Let's begin this week's "journey" by giving some long-overdue props to the genius on Team Bachelor/Bachelorette who coined the phrase "Fantasy Suite." Can you imagine the rejected names? The "Romance Room." The "Love Lodging." The "Sex Shack." Honestly, I hope the person responsible for "Fantasy Suite" gets a hefty, non-taxable bonus each year. He or she is a hero.
And we're in the Dominican Republic, rose lovers! As Andi settles in to her phat pad at the Paradisus Punta Cana, we're treated to the Memory Lane Montage: Josh is "funny and endearing," and he handles Andi's "brattiness" and "divaness" with aplomb. But he's a "former athlete," and, confesses the Bachelorette, "I worried about being hurt by him." As for Chris, he's "cute and charming and romantic," and he "has it all." But, you know, Iowa. Nick, meanwhile, is "shy and a little skeptical," and Andi loves the "mental connection" she has with him.
After the 14th "I'm here in the Dominican Republic," we finally get to the dates. Nick's up first, and he swears he's ready to drop the L-bomb on Andi. Will he do it on the helicopter ride? Nope. Will he do it while they frolic on the "frickin' insane" private island? Nope, there they just make out and talk about Nick's tendency to become "a mess" after a bad breakup. (Though to be fair Nick does try to offer up an "I love you" on Saona Island... but all he manages to spit out is "I think what scares me the most is, trying to like, I don't know, what it is, like, when I'm with you" and then a series of "Um, yeahs"...) Okay, so will he do it at dinner on the beach? Oh man, it's not looking good. "Usually, I, like, to form, like, thoughts—but then with you, not so much," Nick stammers, as Andi laughs in his general direction.
Yes, Nick clearly does better with a script. So he pulls out his latest composition, an illustrated "fairy tale" about "a beautiful princes named Andi" who embarked "on an ancient quest to search for her true love." At first I was hoping the cutesy drawings were by Bella, until Nick got to the part about the "magical room" accompanied by a crude drawing of a bathing suit-clad couple making out. Shudder. Naturally, the story ends with stick figure Nick confessing his love for stick figure Andi, which prompts real-life Andi to give real-life Nick the Fantasy Suite card. He babbles something about talking Andi's ear off (is that what the kids are calling it these days?) before the Bachelorette finally cuts him off with, "Is that a long version of yes?"
It sure is, but first Nick has to pull Andi as far out of camera range as possible (which, of course, is not very far) and finally—finally—spit out those 55 little words she's been dying to hear: "I love what I know about you. Like, I love that you're a serious girl who doesn't take herself so seriously. I love that you know what you want but you can go with the flow... I love that you're very confident and strong but not afraid to be vulnerable. And [pause] I love you, Andi."
And she LOVES it. Cue the Peter Wolf!
NEXT: Josh pounds some Mamajuana