• Published 29th Nov 2013
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The Diamond Cutter - Nova Force



She’s a rich filly. He’s a poor colt. What happens when Diamond Tiara accepts a dare to take Snips to the Sadie Hoofkins Dance?

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Silver Snails

Chapter 2: Silver Snails

The day started normally for Snips. He woke up, went to classes, and joked around with Snails. By the afternoon, however, there was quite a difference between this day and all the other ones. When he left school, only one thought dominated his mind.

I’m a colt with a date!

His senses were supercharged with adrenaline. He trotted through Ponyville and took pleasure in mundane things. A pair of birds flew over him. Where they were heading he did not know, yet he smiled at them. For the first time in his life, he was going to experience a date with a filly, and not just any filly, but Diamond Tiara. “I’m a colt with a date,” he whispered to himself.

There was one place he had to go right away. He galloped as fast as his little unicorn legs would take him. He arrived at a small cottage and knocked on the door. The knob twisted, and Snails emerged. “Hey Snips! What’s up?”

Although Diamond Tiara gave him explicit instructions not to tell anypony about her taking him the dance, Snips simply could not resist telling his best friend. “Guess who’s got a date to Sadie Hoofkins Dance?”

Snails’s jaw dropped to the floor. “No way! Who asked you?”

Snips closed his eyes and straightened up proudly. “Diamond Tiara.”

“What?” Snails’s eyes filled with disbelief and confusion.

Snips’s proud posture shrunk as he revealed more of the story. “Well, she didn’t actually ask. She came right up to me and told me it was going to happen.”

Snips could see his friend trying to process this information. The taller unicorn tilted his head. “Just like that?”

“Just like that.”

Snails didn’t say anything. He stood in his doorway looking dumbfounded. His initial excitement was replaced by a speechless sense of gloom. Although he was normally slow on the uptake, this bombshell took longer than usual for him to process. “Let’s go to my room,” he beckoned with his head for Snips to come inside. The little unicorn followed his friend into the cottage.

The decorations in the room were typical for a young colt: a couple Wonderbolt posters, the Daring Do book series on a small shelf, and a messy bed. Snails hopped on the bed and motioned for Snips to join him.

Snips obeyed. He waited for Snails to make the first move before he said anything else. So far none of Snails’s body language suggested that he was excited for him. What’s going on? Is he jealous? Snips wondered.

Snails raised his hooves to rub his eyes. He moved one of them to his forehead as if he were trying to clear his mind. “Snips, why did you say ‘yes’ to Diamond Tiara? She has been mean to us for years.”

Snips shifted uncomfortably as he could see that he would have to play defense. “I think ‘moody’ would be a better way to describe her.”

Snails shook his head in frustration. “Are you kidding? That brat is way more than ‘moody’. She’s a spoiled, rich filly who treats ponies like dirt if she feels like she can’t get anything from them. She doesn’t even sit with anypony during lunch because she thinks she’s better than the rest of us…”

About halfway through his rant, Snips tuned him out until he finished speaking. “Is there anything else you missed?”

“I’m serious! That girl is the queen of mean. Haven’t you seen her endlessly tease Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo for not having their Cutie Marks? If I had a bit for every time she called them ‘blank-flanks,’ I’d have more money than her dad!”

Everything Snails said so far was true. Still, Snips tried to be impartial in his analysis of his date. “Yeah, I wish she’d stop that too.” He made an attempt at objectivity. “But I think more than anything that she is making a cry for help.”

Snails didn’t bite. “Cry for help, my hoof! She’ll get mad at you over the tiniest things, even if she’s never met you before. Don’t you remember the first time she and I met? She barked at me for having a piece of cake at her cute-ceañera.”

Snips held out a hoof to help illustrate his counterpoints. “First of all, you took the first bite of that cake. It was her party, so she should have had the first bite. And second, you bit the cake in half and swallowed it in a single gulp!”

“I do remember it being delicious.” His eyes stared off in his room as he remembered the cake’s sweetness.

Snips reached over and patted his friend on the back. “So I guess that’s why you two got off on the wrong hoof?”

Snails weighed Snips’s argument. For a moment, it appeared as if he was about to accept his mistake until his face lit up with a new idea. “Okay, what about when she was removed from the Foal Free Press for publishing all those false rumors about everypony in town?”

Snips shrugged. “What can I say? Power corrupts. She’s lost that power.”

Snails could see that he was getting nowhere. He decided to cut to the heart of the matter. “Do you even like her?”

Here was the million bit question. “Well, I know she can be a pain in the flank sometimes, but have you ever seen her paintings? They’re really good.”

Skepticism sprung from Snails’s face. “She paints? I thought she just stayed at home and counted her money.”

Snips leapt from the bed and stood in the center of the room. “She totally does paint! You should see her project in Art class. It’s really something.” An admiring grin spread across his face. “She’s doing these awesome things with her tree leaves. It’s like you can’t even tell where they stop and begin.”

Although he heard every word that Snips spoke, Snails could not connect the dots. “You like her because she paints well?”

Snips started to pace back and forth. “No, I just feel like there’s more to Diamond Tiara than what she lets everypony see. I mean, you didn’t even know she painted until now.”

Snails put on a shrewd face. “Are you going to make any moves on her after the dance?”

He slowed his pacing to a full stop. “What do you mean?”

His friend lowered his voice to a smooth tone. “You know, some moves.”

The implications of what Snails was suggesting shocked Snips. “Are you crazy? Diamond Tiara is a lady. She should be treated like one.”

The surprise in Snails’s voice was genuine. “Wow, you really must like her. I had no idea.”

“It’s not every day beautiful fillies like her ask me to dances, and in case you haven’t noticed, they ain’t exactly clamoring over each other for my attention either. So I don’t want to blow this by acting like a boor. I mean, who knows? I’m willing to give her a chance since she’s giving me one.”

Snips resumed his pacing. As he did so, Snails thought long and hard over everything Snips told him. He still was not sold on the situation. A piece of the puzzle remained lost. “You say she’s giving you a chance, but is she though?”

“What do you mean?” Snips started to get annoyed that Snails was being so cynical. A part of him started to regret telling Snails anything at all.

Snails leaned his head forward. His hair cast a shadow over his grave face. “How do you know she doesn’t have some kind of ulterior motive?”

“Like what?” Snips scrunched his face. No ideas came to him.

Nor did any come to Snails, so he stamped his hooves hard on the floor. “I don’t know! She’s never paid any attention to you before other than to say something snarky. Now all of a sudden she’s demanding that you take her to the Sadie Hoofkins Dance? Something’s not right. Something’s missing.”

Snips turned his head to the side. “Again, like what? What could she possibly have to gain from me? Her father has more money than Celestia and could buy her the moon if she desired it.”

Snails didn’t speak, but the restraint on his face showed that he was keeping his thoughts to himself. Snips narrowed his eyes and peered into Snails’s with hopes of finding an answer. He ventured one of the few guesses he had left about what his friend was thinking.

“You think she’s leading me on or something?” When Snails’s eyes flickered, Snips knew he hit a bull’s-eye. Although on the surface he was frustrated with him, on a deeper level he could tell Snails meant well. “I know Diamond acts mean, but she’s not cruel.”

Snails spoke in a parental manner. “I think you should tell her that you can’t go.”

“Huh? Why should I do that?”

“Because she’s going to hurt you somehow, I just know it.”

Snips had enough of his pessimism. He decided to push back. “Why should you care? Are you jealous that she asked me and not you?”

Snails nearly choked. “Yuck! No way! I would rather drink bleach!”

“Then why are you against all this?”

Snails became quiet. His face showed that in his mind he was wrestling over something important. When he made eye contact with Snips, he looked like he was about to make a confession.

He bit his lower lip. “It’s Silver Spoon.” The moment he revealed her name, he hung his head in embarrassment.

This answered blindsided Snips. “Silver Spoon? What does she have to do with anything?”

Snail’s voice started to quake. “I-I’m thinking about asking her to the dance.”

The conversation had just taken a radical twist. “Wait, what? You are?”

“Yeah, I’ve been crushing on her hard for a while now.” Snails couldn't even bring himself to look at Snips as he admitted his feelings.

Snips cocked an eyebrow. “But the whole point of the Sadie Hoofkins Dance is that the filly has to ask the colt.”

This tidbit of information didn't faze Snails in the slightest. “I know, but I don’t think she’s going to make the first move, so I will.”

Snips scratched his mane; Snails’s behavior didn't add up. “I’m a little confused. I mean, you've been awfully critical of Diamond so far, and Silver Spoon’s not that much different.”

Snails hurdled off his bed and towered over him. “Are you kidding? She’s worlds apart from that brat. Diamond thinks she’s so high and mighty wearing that ridiculous tiara of hers, and she tries too hard to be fashionable with those white streaks in her mane and tail. Silver Spoon, on the other hoof, sticks to a practical yet elegant pair of glasses and a tastefully simple necklace. She lets her mane shine naturally without any gimmicks. Everything about Silver Spoon is genuine, and everything about Diamond Tiara is phony.”

Snips cowered beneath his best friend. “I didn’t even know that you liked her. How come you never said anything?”

“You never asked. She’s the reason I went to Diamond’s dumb cute-ceañera in the first place. I couldn’t have cared less about celebrating Diamond getting her Cutie Mark. Don’t get me wrong, the cake she had was fantastic, but all the sweetness in Equestria doesn’t hold a candle to the beauty that is Silver Spoon.”

“Uh, are you sure about asking her to the dance?”

“Why not? Diamond Tiara just walked up to you and ordered that you take her. Who could have predicted that was going to happen? How do you know Silver Spoon won’t say ‘yes’?”

“How do you know she won’t say ‘no’?”

“It’s worth a try. What do I have to lose? Besides, now that you and Diamond Tiara are a hot item, you can put in a good word for me to her and she’ll pass it along to Silver Spoon.”

“I wouldn’t say that Diamond and I are a ‘hot item’, but if that’s what you want me to do…”

“Yes, please.”

“Consider it done.”

“Oh, thank you!” Snails scooped Snips off the ground and brought him in for a bear hug. When he placed him back on the ground, he opened up like Snips had never seen before. “I’m real sorry, buddy. I know I should be happier for you. I just don’t want to see you get hurt. And, yeah, I have to admit that I’m jealous that you got a date. I mean, I’ve been wracking my brain for days now thinking about how to ask Silver Spoon out, and then you show up telling me you have a date with her best friend through no effort on your part whatsoever. All you had to do was say ‘yes’.”

“I didn’t even have to do that. She just told me like it was a matter-of-fact. But I appreciate that, buddy. Yeah, I’ll put in a good word for you. Who knows? What if the four of us went the Sadie Hoofkins as a double date?”

“That would be so awesome!” The two unicorns shared a bro-hoof.

“So you’ve got your Sadie Hoofkins date. Where do you go from here?”

“One step at a time. I don’t want to rush things. I think tomorrow I might sit with her at lunch. That seems reasonable, right?”

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