Bad news for all you Courtney haters out there.
If Kacie flying all the way to Switzerland to warn Ben that Courtney would break his heart wasn't enough to dislodge the model from Ben's good graces, nothing is likely to.
And if Kacie is right and Courtney really is on the show just to win it, she's playing Ben like a pro.
All it took was for Courtney to admit she'd been immature and she wished she'd treated the other women differently for a relieved Ben to lay the subject to rest and move on to the far more interesting topic of getting laid, er, the fantasy suite card.
Yes, it was the episode every Bachelor must dream of: getting carte blanche to have sex with three different women in one week.
Oh sure, Ben can use euphemisms like "I'm really excited to spend uninterrupted time together," but we all know it's about doing the nasty.
Ben was in picturesque Interlaken, Switzerland, with his final three: Courtney, Nicki and Lindzi. Here's how it all went down.
Date 1, Nicki: Bubbly Nicki was almost as excited about the scenery as she was about seeing Ben for the first time since he visited her hometown. They had the perfect view from a helicopter swooping over mountains and glaciers before depositing them for a hilltop picnic (not that anybody actually eats on The Bachelor; all they seem to do is drink).
Nicki, whose nails were painted bluish purple to match her coat, wasted little time reminding Ben that she'd dropped the "L-bomb" when she saw him in Fort Worth. Ben paid her the compliment of saying that Nicki's father reminded him of his own dearly departed dad. Nicki was already visualizing life with Ben and seemed to take extra heart from that pronouncement.
The game plan went a little awry over dinner (once again, seemingly untouched) when Ben said he wanted four kids and Nicki said she had her mind set on two. But it was quickly glossed over when Nicki said she was willing to give it her all for Ben.
Cue the card with the familiar phrase: "Should you choose to forgo your individual rooms please use this key to stay as a couple in the fantasy suite." Boom chicka wow wow.
Of course, Nicki said yes. After checking out their candle-strewn log cabin complete with fireplace, she and Ben soon repaired to the jacuzzi for some smooching and arm rubbing.
"I'm not a cocky person, but I am confident I would make you so happy," Nicki said.
Date 2, Lindzi: Poor Lindzi, no sightseeing from the relatively safe confines of a helicopter for her. At least she didn't have to jump from a helicopter this time around, but it was almost as bad: she and Ben rappelled 300 feet down a mountainside and both looked scared witless to be doing it.
The reward was time spent in a hot tub where Lindzi got to talk about herself in the third person as "the ice queen" who was melting.
"I love Lindzi," Ben said. "I wonder if we're going to be able to get to the vulnerable state we both need to be in that we both have those feelings of lasting love." Translation: is she going to sleep with me tonight?
Ben certainly didn't help matters by showing up for dinner in a geeky looking bowtie.
Then we got to hear for the umpteenth time about how hurt Lindzi was when her previous boyfriend broke up with her (we're talking about the guy who sent her a text that said, "Welcome to Dumpsville") and how it made her put up walls. But that's okay, because she's tearing 'em down for Ben.
"I didn't realize completely until meeting you how not good a relationship that was," Lindzi told him. "I think you have to suffer a hardcore heartbreak to know and appreciate what love is.... I feel like I absolutely know for a fact that I really like you and I'm falling in love with you."
Woops, another L-bomb. So when the fantasy suite card came, Lindzi said yes, though she let Ben know "normally I just don't go spend the night with anyone." Well, it's not like any part of this situation is normal, so have at 'er, Lindzi.
In fact, Ben and Lindzi skipped the hot tub and went straight to kissing on the bed before the cameras cut out.
Date 3, Courtney: Ben made it sound like his date with Courtney was the most adventurous of all. "She wants to discover new things and she wants to try things," he said. But all they did was take a train to Wengen, buy fruit off the back of a guy's tractor, and bread and cheese from a shop for a picnic, which they shared in a field with a bunch of cows. They also did a silly dance in the middle of a laneway inspired by garden gnomes and cooed over a bunch of goats. Wow, sign me up for that adventure.
Courtney was already starting to lay down the mea culpas over her treatment of the other girls and expressing her fear that it would ruin things with Ben, which sounds like something a producer told her to say. But Ben decided that conversation was better suited to glasses of red wine in a wine cellar than glasses of white wine in a sunny field.
Ben pointed out that he has lots of female friends as well as a close relationship with his mother and sister, so he needed to know if Courtney was going to crap all over the women in his life.
"I think that I've been totally immature at times," Courtney confessed. "Looking back, I could have done things differently. I'm sorry that I've maybe done something that I shouldn't have or I spoke too soon because my guard was up."
That was good enough for Ben, who then proffered the fantasy suite card. "I know that I'm ready to take our relationship to the next step and have uninterrupted everything," Ben told her. That's a new way of phrasing it. I'll have to remember that.
Courtney took a little time to admire the blazing fire in the suite before she and Ben raced back out into the cold and warmed each other up in the outdoor hot tub.
... We interrupt this recap to bring you a sneak peek of new Bachelorette Emily Maynard. I'll be honest, I was disappointed when Brad picked her over Chantal O. and I'm not convinced the Southern sweetness isn't an act. But here was Emily heading to L.A. to get advice from former Bachelorettes Ali Fedotowsky and Ashley Hebert (the only one of the three still in a TV-spawned relationship).
The sum total of it, besides helping Emily pick out a hoochie mama dress and matching jewellery, seemed to be that the roses have magnets instead of pins so you won't stab the bachelors, and the first night is all about physical attraction, on one hand, but you should leave yourself open to people you're not attracted to right away, on the other, which sounds contradictory.
Then the women went off for some product placement, i.e. a viewing of Titanic 3D, and Emily said, while watching Kate Winslet's "Rose" with Leo DiCaprio's "Jack," "I want to feel like how she feels ... I want that to be my life." Minus, the ship sinking, I guess.
Back to our regularly scheduled program.
Surprise encounter 1, Kacie: The longish pair of legs we saw walking down the hall to Ben's room in the promo turned out to belong to Kacie B., who got sent home after the hometown dates. No wonder Ben said "Holy f--k" when he answered the knock on the door.
Kacie was ostensibly there to find out why Ben had dumped her, though I'm not sure why a phone call wouldn't have sufficed. A clearly uncomfortable Ben told Kacie they were "worlds apart almost in where we come from. Obviously, we have two wonderful families but very different backgrounds. For me, in all fairness to you and your family, I don't think I could have given you all of the things you needed from me."
Kacie hinted that she might have moved in with him despite mommy and daddy's disapproval, but Ben was having none of it.
Kacie wasn't done, though. She told Ben she still loved him and wanted him to be happy. And "I feel like if you were to choose Courtney you would get your heart broken.... It seems like she's in this to win it. She has made comments like, 'If it's not Ben, there are other fish in the sea.'"
Whether Kacie was truly being selfless or just trying to spite a rival, Ben didn't take the message well.
He rather briskly walked Kacie out of the room, hugged her and said, "I don't even know what to say" before walking back in the room and shutting the door. Kacie was left in the hall, where she promptly laid down on the floor, apparently overcome by seeing Ben again.
If she'd hoped her visit would rekindle a spark between them, she was out of luck. Ben declined when Chris Harrison offered to parachute Kacie into the rose ceremony.
But Ben claimed to be confused and to be questioning whether Courtney was playing him. He spent some time staring at the three women's pictures looking perplexed and claimed he wouldn't make up his mind until the last minute at the rose ceremony, which I find hard to believe.
Like I said last week, I think the fix is in for Courtney. This side plot about whether she'll betray Ben is just a device to try to prolong the suspense until the finale.
When the time came, Lindzi got the first rose. Then Ben stood and puffed out his breath for a bit before giving Courtney the final rose like we knew he would.
Ben told the castoff Nicki that he'd enjoyed every minute with her, "but I started to have doubts."
Without naming names, Nicki told Ben she feared he'd be hurt, although it was obvious she was talking about Courtney.
"I feel kind of like a fool for falling so hard and so fast for somebody who wasn't really sure," Nicki said tearfully in the back of the exit limo.
Next week, things come to a halt for the "Women Tell All" special, where Courtney will undoubtedly be a hot topic of conversation. And Shawntel Newton will be back, which ought to get the ladies good and riled up.
When the finale airs in two weeks, Ben, Courtney and Lindzi will be in a village at the foot of the Matterhorn for the moment of truth.
Tune in Monday at 8 p.m. on OMNI and catch the recap here.
(The photo of Courtney is by Craig Sjodin for ABC.)