Lady Danbury is Simon's mentor, who took over his care when his father rejected him.
History[edit | edit source]
Taking Simon In[edit | edit source]
Lady Danbury was a dear friend of Simon's mother, Sarah. When Sarah became pregnant and prepared to give birth, Lady Danbury came to the estate to be at her side. However, Sarah's husband, the duke, wouldn't allow her into the room. When the duchess cried out, the duke ran into the room, leaving Lady Danbury on the other side. The duke was only interested in learning if he had a son and when it was confirmed that he did, he took the newborn Simon to present him to the crowd while Lady Danbury went to Sarah's side. She soon after passed out from blood loss due to hemorrhage and died with Lady Danbury by her side.
Lady Danbury visited the estate a few years later and found young Simon practicing his schooling and not dead as she'd been led to believe he was. She was shocked to learn he didn't have any manners despite having learned to read and write. He quickly demonstrated that he had a significant stutter. She decided to take him under her wing, saying she'd help him with his stammer and in exchange, he'd promise that when he stood in the light, he'd be worthy of the attention he commanded. When Simon was eleven, she presented him to his father, now extremely accomplished for his age. Despite this, his father still rejected him and called him his worst failure. Lady Danbury was quick to remind him that Simon would be the next duke, though the duke still sent them both away.
Start of the 1813 Season[edit | edit source]
After the death of his father, Simon returned to London to put his father's affairs in order. While he was there, Lady Danbury greeted him and encouraged him to join in the social events for the year, including a ball she was hosting. When she put pressure on him, he agreed to make a brief appearance at her ball. At the ball, Lady Danbury notices Daphne, who was struggling to find suitable matches due to her brother's overbearing presence, something Lady Danbury sympathized with.
At a show, Lady Danbury invited Daphne and her mother to sit in her box. She and Lady Bridgerton gossiped about the king and Lady Whistledown. They also established that Daphne and Simon would make a good match together.
Lady Danbury and Lady Bridgerton were delighted to observe Simon and Daphne's courtship, unaware they were faking it. Lady Danbury told Simon directly that the two of them made a beautiful match.
Lady Bridgerton later became concerned that Simon and Daphne hadn't become engaged, though Lady Danbury wasn't worried. However, she went to Simon and asked him if the time he'd been spending with Daphne was leading toward anything. With Prince Friedrich starting to show interest, Lady Danbury warned him to let her go if he didn't plan to propose, so that she could be allowed to find a better match. Spurred by this conversation, Simon ended things with Daphne and told Lady Danbury he was leaving London. To that, she called him a fool.
When Simon prepared to leave, Lady Danbury went to see him off, but still told him he was a fool for letting Daphne slip away. She reminded him of how far they'd come, how there used to be two societies, separated by color, until the King fell in love with one of them. She told him love conquers all, but Simon was unconvinced.
When Simon and Daphne became engaged, Lady Danbury and Violet Bridgerton accompanied them out as they went to events. When the archbishop rejected their special license to marry quickly, Lady Danbury said it was the queen's doing, as she was taking Daphne's rejection of her nephew personally. The solution was to make a personal appeal to the queen without begging or insincerity. They just needed to tell her they were in love. She went with them when they appeared before the queen. After they spoke, the queen granted their special license. They married quickly, with Daphne's family present on her side and Will, Alice, and Lady Danbury present for Simon.
Eloise accused Lady Danbury of being Lady Whistledown. She insisted that she was not, but wanted to know who it was when Eloise figured it out.
When the news broke that Marina was pregnant and her engagement to Colin was called off, Daphne and Simon returned to London to support her family. Lady Danbury noticed the timing of their return, though Daphne claimed it was purely coincidence. Lady Danbury then invited Daphne to a party she was throwing for married ladies of the ton. Lady Danbury also became suspicious of Daphne and Simon after seeing Daphne and her mother arguing in the garden. Daphne ultimately decided to attend Lady Danbury's party, where the ladies gambled, drank, and socialized.
When Daphne found the letters Simon had written to his father, which his father left unopened and unanswered, she asked Lady Danbury if she knew about them. Lady Danbury confirmed that she did. The late duke demanded perfection from his son and when that didn't happen, he abandoned his son. Lady Danbury took up the torch and encouraged Simon.
Lady Danbury then spoke to Simon and asked if his plans had changed. He said they hadn't and she told him his pride would leave him with nothing. Soon after that, Daphne and Simon danced together, a waltz they'd agreed upon. As they danced, it began to rain. As they danced, they rekindled their romance. When another couple tried to join them to dance in the rain, Lady Danbury stopped them with her cane and sent everyone home.
Personality[edit | edit source]
The legendary, acerbic, lioness of a dowager who runs this town. Unconcerned with the rules of polite society, Lady Danbury is a straight shooter - both formidable and a little scary. And while her judgments may be sharp, they're always accurate. She is a friend of Simon's late mother, having shown the now Duke a rare kindness when he was a child.