Oh my stars, I am all a-flutter today.  I can barely keep upright without the use of my salts.  That witch Emma Woodhouse asked if I wouldn’t mind having her American niece stay with us for a little while as Emma is remodeling her piano room.  Who needs a piano room?  I certainly don’t – mine is just fine where it is in the drawing room, thank you. Anyway, I said yes, of course, because I have more hospitality in my little finger that Miss Woodhouse has in her whole Piano Room and now that her niece is here, my life has been turned upside down.  The young girl, Fern, brought with her a menagerie and I – oh – I don’t know what to do.  There’s a pig, a spider, a long horned sheep and I swear to the saints that since they all arrived, I have seen a rat scurrying about!

Fern is a lovely girl; she seems to have a big heart.  One might even fault her for caring a little too much; we are rather big fans of bacon here at Thornfield.  But this obsession with keeping all of this livestock on the premises, I just… well I… I swear there is a rat somewhere.  And Fern does tend to let the animals run free, without much to pen them in.  That silly pig is always tossing himself in the air and flipping about.  People show up from all over to see his antics – my precious zinnia beds are being trampled.  Not to mention making up some snacks for all these visitors has become problematic for our cook.  What am I supposed to serve them if animal products get everyone in such a tizzy?  I made some deviled ham finger sandwiches the other day and Mrs. Fezziwig from next door passed out.  Well excuse me for offering lunch!

But it’s the spider that I take exception to – Charlotte.  Yes, she is beautiful and Fern claims the little diva can sing, but she is a bit full of herself, if you ask me.  She has this clever trick of writing things in her web and everyone thinks that is just the bee’s knees (which, of course, she also has bee’s knees in these little messages but nobody complains about those animal parts.)  At first she was saying flattering things about the pig which, I mean honestly – it’s a pig; how many superlatives can we put to it?  But then the little sass started expanding her thoughts to others.  She acts like this is all complimentary but I swear the web over the hall mirror that read “Nice Bonnet”  was laced with sarcasm.  And I could do without her little condescending messages like the one she left in the sunroom that said “well look who decided to grace us with her presence.”  Surely her energy could be better spent, I don’t know, laying an egg sack?

Oh heavens!  I think I saw that blasted rat again.  I just can’t take any more of this.  I am going to take Fern and the spastic pig to the fair today, maybe that will take our minds off the chaos that currently inhabits Thornfield.  I may also leave a little note for that filthy rat as to which rubber plant little miss Charlotte likes to spend her afternoons.

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