• Published 2nd Nov 2015
  • 9,578 Views, 2,420 Comments

A Mother's 'Love' - deadpansnarker



Diamond Tiara finds out the consequences of her actions against Spoiled Rich after she stood up to her in front of the entire school. Disgraced, her precious tiara taken away...Then, somepony knocks on her door late at night, and everything changes.

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Part 18: A Day With The Crusaders

If anypony would have told you within a few days of Diamond Tiara attempting to blackmail and bribe the voters for the school presidency, she would not only be friends with her worst enemies who'd helped run the opposition campaign, but also be living with one of them as a member of their family, they'd have probably have called up Nurse Redheart to give you an immediate shot, and a nice, long bed rest.

But, here they were, large as life, strolling through Ponyville together.The four fillies who used to be at each other's throats, chatting away like old chums. The fact they were around half-an-hour late for class, thanks to the unanticipated delay caused by misunderstandings, arguments and confrontations with irredeemable snobs, didn't seem to bother them.

The fact is, this was the first time that the Crusaders had ever got to talk to Tiara properly, as opposed to falling victim to her oft-chanted insults and hearing her boast about her swanky lifestyle. Hearing some of the punishments forced on her, for the mere crime of failing to live up to the Rich family's high expectations, caused her new friends to lose any bit of jealousy they might have had for the pink filly.

They'd much rather be penniless and free, than loaded and controlled, after all.

"... You mean to tell me." Scootaloo frowned, unable to comprehend what she'd just heard. "That just for talking back to your mother, you were grounded, had all your pocket bits taken away, and were on the verge of being sent to an all-girls boarding school?!"

"Not just any boarding school..." Diamond sighed. "St Whinnieans. The roughest, toughest centre for education around. It costs a small fortune to register, and by the time you come out, you're either a personality-less society filly, perfect for showing off at parties, or a broken mess, probably covered in bruises from all the beatings they hoof out. Let's just say, I'd rather stick with Ponyville Elementary if it's all the same to you..."

"Well, you don't have to worry about that kind of thing anymore." Apple Bloom was continuing her mission of placating Tiara at every opportunity. " You're with the Apples now... And the most pain you'll be in is a bit o'cramp from a hard days work bucking apples, and taking care of the farm. And that's good exercise for you, anyway. It's just a shame your leg got injured when it did, I was really looking forward to sharing my chores with you later, showing you the ropes..."

"Yeah, me too..." Diamond deadpanned. The strange thing was, her wounded hoof, which had stopped hurting a few minutes after Applejack had put the bandage on, had started to ache again.

The pink filly decided to ignore it. After all, she had more important things on her mind.

"So, anyway, I hope you don't mind if I ask..." Sweetie Belle had a question, but was hesitant in asking it. "You know all that stuff you used to do, like tease us, make us feel bad about ourselves, and get us into trouble, was that all down to your mother, or was some of it you?"

"Sweetie Belle!!" Bloom was annoying at her unicorn friend's question. "Di, you don't have to answer that. It's all in the past, now. Right, Scootaloo?"

"Well, actually..." Scootaloo replied honestly. "I kinda want to know too. I mean, I get that she made you look down on the 'lower classes' and forced you to be 'the best' whatever the cost, but why so specifically target us? You always seemed to go after me, Sweetie and Apple Bloom, when there were so many other fillies and colts in town. What did we ever do to you, to make you dislike us so much?" The pegasus's tone wasn't angry, just curious.

"Scootaloo!" Bloom's attempt to get support from her other Crusader friend had backfired. "Listen, I thought we'd agreed not to bring this up again. It doesn't matter what Di used to be like or her reasons for doing what she did. She's different now, we're different, can't we just let sleeping ponies lie?"

"...No." Tiara had heard all of this, and had decided it was time she came clean. "I think I owe you all an explanation. Not just for you three, but also, for myself. If I ever truly am to move on, I have to be truthful about my motives for being who I was, and make amends where necessary. Only then, can I find closure, and finally sever all links with my former self..."

The pink filly put on her most deadly serious of expressions, while the Crusaders were stunned at what they'd heard.

"Well, if you're sure, Di..." Bloom tried to be supportive.

"Whoa. that was pretty deep..." Scootaloo was impressed.

"You're telling me, I can't even tell half of what she said!" Sweetie Belle was all of a tizzy.

"Basically, it all came down to jealousy..." Diamond closed her eyes in shame. "You three had your own special bond, your own little hut, you did everything together, and what did I have? One true friend, who I treated like mule manure. Of course, I could always get other ponies to do what I wanted, on account of my talent and status, but it never felt that they liked me for me. If only, I hadn't been so high and mighty, I could have..." A few stray tears returned.

To say the Crusaders were shocked was an understatement. The privileged, prissy pony that is Diamond Tiara was always jealous, of them? The main cause of her non-stop harassment and bullying was envy? It was difficult to take it all in. While they digested this revolutionary information, the pink filly continued her confession.

"A-and every time my m-mother belittled me at home... Told me how worthless I was for n-not meeting her goals, told me my f-father didn't come to see me just because I was such a huge d-disappointment to the family, s-shouted at me for d-daring to disagree with anything she said. T-the only way I could f-feel good about myself again was by taking out my frustrations on o-others, whether it was my s-servants, y-you three, o-or m-my b-best f-friend. B-but especially you three, because I-I saw what you had, a-and..." Tiara finished her speech, and struggled to keep her eyes from leaking.

She didn't want to cry. She was fed up with crying. And yet, ever since yesterday, she couldn't seem to stop. Never, while under the despotic hoof of Spoiled, had she dared to even consider shedding one droplet. That sort of thing was for the feeble and downtrodden, she was a born leader, and such auspicious types know better than to show their emotions in public, for like charity and earnestness, it was a weakness that should be eradicated.

Diamond had heeded her words well, and every time the pink filly felt upset or depressed in any way, she simply bit her lip, wiped her eyes and carried on as if nothing had happened. She had thought this was working out well for her, considering the almost unanimous fear and awe she was 'greeted' with whenever she stepped out.

Now, free from the coattails of her mother's tyranny for the first time and having adopted a very different mindset, the overflow of liquid just wouldn't stop. It had started on the bridge after her mother had yelled at her that day in town, while she was watching the stallion and his daughter enjoying a day out, and had continued in fits and starts ever since.

On the one hoof, it felt quite good to release years of pent-up trauma and sadness, but on the other it was so unlike her old habit, of keeping up appearances by bottling everything inside and letting it fester in her brain...

It still felt unreal. She still felt embarrassed doing it. She hated showing off her true emotions so freely like this, particularly in such an open setting. And, yet...

Something told Tiara there was plenty more tears where that came from. It was a good job she had some committed friends now, who'd be there for her through thick and thin. At least, she hoped they would.

How ironic. The fillies she used to pick on the most, had become the ones who could save her from herself the most. The switch in dynamics had been sudden and brutal, but it was something she was going to have to grow accustomed to.

For all their sakes.

She didn't realise it, but while she was absorbed in her private debate, her three friends were having a little discussion of their own, while casting little sidelong glances at her. By the time Diamond had cleared her head enough to carry on, their mini-meeting had just concluded, and as she dried her eyes, she felt a pair of comforting hooves on her shoulders that belonged to, who else, Apple Bloom.

"Listen, Di..." The farm filly's amber eyes stared deep into Tiara's blue ones. "Me and the girls have come up with an idea... Well, actually, it's not up for discussion. We're going to make you an unofficial Cutie Mark Crusader for the day. Whether you like it, or not." She said those words in a determined manner, but there was a hint of a smile on her lips.

Out of the corner of her vision, Diamond noticed Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle nod their approval too, and was almost lost for words. "B-but, why?" she stammered, unable to form a cohesive thought.

"Well, for one thing, we can be there if you need us, help you make new friends, keep you from your old habits and teach you how to be nicer to others." Bloom now fully beamed at the pink filly. "Of course, this means you'll have to stick with us all day. We'll sit together, eat together and even play together at recess. Who knows, you might even be able to help us out too, I'm sure that talent of yours could come in handy when we're trying to help other ponies out with their Cutie Marks..."

Tiara was still getting her head around this offer. Sure, her and the CMC were friends now, perhaps even good friends, in the case of Apple Bloom, but to be forcibly enlisted in their club? Even for just a day? Have every move she make be scrutinised, as if she was a little foal? She wasn't sure she liked the sound of that...

B-but... I don't really think..." the pink filly began to protest.

"I told you, a minute ago..." Sighed Apple Bloom, affectionately ruffling her new roommate's mane. "This isn't up for argument. You need and want to know more about friendship, and we're here to teach you. Plus, me and the girls want to make up for lost time by getting to know our new friend. Is there anything wrong with that?"

"N-no, I guess not..." Tiara replied, dumb-struck.

"Well, good! I'll have a word with Miss Cheerilee about changing the seating arrangements in the classroom and dining room when we get to school. I'm sure, knowing my sister, she's explained your situation to the teacher, so it shouldn't be a problem if she knows we're here to support you." Bloom was already thinking ten paces ahead.

"U-um, okay..." Diamond said, still a bit nonplussed,

"And another thing you should know about us..." Apple Bloom winked at the pink filly. "We always walk together single-file, in a group. Today, you'll be squeezed in between Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle. Come on, everypony. Take your positions. I can see the school just ahead!"

"What?!" Tiara had been so wrapped up in her own thoughts, she hadn't realised they were just a few yards from the old building of learning, with the sign of an open book right in front. "We're here already? But... I haven't had time to prepare. How am I supposed to explain my appearance, or why we're so late...?"

"Like I said, I'll have a chat with Miss Cheerilee, and everything'll be straightened out, so, don't fret." Bloom's confidence was so high, Diamond couldn't help but feel better.

All of a sudden though, she saw the farm filly nod in Sweetie Belle's general direction, and felt herself encased in the same green light that had dragged Bloom along for a ride earlier that morning.

"Don't worry Di, she's just getting you where you need to be." the farm filly smirked slightly as Tiara was lifted into the air, before being softly deposited in a sandwich containing Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo.

Yummy.

"Hi!" The white unicorn told the squished Diamond, as her horn stopped glowing. "You might not believe me, but I actually had a daydream once, which was very similar to this. I picked you up with my magic then, too... Only, it was more of a revenge-type fantasy. I had it when you were showing-off with your butler in the playground..."

To the right of Tiara, Scootaloo facehoofed. "Sweetie, she doesn't have to know about that now. Come on, it's about time we got into class, we've had MORE than enough distractions for one day. Quick march!"

Sweetie Belle looked slightly annoyed she didn't get chance to finish her little story, so while Apple Bloom joined the trio to form a quartet, the little unicorn leaned over to whisper in Tiara's ear, "I'll tell you the rest later."

The pink filly wasn't really listening, though.

She was currently in the middle of weighing up the ramifications of being stuck with the Crusaders all day long.

Whenever they got in trouble... She'd share the blame.

Whenever they destroyed something... She'd share the blame.

They might be good ponies, but they did have a tendency to create chaos wherever they roamed...

And, what would happen if she needed to go to the little fillies room?

How would they all fit inside the...

Uh oh.

Author's Note:

I'm tired. It's early morning here in Blighty, and here I am finishing this chapter off for you guys when I should be tucked up in bed. I intend to remedy that situation very soon. Enjoy, and Merry Christmas to you all...

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