Arnessa's Sequel Plot
Editor's Note: This sequel plot was written late in September 1996 and posted to the original P&P board at Bluemarble. It is the original fan fiction!
Having read the book so often, it's hard not to try to imagine what happens after the novel ends. I think the plot would have to revolve around making a good marriage, again, of course. An in short, my idea is this:
At the novel's end we still have unmarried young women, why not see what happens to them. In particular, since Lizzy and Darcy will be central to the story, why not see who Georgiana, Kitty and Anne de Bourgh will marry? Kitty will, after all, be spending a good deal of time at Pemberley as Austen tells us. I say something dreadful happens to Lady Catherine and Darcy and Lizzy are forced to take in Anne. Then the fun starts. Darcy breaks his leg after a fall from his horse. A young physician recently arrived in Derbyshire from London comes to treat him. Georgiana and he fall in love. But Darcy has better designs for his sister. He wants her to marry the Earl of ----, an old family friend. Lizzy sees where Georgiana's heart is and urges Darcy not to interfere because she knows Georgiana won't dare defy her brother. Darcy doesn't see the harm in separating two people whose attraction can only be the work of a few weeks, but after some verbal sparring, he follows his wife's advice and does nothing for the moment. Then Miss Bingley (remember her?) comes for a visit with her brother and Jane. She's still as attentive to Darcy as ever and tries to take over Lizzy's place in nursing him back to health. Can't you just see her now as they're all sitting round the fire in the drawing room?
"More tea, Mr. Darcy? Another blanket?"
Anyway, Miss Bingley has been in London husband-hunting still, and she's heard some scandalous story about the young doctor though she "doesn't remember the particulars."
An angry Darcy makes him leave the place immediately. Lizzy objects and is determined to find out the truth. She writes to Aunt and Uncle Gardiner in London, but they haven't heard anything about the young doctor.
Meanwhile, the Earl of ---- is a frequent visitor to the Darcy household. He is, to be honest, a little dull. Being rich and idle, he never has to think for himself. He fancies himself in love with Georgiana because his mother, an old friend of Darcy's parents, tells him he's in love with her. Georgiana treats him with kindness but can scarcely find two words to say to him. Unlike with the physician, in whose presence she was more talkative than usual. The Earl of ---- notices this and begins to suspect his true love doesn't love him at all. Once, when he came to Pemberley to see Georgiana she was out riding with Anne, and the Earl, finding Kitty alone in the drawing room, ends up pouring out his heart to her. He said he couldn't understand why Georgiana didn't love him. He's tried so hard, brought her flowers, made so many pleasing attentions, yet he had no hope of succeeding. Then Kitty innocently asks the crucial question:
"Why do you have such feelings for her with no hope of a return?"
Well, he hadn't thought about that before. He likes talking to Kitty. She's easy to talk to.
But Miss Bingley and Miss de Bourgh have other plans for the Earl. Seeing Georgiana isn't interested in him, they're not about to let him get away. Anne and Miss Bingley become fast friends. Miss Bingley decides to secretly help Anne snare the Earl. I see Anne as turning into a weaker version of Lady Catherine. In fact, I see her using her weak constitution as a weapon. Everyone has to tiptoe around to avoid upsetting Anne. Meanwhile, Anne gets what Anne wants. When they all go out for a walk, she must take the arm of the Earl because she simply can't bear the exertion. Miss Bingley lets drop to the Earl some hints about Kitty's flirtation with the officers in Meryton and how she followed around her disgraceful sister. And when Lydia, out of money again, comes to stay at Pemberley for a bit, Miss Bingley could not be more delighted. Miss Bingley has stayed on at Pemberley after her brother and Jane return home because Anne de Bourgh says she simply cannot do without her.
The Darcys throw a ball, maybe for Georgiana and Anne's coming out (Is Georgiana out in P&P?). We just have to have a dance scene. The ball is well received, except Georgiana is miserable because she's still not allowed to see the doctor. At the ball, she hears from some friends that he's gone back to London. After the ball, Lizzy seeing Georgiana's distress recommends a change of scene and society. But Darcy has some business that cannot be delayed, and Lizzy has to help Lydia to straighten out her life. So instead of staying at the Darcy's London house alone, Georgiana goes to stay with the Gardiners until the rest of the party is able to join her in London. One of the Gardiner children gets sick, and guess who comes to treat the patient. Yes! Georgiana's true love (violins here). The doctor writes to Darcy asking his consent to marry Georgiana, and Darcy flatly refuses ordering Georgiana to return to Pemberley at once. The young doctor elopes with Georgiana, who is not altogether inexperienced in this area (remember Wickham?). Darcy is furious, and in an angry moment, accuses Lizzy of planning something like this when she sent Georgiana to stay with the Gardiners.
In distress, Darcy turns to Col. Fitzwilliam to help him to find out where Georgiana and the doctor are. Lizzy stays at Pemberley. Darcy and the Colonel go to London to start the search, and while there they find out that the doctor isn't as bad as they thought and indeed the accusations made by Miss Bingley were totally false. Meanwhile Georgiana returns to Pemberley with her husband. Lizzy sends an express to Darcy telling him Georgiana is safe. Darcy and the Colonel return to Pemberley and they have a big family moment. Darcy apologises (most charmingly) to Lizzy for all his angry accusations. Lizzy forgives him, of course, saying she understands that it was his concern for his sister's welfare which made him react so strongly, and she can imagine they'll probably have such disagreements again-over the welfare of their own child, which she's expecting in about 8 months. You can imagine the expression of heartfelt delight diffused over Darcy's face after she says this.
Now that the crisis has passed, Kitty and the Earl make known their engagement. Anne is crushed, Miss Bingley comforts her as best she can, but now that the Colonel is at Pemberley and looks like he plans to stay for a while, Miss Bingley doesn't have much time for Anne anymore.
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