Author's Note: This is a new story which I hope will be well received and liked by all the readers. It is a modern twist at the beloved tale of Elizabeth and William. Lizzie Bennet lives in Harlem, along with her dying father and her beloved sister, Jane. In order to support her family, Lizzie takes a summer job as a maid in the Darcy household. Unbeknown to her, Jane, a nurse, is dating Dr. Charles Bingley, Mr. Darcy's best friend. How will their relationship flourish? Join along for the ride and see how their story unfolds...
"Papa" whispered Lizzie, as she bent down to kiss her beloved, sickly father. He was lying on his bed, sweating profusely. "Here" she said, as she put a towel on his head, "I'm going to work now, I'll be back later"
"What time is it Lizzie?" asked her father, reaching for her hand.
"6am" answered Lizzie. He gave her a faint smile and brought her hand to his lips.
"Have a good first day of work" he said, before dozing off back into a slumber. Lizzie added another cover on top of him, before leaving the house. With her bag in hand, she took the subway from Harlem to the Upper East Side. Dusting off her shirt, she knocked on the door slightly, knowing that Charlotte, the woman who had interviewed her on the phone, was waiting for her.
"Yes?" whispered a voice from inside.
"It is Lizzie, the new maid" answered Lizzie. The door opened and revealed a young woman in her thirties that was plain—at best.
"Hi again, pleasure to officially meet you" she said, putting out her hand, "I'm the Head maid, Charlotte. Come inside" she motioned, leading Lizzie inside. She walked into the grandest of apartments she had ever seen. There were chandeliers every few feet—glimmering as the sunlight precipitated through the grand windows.
"Let's go into the maid's quarters, we can talk there" suggested Charlotte, still whispering, as the whole family was still sleeping.
"This is the Darcy household. Mr. Darcy, as you might have heard, is the CEO of his late father's media company. Miss Georgiana, who is not 16, studies abroad in England, where they have some close relatives. Mr. George Wickham is the son of the late Mr. Darcy's chauffer. He promised his loyal employee that he would take care of his son. Mr. Darcy has fulfilled his father's promise and lets him stay for sporadic periods of time. Their relationship is rocky—but that is not my bit to tell you. Now, unto your duties…."
Charlotte went on for about half an hour, instructing Lizzie on everything there was to do in the house. She took mental notes of all the instructions and tried to draw a mental map of the apartment. After Charlotte finished showing her around, she pulled from a closet a dress.
"This is going to be your uniform—it seems old fashion but that is the way the late Mr. Darcy kept it. For the time being, it will only be the two of us, though we have a butler, Mr. Mark Collins and a chauffeur, Mr. John Gomez. Every once in a while, if Mr. Darcy hosts a party here on in the Hamptons, he will hire more staff to accommodate. Though most expect him to have a chef, he is content with having us cook. I usually take care of the cooking, though that might fall on your lot some days. You are expected to be here at 6:30 am till 5 pm" ended Charlotte, standing up from the kitchen table and reaching for the coffee.
"Coffee?" she offered, smiling sweetly at the new maid.
"Yes, thank you" said Lizzie, taking her mug and sipping it quietly.
Jane Bennet came back from her night shift completely exhausted. She entered her house was surprised to find it empty. Since she had started working as a nurse at the emergency room, her days had begun to blur into one another.
"Lizzie?" she asked, opening the door to their small, shared bedroom. Seeing the bed made, she was reminded that today was Lizzie's first day of work. It killed Jane that her smart and beautiful sister was to be a maid for the summer months and possibly during the year. After their mom had died and their father had taken a toll for the worse, their entire lives had changed. Without their father producing an income, it was now up to them to support him. Thankfully Lizzie had gotten a full scholarship to NYU but she still had to have spending money. The commuting alone was going to cost her, plus there were bills to pay. Jane's minimal income provided them some relief but part of her wages went to her nursing school loans.
Letting out a heavy sigh, Jane took of her zip up sweatshirt and went to go check on their father. Feeling relieved that he was he was soundly sleeping; she went to her room and laid down for a nap.
"Excuse me" said Mr. Darcy curtly, entering the kitchen. Lizzie was wiping down the counters when he startled her.
"Who are you?" he asked.
"I'm Lizzie Bennet, the new maid" she answered softly, avoiding his heavy eyes.
"Oh, where is Charlotte?"
"I…" stammered Lizzie, not sure where she was.
"Never mind" murmured Darcy, waving his hand in the air to dismiss the question. "I'll just take a quick coffee before I leave"
"Sure Mr. Darcy—where should I bring it?"
"I'll be in my study" he said curtly, not even looking at her. He carried himself with such arrogance and pride that he unknowingly made Lizzie feel lowly in front of him. With a broken spirit, Lizzie quickly prepared the coffee and carried to his study.
He was sitting on his leather chair with the stoic look that she would learn to become accustomed to. Without looking up from the paper, he motioned to the corner of his desk, "There is fine. Good day". She put the coffee down, with a folded napkin and quickly left the room. He put the paper down and watched her go from behind. She was a rather pretty girl—if not for that unbecoming uniform, he might have declared her beautiful. He shook those thoughts out of his head and quickly sipped his coffee, as he had a 7:30 meeting in downtown Manhattan.
The rest of the morning passed on rather uneventful as Lizzie cleaned different areas of the house. At around 1pm, she heard someone lumbering towards the bathroom. A bit startled, she raised her broom and approached the guest bathroom hesitantly, scaring a handsome man out of his wits.
"Ahhh" he shrieked, noticing the woman with the broom.
"Sorry" she said, putting the broom down. "Who are you?"
"I'm George Wickham"
"Ah, Mr. Wickham, forgive me" she said.
"With a face like that, no forgiveness is necessary doll" he added flirtatiously. He was a very handsome man—perhaps even more than Mr. Darcy—and with abs like that, it was enough to make any girl melt. He looked at Lizzie up and down with a twinkle in his eyes that made her feel uncomfortable. She gave him a smile and left him, returning to her work.
"Mary" said Mr. Darcy through the speakerphone, "Please get Dr. Charles Bingley on the phone"
"Yes sir" answered his secretary, immediately heeding to his request. A moment he was connected.
"Hello Charles" said Mr. Darcy, looking away from his computer.
"Will—how are you?" asked Charlie in his playful manner. After some small chatter, Will got down to business.
"There is this event tonight Charlie, you know the charity auction for my aunt, I need you to be there" he said.
"Do I have to bring a date?" he asked, thinking in his mind that he had been dying to ask that cute nurse he had met the other day.
"Yes, but please, make sure she is suitable" teased Darcy.
"Humph" said Charlie, pretending he was hurt by his suggestion, "I only date suitable people. Who are you going to bring?"
"No one" he answered curtly.
"Of course" mumbled Charlie, "I'll see you tonight".
Lizzie walked into the house feeling completely exhausted. All she wanted to do was take a long, warm bath and plummet into her bed.
"Lizzie!" said Jane excitedly, running over to hug her beloved sister. "How was your day?"
"Great" answered Lizzie, raising an eyebrow in suspicion of Jane's ebullience. "What's going on?"
"You know that handsome Doctor I told you about! He asked me out on a date! His friend, a CEO of some sort, is having a charity event and asked him to come and he asked me accompany him! Since its Friday, we are both not on duty tonight so he insisted on me attending. He event sent me a bouquet of flowers!"
"That is so sweet Jane, I'm happy for you—you deserve that and more!" said Lizzie genuinely.
"He asked me if you were available tonight…"
"So he is into that?" teased Lizzie, making her sister blush.
"His friend needs a date"
"No" mouthed Lizzie, "I'm exhausted and I'm not going to a charity event. Plus we have nothing to wear"
"Well, actually, since he called me so late and didn't expect me to have anything for the occasion, he sent me two dresses—hoping you would accompany his friend. Please Lizzie?" begged Jane, tickling her sister, which she knew was her weakness.
"Stop" giggled Lizzie, playfully pushing off her sister, "Alright, I'll go!"
"Great—the car service will be here in two hours so let's get beautified"
"Yeepee" murmured Lizzie in a sarcastic tone, wanting to stay on the couch and just sleep.
"Darcy" said a husky voice from behind him. He reluctantly turned around and face his worst nightmare: Charles's sister.
"Hello Caroline" he said curtly, acting more taciturn than usual. He had made the mistake of sleeping with her—a mistake he would not repeat again.
"Have you seen Charles?" asked Caroline, looking at Darcy up and down. He barely looked at her—preventing his eyes from darting at her plunging neckline. She was splendidly beautiful.
"He is not here yet, I believe. He said he had a surprise for me, though his surprises often frighten me" said Darcy.
"There he is—who are they?" said Caroline, motioning to the door. Charlie walked in with two beautiful women linked on either arm; a gorgeous blonde and a striking brunette. Lizzie hesitantly followed Charlie, looking all around her in admiration of the hall. They soon arrived at their destination and Lizzie's eyes immediately fell upon the man she was supposed to accompany this evening: Mr. Darcy.
"Darcy!" said Charlie playfully, "allow me to introduce you to my date, Miss Jane Bennet, the nurse I was telling you about and her equally beautiful sister Miss Elizabeth Bennet". Lizzie could tell the darkening of Darcy's eyes. After the imperiousness she had observed this morning, she doubted he was anything but disgusted at the idea of linking arms with his maid.
Author's Note: the idea for this story came to me and I was very excited to begin writing it, there is much more to come...
let me know if you liked it and your thoughts by clicking the little bubble that says "review".