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The Vampire Diaries: There's no way Elena is gone for good

Did The Vampire Diaries' Damon really just torch [SPOILER]'s body?

Excuse me while I scoop my jaw up off the floor after tonight's episode of The Vampire Diaries.

First and most shockingly, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) sets Elena's sleeping beauty body up in flames.

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Now, while I was watching, I was convinced that Tyler had a decoy coffin and that it was going to end up empty. He clearly had a plan in place to make sure Damon didn't actually get to Elena (Nina Dobrev) — what with the tranquilizer gun and all. But then the camera actually panned to Elena's face burning!

I. Just. Can't. Handle. It.

But we didn't see her ashes. And we didn't see the aftermath of what happened with Damon. There is no way he just left the scene and let Elena burn and Tyler bleed. He would have put out the flames whatever the cost. So did he save her in time? What happened with Tyler? Was he just hallucinating seeing her body?

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Plus, if Damon had actually killed Elena, wouldn't he have shut his humanity off, like, instantly? Damon would not have been able to deal. Especially coupled with his limbo PTSD.

I know I am still trying to process all of the craziness that was tonight's episode. And maybe I'm just having some serious trouble accepting the truth that she's gone. But I think it actually makes sense that he put out those flames in time.

Especially because, during my recent chat with Vampire Diaries' executive producer Caroline Dries, she said that there were no plans, as of now, to have Dobrev return to the series. But she did qualify this by saying that, if the producers suddenly found out the show was ending after Season 7, they would probably scramble to bring her back for at least the finale.

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Since this interview with Dries was only a little over a week ago, she already knew what was coming in tonight's episode. Meaning, if Elena really were gone for good, Dries wouldn't have said that there was the possibility — no matter how small — for Dobrev to return. Rather, she said that they didn't have plans now but they could try to throw them together if they had to. And I'm taking that to mean that Elena is still sleeping peacefully somewhere.

Of course, if The Vampire Diaries has taught us anything, it's that death is far from the end.

Do you think Damon actually killed Elena for good in tonight's episode?

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