Speaking of backstory, Amanda Grange (author of the delightful series of hero diaries) took a diversion from the heroes and gave us a glimpse into Miss Mary Bennet’s private journal of elegant extracts.
Monday 13th January
We dined with the Lucases this evening. Sir William happened to mention that Charlotte had been blessed with her husband, Mr Collins, who was in every way an estimable son in law, and who combined the virtues of an excellent living with the blessings of a noble patroness in the form of Lady Catherine de Bourgh. This annoyed Mama, who was not pleased to be reminded of the nuptials. She remarked that if Elizabeth had not been such an obstinate girl, she could have had Mr Collins, and not Charlotte.
It was this very obstinacy which caused Mr Collins to withdraw his offer and seek consolation elsewhere. Mama was of the opinion that if Charlotte Lucas had not been so artful, Mr Collins would have proposed to me. And indeed, if he had done so, I believe I might have been prevailed upon to accept him. With guidance, I think he would have made me a tolerable husband. He has some intelligence, as his rank as a clergyman shows, and with a settled course of reading he might have one day become my intellectual equal.
But I think, on the whole, that Mr Darcy would make a better husband for me. We have many opinions in common for we both think that Elizabeth is merely tolerable and that every savage can dance. Moreover, he has the experience to appreciate an intellectual wife. As Mrs Darcy, I would have a fine library at my disposal, and I would be in a position to do a great many good works, including sewing numerous blankets for the needy, for I would never have to save the blankets for myself as I would never be in a position to sleep under the hedgerows.
If Mr Darcy returns to the neighbourhood, I think I will show him my extracts.
Show him her extracts? Is that what the kids are calling it now? 😉