Bridgerton (2020) s02e02 Episode Script

Off to the Races

1 [Lady Whistledown.]
Dearest reader.
It has been said that competition is an opportunity for us to rise and stand ready before our greatest of challenges.
Well, if what this author hears this morning is true, then a great challenge concerning this season's diamond has been set forth, indeed.
Any suitor wishing to gain an audience with Miss Edwina Sharma must first tame the rather prickly spinster of a beast otherwise known as her sister.
Lord Lumley.
At the top.
Is he not something of a dandy? - I would use the term gallant.
- Is that what you look for, Edwina? If Kate believes in him, so do I.
- Miss Sharma? - Miss Edwina Sharma.
Not the sister.
Miss Edwina will suffice.
I see you've left off Lord Bridgerton.
Oh, now, he is what Edwina is looking for.
An oversight on your part, my dear? Lord Bridgerton is quite adept at conveying false first impressions.
What did you hear? He stated rather clearly that he seeks a wife only to fulfill his duty and does not believe in love at all.
It is only out of the greatest love of my family that I aim to choose a bride with my head and not my heart.
And you find this unusual? Most marriages of the ton are, in fact, mere matters of business, my dear.
Matters that have been working for centuries.
It is the true love match that is quite rare.
Does Miss Edwina return your affection? [sighs.]
Not yet.
She would have done if it were not for The sister.
- She's rather thorny, I take it? - Indeed.
You know what it is you are looking for, Bon.
You must not forget it.
Lord Lumley will turn the viscount into a distant memory.
- I am certain.
- Though she need not trouble me.
Every rose does have its thorn, after all.
[Lady Whistledown.]
Of course, the only competition that compels my attention is the game of courtship.
So best of luck to this year's players.
Do try not to stumble on the starting line.
Many dismiss Blake's work as childlike, insubstantial [sighs.]
Miss Sharma, am I to be kept at this threshold all day? Lumley's already had an inordinate amount of time with her.
That is because my sister is so enraptured with him at the moment.
You wouldn't want me to interrupt your discourse when it is your turn, would you? [Anthony.]
I say we heed the young lady and wait with the grace our hostess affords us.
Thank you, Lord Bridgerton.
I'm afraid you are much too late, my lord.
You now find yourself at the back of a very considerably long queue.
I wish to escort Miss Edwina to the races this afternoon.
My sister already has an escort this afternoon.
- Tomorrow then.
- She's engaged tomorrow too.
And the day after? Now that I think of it, she may be free - Ah.
- after December.
Unless, of course, she is on her honeymoon by then.
Did I say something funny? I believe you did.
What is funny, my lord, is you here now, after what I overheard the other night That was not for your ears.
But also, in addition to everything I have now read of you, your dubious and libertine reputation goes before you.
No intrusions, Bridgerton! End of the queue.
- [man 1.]
Yes, that's right.
- [man 2.]
That's right.
Is that a copy of Lady Whistledown? - It is.
- I thought we were done with her.
Do not discourage her, Penelope.
If she has taken an interest in Lady Whistledown again, perhaps she's interested in what she has to say about the season's available gentlemen too.
I cannot think of any cleverer way to say this, but no.
Her latest is not exactly the philosophical treatise on the rights of the fairer sex I was hoping for, but I do not think Lady Whistledown has changed her style of writing since her last issue.
Perhaps not.
But perhaps she still can.
Perhaps she does not want to.
Perhaps she is quite content.
And if she's even sparked your renewed interest, El, then perhaps whatever she is doing is working.
Yes, but she could do so much more.
I know I could convince her of it.
If I were to find her this time.
What you must find, my dear, is happiness.
Penelope, assist me here.
Eloise could find that with someone else, could she not? I believe she could.
And not Lady Whistledown, but someone more like Colin.
- My brother? - No, not Coli Colin! Glad to see things have not changed.
- Brother! - Colin! Could you set aside the latest family squabble and embrace me? [all chuckling happily.]
I did not expect you to return so soon, dearest.
Well, I missed you all.
What can I say? - [Hyacinth.]
Brother! - [Gregory.]
Brother! [Colin gasps.]
I believe we must get you to the doctor post-haste.
This strange, fuzzy growth on your chin is some kind of disease.
And you seem to have taken to the sun too.
How peculiar.
- I think he looks distinguished.
- I'm now two inches taller than Gregory.
You are not.
And where, may I ask, is our intrepid viscount? He is back from courting already.
Colin! You are returned.
Even better.
Family, I should like you all to ready yourselves for the races today.
We will be attending, united as one.
I told him it would never do, ma'am, but he insisted.
Is that Cousin Jack's? Cousin? Is that what he asked you to call him? Are you bothered by him, Mama? Of course not.
The new Lord Featherington has come to shower us with many riches indeed.
If we must endure a few dubious style choices in return, along with some rather questionable matters of breeding, then so be it.
I also hear he wishes to convert the morning room into his own personal gaming hell.
Now, that looks splendid.
Livens up the place, yes? It is a happy addition, my lord.
Though, perhaps happier in your own bedchamber.
Have you shot them all, Cousin Jack? Every weapon here has a splendid history and is worthy of interest, Penelope.
I shall have to fill you in on all of my adventures one day.
Now, ladies, run along and get dressed.
We head to the Royal Races today.
It will be an intimate ceremony.
But Mr.
Finch said he wished for nothing to distract from his bride, if you can believe it.
I certainly cannot.
Can you, Penelope? Have you seen the Bridgertons? It is a marvel you love literature as much as I do.
Do you enjoy Byron? [Edwina.]
I have read some, my lord.
Though I believe myself a novice when it comes to poetry.
How fortunate to have found such a well-versed teacher in Lord Lumley, then.
Many find poetry a flat medium.
Words read silently from a page.
But I believe it is meant to be read aloud like music.
Here, I carry a small pocket copy of my favorites with me wherever I go.
Lady Danbury.
I would be so honored if you could facilitate a proper introduction.
I fear my calling card got lost in the shuffle at your home this morning.
Of course.
Thomas Dorset, allow me to introduce Miss Sharma and Miss Edwina Sharma.
A pleasure.
I am afraid my sister already has an escort for today, Mr.
That is very well.
Though I was hoping to speak with you.
How are you finding the season, Miss Sharma? It is a season.
Dorset, I really should London is a far cry from Bombay.
It is where you traveled from, yes? - Yes.
- I have visited.
It is a wondrous place.
- You must miss it dearly.
- Oh, every minute of every day.
But most especially at teatime.
[chuckles lightly.]
We should find our seats.
Allow me to join you.
[Kate clears throat.]
Bridgertons! Mr.
It appears retirement suits you well.
If only he were retired.
Are you planning another foray into the ring? Into business, in fact.
I am opening a gentlemen's club.
Set to rival even the select haunts on St.
James's, if we are fortunate.
You do know we have all been members of White's since birth.
Our grand opening is tomorrow night.
You're all invited Apologies.
If you will excuse me.
Tell me, Mr.
I wouldn't mind some stimulation.
Just look at your brother.
The social season frustrated him at first too, but now it seems this Miss Edwina has quickened his interest and pleasure in courtship.
I only mean to say, Eloise, that we must be willing to look to find the partner that will excite us.
So dance with a bevy of frogs, and one of them might turn out to be a prince? If that's what you must do.
Your father, you know Are you listening to me? What do you have in your hand? Nothing, Mama.
It is only a pamphlet on new methods for the tidying of dogs, apparently.
Well, a lady is allowed her hobbies, is she not? - Thank you.
- Thank you.
[Violet chuckles.]
[Violet sighs.]
Dorset, you travel widely, then? And continuously, it seems.
Well, for my studies.
I find medicine particularly fascinating.
The helping of others is a noble interest, indeed.
Dorset is much like you in that regard, Sister.
Edwina, have you spoken to Lord Lumley of his interests at all? Lord Bridgerton.
Miss Sharma.
Miss Edwina.
How delightful to see you, my lord.
Lord Bridgerton, allow me to introduce myself.
Thomas Dorset.
Miss Edwina, I was hoping to call on you this morning My sister is well aware of everything but promised my family to join them for breakfast.
We are exceptionally close.
Break our fasts together regularly.
There they all are now.
One can tell a great deal about a man from his family, I rather think.
Yes, there are many excellent, affectionate families of the ton.
Are there not? Though none quite as inviting as the Bridgertons.
My mother's been wanting to enjoy another tea at Bridgerton House for some time.
Well, we must gratify your wish, Lumley.
Speaking of refreshments, I could not help but notice the ladies are without.
We are content, thank you.
It is an unseasonably hot day, and any gentleman would make sure Miss Edwina, allow me to fetch a lemonade for you.
Oh, that would be most agreeable.
Thank you, my lord.
Excuse me.
It's a splendid day for a race.
- [bells chiming.]
- [chattering.]
- Pen.
- Oh, Colin! [chuckles.]
We did not get a chance to speak this morning.
We did.
I said, "Colin!" But, then again, it was nothing of note.
I had wanted to hear more about your travels.
I thought you would've been bored of my travels by now.
You read and replied to more of my letters than anyone else.
I suppose I did, though, there is always much more to say than one can put onto the page.
How have you been? Well.
I have been well.
And you? Do not answer that.
I know how you have been.
Exploring the slopes of Mount Olympus, falconry with the Turks.
It was quite exhilarating.
Also lonely, perhaps? [Colin.]
Well, I was never on my own, of course.
- I see.
You met someone - Pen! I finally found you.
You always do.
You've been back hours, yet you are already in my way.
How I have missed you too, El.
I believe I have made a discovery.
Whistledown's new printer.
- Impossible.
- To mere mortals, perhaps.
I am beginning to sense my true power now.
Do you notice the way this pamphlet feels? Like paper? Precisely.
The paper stock is the same texture as that of Whistledown.
Does not all paper feel the same? Texture, weight, grain, the way the light seeps through when you hold it to the sky.
[clears throat.]
- Yes, I must seem mad.
- I did not say You were thinking it.
You seem passionate.
But, El, it is likely a coincidence.
That pamphlet is surely just what it appears to be.
Copious instructions for tending to a dog's undergrowth, evidently.
Most likely.
I suppose you are right.
I must go and pretend to share in the joy of my sister's impending nuptials.
- Give the soon-to-be my regards.
- [chuckles.]
[speaking indistinctly.]
Oh, really? Lord Lumley seems to have got lost on his journey back from the lemonade stand.
I am happy to search for him.
It was the viscount who insisted on refreshments.
Perhaps he might go? With the race set to begin? [chuckles.]
- Which one is your pick, my lord? - Edwina.
Well-bred, highly trained, and well-favored.
- [Kate.]
Really? - Yes.
I have a feeling about him.
A feeling.
Pardon me? You simply chose the horse everyone else has chosen.
- Quite a "feeling.
" - I made a strategic bet.
So you've considered your horse's temperament, as well as the conditions of the track, in order to properly assess its true potential? - It is suddenly rather warm, is it not? - Nectar is a prize steed.
We should find a little more shade.
Nectar ran well at Doncaster, but that was a firmer course.
The weather was much cooler.
Thus his size was an advantage.
Today the track is soft, and it is hot, meaning he will struggle to make headway, overheat, and slow down during the final leg, giving High Flyer, a much swifter, lighter, cooler horse, the victory.
- You think too much about it.
- And you, too little.
It seems your guest has caught the attention of the viscount, Lady Danbury.
- It would seem so.
- [chuckles.]
You do understand that, as Miss Edwina's sponsor, I should like to remain neutral until she has made her choice.
- Of course.
- But as your friend, I will tell you.
There may be an obstacle in your son's path.
The elder sister seems set against the match.
It seems Miss Edwina desires a love match, something the viscount clearly does not.
I see.
Perhaps her mind can be changed.
Perhaps so can the viscount's.
[Lady Danbury.]
My apologies for the delay.
Not to worry.
Lord Bridgerton has been keeping us entertained.
I am quite certain he has.
There is plenty of room, my lord.
[both chuckle.]
[bell tolling.]
- [crowd chattering.]
- [exciting music playing.]
Yes! That's it, Nectar! - Come now, High Flyer! - Yes! Steady! Steady! [crowd exclaiming.]
- Come now, High Flyer! [whistles.]
- Come on! [whistles loudly.]
- Should we separate them? - It's all in good spirit.
- I think.
- Yes, I am having such fun.
- on! Come on! - Yes! [laughing.]
- Oh! Yes! Yes! [laughing.]
- Come on! [shouting triumphantly.]
Prudence! Stop hollering like a newsboy.
Let her cheer.
We've all won today.
[clears throat.]
[giggling quietly.]
I must say, I have never bested a viscount before.
Beating you feels the same as any other win but somehow smells sweeter.
Kate, does Nectar not remind you of the beloved horse I used to adore? - Do you remember the one? - Oh, well, take my arm.
I'll take you down to see him.
Excellent idea.
Miss Sharma, I must ask.
Why do you jab at Lord Bridgerton so? If the viscount is serious about courting my sister, is it not my duty to try his mettle? The viscount does not like to lose.
He has never stomached it, even back at Oxford.
Miss Sharma, I You and the viscount know each other from Oxford? - I thought you met today.
- I have said too much.
You are going to say much more this very moment.
He thought you'd judge me if you knew we were acquaintances.
But I must assure you that my interest in you today was genuine Genuine in the sense you were sent here to distract me, all so Lord Bridgerton could get closer to my sister.
Kate, it is dreadful.
They say Nectar is to be sent to the knacker's yard.
- We are leaving.
- [scoffs.]
I've heard of a sore loser, Miss Sharma, but never a sore winner.
Do not speak to me or my sister ever again.
What has happened? It seems a second game was afoot today, and Lord Bridgerton made certain I play the fool.
Let us go.
I meant no harm.
I only wished to spend time with you.
[distant unclear shouting.]
[horses neighing.]
Whoa there.
Whoa there.
Miss Bridgerton, perhaps this is not such a wise decision.
Seemed wise when you took my money to escort me here.
I will return it.
This part of town is not safe for a young lady such as yourself.
Take the other half.
Keep a watchful eye.
No turning back now.
[doorknob rattling.]
What's this? - Tell me what you know of her.
- Of who? We know this is where Lady Whistledown prints.
- We do? - Why did you think we were here? - I think you might be lost.
- I think you're evading my question.
You never asked me a question.
[clears throat.]
What are those papers? Nothing for the likes of you.
Perhaps you might get your trivial gossip from somewhere else.
That is not what I am not here in search of gossip.
No? Private information about the season's most eligible bachelor, then? Mmm? Your assumptions are not the least bit surprising.
After all, a woman is allowed to have but two interests.
Marriage, or spewing slander about her peers, apparently.
It'd never occur to you that I am, in fact, hoping to find the writer so that we may discuss much more intellective matters.
The rights of woman.
The exploration of her mind, a mind which, I can already discern, is far, far superior to yours.
Is the shock you seem to be displaying at present due to the fact that I appear well-read and articulate? Or do you suffer from some medical ailment about which I should be informed? - This is not - If women's rights are what you're after, then perhaps that is what you need to be reading.
New thoughts.
Unsettling ideas.
Not too unsettling for you, I hope? Though, if I should ever see Lady what's-her-name, I'll be sure to let her know that her leading admirer says hello.
[door closes.]
I now pronounce you husband and wife.
[light clapping.]
Oh, how wonderful.
And to think, we are all one family now, Lady Featherington.
What a delightful thought.
We must tell the new Lord Featherington.
Where is the new Lord Featherington? He is here somewhere, to be sure.
Let me find him.
You ensured the dowry was paid? Of course I ensured the dowry was paid! - Mmm.
- Ah.
[knock at door.]
I would've been in attendance, my lady, but seeing how you wished to keep the guest list small What use are elaborate weddings anyway, my lord, when there are so many more important matters to spend one's money on? If you say so.
Especially with two more young ladies to wed and two more dowries to pay for.
My word, this is a perplexing puzzle.
Apparently I needed less skill to dig my American mines than I do to understand my late cousin's bookkeeping.
Well, surely, to a man of your wealth, settling the estate's affair shan't be of much concern? It'll certainly make a difference to my immediate plans.
Which would be? It may serve you well to involve me in your plans, my lord.
Perhaps we may act in concert in some way.
You are new to town, after all.
You could use someone to keep you apprised of certain matters.
- Well, in that, you are correct, my lady.
- Excellent Which is, indeed, why I plan on finding that someone sooner rather than later.
[chuckles lightly.]
Your new relations are asking for you.
Perhaps all this can wait.
Let us go and enjoy Philippa's day.
I do relish weddings.
Don't you, Mrs.
Varley? [hesitantly.]
Certainly, my lord.
[footsteps departing.]
He does have a pleasing smile.
That smile will be the last thing we see after he installs some beef-witted chit into our drawing room and ousts me out of my very own home.
Let's see how pleasing you find it then.
To be fair, he did not exactly have many choices.
You forbade him to call on me.
- You think he was clever? - No.
I think You told me Appa always said it takes a courageous man to go after what he truly wants.
Appa also said the mark of a true gentleman is honesty.
Something the viscount notably lacks.
[doors open.]
Your Majesty.
Lady Danbury.
Miss Sharma.
And my diamond.
This way.
There is much to see.
They are called "zebra.
" Striped horses from Africa, in fact.
Seven more arrive next week.
Though I can't think what to name them all.
After 15 children, I seem to have run out of ideas.
It is the most spectacular menagerie, Your Majesty.
Indeed, it is.
Miss Edwina? Yes, Your Majesty? I do hope you have been enjoying the attention you have surely been receiving as the season's diamond.
Very much so, ma'am.
It has been an exceptional honor.
It is not an easy mantle to take on, you realize.
To have so many eyes upon you at all times.
Regardless of the truth, people nay, gossips, they will contrive shameless falsehoods.
Rumor can oftentimes be a great hardship to endure.
Just ask your mother.
Just ask me.
My sister aspires to learn from your illustrious example, Your Majesty.
Your marriage, the wondrous love you share with the king.
Edwina desires the very same.
And she shall receive it, should she know who to trust.
Lady Danbury has been a steadfast guide for us this season.
And my sister has me watching her as well.
An inner circle, if there ever was one.
Though you must know there will be many people trying to break it apart for their own ends.
When those persons inevitably reveal themselves and their rather sly intentions, I simply ask that you tell me who they are so that I may decide if they are worthy, of course.
Miss Sharma, perhaps you would like to take your sister to see the rest of these splendid grounds.
The cassowaries are just across the bridge.
But do not veer too close.
They are quite irritable.
Something tells me, ma'am, that there are quite a few sly intentions at work here.
Was I so obvious? You seek to unmask Lady Whistledown with the help of your diamond.
The writer will assuredly seek access to her.
And when she does, Her Majesty will be waiting.
Is that why you chose Miss Edwina in the first place? Someone who was not present last season Meant she was someone I knew I could trust.
- Yes.
- [Lady Danbury.]
Lady Danbury.
Don't appear scandalized.
You relish this frivolity nearly as much as I do.
This season is different.
You may wish to spoil your own fun, Lady Danbury, but you shall not ruin mine.
Let me show you where I house my elephant.
[Lady Danbury.]
- [grunting.]
- [blades swishing.]
She is pompous and arrogant and quite sure she knows best in every situation.
She sounds like a terrible nuisance.
Especially since you are the one who knows best in every situation.
- [grunts.]
- [blades swishing.]
And the victor of every match today.
Less talking, more fencing.
[Benedict sighs.]
Good luck.
Ready? Do you know why I win every time? Because every time you lose, you claim we cheated.
Because I know my duties.
What my purposes are and how to obtain them.
Which I will do when I make Miss Edwina my viscountess.
[Anthony grunts.]
Miss Edwina and I are well-suited.
She is a lovely young lady.
She wishes for children.
She'll make a perfectly agreeable wife.
What he means to say is that he has already dismissed every other young lady in town.
You take too much upon yourself, Brother.
Perhaps your life might be easier if you pursued someone with a less disagreeable sister.
Why should I be the one to admit defeat? Regardless of which young lady I have chosen to pursue, there would've always been some obstinate father or meddlesome aunt into the picture.
I shall certainly not let some sister, especially one younger than me, keep me from getting what it is I want.
Whom you want, you mean? Is this still a friendly match, or do we need to find some armor? That is what you do not understand, Brother.
Benedict honors me by holding nothing back.
As I now honor him.
- [Anthony.]
Yah! Yah! - [Colin laughs.]
What honor.
Thank you, gentlemen, for the bracing exertion.
Now it is time for me to secure my final victory for the day.
Wish me luck.
They were called zebras, I believe.
So it was a pleasant visit, then? I'm quite sorry I was unable to attend.
I am certain it is not the last time we will be invited to the palace.
Her Majesty seemed quite taken by Edwina, was she not, Lady Danbury? I was thinking.
- A soiree this evening.
- [horse neighs.]
So that Miss Edwina may get to know her many suitors rather better.
I shall see to everything.
Sounds delightful.
So long as we are judicious with our guest list.
Pardon me.
[door opens.]
Good boy.
How much clearer must I be? - I brought a gift for Miss Edwina.
- Take your Trojan Horse elsewhere.
I assure you, this is a very real horse.
I'd not recommend trying to climb inside.
- Truly, this is all a game to you.
- I'm not here to play games.
Then what was Mr.
Dorset, if not some deceitful prank? The business with Mr.
Dorset was not so great a deceit as you imply.
And now you question my judgment.
Only because you questioned mine.
I have never met a man as brazenly presumptuous You do not even know me.
I know you are polished.
I know you are careful.
I know you make promises without so much as uttering a word.
There is not much more I need to know.
- [Anthony mutters.]
- Thank you, sir.
Is this about what you heard on the terrace again? You act as if I'm some kind of villain when every other woman in London aspires for the kind of marriage I'm offering.
You must know that.
You have been exceptionally clear about what it is you do and do not wish for, but has it ever occurred to you this might, in fact, be about what your sister wishes for instead? Lord Bridgerton.
Miss Edwina.
I have brought you a small token to remember our fine time at the races yesterday.
The horse is for me? - I thought you loved animals.
- [Edwina.]
I do.
But usually the kind that can curl up on my lap.
[chuckles softly.]
[chuckles softly.]
My apologies.
You said something about Nectar reminding you of a beloved horse back at [Kate.]
That horse is a character from a novel.
A novel of love, in fact.
Something for which my sister is an enthusiast.
I adore it, my lord.
The horse is a generous gesture, indeed.
Come, Edwina.
We must return inside.
Bridgerton! You honor me with your presence.
The honor's all mine, Mr.
The place looks extraordinary.
Though, am I a little early? The crowd will increase with time, naturally.
I heard a rumor that you yourself are an artist.
I dabble.
Then, you must meet Mr.
He's a talented illustrator with many connections amongst artists and patrons.
I'm always excited to meet talented people.
This is precisely what makes my establishment different, Bridgerton.
I know you and your brothers are comfortable at places like White's, but every honest man, regardless of his title, rank, or occupation, is welcome to be here.
I must say, Mr.
Mondrich, I'm quite overjoyed to see what a fine establishment you've built by the sweat of your own honest labor.
Hear, hear.
[sighs softly.]
The tidying of dogs? Yes.
Perhaps you have a friend who finds the subject interesting.
- Mother, are you quite well? - No.
No, she is not.
I was unaware there was a ball this evening.
It is a soiree, rather.
Did you not receive your invitation from the Danbury footman? The soiree is at the Danbury House.
And Miss Sharma likes to accuse me of playing games.
- Can you blame her? - [Anthony.]
What? She is looking out for her sister.
She hopes to find her a love match.
And with you, apparently so forthright in your disdain for such a thing [inhales deeply.]
Perhaps Miss Edwina's other suitors plan on choosing words more wisely tonight.
Some are reading poetry, I hear.
[scoffs lightly.]
There is a lesson here for you somewhere, Anthony.
I only hope that this time you will finally learn it.
- Come along.
- [clears throat.]
[door opens.]
[flute playing unevenly.]
[metallic swishing.]
- [cymbals crashing.]
- [all gasping.]
- [whooshing.]
- [gasping.]
[soft laughter.]
[light clapping.]
- [chuckles.]
- [man grunting.]
At least it is the men who are making fools of themselves this time.
- Was this your idea? - I wish I could take credit, but no.
Lady Danbury encouraged a poetry reading.
The men, thanks to their spirit and competition, concocted the rest of this farce on their own.
Of course they did.
[light clapping.]
[Lady Danbury laughs.]
Oh, yes.
You are the viscount's sister, yes? One of them.
But do not hold it against me.
The fact the viscount is your relation almost makes me think better of him.
We should certainly not give him too much credit, now, should we? [laughs.]
What? Yes.
How about a pause? [murmuring.]
[Lady Danbury.]
[light classical music playing.]
[indistinct chatter.]
A beautiful dress.
Thank you.
[chuckles softly.]
I quite like yours as well.
- You have a sense of humor.
- No, I did not mean I am being truthful.
It is quite beautiful, indeed.
Well, I seem to have grown weary of the color.
[both chuckle.]
I can understand.
Though, I suppose, in truth, it is not a matter of the color, but rather how one wears it.
You wear it well, Miss Penelope.
Pardon me.
So, what will it be for you tonight? A song? A jig? Some hidden hoop-rolling talent you have yet to share with the world? I'm afraid I'm just a spectator.
So much interest shown in a young lady whom none of us really know.
Not a devotee of mystery, Pen? Me? No.
I am always turning to the final chapter first.
Speaking of mysteries, you must tell me the name of the young lady you met while out of the country.
Now, what can you mean? You mentioned, at the races, you were never lonely.
I only assumed Never mind.
[clears throat.]
There truly is someone hoop-rolling tonight.
You are right.
I was not exactly lonely on my travels.
I did begin a real conversation with someone.
Someone I had known for a very long time.
And yet, after everything that happened with Miss Thompson, I realized I never truly knew this person at all.
Yourself? I have you to thank.
Your letters were so encouraging.
I thought, if Penelope can see me this way, then surely I can too.
I was just so distracted by Miss Thompson.
So I cleared my head, swore off women and love, and Well, I only wanted to fully understand myself before stepping back into this world.
You've sworn off women, then? Well, for the time being.
I am a woman.
You are Pen.
You do not count.
You are my friend.
Of course.
Your friend.
How good to hear that.
[melancholy music playing.]
[breathing shakily.]
[Cressida laughs softly.]
Thank you.
I find it quite alluring too.
[Lady Cowper.]
The new Lord Featherington is certainly a man of taste, is he not? Lady Cowper.
Miss Cowper.
What an exquisite necklace.
Courtesy of the new Lord Featherington, I hear.
Did the lord not tell you? He called on us just this afternoon.
- I must have missed that.
- Hmm.
I was so busy with Philippa's nuptials and everything else.
It's quite a generous gesture, is it not? I do wonder what it means.
It cannot mean much.
The new lord is so very generous with his gifts.
It's hard to keep up with them.
- Hmm.
- [chuckles.]
This way, my dear.
I saw that Gérard painting.
- It was a marvel.
- A vision, in fact.
So you are telling me that he, Leighton, and Turner all studied in the same academy? Indeed.
And they have a vacancy, from what I hear.
If you are serious about painting, I hear it is the place to be.
I need you.
- I'm in the midst of a conversation.
- Outside, straight away.
Excuse me.
I need you to teach me how to read that out loud.
Byron? Did I strike you much harder than I realized earlier? "There is a pleasure in the pathless woods.
" Oh "There is a rapture on the lon " How does one make that sound good? I'm afraid that is not possible.
That poem is the opposite of good.
That's nonsense.
I thought this sort of thing was supposed to be your pleasure.
Poetry, yes.
Byron, heavens, no.
Is not everyone supposed to love Byron? Many in our year at Cambridge thought my poetry far superior to his.
Does that mean yours is more or less deceitful? - Deceitful? - Mmm.
Poetry is the opposite, Brother.
It is the art of revealing precious truth with words.
Quite right, Brother.
You You're being serious? Mm-hmm.
Good God.
Good night.
What is it, truly, to admire a woman? To look at her and feel inspiration.
To delight in her beauty.
So much so that all your defenses crumble, that you would willingly take on any pain, any burden for her.
To honor her being [sighs.]
with your deeds and words.
That is what the true poet describes.
You should apply yourself more often, Benedict.
Write that down.
"And on that cheek, and o-er that brow," "So soft, so calm, yet eloquent," "The smiles that win, the tints that glow," "But tell of days in goodness spent," "A mind at peace with all below," "A heart whose love is innocent!" [women softly exclaiming.]
Gentlemen, thank you all for the most splendid display of your talents this evening.
A memorable occasion, to be sure.
Pardon me.
Lady Danbury? Uh, Lord Bridgerton, I did not expect you.
No, I seem to have fallen off the guest list.
Though you'd never deny a young man you've known for 29 years the pleasure of your company? And neither would your footman at the front door.
Apologies, viscount.
You appear to be late again.
We were bringing the evening to a conclusion Surely Miss Edwina has time for one more.
I spent all evening crafting something.
An original.
Would you like to hear it? Would everyone like to hear it? - Yes.
Most definitely.
- Viscount.
- Go on, then.
- Of course, Lord Bridgerton.
[Lady Danbury scoffs.]
"What is it" [clears throat.]
"truly to admire a woman?" "To look at her and feel inspiration.
" "To delight in her beauty.
" "So much that all your defenses crumble, that you would willingly take on any pain, any burden for her.
" "To honor" "To hon" [somber music plays.]
My apologies.
I cannot do this.
I cannot claim these words as my own.
They are someone else's entirely.
Truth be told, I'm not [sighs.]
I'm not a man of poetry.
Words of flattery are beautiful and sweet, but they are also hollow unless accompanied by action.
Miss Edwina, I could stand here and pretend to be someone I am not.
I could pretend to want the very same things as you, but I'd be lying.
I may not be able to offer the display of passion that you truly deserve.
But I assure you that when it comes to action and duty I shall never be found lacking.
And I hope that is what will speak louder than any pretty words ever can.
- [soft murmuring.]
- [scattered clapping.]
Did you hear that, Bon? He cannot give you the love you deserve.
Does that make him a bad man or an honest one? It is the mark of a true gentleman, just as Appa used to say.
Yes? Delicious.
- [grunts.]
- [people gasping.]
[Lady Danbury.]
You should return to the party.
I shall be there in a moment.
Well, the viscount certainly seems to have nettled you.
He can be exasperating.
He is incorrigible.
He is not for my sister.
I shall make sure she sees of it too, one way or another.
Some advice, Miss Sharma? When one is frustrated, it is often much wiser to focus upon satisfying one's own needs.
Attempting to influence others as to the correct course of action, well, it is often a trying and irritating endeavor that only brings out the worst in us before we discover it has been fruitless all along.
I am aware I've made a fool of myself tonight, Lady Danbury.
I do not need to hear it from you.
In fact, I do not need to hear it from anyone.
I do not care what a single person here thinks of me.
Once Edwina is married, I shall return home alone, only too glad to never set foot in this city again.
You may not yet know, and that is all well and good.
But I, for one, find it not only terribly disheartening but also an offense against truth, to hear you say you wish to be alone at a mere six and twenty? Perhaps you should not.
I will be a governess.
I will be content knowing my sister is taken care of.
Content? Are you so miserable, my lady? I beg your pardon? Are you not alone yourself? I watch you.
I see you.
You are more than content.
Because I have lived a life.
I am a widow.
I have loved.
I have lost.
I have earned the right to do whatever I please, whenever I please, and however I please to do it.
Child, you are not me.
And if you continue down this road, you most certainly never will be.
[Lady Whistledown.]
There are two things that lurk within the dark and shadowy places of our fair city.
Vermin and secrets.
I shall leave it to you, dear reader, as to which do the most harm.
[Lady Whistledown.]
One has to wonder what secrets the season's diamond is holding near and dear to her heart.
And who shall she choose to share them with? The Viscount Bridgerton, perhaps? At least the elder Sharma's opinion on such a matter is certainly no secret at all.
If you are truly that vexed by the manner in which Lady Whistledown writes still, perhaps you might stop reading? - She's finally revealed herself.
- What? El I was not going to tell you this because Well, I was embarrassed, and I thought I was wrong, but, I paid this printer's shop a visit yesterday.
You did? Did you speak with anyone? It does not matter.
Pen, look.
Not only are these paper stocks identical, but the letter K's, they are slightly misshapen in the exact same way.
Surely it is not likely to be another coincidence.
Well, we must keep an eye out.
If the same mistake is in Whistledown's next issue, then we will know the print shop is indeed hers.
[compelling music plays.]
[indistinct chatter.]
[in Irish accent.]
A new letter "K" for a Stanhope press.
- That will be ten pence.
- I'll give you five.
Five's a special rate for repeat customers.
Trust me, friend, I'd exasperate you coming back any more than once.
Now give me the discount to keep me away, and we'll both be happier.
Miss Penelope? [Lady Whistledown.]
To be fair, one might call this author the biggest secret-sharer of all.
For who else could possibly keep all of you honest? Here you are, Your Majesty.
And you are certain these are the young ladies our diamond has been conversing with of late? Yes, Your Majesty.
If our theory is correct, then Lady Whistledown will indeed be in this very collection.
[Lady Whistledown.]
When even the most well-kept of secrets must eventually come to light.

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