When threatened, it turns inside out, exposing rows of wicked-looking "cirri. In reality, the vampire squid is a soft-bodied, passive creature, about the size, shape, and color of a football. A "living fossil," it inhabits the deep waters of all the world's ocean basins at depths where there is almost no oxygen, but also relatively few predators. A few previous researchers have caught vampire squids in nets, hauled them up to the surface, and tried to figure out what they ate by examining the contents of their stomachs.
The results were generally inconclusive. The stomachs typically contained bits and pieces of tiny, shrimp-like animals, microscopic algae, and lots of slimy goo. In a recent article in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences , Hoving and Robison show that vampire squids eat mostly "marine snow" -- a mixture of dead bodies, poop, and snot. The dead bodies are the remains of microscopic algae and animals that live in the waters farther up in the ocean, but sink down into the depths after they die.
The poop consists of fecal pellets from small, shrimp-like animals such as copepods or krill. The snot is mostly debris from gelatinous animals called larvaceans, which filter and consume marine snow using mucus nets. In addition to looking at the stomach-contents of vampire squids from museum collections, the researchers used MBARI's remotely operated vehicles ROVs to collect live vampire squids and study their feeding habits in the laboratory.
Finally, they examined vampire squid arms and feeding filaments under optical and scanning electron microscopes. Hoving soon found that if he placed bits and pieces of microscopic animals into a tank with a vampire squid, the food particles would stick to one of the string-like filaments that the animal sometimes extends outward from its body. The vampire squid would then draw the filament through its arms, removing the particles from the filament and enveloping them in mucus. Finally, the squid would transfer the glob of mucus and particles to its mouth and consume it.
He then pored over of these video clips over 23 hours of footage to look for additional clues as to what and how the animals ate. The videos showed that vampire squids often drift motionless in the water, extending one of their thin filaments -- up to eight times as long as the animal's body -- like a fishing line.
In many cases, Hoving saw bits of marine snow sticking to the filament. He also saw vampire squids slowly pulling in their filaments and scraping off the accumulated marine snow using their arms. Other vampire squids had globs of marine snow and mucus dangling from their mouths. Dean is saved from Hell by the angel Castiel ,  who informs him about the seals, and the effort to free Lucifer.
They are unsuccessful, and eventually only one seal remains. Sam chooses to kill Lilith with Ruby's help, leaving Dean behind. Lilith is killed by Sam, high on demon blood, and it is discovered that Lilith is the final seal. Her death frees Lucifer.
Ruby has been playing Sam all along in order to get him to kill Lilith and free the Devil and is killed by Dean for her betrayal. The higher level angels have been complicit in letting this happen, as Michael wishes to kill Lucifer. Lucifer rises. With demon aid Lucifer wreaks havoc, instigating the Apocalypse. Most demons are anxious to serve him, either because they revere him or because they fear him.
Even Meg is glad to follow him. An exception is the demon Crowley , who suspects that Lucifer will kill off the demons as soon as he has destroyed humanity.
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He gives aid to Sam and Dean, including providing them with the Colt, and then helping them to locate two of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Lucifer requires a vessel, and while he finds a temporary one in Nick ,  Sam is the vessel he needs. The demons attempt on several occasions to capture Sam, and put a price on Dean's head. Sam eventually allows Lucifer to possess him, and is able to overpower him and throw him, along with Michael, into Lucifer's Cage.
Following Lucifer's defeat, Crowley assumes control of Hell. He resurrects Samuel Campbell and begins a quest to find Purgatory ,  but is apparently killed by Castiel before succeeding. Crowley tortures monsters in an attempt to find the entrance, with limited success,  until Castiel captures Eleanor Visyak.
They gather the necessary ingredients to open the gate at the next eclipse, but Castiel reneges on their original agreement, so Crowley seeks out Raphael , and makes a deal with him instead. They are not able to stop Castiel from absorbing all the souls in Purgatory, and Crowley flees. After the Leviathans emerge from Castiel, Crowley attempts to create a partnership with their leader, Dick Roman.
Dick thinks demons worthless, and declines,  so Crowley instead supports Sam and Dean's efforts, restraining demon activity that would harm their anti-Leviathan quest. After Dean and Castiel kill Dick, Crowley makes his move: he kidnaps the prophet Kevin Tran , captures the demon Meg who is against him and assisting the Winchesters and brings in an army of demons to deal with the leviathans remaining in SucroCorp who are now disorganized and confused as their leader is dead.
After capturing Kevin, Crowley begins an effort to open the Gates of Hell and release all demons upon the world using information from the demon tablet and Kevin. However, Kevin betrays him and escapes, revealing to Sam and Dean the possibility of using the tablet to do the opposite: to close the gates forever and banish all demons from the Earth permanently, something they are now determined to do. After torturing the captured Samandriel , who is eventually rescued by Sam, Dean, and Castiel, Crowley learns that there is a tablet on angels which the angels fear as if it falls into demon hands and they use it, they could cause great evil with it.
Some time afterwards, Sam sneaks into Hell and rescues Bobby Singer from the demons that are holding him captive and torturing him. Crowley attempts to stop Sam from releasing Bobby's soul into Heaven, but is stopped by Naomi. Shortly afterwards, Crowley captures Kevin and his notes on the demon tablet, leaving Sam and Dean with no clues on how to complete their mission to close the gates of Hell. From it and Metatron the Winchesters learn that the third trial is to cure a demon, but at the same time, Crowley gets the angel tablet from Castiel and tells Kevin that he doesn't need him or the demon tablet anymore as he has many deals and plans in the works as well as the angel tablet.
They also retrieve the angel tablet from him. Crowley starts to become human, but his attempt to summon help summons Abaddon who wants to take over Hell. Sam douses her in holy fire , destroying her meatsuit and driving her away, but stops before completely curing Crowley as Dean learns that he will die if he completes the trials. Crowley is held captive by the Winchesters who want to use him to find all the demons on Earth and kill them.
He eventually agrees to give them what they want if they help him with what he wants. At the same time, Abaddon gets her meatsuit restored and starts a crusade to take over Hell and Earth and tries to kill the Winchesters and get the location of Crowley from them, but is forced to flee when the angel Gadreel intervenes. To this end, Crowley forms a reluctant alliance with Dean to find the First Blade , the only thing that can kill a Knight of Hell.
The two find the demon Cain who killed the other Knights and transfers the Mark of Cain to Dean along with giving him the location of the Blade so he can kill Abaddon and when he is done, Cain himself. As the Blade is at the bottom of the ocean and they need as many allies as possible against Abaddon, Dean and Crowley maintain their alliance. Eventually even Crowley's loyal lieutenants switch to Abaddon's side and she kidnaps his son Gavin MacLeod to force him to help her trap the Winchesters.
Crowley gives Sam and Dean the location of the First Blade, claiming he's found Abaddon and calls off the hellhound he has guarding it. Once the Winchesters have the First Blade, Crowley tells them where to find him, but not before subtly warning Dean its a trap. At the hotel where Crowley and Abaddon are located, Dean sends Sam on a wild-goose chase and confronts Abaddon alone. Abaddon incapacitates Crowley with a devil's trap bullet and overpowers Dean.
However, the Mark of Cain gives him immunity to her powers and telekinesis and Dean finally manages to stab Abaddon with the First Blade, killing her. The Winchesters spare Crowley despite having him at their mercy and he takes his son somewhere safe so he won't return to his own time and die. With that, Dean resurrects as a demon himself. For six weeks after Dean disappears, Sam searches for his brother without success, capturing and torturing the Crossroads Demon Dar for information after tricking Lester Morris into summoning her.
Although Crowley expresses interest in Dean ruling Hell at his side, Dean refuses. To sate the Mark of Cain 's bloodlust, Crowley sends surviving Abaddon loyalists to attack Dean, who easily dispatches them. Sam is able to capture Dean  and attempts to perform the demon cure upon his brother. Though Dean breaks free, he is restrained by Castiel who was himself rescued by Crowley from an attack by Adina.
Sam is able to complete the cure and turn Dean human again, though he retains the Mark of Cain. Having regained control of Hell, Crowley executes surviving Abaddon loyalists, though his alliance with Dean and method of ruling leads one dissatisfied demon to commit suicide. After meeting Shaylene, one of the prostitutes, the Winchesters learn of the operation and attempt to shut it down.
Though disgusted by the operation, Crowley dispatches demons to capture Rowena and kill the surviving prostitutes who are recruited by Rowena to form a coven. The demon assassins are killed by the Winchesters, saving one of the rescued prostitutes, but a second team is able to capture Rowena thanks to the intervention of Cole Trenton.
Crowley is shocked to recognize Rowena as his long-absent mother,  something that she subsequently uses to manipulate Crowley. During this time, the Winchesters and Castiel search for Cain in hopes that he will know a cure for the Mark of Cain. Having been driven back under the Mark's influence by killing Abaddon's demons, Cain begins slaughtering all of his human descendants to get rid of his "cursed" bloodline. The discovery of this by Castiel causes the Winchesters, Castiel, and Crowley to team up together to stop Cain once and for all.
Using magic from Rowena, they are able to lure Cain into a devil's trap , reducing his powers to the point that Dean can fight him. Though initially outmatched as he is unwilling to give into the Mark of Cain's power and rage, Dean manages to gain the upper hand and kills Cain with the First Blade. However, he hands the First Blade over to Castiel instead of keeping his promise to return it to Crowley, damaging Crowley's trust in Sam and Dean. Enraged by Crowley kicking her out on the street,  Rowena demands that Sam kill Crowley in exchange for her help in decoding the Book of the Damned and getting a cure for Dean and the Mark of Cain, and Sam agrees to the deal.
Sam is able to lure Crowley into a trap and immobilize him with a devil's trap bullet , but Sam's attempt to kill Crowley with a spell provided by Rowena fails. Instead Crowley, who has been trying to reshape Hell for the better, is reminded of his evil nature and revels in reembracing it. Upon returning to his usual body, Crowley is informed by Jervis and another demon that either Michael or Lucifer , or both, rattled the Cage, putting Hell into an uproar because of the belief that one or both of the archangels is trying to warn them about the Darkness.
Following the death of Crowley, the last Prince of Hell Asmodeus takes control of Hell, proclaiming that he will return it to the old days of fire and brimstone. Hell also begins preparing for a possible upcoming invasion by the Apocalypse World Michael. Though they get the bones with the help of Alice and the demon Grab , Grab is killed by Luther, who reveals the truth about his history with Barthamus to the Winchesters.
Disgusted, Sam and Dean refuse to complete the deal and Barthamus, who was also sought by Asmodeus for his rogue actions, is killed when Alice burns Barthamus' human bones. Though Asmodeus is able to capture and imprison both Castiel and Lucifer, wanting to keep power for himself  , the two angels are able to escape by briefly working together, killing several of Asmodeus' demons as they leave. However, their brief alliance falls apart afterwards. Asmodeus is aided by the fact that he holds the archangel Gabriel captive  and feeds off of Gabriel's grace for more power.
After Gabriel's rescue by Ketch ,  Asmodeus leads a demon incursion into the Bunker to retrieve his prisoner. However, Gabriel fights back and the archangel kills Asmodeus, leaving Hell leaderless once more. Following Lucifer's death at the hands of Dean Winchester,  Hell is left without a leader or a clear successor to the throne. As a result, the demon Kipling makes a play for the leadership of Hell by capturing Castiel and trying to make a deal with Sam to have a Crowley-like situation. However, Sam refuses to deal and kills Kipling in the fight that follows.
Sam then proclaims to Kipling's henchmen that there will be no more Kings of Hell and any demon that wishes to challenge that will have to go through him. Frightened by Sam, the demons show their acquiescence by fleeing in smoke form. Nick then kills Abraxas with an angel blade. The demons supply him with angel grace for Nick's plan and guard Donatello Redfield while Nick is away getting Jack Kline 's blood. When Dean arrives to rescue Donatello, the two demons attack him. Dean is able to knock one unconscious and kills the other with an angel blade before rushing to Sam's rescue with Donatello.
Azazel is a powerful yellow-eyed demon. He is a greatly respected General of Hell commanding an army of black-eyed demon soldiers. The night the deal comes due, he enters their homes to feed Demon Blood to their six-month-old children, which he does to prepare the infants to one day house Lucifer. The special children develop demonic powers in , and Azazel spends much of arranging for them to kill each other off so that only the strongest remains to be Lucifer's vessel.
Azazel is hunted by the Winchesters for over twenty years in revenge for Mary, and later, Jessica. He plans for his demon army to also be released, for the last-surviving special child to command during the Apocalypse. Although Azazel's plan to free both Lilith and the army is a success, Azazel himself is ultimately killed by the combined efforts of Dean with the Colt with the help of John 's spirit, who had also escaped Hell. Azazel's presence in an area will be presaged by cattle deaths, electrical storms, and temperature fluctuations, and can stop clocks and disrupt electrical devices.
Like crossroads demons , Azazel can raise the dead, but only after he has sealed a deal with someone and only through the power of a reaper. He also saves a dying Dean after making a deal with John. Meg is Azazel 's black-eyed "daughter"  and an apprentice of Alastair 's. According to Meg herself, she has many names. She is ultimately exorcised by Sam at Dean's command, with Bobby 's assistance. Azazel believes the exorcism to have "destroyed" her,  but months later, she is revealed to be alive and to have escaped Hell , where she had been imprisoned.
She does not resume aiding her father when she resurfaces, instead seeking revenge against the Winchesters by possessing Sam and attacking and killing more hunters. She is ultimately forced to leave Sam's body and flee to escape being exorcised again. After the Apocalypse is set into motion, Meg reappears as a follower of Lucifer 's, trying to kill Dean to avert his destiny as the one who will slay Lucifer  and then helping Lucifer with the raising of Death.
Hunted by Crowley to protect his position as King of Hell, Meg and her subordinates seek to kill him. Meg forms an uneasy alliance with the Winchesters to try and kill Crowley,  later reforming said alliance to protect Castiel  and defeat the leviathans. She is eventually rescued by Sam, Dean, and Castiel, only to be killed by Crowley with an angel blade while buying time for the Winchesters and Castiel to escape with the angel tablet.
Ruby is a black-eyed demon and secret Lucifer loyalist. After her exposure, Dean kills her with her own knife. Lilith is the first demon created by Lucifer.
She is first mentioned by the demon possessing Tammi Benton as someone who wants Sam dead as he is a threat to her leadership of Hell. Sam is immune to her powers. Lilith controls a large number of demons, some of which constitute her "entourage. After escaping from Hell and the death of its former leader Azazel ,   Lilith takes command of the escaped demon army. Dean is killed by a hellhound under Lilith's command, but Sam proves to be immune to Lilith's deadly powers, forcing her to flee before Sam can potentially kill her.
The trap solidifies Sam's trust in Ruby while causing him to successfully use his powers to exorcise a demon with his mind for the first time. After Dean breaks the first seal in Hell under Alastair 's torture  Lilith sets out to break the rest of the seals and release her "father" Lucifer from Hell. After discovering Lilith's intentions from the angel Castiel , the Winchesters set out to stop her.
He was sarcastic, had a chip on his shoulder and had the total bad boy act down pat. Yet, he cared enough to save her life…. More and more questions popped into her head, almost making her head spin. She felt sharp jabs of pain as her headache returned. She closed her eyes and rubbed her temples, hoping to ease it off. To her, he was even better looking clothed and the black attire made his blue eyes stand out even more. He smirked while he bent over at the foot of the bed, reaching for something. He held up her duffle bag and carelessly dumped it on the bed.
Bella raised an eyebrow, not quite willing to believe him. But if they die with it in their system, they go into transition. He chuckled, shrugging. That is, unless you change your mind about the whole undead thing. Brand new baby vamp! She shook her head and wondered for a moment exactly what his statement meant.
She glanced anxiously towards her bag and was rather stunned he had actually went to the truck and retrieved it for her. More like stole it , she thought. Damon saw her peeking at the bag and took the phone and the menu from her hands. She arched her eyebrow at his demand, but said nothing. She got up from the bed, tugging at the ends of the t-shirt to make sure everything was covered. I saw it all last night, sweetheart. His expression was rather amused as she stomped past him, heading towards the bathroom with her clothes in tow. Once Damon heard the shower running, he sat on the bed pondering what the hell made him so drawn to her and why the hell he felt the need to save her.
The past five years of his life had been meaningless. He had spent most of the time questioning his very existence and there were more than a few times he had the desire to take off his daylight ring and meet the sun. It would be selfish of him, though. Who would be there to look after his baby brother? Two of those five years were spent wandering around like a vagabond, and had given him too much time to think.
The conclusions he came to were mind boggling. He had told her he would wait for her and she had simply told him to be happy — to live his life. He shook his head, thinking on it. One of his many revelations had been that if he had truly loved her, he would have ended the linking spell put upon her and her best friend, Bonnie.
All he would have to do was simply just kill the other girl and Elena would wake up. Then, they could have lived a blissful human life for however long it lasted. For she was one of his best friends, too. The world would be a rather dreary place without the little witch, after all. He knew without a shadow of a doubt that Bonnie would be dead if he really loved Elena. He reflected on the days after he had interred Elena inside the tomb and how they were filled with nothing but death and destruction.
He drained bodies left and right without a second thought. He and his brother fought a deadly war against their very own mother and her little group of Heretics. Witchpires, as he liked to call them. That too, brought on more devastation upon the town and in the end; it nearly destroyed it. The town became a shell of what it once was and when they finally had the evil, little group right where they wanted them, it was he that killed his own mother. Not that he cared at the time, anyway.
Losing the one he loved, his town, his mother, and another good friend by the name of Enzo hit him like a ton a bricks as he peered down at the reddish spot on the ground. That feeling of desolation, abandonment and aloneness enveloped him and cast a dark shadow on his entire being. Ironically, it was what made him turn the switch back on. That was two years ago…two years ago since he left Mystic Falls and after almost a hundred and eighty years of being on this earth, he finally faced the equivalent of what most people would call a mid-life crisis.
He questioned everything that had happened in his life. He questioned himself and went off in search of something. What he did know was that he liked being who he was and what he was. He accepted his existence and once again reveled in blood, sex and bourbon. He lived for being a vampire and compelling people to bend to his will. He enjoyed the strength, the speed and the agility. He could no longer fathom the idea of taking the cure and being human, ever again. That would be the most miserable thing he could think of.
That little revelation made him realize that any romantic relationship with Elena would be doomed to fail. He had promised her before the spell was cast that he would take the cure, and live out a typical human existence. There probably would have been a white picket fence and two kids. He sneered at the very idea. It was never who he was and he only made the promise to please her.
Things had changed so much in the past five years, that surely the next fifty or sixty years would change even more dramatically. Damon was a realist and it would be foolish thinking to believe that once the spell broke and Elena woke up, that they could easily pick up where they left off.
What she envisioned for them was something he no longer wanted. While he may have mourned her loss and what could have been and while he will always care for her, he could not say he loved her. Not anymore. That chapter of his life had closed. He sighed, hearing Isabella shut off the water and grabbed the phone. He quickly dialed the number and placed an order for breakfast. He then got up and stood at the window, looking down on the city below. He could not deny that she was a true beauty, even with the bad dye job on her head. She had a full, pouty mouth and big brown eyes.
Her curves were in all the right places, and from what he saw the night before… her breasts her absolutely perfect. He smirked at the thought and tossed back the last of his drink. He glanced at the bag and wondered how long it would take her to figure out he had already been through it. There was a knock at the door and at the sound of clinking glass and a squeaky wheel he guessed it was room service. He opened the door and spied the young woman who stood there in uniform with a cart of food.
He smiled devilishly, turning on his inner flirt and took a nice little bite from her neck before compelling her to forget and sending her away. He had just finished transferring the food from the cart to the table when he heard the door from the bathroom click open. Bella timidly walked into the room and stood there, taking in the sight of Damon and the table laden with food.
His eyes then danced with amusement while he smirked down at the petite brunette. Bella grinned at his reply before she sat down and grabbed a strawberry from the fruit bowl. She took a bite and nearly choked on it at his next statement. The strawberry fell from her hand, bounced off her plate and fell to the floor. The very sound of his name sent her for a tailspin. Her heart clenched as she realized that the wounds Edward had left her with would always be there. Not only because he was her first love and cruelly hurt her; but because she would always have an anger and a bitterness in regards to him.
It had been his actions that took everything she held dear away from her. She nodded and placed her hands in her lap. The tears started to fall as she thought to the fact everything was behind her. Edward would never come back, Victoria was dead and she could stop running. She was free and could live a life. My brother and I both fell in love with her and she got captured and locked in a tomb. We transitioned and I spent the next century and a half trying to find a way to free her from the tomb.
May she rot in hell! He then raised his glass in a mock toast as a trace of bitterness laced his features. Bella had been quietly listening while she picked at her food. She too, in love with my brother. She eventually fell in love with me; we promised to love each other forever, then some witch named Kai showed up and bonded her life with her best friend by casting a spell.
At least, until Bonnie — the best friend, kicks the bucket. She sat quietly, taking in what he said, empathizing with him because he had been toyed with by a vampire very much like she had and it was obvious most of his bitterness was directed towards that. She could understand the pain of being abandoned and losing the one you love. For him, it had happened twice. The thought of his waiting for Elena stabbed at her heart as her own memories came back to the time Edward had callously up and left her. Too much has changed since then.
What she wants and what I want are two very different things. At one time, I would have given up my immortality for her, to be her husband, and the father of her kids. But now…I just realize it is not who I am and who I want to be. I like being a vampire. I like being the eternal stud. She snorted as she stabbed a fork into her pancakes. She swallowed and resumed her story. Edward was complicated; moody and sullen one minute, then completely charming the next. I fell for his romantic lines hook, line and sinker. He spouted off words of love and said I was his mate.
They were the perfect family I always dreamed of having. His sister Alice was my best friend, his brother Emmett was the big brother I never had. I would have been willing to give up being human in exchange for an eternity with them. Damon pushed his plate aside, poured a glass of bourbon and nodded, prompting her to continue. He nearly killed me and bit me. After that incident, he almost left me in the hospital; but stupid little me begged him to stay with me.
His sister told me what to wear and his parents intoned proper etiquette upon me. It was all so very Victorian and utterly ridiculous. His brother, Jasper… lunged for me because I cut my finger opening a gift and Edward pushed me out of the way, causing me to crash into a glass table. I was injured so badly his father had to stitch me up.
That was three years ago, now. He said it would be as if he never existed. I have the scars to prove it! Victoria killed my mother, my father, my step-father and my best friend! I tried! For that, I thank you. Just know I am grateful and knowing I have a second chance at life is more than I could have ever asked for.
With that, she stood up and went to her bag. She rearranged her things and zipped it up. Her hands were stilled when Damon come up behind her and laid his own upon hers. She turned around to face him and their chests brushed against the other. There seemed to be some sort of electricity in the air between them.
She drew in a breath and took in his gaze. Those blue eyes seemed to cast a spell over her and for just a moment, she lost herself in them. He stared down at her, never breaking contact with her eyes as he fought an urge to kiss her. It had been a very long time since he repressed his urges. It was usually either screw, bite, compel …or screw, bite and drain them dry. Women were like putty in his hands, with or without compulsion. If he were to be honest… maybe he would like to have more than that himself.
The thought tumbled in his mind and he quickly brushed it aside. Damon braced her fall, then wrapped his hands around her face and met her gaze once more. He wanted to give her something he never had — a clean slate.
He could compel her to truly move on, to move forward and go after whatever her heart desired… compel her to live, to love, to be whoever she wanted to be. He met her eyes and tried his best to get into her head, but something blocked him. An invisible source of some sort that protected her mind. He brushed her cheek and murmured her name. She brought up her hand to his, and in that brief second he could feel a connection with her mind.
You will forget meeting me. All you will remember is that Victoria is never coming after you again. Go live your life to the fullest. It made me a stronger person! Just what the fuck are you trying to do to me? I was giving you a shot at freedom from it. Is it so wrong to spare someone else the grief that comes with it? It made me who I am today! The choices we make, the things that happen to us shape who we are. It defines our very being! While the world may not always be unicorns and rainbows, we become what we are through experiences that life brings us; the good and the bad. I want that reminder of the darkness that haunted me, so I know to never go to that place again.
I may have wanted to die last night because I thought I had no choice. Now, I see I do! Edward took my choices from me, Victoria took my choices from me and no one will ever do that again! So, keep your little mind trick to yourself! Bella glared at him, grabbed her bag and then proceeded to head towards the door. He moved at vampire speed, blocking her path. Goodbye , Damon. He grabbed her arm. Now… let go of my arm.
He nodded and let her walk on out the door as he went straight for the bourbon bottle. His thoughts turned over in his head. Why had he saved the girl?