Everything we know about Francesca's potential love interest Michaela Stirling on 'Bridgerton​'

Francesca Bridgerton may have a romantic relationship with new character Michaela Stirling
Francesca Bridgerton may have a romantic relationship with new character Michaela Stirling

The final four episodes of Bridgerton season 3 dropped today, and while the straight side of X (formerly Twitter) is currently obsessing over Polin, Gay Twitter has been obsessed with the news that two of the Bridgerton siblings are bi.

The romance between Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) is super steamy, but queer fans can't stop talking about Benedict Bridgerton's (Luke Thompson) hot kiss with another man and his sister Francesca's (Hannah Dodd) seeming bisexual chemistry with a brand new character.

In season 3, part 2, Francesca marries John Stirling, the Earl of Kilmartin (Victor Alli), but when he introduces her to his female cousin Michaela Stirling (played by The Woman King's Masali Baduza), the intense chemistry between the two is so instantaneous that she nearly forgets how to speak.

"I caution you. Every sordid detail John has spoken about me is a lie," Michaela quips. "The truth is far worse."

Related: All 29 sex scenes on Bridgerton (so far), ranked

Now fans are speculating that season four will focus on Benedict's queer awakening and explore Francesca's new same-sex attraction. Fingers crossed! We also wouldn't say no to Eloise (Claudia Jessie) getting an LGBTQ+ plot line, too. We can dream, can't we?

But who is Francesca's potential love interest, Michaela Stirling?

Major spoilers for the book are incoming!

For those who haven't cracked the spine on Francesca's book When He Was Wicked, Michaela's introduction was exciting because of the electric chemistry, but queer readers we're probably jumping for joy because of one notable change about the character.


While Michael is still John's cousin in the novel, Michaela goes by a different name because she is actually a he. Michael is also John's best friend, who has a crush on Francesca. Then, after two years of marriage, John tragically dies of a brain aneurysm, and eventually, she and Michael fall in love and get married.

It's unclear what the change from Michael to Michaela means for the show's trajectory, but it leaves the door open for a Sapphic love story at the very least.

In an interview with Glamour, showrunner Jess Brownell explained that as a queer woman, she "related" to When He Was Wicked.

"Her book talks a lot about how different she feels, and I think Julia Quinn's intention in the book is just that Fran feels different because she's introverted," Brownell said. "But for many of us in the queer community, that sense of feeling different is a part of our stories. I felt like there was fertile ground thematically in her book to nod toward telling a queer story."

She also said that fans will still get the HEA (Happily Ever After) that is a feature of romance novels. "There are also some elements of her story that allow us to make sure we can tell a pretty happy ending for Francesca and Michaela," she continued. "It was important for me in telling a main queer story for us to be able to give them a happily ever after, as we have with every other couple."