My Dearest Darcy…
Is Happily Ever After just the beginning?
Lizzy and Darcy are married. They’re ecstatically happy newlyweds. But a journey to London separates them.
Whatever will they do?
Write letters, of course!
In this sequel to Jane Austen’s masterpiece, read the witty, passionate correspondence between her most beloved pair as they survive separation, sisters, and surprise guests. The giddy newlyweds keep the flame alight the old-fashioned way…
All while reminding each other — and us — just what a perfectly matched couple they are.
“Clever and charming, snarky and steamy, meticulously researched with welcome appearances from real-world historical figures. Can’t wait for Volume II!” — Heather Albano, Timepiece, the Keeping Time trilogy
Cady West is the Regency romance pen name for K.D. West, a bestselling author of contemporary, fantasy, and (very) steamy romance. Check out some of K.D.’s… less decorous titles!
My dearest Darcy
I have ruined fully eighteen of these beautiful, creamy linen sheets to get even this far. You will laugh at me, I know, but I am in this my mother’s daughter, and such prodigal waste of paper offends my sense of thrift and of propriety. And for what? Because I wish to write you, but do not know how to call you.
Dearest Husband? Too formal. Dear Fitzwilliam? Too familiar. Beloved lover? Far too familiar, though very true, and I am still close enough to what little maidenly modesty I ever possessed not to wish you to open this letter in public upon such a greeting. (And I do warn you that I cannot promise that pages to come will not venture into territory that might destroy both your modesty and what little remains of mine, and so I hope that you will save the rest of this letter for perusal in some private place; you may take that for a promise or for a threat, as you will!) My own Billy? Well, I think I can imagine the mask of mortification that that salutation would provoke; I will keep that one for special, private moments, I think, when you have become too much the forbidding, proud Mr. Darcy of old and I simply wish to laugh at you.
And so My dearest Darcy it is—not only because it strikes me as particularly euphonious, but because it is true, in whole and in parts. I love your sister—my new sister—dearly, but I can say without any compunction that you are indeed the dearest Darcy to me, dearer even than myself. You are Darcy, first and foremost—I can scarcely think of you by any other name, even though it is now my own. It is the name by which I first knew you, by which I truly came to know you, and by which I have come to love you with all of my foolish, conceited heart.
Too, you are mine. Pride is a sin, as we both know to our misfortune, but I think that this is one of the things of which I am proudest: that you, virtuous, accomplished, intelligent, upright—occasionally to a fault—belong to me. And that I, vain, silly, homely and venal, belong to you, soul, mind and body.
Of your possession of my soul you must trust. Of my mind you have this evidence—that you have been gone from our bed and from our home for but four hours, and I have had scarcely a thought but of you. Kitty and Georgiana have been attempting to engage me in some games—I hope that Kitty will indulge Georgiana’s sense of play even as your sister encourages in mine some heretofore unknown vein of serious-mindedness—but I cannot be distracted from any task but of writing this, my first letter to my husband.
(Here, good my lord, is the point at which I must ask you to remember that I warned you to read this in a private place. If you failed to heed my warning, on your head be it!)
As for my body, sir, you have ample evidence of your possession of that: it has been yours to do with as it has pleased you for these past weeks and, oh, Darcy, I hope it has pleased you to take ownership so completely. It has pleased me, and pleased me again, to the point where now, having felt you within me and against me only this morning, my body weeps at your absence, desiring only to be taken—and to take—again.