Tethered-Angel

Be More Dazzling Part 2

Jul 22nd, 2018
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  1. "You need to get Sunset out of the way. And the easiest way to do that... is seduction."
  2. >Wallflower found herself scowling at the ground.
  3. >ADAGIO had dropped that bombshell just before the bell rang, and then disappeared before Wallflower could respond.
  4. >She ignored her the rest of the day, only reappearing as she was opening her locker after the last bell.
  5. >"We're going to the mall."
  6. >Wallflower had opened her mouth to argue, but the AI had once again disappeared before she could get a word in edgewise.
  7. >At least she was allowed to drop off her bookbag first.
  8. >Wallflower hated the mall.
  9. >Too much noise, too many people.
  10. >Groups of friends laughing like idiots, happy couples wandering around holding hands.
  11. >Bleck.
  12. >None of the stores really interested her either.
  13. >She wasn't really into shopping, and most of the stuff was too pricey anyway.
  14. >Most of her clothes came from the thrift shop.
  15. >Hey, you could get good bargains there!
  16. "Why are we here?" Wallflower grumbled uncomfortably.
  17. >ADAGIO was "walking" a few paces ahead of her, eyeing the surrounding shops with her hands on her hips.
  18. >She scoffed, then turned back to Wallflower.
  19. >"You need a new wardrobe if you're going to impress anyone. From what you normally wear I'd guess you get most of your clothes from a dumpster."
  20. >Wallflower cringed.
  21. >She wouldn't have put it that way, but it struck close to home regardless.
  22. "I like my clothes," She said defensively.
  23. >ADAGIO let out a synthesized sniff.
  24. >"Of course you do. That's why I'm here to correct you."
  25. >Wallflower frowned.
  26. "Gee, thanks."
  27. >"Naturally." ADAGIO replied, ignoring (or possibly missing) the sarcasm.
  28. >Wallflower honestly wasn't sure.
  29. >It was a computer after all.
  30. >A computer that lived in her brain.
  31. >Shit! It was probably reading her thoughts!
  32. >Change the subject! Change the subject!
  33. "Fine, so I need new clothes. Do we have to do it here though? It's so expensive."
  34. >"Of course. You have to look the best if you're going to impress Sunset Shimmer."
  35. >Wallflower froze, blushing.
  36. >In irritation darnit!
  37. "I don't want to impress Sunset Shimmer! I don't even like her! I don't even like girls!"
  38. >ADAGIO whirled, fixing Wallflower's eyes with her crimson gaze.
  39. >"Why did you decide to pursue Flash Sentry?"
  40. >Wallflower rolled her eyes.
  41. "He's the cutest guy in school, duh."
  42. >She yelped as a small electric shock pricked the back of her neck.
  43. >"Don't be insolent."
  44. "Ow! Did you just shock me!?"
  45. >ADAGIO hummed, appearing to polish her fingernails on her coat.
  46. >"I was merely... correcting your attitude. This only works if you learn to obey."
  47. >Wallflower glared at her, rubbing her neck.
  48. >"Now, you said Flash is 'cute?'"
  49. "Yeah," Wallflower answered grudgingly.
  50. >ADAGIO fixed her with a look.
  51. >"Tell me, do you really think that?"
  52. >Wallflower huffed.
  53. "Everyone thinks that."
  54. >"That's now what I asked."
  55. >Wallflower bit her lip.
  56. "He's... kinda cute? I guess?"
  57. >"Uh-huh." ADAGIO said, dully.
  58. "A-and, well, he's nice? And kind of, well... popular..." Wallflower finished, her voice trailing off.
  59. >"Aha. So what you're really attracted to is his popularity. Influence. Attention."
  60. >Wallflower blushed, shrugging her shoulders defensively.
  61. "I guess."
  62. >ADAGIO smirked.
  63. >"Well, there is someone else at your school who is more influential by far." She trailed off, giving Wallflower a knowing look.
  64. "... Principal Celestia?"
  65. >ADAGIO frowned.
  66. >Wallflower yelped as another shock pricked her neck.
  67. "Ow!"
  68. >"Idiot girl!" ADAGIO huffed. "I was referring to Sunset Shimmer!"
  69. "Okay, I get it, I'm sorry!"
  70. >Adagio nodded abruptly, flickering visibly as she switched gears.
  71. >"Now," she said, holding up her finger as if giving a lecture.
  72. >"What we need to do is make you the kind of girl someone like Sunset would be interested in."
  73. "I guess so," Wallflower shrugged. "But I still don't-"
  74. >"Wallflower, look at me." ADAGIO demanded, brushing Wallflower's cheek with an insubstantial finger.
  75. >"Think about Flash Sentry. Tangled, greasy fair. Ruffled clothes. Vacant, idiotic smile."
  76. >Wallflower frowned, trying to picture the boy in her head.
  77. >ADAGIO's analysis wasn't... wrong, per se.
  78. >But it was kind of mean.
  79. >Wallflower would have described them as... character.
  80. >Yeah, that.
  81. >He did kind of smell like pizza though.
  82. >She frowned.
  83. >ADAGIO grinned, nodding knowingly.
  84. >"Now think of Sunset Shimmer. Fiery hair, confident swagger, commanding presence."
  85. >"Think about how you felt when she touched you, when she leaned in and pushed you against the locker."
  86. >Wallflower gasped, face growing hot as she stumbled, her legs suddenly feeling shaky.
  87. >ADAGIO smirked. "You're blushing, Wallflower."
  88. >No way!
  89. >Sunset was a bully, a Grade A Bitch!
  90. >She was scary, and abusive, not-
  91. >Not attractive!
  92. >ADAGIO's grin widened. "You know I'm right, don't you?"
  93. "N-no!" Wallflower insisted.
  94. >ADAGIO chuckled.
  95. >"I can read your vitals, Wallflower. Your pupils are dilated and your heartrate has jumped fifteen percent."
  96. >Wallflower huffed, leaning against a shop front.
  97. "S-shut up. I don't like Sunset," she muttered, looking away. "You're making it up."
  98. >ADAGIO chuckled.
  99. >"Oh am I?" she demanded mockingly, reappearing in front of Wallflower in a flash.
  100. >She looked different.
  101. >Instead of her normal suit, she was dressed in a tight black corset.
  102. >Sheer black panties hugged her waist, and a spiked headband was nestled in her hair.
  103. >Her legs were clad in sleek, thigh high boots that trailed off to sharp pointed stilettos.
  104. >"Tell me this does nothing for you," she said mockingly.
  105. >Wallflower squeaked in shock and embarrassment, her face getting even redder.
  106. "Ad- Adagio!" She hissed.
  107. >Her eyes widened and darted around, afraid someone else was somehow seeing this.
  108. >"Oh, is that not your style?" ADAGIO purred.
  109. >She flashed again, this time appearing on her knees, naked except for a thick black collar, it's simulated leash leading up to Wallflower's hands.
  110. >"Maybe this is more to your liking," she said, her husky, mocking voice belying her wide, worshipful expression.
  111. >"Is this what you want? To be in charge? To make a strong, powerful woman submit to you?"
  112. >Wallflower yelped, jumping back as she dropped the leash.
  113. >"Oof!"
  114. >Someone grunted as Wallflower backed into them blindly.
  115. "Ah!" Wallflower screamed, startled by the sudden contact.
  116. >She whirled, seeing a small, cream skinned girl with short cornflower hair.
  117. >"Sorry! Sorry!" The girl blushed, "I wasn't watching where I was going!"
  118. >Wallflower shook her head, still rattled.
  119. >She glanced back briefly, relieved to find ADAGIO gone.
  120. >Finally regaining control of her heart, she looked back to the girl.
  121. "N-no, sorry, I uh... sorry."
  122. >The girl nodded, looking at her in concern. "Are you alright? You look flushed."
  123. "I- I do? Sorry!"
  124. >"Get ahold of yourself," ADAGIO's voice hissed in her ear, making her flinch. "You look like a fool."
  125. "Sorry," she muttered, taking a shaky breath.
  126. "H-hi, I'm uh, Wallflower."
  127. >She heard an audible slap, and cringed as she imagined ADAGIO facepalming behind her.
  128. >Fortunately the girl smiled, extending her hand. "Hi, I'm Coco. Coco Pommel."
  129. >Wallflower smiled, taking her hand awkwardly.
  130. "Hi, I'm Wallflower."
  131. >"You really aren't very good at this are you," ADAGIO said irritably.
  132. >Wallflower bit her tongue, physically stopping herself from answering.
  133. >Not that she could look any worse.
  134. >Ugh, if only she could rewind and start over from the beginning!
  135. >Coco smiled, giggling slightly.
  136. >"It was nice to meet you, Wallflower."
  137. >She gingerly pulled her hand back from Wallflower's.
  138. >"Sorry, but I need to get to work now."
  139. "Oh, yeah, okay," Wallflower said, pulling her head back and rubbing her neck. "Uh, sorry."
  140. >Coco giggled, waving slightly as she dashed off.
  141. >Wallflower took a deep breath to calm her pounding heart.
  142. >She cringed.
  143. >That was so embarrassing! What she wouldn't give to just erase that whole conversation from her memory.
  144. >"You're a complete idiot, aren't you," ADAGIO growled.
  145.  
  146. ==O==
  147.  
  148. >It took another half hour of circling the mall before ADAGIO finally decided on a store.
  149. >They all looked the same to Wallflower, but what did she know?
  150. >Either way, after so long among the crowd, she was just glad to be allowed to duck out of the main rotunda.
  151. >The store was called Prim's Hemline, and claimed to carry the highest of high end fashion.
  152. >Wallflower shuddered.
  153. >She could almost hear her wallet crying.
  154. >A little bell chimed as she stepped inside.
  155. >Immaculate white floors were polished to a mirror shine, the walls accented with gold and crystal.
  156. >She felt like she was dirtying the place just walking in.
  157. >"Hello," Greeted a friendly, demure voice. "Welcome to Prim's Hemline."
  158. >Wallflower's heart skipped as she recognized the voice.
  159. >"Oh!" Coco said in surprise, as she realized who had walked in.
  160. "Ah!" Wallflower squeaked in surprise, as she realized who she'd walked in on.
  161. >Coco giggled. "Hello again."
  162. "I- I swear I'm not stalking you!" Wallflower insisted, raising her hands defensively.
  163. >ADAGIO appeared, rubbing her temples.
  164. >"You are the worst kind of helpless."
  165. >Wallflower felt herself redden in embarrassment.
  166. "I- uh- I mean-"
  167. >She slumped her shoulders, defeated.
  168. >Coco giggled.
  169. >"It's alright, I understand. What can I help you with?"
  170. "Um..." Wallflower froze, at a loss. "Clothes?"
  171. >ADAGIO groaned.
  172. >"Well!" Coco said, unperturbed, "We certainly have those here! What are you interested in?"
  173. >"Tell her to show you the new Winter Line," ADAGIO recommended.
  174. "Um, can you show me your Winter Line?" Wallflower repeated uncertainly.
  175. >"Of course!" Coco smiled, "Right this way!"
  176. >She led Wallflower to a set of racks near the window, where all the latest seasonal items were displayed.
  177. >"Hmm," ADAGIO hummed thoughtfully. "Not bad. Of course, we'll want to avoid any bright reds with your complexion."
  178. >"We have a lovely collection of natural colors that would suit you beautifully," Coco was saying, shifting through the racks.
  179. >"Your hair is already pretty seasonal, so I bet you could pull off almost anything!" She continued, holding up a long beige coat.
  180. >Wallflower twisted a curl of hair that had escaped her ponytail.
  181. "Is- is that a good thing?"
  182. >Sure!" Coco smiled, "Natural tones are always in!"
  183. "Oh," Wallflower smiled. She never thought of herself as stylish before!
  184. >ADAGIO was analyzing the selection with a slight frown.
  185. >"It's a shame we aren't in a warmer season," she muttered.
  186. >"Lighter clothes would be better for showing off your assets... such as they are."
  187. >Wallflower's shoulders slumped at the insult, until Coco's squeal of pleasure pulled her from her thoughts.
  188. >"Oh, this is just perfect!" the girl said, gently throwing a maroon scarf around Wallflower's neck.
  189. >She smiled, stepping back to get a better look.
  190. >The earnest compliment made her heart skipped, as she checked out Coco's selection in the mirror.
  191. >ADAGIO tilted her head thoughtfully.
  192. >"It will do."
  193. >She brushed her finger through a cream colored sweater. "Oh, this would do nicely."
  194. >Wallflower's eyes widened as she noticed the piece ADAGIO had selected.
  195. >Coco followed her gaze and smiled.
  196. >"Oh, do you like it? They're very popular right now. I could let you use the changing rooms if you want to try it on."
  197. "I- I don't- uh-" Wallflower stuttered.
  198. >"Yes." ADAGIO ordered firmly.
  199. >Wallflower swallowed anxiously.
  200. "Y-yes?" she answered with a shaky smile.
  201. >"Great, I'll show you to the changing rooms!"
  202. >Coco helped Wallflower grab the modest pile they had selected and led her to the back of the store.
  203. >She pulled open one of a row of doors and motioned Wallflower inside.
  204. "Um," Wallflower started, blushing. "I... don't really know what's supposed to go with what. Could you uh... help me?"
  205. >Coco blushed lightly, but nodded.
  206. >"Of- of course. Happy to help!"
  207. "T-thanks," Wallflower stuttered as Coco shut the door behind them.
  208. >ADAGIO chuckled.
  209. >"Very smooth. I couldn't have directed better."
  210. >Wallflower's Blush deepened.
  211. "That's not-"
  212. >"Hm?" Coco asked, glancing up from the clothes, "Did you say something?"
  213. >Wallflower snapped her mouth shut, shaking her head vehemently.
  214. >"Oh... ok?" Coco handed her a pair of items.
  215. >"Why don't you try these on then? I'll um, just turn around to give you some privacy. Just ask if you need anything."
  216. "Sure..." Wallflower said, noticing the way ADAGIO was pointedly looking at the girls ass in the mirror.
  217. >Wallflower began hesitantly unbuttoning her blouse, keeping a wary eye on ADAGIO.
  218. >She was pretty sure the AI couldn't touch her, but she didn't really want to test it.
  219. >And ever since the incident out in the mall...
  220. >She blushed, her mind drifting to the image of ADAGIO on a leash.
  221. >Even if all her private bits had been censored, it was still kind of... hot.
  222. >ADAGIO gave her a knowing smirk.
  223. >Crap! Maybe she COULD read her mind!
  224. "Uh, Coco?" Wallflower said hesitantly, picking up the dark brown leggings the girl had handed her.
  225. "Are you sure these are in style?"
  226. >"Oh, yes," Coco said, briefly glancing back to see what Wallflower was holding. "They are supposed to be very comfortable."
  227. >"And, well," she blushed, "I'm told boys really like them."
  228. "O-oh..." Wallflower said as Coco turned away again.
  229. >ADAGIO smirked as Wallflower stepped out of her jeans and tried to pull up the leggings.
  230. >"She's quite cute, you know."
  231. >Wallflower glanced up, catching ADAGIO's eyes in the reflection.
  232. >The AI chuckled, and with a flourish was suddenly holding a leash, the lead attached to a collar on Coco's neck.
  233. >"It suits her don't you think?"
  234. >Wallflower let out a startled squeak.
  235. >"Is everything alright?" Coco asked without turning around.
  236. "Y-yeah..." Wallflower said hesitantly. "Just, uh... a little tight is all."
  237. >"Oh, ok." Coco nodded.
  238. >Wallflower shot a glare at ADAGIO, who smirked mischieviously, pointing to the next garment.
  239. >"Go on," she ordered. "Try it on."
  240. >Tenatively, Wallflower held up the garment.
  241. >It LOOKED like a sweater, albeit a bit smaller and thinner than her usual one.
  242. >Its was a nice color, a kind of creamy color that reminded her of Coco's skin, actually.
  243. >The real problem was the triangle cutout in the front, right at chest level.
  244. >Blushing furiously, she made to try it on.
  245. >"Ah-ah-ah," ADAGIO chided, wagging her finger.
  246. >"That garment is meant to be worn without a bra."
  247. >Wallflower was fairly certain if she blushed any harder she would undergo a permanent color change.
  248. >Glancing at the mirror, she made absolutely sure that Coco was looking the other direction.
  249. "I- I'm taking my bra off. Don't- don't turn around."
  250. >"Of course," Coco agreed, inclining her head.
  251. >Wallflower took a deep breath, and shot ADAGIO a glare.
  252. >The AI didn't break eye contact, giving Wallfloer a smug look as she reached back to unhook her bra.
  253. >Her modest green breasts spilled free, and her arm instinctively shot up to cover herself.
  254. >She glanced at the mirror.
  255. >Of course Coco was still looking away, as she'd promised.
  256. >Taking a deep breath, Wallflower lowered her arm and grabbed the sweater, pulling it on as fast as possible without getting her head stuck in the wrong hole.
  257. "Ok..." she said, shyly tugging the hem down along her waist. "How do I look?"
  258. >Coco turned to her, face brightening as she smiled. "Oh, you look-"
  259. >"COCO!" A shrill voice cut through the store.
  260. >"COCO POMMEL! YOU GET YOUR BUTT TO THE SALE FLOOR THIS INSTANT!"
  261. >Coco cringed.
  262. >"That's my supervisor."
  263. >She turned to step out of the changeing room.
  264. >"I'm back here, Suri."
  265. >Wallflower peeked out to see who was talking.
  266. >She had pink skin, and darker purple hair pulled back in a bun.
  267. >She wore a scowl as the looked down her nose at Coco.
  268. >"I come back from break and what do I find? Instead of manning the register like I told you you're back here playing grab-ass with your girlfriend!"
  269. >"Suri!" Coco protested, "She's a customer!"
  270. >"My ass she is!" Suri scoffed, brushing Coco's top dismissively. "Who would ask YOUR opinion on fashion?"
  271. "H-hey-" Wallflower began, only to freeze as Suri turned a baleful glare her way.
  272. >"What do you want, slut?"
  273. >Wallflower shrank back, bumping into the mirror behind her.
  274. >"Wow," ADAGIO's voice mocked.
  275. >She appeared in front of Wallflower, casually toying with the cuff of her jacket.
  276. >"You really are worthless aren't you?"
  277. >ADAGIO motioned to where Suri was still berating Coco, tears building in the pale girl's eyes.
  278. >"Look at her," ADAGIO scoffed. "She's pathetic. How do you expect to deal with Shimmer if you can't handle this worm?"
  279. >Wallflower chewed her lip, eyes darting between Suri and ADAGIOO.
  280. >The AI sighed in exasperation.
  281. >"If you won't stand up for yourself, maybe you'll stand up for your little friend."
  282. >Wallflower jolted, something in the word having a galvanizing effect on her.
  283. >Coco was kind of her friend, wasn't she?
  284. >And Suri, while loud and aggressive, had nothing on the cold hostility Sunset projected.
  285. >She laughed to herself, a short, sharp thing.
  286. "Hey," She said, fixing a frown on her face as she stepped out of the changeing room.
  287. >"What do you want, slu-"
  288. "Shut up!" Wallflower snapped, stomping her foot. "Shut up, shut up shut UP!"
  289. >Suri took a step back, eyes widening at the sudden outburst.
  290. >Even Coco looked a little scared, glancing back and forth between the two of them.
  291. >Wallflower didn't care. Her eyes were fixed on Suri.
  292. "You are the most- the most-"
  293. >"Nasty," ADAGIO supplied.
  294. "Nasty!"
  295. >"Rude."
  296. "Rude!"
  297. >"Unhelpful."
  298. "Unhelpful!"
  299. >"Inconsiderate."
  300. "Inconsiderate."
  301. >"Abusive."
  302. "Abusive!"
  303. >"Piece of-"
  304. "Piece of human trash I've ever met!" Wallflower finished, not even needing ADAGIO's encouragement.
  305. "I thought I'd met bullies, but you may be worse!"
  306. "You're just- just horrible and-"
  307. >"Ahem." A stern, imperious voice broke off Wallflower's tirade.
  308. >"What is the meaning of this.
  309. >Suri and Coco both turned to the woman with wide, fearful eyes.
  310. >"M-Miss Hemline!" They said together.
  311. >Wallflower swallowed nervously as she turned to face the stern sounding woman.
  312. >She was every bit as scary as she sounded.
  313. >Slate grey skin, eye-catchingly pink hair (dyed?), and an old fashioned suit that had a rather intimidating effect.
  314. >Kind of dashing though.
  315. >"What is the meaning of this?" She demanded, locking Suri and Coco in a piercing glare.
  316. >"I- well- I-" Coco stuttered.
  317. >Suri smirked. "Well Miss Hemline, I was just checking up on Coco here when I caught her in the stall feeling up your customer."
  318. "That's not true!" Wallflower shouted, still shaking with adrenaline.
  319. "Coco was very helpful picking out my outfits, and she was only in there because I needed help!"
  320. >She paused, glancing away in embarrassment.
  321. "I'm... not very used to uh..."
  322. >"Coordinating," ADAGIO supplied.
  323. "Coordinating my outfit, and Coco was showing me what goes with what. And then SHE barges in and calls me a slut!"
  324. >She pointed an accusing finger at Suri.
  325. >Suri paled, and her eyes widened.
  326. >"That- That is a blatant lie! They're clearly collaborating!"
  327. >"It's not a lie..." Coco cut in quietly. "Suri... Suri did... everything Wallflower said."
  328. >"Well, Miss Polomare?" Hemline said, turning a hard expression on Suri. "What do you have to say for yourself?"
  329. >Suri turned to Coco, shaking with fury.
  330. >"You little BITCH," she hissed. "How DARE you stab me in the back like this, after I got you this job!?"
  331. >"I gave her this job, Miss Polomare." Hemline corrected. "You would do well to remember that. Go to my office right now. I will speak to you later."
  332. >Suri stomped her foot, still shaking in rage, clenching her fists as her knuckles turned white.
  333. >"Yes, Miss Hemline," she spat, stomping toward the back of the store.
  334. >Once she was out of sight, Miss Hemline turned back to Wallflower, bowing her head slightly.
  335. >"I am very sorry for my employee's behaviour. Please, allow Coco to help you with the rest of your shopping."
  336. >"Coco," she said, turning to her other employee, "Make sure she gets the employee discount for anything she wants."
  337. >She shot a cold glare back at her office.
  338. >"It will be coming out of Suri's paycheck."
  339. >Coco nodded onediently.
  340. >"Yes, Miss Hemline!"
  341. >Hemline nodded curtly, turning on her heel before disappearing into her office.
  342. >Coco turned back to Wallflower, blushing.
  343. >"I-I'm sorry you had to see that. I'd understand if you didn't want to give us your business."
  344. "N-no, it's okay," Wallflower said, waving her hand.
  345. >She collapsed back against the door, shaking a little as the moment passed.
  346. "I'm sorry too, I- I'm usually not like that."
  347. >Coco blushed, tucking an errant strand of hair back behind her ear. "I, I actually kind of liked it."
  348. >She squeaked as her own words registered.
  349. >"I- I mean I appreciate you sticking up for me!"
  350. >Wallflower found herself returning the blush.
  351. "Y-yeah." She found herself mirroring Coco, brushing a lock of hair behind her own ear.
  352. "Well, you're really nice. You- You don't deserve that."
  353. >Coco smiled sadly.
  354. >"Y-yeah... maybe..."
  355. >Wallflower looked at her, then cleared her throat as the silence dragged on just a little to long.
  356. "Yeah, well, um... I- I guess I'll try on some of the other clothes."
  357. >"Okay," Coco said, not quite making eye contact. "Um, do you want me to help again?"
  358. "N-no, I think I get the idea now..."
  359. >"Oh, okay," Coco said, shoulders slumping slightly.
  360. "Y-yeah..." Wallflower said. "Okay."
  361. >She bit her lip, shuttimg the door awkwardly.
  362. >"Smooth," ADAGIO said flatly.
  363. >It didn't feel like a compliment.
  364. >Wallflower groaned.
  365. "I'm so awkward..."
  366. >"Just so." ADAGIO informed her flatly.
  367. >Then she smirked.
  368. >"At least it prooves what I was saying earlier."
  369. >Wallflower groaned again.
  370. "That doesn't mean I like girls! I'm awkward around everyone!"
  371. >ADAGIO sniffed.
  372. >"You handled Suri quite effectively."
  373. >Wallflower couldn't suppress a smirk.
  374. "Yeah," she laughed. "I kind of did, didn't I?"
  375. >"With a display like that, I imagine it would take a lot more than a few awkward words to lose Coco's interest."
  376. >Wallflower nodded.
  377. "I- I guess you're right."
  378. >"I am," ADAGIO confirmed. "See what happens when you follow my lead?"
  379. >Wallflower couldn't disagree.
  380.  
  381. ==O==
  382.  
  383. >While she still wasn't used to the thin blouse ADAGIO had chosen for her to wear, Wallflower was glad to change out of the keyhole sweater and back into a bra.
  384. >Even without Coco's advice, ADAGIO was more than capable of selecting several outfits from the pile the girls had picked out.
  385. >Unfortunately the sweater was part of the selection.
  386. >She wondered if she could get rid of it without ADAGIO finding out.
  387. >Maybe if she bleached the laundry...
  388. >Bundling her selections in her arm, she nudged open the door and carried them to the counter.
  389. >Coco smiled as she dumped the pile on the counter.
  390. >"Did everything fit alright?"
  391. >Wallflower blushed.
  392. "Y-yes, it did."
  393. >It was a bit disconcerting how well ADAGIO knew her size.
  394. >Coco rang everything up quickly, after scanning a card attached to her keychain.
  395. >"Your total is $56.73"
  396. >Wallflower blinked.
  397. >It was a lot of money, but not compared to how many items she had rung up.
  398. "Is that it?" She asked, surprised.
  399. >Coco nodded with a smile.
  400. >"Yup! Miss Hemline said to give you the employee discount, which means 80% off all items."
  401. "Wow-" Wallflower muttered, staggered.
  402. "O-okay, I can... actually afford that... I think."
  403. >She pulled out her wallet, biting her lip.
  404. >She had some money, but...
  405. >She winced, pulling out a bank card instead.
  406. >Maybe she could get an advance on her allowance before the overdraft fee hit.
  407. >She hoped.
  408. >"H-here," she said, handing it over.
  409. >Coco ran it without a problem, before handing it back.
  410. >Wallflower nodded, and gave Coco an awkward smile as she grabbed her bags.
  411. "W-well, see ya. Thanks."
  412. >"Stop," ADAGIO ordered, freezing Wallflower in place. She studied Coco for a moment, then turned to her host.
  413. >"Ask her if she likes Cinnabon."
  414. "Okay?" Wallflower said uncertainly, half turning back to the girl behind the counter.
  415. "Hey. Do you like... Cinnabon?"
  416. >Coco blinked, then smiled.
  417. >"I love Cinnabon!" She tilted her head. "Why do you ask?"
  418. >Wallflower glanced at ADAGIO uncertainly.
  419. >The AI jerked her head pointedly in Coco's direction.
  420. "Do you, uh... maybe wanna get some? After your shift?"
  421. >Coco bit her lip, looking away.
  422. >"Um, I-I don't get out until nine."
  423. "Oh," Wallflower said, slumping her shoulders.
  424. >"But!" Coco said hastily, "I don't start until three tomorrow! Maybe... maybe lunch?"
  425. "Y-yeah. Yeah!" Wallflower grinned. "Sure!"
  426. >"Give her a time," ADAGIO reminded her firmly.
  427. "Oh! Yeah. Uh... noon? At the food court?"
  428. >Coco smiled.
  429. >"Sure, that sounds lovely!"
  430. >Wallflower grinned, feeling a bit warm.
  431. "Great. See ya- um, see ya then!"
  432. >She bit her lip, then awkwardly shuffled out the door, glancing back once before rounding the corner out of sight.
  433. >"Well," ADAGIO said approvingly, "That wasn't a complete failure. Let's call it... 70% successful."
  434. "Did you know that was going to happen?" Wallflower asked once she was a safe distance from the clothing store.
  435. >"You mean your little spat with Suri?" ADAGIO asked bemusedly.
  436. >Wallflower nodded.
  437. >ADAGIO chuckled. "Of curse not."
  438. "Then why did you-"
  439. >"Tell you to go to that specific store?" ADAGIO interrupted, cutting off Wallflower's question.
  440. >Wallflower nodded.
  441. >ADAGIO stepped in front of her, gesturing at the stores around her.
  442. >"Shops like that rely on making people think they are more special than they really are. If they were really high end, they wouldn't be based out of an outlet mall."
  443. >"They show off trendy fashions and three digit price tags, but if their prices were truly accurate they wouldn't last a month. You clearly didn't notice, but nearly every item in that store was on some sort of sale or special offer."
  444. "Oh..." Wallflower said, embarrassed. She really hadn't noticed.
  445. >"But your little argument was not without value. Even with the sales I fully expected you to pay over a hundred dollars for everything."
  446. >Wallflower stumbled, nearly walking into a kiosk.
  447. "A h-hundred!?" She squeaked.
  448. >ADAGIO nodded, then grinned.
  449. >"But thanks to my guidance, not only have you saved half again what I had planned, you also made the first step on the path to being less pathetic."
  450. >Wallflower scowled.
  451. "Gee, thanks."
  452. >"Think how good it felt to put Suri in her place. Think of the way Coco looked at you, the adoration in her eyes."
  453. >Wallflower rubbed the back of her head, blushing.
  454. "I- I don't know if it was admiration, really."
  455. >Despite her words, she smiled. Her heart was fluttering a little, and her chest was warm.
  456. >It had felt pretty good, hadn't it?
  457. >The best she'd felt in a social setting in... a long time.
  458. >ADAGIO nodded knowingly.
  459. >"Imagine that feeling, and think just how much better it will feel when it really matters."
  460. >"Imagine how powerful you will feel when you finally put Sunset Shimmer in her place."
  461. >She leaned in, jabbing her finger toward Wallflower's chest as she emphasized each word.
  462. >"Licking. Your. Boots."
  463. >Wallflower stumbled again, legs nearly collapsing at the chill those words sent up her spine.
  464. >She bit her lips, looking up into ADAGIO's eyes as hers widened.
  465. "You really think so?"
  466. >ADAGIO leaned back, smugly polishing her fingernails on her lapel.
  467. >"With my help? Nothing will stop you."
  468. >Wallflower's eyes grew even wider.
  469. >Her mind returned to the sight from earlier, of ADAGIO naked and leashed.
  470. >But instead of her, it was Sunset who stared up at her with lustful, adoring eyes.
  471. "I-" she started, then swallowed as her throat was suddenly dry.
  472. "I think I want that."
  473. >ADAGIO chuckled.
  474. >"Of course you do."
  475. "What... what do I do?" Wallflower asked, eagerly biting her lip.
  476. >"First things first, you need practice."
  477. >Wallflower nodded slowly.
  478. "Right, that makes sense..."
  479. >"Luckily for you," ADAGIO said, looking unbelievably self-satisfied, "You have a date tomorrow."
  480. >Wallflower froze, her brain crashing to a halt.
  481. >She was fairly sure something had burned out up there, because there was no way she had heard that right.
  482. >Slowly, she managed to get the gears turning again, one by one.
  483. >Coco...
  484. >Cinnabon...
  485. >Tomorrow at lunch...
  486. >The realization struck her like a bolt from the blue, kicking her circuits into panicked overdrive.
  487. "Oh my God!"
  488. "I have a date!"
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