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[nick / name]: Brandon
[personal LJ/DW name]: [personal profile] episodic
[other characters currently played]: N/A
[AIM / messenger]: suchaheartleads

[series]: The Vampire Diaries
[character]: Elena Gilbert
[character history / background]: Here’s a link!
[character abilities]:

Elena is human, but she was born a doppelganger which was the key to the ritual meant to break the sun and moon curse on a hybrid (Klaus.) Her blood is also the final ingredient in creating hybrids. Once a werewolf is in transition to becoming a vampire, drinking her blood cements the process.

[character personality]:

Elena Gilbert is a strong-willed, stubborn, and loyal eighteen year old girl who lost her parents too young when she was just starting to find herself.

Before her parents died, Elena was a cheerleader. She was dating Matt Donovan, her best friend since grade school. She was enjoying her sophomore year of high school. She wanted to be a writer. She was close to her parents and her brother Jeremy and she had pride for the town she lived in, Mystic Falls, Virginia. There are pieces of Elena that shine through. She still has an enthusiasm for life even if she has to fight through her own misgivings to get there. But things like her aspirations to write have taken a backseat. When Elena lost her parents a huge part of her world was rocked.

After the accident, Elena attempts in vain to be the Elena everybody remembered before. She attempted cheerleading again. She struck up conversations and smiled through pain and told everyone she was fine when she wasn’t but deep down she was hurting. A huge part of Elena Gilbert’s personality has to do with loss. Not only has she lost her parents, before learning she’s adopted, but she loses her parental figure, her Aunt Jenna and both of her biological parents: Jonathon Gilbert and Isobel Flemming. This actually illustrates how strong she is because she keeps moving. She doesn’t give up and spend all day in bed. Instead, she gets up, greets the morning as best she can and she lives her life. Even if she has to remind herself to breathe in and out, she perseveres. Even when Klaus has hybrids crawling all over Mystic Falls she refuses to live her life trapped in her house. She goes out running. She goes to the Grill. Elena Gilbert lives her life in the face of adversity and loss.

Elena is fiercely loyal when it comes to her friends and family. She loves Jeremy with all her heart. She brow-beats him for doing drugs and pushes him to be the best that he can be. She wakes him up in the morning when he’s late to work. She worries about his well-being to the point of sending him out of town (which I’ll address in the paragraph below.) Other than Jeremy, Jenna is and was the most important person in her life. She was her connection to her mom. She respected and loved her. She worried about her. As I said before, she lied to her for a year. Elena doesn’t leave her friends behind and she isn’t the friend who backs away when they have a fight. She reaches out. She doesn’t push Caroline away after Katherine kills and turns her. She welcomes Bonnie with open arms when she comes out as a witch. Even after breaking up with Matt, she makes an effort to be friends. She fights for her friends. She roots for them. She also protects and cares about family members of her friends. She’s there for Caroline when her dad decides against transitioning. She’s there for Matt after Vicki goes missing, even though she knows the truth.

Also, being Elena Gilbert means keeping a lot of secrets. She lies about the Salvatore brothers being vampires. She keeps Caroline’s vampirism a secret. She lies to her aunt Jenna for nearly a year. She lies to Matt in order to save him from the pain. All this lying is fueled by her need to protect everyone. She believes (sometimes foolishly) that they’ll be safer if they’re kept in the dark. This is illustrated all through the series. Though, this weighs on her, she believes it to be the best choice of action at the time.

Attached to that, Elena tends to make huge, sometimes dangerous decisions without thinking or asking. Most of the time, they don’t pay off. She undaggers Elijah, an Original, on a whim because she believes he’ll be the best ally against Klaus. She daggers Rebekah to keep her out of the plan to kill Mikael. She asks Damon to erase her brother, Jeremy’s, mind twice and the second time she sends him off to Denver to stay with distant relatives. The first time, he straightens out, does better academically and then discovers Elena’s journal. This causes a minor rift but because they’re brother and sister, they work through it. Some of the time, these decisions she makes are strategic. She returns Rebekah to Klaus undaggered before dropping the bomb that Rebekah was aware that Klaus is the one who killed the Originals’ mother. She knows that Klaus will simply dagger his sister again, preferring not to deal with her drama. She makes a deal with Elijah regarding the sacrifice to keep her family and friends safe and so that Stefan will be freed from the tomb. She does this without consulting anyone.

Elena sees past the monster when it comes to vampires and werewolves. She sees people. She sympathizes with Rebekah. She also identifies with her when she says that Rebekah is just a girl who lost her parents too young and who loves blindly and recklessly. She is able to move past both Stefan and Damon (at different times) being vampires and care about the person they are. She sees the good in people and creatures. She trusts Elijah because of his idea of honor. She immediately sees past Caroline’s vampirism and just sees her friend. She was not raised to hate vampires. They’re people who in most cases didn’t ask for the hand they were dealt in life: their deaths.

Of the two Salvatore brothers, Stefan Salvatore means the most to her. At this point in canon, he’s off the deep end. He’s kidnapped her, fed her vampire blood and tried to drive her off of Wickery Bridge (the same bridge her parents died driving off), all to play a game of chicken with Klaus to get the Original to send his hybrids out of town. But, Elena Gilbert loves Stefan. Her relationship with Stefan moved very quickly. A lot of what it was about was something new. He wasn’t asking how she was. He didn’t know the Elena that was. He just knew this Elena. His secret keeping turned her off until she learns he’s a vampire. After working through this, their relationship deepens over the course of two seasons (a year.) Unlike Damon, Stefan lets her choose what she wants to do when it comes to threats against her. He talks to her. He hearsher. She loves him deeply. But, after losing him to Klaus – thanks to compulsion – she fears she may never get him back now. Even after the compulsion was lifted, Stefan has been a one-vampire army pointed directly at Klaus. She realizes now he doesn’t care about the collateral damage around him. But, deep down, she sees glimmers of the old Stefan. She still believes in him. The following episode, she’s digging wooden bullets out of his chest. In “Dangerous Liasons” she attempts to get through to him on her porch again. She will never give up when it comes to Stefan Salvatore but it remains to be seen if she’ll ever go back to him. In the latest aired episode, Elena finally admits to Matt Donovan, her ex, that part of the appeal that came from Stefan was that he wasn’t going to die. That idea was appealing to her as absurd as that is but this makes sense. Stefan also admitted in Season 1 that he is the one who saved Elena from the accident with her parents.

Sometimes, she chooses to see the good in people but never loses sight of how dangerous they can be.

This can be seen in how she deals with Damon Salvatore. Elena’s feelings for the elder Salvatore brother are complicated to say the least. Over time she has grown to truly trust him. But as I stated before she doesn’t lose sight of how reckless he can be – especially when he loses something. Damon has done horrible things. He used Caroline, he killed her brother (who was revived a second later thanks to the Gilbert ring), he shoved vampire blood down her throat – the ultimate wrong you could do to Elena. You see, Elena doesn’t want to be a vampire. The fact that he almost took that choice away from her means a lot. She’s finally kissed him – one episode before her canon point and she has many, many mixed feelings regarding this. She doesn’t have time to really think about it. A part of her still feels that connection to Stefan but Damon is just – a connection she can’t seem to shake. There’s a chemistry there she won’t deny. One thing she knows is that he would never let anything happen to her, because of his love – and sometimes, this is a problem. He’d rather lock her up and throw away the key to keep her safe then let her deal with things. He literally does this when he asks Bonnie to perform a spell that keeps her inside her house. Elena is extremely capable, and yes, breakable but it’s her choice whether or not she is involved – especially because when it comes to Elena, she’s always involved. Damon takes away her choices when he thinks it’s in her best interest.

This is due to her being a doppelganger. A witch creates a doppelganger in order to break a curse. Elena is technically a supernatural being. She was solely created to break Klaus’ hybrid curse. If Elena dies, then more hybrids can be created. Because of this, she is sought out for two seasons, kidnapped, bargained for… It takes away her agency and it’s another example of people trying to take Elena’s choices away. She gives herself up for Klaus’ ritual and dies but that isn’t the end of it. (*Because of a spell, her father links his life force with hers and instead of waking up a vampire (thanks to Damon), she wakes up human.) Klaus seeks her out and learns that her blood is the key to creating hybrids.

There have been two doppelgangers before her, two women who look exactly like her. Tatia, a woman whose name we’ve only heard once, and Katerina Petrova/Katherine Pierce. Elena Gilbert is not Katherine Pierce. Sometimes, Elena can’t even tell where she ends and where not wanting to be Katherine Pierce begins. It bleeds. How much of what she does is Elena and how much is it not wanting to be Katherine? She knows she’s compared. She looks just like her. While unsettling, it’s something she’s gotten used to but as I said, she works at not being Katherine. She tries not to play the Salvatore brothers against each other. Elena isn’t purposefully manipulative. (She’s played on Damon’s feelings for her, especially when they go to Duke.) She’s not entirely blameless in Damon’s connection to her. Elena isn’t narcissistic. When it comes to Katherine herself, now a vampire to escape the doppelganger curse, Elena doesn’t trust her. She also hates the woman. Katherine has done horrible things to her family and friends. But, at the end of the day, she still sympathizes with her. Katherine, too, lost her family young. Sometimes the similarities are striking and that scares her. She's definitely come around to Katherine in terms of, can she be helpful? Yes? Good. But, they will never be friends and she only seeks her out when she wants something. A part of her will never fully trust her ancestor.

There are aspects to Elena which completely separate her from Katherine. She’s sweet. And generous. She helps the town when need be because she grew up doing that. As I said before, she’s fiercely loyal, something Katherine could never be. And she loves with all her heart. When she’s in, she is all in. But, Elena is not a pushover. She doesn’t take crap. She is headstrong and stubborn, sometimes to the point of her own detriment. Elena gives herself up as a sacrifice to Klaus in order to protect her family, her friends. She does this to keep them safe.

Because of her great losses, Elena has developed a bit of a guilt complex. Her parents died in the car crash but she didn't. Had she not been in this town, had she not existed, her family and friends would be safe. She’s the reason Klaus targeted Mystic Falls, targeted Stefan. She’s the reason Katherine has Jenna stab herself and why Caroline is a vampire. She blames herself for how dangerous the town of Mystic Falls has become for Jeremy. She even feels indirect guilt for Bonnie’s grandmother’s death because she dies after a spell cast for the Salvatore’s benefit. Despite feeling this guilt, she doesn’t dwell on her own problems. She isn’t all about her. Elena protects her friends. She lashes out at Damon when she thinks he’s abusing Caroline. She feels bad when she doesn’t talk to Caroline or Bonnie for a few weeks. But, she won’t hesitate to leave them out of a plan if it means they’re safe.

Alaric, her history teacher who had been dating her Aunt Jenna before she died, has taken the part of a surrogate father. She looks up to him, she jokes with him. He stays in the house with them, something she insists on. She also worries about him. He’s a notorious alcoholic and he too has dealt with a lot of loss. But, she also respects him. Currently, she trains with him every few mornings. He helps her learn how to use the devices he creates (weapons against vampires.) She has also taken to exercising more. She’s specifically building strength. She’s not helpless. She will never be helpless.

In a lot of ways, Elena hasn’t fully discovered who she is yet. She left the world she knew because she felt she didn’t belong after a tragedy and she hasn’t found it since. Instead, she’s been fighting for control in her own life. Breaking away from everything happening in Mystic Falls would be incredibly good for her. People have always described Elena – she’s the girl that lost her parents, she’s the girl who’s dating Stefan, she’s the doppelganger but she hasn’t had a chance to be Elena Gilbert. What does being Elena Gilbert even mean, anymore?

When it comes to Matt, he'll always be her best friend. He means a lot to her. And she does love him. But, especially before he found out what Caroline was, when he was a human and human alone, she worked to keep him out of the vampire equation. Now that he's aware and has a mind of his own and is wrapped up in everything, she allows his taking part when it makes sense - i.e. taking Katherine to Klaus' homecoming party. Right before her canon point, she and Matt have an understanding conversation by the bridge. Their friendship has never been stronger. She’s learning to lean on him again.

Elena, at her heart, is a survivor. She’s a fighter. In season 3, she has taken control of her life. She’s stopped letting vampires and supernatural creatures control her. She is a person. She isn’t a prize to be won.

[point in timeline you're picking your character from]: Post Season 3, Episode 11, "Our Town"

[journal post]:

[ When her face comes on the screen, Elena seems tentative, but her expression doesn't give off fright. ]

Would it sound cliche if I said it doesn't seem like I'm in Kansas anymore? Or, like I took a right turn instead of a left on my way to Albuquerque?

Everything was a lot simpler when we were young, wasn't it?

[ Well, there's no reason to hold this off. ]

Could someone tell me where I am? I half expect Caroline or Bonnie - or even Matt to jump out and yell "Ha" or "Surprise." I used to love surprises.

[ Okay, things are way too somber right now. She puts a brave face on. Accompanied by a smile. ]

Believe it or not this isn't the weirdest thing to happen to me, or the first time I've woken up without knowing where I was. [ She's going to step away from the fact that she now sounds like an alcoholic as she stifles a laugh. ] So, where am I? It's not a city I recognize. Oh, I'm Elena Gilbert. It's - well, interesting meeting you all? [ another beat. ]

I'm ... not a party girl. [ she just feels like she should explain. ] If that's what you were thinking.

Look, I just really have to get back to Mystic Falls, Virginia. Does anybody know how far away that is?

[third person / log sample]:

Elena watched as the flowers Matt dropped hit the water softly, creating ripples. Here lies Elena Gilbert, she thought. This was what she needed. She needed to let go of the old her, the plucky cheerleader who wanted to make her mom proud. She released the breath she hadn't realized she been holding as she finally looked up.

Matt had to get to a shift at the Grill. He asked if she'd be okay.

"I will, Matt. Don't worry about me," she said in response, giving him a closed-mouth, reassuring smile.

"Just remember," Matt replied. "You're Elena Gilbert."

Elena looked back down at the flowers.

"I'm Elena Gilbert."

They shared a hug and she watched as he returned to his car.

If she closed her eyes, she could feel the night before all over again. She remembered when the car screeched to a halt and she couldn't even form words. Blood seeped out her mouth. She had been unable to stop herself from swallowing some. Opening her eyes, she wiped her mouth, wishing she could forget the bad taste it still left. Letting out another shaky breath, she made her way back to her car.

Closing the door behind her, she thought about what she would tell Damon. Stefan was long gone. What Stefan cared about was destroying Klaus. Not Elena, not the fact that Elena had been this close to becoming a vampire. Sighing, she knew what she had to do. She went to fish her phone out of her pocket before realizing Stefan had thrown it out the window.

Putting the keys into the ignition, she knew where she wanted to be.

When she arrived home, she found Damon on her porch.

"Were you waiting for me?"

Damon tried to pass off that he was in the neighborhood. Elena rolled her eyes.

"It's Mystic Falls, Damon, you're always in the neighborhood," she replied. It wasn't like she was unhappy to see him. It was comforting. But, she didn't need to be looked after, even if renegade ex boyfriends were kidnapping her. "I was with Matt."

Damon gave her a look.

"I'm fine." How many times had she said this? How many times had she been asked? She didn't know what was worse, the fact that so much had happened that warranted people asking how she was, or that she'd had to say it twice as many times. Convincingly. Everything had stirred up old pain. Was this convincing enough?

"Damon, I'm tired. I just want to take a shower." A part of her wanted to stay inside all day. But, he wasn't going to let her do that, was he? Or, if he was, she wouldn't be alone. Finally, she decided that fine, she'd open up to him. He was there, concern etched on his face. She had to humor him if she wanted peace and quiet.

"Damon, I - I don't know if we can get him back. For months... I wanted to - believe that we could. I even thought you would be the - key." She paused, looking away. "But, I can't give up on him."

It was frustrating. She was the girl who believed a serial killer could be rehabilitated. But, wouldn't everything have been easier had she just let him go when he'd run off with Klaus. But, then she wouldn't have been Elena Gilbert in that instance, would she? Elena Gilbert didn't give up easily.

What happened the night before was scary and traumatizing but it also fueled her fire.

What she hated the most was that she still felt guilt - not for kissing Damon - but that Stefan wasn't aware she'd kissed Damon. Their moment the night before, after he'd picked her up, had reawakened that girl. It wasn't right. Stefan was still his brother. At the end of the day, Stefan had won that battle against Klaus.

"You were right," she replied, before quickly adding, "His methods sucked but -- he beat Klaus last night." She didn't want to give Damon the satisfaction of the 'I told you so.' "Now, can I take a shower?" she asked, holding back the 'alone' in her head.

She looked above her, teetering her head as she stepped onto her porch, when Damon asked if she'd need a ride to get a new phone.

"Alaric's taking me," her hand came to the door handle before looking back at him. "I also drive." She couldn't help the playful dig. "But, thank you. I'll call you tomorrow, Damon," she added, before slipping inside her house.

Closing the door behind her, she stood against it and dropped her head back. It hit the door with a small noise. The house was quiet. Alaric was out. Jeremy was in Denver. So much had changed in a year. Reminding herself to breathe in and out she made her way upstairs.


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Elena Gilbert

April 2012

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