This was meant to be the last bit, but I seem to be writing too many
other things, so here's a bit more in the meantime. I haven't
forgotten, but I have to attend to real life for a bit...

This Time Round / Look Who's Talking
Storytime Presents Scenes from Pride and Petulance.
by V. Jewitt

Part Five(a)
Elizabeth read her letters at the inn...

JANE / LIZ SHAW [Voice Over]
What I have to say relates to poor Lydia... I have bad news for you,
and it cannot be delayed. Lydia has left with Mr Wickham and they are
not yet gone to Scotland, as we first believed. Imprudent as a
marriage between Mr Wickham and our poor Lydia would be, we are now
anxious to be assured it has taken place...

[LYDIA /JO GRANT jumps into a carriage with MR WICKHAM]

LYDIA [in shock]
Cliff? Where's Mike gone?

MR WICKHAM [now played by a grinning PROFESSOR JONES]
I didn't see why he should have all the fun. Isn't this much better,

LYDIA [hugging him]
Well, yes, but you haven't hurt him have you?

Don't tell me you'd rather have him play your husband?

Of course not, but, Cliff, we'll be told off by the Narrator.

There will be lines later, Professor Jones, but just get on with it,

We only made a swap. He went back to the Round for a pint and I get
to do all the hard work of running off with you, seducing you and
marrying you. Thought it worked out well all round myself...

Please, get on and run away!

Oh. Right. Home, James and don't spare the horses!

[LYDIA giggles]


Our distress, dear Lizzy, is very great. My father and mother believe
the worst, but I cannot think so ill of him.

MR BENNET /THIRD DOCTOR [reading a book]
So Lydia's run off with someone she hardly knows. What a surprise.
Up the Amazon again, is it?

Oh dear. This could be the ruin of us all. Would anyone like my new
hybrid sandwich?

A sandwich? Can I have one? [Stuffing it in his mouth] Is it nearly
over? Can I get out of this dress yet?

MR BENNET [chuckling to himself]
Dear me, Kitty, I think Lydia was a bad influence on you.

I am truly glad, dearest Lizzy, that you have been spared something of
these distressing scenes; but now as the first shock is over, shall I
own that I long for your return? I know my dear uncle and aunt so
well that I am not afraid of requesting it, though I have something
more to ask of the former. My father is going to London with Colonel
Forster instantly, to try to discover her. What he means to do I know
not; but his excessive distress will not allow him to pursue any
measure in the best and safest way, and Colonel Forster is obliged to
be at Brighton again to-morrow evening. My uncle's advice and
assistance would be every thing in the world.

MR BENNET [climbing into BESSIE]
Come on man, what are we waiting for?

COLONEL FORSTER [CAPTAIN MUNRO, who's avoided being seen until this
point and thought he was going to get away with it altogether]
Yes, sir.

NARRATOR [coughing pointedly]
Mr Bennet?

MR BENNET [starting Bessie's engine]
If you don't mind, I've got an eloping daughter to find before she
comes to irrevocable harm at the hands of Mr Wickham!

I know Bessie is an antique, but she's still an anachronism in this

Well don't look at me, Miss Wright. I think the book cast the old
girl in the role. Just as well it wasn't the Whomobile, eh?

I suppose that is something.

Well, sir? Shall we try and find the errant couple?



LIZZY / SARAH JANE [leaping up from her seat in distress]
Oh! Where is my uncle?


I beg your pardon, but I must leave you. I must find Mr Gardiner this
moment, on business that cannot be delayed; I have not an instant to

Good God! What is the matter? Here, let the servant go after Mr and
Mrs Gardiner. You are not well enough - you cannot go yourself.

[MR DARCY disappears out the door while LIZZY sits down again.]

MR DARCY [on returning]
Let me call your maid - you are very ill.

No, I thank you. There is nothing the matter with me. I am quite
well. I am only distressed by some dreadful news which I have just
received from Longbourn.
[LIZZY bursts into tears and MR DARCY pats her shoulder awkwardly]

I have just had a letter from Jane, with such dreadful news. It
cannot be concealed from any one. My youngest sister has left all her
friends - has eloped - has thrown herself into the power of - of Mr
Wickham. They are gone off together from Brighton. You know him too
well to doubt the rest. She has no money, no connections, nothing that
can tempt him to - she is lost forever.

[DARCY looks astonished]

LIZZY [sniffing]
When I consider that I might have prevented it! I who knew what he
was. Had his character been known, this could not have happened. But
it is all, all too late now.

I am grieved indeed. Grieved - shocked. But is it absolutely

Lizzy told Mr Darcy what had been done to recover Lydia.

I know very well that nothing can be done. How is such a man to be
worked on? How are they even to be discovered? I have not the
smallest hope. It is every way horrible!

[DARCY shakes his head]

Has he forgotten his lines?

Really, Lizzy, you've been doing so well. No, that's what's written.
Now, carry on before we expire before we get to the end of this. I
shall certainly be having words with Izzy about this.

I should have made known his real character, but I was afraid of doing
too much. Wretched, wretched mistake!

[DARCY paces up and down the room, thinking hard while LIZZY sobs.]

I'm afraid you've long been wishing me at the devil & I have no reason
to stay, excepting my concern. I wish I could do something to help,
but I will not torment you with vain wishes. This unfortunate affair
will, I fear, prevent my sister's having the pleasure of seeing you at
Pemberley today.

Oh, yes. Be so kind as to apologize for us to Miss Darcy. Conceal
the unhappy truth as long as it is possible - I know it cannot be

Of course, Miss Bennet.

[MR DARCY walks out]

The Gardiners and Lizzy set out for Longbourn.

Cheer up, Lizzy. I think I agree with Jane. Whole thing's a fuss
about nothing and I don't see why I should go off to London. I'm
going fishing.

You'll do what you're told for once! Lizzy, think of it - Mr Wickham
cannot be so lost to all sense of self-preservation to do this to a
girl who is by no means unprotected. Why, he would never be allowed
to return to his regiment!

I'm not sure that would stop him... But you have a point! Oh, but I
believe him lost to everything but self!

The travelled as expeditiously as possible -


Barbara looked at Little Peri with her hand up. "Yes?"

"What does expigdishly mean?" she asked, taking her thumb out of her
mouth for once.

Mel and Zoe shook their heads at each other. "Doethn't she know
*that*?" said Mel.

Barbara gave them a quelling look. "It means that they got there as
fast as they could, so we don't need to spend time with them
speculating -."

Mel looks shocked. "Gambling, Mith?"

The teacher sighed to herself. "No. Basically, we're spared a long
and boring bit with them sitting in a carriage pretending to move."

"How *long* is this story?" asked a thoroughly fed up Adric. Nyssa
had been surreptitiously pinching him on the arm for the past ten
minutes and though he kept shuffling along the room, he had now
reached the wall and had nowhere left to go.

Barbara straightened herself. "Don't worry, children - we're nearly
there. And there will be more of the wicked Mr Wickham and Lady
Catherine soon. How does that sound?"

"That Lady Catherine was *funny*!" giggled Victoria. "It looked like
she was a man."

Jamie folded his arms. "O' course she wasn't a man - men don't wear
dresses and Catherine's a girl's name!"

"Just like Kitty, which is, of course, short for Catherine?" suggested
Barbara with a straight face.

Jamie nodded. "Aye." He wrinkled up his forehead. "Miss, why are
the lassies laughing at me?"

"I can't imagine, Jamie," said Barbara. "Tegan, Zoe, Peri and Rose,
please stop giggling, or that will be the end of the story -."

Little Alistair brightened up. "Good!"

The others immediately gave cries of protest and did their best
impressions of little angels - tricky for some, but they tried.
Excepting Davros, who was *still* in the naughty corner.

As soon as they arrived home, Elizabeth hurried to find Jane.

ELIZABETH [hugging Jane]
Have you any news?

Not yet, but now that my dear uncle is come, I hope everything will be

MR GARDINER [brightening at that reception]
Of course it will! [Waving his arms expansively] You can be assured
that I will soon pop up to London and sort out that rogue, Wickham.
I'm rather good at dealing with rogues, aren't I, dear?

You certainly are.

Our father is still in town and we have heard from him but once.

And my mother - how is she?

Tolerably well. She was supposed to retire to bed in hysterics, but
we keep finding her sneaking down to the kitchen to make everyone

But you - how are you? You look pale. How much you must have gone

Oh no. I am perfectly well - the sandwiches are quite edible, I can
assure you.

Mr Gardiner left for London to join Mr Bennet. In the meantime, the
Bennets received a letter from Mr Collins.

I feel myself called upon to condole with you on the grievous
affliction you are now suffering under, of which we were yesterday
informed. Be assured, my dear sir, that I sincerely sympathise with
you and all your family. The death of your daughter would have been a
blessing in comparison of this - and I would have been most happy to
oblige in that respect had you only had the foresight -

Mr Collins!

Dear me, isn't that what it says here? Well, throw off the ungrateful
brat, then and be done with it. I am of course your faithful servant


In the mean time, Mr Bennet returned without success.

I am so sorry - what you must have endured!

MR BENNET [heavily]
Say nothing of that. Who should suffer but myself? It has been my
own doing and I ought to feel it. Lizzy, I bear you no ill will for
being justified in your advice to me last May, which, considering the
event, shews some greatness of mind.

MARY / ZOE [looking up from her book]
Unhappy as the event must be for Lydia, we may draw from it this
useful lesson; that loss of virtue in a female is irretrievable - that
her reputation is no less brittle than it is beautiful - and she
cannot be too much guarded in her behaviour the undeserving of the
other sex.

Perhaps this will dissuade you from running away, Kitty?

I am not going to run away! If I should ever go to Brighton, I would
behave better than Lydia. You wouldn't catch me running off with a

You? Go to Brighton? I wouldn't trust you so near it as Eastbourne
for fifty pounds! No, Kitty, I have at last learnt to be cautious.
No officer is ever to enter my house again. Balls will be absolutely
prohibited, unless you stand up with one of your sisters - Kitty, stop
grinning in that inane fashion - and you are never to stir out of
doors, till you can prove that you have spent ten minutes of every day
in a rational manner.

[KITTY sobs into her hanky]

Well, well, do not make yourself unhappy. If you are a good girl for
the next ten years, I will take you to a review at the end of them.


All Doctor Who characters belong to the BBC. Can't think *where* I
got the rest of it from...

Part One - Part Two - Part Three - Part Four - Part Six

Back To S