A/N: This is my first try on a P&P fanfiction, let alone a Regency area story. I'm no JA buff and I'm German – so this story will hassle as much with the canon as with the language. I won't pretend I can do correct Regency talk, but if you find an abominable error, tell me – I'm willing to learn ;-) This is a work in progress – I know the general direction I want to take this but have not worked out all the details yet. Like to read your reviews! Thanks!
Overcome by the moment
Darcy's voice dropped to a growling low. „So, that is your opinion of me? Thank you for explaining so fully! Maybe these offenses might have been overlooked if not your pride had been injured by-"
„My pride-?!" Elizabeth interjected, meeting Darcy with disbelief who rode roughshod over her intermission without pause, raising his voice to drown hers out.
„—my honesty in admitting scruples about our relationship! Do you expect me to rejoice in the inferiority of your circumstances?!" He almost spat the last words at her in derision, leaning in and tipping his head slightly, now only mere inches away from her heated face.
Elizabeth looked aghast. „And these are the words of a gentleman?" she cried incredulously. Without noticing it, she took a step further towards him, closing the distance between them like a predator, ready to pounce on to him. Her eyes were flashing with fury and anger and had locked fiercely with his.
„From the first moment I met you, your arrogance and conceit, your selfish disdain for the feelings of others made me realize you were the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry!"
The ensuing silence was deafening although the sound of the pouring rain flooded their ears.
Even through her rage, Elizabeth noticed within an instant that her last words had cut Darcy to the quick as his face suddenly changed colour, paling substantially within the blink of an eye. He pulled back a few inches. All haughtiness and derision was wiped off his features and Elizabeth was stunned to discover a sense of hurt and insecurity in his gaze which had not left her eyes during her tirade. For reasons unbeknownst to her, this observation left her deeply unsettled. Although she had wanted to hurt him in lashing out at him like that, it almost pained her to realize she seemed to have been successful in doing so.
Another second later and the expression on Darcy's face changed again although at first, Elizabeth was at a loss to identify the emotion that suddenly lit his eyes. It was as if he all of a sudden had dropped his guard – his unrestrained, mesmerized gaze now on her lips. He cocked his head and seemed to deliberate about something…
…and then again he leaned in towards her, his eyes never leaving her slightly parted lips, only once flickering up to her eyes as if asking a silent question, pausing his forward movement scarcely noticeable.
His deep gaze made Elizabeth blush wildly and she heard a surge in what seemed her ears, not knowing whether it was the ever pouring rain or her blood rushing to her head. Somewhere deep inside she suddenly felt all thought and fury suspended … leaving only so far unknown feelings and instincts to function … the overwhelming pull to answer his unspoken question, the urge to raise her chin just a bit while getting on her toes to get closer to him, being drawn in by his delicious lips and unguarded, long-lashed eyes which were inexplicably talking to her without words…
… and then – in a soft but swift move bridging the remaining distance between them – Darcy locked his lips to hers.
The sensation that washed over Elizabeth when his soft mouth captured hers in a strong, passionate yet sensitive and sensual kiss sent surges of electricity throughout her body. All the heightened tension she had always felt whenever Darcy was near her now translated into her answering his kiss with the same passion, their tongues meeting and communicating all the mutual attraction they both had experienced over time.
Intoxicated with Darcy's vibrancy, Elizabeth savoured the kiss in all its blazing heat. That very second it seemed like the most natural thing to do, suspending the rain around them, their circumstances, differences, anger, time, even the world's turning must have stopped in this moment that seemed like an eternity.
Then suddenly, the moment was over – thought returned to both. And reason hit them like a lightening bolt.
simultaneously, their eyes opened and they broke the kiss, lingering shortly against one another, then Elizabeth's eyes widened in shock and she pushed herself away from Darcy, panting heavily. Darcy lifted his head slightly and his eyes glittered with disbelief at what had just happened. He frowned.
Elizabeth found her tongue first. She wanted to scream her outrage at Darcy for his behaviour, which was all things ungentlemanly and abominable – basically threatening her reputation in the course of it… but before she could say something she realized in a flash that he might have initiated the kiss but she had obviously participated in it as much as he had. And she had not prevented him from doing so.
Never in her life had she felt so wanton. It was an excruciating thought. And she hated him for it. But even more so herself.
„Lack of propriety, Mr. Darcy?" she said in a low voice, barely more than an angry whisper. „It looks like you were wrong to exclude me from your assessment of my family's inferiority in behaviour. I guess you have proven your point."
Now Darcy's eyes widened with shock and for a moment he looked even scared. Elizabeth assumed in bitterness that it was through her own words that it seemed to dawn on him what kind of abominable woman she was. And it infuriated her to confess he was probably right.
But then again, he was in it with her. Elizabeth took a step towards him again and lowered her voice even more, it now dripping with contempt.
„But don't forget to add your name to the list of people with such lack of propriety. Maybe you are not as superior as you think, after all. Welcome to the dungeon of inferiority."
With this, she turned on her heels and fled the monument through the ever pouring rain, leaving Darcy behind shaken and speechless.