Like many teen dramas, the characters on The Vampire Diaries hook up often and, it seems, in a lot of combinations. Things get especially weird when you factor in that one actress plays two main characters who have both hooked up with the same two brothers, and if that sentence confused you, don't worry. In preparation for the series finale, we're ironing out all the relationships and love connections on The Vampire Diaries with the help of some sexy makeout GIFs.
— Additional reporting by Kelsie Gibson
It all starts with Katherine, who first met both Salvatore brothers in Mystic Falls in the late 1800s. Not one to limit herself, Katherine had affairs with both brothers.
Though she pledged to love both men, Katherine later said she had loved only Stefan (doppelgänger curse alert). She was still more than happy to ensure that both Salvatores turned into vampires.
Meanwhile, in a more innocent time, young cheerleader Elena loves her boyfriend, Matt. This is all before Elena's life comes crashing down with the death of her parents.
Shortly after, Matt's sister Vicki is hooking up with Elena's brother Jeremy . . . before she turns into a vampire.
Around the same time, Stefan meets and falls for Elena — the doppelgänger of his previous love Katherine.
Meanwhile, Damon and Caroline are a thing — not a good thing, necessarily, since he's using her for her body and her blood.
Luckily, Caroline later gets a sweet boyfriend who treats her right: Matt Donovan (whom you'll recall is her best friend's Elena's ex).
While Caroline transitions from a human to a vampire, so does her love life. She takes up with Tyler after helping him deal with being a werewolf.
Grownups get love on this show, too. Alaric and Jenna have their own love affair . . . before she kicks the bucket. RIP.
Jeremy successfully manages to land a girlfriend outside of the main group of characters: Anna. Too bad Anna's a vampire, the daughter of Katherine's friend Pearl. Even worse, later she gets staked and becomes a ghost (but Jeremy still finds a way to make out with her).
And then, this. With their undeniable sexual tension and several near-miss moments, Damon and Elena finally give in to their feelings for each other and kiss outside of a motel room. It's the precursor to a complicated relationship with questions of a sire bond, her doppelgänger connection to Stefan, and now little matter of Elena being under a sleeping curse, so let's just reflect on simpler times like this makeout.
Maybe it's not as hot as Damon and Elena, but these two have a slow burn as well, mainly due to Bonnie not wanting to get involved with the little brother of her best friend. And yet: these feelings can't be denied, and Bonnie and Jeremy make it through both of their deaths to still be together. That means something.
Remember when the original vampires were a big part of TVD? Being old and original and all, they had long histories of love, too — turns out, the cold-hearted Katherine had once warmed up long enough to love Elijah.
And Rebekah! This is girl who has been literally waiting an eternity for love, and she had thought she'd found it with Stefan back in the 1920s (and briefly, one sexy time in present day).
Despite her romantic nature, Rebekah is still into an I'm-lonely-you're-lonely one-night stand with Damon.
Speaking of one-night stands (and originals), Klaus and Hayley get it on one night and produce something supernaturals don't often worry about: a baby.
The dalliance between Rebekah and Matt is pretty sweet. Though they spend an entire Summer gallivanting around Europe and getting it on, we only get to see a couple of good kisses.
It was the hookup we'd been waiting for: Caroline and Klaus have the ultimate bad boy-good girl connection (too bad he has his own spinoff).
These two have one of the show's most complicated affairs. They start off as friends, but eventually that blossoms into a beautiful relationship. Even though they go through a lot of drama over the eight season span, they're now Mr. and Mrs. Salvatore.
When Alaric is an original vampire, he falls head over heels for the Gemini witch Jo. She even helps him overcome his vampirism when he crosses the town line. The two are getting ready to start a family with their unborn twins when Jo is tragically killed by her evil twin Kai during their wedding ceremony.
Surprise! Katherine actually isn't Stefan's first love — it's heretic Valerie. She gets pregnant with his child when they are still humans but eventually loses the baby when Lily's abusive boyfriend beats her.
After Caroline carries Jo and Alaric's twins, the two become incredibly close. They even get engaged at one point, but he just isn't a match for her true love, Stefan.
The two certainly have a slow burn, but Enzo eventually becomes Bonnie's great love. He even plans to take the cure so that they can live out their human lives together. Sadly, he is killed by Stefan while Stefan's humanity is turned off.