Credit: The CW

The cast of The Vampire Diaries is constantly growing, but it’s never without its fair share of guest stars. And we want to pay tribute to the not-so-familiar faces who come into Mystic Falls, oftentimes completely change everything our characters think they know and then leave (or, more likely, die).

Here are some of our favorite guest characters from the past four years:

Anna (Malese Jow) and Pearl (Kelly Hu): Anna was one of the longest running guest stars in TVD history, and even after she died, she returned as a ghost. And why? Because she was that great. And there was no vampire in all of Mystic Falls that was more powerful (or more beautiful) than Pearl (this was pre-Klaus).

Lexi (Arielle Kebbel): Stefan’s (Paul Wesley) bestie was the best. Not only did we fall in love with her, but she made us love Stefan that much more for being her friend.

Bad parents: Between John Gilbert (David Anders), Bill Forbes (Jack Coleman), Abby Bennett (Persia White), and Kelly Donovan (Melinda Clarke), the questionable (and sometimes downright awful) parents of TVD always manage to keep things interesting… and heartbreaking.

Mason Lockwood (Taylor Kinney): He was hot. He loved Tyler. He was hot. We will forever miss Uncle Mason.

Katherine (Nina Dobrev): Nobody throws a wrench in the plans of the Salvatore brothers like the queen of manipulation herself. Katherine is fun and fierce, and we never really know if she’s good or bad. She helps and then she hurts, and we could not be more intrigued by her seemingly selfish motives.

Rose (Lauren Cohan): We loved Rose for helping Elena with the sacrifice ordeal, and we loved Rose for helping Damon, er, cope. We also loved her funky  hair.

Andie (Dawn Olivieri): In many ways, Andie was the perfect girlfriend for Damon (Ian Somerhalder) when he couldn’t be with Elena. She helped with his schemes, she came over whenever he called, and she understood that underneath it all, he’s an alright guy.

Meredith (Torrey DeVitto): We questioned her motives at first, but Meredith proved to be a very good girl for Alaric (Matt Davis), and after he died, she helped Damon out for a bit. Speaking of, where is Ms. Fell?

The original family: Rebekah (Claire Holt), Kol (Nathaniel Buzolic), Finn (RIP), Esther (RIP), Mikael (RIP), Elijah (Daniel Gillies), and Klaus (Joseph Morgan) (though he’s no longer a guest star at this point) have easily caused the most intrigue of any of the guest stars. Plus, their accents are the coolest.

Connor (Todd Williams): Connor and his crazy awesome tattoo came to town ready to play ball. Between his extensive knowledge of boobie traps, his vervaine gloves and his muscles, we always wanted to see what Connor would do next.

Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin): She certainly caused a ruckus with the hybrid sacrifice...

Professor Shane (David Alpay): We might have to deem Shane the most intriguing guest star of Season 4. What does he know? Rather, what doesn’t he know?

April (Grace Phipps): Will Pastor Young’s daughter become more than Matt’s (Zach Roerig) admirer and Rebekah’s friend? Only time will tell.

Who’s your favorite guest star? Sound off in the poll below!

Samantha Highfill is a contributing writer to Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter at @samhighfill.