Caroline's Migraine Day
Caroline stepping into the breakfast room at Netherfield was pleased to see the man she intended to marry sitting there drinking a cup of coffee and reading the newspaper.
"Mr Darcy," she gushed, "I was so pleased when Mrs Madison informed us that you were here at Netherfield when we arrived last evening. I thought that you were in town still. You said nothing of returning to Hertfordshire when we saw you at Lady Witherspoons' party Wednesday night."
"Lady Margaret Dewitt informed us when we went to call on Friday afternoon, that your Aunt, Lady Catherine was come to town to visit you. I presumed that you would be in London yet entertaining her ladyship and your cousin, dear Miss DeBourgh."
"My Aunt stayed a very short time," Darcy answered, tersely, "she does not care for London. I believe she and Anne went to Bath, that they might find benefit from the waters."
"Oh, dear me, yes. What a pity that the only child of Lady Catherine and Sir Lewis should be such a sickly creature," she said, slyly.
"How unfortunate that you should not have been here when Charles came to Netherfield. I am sure you could have stopped him from asking Miss Jane Bennet to marry him. If only he had consulted you, or his family we could have prevented this disaster. We must find a way to stop this unsuitable marriage. You must agree."
"It is too late to do anything now Miss Bingley," Darcy replied, "the banns have been posted and the announcement has been published in the London papers."
"There must be something you can do, Mr Darcy, a man with your connections can surely find a way out of this predicament."
"I am sure you could find someone who would be willing to marry the girl for price. What of the new clergyman at Kempton, he would be a fine catch for a girl with her lack of fortune and position. No, no, that would not do she would then be too close to Pemberley. We cannot have that, can we sir."
"Louisa, Mr. Hurst, come help us, together we must be able to think of someone who would take the girl and spare our dear Charles from a disastrous marriage. The thought of having Mrs Bennet in the family gives me a headache just to contemplate it."
"I have no intention of interfering in your brothers life again, Miss Bingley, Mrs. Hurst, "Darcy said, "we were wrong to do it before and I will not do anything to ruin the happiness of these two wonderful people."
"But, Mr. Darcy," Mrs. Hurst gasped, "you agreed, you were the one who convinced Charles last winter that to marry Miss Bennet was a great folly. Miss Bennet is a sweet girl, I grant you, but her family. You cannot possibly believe that our dear brother could find any happiness with such as they. Surely you have not changed your mind."
"I have," Darcy replied, "I have seen Bingley's unhappiness for nearly a year. I thought at first that this was just another passing fancy on his part and he would find another lovely girl to take his attention. This has not happened. Your brother has been unhappy all this time. Now he is restored to his usual amiable happy hearted self, and I shall have no part in sending him back to his pit of despair."
"But what will our friends think, Mr. Darcy," Miss Bingley wailed, "for Charles to marry a nobody from the wilds of Hertfordshire, with no connections and no fortune. It will be mortifying, I could not bear it."
"I care not what anyone else thinks," Darcy snapped, "I care for Charles's happiness. I would hope that you would too. He will never be happy with anyone else. He loves Jane Bennet and she loves him, I will listen to no more talk of parting them."
As he threw down his napkin and rose to leave, Bingley entered the room.
"Ahh, Darcy," he said, are you ready to go to Longbourn?"
"So early, really Charles," Miss Bingley said, "you must at least have some breakfast before you go out."
"I had breakfast with Darcy, Caroline," he answered," I just went out to have the man prepare the horses."
"Are you ready to go, Darcy, have you told my sisters your good news, or has Caroline been talking since she entered the room, giving you no chance to speak."
"News, what news?" Louisa snapped.
"Why, Darcy is engaged to Miss Elizabeth Bennet, her father gave his permission the night before last. We are to have a double wedding. Isn't that diverting, sisters. Our staid, distant Darcy is in love with Miss Elizabeth Bennet, and she with him, is that not wonderful news?"
Caroline leapt from her chair, "Engaged," she shouted, "engaged to Miss Eliza Bennet? This cannot be. Mr Darcy, surely you know that she is only after your fortune, especially after her visit to Pemberley. She wants to be mistress there, I could see it in her face last August."
"Surely you cannot be taken in by her Mr. Darcy, you are far to wise for that. Think of what you are doing. What will your family think. What will Lady Catherine do, you are to marry her daughter. She will never continence this marriage."
"My aunt has nothing to do with this, it is my life and I shall marry whomever I choose, and I choose Miss Elizabeth Bennet. Fortunately for me she has consented, to my great joy."
"No, no Mr. Darcy, you must not, think of dear Georgiana. She will be heartbroken, I am sure she has been looking forward to her cousin Anne becoming her sister."
"Georgiana will be elated," Darcy said, "she became very fond of Miss Bennet while she was in Derbyshire."
"While she was in Derbyshire, surely you must know that she planned that entire visit in order to put herself in you path, to ingratiate herself with you by making a play for dear Georgiana's affections. I saw what She was doing but I was helpless to do anything."
"Don't you see she planned to be there at Pemberley when you arrived, she was waiting lying in wait for you."
"Don't be silly Caroline," Bingley interrupted, "how could she have planned anything. Darcy didn't know himself that he was going to Pemberley a day earlier than us until he received the letter from his steward. You are making a fool of yourself Caroline. Sit down and have your breakfast and get control of yourself. Darcy and I are going to Longbourn. If you can begin to act like a lady and not a child, you may come yourself this afternoon."
"Mr. Darcy, Mr. Darcy, you must know that she cares only for your wealth and position," Caroline cried, "how did she trap you into this proposal?"
"Trap me into proposing," Darcy laughed, "how little you know of Miss Elizabeth, Miss Bingley. She is not one of your town friends who cannot be trusted. If you only knew the half of it," he laughed as he walked out the door.
Mr. Hurst laughed, "There go all your fine plans to become Mistress of Pemberley, Caroline and to lose to Miss Elizabeth Bennet, what a great joke."
"ARRRRRRRRRRRRR," Caroline screamed as cups and saucers, plates and silver flew about the room at her hand, "ARRRRRRRRRRRRR, I hate her, I hate her."
Louisa grabbed the teapot and the coffee before her sister could throw them too, spilling their contents about the room.
"Caroline, calm yourself. Mr Hurst, leave us," she snapped, "I will speak to my sister in private."
Mr Hurst took his plate and left the room laughing all the way, "Mrs. Darcy," he chortled, "not Mrs. Caroline Darcy but Mrs. Elizabeth Darcy."
"Caroline, you will calm yourself and come with Mr. Hurst and myself to Longbourn this afternoon. You will congratulate the Miss Bennets, both of them. You will never let anyone in Hertfordshire know that you are not pleased with these arrangements."
"Do you understand me, sister?"
"No," Caroline pouted, "I will not go to Longbourn today, you cannot make me. I have a huge headache. You will make my excuses."
With that she left the breakfast parlor and went to her room to cry the morning away.
© 2001 Copyright held by author