There's something sweet about our favorite vampires getting to go home for the holidays, but this is not a feel-good episode. In the end, Bonnie burns her tree; Matt becomes Enzo's reluctant partner; Kai is more powerful than ever, ready to merge with Jo, and just kidnapped Elena; and oh right, Liz Forbes has cancer. Because I'm sure a commenter will say it: Yes, this has shades of Buffy—a mother dying of natural causes is one thing neither a vampire nor a vampire hunter can fix. But it seems Liz's illness might be more drawn out. Already, it's served to bring Stefan and Caroline closer. He's going to be there for her this time. Here we go.
We open with Jo phoning Alaric to tell him she's going to be two hours late to dinner, so he should save her some. A young woman comes in with a massive wound to her abdomen. Surprise, Kai stabbed her. (Why is his face all bloody? Not that I'm a splatter expert, but…)