Last week’s episode of The Vampire Diaries ended with Jeremy contemplating a pretty difficult decision: kill or be killed by the dozen or so newly turned vampires Klaus made. This week’s episode, “Catch Me If You Can,” raises the stakes for all involved in the search for the vampirism cure.

The episode starts off with Klaus (Joseph Morgan) compelling the vampires to chase Matt (Zach Roerig) and Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen), but his plans are foiled by Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Elena (Nina Dobrev). The group hides out in the Gilbert house and the Damon/Elena lovin’ you might have expected after their tender phone call in the previous episode never comes to fruition – instead Elena brings Matt back to Mystic Falls and Damon and Jeremy plan on slaying the vampires in the morning. When the duo returns to the bar, however, they discover Klaus’ brother Kol (Nathaniel Buzolic) has already finished the job. Kol warns them that resurrecting Silas, the key to the vampirism cure, would result in the apocalypse, and he tries to kill Jeremy. Damon intervenes, but ends up being pressured by Kol to kill Jeremy himself.

Meanwhile, Rebekah (Claire Holt) and Stefan (Paul Wesley) banter over their heyday in the Roaring Twenties while they search for Silas’ headstone in Professor Shane’s office. Apparently the headstone is one step towards waking the witch. A mysterious man sneaks in looking for the stone too, and Rebekah and Stefan try to torture answers out of him. Instead, the man bites off his own tongue and stabs himself to death. Who else wants the stone?

Professor Shane (David Alpay) is taken in for questioning about the deaths of Pastor Young and 11 other Mystic Falls residents. He confesses to Bonnie (Kat Graham) that their deaths were a result of a ritual gone awry to resurrect Silas and hints that, with Bonnie’s help, Silas could be found and she could also see her dead grandmother again. Bonnie nearly loses control when he mentions her grandmother and sets the room aflame. Shane manages to calm her, but not before Bonnie’s father walks in and sees the extent of her powers.

Damon returns to Mystic Falls in search of Jeremy and chases him through a labyrinth of cave tunnels. He’s completely aware he’s been compelled and tells both Jeremy and Elena what he has to do. When Jeremy finally confronts him, he shoots Damon in the head instead of the heart, which would have definitely killed him. Damon wakes up a little later, the urge to kill Jeremy still strong. Elena tries to stop him, insisting he is strong enough to resist the compulsion because he loves her enough not to do it. Nice try, Elena, but Damon just can’t help himself. Before he can rip Jeremy to pieces, however, Stefan appears, wrings Damon’s neck, locks him up and bleeds him out so he won’t be a threat to Jeremy or Elena, who’s still sired to him.

Later, Stefan and Elena have an ex-lovers’ quarrel. Elena says he’s not himself anymore. “You don’t know what I look like when I’m not in love with you,” Stefan retorts and shows her the door.

In ending scenes Bonnie’s father tells her she needs help for her witch problems, Stefan begins a no-strings-attached relationship with Rebekah, Klaus advises Jeremy that Kol will stop at nothing until Jeremy is dead, and Elena tells Jeremy he’ll kill an Original instead – Kol, to be exact.

Offing an Original isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, however, as next week’s preview goes to show.

Jill Wronski

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