Part one of the two-night season 23 Bachelor finale aired Monday, March 11, and set viewers up for an unprecedented final night. Now, Colton Underwood is opening up about how he came to find himself in such a unique, dramatic position. (Spoilers ahead, obviously.)

One week ago, Cassie Randolph left the show after starting to doubt her feelings for Underwood. He tried to convince her to stay and even told her he loved her and wanted to be with her in the end, but she said she wasn’t ready and didn’t know if she could “get there” with him. That, of course, led to his now-famous fence jump.

This week, rather than spend quality time with the remaining two ladies, Tayshia Adams and Hannah Godwin, Underwood made the decision to break up with both women and instead try to convince Randolph to give their relationship another shot. This means that for the first time in the show’s history, there are no contestants going in to the finale. The Bachelor is, for the moment, completely single.

“I had to do what was right, and what was best for them, and that was to have that tough conversation,” Underwood told People. “I knew I could walk away heartbroken. But I had to fight for Cassie.”

The ABC franchise leading man admitted to People that when he said he was “done” with the show, in a way, he meant it, because in that moment his mind was made up that he would either leave the show solo, or with Cassie. “The game was changed in a way,” he said.

Which brings us to Monday’s episode. After a heart-wrenching breakup with Adams, and a slightly more confrontational one with Godwin, Underwood declared that he was “willing to do anything and everything” to try to make things work with Randolph. As the episode ended, he was seen knocking on a door — her door? — and saying “hi” to the person who answered it.

Part two of the Bachelor season 23 finale airs Tuesday, March 12, on ABC.

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(Photo via ABC/Josh Vertucci)