Epilogue

Miss Sage Darcy proved to be the eldest of seven children, but she was always secretly her father's favourite. She looked just like her mother, from her chestnut curls to her green eyes to her curvaceous figure. After Sage was born, Elizabeth and Darcy had four boys and two more girls, the last born when Elizabeth was almost fifty. They dwelt together at Northangle for nearly twenty years, until Mr. Robert Darcy grew too frail and forgetful to care for Pemberley on his own. Fitzwilliam by that time had much experience overseeing estates, and took over the management of Pemberley with a competence and efficiency that impressed his father. After Sage was born, Mr. Robert Darcy finally seemed to accept Elizabeth fully into the Darcy family. Lady Anne doted on her grandchildren, and was constantly out at Northangle visiting them and spoiling them.

Georgiana became engaged during her third season to the heir of the Earl of Bellmar, Mrs. Gardiner's relation. After her marriage, therefore, she moved only a couple hours away in Derbyshire, and delighted in visiting her brother and sister-in-law, and all her nephews and nieces. She bore her husband a son and a daughter.

Jane Bennet enjoyed her courtship with Mr. Gregory, although it was difficult with their being so far apart. Mr. Bennet gave permission for them to write, however, and by the time Mr. Gregory proposed, Jane was more than ready to move into the parsonage to be his wife. Mrs. Bennet was sometimes heard to utter that her most beautiful daughter was meant for a grander marriage than the wife of a mere rector; but overall she was glad her daughter was happy. Jane bore her husband five children, who filled the parsonage with their laughter and joy. Mr. Gregory lived to a ripe old age, tending to his flock until his final days.

Lady Catherine was never reconciled to Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth. Darcy refused to allow her access to his family without an apology to his wife, and that Lady Catherine was unwilling to give. Darcy ceased his visits to Rosings altogether until Lady Catherine's death. Then Darcy went out with his family in order to support Anne, who was in poor health herself for many years.

Young Basil excelled at his studies, so much so that Darcy was impressed and offered to send him to train to become a solicitor. Basil gratefully accepted, and when Darcy's solicitor finally retired, Basil assumed the position, and served Darcy with distinction for forty years.

Mr. Bingley pined for Jane for about six months before he found another angel to adore. Indeed, there were many angels after that until he finally settled for an angel his sister had selected for him. Miss Bingley continued living with her brother, who could not seem to get rid of her; for Mr. Hurst had declined to have Caroline abide with them any more now that his daughter was born. Miss Bingley herself never married. When she was thirty years old, she attempted to compromise a viscount at a ball. The compromise was successful, but the lord refused to marry her, leaving her ruined in the eyes of society. She lived the rest of her life lording it over her brother and his meek wife, and running their household in the estate that Mr. Bingley had at last purchased.

Miss Mary Bennet blossomed into a talented and pretty woman. She would never quite match the beauty of her sister Jane, but few ever did. It was on one of her visits to her sister Elizabeth that she met again Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam. Colonel Fitzwilliam was fascinated by the young blonde woman who had seemed so pedantic and solemn at their first meeting, but now seemed to have a sense of humour and a definite talent at the pianoforte. When Richard inherited Rosings from a dying Anne de Bourgh, he had the means to support a wife and promptly asked Mary to marry him. Mary, who had secretly admired the vivacious and handsome colonel, at once accepted, and they filled the halls of Rosings with the voices of children.

Lydia and John remained close even after John finished university. Lydia declared that she would never get married and that she would stay at Longbourn with John forever. At this time they were twenty two, and John had no intention of getting married either, despite Mrs. Bennet's hysterical utterings that he must marry, for Longbourn needed an heir. Mr. Bennet, as usual, laughed at his wife's antics, but he secretly agreed with her. Therefore, when John found a young woman he could adore at the age of twenty-seven, he was quickly bound in matrimony. Mrs. Bennet at that point had passed away, so Lydia had served as her father and brother's hostess for more than a year. Having a new bride in the house did not suit her at all; and by the age of thirty she decided that John's strong-willed wife, who reminded her of Lizzy, had more influence over John than Lydia had, and had made her life uncomfortable for nearly three years. Therefore, she married the widower who had purchased Netherfield only six months before, and therefore was able to make the trek to Longbourn to see her brother whenever she wished, while still having her own household to run. She bore her husband three children.

Mr. Bennet lived until the ripe old age of eighty-seven. He had given over the running of Longbourn to John soon after John returned from university, so after his wife's death he spent his retirement travelling to his various daughters' households, and occasionally coming back to Longbourn to see his son and daughter-in-law Violet, who reminded him so much of his Lizzy, and their four children.

Mr. Robert Darcy and Lady Anne also lived into their eighties, seeing their grandchildren grow up and have families of their own. By the time they passed away, Pemberley had been filled with the laughter of children for more than twenty years. And so it remained until Darcy's eldest son, Bennet, took over the reins of Pemberley, and Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth settled into a sedate retirement. They finally passed away together, clasped in each other's arms.

THE END