They Call Me Collins...Mr. Collins...(killer of ladies extraordinarily...I'm brief with words but not brief in other places...if you comprehend me...babe)
Despite the medical advancements of Jane Austen's day ("Ah ha! I've got it! Leeches will cure EVERYTHING!"), Jane recovers. No matter, Bingley is instantly at her heels: "Blanket? Tea? Water? Too hot? Too cold? Toast? Tums? Leeches? Advil? Morphine? Whatchu want? I'll get it!!!!!"
Caroline decides to impress Mr. Darcy by reading a book! It may have gone better if she had been holding the book right-side-up. Whatever, she ditches the book and falls on back on the thing that is sure to get Darcy's heart: her boobs.
She minces about the room. Mince, mince, mince. Chest high! No good. Damn, what IS Darcy reading, pornography? And then she has it. A sure-fire way of getting Darcy to look at her.
She invites Elizabeth to walk with her.
Sure enough, Darcy's eyes come off the page. "Join us, Mr. Darcy," coos Caroline. Mince, mince, mince. "No thanks, I'm good. Besides, you're either trying to share girly secrets or show off your boobs. If the first, I'd be in the way, and if the second, I can admire them better from here."
Scandalous! Elizabeth wants to tease Mr. Darcy. It's impossible to tease Mr. Darcy, says Caroline, he has no faults.
Darcy argues that he does have faults, he just doesn't make mistakes when it comes to understanding people. "My good opinion once lost, is lost forever." He says everyone has some defect or other.
Elizabeth says "Yes! And yours is to hate everybody."
Darcy says, "And yours is to willfully misunderstand them."
Caroline thinks, Damn, why is that every attempt I make to seduce Darcy ends up heating things up between him and Liz????
Elizabeth and Jane write to their Mum to ask for the carriage to take them home. Like any rational mother, she instantly sends them the carriage and makes their beds ready for their arrival....right?
Of course not! They must stay until Tuesday at least, to finish out the week at Netherfield!
Bingley is all STAY, I LOVE YOU!
Darcy is all GO, I MIGHT LOVE YOU!
Caroline is all GO, HE MIGHT LOVE YOU!
So Liz and Jane ask to borrow Bingley's coach, and they go home, much to the dismay of Mrs. Bennet.
Allow me to introduce the wonder that is Mr. Collins.
Mr. Collins is Mr. Bennet's cousin and closest male relative. The Longbourne estate is entailed to Mr. Collins, meaning that when Mr. Bennet dies, the whole of it will go to Mr. Collins.
Having never met the Bennets before (due to a past disagreement between Collins' father and Mr. Bennet), Collins decides it's time to visit the Bennet family, and choose a wife from among the Bennet daughters...like you do, when you meet someone for the first time...
Mrs. Bennet couldn't be happier.
Oh, did I mention that he's a priest? Yup. He's a priest. But it's the Church of England guys, remember who started that craziness? Henry VIII. See Eddie Izzard for some context.
Collins arrives and they sit in the living room and chat. The fact that the room and everything in it could one day belong to the bizarre stranger sitting in the armchair hovers over everything. Mrs. Bennet delicately brings up the elephant in the room--
"THE ENTAIL, oh, it's such an odd thing, isn't it? All my girls will be DESTITUTE, POOR, KICKED TO THE STREETS, should Mr. Bennet die anytime soon, what horror, what sorrow, oh, if only the receiver of this entail would marry one of my daughters and save us from destitution!"
"Not to worry, my dear Mrs. Bennet," assures the austere Mr. Collins, "I've come to admire your daughters...."
(he proceeds to stare down each of the Bennet girls with a look which he believes to be sexy and alluring, but is in fact, phenomenally creepy and weird)
"...Right now I won't say any more, but later--"
And Mr. Collins is cut off by a summons to dinner.
NEXT WEEK: Mr. Collins Kills Ladies and Mr. Wickham is a Lady-Killer, and we find out Mr. Darcy's secret!
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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.