I have invented a technique I call ‘profiling’. We all get taught to make profiles, those silhouettes cut out of black paper, and it’s a good way to flirt, they say, making a profile of a young man. Yeah, right, how hot is sitting still while somebody makes your nose look huge by cutting up paper! What matters is what’s inside the profile, you have to get into their heads you see, that’s what I call profiling, I was trying to explain it to Kitty.
‘But how can Lizzy ensnare Darcy, Lydia, she doesn’t even like him!’ goes Kitty, genius of this parish.
‘D’oh! That’s exactly how, Kitty my poor innocent, look at his profile!’
‘Ah yes that straight nose, noble chin, like, good hair, and even cheekbones to die for...’
‘No, no, you fool. Inside his head! Think of the life Darcy has led. Think what it must be like to be a man, a young man, with pots of dosh.’
Kitty was like wrinkling her forehead with the mental effort. I spell it out for her.
‘Listen, all his life, he’s been the ultimate eligible bachelor. Since he hit puberty, every older female has been pimping her daughters, trying to catch him as a son-in-law. Every girl has been angling to get her hooks into him. Every single minute of every social occasion, they are lining up to compliment him, curtsey to him, smiling and grovelling, showing off their accomplishments and ankles, and the fact that he’s handsome is neither here nor there for most of them. His money alone would make most women hand him their daughters on a plate, even if he was ancient, fat and riddled with diseases. Men like the chase, the hunt, a challenge, but he’s been chased for years and he’s bored, bored stiff.’
‘Stiff!’ yells Kitty and we can’t stop giggling for a while but I pull myself together eventually.
‘This is serious Kits. Now think, or at least try to. What is special about Lizzy, and Jane too, in fact?’
‘Erm...’She gave up.
‘Neither of them gives a flying frock about getting married for the sake of it, even though we are cursed with that entail. They won’t marry a man unless they are in lurve, and he’s in lurve with them. They are hopeless romantics. Even money, yes even money, won’t tempt them. How many pretty girls d’you think Darcy meets who are wired that way? Zilch! Nada!’
‘Who are they?’ asks Kitty, poor dimboid. I refused to be sidetracked when in full flow of like, forensic brilliance.
‘Now, he’s met our clueless Lizzy, and therein lies her most powerful tool.’
‘Tool!’ shrieked Kitty. We couldn’t help corpsing again, but I established calm after a mere fifteen minutes.
‘Lizzy doesn’t simper or grovel or behave all missish, she runs and larks about and behaves like a lad, though with a rack, she makes jokes, she laughs, and she’s feisty. And he insulted her, so she doesn’t like him! The more she doesn’t like him, the more he’ll be likely to like her! And anything we can do to help this along, we’ll do.’
‘I can see a problem with that,’ goes Kitty, ‘what if he ends up liking her enough to marry her but she still doesn’t like him?’
‘I shall think of something when the time comes, fear not. ATM, it’s all about the not liking. Trust me, I know what I’m doing.’