the Vampire Diaries

The Vampire Diaries 7.2, Never Let Me Go: Mother Knows Worst

Three years from now: Caroline is a producer at KQBC, a Dallas TV station, and is getting ready for a news broadcast. Her assistant, Tony, tells her that her fiancé called to ask about her schedule right before their wedding. Tony thinks he wants to plan a trip to Mystic Falls. Caroline says that her fiancé knows they can’t go back there. She tries to shift back to work mode but can’t stop thinking about the message.

Present: Two teens, Amanda and Ryan, are filming themselves as they sneak into Mystic Falls one night a few weeks after its mass evacuation. They’ve heard rumors about strange, inexplicable things happening there and are going to investigate. They’ve brought along a piece of equipment that’s supposed to beep if they’re around something supernatural.

It starts beeping as they approach the Salvatore crypt. They can’t open it but they can see Elena’s coffin inside. Ryan’s thermal camera picks up two people in the woods. Amanda thinks he’s just trying to scare her. Then she gets scared for real when she suddenly gets pulled up into a tree. She comes down head-first, begging Ryan for help. He can’t do much since he’s suddenly being attacked by Nora and Mary Louise.

Matt comes across the group and tries to rescue Ryan, but Mary Louise magically makes Matt’s gun fly into Ryan’s chest, impaling him. The Heretics go after Matt next. In the morning, he wakes up mostly unharmed but with a black ribbon tied around his wrist.

Classes have started up again at Whitmore, and Bonnie is one of Alaric’s students. The class is so stuffed that some people have to stand. Alaric is sure it’s because people want to know what’s going on in Mystic Falls. He tells the students that people like to make up unbelievable things, like zombies or other creatures that can cheat death, because the reality of death is even more unbelievable. He lies that the only scary thing in Mystic Falls is the threat of getting busted for trespassing.

After class, Bonnie and Alaric lament that evacuating Mystic Falls didn’t really do what they’d hoped – people are more eager than ever to get in. The Heretics have killed ten people already, including Amanda and Ryan. Bonnie asks if Alaric’s okay, now that she knows what he was secretly up to in Europe (mainly, losing lots of money to psychics who conned him). She wishes he’d come to her for help. He asks if she doesn’t think it’s weird that he’s trying to contact Jo. “Honestly, after everything we’ve experienced, it’d be weird if you weren’t,” Bonnie replies. Alaric asks her if she’s ever heard of the phoenix stone.

Stefan leaves a message for Caroline as he drives to an abandoned neighborhood. He’s surprised he hasn’t heard from her since they last saw each other (and made out). He comes across Beau, who gives him a magic migraine as Lily approaches. She wants to discuss Malcolm’s death. Stefan doesn’t know anything about it and says the gang isn’t responsible. Lily tells him she’s not there to blame him, but to make him understand why the Heretics did what they did.

What they did, of course, was kidnap Caroline, whom Enzo is tying up with vervain ropes in the basement of Vamp Villa. He tells her she should be glad he’s the one who kidnapped her, since the Heretics wouldn’t have treated her so gently. He’s the closest thing she has to a friend right now. She manages to get some sympathy from him so he’ll loosen the ropes a little, which allows her to get close enough to him to wrap a rope around his neck, then headbutt him. She breaks the wooden chair she was tied to and stakes him in the side.

Before Caroline can get out of the house, Nora and Mary Louise stop her. Enzo comes to get his captive, but the mean girls want to play with her now. They magically render Caroline unconscious and smile at each other as they think about all the fun they can have.

Tyler left town (he’s hanging out with Jeremy) and Matt has never had any control over Damon, so Damon has decided to move into Lockwood Landing. He claims the main bedroom since he thinks Carol would want him to have it. Stefan finds him at the house and accuses Damon of killing Malcolm. Damon doesn’t deny it and doesn’t pretend he feels bad for violating the gang’s truce with the Heretics. Stefan tells him that the Heretics retaliated by kidnapping Caroline. Damon doesn’t get why, since Stefan didn’t do anything wrong. Stefan orders him to go fix this.

So Damon goes to Vamp Villa and confesses to Lily that he killed Malcolm (though he jokes that it was an accident). Lily isn’t surprised that he’s deflecting with humor, since he could never admit when he was wrong as a child. Damon tells her that Stefan and Caroline had nothing to do with Malcolm’s death, so she should let Caroline go. Lily doubts that Damon acted alone, since Malcolm was powerful enough to take him on by himself. Damon won’t name an accomplice, and he even offers to be a hostage in Caroline’s place. Lily turns him down and starts to close the door in his face. Damon tries to enter the house but finds he can’t. Lily tells him the deed has been signed over to someone else.

Alaric shows Bonnie the phoenix stone, which supposedly has “resuscitative powers.” During a night of drinking in New York, before they went to Europe, he pretended to pass out, then snuck into a museum to steal it. Bonnie holds the stone but can’t feel any magic in it. She knows it might be hidden, though, so she does a spell to reveal it. The spell gives her horrible visions of blood and death. She tells Alaric that there’s something wrong and evil about the stone. But she thinks he already knows that, which is why he never told her about it. She warns him not to mess with this kind of magic. They need to destroy the stone.

Damon returns to Lockwood Landing to tell Stefan that he offered himself up in exchange for Caroline but Lily turned him down. “Well, it looks like nobody wants you around, do they?” Stefan snarks. He’s looking at blueprints of the underground tunnels to find a way to sneak into Vamp Villa, but Damon tells him that won’t do any good. They can’t get in since they no longer own the house. Damon’s working on finding out who owns the house now so they can kill that person, “storm the castle,” and save Stefan’s “damsel.”

Stefan thinks Damon’s enjoying himself. I think he’s enjoying the fact that for once, his girlfriend isn’t the damsel in distress. He says he has 60 years to kill, so it’s nice to have a distraction in the form of a nemesis, or possibly multiple nemeses. Stefan thinks Damon’s the real villain here, since he killed one of Lily’s “family” members.

Caroline wakes up in Stefan’s room, but not in the way she’d probably like to be there. The Heretics have hung her from the ceiling by her wrists. Mary Louise explains that her family had a slaughterhouse when she was a child. (That explains why she, Nora, and Valerie hung Stu and Stuella upside-down.) When they found out she was a “siphon freak of nature,” they turned on her. But Caroline’s not just there for torture – the Heretics are about to hold a funeral for Malcolm, and Mary Louise wants Caroline’s fashion advice since Nora doesn’t know what to wear.

Her best funeral option is the dress she wore to Queen Victoria’s funeral, but Nora thinks it’s too old-fashioned now. It definitely is, and Caroline can’t hide how ridiculous she thinks it looks. That angers Mary Louise, and if there’s one person you don’t want to anger, it’s an already ill-tempered vampire/witch hybrid who’s just looking for a reason to cause you pain. Caroline tells her to go find one of Elena’s dresses. Mary Louise repays her by threatening to jam an eyeliner pencil into her eye. She warns Caroline never to embarrass Nora again, then stabs the pencil into her shoulder.

Downstairs, Enzo clearly feels bad about what he’s done and reminds Lily that she promised Caroline wouldn’t be hurt. Lily thinks she deserves it since she tried to escape. She assigns Enzo to stay with their hostage while the Heretics go to bury Malcolm. Valerie overhears, and after Lily leaves, she tells Enzo that Lily lets Nora and Mary Louise do whatever they want. Enzo can still get what he wants, but he’ll have to go around Lily. “Spare me the family politics,” Enzo says. Valerie reminds him that he chose to side with them, and whether or not he made the right decision, he can’t go back. Enzo asks if he should condone the torture of someone he cares about. “No. You should just stop caring about her,” Valerie replies.

Damon calls Bonnie, who tells him that Alaric wants to use the phoenix stone, which is “filled with evil incarnate,” to bring Jo back. “Yep, sounds about right,” Damon replies. She thinks she talked Alaric into destroying the stone. He fills her in on Caroline’s abduction and the fact that someone else now owns Vamp Villa. He plans to get Caroline back without getting Bonnie involved. Bonnie knows this is all because of Malcolm, which means she’s the reason Caroline was kidnapped. Damon wants to take full responsibility so she’ll focus on a mission he has for her. It involves the new owner of Vamp Villa.

Matt is doing some target practice with empty beer bottles in the neighborhood where Stefan ran into Lily. Bonnie finds him there and informs him that he owns Vamp Villa. The ribbon around his wrist was to cover the wound where the Heretics drained his blood to get all the vervain out. Once he was compellable, they got him to sign the deed, never invite Stefan and Damon in, and forget what happened. That means the only way Stefan and Damon can get in to save Caroline is if Matt dies.

That’s where Bonnie comes in – she wants to use magic to temporarily stop his heart. “So Damon screws up, Caroline gets grabbed, and I end up dead?” Matt clarifies. “Doesn’t it ever feel like we’re fighting the wrong enemy?” Bonnie tells him they don’t have time to debate. Caroline needs them, so Matt has to decided ASAP if he’s in or out.

Valerie finds Caroline with the eyeliner pencil and various other items stuck in her body. While telling Caroline about her own experiences with the mean girls, Valerie gives her something to stand on so she’s a little more comfortable, then starts pulling out the things impaling her. As she’s doing a spell, Mary Louise catches her and chases her off. She demands to know what Valerie said to Caroline. She grabs Caroline’s arm but finds that it burns her. Valerie did a spell to keep the Heretics from touching Caroline. Mary Louise injects Caroline with vervain, then complains to Nora that they’re stuck until Oscar, the Heretic we haven’t seen yet, comes back from running Lily’s errands. Caroline has the good sense to compliment Nora’s dress before she passes out.

Bonnie tells Matt that his heart won’t be stopped for more than six minutes (since that’s the longest he can go without really bad consequences). He hopes it’ll be more like ten seconds. She gives him the chance to back out but he’s willing to die to save Caroline. As Bonnie starts the spell, Damon and Stefan head through the woods to Vamp Villa. Stefan doesn’t think Matt will agree to let Bonnie temporarily kill him, but Damon says he knows Damon will kill him if he doesn’t. Stefan snarks that Damon’s morality is really holding up well with Elena gone.

Damon asks if Stefan and Caroline are “a thing.” There must be something going on if Stefan is willing to let Matt die for her. Stefan protests that he’s not willing to let Matt die, but Damon, who’s just gotten a text from Bonnie saying she’s stopped Matt’s heart, tells him he just did. They split up to head into the house.

At Whitmore, Alaric mixes up some acid to dissolve the phoenix stone. As he’s about to drop it in, he sees a picture of himself and Jo. Back in the abandoned neighborhood, Bonnie’s about to revive Matt when she’s hit with the visions she got from the phoenix stone. One of them is of a bloody, X-shaped mark on someone’s skin. Bonnie gets overwhelmed by the visions and passes out.

Damon arrives at Vamp Villa and asks Enzo to help him rescue Caroline. Enzo says that would be crazy of him, since he’s the one who kidnapped her. Damon slams him for choosing Lily over “us,” as if he was ever a part of the gang or even liked by anyone other than Damon. Enzo says he chose the gang a number of times, but they always chose each other over him. He’s teamed up with someone who shares his views on loyalty.

Damon reminds him that Lily abandoned her family and could do it again. Enzo corrects that she abandoned her relatives, which is different from family. Damon surprises him by stepping through the front door of the house. He says that relatives come with connections – blood ties, a shared name, a legacy. Enzo taunts that Malcolm was more of a Salvatore than Damon ever was. That’s why the Heretics are burying Malcolm in the Salvatore crypt, next to Elena. Damon says the crypt is sealed shut, because he’s forgotten that the Heretics can siphon off the magic Bonnie used to seal it. In the cemetery, Lily tells the Heretics to take Elena’s coffin out of the crypt and dump her body under the falls.

Bonnie wakes up and realizes that almost six minutes have passed. She quickly revives Matt. Stefan finds Caroline and frees her from her chains, but he can’t help her out of the house because he can’t touch her. The spell Valerie did makes her untouchable to all vampires, as if she’s been doused in vervain.

Damon heads to the cemetery but is too late – Elena’s coffin is gone. Lily appears and taunts that the Heretics hid her with a cloaking spell. She could still be there or she could be miles away. Lily’s the only one who knows where she is. Damon invites her to punish him for killing Malcolm, but he doesn’t want Elena involved. Lily reminds him that he broke a vase when he was a child and wouldn’t confess, even when Giuseppe beat him. Lily took all his toys, including his beloved toy soldiers, which made him admit everything. “She’s not a toy soldier,” Damon says. “And Malcolm was not a vase,” Lily replies.

The other Heretics join Lily, who tells Damon that Malcolm was an important part of their family. He brought Mary Louise and Nora into the fold, reunited Valerie with her long-lost friend Beau, and was Lily’s confidante and eldest son. She thinks it’s ironic that Damon killed him. Damon finally agrees to negotiate, asking what they want.

Stefan gives Caroline a jacket so he can help her without making contact with her skin. He’s sure Bonnie can do a spell to undo what Valerie did to her. Caroline and Stefan start feeling weird, and he’s suddenly yanked out of the window. Caroline gets dragged downstairs, where Enzo tells the housekeeper, Lucy, to invite her in. Apparently Lucy signed a new deed after Matt temporarily died, and Damon and Stefan are once again banished from Vamp Villa.

Bonnie wants to take Matt to the hospital to make sure he’s okay, but he doesn’t want to have to explain what happened. She feels horrible for it, but Matt blames Damon, since he killed Malcolm. Bonnie notes that she’s the reason the Heretics are there, just like Matt reminded her, so this is on her. She admits that she helped Damon kill Malcolm. She doesn’t want the Heretics to be able to do whatever they want. Matt tells her that he patrols the streets every day, streets that used to be full of happy people. Now he hopes they’re empty because he doesn’t want the Heretics to be able to hurt anyone. He hates the Heretics as much as Bonnie does. She suggests that they come up with a way to defeat them.

Stefan and Damon regroup at Lockwood Landing, and Stefan blasts Damon for not sticking around to help him save Caroline. Damon tells him to take his anger out on his brother while he can because Damon won’t be there much longer. Lily told him to get as far as possible away from Mystic Falls if he wants Elena back. Stefan’s frustrated that Lily keeps winning. “She has all of our toys,” Damon notes.

He remembers how Lily would use the same punishment on them both, taking their toys. Stefan would cry, and Damon would do anything to calm him down. Lily’s taking everything they care about so they’ll turn on each other. Damon thinks they should lean into that – Stefan can pretend that Lily’s fractured their relationship while Damon goes off to create his own fractures. He knows there’s another Heretic, so he’s going to trade him for Elena and Caroline.

Bonnie calls Alaric, who lies that he destroyed the phoenix stone. Oh, Bonnie, you naïve little bunny. Alaric is at the morgue, where Jo’s body is still being stored, but before using the stone on her, he decides to test it out first. He puts it on the chest of another corpse, which soon comes back to life. When Alaric picks the stone back up, the corpse goes still.

Lily checks in with Enzo, offering to talk Nora and Mary Louise into letting Caroline “stay with” Enzo. Enzo says that Caroline made her bed and can lie in it. Lily asks about his own bed, since she’s invited him to move into the house. Enzo asks if she considers him part of her family like she does the Heretics. She says she cares about him like she does the others. Enzo thinks that’s the problem – he’s not there to be one of her children. He chose Lily, not the Heretics.

Nora and Mary Louise haven’t chained Caroline back up, but they’ve spelled her into Stefan’s room. Nora gives her some reading material in the form of a journal. She says Valerie may pretend to be nice but she’s actually the worst of the Heretics. The journal is Stefan’s, and Valerie takes it with her everywhere. It was the first thing she looked for when they were trapped in 1903. Nora points Caroline toward the entry from July 15th, 1863. There, Caroline learns that Stefan and Valerie met more than 150 years ago.

Three years from now: After the news broadcast, Caroline is ready to call her fiancé back and discuss Mystic Falls. Tony tells her that she got another call during the show, this one from Stefan. Caroline tells Tony that if Stefan calls back, he should say she’s not there. She never wants to hear Stefan’s name again. Caroline starts to walk away, but she feels like she shot the messenger, so she turns back to apologize. Unfortunately, Tony has already been shot for real, in the form of a stake to the neck. Another one gets fired and hits Caroline in the stomach, taking her down.

Etc.: I accept a lot of weird stuff on this show but I can’t accept Caroline working as a news producer when she can’t be more than two years out of college.

I’m curious to know when Damon got invited back into Lockwood Landing, because he’s able to walk in when he couldn’t in “Man on Fire.”

So does Matt own Donovan Domicile, Lockwood Landing, AND Vamp Villa? Dang, man, sell a couple of those properties, move to the Caribbean, and spend the rest of your life relaxing on a beach, safe from the supernatural. You’ve earned it.

I’m skipping the stuff where it feels like Enzo’s in love with Lily. It’s gross and weird.

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