The X Factor Season 2 celebrated Thanksgiving by a round of searing emotional performances by its final 10 contestants, then promptly eliminated two of its rising stars: Arin Ray and Beatrice Miller. Speaking exclusively with Wetpaint Entertainment, Arin reveals how he knew he was going home — and what he thinks could have saved him from elimination.

Were you surprised about being eliminated?
Not really. The last two weeks had been kind of rough for me and I hadn't really had a good week since week two, so I kind of expected it, you know? I was hoping not, but you kind of feel when your time has come in a competition like that.

Credit: video still

Contestants often say that. How does it feel?
It's a vibe you feel. I thought I was going home the week before and thankfully I did not, but I was thinking either last week or this week coming up I'd go home. You know it's stiff competition, and everybody is so great — and I'd been at the bottom for a little while so I expected it.

Does the ranking affect how you go into the next week?
It affects it. You've got to step your game up. You gotta bring it every week, hoping you can do something that you love to do and something you would be proud of, and the last songs didn't hit like we wanted them to hit. And you see the outcome.

I feel bad because one, you didn't get to sing for your life, and two, you didn't get the press afterwards. Did you have a song to sing, last words to share?
I’m pretty sure that if I would have sang my saving song I'd still be in the competition. I was very confident in my saving song. I would have loved to sing it. And I would have loved to say something to my supporters but that's how the competition goes. When you’re eliminated, you’re done.

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Credit: IdolxMuzic on YouTube Photo: Watch Arin Ray Sing Estelle's "American Boy" on The X Factor Live Shows Week 2 November 7, 2012 (VIDEO)