Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
Mrs. Gardiner, who, fatigued by the exercise of the morning, found
Elizabeth’s arm inadequate to her support, and consequently
preferred her husband’s. Mr. Darcy took her place by her niece,
and they walked on together. After a short silence, the lady first
spoke. She wished him to know that
she had been assured of his absence before she came to the place,
and accordingly began by observing, that his arrival had been very
unexpected-“for your housekeeper,” she added, “informed us that
you would certainly not be here till to-morrow; and indeed, before
we left Bakewell, we understood that you were not immediately
expected in the country.” He acknowledged the truth of it all, and
said that business with his steward had occasioned his coming
forward a few hours before the rest of the party with whom he had
been traveling. “They will join me early to-morrow,” he continued,
“and among them are some who will claim an acquaintance with
you,- Mr. Bingley and his sisters.” Elizabeth answered only by a
slight bow. Her thoughts were instantly driven back to the time
when Mr. Bingley’s name had been last mentioned between them;
and, if she might judge from his complexion, his mind was not
very differently engaged.
“There is also one other person in the party,” he continued after a
pause, “who more particularly wishes to be known to you:- Will
you allow me, or do I ask too much, to introduce my sister to your
acquaintance during your stay at Lambton?” The surprise of such
an application was great indeed; it was too great for her to know in
what manner she acceded to it. She immediately felt that whatever
desire Miss Darcy might have of being acquainted with her must
be the work of her brother, and, without looking farther, it was
satisfactory; it was gratifying to know that his resentment had not
made him think really ill of her.
They now walked on in silence, each of them deep in thought.
Elizabeth was not comfortable; that was impossible; but she was
flattered and pleased. His wish of introducing his sister to her was
a compliment of the highest kind. They soon outstripped the
others, and when they had reached the carriage, Mr. and Mrs.
Gardiner were half a quarter of a mile behind.
He then asked her to walk into the house-but she declared herself
not tired, and they stood together on the lawn. At such a time
much might have been said, and silence was very awkward. She
wanted to talk, but there seemed an embargo on every subject. At
last she recollected that she had been traveling, and they talked of
Matlock and Dovedale with great perseverance. Yet time and her
aunt moved slowly-and her patience and her ideas were nearly
worn out before the tete-a-tete was over. On Mr. and Mrs.