Paring: Anne and Gilbert
Rating: PG (ooh!!)
Setting: takes place after Gilbert recovers from typhoid. They have just graduated from Redmond.
Spoilers: Anne of the Island, last chapter
The white dress with the puffed sleeves and flowing skirt that made her look like she was wearing a cloud. The pale yellow dress with the fluttery sleeves that let him catch a glimpse of the freckles on her upper arms. The sky-blue gown that hugged her willowy frame and gave him thoughts of dryads floating up from the depths of the sea. But today she wore the green dress. It was old, and not spectacular, but he saw her wear it at Redmond and had told her how becoming it was on her.
He imagined that she wore it especially for him, to remind him of what could have been had she not been so stubborn. Her auburn hair glinted in the sunshine, her lips were parted in a smile, and her hand was so near...
He knew that if she wouldn't have him, he would have no one. There would be no other woman in his life. The letter he received while ill with typhoid gave him hope. Phil had written that Anne wouldn't marry Roy, that there was still time to try again. And so he would. They made their way to the secret garden of Hester Grey and sat.
"I have a dream, " he said slowly. "I persist in dreaming it, although it has often seemed to me that it would never come true. I dream of a home with a hearth-fire in it, a cat and a dog, the footsteps of friends - and you. I asked you a question over two years ago, Anne. If I ask it again today will you give me a different answer?"
He felt he would never breath again, so desperate was he to hear her accept. Her hand crept shyly to his cheek and held it. He only dared to close his eyes when he saw her tears. He slowly let out his breath and allowed himself to touch her face. He hadn't tried since Diana Barry's wedding party. Silk. She turned her face into the palm of his hand and there placed a gentle kiss.
Surely it was not meant for man to feel so strongly, and it amazed him that his heart could feel so much joy without breaking. Gilbert leaned almost imperceptibly towards her, tilting her face to meet his.
"Sweetheart. My love," he whispered.
Their lips met and he felt that he would die, that he could carry the heaviest load, that he should cradle his sweet Anne in his arms and protect her forever. The gentlest of pressure caused her to encircle him with her arms. He pulled her closer into his embrace and traced a path from her ivory neck to her glorious hair.
"Oh, Gilbert, I've been such a fool. How much time I've wasted not loving you."
"Shh. We've each other now and forever." He wanted to kiss each and every freckle on her perfect little nose. He wanted to pull those silly combs from her hair and run his hands through it before the light faded and he was unable to see its fire. He wanted to pull her onto his lap and hold her firmly to him.
She giggled and he nipped at the soft skin under her ear. Watching Anne laugh was like watching a brook come to life. She stood and pressed her hands to her cheeks. He worried until he saw her eyes shining. She held her hand out to him and they lingered at the garden wall, breathing in the scent of the garden, Anne's head on his shoulder, and everything as it should be.
The proposal is taken directly from the book, apologies to Lucy Maud.