Credit: Annette Brown/The CW ©2012 The CW Network Photo: Jeremy in Season 3, Episode 21: “Before Sunset”

And the Truth Shall… Get You Caught

Without realizing it, Elena just gave Klaus incentive to kill her. Klaus takes Elena home, ties her to a chair, and compels a nurse to drain her blood, bagging it up one liter at a time. Tyler walks in and when he sees Elena he almost blows his sire-bond cover. But when Klaus orders him to go get more blood bags, he pulls it together, pretends the sire-bond is still in effect, and leaves the room.

Back at the high school, Damon wakes with a start. “Why am I still alive?” he asks Alaric as he sits up. Turns out Alaric did not stake the Salvatores and burn their bodies because he does not have a Daywalker ring and he needs them to travel across town in broad daylight to save Elena.

Meanwhile Elena’s busy trying to save herself. She psychoanalyzes Klaus, telling him that the only reason he needs her blood is because he’s afraid his family will ditch him and he’ll need to create a new hybrid family. Klaus gets back at her by telling Elena that the only reason she hasn’t chosen between Damon and Stefan is because she knows that she will tear the brothers apart. He suggests that by draining her blood and killing her he is actually doing her a favor.

Elena begs to differ. As does Tyler. The minute Klaus steps out of the room, he sneaks in to free her. But Klaus catches him and demands to know how he broke the sire-bond. Tyler says, “by breaking every bone in my body 100 times for the girl I love.”  Klaus is both appalled and impressed. He throws Elena across the room, then attacks Tyler. Just as he does, the Salvatores burst in and Stefan punches Klaus in the chest, digging his fingers into his flesh. Bonnie uses their connection to start the spell and she stops Jeremy’s heart.

Klaus goes ashen. His face gets all veiny. Back in the woods, something weird happens, and veins start to creep up Bonnie’s face as well. She closes her eyes and seems to enjoy it. Just then Klaus tears up. He looks around, struggles, and collapses back onto Tyler.

After the moment passes, Bonnie tries to restart Jeremy’s heart. At first it doesn’t work. But just as she panics, Jeremy takes a breath.

While Bonnie resuscitates Elena’s little brother, Damon and Stefan take Elena home. Having lost almost half her blood, she’s weak. They should take her to the hospital. But neither one thinks of this. They’re preoccupied. To keep Alaric from finding them, they have to leave town before sundown. They’ve also got to road trip to the Atlantic to dump Klaus’s body. Elena seizes the opportunity to apologize for stringing them along. “I’ve lost so many people,” she says, “I can’t bear the thought of losing one of you.”

Inside the Gilbert house, an underage drinking party awaits. Caroline, Tyler, Matt, and Jeremy gather around the kitchen island to do shots and celebrate the death of Klaus.

Across town at the same time, another party gathers. Alaric has called an emergency meeting of the Town Council and he’s forcing Mayor Lockwood to host it. When Sheriff Forbes arrives, Alaric outs her and the Mayor as parents of a vampire and a vampire-werewolf hybrid. He accuses them of working together to cover up the crimes their children commit. The Sheriff tries to leave the meeting and he vamps over to stop her.

While the town council meets, the Salvatores race toward the coast with the body of Klaus in the back seat. Stefan offers to leave town if Elena chooses Damon so that they can be happy together. Damon does not offer to do the same. “Then in 160 years we’ll go back to being brothers and none of this will have mattered,” he says. “Right?” There’s an awkward pause. Then Damon reluctantly offers to leave town too. “All this over one girl,” he says.
“She’s a pretty special girl,” Stefan replies.

Back in Mystic Falls, Jeremy and Elena go back to painting Ric’s room. When Jeremy ducks out for more supplies, Elena’s nose starts to bleed and she drops to the floor, passing out. Uh oh.

 

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Credit: Annette Brown/The CW ©2012 The CW Network Photo: Damon, Bonnie, and Stefan in Season 3, Episode 21: “Before Sunset”

It’s a Family Affair

Bonnie needs her mother’s help to make the spell work. So she asks Jamie to contact Abby, then she heads over to the Salvatore manse to wait for dear old mom. It takes a while, but Abby finally arrives. When she does, she tells Bonnie that her magic is too pure to handle such a dark spell. “You turned your back on me for 16 years,” Bonnie replies. “You have no idea what I can handle.” Damon chimes in: “Gotta say I’m Team Bonnie on this one.” So are we.

Abby tells her daughter how to do the spell. It’s harder than Bonnie thought it would be. Apparently, in order to arrest ‘Ric’s heart Bonnie will have to actually stop a human heart from beating, to create a balance in the world. Assuming Bonnie will be able to jump start his heart, Jeremy volunteers to die for his sister. He and Bonnie agree to head out to the woods to do the dirty deed. But first Bonnie will also have to bind all the vampire players together with her blood so that whoever hits ‘Ric hard enough to draw blood can be used as a conduit for the desiccation spell.

While Bonnie works out the deets on the spell, Klaus bends Stefan’s ear. He tells the youngest Salvatore that even if they succeed in killing Alaric he’s still going to take Elena and leave town. Rather than fight him on it, Stefan simply says “then I’ll come with you.”

Are You Ready to Rumble?

Before they all head over to the high school, Damon, Stefan, and Klaus drink some of Bonnie’s blood. Before he takes a sip (and thus joins the gang), Klaus tells them that he sired their vampire line. Damon thinks Klaus is lying to keep them from killing him. Stefan does not seem to care.

Over at the school, Elena’s fight has already started. Alaric hands her the white oak dagger and, once again, orders her to murder her friend. E turns to Caroline. Then she makes a feeble backhanded attempt to stab ‘Ric. He stops her easily. So she grabs the glass full of Vervain and smashes it in his face.

While Ric howls in pain, Elena frees Caroline and tells her to run for help. Caroline vamps down the hall and bumps into Klaus, who promptly makes like a Salvatore and tells Caroline that she is safe but she needs to go home. He will save Elena, he says, and we can tell Caroline is touched.

Back in the class ‘Ric grabs Elena and throws her across the hall into some lockers. Then he picks her up by the neck. “You’re the worst offender of them all, Elena,” he says. “You don’t deserve to live.”

Damon and Stefan arrive before ‘Ric can crush Elena’s vocal chords. Not that they’re much help. With little effort, Alaric breaks both their necks. Klaus vamps in and tries to rip out Alaric’s heart, but the teacher’s too strong. He body slams Klaus and prepares to stake him. Before the white oak dagger makes contact, Elena has a revelation. She realizes that ‘Ric won’t kill her because the witch Esther has tied his destiny to hers. If she dies, ‘Ric dies. So Elena tells him this. Then she threatens to slit her own throat. She even starts to cut her neck with a jagged piece of metal. This distracts Alaric long enough for Klaus to push him aside, grab Elena, and vamp off.

Credit: Annette Brown/The CW ©2012 The CW Network Photo: Klaus in Season 3, Episode 21: “Before Sunset”

The citizens of Mystic Falls do not waste time. Seriously: The amount of problems Elena and Co. cause and solve within one day is mind-blowing. For proof, check out the latest Vampire Diaries episode. And keep in mind that everything that happens does so in less than 24 hours’ time.

Why Hire Movers When You’ve Got Hybrid Minions?

“Before Sunset” opens around 8 a.m. with Tyler being summoned to Casa Klaus to pack. Apparently, today’s Moving Day and this time — now that Caroline has turned him down for the thousandth time — Klaus is really leaving town. For reals.

While Klaus makes other people pack, Rebekah heads over to Mystic Falls High School to work clean-up detail for a dance that she did not attend. Caroline is the only other person who shows up and the vamps share a moment. Caroline expresses her condolences for what happened with Rebekah’s mom Esther. Then Beks apologizes for Alaric.

Just as Caroline and Rebekah start to look like they might bond, Alaric attacks. Or, rather we should say Evil-Ric-turned-Vampire Alaric attacks. And dude is strong. He almost kills Bekah before Caroline stops him. Together the ladies stab him in the heart with the fortified White Oak dagger. It doesn’t hurt him. But it buys them time to run. Unfortunately, before Caroline can get her keys in the door, the history teacher grabs her, slams her head into the car, and breaks her neck. Then, sizzling as the sunlight fries his skin, Vampire ‘Ric drags Caroline back into the school while Beks watches from the other side of the parking lot.

Collateral Damage

Over at the Gilbert family home, Elena and Jeremy are painting Ric’s room — mere hours after he supposedly died. Apparently, waking up in the middle of the night to force her little brother into manual labor is Elena’s way of moving on. (Yeah, that’s normal.) While they work, Stefan drops by to check in on them. Jeremy is not thrilled to see him, saying, “Why don’t you do the right thing and give us one day — just one day — without any vampires in it?”

Stefan heads for the door only to find Damon and… Bonnie. Elena’s witch BFF is alive (thanks to Damon, who fed her his blood). They break the news about Alaric. While Bonnie and the Salvatores are in one room talking about ‘Ric, Elena’s in the next room answering a call from him. ‘Ric tells Elena to come to his history class — alone! — or he will kill Caroline. Elena sneaks out without hesitation.

Just after Elena leaves, Klaus arrives to pick up his “road trip necessity,” a.k.a. Elena. Jer refuses to invite him in. Damon closes the door only to find out that Elena is no longer there.

Klaus can’t enter the Gilbert house uninvited. So he stalks it, pacing outside. He starts throwing things through the windows: a newspaper, a soccer ball, stakes from the neighbor’s white picket fence. When he leaves the porch then returns carrying a torch and a propane tank, Stefan steps outside to break the bad news they’ve just learned: Alaric has Elena and Caroline “and he’s going to kill them both unless you turn yourself over to him.”

Klaus refuses to turn himself in. But to save his hybrid-making blood bank, he agrees to work with the Salvatore brothers. Their plan? The vampires will attack ‘Ric and draw blood, allowing Bonnie to squash him using the same desiccation spell her mother used to take down Klaus’s father, Michael.

When Elena enters Mr. Salzmann’s class, she finds that the history teacher has staked Caroline to a desk with two pencils and gagged her with a Vervain-soaked cloth. It’s almost noon and Ric has spent the last three hours punishing his former pupil. He takes a break from the torture session to lecture Elena about “trusting vampires” then gives her an assignment: Kill Caroline.