On her first night as the Bachelorette, Clare Crawley made a bold announcement. After her first encounter with contestant Dale Moss, she declared she'd just met her husband. Well, it turns out she may have been very right, because only four weeks into The Bachelorette, Dale proposed to Clare.
It's the ending that a lot of Bachelor Nation saw coming, but watching it play out on live TV was still pretty thrilling. As Chris Harrison told Clare in their heart-to-heart at the start of the Nov. 5 episode, she "blew up The Bachelorette" by focusing so much on Dale Moss so early in the season. But Clare couldn't hide the fact that she was "totally head over heels" for Dale.
"I feel like Dale is my match," Clare told Chris. "He meets me on the level emotionally of what I'm looking for and everything I want out of a relationship, everything I want out of life."
But before they could move forward, Clare needed to make sure Dale was on the same page. Instead of a cocktail party with the whole group, Clare and Dale got to have a one-on-one date, during which she shared her true feelings with him. Luckily for both of them, they both said they were falling love with each other.
Even after that all that discussion, the date wasn't over yet. Next, Clare and Dale enjoyed a private concert by The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart's Chris Watson and Bri Strauss. Then they got to spend the night together, something that usually doesn't happen until the Fantasy Suite dates much later into the season. It all worked out, since Clare said she would be honored to spend the rest of her life with him, and that she was ready to say goodbye to all the other guys.
After the big date night, Clare had another meeting with Chris. This time he told Clare the next step was a proposal. Clare said she was ready to get engaged, so she broke up with the rest of the guys. Then it was Dale's turn to learn he was supposed to propose to Clare that very night, and fans weren't sure what to make of his less-than-exuberant reaction to that news.
Fans' nerves were made no better by Clare, who, faced with the possibility that Dale might not be ready for that big leap, got real nervous, real fast. There were some tears as Clare faced her fears about commitment. But Clare also said things were different with Dale, so she was hopeful about their future together.
And yet, as Clare waited for Dale to show up for the (much earlier in the season than anticipated) final rose ceremony, things got even more tense. Instead of her love walking up to her, Chris Harrison appeared, telling Clare there was something he needed to tell her. Clare's face dropped — as did the hearts of fans at home, who had to have been thinking the worst. But instead of saying, "Dale's not coming," Chris simply told Clare he was proud of her. Gotta love his dramatic timing....
Once Dale finally arrived to the ceremony, Clare told him, "When you got here, it was like electricity for me, because I knew that I had just met my husband. You embody everything I want in a man."
Dale responded: "From the moment I stepped out of the limo, I felt this was special, there was no denying it. You made it so clear and apparent that you believe in 'you and I' and I know without a shadow of a doubt that you would got to the end of the world for me."
Dale went on to tell Clare how much he wants to be the perfect man for her. "I want to be here for you," he said. "I want to be strong. I want nothing more than to keep moving forward and keep being there for you each day."
Next, Dale told Clare that his late mom would have loved her, and they both said "I love you" to each other. Then, it was time for the big moment.
"The best is yet to come," Dale told Clare. "I'm not going anywhere, I want to make you happy each and every day." He got down on one knee and popped the question. Clare said yes, because ~duh~, and Clare's fairytale love story found its happy ending.
Season 16 of The Bachelorette continues with Tayshia Adams as the new Bachelorette (!) on Tuesday, Nov. 10, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.