On Tuesday night's episode of Bachelor in Paradise, a handful of cast members ambushed Brendan and Pieper on the beach, accusing them of being on the show for fame, clout and Instagram followers since they had brought their already-existing relationship to the beach, where they could resume dating on television.
Following more than a week of backlash from Bachelor Nation and Bachelor in Paradise viewers over how Brendan essentially admitted to stringing Natasha along while waiting for Pieper's arrival, Pieper dished to Us Weekly about the current status of her relationship with the 31-year-old commercial roofer.
"We're working through things," Pieper, 24, told the magazine of Brendan.
"This obviously isn't something that's super healthy for a relationship either, so it kind of is what it is. Every day, [we're] taking it day by day."
Pieper, who suggested things have been rough with Brendan in the real world, also didn't hesitate to share how she had nothing to do with Brendan's apparent ploy to exchange roses with Natasha up until the moment when he could reunite with Pieper in Paradise.
"I had no idea what I was walking into. Obviously, [if] you like somebody, you hope that they're waiting for you, but you don't know the circumstances when you walk into Paradise," the Oregon native insisted.
"So, whatever he had to do beforehand, that had nothing to do with me. I didn't tell him to do anything, so that was kind of what it was."
Pieper also said she didn't know Brendan would even be in Mexico upon her arrival and she wasn't even officially cast on the show until "a week" before she flew to the Playa Escondida hotel, where the show filmed.
"I honestly try not to live with regrets. What happened, happened, and I'll deal with whatever happens next," Pieper said on Thursday.
While Brendan hinted on the show he and Pieper had discussed dating in Paradise given they hung out about 10 times before the spinoff filmed and were dating without labels, Pieper said she was "shocked" to see him on the beach and they "didn't have a plan."
"As new as it was to the viewers was as new as it was to me," Pieper claimed, adding, "I liked him and I was excited to see him, but that was the extent of it."
Pieper, however, said she has apologized to Natasha personally and privately and appreciates how Brendan had also issued an apology on his Instagram account.
Bachelor in Paradise's September 6 episode featured Brendan admitting to Pieper he had downplayed the extent of their pre-Paradise relationship in order to "navigate" the Paradise process, and Natasha called Brendan "a liar" for saying his fling with Pieper had been "super casual" and they supposedly only hung out twice.
As Natasha struggled to mend her broken heart, Brendan and Pieper appeared to laugh about "playing the game" and were shown talking about their influencer status and thousands of social-media followers, which have since plummeted -- by nearly 30 percent, in Brendan's case.
Pieper told Us on Thursday, "I didn't go into Paradise with the intention of hurting anyone, nor would I ever want to be the reason why someone had a bad experience."
Pieper also accused Natasha of knowing about her pre-show romance with Brendan, even though Natasha has said she had "no idea" Pieper and Brendan were dating until rumors began swirling on the beach in Mexico.
"I had a friendship with Natasha before the show and had spoken to her about me and Brendan talking," Pieper alleged.
"With that said, I am truly sorry for any hurt that I caused her and hope that I get the opportunity to speak to her soon and make things right."
Pieper also previously blamed Bachelor in Paradise's editing and production, in part, for painting Brendan and herself in an unflattering light. She claimed in her Instagram Stories last week that a two-hour episode cannot possibly capture the whole story.
Once Pieper and Brendan returned to the beach from their first date in Paradise, Pieper immediately called Brendan her "boyfriend" and they didn't hide their feelings and affection for one another.
At the sight of them, Natasha lamented, "I feel like a casualty in [Brendan]'s convoluted plan."
Natasha let the cameras know that she felt "played" and "swindled" by "a con artist" who had "lied" and "manipulated" her.
When Natasha confronted Brendan about having lied about his past with Pieper, Brendan accused Natasha of having had "selective hearing" when they'd talk about their connection, which he ultimately dubbed just "a friendship."
Natasha therefore accused Brendan of "gaslighting" and being disrespectful to her on Twitter.
Brendan was also shown bragging to Pieper on Bachelor in Paradise about how Natasha didn't have any other "prospects" and so he essentially did her a favor by giving her a rose so she could stay on the show longer.
"After taking time to begin to process the events that unfolded over the past few days, I have realized I was wrong on so many different levels," Brendan wrote via Instagram Stories on September 8, after being subjected to major backlash.
Brendan admitted he had been "completely insensitive" by poking fun of the situation on Instagram, and he added, "I apologize to you, Natasha. I hurt you. I am deeply sorry for doing so. I understand that the damage is already done and all I can do going forward is acknowledge the error of my ways."
Brendan added, "For those of you that felt my actions triggered certain feelings and emotions I am truly sorry."
"Lastly, despite the fact that Pieper and I had misunderstandings going into paradise (and I can't stress this enough) -- If you feel the need to express disdain for the situation, please do so at my expense. I am completely at fault. A full statement and apology will follow," he concluded.
Brendan said his co-stars -- who told Brendan and Pieper they would leave the beach if they had any "dignity" left -- had made "a pathetic attempt to intimidate [him]" and that Natasha was just "salty."
Pieper whispered to Brendan afterwards, "I told you I didn't want to come. I told you."
Brendan and Pieper then decided to leave on their own terms and continue their relationship at home.
"I didn't intentionally want to mislead anyone; I just withheld information," Brendan said in his final words.