By Samantha Highfill
Updated February 12, 2015 at 12:00 PM EST
Credit: Annette Brown/The CW

After six seasons, multiple love interests, and even more death scenes, Jeremy is leaving Mystic Falls for good in Thursday night’s episode of The Vampire Diaries, after which Steven R. McQueen will no longer be a series regular.

As a character, Jeremy’s come a long way from the days of being Elena’s emo younger brother who couldn’t stop talking about Vicki Donovan. Now, he’s an ex-vampire hunter who knows exactly what it means to live in a world full of vampires, hybrids, witches, and ghosts. And in honor of his last hour on the show, we talked to McQueen about what fans can expect from his farewell and whether Jeremy finally forgave Damon for snapping his neck in season two:

On his last episode: Although McQueen did say that Jeremy and Elena spend most of the last episode “talking and reminiscing” about the past, he also added that Jer will get scenes with just about everybody. “I knew I was it was my last season [and] this was my last episode and I got scenes with everybody and got to tie up loose ends and say my goodbyes,” McQueen said. “It was very sweet.”

On why Jeremy’s okay with leaving Bonnie: “The way I thought about it was Jeremy’s struggle throughout the show has been fighting to keep the people he loves safe and often times, he’s too weak to do so or there’s these supernatural creatures and there’s all these circumstances out of his control,” McQueen said. “So he’s constantly fighting to get his power back. With Bonnie, in the second-to-last episode, I’m finally able to save her. But for the character Jeremy, he’s so overwhelmed, and there’s so much going on that at that point, I think he knows there’s nothing else he can do to save Bonnie. At this point, she kind of has to help herself, so he’s just at a point of needing something else, needing some sort of distraction.”

On whether he forgives Damon for killing him: “At this point, what else could Jeremy go through? He’s been killed, but that’s not the worst thing that’s happened to him,” McQueen said. “The worst thing that’s happened to him is [that] he’s failed to protect the people that he loves. I don’t think Damon’s at the top of the list of friends, but at the end of the day, he cares about my sister and when I’m gone, I know that he’ll keep her safe.”

On how it compares to his other goodbyes: As a character, Jeremy has left Mystic Falls before, both by compulsion and by death. This time, neither of those things will be involved. (We hope.) “What I really enjoy about this goodbye is this time, I’m alive. So let’s say Bonnie comes back or Elena and Damon or Elena and Stefan get married, then I can come back for an episode or two,” McQueen said. “It was nice because I knew at the beginning of the year that this was what was coming so I took the time to say goodbye to everybody and really enjoy my last couple moments there.”

On his favorite Jeremy moments: “I liked becoming a hunter. That was fun,” McQueen said. “One of my favorite scenes was when I was hungover and was puking with Matt Davis. That was just a fun day, [and] it was one of the rare opportunities that Jeremy got to be funny.” His final pick: “I think Jeremy and Bonnie’s love for each other was really cool, really well written, and we had some nice moments.”

On the advice he’d give Jeremy: “I think I would give him the advice that he’s kind of taken himself that, at a certain point, you can’t control all this craziness. You just gotta have a fresh start and see what happens.”

The Vampire Diaries airs tonight at 8 p.m. on The CW.

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