Thursday’s 300: Elizabeth’s Calendar

Welcome back to Austen Promises!

As with my last several posts, this one has no relation to any other post. It’s just a random scene out of my head, and one I greatly enjoyed doing. I thought it was kind of funny, too. <3 This is a Regency, in case it’s not clear from the story.

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Elizabeth Darcy was in a panic. Her calendar was missing. She had carefully drawn it out, one month to a page, six pages. It had taken hours, not to mention quite a bit of ink. She had felt guilty about using the fine paper her husband insisted on stocking in the house. Now, she felt even worse.

Elizabeth relied on that calendar to keep their social life and other appointments straight. She was an intelligent woman, but there were so many outings that she sometimes forgot one here and there. Then she would find herself expected in two places at once, which was embarrassing and upsetting.

Fitzwilliam Darcy, her husband, had laughed at her concern. “I do not understand why you are fretting about missing a ball or dinner. You know I hate them.”

“I do,” Elizabeth shot back, “but some of these are important, and are ones you told me to make sure we accepted!” She jammed her finger into his chest as she spoke, and then huffed, both fists landing on her hips. Just like a man, she thought. Not in the least concerned about anything that did not directly relate to his meals or his wheels.

Now, here Elizabeth was, frantically digging through the drawers of her desk. She muttered to herself, feeling her color and temperature both rising.

“Are you looking for something?” Darcy leaned against the door frame with his brows raised.

Elizabeth straightened, stiffening her spine. She heard a bit of mockery in her husband’s voice and was not certain she appreciated it. “As a matter of fact, I am,” she replied, her voice as steady and unaffected as she could make it. There was silence for a moment, and she knew he was waiting for her to offer up more information. Which, she refused to do. She lifted her chin.

Darcy’s lips twitched. He looked at the floor and took a deep breath, as though he was struggling with what to say. He let the breath out and took another, deeper one. Then, he lifted his gaze to hers once more. “May I help you look? Perhaps all that is needed is another perspective.”

Elizabeth could clearly see from Darcy’s mien that he was amused. “That innocent look is lost on me, Fitzwilliam.”

“I have not the pleasure of understanding you.” Darcy coughed, lifting his hand to cover his mouth.

Elizabeth narrowed her eyes at him.

Darcy rolled his lips together between his teeth and coughed again. Then, he asked, as he pulled something out from behind his back, “Are you looking for this?”

Elizabeth gasped, then marched up to her husband and snatched her calendar out of his hand. She opened her mouth to speak but was cut off by the great burst of laughter that suddenly emanated from his mouth. Turning on her heel, she marched back to the desk and sat behind it, laying the calendar on the table and unfolding the sheets, then smoothing them flat.

Darcy laughed until tears leaked out of his eyes. Then, wiping them as he walked, he approached Elizabeth’s desk and sat on the edge. “I am sorry, my love, but listening to you bluster while you searched was vastly entertaining. I would never have guessed you to have such a filthy mouth.”

Elizabeth’s jaw had been clenched for several minutes, but as she sat there endeavoring to ignore Darcy’s words, the humor suddenly hit her. She could not suppress a giggle. “Very well, then. I suppose from your vantage point, it was rather amusing.” She looked up at him out of the corner of her eye. “But it was a mean thing to do, stealing my calendar.”

Darcy chuckled, reaching over to grab her hand and guide her up out of her chair and into his arms. “I only wanted to see what you would do. You are far too worried about what the ton thinks of you.”

Elizabeth rolled her eyes but held in her original thoughts. Instead, she said, “I know that your position in society is one of importance. I do not want the beau monde to think your wife is an imbecile.”

“Who cares what they think? As long as I am happy with you, that is all that matters.” Darcy kissed Elizabeth’s nose and then her lips.

Elizabeth remained tense for a moment, but then the truth of his words sunk in and she sighed, relaxing against him. “You are correct. I am sorry.”

Darcy hugged his wife tighter, kissing the top of her head and rocking her back and forth. “Of course I am correct. When am I not?”

Elizabeth pulled herself out of his arms, eyes rolling. “Good heavens,” she replied in a flat voice. “Getting a bit arrogant there, are you not?”

Darcy grinned at Elizabeth. “Maybe I need you to teach me another lesson in humility.” He grabbed for her, but she was too quick and moved out of the reach of his arms. After a few minutes of chasing her around the room, he finally leapt over the back of a settee and caught her, silencing her laughing squeal with his lips.


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