I will not mourn Elijah. Because I refuse to believe we've seen the last of him. Producers have said in the past that they loved the character (and Daniel Gillies' performance) so much, they found themselves making it harder and harder to kill an Original. (They weren't lying!) But it paid off in this episode, which had tons of tension as Damon plotted to off Elijah at his dinner party, and Elena neglected to reveal all relevant information about the procedure detailed in old Johnathan Gilbert's journals at once. We now know that Elijah will rise again if the dagger is removed, so the question is: how soon will that happen? In the meantime, let's dig in.
So Elena started reading Johnathan's journals and found out that Stefan had taken revenge on the founding families for what he thought they'd done to Katherine. He attacked Johnathan, but he lived to write another day. We know vampires have superspeed, do you think they are speed readers? If so, she should have let Stefan skim it first. He wanted to tell her the truth, and so he did. He was worse than Damon. He felt so guilty about killing his father and making Damon become a vampire that he turned off the human side of himself and turned on multiple ladies. Was it just me, or did they seem to be enjoying being bitten a lot more than most people on this show? Damon, it turns out, was the bore back then. He didn't want to draw attention to themselves. They had to be more clever than that, he said. He wanted to live, and if Stefan was on a suicide mission, he wasn't going to watch. He'd leave town.
The year was 1864, remember, and I'm sorry, but having Stefan feed on wounded soldiers during the Civil War was just cool. He was helping himself to the endless anonymous blood supply when he noticed a cloaked woman. She'd been nursing a soldier, than got up and walked into the woods. Stefan followed her and was prepared to attack when she took him to the ground: "What kind of an idiot are you?" she asked. It was Alexia Branson, aka Lexi, his best friend, who he would eventually accompany to a Bon Jovi concert and who Damon would eventually stake. Since he'd tried to eat her, he offered her a place to stay. She took one look at the bodies in the parlor and realized he was a "ripper." (New term! Fun!) "There are good parts of being a vampire, and there are bad parts. You’re the bad parts," she explained. "Well, we’re going to have to change that." I love how matter of fact she was. She took him back to the wounded and dying soldiers and asked him what he felt. Nothing, he said. To feel anything, he was going to have to feel everything, she said, including the pain and guilt from what he'd done. "Once you can hurt, you can love. Love, Stefan, that’s the point. Everything is intensified when you're a vampire. When we hurt, we really hurt. But when we love..." she said. I know this is all about Stefan, but how many of us were thinking Damon has been really hurting as of late. Does that mean we can allow ourselves to believe, guilt-free, that he is capable of really loving?
NEXT: Damon's shower gets more use.