Alaric is in his classroom, coming up with a plan for how best to use his new “ultimate weapon.” Caroline is also at the school, and she’s on the phone with Tyler, who’s been tasked with packing up the Haus of Klaus since Klaus is planning to leave town. This is apparently Tyler’s punishment for Caroline’s decision to stay with him instead of get together with Klaus. Plus, Klaus thinks Tyler’s still sired to him, so Tyler has to do the work to play along.
Someone zooms through the hallway as Caroline heads to the gym to clean up after the previous night’s dance. Matt was supposed to be there, too, but he got called in to work, so Rebekah is there instead. She chastises Caroline for being there two minutes late to clean up. Rebekah managed to show up on time despite not even being able to go to the dance. The two put aside their animosity for a few seconds when Caroline says she’s sorry about Esther’s death and Rebekah says she’s sorry about Alaric’s death.
Speaking of Alaric, Rebekah runs into him in the hallway. He prepares to stake her, but Caroline zooms in and rescues her. He ends up with the stake in his chest instead, but it just barely slows him down. Caroline makes it outside to her car, where Alaric breaks her neck and drags her, caveman-style, back inside. He doesn’t have a daylight ring, so he burns the whole time. Rebekah just watches from nearby.
Over at Gilbert Gables, Elena and Jeremy are starting the day by painting Alaric’s room. Stefan thinks they should wait to make any changes, but Elena wants to keep moving so they don’t have to think. When Stefan offers to help, Jeremy asks if they’re back together. Elena and Stefan both say no. In that case, Jeremy would like Stefan to leave. He wants one day without any vampires, as if he doesn’t know what show he’s in. Elena tells Stefan that he didn’t mean that, but Stefan knows better. The doorbell rings and he finds Damon on the front porch with Bonnie. Damon announces that they have a problem.
Rebekah rushes to tell Klaus that Alaric is a) alive, b) a vampire, and c) not affected by the white oak stake. Since he doesn’t have a daylight ring, he’s confined to the school for the rest of the day, but as soon as the sun goes down, killing Klaus and Rebekah will be his top priority. They need to move up their trip out of town. Klaus agrees and says he’ll get Elena.
Rebekah protests that he doesn’t need more hybrids. Klaus wants an army to protect him, but she says they’ll protect each other the way they always have. “Always and forever,” blah blah. Klaus refuses to leave town without Elena. Rebekah says she’s going now, and if he doesn’t go with her, he’s on his own. He doesn’t budge, so she tells him he’s an idiot for trusting hybrids over his family, and his spite will be the death of him. Eh, only if the spite is covered in white oak.
Back at Gilbert Gables, Stefan blames Damon for not preventing Alaric from completing his transition. Damon blames Bonnie, who didn’t know what was happening. The witches sent her to the crypt and made her feed Alaric. Damon also seems to blame Bonnie for the disappearance of the white oak stake, but she was never in the crypt before she was forced to go there, so I don’t think that was her responsibility. She makes a good point that if Damon is so mad at her, why did he give her his blood to save her after Alaric fed on her? He says he does stupid things. For example, he let Alaric die the way he wants instead of just breaking his neck and ending it already.
Obviously the thing that’s actually important here is that Alaric is now the gang’s biggest threat. Bonnie knows a witch can’t create a being who’s truly immortal, so there has to be a way to undo the spell that made Alaric an Original. Too bad Bonnie doesn’t know what it is.
Elena has been left out of this conversation, so when she gets a call from a number her phone IDs as Alaric’s, she thinks someone’s messing with her. He tells her he’s at the school and is holding Caroline hostage. Elena is to come meet them without telling anyone where she’s going, or Alaric will kill Caroline.
Klaus shows up at the house as if he can ask to take Elena out of town and she’ll just agree to go. Stefan and Damon send Jeremy to his room, and Klaus notes that replacing Jeremy’s most recent father figure with the Salvatores isn’t a great trade. He tells them he’s leaving town and just needs his doppelganger. The guys close the door in his face. Stuck outside because he’s never been invited in, Klaus brainstorms. Stefan goes looking for Elena, but she’s already on her way to the school. Klaus grabs a newspaper off the front porch and throws it hard enough to break a window.
Elena arrives in Alaric’s classroom, where poor Caroline has been gagged with a vervain-soaked cloth and has pencils jammed through her hands to pin her to a desk. Alaric invites Elena to free her, but when she tries, he jams a pencil back down into Caroline’s hand. He berates Elena for trusting yet another vampire.
In the yard of Gilbert Gables, Klaus is all, “Little pigs, little pigs, let me in!” and the Salvatores are all, “Not by the hair of our chinny-chin-chins!” Klaus grabs a soccer ball from a neighbor’s yard and kicks at the front door hard enough to make the door fly open. Then he throws slats from a wooden fence inside, trying to stake Damon. He misses and Damon is able to throw them back. In the middle of the chaos, Alaric calls Stefan.
Klaus moves on to plan C: lighting a newspaper on fire and throwing it into the house. Stefan stops him before the throwing part and tells him that Elena’s not there. Alaric has both her and Caroline and will kill them both if Klaus doesn’t meet him at the school. Klaus thinks the gang is sending him into a trap, but Stefan reminds him that if he dies, there’s a one-in-four chance that the Salvatores and Caroline do, too. Damon’s willing to risk that, and definitely willing to risk Tyler dying. But Stefan thinks they can all work together to come up with a way to stop Alaric.
Group brainstorming session! Klaus’ first idea: Damon distracts Alaric while Stefan rescues Elena. Yes, maybe Alaric will kill Damon instantly, but Klaus doesn’t see that as a problem. Damon reminds Klaus that his crush is also there, then taunts that maybe Caroline rejected him too many times for him to care about her safety. Bonnie (who’s taken the time to change out of her ’20s clothes and take down her hair) says she has an idea. Abby desiccated and immobilized Mikael, so maybe Bonnie can use the same spell on Alaric. But it’ll take a lot of vampires to take Alaric down, so the guys will need to keep working together. Klaus notes that they only have about eight hours before the sun sets. If they haven’t handled Alaric by then, the gang is on their own.
Alaric puts a new gag on Caroline so she’ll keep inhaling vervain. He tells Elena she’s going to kill Caroline. She always wanted Alaric to teach her how to kill vampires, and now there’s one right here for her to stake. Damon and Bonnie have moved to Vamp Villa, and they’re waiting for Abby to arrive so Bonnie can learn the desiccation spell. Damon notes that Abby isn’t reliable, but she shows up because her daughter told her it was urgent.
Meanwhile, Stefan and Klaus go to the school. Klaus says that no matter what happens, he’s taking Elena with him when he leaves town. Stefan says he’ll come, too. He’d give up everything in Mystic Falls to make sure Elena’s safe. Klaus tells Stefan he’s the better option for Elena, who needs to realize that she’s wasting her time with Damon. Stefan says that after all Klaus has done to try to make the Salvatores hate each other, the brothers have actually gotten closer. Klaus says that in that case, maybe he’ll let Elena choose which brother comes with them when they leave town. Stefan’s fine with that, since he and Damon have been through a lot worse than Klaus.
Back at Vamp Villa, Damon addresses a plot hole so the writers stop getting asked about it – after Elena died in Klaus’ sacrifice, her ownership of the house was voided, which is why vampires can enter without an invitation. He offers Abby some blood as a peace offering for, you know, turning her and ruining her life, but she’s not interested. How about a fake apology? Damon likes fake apologies.
Bonnie tells Abby that they need to use her desiccation spell on Alaric. Abby says it’s too dangerous, since it requires a dark magic that Bonnie hasn’t tapped into before. It’ll lead her to places she can’t handle. Bonnie replies that Abby has no idea what she can handle. Abby continues that the spell allows you to stop a vampire’s hard to force them to desiccate. It requires finding a balance with a living person, meaning Bonnie will have to stop a human heart.
Bonnie and Damon head to the school, alerted to Elena and Caroline’s location by an app that connects Bonnie’s phone to theirs. Damon compares it to a digital locator spell and asks why they need Bonnie anymore. They meet up with Jeremy, who won’t give up his Gilbert ring. He wants to be the one who has his heart stopped. Damon points out that dying too many times while wearing the ring leads to insanity. Jeremy again refuses to let anyone else do the spell with Bonnie. Elena’s his sister, and no one will fight as hard as he will to save her. Jeremy, can I introduce you to Stefan and Damon, who will absolutely fight as hard as you will to save your sister? Apparently you haven’t met. Also, you’re the only human here, so you have to be the one to do the spell.
Stefan and Klaus join the group and Bonnie has the vampires drink some of her blood to connect all of them to her. When she stops Jeremy’s heart, the vampires will all get the power to stop Alaric’s. They just need to make some sort of physical connection to his bloodstream. Klaus announces that he created Stefan, Damon, Caroline, Tyler and Abby’s sireline, which means he’s responsible for their lives. In other words, if they’re planning to turn on him and kill him, they’ll all die, too. Damon thinks he’s lying about the sireline, but Klaus knows he won’t risk being wrong.
Inside, Elena asks Alaric why he’s holding her and Caroline hostage. He says Elena needs him. She has no guardians and no guidance and no sense of right or wrong. Elena notes that his concept of what’s “right” is pretty messed up. Alaric says Caroline admitted that she liked killing Carter, which also isn’t right. Miranda and Grayson were on the Founder’s Council and believed in the mission of protecting Mystic Falls. It took Elena less than six months after their deaths to buddy up with vampires. Does she think they would be proud of her? “If you don’t side with the humans, you’re just as bad as them,” Alaric says, sneering at Caroline. He tells Elena to kill her or he’ll do it.
He hands her a stake, but instead of using it on Caroline, Elena spins it around to use it on Alaric. He catches her arm, knowing all her moves since he taught them to her. But she expected that, and she’s just distracting him while she grabs the beaker of liquid vervain he’s been using on Caroline’s gag. She throws it in his face, then frees Caroline and sends her to get help. Alaric stops Elena from leaving as Klaus finds Caroline in the hallway and assures her that she’s safe. He tells her to go home while he and the others save Elena. She thanks him and he zooms off.
Alaric threatens to kill Elena like he killed Brian and Bill, and like he plans to kill the other “cowards” who haven’t fulfilled their duty to rid Mystic Falls of vampires. She’s the worst of all of them and doesn’t deserve to live. Elena asks why she’s still alive, then. He clearly doesn’t have any humanity left, so why hasn’t he killed her already?
Alaric vamps out but ultimately lets Elena go. Stefan and Damon zoom in and grab him so Klaus can make contact with his bloodstream, but Klaus doesn’t move fasts enough and Alaric is able to break the Salvatores’ necks. Klaus grabs Alaric’s heart, and outside, Bonnie tells Jeremy it’s time. She does the spell to stop his heart, but Klaus can’t handle Alaric on his own, and he loses contact with Alaric’s bloodstream. Alaric throws Klaus to the ground and prepares to use the white oak stake on him.
Elena took off during the fight, but she returns with a scalpel and tells Alaric that if he kills Klaus, she’ll kill herself. Alaric doesn’t like that idea, and Elena has figured out why: Esther tied his life to hers when she made him immortal. That means he only has one lifespan to kill all the Originals. If Elena dies, Alaric dies, too. He says she’s wrong, but when she cuts into her neck, he yells at her to stop. Klaus throws him off, grabs Elena, and zooms out of the school.
He takes her to the Haus of Klaus, where he plans to have a nurse drain Elena’s blood so he can make hybrids without keeping her around. Tyler’s still clearing out the house, and unlike the last time one of his friends was in danger, he immediately moves to help Elena. Klaus invokes the sire bond to send him away, and though Tyler tries to disobey, Klaus won’t let him. He tells Elena that she’ll fall asleep as her blood is drawn and die peacefully.
Damon wakes up as his phone buzzes next to him and wonders why he’s still alive. Alaric tells the Salvatores to get up and go save Elena from Klaus. He knows that Klaus plans to kill Elena in order to take Alaric down. Alaric can’t do anything because the sun’s still up, so the Salvatores need to get moving.
Back at the Haus of Klaus, a weakening Elena reminds Klaus that once she’s dead, he loses his renewable source of hybrid juice. Like Stefan, Klaus thinks that what Esther did to him and his siblings made them closer instead of destroying them. Oh, yeah? Is that why Kol and Elijah left town and Rebekah’s on her way out? Klaus says he’ll be okay with a smaller number of hybrids if he still has his family. Elena asks why he’s taking her blood at all, if that’s true. She guesses he wants a backup family because his siblings won’t trust him again.
Klaus says that Stefan blames him for trying to drive a wedge between him and Damon, but it’s obvious who the real culprit is. Elena won’t choose between the brothers because once she does, she’ll destroy their bond. Klaus is doing her a favor by killing her. No one will end up discarded or unchosen. “But just between us girls, who would you have picked?” he asks. “Rot in Hell,” Elena replies. He leaves her there to die alone.
Tyler returns, and without Klaus there to stop him, he’s able to free Elena. Klaus catches him and realizes the sire bond has been severed. “I’m not your little b&^$% anymore,” Tyler says. He broke the bond for Caroline. Klaus says that’s impossible, but Tyler tells him that real love must be stronger than fake loyalty, not that Klaus would know. Klaus thinks Tyler should be grateful, since Klaus gave him a gift by taking away his misery. Tyler knows Klaus didn’t care about him – he just didn’t want to be alone.
Tyler starts to lead Elena out of the house, but Klaus stops him. As he’s grabbing Tyler, he slams into Elena, who falls and hits her head on a step. Stefan and Damon zoom in, and Damon and Tyler hold Klaus so Stefan can grab his heart. In the woods by the school, Bonnie starts the spell again, successfully stopping Jeremy’s heart, then Klaus’. Damon gets Elena as Klaus desiccates, looking into the eyes of the guy he spent the summer with and once thought of as a brother.
Bonnie shakes off the power she used for the spell and realizes she still has a step left: reviving Jeremy. It takes a little longer than she’d hoped, but he’s okay. Klaus finishes desiccating, and Stefan says they need to get Elena home before the sun goes down.
Both brothers accompany her, even though she insists her head doesn’t hurt that much and that she’s safe in her own home. She’s more worried about Alaric finding the Salvatores, who are going to take Klaus’ body out of town. Elena tells them she knows it’s selfish of her to keep both brothers on the hook, but choosing one means losing the other, and she doesn’t want to lose yet another person she cares about. The guys don’t want to address that, so they just tell her they’ll call her from the road as the head to the ocean to dump Klaus’ body.
Elena goes inside alone and finds the rest of the gang waiting for her. They want to celebrate the fact that they defeated Klaus, even though they still have Alaric to deal with. Matt wishes he’d been invited to help take out Klaus, considering he already took out one Original. Caroline heard Elena talking to the Salvatores and reminds her that she’ll have to choose one of them sooner or later. Elena knows. She thanks Tyler for standing up to Klaus, then says she doesn’t approve of the underage drinking the gang wants to do. Jeremy thinks she deserves a night of being irresponsible. They all toast to a Klaus-free life and their little family.
Liz goes to Lockwood Landing for an emergency council meeting she thinks Carol called. Carol tells her that Alaric arranged it. He’s just told the council that there’s a vampire problem in town and Liz and Carol haven’t done anything about it. He announces that Liz’s daughter is a vampire and Carol’s son is a vampire/werewolf combo. That makes the sheriff and the mayor hypocrites for claiming they want to rid the town of vampires, then covering up their children’s actions. Liz tries to leave, but Alaric zooms in front of her and tells her they’re just getting started.
On their way to the ocean with Klaus in a casket, the Salvatores take a moment to be happy that they won this battle. Stefan admits that they make a good team. He asks what will happen when Elena chooses between them. Damon guesses that she’ll list all the pros and cons, then dump them both. Stefan says that if she picks Damon, he’ll leave town and let them be happy. Damon notes that in 60 years or so, after Elena dies, they can renew their brotherly relationship. He agrees to leave town if Elena picks Stefan. No fight to the death? How anticlimactic! “All this over one girl,” Damon says. “She’s a pretty special girl,” Stefan replies.
The gang has left Gilbert Gables, and Jeremy has gone back to painting Alaric’s room. Elena says things would be easier if Alaric killed all the vampires in the world, but that would mean she loses Caroline and the Salvatores, Bonnie loses Abby, and Carol loses Tyler. If wanting to keep those people alive makes Elena the bad guy, she’s okay with it. Jeremy reminds her that Alaric didn’t want to be a vampire. He might kill himself after he’s killed all the Originals. That means Jeremy would lose Elena, and he’s not going to let that happen.
He heads off to get ready for bed, but Elena decides to keep painting. Suddenly she feels pain in her head and collapses, unconscious. Blood pours from her nose, mixing with the paint she’s knocked over.
Keep in mind: Elena and Alaric’s lives are linked.
Etc.: Damon taunting, “Missed me!” when Klaus throws the fence slats at him is extremely in character for him.
Alaric using Caroline to lure Elena to the school was probably unnecessary, since I bet Klaus would have come to rescue Caroline even without the threat of losing his doppelganger.
As I’ve said, I’m not a Klaus fan, but if I were going to start liking him, it would be with, “But just between us girls, who would you have picked?”
When Elena asks Tyler for help, she tells him to get Stefan. Make of that what you will.
I love the twist of the gang using the heart-stopping spell on Klaus instead of Alaric. It’s genius.
I’ve watched this series multiple times and am just now realizing that the scene were Alaric reveals Liz and Carol’s secrets to the council is foreshadowed in “Disturbing Behavior,” when he calls them out for hiding that they have vampire and werewolf children.
Also, why didn’t Alaric just kill the whole council while they were in one room? I know, I know, this is just setup for later, but if he wants them dead so badly, why not act now?