P&P Missing Scenes – Charlotte Becomes Suspicious by Monica Fairview — 35 Comments

  1. I loved the words you used to show how attracted Darcy is to Elizabeth….”he was listening as closely as if her words were divine intervention” and “entranced”. She is so clueless and even convinces Charlotte that Darcy isn’t attracted to her. Thank you for a wonderful missing scene this morning. I felt like I was a fly on the wall listening in and watching unobserved.

  2. i had to take the moment from getting ready for work to read this missing scene.
    It did not disappoint.

    Lizzy is very persuasive , as with only a few sentences , she changed charlottes prospective on what had just occurred .
    Great insight Monica! !

    • I hope you weren’t late, Carol! Glad you enjoyed it.

      Well we all know Lizzy is clever with words. Plus Charlotte is probably very easily persuaded because Mr. Darcy is too difficult to read.

  3. A lovely scene! I loved this – Darcy sat in the corner and contemplated the wall. Poor, poor man! Thanks! I loved it!

  4. Well, done. But sometimes Charlotte can be very perceptive. That is only one of the reasons she was a good choice for Mr. Collins. I like how she wants to bring the tenant’s thatched roofing problem to his attention but knows she must phrase it so as not to get a long lecture from her husband. In this scenario Charlotte reminded me of Jane…looking for the good in people. But on the other hand, Darcy can’t you see how you come off as a bump on a log – all silence and long looks, ready to skedaddle at the first ripple in the pond.

    Thank you for sharing.

    • A pleasure, Sheila. I feel Charlotte is often overlooked but there’s a reason she’s Lizzy’s closest friend and that’s because she’s smart. She’s more practical than Lizzy, who has that strong romantic side, and she notices things. I did enjoy exploring her personality here just a bit.

      As for Darcy, he’d better figure out what he wants quickly.

  5. Wonderful! I, like Darcy, am enchanted. 🙂 The poor man is a moth to a flame where Lizzy is concerned. This scene was perfection. Bravo!

  6. This was indeed a delightful contribution to our favorite story just where it could use a little more added! Your interpretation of everyone was most satisfying and I too loved your description of Charlotte’s observation of Darcy’s attention to Lizzy as she and Maria entered… and how he was oblivious for a bit to their entrance! I also loved to see the exchange between old dear friends.

    • Thank you, Carol. There is so much that we take for granted in the novel and I was pleasantly surprised how quickly the characters came to life in this little scene. It made me really appreciate Charlotte and gave me a new aspect of Lizzy to explore.

  7. Nice scene Monica! A missed opportunity by Darcy! Elizabeth is talking about orchards which is a subject he would know thoroughly. What kinds of fruit in the different parts of the country? Does Longbourn have orchards? Do they have to use peat fires to protect from late frosts? What are her favorite fruits in the different seasons? Sigh. Yeah, he is probably castigating himself on the way back to Rosings. I should have said… she would have replied… Yep, another missed opportunity!

  8. Oh, yes. He’s definitely kicking himself. I like the details you’ve provided Dave. You’re right, of course. If he wasn’t so in love he would have done a better job of picking up the conversation. Unfortunately for him, he was too preoccupied to do it. Glad you enjoyed it, Dave.

  9. Wonderful vignette!! Darcy’s discomfort and embarrassment were nearly tangible! I especially enjoyed the small detail of Darcy perhaps colouring a little as Elizabeth gave one of her “mischievous” smiles–that slight blusg says so much…and without a single word!

    Thank you, Monica, for a delightful and insightful tale! 🙂

    Susanne 🙂

  10. Charlotte is so quick to read people and as Lizzy’s dearest friend she knows how to agree with her whilst holding her own opinions. I love these little insights into our much loved characters. Thank you Monica

    • Good point, Jean. Charlotte is a fully developed character who doesn’t get much attention but is actually more complex than she seems at face value. I love the fact that JA has her keep her own counsel, yet she’s always trying to point out things to Lizzy. She’s a kind of wise woman. The problem is, Lizzy doesn’t listen.

  11. I loved the scene. It was so true to the original characters. At this point in P&P Darcy is painfully awkward, as you so brilliantly write him in this scene. How on earth could Lizzy ever get the seance that he admires her? Charlotte can see a little something observing from the outside, but I can totally understand why Lizzy still thinks he despises her. I remember reading P&P for the first time and being so shocked when Darcy proposes at Hunsford. I didn’t wee it coming any more than Lizzy did. Great job filling in the missing scene!

    • TLeighF — I think that’s why the proposal is romantic in so many ways, despite the fact that he gets everything all wrong and bungles it all. His sudden admission seems like a bolt out of the blue, but then if you go back you can see the signs were there all along. It’s all the more startling to have someone like Mr. Darcy who is so controlled be so overwhelmed by his emotions. “Shocked” is a good word. It’s shocking both to us and to Lizzy. The only person who saw it coming to some extent was Charlotte, which is why I enjoyed writing this scene. The situation is so deliciously ironic.

  12. You do write this so well! As others have commented, you can just feel Lizzy’s amusement, Darcy’s awkwardness and Charlotte’s attempt at puzzling it out. When reading the original, we see everything from Elizabeth’s point of view, and she is very persuasive. She convinces us as much as herself that it would be impossible for Darcy to ever see her as a possible Mistress of Pemberley, and given the society of the time, we readily agree with her. So, you are correct. It comes as a shock to us, too. Now that we have all read it a dozen times and read a zillion variations, it doesn’t come as a shock But we sit and wait to see – what will this author do to make it shocking again. And, all of you so rarely disappoint!

    • That’s a good point, Barb. The class issue definitely contributes to our dismissal of Darcy as a possible suitor, which is ironic given that Lizzy argues in the proposal scene that since she’s a gentleman’s daughter, she’s his equal. I love how JA plays with our expectations that way.

  13. Very clever. I can see it happening just this way, and still, with all the evidence before her, Elizabeth is surprised when Darcy finally “makes his move”!

    • Thanks, Julie. now that you mention it, there’s another aspect of it that makes the situation all the more awkward and that is, the fact that Lizzy doesn’t even consider him as a possibility. Does Darcy unconsciously realize this?

  14. How I dearly love a perceptive, clever and persuasive Charlotte. This is so very well written. I would wish to have more stories to read that have her from this point on actually convincing Elizabeth of her prejudice and make her think twice about what she may be giving up by not acknowledging Darcy’s interest and getting to know him. She was slightly older and perhaps thought Elizabeth to be a little juvinile not considering the reality of becoming a spinster or having to marry a class below and have a tradesman for a husband. Very well done. I liked this very much indeed.

    • Just waking up. What a lovely comment to start the day! Thank you, Kay.

      Yes, there is that aspect of the novel that we don’t really think of very often since Mr. Collins is depicted so negatively and Charlotte chooses him. Since that puts Charlotte in the camp of Mrs. Bennet, we tend to dismiss her. Certainly Lizzy does. I think this theme is played out more clearly in Sense and Sensibility with the two sisters.

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