“You ever been in love?” Silas asks. He’s at a bus station with a couple who confirm that they’re enamored with each other. Silas thinks that’s adorable. He loves love. He has a soulmate, Amara. When they first got together, he was with someone else, so he cheated with Amara, and he doesn’t think it would have been that big a deal if Qetsiyah hadn’t turned out to be insane. She turned Amara to stone “Medusa-style.”
The guy asks if Silas is okay. Silas wonders if the couple thinks he’s crazy. Is it crazy for him to spend 2,000 years wanting to be reunited with the love of his life? The couple notes that he talked about someone turning to stone and being alive for 2,000 years, so they’re justified in thinking he’s crazy. Silas clarifies that he and Amara were immortal, and now they aren’t, as if that makes things more normal. The couple moves down on the bench, but Silas keeps talking. He even tries to show them what’s under the bandage he put on his neck after Amara drank from him.
Silas advises the couple to enjoy their love while it lasts. Just a few days ago, he was psychic, immortal, and in love. Now he’s mortal and his neck hurts. Also, he’s at a bus stop in Delaware. The woman tells him he’s actually in Philadelphia. Silas thinks that’s worse. The guy suddenly starts gagging and coughing up blood. Silas says he may be liquefying the guy’s internal organs. After all, he’s a witch. The woman begs him to stop, but Silas says he’s mad at the world and taking it out on her boyfriend. He might move on to her next. The woman runs off, leaving her boyfriend to fend for himself. Silas complains that love is fickle, then leaves the guy on the bench and boards a bus.
Stefan’s first night back in his room at Vamp Villa hasn’t gone so well, since he’s been dreaming about how Silas locked him in the safe and left him to drown all summer. Elena wakes him and tells him she misses him. When he lost his memories, she lost a friend. Instead of telling him how much they meant to each other, she wants a new start. But thanks to Qetsiyah, Stefan’s memories are all back. Elena’s thrilled.
Damon quizzes Stefan on some significant events from their past to make sure he really remembers everything. Damon can’t believe Qetsiyah restored all of Stefan’s memories, no strings attached. Stefan notes that it wasn’t exactly a gift. He has a flashback about his time in the safe and accidentally breaks the glass he’s holding. Damon and Elena are worried, but he pretends everything’s fine.
They take him to the basement, where they’re keeping Amara in a cell. She’s again talking to someone or someones no one can see. Stefan confirms that she’s the only thing keeping the Other Side intact. Damon says they need to keep her alive so they can still have a chance to get Bonnie back. That might be a problem now that Amara’s mortal again.
Damon somehow still trusts that Silas will do the spell to bring Bonnie back, but since he and Jeremy ditched Silas in New Jersey, they have to wait for him to come back to Mystic Falls. Damon catches Amara trying to bite her own wrist so she can die, and as he goes into the cell to restrain her, he admonishes her like she’s a puppy who keeps making a mess in the house. He hopes Silas still wants to be with her.
Upstairs, Jeremy tells Bonnie that the gang has run into another problem. Bonnie wonders what will happen if the Other Side is destroyed. Will it hurt? Jeremy has three things to say: 1) She’ll always be there. 2) He’s grateful that she gave up her life for him. 3) Bonnie doesn’t want to hear it because if Jeremy doesn’t say it now, they’ll have to have another conversation later, which means this won’t be their last one.
Wes has done some tests and run some scans on Katherine, and despite her graying hair and loosened teeth, everything about her seems normal. Wes notes on his recorder that Katherine’s irritable, but he’s not sure if it’s a symptom or part of her personality. She throws the recorder against a wall and says, “Personality.” He tells her she’s aging. She spent 500 years basically frozen in time, age-wise, and now that she’s human again, time is catching up with her. There’s no way to stop it. At this rate, she only has a few months left.
Damon calls Silas, who’s enjoying the long bus ride from Philadelphia to Mystic Falls. Damon’s impatient for him to get there, but Silas likes getting to watch humans in their normal environment. He reveals that he wants Amara to die if she’s really miserable staying alive. Damon’s even free to kill her. Damon reminds him of their deal, but Silas wants out. If Damon doesn’t bring back Bonnie, he’ll be breaking a promise to Elena, which could damage their relationship. That would make Silas happy. Plus, it might send Elena back to Stefan, just as fate intended. Damon hangs up, and Bonnie looks on as he tries not to throw a tantrum.
Caroline leaves Jesse a message, having been out of contact with him for a while. Nadia finds her in her dorm and announces that she’s looking for Katherine. When Katherine arrives, Nadia starts to tell Caroline how they know each other. Katherine rushes to say that Nadia’s her stylist. Caroline wisely decides to excuse herself and avoid their whole deal.
Elena suggests to Damon and Stefan that they move Amara someplace where Silas can’t get to her. Damon notes that he can find her with a locator spell. Stefan tells Elena to give up already; Silas isn’t going to bring Bonnie back. Elena’s like, “I have never given up on a person in my life, and I’m not going to start today.” Stefan tells her she puts her hope in the wrong places and sometimes the wrong people. He wants Silas to die and put them all out of their misery. Elena still has some hope, but Stefan tells her not to hold her breath (a little drowning humor). Silas needs to die, and Stefan wants to be the one to kill him.
Jeremy and Bonnie look in on Amara, guessing she’s been driven insane by her 2,000 years of isolation. Amara recognizes Jeremy but is confused because she thought he was dead. He says he was, but he came back. Amara says Bonnie must have been responsible. Bonnie’s shocked that Amara can see and hear her. Jeremy realizes that as the anchor to the Other Side, Amara can see and interact with both the living and the dead. This gives Bonnie an idea.
Jeremy tells Damon and Elena that Amara exists in both the real world and the Other Side. She’s not crazy; the people she talks to are real, just not in the world the gang inhabits. Jeremy and Bonnie think that Bonnie could take Amara’s place as the anchor. Elena loves that idea and says they just need someone to do the spell to make the switch. Damon knows who that someone is and doesn’t want her to say it. Elena notes that that someone has the biggest stake in giving them what they want: Amara dead and Bonnie alive.
Damon reluctantly goes to Qetsiyah’s cabin and tells her that Amara is mortal and wants to die. Silas wants to kill her and destroy the Other Side so he and Amara can be together forever…wherever they would go. Damon admits that Qetsiyah was right about doppelgangers always ending up together. He knows she wants Silas dead, and he wants to make a deal with her.
Back at Vamp Villa, Elena tries to talk Stefan out of killing Silas. She doesn’t want him to do anything crazy so soon after the gang has gotten him back. She knows he gets that revenge isn’t the way to go. Stefan says he experienced sill moments in the safe when he thought about things that made him happy and gave him hope. Those are the only things that kept him sane. But after a while, his pain took away those moments, too. Now Stefan feels the pain and fear over and over, and he needs to make them stop by killing the person responsible. If he doesn’t, he might go crazy and turn off his humanity.
Damon presents the gang’s idea to Qetsiyah, who seems willing to do the anchor swap but will need a lot of power for the spell. There’s no full moon, and there won’t be a comet with enough juice for a really long time. Damon pressures her to think harder so he can give Elena her best friend back. Qetsiyah realizes she already has a mystical, natural source of power at her fingertips: doppelganger blood. “I got doppelgangers coming out of my ears!” Damon exclaims. “How many you want?”
Nadia has come looking for Katherine so they can talk about how they had a bonding moment, and then Katherine ditched her again. Katherine points out that she didn’t abandon Nadia when she was a baby – her father took Nadia away. Also, it’s been 500 years and she’s not interested in bonding. Caroline has been looped into the gang’s plan, so she comes to collect Katherine and take her to Mystic Falls. Katherine has no idea what she’s in for but probably would prefer it to talking to Nadia.
Damon takes Qetsiyah to Vamp Villa, where she thinks the current living arrangements – Damon and two doppelgangers who are fated to be together – would be a great setup for a sitcom. She goes to the basement and demands an apology from Amara for stealing Silas. Amara timidly apologizes, but only because she knows that’s what Qetsiyah wants to hear. Amara suffered for 2,000 years, and she’s learned her lesson for falling in love, and now she’s ready to die. Qetsiyah promises that she will, but Amara and Silas won’t be together once they’re both dead. Amara’s human and Silas is a witch, which means they won’t go to the same place.
Caroline delivers Katherine, who announces her arrival with, “The cute one’s here!” She doesn’t care about Bonnie or the Other Side disappearing, but she does have a reason to work with Qetsiyah: She wants Qetsiyah to stop her rapid aging. Qetsiyah agrees to find a way to keep her alive once she’s done the spell to make Bonnie the anchor. She’s ready to start, as soon as they collect Elena and Amara, AKA “Tweedledee and Tweedledum.”
Qetsiyah uses Bonnie’s grimoire as a talisman since Bonnie can’t physically be there for the ritual. She draws blood from all three doppelgangers and chants something. But the lights in the room start sparking and wind blows around the women. Qetsiyah says Silas is interfering. His power blows out all the lights in the house. When Damon comes to check on the situation, he realizes that Amara and Qetsiyah are both gone.
Qetsiyah finds Silas in the living room and they have a fight about her desire for vengeance and inability to let things go. He stabs her with a fireplace poker and mocks her for waiting 2,000 years for him to die so they could be together, when the universe wanted him with someone else. He thinks that makes Qetsiyah’s whole existence a waste. She says she loved him, but he doesn’t care. Stefan calls from the woods and tells Silas he has Amara. Silas has ten minutes to join them or Stefan will take her somewhere to hide while everyone else hunts Silas down.
Caroline finds Katherine still bleeding from the ritual and offers her some of her blood. Katherine can’t keep it down, which she thinks is a side effect from taking the cure. (I assume it’s so someone who takes the cure can’t be turned into a vampire again. No takebacks!) Meanwhile, Elena comes across Qetsiyah, pulls out the poker, and orders her to get back to her spell.
Silas makes it to Amara before his ten minutes are up. She tells him she still loves him, but she can’t live any longer. She asks him to understand. He does, though he’s heartbroken to lose her again. He puts a knife to her throat but can’t bring himself to kill her. Amara begs him, saying she’s ready.
Silas is about to give in when Stefan grabs him. He strangles Silas so he’ll feel like Stefan did in the safe. Amara unties herself as Silas gives Stefan a magic migraine and taunts him for barely surviving three months in a safe when Silas himself lasted 2,000 years in a tomb. He thinks the real torture for Stefan was being forgotten about. Stefan spots Silas’ knife on the ground, grabs it, and stabs Silas. Amara cries out and starts to go to him, but she’s stopped by pain.
Back in the house, Qetsiyah and Elena are continuing the spell. Damon interrupts to tell Elena that he can’t find Stefan or Amara. Elena’s worried that Stefan is going after Silas and will get himself killed, but Damon knows what he’s up to and says he’s being his typical self. Elena tells him Stefan is hurting and isn’t thinking clearly. Yes, Silas put him in the safe, but Damon and Elena should have gotten him out. She doesn’t want to lose him again. Damon agrees to go find his brother.
Amara pulls the knife out of Silas’ body and stabs herself so she can join him in the afterlife. Damon’s just moments too late to stop her, and his blood won’t heal her. She tells him she’s been in Hell for 2,000 years. He thinks she can wait a few more minutes, but she just wants release.
As Qetsiyah continues the spell, Bonnie goes to say goodbye to Jeremy. She thinks Amara’s death will keep the anchor swap from being successful. She asks to hear the third thing Jeremy wanted to tell her. It’s that he loves her. He says he’s not ready to let her go, then instinctively puts a hand to her face, even though he hasn’t been able to touch her since she died. But suddenly he can. Elena and Caroline find them and are able to see Bonnie. The spell worked!
Once they’re alone again, Bonnie and Jeremy enjoy the little things they’ve missed, like feeling warm (her) and holding hands (him). Also, kissing. Katherine’s ready for her reward from Qestiyah, but Qetsiyah isn’t willing to mess with someone’s lifespan again, since that’s how this whole mess started. With Amara gone and Silas on the Other Side, Qetsiyah is ready to die again. She’s already used a glass to cut her wrists. Katherine yells for someone to help her, but no one hears. “True love prevails, universe be damned,” Qetsiyah says.
She suddenly appears in another room of the house, surprising Bonnie. Qetsiyah explains that as the anchor, Bonnie will have to withstand every dead supernatural being passing through her on the way to the Other Side. She’ll feel all their deaths, and it won’t be pleasant.
Stefan’s ready to bury Silas’ body, but Elena isn’t sure he’s really gotten what he needed from Silas’ death. Stefan asks why his state of mind is so important to Elena. She admits that she was happy while he was suffering. She got everything she wanted. She needs to know that this worked and Stefan will be okay. “I wanted it to be you,” he tells her. He wanted her to be the one who rescued him from the safe – her and Damon.
Katherine follows Caroline back to Whitmore, but with Bonnie back and about to enroll, the Super Suite is at full capacity, so Katherine will have to find somewhere else to crash. Caroline’s grateful for Katherine’s help, but Katherine doesn’t do gratitude, and she reminds Caroline that they still hate each other. Nadia arrives and tells Katherine she’s going back to Prague. She’d like Katherine to come along. They can visit Bulgaria and tell each other about their lives.
Katherine isn’t interested – she’d rather rip out her own heart than bond with Nadia. “I don’t want to know you,” she spits out. Caroline, who’s trying to pretend she’s not eavesdropping, even though she’s still in the room, is surprised to hear that they’re mother and daughter. Katherine tells Nadia she’s doing her a favor by keeping her distance. Katherine can’t be there for her, and Nadia will never see her again.
Stefan buries Silas’ body, still remembering everything Silas did to him. He’s disturbed to realize that the closure he was hoping for hasn’t come.
Etc.: The opening is one of my favorite scenes in the entire series. Don’t judge me.
I wish we’d gotten more Silas/Damon banter. It’s fun to watch Damon have to deal with someone who’s technically on his side but just isn’t doing things the way Damon would like.
Nadia and Katherine’s dynamic plays like Nadia’s the parent and Katherine’s the child. Nadia’s disappointed that her rebellious daughter won’t listen or play by the rules.
Caroline is a saint for putting up with Katherine for multiple days, and for driving her from Whitmore to Mystic Falls without strangling her.
“The cute one’s here!” is fantastic.
They should have thrown in a scene where Damon’s happy to see Bonnie but tries to pretend it’s just because of what it means for Elena, not because he missed her himself.