— Laela to Elena on hating Damon
Laela Jean Salvatore (pronounced LIE-la not LAY-la) is a protagonist, and a main female character of The Vampire Diaries. She is an 19 year old vampire, turned by Damon just two year ago.
She was born on the 22nd June 1992 to Isobel Flemming and John Gilbert. She was, however, not adopted by the Gilberts, and so fell to the care of the local carehome in the nearby city of Chesapeake, Virginia, where she remained until the age of nine, when she was found and adopted by Zach Salvatore, who noticed the resemblance to both the fabled Katherine and Elena Gilbert, his friend's nine-year-old.
Laela was sent to bording school for most of her schooling, to avoid her meeting Elena, confusing them both. While this was quite an expensive school, still managed to sneak in alcohol. Eventually, she was expelled when she was 17 for her integral role in the throwing of a roudy party in her dorm block, as she was desperate to leave the strict regime of the bording school.
When the Salvatore brothers first arrived in town she was told they were her 'cousins'. She immediately warmed to Damon, who she considered to be much more "fun" than the more mature brother, Stefan. She spent a lot of time with him, despite Zach warning her to stay away from them both. That was until he killed her father as she watched, she attempted to run away but injured herself tripping over down the stairs.
Damon compelled her to foreget what he did. However, shortly after Damon healed her with his blood, growing bored as Stefan had still got his ring, and knowing he would later regret the decision, he killed Laela with his blood in her system, turning her into a vampire.
Originally, after becoming a vampire, she was refered to by her 'cousins' as a 'mini Katherine' due to the way she originally lashed out at the brothers. As a result of this, she had less friends, with most of Mysic Falls utterly hating her. However, once she controls her urges and thrill-seeking peronality, she settled into her new life. She made a friend of Caroline Forbes by showing empathy for her situation in season 2.
Despite Damon's apparent redemption, she still refuses to forgive him for turning her into a vampire, however she has warmed to Stefan, ironic, as personality-wise she is by far more like Damon. She has, however, stopped trying to kill him.
Laela is an adoptive member of the Salvatore family.
- "The bording schools sucked, but the care home was worse. Zach may not have really wnated a daughter, but he did save me. Of course I miss him, Stefan. He may have only adopted me, but he was my dad."
- —Laela about her adoptive father.
Laela Jean Salvatore was born on the 22nd June 1992 to Isobel Flemming and John Gilbert, the biological twin siter of Elena Gilbert. Ulike Elena, however not adopted by the Gilberts, and so fell to the care of a local carehome in the nearby city of Chesapeake, Virginia.
During her time there she was given the name Laela Flemming, as that was the name of her biological mother. Laela described the care home as worse than the boarding shcool she openly admitted to purposely getting herself expelled from in order to escape.It is not very clear what the foster home was actually like, but it has been mentioned on one occasion that she was bullied there. Even before viewing Zach as a father, Laela was incredibly grateful to him for getting her away from the home at all.
Zach of course tracked Laela down after researching the family tree of Katerina Petrova, after obviously discovering her real name, an extensive project, to say the least, involving tracking down and talking to a lot of vampires at least Katerina’s age, if not older. This was after spending some time with the witch Rosanna Harman, who blathered on a bit about something important that had arrived in Katherine’s bloodline. His search led him all the way down to Isobel Flemming, who at this point he believed to be a dead end until he talked to Grayson Gilbert.
- "Oh, I see, so your parents left me in the foster home to spare your feelings, that was nice of them. It's funny to think that if things had gone a little different and your parents were decent people and all we may have been sisters, right Elena?"
- —Laela lashing out at Elena
Zach arrived at Chesapeake, posing as a prospective adoptive parent. As soon as he saw Laela he noticed the striking resemblance to Elena, which wasn’t surprising to him as they were identical twins, but also the likeness they both shared, age only nine to the pictures he’d seen of Katherine Pierce. After a period of time he was given the opportunity to foster Laela, and eventually was able to adopt her. Though the child was quite the handful, mostly due to behavioral problems and emotional insecurities she had picked up at the care home.
- "Boarding school sucked, I hated it, so I got together a bunch of booze, stole the school stereo system from the music department and I seem to remember we acquired some firework…” [she smiles] “..so we threw the party of a century just to see how much drunkenness and debauchery it took to make the esteemed headmaster forget how much our parents were paying to keep us there."
- —Laela recounting how she “escaped” boarding school.
For most of her schooling, Laela was sent to boarding school in Vermont. This was partially because of Zach finding it hard to cope with her behavioral issues full-time, but partially due to Zach’s and Grayson Gilbert’s agreement to keep their daughters from discovering one another. Though Zach felt guilty for sending her away rather than looking after properly, sending her away was admittedly much easier for him. Despite this, surprisingly, Laela and her father were quite close still. This was mostly down to Laela’s gratitude toward Zach for getting her out of the care home.
At the boarding school, they tried to get rid of her thrill-seeking, deviant attitude, which only led Laela to want to rebel further. This was, at first, limited to Laela sneaking in alcohol and cigarettes and hanging out understatedly with her friends in an abandoned cabin a little up the drive from the school. Though after several strict punishments for getting caught, Laela was starting to get angry with the school; when she was not being forced to sleep at 10:00pm at the latest and wake up at 6:00am, on a diet of frankly disturbing food, with nothing to do other than read the small selection of books in the library that had not been banned, she was being told off for having whatever understated ‘fun’ she could manage. The situation was truing Laela’s patience.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot : Leala drops an F-bomb a minute, among other colorful language.
- Deadpan Snarker : Laela is snarky as fuck.
- Jerkass : She can be this at times.
- Foster Kid : Laela was in foster care for most of her early life.
- Happily Adopted : Until Zach died.
- Street Smart : Generally speaking.
- Anti-Hero : Laela has done her fair share of questionable things. Though a sypathetic character, for a short while she was somewhat of an antagonist. She still talks big about how she wants to kill Damon.
- Action Girl : Laela becomes this more and more as the series progresses.
- The Lad-ette : Somewhat. She enjoys whiskey, beer and partying.
- Parental Abandonment : Experienced this until being adopted.
- Lesbian Vampire : She's a vampire and she's gay.