by Dianna Berrian
This memorable evening starts off with a parallel of two scenes – a flashback to 1491 when Katherine gave birth to her daughter Nadia, and present day where Katherine is lying on an operating table in Mystic Falls hospital being resuscitated. It depicts life and death, and is the moment in Katerina Petrova’s life that set the ball rolling for her to become the Katherine Pierce we know and love. Or hate. Your choice.
Out in the waiting room, Nadia walks in to find Stefan there waiting for the doctors to let him take her back home so she can pass comfortably. With every major organ failing, she’s not likely to make it through the day. Say it ain’t so!
In the meantime, Caroline and Bonnie have prepared a special “breakup breakfast” for Elena to ease the pain of being dumped by Damon. Hold up. When Caroline was dumped by Tyler, everyone ignored her but queen Elena gets the cavalry? Unjust. Simultaneously, Jeremy and Matt stumble upon a passed out Damon over the bar of the Grill. Or maybe…not so passed out:
Matt: Who spends 2 years pining after a girl to dump her?
Damon: I can hear you, dumbass.
I feel you, Matt. I feel you. During both parties attempts to heal (or deal, in Damon’s case), a phone goes off and Stefan reports the news of Katherine’s now quickly approaching death. They all gather at the Salvatore boarding house where the boys start lining up shots for a drinking game that Damon initiated in honor of Katherine’s death. Here’s the lowdown:
- Rule #1 – Think of the worst thing Katherine Pierce has ever done to you.
- Rule #2 – Toast to the glory of her impending death.
- Rule #3 – You come across something that’s worse, which you will, repeat #2.
And it seems the only one showing any compassion toward the dying doppleganger is Stefan:
Stefan: “She’s a survivor, right? So that’s the girl I will drink to today. Cheers.”
You go, Stefan! By the way, somewhere in all that mess while Matt was grabbing more booze, Nadia showed up to knock him out. When she reveals herself, she informs the crew that she locked Matt in the safe Stefan was drowning in all summer and buried him somewhere on the property. Without his Gilbert ring. The only way they’ll get him back is if they help her save her mother. What did you expect? She’s a Petrova.
Stefan and Elena volunteer to accompany Nadia in her quest and there’s a bit of tension between them once the Stefan-slept-with-Katherine cat was let out of the bag earlier at the house…
Elena: “Please don’t defend her. Now that you’ve – ”
Stefan: “Now that I’ve slept with her? I’m sure you have plenty to say about that.”
Don’t be a hater, Elena. As they near their destination, Nadia reveals all, telling them of Katherine’s Traveler bloodline. She wants her mother to be a passenger in her body. Cause that’s not a little creepy. Back at the boarding house, Caroline, Bonnie and Jeremy set out to search for Matt. It’s all gossip all the time, first with Katherine and Stefan’s steamy hookup, and then Bonnie and Jeremy not so subtly implying their own scandalous time spent “registering for classes.” When it’s sufficiently awkward enough, the three split up. Which is perfect timing for KLAUS to show up and greet his favorite little blonde vampire. But we’ll get back to them in a minute.
Upstairs in bed, Katherine flashes back to the night she ran home to find her entire family slaughtered by Klaus. It’s a tragically sad moment ruined by Damon suddenly appearing in the memory, out of place. It takes a minute before she realizes he’s playing vampy tricks on her mind, but it’s enough to believe him when he tells her her family’s death is all her fault. Damon you are a special kind of bastard. Especially when he’s about to smother her with a pillow. Luckily, Sheriff Forbes walks in to stop him, offering some advice.
Damon: “Every awful thing I’ve ever done is linked to her. She taught me how to kill, and enjoy it. She
Liz: “Look at how much control she still has over you, Damon. Prove her wrong.”
These are the reasons why Liz is still the only parent left alive in Mystic Falls. We love you Sheriff Forbes!
Back to the doppleganger troupe, Nadia leads the pair inside an abandoned, run down cabin in the woods. They meet a Traveler named Mia to make the deal to save Katherine’s life and perform the switch. But Nadia’s proven to be her mother’s daughter once more. She offers Stefan and Elena as her end of the bargain, snatching their daylight rings and leaving them in a cabin suddenly filled with Travelers, all chanting in unison. Soon the chanting starts bringing down the house – no, literally. Slabs of wood are falling and sunlight’s pouring in, trapping Stefan and Elena in the corner in a swarm of Travelers.
Okay. So last we saw, Klaus was busy dealing with witches in the French Quarter, and suddenly he’s here in Mystic Falls? Why? Turns out Damon told him about Katherine’s soon-to-be demise and he was there to “gloat over her corpse to be”, or so Caroline assumes. He brings up Tyler and she goes from annoyed to worried that he may have actually killed her ex. But he didn’t, though he was surprised to hear of their breakup. She tells him of the choice she gave Tyler and that he picked his vengeance over her. Klaus sympathizes but she’s really not interested in what he’s selling and says to just let Katherine rest in peace, then runs off. Very cat and mouse, these two!
Sheriff Forbes came armed with sedatives for Katherine’s pain but she refuses, not wanting to be weaker because when she’s weak, Damon can get in her head. And…then she pulls her typical Katherine behavior, making a cutting jab at his breakup with Elena, taking full credit for it. He stabs her vengefully with one of the syringes and it’s lights out for America. I mean, Katherine. She falls out of consciousness and right into another flashback, this time when she’s riding into Mystic Falls with Emily Bennett and catches a glimpse of Stefan for the first time with his broken down carriage. The attraction to him is instant and her plot to make him hers begins here. But present day Damon is a little confused by the memory, never hearing of it before. Katherine admits she wants to believe the whole prophecy of the dopplegangers is absurd but the moment she saw Stefan was indescribable, almost like…fate. Hmmm.
The Travelers are still swarming Stefan and Elena and the impending danger provokes an apology from Elena for being mad about his indiscretion with Katherine. One of the Travelers comes closer with a pot for each of them. He slits their wrists over them and lets their blood pour in. Oddly, the two don’t heal. Weird. Anyway, Caroline is still searching for Matt in the woods, having left Klaus in the dust. Or so she thought. He returns with the question as to whether or not she would give him the same choice between his vengeance against Katherine or her. But she dodges the question with her concern for Matt, so he allays her fears by assuring her he already located him and he’s in the process of being rescued by a very friendly face. Let’s hear it for Rebekah making a cameo to save her man! Sorta.
Katherine’s still enduring Damon’s mind torture and it gets weirdly nostalgic as he manifests images of Elena’s Aunt Jenna and Uncle/Father John attacking her. The real anguish is when he tricks her into believing Elijah is there. For a moment her heart lifts and she actually smiles as she reaches to touch his cheek. But the vision is gone instantly. Like I said, he’s a special kinda bastard. And though he claims no one cares enough to help her, Nadia proves him wrong and snaps his neck. YEAH!
Stefan and Elena are still pouring their hearts out, along with their blood, and discussing her breakup with Damon. Stefan reminds her she never gave up on him, so don’t give up on Damon either. By the time they’re back on friendly terms, the Travelers are done getting their buckets of blood and set them free. I wonder what all the blood is for? Maybe the Traveler spell, as Nadia is repeatedly trying to get Katherine to say the spell so she can travel into Nadia’s body and live, but Katherine isn’t keen on the idea.
Katherine: “Nadia, letting my father rip you out of my arms – it was the biggest regret of my life. I
should have fought harder to keep you, but I didn’t. So I spent the last 500 years making sure I never
made that mistake again. I fought for everything. And in the process, I had a long full life and I got to
know my beautiful daughter. You spent the last century searching for me. Don’t waste another minute
on me. It’s your turn to live.”
Nadia: “You can’t do this.”
Katherine: “Let me. I’ve made selfish decisions all my life. Let me do the right thing for once.”
Nadia: “Fine. Then go. Leave me. Drift off into oblivion. But I will not sit by your side and watch you
Sniff sniff. But…no. You’re Katherine Pierce, you’re a survivor, you can’t just give up!
We’ll just have to cut to a Klaroline scene to make up for the sadness right now. Klaus is still following Caroline through the woods like the little puppy he is around her. He gives his word he’ll leave town, minus the gloating, in return for one small thing: a confession.
Caroline: “My confession? I didn’t do anything. Confession about what?”
Klaus: “Me. As soon as we’re done here, I’m gonna walk away, and I’m never coming back. You’ll
never again have to look me in the and cover our connection with hostility and revulsion. You’ll never
have to loathe the darkest parts of yourself that care for me, in spite of all I’ve done. I will be gone,
and you will be free. I just…want you to be honest with me.”
Caroline: “I’m in college. I’m building a life for myself. I have plans and a future and things that I want
and none of those things involve you, okay? None of them.”
Klaus: “I see.”
Caroline: “No. You don’t, because yes, I cover our connection with hostility, because yes I hate
myself for the truth. So if you promise to walk away like you said and never come back, then yes, I will
be honest with you. I will be honest with you about what I want.”
Klaus: “I will walk away and I will never come back. I promise.”
AND THEN THIS HAPPENED:
Dear readers, please excuse me for one moment while I proceed to fangirl at my hardest. (Feel free to join in!)
…Ahem. That’s done. Back to your regularly scheduled recap. Stefan returns to the boarding house where Damon confesses to messing with Katherine’s mind a little to blow off steam. He dismisses his heartless brother and sits by Katherine for one final goodbye. He tells her to close her eyes and she falls back into the memory of her family’s slaughter. Stefan appears in the scene, thrown by the darkness of her choice of memories. The look on her face is purely heart wrenching.
Katherine: “This was the worst day of my life. He said it was my fault. That I deserve everything bad
that’s ever happened to me. He’s right. He was right, Stefan. I don’t deserve to be loved.”
Stefan starts to alter her memory, making her father’s body vanish first, then her mother’s. He tells her she deserves to feel peace, that she is a 17 year old girl and that none of this is her fault. As one final gift to her, a baby’s crying sounds from the basinett. Her baby. She walks up to it, a bright light shining from inside and finally gets the chance to hold her baby girl, the only thing she ever wanted all those centuries ago.
Elena shows up to ask if she’s passed, but not just yet. The drugs will knock her out and she won’t wake up again. In a little while, Damon and Stefan spend some time bro bonding on the roof, talking about Katherine at first and then Elena. Stefan advises him to fix it because its the best thing that ever happened to him. And Damon agrees, he can’t live without her, but she’ll be happier without him.
Caroline subtly walk of shames it back into the boarding house, loosening a few leaves from her hair from the sexy rendezvous. The gang is all together, waiting for Katherine to die. They start questioning Bonnie about her status as anchor and whether she’ll feel Katherine’s death, which she will because she’s both a doppleganger and a Traveler. More nostalgia creeps up as the ghost of Vickie pops up to tell Bonnie to tell Matt she loves him and to stop hanging out with that “blonde Original chick that almost got him killed.” Adding to the crowd, Tyler walks in as a parting gift from Rebekah. Er…that should be awkward for Care. But the best surprise of all is when Alaric appears to “tell these idiots to lay off the booze.” The reunion is cut short when Katherine’s ghost joins the party.
Not yet ready to die, she somehow manages to travel back to her body (ha, travel) only to find Elena watching over her. She really just can’t get a break, huh? She prepares herself for whatever speech Elena is ready to give but it’s the last thing she expects – forgiveness. She relates their lives in a way that shows they’re really not so different, both having lost everyone they cared about way too young, with no family to look after them. But Kat’s too tired to hear her doppleganger keep rambling on so she asks her to keep the poetry a’flowing and stick her with the last syringe. Elena obliges, and as soon as the sedative in injected, Katherine grabs Elena and says the spell to travel into her body! Elena passes out and Katherine’s body passes on. Shortly thereafter, Elena wakes up from her cell phone ringing. When she answers, Nadia says a quick spell, Elena’s eyes go demon black, and Katherine is back in business. Nadia asks to be sure it worked, and oh did it work.
Katherine: “Of course it worked. I’m Katherine Pierce. I survive.”
But now, will Elena survive next week when Katherine tries to take over her body for good? Let’s hope not!