Elizabeth Marton

From even her first sighting of him, Elizabeth strongly despises Fitzwilliam Emmerson, the silent, surly friend of Edmund Fitzwield, owner of a nearby estate. However when things take a funny turn and something more than what Miss Marton could ever have anticipated is revealed, she begins to realize
exactly how wrongly judgemental she has been, particularly concerning Mr. Emmerson's father...


4. 4

It was shortly after the disastrous card game had been packed away, that an unfamiliar young woman, of about Janet's age appeared in the doorway and introduced herself as Miss Lucinda Fitzwield, younger sister of Mr Fitzwield. The reason, she said, that their present company had not yet had the pleasure of acquainting with her was because, since her, her brother's etc, had arrived at Inklefield house was because she had, most unfortunately, been taken ill upon their journey. She was a very unfeminine woman, with a broad nose and shoulders to match and heavy eyebrows, so much unlike Mr. Fitzwield in appearance and, it so seemed, nature. She was spiteful and domineering, and seemed very much on the side of Mr. Emmerson. She also, as was the opinion of Mr. Emmerson, thought Elizabeth plain and hateful and relished in even more delight than Mr. Emmerson in tormenting poor Elizabeth. She had not thought she could find a person, in this whole world, whom she hated more than Mr. Emmerson, but yet here was this woman, wickedly standing before her. In fact, Lucinda Fitzwield was disliked so much by everyone, even her own brother, although he, at least, tried to be civil towards her, that when Mr. Fitzwield called for a turn about the grounds, she was left partnerless and had to be grouped together with Kitty and Mary, neither of whom, looked particularly pleased about the matter.

Mr. Fitzwield himself, however, partnered, to Mrs Marton's delight, Elizabeth's sister Janet, then paired Elizabeth, herself, with Mr. Emmerson, the latter of which, silently took Miss Marton's arm with such a peculiar look astride his features, that Mr. Fitzwield good-naturedly teased his friend all the way down and out of the house. Mr. Emmerson, of course, scowled some more and said, amidst a mellow laugh from Mr. Fitzwield, that he would rather marry a slug than Elizabeth. Elizabeth, meanwhile, wisely chose to ignore it. If that dratted, awful man chose to be so ill-natured than so be it. At this rate he wouldn't get even a slug to be his wife, and that satisfied her. Likewise, for most of their journey, Mr. Emmerson ignored Elizabeth back.

There came a time, however, where Mr and Mrs Marton, Kitty, Anne and therefore Miss Fitzwield grew tired and walked back up the distance to the house. This turn in events left only four of them left, a-walking and what an odd mixture of people it was! There was Mr. Fitzwield, conversing animatedly with Janet, whilst in front, strode the entirely opposite couple, marching along like soldiers and not talking to each other, going at such a mighty pace, so eager to get out of the company of each other, so Elizabeth was sure, that they soon left Mr. Fitzwield and Janet quite behind. Now without fellow company, nor his friend to guide him in situation, Elizabeth, within several minutes of only the sound of their shoes and the path to accompany them, decided to make the utmost best out of the dismal walk, and decided to attempt at figuring out Mr. Emmerson's true and unconcealed character. Her first idea of a topic to make him talk, came about as they strode through an avenue of neatly pruned headges and she said civilly "Do you much like gardening? For I feel as though hedges such as these must take up an awful amount of time to prune. Do you keep such things at Pickerly?"

Mr. Emmerson looked at Elizabeth in great surprise. "Yes." he curtly replied, "But I am not too fond of gardening myself."

"Me neither." Said Elizabeth. "I suppose, then, as you do no gardening yourself, that you must hire someone to keep your grounds for you?"

"Yes." Said he, and they walked, once more, in silence, although Elizabeth was using the time to try to make something of Mr. Emmerson's personality. If only he had asked some questions of his own, for then she might have managed it.  The walk, she thought bitterly, had been very much wasted and she hoped that Janet's time with Mr. Fitzwield had been more productive, and it was, that night, of Mr. Fitzwield, as she lay in bed. Why, she wondered, was he so desperately keen for her to become acquainted with Mr. Emmerson?

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