Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 20

Previous parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19,

Chapter 10B

For two days, Mr. Bennet carried that rock in his pocket, running his fingers over it as he thought, weighing it from hand to hand as he considered all that had happened.  Finally, on the third day after Colonel Fitzwilliam had called, he could no longer deny that he had been wrong, and after another two hours of attempting to avoid doing what he knew he must, he called for the carriage and made his way to Darcy House.

He shifted from foot to foot as he waited in the entry for the butler to inquire after whether his master was home to callers or not. Thankfully, or perhaps not, Mr. Bennet could not decide, Mr. Darcy was at home for such a call.  With his heart beating wildly in his chest and echoing in his ears, he drew a deep breath and entered Mr. Darcy’s study after being announced.  He paused for a moment to take in the well-ordered shelves and the cozy arrangement of chairs near the hearth before moving to stand before Darcy’s desk.

“Please, have a seat,” Darcy motioned to the chair not occupied by Richard, and Mr. Bennet sat — but only just. He did not fill the chair completely nor did he relax his posture in any way.  Clearly, the man was a ball of nerves.  Darcy tipped his head and propped his chin on steepled fingers as he waited for Mr. Bennet to speak.

Mr. Bennet carefully placed the rock that had kept him company for two days on the desk. He turned and gave Colonel Fitzwilliam a small smile.  “I find I have no need for this, Colonel.”  And then he turned toward Darcy.  “And I pray that you will not either.”

Darcy’s brows furrowed as he reached for the rock and looked at his cousin, who gave a small nod of his head.  So this was the rock about which Richard had told him — the one that he had left with Mr. Bennet at his last meeting with the gentleman.

“I do not know why I should need a rock,” he said, turning the stone over in his hands. Continue reading Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 20

Music Monday: The Reason, Hoobastank

Today, I have an excerpt from this week’s upcoming release, Unravelling Mr. Darcy (Dash of Darcy #4), as well as a Pride and Prejudice fan video. The lyrics of the song in today’s video fit quite nicely with the premise of my light-hearted novella.  Consider these two things…

BrokenDoll7. “Pride & Prejudice – The Reason.” YouTube, YouTube, 4 Mar. 2008.

The song ends with these lyrics:

I’ve found a reason to show
A side of me you didn’t know
A reason for all that I do
And the reason is you

The description of my upcoming new release says:

What’s a gentleman to do when he has laid his heart before a lady only to have it crushed beneath her dainty slipper? If you’re Fitzwilliam Darcy, there is only one thing to do ─ unravel your tightly wound pride, mend your ways, and convince the lady of your worth.

And what’s a lady to do when she has spoken harshly and knows she has done so unfairly?  If you’re  Elizabeth Bennet, you take a deep breath, swallow your dignity, give him a second chance, and perhaps along the way, discover a gentleman you didn’t know existed.

Can you see the connection?  I’m sure you can, but let me tell you a little bit more about this story anyway.

Unravelling Mr. Darcy begins immediately following the moment in Pride and Prejudice when Darcy says

Forgive me for having taken up so much of your time, and accept my best wishes for your health and happiness.

In the next paragraph, we read that he hastily left the room and the parsonage.

Available for purchase September 21, 2017

Not so in this new version of events.

In this version, he is not leaving quickly but is rather willing himself out of the room and praying for some sort of divine intervention — which he gets.  Elizabeth calls him back and apologizes for her rudeness.

Here I must pause and warn those who are looking for the utmost propriety in a story that they will be sadly disappointed in this tale, for it begins with a rather indelicate discussion about why Elizabeth is feeling ill and why her words were so harsh. 

This apology and the discussion of several topics in the parsonage’s sitting room that follows Elizabeth’s apology lead to Darcy being granted a second chance to win Elizabeth’s heart. To do so, Darcy is amending his ways in grand style. Therefore, prepare yourself to meet a Darcy who, though still noble and honorable, has made a 180-degree turnabout because

He’s found a reason to show
A side of him she didn’t know

Unravelling Mr. Darcy will be hitting the digital shelves beginning this Thursday, September 21, 2017, and a print copy will follow shortly thereafter.

One more little side note in relation to this story: Last week, I mentioned that I wanted to get the sequel to a point where I could include a small sample of it at the back of this book. That has not happened. I have begun what I think will be the sequel telling Anne’s story, but it is not to a place where I can say “Yes, this is definitely how the story will begin.” Therefore, revealing any of her story will wait until I can.  However, Anne’s story, Becoming Entangled, will be available in the late fall, around the time of American Thanksgiving or shortly thereafter as it will depend on my editors’ schedules as much as my ability to get the story written.  

AN EXCERPT FROM Unravelling Mr. Darcy: 
Continue reading Music Monday: The Reason, Hoobastank

Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 19

Previous parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17, Part 18,

A/N: Today’s installment is a little shorter than some, but it contains an important meeting.  Just to keep you on track with the timeline of the story, this meeting takes place just nine days after Lydia’s injury.

Chapter 10A

For four days, Darcy House sat empty of its master.  For four days, the Gardiner’s sitting room was occupied for an hour each day by Mr. Bingley. For four days, Darcy and Richard made calls and paid debts, and for four days, Elizabeth sat by Lydia’s side reading her poems while she improved and gained strength. Hours ticked past. The sun set and the moon rose, and Mr. Bennet’s opinion began to soften. Whether this was due to the arguments presented to him by Mr. Gardiner, who through his wife’s intelligence had learned of Mr. Darcy’s proposal, or whether it was due to Mrs. Bennet’s constant laments over her second daughter never marrying and how delightful it would be to have Elizabeth marry Mr. Bingley’s friend with ten thousand a year, or whether it was simply due to time and seeing his youngest daughter becoming well, one cannot say.  But no matter the cause of his waning displeasure with Mr. Darcy, the results were such that on the morning of the fifth day, he was in a humor to be amenable to a call such as Colonel Fitzwilliam intended to make.

“Colonel Fitzwilliam,” Mr. Bennet greeted Richard as Richard entered Mr. Gardiner’s study.

Richard would have been happy to meet in the sitting room, had it not been filled with females, but it was, and what he needed to discuss with Mr. Bennet needed no audience larger than Mr. Gardiner, who was seated across a chess board from Mr. Bennet. Continue reading Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 19

Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 18

Previous parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17,

Chapter 9B

That evening, Bingley attended dinner with his friend, and the inevitable and required topic of Darcy’s part in separating Bingley from Jane was canvassed and quickly discarded.  Bingley had read the letter Darcy had sent with his cousin two days prior when Richard had gone to give Bingley Lydia’s message regarding her sister being in town.

Lydia’s had been relayed cheerfully and loudly by Richard as he knew Caroline was just passing the door to Bingley’s study as Bingley was shutting it.  The rest of the information of which Bingley needed to be made aware, including Jane’s call on Bingley’s sisters and Darcy’s error in his recommendations, Richard had left to the work of Darcy’s letter. He had, of course, answered questions where he could and assured Bingley of Darcy’s sorrow at discovering his error.

Therefore, when the subject was broached over wine glasses and cutlery, it was a topic that had already been given an ample amount of contemplation.  And as is the way of things, time spent in contemplation of anything startling, especially of an unpleasant nature, when taken up in the mind of a reasonable and rational gentleman, such as Bingley was, will give the news and opinions time to soften and will provide a greater chance for clarity in understanding to develop.

“I shall not question your opinion on the affections of ladies again,” Darcy said as the conversation drew to a close.

Having attained a nod of acknowledgment from his friend.  Darcy took a sip of his wine before returning to his plate of food.

Richard was pleased to see his cousin savouring each bite as it indicated his spirits were still lifted, and Richard knew that Darcy with raised spirits would be much more beneficial to their cause.  They — he and Bingley — must do their part to ensure Darcy did not slip back into a morose state, no matter how long it might take to set things to right.  Continue reading Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 18

Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 17

Previous parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16,

Chapter 9A

After Elizabeth and Jane had left Darcy House, Richard once again found himself seated before his cousin’s desk.  He picked up the papers he had discarded there earlier and tapped them on his left hand as he studied Darcy.  He had hoped the call would do Darcy some good, and it appeared it had.

“Are those the figures?”  Darcy sat comfortably reclined in his chair with his elbows propped on the arms and his chin resting on his steepled fingers.

“They are.”  Richard tipped his head and raised a brow as he took note of the slight turning up of Darcy’s mouth. They were about to speak of Wickham, Darcy should not be smiling.  “You seem happy.”

Darcy’s lips twitched. He was happy — very, very happy — and containing that happiness within a small smile was not easy.  “I am.”

“I am glad,” Richard tucked the papers he held under his right thigh.  “I should like to know why.  I am delighted that seeing Miss Elizabeth has lifted your spirits, but to be honest, I had thought upon her departure, a gloom might once again settle in.”

“Fear not,” Darcy replied with a half smile, “I shall likely find my morose mood again soon enough, but for now you shall have to endure my less dour mood.”

“Does this shift in disposition have anything to do with the exchange I witnessed in the library?”  He had seen the blushes on Elizabeth’s cheeks, and the dip of her head, as well as the kiss Darcy, had placed on her hand.  From where he had sat next to Jane, it looked to him that the battle to sway Elizabeth’s opinion of Darcy had doubtlessly been won.

Darcy could not contain his smile any longer and allowed it to spread across his face as he nodded.  “It does.  We have come to an understanding of sorts.” Continue reading Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 17

Music Monday: Rescue, Hunter Hayes

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 Continue reading Music Monday: Rescue, Hunter Hayes

Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 16

Previous parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15,

A/N: Jane has an idea… 🙂

Chapter 8B

Elizabeth’s message to Darcy roused him from his melancholy — but only slightly.  He kept mostly to his study or his rooms, venturing as far as the breakfast room where he took all his meals. The knocker was left off the door.  All who were employed by Darcy House carried out their duties in a manner which was respectful of a master not feeling like his normal self.  Richard was grateful for the dedication Darcy’s servants had to their master.   It had only taken a few brief words to Haywood, Darcy’s butler, and things had fallen into a slow and serene state of order.

Richard watched his cousin with a wary eye but did not amend his disposition.  He refused to tiptoe about, although he did keep the noise he created to a minimum.  Richard knew that in time his cousin would share all that was passing through his mind.  Darcy rarely acted on impulse, and, having suffered such a blow as he had when he received Mr. Bennet’s letter, Richard knew that Darcy would be even more hesitant to act without giving the matter a great deal of consideration. Therefore, he left his cousin to his thoughts and carried on about his own business while watching for and relying on Chase to inform him of anything needing urgent attention.

It was on the second day after visiting Mr. Bennet, when Richard finally had something requiring action which needed Darcy’s attention, that Richard entered Darcy’s study for more than a word of greeting.

He had just settled himself into a chair in front of Darcy’s desk when Haywood stepped into the room.

“There is a young lady here to see you, sir.”  The butler shifted uneasily.  “I told her you were not home to callers, but she insisted that if you were not available, she be allowed to see Colonel Fitzwilliam. She said it is of great importance.” Continue reading Thursday’s Three Hundred: With the Colonel’s Help, Part 16