Barbara pulled into her driveway and parked the car. She took a breath and sighed.
Ambrose got out of the car and came around to her. He opened the driver’s door.
She looked up at him.
He smiled gently. “You can’t stay in there.”
Barbara unbuckled her seatbelt and got out of the car.
“Are you okay? Do you need me to stay with you?”
“Can you? Just for a little bit?”
“It could be dangerous.”
“Just until I fall asleep?”
“Please, Ambrose.” She laid her hands on his chest. “One last time.”
“You naughty temptress. Fine. One last time.”
“Oh, this is terrible news!” exclaimed Nizzie in his low baritone.”Lyder’s gone and run off with Jenny Wickham.” He wrung his hands. “Oh, Papa will be quire distraught. And I daren’t imagine how Mama will react. She’s likely to take her hunting rifle and go shoot the man-filching wench.”
Nizzie’s oldest brother, Janus, sat down on the bed next to Nizzie. “Do you suppose this is our fault for not putting out a general announcement about Wickham’s past dealing with Miss Darcy’s younger brother?”
“No. This is strictly Lyder’s fault. I always knew that he would bring shame and disgrace to our family name. I just had no idea that he would go through such lengths to disgrace it.”
Barbara smiled and hugged Ambrose’s arm. “Thank you for staying.”
Ambrose pulled his attention from the intriguingly bad gender swapped Pride and Prejudice movie “You’re So Prejudiced (and Proud Of It). “Not a problem. You okay?”
“It feels wrong to say yes, but yes. I still feel bad for Kevin, though.”
He kissed her head. “You wouldn’t be the Barbara Addleston I love if you didn’t feel bad for him.”
“You’re so weird.”
He grinned. “Am I?”
“Yes. Most guys would be jealous about me caring about my ex.”
“Who says I’m not jealous?”
“That’s part of the reason why I don’t get along with him.”
“What’s the other part?”
“If you were scent sensitive, you wouldn’t even have to ask. You would know.”
“Smells like garbage?”
“Of the worst kind. I could describe it to you, but I don’t want to make you sick.”
“Silly. You don’t have to be jealous of him. I love you and only you.”
“I know.” He frowned at the tv screen. “What the…?”
Mrs. Bennett was dancing around a burning building, laughing maniacally. “Burn, you man-filching wench! FEEL THE BURN!” Cue more maniacal laughter.
“What the heck did we just miss?” asked Ambrose.
“Something that Jane Austen clearly didn’t write.” said Barbara.
Miss Fitzwilla Darcy rode up on her glorious white charger. “And this is why I didn’t want my dear friend Charlotte Bingley to marry into this family.” She said it soft enough so Mrs. Pyromaniac Bennett didn’t hear.
Miss Darcy blew a whistle and a whole fire brigade rushed onto the scene and put it out in no time.
As they put out the fire, Miss Darcy pulled out her black book and wrote in it: “Things to accomplish today: Settle Wickham’s debts. Convince her to marry that unwelcome Lyder baggage.” She glanced up as the cops hauled Mrs. Bennett away. “Pay Mrs. Bennett’s bail.”
Ambrose grinned. “We’re gonna have to watch this from the beginning.”