Welcome back to Austen Promises!
I can’t remember if I told you last week, but this story is rapidly coming to a close. There will probably be not more than two more posts for it. I changed the name, too, after being advised that it was weak. So, when it gets published it will be Darcy’s Surprise Betrothal.
With this book, I’ll have a brand-new cover style. Be looking, especially on Facebook but probably also here on the blog, for it. I plan to share everywhere I can so my readers are not shocked or anything. 🙂
I’m not sure how much I give away here. I’ll leave it to you to tell me. 🙂
Did you know that for a monthly pledge of as little as $1 at Patreon, you can have early access to all my blog posts, including my Thursday ones? And, that the Thursday posts are expanded for my patrons, who get a whole chapter?
Just as the sun began to rise, a shout was heard among the searchers, and everyone rushed to reach the spot. Darcy was overjoyed to see his son, wet and bedraggled, walking towards him.
“Son!” Darcy rushed to Fitzwilliam, pulling him in for a quick hug and then releasing him to step back, hands on Fitzwilliam’s shoulders. “I am very happy to see you. You kept us all up, pacing the floors last night. Are you well? Where is your horse?” Darcy looked over his son’s shoulder.
“I am well. I stumbled across a small barn last night. It was abandoned, I think; the roof was mostly missing. Orlando is tied there. He came up lame not long after I made the decision to find shelter. He slipped in the mud. I cannot feel a break; I suspect a strain, but since I had no idea where I was, I thought it best to leave him there until I had worked out where we were.”
“That was wise. Can you point us in the direction of the barn? I will send someone to bring the gelding back.”
As Fitzwilliam directed one of the tenants to the building, Gardiner walked up, blanket in hand. Handing the piece of cloth to Darcy, he informed his new friend that he had sent for a carriage to pick Fitzwilliam up.
“Thank you, Gardiner, I appreciate that.” Darcy took the blanket, laying it over the shoulders of his now-shivering son. Once Fitzwilliam turned back to him from speaking to the farmers, he informed him of the coming carriage.
“Are we really that far from Longbourn? I would far rather walk. It warms the blood, and I need warming.”
Darcy’s brows rose in surprise. “I do not believe we are more than a mile away, what say you, Gardiner?”
“Not much further than that, I would imagine. But are you certain you are well enough for that, Fitzwilliam?”
“I am. I have a little chill is all.”
“Very well, then. We will walk.” Darcy positioned himself on one side of Fitzwilliam, and Gardiner on the other, and they began the trek back to Longbourn.
“How is Elizabeth? Was she worried?”
“She was. She remained below stairs until after midnight.”
“Your father had to force her to go to bed, or nearly so.”
“Did you see her this morning?”
Darcy assured his son they had. “She was waiting in the drawing room for our return.”
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