So, disaster averted. Lizzie doesn’t have to marry Mr. Collins – she just has to endure her mother’s not-so-subtle whining and Mr. Collins’s resentful silence. All the absurd flattery he had been piling up on Lizzie like a mountain of unwanted Twizzlers gets transferred instantly to Charlotte – and oddly, she doesn’t seem to mind?
So, off they all go to Meryton to find out if the no-show Mr. Wickham has anything to say for himself. And he actually does!
“Yeah,” he says (probably with his gorgeous hair swooshing manfully in the breeze or something, UGH) “I realized I really didn’t want to see Darcy. I just don’t think I could…bear it.” (Stares soulfully away, brooding harder than a glittery vampire.)
When they get back home there’s A LETTER FROM NETHERFIELD.
I repeat: A LETTER FROM NETHERFIELD.
THIS IS NOT A DRILL.
Watching Jane read, Lizzie can tell something’s up. When they get up to their room, Jane tells her what the letter says. Basically:
The Bingley crowd has gone off to join their brother in town.
But actually, NONE of them are coming back this winter.
Could this letter get more shit-tastic? Actually yes, because then comes the worst part:
“OMG Georgiana Darcy is soooooo pretty and elegant and brilliant and perfect and we love her sooooooo much, we all just can’t WAIT to see her, she’s basically like a sister, and actually she probably will be our sister because my brother will definitely fall in love with her and obviously she’ll fall in love with him…so that’s happening. But anyway, hope you have a great Christmas xoxo!”
“Ah well,” says Jane, metaphorically reaching for her tub of Peanut Butter Fudge Core Ben & Jerry’s, “I guess that’s that.”
But Lizzie is calling bullshit on this whole nauseating letter. Bingley totally loves Jane, Caroline is a conniving beyotch, and she’s trying to shove her brother into Georgiana’s arms in hopes it’ll somehow improve her chances with Mr. Darcy (like hell!)
But Jane, spooning ice cream into her mouth, is all: “No, she wouldn’t do that.”
Luckily, Lizzie is the Cheering-up-Jane master. Eventually Jane is willing to admit that MAYBE Bingley will come back before the winter is over and they’ll get their happy ending. Which they totally will because obviously they belong together.
Sisterly mission: accomplished.
Now there’s just the small matter of telling Mrs. Bennet that the Bingley’s have all gone away for a while.
Hoo boy. Shields up.
Okay: Mom Bennet has come down from her freak-out and is now completely certain Mr. Bingley will be back and he and Jane will live happily ever after. Jane is somewhat hopeful. Mr. Collins has been successfully rebuffed.
Whew! Other than Mr. Collins still being around and randomly sneaking out one morning, everything seems to be back to normal.
Oh, hey! It’s Charlotte!
“Lizzie, uh…well…the thing is…I’m marrying Mr. Collins.”
Apparently Mr. Collins snuck out to propose to Charlotte and she actually accepted! Accepted Mr. Collins? WTMother’lovin’F??
But Charlotte explains she really doesn’t care about romance, and at the ripe old age of 27 (which apparently is ANCIENT), she has to get married right quick or she’ll be a huge burden and embarrassment to her family. Since her attitude towards men and marriage is basically, “Meh,” she might as well marry this guy, since he has a pretty sweet house and isn’t too badly off.
Okay, okay. Get a grip on yourself, Lizzie. Swallow the vomit you just threw up in your mouth. Turn your smile on. Friendship dial set to “supporting you even in your stupidest decisions.”
“Wow! Well, that’s great, Charlotte. I mean, you know. If you like…him. Or whatever.”
So now, to visit Charlotte in the future, Lizzie will have to actually lay eyes on Mr. Collins again??
Something not terrible needs to happen, like, now.
Nope. Things just keep getting worse. Because now things between Lizzie and Charlotte are awkward, Mr. Collins is coming back to stay with the Bennets so he can see his bride-to-be (cue disgusting love speeches, GAG), and it turns out Bingley definitely isn’t coming back to Netherfield that winter at all.
Is horrible Caroline actually succeeding in keeping Bingley away from Jane for her own nefarious purposes?? Is the Jane/Bingley ship (Jingley? Bane?) doomed to sink before it even gets out of the harbor????
This week's chapters were written by Peytie McCandless, actress/writer/teacher extraordinaire. She will be playing "Jane Bennet" in our upcoming production. Find out more...
Caitlin Lushington is the Co-Artistic Director of the Enso Theatre Ensemble, a teacher, director, and actress. Sometimes she works too hard, sometimes she forgets things, and she strives to put the car keys back in the same place every time. She drinks tea every morning from her TARDIS mug and "Mr. Tea" diffuser. She loves the morning and wishes she had a photographic memory, so she could remember the names of every person she meets.