I like to consider all possibilities when thinking about a plot for a Pride and Prejudice variation. Here is one I considered, but will not use, because I can’t figure out where it goes from here.


Darcy and his cousin, Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam, entered Rosings Park for their usual Easter visit. Darcy expected his only pleasure would be in the time he spent with Richard and the use of the beautiful grounds of Rosings. His and Richard’s mutual aunt was not a pleasant companion, but family duties took precedence over pleasure.

Aside from his aunt’s desire to dominate conversation, one anticipated ordeal was Mr. Collins, who was his aunt’s rector. Darcy had met Mr. Collins in Hertfordshire and did not think he would enjoy his sermons, nor would he enjoy any interaction with Mr. Collins. But duty was duty and even long Easter services could be tolerated.

As they walked up the steps, Higgens, Lady Catherine’s butler, told them, “I was ordered to have you come to the principle drawing room immediately upon your arrival.”

“Surely, we need time to freshen up after our journey,” Richard asserted.

“My orders were ‘immediately.’”

Darcy and Richard exchanged a glance. Richard shrugged and they headed for the principle drawing room. “Bad news?” Darcy anticipated.

“Lady Catherine stubbed her toe,” Richard replied, deliberately using their aunt’s title.

Lady Catherine was not in her usual chair. Instead, Mr. Collins was. She was next to him. Darcy and Richard both looked from one to the other. Mr. Collins announced, “Welcome to Rosings. My wife and I are happy to see you.”

Lady Catherine did not look happy.

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