A Soldier’s Life, by Bronwen Chisholm

A Soldier’s Life, by Bronwen Chisholm

I am currently between projects, but that does not mean I am not writing. Little ideas pop into my head from time to time and I thought I would share one here. In truth, this is one that I have no intention of writing. There are many other authors out there who have a much better knowledge of life as a soldier in the Regency era and they are welcome to this little intro if it stirs their creative juices. Enjoy!


“We are alone behind enemy lines, what do we do? And you can’t use money, Wills.” Phillip Fitzwilliam, second son to the Earl of ____, whispered to his cousin as they crouched behind a lush hedge. “Remember, you are a younger son and must rely on your wits and charms.”

“I speak fluent French. If we can find some clothing, we might pass for natives.”

“You are a younger son. How would you know fluent French?”

“Because,” Fitzwilliam Darcy responded, his voice growing louder with his anger, “I paid attention to my tutor instead of woolgathering about war. Just because you are a younger son doesn’t mean you didn’t have the same education as your brother.”

“Ah,” an older male voice said from the other side of the hedge, “but would your knowledge of French be sufficient, Master Darcy? Perhaps in a proper establishment, but in a small village you would be spotted as an English gentleman’s son before you finished a sentence.”

“See,” Phillip replied before standing and looking over the bush at his favourite uncle. “He can’t think like us younger sons.”

“And what would you do, Phillip?” the man challenged.

The lad tilted his head to the side and rubbed his chin, a gesture he had seen the older man do many a time. “It would be best to change clothing . . .”

“Like I said,” Darcy muttered.

Phillip shot a glare at his cousin before continuing. “Perhaps a lass could be charmed to help us.”

Lieutenant Anthony Fitzwilliam laughed heartily while young Darcy scowled. “What would you do, Lt. Fitzwilliam?” the boy asked before Phillip could say more.

“Anthony,” a lady’s voice called from the porch. “Are the boys with you? It is time for tea.”

“Yes, Catherine.” Lt. Fitzwilliam stood and brushed at a dirt stain on his knee. “Come along, lads. We have been rescued.”


Phillip jolted awake, taking a moment to orient himself to his location before sitting up in the army tent. He ran his fingers through his hair and then roughly rubbed at his eyes. “You left a few things out in your description of a soldier’s life, Uncle Anthony,” he muttered.

Don’t you love the idea of Darcy and the Colonel as children? I think it is one of my favorite things to play with. What are your thoughts?

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16 Responses to A Soldier’s Life, by Bronwen Chisholm

  1. Boys love to play at soldiers but don’t ask how it feels to see a buddy die. My son used to make swords out of branches as I refused to buy play swords. I finally gave in.

    • Well, I do not feel capable of writing that story, but an encounter between a young Lizzy Bennet and two young men from Derbyshire has been tripping around my brain since posting this. We will have to see where it leads. 😉

  2. Great photo of ‘95 Colonel Fitzwilliam. Enjoyed your vignette from childhood of D and F.
    Stay well and safe.

  3. I love stories of our favorite characters as children. I especially like it when D&E meet early. Their arrogance and pride might still be there but hasn’t quite become as strong as when they grow up. Their innocence is so cute that they charm their way into almost anything. This excerpt was different but real. Thanks for sharing it with us. Are you sure you don’t want to write it?

    • I only received the scene – like I said, I do not feel comfortable writing about army life during the Regency. It definitely is making me think about writing something with them as children. And suddenly a had a vision of Muppet Babies flash through my brain. lol 😀

    • Having a son who had mischievous friends, I can only imagine what Darcy, Fitzwilliam and Wickham would have gotten into. Not saying my son was innocent, but his friends had the devil in their eyes more times than not. 😀

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