Mrs Darcy versus the Aliens
|Mrs Darcy versus the Aliens|
|Cover artist||Sir Christopher Hamilton-Emery, RA|
|Publication date||September 2011|
Mrs Darcy versus the Aliens is a non-fiction work by the 19th century English journalist Jonathan Pinnock. Details of the original publication are - for obvious reasons - sketchy. However, the book was known to have been in general circulation in the mid-1800s prior to its blanket suppression in the aftermath of the notorious treason trial.
According to most accounts, the book purports to provide a counterpoint to the
lies, half-truths and dissemblishments
spread by Jane Austen in her so-called novel Pride and Prejudice. It is understood that the author was particularly eager to put the record straight about the role played by George Wickham and Mrs Elizabeth Darcy in the skirmishes leading up to the First Alien War.
However, shortly after publication, it emerged that much of the information contained in the book was not in fact obtained by legitimate means, but by intercepting and hacking open correspondence between Wickham and Mrs Darcy. It subsequently turned out that this practice was widespread in the journal that Pinnock worked for (The News of th'Earth), with many others such as Lord Byron, Beau Brummell and the Prince Regent himself now claiming that their personal correspondence had also been hacked open.
The resulting furore led to the closure of the journal and the arrest of Pinnock and his proprietor, Sir Rupert Merde d'Oc, for high treason. Both were sentenced to be hung, drawn and quartered, although Merde d'Oc's punishment was commuted to transportation to Van Diemen's Land, where his descendants continue his work to this very day. Pinnock, an unprepossessing individual with rat-like features, bad skin and appalling halitosis (almost certainly as a result of suffering from the condition now known as McMullan's Trifecta), is in hindsight generally regarded to have been the fall guy, although his execution drew a large crowd of baying onlookers, most of whom had themselves only recently bought a copy of his book.
Following the trial, the book was suppressed under the terms of the 300-year rule, making it illegal even to own a copy. There has been speculation in some quarters as to whether the whole so-called "hacking" scandal was manufactured in order to provide an excuse for this. Be that as it may, in the past few months, an ancient battered copy has come into the possession of the shadowy Wickhamleaks organisation, and their continual stream of leaks from the book have now led to the authorities relenting and allowing a new publication to go ahead. What happens next is anyone's guess.