The show's mean girl is still in it for the cash – but found a soft spot for Swiderski

Credit: Craig Sjodin/ABC

Self-proclaimed Massachusetts mean girl Jaclyn Swartz came to Bachelor Pad with dollar signs in her eyes and disgust for Blakely in her heart.

But now Swartz, 27, admits the game show and her “default partnership” with Ed Swiderski changed her for the better. Not that she doesn’t still want the prize money, as she tells PEOPLE.

Did you come for love, money or both?
My main focus was winning the money. Never in a million years would I think that it’s a game for love.

Yet you hooked up with Ed. Loudly
Ed’s noises are pretty epic. I don’t recall hearing those that night but [because we were drunk] I might not have remembered that. I saw that [on TV] and could not stop laughing. So far it’s just like us having some casual fun. We were just partners in the game. We were so normal and cool afterwards. And we live in the same house so you can’t really escape the person. He makes jokes about it.

Were you concerned that it would ruin your partnership?
I was thinking about every move at all times and at this point, we worked really well as partners. If I [thought] that would jeopardize something, I wouldn’t have gone there. I don’t think he would have either. It’s not like him and Sarah hooking up. That’s a different situation.

Did that “situation” bother you?
It’s tough to see your partner hook up with somebody else because at this point in the game, we don’t know if that’s going to be your partner to the end. You want your partner to be someone you want to go on dates with. But if your partner is hooking up, you’re not going to take them on dates if you win and that’s a problem. Ed and I talked after [that], and I was pretty clear that wasn’t happening again. I was bummed that Sarah made comments about me. I never once badmouthed her, and we spoke after [her hook-up and mine] and were on great terms, so [those] were a shock to hear.

Do you wish you had picked a different partner? Ed has struggled in challenges
I was playing the game the minute I walked into the house. I definitely spotted Kalon and Chris first. But I was drawn to Ed because he was fun and cute. We were having fun and not thinking about the challenge day one and it brought us together. It was clearly a default partnership. As weeks went on, we just clicked. I trust Ed a lot and there’s no reason to change. Ed toughed it out in the first challenge. I was the one who fell first. That gave me more reason to believe that I could stick with him.

Were you worried Ed would be eliminated?

I was mentally prepared for [it] because I’m never confident. It’s Bachelor. There are always twists. There were people gunning for me. If Reid stayed, I would be the next to go so I was freaking out.

Were you genuinely upset by Reid’s betrayal of Ed?
Really upset. Reid and Ed came into it great friends and we [thought] he was on our side. Then I would catch cryptic things he’d say that weren’t in line with [our strategy]. When you think someone is working with you and they’re [not], it’s hurtful regardless of the fact that it’s a game. And it was sad to see sensitive Ed [think] he was going to leave. The game didn’t do good things for Reid. If he’d just relaxed and not pulled those moves to shake up alliances, he would have had smooth sailing. I wouldn’t have voted him off in a million years because I like Reid. But it plays on that past vendetta and it probably would have been liberating to see Ed go before he goes.

Did anyone else surprise you in the house?
Blakely. You saw my reaction to her being in the house. I thought we’d completely butt heads and I’d want her out of the house. As the game progressed, I saw a side of her that I never saw before. She led me to believe she’s trustworthy. Our friendship took a turn for the better

Give us a tease for next week
One-On-One dates start. There’s a huge difference between group hangs in the house and three-on-ones and one-on-ones. You don’t want to spend an entire day with someone you don’t click with. We’ve seen people randomly couple up in challenges but now it’s game time and people have to make tough decisions about who you want your partner to be in the end. Girls are going to be offended and people are going to be shocked. You’ll see a lot of relationships change.

Assuming Chris’ tainted trio is one of them
Chris’s love triangle becomes a love square with a new girl entering and it all comes to a head. No matter what Chris does, two of three girls are going to be hurt and it’s going to affect Chris’s game. Things blow up, people get angry and to be able to be just a bystander is pretty entertaining.