• Published 2nd Nov 2015
  • 9,567 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 36: A Beginning

Silver Spoon was caught in a state of absolute turmoil as she fled the hospital, and the associated feelings of confusion and bewilderment that threatened to overwhelm her.

Why did my best friend smack me so hard, when I was just engaging in a bit of harmless horseplay?

Is Mrs Rich right in thinking that she is innocent of any crimes, and everypony else is against her? She sounded so convincing...

Have the Crusaders done more harm than good by turning Di's behaviour around and causing such a huge rift between her and her mother? Was that why my best friend is now in care, living on a farm?

What's behind Di's erratic mood swings? One minute, we're having a great time laughing together, the next minute, she's...

Silver felt her eyes well up, and she instinctively reached up to wipe the tears away.

Of course. No glasses. I better slow down, I don't want a nasty incident like when I ran full speed into Big Macintosh in town that one time. Whatever will my mother think. She just got them for me...

She paused for a moment, screeching to a halt in the middle of her headlong rush. That's it, my mother! she thought. She'll be at the school by now, because it's so close to hometime. I'll go straight there now, and tell her everything that's happened today. She knows Mrs Rich very well, seeing as they attend a lot of the same social gatherings. Perhaps she could ascertain how much of what Di's mother said was accurate, and what exactly I can do next.

The grey filly trotted forward with renewed vigour, feeling confident that Silver Sterling could allay her fears and give her sound advice, just like always. Her best friend may have just physically assaulted her unprovoked, but Spoon was sure there had to be a good reason behind the attack. Maybe it was simply down to the stress of the new changes in her life, or perhaps there was more to it than that.

Two things were for sure though: She'd get to the bottom of it, and she'd already forgiven Di.

Oh, and she was as still as jealous as Tartarus of Apple Bloom's new 'status'.

Now, which blur will lead me to Ponyville Elementary?

...........................................................................................................................................

Speaking of the farm filly, she was currently being watched closely by Applejack, as she slowly made her way to the corner of the hospital room where Diamond currently resided, waiting to be told to "get back" any moment by the depressed youngster.

Those words never left Tiara's sobbing lips, and Bloom finally reached the place where her friend was still curled up, free of aggravation. She took the precaution of standing as close to Tiara as she could, without actually touching her. She didn't want a repeat of the unfortunate Silver Spoon incident.

"Di. Can I...Can I...Sit down?" Bloom hesitated to speak to the disconsolate, shaking mess in front of her, but surely anything was better than leaving her to cry her heart out alone.

A slight nod of the head could be seen between the hunched-up hooves, as Diamond's bloodshot eyes focused on the new arrival. Taking the time to clear away the remnants of the unwanted tiara next to her, Bloom slumped down adjacent to her friend, unsure what to say.

Fortunately, the pink filly helped her out there. "A-Apple Bloom..." She said, in a voice that was a little more than a trickle. "Y-You have t-to believe... I-I didn't mean to hurt S-Silv, i-it just k-kind of h-happened..."

"I know, Di. I know..." Apple Bloom's heart swelled with sympathy and compassion for the distraught youngster. "After what you've been through, I completely get it. I just wish there was a way we could get them to understand, without, you know..."

In a flash, Tiara sprung up and grabbed Bloom by the neck, her fear and shame putting her on high alert. "No! You mustn't tell! You must never tell!" She pleaded with her roommate, even as the farm filly began to choke. "If everypony knew... How would I ever..."

Diamond's frenzy was abruptly halted when, out of the corner of her eye, she spotted Applejack glaring at her from the entrance, about two seconds away from intervening. That's when she finally noticed the orange mare's sister beginning to gasp for air in her clutches.

Removing her hooves from the wheezing Bloom, Tiara sighed and flopped back in her spot. "Look, I'm sorry. About everything." She spoke in a much softer voice." I don't deserve friends like you, or Silv for that matter. Perhaps I had all this coming. Maybe this is what I get, for all the mean things I've ever done..."

"Horseapples!" Diamond was cut off by a single word from the recovered filly next to her. "Don't you ever think that! What happened to you back there was totally wrong, whatever you did in the past! And for your mother... Your mother... To stand by smiling while Upper Crust did what she did, was unforgivable! The thing I'm glad about most of all is that you're out of that house, away from her! I've only had a small taste of what she's like, and already I hate her guts! Sorry for saying that, but it's just the way I feel!" This was again said in a lower volume, as Bloom respected her friend's wish for privacy from those lingering at the door.

Upon hearing her companion's unnecessary apology, Tiara ruefully grinned. "You're really something, you know that? Not once, in all the times I bullied and insulted you and your family, did you ever retaliate. Yet, the one occasion you saw me miserable, walking home by myself, instead of gloating like I would have done, you came to comfort me the very next day. And even now, though you have every reason in the world to despise my mother, you're still gracious enough to say sorry when you state what you must know both of us are thinking. How do you do it, Apple Bloom? How can you be so... Nice?"

Blushing slightly at Diamond's praise, the farm filly shrugged her hooves. "To be honest, I don't really think about it. I just respect my Mom and Dad's memory by trying to act like they would. Never feel bad towards anypony, because you don't know what they're going through on the inside. Always try and help others, because one day you could be the one in need. Try to get through life with a smile, because life is too short for moping and fussing. That's the Apple way. And now you're one of us, I could teach you that too, if you like..."

Tiara was completely taken aback by Apple Bloom's selfless philosophy, which was in such direct contrast to her own upbringing, where basically either you finished at the top, or you were banished to your room for long periods in disgrace. She thought about all the terrible things she'd done, all to try and satisfy her mother. None of them had worked, and in most cases had just made her personally miserable. She'd never felt appreciated or loved by the onerous Spoiled, and as for her father, why was he never around when she needed him? Like now.

She tried to think back to happier moments in her life. Her Daddy giving her ponyback rides through town, before work completely consumed him. Days spent frolicking with Silver Spoon, before the pressure exerted by her mother forced her into 'bullying' mode. The most joyful occasion of late was when she supervised the construction of the new play-centre outside the school, where in comparison to her usual berating of all and sundry, her carefully chosen words of encouragement seemed to stir her young workers into life, and the edifice was completed in record time. It had felt extraordinarily satisfying to achieve her goal without having to resort to her old tactics of bribery and manipulation. It was a feeling that could not be replicated, and one she wanted to experience again and again...

And, that's when she realised it. The significance of the Tiara shining on her flank in the middle of the building work. Her true destiny.

Not to be a rude, stubborn, conceited and cruel dictator, like her mother.

But a decent, reasonable, humble and considerate leader, like the Apples were, all around the community.

Like the...

An invisible veil had been lifted from her eyes. A seed of hope was planted in her mind. For the first time since that incident, she felt like she had the strength to carry on.

"You do understand, that despite him leaving me alone all the time and not paying me enough attention, I still love my Daddy, right?" Diamond's words came out of nowhere for Apple Bloom, who had allowed her eyes to wander during the pink filly's long deliberation.

"Um, yeah. Of course I do. You heard me tell Mrs Rich as much a couple of hours ago, right?" Bloom answered in puzzlement.

"And I like pretty much the same things I used to when I lived at the mansion. I don't think I'll ever be as hard-working, forgiving or as nice as you, and we might argue a lot..." Tiara continued her profiling in earnest.

"That's fine. Twilight told me once everypony is special in their own way, and even though me and the Crusaders are definitely the best of buddies, sometimes we plain just feel like tearing each other apart..." Bloom was always one for honesty, just like her big sister.

"Well, that's good, I guess..." Diamond raised an eyebrow at such a forthright confession. "Because it makes what I'm about to say a lot easier. After seeing what my own mother is capable of, and what those rich friends of hers' did to me, I'm through with my old life for now. I want to learn what you Apples have been teaching each other for years, and I need your help to do it. It'll take a lot of getting used to, living at the farm. But, with your help and the rest of your family guiding me... I think, we can make it work..."

Despite Apple Bloom's earlier aversion of setting off Tiara's trauma by touching her, she couldn't help but throw herself at the pink filly in the tightest hug she'd ever been given. " Oh, Di!" She exclaimed, joyfully. "I'm so happy you feel that way! I promise to do my best to help you however I can, and I'm sure the same goes for the rest of my... I mean, our family. I know it'll be tough for you at first, but if we work together, I'm positive we'll do all kinds of great things! I can't wait to get started! That is, when you're ready..."

It took all of Diamond's mental strength not to shove Bloom away, but this kind of affection felt kinda nice. As long as her friend didn't venture too near the 'problem" area, everything should be fine. As for what her new roommate had said, she wasn't quite prepared to call the rest of the large Apple clan her 'family' just yet. It had been less than a day since her forced eviction after all, and she still planned to see her Daddy regularly.

One thing was for sure though. She certainly felt a lot closer to her new foster relatives than her own mother, who, after her major role in reducing her to the pathetic, weeping heap in the corner that day, as well as the countless other mistreatments she'd administered over the years, she'd quite happily never see again. To think, she could have ended up like that, if not for...

Tiara smiled at Apple Bloom. Kicked what was left of the remains of her old headgear on the floor away...

And then, returned the hug.

Hang on a sec. Does this make Apple Bloom my auntie, now?
.................................................................................................................

As Silver Spoon ran off into the distance, leaving a trail of blood and tears in her wake, at first the adults were taken by surprise.

Then, the debate raged as to who should go after her.

Applejack wanted to stay with her sister. Fluttershy felt she didn't know Spoon well enough. Rainbow Dash said she needed to wait for Twilight. Rarity balked at the idea of her hooves being stained red.

And, by the time Pinkie Pie got over her disappointment over her incomplete toy to volunteer, the grey filly was long gone.

"I do hope she's going to be alright. I wonder what made her run off like that..." Rarity pondered.

"Well, I guess we'll never know now, due to all of y'all's indecision..." Applejack remarked, silently cursing that she'd taken her eyes off the occupants of the room for just a second when the incident unfolded, and resolved never to let it happen again.

"You're one to talk! You could have easily caught her up, asked her what was wrong, brought her back here..." Rainbow commented.

"Yes dear, all of us are guilty of that. If only I hadn't just polished my hooves before setting out here, I would have been the first to go..." Rarity sighed, as if that was a viable excuse.

"Sh! Something's happening in there..." Applejack silenced her friends, to observe what was taking place in the room. All five mares listened and watched intently, as Diamond Tiara almost throttled Apple Bloom, while shouting "Never Tell" about something, as if her life depended on it.

"That's it, I'm going in there..." Applejack sounded for all the world like a soldier about to head into battle, at the sight of her sister being ponyhandled in such a way. She didn't care what Diamond's personal hang-ups were, nopony did that to her flesh and...

"Wait!" A little noise sounded behind Applejack, followed by a far stronger hoof, which stopped her in her tracks. The orange mare turned around to see who'd halted her charge, and shockingly it was Fluttershy.

"Um... I hope you don't mind me interfering..." The yellow pegasus meekly commented, while still grasping her friend's shoulder. "But, I think this is something related to what Diamond Tiara is going through now, and the best pony to help her deal with it is right there in that room. If you go in, and make the situation more complicated than it is, Diamond may resent you for it, and I don't think Apple Bloom would like it too much, either. I don't believe your sister is in any real danger. See, look! Things have already calmed down in there..."

Applejack's gaze returned to the room, and sure enough, both fillies seemed to be a lot more congenial towards each other, the only problem with this was now they were talking in whispers.

Nodding her thanks to Fluttershy for interpreting the situation much better than she did, Applejack was still frustrated at the lack of information as to what exactly was bothering her sister and foster child. "That pretty much darn confirms it. They're hiding something from me. I gotta find out whatever it is, otherwise..."

"I'm sure that 'whatever it is', they'll tell you in their own time..." Fluttershy tried to placate the orange mare. "Forcing the issue now won't do any good. I think my talk with Diamond has really opened her heart, she'll let you know when she's ready..."

"I'm just worried in the meantime, before 'she's ready', that whatever's eating away at her might cause her to lash out at others. You saw what she just did to my sister, and I suspect that thing with Silver Spoon is connected with that little filly too. I knew things would be tough when I took her in, but I never thought..." Applejack mused at what a gigantic mess this was turning into.

"Oh no! You can't give up on her! You can't!" Pinkie Pie began to bounce with anxiety where she stood, driven to it by the seeming resignation of the orange mare to Tiara's plight. "I know she has a lot of stuff going on in her head at the moment, and that's why she needs friends like us more than ever! Please Applejack, if I know anything about you, it's that you're always up for a challenge! And you stick at it, no matter how tough it gets! We'll all help, isn't that right, ladies?" At this juncture, everypony nodded their head, apart from Rainbow Dash who'd flown to the end of the corridor out of earshot, to wait for Twilight.

Rolling her eyes, but nevertheless moved by her friends' support, Applejack replied. "Don't worry, sugarcube. That was the last thing on my mind. I was just thinking how difficult it's going to be, for her and us, if she keeps what's bugging her locked up inside for a long time. If she's going to hit out at everypony who tries to help her, then I don't see what good it could do. I'll give her space for now, but if I feel that her bottling away her emotions is harming her and those around her, you just try and stop me from getting to the root of the matter."

Those present thought that this was a good way of handling things, an opinion further backed when the four mares watching witnessed Diamond and Bloom's apparent reconciliation in the warmest of embraces.

If Fluttershy had been less timid she probably would have nudged Applejack and said "I told you so!". As it was, the yellow pegasus was simply content to watch the fillies make up, while the others were just grateful the crisis was apparently over for now...

"Twi's here!" Came the call from Rainbow Dash, as she flew back to join her friends. "Eww, what's everypony looking so mushy about?"

"Nothing that you'd really be interested in, dear..." Rarity produced a scented handkerchief, to wipe away a stray tear. "Just two old enemies, who became friends, becoming enemies again, before becoming friends..."

"Huh?" Dash was beginning to think maybe she'd flown too high that day. "Well, anyway, Twilight has arrived, so maybe if you've stopped talking in riddles, we can go and see her together..."

The group waited for two more minutes, and sure enough along came the Princess Of Friendship herself, looking somewhat flustered, but still none the worst-for-wear. After a friendly hug of greeting with her fellow Element holders. They got down to business.

"Have we got some news for you!" Rainbow Dash started the ball rolling.

"That's most impolite, Rainbow! Where are your manners?" Rarity chided the blue pegasus. "First of all, darling how was your visit to Canterlot? I trust the princesses are doing well..."

" Yes, they're fine..." Twilight was still a little on edge from her meeting with Spoiled, but tried to keep smiling.

"I'm sorry if we interrupted anything important, but this really couldn't wait, sugarcube..." Applejack stated. "You see, something big has happened with Diamond..."

"Yes, and I'm getting quite a clear picture as to what it could be..." Twilight stared at the ground crossly.

"What? How so?" Applejack tipped her hat in confusion.

"I've just had a long talk with her mother..." An involuntary shudder ran down the alicorn's spine. "And a lot of things are beginning to make sense..."

Author's Note:

Not much to say really. I want to keep things short and sweet after my last couple of author's notes verged on being essays. Just to thank all my readers for their patience in waiting for updates, as it's been a hectic week all round, and their comments, which without sounding too cheesy :rainbowderp: always cheer up my day. Hope you appreciate the more sedate nature of this chapter, because in a harbinger of things to come, thing'll liven up again pretty soon. :twilightoops:

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