Welcome back to Austen Promises!
This poor story has no title! 🙁 I don’t have much written on it; this one will come more slowly than the last few, I fear. 🙂
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“Lizzy, would you like to accompany me to Hatchards today? Your uncle and I have a couple books we have been looking for, and rumor has it, Hatchards has them.”
Elizabeth looked up from her embroidery. “Oh,” she began, “I do not know …” She looked down at herself. Though the outward signs of the terrible accident had long ago receded, the usually confident Elizabeth had been unnaturally diffident about going out in public in general, much less in a carriage.
“Come with me, it will be good for you.”
Elizabeth sighed, a sound that seemed to come from the middle of her soul. “I know.”
Tilting her head, Maddie Gardiner examined her niece as she ran a list through her head of items that could be holding back a known bookworm from visiting a book shop. Suddenly, she remembered the trip from Meryton to London and the laudanum that had been necessary for Elizabeth to be able to even board the carriage. Her curious gaze turned tender.
Making her way to sit beside her niece on the sofa, Maddie slipped her hand over one of Elizabeth’s, squeezing it gently. “The carriage is a must, I fear, for this trip. Mayfair is simply too far to walk. We will be perfectly safe. It is not raining, and there is not a ditch or cliff for a dozen miles.” She looked at the incipient terror in her nieces eyes and continued, “You must get over this, Lizzy. It has been over a year. You cannot stay in the house forever, and you cannot always be walking to get to where you are going. You will come with me, I will instruct the driver to go slowly, and we will get there and back with no mishaps. Do you trust me?”
Elizabeth, though terrorized by the memory of the accident, nodded. Swallowing hard, she agreed to ride along.
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