In a few minutes she was joined by Bingley, whose conference
with her father had been short and to the purpose.
"Where is your sister?" said he hastily
, as he opened the door.
"With my mother up stairs. She will be down in a moment, I dare say."
He then shut the door, and, coming up to her, claimed the good wishes and affection of a sister. Elizabeth honestly and heartily expressed her delight in the prospect of their relationship. They shook hands with great cordiality
; and then, till her sister came down, she had to listen to all he had to say of his own happiness, and of Jane's perfections; and in spite of his being a lover, Elizabeth really believed all his expectations of felicity
to be rationally founded, because they had for basis the excellent understanding, and super-excellent disposition
of Jane, and a general similarity of feeling and taste between her and himself.
It was an evening of no common delight to them all; the satisfaction of Miss Bennet's mind gave a glow of such sweet animation
to her face, as made her look handsomer than ever. Kitty simpered and smiled, and hoped her turn was coming soon. Mrs. Bennet could not give her consent or speak her approbation
in terms warm enough to satisfy her feelings, though she talked to Bingley of nothing else for half an hour; and when Mr. Bennet joined them at supper, his voice and manner plainly
shewed how really happy he was.
Not a word, however, passed his lips in allusion
to it, till their visitor took his leave for the night; but as soon as he was gone, he turned to his daughter, and said, "Jane, I congratulate you. You will be a very happy woman."
Jane went to him instantly, kissed him, and thanked him for his goodness.
"You are a good girl;" he replied, "and I have great pleasure in thinking you will be so happily settled. I have not a doubt of your doing very well together. Your tempers are by no means unlike. You are each of you so complying, that nothing will ever be resolved on; so easy, that every servant will cheat you; and so generous
, that you will always exceed your income."
"I hope not so. Imprudence or thoughtlessness in money matters would be unpardonable
their income! My dear Mr. Bennet," cried his wife, "what are you talking of? Why, he has four or five thousand a year, and very likely more." Then addressing her daughter, "Oh! my dear, dear Jane, I am so happy! I am sure I shan't get a wink of sleep all night. I knew how it would be. I always said it must be so, at last. I was sure you could not be so beautiful for nothing! I remember, as soon as ever I saw him, when he first came into Hertfordshire last year, I thought how likely it was that you should come together. Oh! he is the handsomest young man that ever was seen!"