The Bachelorette had to sign off for the season with Ashley Hebert wearing a ring, right?!
Right off the bat, we saw that it wasn't going to be easy, what with Ashley's sister Chrystie immediately determining that J.P. Rosenbaum wasn't the right guy for her and Ashley actually telling J.P. that her sister's half-cocked opinion mattered to her.
Maybe we're so used to the Bachelor/Bachelorette's family being initially wary and then coming around in a neat 15 minutes to the idea of their offspring getting engaged to whoever, that we were just taken aback by Chrystie's honesty and it's Ashley who couldn't handle the non-sugarcoated version of what was happening.
Or was her big sis being a major be-yotch?
"She only wants my opinion if it corresponds with the way she's feeling," Chrystie pointed out when their mom, Laurie, asked why she couldn't be more supportive of her little sis.
Good point, but she was still a major buzz kill, going so far as to tell J.P. that she saw more between Ashley and Brad Womack than she did between the two of them.
Poor little already-wounded J.P.
But apparently ole eagle-eyed Chrystie, who revealed that she's been married and divorced (big shocker there), spied the passion between Ashley and Ben Flajnik right off the bat!
"The next time I see all these people, I will be engaged to Ashley," Ben said confidently after all was said and grilled.
Wouldn't you know, though, that Chrystie's treatment of J.P. had Ashley edging slightly into his court as she wondered what bug crawled up her sister's bum?
Ben was the first to use the L-word, though, and they appeared to have quite the night together.
But the following day, J.P. was wondering, "Maybe the other guy said he loved her," and so he followed suit. He told Ashley that he had already informed her whole family that he was "madly in love" with her. And she liked it.
"Tonight Ashley made me feel like I was the one," J.P. reflected.
As always, however, both guys headed off to Neil Lane for a dazzling piece of bling to present to the Bachelorette. And you'd think that Lane, of all people, would have laid off of poor undecided J.P. for a second.
"This is tough, this is your heart, your affection, your future. What happens if she says no?" the jeweler asked.
And there went J.P., walking out without a ring noticeably in his hand, making us wonder whether he would really be able to go through with it and face the possibility of rejection head-on.
"I have to say goodbye to one of these guys and I don't think he expects it, and that just breaks my heart," Ashley remarked on the eve of the proposals.
Sure enough, Ben made it all the way down onto one knee and even managed to pop the question, only to be rejected.
"Wow, I didn't see that one coming," the once-confident winemaker said in disbelief. And, duh, he didn't need Ashley telling him how "interesting and smart" he was afterward.
"You can't leave something like this on good terms," Ben informed her. "It's not possible...Good things don't end unless they end badly." (Another sharp point. Maybe Ben and Chrystie should go out.)
But on to the romantic stuff: Isn't someone glad he took the leap of faith?!
"Ashley, will you marry me?" J.P. asked after a bit of speechifying that had us nervous he was going to be too scared to propose.
And guess what? She said...yes!
Way to go through the ringer, J.P. We wish him and Ashley all the real happiness in the world!
(Originally published Aug. 1, 2011, at 7:45 p.m. PT)