Season 3 of Bridgerton has finally come to an end with the release of Part II, and it has become (once again) the number one show on Netflix. This time, fans enjoyed the love story between Colin and Penelope, which are portrayed by Luke Newton and Nicola Coughlan. However, among the Bridgerton siblings, another character that had a major development was Francesca.

Now portrayed by Hannah Dodd, after Ruby Stokes left the series, Francesca has finally stepped into the spotlight. This season we watch her fall in love and get married to Lord John Stirling, played in the series by Victor Alli.

While there hasn’t been a confirmation about who will be the next lead of the series, fans of the novels written by Julian Quinn know that John Sterling won’t be Francesca’s only love interest. And, after the third season’s epic finale, we have already know who will be the lead of her story, and it changes everything we come to expect about the series.

Who is Michael Starling, Francesca’s love interest according to the books?

In the books, Francesca does get married to John Stirling, Earl of Kilmartin, in 1818, two months after meeting each other. They live mostly in Scotland. However, two years later John dies unexpectedly and she suffers a miscarriage.

Then in 1824, Francesca comes back to London looking for a new husband, where she will encounter Michael Stirling, John’s cousin. They first met each other two days before Francesca’s wedding, with Michael falling in love with her immediately.

Francesca Bridgerton and Lord Sterling (Netflix)

Francesca Bridgerton and Lord Sterling (Netflix)

After they reconnect, they start a romantic relationship, eloping after Eloise’s wedding to Phillip Crane. However, as you might notice, in the Netflix’s series things didn’t happen exactly like this.

Who will be Francesca’s lead in the series?

In the series, Michael doesn’t arrive before the wedding. And, actually, Michael is now Michaela, who arrives after Francesca’s wedding to John Stirling. And, not only that, when Francesca meets her she becomes speechless and start stuttering, just exactly the same reaction that her mother Violet told her she had when she met Edmund, feeling love at first sight.

Does this mean that Francesca will be officially falling in love for a girl? Yes, showrunner Jess Brownell told Variety that she is “cautious bout talking about it in detail now, because I want people to see how it’s going to play out,” but she intends to do it.

Francesca meets Michaela Sterling in ‘Bridgerton’ (Netflix)

Francesca meets Michaela Sterling in ‘Bridgerton’ (Netflix)

“I’m not trying to be withholding, it’s just difficult to talk about the thought and the research that went into it without talking about what’s to come. And I’m just trying to be protective of what story we want to tell for Season 4 and beyond,” she told the oulet.

Is Francesca the next lead of Bridgerton?

Well, it’s unlikely that Francesca will be the protagonist of the next season, if they follow the same timeline of the books. Her story develops some years after her marriage to John Stirling.

On the other hand, there’s seems to be hints that Benedict’s story will be next, especially as in the Season 3 finale, Eloise mentions that she will see him at the Masquerade Ball, which is where his story begins in the books.

The article will be updated with more information.