Snow White, as a series of Very Short Vignettes

Scene 1 TOC with notes

[Intended to be presented by junior high or high-school level students of English as a foreign language. See here for annotations]

Narrator: Once upon a time, there was a beautiful queen.

Queen: I would like a daughter as beautiful as the white snow.

Narrator: In due time, she had a beautiful daughter.

Queen: Our daughter is as beautiful as the white snow.

King: Let us call her "Snow White".

Snow White: Coooo.

Narrator: But the beautiful queen died.

King: Don't die!

Snow White: Waaaaah!

Queen: Goodbye, my dear family.

Narrator: A very beautiful, but very vain lady lived nearby:

(Soon-to-be) Stepmother: You need a new queen.

King: Snow White needs a new mother.

Narrator: And so the very vain lady became the new queen, and Snow White's stepmother.

Stepmother: You are a very beautiful girl, Snow White.

Snow White: Thank you, Ma'am. You are very beautiful, too.

Narrator: The stepmother had a magic mirror.

Stepmother: Mirror, who is the most beautiful woman in the kingdom?

Mirror: You are, Queen.

Stepmother: You always tell the truth.

Narrator: Snow White grew up to be a very beautiful young woman.

Stepmother: Mirror, who is the most beautiful woman in the kingdom?

Mirror: Please don't ask.

Stepmother: What? Tell me, now!

Mirror: It is Snow White, your stepdaughter.

Stepmother: Snow White? This must not be!

Narrator: The king had to go to war.

King: I don't want to go, but I must.

Snow White: Be careful, Daddy.

Stepmother: Come back soon, Dear.

King: I'll try.

Narrator: The stepmother tried to leave Snow White in the woods.

Snow White: The woods are very pretty, Mummy.

Stepmother: Oh, dear. You are back.

Narrator: Then the stepmother told the royal hunter to take Snow White to the woods and accidentally kill her.

Royal Hunter: Snow White, you must run away. It's not safe here.

Snow White: Where can I go?

Royal Hunter: Some people who live in the woods may be kind.

Narrator: Snow White wandered around the woods for a long time. Then she came to a small cottage.

Snow White: Who lives here? Are they kind?

Narrator: No one was home. But Snow White was very hungry, so she went inside anyway.

Snow White: No one is here. But this place is a mess, so I will clean it up.

Narrator: There was a table with seven plates and seven cups and seven small chairs in one room.

Snow White: Oh, there is food here. I shouldn't eat it, but I am very hungry.

Narrator: So she had a tiny bit from each plate.

Snow White: Now I need a nap.

Narrator: In another room, there were seven small beds. Snow white found one that fit her and lay down for a nap.

Snow White: ZZZzzzzz.

Narrator: While Snow White slept, the seven dwarves who lived in the cottage came home.

Dwarf 1: Someone has been eating from my plate!

Dwarves 2, 3,4, & 5 (in unison): Mine, too!

Narrator: And in the other room, ...

Dwarf 6: Someone has been sleeping in our beds!

Dwarf 7: Here she is!

Dwarf 5: She is beautiful!

Dwarf 4: I don't care. Throw her out!

Snow White (waking up): Oh! I'm sorry. I didn't mean any harm.

Dwarf 2: Someone has been cleaning up!

Dwarf 4: Oh.

Dwarf 3: What's your name, young lady?

Snow White: My name is Snow White.

Narrator: So the Dwarves let Snow White stay, and she helped clean.

Dwarf 4: But while we are working, you must never let anyone in!

Snow White: Okay.

Narrator: Back at the castle, the Stepmother was worried.

Stepmother: Mirror, ...

Mirror: There are better ways to spend your time than vanity.

Stepmother: Don't stall. Who is the most beautiful now?

Mirror: It won't make you happy to know.

Stepmother: Where is she?

Mirror: Somewhere in the woods.

Narrator: So the wicked stepmother dressed up like an old lady selling lace and went looking for Snow White.

Stepmother: There she is!

Narrator: She knocked on the door.

Snow White: I'm not supposed to let anyone in!

Stepmother: But that's just for bad people. I'm not a bad person!

Narrator: And when Snow White let her in, she showed her a lace bodice.

Stepmother: Here. Try it on.

Narrator: But she tied Snow White's bodice so tight that she couldn't breath.

Snow White: I .. can't .. breath!

Stepmother: I'm sorry, but I can't have anyone more beautiful than I am.

Narrator: When the dwarves returned, Snow White had fainted.

Dwarf 5: Snow White! What happened?

Dwarf 4: It's too tight! She can't breath.

Narrator: So they loosened the bodice and Snow White gradually woke up.

Dwarf 1: Oh, we're so glad you are okay!

Snow White: Thank you, everyone.

Dwarf 4: Remember, you mustn't let anyone in, not even nice old ladies!

Narrator: Back at the castle, ...

Stepmother: So, Mirror, is Snow White still the most beautiful?

Mirror: Why, yes. It seems she has completely recovered.

Stepmother: Oh, no!

Mirror: And jealousy is bad for your complexion. Leave it alone and you will be more beautiful than you are now.

Stepmother: But I must be the most beautiful of all!

Narrator: This time, the wicked stepmother dressed up as an old hag selling apples.

Stepmother: Little girl, like a nice apple?

Narrator: But the reddest half of the apple was poisoned.

Snow White: Well, you don't even look like a nice old lady.

Stepmother: But my apples are sweet.

Snow White: And the apple looks only half-ripe. Please go away, old lady.

Stepmother: See, I'll eat the green side. Then you can have the red side.

Show White: Well, in that case, ...

Narrator: But the poison was very quick-acting, so Snow White fainted without swallowing it.

Stepmother: You poor thing. I'm afraid I didn't teach you not to trust strangers, did I? Oh, no, what have I done?

Narrator: When she was back at the castle, the stepmother went to the mirror.

Mirror: She is more beautiful in death than you are alive.

Stepmother: What!?

Mirror: I warned you. Vanity and jealousy only make you ugly.

Narrator: Now it was the stepmother's turn to swoon.

Stepmother: Ooooohhhh!

Royal Hunter: The queen has fainted dead away!

Narrator: Out on the battlefield, the king was fighting the enemy's prince.

King: Why are we fighting against each other?

Prince: I don't know. Should we quit?

King: I think so.

Narrator: So the war ended, and everyone made friends and went home.

King, Prince, and Soldiers: Take care! Goodbye!

Narrator: The dwarves were very sad that Snow White was dead.

Dwarf 2: I suppose we have to have a funeral.

Dwarf 3: I don't want to say goodbye to her.

Dwarf 4: Her body doesn't change. I wonder if she's really dead.

Dwarf 7: Let's put her on a bed here in the cottage.

Narrator: When the king returned, he thought he had lost everything, and he was very sad.

King: Oh! Woe is me!

Royal Hunter: I think I know where Snow White is.

Stepmother: But I have killed her. I am evil, kill me!

Narrator: The prince passed the dwarves' cottage when it was dark.

Prince: May we spend the night here?

Dwarf 5: Okay. But please don't disturb Snow White.

Prince: She's beautiful. Is she asleep?

Dwarf 6: We can't wake her up.

Prince: May I try?

Narrator: So the prince tried artificial respiration.

Prince: First we have to clear the mouth of foreign matter. Oh, there's a piece of apple. Let's wash her mouth with water.

Narrator: The prince was an Eagle Scout, so he knew how to do mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

Snow White: Oh! My. Your lips are soft!.

Prince: Sorry. I thought I could wake you up.

Snow White: I guess you did. Thank you.

Narrator: Just then, the king and the stepmother and the Royal Hunter and many servants arrived at the Dwarves' cottage.

King: Hello! is anyone home?

Dwarves: Oh, dear, it's the king! We're in trouble!

Prince: Don't worry. He's my friend.

Snow White: Father! I'm okay! But I think Mummy needs help.

King: Oh, it's you, Prince!

Prince: You have a beautiful daughter. And she's awake now.

King: We checked the poison the queen used, and it was just a very strong soporific.

Stepmother: I'm sorry everyone.

Snow White: Oh, I was sure you didn't really want to kill me.

Narrator: So the stepmother talked with the royal psychologist every day for a full year, until she was sure that she could quit being jealous of other beautiful people.

Mirror: So, who's the most beautiful woman of all?

Stepmother: Everyone is beautiful to someone.

Snow White: That's right, Mummy.

King: The Prince is coming to visit.

Snow White: I'm looking forward to seeing him again. Do you like him, Mummy and Daddy?

King and Stepmother: Of course!

Stepmother: Oooh. Oh, dear. I think it's time to call the doctor.

King: I'm on my way.

Snow White: I hope I'll have a little brother.

Narrator: And that's how the new queen learned to be kind.

with notes TOC Scene 1


Snow White, as a Play, scene 8, The Stepmother's Heart Grows Cold

prev TOC

[Scene 8, The Stepmother's Heart Grows Cold -- 

N: Narrator, M: Mayor, A: Advisor, C: Councilor, VW: the 2nd Queen, who was a Vain Woman,

MM: Magic Mirror ]

N: But without the King, Snow White's stepmother could not be brave forever.

M: The King has been gone a long time.
    Has he found someone else?

A: What do you mean, someone else?

C: Busy men's hearts wander when they are under stress.

M: And war is very stressful.

VW: Do you think the King's heart would wander?

A: Nonsense. The King is nothing if he is not true.

M: But he is just a man.
    And I am sure he misses the First Queen.

A: And I am sure he wishes he could be home with his family.
    But I am sure he is doing his best to protect our Kingdom.

N: Certain people in the Kingdom seemed not to want the New Queen to be brave.

VW: Mirror, who is the most beautiful woman in the world?

MM: I refuse to talk any more about this.

VW: What shall I do? He won't love me any more!

MM: He'll love you just fine if you settle down and quit worrying.

VW: Why me? I didn't do anything to deserve this.

MM: It is part of you job as queen.
    Please try to be brave a little longer.

VW: She is too beautiful. I'll kill her.

MM: That won't make her father love you.

VW: Why can't he come back to me?

MM: The King is presently leading a very dangerous battle.

VW: Will he win?

MM: I cannot tell you the future.
    You agreed to that.

VW: Will he still love me?

MM: His heart is still true.

[JMR: Written May 2014, published 21 January 2017.]

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Romeo and Juliet as a Student Play, Scene 1 -- the Background

[With apologies to the Bard. 
Intended to be presented by junior high or high-school level students of English as a foreign language.]

Scene 1

Narrator: In the city of Verona, two families have been fighting.

Abe: Are you insulting me?

Sam: Maybe. Do you want to fight about it?

Abe: Not unless you're insulting me.

Narrator: They've been fighting so long, they've forgotten why.

Sam: Cap is better than Monty!

Abe: Now you're in for it.

Narrator: Some people want to stop the fighting.

Ben: Stop it!

Narrator: Some people don't want them to stop.

Ty: Go for it!

Narrator: The prince wants them to quit fighting.

Prince: Stop, now!

Narrator: The prince is angry.

Prince: Cap, Monty, you have been fighting for too long. You must stop.

Cap, Monty [in unison]: Yes, sir!

Prince: Cap, you will come talk with me, now! Monty, you will come talk with me this afternoon! Or else.

Cap, Monty [in unison]: Yes, sir!

Monty: What happened, Ben?

Ben: I tried to stop them, sir, but then Ty started fighting with me.

Narrator: Monty and his wife are worried about their son, Romeo.

Lady Monty: Do you know where Romeo is? I'm glad he was not here.

Ben: I saw him by the woods, Ma'am. He didn't seem to want to talk.

Lady Monty: He is very sad, lately.

Monty: We want to help him.

Ben: Here he comes now. I'll ask him.

Lady Monty: Thank you. Be sure to tell us what you find out.

Ben: Okay. Goodbye.

Ben: Good morning, Cousin Romeo!

Romeo: Is it morning, Cousin Ben? Time passes so slowly.

Ben: What makes the time so slow? Do you have a crush on someone?

Romeo: Yes, and if she liked me, time would go by so quickly!

Ben: I thought so. Who is it? Did she tell you she doesn't like you?

Romeo: She said she likes me just as a friend!

Ben: Oh! Brutal! Forget her.

Romeo: I can't! I'd have to forget how to think!

Ben: There are other pretty girls.

Romeo: She is too beautiful to forget

Ben: I think I can help you forget her.


Snow White, as a Play, scene 7, Snow White Blossoms

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[Scene 7, Snow White Blossoms -- 

N: Narrator, SW: Snow White, 

Q2: the 2nd Queen, who was a Vain Woman,

MM: Magic Mirror ]

N: The war lasted a long time.

SW: When is Daddy coming home?

Q2: He should come home soon, honey.

SW: Daddy is trying to help people, isn't he?

Q2: Yes, dear, he is.
        And we must do our part, too.

SW: What is my part?

Q2: You must grow up to be a strong, beautiful woman.

SW: Like my mother?

Q2: Like your mother.

SW: Like you?

Q2: Like me, too.

N: Snow White grew more and more beautiful each day.

Q2: But don't worry about it, just be yourself.
        You are growing up to be very beautiful.

SW: Thank you, Mum. You help me a lot.

N: But Snow White's stepmother began to worry
     too much about her own appearance.

Q2: Mirror, where is the King?

MM: Today he is meeting with the leaders of three countries.
          He is trying to convince everyone to quit fighting.

Q2: Is it going well?

MM: No, it isn't. There are too many vain kings.
        Vanity does not become a king, or a queen.

Q2: Speaking of vanity,
        am I still the most beautiful woman in the world?

MM: No you are not.

Q2: What? Oh no, what shall I do?

MM: Don't say anything rash.

Q2: But who would dare be more beautiful than I?
        She must die!

MM: Don't do anything rash, either.

Q2: Who is she?

MM: I don't want to tell you.
         She is not doing it to be mean to you.

Q2: I order your to tell me!

MM: It is your stepdaughter, Snow White.

Q2: OH! Of course.
        Why did I say that?
        She must NOT die!

MM: If anything should happen to her,
         the King would be broken hearted.

Q2: Then I must be brave.

MM: You must be brave.

Q2: Thank you, mirror. You help me a lot.

TOC next

Snow White, as a Play, scene 6, The King Must Go to War

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[Scene 6, The King Must Go to War -- 

N: Narrator, M: Mayor, K: King, C: Councilor, A: Advisor]

N: Some years passed, and the King had to go to war.

M: The enemy is attacking our friends!

K: Is there a reason for this?

C: We must help our allies!

K: But is there a reason for this?

A: It appears not to matter.

K: Are you sure?

M: War is war and allies are allies.

K: But if our allies are wrong?

C: If we don't help our allies, our allies may become our enemies.

K: I worry about the kingdom.

M: We have the princess and the queen, and the council.

K: I shall also leave my advisor, as Regent in my absence.

A: I will do my best.

N: And so the King went to war.

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Snow White, as a Play, scene 5, the Vanity and the Magic Mirror

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[Scene 5, The Vanity with the Magic Mirror -- 

N: Narrator, Q2/VW: 2nd Queen/Vain Woman, 

SW: Snow White, K: King, MM: Magic Mirror]

N: Now, at first, the very vain woman was not a bad mother.

Q2/VW: Snow White, you are a beautiful child.
         I almost wish you were mine.
         Let's have some breakfast.

SW: Gurgle. Coo.

N: But she was very insecure.
     So she often asked her new husband for encouragement.

Q2/VW: My king, am I beautiful?

K: Of course you are.
     How is Snow White?

Q2/VW: She is doing fine.
         She is a very beautiful child.
         Just like her mother.

K: Yes.

Q2/VW: Do you miss her mother very much?

K: I'm afraid I do.
     You are wonderful to take care of Snow White for us.

N: Sometimes, when she was alone,
     she asked her magic mirror for encouragement.

Q2/VW: Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
        Who is the most beautiful woman in the world?

MM: Isn't that supposed to be,
Who is fairest of them all?
Q2/VW: Yes, but we have copyright laws in this country.
         So, am I the most beautiful woman in the world?

MM: Yes, my mistress, you are.

Q2/VW: When you say, "my mistress", I don't trust you.

MM: I am not lying.

Q2/VW: Thank you.

MM: But you shouldn't worry.
         There are more important things than beauty.

Q2/VW: Like what?

MM: Like love.

Q2/VW: But you have to be beautiful to be loved!

MM: No, you don't.

Q2/VW: I don't believe you.

MM: I wish you would, because it's true.

SW: Waaaaaahhh!

Q2/VW: Oh, Snow White,
         you need your diaper changed, don't you?
         Here we go, a clean diaper.
         Now, now, we'll have it changed in a flash.
         All nice and dry.

SW: Coo.

MM: Do you see what I mean?

Q2/VW: Babies aren't very demanding.

MM: I think your willingness to change the diaper
         is more important right now than beauty.

Q2/VW: Hmm.

TOC next

Snow White, as a Play, scene 4, the Vain Woman Becomes the Step Mother

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[Scene 4, The Vain Woman Becomes the Step Mother -- 

N: Narrator, SW: Snow White, K: King, 

VW: Vain Woman, C: Councillor, M: Mayor]

N: The King was very distraught and lost his presence of mind.

K: Snow White, what shall I do for you?
     You need a kind and caring mother.

SW: Waaah! Waaah!

N: A very vain, but very beautiful women lived in the King's country.

VW: You need a new wife.

K: My daughter needs a kind and caring mother.

N: The people of the country were very concerned.

C: The country needs a new queen.

M: The country needs a beautiful queen.

C: Your daughter needs someone to care for her.

M: The country needs a very beautiful queen.

VW: You need a new wife.
         I can take care of you and your daughter.
         And I am beautiful, you see?

K: Very well.
      Please help me take care of my daughter.

N: And so the very vain woman became the new queen,
     and Snow White's step mother.

TOC next

Snow White, as a Play, scene 3, the Queen's Death

prev TOC

[Scene 3, The Queen's Death -- N: Narrator, SW: Snow White, K: King, Q: Queen]

N: But the Queen's health soon failed her, and she died,
     leaving the King to raise Snow White by himself.

K: Noooo! Don't die, my Queen!

Q: Farewell, my King!
     Be strong, my daughter!

SW: Waaaaaah!

K: Waaaaah!

TOC next

Snow White, as a Play, scene 2, Birth

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[Scene 2, Birth -- N: Narrator, SW: Snow White, K: King, Q: Queen]

N: In due time, a daughter is born to the King and Queen.

SW: Waaaah!

K: Wow! Such a beautiful child.
     Strong lungs, too.

Q: Bring her to me.

SW: Coo. Gurgle.

Q: My beautiful child,
     your hair is as black as the feathers of the crow,
     your cheeks as red as my blood on the snow,
     and your skin is as white as the snow on that day.
     We shall call you Snow White.

K: Snow White you are.

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Snow White, as a Play, scene 1, Name


[Scene 1, Name -- N: Narrator, K: King, Q: Queen, C: Crow]

N: A beautiful Queen is sewing on a porch of the castle,
     on a snowy winter day.
     The King approaches from inside.

K: Needlework? Outside, on a cold day like this?
     Be careful, my queen.

Q: I'll be okay. No problems.

C: Caw!

Q: Ouch!

K: Are you okay?

Q: I'm just fine. It's just a prick.

K: You're bleeding!

Q: It's just a drop.

C: Caw! Caw!

Q: Oh, look! It's a beautiful pink on the snow.

K: It is pink. I don't think it is beautiful.
     You should come inside with me.

C: Caw!

Q: How I would like a beautiful daughter,
     white, like the snow,
     lips as rosy as my blood on the snow,
     and hair as black as the feathers of that crow.

K: Our children shall be the most beautiful in the world.
     But leave the needle work for the servants to pick up.
     Let's go inside now.

TOC next

Snow White as a Play -- Table of Contents

[JMR: Table of contents posted on 20 January 2017]

Snow White, 

or How the New Queen Learned to Be Kind

told as a Play
(not-quite complete, yet)

by Joel Matthew Rees
Copyright 2014, 2017

This was written to be used in a high school oral communications class. I ended up with too much material for the students, even in the synopsis version. Maybe I'll post the very short version we used, as well, some time.

Table of Contents

(Other stories in this blog.)

(Other threads of thought in this blog.)

Composition Examples 作文の例文 : Why do you like them?

Goals (8th grade == jr. high, 2nd yr.): 

  1. What! -- intensifying, not querying 疑問ではなく、強調
  2. Why? Because. -- asking and giving reasons 理由の聞き方、及び単純な返事

Teacher's example:

T: What a lot of subjects!
   Who's your favorite teacher?
S: I like Mr. Sakakawa.
T: Why do you like him?
S: Because he teaches math very well.

The pattern:

A: What a lot of [1]___________________s!
    (Student choice. 本人に決められる。)

    { Who | What | Which } is your favorite [2]_________________?
    (Match to [1]. [1]に合わせる。)

B: I like [3]____________________.
    (Respond to [2]. [2]に答える。)

A: Why do you like [4]________________?
    (According to [3]. [3]によって決まる。)

B: Because { he | she | it | they } [5]_________________________ { very } well. [etc.]
    (Student's reason. 理由は本人の意見による。)


Student examples:

baseballs, player, Maeda, pitch:
A: What a lot of baseballs!
     Who's your favorite baseball player?
B: I like Maeda.
A: Why do you like him?
B: Because he pitches very well.

CD, singer, RADWIMPS, guitar/English:
A: What a lot of CDs!
     Who's your favorite group?
B: I like the RADWIMPS.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they play the guitar very well,
     and their English is very good.

CD, singer, Syounannokaze, attractive:
A: What a lot of CDs!
    Who's your favorite singer?
B: I like Syounan-nokaze.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they are so attractive.
(For Syounan-nokaze, "cool" might be preferred to "attractive". 湘南乃風にしては「attractive」よりも「cool」のほうが適しているかも知れません。)
(so => very)

sushi, kind, salmon, delicious:
A: What a lot of sushi!
     What's your favorite kind of sushi?
B: I like salmon.
A: Why do you like it?
B:  Because it is very delicious.

manga, character, Doraemon, funny:
A: What a lot of manga!
     Who's your favorite character?
B: I like Doraemon.
A: Why do you like him?
B: Because he is very funny.
(Doraemon is a robot cat, so we might use "it". But "it" might mean the cartoon, as well. ロボットネコですから、「it」と言っても良い。ただ、「it」にするとネコか、漫画か、どちらを示しているかがわかりません。)

manga, animation, Sazae-san, interesting:
A: What a lot of manga!
     What's your favorite anime?
B: I like Sazae-san.
A: Why do you like it?
B: Because it is very interesting.

baseball, brand, SSK, fly:
A: What a lot of baseballs!
     What's your favorite baseball?
B: I like SSK {baseballs}.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they have very good flight.

dancing, dance, hip-hop, enjoyable:
A: What a lot of dancing!
     What's your favorite kind of dance?
B: I like hip-hop.
A: Why do you like it?
B: Because it's very enjoyable.
(dancing => 踊っているの)
(enjoyable => fun)

DVD, director, 森三中 (Morisanchu), interesting:

A: What a lot of DVDs!
    Who's your favorite director?
B: I like Morisanchu.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they are very interesting.
(Morisanchu is actually a group of entertainers, but this is close enough. 森三中とは、実際には漫才師に類されるでしょうが、十分関連しています。)

PC, PC activity, games, fun:
A: What a lot of PCs!
     What's your favorite thing to do on a PC?
B: I like games.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they are fun.

soccer, player, Honda, play/positive:
A: What a lot of soccer!
     Who's your favorite soccer player?
B: I like Honda.
A: Why do you like him?
B: Because he plays soccer very well.
     He plays with a positive attitude.

baseball team, tigers, ?:
A: What a lot of teams!
     Which is your favorite baseball team?
B: I like the Hanshin Tigers.
A: Why do you like them?
B: Because they are cool.

baseball, ?, Darvish, ?:
A: What a lot of baseball players!
     Who is your favorite?
B: I like Darvish.
A: Why do you like him?
B: Because he is from Japan and he pitches very well.

(Did I guess this one right? 推測が合っているかな?)

cards, ?, ?, ?:
A: What a lot of cards!
     Which is your favorite?
B: I like the ace of spades.
A: Why do you like it?
B: Because it has good luck.
A: No way! Cards don't have luck!
B: They have luck for me!
(Note to students -- please finish your assignments so we don't have to finish them for you. 生徒たちへのお願い~先生に決められないように宿題をある程度完了してください。)