Previously on Vampire Diaries: Bonnie and Damon weren’t alone.
Now that she’s not spending all her time doing drugs and having lengthy conversations with dead people, Elena’s regressing to her pre-Damon personality. Which means flirting with Stefan, throwing carefree keggers out at the swimming hole conveniently located just outside the borders of Mystic Falls, and trying to set Caroline up with the semi-cute guy from her hospital internship.
Except Caroline’s still mad about Elena erasing her memories, Stefan’s only interested in some light revenge killing, and semi-cute guy has the hots for Elena herself. (She doesn’t seem completely opposed. Unfortunately for him, he is both utterly normal and forgettable, and therefore probably has the life expectancy of a gnat. I don’t plan on bothering to learn his name.)
Caroline is so lonely that freaking Enzo has become her new de facto BFF. Until she remembers that he’s a big fan of casual murder so long as it’s not someone he’s personally in love with. Who could have seen this coming? Oh, yeah. Anyone who’s ever met Enzo before.
Meanwhile, Stefan’s hanging around looking for Enzo. His great feelings of guilt over his girlfriend’s death extend to retribution… but not to giving her family any closure over what’s happened to her, or even burying her body himself — no he compels his poor boss to do that. So that poor guy’s probably going down on a murder charge some day. Classy as always, Stefan.
After Caroline catches him about to kill Enzo, they have an emotional conversation where she implores him to come home if even the slightest part of him misses his shitty friends and shitty life. Shockingly, he leaves anyway. When Elena catches Caroline later, she finally admits that she was developing feelings for him — but that’s over now. Uh-huh. Sure, Caroline.
While all this is happening, the gang realizes that traveling over the border into Mystic Falls erases compulsion. Which means Elena’s victim must remember more than she’s letting on. And now she’s nowhere to be found. DUN!
B-plot round up: Tyler’s been trying to control his drunk rage issues. Which mostly works, even when one of Cute!Matt’s hunter buddies tries to provoke him. Said hunter also tries to take out Stefan and Enzo, which gets him rapidly and predictably killed. Thus, poor Matty realizes his whole community defense league is probably crawling with hunters, and he’s sad — again, some more — about how terrible his life is. Oh, and Liv shows up to admit she only pulls Tyler’s pig tails so much because she like likes him.
In the end, Enzo has a run in with Trip, in which he’s probably going to come out on top — until Stefan shows up and uses dead hunter kid’s gun to shoot several stakes through Enzo’s back. Trip recognizes the Salvatore name as one of the founding families but doesn’t seem to realize they’re vampires. Which seems kind of crazy at this point? (Like, how could anyone in this town not know by now, especially if compulsion no longer works in Mystic–you know what? Nevermind. I refuse to care about logic more than this show’s writers do.)
Stefan’s about to finish Enzo off when Trip stops him — he wants to use his preferred method of driving him over the border. Damn it, Trip! Now he’s going to have time to escape! This is why we can’t have nice things.
Over in 1994, Bonnie and Damon are bickering and grocery shopping and generally still being all domestic and adorable together. They find a few more signs that they may not be alone, but Damon’s pessimism prompts Bonnie to storm off in a huff. Except when he heads over to the liquor store, there’s a mystery dude named Kai waiting for him.
Kai’s been spying on them for months — enough to know that Damon cheats at Monopoly (hah!) and the easiest way to take him out is to spike the store’s bourbon supply with vervain. He’s about to stake him when Bonnie swoops in like a tiny knight in witchy armor. She and Damon share some fraught looks that I enjoyed way too much. (Almost as much — but not quite — as I enjoyed Damon casually admitting to Kai that he actually likes her.)
Kai taunts her about her uselessness now that she doesn’t have her magic, but it turns out all she needed was a really good motivator. Like the threat of losing Damon! She manages to do her firestarter thing on a candle, and Damon shoots her a look that was more good for me than I can adequately express. IT WAS A JUST REALLY GOOD LOOK, OKAY?
They knock Kai out and take him back to Chez Salvatore for fun bondage games. Except it turns out he was never really trying to kill Damon. He just wanted to kickstart Bonnie’s mojo, because it’s the only thing that can help them all escape. Drama bomb!
Next time: Elena and Stefan go on a romantic road trip! I hate everything.