Continuing Tales

Inevitable Change

A Pride & Prejudice Story
by acuppajava

Part 20 of 21

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Inevitable Change

The wedding, while not a traditional Indian affair, was replete with some of the local customs. Ashwini had recruited some of the village women along with the household servants to attend to the bride. Elizabeth was somewhat bemused by their attentions; it was evident that her wedding to Mr. Darcy had become the focus village social life – quite in contrast to what would have transpired had the couple chosen to marry in London. The women fought over her style of her dress, her veil, the flowers and silks to be used. Every detail was inspected and reviewed, and usually revised two or three times until satisfactory compromise was met.

As was the local custom, the bride and groom were separated for three days before the wedding for special feasting and purification ceremonies. Elizabeth was not use to being apart from Darcy, even when they were so very distant in their relations with one another. They had lived together under the same roof for so very long, it seemed strange to have him sequestered away from her in a travelers' bungalow down the road from the big house. Still, with Ashwini's calming presence at her side, and Georgiana's enthusiasm, she waited for the day patiently.

The morning of the wedding, after a night of feasting and music, there was a haldi ceremony scheduled for the engaged couple. Elizabeth was humbled by the maids' gestures, under Ashwini's careful supervision. She also wondered, with some amusement, if Darcy was being cleansed in the same manner. The women sang songs and smoothed a pungent herb cream on her arms and her face, and worked the paste into her legs until she giggled with the sensation. The yellow tumeric tingled on her white skin, and the women, speaking in their native tongue, commented that Elizabeth glowed like a white palace after their treatments. There were some lewd comments made, as well, regarding the vigor of the groom about to enter the palace gate, but Elizabeth was oblivious to it all. In two hours, she would be wed.

They bathed her in water scented with crushed jasmine flowers, and dressed her in a jewelled red sari that lay over a traditional English frock, dyed red for the occassion. "Red is the color for brides in India, not white. White is reserved for widows - very bad luck." Ashwini explained. Elizabeth would not allow them to mark her with henna or the bindi, for she did not think it proper, but she would permit Darcy to place a traditional mangalsutra around her neck as well as the usual wedding ring on her finger. Once all had been settled, the time had come to travel to the church.

The bridal procession made their way into the church vestibule where Elizabeth was met with Lydia and Captain Danbury, and with her uncle, who would walk her down the aisle. Lydia gave her a familial embrace, and accompanied her husband to their seat in the church. Elizabeth stood at the doorway, receiving one last hug from Georgiana. She smiled blissfully at the pretty Miss Darcy who had blossomed into a young woman, her soon-to-be sister, who had stayed near her side during the three days of preparation and celebration. She could not help but tear up as she watched Georgiana slide into a pew next to the recuperating Col. Fitzwilliam. Mr. Gardiner then clasped Elizabeth's trembling hand to his arm, and they started the slow walk toward her groom.

Darcy was overcome with emotion when he saw her, wrapped in red silks from head to toe, her dark hair twisted and braided in gleaming ropes down her back. Pearls and rubies dotted the banded neckline of her dress, and tiny bells had been sewn along the hem of the veil she wore, so a delicate tinkling followed her as she walked. He could smell the scent of jasmine, and the scent of sandlewood. The scene was so surreal to him – his Elizabeth, dressed as an oriental princess, in a small country church that was English in every aspect. It was unlike any dream he had ever had, and at the same time, was so fantastic as to be outside of anything he could imagine. His Elizabeth, so stunning, so long apart from him, would at last be his. After three long days of waiting, and years of wanting, they would finally be together.

There was one final feast after the reverend said his piece about the sacred bond of marriage, and this was the most elaborate party of them all, lasting into the late hours of the evening. When the couple had enough of the dancing and music, Darcy leaned toward his radiant bride and indicated that they would make their adieus quietly and retreat to the travellers' bungalow. It was not to be a peaceful departure, for part of the local customs included accompanying the bride and groom to their wedding chambers. Darcy deftly lifted Elizabeth upon a white stallion from the captain's stable, and then climbed upon the horse, sitting behind her. The villagers and wedding party trailed behind, some well into their cups, singing celebratory songs and throwing flowers and petals before the couple.

The bungalow had been festooned with garlands and lit inside with oil lamps so that it glowed with its own warmth and sense of anticipation. Darcy dismounted then gracefully assisted Elizabeth to the ground. With great emotion and not a little impatience, he thanked the captain for his endless hospitality, and turned to the crowd for one last expression of his gratitude. He then took Elizabeth by the hand and pulled her into the bungalow, simultaneously stripping off his jacket and waistcoat, his lips already upon hers, as he placed his booted foot on the door and nudged it closed.

Ignoring the rowdy sounds of the wedding party, which lingered then slowly dispersed into the night, Darcy led Elizabeth to their wedding bed. The covers had been pulled back and the netting set aside. Lotus petals had been strewn across the sheets. But Darcy's attention was fully upon his lover. He clasped her face in his hands and kissed her lingeringly, deeply, releasing her only to kiss her lightly across her face, her eyelids, her cheeks and forehead, then back upon her lips. The back of his hands moved down her arms, stroking the silk sari she still wore. As he prolonged the kiss, he could not help but grasp her tightly to him by the shoulders, and he parted her lips with the tip of his tongue. Her head fell limply over to accommodate the pressure of his attentions, and she moaned as she tasted his sweet lips.

They parted briefly, but he was unwilling to end the embrace, and he placed his hand at the small of her back and pulled her to him yet again, and again crushed her lips with his own with an intensity neither of them expected. Over and over, his lips met hers, caressing and suckling and nipping and demanding more and more. His other hand busily unbraided her hair, so he could wind his hands in its sleek thickness. He was unaware how tightly he clung to her, bending her back with his enthusiasm, but it became apparent when she paused to draw a breath to gasp, "William – my love! William, please!" He immediately stopped and drew back, the passion burning in his eyes while simultaneously a look of shock spread on his face.

"Oh my Elizabeth, I am sorry – I have not hurt you, have I? I just have wanted this – you cannot know how much I have wanted this!"

And she assured him with a smile that all was well, and he sighed in relief. "It's just…I am not accustomed to…I am…" She blushed modestly and looked away.

Darcy took but a moment to guess her hesitation. "I believe you may be…frightened, perhaps? Is my…ardor… too much for you? I will stop if you wish…" though this he said in a small voice, almost negating the offer with its lack of will.

"No! No! I do not wish for you to stop! I am simply…I am overcome by my feelings," she said, with a tremulous smile. "When we kiss, it is so – intense. I feel as if I were on fire. I did not think I could feel this way. I feel so…exhilarated!"

Darcy smiled and his eyes darkened with an unspoken promise. "May I…exhilarate you some more, my love – perhaps more slowly?" And he reached over to lightly stroke her face, allowing his fingers to stray down her jawline and throat, along the edge of her bodice. She quivered at his gentle touch, and her eyes opened wide as his finger traced further downward to circle one nipple, then another. He boldly turned her away from him, so that he could unravel the silk cloth from about her body, and slowly unfasten the bodice of her dress. "May I suggest that we do away with this finery, so that I may continue – exhilarating you?" he whispered in her ear.

She let out a low laugh, as her skin tingled with pleasure as the sari slipped from her shoulders and puddled to the floor. Then, he lowered the sleeves of her dress, so that her breasts strained against the chemise beneath. "I wish to …to hold you, Elizabeth. May I please?" Darcy asked, as he placed feather kisses up and down her neck.

"Yes, you may." Elizabeth answered, lost in a trance. His hands moved up, brushing her lightly clothed waist, and cupped her breasts. Pleased that she experienced some pleasure in this contact, Darcy proceeded to stroke her nipples, circling around and around the areolas, to feel them rise under his fingertips. He could feel Elizabeth's breath change with his ministrations, and he knew she was nearly ready.

"I shall do away with this dress and chemise now, don't you think, Elizabeth?" he asked steadily, although his passions made him feel otherwise. She nodded yes, not wanting to speak for fear she would not be able to modulate her voice, but then she held up a hand to stop him.

"You are still fully clothed. I…I wish to see…may I touch you?" She could not articulate the words, for the requests she made were so foreign to her own sensibilities. His touch drove her wild and her body cried for more. But her immediate need was to see him unclothed, as vulnerable as she.

Darcy stepped back, and in an instant, stripped off his linen shirt and cravat, and unfastened his breeches. He turned her around so that she could see his bare chest, and the trail of dark hair that went from his heart down to the core of his masculinity. Her gaze roamed over him, and she gasped when her eyes fell upon the bulge in his loosened breeches. "I trust I am pleasing to you? For you are beyond pleasing to me, my beautiful Elizabeth!" And he reached around to finish unbinding her from her dress, which slipped past her waist to the floor. Dressed in nothing but her chemise, she instinctually wrapped her arms about her to shield herself from his gaze, but he would have none of it. He gentle untangled her arms, then bent forward to collect the hem of her undergarment. Ever so slowly he raised the soft fabric up over her head and then tossed it aside. He drank in the vision of her standing in the lamplight, hair tumbled about her, smooth white skin and silky dark hair all designed to bewitch him.

Elizabeth, encouraged by his dark glances, tentatively raised her small hand and placed it over Darcy's heart. The warmth of his skin surprised her, and its smoothness and hardness, and her hand drifted down his chest, over his ribcage to the waistband of his unbuttoned trousers. She felt his breathing change, and become erratic. She looked deeply into his eyes, then arched her brow mischieviously. Her fingertips slipped between the cloth and his skin, and she tickled them across his hipbone. Darcy stopped her progress with a quick intake of breath, taking her hand in his. "Let us not proceed too quickly, Elizabeth. I think perhaps we should retire to the bed."

She smiled, knowing now that she had produced a powerful effect in him – as powerful as he did in her. She boldly watched as he pulled off his boots and discarded his breeches, once and for all. She was in awe of his physique, and she could not stop staring at his fullness. Standing naked at the foot of the bed, he murmured, "Roll over, Elizabeth." Her heart raced, not knowing what was to come next, but she obeyed his command. Darcy straddled her, and she could feel his arousal press against the soft flesh of her bottom. He raised her arms above her head, and proceeded to stroke her back, whispering into her ear how much he loved her and wanted her. He was amazed at her soft skin – as soft as the silk she had just worn. He kissed her along her hairline, and her ear, which made her giggle a little, but as his lips lowered to the small of her back, she could not help but arch her hips a little in response. He moved to lay beside her, and she still felt him pressing into her thigh, and as he continued to stroke and kiss her body, loving her with his words and his touches, her hand crept to him and grasped him tentatively. He caught his breath in his throat, and croaked, "What you do to me! Oh, Elizabeth!"

With as much control as he could muster, he gently rolled her onto her back, and held her face in his hands. "I love you, Elizabeth," he said, and kissed her passionately. His hands seemed to be everywhere on her all at once, embracing her, caressing her. One hand slid down her back to her buttocks, and squeezed her gently while she felt his hips nudge up against her groin. Not having any experience to draw from, she mirrored his moves, clinging to his shoulders, smoothing her hands across his muscular body as his massive frame encompassed her. His other hand moved across her belly and over her hip, to stop at her most private place. She froze immediately in a fit of modesty, but he quietly said, "Elizabeth, you must trust me. Let me love you. Let me touch you." He began rubbing her, slowly and methodically, and she found herself slowly enveloped in a thick haze of sensation. One finger, then two, slipped into her, moving back and forth, back and forth.

Darcy's desires built ever higher as he watched Elizabeth spiral up and up in her passion. As she neared her climax, he ceased his movements, leaving her breathless and wanting more. Her eyes, which had been shut tight as he pleasured her, flew open as he moved atop her. "Elizabeth, it is time – you are ready. It maybe painful at first, but you must trust me in this." She nodded and panted, "Yes, yes, please," pleading for relief from the fever he had set on her. He defered by slowly inserting himself into her.

As his erection stretched her open with his first entrance, she did indeed cry out, and he held her tight, and resisted moving even an inch, ignoring the raw demands screaming in his head, apologizing profusely for the pain he had caused her. When he was certain she was no longer hurting, he pulled back, then curled his hips downward again to fill her. At the next approach, she had begun to shift her hips upward to meet his, and manoevuered to wrap her legs about him, as his rhythm increased in pace and deepened. He planted himself in her again and again, lingering at the completion of each thrust, and reveling in her response. He could feel her ecstacy building with each movement in her, and so he prolonged his own release so she might feel the pleasure he was experiencing. As her breathing quickened, and she trembled beneath him, he grabbed her tightly and plunged again and again, filling her with his seed. "Elizabeth! Elizabeth! Elizabeth!" he groaned as their peak came together.

Weeks later, Elizabeth and William Darcy sat picnicing on the lawn near the Taj Mahal. Ashwini accompanied them on their honeymoon journey, acting as nanny to little Carolina, who no longer needed the services of a wet-nurse. Col. Fitzwilliam and Georgiana had departed Madras bound for home, as did Mr. Gardiner. "Soon, we shall be the only English citizens in India," Darcy would joke to Elizabeth.

"Yes, but we shall be the most well-travelled," she would retort. And it was true. After their wedding night and bidding farewell to their family, the two set off to explore virutally all of the the land north of Captain Danbury's hill country retreat.

Along the way, they found the most exquisite ruins and abandoned temples. They toured parks and towns and villages and markets along the way, and encountered every imaginable tropical species of animal and plant, with the exception of (thank the lord) the mighty tiger. They inspected secret jungle ponds and wells, all of which were quite picturesque, but none so beautiful as their own secret spot near the plantation. Still, these retreats held their own special magic, particularly when the couple was inspired to bathe spontaneously, with the assurance that none would spy on them. Both Mr. and Mrs. Darcy would also view the holy spaces that featured rather explicit carvings – they found the art there quite…exhilarating.

But it was the Taj Mahal, that shining mausoleum, that inspired Darcy most profoundly. An Indian shah built the palace as a grave for his most beloved wife. He described the structure as a place where the guilty could seek asylum, a place where sinners would be redeemed.

It was here, with his head in his Elizabeth's lap, enjoying the sliced mango she fed him, seeing her gaze fixed at the great white minaret, that Darcy felt cleared of all his prejudices and his mistakes and misteps. His pride was washed away, and his bonds with society cut; all there was was his own desire and love, his Elizabeth. It was all.

Inevitable Change

A Pride & Prejudice Story
by acuppajava

Part 20 of 21

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