'The Vampire Diaries': Alaric deciphers the cave-art, plus hiatus details

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The typical mythological viking is a violent warrior... so it should come as no surprise to "Vampire Diaries" fans that the Original vampire family were vikings, who settled in the U.S. about a thousand years ago. Where in the U.S., exactly?

Mystic Falls, of course. This town is ground zero for supernatural mayhem.

In this new clip from Thursday's episode, Alaric ( Matt Davis) deciphers the viking hieroglyphics he found inside the Lockwood cave... and discovers some very familiar names.

"The Vampire Diaries" just keeps getting more intense -- which, unfortunately, means that the mid-season finale is upon us. The final episode of "TVD" for the year will air Nov. 10. After that, the show will go on a holiday break and return just after the new year on Jan. 5, 2012.

Photo/Video credit: The CW