares at it in horror. Hilariously, she yelps, "OH MY GOD" so loudly that it wakes Stefan up. He turns around to face her and murmurs a hello, but Katherine is still Katherine, so she doesn't want Stefan to see her all gray-haired and getting old and whatnot. She hops off the bed and covers her head and body with the comforter. She orders him not to turn around, but Stefan has no idea wtf is happening, so he's just like, "What the fuck are you doing?" Katherine, still under the blanket, picks up her clothes and walks toward the door. When he asks her where she's going, she's just lies and says, "Everything's fine, go back to bed!" Well, you took his blanket, Kitty Kat, so that's gonna be difficult. As she stumbles out the door, she totally runs into the door frame and yells out in pain on her way out. Stefan just laughs at her and lays back down in bed.

(via eatonstriss)
Downstairs, Katherine has gotten dressed in workout gear and a black baseball cap to cover up her grays, and is about to walk out the door to Casa Salvatore when Damon finally returns. He's still all disheveled and bloody from being attacked by Jesse and shot by Aaron, so Katherine can't help but ask, "What the hell happened to you?" They're all injured on a regular basis, how is that a shock to anyone? Damon's got more important things on his mind, so he asks if there's any chance Elena has been home recently. Katherine replies that she hasn't seen her. "Not that I've been looking." Damon calls upstairs for Stefan, and Katherine can't help but push his buttons a bit.

KATHERINE: "You know, he hasn't seen her either. I know, because we were together all night."
DAMON: [disgusted and annoyed] "Look, I've had a really crappy couple days, okay? If you're implying what I THINK you're implying--"
KATHERINE: "--Why, what were you thinking? That our hot, naked bodies collided in one unforgettable night of passion?"
DAMON: [groans] "I'm gonna barf."

(via emiliederaivn)
Katherine smiles, and tells him that her work there is done as she struts out the door. Damon shudders at the thought of her and Stefan together, and groans. "Ugh." I love how over Katherine he is, hahaha. Especially considering his brother obviously isn't, although I think his thing with Katherine is more about Elena than anything else.

Speaking of Elena, she is currently strapped to yet another gurney in a totally different underground vampire-testing lab. She wakes up, and slowly she starts to take in her surroundings. She looks super weak and pale, poor girl. There's an empty IV bag on an IV stand next to her, and a staircase on the other side of the room. She gets a brief flashback of sorts, where she hears the voice of a young girl giggling as a soccer ball bounces down the stairs. Wes is nearby, talking into his recorder, per usual. "Subject 83182 appears conscious." Elena finally notices his presence, and weakly asks him where she is. "Why? Look familiar?" Wes says sarcastically, but Elena is distracted by the huge dialysis machine next to her. She starts rattling at her restraints in an effort to get out as she asks him what the machine is/what he's doing to her. He ignores her, because he's a huge dick, and continues to talk into his recorder. "Subject 83182 resume prep for blood dialysis." He puts a mask over Elena's mouth and nose and asks her to count down from 10. It takes only til about 5 before she starts to fall asleep again.

We return to Stefan's bedroom, where he's putting away laundry and talking to his brother, who is standing in the doorway. His first question, obviously, is "Where the fuck have you been?" Damon: "Oh, you know--being held against my will, shot in the head, now I can't find Elena." He walks into the room, and asks what interesting things Stefan's been up to the last couple of days. Stefan's stuck on the Elena part, as you could imagine, and asks what he means. "I mean, she's not picking up her phone, she's not in her dorm, she's nowhere in this house, which leads me to believe that Dr. Creepy Ken-Doll has her somewhere." Yeah, he's clearly leaving out some bits. Stefan is like, "Uh, that Whitmore biology teacher?" so Damon gives him a brief introduction to Wes' extracurricular vampire activities. "Put your hero hair on, Stefan. Let's go get Elena." He starts to walk away, but Stefan points out that Damon just said he has no idea where she is. Damon confirms that's true, and adds that as a result, they need some leverage to figure it out. He once again beckons Stefan to follow him, and the boys head off to find their lady.

The Salvatore Brothers end up at some Whitmore College hangout, where Aaron is sitting on a couch, earbuds in and tuned out from the world. Kind of a stupid move, after just learning that vampires actually exist, and that at least one of them has vowed to kill pretty much everyone in his family, don't you think? Damon sits down next to him on the couch and pulls out his left earbud, which startles Aaron pretty badly. "Pop quiz," Damon begins, as Aaron anxiously starts to look around the room. "So, your girlfriend's taken by a mad scientist. Now, do you: A) get a new girlfriend, B) call the police; or C) kill someone close to the mad scientist?" As expected, Aaron grabs his stuff and gets up to run away, and Damon just smirks and remains seated while Stefan cuts Aaron off and orders him to sit.

Back at Wes' Super-Secret Vampire Lab, Wes examines a HUGE blood bag that contains all the blood he's drained from Elena. He takes his penlight and waves it in her eyes, which causes them to flutter. "83182 still shows signs of consciousness. Note that fifteen years ago, subject 12144 faded into unconsciousness after losing 2.9 pints. Evolution, or luck? Mystery for another day." Wait, 12144 is Enzo, right? Elena continues to try to break free from her restraints, and demands to know what he's doing to her. "Let me go!" Wes walks over to a little table to jot down some notes, and assures her that he plans to let her go when he's finished his plan. Elena reminds him that her friends are going to find her, which hits a nerve. "Your heroic vampire friends?" He adjusts the parameters of the machine.

"Did you know Aaron Whitmore spent his entire life thinking his family was haunted by some death curse? Turns out, that curse was just your boyfriend systematically killing every member on his family tree. I'm curious, how does one justify that, in their mind?" Elena points out that, hello, Aaron's grandfather totally tortured and starved Damon and other vampires for years, so how do the Augustines justify THAT? It's a legit point, even if Aaron and his other family members didn't deserve what happened to them. Wes informs her that SCIENCE is what justifies it, and starts to read from a journal. "June 25, 1999. Incredible findings today. After enduring 3,000 volts of electricity, the subject continues to have a heartbeat. June 26. More success. Subject was exposed to 4,000 volts today. Seizing continues after electrocution. Flesh remains hot to the touch." YIKES. Elena calls Wes a monster, so he does the most cruel thing he's done yet, and gleefully explains that he's reading from Grayson Gilbert, Elena's adopted father/biological uncle's own journal. Elena looks at the journal and clearly recognizes her father's handwriting. "Everything I'm doing to you, I learned from him," Wes smugs. GOD HE IS THE FUCKING WORST. Can someone just kill him off already?

Aaron swears that he has no idea where Wes could have taken Elena, which is not helping Damon or Stefan's patience a bit. Stefan asks where else Wes could have hidden a vampire, other than his lab. "I'm sorry, am I supposed to know who you are?" Aaron snits. Damon introduces him as his brother, Stefan, and adds, "But, I'd watch your tone with him, because he's kind of in the midst of a psychotic break." Stefan is clearly offended by this remark, so Damon brings up the whole Katherine thing. Stefan, true to form, accuses Damon of being jealous that he got to bang Katherine, which is a pretty pathetic comeback, tbh.

Damon turns to Aaron and snits, "See? He's off his rocker, he's losing his mind, teetering on the brink of insanity." Hey, Damon, maybe you should focus on the task at hand, eh? Aaron asks Damon how he's even still alive after being shot in the head, which leads to Damon being really stupid. "Well, because you went for the head," Damon explains, after assuring that no one was listening in to their conversation. "You gotta go for the heart!" He smacks Aaron in the back of the head, and asks him where the fuck Elena could be. Damon is SO not here for any of this. "We're gonna call Wes, and you're gonna tell him that if he doesn't give us Elena, the next experiment he conducts is gonna be sewing your arms back on." TELL HIM! I'm sorry, I just don't like Wes OR Aaron. Sorry?

Elena is still bound to the gurney, and as she looks around the room, she realizes that they're in the basement of her father's old medical clinic, which Wes confirms. "This WAS your dad's clinic. Then, your town council burned a whole bunch of vampires down here. Now, it's just a condemned building in Mystic Falls where no one will find us." Isn't Whitmore supposed to be like, 2-3 hours away? How did he get Elena all the way there? JFC. Wes' phone starts to ring, and he goes outside to answer it, probably so Elena can't eavesdrop or try to yell for help or something. In the meantime, Elena keeps trying to free herself. Wes greets Aaron on the phone, and Aaron's first words are, "Do you have Elena?" Wes can automatically tell something is up, and asks what's going on. Aaron tells him that Damon and Stefan have found him and are totally planning on killing him dead unless Wes frees Elena. Wes is a little confused. "Damon Salvatore is locked in an impenetrable and inescapable fortified cell," Wes explains, but clearly his cells aren't as strong as he thought. "Or, he's in front of me, imagining what my kidney would taste like."

Wes is pissed now, so he instructs Aaron to have Damon and Stefan meet him in his classroom. If he's safe when they meet, they'll get Elena back. They hang up, and Wes returns to the basement of Grayson's clinic, but instead goes into a different room where Enzo is strapped to a gurney and sleeping. Wes unhooks the IV from Enzo's arm, and pulls out a syringe. "Enzo, wake up. When was the last time you were out in civilization?" He injects Enzo with something that he calls an "insurance policy," to make sure that Enzo comes back. "I'm giving you the day off. You and Damon have some catching up to do." Wes hands Enzo some blood bags to perk himself up, and Enzo smiles at the idea of getting his revenge on his old amigo.

In the woods, Matt and Katherine are exercising. Katherine is doing a handstand, while Matt holds onto one of her legs to keep her upright. He checks the timer in his hands as Katherine's arms start to shake. "I don't hear you counting!" Katherine snits. He starts to count, and makes it to six before Katherine falls over. Matt is a gentleman, as we all know, so he helps her up and tells her it was a good try. "Good try? That was horrible, Matt. Come on! I'm paying you to make me hot again, whip me into shape and prolong this death thing as long as possible." What money does she have to pay him? Hasn't she basically been squatting at the Salvatore's this entire time? She starts doing jumping jacks, and Matt is just like, "Yeah, whatever." That's when Katherine gets hilarious.

"What did you say? [beat] No, seriously. I didn't hear you. Oh, god. I'm going deaf. I'm going deaf! My entire body is falling apart! I can't breathe. I can't breathe! Wa-water! Give me some water! Faster!" Matt does what the lady says and hands her the water bottle, which she chugs. He encourages her to take deep breaths, and after she's calmed down a little, he asks her why she doesn't just have someone turn her again, if she's so desperate not to be dead. Wouldn't she be stuck in her breaking-down body forever, then? I guess that's better than death, but still! Plus, there's this: "Tried that. Every time I ingest vampire blood, my body rejects it." When she bends over to put the water bottle back on the ground, her back cracks, and she groans in pain.

She can see that someone is approaching them, but her vision is getting blurry in her old age, and she can't tell who it is, so she asks Matt who it is. He reluctantly admits that it's Nadia, and that he told her they were there. I love that he's still in contact with Nadia, even though she robbed him after they had a threesome with Rebekah. Katherine hilariously grimaces and tries to hide herself under the bill of her hat, as if that will keep Nadia from recognizing her.

When Nadia finally joins them, she is very obviously not happy, and she pulls a slip of paper out and reads from it. "Dear Nadia, sorry I had to kill your boyfriend, but it was the motherly thing to do. Suicide, however, not very motherly of me." Katherine is mortified, as you can probably guess. "Great, so, um, Stefan obviously gave you my suicide note. What's your point?" Nadia's face turns murderous, and she slaps the FUCK out of Katherine's face, to the point she's literally thrown backwards. Matt can't help but laugh hysterically and blurt out, "Dammmmmmn!" God, I love Matt so much. MOAR MATT PLZ. Nadia just continues to glare, and spits, "That's for trying to kill yourself without saying goodbye."

(via peetahales)
Stefan, Damon, and Aaron are walking around campus when Stefan asks Damon how he and Aaron know each other. "Aaron is Aaron Whitmore," Damon explains. "And he comes from a very long line of vampire-probing, blood-testing, organ-removing freaks called Augustine." Stefan doesn't understand how Damon even knows this, so Damon finally has to admit that it was because he was one of their vampire test subjects in the 50s, which is what sent him into his humanity-less spiral that lasted until like, 2009. Stefan asks him what he means by test subject, but Damon's always been best at deflecting with humor. "Meaning, I donated my body to science! Except, I was alive, and it was against my will." Stefan is horrified that this happened without him ever knowing about it, but Damon just tries to shrug it off. "Don't get all guilt-ridden, Stefan, on me. We were on the outs back then, and by the time it was over, you was over." Aaron whines that Damon should finish the rest of his story, but Stefan is in bad cop mode this episode. "I don't recall saying that you could talk. [to Damon] Did I say that he could talk?" Damon agrees that he doesn't remember him saying so, so they both basically tell him to STFU.

Nadia and Katherine are in the parlor, where Katherine is mixing herself a smoothie. "I get it now. If I was living here, I'd want to kill myself, too." How dare you, Nadia! The Salvatore Boarding House is glorious, I would loooove to live someplace like that. Katherine claims that her suicide attempt was a moment of weakness, and that she's onto bigger and better things, now. Nadia points out that moments of weakness usually involve something a lot smaller scale than jumping off a clock tower, but Katherine is tired of talking about it already, and holds up the blender. "Do you see this? This is raw kale. In what universe would I put this inside of my body unless I actually wanted to live another day?"

That is a good point, although I thought that Katherine was a clean food freak? I'm the pickiest person ever and I still love kale on my salads. Nadia asks her mother what changed her mind, which seems to perk her up a little. "It's not so much a matter of WHAT as it is WHO. Can I ask you something, absentee mother to mildly abusive daughter?" Nadia tells her to go for it, so Katherine gets to the point. "Do you think, after all the horrible things that I've done, it would be possible to be forgiven?" Nadia TOTALLY thinks Kat is talking about her, and is about to be soooooooooo disappointed when she learns otherwise. But for now, she just tears up and admits that she absolutely does. "That's actually why I'm here. I may have an idea that will keep you alive longer." As expected, Katherine is totally open to suggestions.

Elena is still strapped down to a gurney, and still has nothing else to do but look around the burnt out basement of her father's clinic and get flashbacks from when she was just a wee babe. In flashback, we see the soccer ball fall down the steps again. This time, though, bb Elena totters her way down the steps and grabs the ball. Before bb Elena heads back upstairs, she gets distracted by a shelf full of medical files. She walks back up the steps, but stops again by the sound of electricity crackling in another room. She stares at the door when she hears the sound again, but must have gotten too scared, because she continues her way up the stairs.

In present day, Elena asks Wes when he met her dad. "He was working with the Augustine to turn vampire blood into a magical cure-all to fight disease, cure cancer, save the world," Wes explains as he examines some vials of blood. When Elena asks him if her dad ever brought vampires down there, he just ignores her. Rude! You're experimenting on her without her consent, the least you can do is answer her damn questions. "I remember coming down here as a kid," Elena continues. "There was something about this place that always creeped me out." Wes is still giving her the silent treatment as he swaps out an almost-full blood bag with a new empty one, so she brings up the fact that she saw Enzo and knows he's still alive and she wants to know where he is. "He's on a little day trip. Apparently, he had some unresolved business with your boyfriend." Elena immediately starts to panic and starts fighting against her binds as she tries to sit up. "What did you do?!"

Stefan, Damon, and Aaron show up at the building where Wes' classroom is. When they walk in, they see a man sitting in the back of the class with his feet up on the seat in front of him. "21051!" says the man, who Damon automatically recognizes as Enzo. He's shocked, as you can imagine, and Enzo stands up and walks over to him. Aaron is still worries he's about to get killed at any moment, so naturally he's like, "Who the fuck are you?" Enzo: "Lorenzo, but my friends call me Enzo. [beat] Ah, kidding. I don't have any friends." He goes to shake Stefan's hand, but Stefan is in Elena-mode, just like Damon, and won't take it, which hurts Enzo's little feelings. Damon can see the questions in both Stefan and Aaron's eyes, so he gives them the briefest of details--Enzo was the Augustine vampire whose cell was next to his, the end. Then, he turns to Enzo and asks if he knows Wes Maxfield. This was the WRONG question, apparently. "That's your first question for me? Not 'How are you?' 'How'd you survive that fire I left you to die in?'" Aaron still has NO idea what the fuck is going on, so Enzo gladly informs him that, if he'll kindly take a seat, he will take great pleasure in telling his story to them.

Wes turns off Elena's dialysis machine and removes the IV from her arm. Elena asks him if Enzo was the vampire who killed Megan, her roommate for all of four hours. Wes encourages her to save her energy, considering he's drained her of a shitload of blood in preparation for phase two of his mad scientist plan. I'm guessing he's doing his whole vampire-eating-vampire thing by making them super hungry and then teaching their body somehow to think vampire on the rocks is what they're craving most? Elena's like, "Let me guess, you're not gonna tell me what phase two is, are you?" All Wes will say is that if it works, Elena will be the first to know. Yeah, probably because she'll be eating her boyfriend and all her friends, right? Elena's next question is why Megan had a picture of Elena's dad on her phone.

"Because her parents helped fund your father's projects," Wes states, like it's obvious. Elena is surprised to hear that they knew about Augustine, too, but they didn't. "Well, no. All they knew was that your dad had an unregulated compound that could cure most injuries." Elena correctly identifies his miracle-cure as vampire blood. Wes messes with the dialysis machine and drops some unidentified stuff on it as he finally gives Elena some answers. "But, as Megan grew up, she got suspicious. Enrolled at Whitmore, roomed with Dr. Gilbert's daughter, and she went to a party at Whitmore House and put her nose where it didn't belong." Okay, but she had vervain water, so did she know about vampires? Or did Grayson convince her family that it was some kind of miracle herb or something? ALSO, what are the odds, do you think, that Wes LET Enzo kill her because she found out about his unofficial research project and was gonna tell people about it? He seems like the kind of guy who would kill people, or at the very least be indifferent to their death, if it meant protecting their "science."

Elena realizes that Megan must have found Enzo in his cell. "And, being clueless to what a starving vampire will do around fresh human blood, I'm guessing she got too close." Okay, but didn't she have vervain in her system? How would Enzo be able to feed on her to death without getting vervained himself? And how was he able to throw her out a window? Okay, I need to stop picking at nits here, sorry. Wes' phone rings again, and he answers it, thinking it's Aaron. Unfortunately for him, it's Stefan. He asks where Elena is, and when Wes asks who this is, Stefan smirks. "We have Aaron, and we're trying to decide how to kill him." Wes: "Funny, I have Elena, and I'm wondering how she'll function without her cerebral cortex. Touch him, and you'll never see her again."

Meanwhile, Enzo has been telling his story to Damon and Aaron, neither of whom look like they want to be there one bit. "Damon and I had been locked in those cells for years; tortured, beat, humiliated. But, we weren't gonna let them break us, no. We decided if we were going to escape, we needed to work together. We needed each other." He puts great emphasis on the word "together," just to make Damon even more uncomfortable. TBH, I really don't like Enzo that much anymore. What Damon did was shitty, yes, though understandable, and who's to say Enzo wouldn't have done the same thing in Damon's shoes? He's so focused on his revenge against Damon that he's forgotten that AUGUSTINE, and by extension, Wes, has been his true enemy. ANYWAY, Stefan comes in and interrupts to inform Damon and Aaron that Wes refuses to send Elena back. Enzo clearly gives no fuck about her whatsoever, and just wants to get back to his story, but Damon doesn't give a fuck about ENZO at this point, so he continues to brainstorm with his bro.

"Doesn't he know we have Aaron?" Damon asks, but Stefan points out that apparently, Wes is willing to risk his life to finish whatever he's doing. Aaron starts to FREAK OUT and begs Stefan and Damon to let Aaron talk to him and convince him to help. Damon is pretty panicked himself, and snits, "What part of 'HE DOESN'T CARE' are you not registering?" Enzo is SO butthurt that no one is listening to his story that he rips one of the desks that was bolted to the floor and throws it through the window. "Where were we? Uh, ah, right, I was telling my story, and you were all politely listening! Huh." He then starts ruminating on the fact that he had given Damon all of his blood rations while they were locked up together, in order to give him the strength to bust both of them out, a plan that started out without a hitch.

We flashback to the night of the party, when they let Damon out of the cage to feed his blood to the guests. "I was waiting in the cage for him to release me, waiting for my friend, my cellmate, the only soul with whom I'd connected with in all those years of captivity." Wow, Enzo is kind of a drama queen, isn't he? That's actually kind of an understatement. He explains about the fire going out of control, and the fact that Damon couldn't get the cage open, blah blah blah, then he just looks him in the eye before saving himself and leaving him to die. Damon reminds him that he very clearly didn't die, which Enzo concedes is true. "No, unfortunately, I lived. I was spared by one of the scientists, so I could spend another fifty years on a table being opened and closed. Now that we've all be acquainted, I'm gonna find something to wet my whistle." He saunters out of the classroom, and leaves the boys to themselves.

Stefan is a little pissy that Damon never told him about Enzo, and Damon is pissy that they're all wasting time when they don't know what Wes could be doing to Elena right now. "It was the 1950s. I'm supposed to remember every moment of my life?" He turns to Aaron, and asks Stefan if he wants to kill Aaron, or if Damon should just do it. Stefan points out that the guy was his cellmate and friend for five years, AND he left him to die, so why is he so unfazed about it? (Answer: he's very clearly the OPPOSITE of unfazed about it and Stefan is a moron) Damon's like, 'kay fine, I'll kill him, nbd, but Aaron is understandably not quite ready to be dead just yet. "Whoa, whoa, whoa! Hold on, hold on, hold on. Wes gave me a bunch of files on my family history. They're in my dorm, okay? Maybe there's something in there you need, a name, I mean, another lab..." Damon's not cool with the large amount of time it took for Aaron to reveal this information, but Aaron reminds him that Damon's not exactly going to HELP him, here, so why should he help Damon?

Damon descends upon Aaron, and Aaron fearfully backs away from him. "I don't like you. I don't like your family. I don't like you messing up my relationship. If you're lying, I'm gonna take my thumbs, and I'm gonna gouge out your sad little eyes from your sad little head!" Okay, that was kind of funny, I'm sorry. Enzo chooses that moment to waltz in with what looks like two bottles of some kind of grain alcohol. "It's frightening what you can find on campus these days!" Stefan tells Enzo to have fun with that, and informs the rest of the boys that they're moving onto plan B, per usual. Enzo insists that Damon stay here with him. "He knows all my secrets, so he knows how ornery I can get what I don't get my way." Damon wisely decides not to fight it, and instructs Stefan to go with Aaron. "Call me if you find anything. Kill him if you don't." YIKES.

At Casa Salvatore, Nadia and Katherine are sitting in the parlor and having a drink. Katherine is chuckling sarcastically as she snits, "You didn't just propose spirit possession with a straight face." Nadia is quite serious, though, and reminds her that she said Nadia's grandfather was a Traveler, which means Katherine's father was a Traveler, which means that Katherine is a Traveler, too, now that she's human again. So now, all she needs is someone who can teach her how to do the passenger spell. YES! I was wondering if we'd ever learn more about this angle! It's kind of how it's possible that Rebekah, Elijah, Klaus, Kol, etc could have been witches had they not been turned into vampires. Katherine just scoffs. "Hang on, I'm hardly a Traveler, okay? My father banned us from doing Traveler magic. He said it was the devil's work, or something dramatic that terrified us, and then I became a vampire and never thought about it again." Hahahaha! Okay, seriously though, I need a spin-off that is all about Katherine's life--her family growing up, her exploits as a vampire over the centuries, etc. GIVE IT TO ME NOW.

"But it's in your blood," Nadia argues. "Which means you have the ability to keep living inside someone else's body. Gregor was a Traveler. He put his spirit inside Matt, so that even after his body died, he lived on." Kat laughs again and reminds her that he put his spirit in a busboy, of all people, and whines that Stefan happens to like HER body. Yeah, because she's Elena's doppelgänger! Also, I totally figured out where this story is going as SOON as she said that, and I hate it. Katherine is going to figure out a way to put her essence in Elena's body, isn't she? UGH UGH UGH. I love Katherine and I really don't want her to die, but I would much rather she died than have her invading Elena's body and mind. ANYWAY, Nadia is like, "What the fuck does Stefan have to do with anything?" Kat explains to her daughter that she may have rekindled her thing with Stefan the previous night, and Nadia is completely devastated, as expected, when she figures out that it wasn't her that made Katherine change her mind about living.

NADIA: [stands] "I see. So, when you asked me about forgiveness, you were asking about him, not me?"
KATHERINE: "Look, maybe I don't want to die a sad, lonely, 538-year-old. If I have to bow out, knowing that Stefan still cares migt not be the worst way to go."
NADIA: [hurt] "No, you had it right the first time. Go kill yourself, see if anyone misses you."

OUCH. Yeah, selfish as Katherine may be, that definitely hit her right in the feels, and she looks a little hurt herself as she watches her daughter stomp away.

Enzo has dug into the booze in the meantime, and takes a shot before asking Damon if cricket ever became a hit in America. Damon is still in a bad mood, so he curtly tells him no, it didn't. "Oh, shame. Fun sport! Not that I can play. Took up drawing for a while. Of course, I had no pencil, so I'd just prick my finger and paint the cell wall with my blood." Morbid. Also, no offense to any European readers out there, but cricket is such a fucking boring sport. To be fair, I also find baseball to be a really boring sport, so there's that. But I digress! Damon asks Enzo if he wants him to feel guilty. "I couldn't save you. Now, where's Elena?" Enzo is about to say something snarky, I presume, but is overwhelmed by a coughing/dry-heaving spasm and braces himself on the table. Damon is confused and weirded out, and asks him what the fuck is wrong with him, so Enzo finally explains what that "insurance policy" that Wes injected into him really is--it's a poison that will eventually stop his heart and cause him to desiccate if he doesn't get to Wes in time to get the antidote. I bet Enzo is really regretting the fact that he spend so much time talking and not enough time trying to kill Damon. See what I mean? Stupid plan.

Damon sees this as an opportunity to hit two birds with one stone. "All the more reason to tell me where he is! Look, you get the antidote, I'll save my girlfriend, we'll save Elena together!" Again, I can see where Enzo is coming from for the most part, but this is an ideal plan. Sure, Damon is mostly looking out for his own self-interests, but I genuinely believe that he does want to try to make amends with Enzo, and finally freeing him after all this time would definitely do it. Of course, Enzo is still all caught up in his own Damon-revenge scheme to realize how great of a plan this is. "Did you even think about it after you left? The experiments, the cell? Or did you just go out and live your merry life to its fullest?" Damon tries to steer him back to the plan, and assures him that they'll go back together and finish their plan together. He even extends his hand to him to shake on it, and when Enzo takes it, Damon truly believes that he's convinced him to help. Of course, he's totally wrong.

"You're not gonna see your girl again, Damon," Enzo sneers, as he crushes the bones in Damon's hand. "Because I want the antidote, and Wes told me not to come back until you were dead." Okay, that is TOTALLY STUPID. So Enzo would rather kill Damon and go back for the antidote, and probably continue to be a test subject for the next bazillion years, than to team up with Damon one last time and kill Wes? His thirst for retribution is clouding his judgment hardcore. Enzo picks up Damon in a chokehold and throws him out the damn window, where he lands on a car in the parking lot below. Surprisingly, (or unsurprisingly, if you are a regular viewer of this show) NO ONE noticed the fact that a man fell from at least the second story of a building onto a car below and managed to not sustain any injuries. I want to live in a town full of such unobservant people!

Enzo hops down and joins Damon again, and lists off all the bones Damon probably broke during his fall. "It's funny what you learn about your body when it's taken apart like a bloody automobile, right before your eyes!" Damon walks off his injuries and maintains that he has no intention to fight Enzo. So, of course, Enzo just slugs him in the face and snits that Damon'll probably run instead, since that's what he does best. Um, what? Damon rarely EVER runs, which is a lot of the reason why he's always getting into trouble. The guy picks fights like nobody's business. Damon grabs his fist and crushes Enzo's hand before he can punch him again, and states firmly. "I want to find my girlfriend." He throws Enzo across the little green they're standing on on the campus, but he gets up quickly. "While you were out, running wild, I had one single thought: that I'd have the pleasure of killing you."

He zoops over to Damon and puts him in another chokehold, but it lasts all of two seconds before Enzo starts to desiccate before Damon's eyes. Damon manages to catch him before he hits the ground, and holds Enzo in his arms as he tries to get his attention. Enzo whines a bit about the poison, but Damon ignores it in favor of demanding where Elena is. "Or what? You never see her again? It might be good for you to know what it's like to miss someone for the next sixty years." He finally desiccates completely and loses consciousness, and Damon continues to hold him and try to wake him up, to no avail. Did anyone else get Alaric vibes during this? It was an interesting parallel to when Alaric died, although they were way closer friends than Damon and Enzo are, obviously.

Stefan and Aaron have finally arrived to Aaron's dorm room, and Aaron tells Stefan that all of the files he was given by Wes are there. Stefan urges him to hurry the fuck up, so he goes under his bed and stupidly grabs his gun and aims it at Stefan. This isn't Stefan's first rodeo, as you're well aware, and Aaron is still new to all of this, so it takes absolutely no effort on Stefan's part to vamp-speed over to Aaron, pin him against the wall, and disarm him. "Is this all a lie? Huh? If you want me to kill you, I will kill you. Do not test me." Aaron gasps under Stefan's chokehold. "Do it. I'm dead, anyway. Damon's been planning my death since before I was born." Stefan has no idea about any of this, since Damon has only given him details on a need-to-know basis. Aaron explains that Damon left out the "best part" of his Augustine story, so Stefan releases him and orders him to spill.

"It wasn't enough for Damon to kill the doctors who tortured him. He had to torture their families and their future families. He spent the last sixty years killing every one of my relatives." He describes Damon's method of leaving one Whitmore alive who can carry on the family bloodline, and then proceeds to kill all of the family except yet another one who can continue it, etc etc etc. He tells Stefan that he's basically a goner anyway, and he doesn't want to give Damon the satisfaction of being able to do it himself, so Stefan should just do it. Naturally, this puts Stefan in a position where he can act like he's the superior, good brother, and spares Aaron. "You know, not all of us are like my brother." It's true, you know. Some of them go on Ripper binges every couple of decades that involve killing hundreds of people and writing their names on a wall.

I'm sorry, but it drives me CRAZY when Stefan plays this way, because while Damon's Whitmore-revenge plot may have been terrible and psychopathic and uncool on many levels, it honestly isn't any worse than anything Stefan has done in the past. The difference is that Damon not only owns it, but gets punished for it by others, many of whom STILL to this day do not like him or give him the benefit of the doubt, while Stefan's misdeeds get shrugged off as being done by the "Ripper" and not by Stefan himself. UGH. I'm sorry guys, I really hate being so negative but it just drives me crazyyyy. ANYWAY, when Aaron realizes that Stefan has no intention to kill him, he pulls the files from under his bed and hands them to him. "This is everything Wes gave me on Augustine. I saw Elena's last name on a few pages. Maybe it will help." Stefan takes the files and looks inside the top file. He must have found something about the clinic, because he looks at Aaron with a "Eureka!"-like expression.

Elena, who has been strapped to a gurney for God knows how long, has launched herself into another flashback to when she was little. Bb Elena walks down the steps to the basement of the clinic again, and hears screaming coming from behind a door. She slowly walks over to it, but before she is able to open the door, she is stopped by a hand on her shoulder. It's Grayson! He smiles at her, and tells her she's not supposed to be down there, as apparently he's declared it a kid-free zone. Y'know, 'cause of the vampires. Bb Elena admits that she heard screaming, which alarmed her, but he assures her that everything is actually really good that day. When she asks why, he tells her, "Daddy's gonna save a little girl's life! She's just about the same age as you. Pretty cool, huh?" Megan, I assume? Oh shit! Bb Elena nods at him, because yeah, that is pretty cool, except for all the torture, obviously, so her dad sends her on her merry way.

In the present day, Wes comes up to her and claims that he has good news. "The sample cells mutated. My compound worked!" Elena is super weak from the blood loss and starvation, but she manages to keep a little of her sense of humor. "I don't follow. You kicked me out of bio, remember?" LOL! Wes smugs that he did his own version of Pavlov's dog experiment, only instead of having a dog salivate at the sound of a bell, he made it so vampires salivate at the smell of vampire blood. Okay, but how does he do that with just an injection? Isn't it supposed to be psychological conditioning, like how he was doing it with Jesse? YOU ARE CONFUSING ME, SHOW, AND NOT IT A GOOD WAY. Elena quickly realizes that he's doing the same thing to her that he did to Jesse. Wes is just getting high off of his own brilliance at this point. "Jesse was a fantastic case study, but he took too long to condition. And, considering the size of the vampire population, a single-dose injection is much more efficient." Elena points out the obvious, which is that he pretty much turned Jesse into a rabid animal, but Wes insists that's the point. "Vampires are now one shot away from craving their own kind, and you're about to be Patient Zero." SHITSHITSHIT. He fills up a syringe as Elena freaks out at the thought of becoming a vampire-eating-Ripper.

As he squirts out the excess air in the syringe, he starts talking into his recorder again. "Subject 83182 prepped for compound injection." Elena pleads with him not to do this to her, but Wes swears that she'll be doing the world a favor, because though he doesn't have what it takes to kill vampires, she will. She furiously tries to free herself from her binds, but he's still able to stab her right in the heart with the syringe, and she screams. Thankfully, Stefan appears out of nowhere, distracting Wes enough that Elena is able to headbutt Wes and knock him out before he could press the plunger on the syringe. Stefan zoops over to her and helps unbind her before helping her up. She can barely stand on her own, thanks to the blood loss, but Stefan promises that he's got her. She clearly wants to get the fuck out of there, STAT, but on their way out, she grabs her dad's journal.

Nadia is sitting alone at an outside table at the Grill when Matt comes out and informs her that they're closing. She reminds him of how they met on a restaurant patio very similar to this one in Prague, but Matt tells her as kindly as possible that he'd like to keep the past in the past. She's clearly hurt, but says it's fine. She came to give Matt Gregor's Traveler-killing knife, and tells him she wants him to hold onto it for her. Matt's understandably wary, since he JUST got rid of the Traveler in him, as well as the knife, but Nadia promises it has nothing to do with him. She just wants to make sure it's safe, since she's leaving Mystic Falls. Matt asks her why, and why anyone would want it. "I thought I could convince Katherine to live a little longer. I was wrong. But, if she changes her mind...she will need this. That's all you need to know."

Matt sits down across from her at the table, and again, tries to give her some bitter truths as kindly as he can. "Well, she wont, because Katherine cares about Katherine, and ONLY Katherine. If she doesn't want to do something, then she won't." Nadia starts to tear up again, and explains that she spent half a milennia searching for her mother, and once she finally found her, she lost her all over again. "I don't know if I should hate her for giving up, or be at her side when she dies." Matt can definitely empathize with her, and tells her a little bit about his own mother issues. "Listen, I get the whole crappy-parenting thing. My mom kind of sucked. She was selfish, and she drank too much, and never really thought about how it would affect me." OH SHIT, I forgot all about Matt's mom. Where the fuck has she been? Nadia points out that if Matt knows what she's going through, then he knows what it's like to hold on hope that their moms will get their shit together and do what their kids want for a change. Matt reconsiders his previous position, and puts his hand over hers. "If she changes her mind, the knife will be with me."

Okay, so why would Katherine need the knife? To finally kill herself once she's done Passenger-ing some hapless soul that is probably going to be Elena? Maybe if Katherine picks Elena, Matt will be the one to use the knife to get Katherine the fuck out of there. Matt likes Katherine, I can tell, but I don't think he'd take kindly to her hitching a ride in Elena's brain, especially after having his own Traveler stuck in his head.

Damon is sitting around in Wes' lab at Whitmore when Enzo finally wakes up from his desiccation nap. Enzo asks what the fuck he did, so Damon cheerfully explains that he injected Enzo with literally EVERY vial he could find that said "antidote" on it, and apparently, one of them worked. "If this is some attempt to make amends, it's a bit pathetic, mate," Enzo snits as he walks toward Damon. However, Damon doesn't really give a fuck either way, tbh. "I don't care about amends, MATE. My girlfriend's safe, so technically, I'm not suffering, and it'd really suck if you desiccated in vain..." Enzo gets PISSED, for whatever reason, and vamp-speeds over to him, but Damon anticipated that reaction, and shoves his hand into Enzo's chest and grabs his heart.

He states that now, Damon's going to tell HIS side of the story--to answer Enzo's earlier question, Damon did NOT think about Enzo after he escaped, nor does he feel guilty about leaving him, because in order to leave him in the first place, he had to turn off his humanity. So, he felt no remorse, regret, pain, etc. Enzo is still trying to hurt Damon in whatever way possible, so he points out that no amount of remorse, regret or pain that Damon feels now will change the fact that he's a horrible person. Damon tries to not let it affect him, and lets go of Enzo's heart. "We're even, Enzo." Enzo's not quite done, though. "You were the most important person in my life, and you ruined me, but that's just who you are, that's who you'll always be...a monster." Enzo leaves, and Damon is clearly ruminating over that speech.

Elena is on the couch, reading her dad's journal, when Damon finally gets home. Apparently, she must have had a blood bag or two for a snack, because she looks much less peaked than she did before. She points out that even as a kid, she knew that there was something creepy going on in that basement. Damon hands her a mug of tea, and asks if she really wants to be reading that journal. She brings up the little girl her dad was talking about in the flashback. "I think he was talking about my roommate, Megan." She shows him the journal page and reads an excerpt. "January, 1999. Saw Megan King today. Megan is seven years old. She suffers from a congenital heart defect with a life expectancy of two months. A single injection of vampire blood appears to be an effective life-saving solution." Elena figures that's why Megan had the picture of her dad on her phone, because he was the one who saved her. Damon is shocked that Elena was able to find the one happy page in a hundred pages of details of vampire torture.

She argues that her dad was trying to save lives with his research, which understandably rubs Damon the wrong way. "Yeah, and dissected vampires along the way. Newsflash, Elena, you ARE a vampire. I mean, do you honestly think that he would sit here and see you as anything more?" Elena thinks about it, and replies that she doesn't know, but he is her dad, so she can't not defend him. This also hits a nerve, and Damon gets up and starts to pace. "No, I know you can't, because you do it for me all the time." Elena points out that she's not defending him, or his decision to kill Aaron's whole family, which does NOT help Damon's mood one bit. "So, why are you still here? I'm BAD, Elena. I am BAD for you, so why wouldn't you have run away from me as far as humanly possible?" Elena rolls her eyes, all "There he goes again!" and stands up to look him in the eyes. "Because I LOVE you, Damon. Because I chose you, and because I stand by my choice." Damon thinks about it for a moment, and informs her that he's choosing to let her go, now, to save him from having to think about how she feels every time a bad choice from his past comes to haunt him, and to save HER from having to constantly defend him.

DAMON CUT THAT SHIT OUT RIGHT NOW. SERIOUSLY. Let the girl make her own damn choices! Elena brings up an EXCELLENT point. "Stop acting like I'm perfect, Damon! I've done horrible things, too. You think I'm gonna stand here and judge you after I find out that you'd been tortured for five years?" Damon, who is incredibly frustrated by this point, bellows, "STOP DEFENDING ME!" He insists that he can't and won't change who he is, but he refuses to change her in order to make it work. Elena is clearly devastated, and he knows it, because he walks away so he won't be able to see the hurt he caused her. Elena takes a deep breath and tries to calm herself, but after a moment, she begins to sob on the couch. :(:(:( foreverrrrr.

Upstairs, Katherine is examining herself in the mirror in Stefan's bedroom. She pulls at the skin around her eyes as Stefan opens the door and walks in. "Can I come in, or are you gonna freak out and run away again?" Katherine admits that she's getting wrinkles, which Stefan finds hilarious in a very ironic sort of way. "Heh, Katherine Pierce's chickens come home to roost in the form of wrinkles. It's kind of brilliant." Katherine proclaims that to be very unfunny, but Stefan changes the topic to what Kat is doing in his room. She confesses that she wants to talk about what happened the night before, and when Stefan agrees, she orders him to talk, which makes him laugh. What he says next isn't really a surprise, though. "Well, um, it was a long day. We had a moment, and we got swept up in it." Kat asks him if he memorized that from a textbook, but Stefan gets serious.

"Katherine, what do you expect? You want me to just forget everything that you've put me through for the last 147 years?" Katherine reminds him that she's dying, but Stefan really doesn't seem that worried about it--he replies that he knows she is, but he's certain that she'll find a way out of it, per usual. "No, I mean, it's for real this time." She walks toward him and removes the scarf that covered her gray hairs. "Look at me. I'm dying. What does someone have to go through to get a little redemption around here?" Stefan argues that 147 years of wrongdoing can't be forgiven in one night, but Katherine figures that even if she had an eternity to make up for it, he'd never see her the way he sees Elena. Stefan doesn't really have an argument for that, so he stays silent. Katherine chokes down her tears and bids him a goodnight before rushing for the door. Stefan catches her by the arm, and takes her hand and squeezes it. "Hey. [beat] I'm sorry you're dying." Katherine's eyes tear up even more, and she whispers, "Trust me, I am, too." On that note, she takes her leave.

(via vampire-originals)
Aaron walks down to the basement of Whitmore House and finds Wes passed out on the floor from Elena's headbutt to the frontal lobe earlier. He bends down to wake Wes up, and when he does, Wes is shocked to see him. Once he's awake, Aaron picks him up by the shirt and slams him on a nearby table as he asks what the fuck this place is. Wes responds that it's one of Augustine's research labs, which takes Aaron's anger up to LIVID. "Do you really think that you're helping people with this vampire crap? You sold me out! You used my life as a bargaining chip!" You all know I'm not a fan of Aaron, but I'm even MORE not a fan of Wes, so I was totally cheering him on during this scene. Wes gives him a half-assed apology, not noticing that Aaron spotted the syringe on the floor and has picked it up. Aaron informs Wes that he never wants to see Wes again, and demands that he stay out of his life for good. When he leaves, Wes frantically calls after him. OH SHIT, this is going to be a mess, isn't it?

Elena is still sitting on the couch by the fireplace at Casa Salvatore. She continues to look at her dad's journal, and hugs it in her arms. After a moment or two, she shakes her head, as if ordering herself to do pull herself together, and throws the journal into the fireplace. Katherine comes down the stairs as she talks to Nadia on the phone. She asks if she and Nadia have a deal. "You'll find me a Traveler that will teach me how to do the spell?" Nadia is driving while she talks to Katherine, and assumes this means that Katherine has found the will to live, again. "I'm a survivor," Katherine smugs. "Staying alive is my specialty." Truer words have never been spoken, tbh. Nadia points out that that's only the case when it's on Katherine's terms, and guesses that Stefan was the reason behind her change of heart. Katherine concedes that Nadia is correct.

"I think Stefan believes that a part of me can still be redeemed." Oh, honey, I don't know about THAT. Stefan's standards are incredibly high, because he's looking for a person who will make HIM feel like a good person. That's what drew him to Elena, because she saw him as the person that he WANTED to be, which was the closest he ever came to BEING that person. I'm not sure that Katherine could ever attain that level of goodness for him, but I can't say that I wouldn't like to see her try and get with him f'reals. Maybe it would help him take that stick out of his arse. Nadia asks her if he's right, but Katherine is overcome by a numbness in her left arm, which causes her to drop her bag on the steps. She grabs her arm with her other hand, and groans as she loses her grip on her phone, dropping it on the floor. Nadia's like, "Hello?" but Katherine grabs at her chest, and quickly becomes unable to breathe or talk. After a short moment, she falls down the stairs and passes out. OH SHIT SHE HAD A HEART ATTACK. As we zoom into Katherine's face, we can still hear Nadia's voice on the phone. "Katherine? Katherine?" YIIIIIIIIIIIIKES!


(via vampire-originals)

Next week: The Vampire Diaries' 100th episode! Katherine is straight-up DYING, y'all, and the Scooby Gang convenes to share their favorite memories of our fair Katerina Petrova. Supposedly, we may even see more flashbacks about the day Nadia was born! I'm assuming some other stuff happens, too, but we're not privy to the details in the promo. Awww, man!

[screencaps via the lovely cappers at KissThemGoodbye]

-So, Katherine is totally not going to die (yet) and is going to take part ownership of Elena's body for a while, I'm calling it now. And probably Matt will eventually get her out with Nadia's knife? Also, in the case that Katherine finds a different body to hide out in, I think she should probably learn more Traveler magic, at least that way she could protect herself, if she can't be vamped again?

-Also, Klaus and Tyler are supposedly going to come back for this next episode, so I can only guess what kind of shenanigans THEY'RE going to get into while they're here.

-Um, where the fuck has Bonnie been? I'm pretty sure she got more screen time when she was dead than she has now that she's alive. Also, I would really like more Matt. And Jeremy. Is that too much to ask?

-Sooo, is it safe to assume that Aaron is going to take that syringe with Wes' magic compound in it and stab Damon with it as punishment for what he's done to his family? Although, if he gives one iota of shit about Elena, that's a shitty way of showing it. Could the compound even work if the vampire isn't totally drained of blood and super hungry? I am not liking the implications of this AT ALL.


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