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Nick's 'Bachelor' Season Ending May Surprise You

This season of The Bachelor has been one of the most unpredictable yet. I don't think anyone could have anticipated just how stressful watching Nick Viall's journey to (hopefully) true love would be. Possibly more than any other contestant in the show's history, Nick has voiced serious concerns about the process and his anxiety over doing this whole song and dance yet again, for what's now the fourth time. With only a few weeks left, Nick's journey will be over soon, for better or worse. But how does Nick Viall's Bachelor season end?

There's been plenty of drama on Season 21 of The Bachelor so far. All of the shows in the franchise have a tried and true format that they've abided to for years — cocktail parties, rose ceremonies, one-on-ones, two-on-ones, group dates, overnights, and hometowns are all part of the typical equation. But what has fans wondering (and, TBH, worrying) about the outcome of this season is how much Nick has been willing to bend (or even break) the Bach '"rules."

Already, he's sent so many women home outside of the usually-prescribed elimination times. Earlier on, Liz Sandoz and Dominique Alexis were sent packing during group dates. Just a few weeks ago, the same was done to Jasmine Goode, after she freaked Nick out with her choking "jokes." Both Whitney Fransway and Danielle Lombard went home during a two-on-one (where, typically, one girl always comes back from). In the most recent episode, Danielle Maltby and Kristina Schulman were both eliminated during a one-on-one and hours before the cocktail party, respectively.

Now, heading into the four hometown dates for Corinne Olympios, Vanessa Grimaldi, Rachel Lindsay, and Raven Gates, everything is up in the air. Personally, I'm banking on a final two showdown between Vanessa and Raven, both of whom seem to have had the strongest connections with Nick so far and have not been announced as the next Bachelorette.

This is a spoiler-free zone, so I can't make any guarantees for what will happen. But if I had to bet, I'd say that Nick walks away engaged to one of the women — either Raven, Vanessa, or Corinne. Rachel is, obviously, out of the equation, given that she's set to appear as the Bachelorette for that show's upcoming thirteenth season.

Prior to the start of the season, during interviews with press, Nick outright said that he does find love on the show, which wrapped filming in November. "I can say I definitely found love," he told reporters during a conference call. "I really won’t be able to get into much more detail about that other that. But… I certainly have no regrets." He was careful to clarify, when speaking with E! News that he couldn't confirm or deny a season-ending engagement — that's just standard Bachelor confidentiality stuff.

While "finding love" doesn't necessarily mean that he's gotten engaged — past Bachelor stars have chosen a winner but not proposed — to me, an engagement sounds like a safe guess. I mean, this is Nick we're talking about. There's no way there'd be all this build-up and no engagement at the end of it.

There's also another (albeit totally remote and melodramatic) possibility: that Nick pulls a Brad Womack and then shows up on Rachel's Bachelorette season instead.

There's certainly a whole faction of fans who are hoping for that outcome. And hey, stranger things have happened on this show, so you never know.