Ian Somerhalder (Damon Salvatore) has been dropping cryptic hint after cryptic hint regarding his character’s fate in the Season 5 finale — Season 5, Episode 22 (“Home”) — and we’re officially worried. Will Damon die in The Vampire Diaries season ender?

The ending involves Damon “in a very cool way.” Ian told E! Online: “The ending, I think, is really gonna throw people and it definitely involves Damon in a very cool way. I’m actually excited to see what happens.” In this particular instance, Ian’s vague hint does not necessarily have a negative connotation, but don’t think we’ve forgotten the synopsis: “Damon comes up with a dangerous plan that relies on split-second timing from Jeremy and Matt.” Dangerous, they say!

Damon’s season finale plot involves Bonnie. What else is in store for Damon in the Season 5 finale? Well, “there is some very cool stuff with Damon, Elena, Bonnie. Stuff you [don't expect],” Ian told E! Online.  This mention of Bonnie has us particularly worried, given that her character is more or less guaranteed death in the season ender. Is Damon’s sacrifice with Bonnie the “big moment with another lady” TV Guide teased “will have people talking after the finale airs.” And will it involve one or both of their deaths?

It’s definitely a cliffhanger. Whatever goes down in the Season 5 finale, Ian told E! Online: “It’s definitely a cliffhanger,” and we can only imagine the scope of said cliffhanger given what we know from the synopsis: “Damon’s plan causes a massive explosion in Mystic Falls, and everyone is caught up in the confusion, leaving a trail of heroism, sacrifice, relief and despair." Yikes! Is Damon’s life one of the sacrifices in question? Does he die in the explosion that takes our Mystic Falls?!

Ian said Damon would die. OK, so, we’re pretty sure Ian was joking when he told E! Online: "When Damon dies it's the dopest thing." It certainly comes off as such in the interview. But what if he’s not? What is Ian is bold enough to actually tease his death, but to do it in such a way that it cannot be taken at face value — that is, until we watch the interview after the season finale has aired? If anyone could pull this kind of thing off, it would be The Smolder. His eyes are very distracting.

Do you think Damon will die in the Season 5 finale? Sound off in the comments below!

The Vampire Diaries airs Thursday nights at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.

Kayti Burt is a contributing writer for Wetpaint Entertainment with a penchant for all things pop culture. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!