• Published 13th Feb 2013
  • 1,195 Views, 69 Comments

Pride and Prejudice and Ponies - arglefumph

Rarity reads her favorite romance novel, Pride and Prejudice, to her little sister Sweetie Belle.

  • ...

Chapter 12

At first, Rarity resolved not to talk to Mr. Darcy at all, while they were dancing. As the silence continued and Mr. Darcy made no attempt to speak, Rarity changed her mind. Conversation could be an ideal method for tormenting Mr. Darcy, seeing that he could not get away from her for a substantial period of time.

"This is quite a lively ball tonight," Rarity said as an opening statement.

"Hm? Yes, quite," Mr. Darcy said.

He made no signs of continuing. After twenty seconds, Rarity shook her head and addressed him a second time. "It is your turn to say something now, Mr. Darcy. I talked about the dance, and you ought to make some sort of remark on the size of the room, or the number of couples."

"I...I see," Mr. Darcy said. "Do you talk, then, as a general rule while you are dancing?"

"Sometimes," Rarity said. "It would be exceedingly odd for two ponies to be silent for half an hour together. Do you mean to tell me that the dances are different in Canterlot?"

"They are not so different," Mr. Darcy said. "However, I have found that most of my dance partners do much in the way of talking, but very little when it comes to conversation."

"I see," Rarity said. "It would seem that, here in the country, we mares expect a bit more out of stallions."

"Or perhaps that is a trait which is peculiar to yourself, Miss Rarity," Mr. Darcy said.

"It is true that expect a good deal out of the stallions I meet," Rarity said. "That is why I planned to come tonight with Mr. Blueblood Wickham as my escort. It is a shame I have to settle for somepony lesser."

The effect was immediate. A deeper shade of haughtiness overspread his features, but he said not a word. Rarity, though gratified to see her words had their desired effect, could not go on. At length, Darcy spoke, and in a constrained manner said, "Mr. Blueblood is blessed with such happy manners that he can easily make friends. Whether he can be equally capable of retaining them is less certain."

"Yes, I heard that he was unlucky enough to have lost your friendship," Rarity said with emphasis. "I am sure that is a dreadful blow, from which he will be unable to recover. I daresay, he may suffer all his life."

Darcy made no answer and seemed desirous of changing the subject. At that moment, Lady Luna appeared close to them, meaning to pass through the set to the other side of the room, but upon seeing them together, she stopped with a curtsy of superior courtesy to compliment the match.

"Fair Fancypants, it is a delight to see you finally gracing the floor. Such very superior dancing is not often seen, and your lovely partner compliments you in every way." Lady Luna glanced noticeably at Fluttershy and Big Macintosh. "It is such a pleasure to see so many happy couples tonight! Perhaps Shining Armor's wedding will not be the only one to take place soon..."

Luna excused herself after this, but Mr. Darcy seemed to pay no attention to her at all. His eyes were directed with a very serious expression towards his friend and Fluttershy, who were laughing happily as they danced. Recovering himself shortly, Mr. Darcy turned to his partner and said, "I apologize. Lady Luna's interruption has made me forget what we were speaking of."

"We were not," Rarity said shortly. "Lady Luna could not have interrupted two ponies in the room who had less to say for themselves."

"I see," Mr. Darcy said. "So you do not wish to speak with me anymore?"

"I believe I have a firm understanding of your character now," Rarity said. She said no more, and they went through the other dance and parted in silence. Both sides were dissatisfied, though not to an equal degree.

Rarity avoided the dance floor after that, which ended up being a good idea, as Pinkie Pie soon tried to get everypony to do the Pony Pokey. Rarity wandered the area, talking to her friends and the various townsfolk. She had a short conversation with Applejack, which ended abruptly after Applejack offended Rarity with her blunt manner.

Rarity withdrew from the area, and she was headed towards one of her old acquaintances, when Spike came up to her.

"Rarity!" Spike said. "Want to dance again?"

"I...I've had enough of dancing for tonight," Rarity said.

"That's okay," Spike said. "By an extraordinary accident, I have just now learned that there is a near relation of my patroness in the room! A nephew of Lady Chrysalis herself!"

"Er...what?" Rarity asked. To be honest, she didn't pay much attention in the past, when Spike talked about Lady Chrysalis and how wonderful she was for sponsoring him.

"Yes, I happened to overhear the gentlecolt himself mention his cousin, Miss de Bourgh," Spike said. "I know it may seem like bad manners, but I simply must introduce myself to him!"

"Right, you go do that," Rarity said, not much concerned if Spike made a fool out of himself. She was, in turn, greatly surprised when she saw Spike waddle not to some strange pony, but directly to Mr. Darcy. At such a distance, Rarity could not tell what they were saying, but Spike was waving his arms around in a manner which clearly indicated that he was giving an enthusiastic speech.

After about forty seconds, Mr. Darcy made a response, which could not have been longer than two words. Spike interrupted and gave another long speech. The expression on Darcy's face was entertaining to see, in a cruel sort of way, as Spike kept talking and talking. Eventually, when there was another break in Spike's monologue, Darcy gave a polite bow, then immediately turned and went in another direction.

"Oh dear," a voice at Rarity's shoulder said. "It looks like Mr. Darcy is avoiding Spike."

"Fluttershy!" Rarity said, turning her head. "Did you ask Mr. Macintosh about Mr. Blueblood?"

"I'm sorry," Fluttershy said. "Maccy doesn't know anything about him. He says the first time he met Blueblood was the other day, in the market."

"You're calling him Maccy now?"

Fluttershy blushed. "He...he called me Flutters, so I thought I'd make a pet name for him!" she said. "Please don't tell anypony, though! His sister Applejack overheard, and she got mad."

"I happen to think it's adorable," Rarity said. "If Applejack doesn't approve, then it's too bad for her."

Eventually, the bell rang, signalling an end to the dancing and talking. Dinner soon followed.

"Oh, you have got to be kidding me," Rarity said, as she found Mr. Darcy sitting next to her designated spot.

"Miss Bennet," Mr. Darcy said. "It seems we will have the unexpected pleasure of being eating partners, as well as dancing partners."

"My joy in life is complete," Rarity said. She rolled her eyes at her seat, then stopped. "Wait a second. That's not my spot."

"Excuse me?" Mr. Darcy asked.

"I am not the only R. Bennet in attendance tonight," Rarity said haughtily.

"Oh, good, you found my seat," Rarity's mother said, stepping forward, She plopped herself down, next to Mr. Darcy. "I'm starved! What are they having?"

Mr. Bennet got the seat next to his wife, and Lady Luna got the seat on his other side. As he remarked later on, being seated between his wife and Lady Luna was something like standing inside a chicken coop. The two of them talked so long and so loudly that he could not get a word in edgewise. Rarity, seated next to Twilight on the other side of Luna, found she could not partake in conversation either.

Luna started by discussing Shining Armor's engagement to the lovely pink pegasus, Cadance. Talk of wedding dates and invitations soon followed, with little end in sight. "'Tis a most promising match," Lady Luna said. "Verily, the pleasure in our household has been doubled. I only wish both of my children could be so happy."

Twilight squirmed a bit in her seat and blushed.

"Oh, I know," Mrs. Bennet said. "That is why it will be such a good thing for Fluttershy to marry Mr. Macintosh Bingley. It will certainly throw my remaining daughters in the way of other rich men."

Next to her, Mr. Darcy choked on his soup. The conversation dawdled on this particular topic, as Mrs. Bennet was speaking freely, openly, and of nothing else but her expectation that Fluttershy would soon be married to Big Macintosh. It was an animating subject, and Mrs. Bennet seemed incapable of fatigue while enumerating the advantages of the match. His being such a charming young stallion, and so rich, and living but three miles from them, were the first points of self-congratulation. As she continued, the expression on Darcy's face gradually changed from indignant contempt to a composed and steady gravity.

At length, the supper came to an end. Music started up again, and Sweetie Belle eagerly volunteered to sing for the party. Her singing was not quite equal to her enthusiasm, but when she showed all the signs of continuing, her father stepped in and distracted her with mild compliments. Rarity breathed a sigh of relief, happy that the potential embarrassment for her family was over.

...That was when Spike took the microphone.

"I'm not very good at singing, but I love karaoke!" Spike said. "And this is a song that I'd like to dedicate to a very special unicorn."

Love is in the bloom!
Two hearts becoming one
A bomb that cannot be undone because
For us...

Rarity had the urge to smash her head against the nearest wall. "Please tell me this is not happening..." she moaned.

Spike finished the song with dance moves of his own creation, which resembled the spasms of a dying moose. He gave a large thumbs-up to the stunned crowed. "Shout out to my boy, Mr. DarCAY!" Spike shouted. "Dude, your aunt is the greatest!"

"That's it," Mr. Darcy decided. "I'm leaving. Now."

Rarity sighed. "At least Spike can't make things any worse for me..." she said to herself.

She was wrong. Oh, she was very, very wrong.