Actress Nina Dobrev left fans heartbroken when she announced she had quit The Vampire Diaries but before rumours suggest she was fired, sources insist that it was entirely the star's decision.
The 26-year-old announced her departure from the popular CW show via Instagram, describing the past six years, during which she played Elena Gilbert, as "the journey of a lifetime".
Actor Michael Trevino, who has played Tyler Lockwood since season one, also announced he was leaving the series.
Explaining Dobrev's decision to quit, a source has told E! News that her departure has "been in the works for quite some time" and that it was "truly [Dobrev's] choice". The website adds the actress was ready to "reclaim her freedom" and move on to other roles.
Some fans are concerned the departure of two of the main stars could mean the end of the series but network CW has confirmed the show will go on, with actor Ian Somerhalder still in his lead role.
The Vampire Diaries' executive producer, Julie Plec, said in a statement released to Variety: "Saying goodbye to Nina is both bittersweet and beautiful. After six-plus years together, the entire cast and crew of The Vampire Diaries has reached a level of closeness that I don't think any of us ever expected.
"Nina is excited to spread her wings, get some rest, travel the world and also take it by storm, and we support her a thousand-fold. We will miss Nina and the four hundred characters she played, but we look forward to the insane and exciting challenge of continuing to tell stories of our Salvatore brothers and our much-loved and gifted ensemble."
News of Dobrev's departure may not come as a surprise to some as reports surfaced in August 2014 that one of the main cast members had not signed on for season seven.
It is not just the on-screen storylines that have gripped loyal viewers over the years, they also invested in the real-life romance between co-stars Dobrev and Somerhalder but they split up in 2013 after three years of dating.
So long, Dobrev. Here are some of the most heartbreaking reactions from devastated fans: