"You are considering how insupportable it would be to pass many
evenings in this manner--in such society; and indeed I am quite
of your opinion. I was never more annoyed! The insipidity, and
yet the noise--the nothingness, and yet the self-importance of all
those people! What would I give to hear your strictures on them!"
"You conjecture is totally wrong, I assure you. My mind was
more agreeably engaged. I have been meditating on the very
great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty
woman can bestow."
Miss Bingley immediately fixed her eyes on his face, and desired
he would tell her what lady had the credit of inspiring such
reflections. Mr. Darcy replied with great intrepidity:
"Miss Elizabeth Bennet."
"Miss Elizabeth Bennet!" repeated Miss Bingley. "I am all
astonishment. How long has she been such a favourite?--and
pray, when am I to wish you joy?"
"That is exactly the question which I expected you to ask. A
lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to
love, from love to matrimony, in a moment. I knew you would
be wishing me joy."