How much would you gamble for true love? Jane Fairfax dreaded her future as a governess. But genteel solitude seemed her fate. Then handsome, charming, rich Frank Churchill asked to marry her – IF his rich aunt agreed. If their secret engagement was discovered, Jane would be ruined. Frank seemed worth the risk; but the stakes got higher when the aunt refused her consent!
This was, perhaps, the hardest of all the things Jane had to face in keeping her secret. She wished she could simply tell Mrs Elton to stop looking for a situation for her, because she was not going to be a governess. She would be marrying Mr Frank Churchill, and be helping him take care of Mr and Mrs Churchill, until the time they had their own children to take care of – and find a governess for.
Unable to simply stop Mrs Elton’s intentions of helping by telling her the truth, she had to settle for the same excuses and vagaries she had been using over and over again, assuring her she would not at present commit to any engagements with any families. Mrs Elton refused to respect her wishes, and pressed her for the authorization to write to her sister on the morrow to accept.
Jane was uncomfortably aware that everyone in the party had now stopped talking, in order to listen to them arguing. It was time for a strategic retreat. “We have been sitting here so long, now, our legs are going to get stiff,” she stood up. “Shall we walk?” If Mr Knightley had been a gentleman with any manners, he would have long since interrupted Mrs Elton’s clearly unwelcome advances with a distraction. She appealed to his duties as a host. “Would Mr Knightley do us the honor of showing us the gardens? All the gardens? We can see how extensive and perfectly cared for his strawberry garden is. I should like to see the whole extent of the other gardens.”
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Jeanette Watts has written three Jane Austen-inpsired novels, two other works of historical fiction, stage melodramas, television commercials, and humorous essays for Kindle Vella.
When she is not writing, she is either dancing, sewing, or walking around in costume at a Renaissance festival talking in a funny accent and offering to find new ladies’ maids for everyone she finds in fashionably-ripped jeans.