Story: Lizzy, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
Author: SBL (SandyL)
Story URL: Derby Link
Word count: 57,500
Summary: An epic response to the “Sardines Challenge”… When Lizzy Bennet agrees to play a game of Sardines with the Bingleys and Mr. Darcy while her ailing sister slumbers, she can have no notion of where this innocent game will lead her, and into what kind of peril she will stumble when she chooses to hide in Miss Bingley’s wardrobe. Survival in a strange world will require her to find allies where she thinks she has enemies, and she is not the only one from Netherfield who finds a way into this strange land…
The Chronicles of Narnia are my absolute favorite books in existence, and I well remember my days of playing in a large wooden wardrobe when I was 5-years-old, pretending I was Lucy during a time I was living in a foreign and sometimes uncomfortable environment. So taking that basic premise and applying it to Lizzy’s time at Netherfield, when she, too, was often uncomfortable in her foreign environment, was not at all a stretch. I saw the listing for this fic long ago, but avoided it because I expected it to be silly and too crack-ish for even my tastes. Instead, I found a story that I firmly believe would have delighted C.S. Lewis (who was known for encouraging his fans to write their own Narnian tales). The story characterizations are completely true to canon, and the explanations given for any fantastical behavior make perfect sense. The story felt so very much like something that could have happened both within Narnia canon and P&P canon, as bizarre as it might seem to say so, given the vastly different genres of the two books.
My only critique: I was rather disappointed by the ramifications of one of Moira’s requests before they return to Netherfield. I completely understand why the author went that route, and it certainly didn’t ruin the excellent story! But for my own sake, I rather wish that requirement had not been made, as I think it would’ve made a far more fluffy and happy ending (if, perhaps, not at all in keeping with canon and the character journeys which Miss Austen wisely put in place). Regardless, the story and its conclusion were still fantastic.