Thursday’s 300: Elizabeth’s List

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. I wrote this one while waiting at the laundromat for the comforters to wash and sort-of dry. This is a Regency, in case it’s not clear from the story.

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Elizabeth Darcy walked down the hall of Pemberley’s guest wing with paper and quill in hand. She was followed by a maid carrying a tray that held more paper, a penknife, and a pot of ink. Elizabeth was undertaking a solitary tour of the house with a mind to listing the items she wished moved, changed, or otherwise altered. She would stop in each room, examining the decoration and color scheme, and making note of the furnishings and their condition. Then, she would use the table or dresser top in the room to rest her paper on and write.

The tour, her third in the last half-year, was her first without an escort. Her husband had taken her on her initial excursion about the manor, but she had paid little attention to the décor then. As a matter of fact, she paid little attention to anything that was not Fitzwilliam Darcy. She blushed now to think about the things she and her darling husband had done on that tour, and how it had taken a week complete to see every room.

The second trip had been undertaken with the assistance of Mrs. Reynolds, Pemberley’s housekeeper. The long-time senior servant had accompanied Elizabeth as she attempted to begin her duties as mistress. This tour was not nearly as interesting as the one she and Darcy had completed, but was finished far faster.

Now, she was alone, except for Molly. This time, the trek was accomplished even more quickly than the one with Mrs. Reynolds.

After spending an entire afternoon in the guest wing, Elizabeth and Molly separated, Molly to the kitchens for a bite to eat before she resumed her regular duties and Elizabeth to the study.

Knocking on the door, Elizabeth waited for her husband to bid her enter, and when he did, she peeked her head in. “Are you busy?”

Darcy stood upon seeing his wife’s chestnut curls poking out around the door. “I am not,” he assured her. “Come in, my love. Did you wish to work beside me?”

Elizabeth smiled, a lifting of her lips that brightened her entire face. “I do, if it would not be an imposition.”

“You could never be that.” Darcy assisted Elizabeth into a chair he had pulled up beside his, behind the large mahogany desk. He kissed her and brushed his fingers over her cheek, then seated himself in his own chair. “What have you there?”

Elizabeth looked down at the papers in her hand and blushed to realize that Darcy had once again managed without a word to distract her from her purpose. She cleared her throat. “I have just come from a survey of the guest chambers. This is a list of the things I would like to change to freshen the rooms up a bit.” She handed the pages over to him.

Darcy examined the list carefully. “Elizabeth, you have not said anything about paint or wall coverings.”

“Neither is needed, in my opinion. I think that by moving the furniture around and reupholstering some of it, the rooms will appear to have been totally made over, and with far less expense or work involved.” Seeing her husband’s doubtful look, Elizabeth added, “Really, whoever decorated the last time did a wonderful job of it. The rooms are elegant and refined, timeless even, just as they are.”

After another long, doubtful look, Darcy leaned back in his chair. “Very well, then. I will trust you in this matter.” He handed the pages back to Elizabeth, who took them and folded them up.

“You should, you know,” Elizabeth said as she stood. She tucked the list into her bodice, leaving Darcy gaping and wide-eyed. He quickly recovered himself.

With a sly grin, Darcy reached for his wife, pulling her into his lap. “I know of something better that should be tucked up in there,” he declared before kissing her senseless.

An hour later, a flushed and disheveled Elizabeth exited the study, closing the door behind her. Taking a deep breath, she held her head high and ascended the stairs. She hastened down the hall to her dressing room to prepare for dinner, and as she entered her chambers, the crinkling of paper at her bosom reminded her of her list. She pulled the wrinkled set of papers from her bodice, taking them to her dressing table, unfolding them, and smoothing them out. Then, with a giggle, she turned away and allowed her maid to help her wash and change.


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4 thoughts on “Thursday’s 300: Elizabeth’s List

  1. You do this so well. Maybe my next posts to my blog when my current story if finished should be just little snippets like that. I am not sure if I could write these.

  2. Love it! Good thing she had the list started otherwise it would never have gotten done that day! With such a distraction, who could blame her!

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