Nick Ray/ ABC
Reality set in for Ben Flajnik and Courtney Robertson as the reality show played out on national television. The Bachelor couple struggled to remain intact as Courtney's duel identity was revealed and tabloid rumors spread, calling Ben's fidelity into question.
On After the Final Rose, Ben sat in the hot seat first. He broke news that the twosome had split "for a period of time while this show aired." He needed a break to "reassess" their relationship. In response to magazine allegations, Ben swore "on my father's grave, I haven't kissed another woman, hooked up with another woman, or cheated on Courtney." On the day that article was published, Ben discussed the false rumors with Courtney. The media hog then went to try on wedding dresses "to divert attention."
As Courtney walked on stage, she was greeting with boos from the audience, much like Kris Humphries as he enters the basketball arena since his controversial divorce from Kim Kardashian. Clearly shaken, the ring-less bride-to-be took responsibility for her actions on the show. With her bare finger visible, she told Chris Harrison that Ben had joined her family for Thanksgiving in Arizona before the "big storm rolled in." Just last month, Ben didn't even acknowledge Valentine's Day, neglecting to send his one-time dearly beloved flowers or a card. At the time, she felt "abandoned" by her fiancé and remained cooped up at home to cry.
The on-again couple then made their public debut and to show their solidarity. Ben offered an apology to Courtney "for not standing by you. I messed up in that regard…That wasn't fair to you. That was my coping mechanism." After watching their special engagement play back, both parties got emotional. "The beautiful moment has been soiled by all of this," Ben said with tears streaming down his cheek.
He used After the Final Rose as an opportunity to create new proposal memories. Chris had the Neil Lane sparkler in his possession and offered it back to Ben. To officially patch things up, Ben slid the ring back on Courtney's finger to signify the token of his affection and the on-again status of their engagement.
Noticeably absent was runner-up Lindzi Cox. Check back with ETonline tomorrow to hear from her. Still floating on Cloud 9, Ashley Hebert and JP Rosenbaum dropped in to announce they hope to marry this year and even asked Chris to get ordained in time to officiate their ceremony. JP jokingly said they are expecting a baby, but Ashley quickly shot down the emerging rumor.