A Rocky Road

A letter of civility

Darcy POV

From my current position, I can hear the guests being greeted and deduce that it is once again that toad of a parson and his wife, which means that Elizabeth- no she can no longer be Elizabeth to me, she must be considered as Miss Elizabeth now- will be there with them. I am glad that I am not there.

I can hear my aunt making demands of the Collins'. I replay the rejection in my head, over and over. I cannot stop thinking about it. Why? I silently wonder. Because you love her and nothing will stop this feeling. I silently answer.

It is true, I love her so much.

Hearing my aunt makes me realise that some of my claims were vastly inaccurate, as she is much the same as Mrs Bennet- interested in gossip and lace, and other frivolous pursuits, and definitely just as loud and demanding.

I regret attacking her family, but it was true and I was becoming frustrated with myself and her for not understanding the true meaning of what I was saying- that everything that was in the way of us being united meant absolutely nothing to me.

Darcy you fool! I berate myself.

I decide to write her a letter expressing my deepest sorrows and hope to make amends in our relationship so that at least there is the prospect of friendship and civility. I will not propose again.

I sit at my writing desk and begin to write.

Dear Miss Elizabeth,

Please be assured that there will be no renewal of the addresses that I expressed today. I wish merely to let you know that I am sincerely in regret of what I said about your family, as I realise that my own is somewhat the same. This is no excuse for my behaviour which was ungentlemanly, as you said.

It is my hope that in the future we may meet with some civility and attempt to become friends.

Yours,

Fitzwilliam Darcy

I reread the letter to make sure that there is nothing in it that could cause offence.

I want to see her again and I cannot send the letter without some suspicion. I will deliver it to her myself, I decide.

I did not hear her voice amongst the voices of the guests; she must have decided to stay at home. To avoid me, I sadly realise.

I order my horse to be readied and quietly descend the stairs.

Elizabeth POV

I keep replaying the events of the afternoon and wonder what could have possessed the most proud man in all of England to propose to me, someone he sees as decidedly beneath him.

As I sit, I wonder what about his proposal had caused me to so utterly and completely refuse him. I remember him saying that my family would be a degradation to be aligned with through marriage.

I begin pacing as I have become agitated simply sitting on my bed.

As I pace, I hear someone approaching the house. I hear the hoof beats as the horse approaches. There is a brief silence due to the time it takes for the rider to dismount and knock on the door.

A servant comes into the room and says "pardon me miss; there is a man to see you."

"Thank you. Tell him I will be downstairs in a few moments." I reply.

The servant bobs in a curtsy and leaves the room.

Curious as to whom the man could be, I hasten to ready myself for visitors. Suddenly a thought comes into my head- it could be Mr Darcy. I quickly dismiss this thought as he would have no occasion to come to see me.

I descend the stairs as fast as I dare so as to not keep the visitor waiting. As I enter the drawing room, I notice the profile of a tall man leaning against the mantle.

With a deep breath I approach the figure.

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