So, where did we leave off? Oh, that’s right, ultra-bitch Katherine made her return to Mystic Falls. And not only has she left Damon hanging for over 100 years, but when they finally reunite, she tells him that she never loved him. That it was always Stefan. Ouch. So now, Damon has lost both Katherine and Elena to Stefan. Katherine, as you can imagine, is no saint and she’s got some pretty nasty ulterior motives. Now, our friend in Caroline is still in the hospital after the wreck she, Tyler, and Matt were involved in. She begins to recover after Damon gives her some of his blood. Before it can all leave her system, Katherine shows up and smothers Caroline sending our friend into vampire transition.
Meanwhile, at Mayor Lockwood’s funeral, Tyler’s uncle Mason shows up. Nobody new ever shows up in this town without a secret, but according to him, he’s only looking for a Lockwood family heirloom – a moonstone – for sentimental reasons. Tyler doesn’t trust him and keeps the moonstone in his possession. Damon doesn’t trust Uncle Mason either so he puts Tyler and his anger issues in a compelling situation with a local. Before Tyler can go all animal on the guy, Uncle Mason comes to the rescue, proving to Damon and Stefan nearby that he is supernatural – a werewolf to be exact.
Since werewolves were thought to be legend, Damon, Elena, and Alaric head to Isobel’s office at Duke University (remember, she was a research of the paranormal) to find out more. Here, they find out that both vampires and werewolves used to roam the earth freely until they were cursed by an ancient shaman. The curse made the vampires slaves to the sun and the wolves slaves to the moon. In addition to this, werewolves and vampires are mortal enemies – one werewolf bite is fatal to the vampires. At a bonfire party on the Lockwood plantation property, we witness Uncle Mason wolf out almost taking down Caroline, who is full vamp by now. So Mystic Falls has a wolf on their hands now.
Damon’s not too happy about this, but Mason, who can sense that Damon and Stefan are vampires, insists that they don’t have to be enemies. But Damon, in his true fashion, tries to take out Mason by stabbing him with silver. That trick, unfortunately, is just a myth and now they’re enemies. Mason spills the vampire beans to Sheriff Forbes and she concocts a plan that nearly, actually kills Damon and Stefan. Caroline, however, comes to the rescue, exposing her vampire self to her mother. The deputies are collateral damage, but they spare the sheriff by locking her up until the vervain exits her system and she can be compelled to forget.
Now that they’ve survived death again, Mason must be dealt with. Bonnie helps detain him and Damon takes it upon himself to torture him and, eventually, kill him. At the same time, the rest of the gang are trying to retrieve the moonstone. After an angry confrontation, Mason tells Tyler that the werewolf thing is a family curse and to trigger it, you have to end a human life. When Tyler thinks he almost kills one of his friends, he gives the moonstone up. Of course, Mason has hidden it and it turns out to be in the bottom of a well on the Lockwood property. The big surprise is that Mason has been working with Katherine all along – he’s another one of her lovers. Oh, the tangled web.
So now that Mason is dead, heart ripped out by Damon, Katherine needs another werewolf for her plan – enter Tyler. At a masquerade ball, Matt and another friend, who are both compelled by Katherine, get into an argument with Tyler. Caroline breaks it up, but Tyler pushes the girl and she hits her head, causing her death and triggering the curse. At the same ball, Damon and Stefan enact a plan to kill Katherine, but it fails once they learn that Katherine has used linked herself to Elena with the help of a witch. So she lives to fight another day, but she must spend the rest of those days in the tomb she was supposed to be trapped in in 1864. The spell has been reworked to actually keep her in there this time.
We should think that everything’s fine and dandy, only it’s not. It never is. Elena is in trouble once again. She’s been kidnapped. When we find her, she’s somewhere in rural Georgia being held prisoner by some very old vampires. They want to use her as a peace offering for an even older vampire – Elijah – and the person he works for – Klaus. Here, we learn that Elena is a Petrova doppelganger and is the key to breaking the sun and moon curse we learned about earlier. Stefan and Damon come to the rescue once again and stake Elijah. Hooray! The only problem is that Elijah doesn’t stay dead. Yikes.
Here’s the dilemma, Elijah is an original vampire. Yes, original. You can’t kill those. He comes to Mystic Falls to explain his terms. See, Elijah, although ruthless, is quite the gentleman. He wants to bargain with the gang. He wants Elena, not to give her up to Klaus, but to use her to kill him. Klaus and Elijah are brothers and Elijah wants revenge for the death of the rest of his family. Of course, Stefan and Damon don’t trust Elijah, so they try to contact Isobel for information on original vampires. Instead of Isobel, they get John Gilbert again. But he’s actually useful this time, providing them with one of the only weapons that can kill an original vampire – a dagger dipped in the ash of an ancient white oak tree. He just fails to mention one tiny, little detail – the fact that it will kill any vampire that wields it. So you need to be human.
Elijah also informs Elena that that whole sun and moon curse thing is false. There’s a curse alright, but it’s on Klaus and not the whole vampire/wolf races. See, turns out that Klaus is actually the half brother of Elijah; and Klaus just happens to carry the werewolf gene. He’s a hybrid. To prevent this abomination of nature, the curse was placed on Klaus to keep the wolf side dormant. Klaus has been trying to break the curse and claim his full power. Let’s just say, nobody wants that to happen. Now, what you need to break the curse is the moonstone, a vampire sacrifice, a werewolf sacrifice, and the blood of the doppelganger. All of these things are conveniently located in Mystic Falls.
If the blood of the doppelganger is needed, then it’s the end for poor Elena, right? Not quite. Way back in the day, when Katherine was the doppelganger, Elijah had developed a plan to save her. Then, of course, Katherine screwed it all up by running, hanging herself and turning into a vampire. Elijah’s plan now is to let Klaus break the curse, but then use the power of hundreds of dead, angry witches channeled through Bonnie to weaken Klaus enough for Elijah to take him out. And as for Elena, he has this potion for her that will bring her back to life. Sounds like a good plan right? For the most part, it is.
When Klaus finally makes his way to Mystic Falls, things kind of happen in a frenzy. First of all, he possesses Alaric and his first priority is to kill Bonnie. No witch, no problems. So Bonnie has to fake her death. Klaus is fooled. Then, Damon in an attempt to get rid of the other necessities to break the curse, namely the werewolf, is accidently bitten by Tyler. But Klaus has backup sacrifices for the werewolf, one of Mason’s friends, and poor Aunt Jenna has been turned into a vampire for the sacrifice. The ritual goes through as planned (RIP Aunt Jenna), and the curse is broken. During Klaus’s wolf transformation, Bonnie shows up and lays a witch whooping on him, while Elijah swoops in prepared to take his heart out of his chest. But Klaus, ever the promise-maker promises to reunite Elijah with their family, who isn’t actually dead. His leverage? If you kill him, you’ll never know where they are. Damn you Klaus! So Elijah reneges on his word and spares Klaus. Damn you Elijah!
So now, we have a really, freaking big problem on our hands. You’ve got an original vampire roaming around and his hybrid brother, who cannot be killed – not even by the dagger in the heart. Ay yi yi. But in other news, Damon is still suffering from his werewolf bite, so Stefan the Hero goes to Klaus to find the cure. Klaus has the cure (his blood), but what’s his price? Well, he makes Stefan drink human blood (the guy can’t control himself, remember) and basically become his flunkie. Uh oh, what has Stefan gotten himself into. But Katherine, who’s been chilling on the sidelines due to Klaus’s compulsion, delivers Klaus’s blood to Damon and he survives. But now, we’ve got this invincible, ferocious hybrid to deal with. Double yikes.
Guys, it’s hard to believe that so much has happened in Mystic Falls in so little time. Sheesh! It’s hard to keep up with it all. And Season 3 gets even more twisted! Check out the Season 1 recap here.