Today, I am sharing a video but not just because of the music (which is excellent). Rather, I am sharing it because of what is happening in the background while the music is being played. You’ll have to watch to see what I am talking about. (I find it fascinating to watch artists do this sort of thing.) However, don’t get so caught up in the moment that you forget to keep scrolling after the video is over and miss the writing news and story excerpt I am including. 🙂
hunterhayes. “Hunter Hayes – Rescue (Official Music Video).” YouTube, YouTube, 29 June 2017.
As expected, this week was a slightly lower productivity week for me as I took time out to take a day trip to Fort Anne and Port-Royal National Historic sites (pictured below) with my husband and boys.
But in spite of this full day break from my normal routine and an evening spent out and about with my husband, I did manage to get some work done.
Here’s what I accomplished:
- I came very close to finishing the first pass edits of Unravelling Mr. Darcy, so that should get sent to my first reader this week.
- I wrote my post for Austen Authors for this Tuesday, which includes an excerpt of Henry’s story and a giveaway.
- I bundled And Then Love, The Tenant’s Guest, So Very Unexpected, and At All Costs into a one book Willow Hall Romance collection and have uploaded it to Kindle at a special sales price (USD 3.99). I will be uploading it to my various other vendors over the course of this week, but the special price is only on the Kindle edition and only available until September 5, 2017.
- AND I added about 3,000 words to my work in progress — Confounding Caroline, which will become the next Thursday’s Three Hundred story once October gets here and from which I am sharing an excerpt below.
EXCERPT FROM Confounding Caroline:
“Oh, boys and their biscuits!” Mrs. Gardiner cried. “My youngest son is forever attempting to sneak an extra treat when his nurse’s back is turned.” She chuckled. “He is only two, so though I reprimand, it is forgivable.” She held out a plate of almond cakes to Bingley. “Mr. Darcy,” she began as Bingley selected two cakes from the plate, causing her to smile. “You are very much like John,” she said to Bingley before turning back to Darcy. “You said you could not return to Netherfield, and I admit to being curious as to the cause of your reluctance — nay — refusal to return.” She offered him an almond cake and refused to move from her spot until he had taken one. Then, she gathered his cup from the tea tray and returned that to him as well. “I will not have you leave without refreshment,” she said kindly.
Then, she returned to her seat. “Would I be correct in assuming it had something to do with another one of my nieces?”
Darcy washed down his bite of cake with some tea. “Yes,” he replied simply.
“Were you much attached to Lizzy?” Jane asked, causing Darcy’s eyes to widen in surprise.
The Miss Bennet he had witnessed today in this drawing room clashed with the one he remembered from his time in Hertfordshire. This Miss Bennet was much bolder. However, from the pink that stained her cheeks and the way her eyes did not hold his for long before dropping away, he knew that the effort was not without cost.
“Surprisingly, yes,” he admitted. “I realized just how much when I returned to town and could not rid myself of her memory.”
“She likes you,” Jane’s voice was no more than a whisper.
“I am sorry to disagree with you, Miss Bennet, but your sister does not like me,” Darcy returned.
“Oh, no,” Mrs. Gardiner said, “our Lizzy is quite taken with you. She just does not realize it.”
For the first time since his arrival, he saw the woman relax into her chair and take a leisurely sip of her tea rather than the quick ones she had taken thus far.
“You will have to explain that to me,” Darcy said, settling back into his chair. “I was left with the distinct impression that she did not approve of me any more than I approved of such a connection at that time.”
“How will your family receive her?” Mrs. Gardiner asked.
Darcy shook his head and shrugged. “I do not know, but first –”
“Do you love her?” Mrs. Gardiner interrupted.
Darcy drew a deep breath and released it as he nodded his head. “But I do not see how –”
“Good,” Mrs. Gardiner interrupted again.
It appeared that the lady was determined to be the only one asking questions and directing the conversation, so Darcy leaned back and waited expectantly.
“No more protests, Mr. Darcy?”
The familiar twinkle had returned again to Mrs. Gardiner’s eyes, causing the right side of Darcy’s mouth tipped up in a half smile. “You are very much like her.”
Mrs. Gardiner finished the tea in her cup and placed it to the side. “I cannot deny that. That you have recognized it, speaks to how much you must admire her to have noticed such a thing. Tell me, because my curiosity must be satisfied; what makes you say that Elizabeth and I are alike?”
Darcy tipped his head. “You would leave your children in the care of Bingley to have a cup of tea and a read. Therefore, I assume you enjoy reading as much as she does.”
Mrs. Gardiner accepted his statement as true with a tip of her head.
“You are determined and unafraid to speak your mind. You challenged both me and Bingley.”
“One of my faults,” Mrs. Gardiner said with a smile.
“No, I do not find it to be a fault. I prefer directness to prevarication and pandering.” He tipped his head and watched the light dance in the eyes of the woman before him. “Her eyes sparkle and dance just as yours do, and her brow raises in much the same fashion as yours is now.” A smile spread across his face. “Her lips purse and twitch just like that when she is trying to contain her amusement.”
Mrs. Gardiner clapped her hands in delight. “Oh, you do love her!”
Darcy nodded. “But –” He stopped as Mrs. Gardiner held up a hand.
“She would not dislike you as much as she does if she did not like you.”
Darcy’s brows rose, and he blinked. “I beg your pardon?”
“Do you understand her meaning?” Darcy asked his friend.
“I think I might,” Bingley replied. “The lady doth protest too much, me thinks.”
Darcy’s eyes grew wide. “Shakespeare?”
“I said I read occasionally,” Bingley retorted.
“He has the right of it,” said Mrs. Gardiner, “does he not, Jane?”
Jane nodded. “Oh, indeed. Lizzy avows her dislike far too much for it not to indicate how much she wishes for your good opinion.”