Mr. Darcy’s Rejected Proposal

Mr. Darcy: Miss Elizabeth. I have struggled in vain and can bear it no longer. These past months have been a torment. I came to Rosings only to see you. I have fought against judgement, my family’s expectation, inferiority of your birth, my rank. I will put them aside and ask you to end my agony.

Elizabeth Bennet: I don’t understand.

Mr. Darcy: I love you. Most ardently. Please do me the honor of accepting my hand.

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Elizabeth Bennet: Sir, I appreciate the struggle you have been through,and I am very sorry to have caused you pain. It was unconsciously done.

Mr. Darcy: Is this your reply?

Elizabeth Bennet: Yes, sir.

Mr. Darcy: Are you… Are you laughing at me?

Elizabeth Bennet: No.

Mr. Darcy: Are you *rejecting* me?

Elizabeth Bennet: I’m sure that the feelings which, as you’ve told me have hindered your regard, will help you in overcoming it.

Mr. Darcy: Might I ask why, with so little endeavor at civility, I am thus repulsed?

Elizabeth Bennet: And I might as well inquire why, with so evident a design of insulting me, you chose to tell me that you liked me against your better judgment. If I was uncivil, then that is some excuse. But I have other reasons, you know I have.

Mr. Darcy: What reasons?

Elizabeth Bennet: Do you think anything might tempt me to accept the hand of the man who has ruined, perhaps for ever, the happiness of a most beloved sister? Do you deny that you separated a young couple who loved each other, exposing your friend to censure of the world for caprice and my sister to derision for disappointed hopes, involving them both in misery of the acutest kind?

Mr. Darcy: I do not deny it.

Elizabeth Bennet: How could you do it?

Mr. Darcy: Because I believed your sister indifferent to him.

Elizabeth Bennet: Indifferent?

Mr. Darcy: I observed them most carefully and realized his attachment was far deeper than hers.

Elizabeth Bennet: That’s because she’s shy!

Mr. Darcy: Bingley was persuaded she didn’t feel strongly.

Elizabeth Bennet: You suggested it.

Mr. Darcy: I did it for his own good!

Elizabeth Bennet: My sister hardly shows her true feelings to me. [silence] I suppose his… fortune had some bearing?

Mr. Darcy: No, believe me I wouldn’t do your sister the dishonor it was just merely suggested…

Elizabeth Bennet: What was?

Mr. Darcy: [pause] It was clear that an advantageous marriage would be the worst option possible…

Elizabeth Bennet: Did my sister give that impression?

Mr. Darcy: No! No, there was, however, the matter of your family…

Elizabeth Bennet: Our want of connection? Mr. Bingley did not seem to object…

Mr. Darcy: No, it was more than that.

Elizabeth Bennet: How, sir?

Mr. Darcy: It was the lack of propriety shown by your mother, your three younger sisters, and even, on the occasion, your father. [thunder clash, Elizabeth is hurt]

Mr. Darcy: Forgive me. You and your sister I must exclude from this.

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Elizabeth Bennet: And what about Mr. Wickham?

Mr. Darcy: [He walks closer to Lizzie] Mr. Wickham?

Elizabeth Bennet: What excuse can you give for your behavior toward him?

Mr. Darcy: You take an eager interest in that gentleman.

Elizabeth Bennet: He told of his misfortunes…

Mr. Darcy: He told me of his misfortunes!

Elizabeth Bennet: …and yet you treat him with sarcasm.

Mr. Darcy: So this is your opinion of me? Thank you. Perhaps these offences might have been had your pride…

Elizabeth Bennet: My pride?!

Mr. Darcy: …not been hurt by scruples about our relationship. Am to rejoice in the inferiority of your recent circumstances?

Elizabeth Bennet: And those are the words of a gentleman? From the moment I met you your arrogance and conceit and your selfish disdain for the feelings of other made me realize that you are the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry.

[they look at each other for a long time as though about to kiss]

Mr. Darcy: Forgive me, madam, for taking up so much of your time.

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