The Vampire Diaries Season 4, Episode 14, “Down the Rabbit Hole” opens with Damon (Ian Somerhalder) tied to a tree with vervain ropes — and not in a shirt-off sexy way. His captor is the hunter who broke his neck the night before. Hunter No. 2’s name is Galen Vaughn and he sounds Scottish. As he marches Damon through the woods towards the cave, we learn that, for a supposedly super remote island, Silas Central is really crowded. In addition to our gang, the “islanders,” and now Galen, there’s another lurker scoping the action who has yet to be revealed.
Apparently, Galen’s been watching our crew for quite some time. The Scot knows all their names and their role in the search-for-Silas game. Because he’s feeling so chatty, he shares with Damon this little fact: He’s be slaying vampires his entire life but his mark didn’t flare up until three days ago when the Gilberts burned Original Brother Kol to a crisp.
Back in Mystic Falls, Klaus (Joseph Morgan) is still trapped in the Gilberts’ living room. Newly cured, Caroline (Candice Accola) is still sticking around to babysit. So is Tyler (Michael Trevino). Suddenly Elena (Nina Dobrev) calls. She, Stefan (Paul Wesley), and Rebekah (Claire Holt) have had no luck finding the others, nor the cave. Desperate, Elena wants Caroline to search Casa Klaus for the hunter’s sword so they can use it to translate the mark and find the cave without Bonnie (Kat Graham). Always down to do Elena’s legwork, Caroline agrees. She and Ty easily find the sword hidden in the attic. When they bring it back to the Gilbert’s place, supposedly to gloat, they discover its encrypted handle is written in Aramaic. Lucky for them Klaus is older than half the Old Testament. Not only does he speak the dead tongue, he strangely agrees to translate the cryptex for them.
Meanwhile Professor Shane (David Alpay) is happier than an alcoholic at an open bar. He’s so giddy at the prospect of raising Silas that he’s not bothered by the fact that his island witch bows out of the game the second they step inside the cave. Rather than think, ‘Hey something’s wrong with this picture,’ the nutty prof simply pays the guy with the headstone (“In some witch circles that ‘s more valuable than the Hope Diamond,” he says.) and motions for Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) and Bonnie to lower themselves into the cavern.
Do for Self
Meanwhile, back on the beach, Elena asks Stefan why he never told her he wanted to take the cure himself. What she really means to say, is ‘What do you mean this isn’t all about me?’ Stef hears what she’s not saying and replies, “It had nothing to do with you.” He tells her that immortality taints even the best parts of being a vampire.
We think Damon would beg to differ — even now as Galen drags him through the woods. At one point, Hunter No. 2 reveals that he wants to slay Silas. Damon says his crew will gladly help kill the Original Creep as long as Galen gives them a cut of his share of the cure. At this Galen looks at Damon like he feels sorry for him. “There is only one dose [of the cure],” he says. Galen then informs Damon that he fully plans to use that one shot to kill Silas.
“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me a hundred times…”
Back in Mystic Falls, Klaus is discovering the truth about the cure at the same time. He waits until they call Elena, Bex, and Stefan to give them a translated map to the cave. Then he cuts into the conversation to warn Rebekah that there is only one dose of the cure and that she needs to get to it first.
Bex won’t be first, though. Bonnie and Jeremy are already lowering themselves into the well inside the cave. On the way down, Bonnie slips and cuts her hand. She bleeds on the floor and, like Shane, seems to think nothing of it. In fact she doesn’t even stick around to see that her blood seeps unnaturally quick through the floor and into the dungeon below. What is wrong with these people and their inability to spot a blazing red flag?
We guess Bonnie is preoccupied. “Hey Bon,” Jeremy asks, “ what do you think’s going to happen once you cast the spell on my tattoo and there’s nothing between Shane and Silas?” Bon-Bon gives Jer an I-got-this face. She asks if he trusts her then she tells him that she has no intention of helping Shane raise Silas.
I always feel like somebody’s watching me
Damon and Galen stumble across Shane’s witch on their way to the cave: Like the islander who tried to kill Jeremy, he is very dead — his throat has been slit, to be more exact. “Was that you?” Damon asks. “No,” Galen replies. They both look around nervously.
On the other side of the island, Elena, Stefan, and Rebekah decide to cut miles off their trip by jumping off a cliff. The moment after Elena leaps, Rebekah tells Stefan that there is only one dose of the cure. “Even if I wanted to ease your pain and I gave you the cure to save yourself, you’d give it to Elena wouldn’t you?” She asks. Stefan does not reply. “That’s what I thought,” she says. Then she snaps his neck and heads for the cave, taking the map with her. Elena looks up just in time to see Stefan fall.
Meanwhile, Shane coos and ahs over the cave. When he finds a geometrically perfect circle indented on the floor. He pats it, “This is it. It’s the spot.” Bonnie closes her eyes, touches Jer’s bare chest and starts the spell. As his Hunter’s mark disappears the walls start to shake and the ceiling caves in, breaking Shane’s leg. Or so he claims. The rumble opens a passage into a neighboring room. Bonnie and Jeremy head for it, leaving Shane behind.
Above them Damon and Galen enter the cave. At this point Hunter No. 2 declares that he no longer needs Damon so, he promises to “make it quick and painless” when he kills the Sexy Salvatore. “Wish I could make the same promise,” Damon says as he rips off his vervain restraints. As he steps toward Galen, the tells the hunter that he will give the cure to “the girl he loves.” Just then Bekah enters.
“Are we gonna dance or are we gonna play?”
Galen is no joke. Neither are his fancy slayer toys. When Rebekah attacks, Hunter No. 2 skillfully blocks her blows and plants a stake grenade in her chest. Then he wraps a silver/vervain bolo around Damon’s neck. Before the vampire can recover, he jumps onto Shane’s rope and rappels down into the cavern.
Meanwhile it dawns on Caroline and Tyler that Bonnie’s spell is about to expire and free a vengeful Klaus. Tyler freaks and decides to leave town. But Caroline stops him. “Let me fix it,” she says, using the same words he’d said to her a day earlier. Her idea of a fix? Going inside and begging Klaus not to kill Ty. “Show him the mercy that I would show you,” she says. Klaus agrees but only to give Tyler a head start. So the young vampire and her hybrid boyfriend share a tear-filled farewell on the Gilbert’s porch. “This isn’t goodbye,” Tyler says. “We’re immortal. We will find a way.” Caroline’s not so hopeful. She makes Tyler promise that, if for some reason they can’t get back together, he will forget her and live a full life. “I promise I will live a happy life without you,” Tyler says. They kiss. Then Tyler walks off.
As Bonnie and Jeremy get closer to Silas’s grave, Grams appears to Bonnie. “All you have to do is reach him and feed him and he will do the rest,” she says. When Bonnie starts to head towards the grave, Jeremy stops her. As you’ll recall, he can see and talk to the dead, and he definitely does not see Grams. He warns Bonnie that she’s hallucinating, that the ghost of her beloved grandmother is not really there and that it’s just Silas messing with her mind.
After Stefan frees him, Damon begs his little brother to go get the cure for Elena. Stefan gives him the look. Then jumps down the well. A second after he does, someone attacks Elena elsewhere in the cave.
Stefan finds a pinned Shane and tells him there’s only one dose of the cure. Then he leaves the lovesick PhD to suffer in the knowledge that, if that one thing wasn’t true, then, probably a lot of the other things he’d hoped would happen also won’t come to pass. As Stefan saunters off, Shane’s wife appears to him and tells him that “everything is going to be just fine.”
But it won’t. When Jeremy and Bonnie find the mummified body of Silas, and they spot the tiny package in his hand, Jeremy explodes. “How is that supposed to cure every vampire in the world?” Bonnie says she doesn’t think it will. Then they try to pull the package from Silas’s cold, dead hands. It doesn’t work. Bonnie realizes that they have to wake him the same way they would wake a captive vampire — with their blood. Jeremy ignores her and starts whacking the body. Bonnie pleads with him. But a knife in the back interrupts her cries. “Don’t listen to the witch, boy,” Galen says as Bonnie falls. “We have to raise Silas. And we have to do it now.”
Upstairs, Damon crawls over to Rebekah and digs the stakes out of her body. When she wakes, she asks why he didn’t go with his friends, Damon tells her that he’s made peace with the fact that he can’t control everything, adding, “Life sucks, get on with it.”
“Life sucks. Get on with it.”
Jeremy attacks Galen. But he’s no match for the older hunter. Galen easily gets the upper hand. Just as Hunter No. 2’s about to stake Jeremy for wanting to waste the cure on his sister, Elena vamps in attacks him. Or so we think. Moments later, when Stefan comes across an injured Elena in the tunnel, we realize it’s not our girl at all. It’s Katherine (Nina Dobrev). Unfortunately for Jeremy, he doesn’t catch on until his so-called sister refuses to help her best friend. Before Jer can put two and two together, Katherine cuts him and places his bleeding arm to Silas’s desiccated mouth. “It’s been too long little Gilbert, she says. “Then she bites Jeremy in the neck and forces him down onto Silas with one hand while she snatches the cure with the other. As Katherine runs off, the immortal’s desiccated arm snaps up and holds Jeremy in place. He snaps Jer’s neck then drops Elena’s drained little brother onto the floor. Meanwhile, all Bonnie can do is whimper.