THE ROAD TO MEMPHIS
[Stefan (still in Marty Hammond's body) is unconscious in Damon's Camaro as Damon drives and eats one of the doughnuts he brought for his brother. After a moment, he becomes concerned that he's still unconscious and holds his hand in front of his mouth and nose to make sure he's breathing. When he finds that he's still alive, he tries to rouse him awake]
- DAMON: Stefan? Hey, Stefan.
[Finally, Damon pokes him in the face with his hand, and Stefan/Marty groans as he comes to]
- STEFAN: What happened?
- DAMON: Well, I pulled your ass out of the snow, you ate a bunch of doughnuts, and then puked blood all over my nice, clean car.
[Stefan/Marty looks down at his lap, which is covered in bloody napkins]
- DAMON: You said "everything hurt," so...
[Damon pulls out a grocery bag of over-the-counter medication and plops it on Stefan/Marty's lap]
- DAMON: Head stuff, throat stuff, stomach stuff...
[Stefan/Marty groans again, visibly ill and generally miserable-looking]
- STEFAN: Where are we?
- DAMON: On our way to Memphis. Valerie got a line on your real body-- the one with the nice hair.
- STEFAN: [exasperatedly] How did my real body end up in Memphis?
- DAMON: [hesitates] You know what? Long story. How about you just focus on staying alive, okay? Sit back, relax, find your happy place... Chug one of those five-hour energy things, maybe with a cough syrup chaser or something?
[Just then, Stefan starts to retch, and reflexively holds up the back of medicine just in time to throw up a significant amount of blood inside of it. Damon is both frustrated and grossed out by this development to the point that they're both groaning]
- DAMON: Aw... Okay. Plan B.
[Damon pushes down the gas and speeds down the street before pulling over so quickly his tires screech]
- STEFAN: [groans] What are you doing?
[Damon pulls out his phone and dials a number. After a few rings, an emergency dispatcher answers]
- OPERATOR: [on the phone] 911. What is your emergency?
[Stefan/Marty gives Damon a desperate look]
- STEFAN: Damon, I can't go to a hospital! Marty Hammond got loaded and crashed a bus full of kids. There's an interstate manhunt going on.
[Damon smiles at his brother reassuringly]
- DAMON: Don't worry, brother. I'm not taking you to a hospital-- I'm bringing the hospital to us!
[Alaric has just driven into the parking lot of a hospital in his old SUV, where he gets out and walks toward an ambulance in the bay. Just then, the back doors of the ambulance open, and Damon smiles and hops out at the sight of Alaric. Behind him, two (presumably compelled) paramedics are assessing Stefan/Marty's condition, and when Alaric sees them, he gives Damon an exasperated look]
- DAMON: I had to improvise! The over-the-counter stuff wasn't working.
[Damon turns to point at the paramedics behind him]
- DAMON: That's Frank, and that's Sully.
- FRANK: Hi, guys
- SULLY: Hey, how you doin'?
- DAMON: I've asked them very politely to make sure that Marty stays alive, and if he doesn't, then I will cut their thumbs off and feed them to the squirrels. Right, guys?
[Damon turns back for confirmation, and Frank and Sully roll their eyes before giving him double thumbs-up before he turns back to Alaric]
- DAMON: Meanwhile, you and I will go hunt down the sociopath that has taken residence in my brother, and then Valerie will jam his soul back... in...
[Damon frowns and narrows his eyes at Alaric when he realizes what (or who) is missing]
- DAMON: Where's my witch?
- ALARIC: [rolls his eyes] She's at a motel off Route 70, prepping for the spell.
- DAMON: [confused] Prepping for the spell? What does that even mean? What could she possibly have to prep?
- ALARIC: [sighs] I guess it's a little more complicated than that. At any rate, she managed to do a locator spell on the serial killer in Stefan's body. His name's Ambrose. Turns out, he's holed up in a frat house near Memphis College.
- DAMON: [nods] Maybe he'll be so busy snacking on drunk sorority girls that this'll be an easy snatch-and-grab?
[Damon starts to walk toward the Camaro while the paramedics continue to treat Stefan/Marty in the ambulance]
- DAMON: Listen, thanks for coming all this way to help out, buddy. Means a lot.
- ALARIC: [sarcastically] Yeah, well, I didn't exactly volunteer, Damon. Valerie sort of ambushed me.
- DAMON: [shrugs] Well, you know, she probably thought you'd feel good about stepping up for an old friend. Especially since you're planning on marrying his ex...
[Alaric gives Damon a look]
- ALARIC: You sure this is how you want to play it, Damon? You know, maybe you bought Marty an hour or so, but when the same thing happened to Jo... I don't know, maybe you want to consider spending your remaining time just... being with your brother.
- DAMON: [scoffs] Did you seriously just suggest that I spend the afternoon saying a sappy goodbye to Stefan instead of saving his life? Getting soft, Ric. More than soft-- your brain has liquefied.
[Damon starts to head toward his car]
- DAMON: Get in.
MENTAL HEALTH CENTER-- ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA
[Bonnie, who is still in the mental health hospital, is in the middle of a group therapy session and is talking about her feelings regarding her friendship with Damon]
- BONNIE: Thing is, I cared about him more than anyone else in the world... But it wasn't enough. I mean, he walked away like it was the easiest thing in the world to do. Then, I find out he's back and hasn't bothered to contact me. I think, "How could I have fallen into such a dark place over someone who cares so little about me?"
[A woman who is older than Bonnie and who is sitting across from her at the circle watches her speak with a curious expression]
- BONNIE: I've decided I'm ready to move on. I'm not gonna let that betrayal define the rest of my life.
- COUNSELOR: Thank you, Bonnie. Nice progress.
[The counselor turns toward the woman seated across from Bonnie, who is still staring intently at her. Bonnie starts to look uncomfortable and confused by this attention]
- COUNSELOR: Virginia? Did you have something you wanted to share?
[Virginia just rolls her eyes, though her gaze does not stray from Bonnie]
- VIRGINIA: No.
[Bonnie continues to stare back at Virginia with an uneasy expression]
ON THE ROAD TO MEMPHIS
[Damon is driving the Camaro as he tries to get information from Alaric, who is sitting in the passenger seat]
- DAMON: So, what'd I miss when I was gone? What's been happening?
- ALARIC: [shrugs] Wouldn't know.
- DAMON: [scoffs] Oh, come on. Maybe you buried your head in a Dallas sandbox, but your wife-to-be? She's always in everyone's business. Which is why I find it hard to believe that she wouldn't drop some details about her best friend over string cheese and chicken nuggets.
- ALARIC: [sighs] Look, Damon, if you're fishing for information about Bonnie, I suggest you go straight to the source.
- DAMON: I totally would, but she didn't leave a forwarding address with my storage unit. Ah, it doesn't matter. It'll give Care-bear and I something to talk about at the reception.
- ALARIC: [chuckles] Yeah, well, we're not actually having a big wedding thing. Just a few friends.
[Damon makes a face at him]
- DAMON: Since when do you have friends besides me?
- ALARIC: [exasperatedly] We made new ones. Look, I know this has been just a cat-nap for you, Damon, but it's been three years in the real world. People change. Life goes on.
- DAMON: [offended] It wasn't a cat-nap, Ric. I made an excruciatingly painful descent into a near-death state so I wouldn't destroy everyone that I loved.
- ALARIC: [sighs] You know what? Now that we know where Ambrose is all camped out, I think I'm going to go back to my life, now. So, if you don't mind taking me to the airport, or a train station, or... even this bus stop here... Yeah, if you want to pull over...
- DAMON: And there it goes. Look, I get you're mad, okay? I shouldn't have said goodbye in a letter. I should've flown to Dallas, and taken you out for drinks and line-dancing, and told you face-to-face. I'm very sorry, Ric. Just let me make it up to you, huh?
- ALARIC: Oh, you know, Damon, I'm really not interested in being part of your 12-step redemption tour.
- DAMON: One more mission, for old time's sake, huh? I can assure you that saving my little brother will be much more fun than putting together old broken-up baby dolls.
- ALARIC: [annoyed] Yeah, well, I'm not really a big fan of your brother right now, either. He broke Caroline's heart when he abandoned her.
- DAMON: Worked out pretty well for you, didn't it?
[Alaric, confused, makes a face at him]
- ALARIC: Huh?
- DAMON: [smirks] Oh, come on! Help me out. Be a hero. I mean, unless you don't think Caroline cares whether Stefan lives or dies...
[Ric gives him an exasperated look as though to say, "Seriously?", but when Damon just smiles brightly at him, he sighs in defeat]
[Stefan/Marty is still in the ambulance outside of the hospital, where he has an oxygen mask over his face and is fading in and out of consciousness while the paramedics keep an eye on him. After a moment, his eyes flutter closed, and he is transported into a flashback]
THE PHILIPPINES-- TWO YEARS AGO (2014)
[Stefan, looking a little glum, is sitting alone at the tropical-themed bar from the flashbacks in Days of Future Past, clicking a pen in his hand while deep in thought. After a moment, the bartender starts to talk to him]
- BARTENDER: Where's your girl tonight?
- STEFAN: [confused] My girl?
- BARTENDER: Valerie? Tall, pretty, likes the drinks with the little pink umbrellas? Or do you have more than one?
- STEFAN: Oh! No, no, no. Just... just one.
[The bartender notices the pen in his hand and the paper in front of him on the bar and gets a curious look on his face]
- BARTENDER: Need any help? What are you trying to write?
- STEFAN: [sighs] An apology.
[The bartender looks at the letter and reads it aloud]
- BARTENDER: "I wish that things were different, but it's safer this way. Never meant to hurt you, and I wish you all the happiness in the world." Well, sounds good to me.
- STEFAN: She returns all of them unopened. Maybe this is the one she'll read.
- BARTENDER: [nods] Right.
PRESENT DAY-- ARKANSAS HOSPITAL
[Stefan/Marty has just awakened once again, and the paramedics look at him with concern when he pulls the oxygen tank away from his face]
- FRANK: Everything okay, buddy?
- STEFAN: Do you have a piece of paper and a pen? I need to write a letter... in case I don't make it out of this.
[He takes a deep breath and puts the oxygen mask back over his face]
ALPHA RHO TAU FRATERNITY HOUSE-- MEMPHIS COLLEGE, MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
[Ambrose, who is still in Stefan's body, is doing the vampire version of a keg-stand-- he feeds off of the human who is upside down and chugging beer from the keg as the rest of the (presumably compelled) fraternity brothers and their guests chant and encourage them to keep going]
- CROWD: [chants] Chug! Chug! Chug! Chug!
[The crowd cheers as Ambrose/Stefan pulls away, blood smeared across his mouth, and sighs in pleasure as the crowd cheers. Just then, Damon appears on the front step and forcefully kicks the door open, causing the bent fireplace poker locking the doors to clatter aside as everyone, Ambrose included, turns to see the cause of the racket. Ambrose seems very amused to see Damon standing there]
- AMBROSE: Damon! I was wondering if you'd show up. Come in, friend. Have a drink!
[Damon is about to stomp through the door when he's stopped at the threshold, having not been invited in by one of the fraternity brothers who lives at the house]
- AMBROSE: Oh, dear. Looks like you're a pledge who didn't make the cut! I guess now you'll just have to slog through a bit of old-fashioned hazing.
[Damon sighs in annoyance and scowls at him]
[After the break, Damon has walked back to the car with what looks like an Alpha Rho Tau t-shirt in his hands, where he finds a still-annoyed Alaric waiting for him as he slides into the driver's seat]
- DAMON: Okay, so... I couldn't get past the threshold. You're on deck.
[He tosses Alaric the tshirt]
- DAMON: Got you a disguise. Here, put that on. You can go as the... uh... creepy professor pretending to be a chaperone.
[Alaric gives Damon a look]
- ALARIC: I booked a 5:15 into Dallas/Fort Worth. Even used my miles!
[Damon scoffs and rolls his eyes]
- DAMON: You're not fooling anyone, Ric. You know that? You leveled a rifle on me when I showed up at your house. I know you're still in the game.
- ALARIC: [exasperatedly] I'm not in the game because I possess the means to protect my family from some uninvited lurker.
- DAMON: [impatiently] It's my brother's life we're talking about here, Ric! If you're not gonna do it for me, at least do it for the guy who stepped aside and made this perfect, happy life that you're just dying to get back to possible.
[Alaric gives him another exasperated look, but before either of them can say another word, a young woman approaches the car and knocks on the window. Damon reluctantly rolls it down to speak with her and looks at her with confusion]
- DAMON: Yeah?
- WOMAN: Are you Damon Salvatore?
- DAMON: [warily] Well, that depends on who's asking...
[She holds up a phone, which has just started to ring, and hands it to him through the window]
- WOMAN: He said if you don't answer this, I'm supposed to run into traffic.
[Alaric is visibly unhappy by this development, and Damon looks pretty appalled as well]
- DAMON: I'm answering.
[He takes the phone and hits the "answer" button before putting it up to his ear to speak with Ambrose. The woman, content knowing her fate is secure, walks away]
- DAMON: [on the phone] So, I hear your vampire MO is payback for you being a Greek system reject. Kind of cliché, don't you think?
[Damon shoots Alaric an annoyed look before opening the driver's side door and getting out so he can take a walk while they talk]
- AMBROSE: Why don't you come on back here, Damon? I'm sure I can remember which attractive, over-privileged parasite owns this place.
- DAMON: Huh. Well, the only parasite I'm interested in is you.
[While they talk, Ambrose walks up the stairs of the frat house, where the party is still raging hard despite the fact that it's now daytime, and takes in the sight of everyone dancing and drinking]
- AMBROSE: You know, I don't actually care much for the taste of blood. What I do love are the less-obvious perks. Eavesdropping skills, mind games... Of course, it's fun to wantonly murder these class-obsessed imbeciles, but making them kill each other? Oh, that really takes the egg.
- DAMON: [sighs] This is all fascinating. Really. Here's the thing-- I can't hear you that well. I don't think the reception's that good in there. Why don't you just come out and deliver your villainous monologue face-to-face? What do you think?
- AMBROSE: Look, Damon, I know you won't leave me alone until you get your brother's body. So, why don't you do me one small favor, and we'll both get what we want?
[Ambrose/Stefan takes an empty wine bottle and smashes the end of it on the edge of the bar upstairs. Damon is clearly tempted by this offer, though he seems to know nothing good will come from it]
- DAMON: ...How small?
- AMBROSE: Rayna Cruz. She chased me across this country for a decade. Made my life hell-- literally. Yours, too, I hear.
- DAMON: What about her?
[As Ambrose replies, he uses the sharp edge of the now-broken bottle to slit his wrist before draining his blood into an empty red Solo cup]
- AMBROSE: Well, let's just say I made things personal with her. Framed her for a couple of massacres...
[Ambrose sighs dramatically before he continues]
- AMBROSE: Turned her boyfriend. She won't be satisfied until I'm dead. In fact, she's probably on her way over here right now. So, why don't you go ahead and kill her for me, and I promise I will turn your brother's body over to you.
[Ambrose walks over to a nearby frat brother and hands him the cup of his blood with a smile, which the young man then drinks without question]
- DAMON: [skeptically] And why would you do that?
- AMBROSE: Oh. Clearly, you are not familiar with the loophole. Well, I can easily jump into the body of a transitioning vampire...
[Ambrose rears his arm back before using the broken bottle to slit the throat of the frat boy who just drank his blood, killing him nearly instantly]
- AMBROSE: All you need to do is find me a witch who can soul-swap me into the body of a fellow you don't care about, and Stefan can have his body back. I, in turn, can mount Rayna Cruz's head on my wall. Everyone wins. What do you say, Damon?
[Damon nods, realizing this is his best option]
- DAMON: Consider it done.
- AMBROSE: [cheerfully] Wonderful!
[Valerie has just walked into a motel room with her bags when her phone rings. She answers it when she sees that it's Damon and skips the greeting in favor of getting to the point]
- VALERIE: How's Stefan?
- DAMON: Well, old Marty's heart's still beating, thanks to the miracle of modern medicine. I'm now sending him to the beautiful Wildwood Motel in a big red truck. Little sirens on the top, white stripe on the side-- you can't miss it.
- VALERIE: [impatiently] And what about Ambrose? What is taking so long?
[Damon scoffs in offense at her remark]
- DAMON: Hey, I'm out here busting my ass trying to catch this candy shell of a man that you love. You're the one holed up in the motel, eating vending machine crackers, so just give me a break, okay?
[Valerie looks extremely stressed out about this situation]
- VALERIE: Gemini spells usually take two witches, Damon. I'm trying to gather the strength to ensure that I can actually get him back into his own body.
[Valerie's anxiety does nothing but make Damon more concerned]
- DAMON: So you're saying you can't do it??
- VALERIE: [sighs] No, I didn't say that.
- DAMON: I'm not the kind of guy that likes to live in the middle, Val. You can either do it, or you can't.
- VALERIE: [frustratedly] Everyone I've ever loved in this entire world is gone. Stefan is the only thing I have left. I'll do whatever I have to do to get it done.
[Damon seems relieved by this response, though they're both still anxious about Stefan's current situation]
- DAMON: Okay. Good. Good. Now, question... Any chance you could spare some of that strength to do a locator spell for Rayna Cruz?
ON THE ROAD-- MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
[Rayna, who is weak and visibly overwhelmed by the voices of all of her vampire targets and the flashes of visions of their locations and past torture, is riding in the backseat of a car while her Uber driver, a young man with a shaved head, babbles to her. His voice and appearance is distorted by just how much sensory overload she's experiencing due to the broken Phoenix Stone]
- UBER DRIVER: I majored in poli-sci, but like, obviously, what do you do with a poli-sci degree? That is why I'm doing this. Uh, only for now.
[A horn blares as a car passes them, which only makes Rayna look even sicker, which her driver finally notices]
- UBER DRIVER: Hey, you, uh... you okay back there?
[Rayna tries to take deep breaths and closes her eyes, which only seems to worry him more]
- UBER DRIVER: You know, if you puke in my car, I gotta ding you with zero stars...
- RAYNA: [tensely] I'm fine. How much farther?
- UBER DRIVER: Oh, not far. You're gonna love these guys. They throw parties that rage for, like, three days.
[Rayna groans weakly, looking nauseous and generally miserable as the driver narrows his eyes at something ahead]
- UBER DRIVER: What the heck?
[Rayna looks alarmed and sits up so she can get a better look]
- RAYNA: No. Don't stop...
[The camera pans out to show that the road has been completely blocked off by orange traffic cones, and the driver stops despite her pleas]
- UBER DRIVER: Sorry. Gotta stop. Says so in the bylaws.
[The driver pulls down the flap-mirror over his head to show her that he's hung a piece of paper with the rules on it. However, before either can react further, the back windshield breaks, and Rayna, who has been shot with several tranquilizer darts, falls unconscious and slumps over. The driver looks horrified and scared just as Enzo, armed with his tranquilizer gun, walks around to the driver's door and aims at him for a moment before lowering it and opening the door. Enzo then stares the driver in the eyes to compel him]
- ENZO: [compels him] Sit here. Don't call anyone. Don't move.
[The driver does as he's told while Enzo lean forward and hits the button on the dashboard to turn on the emergency blinkers. He then walks around to the backseat once again, opening the door and pulling Rayna's unconscious body out of the car]
MENTAL HEALTH CENTER-- ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA
[A tray full of small cups of pills sits on the nurse's station's counter as Bonnie stands in front of the nurse behind it, picks up a cup of pills, and swallows them]
- BONNIE: Thanks. Can you check to see if I've got any messages for my doctor?
[The nurse nods and turns to do just that, and Bonnie looks around nervously for a moment]
[The scene cuts to the hallway, where Bonnie is now walking down the hallway. Behind her is Virginia, who is scowling at her as she follows her. Bonnie senses her stare and eventually stops to turn around and face her. Virginia gives her a look]
- VIRGINIA: Hey.
[Bonnie frowns in confusion as Virginia walks away without another word. Bonnie, clearly uneasy by this weird behavior, turns and walks in the opposite direction of her, ending up in a nearby empty room. However, she spins on her heel and looks concerned when she hears the door shut behind her, where she finds Virginia locking the door before staring at her]
- BONNIE: What are you doing?
- VIRGINIA: You've been stealing my med!
- BONNIE: [worried] What?
- VIRGINIA: Every day, when you get your meds, you ask the nurse, "Hey, do I have any messages from my doctor?" Then, she looks, and you swap my meds with sugar pills.
[Bonnie's eyes widen in horror at this accusation, and Virginia glares at her angrily]
- VIRGINIA: Why are you stealing my meds?
[Bonnie sighs before she finally responds]
- BONNIE: Because none of us are gonna get well if we can't think straight. You just seemed to be in a weird fog. I wanted to help.
[Virginia seems confused by her words at first, but then, after a moment, she smiles and lunges toward Bonnie to wrap her in a tight hug, which visibly confuses Bonnie. Virginia then pulls away and looks Bonnie in the eyes]
- VIRGINIA: Thank you. I finally feel like myself again. And I haven't felt like myself in a really long time.
[Bonnie still looks uneasy, but she smiles weakly at Virginia, who smiles shyly in return]
- VIRGINIA: You want to get something to eat?
[Bonnie is surprised by this rapid mood swing of Virginia's, but eventually nods in agreement]
- BONNIE: Yeah, sure.
[The two leave the room to get their candy]
ON THE ROAD-- MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
[Damon and Alaric have just pulled up to where Enzo captured Rayna, where the Uber driver is still sitting in his car in front of the row of orange traffic cones]
- DAMON: Well, that doesn't look good.
[The two get out of their car and approach the driver, who looks incredibly confused and cannot move thanks to Enzo's compulsion. Damon opens the driver's side door to talk to the man]
- DAMON: What the hell happened here?
- UBER DRIVER: [anxiously] I had a fare. I was taking her to a frat party, and some guy with an accent shot up the car and dragged her away.
[Damon sighs and rolls his eyes before looking over at Alaric, and both seem to know exactly what has just transpired]
[The scene cuts to Enzo, who is driving on the road with Rayna passed out in his backseat when his phone suddenly rings. When he sees that it is Damon who is calling him, he sighs before answering]
- ENZO: Damon. To what do I owe the pleasure?
- DAMON: [frustratedly] Bring her back.
- ENZO: [plays dumb] No idea what you're talking about.
- DAMON: Isn't it a little embarrassing, still playing fetch for the Armory?
- ENZO: I'm no longer affiliated with that organization. Try to keep up.
- DAMON: Fine. Enlighten me. What are your exact needs for Rayna Cruz at this moment? Because I promise you, I need her a lot more than you do.
- ENZO: Oh, is that so? Well, then let me ask you a question-- How's Bonnie? You know, the best friend that you just abandoned. What's her life been like since you decided to just push the pause button on your pathetic existence?
- DAMON: We're not talking about Bonnie right now. We're talking about Stefan, who is currently dying, and the fact that Rayna is the only key to her survival--
- ENZO: [cuts him off] Well, then I suggest you find another way to save him... Because you're not getting her.
[Enzo hangs up on Damon and tosses his phone on the passenger seat, and Damon looks furious as he hangs up his own phone]
[The scene then cuts to inside the Camaro, where Damon and Alaric are back on the road. After a moment of silence, Alaric finally speaks up]
- ALARIC: Together.
- DAMON: [confused] What?
- ALARIC: Bonnie and Enzo. They are together.
- DAMON: [in disbelief] "Together," as in "Someone kidnapped Bonnie Bennett and brainwashed her into a relationship with Enzo," or...?
- ALARIC: As in, Bonnie got into trouble with the Armory when you decided to take your little hibernation-vacation. Enzo stepped in and helped her out. I guess, you know, things happened from there...
- DAMON: [irritably] I thought you didn't know anything?
[Just then, the phone that the compelled Memphis College student gave Damon earlier starts to ring]
- ALARIC: Your Barbie Dream-Phone is ringing.
[Annoyed, Damon answers the call and puts it on speaker before greeting Ambrose/Stefan, who is still at the Alpha Rho Tau fraternity house at Memphis College]
- DAMON: I was just about to call you...
- AMBROSE: You know what I've realized? Between this game of beer pong and the extremely short shorts, modern Greek life is even less dignified than it once was.
- DAMON: [hesitantly] Listen, we hit a little bump in the road...
- AMBROSE: I hope that means you ran over Rayna Cruz and strapped her to the hood of your car.
- DAMON: [sighs] Ambrose, brother, nothing would make me happier than exterminating our little Huntress friend, okay? But, I'm gonna need you to take a rain check on the hit. Now, listen, I promise I'm gonna get to it. It's just, she's currently out of range right now, and I am running out of time. What do you say? We have a deal?
- AMBROSE: This sense of disappointment must be what it feels like to actually have you for a brother.
[Ambrose laughs before he hangs up the phone]
MENTAL HEALTH CENTER-- ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA
[Bonnie and Virginia are in what is presumably Bonnie's room, where they're sitting on her bed and eating candy while they talk]
- BONNIE: So, how'd you end up in here?
- VIRGINIA: Same as you, I guess. I was betrayed by someone I loved. Except it was my family, not my boyfriend.
[Bonnie's eyes widen when she realizes that Virginia believes she and Damon were in a relationship]
- BONNIE: Oh, no. Damon was not my boyfriend. He was... I don't know what he was.
- VIRGINIA: That's even worse.
[Bonnie nods in agreement before changing the subject]
- BONNIE: So, what happened with your family?
- VIRGINIA: Let's just say I tried to save them from something... dark. Turns out, they didn't want to be saved. So, my sister had me drugged up and locked away in this psych ward. Got everyone to say I'm crazy, which I'm not.
- BONNIE: [nods] Yeah... Must be hard, being a member of the St. John family.
[Virginia looks horrified by the revelation that Bonnie knows who she really is, and she begins to panic as Bonnie tries her best to reassure her and calm her down]
- VIRGINIA: You know who my family is? Is that why you're here? To spy on me?
- BONNIE: [quickly] No. No!
- VIRGINIA: Do you work for them?
- BONNIE: No! Your sister Alex is looking for me. The whole Armory is looking for me.
- VIRGINIA: [skeptically] Why?
- BONNIE: I have no idea. I faked a story and checked myself into this place a few weeks ago, hoping you could help me figure it out. They've been hunting me for almost three years.
- VIRGINIA: [bitterly] If you're expecting me to give you some pearl of wisdom, you're out of luck. That's what my family does-- they hunt things. Weapons, relics, people... And they don't stop until they get exactly what they want.
- BONNIE: [desperately] I need my life back. If there's anything you can tell me... I'm a Bennett witch. Does that mean anything to you?
- VIRGINIA: Prove it. Do magic.
- BONNIE: [anxiously] I can't. I don't have access to my magic right now.
- VIRGINIA: If you really were a Bennett witch, they would have tracked you down a long time ago.
- BONNIE: I found a way to hide from them. That, I can prove, if you promise to keep my secret.
- VIRGINIA: [hesitates] I'll keep your secret... If you promise that you'll break me out when you go.
- BONNIE: [sighs] Deal.
ALPHA RHO TAU FRATERNITY HOUSE-- MEMPHIS, TENNESSE
[Alaric and Damon have just returned to the fraternity house where Ambrose was hanging out, and when they walk up the front steps toward the door, they see the girl Ambrose compelled to give Damon her phone earlier, who is covered in blood splatter and holding the broken bottle that Ambrose used to slit his wrists to feed his blood to a frat brother]
- DAMON: Hey, what happened?
[The girl doesn't even look at them as she walks right past without a word]
- DAMON: Hey!
[Realizing that this can't mean anything good, Alaric and Damon walk toward the door, which is cracked open, and Damon is concerned when he finds that he can cross the threshold]
[The two walk into the fraternity house to find it is a literal bloodbath, with all of the party-goers dead and laying scattered around the rooms. Most of them look as though they were fed on, but others have other injuries that could have caused their deaths. Damon looks at Alaric with an extremely worried expression that his friend returns in kind]
- DAMON: Uh-oh.
- ALARIC: You think he went after Rayna himself?
- DAMON: No. He wouldn't know where to look. That's why he made me the hit-man.
[Damon pulls out the girl's phone to call the phone Ambrose was using, only to frown in frustration when it starts to ring across the room next to its now-dead owner]
- ALARIC: Maybe he's looking for his next murder party? Or maybe he's just gonna keep running, until...
[Damon frowns and fills in the blanks]
- DAMON: ...Marty drops dead with my brother still on-board?
[Suddenly, Alaric gets an idea]
- ALARIC: "On-board"... Hey, do you think he overheard you tell the drivers where to take Marty? You were just outside the house when you said it.
[Damon looks horrified by this revelation]
- DAMON: Oh, no... Maybe he figures he can get me off his back if he snuffs out Marty, and then I won't need Stefan's body anymore.
[Damon frantically grabs his phone and calls Frank, who is still in the back of the ambulance with Stefan/Marty while Sully drives. Frank pulls his phone out of his pocket and answers it]
- FRANK: This is Frank.
- DAMON: Tell me you're not still driving, Frank.
- FRANK: We hit a little accident-related traffic a few miles back.
- DAMON: [frustrated] What is the point of having an emergency vehicle if you can't run other cars out of the way?
- FRANK: Sorry about that.
- DAMON: [angrily] Do not stop again! Do not pass "Go," do not collect $200. Turn on the lights on the top of the van, Frank, and deliver him to a very powerful witch woman before some lunatic tries to off my brother.
- FRANK: Copy that.
[Frank and a very frustrated and anxious Damon hang up before Frank turns to address Sully]
- FRANK: Hey, Sully? We gotta turn on the lights.
[Sully nods and turns to the right to turn on the sirens and lights, just as a large pick-up truck rams right into the driver's side door so hard that the ambulance topples onto its side and slides across the road. Stefan/Marty, still hooked up to his oxygen mask, falls with the ambulance and lands on his side on the wall when it makes impact, briefly knocking him out. Meanwhile, Ambrose/Stefan, who is driving the truck that hit them, smirks in satisfaction]
- AMBROSE: Bull's eye!
[After the break, Ambrose/Stefan sees Sully, who has been badly injured, crawl out of the driver's side door and onto the side of the ambulance as it lays sideways in the intersection, and when Sully jumps to his feet, Ambrose gets out of his truck to speak with him. Next comes Frank, who crawls out of the back of the ambulance and who does not seem to be as injured. Sully looks at Ambrose/Stefan with concern]
- SULLY: Hey buddy, you okay?
[Ambrose seems surprised that he's concerned about his well-being and smiles fakely, picking up an oxygen tank that fell off of the ambulance]
- AMBROSE: Me? Oh, I'm well. Thank you.
[Ambrose whacks Sully in the head with the oxygen tank so hard that he spins before falling onto the ground. Inside the ambulance, Stefan/Marty recognizes the sound of his own voice, and the adrenaline rush helps him awaken from his disoriented state. Ambrose kicks Sully to make sure he's dead before turning to Frank, who has just limped onto his feet]
- AMBROSE: How about you, friend? Are you hurt?
[Frank glares at him before turning to run in the opposite direction as fast as he can, but Ambrose easily vamp-speeds toward him, grabs him by the shoulders, and feeds on his neck from behind as he screams in pain. When he's done, he sighs in relief as he's empowered by the blood before walking toward the ambulance]
- AMBROSE: What about you, Stefan? Are you ready to meet your maker?
[Ambrose finally makes it to the ambulance and pulls the back doors open, but becomes frustrated when he sees that Stefan/Marty are nowhere to be found. He sees something moving out of the corner of his eye and looks around the edge of the ambulance to see Stefan/Marty stumbling away as fast as he can. It's clear that it's taking all the energy that he has, but he manages to make it all the way to a nearby house, where he breaks the glass of the door with his elbow and opens the doorknob from inside before throwing himself over the threshold just as Ambrose catches up with him. Unfortunately for Ambrose, he can't make it through the door due to not having been invited, and Stefan/Marty laughs smugly as he struggles to catch his breath]
- STEFAN: I guess being human still has a few privileges.
[Ambrose can't help but chuckle at this turn of events]
ON THE ROAD (MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE) / MENTAL HEALTH CENTER (ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA)
[Rayna has just awakened in the backseat of Enzo's car ON THE ROAD in MEMPHIS, TENNESSE to find that her wrists have been shackled and chained strongly to the car door. She looks around in horror until she sees Enzo's reflection in the rearview mirror and realizes who has just captured her this time]
- RAYNA: [annoyed] Oh, no. Not you again.
- ENZO: Afraid so. Lucky for me, you seem to be a bit off your game today.
- RAYNA: I would rather die than go back to the Armory. I'll strangle myself with this seatbelt if I have to.
- ENZO: Don't bother. They know where you are. Seems that Alex St. John got everything she needed from you.
- RAYNA: [confused] So, what am I missing? Why am I here?
- ENZO: Let's just say that I have my reasons.
- RAYNA: Wow. That's specific. Are we playing 20 Questions now? Great, I'm game.
- ENZO: Are you aware that the Armory has engineered a type of pill that suppresses magic?
[Rayna's eyes widen in horror when she realizes what he's talking about]
[Meanwhile, at the MENTAL HEALTH CENTER in ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA, Bonnie has just plucked one of the pills made from Rayna's blood from a silver cup on her desk to show Virginia]
- BONNIE: If I take one of these every day, they can't do a locator spell on me. The downside is, I don't have access to any magic.
- VIRGINIA: [confused] How'd the Armory make something like that?
- BONNIE: You ever hear of a vampire hunter named Rayna Cruz? They used her blood to make the pills I've been taking. If you help me, you'll be free to move away.
- VIRGINIA: [warily] What kind of help are you looking for?
[Back in Enzo's car ON THE ROAD, Enzo and Rayna continue their conversation]
- ENZO: I need to know if the effects of those pills can be reversed.
[Rayna laughs in response to this question, which does not do much to amuse Enzo]
- ENZO: Or, I could slit your throat and throw you in a dumpster. It depends on your attitude.
- RAYNA: [shrugs] Sorry. I guess it's the dumpster for me, then. The effects of my blood can't be reversed-- only enhanced.
[This horrifies Enzo so much that he hits the brakes and swerves over onto the side of the road, causing his tires to screech loudly. The force of the stop causes Rayna's back to slam against the backseat, and Enzo quickly pulls his dart gun out and aims it at Rayna's face]
- ENZO: How do you know? If I put enough of these through your eyeballs, you'll probably never wake up.
- RAYNA: The Armory already tried. They failed. Magic doesn't behave like science. Don't shoot the messenger.
[Enzo looks devastated by this news, which intrigues Rayna]
- RAYNA: This isn't a matter of idle curiosity, is it? You stole those pills and gave them to someone you care about. You know what would be a terrible shame? Is if that person were a witch...
[Rayna continues to speak in voiceover as the scene cuts back to the MENTAL HEALTH CENTER, where Bonnie has just popped one of the pills into her mouth and swallowed it dry while Virginia watches curiously]
- RAYNA: [voiceover] Say, Bonnie Bennett? Because that would mean you just gave the girl you love a death sentence.
STEFAN'S HIDEOUT-- MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
[Ambrose (in Stefan's body) is still puttering around outside the house where Stefan (in Marty's body) is hiding out. Stefan is kneeling on the ground, gasping for breath, while Ambrose paces outside]
- AMBROSE: You look like you're in pretty bad shape, Stefan. Hmm? Would you rather just get this over with? Think of it this way-- at least you won't have to go back to the Hell Stone.
[Ambrose looks around at all of the construction materials outside of the house before noticing a pile of bricks and picking one up before throwing it into the house. Stefan sees it coming toward him and ducks onto the ground as he crawls away just as Ambrose picks up another brick]
- AMBROSE: You just have the sweet release of death to look forward to.
[Ambrose throws a second brick just as Stefan attempts to take cover behind a doorway, allowing the brick to hit him hard in the head before he gets to his hiding spot. Ambrose then looks around for something else and is very pleased to find a gas tank next to a grill in the side yard while Stefan pants for breath and groans in pain inside]
- AMBROSE: Oh. Portable stoves! What will they think of next? I think I'm really going to enjoy my life in this new world.
[Ambrose turns the spigot on the gas tank, causing it to release the gasoline inside before he throws it through the now-broken window, where it lands in the foyer. Stefan looks panicked as he sees the tank fill the house with gas. Outside, Ambrose continues to talk to him while he uses a grill lighter to set a can of oil on fire in a makeshift Molotov cocktail]
- AMBROSE: I've read your journals, Stefan. And I know you're a deeply sensitive, literary sort of fellow. Is there any final words you'd like me to deliver?
[Stefan, terrified at the thought of dying in an explosion, crawls into the living room to grab the gas can. Just as Ambrose throws the lit oil can, Damon appears in front of him and catches it before it can get into the house]
- DAMON: Fun's over.
[Damon rolls his eyes as he blows the lit can out, and Ambrose scowls at him angrily before grabbing a nearby plank of wood and using his knee to break it in half]
- AMBROSE: On the contrary-- the fun's just begun.
[Ambrose lunges toward Damon to stake him as Damon just smirks smugly. Before Ambrose can get close to him, he's shot in the back with a vervain dart and is instantly knocked out. When he collapses onto the ground, it is revealed that Alaric is standing behind him and was the one who shot him, and it's clear by the look on his face that he's enjoying himself, which makes Damon happy]
- ALARIC: I hate how good that felt.
[Damon smiles warmly at him]
MENTAL HEALTH CENTER-- ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA
[In Bonnie's bathroom, Bonnie has just taken the cup of Rayna's blood pills, which is actually the handle on the faucet of her sink, and replaced it so that she can keep them hidden before she turns back to Virginia, who is standing in the doorway]
- BONNIE: Now tell me why the Armory is looking for me.
- VIRGINIA: You also promised to get me out of this place, remember? Do you have a key code or something?
- BONNIE: I have a doctor who can check us both out, but not before you tell me what I need to know.
[Bonnie stares Virginia in the eyes, and Virginia takes a shaky deep breath, clearly scared by whatever she is about to tell her]
- VIRGINIA: There's a vault in the basement of the Armory. It was sealed by a Bennett witch a long time ago, and only a Bennett witch can unlock it.
- BONNIE: [confused] So they want me to open a vault?
- VIRGINIA: As far as my family knew, Lucy Bennett was the only living witch in your line, but she disappeared about four years ago. I'm not sure why we didn't know about you...
- BONNIE: I was officially dead for a while. Then I wasn't.
[Virginia frowns in confusion, and Bonnie shrugs]
- BONNIE: It was a long story. What's in this vault?
[Virginia's voice shakes with fear when she replies]
- VIRGINIA: Something that can't be let out.
- BONNIE: [impatiently] Gonna need to you be a little more specific.
- VIRGINIA: First, you have to sweat that you'll never open it.
[A tear falls down Virginia's cheek from the fear of what is inside the vault, but Bonnie isn't swayed]
- BONNIE: If this vault is the key to my freedom, I can't promise you anything until I know what's in it.
[Virginia looks sad and disappointed as more tears fall down her cheeks, and she smiles weakly before turning away and wiping the tears off of her face]
- VIRGINIA: Oh... I was hoping you'd be... on my side.
[She suddenly grabs the toothbrush cup on the sink and uses it to smash the mirror over it before grabbing a large shard of glass and wielding it as a weapon. Bonnie backs away and looks at her in horror]
- BONNIE: What are you doing?!
- VIRGINIA: Sorry. I can't let you open the vault.
[She swipes at Bonnie several times, cutting her on the bicep twice and causing Bonnie to call out in pain]
- BONNIE: AHH! OW!
[The sound of Bonnie's cries alerts the orderlies, who rush into the room. When they see the injured Bonnie being physically threatened by Virginia, one of the male orderlies grabs Virginia and disarms her before using his arms to restrain her]
- VIRGINIA: Let me go! Let me go! She's a witch! She's trying to break out! You have to stop her. Please!
[Another orderly rushes around with a syringe full of sedative and injects Virginia in the arm with it, and though she continues to struggle against their hold, she quickly weakens as she starts to fall asleep]
- VIRGINIA: You have to stop her! She can't open that vault! She can't open... the vault...
[Once Virginia is unconscious, one of the orderlies carries her out to take her back to her room, leaving the other orderly to check on Bonnie]
- ORDERLY: You alright, Miss McCullough?
[Bonnie, who is clearly still shaken by this turn of events, is distracted for a moment before she finally nods weakly]
- BONNIE: Yeah.
[The orderly leaves to go tend to his other patients, leaving a still-concerned Bonnie behind in her room]
[Ambrose, still unconscious and in Stefan's body, is laying on one of the beds in Valerie's motel room while Stefan is barely conscious in Marty's body and laying in the other. Valerie sits between the two beds, surrounded by dozens of white candles, as she takes Stefan/Marty's hand in her own and looks at him with affection, though it's clear Marty is in bad shape. All the while, Alaric watches from behind her, looking conflicted about this situation]
- VALERIE: I'll get you back to where you belong. Don't worry.
[Valerie looks back at Alaric with a grateful expression]
- VALERIE: Thank you for doing all this.
[Alaric looks surprised by this reaction just as Damon walks into the room with a defibrillator in his hands, closing the door behind him before holding up the device]
- DAMON: Snagged this from the front desk, in case we have to restart Marty's ticker.
[Alaric looks over at Valerie]
- ALARIC: Damon's the one you should be thanking.
- DAMON: [scoffs] She didn't think I'd come through, even though Stefan's well-being is the one and only thing we have in common.
[Damon then looks over at Valerie with a serious expression]'
- DAMON: Don't thank me. Just promise me you can do this.
- VALERIE: [nods] I promise.
[Valerie looks down at Stefan/Marty, who nods at her, and Valerie takes a deep breath before she stretches her arms out, placing one hand on Marty's arm and one hand on Stefan's arm as she closes her eyes to begin the spell]
- VALERIE: [chants] Phasmatos spiritus revertum corpus soelteros mentum mente. Phasmatos spiritus revertum corpus soelteros mentum mente...
[Suddenly, Stefan, in his own body, awakens to find himself laying on the couch in the parlor of the Salvatore boarding house. A fire is roaring in the fireplace, and Valerie is by the bar, where she smiles and reaches for a bottle of bourbon. It soon becomes clear that Valerie is using her vampire telepathy to enter Stefan's mind to comfort him while she does the spell in the real world]
- VALERIE: Care for a drink?
[Stefan sits up and looks around in confusion as Valerie pours them drinks]
- STEFAN: What am I doing here?
- VALERIE: Well, you know what they say-- "There's no place like home."
- STEFAN: You're in my head, aren't you?
[Valerie rolls her eyes good-naturedly as she joins Stefan on the couch and hands him a drink]
- VALERIE: No matter where we traveled, you were always going on and on about how much you missed this musty old house. I figured you'd be more comfortable here, and I wanted to see the real you.
- STEFAN: Do I even want to know what's happening out there?
- VALERIE: You're going to be fine. Promise.
[Valerie leans forward and kisses him, but when they pull away, Stefan makes a suspicious face]
- STEFAN: You wouldn't happen to be lying to me, would you? Because if I'm about to die a painful death in a strange human's body, then I want to make the most of my time.
- VALERIE: The only thing you need to worry about is our next destination. Any ideas? Or would you rather spin the old globe in the upstairs study and let fate decide?
- STEFAN: Well... I've actually had a lot of time to think lately.
- VALERIE: I suppose there's something about standing on the precipice of death that lends itself to deep thoughts.
- STEFAN: And I wouldn't have to run anymore. I wouldn't have the scar. My life wouldn't be tied to Rayna's.
- VALERIE: Well, we wouldn't have to call it "running." We could call it "sightseeing".
- STEFAN: Or, we could stay closer to home.
- VALERIE: "Home?" You do remember we can't go back to Mystic Falls, right? Matt Donovan made sure of that.
[Valerie's smile falls slightly when she realizes where he may be going with this]
- VALERIE: Unless you're talking about somewhere else... Dallas, maybe?
[Stefan smiles and shakes his head]
- STEFAN: No. Of course not.
- VALERIE: But things are different now. And you have a chance to go back to your real life.
- STEFAN: [confused] You are my real life.
[This response clearly touches Valerie deeply, and her eyes start to fill with tears, which does not escape Stefan's notice. However, his concern becomes even more serious when he sees that her nose is starting to bleed]
- STEFAN: Valerie? What's wrong?
[In the real world, Valerie is still working on the spell, but it's clear that it's starting to take its toll on her as her nose begins to bleed even more and pant for breath]
- VALERIE: [chants] ...revertum corpus soelteros... mentum... mente...
[Valerie falls to her knees and gasps for breath as Alaric rushes over to check on her]
- ALARIC: Valerie? Valerie, are you okay?
[Damon joins Alaric in checking on her as she wheezes, looking even more frantic than Valerie herself as he puts his hands around her arms and holds her upright]
- DAMON: No, no, no! Hey, get up! Hey, you promised me. Get up. You promised you could do this. Get up! Valerie, get up!
[Valerie struggles to get up and finish the spell, but she's getting weaker by the moment, and her attempts to chant just come out as grunts and groans]
[Back in Stefan's mind, Stefan is looking at Valerie with just as much concern as he tries to get her to talk to him]
- STEFAN: Valerie, what's happening?
[Valerie weakly wipes the blood from her nose before looking at Stefan with a sad expression]
- VALERIE: Be honest-- have I only been a pleasant distraction these past few years, or am I something more?
[Stefan looks taken aback and saddened by this question]
- STEFAN: What? No, you've never been a distraction.
[Valerie becomes even weaker and slumps over, leading Stefan to finally realize what is happening]
- STEFAN: Valerie! It's the spell. It's hurting you.
[Stefan tries to keep Valerie upright]
[Meanwhile, in the real world, Damon is holding Valerie the exact same way as he continues to try to rouse her while Alaric watches anxiously]
- DAMON: Valerie? Valerie, get up!
- ALARIC: Damon, stop. She's not strong enough.
- DAMON: [desperately] Yes, she is! She's not gonna let him die!
[Damon turns back to Valerie, who is still barely conscious and hanging like a rag doll in Damon's arms]
- DAMON: Hey, get up! You promised me you could do this!
[Valerie suddenly gasps awake, and though she's still weak, she's at least aware and alert enough to pick up where she left off as Damon takes her hands in his own and puts one each on Marty and Stefan. He continues to stand behind her with his arms bracing hers so she can stay upright as she kneels on the floor between them]
- VALERIE: [chants] Phasmatos spiritus revertum corpus soelteros mentum mente. Phasmatos spiritus revertum corpus soelteros mentum mente...
[In Stefan's head, Stefan is looking at Valerie in horror in fear when he realizes she's still doing the spell]
- STEFAN: Valerie, stop the spell right now! It's too strong for you. It's killing you.
- VALERIE: [determinedly] No.
- STEFAN: [panicked] Valerie, stop it!
- VALERIE: [weakly] No, I-I promised you'd be fine.
- STEFAN: Do not sacrifice yourself for me, do you understand?
- VALERIE: I have no intention of breaking that promise.
- STEFAN: [pleadingly] Valerie, please! Please, stop.
- VALERIE: [seriously] You're all I have.
[Valerie closes her eyes to continue the spell as Stefan becomes overwhelmed with fear]
- STEFAN: Valerie, stop the spell!
[Stefan is horrified when suddenly, Valerie slips out of his hold and completely vanishes, causing him to look around the now-empty parlor in confusion and panic]
- STEFAN: Valerie? Valerie?!
[The parlor starts to glow white as Stefan stands to his feet, until suddenly, he awakens with a gasp in the bed in Valerie's motel room to find Valerie kneeling on the floor beside his bed, who stares at Stefan in shock, along with Damon and Alaric, who aren't sure what to think]
- VALERIE: [hesitantly] Stefan?
- STEFAN: It's me. It's me.
[Stefan manages to pull himself into a halfway-seated position so that he's close enough to pull Valerie closer to him]
- STEFAN: It's me.
[Stefan pulls her into an embrace and hugs her tightly, and both Damon and Alaric share a happy look as they sigh in relief. However, though Valerie still hugs him tightly, Stefan looks troubled by what has just occurred]
[After the break, Alaric has just walked out of the motel and into the parking when Damon suddenly chases after him]
- DAMON: Hey, wait up!
[Alaric ignores him and keeps walking]
- DAMON: Ric! Ric, come on, man. Where are you going?
[Alaric finally stops walking and turns to face him, and it is clear by the expression on his face and the tone of his voice that he's annoyed and his patience is wearing thin]
- ALARIC: Home.
[Damon's expression looks hurt as he sighs, visibly guilty about what he's done to their friendship]
- DAMON: Oh, Ric. I'm trying here, man. I am. I shouldn't have abandoned you. That was a terrible thing to do. I'm sorry. But just tell me whatever amends I need to make, or whatever bridges I need to build, and let's just... Let's just get back to the way things were. All right?
- ALARIC: [sighs] You want to know why the last three years have been the happiest of my life? Because I got to start over. Because I have two little girls that I absolutely love, a job that I actually earned, and a fiancée that makes me feel so lucky to be alive. And I did all that without you barging into my life and screwing things up.
[Damon is obviously devastated by this answer, though he knows that Alaric has made a valid point, and when Alaric sees the guilt and hurt in his expression, he sighs again, though only slightly guilty about his harsh words]
- ALARIC: Damon, no offense, but I don't want things to go back to the way they were.
[Damon, overwhelmed by emotion and at a loss of what to do, just swallows anxiously and tries to cover up his hurt feelings]
- DAMON: Well... Thanks for being honest.
[Alaric gives him a somewhat sympathetic look before turning to walk away, but after a moment, he grimaces before he reluctantly stops and turns around to make one last statement to Damon]
- ALARIC: Bonnie's undercover in a psych ward in Ashville. You might have better luck winning her back.
[Alaric turns and walks away toward the bus station, and Damon nods as he gets a determined look on his face]
[Stefan has just walked out of the bathroom, having showered and changed into fresh clothes, and he sighs in relief at being back in his own body again]
- STEFAN: Ahhh. Better?
[Valerie smiles weakly at him]
- VALERIE: Better.
[Stefan notices that Valerie is sitting on one of the beds with a pen and paper in her hands and frowns in confusion as he walks toward her]
- STEFAN: Hmmm. Catching up on your, uh, correspondences?
[Valerie continues to smile weakly, and she blushes slightly in embarrassment]
- VALERIE: I was trying to write you a letter... Like the ones you used to write Caroline when you thought I wasn't looking.
[Stefan only looks more confused by this answer]
- STEFAN: Uh... I'm standing right here. You don't have to right me a letter.
- VALERIE: [sighs] I heard the fear in your voice. You weren't afraid of dying. You were afraid that I was going to die for you.
- STEFAN: [frowns] Yeah, of course I was.
- VALERIE: You were afraid that it wouldn't have been worth it. Me sacrificing myself for you. Because you don't love me the way I love you... And the guilt of that sacrifice would eat you alive.
[Stefan looks overwhelmed by Valerie's analysis of his behavior and doesn't know what to say]
- STEFAN: Valerie...
- VALERIE: The truth is... I've never loved anyone the way I love you. But that's not true for you. And now, by some miracle, you get the chance to go back and make things right with Caroline. I know you never meant to hurt me. I even know that you loved me in your own way. And maybe if things had been different, if the world had been kinder to us... I could've been the love of your life, too. Your small, quiet human life.
[Stefan is still speechless out of shock, guilt, and a little sadness that his relationship with Valerie is over, and pauses for a long moment before he finally speaks up]
- STEFAN: I'm so sorry...
- VALERIE: Don't be. I think it will be good for me, to find a new life that's completely my own. I've never had that.
[Valerie kisses Stefan passionately one last time before she pulls away, stands up, and grabs her bag. Stefan remains seated on the bed, overwhelmed by everything that has happened in the last few days and what he'll do from here, though he looks up just as Valerie makes it to the door and turns back to say goodbye]
- VALERIE: I know you don't always believe this, but... You deserve to be happy, Stefan. Please, be happy.
- STEFAN: [smiles weakly] You, too.
[Valerie smiles tearfully at him before turning and walking out the door while Stefan watches sadly]
MENTAL HEALTH CENTER-- ASHVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA
[Bonnie is in the middle of packing her bags in her room at the center when she picks up a book to put it in her suitcase. Under the cover of the book is the letter Damon wrote for Bonnie, which is still sealed and has remained unopened since Damon wrote it three years ago. She's in the middle of staring at it when Enzo suddenly appears in the doorway]
- ENZO: The hospital left a message with your doctor. Said you had an incident with another patient.
[Bonnie genuinely laughs at this remark before Enzo smirks at her, and the two leap toward each other as they embrace tightly. Enzo spins her around in a circle before leaning down to kiss her passionately. However, when they pull away, he frowns when he sees the bloody cut on her arm from where Virginia cut her with the shard of mirror. Bonnie responds in a flirtatious tone of voice]
- BONNIE: It's just a scratch, Doctor. But it was all worth it, because guess who knows why I'm on the Armory's Most-Wanted list?
- ENZO: [smiles] Virginia St. John.
- BONNIE: Turns out, there's some kind of vault in the basement of that pretentious building-- sealed by a Bennett witch. Alex St. John wants me to open it.
[Bonnie walks away from Enzo and unscrews the cap on the faucet handle so she can pack the pills made from Rayna's blood. The sight of them makes Enzo go pale from horror about what he now knows about those pills]
- BONNIE: Now, we just have to figure out what's inside and the best way to leverage my freedom... After you check me out of this place and take me out for dinner, because if I have to eat another piece of runny, beige casserole, I might actually lose my mind.
[Bonnie finally notices the scared look on Enzo's face and becomes concerned]
- BONNIE: What's wrong?
- ENZO: [sighs] You can't take these anymore, love.
[Bonnie frowns in confusion]
- BONNIE: I got a lead, not all the answers. I still need to stay off the Armory's radar.
- ENZO: The pills are making you sick.
- BONNIE: What are you talking about? I feel fine?
[Enzo's guilt starts to overwhelm him, and he starts to stammer anxiously about what he knows]
- ENZO: I didn't-I didn't know, but the Armory was, was-was experimenting on Mary Louise. They forced these pills down her throat every day for the past three years, and as a result, she became very... very ill.
- BONNIE: [confused] I thought she blew herself up?
- ENZO: It's because she knew she was dying.
[Bonnie looks horrified by this bad news, and Enzo becomes even more guilty and concerned for Bonnie]
- ENZO: I'm-I'm so sorry... Uh, I-I thought I was protecting you.
[Bonnie's eyes fill with tears as Enzo absentmindedly rubs her shoulders]
- BONNIE: I'm gonna die? Is that what you're trying to tell me? Because I've done it once or twice before, and it's not all that fun...
- ENZO: [determinedly] No. I will not let that happen. I will not let you die, Bonnie Bennett. You have my word.
[Enzo pulls Bonnie into another tight hug, and Bonnie looks completely stunned by what she's just learned as she squeezes her eyes shut. However, she only becomes even more shocked when she opens them again and looks over Enzo's shoulder to find Damon standing in the doorway holding a bouquet of flowers. Damon looks surprised to see her, and even more surprised to find her in Enzo's arms]
- DAMON: Bonnie?
[Bonnie freezes in shock for a moment before sliding out of Enzo's embrace, and they both turn to face him as Bonnie makes her facial expression blank. She walks toward him with as much confidence as she can muster, and Damon begins to ramble anxiously]
- DAMON: I'm sorry. I don't... I, um... I...
[A tear falls down Bonnie's cheek, and it almost looks like she's happy to see him, and Damon, unsure of how to react, looks down at the flowers in his hand. Just then, Bonnie sneers and grabs the door before slamming it as hard as she can in Damon's face]