Netherfield Park – the same night
Fitzwilliam Darcy was in a quandary. Pacing back and forth in his bedchamber, unable to sleep, he occasionally stared out the window into the darkness of the moonless cloudy sky.
What a to do!
Such a spectacle he had created earlier at the ball. He – who prided himself on his decorum and fine genteel breeding – had totally lost all his reserve when faced with those "fine eyes" of Miss Elizabeth Bennet!
How exquisite she had appeared before me here in the library. Her temper, peaked into anger towards me shining through her fiery eyes while she pierced my heart with her tirade in defense of that scoundrel – Wickham!
He had been stunned, shocked, but not surprised that Wickham had distorted the truth to his advantage – used his natural charming abilities to deceive his Elizabeth.
Well, she is not yet mine, but then again after this episode perhaps she soon will be?
Wickham's motives, Darcy could understand, but Elizabeth's vehement defense of that man’s character was undeniably based on his plans to deceive and mislead her!
Of course she would have not the least suspicion to doubt Wickham's tale of woe and misfortunes!
The rascal had always been gifted with the talent to charm and trick his way through many an advantageous circumstance – after all, had not Wickham deceived Darcy's own excellent father for all those many years? Darcy perfectly understood how Elizabeth could have been tricked into drawing the wrong assessment of his own character by whatever lies Wickham had told her. This was another reason he again singled her out, to further discover from her exactly what falsehoods Wickham had told her to slander Darcy's character and integrity.
After their heated discussion during the one dance for which he had the pleasure of her company, Darcy simply needed another opportunity to not only continue in her presence, but to somehow remedy whatever the damage Wickham had done to defame him in her eyes. Darcy knew the danger for him to be alone with Elizabeth, but he could not bear knowing she thought ill of him.
Upon entering the library Darcy realized he had willingly succumbed to her arts and allurements, drawing him deeper into desiring her company. He could no longer contain the pull of his heartfelt longings to draw her closer to him -- perchance more intimately.
If he even had the power to turn back time – he would not – as scandalous as the outcome had transpired, he could not truly regret his rash passionate actions with her. However, he found that his present distress and restlessness was for Elizabeth's sake alone. She had been totally humiliated and disgraced, which he later confessed to himself was entirely his fault. He had utterly compromised her.
He had meant to redeem himself in her "fine eyes" as the gentleman he was bred to be rather than the rake his behaviour had displayed during their heated arguments about Wickham -- when she suddenly tried to escape his ardent manner toward her! He just could not resist her anymore… he found her so tantalizing… the minx! Her defense of Wickham, though misguided, was to him quite courageous and very stimulating. Never had a lady of the ton, nor any woman for that matter, ever stood up to him in the manner that Elizabeth did. He had realized she was not impressed or intimidated by both his position in society or by his wealth or consequence, and how he admired her wit -- the liveliness of her mind…
Dearest loveliest Elizabeth... Oh how I desire you!
But, now, in the solitude of his bedchamber, he pondered, and plotted, hoped and prayed that the morning light would come as soon as possible. He knew exactly how to act to set things right! He would briefly inform Bingley of his intentions and then ride to Longbourn to speak directly to Mr Bennet. His honor and duty demanded it, but he realized that this was not a burden on his part at all. He recognized that once he had her father's consent and blessing, his hardest challenge would be to convince and persuade Elizabeth that all would be well.
Darcy had finally admitted to himself that he ardently loved her, wanted her to be his life's companion as mistress of Pemberley – Mrs Elizabeth Darcy.
The lifetime companion of my days and nights -- sharing everything I have with her and most of all sharing love and passion with her.
At last, he now had a plan. He would take advantage of any opportunity to explain everything to her. He would first set things right with her father. For her sake he would swallow his pride and give an explanation and apology for what had happened between himself and his daughter in the Netherfield library. He would declare his love and use every means of persuasion available to bring Mr. Bennet to an understanding of his honorable intentions and to the advantageous benevolence not only towards Elizabeth, but the entire Bennet family! Darcy had no doubt that his suit would be accepted simply on the merit of his reputation and consequence.
Fitzwilliam Darcy had decidedly made up his mind. Elizabeth Bennet was worthy of him in spite of her low connections and lack of wealth. He had struggled and argued with himself long enough. No matter what his relations may object to this "love match", for in truth on his part at least, this actually was the deciding factor – he was in love with Elizabeth Bennet. He was going to follow his heart, swiftly court her and win her love, too!
Yes! I will conquer this. Everything will turn around for the best. This scandal would soon be forgotten.
Darcy would use every means in his power to make it all right for Elizabeth throughout the whole society of Hertfordshire. He would restore her good name! He vowed to himself that he would devote the rest of his life to making his soon to be wife -- Elizabeth -- very happy, indeed!