My experiences as a Love Investigator—having personally interviewed over 500 men—prompted me to imagine what Darcy might have been thinking as he left the Hunsford parsonage after his horrific attempt at offering for Elizabeth Bennet’s hand. Taking what I had learned from my six years of travel, exploring the minds of men, I decided to apply my knowledge to Darcy’s state of mind. The result is my new novella available for pre-sale with a release date of January 20, 2018.
Darcy is haunted by his clumsy proposal to Elizabeth. Enter his mind and his heart during the time between his first and second offer for her hand. What were his thoughts as he left the parsonage stunned and humiliated by her rejection? How does this prideful man cope with being told he has acted in an ungentlemanly manner? What smoldering emotions finally move him to take a second chance?
A Regency tale of love lost and rediscovered.
Setting for excerpt ~ Darcy has a desperate need to get away from all that would remind him of the humiliation of his botched proposal. He journeys to the Castle Moray in Scotland accompanied by his cousin, Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam.
Darcy decanted a bottle of Spanish wine and they soon managed to finish the entire flagon in silent reverie. Once they were firmly in their cups, Darcy allowed his tongue to loosen. The worries that had plagued him now pushed him to seek advice from his cousin, whom he considered a man of the world for a colonel in the regiments must have some knowledge of the matters that tormented Darcy. “What do you know of love?” he asked.
The question coming without any preface and after a long silence caused Richard’s eyes to bulge in surprise. It was not the sort of query one expected from Fitzwilliam Darcy.
Feeling the need to tread cautiously, Richard replied, “I take it you are speaking of love as in marriage and not the love one might have for a sibling or parent.”
“Yes,” Darcy replied, frustration in the tone of his voice. “The love between a man and a woman. That kind of love.”
“Not that I have much experience, but I would say love is all about giving your word. It is a matter of honor. Each party must honor the other for the being they are and what they wish from life. And once given, they must keep their word and never change it.”
Staring into the crackling fire, Darcy grew thoughtful. “Love is about honor. You had the answer at the tip of your tongue. Tell me this, if once lost—the respect one person has for the other, not love—can it be reinstated? For my good opinion once lost is gone forever, but do you think I am the exception or the rule?”
Darcy placed his wine glass on the side table, and with a heavy sigh, he ran his hand through his hair. “I have always been a man fighting within himself to contain my emotions for I saw such things as a sign of weakness. Now I am weary of the battle. It has done me no good. I must concede but I know not how.”
Richard hesitated answering, for he was certain this was about Miss Elizabeth Bennet. Darcy was clearly suffering from something that had occurred between the two. He thought back to the bantering he had witnessed at Rosings Park. They seemed a good, if socially unequal, match for one another.
At the insistence of Lady Catherine, Elizabeth had played a series of pieces on the pianoforte. At the time Richard noticed an attraction on Darcy’s part as he lingered close, provoking Elizabeth with snipes that she returned in equal spirit. There was an undercurrent to their insults, a sort of playfulness he had never before seen in his cousin. It was that jocularity that prompted him to accompany Elizabeth around the grounds while slyly injecting examples of Darcy’s finer qualities. At this point in time he was not aware of the damage he had done.
“If you build your word, your love, on your emotions, you are building on a weak foundation that is going to shift and change. It is going to fall apart.” Richard said. “Do not let your emotions dominate your relationship for there will be days when you feel less in love. Your moods should not affect the value placed on your words.”
“I can see the significance of what you are saying, although I am more than a little surprised at the extent of your knowledge,” Darcy sipped his ruby red wine. “I must honor the person that Elizabeth is, no matter her position in life—or my mood.”
“Elizabeth? I thought so,” Richard said.
“Say nothing or I shall have to kill you!” Darcy responded in jest. “I suffer from rejection and would only share such a confession with you. I have always thought that love was merely a powerful feeling but now that she has have given me a peek inside the door, I see it should be more. When I tell a lady that I love her, I am giving her my promise that I shall never hurt her by my words or my deeds.” He sighed. “I have failed miserably.”
Stretching his long legs before him, Darcy attempted to release some of the tightness in his muscles. He stood and walked to the wine cabinet where he removed another bottle. Uncorking it he poured it slowly into a crystal decanter. So deep in alcohol muddled thinking was he that he jerked his hand when the housekeeper spoke from the doorway. Wine dribbled on the table.
Meet author, Barbara Silkstone, who traveled the country for six years armed only with a tape recorder and a quirky sense of humor, listening to men talk about women, love, commitment, and male hopes and fears.
Women will enjoy this book for the insight it gives them into the male mind. Men will immediately compare themselves with the men who opened their hearts to the Love Investigator. Both genders will gain a new and often humorous perspective on the opposite sex. This is a work of True Fiction.
From the man who is totally committed to the man who sounds like he ought to literally be committed, Barbara Silkstone offers an interesting look into the tormented world of a man’s mind.
Barbara is able to capture how men constantly wrestle their inner demons. Even if he’s the model spouse, he is not immune to the thoughts and desires that afflict every man. A brilliant look into why some men won’t allow themselves to love while others rise up and conquer their demons. The differences between what men and women think about sex, love, and relationships has never been clearer.
~ Scott Kudia, Ph.D Relationship Expert
With love & laughter!
The Love Investigator