A year ago, I celebrated the five-year anniversary of my first release, To Have His Cake. Today, I’m celebrating the fifth anniversary of another one of my favorites: He Taught Me to Hope. I released a Limited Edition commemorative boxed set titled, Pride and Prejudice Untold, in honor of the five-year mark for To Have His Cake. I’ve done the same for He Taught Me to Hope. The commemorative boxed set is titled, The Makings of Mr. Darcy. Available now in paperback and eBook (and soon to be released in audiobook), it includes all the books in the Darcy and the Young Knight’s Quest series, plus a little something extra.
Happy News! I’ve applied the concept of a ‘Director’s Cut’ to this boxed set. Five bonus scenes are included throughout book one (He Taught Me to Hope) in The Makings of Mr. Darcy.
Here’s a bonus scene excerpt for your reading enjoyment:
On one morning, Darcy and Elizabeth strolled along, engaged in a contest of wills. Suffering no success whatsoever in persuading Elizabeth to join him for an early morning horseback ride—solely the two of them—on the following day, Darcy asked, “Has anyone ever told you just how stubborn you are?”
His tone conveyed a mixture of disappointment and teasing, and thus Elizabeth responded in kind. “You have met my mother, sir. ‘Foolish, headstrong girl.’ Indeed, those words have been her constant companions, or so I have been told, since the day I was born. It seems I was in no hurry to make my entrance into the world,” Elizabeth exclaimed before remembering herself.
“Headstrong indeed—but foolish, I think not,” Darcy declared. “You are by far one of the most intelligent women I know.”
“I assure you that there are those who would disagree with you. My father, for one, would vigorously argue otherwise.”
“What evidence would he put forth in defence of such a stance?” Darcy asked, his voice disbelieving.
“I am afraid that my papa would refer to my marrying Ben’s father as an illustration of his point.”
Clasping his hands behind his back, Darcy said, “It is my understanding that your late husband hailed from a prominent family—highly regarded among Society. He was a young man of considerable fortune. What father would look unfavourably upon such a match for one of his daughters?”
“His opposition had more to do with my late husband’s age. Papa believed staunchly that a young man, especially one conferred with every blessing that such a young man ought to have, must take time to travel and know the world before taking on the obligations that marriage entailed.”
Here, Darcy ceased walking and encouraged Elizabeth to do likewise. He captured her hand in his and gave it a gentle squeeze. “Allow me to tell you once more how sorry I am for your loss.”
Elizabeth smiled. There was a time when such sentiments, regardless of how kindly conveyed, evoked a profound longing in her heart. The pain of it all diminished with each passing day. “You are very kind, sir,” she said, pulling back her hand and taking up her former attitude.
“Indeed, I was stubborn in my determination to marry even against the favourite wish of a most beloved parent. But foolish, I shall never teach myself to consider my action as such, for I know without a shadow of a doubt that had I to do it all over again, I would not alter one thing; regardless of how ensuing events unfolded. I may have lost my father’s good opinion, but my son is the fruit of my marriage. There is nothing in the world that is more important to me than being Ben’s mother.”
“Ben is a blessing to everyone whom he meets,” Darcy said at length. “I, for one, am a better man having met him.”
Her spirits rising to playfulness, Elizabeth laced one arm around Darcy’s, clasped her hands, and leaned closer to him as they walked along the path. “Does this mean you now have cause to consider my stubborn nature a virtue rather than a fault?”
“Oh! A virtue absolutely,” he replied, settling an assuring hand upon hers. “I believe I am indebted to you for your stubbornness—an indebtedness I look forward to repaying time and time again if you will but allow it.”
“Mr. Darcy!” Elizabeth proclaimed, “You, sir, are incorrigible.”
What say you? Is Elizabeth’s stubbornness a fault or a virtue?
Comment for a chance to win a copy of The Makings of Mr. Darcy. One prize will be awarded: a paperback edition (US Mailing address required) or an eBook edition. One winner will be selected on Tuesday, October 25th.