Two knights wearing armor are fighting with sword as a castle burns nearby. One knight ends up on the ground, where he takes off his helmet, revealing that he’s Rafael. The other knight is about to finish him off when someone throws an axe at him and cuts off his arm. The mysterious hero then uses magic to get back the axe. Rafael turns to his savior, who’s wearing a red hood. It’s Hope.
This is all in Landon and Rafael’s imagination as they read The Lost Bloodline of King Arthur. Landon insists that this all could have happened. Rafael asks what Hope was doing there. Landon thinks Rafael should be way more excited about this recent news that he’s descended from kings. Rafael says that’s the difference between them: Landon has always wanted to be special while Rafael has always wanted to be normal. Now that he has the family and home he’s dreamed of, he doesn’t need a fantasy to tell him where he comes from. He’s done looking back.
He steals the book from Landon and they start play wrestling. They stop when Landon realizes that Rafael’s nose is bleeding. Rafael suddenly falls to his knees and starts vomiting black goo just like Chad did.
Speaking of Chad, Kaleb found his body the morning after his death and has brought Alaric to him. Kaleb doesn’t get why Chad looks like he’s been dead for months when he was just at the school the previous morning. Alaric says he died months ago and the Necromancer kept him alive until their deal was done. Kaleb asks why “Dollar Store Jack Sparrow” would keep Chad alive for so long, then just kill him.
Landon brings Rafael in, and Alaric submits him to a bunch of magical tests. When the witches finally leave Rafael alone, he tells Landon he wants to leave. Sitting around and waiting for the results won’t change anything.
Alaric bursts into the Salvatore crypt, yelling at the Necromancer about how they had a deal, then dropping Chad’s head at his feet. The Necromancer says he held up his end – he severed his connection to the acolytes. Then he figures out that that that was the problem. Since he was the one who brought them back, losing their connection to him doomed them. Alaric is shell-shocked to realize that Rafael and Landon are going to die again. Well, the Necromancer isn’t sure about Landon, since he might not have technically been dead to begin with. Alaric asks about Alyssa. “Chin up. One out of three ain’t bad,” the Necromancer replies.
Alaric returns to the school and tells Lizzie, Kaleb, M.G., and Jed that things look bad, but they’ll do everything they can to help Rafael. M.G.’s optimistic, but Kaleb thinks they should have a contingency plan in case they fail. He wants them to be realistic about their odds. Alaric says he’ll handle the worst-case scenario. It’s the Super Squad’s job to look for a loophole. He tells Jed to get the pack and rally around their alpha, but Jed says that a dying wolf separates himself from the pack. They need to respect Rafael’s privacy and stay away unless he asks for them. Alaric asks if that’s how Jed would want to be treated. Jed replies that that’s their nature.
Lizzie and the witches will keep looking into healing spells. They gave Rafael an elixir that links him to the lunar cycle, so his symptoms will be held off until the morning. “When he drops dead,” Kaleb mutters. Everyone turns and stares at him. “I said that out loud,” he realizes. Lizzie tells the others that if anyone can save Rafael, it’s them. Hope enters just then and announces that he took off.
He and Landon borrowed Lizzie’s car to go camping and fishing like they did as kids. They stop at Walt’s first to bring him along, but he’s not home. Rafael tries and fails to hide his disappointment that he won’t get to see his father again. He admits to Landon that he’s scared.
Alaric tracks down Sheriff Mac, who’s a little ticked at him for being out of touch for so long. He tells her he was dealing with a lot, including taking his daughters on a trip to see their uncle. Way to spin being sent to a prison world without warning into an excuse for not calling someone you’re interested in romantically, Ric. Now he’s back in contact because he needs Mac’s help finding a missing person. Mac declines to drop everything and help him whenever he asks, but she doesn’t have a choice. When Kaleb compelled her to forget about the supernatural, he also compelled her to listen to Alaric in life-or-death situations.
The Necromancer is impatient to hear Alyssa’s response to the offer he extended to keep her alive. She’s still thinking about it. She’d like to know if her skills are of use. She’d also like to get rid of the Malivore pit, which isn’t really possible. She suggests throwing a rug over it. The Necromancer tries to remind her that he has the power here, but Alyssa sees this as a job interview, which means she needs to cover her bases as much as he does.
She asks the Necromancer’s plan for raising Malivore. He says her mind should shatter if he told her. She refuses to team up with him until she knows their mission statement and how much pain they’ll cause the Salvatore School. She invites the Necromancer to pitch to her.
The students get to work doing research while the witches try some healing spells. None are successful. Lizzie tells Hope that they’re out of ideas and need to do the same linking spell that saved Lizzie from the merge. Hope says this is different – if she links Landon to Rafael, Landon would have to die and resurrect every day. They don’t know how many lives he has left, and they could go over his quota, which would kill both him and Rafael. Lizzie asks what Hope thinks Landon would want. Hope starts coming up with another idea instead.
Rafael and Landon wait for Walt to come home, trying to stay patient. Rafael just wanted one day to be normal again. Landon promises that they’ll beat this, but Rafael has never had anything go his way, and he doubts today will be any different. Kaleb and M.G. suddenly arrive and announce that Hope has a plan, so they need to get back to the school.
Landon sums up the plan when they get there: “Hope wants to use Clarke’s Freaky Friday tuning fork to put Raf’s consciousness in someone else’s body?” Lizzie says they can modify the trident and use it to transfer energy instead of consciousness. She wanted to use Jed’s energy, but they have to use a phoenix. Landon guesses that that means he’ll become human.
The Necromancer finishes his pitch to Alyssa, who isn’t impressed. “Your puny mind could not possibly process the profundity of my plot!” he yells alliteratively. No, she gets it: 1) Get a bunch of black magic. 2) Use that black magic to reenact the original Triad spell and raise Malivore. 3) Rewrite the spell so Malivore serves the Necromancer instead of the Triad. Alyssa thinks it’s too small of a plan. Why not do more than just make Malivore a servant? “He started it,” the Necromancer pouts. “It’s petty. You’re better than this,” she replies. The spell is a sequel, so it has to be bigger and badder than the original. They should bring back Malivore and all the monsters he’s consumed.
In a bar somewhere, a woman is making money by arm-wrestling guys who think she’s too small to beat them. Alaric puts some money down and admits that he already knows he can’t win, since the woman is a werewolf. He’s there about her son. Her eyes glow yellow and she says she doesn’t have a son. She pushes the table into him so he falls over, then heads for the door. Mac is there to stop her.
Lizzie sets up for Rafael’s spell in the gym, having already put together the new trident. He’s really impressed, and she asks him to let Alaric know how awesome he thinks she is, since she’s not sure Alaric gets it. Rafael says he’ll figure it out. Lizzie’s lucky to have a father like him – his mistakes only come from his attempts to protect his daughters. Lizzie tries to cheer Rafael by pointing out that he has Landon. Rafael regrets what saving him will do to Landon.
Landon finds the situation ironic – Rafael spent the previous day trying to get Landon to go back into his body, and now he wants him to give away the most important piece of it. Landon would do anything for Rafael, so he’s willing to give up his immortality. Lizzie’s ready for the spell, and Landon and Rafael hug before they get started. But when Lizzie tries to transfer Landon’s energy, nothing happens. There’s nothing inside him to siphon. Landon realizes that he’s not a phoenix anymore.
He guesses that when he was “felled” by the golden arrow, it killed his phoenix nature. When the Necromancer resurrected him, he came back human, with just one last mortal life. (Hey, guys, we already did this with Rayna.) He can feel it, and he should have known. Lizzie suggests running more tests, and Landon offers to see if he can fly. Rafael announces that he’s done fighting losing battles. He wants to make the most of whatever time he has left and spend it with his friends. He wants to go out on his own terms.
Alaric tells the woman in the bar, Lucia, that Rafael is dying. He shouldn’t have to face that alone. He deserves to have people who love him by his side. Lucia doesn’t see the point in going to him when she’s never been there for him before. She left him because she couldn’t be his mother. She thinks he’s better off without her. Mac agrees to let her leave, sure that she’ll come back.
As some students set up for a party at the old mill, Hope sits alone nearby, looking up at a supernova. She admits to Rafael that she’s a sore loser. She’s beaten death tons of times and thought they would beat it again. Rafael tells her he’s not afraid anymore. He thinks everyone gets their own version of Heaven. His will be his best day ever on a loop: a day outside with people he loves. While he’s still alive, he’ll appreciate everything he can, like the supernova. Being able to see one without a telescope is something that only happens once in a lifetime. And that gives Hope another idea.
That night, the students gather for a bonfire at the old mill, which isn’t quite the rousing send-off Rafael wanted. He tells them he was hoping for a party like the one they were having the first night he was there. He doesn’t want a funeral; he wants them to have happy memories of him. He gives them one to start with, his spoken-word poetry from the talent show. M.G. remembers the time Rafael turned while he was wearing his uniform, making him a werewolf in a necktie. The mood shifts and everyone starts enjoying themselves.
Well, everyone except Landon, who’s inside the building, unable to find anything happy about the fact that his brother is going to die. Rafael suggests that they leave, then. He already got what he needed from their classmates, and he wants to spend the rest of the time he has left with Landon.
Lizzie calls Alaric and confides that she’s scared. Rafael is going to die and there’s nothing they can do. Alaric agrees to come back to the school, but Mac wants to stay at the bar. She’s not ready to give up on Lucia yet. Alaric wonders why Mac is so sure that Lucia will show up for her son. Mac chalks it up to maternal instincts. As Alaric starts to leave, Lucia returns.
Landon and Rafael eat burgers in their room, remembering the time they shared them in the woods while they were on the run. Landon laments that Hope couldn’t find a way to save Rafael. Normally that’s what she does. Rafael thinks he scared her off, but Landon says she doesn’t scare easily.
Rafael wanted to ask Hope to look after Landon after he’s gone. Landon notes that now that he’s human again, Hope isn’t going to let him out of her sight. They laugh, and Landon points out that their lives got pretty weird, considering they started out as foster kids. “Weird life…weird death,” Rafael says. Before things can get too depressing, Jed shows up with a surprise: The pack found Walt! He promises to stay by Rafael’s side.
Hope’s ready to share her idea with Lizzie. It involves the supernova, an ascendant, and Bennett blood. While they work, Rafael, Walt, and Landon sit together all night, then watch the sunrise together. Rafael closes his eyes against a bright light that overtakes him.
Landon goes to tell Hope that Rafael’s gone…literally. He thinks it’s some weird werewolf thing, but Hope says she’s responsible for his disappearance. Rafael finds himself alone in his room until Walt comes in. He explains that Rafael’s friends found a way to save him, and Alaric found Lucia. She’s there, too, and Rafael is happy to see her. He asks if this is real. Walt tells him that his friends can explain. They’re waiting to see him one last time.
Hope voices over that they couldn’t heal Rafael, but they could still save him. She and Lizzie gave Rafael “peace as he defined it.” He goes downstairs and finds all his classmates waiting for him. Kaleb says he never doubted that Rafael would survive. M.G. gives him a look. “Okay, I doubted it hard,” he admits. M.G. tells Rafael they’re going to miss him. Alaric hugs Rafael goodbye as Hope says, “A prison world is only a prison if you’re alone.”
The rest of the school can’t stay, but Rafael can live in the prison world with all he needs to stay safe and happy, always and forever. “Maybe that’s what Heaven is,” Hope voices over. Since the witches’ elixir stalls Rafael’s symptoms until the next morning, and there is no “next morning” in a prison world loop, Rafael will never get worse.
Landon stays behind after everyone else leaves, and though Rafael is hesitant to say goodbye, Landon doesn’t think they need to. He can visit, after all. Still, the real world won’t be the same without Rafael. Rafael just wants Landon to live his last life all in, like they’ve always talked about. Walt and Lucia are also staying in the prison world, and Rafael plans to be all in for them, the family he’s always wanted. He’s sad to leave his Salvatore School family behind, but Landon thinks he deserves it. Rafael’s always been all in for everyone else.
They’re almost done saying goodbye when Landon remembers something he wanted to give Rafael: Excalibur. “Until we meet again, my once and future king,” he says. He watches as Rafael joins his parents in Walt’s truck. They go to Walt’s cabin and gather everything they need to go fishing. Walt’s fine with living in the prison world, since he was already pretty much a hermit, and Lucia’s looking forward to the same day looping over and over, since there will never be a full moon. Like Rafael, they’re all in. “Hey, did you guys know we’re royalty?” he asks as they head out.
Landon finds Hope on the dock and thanks her for what she did for Rafael. She thinks Landon should stay in the prison world, too, at least until “all of this Necromancer nonsense blows over.” Landon doesn’t want to be without her. Hope feels like they lost Rafael even though they saved him, and she doesn’t handle loss well. Now that Landon’s human, things will be harder for her. He accuses her of calling him weak and feeling like she’ll have to spend her life worrying about him. Does she see him differently now that he’s not special?
Hope reminds him that she’s never needed him to be special. She’s always loved him for who he is. Landon’s upset that she never said today that everything would be okay if he gave up what makes him fit in there and with her. “We only work when I’m unbreakable,” he says. She never told him that they would be okay if he was human. He thinks it’s because she doesn’t believe it. Hope doesn’t respond, which just convinces him more that he’s right. Landon promised Rafael that he’d live life to the fullest, and if Hope wants him to always be protected and safe, he won’t be able to do that.
Alyssa and the Necromancer have sorted out the details of their big plan: They’ll raise Malivore, make him the Necromancer’s puppet, free all the monsters, and take control of all of them. But that’s not why they raised the person they’re talking to: the Sphinx. They just want to know if they’ll be able to pull it off. The Sphinx says they will, and they’ll even make the Salvatore School students suffer. Not only that, but one of the students will die. Pleased with the terms of the deal, Alyssa becomes the Necromancer’s partner.
Etc.: “Dollar Store Jack Sparrow.” How can you not love Kaleb?
The Necromancer briefly imitates Chad, just like Chad imitated him in the previous episode, but it’s not as good.
Hey, Alyssa finally got interesting! Too bad she’s only in a couple more episodes. Darn you, Olivia Liang, for getting your own show!
Don’t get me wrong, I love my parents, but living in a world where they’re the only other people and we spend all day, every day together? No.