In the woods, Elena and Stefan wake up together. We get a flashback to Stefan and Damon arguing over a blood source for Elena. It's Stephen's plan to get Elena used to animal blood right from the get go. Stefan feels that if she kills someone, she will turn off her humanity. Damon believes that Elena cannot learn to control the bloodlust until she experiences the blood lust. Damon tells Elena that vampires eat people and that this is part of the natural food pyramid. Honestly, Damon's approach is the most sensible. Back in the woods, Stefan is trying to help Elena get acquainted with her vampire senses and as he touches her he tells her that everything is heightened, taste, touch, smell. It's not long before clothes start to come off but Elena has to pull back to spit up the blood she ingested.
Connor Jordan enters the pastor's cabin and starts exploring the scene. In the oven he finds a letter addressed to April.
Jeremy and Matt are packing up paper lanterns for the memorial. Matt asks how Elena is doing and says that Elena is a vampire because of him and he would like to pay it forward. Didn't we have enough of poor Elena last week? April, who is Pastor Young's daughter approaches Jeremy saying that she is not much for grief and then takes off to register for school.
Elena is on the phone when Stefan enters with a bottle of champagne from the year she was born. He believes that they should celebrate her first feed, even though it was disgusting and traumatic. Stefan admits that he choked animal blood down for a month before he could handle the taste. Elena notes that Stefan is so happy, and he say it's because she is alive and with him. Their kiss is interrupted with a phone call from Damon.
Elena shows up at the bar and asks Damon if he set off the explosion which blew up the town council. He denies any participation. Elena confides in Damon that she cannot keep any of the animal blood down and Damon points to different people that she can feed from. Elena says that Stefan is right and that she has to get through this without hurting anyone. Is she ever going to clue in that she is a vampire? Damon takes her into another room and then cuts open his hand. He tells her not to tell Stefan because blood sharing is personal.
Tyler and Caroline are having sex and she stops him saying that it's wrong because a bunch of people died. He points out that if they stopped having sex every time someone died that they would explode. Tyler tells her that he loves her and Caroline says that she loves him too. The doorbell rings and its Connor. He asks Carol Lockwood about the explosion and she replies that it is an internal matter. Connor says that it was a cover up and he wants to know why Carol was not at the meeting considering that she was the mayor. Tyler comes downstairs to see what is going on and when he shakes Connor's hand his hand starts to sizzle. Connor pulls out a gun and shoots Tyler several times in the chest. On the ground Tyler opens his eyes, as Carol screams for him to run. Hearing the shots, Caroline comes downstairs. Clearly Connor is town to clean up the vampire population, finishing what Pastor Young started.
Tyler is getting the slugs pulled out of him by Stefan, who says that the bullets were specially charged. Tyler says that Connor's gloves had to to be seeped in vervain and he knew what he was doing. Finally, a new Black character that isn't a witch or a servant of the White population of Mystic Falls. It seems that he is being set up as an antagonist though, so he is probably not going to be on the show for very long.
At the church, Matt is talking to Elena about how she feels. Matt points out that she didn't have to volunteer but she says that she had to because people she's known her whole life died. When Elena sees April, she goes over to sit with her. They realise that they have not seen each other since Elena's parents funeral. April says that she was asked to speak but does not know what to say and asks what happens if no one says anything. April believes that everyone deserves to have something nice said about them at their funeral. Elena tells April not to worry because everyone in the town loved Pastor Young. As Elena is stoking April's arm, the blood list hits her. Elena just makes it to the bathroom in time to vomit up blood. It's a complete mess because she vomits literally everywhere.
Stefan knocks on Bonnie's door and when she does not answer, he says that it's important and he can hear her breathing. Bonnie comes to the door and lets him in. Bonnie says that it was like watching her grandmother die all over again and that she is a mess. Bonnie asks him what he needed and says that she is okay. Stefan shows her the slugs and says that they burn to the touch and asks if the writing on the bullets mean something. Bonnie says that it's not magical. Clearly Bonnie is hurting but of course she puts her pain aside to help Stefan. She has lost so much but no one ever puts her pain first and I am so sick of how they are treating her character. Because she is the resident witch she is nothing but a servant.
Elena is in the bathroom trying to clean up the mess and calls Damon, when Connor twists the handle trying to get in. Damon shows up and when Connor offers his hand, Damon refuses to shake saying that he is a germaphobe. They play a little game of cat and mouse. When Elena leaves the bathroom, Damon tells Connor to enjoy his stay. Connor then goes upstairs, and stabs Alice with a wooden stake.
As Elena and Damon leave the church, she asks if he brought the blood bag. She takes a bite and once again throws up the minute she tastes the blood. Damon says it might be her doppelganger nature resisting the change. Elena is worried that she is dying and Damon tells her that she needs to drink from the vein but Elena says that she cannot do that. Stephan sees the exchange and is upset that Damon offered her human blood. Damon tells Stefan that Elena is starving and that she cannot even keep his blood down.
Elena goes back into the church and sits next to Matt but she is clearly struggling. Jeremy says that April was looking for her and that she wanted help with her speech. Stefan approaches Tyler and asks what he is doing there with a hunter out to get him. Tyler replies that he is not going to be stopped from doing what he has to do. Did they all just forget that Pastor Young kidnapped them and tried to kill them?
Carol begins the mass but April does not show up. What no one in the church realizes is that Connor has a weapon loaded with wooden slugs pointed at the congregation. Damon enters and crosses himself, as Elena steps forward to share a memory of Pastor Young. Damon sits with Stefan and is not impressed by how weak Elena looks. April's blood is dripping from the ceiling, which all of the vampires can smell and Damon says nobody move, it's a trap.
The blood continues to drip from the ceiling and Elena is now struggling with her speech and sweat begins to pour down her forehead. Stefan escorts her from the front when it clear that she can barely stand. The choir begins to sing, as Elena talks about how she can smell the blood. Stefan encourages her to focus. Matt wants to know what's going on and Stefan reveals that Elena has not fed in days. Damon says that he is going to kill the guy. Matt tells Elena to feed from him because everyone will think that she is upset. Connor watches through the scope, as Elena thanks Matt and pulls away after feeding. Elena says that the blood has to be April and they have to do something to save her.While they are talking, Tyler goes up to say a few words about how Pastor Young helped him. Connor shoots and Tyler falls to the ground as people rush out of the church. This made absolutely no sense to me. Tyler knows something is going on and he still went up there and made himself a target. Does he not have the common sense God gave cabbage?
Carol checks on Tyler and he has a stake in his chest, which Caroline pulls out. Tyler says that he is going to kill that guy but Stephen says that Damon is way ahead of him. Elena leaves to find April, Carol says she has to call an ambulance because the whole town saw Tyler get shot. When Damon catches up with Connor, he gets shot several times and the two struggle. Stefan gets there just as Connor gets away. Instead of helping Damon up, Stephen punches him. Elena finds April and Caroline stops her from feeding on April. Caroline reminds Elena that April is an orphan and that she is scared. Caroline feeds April vampire blood and April comes to, begging not to be hurt. Caroline tells Elena that she needs her to forget all of this. Elena says that she cannot do this, but Caroline points out that the only way she is going to learn is if she tries. Elena tells her that everything is going to be okay and then uses her power to erase the memory of being kidnapped and wounded. Elena tells April that she watched the funeral from up there, so she could grieve alone. Now that Elena has figured out how to mess with people's minds by herself, how long will it be before she messes with Jeremy?
At the bar, Jeremy and Matt are wondering how they are going to cover up Tyler being shot. Conner asks Matt how he got the wound on his neck and Matt brushes it off as a girlfriend going a little bit wild. Jeremy notices a massive tattoo and compliments Connor. As they walk away Matt asks what ink and Jeremy says that Tyler had a massive tattoo but Matt didn't see it.
Connor returns to an RV and opens the letter left to April. It says that what the pastor did was the first of many sacrifics to come. Connor looks down a list of the council members.
Elena is having a drink and Stefan says it helps with the cravings. I guess this explains why the vampires of Mystic Falls are always drunk. Elena asks him if he is mad and Stefan says that she lied to him. Elena replies that Stefan was just so happy that things were going so well. Stefan says that she is in hell and because she is in hell he is also. He is further angry that she went to Damon for help. Elena says that she went to Damon because she thought he would understand. Elena says that she is sorry and that she didn't mean to hurt Stephen and asks why she is crying. Stefan again points out that her emotions are a bit heightened. Elena says that they keep burying people and she cannot stop feeling everyone's grief. Stefan tells her to come with him because they have something they need to do.
Stefan assembles everyone and says that they are finishing the memorial they didn't get to have earlier. Damon says that they need to do find out who the hunter is and find out what he knows about the council. Stefan counters that this is more important tonight. Stefan lights a lantern for Lexy, his uncle Zak and Alaric. Matt lights one for Vicki. Caroline lights one for her dad and Tyler's father. Jeremy lights one for Vicki, Anna, Jenna, Alaric and his parents and then hands Damon the lighter. Damon walks away saying that he is not doing it and so Jeremy hands the lighter to Bonnie. Bonnie lights one for her grandmother. Elena lights one for her mother, her father, Jenna, and everyone that they've all lost and that the town has lost. One by one they release the lanterns into the sky.
Damon is at a tombstone and points out the ridiculousness of letting go Japanese lanterns though they are not Japanese. Damon believes that they are children and pretending that Elena is not going to end up like the rest of the murdering vampires. He says, in the end, when you lose someone, every candle and every prayer is not going to make up for the fact that all you have left is a hole where that person used to be. He's at Alaric's grave and we get a flash of Alaric. Damon says that he didn't get the girl and that he is just stuck there fighting with his brother and taking care of the kids. Alaric says, "I miss you too buddy." but Damon does not hear him and walks away. I had really hoped that when Alaric got killed off last season that we weren't going to see him again but clearly the writers have other ideas.
I am fascinated by Connor and want to see his backstory. It's great to finally have an active Black character than a passive one. My only worry as I said earlier is that he is not going to last long on this show. Damon already wants to kill him and he presents a threat to the vampires of Mystic Falls. I really liked Damon's point about the Japanese lanterns and his point about the naivety regarding Elena's transition to vampire. It helped to zap some of the ridiculousness out of the angst. I am upset about the return of Alaric because it points to fan service and of course slashers. Damon and Alaric have long been "shipped" and I have no doubt that the writers didn't want that to end. With Matt on the show we already have a meaningless character, do we really need Alaric? The only purpose to bringing him back is to give the slashers something to oooh and ahhh about.