Abby, this is in one word, a breathtaking chapter... actually three, but you get my meaning!
The ball, wonderful, it felt as if I was part of it (wish I could have!), and so Regency indeed... all propriety on the surface, but look at them!
The truth was that in those days high society overindulged in excessive use of spirits, they gambled away the family fortune and certainly did not hesitate to make a pass at other peoples spouses...
Jane Austen showed us ever so subtly: had those who pointed at others to be ill-bred the right to do so... considering their own behaviour?
As far as the developing relationship between Elizabeth and Darcy is concerned... what agonies the poor man must suffer! He so longs for her that he even promotes himself as an eligible man, that many a woman would love to be in her place... (Any time, Mr. Darcy... hee). I suffer with him, but I suffer with Elizabeth too. His incredible clumsy way to make his desire known... A desperate man, to be sure. Elizabeth's riposte was capital... Her courage rises with every attempt to intimidate her, right?
Can't wait for part 2, Abby. Thank you for sharing this wonderful story with us.
Thanks for the lovely comment, Renee. This was the chapter that started it all. I've had it in my head since I began. It existed well before Chpt. 1 - all of it - the allusions to Twelfth Night, disguise, his rather bold suggestion. Really, I've been writing to get here - and now I'll write to move past it.
I'm so glad you feel for them both. So many seem to want to blame Darcy, but I admire his willingness to move forward - or, rather, his desire to be more than they are to one another. He took a risk, handled the rejection rather poorly - but he is very much redeemable in my eyes. Nor can I blame Elizabeth - the poor girl was confronted with excesses all evening and her husband's "suggestion" only added to her growing frustration.
They need to move past this and learn to look beyond themselves. I hope this was the start of them acknowledging that the "other" is worthy of consideration as well.
Abb, It's clear he feels for her albeit more lust at this point than love, I presume. But the process towards true love is working... and, he's a good man. He doesn't force himself upon her. If I compare your Darcy to Galsworthy's Soames Forsyte of the Forsyte Saga, who, almost a century later, actually raped his own wife, I opt for your Darcy any time! After all, men were entitled to demand their rights in this regard, and women just had to submit. So, we cannot pretend he doesn't respect her! Therefor, considering the era, I admire his restraint.
As you already know from my e-mail, I forgot to mention in my first comment my admiration for the way you've translated his first proposal (which was based on lust as well, IMHO) into this request to share her bed! The insulting manner in which he did it made me feel sorry for both of them. Some people don't always understand that honesty -- however great a virtue in general -- can be unnecessarily hurtful. So, often it's wiser to just declare your feelings and stop there!
Girls, I have posted this on the main page already, but in case you missed it, chapter 18 is now posted on Abby's mini-site.
Abby, this is another fantabulous chapter. There's rapproachement, finally. There are still quite a few obstacles to overcome, but light is gleaming at the end of the tunnel, right?
I love your Elizabeth, well, I love your Darcy too. But the combination of Elizabeth's sensitivity and courage to just face facts was very poignant. I perfectly understood why Darcy didn't seek a private audience, it's his rational way of thinking that prevented him from doing it, not his lack of courage, but the fact that she -- spontaneous as she is -- actually went to his study to talk, made my esteem for her even greater.
Thank you, dear Abby, for another wonderful read. [kisses]
It must have been a tough nut to crack to 'crawl' into your characters' head, so to speak, and express their thoughts, particularly not after what had happened in Lizzy's bedchamber and the consequences of it. I think you did a marvelous job. Hats off!
And I love the way you build up her gradual change of heart, without her being really conscious of it. Miss Harlowe played an effect part in this regard.
I thought Lizzy's musings on her being a mother, and, particularly, about Darcy being a father were very endearing.
...As she rose to make her exit, she found herself looking directly into the warm eyes of her husband.
Warm eyes! That sounds promising...
..."Welcome to Pemberley, Mrs. Darcy," he said levelly. ... this a little less. Ah well, the man is just suppressing his feelings. I'm sure they both get the chance to grow closer to each other soon. Well, I hope so.
I certainly did, Renee. The hard part is waiting for the next installment. This fanfic is very addictive but it is an adjustment from reading a book where you can just steam ahead until you finish the story. There is an agonizing suspense as we wonder when we'll get to hear more from the dear characters...
The hard part is waiting for the next installment. This fanfic is very addictive but it is an adjustment from reading a book where you can just steam ahead until you finish the story.
Hello Rita! It's wonderful how you look at it this in such a positive way and I like the comparison with a book. Never thought of that before!
I wouldn't think of reproaching an author either for having us waiting. Writing is a slow and difficult process and it needs time.
We are very lucky though Abby is one of those great authors who regularly post: she keeps us waiting for but a week between chapters. (TY Abby! )
I'm so sorry I didn't discover your comments before now. I wasn't on the computer much yesterday and just checked in here right now.
First off, thank you Rita for reading and discovering "Happenstance". It's so nice to "meet" new people who are willing to read this story that has been kicking around in my head for well over a year.
Next, I do try to update each Monday. It's a rule I have to follow, I'm afraid. If not, I'd probably been steamrolled by another new interest (my now-suppressed Live Journal obsession), and not finish this story at all. I know myself - I cannot serve two masters at one time unfortunately . Whomever said that women can multitask wasn't referring to me obviously.
I will be posting again on Monday, January 23 - barring anything really wrong going on with my story or RL. Just yesterday, I had some news which may make it necessary to have to abandon my story for a while in the near future. As well, I'm leaving for a trip to the Mayan Riviera on the 26th of January which means I'll have to miss a week at least.
Fortunately, lovely Renee archives my story almost the minute she gets it every week. I'm so thankful to her.
Thanks, Rita (and, of course, Renee) for following this and letting me know what you think. Comments bolster my mood to write like nothing else.
This chapter, my transition chapter, was a beast for me to write! Because Elizabeth and Darcy are apart until the end, I found myself hard pressed to actually like what I was writing. Without question, this was the most trying chapter I've written thus far. I'm quite certain I'm a much nicer person now that it's out of the way.
I wanted to have E&D, two remarkably clever people after all, ponder what has been said, yet I wanted to not have them falling all over each other immediately. If their transition is to be real, it has to be gradual. My next chapter has them taking some more tentative steps, but awkwardness and uncertainty will still characterize their relationship for a few more chapters. I think though that they must learn to like one another before they can truly fall in love. I've always interpreted some of their almost "primal" reactions to each other as an indication that they're not wholly oblivious to one another. Regardless of whatever "ammunition" they've had to consider one another warily, IMHO had they not been attracted to one another, their feelings would not have been so raw. Thus, once they begin to try to make their marriage work and discover that their partner isn't all bad, they're well on their way to making this relationship as meaningful as we know it is in the text.
Thank you, Renee, for your praise and your championing of this story. It means the world to me.
My dear, no need to apologise. You're a busy woman! I don't expect you to rush over and reply to all I have to say. . I'm glad you like your pages and for me it's a pleasure to post each chapter without delay! I'm already ready to go for the next!
I know you had trouble with this one, like I had with my last one where Darcy and Elizabeth didn't meet. That's a tough nut to crack. We want them together, either fighting or loving passionately, but together they should be!
Hi, I was directed to this site, and this story in particular via the matthew macfadyen site. I found it a little difficult to get into at first - what can I say, but that I'm also reading P&P again at the moment and so get distracted easily? - but now I'm very eager for the rest of the story. Hurry up and finish! (Please!) I want to know what happens next!
Thank you so much for reading and telling me about it. Sorry the story was hard for you to open, but I am glad you're enjoying it.
I'll hurry up as much as I can. Do me a favour - remind me to never post anything again until after I've finished it completely, OK? I think this will be my one hit kinda wonder, but just in case, remind me, OK?
Abby!!! I loved, loved, loved chapter 20! What a pleasure to see Darcy and Elizabeth closing ranks against their 2 unpleasant guests! Miss Bingley and Mrs. Hurst are far worse than Elizabeth's family in my opinion. At least the Bennet family's misbehavior is not founded on cruelty or viciousness. You have given me a new appreciation for them! LOL!
Those Bingley sisters are pretty brutal. They're not overtly hostile, but their subtle viciousness is lethal! They may hide behind these polite, interested veneers, but make no mistake, these girls are truly ******* I love that Darcy and Elizabeth combine forces. They needed to do it.
Thanks for your enthusiasm. I won't be posting next week as I'll be in Yucatan, but look for the next chapter on February 8th if all goes well.
Echoing Rita, Abb, I loved loved loved this chapter... I'm so happy that a certain calmness has come over them, and... hope, obviously. It's so wonderful how you manage to gradually 'mould' their relationship into a beautiful final result... at least that's what we are all hoping for, right?
Loved it too how they koined forces against those ghastly, incredibly ill-mannered Bingley sisters.
I won't be posting next week as I'll be in Yucatan, but look for the next chapter on February 8th if all goes well.
We will be missing you, but wishing you a great time.
I'm a bit of a country mouse myself really. I live a bit out of Toronto. Kleinburg, the city I live in, was farm country up until about 5 years ago. Now, it's becoming a sprawling suburbia, but it wasn't when we first moved here.
A week will pass all too soon, I imagine. I'm sort of needing to escape RL a bit so I'll love every minute.
My latest chapter had to have the Bingley sisters get some sort of comeuppance. After all, never before has Elizabeth hosted them - not really, unless you count the brief teas at Longbourn. I think it's quite realistic that they would attempt to hide their petty jealousies in comments about her improved circumstances. Elizabeth just couldn't let that go by.
Thanks for your nice words. And, believe it or not, a tiny part of me will miss you too.
And Renee, I absolutely must pick up that Outlander one day. Between you and Julie, you've made me quite curious!
I'm totally addicted, Abb! When I had finished the first I was so restless, I just had to purchase the second immediately. My own bookshop didn't have it in stock, so I had to go down town to get it at the American bookcenter. I was able to restrain myself but I could have kissed the shop assistant.
It's so compelling, absolutely unputdownable. The author is a fantastic storyteller.
I am a new reader and have just caught up completely on the Happenstance story and must offer my compliments to the author. I am so thoroughly enjoying this story and feel I have been totally brought into the hearts and minds of these two beloved characters. Well done!
I'm so happy to know you're enjoying this story. It's something I've been mulling over for several years now. I was just never brave enough to post it. This year, I'm home on a teaching sabbatical and so I decided to try something new. It's been rewarding largely because of the kind comments from readers like you.
MMad I'm totally in love with this chapter as well. They're so close to truly love each other. The skating was super, so deliciously romantic. And now the longing is tarting to overwhelm Lizzy too... What a prospect!
There's one thing I have to tell you, dear readers. Abby won't be posting each Monday anymore for the time being. Family circumstances require her undivided attention. But rest assured your patience will be rewarded, most definitely.
Abby, I will keep your father in my prayers for a complete recovery from his surgery. Blessings to you both.
A skate in the moonlight! Exquisite. I fell in love with my husband during the winter when we both worked at a ski resort years ago....to this day snow equals romance to me. The world is quieted and ones senses seem to be heightened. A perfect setting for laughter and closeness and love. What pleasure your story brings.
Firstly, thanks for reading. As a new author, knowing that someone is reading what I write is a very huge deal.
Next, a brief explanation. Up until now, I've tried to be a regular poster mainly because that's what I appreciate as a reader and because I've had time to keep up with the story. Had I been working this year, I would have never been able to do this. Yet, a really ugly part of real life has reared it's head. My father is having brain surgery on Feb. 15th. This is his third surgery in less than 3 years, but it's very scary. That's why I can't concentrate on the story right now. I don't just want to pull something off because that would be unfair to you, to these characters who I've come to hold dear and to me.
Regardless of how insignificant this may be to me one day (maybe - I doubt it though), right now, it's pretty important. I want to look back on this story and know I gave it my all and, right now, I just can't do that. We're busy setting things up for my dad's surgery and trying to make arrangements for what life will be like post operatively.
So, thank you, dearest Renee, for alerting the readers. And thank you readers for reading and understanding.
Rest assured, the story is all planned. I just need time to write it. I'll get there - promise!
I totally understand what you meant. You're right, you'll never regret helping him through this walk. Don't worry about us, we'll be here, waiting patiently.
Your story is a wonderful one and is well worth waiting for.
Hope your Dad's surgery is a success. Don't forget to take good care of yourself as much as you can.