Mr Darcy. I paused as I thought about my favourite of Jane Austen’s heroes. In my head his face lit up when he smiled as I accepted his proposal. Of course Mr Darcy wasn’t my only fictional husband. I had loved him the longest but that hadn’t stopped me from finding other fictional heroes to fall in love with because (lets face it) there are plenty out there. The list goes on and on, each man just as good as the last.
The juddering halt as the train came to a stop threw me back into the real world. I shoved my battered copy of Pride and Prejudice into my bag, hurried off the train and onto Charing Cross platform. I was now officially lost. I was trying to get to Edinburgh but I had no idea where my connecting train was. I saw a woman in a shirt declaring the she was ‘here to help’. I hurried towards her and asked where I should go. She smiled cheerfully and gave me directions to another train station and told me that I should check the boards when I got there to find my platform. I smiled politely, thanked her and ran off.
When I got to the front of the station I realised that I hadn’t listened to a word the woman had said and I had no idea of where I was going. I remembered the name of the station and to prevent myself from looking foolish by asking for directions again I hailed a cab and directed the driver towards Kings Cross Station.
I collapsed against the seat and let out a sigh. The cab driver had a very stern look on his face so I decided not to disturb him, got out Pride and Prejudice and settled down to re-enter that magical world. As I read I could see the scene, Mr Darcy pacing across the room preparing himself for what he was about to say. My body tensed at Elizabeth’s violent rejection of him, each harsh word piercing my heart.
‘Miss, we’re here.’ I looked up at the meter. Nearly ten pounds! I handed him a tenner and jumped out of the cab, he could keep the change.
I entered the busy station and fought my way towards the boards. There it was, I could see my train, the twelve fifteen to Edinburgh platform six. Where the hell is platform six? The thought blared through my head. I had minutes to spare when I saw a big white number six at the other end of the station. I began to weave my way towards the sign whilst trying to find my pre-booked ticket in my bag.
Suddenly a figure appeared behind me and knocked my bag out of my hands. My things went flying over the floor. The man was instantly beside me picking up my things and apologizing at a million miles an hour. The envelope with my ticket in was lying a meter or so away from me.
When everything had finally been collected I got my first look at this strange man. He looked studious, a pair of glasses perched on his small nose and his eyes were sparkling despite the worried look on his face. He ran his hands through his mass of curly toffee-coloured hair nervously.
‘I’m so sorry.’ To my amazement he sounded sincere. ‘I wasn’t looking where I was going you just suddenly appeared – ‘ ‘It’s fine really’ I was conscious of the minute hand on the huge clock creeping closer towards the quarter past mark. ‘If you could excuse me I’m in a bit of a rush.’
‘Me too. Sorry again.’ I ran towards the gate, showed the guard my ticket and passed through and onto the train. After five minutes walking around, I finally found my seat and collapsed onto the empty space. To my great surprise there were two empty seats instead of just one when the rest of train was full to bursting. I would obviously be joined by some grumpy old lady who would spend the entire journey complaining about public transport, the state of the government, global warming and their connections to each other. I got my laptop out of its case, it had been bashed a bit by my collision but didn’t seem too worse for wear because of it. Seeing as I was going to be on this train for a while I thought I should do some work. As I pondered about where to start I heard a commotion a little further down the carriage and over it I could hear a familiar voice.
‘Sorry. Could you excuse me? Thank you. I’m very sorry madam.’ A smile crept across my face as I recognised the man who had run into me at the station. He was struggling to bring his numerous bags down the small aisle towards this end of the carriage. He eventually reached the empty seat next to me, checked his pre-booked ticket that was identical to mine and put some of his small collection of bags on to the overhead rail. He sat down in the seat next to me still fiddling around with the remainder of his bags. When he was settled he pushed his glasses up to the bridge of his nose, turned to face me and gave me a beaming smile. His face dropped as he recognised me. Before anything could be said I held out my hand with a smile that matched his own.