She must move before she completely lost her nerve.

Squaring her shoulders, Emma summoned her courage, summoned her near impertinence—as she was sure George Knightley had said on quite a few occasions—and held on to her resolve.

Taking a deep breath, she opened the door of her bedchambers and quietly stepped out into the dark hallway. A flash of lighting seen through the windows caused her to stop as it momentarily brightened her surroundings. The downpour that had started at dinner time had steadily grown stronger as the night progressed, now the outside world had turned into something akin to a battle between wind, rain and thunder.

Resuming her steps, Emma counted the doors along the hallway until she reached the one she had for the past hour tried in vain not to think of. Hand on the door handle, she gave herself one last chance to change her own mind.

Breathing deeply, she turned the handle and opened the door.

George Knightley was aware that he was dreaming. In his dream his beloved Emma lay beside him. Soft and warm, she was flush bare against him, and on his chest rested her hand which bore her wedding ring. She looked at him with eyes that challenged him to make her his.

Consequently, it was the feel of her skin against his that made him know it was but a dream. For however passionately, however frequently they had kissed, George had never permitted himself to touch her in certain areas.

Too many times had it cost him, too many times had he lain sleepless yearning for the day he could let his hands roam free, his mouth bestow kisses in places that he knew would surprise his beloved. That day was but three days away, and George was desperately counting the days.

Suddenly, he was roused from sleep. A crack of thunder rattled the windows, drapes he had forgot to close showcased the chaos outside Hartfield. He had stood by that window before he had gone to bed, watching the strong rain as it washed the earth. He had been thinking of Emma of course. He had smiled as he recalled first her disappointed look as they had surmised that their customary evening walk in the gardens would not happen due to the weather, and then the intensity of her eyes as her father had declared Mr. Knightley must not risk traveling to Donwell Abbey at such awful weather.

"You must stay the night, Mr. Knightley. With the wedding so near you must not endanger yourself!"

His eyes had met Emma's and it took all of George's self-control not to groan as she gave him a most suggestive look. If there was any danger to his well-being, it was most assuredly the woman who had stood before him, eyes aglow, lips forming a secret smile which she shared only with him.

His mind had recalled how her first shy responses to his kisses had gradually turned into impassioned exchanges. Their evening walks of course had been their most frequent means of enjoying those intimacies. He could no longer look at Emma's greenhouse and not associate it with heated kisses and shared sighs of ardor.

Now laying in a bed that somehow smelled of her, George shifted higher on his pillow and wondered how he would manage to fall back to sleep. His dream had been too vivid, too real for his peace of mind. In truth it had not been the first of its kind. Being a man fervently in love, he had not been surprised, for Emma's pull on him was something he had never felt before—never allowed himself to feel before. Their engagement had changed everything.

Closing his eyes, he recalled the visions of his dream. Would she look at him the same way on their wedding night? His blood heated just at the thought.

It was as if for a moment the wind had suddenly stopped, as if that one flash of lightning rendered everything silent. The sound of the opening door was unmistakable. George's heart leapt at what he knew to be true. His beloved had come to him. As their eyes met, did thunder strike and the rains celebrate.

Clad only in her night dress, Emma turned and closed the door. Securing the latch, she gave herself a moment to calm her thundering heart. It echoed the world outside, it wanted too to claim what was hers as the storm claimed the land.

She turned and walked purposefully toward the bed, the light from the fireplace guiding her.

"E-Emma?" Sitting up quickly, George tried to convince himself that he was perhaps still dreaming, but all his senses told him otherwise.

"Mr. Knightley—George, I…"

"Why are you here?" He asked, a guarded look on his face. Her answering smile was almost his undoing.

"Do you not know?"

"Emma…" George stifled a groan. His imagination ran wild, his heart refused to calm down.

"I have come for my good night kiss." Smiling, she reached the bed and sat next to him. "We have never missed an evening since our understanding—certainly more than just evenings since our engagement."

A good night kiss. Wether it was relief or disappointment that made George let out a breath, he did not wish to ponder.

Leaning towards him, Emma rested her hand on George's chest, then as if burned, she withdrew it with a gasp. Noting for the first time that his chest was bare, she touched his skin slowly with her fingertips. Eyes darting to his, she watched for his reaction. When he made no move to stop her, her palm flattened on his chest, fingers exploring the smattering of hair there.

She had never seen a man's bare chest before, not even a man's bare shoulder, bare neck, nor bare arms for that matter. Taking in her fill, her hand unconsciously followed the path her eyes had taken. He was beautiful.

George forced himself to breathe normally, he gritted his teeth as his skin tingled at Emma's touch. Her trailing fingers marked his skin. He doubted if she knew the extent of the effect she had on him.

"Emma." His breath came short.

At the sound of her name, she stopped her roving hand and settled it once again on his chest. Attempting to slow down her own racing heart, she spoke the first words that entered her mind.

"Where is your nightshirt, sir?"

"For tonight I have none, not here at Hartfield that is." His face betrayed no emotion, if not for the heavy thudding of his heart under her palm, she would have thought him unaffected.

"Oh yes. Yes, of course. I should have made arrangements—"

"Your father's valet brought me Mr. Woodhouse's to try on, but we found that it did not fit."

"Hmm." Measuring the breadth of his broad shoulders with her eyes, she had no doubt that her father's garments indeed would not fit.

"I assured him my own shirt would do well enough for sleeping, and for some moments it did. But with the fire burning ablaze and the added beddings, I found it was too warm for my own comfort."

Emma laughed but quieted down almost immediately, the knowledge that he wore nothing under the blankets sobered her, sent a flush to her cheeks.

Watching his handsome face so close to her own, knowing the goodness in his heart, she could not believe that she deserved him. And yet he loved her. Her fingers rose to roam his face, to his neck that was at last free of any cover.

"Will you not kiss me, Geor—"

George's mouth fastened on hers before she even finished saying his name. His hands found her hair, tangled in the soft curls. How many times had he envisioned her hair thus? How many times had he nearly unbound it himself with his trembling hands?

They kissed for what seemed like hours—or perhaps they were mere seconds—both could not tell. Deep kisses that had Emma moving to sit astride him, that had George wrapping his arms around her until her nightdress was imprinted on his skin.

When they parted, their foreheads rested on each other's. Emma let out a shaky breath, her skin was on fire.

Thus they remained for a time. After a while, George spoke with a thick voice.

"You must go, Emma."

Studying him once again, Emma realized how harsh his expression was, how serious his countenance. She bit her lip, he was angry. Had she been too forward? She had disappointed her beloved George, her heart sank even as embarrassment and shame started to claim her. Looking away, she moved away from him.

"I-I'm sorry, I shall—"

Seeing Emma's expression, George encircled her wrist with his hand. Raising her hand to his lips, he pressed a kiss on it. He looked at her and unveiled his feelings. The soft gasp that came from Emma's lips told him that she saw the thoughts that swirled in his mind, and thus better understood his last statement.

"Embraces in your greenhouse are quite different from embraces in bed, in a darkened bedchamber, on a stormy night."

Unbidden, an image flashed in George's mind of their bodies entwined, of Emma's ecstatic exclamations going unheard, drowning in the storm. Fire shot through his veins. Taking a firm hold on his imagination, he took a deep breath.

"I do not wish to frighten you."

Moving closer to him, Emma once again placed her hand on his chest.

"I am not frightened. Not in the least."

"Then what is it that you feel?" He regretted the question as soon as it escaped his lips, for the answer to it he could certainly divine.


"Hmm." George swallowed. He did not at all like the smile that formed on her face.

"For instance," Emma continued, encouraged by his silence. "I would like to know what you feel when you press against me during our kisses."


"You move your hips against me and it feels wonderful for me, does it not for you?"

"Damnation, Emma! I-I can not discuss this with you!" George ran his hand wildly through his hair. "And a gently-bred lady should not be asking such questions!"

"I would not be asking if I had not felt you move in such a way!"

Her answer turned George's ears red, rendering him speechless. Taking no pity on him, she continued on pursuing her line of questioning.

"And why should I not ask these questions if they are to be a fixture in our married life?" She said undaunted. "With whom else would you wish me to discuss them? Perchance I could ask Mrs. Weston—"

She almost laughed at George's horrified look. Taking his hands, she spoke to him earnestly.

"You have always been frank with me, always spoke to me with complete honesty." At her betrothed's groan, she continued undeterred. "We are to be husband and wife in three days, I wish to understand these feelings. And so of course I ask you, my love."

The look she gave him was so pleading that George could do nothing but sigh.

"Very well." He replied in a defeated voice, but his gaze dared not meet hers. He would admit cowardice, for indeed he feared his reactions to her questions and words. With her sitting so close to him that he could breathe in the scent of her skin, feel the shape of her underneath her nightdress, he could not risk exposing what he really wanted to do with her. Clearing his throat, he continued. "Yes, of course it feels wonderful for me as well."

"But how, how does it become so?"

"Good god, Emma!"

"George, you must tell me!"

Fearing that he would not survive the night with his sanity in tact, George tried to compose his answer in the most matter of fact way he could at that moment think of.

"Biologically, that is where a man joins with a woman in the act of procreation." He cast his eyes about, felt the heat rise up to his face even as he fought the tightening of his body.

"Mr. Knightley, I am not such an innocent to be unaware of that." She gave him a frowning look. "I ask how. What makes it feel wonderful?"

"Because 'tis-tis how nature intended." Nearing his wits' end, George ground his teeth. "Emma, this is most inappropriate."

Laughing at his words, Emma nipped at his chin.

"George, as you said, I am in my nightdress, on this bed with you, locked in a dark bedchamber."

He knew she repeated naught but the truth, and having just earlier shared a kiss in the most passionate way, he suddenly felt his unwillingness to answer her questions to be very hypocritical of him.

He took a deep breath. Accepting his fate, George slowly turned to Emma. He steeled himself even as he pulled her astride him once again.

She gasped as he fitted their bodies together once again. Even the barrier of her nightclothes and the beddings could not hide his desire. With intense eyes, he answered her as he knew she wanted to be answered. By way of a lesson.

Moving his hips against hers, George gently took Emma's face in his hands.

"The touch—the contact feels wonderful because our bodies were made to join in those parts. Your womanhood was made to accept my manhood." He was surprised to hear his voice so even, so calm—the complete opposite of what he was feeling. "The physical joining—when done with desire—elicits such bodily reactions. The joining in itself is already a marvel, but because of our love for each other it is multiplied a hundredfold."

As he spoke, George felt all of Emma's focus on his every word, felt her whole body attuned to his own. How he wanted her! He knew not how he kept his control, knew not how he prevented himself from casting away the gentleman in him.

Emma's eyes roamed his face, his eyes were a stormy blue, impassioned. His mouth inched slowly towards hers. Throwing caution to the wind, she did what she wanted and moved her hand down until she touched him.

Flinching as if from pain, George sucked in a breath in surprise. He took her by the wrist and attempted to move her hand away.

"Let me, George. I merely want to touch you."

When he stilled, she continued softly, persuasively.

"I merely want to know what it is I shall be accepting on our wedding night."

"I can not, I shall not be able to—Emma you ask too much of me!"

"You can, you shall. For me?"

"Emma, you shall be the death of me."

His voice was hoarse, but as if surrendering to his fate, George leaned back against the headboard. Though his entire body tensed, he kept his hands beside him flat on the bed. He resolved not to touch Emma, for if he did he knew he would not be able to stop.

Moving back, Emma pulled at the blankets until she revealed what she sought.


Chest heaving, George gritted his teeth. He would count from ten and then he would forcefully remove Emma from the room.

"I did not think it would be quite so-so angry!"


"Is it always like that?"




Tentatively, she touched him with her fingers again. The sound of his shuddering breath made her pause for a moment—to George's relief, or was it pain?


"Why, 'tis smooth, very like satin."

Six. Good god he was dying!

Her hand wrapped around him clumsily, taking his measure.

Five, four, three, two...

"How on earth shall it fit?"


George pried her hand away, then nearly jumped off the bed, surprising Emma first with his swift movement and next with seeing him in all his nakedness.

The heated way her eyes swept over his body, her blatant admiration of his masculinity further inflamed his ardor, fed his vanity. But self-preservation won. He pulled her up from the bed—not even daring a kiss—and steered her towards the door.

"For mercy's sake, Emma, you must leave now." George said in a low growl.

Emma blinked. Only upon hearing the tone he employed, did she finally understand and finally feel the heat of the fire that she played with. She had always taken for granted the security she felt around George Knightley, to be sure, he had never given her any cause to feel anything but safe in his company. But now with darkened eyes did he look at her like a man on the verge of losing his control. Excitement ran down her spine. A dangerous George Knightley was one that she wished to experience. She could not wait for their wedding night.

Daring one last look at her betrothed, she smiled archly at him.

"I love you."

And then Emma hastily slipped out of the room.

The sudden quiet left by her departure deafened George. He closed his eyes and controlled his breathing. When he had sufficiently calmed down, he moved to the door. Taking no chances, he secured the latch and then tumbled back on the bed.

He lay on his back, head still reeling from what had just happened. His beloved Emma was a vision in her virginal night dress, innocence and passion simultaneous in her eyes. The garment barely concealed the contours of her body, and with her having been pressed so close to him, he knew her form already even with the impediment of garments. George made a sound that was part laugher and part groan.

Emma Woodhouse was mischief incarnate. Even the crack of thunder outside agreed with him. How he loved her! He wanted nothing but to spend his whole life in her company, in her light and vitality. In her sunshine that radiated right through to his heart. And of course he wanted her—an understatement—wanted to share the joys of the marriage bed with her.

He rubbed his face with his hands, it was going to be the longest three days of his life. He grinned. And after that would be a lifetime of happiness, of love, of passion—and yes of mischief—for the rest of their lives. And for that, he could not wait.


I love Emma and George Knightley!

In their marriage, I imagine Mr. Knightley being routinely exasperated and at the same time charmed by Emma. And I imagine Emma routinely teasing him, routinely learning from him. And here, I wanted to inject some of that while at the same time giving them a romantic moment (continuing on from the romance in the recent movie).

If there ever would be a JA sitcom, I would put my money on this pairing!

I hope you liked it. Please let me know how you found it! :)