That night after dinner, Jane is well enough to come down for a few hours. Mr. Bingley is so glad to see her, he hardly pays attention to anybody else.
Miss Bingley tries to keep Mr. Darcy's attention and fails. She pouts about Mr. Bingley's plan to give a ball at Netherfield – balls are so boring when the people who attend are <em>so</em> beneath you – but she fails to dissuade him from the idea.
Miss Bingley asks Elizabeth to parade up and down the room with her. She wants to show off her fine figure to Mr. Darcy.
When Miss Bingley asks Mr. Darcy to join them in walking up and down the room, he refuses, saying that it would ruin her reason for walking back and forth. In other words, she is either sharing gossipy secrets with Elizabeth, or they realize that their figures look best when they are walking about and are trying to get attention. How could he possibly notice their fine figures if he joined them?
Much to Miss Bingley's disgust, the conversation soon grows into banter between Darcy and Elizabeth. She tells him his main fault is his inclination to hate everybody; her defect, he tells her, is to intentionally misunderstand them.