Bob Mahoney/The CW
Samantha Highfill
October 17, 2016 AT 03:20 PM EDT

With only one season left, Vampire Diaries fans are dying to know if they can expect a final crossover with TVD spin-off The Originals before all is said and done. The short answer: It doesn’t look like it. The longer answer, however, is that New Orleans will tie into Vampire Diaries‘ final episodes.

After Bonnie lost her magic at the end of season 7, Vampire Diaries showrunner Julie Plec had stated that the writers were challenging themselves to get as far as possible into season 8 before using magic to write their way out of a situation. And so far, they’ve been successful.

“We’re on episode 8 and I think the biggest thing we’ve had to do magically was borrow a dark object from the armory out of the city of New Orleans,” Plec tells EW. “We’ve really enjoyed it. It’s been great to not be able to solve every problem with a witch spell and just boil down the storytelling to its simplest. Certainly our villains are imbued with certain kinds of powers, so you could argue that that’s a mystical element right there, but it’s been fun. So we’ve hit the 50 percent mark and a dark object is the only thing keeping us from a perfect record.”

As for that mention of New Orleans, Plec reminds fans that the timelines of the two shows no longer match up. That’s why last season, when Caroline visited New Orleans, Klaus was nowhere to be found. If Vampire Diaries is three years into the future, then the Original siblings still have two years left on their sleep/time in Freya’s magical safe space.

As Plec puts it, “Seeing as in our timeline every single person is in a coffin scattered across the country in New Orleans, I don’t think we’ll see [the trip to New Orleans] happen on camera. But it’s still fun to reference dark objects like they’re a thing, because they are over in the Originals universe.”

The Vampire Diaries returns Friday, Oct. 21 at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.

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