Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Lost Interview of 1814

The following is an unpublished interview transcript, conducted with a rather noteworthy member of society in approximately 1814. This excerpt was purported to have been discovered in the writing desk of one Countess of W-, whose name no doubt needs no further introduction to my readers. The interview is believed to have been transcribed by the Countess’s secretary and intended for circulation in Society’s Secrets, an anonymous circulation at that time.

The history of its recovery is by now the stuff of family legend, but we do have reason to believe that this is a true transcript of the original interview. The story goes that a dissatisfied housemaid was able to secure this copy and attempted to use her stolen evidence to her advantage. Accounts differ as to the success of her endeavor, but a party claiming to be an heir of that same housemaid wrote to us from her residence in Mayfair this week.

This heir had just finished listening to a recently produced audio account involving the rather unconventional courtship and marriage of one of the parties mentioned in this interview. The account she heard was scandalous enough, and she felt, after all of these years, that this long lost piece of her family history deserved at last to be published. And now, without further ado, I present to you:

An Interview with Colonel Fitzwilliam

Good Afternoon, Colonel. Thank you for agreeing to speak with me today.
Good afternoon, Countess.

Oh, do remember, Colonel, you must simply call me “Madam,” for this interview.
Forgive me, Madam. I am flattered by the invitation. It is not often a military officer receives such distinction as recognition in Society’s Secrets.

The honor is mine. Now, Colonel, I was wondering what you could tell us about your cousin, Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy.
Oh, not again. I thought perhaps you had some questions about my service in the Peninsula, or my association with Wellesley’s office. My father’s connections recommended me, you know, but the Iron Duke is not called such for nothing! He is rather hard on his adjutants, I can tell you.

Yes, of course. So I understand that you grew up rather closely with Mr Darcy before beginning your military career. Did you spend a great deal of your youth at Pemberley?
Yes, I suppose so. My uncle often desired my company for my younger cousin after he lost his mother. I was the superior horseman, you see, and Darcy was better motivated to abandon his dreary old library when there was a little competition. I am still the better horseman, of course. Twice running I won the Skill at Arms competition against some of the finest Cavalry officers in the regiment.

Most impressive, Colonel. You alluded to your cousin’s grief at losing his mother. Can you tell us more about that? I am curious how such a loss might impact a very young man.
Oh, come, are we to talk only about my cousin?

Well, he is the most eligible bachelor in the ton. Many of our readers are eager to learn anything they can about him.
Oh, very well. What would you know about him? He became very taciturn after Lady Anne passed away, and he is worse now that he is Master of Pemberley. There, are you quite satisfied?

That is very intriguing. Our readers do love a man of mystery! Tell me, Colonel, what do you think it will take to bring such a man out of his shell?
Hah! Impossible, Madam. Set him on that great horse of his and let him alone, I say.

Oh, surely there must be some way to mend the man’s heart. He can only be waiting for just the right woman, Colonel! Now, tell me if you can, what sort of woman you think your cousin might prefer. Surely he finds one of London’s most elegant beauties to his liking. I shall not name any names in this publication, but I am to understand that a great many of my very own readers are most interested in Mr Darcy’s social calendar.
They are wasting their time, I tell you. I would wager that my cousin is more likely to be diverted by a woman who wants nothing to do with him than one who seeks him out at every opportunity. He is rather bored of it, do you see. I, on the other hand, am not nearly so difficult to please. I would remind you readers that I am second in line for the earldom, and my elder brother did recently collect a very nasty cough….

How very kind of you to remind us of that point, Colonel. What sort of… er… physical attributes does Mr Darcy favor? Last season it was noted that he danced several times with a certain tall redhead, but I shall refrain from naming anyone here.
Caroline Bingley? He would rather dance with his horse, Madam, but he was not given that opportunity.

I see. So shall I tell my readers that a woman of a more petite figure might stand a chance? Does he favor blondes? Perhaps does he prefer brunettes, or a more… shall I say womanly physique?
Madam, you forget yourself! This line of questioning is rather coarse. I cannot possibly continue! Your husband is a friend of mine, after all.

I beg your pardon, Colonel. My readers rather enjoy such intimate details, which is, of course, why I write this column anonymously. I would thank you, Colonel to remember our agreement regarding confidentiality.
Indeed! You had better travel to France, my dear woman. This sort of filth may be appreciated there. There is one particular publication I remember….

Let us return to Mr Darcy, if you please, sir. Is his estate not one of the most breathtaking in all of England? What sort of luxuries might its future mistress enjoy? I understand the private suites are exceedingly large and well-appointed, and the staff are among the very best. Would Mr Darcy consider a French maid for the Mistress of Pemberley?
She would have whichever blasted attendant she pleased, I imagine- if the woman existed. I assure you, Madam, she does not. I would be very surprised if my cousin even attended any balls next season, he was so disgusted by the last. I, on the other hand, have already made plans to attend several of the finest events next year. I prefer tall blondes, if that should entertain your readers, Madam, but any lively young lady with a pleasing manner would be sure to attract my notice.

I am sure we are pleased indeed to know of this, Colonel. Can you tell me, sir, where Mr Darcy is now? I am to understand that he has left Town, and is not to be found in Derbyshire. Could he possibly be calling on some fortunate young lady?
He is in the country, Madam. One of his friends has leased an estate, but you will not induce me to divulge its whereabouts. As for young ladies, he tells his sister- who tells me- that there are bountiful provisions to be found in the country. One of the neighboring families has five unmarried daughters! Can you believe such an oddity? I shouldn’t wonder if the parents were still baffled as to how such a circumstance might have come to be. I hear that at least one or two of them are rather less than abhorrent.

Colonel, you do insist on teasing us! You cannot seriously be suggesting that Mr Darcy might settle for one of these mysterious country ladies! Oh, no, you are indeed too much. Surely Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy, one of the most celebrated thinkers of the ton and a man known for his discriminating taste, will be searching for the most accomplished and elegant ladies in Society.
How many Seasons has he remained a bachelor? Four? Or was it five?

Ah, but he is a patient man. My readers appreciate a man who has achieved some maturity, Colonel. There can be no objection to a man of particular sensibilities. It sweetens the prize, do you see, to at last win the hand of the most elusive bachelor in England. My readers have great reason for continuing hope, Colonel.
Your readers are greatly deluded, Madam.

Mr Darcy needs an heir, does he not? Now, Colonel I have one last question that is of most particular interest to my readers. What are Mr Darcy’s… er… intimate preferences?
I do not understand you, Madam, nor am I certain I wish to.

Come, now Colonel, my readers are women of the world! Surely Mr Darcy has an established arrangement of some kind? All of the gentlemen of the ton do! My readers are most eager to know what manner of expectations the future wife of such a man might be required to entertain.
Madam! My cousin is a gentleman in every sense of the word! That you would even suggest such vulgarity is utterly beyond the pale!

That is very loyal of you Colonel. Quite seriously, do you think Mr Darcy might be the kind of man to place rather minimal expectations upon his wife? My readers have often observed that the more silent type in public can express himself rather more eloquently in private, if you take my meaning, sir. Do you suppose he would desire a more… unconventional marriage? Is it possible that he might go so far as to request that his wife share his quarters? It would be perfectly scandalous, of course, but many of my readers have expressed an interest in such an arrangement. He is, after all, a very handsome man! So, Colonel, what manner of details can you share?

Colonel Fitzwilliam?

Colonel?

~
We hope you have enjoyed this little piece of history. Its connection to the aforementioned recent audio production makes it a rather entertaining read. For more information about Colonel Fitzwilliam, Mr Darcy, and what the latter was doing during his mysterious disappearance to the country, we recommend the following references:



https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26832227-rumours-recklessness

~~~~~~~~~~

Oh, wasn't this delicious? Just think, we got to read a long lost interview of Colonel Fitzwilliam's! Now I must know the rest of this story. Can't wait to 'listen' and learn more about the mysterious disappearance! :) Thank you so much, Nicole Clarkston, for slipping us this long lost transcript! 

Remember, Ms. Clarkston is giving away two audio books of Rumours & Recklessness. To be entered, you must 'have your share in the conversation'... so leave a comment below. Commenting on this post and the interview with Nicole Clarkston from yesterday will double your chances. Be sure and include your contact info so I may reach you if you are randomly selected. The giveaway will end at 11:59 PM on the 7th of March, 2016. Good luck to all of you AND don't forget to stop back by tomorrow for the mystery post and more chances to win!!!


17 comments:

  1. What a hoot! I loved how the Colonel kept up his end of the interview. He sure kept the interviewer off balance. ;) I think she'll be in for a shock about the country girls.

    sophiarose1816 at gmail dot com

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    1. Wasn't it though? I loved it too. Such fun reading his efforts to turn the interview away from Darcy! Yes, those country girls, one in particular, sure made an impression on the gentleman in question. Cannot wait to read or listen to this book.

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    1. Yes, it was. Thanks for stopping by.

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  3. Great interview! Thank you. lbischoff53 at gmail dot com

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  4. Loving the Colonel,thank you for the interview

    meikleblog at gmail dotcom

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    1. He was quite entertaining! Good luck, Vesper.

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  5. Oh, what a wonderful interview! evamedmonds(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. I felt sure everyone would love this long lost transcript! Thanks, Eva, for visiting.

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  6. This was hilarious! I loved it! But I do feel sorry for our dear Colonel, it must be such a burden to be regarded only as the cousin of the great Fitzwilliam Darcy!

    ritaluzdeodato at gmail dot com

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    1. Hi Rita. It was a hoot but I do feel sorry for the Colonel too. Thankfully, he and Darcy were close friends! Glad you stopped by, Rita.

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  7. This was awesome! I could almost see the colonel roll his eyes - not Darcy AGAIN!!! Well done!

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  8. Wasn't it awesome and well done! I could almost see him rolling his eyes too! I love the Colonel! I appreciate you coming by, Joy!

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  9. I don't know about the Colonel rolling his eyes, I was doing it on his behalf, just in case he was being too polite to do so!

    Hilarious interview, I was chuckling over my Mother's Day breakfast whilst reading this, as I'm doing some blog catching up. Husband and son are off doing something mysterious!

    angmardee (at) hotmail (dot) com

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  10. Hi again.

    Please can you take my name out of the hat for the giveaway. I've just discovered that I already have a copy of this audiobook in my Audible library. I must have cashed in one of my credits when it was first published and then totally forgotten about it!

    Good luck to everyone else!

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