The young bombshell who has been identified as the former governor Eliot Spitzer's $4,300 date is a New Jersey woman who hoped to make it in the big city as a singer, but now worries about paying the rent on her luxury apartment.
The New York Times identified Ashley Alexandra Dupre as Kristen, the high-priced hooker whose alleged tryst with Spitzer led to his disgrace and resignation.
Dupre is also known as Ashley Youmans, a high school dropout who left her New Jersey shore home at the age of 17 to begin her search for fame.
So far her career has been limited to gigs at some small-time New York City clubs, a recording on her MySpace page and a leading role in her elementary school play.
"We did the third-grade play together," her childhood pal Bill Coyne told ABC News. "She played Sandy in 'Grease' and opposite I played Danny. We had a lot of fun."
Coyne was surprised that the class beauty allegedly became a hooker.
"She is naturally just a sweet, sweet person, kind spirit. I never would have thought she would have been involved in anything like this," Coyne said.
But he's not surprised she became famous.
"I always knew that she was going to be famous because she had this larger than life persona. She's a bombshell," Coyne said.
The Emperors Club VIP escort service also seems to have thought "Kristen" was a bombshell and had her vitals handy when Spitzer needed reminding who his date was going to be.
The Emperors Club told Spitzer "Kristen" was "American, petite, very pretty brunette, 5 feet 5 inches and 105 pounds," according to a federal complaint.
The description left out that she was an aspiring singer whose MySpace page featured her song "What We Want," with hip-hop lyrics like, "I know what you want, you got what I want. I know what you need. Can you handle me?"
Her online profile also hints at hard times. "What destroys me strengthens me" is the motto next to her photo. She claims she left a "broken home" after enduring "abuse."
In a bluesy mood, she wrote, "I have been alone. I have abused drugs. I have been broke and homeless. But, I survived, on my own. I am here, in NY because of my music."
At another point she writes defiantly, "But I made it ... I'm still here and I love who I am."
In an Aug. 30 blog posting on MySpace, she wrote: "The past few months have been a roller coaster with so-called friends, lovers, and family ... but it's something you have to deal with and confront in order to move on ..."
She lists her musical models as Etta James, Aretha Franklin, Celine Dion, Christina Aguilera and Frank Sinatra.
Dupre, whose identity was first revealed by The New York Times, told the newspaper that her boyfriend recently walked out on her and that she now fears she will be unable to pay the rent on her apartment.
She lives at the brand-new Manhattan skyscraper The Chelsea Landmark where rents for small studios begin at $3,500 a month.
Mental health experts say Dupre's description of her background fits a common profile for prostitutes, even the so-called high-class call girls: childhood abuse, struggles and failed dreams.
"I think that people who find themselves in prostitution usually are trying to rewrite history and gain a power that they don't ordinarily have," psychoanalyst Jane Brown told ABC News.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.