Credit: The CW

The 100th episode of The Vampire Diaries is right around the corner, and the entire gang will be there to celebrate (along with a few familiar faces from the past). But why is the whole cast together in these recently-released promo pics?

Credit: The CW

The first snapshot shows the whole gang together at the Salvatore mansion: Stefan, Damon, Caroline, Bonnie, Jeremy, and Elena — but subsequent shots imply that Matt and Nadia will also show up for the shindig. What is the gathering for? Katherine’s death, of course! The 500-year-old vamp-turned-human is now on her deathbed, and most of the TVDers aren’t wasting anytime celebrating. In the promo, we see the cast commiserating about all of the times Katherine has done them wrong (in at least two cases, killing respective members of the group). Yeah, not everyone seems so sad to see Katherine go.

There is one of their number who is feeling a bit gloomy about the whole situation: Stefan. In the first promo pic, we see Damon raising a glass towards his brother, and we can assume he’s probably making some kind of insensitive remark about Katherine’s imminent demise. But Stefan, who recently rekindled his friend-with-benefits-ship with Katherine, is not having any of it. He, for one, seems torn up about this morbid turn of events. (It’s OK, Stef. We’re sad, too. We’re also guessing Nadia isn’t feeling too great about her mother’s dying, either.)

But is this the big cast gathering we heard talk of at the 100th episode celebration? We think not, considering it seemed like that would include not only current cast members, but ones gone but not forgotten. Will we really get to see faces of future and present all in one place, or is that a pipe dream? And will Katherine really die, or is all of this hoopla for nothing?

The Vampire Diaries returns Thursday, January 23 at 8 p.m. on The CW.

Kayti Burt is a contributing writer for Wetpaint Entertainment with a penchant for all things pop culture. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!