Paul Wesley is not a shipper. He made that very clear when we talked to him. But there was a period of time when the Vampire Diaries star would have shipped Stefan with anyone, even Alaric, to free himself from the emotionally taxing Damon/Elena/Stefan love triangle that toyed with our hearts for nearly five seasons.
Now, the show is in its seventh season and Wesley finds himself in the middle of another love triangle. Well, sorta. Valerie may not be as big of a threat to Steroline as we originally thought. We wish we could say the same for Stefan's hero complex, which got him into a heap of trouble with vampire huntress Rayna Cruz in last week's episode.
With a shiny new Hunter's Mark on his shoulder, Stefan is off to New Orleans to visit his old friend Klaus in tonight's Vampire Diaries crossover episode with The Originals. Will the Originals be able to help their former friendly enemy? Wesley previews the emotional two-parter below.
MTV News: After last week's episode, I came to the realization that Stefan is constantly on the run. Every season, he's running from something. What's up with that?
Paul Wesley: I know! What's up with that shit? He's got to stop and face his demons. He's always running. What's he always running from? I don't know. It's like me; I'm always moving apartments or moving houses or moving cities. I think Stefan has to take some time to deal with himself.
MTV: At least he's running to Klaus, which I think is going to make a lot of fans happy because that dynamic Klaus and Stefan had in Season 3 was great.
Wesley: That was my favorite, too. I loved it so much.
MTV: So, will we get to see that camaraderie again?
Wesley: There's a beautiful camaraderie there that's an homage to Season 3. It's a bit of a camaraderie and then it shifts to hostility. It's a combination, and their relationship has always been that way. It doesn't necessarily change.
MTV: Obviously, Stefan has now been cursed with the Hunter's Mark, which means he can't stop running, and Klaus still has this Mikaelson family prophecy hanging over his head. Are Stefan and Klaus able to help each other through their respective woes?
Wesley: They're definitely going to align their respective issues and try to help one another. There will also be lots of alcohol involved, plenty of bourbon.
MTV: If NOLA is just a stop on Stefan's road trip, where do you want him to go next?
Wesley: I want Stefan to go to New York City, to be quite honest with you. That's my dream. I think he should go to New York City -- because that's one of my favorite cities in the world -- and just chill for a bit. It would be great if they did flashback episodes in New York City as well.
MTV: Well, Damon got to have a flashback episode in New York...
Wesley: Damon got to go, Stefan wasn't there, and I'm still pissed about it.
MTV: Speaking of Damon, they've had a lot of ups and downs this season. Does Damon feel guilty about what happened to Stefan? He was the one who gave Rayna her sword.
Wesley: That guy always goes through bouts of guilt, and that doesn't really get him anywhere, does it? It's sort of his M.O. He messes up, and then he feels terrible. But that's Damon, and that's why we love him. And then Stefan is always sacrificing everything because that guy does not know how to say, "No." Their relationship right now is complicated. That would be their Facebook status.
MTV: Let's talk Steroline. I'm a little upset that Stefan is constantly running away from Caroline. He did it at the end of Season 5, and now he has to do it again in Season 7. This is not a good trend. What's their relationship like now that he's on the run?
Wesley: Let's put it this way: in the future episodes, when we flash forward three years into the future, things aren't that great between the two of them. So we know something bad happens in their relationship, and Stefan having to be on the run all the time is definitely part of that.
MTV: We also saw in a flash-forward that Stefan and Valerie are together, so does that have anything to do with Steroline's breakup?
Wesley: I don't know if it has anything to do with her, necessarily, but I definitely think that she's a part of it. He tries to give Caroline her space for her own safety, and I also think he cares about the twins and he doesn't want to impose any danger to them. He thinks he's doing the right thing, and by the time he realizes, "Oh, hey, I love this girl and I should fight for her..." I'm not saying it's too late because we're only on Episode 19, but it's definitely not easy.
MTV: There are a lot of fans who were very surprised at the end of last week's episode when Caroline revealed that she was going to New Orleans in the flash-forward. Assuming that she's going to Klaus for protection against Rayna, is it possible that Klaus still holds a flame for her, and how will that affect Klaus and Stefan's relationship in the present? That has to be kind of awkward. I know how much Steroline means to you.
Wesley: I don't ship anyone. I really don't. I'm not a shipper, but I'm all for men duking it out for a chick. In a weird way, Klaus kind of understands his place in Caroline's life. I'm not saying he gives up. It's just that he understands that maybe times have changed. That's not cemented, or something that's necessarily forever, but I think that's how he feels at the moment. He's not really fighting for her attention anymore.
MTV: You may not be a shipper, but there was definitely a period of time when you could not stop talking about Caroline and Stefan.
Wesley: I think I was just so exhausted from the Stefan and Elena stuff that you could have literally shipped me with Alaric, and I would have been into it -- not to take away from Stefan and Caroline. I actually do think they have a really beautiful friendship that turned into a love affair. I think Candice [King] is fantastic, and I really do love working with her. But in reality, Stefan's obsession over Elena and him crying over her all the time was a bit taxing.