This is my first fic that's not a one shot and may contain elements from my one shot. I've always thought that although there was Wickham, Collins, and his cousin Darcy didn't have anyone in particular to be jealous of. He's not there for a lot of Wickham/ Lizzie scenes, she doesn't like Collins and she could never actually marry his cousin because of the money issues. I've read a few regency ones that involve another male character but as I don't think I could write one so this is modern.
It starts at Netherfield but will include flashbacks. Not the best first chapter but it does get better. I'm afraid the first few chapters may seem slightly cliché but I'll try to improve.
Sorry for mistakes. Don't own.
Chapter One- Never thought I'd be here
Lizzie sighed and pushed her hand through her still slightly damp hair. Looking around at the high arched ceiling and the fire place she couldn't believe she was sitting here. Still it was all for Jane...
Lizzie yawned and stretched as she stepped out of the bath; wrapping her towel around her she bent down and blew out the candles that were on the side when the phone rang.
"Perfect bloody timing," she muttered to herself. She thought that she had left the answer phone on but as the phone kept ringing she obviously hadn't.
"Hello?" she answered towel still wrapped around her, hair dripping wet falling past the phone.
"Hi, is this Elizabeth Bennet?" asked a nervous male voice that sounded a lot like Charlie Bingley.
"Oh, Lizzie thank god it's you. Um I was just going to tell you about Jane."
"What about Jane?"Her voice was panicked. Calm down Lizzie she scolded herself you don't know anything's happened yet.
"We'll about half an hour after she arrived she said that she felt funny and then the next minute she fainted."
Lizzie gasped her mind was now running through a whole series of different scenarios. Jane fainting and falling down the stairs. Jane fainting and landing on broken glass. Jane fainting and landing in the pool (Wait, did they have a pool?). And then the real issue, the one she didn't want to get to. Why had Jane fainted?
"She's ok she says. It's just that when she fell she hit her head and I don't really think that she should be driving so she's going to stay the night. I just thought you should know."
"Has she seen the doctor? Is she definitely ok or is that just what she's telling you to tell me? Can I speak to her?"
"Um well," Charlie felt awkward. "She already went to bed, she said she felt exhausted."
Lizzie frowned worriedly and bit her lip.
"Darcys done several first aid courses and said that she seemed ok- she really didn't want any fuss. She seems ok- I promise you, Lizzie."
Despite the reassurance in his voice Lizzie immediately started to panic and had manically got dressed grabbing stuff and shoving it in a bag. As she grabbed her keys she went to her filing system and grabbed a folder full of paper and documents.
Right might as well stop being a chicken, Lizzie scolded herself and join Charlie and the rest of them downstairs in the Living room.
Downstairs meanwhile the occupants were talking about a certain Bennet girl, the one who was awake and the one who they considered not worth their time unlike her older sister.
"Did you see the way she looked," Caroline Bingley, Charlie's youngest and bitchiest sibling laughed with her sister Clare. "I mean really why would you allow yourself out like that?"
"I know," Clare responded. "Doesn't she realise that people will see her?"
The two continued to make catty comments about her appearance and giggling whilst Charlie sighed and ran his fingers through his messy dishwater blonde hair. Hurst (as he was known) who was Clare's rather useless husband was snoring gently on the sofa. Will Darcy, who yes had unfortunately insulted her when he had first met Lizzie Bennet at that damned work event but wasn't so sure that his opinion had been right, was frowning at the girls' comments. If anyone asked he could pretend it was his book, Joseph Heller's Catch 22. The book's language wasn't incredibly difficult to read but the plot was rather confusing.
Charlie who clearly didn't know what to do with himself especially as he didn't want to her all these comments about Lizzie and her family who, he secretly hoped would soon become his girlfriend's family. Despite the situation he was glad that Jane was here.
Lizzie walked down the corridor and gently pushed on the bedroom door where Jane was sleeping. She had woken for about an hour or two just after Lizzie had arrived and she was groggy. Lizzie had made her take something to help her sleep knowing that if she didn't she would just be constantly waking up in the middle of the night. There was no point in checking on her but she couldn't help it. As she pushed on the door her eye caught a piece of paper that was lying on the floor.
She picked it up and recognized the neat small handwriting.
"Lizziebear I'm fine! Now I'm telling you as your bossy big sister stop worrying! It's not good for either of us.
Love Janneykins. Lizzie smiled at the nickname they had used when they were younger.
p.s you should go downstairs and be sociable. If anything it'll help with your writing.
She shook her head and sighed. That was so typical of Jane, always reassuring although in some way it made Lizzie worry even more. She had been like that when they had spoken earlier.
"Lizzie, what are you doing here?" Jane sat up in bed.
Lizzie wasn't sure what to say, she wasn't sure she could speak right now so instead leapt forward and hugged her sister.
"I'm fine, Lizzie really I am. I know what you were thinking but it's not that I promise you. I haven't eaten much today, I was excited and I just had my period. It's probably a result of the two.
"But, Charlie said you've been feeling tired."
"And? Haven't you? We've both been rushing around lately."
"Fine, but can we go through the questions and the forms? Not right now, if you don't want but definitely later. And I definitely think that we should get you a doctor's appointment." When Jane looked like she was about to protest Lizzie became sterner. "You didn't last time."
She knew her sister was right and that maybe she might worry less if she was being sociable so she closed the door carefully and made her way downstairs. Darcy who had just returned from the toilet met her in the hallway.
"Hi," she said awkwardly.
"Hello," he paused then turned towards her, "your sister ok?" wow, she thought sarcastically, a four word sentence from you, and aimed at little old me, the jobless floozie who didn't really know how to pick out a dress?
"She seems to be that way. I think that she just needs to sleep it off."
"Good." He answered and turned back to the room where the others were.
"God could you actually expand a little" she thought to herself rolling her eyes as she followed him. She could already hear Jane telling her to give them a chance.
"Lizzie, how's Jane?" Charlie bounded up to her very enthusiastically making her instantly smile.
It was so hard to believe that he was the CEO of the main company that owned the smaller sister version that Jane was in charge of running. The cynical part of her believed that he seemed too good to be true. They had all met at a large party to celebrate another small company joining the group. Lizzie was invited because she often temped at the office and was very good at organising the events and as she wasn't working had assisted Jane in organising the party.
It turned out that Jane had met Charlie before at a big board meeting and was excited to meet him again. As was he. Hurst who was lower down in the main company was there at this initial meeting along with Caroline who didn't really have a purpose but when she needed money was given a made up title of being in charge of Creative control despite the fact that all three companies had an Arts Editor and a Creative Manager. This was all the little scraps of information that Jane had been able to gather. As far as she knew Clare Hurst didn't work.
"She's sleeping now but I think that she's ok. I can normally tell."
"How?" this rather brusque question came from Darcy who was sitting on a chair in a corner.
"Well she's my sister. I know her." Lizzie was surprised that someone who should obviously be fairly intelligent could question such an obvious question.
"Lizzie you need to sit down, you must be exhausted, Jane told me how busy you were today." Charlie ushered her over to the sofa next to Darcy's chair. "Can we get you anything to eat? I mean we already ate but I'm sure there's something."
"It's fine." She smiled. She hadn't eaten yet but wasn't hungry. She smiled again thinking what Jane would say at her being a hypocrite.
"Well we could play a game? I mean the t.v's out we seem to have had problems recently. I guess with all the moving in and re-organising things there must be stuff that needs sorting. We had a power cut last week."
Charlie and his sister Caroline had arrived from Australia about a month ago. The family was English but the company was possibly expanding to Australia and so they had gone over there to see potential problems.
"It's ok, Charlie I've got a book. You really don't need to entertain me."
"You prefer a book to socialising?" Caroline asked raising her eyebrows raised. "How odd."
Lizzie felt herself getting annoyed. "No, I just feel like I am getting a headache so would prefer to be quiet."
She didn't actually say it but Darcy could feel that in her loaded sentence that the cause behind her headache was now looking at her disdainfully.
"What are you reading? Jane mentioned you were a fan of the classic and had been from an early age. Pride and Prejudice is your favourite, isn't it?"
"Ooh really Mr Bingley just how much have you been talking about me? I mean I know I'm fascinating and all but seriously?"
He smiled at her teasing manner whilst Darcy wondered whether it was appropriate for her to be teasing someone she barely knew and also why she wasn't comfortable enough to tease him. Maybe, he chastised himself, if you actually talked to her more and stopped scowling then she might. But, his mind debated it's not as if you're going to become friends with this women. Really you are a Darcy you know.
"No," Charlie let out a soft laugh. "We passed a book shop on our way back from lunch one day and Jane said she had to pick something up for you."
Without realising it Charlie had just released some very interesting information to the only two people in the room who were listening as Caroline and Clare were flicking through magazines. Lizzie was excited; if Jane was having lunch with this guy then it must mean that she liked him especially (and others had always found it strange) if she wasn't telling Lizzie. After all, she had been known to be very judgemental and protective over Jane. Will however, paused annoyed as he really didn't want to go through this all again. Just because she was blonde.
"Actually, I'm reading the book that she bought me. It's one of my favourites but I lent it to a friend and never got it back. Catch 22." She held up the exact same even with the same cover that Darcy had in his hand and showed it to them.
Aha, thought Will and then realising how he sounded even in his head, now I have an opening.
"This is one of your favourite books?" he held up his own copy.
"Yeah," she was annoyed that she actually shared something in common with the great proud Darcy.
"Really, you don't feel that he is making light of a very serious issue? It's only known because it's not like anything else, anything conventional."
"I don't think it's that light a book. Besides I feel that we make light of things that we can't really understand. If we couldn't laugh, we couldn't react to a lot of life. Bill Watterson."
"You feel that we can't really understand war?"
"No, nor should we have to."
"Let me get this straight. You don't believe in war? You would have just left Hitler get on with it?"
"No of course not," she snapped back. "But, if you check your history you'll find that it was the horrific condition that the rest of the world left Germany in after the First World War that caused some of these actions. Besides the book is about Americans bombing places. Can you really defend Hiroshima?"
"They did what we had to do to win the war."
"At what cost?" she snapped back. "People there are still suffering the effects of radiation poisoning."
"Just how old are you Ms Bennet?" she leaned back in her seat surprised at his sudden change in conversation and the rudeness of his question.
"I'm sorry?" she looked at Charlie frowning.
"Darce, c'mon mate you can't ask that sort of question." He attempted to shrug Darcy away. Jane had mentioned casually that Lizzie could be quite scary when she wanted to be and he didn't really want to see that.
"I was just saying that Ms Bennet seems to have a rather naive view of how the world works but that this may be due to her age and the fact that she hasn't had that many experiences in life. Then of course her view is more excusable."
"Excuse me! Ms Bennet is actually sitting right here. And let me guess, my opinion doesn't matter because it's not the same as yours?" Lizzie was really annoyed by now and was chanting in her head. "Jane, Jane, Jane, remember her and Charlie. He's nice at least."
Caroline who had now become interested in the conversations as she had heard the raised voices.
"I don't know why you're so offended Eliza. You can't be more than twenty seven, and with your education your opinion can't be fully developed.
Charlie winced and immediately mouthed "sorry" at her along with "I'll talk to her" but at this point Lizzie was too angry to care.
"Actually, Caroline, I'm twenty two and I think that because my headache seems to be getting so much worse I'm going to go to bed now. Night Charlie." She got up and walked out of the room without so much as a backwards glance.
The moment he was sure that he was sure that she was out of ear shot Charlie turned to the two angry (or at least as angry as Charlie could manage), "Just what exactly is wrong with the two of you? Lizzie is a guest."
"Yeah one who invited herself," Caroline muttered just loud enough for them to hear.
Charlie sighed and wondered if he should say more but knew it wouldn't do much good.
"She'll get over it; meanwhile I'm going to bed." Caroline sauntered off.
Clare went with her and as Hurst was already asleep Darcy and Charlie decided to go into the games room and play pool. As Darcy managed to sink yet another ball Charlie decided to bring up an awkward topic.
"You know when I was a boy, there was this girl Amanda Rigby who had the most amazing blonde curly hair right down her back. And, so because I liked her I pushed her over in the playground and she grazed her knee and cried. You know what that shows?"
"That you liked blondes aged six."
"No, that boys will always be mean to the girls they like."
"What exactly," Darcy had put down his cue and turned towards him pronouncing every world clearly and precisely, "is your point, Charles?"
"That you like Lizzie."
Darcy was surprised; it wasn't as if Charlie was known for being very observant.
"Please, Elizabeth Bennet? God no. I actually have standards."
"Really, so what was Lucinda?"
Darcy shuddered, "A drunken mistake."
"Definitely. So you really don't like Lizzie then?"
"I'm sure that under better circumstances she could be a decent human being but no, in no way that you are insinuating do I like Lizzie."
"Oh that's good then." Charlie said with such as large smile of relief that Will immediately knew he was right. If Charlie who was one of his least snobby acquaintances thought that she wasn't right, then she definitely wasn't right. "it's just I was thinking of setting her up with someone. Well not a set up as such as we really don't know her that well but if they met and hit it off it would be really great."
"Oh, who?" he said feigning nonchalance but secretly annoyed. Charlie was going to set her up with someone else? Even if Will was saying he wasn't interested why did Charlie presume that they wouldn't work? Why wasn't he pestering Will to give it a shot? Maybe because he knows that it wouldn't work with two such different backgrounds or maybe said a small voice further back in his head your personality would make it not work.
"Chris," Charlie's voice was muffled as he leant over to take a shot. "I mean I can see them being perfect together."
"Sure," Will yawned. "Do you mind if we finish this in the morning?"
The two climbed the stairs and went into their separate bedrooms but Charlie turned to him.
"By the way I put Lizzie in the room next to yours. The wall's fairly thin you might want to be careful."
"Why that room?"
"Oh the other bedroom's really draughty and Caroline dumped a whole bunch of clothes on the bed. Why, is it an issue?"
"It's just the two have an adjoining bathroom. It might have been awkward that's all."
"Oh, yes I remember Caroline petitioning quite hard to get that room. At least until she saw the size of the other one."
"I can't believe that you gave your sister the master bedroom in your house."
"Like you wouldn't have done the same for Georgy."
He shut his door and let out a sigh. Why did it bother him who he was sharing a bathroom with. It was highly unlikely she would even need to use it. He undressed redressed in his pyjamas but as he was climbing into bed the last thing he saw before he closed his eyes was Elizabeth Bennet's bright brown eyes staring at him in astonishment.
Lizzie Bennet couldn't sleep. She also had no idea what time it was and it was annoying her. She had definitely drifted off for a couple of hours but now she was restless. There was a little light coming in from the window, it over looked a side gate that had an outdoor light that Charlie hadn't figured out how to turn off yet. She rolled over and closed her eyes as if willing herself to sleep.
Will Darcy couldn't sleep either. He knew he had that business meeting coming up, the one with Roger Blackwell and he wasn't totally prepared. He needed also to ring Alison Reynolds about Pemberley, he hadn't been there in so long. Thinking of Pemberley made him think of Georgy, of course he knew he had been forgetting something. She had emailed him earlier and he needed to reply. He sat up half out of bed before he looked at the time. Georgy would worry if she saw that he had sent her an email at three o' clock in the morning. He could do a better job later in the day. He picked up his book and began to read wondering if his first impression had been wrong.
Lizzie frowned, there it was again she had definitely heard that noise again.
"Stop it your being paranoid" she chastised herself when she had a louder sound coming just from her right where the window was. Turning, slightly she could almost make a figure out behind the darkness, through the curtains.
"Oh my god," she was beginning to panic and knew that so said out loud. "Just relax"
If there was someone coming through the window they were probably just a burglar. Nobody was going to murder of rape her. Darcy was next door and Charlie down the corridor.
"C'mon Lizzie, you're in a better position than you would be at home."
But, wait, this was a big expensive house, what if the burglars who robbed these types of houses carried knives or guns?
Slowly, carefully she slid the heavy ornate candlestick of the bedside table. Charlie had told her when the power cut had happened they had been totally unprepared so he had left a few candles and things around just in case. Well, she was definitely grateful now.
She was running through in her mind all those tips she had been taught years ago. She had never thought that she would need them. Never thought that she would be in this sort of situation.
Always remember to SING. What did that stand for? Shin, Instep, Nose, Groin. Right, yes that was it.
If you're going to punch anyone keep your thumb out- or was it in?
Most importantly noise is the thing the attacker fears most.
This was the final thought running through her mind as she heard the window being lifted up and a foot swinging in and slipping on the floor. At the moment she opened her mouth wide and let out the largest scream she possibly could.
Duh, Duh, Du!! Please Review...