Let's contrast those 'good' examples from the 'bad' one Fiona would have set. The reason that she's a bad pony that Mike should not have bet on is that unlike John, Elly and Eva Warzone, Fiona has known genuine hardship growing up with a crude, entitled, verbally abusive sneak-thief of a father who viewed the world as consisting solely of suckers for him to exploit with Fiona herself as the biggest of the lot. While she is a bit of a con artist in her own right, she does have lessons to teach that the Pattersons might not want Mike to learn. Said lessons are:
- Trust and respect have to be earned.
- If people think that they can take advantage of you, they will and they won't feel the least bit sorry.
- The worst hucksters out there will use you as an accessory before they burn you.
- You have to pay attention at all times and can't rely on waiting for miracles.
- Things are never what they seem.
- Most of all, what you want has nothing to do with anything so don't take things personally.
If Mike were to have taken that sort of lesson to heart, he'd have been less likely to let his horses be owned; therefore, he had to be made to steer clear of someone who'd make him see the world as it is, not as Elly wants it to be.