Atlanta paramedic Tom Avery is on the job, saving a patient with an emergency procedure I don’t think paramedics are allowed to do. Sloan is watching him through another linking spell, desperate to get more information on his location. A doctor comments angrily that Tom is a piece of work: “They must have broke the mold when they made you.” Get it? ‘Cause he’s a doppelganger? So there’s more than one of him? Har har. Stefan is able to give Tom’s location to Sloan, who’s pleased that Caroline and Enzo will be able to kill him.
Elena wakes up in Damon’s bed the next morning and sees an appointment reminder for a meeting at Mystic Falls High. Damon reveals that he’s been awake for hours and didn’t let on. She tells him that nothing’s changed – they’re still bad for each other, so she won’t be getting back together with him. Their night together was a mistake. Damon suggests that they keep making mistakes. Elena fights the temptation to get back in bed or stay for “naked breakfast,” though Damon works hard to get her to change her mind.
Sloan calls Enzo, who’s with Caroline at a diner in Atlanta, waiting for more information on Tom’s location. The Travelers are on the move, carrying Stefan to a new location. Sloan tells Caroline and Enzo where they can find Tom, and Caroline realizes she got the details from another linking spell. She’s unhappy about that, but Sloan doesn’t care about the possibility that she’ll fry Stefan’s brain. She’s only interested in his blood, and that’s only useful to the Travelers if Tom is dead. If Caroline and Enzo don’t kill him, Sloan will take out Stefan. Caroline promises they’ll do their job and threatens to kill Sloan if she does another linking spell. Enzo calls her a “perky blond angel of death.”
Damon goes to the Grill for a drink, which comes with free taunts from Tyler and Matt. Matt says if Damon wants actual advice from someone who cares about him, he should talk to Stefan. Damon replies that he doesn’t want to tell his brother that he broke up with the love of his life, then slept with her. Besides, Stefan’s away working on a “research project” with Caroline. Liv arrives and Damon invites her to join him. She’s not interested. Tyler, however, seems interested in her. Damon tells the guys he needs to go, but he’ll come back later to discuss his childhood traumas with his new therapists. He spots Jeremy arriving to talk to Liv.
Elena’s at Mystic Falls High for parent/teacher conferences. While she’s waiting to sign in with Jeremy’s guidance counselor, she talks to Bonnie on the phone about her breakup and subsequent breakup sex with Damon. Bonnie asks if Jeremy knows, and Elena says he wasn’t at Vamp Villa overnight. Bonnie’s not happy to hear that. She’s studying in her dorm lounge, and she lets Elena know when Luke joins her. Bonnie suggests that Elena go out with him, but Elena says Damon is more his type. “They’d be cute, too,” Bonnie says. When it’s Elena’s turn to sign in, the guidance counselor, Ms. Douglas, says that she’s not listed as Jeremy’s primary guardian. Damon is, which is why he’s there for the meeting as well.
Caroline and Enzo go to the hospital where Tom saved his patient and wait to talk to someone who knows him. Enzo stares at Caroline, apparently trying to annoy her into talking to him. When she doesn’t, he says he feels like he deserves friendliness because he delivered Damon and Elena’s antidotes. Caroline replies that she doesn’t trust him. She also doesn’t know why he’s still around. Enzo says he needs a new murder buddy now that Damon’s behaving himself. (He says he’s kidding, but I don’t think he is.) Then he hits on Caroline, hinting that she’s the reason he’s still around.
He tells her she reminds him of someone he used to know, the woman he fell for when she worked for the Augustine Society. “Which means she tortured you. I can definitely relate to that,” Caroline replies. Enzo says Maggie was just an observer. Caroline expects a cliché about her, like she made him want to be a better person, but he says she reminded him that he was good all along. The doctor who got mad at Tom joins them and reveals that Tom disappeared four months ago. No one knows where he is.
Stefan wakes up in the Travelers’ new camp, a junkyard just outside Mystic Falls. Sloan tells him they’ll be meeting Markos, their leader, there. Caroline calls to tell Sloan that the visions from her linking spell weren’t current. She asks Stefan if he noticed anything else that could help locate Tom. He can’t remember anything, so Sloan prepares to do another linking spell. Caroline protests, but she’s hundreds of miles away and can’t stop Sloan. She tries to help Stefan stay calm as the Travelers do the spell.
Stefan has a vision of a woman named Hazel approaching Tom at the hospital. The patient he saved was a friend of hers, and Hazel wants to buy him dinner to thank him. She gives him her address, so Enzo and Caroline have another lead to follow. Stefan tells Caroline not to hurt Tom; he’s a good person.
Elena and Damon are left alone in a classroom while they wait to meet with one of Jeremy’s teachers. She thinks he’s only there to see her, not because she left him in charge of Jeremy when she went off to Whitmore. He brings up seeing Liv and Jeremy together at the Grill. Elena doesn’t think Jeremy would cheat on Bonnie, but Damon reminds her that he had that weird thing going on with Anna. Elena thinks he learned his lesson.
Ms. Douglas arrives and informs Damon and Elena that Jeremy has missed 11 days of school. I guarantee Elena missed more than that in just one semester of high school, but okay. Jeremy has also started some fights and been caught cheating in class. Damon’s like, “Cheating, you say? Jeremy cheated? Well, I never!” Ms. Douglas is understandably confused about why Elena brought some random guy with her to this meeting. She says Jeremy needs a stable living situation. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! No one at this school cares about kids having stable living situations. Where were they when Matt was living by himself as a minor? Elena promises that they’ll do better.
Enzo and Caroline go to Hazel’s house, where no one’s collected the mail for months. The doorknob is loose, so Enzo just pulls it off. Hazel is sitting in her hallway, in a trance. The vampires can’t get in the house, so Enzo whips the doorknob at Hazel’s head and kills her. Caroline’s upset about that, since she was their only lead. “And I am a murderous vampire. Surprise!” he replies.
Bonnie watches Luke unsubtly, then asks why he keeps looking at her. Don’t ever become a spy, Bon-Bon. As they’re chatting, Hazel’s spirit arrives. She tells Bonnie to tell “them” that she failed. She tried to hide Tom with magic, but someone found them. She introduces herself as Hazel and tells Bonnie that Luke can fill her in. After Hazel passes through her to the Other Side, Bonnie mentions her to Luke. Indeed, Luke knows who she’s talking about.
At the Grill, Liv does a spell that will keep Tyler from eavesdropping on her and Jeremy. Tyler asks Matt about Liv, whom he thinks is hot. He realizes he can’t hear her and Jeremy. Liv tells Jeremy that since he’s a hunter and the Travelers can’t use mind control on him, he’s the only person she can trust. There’s a rumor in witch circles that the Travelers are planning something big. She clarifies that Travelers, while technically witches, aren’t really accepted by them. Travelers don’t like magic that’s drawn from nature; they think witches cursed the land to turn it against them.
Liv continues that the Travelers are on their way to Mystic Falls because of Elena. “Turns out Elena’s friends are right – the world actually does revolve around her,” she says. Heh. If Jeremy wants to keep her safe, he needs to help Liv figure out what the Travelers are up to. Luke texts her to tell her that Hazel’s dead, so it’s time for plan B. Liv immediately gets up to leave, and Jeremy objects, asking why she would dump all this on him and then go. She tells him he was plan A, and now things have changed. Tyler zooms over to stop Liv, who magically tosses him across the room and confirms that she’s not new to magic after all.
Back at Mystic Falls High, Elena and Damon are debating whether Jeremy’s cheating on Bonnie. Damon points out that Elena’s defending her brother the same way she usually defends him. She’s annoyed that he keeps trying to make this about them. He’s annoyed right back because she wants to avoid talking about them. (Music: “Do I Wanna Know,” Arctic Monkeys) She agrees to talk about their night together, but he’ll have to admit that he came to the school to see her, not because of Jeremy. Damon says he doesn’t know what to do or say or think. He just wants to have sex with her in a classroom. Elena tries to stay calm as she turns him down.
At Hazel’s, Enzo defends his decision to kill Hazel by saying he’s trying to help save Stefan. He doesn’t think Caroline will be able to go through with killing Tom. She reminds him that she’s a good vampire. Enzo says he’s not judging her, he’s preparing her. He’s seen trained soldiers freeze up on the battlefield and get themselves killed. Caroline points out that this isn’t a war and Stefan isn’t a soldier. He’s a good person, and she’ll do almost anything to save him.
She stops when they both hear a heartbeat coming from the basement. Down there they find Tom catatonic and attached to IVs. Enzo wonders why Hazel would work so hard to keep him alive and off the grid. Caroline realizes that Tom went missing around the same time Silas died, leaving Tom and Stefan the only remaining male doppelgangers.
Enzo tells her to leave so she doesn’t have to watch him kill Tom. Caroline made the deal, though, so she wants to be the one to see it through. Enzo thinks she just wants to be the one to save Stefan. She reluctantly starts to strangle Tom, who suddenly wakes up. Caroline compels him to calm down and trust her. Enzo rolls his eyes at her desire to do this the nice way, which will just make it harder. Caroline convinces Tom that she’s his friend and promises that he won’t feel a thing. Then she zooms over to Enzo and breaks his neck. She tells Tom she’s going to get him out of there.
In the Super Suite, Bonnie recaps what she’s learned about Luke: He’s Liv’s twin brother and they’re both witches. He asks her to go easy on Liv since they have a messed-up family. (Stay tuned for season 6 to find out just how messed-up!) Jeremy calls Bonnie, worried that Liv is up to something and that Elena’s in danger. While Bonnie’s distracted, Luke runs off.
Elena and Damon find an empty classroom and make out. No, wait – Elena’s just daydreaming. Fittingly, it’s while she, Damon, and some others are meeting with a chemistry teacher who’s talking about attractions and reactions. Damon complains that he’s bored. He shouldn’t be, because the teacher’s comments are amazingly relevant to his relationship. He’s talking about reactions, and how some are beautiful and some are destructive.
Elena goes to the wood shop to try to cool down (I guess splashing water in her face in a bathroom would be too easy). Liv finds her there, magically pins her to a wall with stakes through her arms, and grabs a piece of broken wood. She semi-apologetically says her coven tried to protect Elena, but she turned out to be too dangerous. As Liv is about to stake her, Damon zooms in and knocks her out. He chastises her for wasting time by feeling bad about killing someone.
Speaking of people who feel bad about killing, Caroline has taken Tom to a diner. He doesn’t remember anything from the past four months, just going to Hazel’s house to get her for their date. He’s surprised to feel so comfortable telling Caroline about himself. She says she compelled him to open up and to not worry. She wants to make sure he’s a good guy. He is – in fact, he’s so good that he wants to repay Caroline’s kindness for saving him.
He starts choking on his food, and Caroline picks up his glass of water so he can’t save himself. But she’s just imagining what it would be like to watch an innocent person die. She tells him he reminds her of someone important to her. Tom says that guy is really lucky. Caroline replies that Tom is, too. She compels him to leave town, start over, and have a long, happy life somewhere else.
Damon sticks Liv’s hand in a vise so he can torture her into spilling everything he and Elena need to know. Elena objects to this, but since they’re not together anymore, Damon won’t let her try to influence his morality. Elena wants him to understand that this sort of thing is exactly why they broke up. “Just kill me already,” Liv says. She finally explains that once Tom or Stefan dies, the Travelers will come for Elena, the last female doppelganger. The witches are trying to stop them.
Damon’s ready to kill Liv to protect Elena, but Elena asks how she’s supposed to act afterward – with anger or forgiveness? Jeremy arrives just then and tells Damon that if he wants to kill Liv, he’ll have to kill Jeremy first. And we all know that’s not going to happen, so congratulations to Liv for just having her life saved.
As Luke, Matt, and Tyler all arrive at Mystic Falls High to provide backup for their allies, Jeremy assures Damon that Liv is going to help protect Elena. Elena can’t trust him, though, since he hasn’t been making good decisions lately. He notes that he can’t prioritize school when the rest of his life is so insane. “Doppelganger invasion” isn’t a viable excuse for missing class. (Well, not since Alaric died, at least.) (I miss Alaric.) Jeremy promises that he knows what he’s doing. He wants them to let Liv live (…heh) since she can tell them more about the Travelers. Elena decides she can trust Jeremy after all, and she asks Damon to trust her.
Once she’s been freed, Liv blasts Luke for taking so long to get to her. Jeremy presents them with plan C: They’ll protect Elena and he’ll help them stop the Travelers. Luke declares that a conflict of interest, but Liv points out that it would be nice to have a hunter on their side. He’ll see a threat coming before they do. Does she think being a hunter gives Jeremy magic-detecting radar? You’re thinking of Davina, Liv. Anyway, Jeremy will only work with Luke and Liv if they agree to team with Matt and Tyler, too.
Enzo finds Caroline and Tom as they leave the diner, and he immediately kills Tom. He reveals that he has his own deal with the Travelers. They claim to know where Maggie is, and he wants to see her again. Caroline thinks Maggie will lose respect for him after this. Enzo says that unlike Caroline, he really will do anything for the people he loves. He tells her where the Travelers are now and says she can tell Stefan that she’s the one who saved him.
At Vamp Villa, Elena tells Damon that they’re not just bad for each other, they’re also bad for Jeremy. Damon says the only thing they can do for him is send him out of town. Yeah, that worked out great last time. Jeremy has his own solution, though – he’s going to stay at Lockwood Landing. He needs to figure out how to deal with his insane life on his own. This is what’s best for him, and he’s not asking for permission. (I think he’s 18 by this point, so Elena wouldn’t be able to stop him anyway.)
Caroline finds the Travelers’ new camp and lies down in the back of a car with Stefan. She laments that she failed – she couldn’t kill Tom, even knowing it would save Stefan. He’s a little amused that she feels guilty over not being able to kill someone. Caroline says she really feels guilty because Stefan’s still the Travelers’ captive. He knows they wouldn’t have let him go even if Caroline had completed her mission. She tells him Enzo did the job, and she should have guessed that his flirty nature was just a ruse. She’s pulled that trick herself.
She doesn’t know what to do now, so Stefan suggests that they get some sleep. He teases that while he was being tortured, she spent the day flirting with another British guy. They’ll gather their strength and wait for a chance to escape the Travelers together. Caroline realizes that Stefan knew the whole time that she wouldn’t be able to kill Tom. He corrects that he knew she wouldn’t do it. That’s what makes her who she is. She cuddles up next to him and they go to sleep.
Elena tells Damon she’s going back to Whitmore. When they’re together, they do bad things for each other, and she can’t let that continue. She also won’t let him drive her back to school, because she’ll lose her determination to stay broken up. She asks him to let her go. She thinks he’s going to try to seduce her into changing her mind, but he just kisses her forehead and tells her to drive safely.
Bonnie’s been left out of the loop since she talked to Luke, so she leaves Jeremy a message asking for an update. Caroline and Stefan wake up as the Travelers are performing a spell. They drink Stefan and Elena’s blood and chant something that includes Markos’ name. Sloan lights a Traveler on fire, which sends a bunch of them up in flames. Stefan and Caroline see their chance and zoom off.
The Travelers’ spirits appear to Bonnie, ready to go to the Other Side. They continue chanting as they pass through her. She tries to run from them but they just have to touch her to pass through. Eventually she gets overwhelmed feeling their deaths and loses consciousness. Markos passes through her from the Other Side to the real world.
Keep in mind: It’s possible to return from the Other Side through the anchor.
Etc.: Jeremy and Bonnie really get very little to do this season. I mean, name the last time Jeremy did something that had even a small effect on a plot. (Getting kidnapped doesn’t count.)
I assume the show never intended for Enzo and Caroline to have as much chemistry as they do, but no one told the actors to tone it down.
Caroline’s speaking for all of us when she asks why Enzo’s still around.
Caroline is nothing like Maggie when we meet Maggie in a couple of episodes, but whatever.
If Jeremy managed to skip 11 days of school, get in multiple fights, and get caught cheating in class all without Elena finding out, someone at Mystic Falls High sucks at their job communicating with guardians.
The gang is way too casual about Liv and Luke knowing so much about them.