I am all a-flutter! Mr. Theo Darcy has granted me an interview!

aTransParentMom


Proceeding the commencement of my audience with Mr. Theo Darcy, I should like to acquaint you with publication which shall be released almost this very moment! In fact, I dare say that it is quite within reach! If you would be so kind as to click on this singular portrait, you shall find that you may, indeed, read portions of his exploits, which are quite intimate, in my way of understanding. To write of one’s enterprises seems to be a bit pretentious.

However, I shall endeavor to think only the best of him and it really shall be a fascinating read. Indeed, I shall feel quite wicked reading it! What is a girl to do when such fun is to be had? I shall venture to say, “Alas, read the publication and read it well so you shall have much to share when you see your companions Tuesday next!” I…

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Letter #12 10 June 1812 to Mrs. Reynolds

London, 10 June 1812

Dear Mrs. Reynolds,

Hah! I knew you could not rest without a full description of William’s nuptials. I doubt you will ever get a satisfactory account from my brother, since apparently he saw nothing but his bride during the entire event. I never thought to see him so besotted! I will refer you to Georgiana for any detailed description of the lace and silk involved, but I will tell you the bride looked lovely. I suppose I should say the brides looked lovely, since Miss Elizabeth’s eldest sister Jane wed William’s friend Bingley in the same ceremony.  A double wedding was a wise choice in this case, since I doubt the mother of the brides could have survived such excitement twice. Such a fluttering of nerves and handkerchiefs you have never seen! You would have dosed her in an instant with your special tincture of lemon balm.

Mrs. Bennet, I am sorry to say, was sufficiently recovered by the time of the wedding breakfast to consider the fate of her remaining unmarried daughters. You might think marrying off three daughters in two months, she could rest on her laurels for a time, but no. That woman is terrifying! At every turn, she would push her unmarried daughter Miss Katherine in front of me, apparently in the hope that William’s condition might be contagious to me. Alas, the new Mrs. Darcy is by far the most interesting of Mrs. Bennet’s brood, and Miss Katherine is merely a washed-out version of her elder sisters.  I must confess I flirted a little with the other Bennet daughter, Miss Mary, who earned my sympathy via the misfortune of being the only plain one in the family and generally disregarded by the rest. It was most satisfying to see a little color in her cheeks afterwards as a result, but I had to take to my heels when Mrs. Bennet approached yet again with Miss Katherine. Mr. Bennet, in the meantime, seems to be determined to take on my old avocation of needling William for his own amusement. As an expert on the subject, I must say he shows some promise!

Naturally our family provided its share of the entertainment as well. Colonel Fitzwilliam was in attendance since, as he said, unless he witnessed it with his own eyes, he would never truly believe William had taken on a leg-shackle. Miss de Bourgh insisted upon coming as well, which was hardly surprising as she has taken to insisting upon going to any event any of us attend. I live in fear she will turn up in my club one of these days! But she was well behaved, at least by her own standards, which is to say she only made half a dozen outrageous utterances. While she did stare fixedly at my friend Monty’s cravat, she managed to restrain herself from taking any direct action. As for Monty, he could not miss the wedding because he is determined to put in an appearance anywhere Georgiana might happen to be. He is only doing so to annoy me, I believe, but I had my revenge. I told Mrs. Bennet he was a wealthy baronet and unmarried. He could not turn tail and run quickly enough!

Then it was all over. William and Elizabeth departed, still starry-eyed. I rode back with Monty and the colonel, where we proceeded to enjoy an evening you would disapprove of, thanks to two bottles of William’s finest port which Richard had been clever enough to liberate from Darcy House the previous day.

As for William and me, our truce remains in effect, and I anticipate his new bride will not permit any change in that status. You will be amazed when I return to Pemberley at Christmas – at William’s insistence, I might add, although your plum pudding may have something to do with it as well – at how civil we have become, something I once thought quite impossible. I can see you shaking your head and murmuring, “I told you so, Master Theophilus!”

Yours, etc.,

Theo Darcy

Postscript – You are not under any circumstances to allow the cook to leave before she has written down her receipt for ginger cakes!

Letter #11 2 April 1812 to Miss Georgiana Darcy

In my bachelor quarters sadly lacking for a sister’s presence, 2 April 1812

Dearest Georgiana,

Has there been any progress in the matter of our brother’s engagement? I know I can depend upon you to make certain everything proceeds as it ought, and to prevent William from making a fool of himself any more than absolutely necessary. When the happy event occurs, pray do give Miss Bennet my best wishes, and tell her that I look forward with happy anticipation to her presence at the next occasion on which I am called into the royal presence. She will not, of course, know how very much I look forward to it, as I have high hopes she will be able to teach William at least a modicum of manners.

You were quite correct in your supposition that it was business which called me to Town. Mr. Garrow, who, as you no doubt are aware, was a barrister of some renown in his younger days before he became a member of Parliament, has been kind enough to take an interest in my career since my days at Lincoln’s Inn, and has referred a number of clients to me. I received a letter from him that day at Rosings informing me there was a case he most particularly wished me to take, but owing to a delay in London, the letter only reached me the day before the case was to be argued. Hence my sudden departure, for to repay Mr. Garrow’s generosity with failure to heed his request was simply not to be conceived of.

In any case, it went quite well. I dined with Mr. Garrow the evening I arrived and he put me through my paces, playing judge and opposing counsel at once. His mind is most inventive; I wish I might have seen him argue a case in his heyday! I understand it was quite a sight, and I am always amused to see the judge turn pale upon spotting his presence in the gallery. I am flattered beyond words when he says my argument of cases reminds him of his own. In any case, there are no better footsteps in which I could follow.

The case went well, a successful defense of a young woman falsely accused of theft. At one point, I thought the jury might go against us, but I was able to discover some discrepancies in her accuser’s story when I cross-examined him. It was the usual case, where he had threatened her with prosecution in order to secure her favors, but she, trusting in the law, refused his blackmail. I hope to see him brought up on charges soon. Mr. Garrow has already arranged a new situation for the girl with a family he trusts. But pray, do not tell William I am poisoning your innocent ears with tales of criminality! He would be most disturbed to discover I do so at your behest. That a young girl’s mind could possibly turn to such serious matters is quite beyond him, and by all means, do not tell him you find my stories as good as a Gothic novel!

I must be off now; Monty is taking me to the theatre to celebrate my victory.

Your affectionate brother, &c.
Theo

Letter #10 2 April 1812 to Fitzwilliam Darcy

London, 2 April 1812

William,

Pray be so kind as to inform your solicitor that he need no longer trouble himself with sending me an allowance as of Michaelmas of this year, as I will no longer require it. By this means, you may also spare yourself your quarterly inquisition into my finances and commentary on my life, since one can scarcely call your missives letters.

Pray give my regards to Georgiana, Richard, Anne, and the lovely Miss Bennet, whose injury, I am informed, came from a misfire of Watkins’ rifle rather than a shot at my hat. But there is no need to extend your apologies, as I am so accustomed to your false accusations as to be quite deaf to them, and we both know any expression of regret on your part would be purely a matter of form, and not truly meant.

Yours, etc.

Theophilus Darcy

Letter #9 27 March 1812 Express to Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam

Richard,

I am at my wit’s end, but for once, the source of my distraction is not our imperious aunt. I pray Darcy has found you in London and has explained our joint concern for Georgiana’s safety and well being. If William has not, of yet, spoken to you in person, the source of our agitation rests solely on my former associate, Mr. Wickham. Since my arrival at Rosings, I have heard from the dastard twice. As one might expect, the rogue initially solicited funds to cover the cost of his most pressing gambling debts, to which I most soundly refused.

Following my denial, a second missive arrived in which Wickham insinuated he would call upon Georgiana and offer himself as her “escort” in her brothers’ absence.

Learning of Wickham’s intentions, I meant to return to London immediately, but Darcy rightly reasoned my withdrawal from Rosings would draw attention to the situation. Therefore, our William has journeyed to Town under the guise of pressing business. Unfortunately, that particular fact leaves me to “entertain” and, likewise, be “entertained” by Lady Catherine. Trust me, I am well aware I deserve such excruciating agony for my short sightedness where George Wickham is concerned.

As I have heard nothing from Darcy regarding the arrangements he has made to protect Georgiana, I am begging for a word from you that all is well in hand.

Theo

 

Letter #8: 26 March to Sir Montgomery Preston

Rosings Dungeon (rattling his chains), 26 March 1812

Dear Monty,

So much has occurred since we last corresponded; I do not know where to begin. I will leave the biggest event to last in order to keep you in a fever of anticipation.

The first important event has been that I met my aunt’s protégée, a man she has taken under her large bat wing. He a clergyman by the name of Collins who is so obligingly servile ‘tis a wonder he does not throw himself to the floor at the old bat’s feet. I may yet have a use for Mr. Collins. He has so far provided me with an excuse for laughter by becoming tangled in a holly bush, which resulted in such panic and mayhem that even Darcy (I promised myself I will no longer call him Prince William) found it droll. So you can imagine how ludicrous this personage must be!

I know you are thinking that I have turned into a veritable country bumpkin, thinking it worth the cost of ink, paper, and franking a letter to pen such nonsense, but since it is Lady Catherine who is providing all three, I feel no qualms about writing what claptrap I choose.

The second event which provided some entertainment is that I rescued a young lady’s bonnet. You may think that equally trivial and insignificant, but when you hear my third point you will realize the supreme importance of this occurrence.

For now I come to the meat of the matter. I have discovered the root cause of my brother’s transformation into a bull ready to charge at a rag. I will admit that your extraordinary insight into the human heart once more hit its mark. As you suspected, there is a young lady involved, and she is none other than Miss B., the lady whose bonnet I rescued. So you see, Monty, I have not yet taken leave of my good senses, though I do admit I am close. A few more days with Lady Catherine may well turn me into wild lunatic fit only for Bedlam.

But there is more to come, and here is where I require your exemplary wisdom in such matters. I do not yet believe the young lady’s feelings are engaged. The question is, should I allow matters to take their course (which could only lead to a certain party’s disappointment) or should I employ my arts of persuasion and try to influence both parties with the hope of a more favorable outcome?

Awaiting a letter from you with the utmost urgency – or else I shall go out on the fields with the sheep and begin bleating.

Sincerely, etc.

Theo

Postscript: do not be surprised to run into my brother in Town. He has gone there on business and left me at the mercy of the Tyrant.

Letter #7: 24 March 1812, Express to Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam

Rosings Park, 24 March 1812

Dear Cousin Richard,

While you are in town, I have a mission for you should you have time. I would caution it is imperative this be done without Darcy’s knowledge. I would like to know anything you can find out about a family by the name of Bennet who lives in Hertfordshire. The name of the estate is Longbourn. Longbourn is entailed to the male line, and as there are no sons (but five daughters), the estate will pass to one William Collins, cousin to that family. Does that name sound familiar? Currently, he has the living at Hunsford under the patronage of our Aunt Catherine.

Why am I asking you this favor? I have formed a theory that my brother may be enamored with the second eldest of the Bennet daughters, Miss Elizabeth, whom he met last autumn when visiting Charles Bingley at his new estate. Of all the strange coincidences, said lady is here at Hunsford staying with her cousin, Mr. Collins, who was recently married to another lady from that Hertfordshire neighborhood. Small world, is it not? If William’s interest in her is what I suspect it to be, this could explain his strange behavior over the past few months. After meeting Miss Elizabeth, I can only say I completely understand his fascination with her.

I think you will find her family is of good character but definitely nothing to the standing of our own. However, if there is no scandal attached their family name, then it is possible Darcy could pursue an alliance with her even though it would be somewhat unusual for someone of his status. Lord knows, he has found no one else to liking amongst the debutants of the ton – despite your mother’s efforts, I might add.

By the way, thank you coming to my rescue in the matter of the book in Aunt Catherine’s library. My future health was entirely in your hands! I was able to locate the volume and tear out the incriminating pages. Better she find a defaced book than discover the caricatures. I have to admit upon seeing them again that they were very cleverly done!

Please write to let me know of your progress, but do not tell William of my request. Give my love to your mother and promise her I will call the moment I return to London with the latest intelligence about our dear Aunt Catherine’s activities and absurdities. I know how your mother appreciates a humorous story, and you know how I love providing her with this type of entertainment.

Yours etc,
Theo