Chris Harrison
July 09, 2013 at 05:04 AM EDT

This week we found our way back to the country of Portugal. The last time we came to Portugal was with Ali and we stayed in the city of Lisbon on the mainland. This visit took us well off the coast, to the small island of Madeira. It’s actually a lot closer to Morocco in Africa than it is to Portugal. Madeira is a small island known for its gardens and amazing hikes.

The week began with Des getting to visit with some friends from last season: Jackie, Lesley, and Catherine. Catherine had a smile on her face, but believe me she was exhausted. Due to some travel complications, she barely made it into town at the last moment and her luggage never actually made it at all. Then she had to hop on a flight the very next day to get back to the States for an event with Sean. Even through that, she was thrilled to get to catch up with her old friends and dish about the five remaining guys. Des also enjoyed the visit with the girls and it put her in a great place going into her dates.

Brooks got the first one-on-one this week. I find these two very interesting. They seem happy together, but they also seem very cautious. It’s almost as if they spend time trying to figure out how to define their relationship or figure out how the other person is feeling. For example, they came up with “adjectives” to describe where they are between like and love. Now the fact that they actually came up with verbs, and not adjectives, is something I know mortified every English teacher in the world, but that’s not the point. The point is while their outward appearance is happy and free, their words still seem cautious. Des later admitted to me that she isn’t “running” toward love, she’s actually at the “finish line.” She’s in love with Brooks and she feels he’s in love with her as well, although he hasn’t expressed that to her verbally.

Chris got the second one-on-one this week and as good as Brooks’ date was, Chris’ was just as emotional, if not more. When these two are together they just seem right. It’s unbelievably easy and nothing seems forced between them. Chris really seems to make Des happy and he became the first this season to tell Des he loves her. He did it in a poem, but it still very much counts and Des knows exactly how he feels about her. Later, during our deliberation, Des admitted she’s also fallen for Chris and that she could easily see a future with him. I’m glad she’s kept an open mind and is still able to separate each man and each date at this point.

Michael was definitely put behind the eight ball this week. After two incredible dates with Brooks and Chris, the guy just didn’t stand a chance. Maybe if he’d gone first things might have been different, but after being with two men she definitely sees a future, with her feelings and relationship with Michael just didn’t measure up. You could really see it in Des’ body language and hear it in her voice. Michael opened up all he could and he can leave knowing he really gave it his all. He really expressed his emotions to Des, but it just didn’t click for her. Des narrowed it down to five great guys, but when you look at her other four relationships they are just much further along and much deeper than her relationship with Michael. Looking back, I’m not totally sure that the two-on-one where he went after Ben didn’t doom their relationship. After that date you got the sense that Des wasn’t feeling it.

The final two-on-one date was really a foregone conclusion. Unless one of these guys went completely nuts on her she likely knew that both of them would be getting a rose this week. The only true decision would be who would get the rose on the date and who would have to wait for the rose ceremony. Zak brings out a very happy and playful side in Des. When she’s around him she always has a smile on her face. Drew also makes Des happy, but it seems to be in a deeper emotional way. When I see them together they look like a couple that’s been together for years. They seem to get each other on a very deep level. Drew went a little further than Zak and professed his love to her and he ended up getting the rose, but again, at this point, she already knew Zak would get one as well.

The deliberation and rose ceremony this week took place in the courtyard of our hotel. The deliberation was down on a patio right off the ocean. Des was more open and honest in this deliberation than she’s been all season. She admitted she’s already in love with Brooks and Chris and that Drew and Zak were close behind. Heading into hometowns she’s definitely in a good place but also realizes she has her hands full, as time is running out. This next week with be incredibly pivotal because at this point, Des really needs to see that these men want to be there for her for the long haul and that they are just as committed to these relationships as she is. Hometowns are always my favorite because you can’t fake family. It always provides for an interesting and entertaining episode. I’ll see you next week back in the States as we narrow it down to the final three men! In the meantime you can always find me via twitter and facebook @chrisbharrison.

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