Clarifications for those who decide to read my story:

English is not my first language; therefore, I apologize for grammatical and vocabulary use errors. I also want you to know that to post frequently, I do not spend time editing until the story is complete. So, I ask you to consider these aspects if you decide to comment.

Greetings to all, and we will see if anyone is interested in this little story based on the characters of Jane Austen.


Chapter 1

Baroness Eleanor Beatrice Campbell entered into a small town called Meryton in her luxurious carriage after a little more than twenty years that she had gone. At first glance, everything remained the same. It seemed that time had frozen in the town where she had grown up, and she had lived practically half of her life.

Eleanor was born and raised in Longbourn. Her father was Eustace Thomas Bennet, and her mother, Beatrice Bennet. She was the second of two children, and her older brother was Thomas Bennet. Her family dynamics had always been defined because Longbourn was entailed to male heirs only. When Thomas was born, both parents were content; his birth ensured that the estate would stay in the family. But children's health was generally fragile, so they wanted their second child to be a boy too, so they could have a spare if something happened to young Thomas. Unfortunately for them, it was a girl, and after the birth of little Ella, they did not become parents again.

Consequently, Eustace and Beatrice protected and overprotected their son and heir to ensure that nothing bad happened to him. If they lost Thomas, Longbourn would be inherited by a distant family cousin. All of this made Thomas a very spoiled and irresponsible child from a young age. Thomas never had to strain to get anything; he knew that he would inherit the estate since he was born. He was not concerned about anything else. Eustace Bennet had been a good landlord, diligent and hard-working. But his son was not interested in anything related to the work of managing and producing the land. He only liked to read about things that interested him, like history and philosophy.

On the contrary, his sister Eleanor was mainly ignored by her parents, which made her quite independent from a very young age. Her mother had trained her well so she would know how to run a home. Thomas always pretended to be ill when his father asked him to accompany him to supervise the estate work. Because of that, Eleanor was the one who went with her father and learned what his brother should know. She always liked numbers, so she was in charge of helping her father keep Longbourn's accounts. When her brother Thomas went to Oxford, Eleanor was pretty much in control of everything. Thomas only came home for the holidays and had even less interest than before in collaborating or learning with his father.

Longbourn had an annual income of three thousand pounds. Her parents were quite thrifty, so they had a good amount of savings, including a dowry of eight thousand pounds for her. But Thomas was not like his parents; he did not limit his expenses. When he was at Oxford, he always spent large sums of money on books, clothes, horses, and other things related to his comfort. He had no vices but was too self-centered.

Lady Campbell asked her coachman to drive her a mile outside of Meryton. She wanted to see her former home. From a distance, she could see that not much had changed. It looked pretty run down, something that didn't surprise her at all. She imagined that her brother must have been in charge of everything by now, and knowing how negligent he was, she was not surprised to see everything so ruined. Their mother had died when Eleanor was fifteen, and Thomas was eighteen. When she left Hertfordshire, her father was alive, albeit ill. He was still in charge of Longbourn because he was afraid to let his son take charge. After all, he knew he was not prepared.

By then, Thomas had married Frances Gardiner, and they had a little daughter named Jane, and another child was on the way. She never understood why her brother had married Fanny. She was a beautiful woman, but that was her only attribute. She always remembered the disappointed face of her father, her brother, and Fanny herself when the first child of the marriage was a girl and not a boy. She recalled how everyone prayed that the second child was a boy. The entail had been a significant burden to her mother and her father, both diligent and hard-working. She didn't even want to think about the effect it could have on such a simple and pretty nervous woman like Fanny with a lazy husband and only concerned about himself.

It was still very early, and probably everyone in the family was still asleep. The day before, it had rained a lot. She had to spend the night at an inn outside of Meryton. After taking one last look at what was once her home, she climbed into the carriage and continued to her destination.


Fitzwilliam Darcy was a serious, intelligent, and immensely wealthy man. He descended from a noble family on his mother's side and a family of wealthy landowners on his father's side. Five years ago, he had taken possession of his inheritance, becoming one of the richest men in England even though he was only 27 years old. He was also a very handsome man; his face revealed his aristocratic lineage and his dark blue eyes a complex personality. He was a tall with an excellent physical build typical of an active man in both sports and work. That is why mothers and their marriageable daughters constantly sought him out.

But, he was not an easy man to understand. He had always been respected for both his rank and his sharp intelligence, and that had led him to have a high opinion of himself. He also was an extremely reserved person and even a bit shy when it came to social interactions. The fact that so many people constantly sought his attention was not something he liked. As a defense mechanism, he had developed a haughty and arrogant personality. Most of the people in his circle accepted without qualms because they thought that a man with his wealth and qualities had the right to behave as he pleased, and in a way, he did it.

That morning he had gone out riding at dawn. He liked morning exercise because it helped him think and plan what he would do for the day. Unfortunately, the day before, Miss Bennet had fallen ill after getting wet in the rain and was staying at Netherfield. She was a very beautiful woman, like many he had known before. But in his opinion, there was nothing special about her.

The one that had caught his attention was Miss Elizabeth, who was pretty but full of other qualities hard to find in a woman. Sadly for her, she came from a poor and vulgar family, so she could never capture the attention of a man like him no matter how hard she tried. He remembered how she constantly challenged him when she looked back at him defiantly or verbally when refuted what he said. He remembered how she had sung for him at Lucas Lodge a couple of evenings ago and how she had refused to dance with him at the same gathering. He recognized that she was an charming woman, and If her circumstances were different, he might have given her a chance.

He was only sorry that Miss Bingley had caught him in a moment of weakness, and now she was aware of the flirtation that had happened between him and Miss Elizabeth. But that was over; he was not willing to waste his time with a simple country girl like her and less to raise expectations that he could never fulfill.

"I think it's time for me to forget about all this and have breakfast. I hope to get there before Miss Bingley has woken up, so I don't have to put up with her constant comments and flattery. Let's go home," Mr. Darcy said to his horse.


While traveling in the carriage to her destination, Lady Campbell remembered how twenty years ago she had embarked for Canada as a companion to a widow traveling to reunite with her son because she had not seen him for many years. Lady Margaret allowed her to flee England and leave behind the painful past and the abandonment of her family. The dowager countess had two sons, her eldest Robert Campbell Earl of Westcliff, and her younger son Daniel Campbell. Daniel was Eleanor's late husband, her best friend, and a true brother.

Lady Margaret's husband had been an aggressive, immoral man and a terrible father and husband. At his death, the Earldom was practically broke, but Robert, with the financial help of Daniel, had managed to rescue part of the family's heritage. The late Earl never accepted Daniel because since he was little, he was a different child, with a very soft personality and different tastes from the rest of the boys. As a good second son, he enlisted in the army where he made an exemplary career and where he met James, the love of his life.

When the rumors began about their relationship, they both fled to Canada, where they became rich and powerful men. But once again, Daniel heard insinuations and ill-intentioned rumors threatened his social position and everything he had achieved in Canada. At that moment, Eleanor came into his life. She had sworn never to love anyone again; after losing Marcus, her romantic life had ended. So, the two friends decided to help each other and married. Their union was based on camaraderie and respect. Daniel had become the most important man in the province, both politically and economically. So he was awarded the title of Baron in recognition of his service to the crown.

Daniel knew that without his beloved friend, and Eleanor's unconditional support, he would never have accomplished anything that he did. Thus, he made her his only heir and wanted to give her a special gift. Many years ago, he had commissioned his solicitor to buy a property near Meryton. A few days before he died, he told Eleanor that she was the mistress of Netherfield and that one day she must return to England to close the wounds from her past that were still open. She smiled when she remembered the words of her beloved Daniel. He was right; she needed to close all the wounds of her past to be finally in peace with the world and herself.

When she finally arrived at Netherfield, she was amazed at how beautiful the property was. When she left the area, they were just building it, and they had undoubtedly done a great job. Unfortunately, it had only recently been leased. She was unsure if the current tenant would allow her to view the property.

She was accompanied by her secretary, Mr. Taylor, and his wife, Mrs. Taylor, who served as a companion. After twenty years outside of England, she needed some advice, and this couple had been a true blessing in the process of reconnecting her with English habits and customs.

Just as her carriage entered Netherfield, Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley were leaving the house for the stables to check on the progress of the repairs he had ordered. When they saw the luxurious carriage, they decided to wait and see who it was.

After waiting a few minutes, they saw a beautiful and elegant lady come out of it, accompanied by a couple. "Good morning," Eleanor said to the two young men who greeted her on the main entrance steps. "My name is Lady Eleanor Campbell, and I am the owner of Netherfield." She explained the circumstances of how she had inherited the property and that she had never had the opportunity to see it but that she did not wish to intrude. She would leave after touring the gardens if they allowed her.

"My dear Lady Campbell, please allow me to show you the house and all its surroundings," said the ever kind Mr. Bingley. Mr. Darcy offered to take over the stable for Bingley to attend the illustrious visit. He knew that the lady was also Lord Westcliff's sister-in-law.

Eleanor was delighted with everything she saw, except for the gaudy decoration of some rooms. But she was a little relieved when the kind Mr. Bingley explained to her that his sisters were in charge of the decoration, that it was not part of the house. When Caroline and Mrs. Hurst finally showed up a little before noon, Charles introduced them to Eleanor. They were fascinated to have such a distinguished woman as a visitor. Even more so, when they heard the conversation between Lady Campbell and Mr. Darcy and found out about her relationship with Lord Westcliff.

"When do you plan to return to London, my Lady?" asked Mr. Bingley.

"I don't know yet. I grew up in Hertfordshire and I am looking forward to stay for a few days more to tour the area. I will see if there are rooms at the Inn in Meryton for myself and my staff and make a decision," explained Lady Campbell.

"My dear lady, you cannot stay in an Inn. Allow me to offer my hospitality," said Mr. Bingley.

"Of course, you must stay with us, my Lady," said Caroline, and looking at Mr. Darcy, added, "Let me be your hostess. I know that I can treat a woman of your category and elegance as you deserve." Miss Bingley had realized that by hosting the lady, she could demonstrate to Mr. Darcy all the qualities that would make her the perfect mistress of Pemberley.

Lady Campbell hesitated for a moment. She did not wish to be an intruder. Mr. Darcy, observing the great lady, added, "My Lady, a woman of your rank and status cannot stay at the Inn of a town like Meryton."

Eleanor found the tall, stern young man's comment quite pompous, but she understood that he was doing it with good intentions. "Alright, thank you very much. I accept your hospitality but only for one night."

Caroline ordered a tray of tea, and everyone in the room began to chat amiably. Mr. Bingley told her that they had a guest, who, unfortunately, was ill, and that was why he was not going to be able to introduce her.

"Miss Jane Bennet is the daughter of our neighbor, Mr. Bennet of Longbourn." Mr. Bingley explained and said many other things, describing how nice and kind she was.

Eleanor's heart clenched. Indeed the young lady they were talking about was her niece, the little girl she adored and whom she hadn't seen in so many years. But her thoughts were interrupted by a comment from Miss Bingley.

"Jane Bennet is a sweet girl, Lady Campbell. She is the only one in her family that a woman of your elegance could tolerate." Caroline said briskly.

Eleanor was trying to process that information when the butler announced a new visit and said, "Miss Elizabeth Bennet is here."

Eleanor couldn't believe her good luck. She would meet another niece, and maybe she could get some information from her. She couldn't help but smile when she saw a young lady, a little disheveled and muddy, enter the room.

"Good morning. I have come to inquire about my sister's health," Elizabeth said nervously noticing the displeased faces of Mr. Bingley's sisters.


Thanks to everyone who leaves supportive comments!