A/N: I wrote a fluffy Darcy thing. I didn’t know how to end it, though, so I just kind of...did.
“Are you going to talk to me at all?” Darcy asked, once the last guest had left for the night. He’d been getting the cold shoulder from Alice for hours and for the life of him he couldn’t figure out why, “Did I do something to upset you?”
“I really shouldn’t say anything, Darcy, because if I do, I’m not going to be able to stop some of the things that come out of my mouth.” she warned, pacing back and forth across the length of the kitchen.
“I need to know what I’ve done so that I can right what’s happened.” he insisted, “What have I done?”
Without any further provoking, Alice slammed a fist against the counter, gritting her teeth as she whispered, “I overheard you and Katherine talking. You made a promise to her.” she scoffed, as a realization dawned across his face, “I guess it’s lucky that Jack stuck with her for as long as he has, because if not, I just would’ve been out of luck, huh?”
“That isn’t at all what we meant by it.” he insisted, peeling his glasses away and sticking him in his pocket with much care, “We made that promise when we were children.”
“Yes, well, maybe it was that way for her, but if there is one thing I know about you, Darcy, it’s that you don’t go back on a promise.” he lowered his eyes to the ground in defeat, “How far would you have gone to make Katherine happy?”
“Katherine has never seen me in that way and you know it.” he murmured.
“That didn’t answer my question.” His blood ran cold and her voice was ice as she whispered, “Would you leave me for her?”
He couldn’t form words. He couldn’t make eye contact. Somehow, somewhere deep inside himself he knew that he wouldn’t have gone back on his promise to Katherine. They had made a promise to each other at the ages of eleven and twelve that if she weren’t married by her thirtieth birthday, he would take her as his own. Back then, he’d known he’d loved her, even if it was in a childish way, and he wasn’t sure that his feelings had ever left.
“Tell me just one more thing, Darcy.” she murmured, so low it was almost unintelligible, “Am I just the next best thing for you? You knew you couldn’t have Katherine, so you settled for me?”
That was when his eyes shot up to hers, hurt evident there, “Don’t be absurd.” he barked, “You aren’t being quite fair to me, are you? I have been nothing but faithful to you.”
“Faithful of mind, maybe. But in your heart, there’s always been Katherine, and it wasn’t until today that I saw it. I can’t believe I was so stupid.”
All he could do was shake his head. He hadn’t realized that a promise he’d made when he was twelve could come back to haunt him in such a vicious way, “I apologize for my part, but-”
“Stop, please. I really don’t need to hear anything else from you, Darcy.” she sighed, raking a hand through her hair frustratedly, “I need to leave for a few days. I’m going to stay with my father. I’m not … leaving, but I also need to take a few days to decide what I’m going to do about this.
“Alice, you’ve got to understand that the things we were talking about - they happened a very long time ago.”
“Doesn’t mean they didn’t happen.” she snapped, slamming the door as she stormed out and he was left staring down the blank space when Alice had stood just moments ago.
Days passed and still there was no word from Alice. Katherine hadn’t been able to get ahold of her, either, not even with the help of her father. Alice was just angry enough to have shut down the entire world, which left Darcy with only one choice. That third night, even against the pouring rain, he had finally plucked up enough courage to walk across town to her father’s house and knock on the door. To his surprise, it wasn’t any servant who opened the door; it was Alice herself, “I meant it when I said I wanted time to think.” she insisted.
“And I’ve allowed you that. Now I have come to tell you that it’s time for you to come home.” he said, extending a hand to her, “We should go quickly while there’s still some sunlight.”
“You think it’s that simple?” she scoffed, smacking his hand away, “I’m not even sure I’ve forgiven you yet.”
“I don’t see why you’re putting up such a fuss.” he admitted, “It’s such a small thing, really.”
“It’s not the size of the lie that matters, Darcy.”
“I did not lie to you.” he barked incredulously, genuinely offended, it would’ve seemed.
“A lie by omission is still a lie.”
He could feel his composure beginning to slip as he removed his glasses from his face, “Stop this nonsense.” he scoffed, backing off of the porch, “I’m not going to stand here in the rain and argue with you about this. I’ll be at home whenever you’re ready to come back. And you may not believe it, but I haven’t slept since you left and I probably won’t be able to until you come back. I’ve made myself sick over this and you will not even let me say my piece.”
“What is it that you were going to say?” she asked, her tone softening, interest peaked.
“I just -” he froze. He’d never anticipated getting this far, so he had to take a minute to compile his thoughts, “I never realized how much I would miss having you at the house. I can’t sleep knowing you’re not there. I didn’t realize how terrible I was at cooking until I had to do it by myself. I just - I need you to come home.”
She took a second, glaring at the ground to think things through, even though thoughts were rocketing through her head at a million miles a minute. What he’d said had had an impact. Darcy Reid wasn’t exactly known for his outstanding sentimentality, so she knew that it had been said with the utmost sincerity, if not a little bit of discomfort on his part, “You will not lie to me again, Darcy. Is that understood? Not even if it has to do with my sister. You knew that was something that I should’ve known. You knew. If you ever try to pull something like the again, I will leave and I will not come back.”
He let out a sigh of relief that he hadn’t even realized he’d been holding, charging at her with arms held wide open, “Thank you.” he sighed, hugging her tightly, burying his face in her hair, “Can we go home now, or do you need to collect your things?”
“No, we can go home.” she nodded, a small smile spreading across her face, “You’re soaked.” Alice chuckled, as they ran through the rain in the direction of their own apartment.
“Well, that would be because it’s raining, darling.” he snorted, earning him a slap across the arm.
“You know, for such a professional, straight-laced gentleman, you can really be an ass.” she grumbled.
The rest of the walk home was silent as they simply enjoyed one another’s company, grateful that they’d been given this chance to learn and grow.