Credit: Nino Munoz/The CW © 2013 The CW Network Photo: The Cast of The Vampire Diaries Season 5

Rumor has it there’s a new Big Bad coming to Mystic Falls, and his name is Markos. Who is Markos and what might his presence mean for The Vampire Diaries? We tell you what we know and what we can theorize about the mysterious newcomer.

Who is Markos?

We may still be hung up on current trouble-stirrer Enzo and his bromance with Damon, but the world of TVD has already moved onto a new villain: Markos. According to E! Online, Markos is a “charismatic but imposing leader from a faraway land” who will be introduced in Season 5, Episode 17. So, we still have some time to spend with this current story arc before the next baddie enters our narrative atmosphere. But, be warned: Markos is coming.

Will he be alone?

It sounds like Markos will have quite the network of minions — or, as he’ll probably call them, followers. According to E! Online: “He’s super dark, but people can’t help but be drawn to him, and he’s worshipped by his followers.” We’re eager to see this kind of villainous storyline play out. Most of TVD’s villains have operated solo or, in the Mikaelsons’ case, in families. It sounds like Markos will have a huge group of people at his disposal. Spooky.

Is he connected to the Travelers?

We’ve long speculated that there is much more to learn about the mysterious Travelers, the subgroup of witches Silas, Amara, and Nadia have all been a part of. They have been the lingering, nefarious force at the periphery of Season 5 thus far, and it sounds like they might finally come into focus with this Markos character. Could he be the leader of the Travelers? The descriptor “worshipped by his followers” certainly seems to suggest so. As does the hint that he hails from a “faraway land.” Eastern Europe isn’t that far, but we suppose it’s all relative when most TVD action takes place in Virginia.

What does he want?

The mission of the Travelers has been somewhat vague thus far. When Nadia and her boyfriend, Gregor, first come to town, it is to kill Silas and then Katherine. They were also tasked with keeping Amara, aka the anchor, safe. Might Markos come to town to kidnap Bonnie, i.e. the new anchor to the Other Side? We’re totally for this motivation, if only because it would give Bonnie something more to do.

Will Nadia be involved?

We’re also interested in this speculative theory because it would give Nadia something to do, even after Katherine’s assumed death in this week’s 100th episode. With Katherine gone, there isn’t much reason for her to stick around -- unless she is a) there on Traveler business or b) betrays her Traveler brethren to protect Matt and his friends. Either way, she’s invested in the plot moving forward.

Who do you think Markos is? Do you think he may be related to the Travelers? Sound off in the comments below!

The Vampire Diaries airs Thursday nights at 8 p.m. ET 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+!