This is a recap, so there are spoilers ahead!

Unable to contact Stefan or Damon by phone, Elena goes to the Salvatore house and catches Rebekah leaving Damon’s bedroom.  Thinking she’ll get a reaction, she tells Damon of Esther’s plan to kill the Original Children, but he’s up for any plan that ends in the death of Klaus.  Rebekah returns home to her brothers.  Kol wants to have fun and cajoles Klaus to go out with him.  Elijah confides in Rebekah that he has noticed strange behavior from their mother and thinks something’s afoot.

Kol - The Vampire Diaries - All My Children episode

Bonnie tries to learn the privacy spell Esther used.  She mentions that Esther asked her and Abby to channel their bloodline for the spell she wants to perform that very night.  Elena is the only person who seems reluctant to kill off the family – Elijah helped save her life and she feels like she should return the favor.

Elijah takes Elena on a trip into the woods, which should strike Elena as a terrible idea, but she is distracted by his flowery stories of what the town used to be like.  Sure enough, after finding out Esther’s real plan, Elijah kidnaps Elena and forces her underground into the Lockwood caves.

Despite pretending he doesn’t care about her, Damon notices Elena is missing, but Alaric is busy on a date with the doctor and doesn’t seem concerned with her disappearance.  Elena discovers that Rebekah is in the tunnels with her.  Uh oh!

Stefan - The Vampire Diaries - All My Children episode

Elijah tells Damon and Stefan to kill the Bennet witches so Esther can’t perform the spell that kills them all.  If they don’t, Rebekah will kill Elena.  Damon presents another plan to Stefan: they dagger Elijah, which will start a domino effect and kill all the siblings.  Vampires can’t wield the dagger without killing themselves, so he calls up Alaric.  Klaus and Kol are getting pretty drunk at the bar, and they bring in Caroline to distract Klaus.  She lures him outside, where he seems genuinely interested in getting to know her.

Esther works on her reversal spell.  The plan is that the spell will make them human again, and Esther will sacrifice Finn, who hates being a vampire.  Kol takes a liking to Meredith, and when he’s distracted, Alaric daggers him.  One by one, the Originals fall except for Klaus, who finds Alaric, Stefan, and Damon dragging Kol’s body.  He fights them and removes the dagger, knocking out Alaric in the process.  The Originals spring back to life, good as new.  In the meantime Elena has run from Rebekah.  Elijah tells Klaus of Esther’s plan to end them all, and he is understandably upset.

Rebekah recaptures Elena before she can escape, but she manages to tuck herself into the part of the cave that vampires can’t enter.  Stefan and Damon drive to the Old Witch House.  They’re betting the witch trio is there, but neither wants to do any witch killing, since Elena will hate the brother that kills her friends.  They flip a coin to decide.

While Elena explores the cave, Rebekah returns with gasoline that she proceeds to splash everywhere, including on Elena.  She lights the cave on fire to force Elena out.  Elena tries to play talky therapist, asking Rebekah about her relationship with her mother and how if she kills Elena now she won’t be able to draw out her revenge.

Interrupted by two sets of vampire brothers, Bonnie and Abby take cover in the Old Witch House but are immediately separated.  Stefan confronts Bonnie in the dark, but it’s a mislead –  Damon snaps Abby’s neck and Esther’s spell is ended.

Rebekah releases Elena, delivering the news that Damon turned Abby into a vampire.  Elena tries to see Bonnie, but Caroline keeps Elena away, saying Bonnie doesn’t want to see her.  Oh, because now when someone is kidnapped, we blame the hostage?  How is it Elena’s fault that people will do anything to save her?  Elena’s got enough of a guilt complex already.

Damon - The Vampire Diaries - All My Children episode

Damon admits that he actually won the coin toss but is letting Stefan have the better chance with Elena, saying “I’m better at being the bad guy anyway.”  Stefan admits that he hasn’t had any blood to drink since almost driving Elena off the bridge.

Elijah is disgusted with himself and the way he used Elena and Rebekah to get what he wanted.  Klaus burns his drawings of Caroline.  Kol, Finn, and Esther have already fled and Elijah plans to leave town as well.  Rebekah shows Klaus the cave  drawings on her phone, which indicate a new white oak tree sapling has grown where they burned the other one.

Alaric awakens at Meredith’s house in the middle of the night and finds a bunch of medical records, including Caroline’s father’s.  Next to them is a dagger.  Saying, “You weren’t supposed to see that,” Meredith shoots Alaric point blank.

I KNEW IT!  I knew the doctor was a crazy lady!  I knew I didn’t just dislike her from her character on ‘Pretty Little Liars’!

This was not my favorite episode so far.  Several characters mentioned how Elena is always being kidnapped or used as a pawn, and I have to agree that this is becoming really trite as a plot device.  I wasn’t pleased with the scenes between Elena and Rebekah – it just didn’t feel like much was happening there.  I’m also getting bored with Alaric dying over and over.  I know the writers can do better, so I’m hoping they do next week.  The new tree sapling is an exciting prospect – a real threat to Klaus! – and the mystery of Dr. Fell slitting throats all over town should be intriguing.  The romance between Klaus and Caroline was short-lived, but I saw the smile on Caroline’s face when Klaus wanted to talk to her.  She was flattered, and without Tyler around, I’m sure she enjoyed the attention.  I like an action-packed show, but I also love the tension and drama between all these characters.  I hope next week we get more of these stories and less of Alaric defeating death…again.

If you missed the previous episode be sure to read our ‘The Vampire Diaries: Dangerous Liaisons’ recap.