Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Letters From The Heart by Rose Fairbanks Excerpt & Giveaway!!

Hello everyone, I hope you're enjoying the holiday season? To continue the festive spirit I am delighted to welcome Rose Fairbanks to my blog for an excerpt and giveaway of her new Pride & Prejudice novella, 'Letters from the Heart'. A short read, it's perfect for the JAFF addict that will be busy over Christmas :)

I love letters and although I have not written one in years, as text and email take precedent, I love to re-read the letters I have kept. Thoughts, feelings and places in time, are all captured indefinitely within the sheets of a letter; to be cried over, laughed over, cherished keepsakes of days gone by.
Therefore it is imperative letters do not find their way into the wrong hands. especially cathartic letters that are written with the intent purpose, never to see the light of day!

Blurb~ Resolved to forget Elizabeth Bennet during a winter in London, Fitzwilliam Darcy writes a letter in bitterness of spirit. Frustrated by her growing obsession with the arrogant man, Elizabeth commits her thoughts to paper. But angry people are not always wise, and secret thoughts do not always remain secret. Compelled to face their selfishness and fears, their actions encourage those dearest to them to change as well.

Excerpt~  In a previous excerpt we saw the scene which culminated in Darcy’s plan to write a cathartic letter—never meant to be sent—to Elizabeth. As the blurb says, secret thoughts do not always remain secret and the letter was sent. Darcy is now calling on Longbourn to settle matters.

An hour later he arrived at Longbourn’s door in fresh clothing. The house was strangely quiet. He chose the coward’s way out and requested Mr. Bennet immediately instead of greeting the ladies in the drawing room. Mr. Bennet did not seem very welcoming and chose to stare at him directly.
“Mr. Darcy, would you care to tell me your reason for visiting today?”
“I believe I owe you an apology, sir,” he humbly began. “I have reason to believe a mislaid letter was sent here this morning. In it, among other things, I insulted your family.”
Mr. Bennet raised an eyebrow, and Darcy had the uneasy feeling that he was the prey being played with, as a cat toys with a mouse. “And is that the extent of your travesties?”
“No, sir.” He gulped. “I also declared my love for your daughter, Miss Elizabeth, and then arrogantly laid out all the reasons I chose not to offer for her. I insulted her, I blamed her for my own lack of composure, and now I worry that I have compromised her reputation.”
Mr. Bennet was silent for a long time. “I believe she has sent you a letter as well. I am inclined to let the issue pass. I understand you have both exchanged admiration and insults and agree a match is nonsensical.”
This was not how Darcy imagined the meeting to go. “Sir! I...you must see that there were others who handled these letters. An attachment, even an engagement, must be presumed.”
“You sound very certain when you have only arrived to the area yourself, and it has been mere hours since the letters were sent.”
Blast the man! He would make Darcy confess all. “I arrogantly sent notices to my solicitor and family in hopes of making it seem as though there was a pre-existing engagement. Before reading Miss Elizabeth’s letter the idea that she would refuse me never occurred to me.”
“Well, it is as you say. She did not think highly of your insults and might refuse you, even with what appears to be weighty proof of an engagement. It is not uncommon for ladies to think better of an attachment.”
Darcy sank back in his chair. “She would harm her reputation? Even that of her sisters? The engagement would be well known, nothing so easily silenced. Does she truly think so little of me?”
He had been humbled thoroughly this day. More than this, many times now he saw that he chose a cowardly way, but now his heart demanded he be brave and fight. Not because he deserved it, but because he would not harm Elizabeth if he could help it and did not want to lose hope of her regard.
“Might I speak with Miss Elizabeth, sir? I wish to know her thoughts on this.”
Mr. Bennet looked surprised, which only humbled Darcy further. The older gentleman undoubtedly did not believe Darcy was capable of following another person’s wishes.
“Very well.”
Mr. Bennet excused himself, and after a few moments, Elizabeth was brought in. Darcy almost knocked over his chair when he stood at her entrance. She looked more beautiful than he recalled, but was subdued, and he would wager he saw caution in her eyes.
“You wished to speak with me, sir?”
Was she trembling? Why did he always lose his ability to speak sensibly around her? She motioned to his seat, and he obeyed her silent request.
“Mr. Darcy, I am a very selfish creature and, while it may wound your feelings for me to mention it, I must apologize for my unjust accusations in my...” she trailed off before quietly finishing, “in my letter.”
“What did you say of me that I did not deserve? Even more so in light of my letter. I hope you have destroyed it. I wrote harshly, and it is full of expressions that should justly make you hate me.”

“Please,” she replied staring at her hands. “Please, do not apologize for your letter. It begins in bitterness, but the ending is so full of hopeless love.”
He reached for her hands, but she pulled them away. She turned from him but said in a shaky voice, “You wrote many sensible things in the letter as well. It would be an imprudent match for you. My family’s behaviour is unpardonable. I would be nothing but a blight on your family name, and I bring nothing but myself.”
He stood at her words. “Elizabeth, you mean everything to me! There is nothing greater I could desire. Do not I owe it to my family to be happy?”
He had never been more ashamed of his selfishness. In his letter he sought only to ease his own feelings. Although he did not mean for her to read his thoughts on her family and connections, it was inexcusable for him to even think them. If, in the last day, he wondered if he truly loved Elizabeth he could have no more doubts. Her pain was his, all the worse for it came by his own hand.
“But would your happiness last? When your family name is diminished, your wife scorned, and your children unaccepted would you still be happy? What of your sister?”
“You are rejecting me?” This morning he felt disbelief at the notion. Now he felt only fear and knew she was every bit justified.
Her voice was low. “The feelings which hindered your earlier regard will soon allow you to overcome your pain, sir.”
Darcy was silent for a long moment, desperately trying to find some kind of composure. His heart pounded and every second he was sure it would be its last beat. He circled around her, willing her to meet his eye. “And what of you, Elizabeth? Do you still find nothing to esteem in me? You wrote you love me. Are you willing to go through life without that love?”
She stared at the floor, but he saw her wipe her eyes before she faced him again to reply. “I am convinced I am the last person in the world you should marry. We both know you would not be here if not for the letters.”
Panicking he declared, “But the letters are known! In an effort to affect a pre-existing engagement for us, I even sent a notice to my solicitor and my relations in London. An engagement is presumed.”
Elizabeth was silent a long moment. “Your letter tells me you think little of my sense—perhaps rightly so—therefore it should come as no surprise to you that I am willing to face the consequences of either the assumption of a broken engagement or corresponding with a gentleman without one. If my family is harmed, according to your depiction, we do not have much respectability to lose. My reputation and my family is not your concern.”
Colour drained from his face and he sank down into his chair. Cradling his head in his hands he knew not when Elizabeth quietly left the room. He had been allowed, encouraged, and nearly taught to be selfish and to think of none beyond his own family circle. Elizabeth could scarcely have chosen better words for her reproof. Here now was the true culmination of the plans of his life. Hope was over, entirely over. Alone with his tortured thoughts, he waited until Mr. Bennet returned.

Thank you for sharing Rose I'm intrigued, would Elizabeth really jeopardise her sisters reputations? Does stubbornness prevail or does she have other provocations? I personally love it when Darcy and Elizabeth communicate. Their fiery, detailed analysis of ones' character defects, is always the catalyst for change, a change that hopefully always leads towards a HEA.

Rose Fairbanks is kindly giving two lucky readers a chance to win an e-book copy of 'Letters from the Heart'. Leave a comment below for a chance to win. Is Elizabeth's refusal one of your favourite scenes? What is and why? 
Winner to be announced on the 31st Dec 14 (open internationally). Good Luck everyone! Thank you again Rose, for sharing an excerpt with us today & for your generous giveaway! 

Author bio: 
Rose Fairbanks fell in love with Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy twelve years ago.  Coincidentally, or perhaps not, she also met her real life Mr. Darcy twelve years ago.  They had their series of missteps, just like Elizabeth and Darcy, but are now teaching the admiring multitude what happiness in marriage really looks like and have been blessed with two children, a four year old son and a one year old daughter. ! She proudly admits to her Darcy obsession, addictions to reading, chocolate and sweet tea, is always in the mood for a good debate and dearly loves to laugh.

You can connect with Rose on Facebook, Twitter and her Blog


  1. oh Elizabeth, so stubborn

    meikleblog at gmail dot com

    1. They're path together can never be entirely easy, can it? Good luck and thanks for commenting!

  2. Lizzy is good at refusing proposals. She believed practice makes perfect and thus increase the affection of Mr.Darcy~~~[grinning like Mr.Collins]

    Kandy : kandychula@yahoo.com

    1. She refuses him twice in this story! Poor man! Good luck!

    2. Twice! why do I delight and cringe at the same time :)

  3. Elizabeth's refusals show her power in the choice od who she chooses to fall in love with. That's why they are my favorite


    1. I really think you're right. I'm slightly obsessed with forced marriage scenarios but in the end I've always had it be Lizzy's choice before the marriage takes place, even if she doesn't quite understand all of her feelings at the time. I've written three stories where it's a forced engagement/compromised reputation issue and she realizes her feelings at a different spot in each one (including after the marriage in one) but I've yet to do a situation where she is kicking and screaming at the altar. I always like her getting to express her opinion at some point! Good luck int he giveaway!

  4. Oh, poor Darcy! I loved the excerpt, but I am always sad when I read scenes like that. I understand Elizabeth's refusal in the original novel, and in many other Austen inspired books I have read. But I always feel sorry when they both suffer! Thanks for the giveaway :)


    1. This is one of the added scenes and it really helped change the tone of the story. I've only done a few real refusal scenes, I tend to try to avoid it by forcing the engagement, or altering the dynamics of things before the proposal but it's hard to write the heartbreak. It doesn't last long in this one, if that helps at all. Good luck!

    I don't really enjoy the scene. I always cringe when someone gets embarrassed or disappointed. tgruy at netscape dot net

    (COMMENT posted on behalf of Teresita)


Thank you! Your comments are always welcome