After the final bell rang, Lizzie Bennet walked into the girl's restroom and she heard someone crying. "Are you okay? Can I help?" She called out.
The girl stepped out of the far stall, her blonde hair was in disarray, she had tears streaming down her cheeks and her eyes were red and swollen from crying. She obviously needed a friend and Lizzie felt her heart breaking for the girl as she saw her in this state.
"What's your name, sweetie?" She put her arms around the girl to comfort her.
"Georgie." The girl hiccupped through her tears, "Georgiana Darcy."
"It's okay let it out, I'm here, and I can help, now tell me what happened." Lizzie soothed her and with three younger sisters she had plenty of practice at this.
"He…" She explained between her sobs, "He e-mailed the entire student body that I slept with him and I didn't even go out with him. I don't know why someone would want to do this to me. What did I do?" Georgie's body was wracked with sobs as a new flood of tears streamed down her face.
Lizzie patted her back until she had cried out her grief. "Who did this to you?"
"That jerk, I can't stand that guy." Lizzie had her reasons for hating Denny but she wasn't going to tell this troubled young girl but she would get even. Plus Georgie was just a freshman; she couldn't be more than 13 and even for Denny that was low.
"Let's get you cleaned up and then I'll give you a ride home to your parents."
"My parents are dead; it's just my brother Will and I, he's my guardian." Georgie told her while she brushed her hair. "He's going to be so angry with me."
"No, he won't, I promise." Lizzie assured her, "I'll explain everything for you and he'll know that you are not to blame."
They climbed into Lizzie's VW Bug and started toward the Darcy's house.
"You said your brother's name is Will, is that William Darcy, the CEO of Pemberly Wineries?"
"Yeah that's him; one of our great-great-great grandfathers' started the winery." Georgie seemed to be calmer now that the conversation had turned to everyday conversations. She talked about her brother a little bit until she finally burst out, "I adore my brother but I can't stand all the women he dates. I think that he has a new one every day and they are always the same, blonde haired, air-headed, gold digging bimbos. It's always the same, each one with a calculator instead of a heart, trying to figure out how much they can get out of him. Worst of all they treat me like I'm 6. I hate them!"
"Now does that feel better, getting that off your chest?" Lizzie glanced toward the girl and grinned.
"Actually it does." Georgie let out a sigh of relief.
Georgie did seem to be more composed now that she was able to say what she was feeling out loud. Lizzie on the other hand was getting more nervous with every mile closer they got to the Darcy home. She hadn't come face to face with Will Darcy for almost two years and she hadn't forgiven him yet.
She pulled in the driveway and parked. Georgie got out of the car, "Can you walk me in?"
Lizzie agreed and walked with Georgie as she reluctantly opened the front door.
Lizzie touched her shoulder and smiled at the girl. "It will be alright, trust me."
Georgie smiled back at her new hero and she had a strange feeling that everything would be alright. "Will likes to be here when I get home from school, so he should be inside." She explained and called, "Will, I'm home."
Will Darcy strode to the door and mussed his sister's hair in a greeting that was obviously a ritual between the two, "How was school, Munchkin?"
As everything came back to her, Georgie burst out crying again and raced from the room as Will Darcy saw Lizzie standing in the doorway.
"That was the wrong question." Lizzie stated as the she studied the man before her. God, he's even more gorgeous than ever with his curly black hair and bold blue eyes that pierce right into my soul.
"What is wrong with my sister?" He demanded with anger in his voice, "Why did she run away from me?"
"Your sister has had a rough day." Her voice was cold as she returned his malevolent stare. She explained what had happened to Georgie not sparing him any detail.
"I'll go to Principal Annesley and she will be able to take care of that kid."
"That won't do any good, Mr. Darcy, trust me I know." Her eyes were blazing as she told him, "I'll handle Denny Saunders because that worm has it coming."
"What can you do to this boy that the principal can't?"
Lizzie just laughed at this, "I've taken care of this kind of problem before."
"What is your plan, Miss…"
"Bennet, Elizabeth Bennet." Lizzie answered for him, "You've heard the phrase 'plausible deniability' haven't you?"
"Well, you don't ask, I won't tell and I'll take care of that little prick."
"You are quite scary, Miss Bennet, I don't think I would want to meet you in a dark alley."
"You would do well to remember that, Mr. Darcy."
Darcy laughed and Elizabeth found that she was entranced by his smiling eyes.
"While we're talking so frankly, there's something else you should know." Lizzie looked at him with an evil grin.
"Go ahead." He said slowly with a feeling that he did not want to hear this.
"Georgie hates the women you date, the 'blonde haired, air-headed, gold digging bimbos' is what she called them." Lizzie smiled at the shocked look on Will Darcy's face.
"How long have you known my sister?"
"I just met her today when I found her crying in the restroom."
"She opened up to you just like that."
"I think once she got to talking, she just let loose the flood gates and things she had wanted to say for a long time came out."
"You sound way too mature to be a school mate of Georgie's so Miss Elizabeth Bennet, how old are you?" He could not believe that she was standing in front of him and he waited nervously for her answer and he prayed that she was eighteen.
"17, I'm a senior." She didn't even think about not answering him but her icy look spoke volumes, "You know Mr. Darcy you shouldn't ask a woman her age, it's not polite."
Darcy couldn't believe he was being lectured to by this 17 year old and what a firecracker she had turned out to be. She was even more beautiful than he remembered. God, he couldn't take his eyes off her and she was fantastic with her long dark curls that seemed fan out in every direction. Her jade green eyes flashed with intelligence and what a temper she had. He almost felt sorry for the boy who had hurt Georgie… almost. Weird thing was that she also seemed angry with him and he didn't know what he had done.
"Have I done something to anger you, Miss Bennet?" He gazed intently into her magnificently expressive eyes, "You don't seem to like me very much."
"You don't remember me do you?"
He just stared at her without answering because he wasn't going to admit that he knew exactly who she was and that he had been dreaming about her for years.
His silence convinced her that she was right and she supplied, "My father, Thomas Bennet works for you, as an accountant for Pemberly Winery." She seemed to be dredging the depths of his soul for an answer but he refused to allow his eyes to give anything away."I've met you twice before at the company's annual Christmas party but I guess you don't remember me."
"Elizabeth Bennet, let me take you to dinner." Will changed the subject but as he read her reaction to his invitation, he qualified, "As a thank you for helping Georgie."
"No thank you, Mr. Darcy, now if you'll excuse me, I'll say good-bye to Georgie before I leave." She turned and had just left the room when Darcy caught her shoulder and said, "You're going the wrong direction, her room is this way, let me show you."
He put his hand on the small of her back and guided her up the stairs to Georgie's room.
The girl looked up and removed her earphones, "Lizzie, you're still here. I'm so glad, I'm sorry I ran out on you earlier."
"No problem, anytime I can help. I just wanted to tell you I'm going and I'll see you at school tomorrow."
"Elizabeth told me what happened to you and don't worry we'll take care of that loser boy." He winked at Lizzie who did not return the look, "I've got a great idea." He said in an overly peppy voice, "Why don't I take you both out to dinner tonight. You choose the restaurant."
Georgie looked at her brother with an odd expression; Will had never taken any notice of her friends before and she was determined to get to the bottom of this. Georgie glanced at her brother and back to Lizzie trying to figure out the tension she felt emanating from them. She vowed to forget her problems for the night and see where this would lead. "Oh thank you that would be great." She hugged her brother, "Plus this is great because Will never lets me choose the restaurant."
"No, I have to get home or my mother will worry." Lizzie protested.
"Lizzie, please come, we won't take no for an answer. Will, tell her she must come." Georgie begged.
"Elizabeth, you can call your mother and tell her that you're having dinner with us. If you don't have a cell phone, you can use mine." He offered her his phone while he leaned in and whispered, "I'm sure it would help to keep her mind off what happened for a little while."
"See you have to come." Georgie beamed in delight.
"Fine, I'll come; I can't fight both of you." She threw Darcy a furious look. She was fully aware how he had used Georgie to manipulate her into having dinner with them just because she had said no when he asked the first time.
When Darcy saw Lizzie's little bug in the driveway, he insisted on putting it in their garage so that nothing would happen to it. So there she had left her little blue bug, sitting next to an expensive fancy sports car.
They were driving to the restaurant that she and Georgie selected, although it was more like fast food only better. She still couldn't believe her mother's reaction when she told her she was going to dinner with the Darcy's. She had shrieked loudly with pleasure and she was so strident that Elizabeth was sure the two Darcy's had heard her.
"All Burger has the best cheeseburgers around. Will doesn't usually allow me to eat there but I guess it's a special occasion because this is your first date." Georgie did most of the talking as it seemed neither of the other two had any inclination to talk
"This is not a date." Lizzie protested vehemently.
Will just stared straight out of the front windshield while he clutched the steering wheel until his knuckles turned white, God why had it been Elizabeth Bennet who had found and befriended Georgie in her time of need. Just when he thought he had forgotten her, she returned with a vengeance and not only that but she detested him for some unknown reason. But wait, maybe she was just jealous; after all she did mention all of the women he dated. He felt relieved because that had to be it, she was jealous.
During dinner, Lizzie took out her resentment by teasing Darcy mercilessly, "You don't seem to be enjoying your hamburger but I guess that's what happens when you get old." She smiled, "Your doctor probably told you to cut down on your cholesterol."
"Will always eats healthy and he works out, he's in great shape."
Lizzie took a bite of her French fry and waved it the air before she ate it slowly. "I guess you have to give up all the good things in life when you get to be his age." Will watched her hungrily but his appetite was definately not for the French fry.
"I'm not that old, I'm only 26." Will protested, looking directly at Elizabeth and she just smiled.
"Just a few years from retirement then." Her voice was sweet but her eyebrow arched in a challenge.
"He's been looking for property in Florida," Georgie joked, "I just didn't realize it was retirement property."
"You're a very bad influence on my little sister." Will shot a look at Elizabeth.
"Isn't it great." Georgie said as she excused herself from the table.
"I'm such a bad influence, you probably don't want me hanging around with her."
"I wouldn't go that far," Will winked, "You are good for a few laughs." He leaned over and whispered in her ear, "You're not getting off that easily."
After they finished dinner, Will announced, "It's time I got you two home, it is a school night."
Darcy insisted on driving Lizzie home, "I don't want you out on the roads this late."
"What about my car?" Lizzie asked, "I need it to get to school tomorrow.
"Don't worry about that, I'll pick you up and take both you and Georgie to school in the morning."
"You have an answer for everything, don't you." Lizzie shot daggers at him in the dark.
"Yes." Will answered as he parked in front of her house, "Let me walk you to the door."
"There's no need." She insisted.
"Yes there is."
He walked her to the door and she asked, "Do you always get your own way?"
"Yes, I do," He whispered and she felt his hot breath on her ear, "You would do well to remember that, Miss Bennet."
She yanked the door open, stormed away and slammed it in his face.
Darcy chuckled as he walked toward his car, God that girl is a firecracker and he whistled a happy tune.