On this episode of The Vampire Diaries, “Let Her Go,” an ailing Kai turns to Jo for help. Bonnie makes an interesting discovery. Sheriff Forbe’s funeral brings up painful memories for Damon. Stefan comes to a decision regarding his relationship with Caroline. A new threat arrives in Mystic Falls.

TVD writers have been using Sheriff Forbe’s illness as a catalyst for introducing a previously missing piece of the Salvatore brothers’ family puzzle, what happened to their mom? We know their dad was a founding father who hated vampires and wound up getting eaten by Stefan. According to Stefan, their mother was ill, got sent away and croaked. Both brothers have regrets, and their shared attraction for the same women just screams mommy issues. Now that Liz is gone, it looks like we’ll be delving a bit deeper, especially since Damon believes that Lizzie tasked him with writing her eulogy as a way to make him come to terms with his past. Damon revealed to Liz that he was supposed to write his mother’s eulogy but couldn’t.

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Same Day Service

Caroline is dreading the funeral, and Damon warns her that the real heartache will take place after the funeral when everyone resumes their lives and leaves Caroline alone to really deal with her loss. Leave it to D to never sugarcoat anything.

Caroline recruits all of her friends to expedite laying her mother to rest. She wants Liz in the ground by the end of the day. I know it’s ridiculous to nitpick something as mundane as the speed at which it takes to plan a funeral on a show with witches, vampires and werewolves, but, c’mon! I know they can compel themselves anything their heart desires, but gathering the townsfolk for the burial of a beloved government official with no notice is off-the-charts ridiculous.

Girl Trouble

Damon has a lot on his plate. While dressing for Lizzie’s funeral, he flashes back to the day of his own mother’s funeral. In this flashback, Stefan is surprisingly younger, just a boy of 10 while Damon looks the same. Stefan tells his brother he was visited by his mother’s angel the previous night while he was sleeping. This angel told him everything would be alright.

Damon is then approached by Stefan, who admits he does not have that lovin’ feeling for Caroline. Sorry, Steroline fans. It looks as if this romance is just not meant to be. Damon urges Stefan to tell Caroline the truth, just not on the day of her mother’s funeral. That would be a move that would go down in douche history. My words, not Damon’s.

Double Trouble

Kai shows up at Jo’s, and he is not looking good. In fact, neither is Jo. Kai believes that merging with Luke instead of Jo is causing some serious side effects, mainly dying. If Kai dies, so does Jo, Liv and the rest of the coven. Kai begs his sister to help him.

Jo can’t find anything medically wrong with Kai, but he’s still vomiting blood, which demonstrates he clearly has problems. Kai briefly grabs on to his sister’s arm for support and absorbs some of her juju. Suddenly, he feels better. Kai comes to the conclusion that the faux merge didn’t work, and he still needs Jo’s magic. He requests that she place her magic in some inanimate object which demonstrates some real growth on Kai’s part. I mean the old Kai would have been far more duplicitous and homicidal.

Alaric doesn’t trust Kai, even though he really has no choice since his girlfriend’s fate is linked to her brother’s. For added incentive, Kai tells Ric that the power that binds the Prison Worlds comes from the leader of the coven (Kai), so if he dies, the worlds collapse. Yes, kids, worlds. I assume this is about to get all kinds of confusing, so bear with me.

Just Say Goodbye

Damon continues to struggle with Liz’s eulogy. He has another flashback to arriving at his mother’s graveside after the service. Stefan is blubbering, disappointed that his big brother was a no show. When Damon says he didn’t know what to say, Stefan, lip quivering, tells him he could have just said goodbye. This memory appears to get Damon’s creative juices flowing because he starts scribbling.

Caroline and Stefan find themselves alone together before the service, and though Stefan is willing to hold off on breaking the bad news to Caroline, she’s determined¬† to figure out if she should change her Facebook status to “In a Relationship.”¬† He manages to convince her the timing couldn’t be worse and presses pause on the topic of them.

In 1994, Bonnie has returned from Spooky Island with Quetsiyah’s headstone. She has regained her power and is planning to head out on that day’s eclipse. Why, oh why, do I think something is going to waylay her once again?

After almost 300 days spent in 1994, Bonnie has everything she needs to head home, but as anyone with a pulse could have predicted, something goes terribly wrong come zero hour. All of a sudden, the eclipse disappears, it’s nightfall and there’s snow. Bonnie makes her way to a house where she sees a journal that’s dated November 1903. She discovers a picture of the Salvatore brothers, so she’s still in Mystic Falls.

Instead of an eclipse, the celestial event is the Northern Lights. I would guess she got dropped into this other dimension because of Kai’s declining health. This poor witch cannot catch a break, and 1903? How is she going to make pancakes now?

Liz’s funeral goes off without a hitch, if you don’t count Matt denying a drunken Tyler access to the event. It certainly goes better than Mrs. Lockwood’s did when there was a vampire hunter picking off attendees.

Damon’s eulogy focuses on Caroline and how extraordinary she is, all of the things her mother wanted to say to Caroline but didn’t get the chance.

In a crazy sweet moment, Caroline belts out a tune to her mom, and it’s a reminder that Caroline has got some pipes on her.

Caroline has been dropping a few cryptic hints throughout the day that something is up, and Elena begins to put it together when Caroline, heading home after the funeral, says all she had to do was get through the day. If Caroline was feeling emotionally unstable and vulnerable before Damon’s pep talk, I’m pretty sure his words of wisdom pushed her over the edge.

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A Stranger in a Strange Land

Jo decides to give all her power to Kai directly and skip the middle man. As the transference takes place, Bonnie finds herself flip flopping between 1994 and 1903. She decides to just go for it. Both dimensions have the celestial events she needs and just as she’s completing the ritual, a woman appears, who I think is going to wind up being Damon and Stefan’s mom, approaches her. She asks who Bonnie is, Bonnie asks who she is, and Bonnie gets sucked upward in a flash of light. Kai did say that in the second Prison World, there were others, not such nice people like him.

The Freaky Friday power switch works, and Kai has some parting words for his sister, she’s pregnant. Could it be twins? She tells Ric, and he immediately proposes. Jo isn’t interested in a pity proposal until Ric pulls out a little black box. Guess a proposal can’t be out of pity if it’s pre-meditated.

Escaping the Grief

Stefan decides that he does have more than friendly feelings for Caroline. No, it may not be the crazy Katherine/Elena lusty love, but he feels it could be something even better. Better than Kitty Kat? There is no possible way.

Elena confronts Caroline and Blondie confirms what her BFF suspected, she wants to flip her switch. Better yet, why not just compel all the memories of her mother away? Elena warns her this is not a great idea, and Caroline points out what a raging hypocrite Elena is. Caroline breaks down, she and Elena hug, Elena says she’s not going to let Caroline do it, and Caroline snaps Elena’s neck. Looks like the switch has been flipped. Yikes! An evil Type A vampire. That may be the scariest thing the MF crew has faced yet.

Homecoming

Guess who finally found her way back to the present? And guess who’s appropriately the first one to greet her? Damon and Bonnie’s reunion is a thing of beauty. Bonnie videotaped herself throughout the day and fills Damon in on her time jump. She also happened to catch the mystery woman on film and, big shocker, it’s Damon and Stefan’s mother. You all know they wouldn’t have brought mommy dearest up at all if there wasn’t going to be a family reunion. Since mama was banished to a Prison World, I’m guessing she might lack the maternal instincts her boys so desperately crave.

(BTW, I so knew Jo was preggers.)

The Vampire Diaries airs Thursdays at 8pm on the CW.

(Image courtesy of the CW)