Story: Rainy Days
Author: Lory L
Story URL: Amazon Link – Fanfic Link (Password available to the MRR [Meryton Reading Room] HERE)
Word count: 201,500
Summary: Two days before the Netherfield Ball, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy were caught in a storm and forced to shelter from the rain in a cottage. This event changed their opinion about each other and the whole story took a different course.
I’ve read this story multiple times and very much enjoy the AU take on how the story might have developed if Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy had been trapped together and forced to speak directly to one another, without interference from the likes of Miss Bingley or Mrs. Bennet, prior to the Netherfield Ball. Imagine the possibilities: If in November both Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy had received the sort of information they didn’t learn in canon until Easter, how might things have changed? As I’ve frequently said here on my blog, “what-if?” fanfics are my favorite types, and this is a fantastic example of how they can be done well.
My only critique: I have some stylistic concerns with the fic, though I understand those were addressed in the published version. And while it pains me to say it about a story I so enjoy, I suppose one might consider that there is some OOC (out-of-character) behavior within “Rainy Days.” But when I moved past those minor concerns I found the story to be an interesting, well-developed what-if scenario which leads to a speedier resolution of the P&P plot while maintaining a logical and carefully-plotted story progression. Thus, ultimately, those minor issues haven’t detracted from my repeated enjoyment of “Rainy Days.”