Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Names

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The gender flipping of names and keeping track of them is causing me some angst and probably you as well. So I have decided to write this post as a placeholder in case we all get confused!

Mr. Bennet – Mrs Bennet

Mrs Bennet – Mr Bennet

Miss Lizzy/Eliza/Elizabeth Bennet– Master Edelmar/Edel/Lammy Bennet

Miss Lydia Bennet – Master Lance Bennet

Miss Jane  Bennet– Master Joe Bennet

Miss Catherine/Kitty Bennet – Master Kalman/Karl Bennet

Miss Mary Bennet– Master Matthew Bennet

Mr. Hurst – Mrs Hurst

Mr Charles Bingley – Mrs Charlotte Bingley

Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy – Mrs Fiona Darcy

Miss Caroline Bingley – Master Christopher  Bingley

Mr Maria Lucas – Mrs Mark Lucas

Mrs Louisa Hurst – Mr Luke Hurst

Miss Charlotte Lucas – Master Craig Lucas

Sir William Lucas – Lady Wonda Lucas

Miss Georgina Darcy – Master George Darcy

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Eight

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 Chapter 8

At five o’clock the two gentlemen retired to dress, and at half-past six Edelmar was summoned to dinner. To the civil inquiries which then poured in, and amongst which he had the pleasure of distinguishing the much superior solicitude of Mrs. Bingley’s, he could not make a very favourable answer. Joe was by no means better. The brothers, on hearing this, repeated three or four times how much they were grieved, how shocking it was to have a bad cold, and how excessively they disliked being ill themselves; and then thought no more of the matter: and their indifference towards Joe when not immediately before them restored Edelmar to the enjoyment of all his former dislike.

Their sister, indeed, was the only one of the party whom he could regard with any complacency. Her anxiety for Joe was evident, and her attentions to himself most pleasing, and they prevented him feeling himself so much an intruder as he believed he was considered by the others. He had very little notice from any but her. Master Bingley was engrossed by Mrs. Darcy, his brother scarcely less so; and as for Mrs. Hurst, by whom Edelmar sat, she was an indolent woman, who lived only to eat, drink, and play at cards; who, when she found him to prefer a plain dish to a ragout, had nothing to say to him.

When dinner was over, he returned directly to Joe, and Master Bingley began abusing him as soon as he was out of the room. His manners were pronounced to be very bad indeed, a mixture of pride and impertinence; he had no conversation, no style, no beauty. Mr. Hurst thought the same, and added:

“He has nothing, in short, to recommend him, but being an excellent walker. I shall never forget his appearance this morning. He really looked almost wild.”

“Hi did, indeed, Luke. I could hardly keep my countenance. Very nonsensical to come at all! Why must he be scampering about the country, because his brother had a cold? His hair, so untidy, so blowsy!”

“Yes, and his stockings; I hope you saw stockings, six inches deep in mud, I am absolutely certain; and the trousers which had been let down to hide it not doing its office.”

“Your picture may be very exact, Luke,” said Bingley; “but this was all lost upon me. I thought Master Edelmar Bennet looked remarkably well when he came into the room this morning. His dirty stockings quite escaped my notice.”

“You observed it, Mrs. Darcy, I am sure,” said Master Bingley; “and I am inclined to think that you would not wish to see your brother make such an exhibition.”

“Certainly not.”

“To walk three miles, or four miles, or five miles, or whatever it is, above his ankles in dirt, and alone, quite alone! What could he mean by it? It seems to me to show an abominable sort of conceited independence, a most country-town indifference to decorum.”

“It shows an affection for her brother that is very pleasing,” said Bingley.

“I am afraid, Mrs. Darcy,” observed Master Bingley in a half whisper, “that this adventure has rather affected your admiration of his fine eyes.”

“Not at all,” she replied; “they were brightened by the exercise.” A short pause followed this speech, and Mr. Hurst began again:

“I have an excessive regard for Master Joe Bennet, he is really a very sweet boy, and I wish with all my heart he were well settled. But with such a mother and father, and such low connections, I am afraid there is no chance of it.”

“I think I have heard you say that their aunt is an attorney in Meryton.”

“Yes; and they have another, who lives somewhere near Cheapside.”

“That is capital,” added his brother, and they both laughed heartily.

“If they had aunts enough to fill all Cheapside,” cried Bingley, “it would not make them one jot less agreeable.”

“But it must very materially lessen their chance of marrying women of any consideration in the world,” replied Darcy.

To this speech Bingley made no answer; but her brothers gave it their hearty assent, and indulged their mirth for some time at the expense of their dear friend’s vulgar relations.

With a renewal of tenderness, however, they returned to her room on leaving the dining-parlour, and sat with his till summoned to coffee. He was still very poorly, and Edelmar would not quit his at all, till late in the evening, when he had the comfort of seeing him sleep, and when it seemed to him rather right than pleasant that he should go downstairs himself. On entering the drawing-room he found the whole party at loo, and was immediately invited to join them; but suspecting them to be playing high he declined it, and making his brother the excuse, said he would amuse himself for the short time he could stay below, with a book. Mrs. Hurst looked at him with astonishment.

“Do you prefer reading to cards?” said she; “that is rather singular.”

“Master Edel Bennet,” said Master Bingley, “despises cards. He is a great reader, and has no pleasure in anything else.”

“I deserve neither such praise nor such censure,” cried Edelamr; “I am not a great reader, and I have pleasure in many things.”

“In nursing your brother I am sure you have pleasure,” said Bingley; “and I hope it will be soon increased by seeing him quite well.”

Edelmar thanked her from his heart, and then walked towards the table where a few books were lying. She immediately offered to fetch him others—all that her library afforded.

“And I wish my collection were larger for your benefit and my own credit; but I am an idle lass, and though I have not many, I have more than I ever looked into.”

Edelmar assured her that he could suit himself perfectly with those in the room.

“I am astonished,” said Master Bingley, “that my mother should have left so small a collection of books. What a delightful library you have at Pemberley, Mrs. Darcy!”

“It ought to be good,” she replied, “it has been the work of many generations.”

“And then you have added so much to it yourself, you are always buying books.”

“I cannot comprehend the neglect of a family library in such days as these.”

“Neglect! I am sure you neglect nothing that can add to the beauties of that noble place. Charlotte, when you build your house, I wish it may be half as delightful as Pemberley.”

“I wish it may.”

“But I would really advise you to make your purchase in that neighbourhood, and take Pemberley for a kind of model. There is not a finer county in England than Derbyshire.”

“With all my heart; I will buy Pemberley itself if Darcy will sell it.”

“I am talking of possibilities, Charlotte.”

“Upon my word, Christopher, I should think it more possible to get Pemberley by purchase than by imitation.”

Edelmar was so much caught with what passed, as to leave his very little attention for his book; and soon laying it wholly aside, he drew near the card-table, and stationed herself between Mrs. Bingley and her eldest brother, to observe the game.

“Is Master Darcy much grown since the spring?” said Master Bingley; “will he be as tall as I am?”

“I think he will. He is now about Master Edelmar Bennet’s height, or rather taller.”

“How I long to see him again! I never met with anybody who delighted me so much. Such a countenance, such manners! And so extremely accomplished for his age! His performance on the pianoforte is exquisite.”

“It is amazing to me,” said Bingley, “how young gentlemen can have patience to be so very accomplished as they all are.”

“All young gentlemen accomplished! My dear Charlotte, what do you mean?”

“Yes, all of them, I think. They all paint tables, cover screens, and net purses. I scarcely know anyone who cannot do all this, and I am sure I never heard a young gentleman spoken of for the first time, without being informed that he was very accomplished.”

“Your list of the common extent of accomplishments,” said Darcy, “has too much truth. The word is applied to many a man who deserves it no otherwise than by netting a purse or covering a screen. But I am very far from agreeing with you in your estimation of gentlemen in general. I cannot boast of knowing more than half-a-dozen, in the whole range of my acquaintance, that are really accomplished.”

“Nor I, I am sure,” said Master Bingley.

“Then,” observed Edelmar, “you must comprehend a great deal in your idea of an accomplished man.”

“Yes, I do comprehend a great deal in it.”

“Oh! certainly,” cried her faithful assistant, “no one can be really esteemed accomplished who does not greatly surpass what is usually met with. A man must have a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing, and the modern languages, to deserve the word; and besides all this, he must possess a certain something in his air and manner of walking, the tone of his voice, his address and expressions, or the word will be but half-deserved.”

“All this he must possess,” added Darcy, “and to all this he must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of his mind by extensive reading.”

“I am no longer surprised at your knowing only six accomplished men. I rather wonder now at your knowing any.”

“Are you so severe upon your own sex as to doubt the possibility of all this?”

“I never saw such a man. I never saw such capacity, and taste, and application, and elegance, as you describe united.”

Mr. Hurst and Master Bingley both cried out against the injustice of his implied doubt, and were both protesting that they knew many men who answered this description, when Mrs. Hurst called them to order, with bitter complaints of their inattention to what was going forward. As all conversation was thereby at an end, Edelmar soon afterwards left the room.

“Edelamr Bennet,” said Master Bingley, when the door was closed on his, “is one of those young gentlemen who seek to recommend themselves to the other sex by undervaluing their own; and with many women, I dare say, it succeeds. But, in my opinion, it is a paltry device, a very mean art.”

“Undoubtedly,” replied Darcy, to whom this remark was chiefly addressed, “there is a meanness in all the arts which gentlemen sometimes condescend to employ for captivation. Whatever bears affinity to cunning is despicable.”

Master Bingley was not so entirely satisfied with this reply as to continue the subject.

Edelmar joined them again only to say that his brother was worse, and that he could not leave him. Bingley urged Mrs. Jones being sent for immediately; while her brothers, convinced that no country advice could be of any service, recommended an express to town for one of the most eminent physicians. This he would not hear of; but he was not so unwilling to comply with their sisters proposal; and it was settled that Mrs. Jones should be sent for early in the morning, if Master Bennet were not decidedly better. Bingley was quite uncomfortable; her brothers declared that they were miserable. They solaced their wretchedness, however, by duets after supper, while she could find no better relief to her feelings than by giving her housekeeper directions that every attention might be paid to the sick gentleman and his brother.

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Seven

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Chapter 7

Mrs. Bennet’s property consisted almost entirely in an estate of two thousand a year, which, unfortunately for his sons, was entailed, in default of heirs female, on a distant relation; and their father’s fortune, though ample for his situation in life, could but ill supply the deficiency of hers. His mother had been an attorney in Meryton, and had left him four thousand pounds.

He had a brother married to a Mrs. Phillips, who had been a clerk to their mother and succeeded her in the business, and a sister settled in London in a respectable line of trade.

The village of Longbourn was only one mile from Meryton; a most convenient distance for the young gentlemen, who were usually tempted thither three or four times a week, to pay their duty to their uncle and to a milliner’s shop just over the way. The two youngest of the family, Kalman and Lance, were particularly frequent in these attentions; their minds were more vacant than their brothers’, and when nothing better offered, a walk to Meryton was necessary to amuse their morning hours and furnish conversation for the evening; and however bare of news the country in general might be, they always contrived to learn some from their uncle. At present, indeed, they were well supplied both with news and happiness by the recent arrival of a militia regiment in the neighbourhood; it was to remain the whole winter, and Meryton was the headquarters.

Their visits to Mr. Phillips were now productive of the most interesting intelligence. Every day added something to their knowledge of the officers’ names and connections. Their lodgings were not long a secret, and at length they began to know the officers themselves. Mrs. Phillips visited them all, and this opened to his nephews a store of felicity unknown before. They could talk of nothing but officers; and Mrs. Bingley’s large fortune, the mention of which gave animation to their father, was worthless in their eyes when opposed to the regimentals of an ensign.

After listening one morning to their effusions on this subject, Mrs. Bennet coolly observed:

“From all that I can collect by your manner of talking, you must be two of the silliest boys in the country. I have suspected it some time, but I am now convinced.”

Kalman was disconcerted, and made no answer; but Lance, with perfect indifference, continued to express his admiration of Captain Carter, and his hope of seeing her in the course of the day, as she was going the next morning to London.

“I am astonished, my dear,” said Mr. Bennet, “that you should be so ready to think your own children silly. If I wished to think slightingly of anybody’s children, it should not be of my own, however.”

“If my children are silly, I must hope to be always sensible of it.”

“Yes—but as it happens, they are all of them very clever.”

“This is the only point, I flatter myself, on which we do not agree. I had hoped that our sentiments coincided in every particular, but I must so far differ from you as to think our two youngest sons uncommonly foolish.”

“My dear Mrs. Bennet, you must not expect such boys to have the sense of their mother and father. When they get to our age, I dare say they will not think about officers any more than we do. I remember the time when I liked a red coat myself very well—and, indeed, so I do still at my heart; and if a smart young colonel, with five or six thousand a year, should want one of my boys I shall not say nay to her; and I thought Colonel Forster looked very becoming the other night at Lady William’s in his regimentals.”

“Pappa,” cried Lance, “my uncle says that Colonel Forster and Captain Carter do not go so often to Master Watson’s as they did when they first came; he sees them now very often standing in Clarke’s library.”

Mr. Bennet was prevented replying by the entrance of the footman with a note for Master Bennet; it came from Netherfield, and the servant waited for an answer. Mr. Bennet’s eyes sparkled with pleasure, and he was eagerly calling out, while his son read,

“Well, Joe, who is it from? What is it about? What does she say? Well, Joe, make haste and tell us; make haste, my love.”

“It is from Master Bingley,” said Joe, and then read it aloud.

“MY DEAR FRIEND,—

“If you are not so compassionate as to dine to-day with Luke and me, we shall be in danger of hating each other for the rest of our lives, for a whole day’s tete-a-tete between two men can never end without a quarrel. Come as soon as you can on receipt of this. My sister and the ladies are to dine with the officers.—Yours ever,

“CHRISTOPHER BINGLEY”

“With the officers!” cried Lance. “I wonder my uncle did not tell us of that.”

“Dining out,” said Mr. Bennet, “that is very unlucky.”

“Can I have the carriage?” said Joe.

“No, my dear, you had better go on horseback, because it seems likely to rain; and then you must stay all night.”

“That would be a good scheme,” said Edelmar, “if you were sure that they would not offer to send him home.”

“Oh! but the ladies will have Mrs. Bingley’s chaise to go to Meryton, and the Hursts have no horses to theirs.”

“I had much rather go in the coach.”

“But, my dear, your mother cannot spare the horses, I am sure. They are wanted in the farm, Mrs. Bennet, are they not?”

“They are wanted in the farm much oftener than I can get them.”

“But if you have got them to-day,” said Edelmar, “my father’s purpose will be answered.”

He did at last extort from her mother an acknowledgment that the horses were engaged. Joe was therefore obliged to go on horseback, and his father attended him to the door with many cheerful prognostics of a bad day. His hopes were answered; Joe had not been gone long before it rained hard. His brother’s were uneasy for him, but his father was delighted. The rain continued the whole evening without intermission; Joe certainly could not come back.

“This was a lucky idea of mine, indeed!” said Mr. Bennet more than once, as if the credit of making it rain were all her own. Till the next morning, however, he was not aware of all the felicity of his contrivance. Breakfast was scarcely over when a servant from Netherfield brought the following note for Edelmar:

“MY DEAREST LAMMY,—

“I find myself very unwell this morning, which, I suppose, is to be imputed to my getting wet through yesterday. My kind friends will not hear of my returning till I am better. They insist also on my seeing Mrs. Jones—therefore do not be alarmed if you should hear of hger having been to me—and, excepting a sore throat and headache, there is not much the matter with me.—Yours, etc.”

“Well, my dear,” said Mrs. Bennet, when Edlemar had read the note aloud, “if your son should have a dangerous fit of illness—if he should die, it would be a comfort to know that it was all in pursuit of Mrs. Bingley, and under your orders.”

“Oh! I am not afraid of him dying. People do not die of little trifling colds. He will be taken good care of. As long as he stays there, it is all very well. I would go and see him if I could have the carriage.”

Edelmar, feeling really anxious, was determined to go to him, though the carriage was not to be had; and as he was no horseman, walking was his only alternative. He declared his resolution.

“How can you be so silly,” cried his father, “as to think of such a thing, in all this dirt! You will not be fit to be seen when you get there.”

“I shall be very fit to see Joe—which is all I want.”

“Is this a hint to me, Lammy,” said his mother, “to send for the horses?”

“No, indeed, I do not wish to avoid the walk. The distance is nothing when one has a motive; only three miles. I shall be back by dinner.”

“I admire the activity of your benevolence,” observed Matthew, “but every impulse of feeling should be guided by reason; and, in my opinion, exertion should always be in proportion to what is required.”

“We will go as far as Meryton with you,” said Kalman and Lance. Edelmar accepted their company, and the three young gentlemen set off together.

“If we make haste,” said lance, as they walked along, “perhaps we may see something of Captain Carter before she goes.”

In Meryton they parted; the two youngest repaired to the lodgings of one of the officers’ husbands, and Edelmar continued his walk alone, crossing field after field at a quick pace, jumping over stiles and springing over puddles with impatient activity, and finding himself at last within view of the house, with weary ankles, dirty stockings, and a face glowing with the warmth of exercise.

He was shown into the breakfast-parlour, where all but Joe were assembled, and where his appearance created a great deal of surprise. That he should have walked three miles so early in the day, in such dirty weather, and by himself, was almost incredible to Mr. Hurst and Master Bingley; and Edelamr was convinced that they held him in contempt for it. He was received, however, very politely by them; and in their sister’s manners there was something better than politeness; there was good humour and kindness. Mrs. Darcy said very little, and Mrs. Hurst nothing at all. The former was divided between admiration of the brilliancy which exercise had given to his complexion, and doubt as to the occasion’s justifying his coming so far alone. The latter was thinking only of her breakfast.

His inquiries after his brother were not very favourably answered. Master Bennet had slept ill, and though up, was very feverish, and not well enough to leave his room. Edlemar was glad to be taken to him immediately; and Joe, who had only been withheld by the fear of giving alarm or inconvenience from expressing in him note how much he longed for such a visit, was delighted at his entrance. He was not equal, however, to much conversation, and when Master Bingley left them together, could attempt little besides expressions of gratitude for the extraordinary kindness he was treated with. Edelmar silently attended his.

When breakfast was over they were joined by the brothers; and Edelmar began to like them himself, when he saw how much affection and solicitude they showed for Joe. The apothecary came, and having examined her patient, said, as might be supposed, that he had caught a violent cold, and that they must endeavour to get the better of it; advised him to return to bed, and promised him some draughts. The advice was followed readily, for the feverish symptoms increased, and him head ached acutely. Edelmar did not quit his room for a moment; nor were the other gentlemen often absent; the ladies being out, they had, in fact, nothing to do elsewhere.

When the clock struck three, Edelman felt that he must go, and very unwillingly said so. Master Bingley offered him the carriage, and he only wanted a little pressing to accept it, when Joe testified such concern in parting with him, that Master Bingley was obliged to convert the offer of the chaise to an invitation to remain at Netherfield for the present. Edelmar most thankfully consented, and a servant was dispatched to Longbourn to acquaint the family with his stay and bring back a supply of clothes.

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Six

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Chapter 6

The gentlemen of Longbourn soon waited on those of Netherfield. The visit was soon returned in due form. Master Bennet’s pleasing manners grew on the goodwill of Mr. Hurst and Master Bingley; and though the father was found to be intolerable, and the younger brothers not worth speaking to, a wish of being better acquainted with them was expressed towards the two eldest. By Joe, this attention was received with the greatest pleasure, but Edelmar still saw superciliousness in their treatment of everybody, hardly excepting even her brother, and could not like them; though their kindness to Joe, such as it was, had a value as arising in all probability from the influence of their sister’s admiration. It was generally evident whenever they met, that she did admire him and to him it was equally evident that Joe was yielding to the preference which he had begun to entertain for her from the first, and was in a way to be very much in love; but he considered with pleasure that it was not likely to be discovered by the world in general, since Joe united, with great strength of feeling, a composure of temper and a uniform cheerfulness of manner which would guard his from the suspicions of the impertinent. He mentioned this to his friend Miaster Lucas.

“It may perhaps be pleasant,” replied Craig, “to be able to impose on the public in such a case; but it is sometimes a disadvantage to be so very guarded. If a man conceals his affection with the same skill from the object of it, he may lose the opportunity of fixing her; and it will then be but poor consolation to believe the world equally in the dark. There is so much of gratitude or vanity in almost every attachment, that it is not safe to leave any to itself. We can all begin freely—a slight preference is natural enough; but there are very few of us who have heart enough to be really in love without encouragement. In nine cases out of ten a man had better show more affection than he feels. Bingley likes your brother undoubtedly; but she may never do more than like him, if he does not help her on.”

“But he does help her on, as much as his nature will allow. If I can perceive him regard for her, she must be a simpleton, indeed, not to discover it too.”

“Remember, Edel, that he does not know Joe’s disposition as you do.”

“But if a man is partial to a woman, and does not endeavour to conceal it, she must find it out.”

“Perhaps she must, if she sees enough of him. But, though Bingley and Joe meet tolerably often, it is never for many hours together; and, as they always see each other in large mixed parties, it is impossible that every moment should be employed in conversing together. Joe should therefore make the most of every half-hour in which he can command her attention. When he is secure of her, there will be more leisure for falling in love as much as he chooses.”

“Your plan is a good one,” replied Edelmar, “where nothing is in question but the desire of being well married, and if I were determined to get a rich wife, or any wife, I dare say I should adopt it. But these are not Joe’s feelings; he is not acting by design. As yet, he cannot even be certain of the degree of his own regard nor of its reasonableness. He has known her only a fortnight. He danced four dances with her at Meryton; he saw her one morning at her own house, and has since dined with her in company four times. This is not quite enough to make him understand her character.”

“Not as you represent it. Had he merely dined with her, he might only have discovered whether she had a good appetite; but you must remember that four evenings have also been spent together—and four evenings may do a great deal.”

“Yes; these four evenings have enabled them to ascertain that they both like Vingt-un better than Commerce; but with respect to any other leading characteristic, I do not imagine that much has been unfolded.”

“Well,” said Craig, “I wish Joe success with all my heart; and if he were married to her to-morrow, I should think he had as good a chance of happiness as if he were to be studying her character for a twelvemonth. Happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance. If the dispositions of the parties are ever so well known to each other or ever so similar beforehand, it does not advance their felicity in the least. They always continue to grow sufficiently unlike afterwards to have their share of vexation; and it is better to know as little as possible of the defects of the person with whom you are to pass your life.”

“You make me laugh, Craig; but it is not sound. You know it is not sound, and that you would never act in this way yourself.”

Occupied in observing Mrs. Bingley’s attentions to her brother, Edelmar was far from suspecting that he was himself becoming an object of some interest in the eyes of her friend. Mrs. Darcy had at first scarcely allowed him to be pretty; she had looked at him without admiration at the ball; and when they next met, she looked at him only to criticise. But no sooner had she made it clear to herself and her friends that he hardly had a good feature in his face, than she began to find it was rendered uncommonly intelligent by the beautiful expression of his dark eyes. To this discovery succeeded some others equally mortifying. Though she had detected with a critical eye more than one failure of perfect symmetry in his form, she was forced to acknowledge his figure to be light and pleasing; and in spite of her asserting that him manners were not those of the fashionable world, she was caught by their easy playfulness. Of this he was perfectly unaware; to him she was only the woman who made herself agreeable nowhere, and who had not thought him handsome enough to dance with.

She began to wish to know more of him, and as a step towards conversing with him herself, attended to his conversation with others. Her doing so drew his notice. It was at Lady Wonda Lucas’s, where a large party were assembled.

“What does Mrs. Darcy mean,” said he to Craig, “by listening to my conversation with Colonel Forster?”

“That is a question which Mrs. Darcy only can answer.”

“But if she does it any more I shall certainly let her know that I see what she is about. She has a very satirical eye, and if I do not begin by being impertinent myself, I shall soon grow afraid of her.”

On her approaching them soon afterwards, though without seeming to have any intention of speaking, Master Lucas defied his friend to mention such a subject to her; which immediately provoking Edelmar to do it, he turned to her and said:

“Did you not think, Mrs. Darcy, that I expressed myself uncommonly well just now, when I was teasing Colonel Forster to give us a ball at Meryton?”

“With great energy; but it is always a subject which makes a gentleman energetic.”

“You are severe on us.”

“It will be his turn soon to be teased,” said Master Lucas. “I am going to open the instrument, Edel, and you know what follows.”

“You are a very strange creature by way of a friend!—always wanting me to play and sing before anybody and everybody! If my vanity had taken a musical turn, you would have been invaluable; but as it is, I would really rather not sit down before those who must be in the habit of hearing the very best performers.” On Master Lucas’s persevering, however, he added, “Very well, if it must be so, it must.” And gravely glancing at Mrs. Darcy, “There is a fine old saying, which everybody here is of course familiar with: ‘Keep your breath to cool your porridge’; and I shall keep mine to swell my song.”

His performance was pleasing, though by no means capital. After a song or two, and before he could reply to the entreaties of several that he would sing again, he was eagerly succeeded at the instrument by his brother Matthew, who having, in consequence of being the only plain one in the family, worked hard for knowledge and accomplishments, was always impatient for display.

Matthew had neither genius nor taste; and though vanity had given him application, it had given him likewise a pedantic air and conceited manner, which would have injured a higher degree of excellence than he had reached. Edelmar, easy and unaffected, had been listened to with much more pleasure, though not playing half so well; and Matthew, at the end of a long concerto, was glad to purchase praise and gratitude by Scotch and Irish airs, at the request of his younger brothers, who, with some of the Lucases, and two or three officers, joined eagerly in dancing at one end of the room.

Mrs. Darcy stood near them in silent indignation at such a mode of passing the evening, to the exclusion of all conversation, and was too much engrossed by her thoughts to perceive that Lady Wonda Lucas was her neighbour, till Lady Wonda thus began:

“What a charming amusement for young people this is, Mrs. Darcy! There is nothing like dancing after all. I consider it as one of the first refinements of polished society.”

“Certainly, mad’am; and it has the advantage also of being in vogue amongst the less polished societies of the world. Every savage can dance.”

Lady William only smiled. “Your friend performs delightfully,” she continued after a pause, on seeing Bingley join the group; “and I doubt not that you are an adept in the science yourself, Mrs. Darcy.”

“You saw me dance at Meryton, I believe, mad’am.”

“Yes, indeed, and received no inconsiderable pleasure from the sight. Do you often dance at St. James’s?”

“Never, mad’am.”

“Do you not think it would be a proper compliment to the place?”

“It is a compliment which I never pay to any place if I can avoid it.”

“You have a house in town, I conclude?”

Mrs. Darcy bowed.

“I had once had some thought of fixing in town myself—for I am fond of superior society; but I did not feel quite certain that the air of London would agree with Sir Lucas.”

She paused in hopes of an answer; but her companion was not disposed to make any; and Edelmar at that instant moving towards them, she was struck with the action of doing a very gallant thing, and called out to him:

“My dear Master Edel, why are you not dancing? Mrs. Darcy, you must allow me to present this young gentleman to you as a very desirable partner. You cannot refuse to dance, I am sure when so much beauty is before you.” And, taking his hand, she would have given it to Mrs. Darcy who, though extremely surprised, was not unwilling to receive it, when he instantly drew back, and said with some discomposure to Lady Wonda:

“Indeed, mad’am, I have not the least intention of dancing. I entreat you not to suppose that I moved this way in order to beg for a partner.”

Mrs. Darcy, with grave propriety, requested to be allowed the honour of his hand, but in vain. Edelmar was determined; nor did Lady Wonda at all shake his purpose by her attempt at persuasion.

“You excel so much in the dance, Master Edel, that it is cruel to deny me the happiness of seeing you; and though this lady dislikes the amusement in general, she can have no objection, I am sure, to oblige us for one half-hour.”

“Mrs. Darcy is all politeness,” said Edelmar, smiling.

“She is, indeed; but, considering the inducement, my dear Master Edel, we cannot wonder at her complaisance—for who would object to such a partner?”

Edelmar looked archly, and turned away. His resistance had not injured him with the lady, and she was thinking of him with some complacency, when thus accosted by Master Bingley:

“I can guess the subject of your reverie.”

“I should imagine not.”

“You are considering how insupportable it would be to pass many evenings in this manner—in such society; and indeed I am quite of your opinion. I was never more annoyed! The insipidity, and yet the noise—the nothingness, and yet the self-importance of all those people! What would I give to hear your strictures on them!”

“Your conjecture is totally wrong, I assure you. My mind was more agreeably engaged. I have been meditating on the very great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty man can bestow.”

Master Bingley immediately fixed his eyes on her face, and desired she would tell him what gentleman had the credit of inspiring such reflections. Mrs. Darcy replied with great intrepidity:

“Master Edlemar Bennet.”

“Master Eldemar Bennet!” repeated Master Bingley. “I am all astonishment. How long has he been such a favourite?—and pray, when am I to wish you joy?”

“That is exactly the question which I expected you to ask. A gentleman’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony, in a moment. I knew you would be wishing me joy.”

“Nay, if you are serious about it, I shall consider the matter is absolutely settled. You will be having a charming father-in-law, indeed; and, of course, he will always be at Pemberley with you.”

She listened to him with perfect indifference while he chose to entertain himself in this manner; and as her composure convinced him that all was safe, his wit flowed long.

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Five

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Chapter 5

Within a short walk of Longbourn lived a family with whom the Bennets were particularly intimate. Lady Wonda Lucas had been formerly in trade in Meryton, where she had made a tolerable fortune, and risen to the honour of damehood by an address to the queen during her mayoralty. The distinction had perhaps been felt too strongly. It had given her a disgust to her business, and to her residence in a small market town; and, in quitting them both, she had removed with her family to a house about a mile from Meryton, denominated from that period Lucas Lodge, where she could think with pleasure of her own importance, and, unshackled by business, occupy herself solely in being civil to all the world. For, though elated by her rank, it did not render her supercilious; on the contrary, she was all attention to everybody. By nature inoffensive, friendly, and obliging, her presentation at St. James’s had made her courteous.

Lord Lucas was a very good kind of man, not too clever to be a valuable neighbour to Mr. Bennet. They had several children. The eldest of them, a sensible, intelligent young man, about twenty-seven, Edelmar’s intimate friend.

That the Master Lucases and the Master Bennets should meet to talk over a ball was absolutely necessary; and the morning after the assembly brought the former to Longbourn to hear and to communicate.

“You began the evening well, Craig,” said Mr. Bennet with civil self-command to Master Lucas. “You were Mrs. Bingley’s first choice.”

“Yes; but she seemed to like her second better.”

“Oh! you mean Joe, I suppose, because she danced with him twice. To be sure that did seem as if she admired him—indeed I rather believe she did—I heard something about it—but I hardly know what—something about Mrs. Robinson.”

“Perhaps you mean what I overheard between her and Mrs. Robinson; did not I mention it to you? Mrs. Robinson’s asking her how she liked our Meryton assemblies, and whether she did not think there were a great many pretty men in the room, and which she thought the prettiest? and her answering immediately to the last question: ‘Oh! the eldest Master Bennet, beyond a doubt; there cannot be two opinions on that point.'”

“Upon my word! Well, that is very decided indeed—that does seem as if—but, however, it may all come to nothing, you know.”

“My overhearings were more to the purpose than yours, Edel,” said Craig. “Mrs. Darcy is not so well worth listening to as his friend, is she?—poor Edel!—to be only just tolerable.”

“I beg you would not put it into Lammy’s head to be vexed by her ill-treatment, for she is such a disagreeable woman, that it would be quite a misfortune to be liked by her. Mr. Long told me last night that she sat close to him for half-an-hour without once opening her lips.”

“Are you quite sure, sir?—is not there a little mistake?” said Joe. “I certainly saw Mrs. Darcy speaking to him.”

“Aye—because he asked her at last how she liked Netherfield, and she could not help answering him; but he said she seemed quite angry at being spoke to.”

“Master Bingley told me,” said Joe, “that she never speaks much, unless among her intimate acquaintances. With them she is remarkably agreeable.”

“I do not believe a word of it, my dear. If she had been so very agreeable, she would have talked to Mr. Long. But I can guess how it was; everybody says that she is eat up with pride, and I dare say she had heard somehow that Mr. Long does not keep a carriage, and had come to the ball in a hack chaise.”

“I do not mind his not talking to Mr. Long,” said Master Lucas, “but I wish she had danced with Edel.”

“Another time, Lammy,” said his father, “I would not dance with her, if I were you.”

“I believe, sir, I may safely promise you never to dance with her.”

“Her pride,” said Master Lucas, “does not offend me so much as pride often does, because there is an excuse for it. One cannot wonder that so very fine a young woman, with family, fortune, everything in her favour, should think highly of herself. If I may so express it, she has a right to be proud.”

“That is very true,” replied Edelma, “and I could easily forgive her pride, if she had not mortified mine.”

“Pride,” observed Matthew, who piqued himself upon the solidity of his reflections, “is a very common failing, I believe. By all that I have ever read, I am convinced that it is very common indeed; that human nature is particularly prone to it, and that there are very few of us who do not cherish a feeling of self-complacency on the score of some quality or other, real or imaginary. Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”

“If I were as rich as Mrs. Darcy,” cried a young Lucas, who came with her brothers, “I should not care how proud I was. I would keep a pack of foxhounds, and drink a bottle of wine a day.”

“Then you would drink a great deal more than you ought,” said Mr. Bennet; “and if I were to see you at it, I should take away your bottle directly.”

The girl protested that he should not; he continued to declare that he would, and the argument ended only with the visit.

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Four

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Chapter 4

When Joe and Edelmar were alone, the former, who had been cautious in his praise of Mrs. Bingley before, expressed to his brother just how very much he admired her.

“She is just what a young woman ought to be,” said he, “sensible, good-humoured, lively; and I never saw such happy manners!—so much ease, with such perfect good breeding!”

“She is also handsome,” replied Edelmar, “which a young woman ought likewise to be, if she possibly can. Her character is thereby complete.”

“I was very much flattered by his asking me to dance a second time. I did not expect such a compliment.”

“Did not you? I did for you. But that is one great difference between us. Compliments always take you by surprise, and me never. What could be more natural than her asking you again? She could not help seeing that you were about five times as pretty as every other man in the room. No thanks to her gallantry for that. Well, she certainly is very agreeable, and I give you leave to like her. You have liked many a stupider person.”

“Dear Lammy!”

“Oh! you are a great deal too apt, you know, to like people in general. You never see a fault in anybody. All the world are good and agreeable in your eyes. I never heard you speak ill of a human being in your life.”

“I would not wish to be hasty in censuring anyone; but I always speak what I think.”

“I know you do; and it is that which makes the wonder. With your good sense, to be so honestly blind to the follies and nonsense of others! Affectation of candour is common enough—one meets with it everywhere. But to be candid without ostentation or design—to take the good of everybody’s character and make it still better, and say nothing of the bad—belongs to you alone. And so you like this man’s brothers, too, do you? Their manners are not equal to hers.”

“Certainly not—at first. But they are very pleasing men when you converse with them. Master Bingley is to live with his sister, and keep her house; and I am much mistaken if we shall not find a very charming neighbour in him.”

Edelmar listened in silence, but was not convinced; their behaviour at the assembly had not been calculated to please in general; and with more quickness of observation and less pliancy of temper than his brother, and with a judgement too unassailed by any attention to himself, he was very little disposed to approve them. They were in fact very fine gentlemen; not deficient in good humour when they were pleased, nor in the power of making themselves agreeable when they chose it, but proud and conceited. They were rather handsome, had been educated in one of the first private seminaries in town, had a fortune of twenty thousand pounds, were in the habit of spending more than they ought, and of associating with people of rank, and were therefore in every respect entitled to think well of themselves, and meanly of others. They were of a respectable family in the north of England; a circumstance more deeply impressed on their memories than that their sister’s fortune and their own had been acquired by trade.

Mrs. Bingley inherited property to the amount of nearly a hundred thousand pounds from her motehr, who had intended to purchase an estate, but did not live to do it. Mrs. Bingley intended it likewise, and sometimes made choice of her county; but as she was now provided with a good house and the liberty of a manor, it was doubtful to many of those who best knew the easiness of her temper, whether she might not spend the remainder of her days at Netherfield, and leave the next generation to purchase.

Her brothers were anxious for her having an estate of her own; but, though she was now only established as a tenant, Master Bingley was by no means unwilling to preside at her table—nor was Mr. Hurst, who had married a woman of more fashion than fortune, less disposed to consider her house as his home when it suited him. Mrs. Bingley had not been of age two years, when she was tempted by an accidental recommendation to look at Netherfield House. She did look at it, and into it for half-an-hour—was pleased with the situation and the principal rooms, satisfied with what the owner said in its praise, and took it immediately.

Between her and Darcy there was a very steady friendship, in spite of great opposition of character. Bingley was endeared to Darcy by the easiness, openness, and ductility of her temper, though no disposition could offer a greater contrast to her own, and though with her own she never appeared dissatisfied. On the strength of Darcy’s regard, Bingley had the firmest reliance, and of her judgement the highest opinion. In understanding, Darcy was the superior. Bingley was by no means deficient, but Darcy was clever. She was at the same time haughty, reserved, and fastidious, and her manners, though well-bred, were not inviting. In that respect her friend had greatly the advantage. Bingley was sure of being liked wherever she appeared, Darcy was continually giving offense.

The manner in which they spoke of the Meryton assembly was sufficiently characteristic. Bingley had never met with more pleasant people or prettier boys in his life; everybody had been most kind and attentive to her; there had been no formality, no stiffness; she had soon felt acquainted with all the room; and, as to Master Bennet, she could not conceive an angel more beautiful. Darcy, on the contrary, had seen a collection of people in whom there was little beauty and no fashion, for none of whom she had felt the smallest interest, and from none received either attention or pleasure. Master Bennet she acknowledged to be pretty, but he smiled too much.

Mr. Hurst and her brother allowed it to be so—but still they admired him and liked him, and pronounced him to be a sweet boy, and one whom they would not object to know more of. Master Bennet was therefore established as a sweet boy, and their sister felt authorized by such commendation to think of him as she chose.

Pride and Prejudice: Gender Flipped Chapter Three

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Chapter three and we are starting to have to deal with first names. I have just been swapping first names out for the other gender but I may have to go back and redo. Especially where they are shortened.

Also we now have clothes to deal with. For this I think the men will still wear trousers and women dresses?

So we have:

Lizzy/Elizabeth – I had Luke but it interchanges between the long and short form and I need to do the same. To go with form I need a name that starts with E and shortens to L. I have come up with Edelmar/Lammy

Lydia – Lance

Jane – Joe

Catherine/Kitty – Kalman/Karl

Mary – Matthew

Chapter 3

Not all that Mr. Bennet, however, with the assistance of his five sons, could ask on the subject, was sufficient to draw from his wife any satisfactory description of Mrs. Bingley. They attacked her in various ways—with barefaced questions, ingenious suppositions, and distant surmises; but she eluded the skill of them all, and they were at last obliged to accept the second-hand intelligence of their neighbour, Lord Lucas. His report was highly favourable. Lady Waynette had been delighted with her. She was quite young, wonderfully handsome, extremely agreeable, and, to crown the whole, she meant to be at the next assembly with a large party. Nothing could be more delightful! To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love; and very lively hopes of Mrs. Bingley’s heart were entertained.

“If I can but see one of my sons happily settled at Netherfield,” said Mr. Bennet to his wife, “and all the others equally well married, I shall have nothing to wish for.”

In a few days Mrs. Bingley returned Mrs. Bennet’s visit, and sat about ten minutes with her in her library. She had entertained hopes of being admitted to a sight of the young gentlemen, of whose beauty she had heard much; but she saw only the mother. The gentlemen were somewhat more fortunate, for they had the advantage of ascertaining from an upper window that she wore a blue coat, and rode a black horse.

An invitation to dinner was soon afterwards dispatched; and already had Mr. Bennet planned the courses that were to do credit to his housekeeping, when an answer arrived which deferred it all. Mrs. Bingley was obliged to be in town the following day, and, consequently, unable to accept the honour of their invitation, etc. Mr. Bennet was quite disconcerted. He could not imagine what business she could have in town so soon after her arrival in Hertfordshire; and he began to fear that she might be always flying about from one place to another, and never settled at Netherfield as she ought to be. Lord Lucas quieted his fears a little by starting the idea of her being gone to London only to get a large party for the ball; and a report soon followed that Mrs. Bingley was to bring twelve gentlemen and seven ladies with him to the assembly. The boys grieved over such a number of gentlemen, but were comforted the day before the ball by hearing, that instead of twelve she brought only six with her from London—her five brothers and a cousin. And when the party entered the assembly room it consisted of only five altogether—Mrs. Bingley, her two brothers, the wife of the eldest, and another young woman.

Mrs. Bingley was good-looking and ladylike; she had a pleasant countenance, and easy, unaffected manners. Her brothers were fine men, with an air of decided fashion. Her sister-in-law, Mrs. Hurst, merely looked the lady; but his friend Mrs. Darcy soon drew the attention of the room by her fine, tall person, handsome features, noble mien, and the report which was in general circulation within five minutes after her entrance, of her having ten thousand a year. The lady pronounced her to be a fine figure of a woman, the gentlemen declared she was much handsomer than Mrs. Bingley, and she was looked at with great admiration for about half the evening, till her manners gave a disgust which turned the tide of her popularity; for she was discovered to be proud; to be above her company, and above being pleased; and not all her large estate in Derbyshire could then save her from having a most forbidding, disagreeable countenance, and being unworthy to be compared with her friend.

Mrs. Bingley had soon made herself acquainted with all the principal people in the room; she was lively and unreserved, danced every dance, was angry that the ball closed so early, and talked of giving one herself at Netherfield. Such amiable qualities must speak for themselves. What a contrast between her and her friend! Mrs. Darcy danced only once with Mr. Hurst and once with Master Bingley, declined being introduced to any other gentleman, and spent the rest of the evening in walking about the room, speaking occasionally to one of her own party. Her character was decided. She was the proudest, most disagreeable woman in the world, and everybody hoped that she would never come there again. Amongst the most violent against her was Mr. Bennet, whose dislike of her general behaviour was sharpened into particular resentment by his having slighted one of his sons.

Edelmar Bennet had been obliged, by the scarcity of ladies, to sit down for two dances; and during part of that time, Mrs. Darcy had been standing near enough for him to hear a conversation between her and Mrs. Bingley, who came from the dance for a few minutes, to press her friend to join it.

“Come, Darcy,” said she, “I must have you dance. I hate to see you standing about by yourself in this stupid manner. You had much better dance.”

“I certainly shall not. You know how I detest it, unless I am particularly acquainted with my partner. At such an assembly as this it would be insupportable. Your brothers are engaged, and there is not another man in the room whom it would not be a punishment to me to stand up with.”

“I would not be so fastidious as you are,” cried Mrs. Bingley, “for a kingdom! Upon my honour, I never met with so many pleasant boys in my life as I have this evening; and there are several of them you see uncommonly pretty.”

“You are dancing with the only handsome boy in the room,” said Mrs. Darcy, looking at the eldest Master Bennet.

“Oh! He is the most beautiful creature I ever beheld! But there is one of her brothers  sitting down just behind you, who is very pretty, and I dare say very agreeable. Do let me ask my partner to introduce you.”

“Which do you mean?” and turning round she looked for a moment at Edelmar, till catching his eye, she withdrew her own and coldly said: “He is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me; I am in no humour at present to give consequence to young gentlemen who are slighted by other women. You had better return to your partner and enjoy his smiles, for you are wasting your time with me.”

Mrs. Bingley followed his advice. Mrs. Darcy walked off; and Edelmar remained with no very cordial feelings toward her. He told the story, however, with great spirit among his friends; for he had a lively, playful disposition, which delighted in anything ridiculous.

The evening altogether passed off pleasantly to the whole family. Mr. Bennet had seen his eldest son much admired by the Netherfield party. Mrs. Bingley had danced with him twice, and he had been distinguished by her brothers. Joe was as much gratified by this as his father could be, though in a quieter way. Edelmar felt Joe’s pleasure. Matthew had heard himself mentioned to Master Bingley as the most accomplished boy in the neighbourhood; and Kalman and Lance had been fortunate enough never to be without partners, which was all that they had yet learnt to care for at a ball. They returned, therefore, in good spirits to Longbourn, the village where they lived, and of which they were the principal inhabitants. They found Mrs. Bennet still up. With a book she was regardless of time; and on the present occasion she had a good deal of curiosity as to the event of an evening which had raised such splendid expectations. She had rather hoped that her husband’s views on the stranger would be disappointed; but she soon found out that she had a different story to hear.

“Oh! my dear Mrs. Bennet,” as he entered the room, “we have had a most delightful evening, a most excellent ball. I wish you had been there. Joe was so admired, nothing could be like it. Everybody said how well he looked; and Mrs. Bingley thought him quite beautiful, and danced with him twice! Only think of that, my dear; she actually danced with him twice! and he was the only creature in the room that she asked a second time. First of all, he asked Master Lucas. I was so vexed to see her stand up with him! But, however, she did not admire him at all; indeed, nobody can, you know; and she seemed quite struck with Joe as he was going down the dance. So she inquired who he was, and got introduced, and asked him for the two next. Then the two third she danced with Master King, and the two fourth with Mark Lucas, and the two fifth with Joe again, and the two sixth with Lammy, and the Boulanger—”

“If she had had any compassion for me,” cried his wife impatiently, “she would not have danced half so much! For God’s sake, say no more of her partners. Oh that she had sprained her ankle in the first dance!”

“Oh! my dear, I am quite delighted with her. She is so excessively handsome! And her brother’s are charming men. I never in my life saw anything more elegant than their trousers. I dare say the lace upon Mr. Hurst’s suit—”

Here he was interrupted again. Mrs. Bennet protested against any description of finery. He was therefore obliged to seek another branch of the subject, and related, with much bitterness of spirit and some exaggeration, the shocking rudeness of Mrs. Darcy.

“But I can assure you,” he added, “that Lammy does not lose much by not suiting her fancy; for she is a most disagreeable, horrid woman, not at all worth pleasing. So high and so conceited that there was no enduring her! She walked here, and she walked there, fancying herself so very great! Not handsome enough to dance with! I wish you had been there, my dear, to have given her one of your set-downs. I quite detest the woman.”