Jane Austen herself, according to her family, used to speculate on the future of her characters.
In “The Poignant Sting,” a line from Emma inspired a novelette. Mansfield Park inspired two alternate sequels, both involving characters from other books, and finally, a fantasia about Miss Austen herself, supposing she had been able to travel to Eastern Europe, where she met a mysterious and sinister count. Whose wit prevailed?
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