The Middle might have just ended its nine-season run with an emotional finale, but co-creator Eileen Heisler is already looking to the future.
In "A Heck of a Ride," Frankie (Patricia Heaton) and the rest of the family deal with the sudden departure of Axl (Charlie McDermott) from their lives after takes a job in Denver.
Most of the episode revolves around the road trip the family takes to see him off, while also offering glimpses into the characters' futures.
The show reveals Axl eventually moves back to Orson and has three sons who are just as messy as him. Brick (Atticus Shaffer) grows up and writes a successful book series and Sue (Eden Sher) marries Sean (Beau Wirick) after a roller coaster romance.
Heisler revealed to Deadline that making the final season was bittersweet.
"Knowing it was the last season made every moment more precious," Heisler said. "I think we got the chance to show a lot of appreciation and love for each other all season long. So many special moments for all of us — it was a joy."
Despite the series coming to an end on their own terms, Heisler revealed the Heck family's stories are far from over.
"We had a whole board of stories we never got to [tell]," Heisler revealed. "We felt it was a good time to end because we were all still loving it, loving each other, and enjoying ourselves."
She continued: "We never wanted to get to the point where we were retreading old stories, or anyone was feeling restless and wishing they were somewhere else. We wanted to go out while we're still at the top of our game, and to have a year of knowing we were wrapping up so we could write to an ending. We feel very grateful we've gotten to do that, and hope we are leaving fans wanting more."
So could there be more The Middle sometime in the future? While the creators had said previously they meant to have a concluding story for the finale, Heisler says there could be room for more in the future.
"Our ratings have been great and ABC was very clear they did want more seasons — it was our decision to bring it to a close," Heisler said. "And hey... I can't tell you what's next... gotta save it for the reboot. See you in ten years!"