Lavender Haze

Title: Lavender Haze
Author: ExcentrykeMuse

Fandom(s): Harry Potter Series / Pride & Prejudice
Pairing(s): Fem!Harry/Darcy

WordCount: 1k
Rating: PG
Written: 6 March, 2023

Warning(s): rule 63, squib!Harry, Taylor Swift references, suggestions of illegitimacy, evil stepmother Florence
Prompt: for mariannedupre06 who wanted Fem!Harry/Darcy

Lavender Haze

She was a vision in lavender in an assembly of otherwise dull colors or pale fabrics.  While Bingley was getting acquainted with the local beauties, Darcy stood in the corner and took in the lavender vision.  She was delicate with wide green eyes and luscious black hair that could barely be contained in the chignon on her head.

Despite her beautiful countenance and obvious wealth, she was sitting alone and no one was asking her to dance.

“Bingley,” Darcy murmured, grabbing his friend before he could ask another young woman to dance.  “Who is that?”  He indicated the young woman in lavender with his head and Bingley turned his head.

“By jove, I have no idea.  Sir William did not say.”  He looked about him and made a signal.  “Here comes the man.”

Darcy was loathe to speak to the effusive man, but he could not approach the young woman without a proper introduction, and so Sir William’s company was a necessary evil.

“Oh dear,” Sir William said when the lady in lavender was pointed out to him.  “You do not wish to be acquainted with that young woman.  She is only at the Assembly because it is an open invitation to the entire neighborhood.  Lady Lucas will not have her in the house.”

Bingley seemed speechless and he looked at Sir William with mouth slightly agape.  Darcy, however, was not so easily cowed.

“Is she unrespectable?” he asked instead.  “Is there some stain upon her character or her family?”

Sir William looked uncomfortable but he nodded once.  “Her name is Henrietta Potter.  She is the ward of the Earl Black, who sent her to live here three years ago.”  He paused, clearly wishing to change the subject.  Darcy, however, stared at him, willing him to continue.  “It is said,” Sir William continued, “that Miss Potter is Lord Black’s natural daughter.  She is his spitting image.  I don’t know why she shows herself in good society.  No one speaks to her.”

Looking over at the young woman in lavender again, Darcy made his decision.  “I should like to speak to her.”

“She is an illegitimate—” Sir William warned.

“Allegedly,” Darcy argued.  “I should still like to make her acquaintance.”

Seeming quite put out, Sir William looked like he meant to refuse.

Bingley was just staring at him.  “Do you think that is wise?” he cautioned.

“I should very much like to meet Miss Potter,” Darcy reiterated.  “You go back to your partner and her pretty smiles and think no more of me.  Sir William—if I can prevail upon you for the introduction so I do not embarrass the lady by introducing myself—”

“Oh dear,” Sir William murmured, dithering, before he indicated that Darcy should precede him toward the young lady in lavender.

As Darcy made his way toward her, he took her in from the top of her head to her pretty mauve slippers that were clearly dyed in London.  He reminded himself that he should smile, that young ladies responded to smiles although it was not his wont, and almost did smile when she jumped up when they were almost upon her.  She was clearly not expecting to be the object of their journey across the ballroom.

“Miss Potter,” Sir William began, clearing his throat, “I hope the evening finds you well.”

“Yes, very well, Sir William,” she murmured, her voice low and earthy.  Her green eyes flicked between him and Darcy.  “I hope you are also enjoying yourself.”

“Yes, quite,” Sir William answered, still uncomfortable.  “May I introduce Mr. Darcy of Pemberley in Derbyshire?  Mr. Darcy, this is Miss Henrietta Potter.”

Eyes wide, she sketched a curtsey and Darcy bowed down to her. 

Sir William cleared his throat again and, duty done, left as quickly as etiquette allowed him.

Left alone, Darcy knew that it was incumbent upon him to speak.  He was, however, quite stunned by the beauty before him.  Miss Potter was even more beautiful up close than she was across the Assembly.

She hesitated a moment and then murmured, “I wonder that you convinced Sir William to introduce us.  Lady Lucas is quite vocal in her dislike of me.”

“You should not be held accountable for the—eccentricities of your guardian,” he told her carefully, “or the whims of Lady Lucas.”

“Sirius,” she told him, “that is, the Earl Black, sent me here with only a maid.  I don’t even have a companion.  I don’t think he realizes that small towns like to gossip and that young women need more companionship than a French maid.”  She gave him a small smile.  At the change of music, she took her seat and Darcy happily sat beside her.  “The Earl and my father were childhood friends and neither had sisters, so I doubt either realized what is required.”

“Sisters and wards are quite a delicate matter,” Darcy agreed.  “My sister Georgiana, who is but sixteen, is my responsibility.”

The fabric of her lavender dress caught the light and Darcy thought how absolutely lovely Miss Potter looked in the color.

“You have the advantage then over many men,” she told him simply, going quiet.  Her index and third finger crossed in her gloves, showing her nervousness, and Darcy longed to reach out to her, but propriety would not allow him. 

“Have you always lived in Hertfordshire?” he asked.

She shook her head.  “Nay.  I lived in London, at Sirius’s London address, until he was married and the new Countess found me a nuisance.”  Miss Potter blushed at the admission.  There was something she was not saying.  Perhaps it was her likeness to the Earl that had caused his new bride to dislike her and send her away to the country.  Still, she was all loveliness in her gown of lavender, and all feminine modesty.

The tune turned again.

Darcy stood and offered his hand.  “Would you care to dance, Miss Potter?”

Reaching her hand into his, Miss Potter stood.  “I am a bit out of practice,” she warned, “but I should dearly love to dance.”

He led her onto the dance floor, and the couple drew the eyes from the entire assemblage.  Darcy could feel Miss Potter’s discomfort so he leaned toward her and murmured, “look into my eyes,” and they danced into a lavender haze.

The End.

Published by excentrykemuse

Fanfiction artist and self critic.

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