Fandom: Gilmore Girls
Characters: Luke Danes/Lorelai Gilmore
Spoilers: Yes, for the whole series but especially the last few episodes.
Notes: When the possibility of a Gilmore Girls revival was first rumored (it's still not confirmed as of this writing, but circumstantial evidence continues to be solid), I decided that it was time to watch the series again, not least because I never finished it the first time (I stalled out early in season 6, not because I wasn't liking it but because I had to set it aside for something else, and just never got back to it). It had been long enough that I thought it made sense to start over again, and I enjoyed it very much, even the controversial Season 7. I came out the series 'shipping Luke/Lorelai and Rory/herself, and although I don't know that I'll ever write fic for it again, this missing scene from the series finale has been buzzing at me since I finished a few days ago. So I wrote it down.
"I just like to see you happy."
Lorelai looks at Luke then, let herself really look at him for the first time since karaoke night -- for the first time, really, since she asked him to elope and he didn't say yes. He looks back, his eyes bright, all the coldness he'd been projecting vanished, and it no longer seemed impossible that he might still have feelings for her.
The only thing that seems impossible is that she's not kissing him right now, and so she kisses him, stepping into his arms just as he reaches out. And then they're kissing each other, long and slow, and it's just as amazing as she remembers, just as perfect, just as right. And as he pulls away, she knows that she doesn't ever want to be not-kissing him again.
She catches his hand in hers, presses their palms together. "So," she says.
"So." He brushes a finger over her chin, then glances over her shoulder, in the direction of the square, before jutting his chin toward the diner door. "Can we go inside for a second?"
She smiles. "Sure." Hands still joined, they step over the bag of charcoal that he let fall on the ground, and he leads her through the door, into the deserted diner. As the door falls shut behind them, she's in his arms again, kissing him again, pressing her whole body into his. "God, Luke. I miss you. I miss you so much."
He hugs her back, arms coming around her waist, and presses a cheek into her hair. "Me too." They stand like that for a whole minute, just being together, breathing together, feeling the rightness of it all. Then he shifts to look at her, all the warmth of happiness in his eyes. "So. Are we starting over? Trying this again?"
"I want to," Lorelai says. She lays a hand on his rough cheek and smiles. "Very much." Then she lowers her eyes. "But I-- I can't talk about this yet. Or even think about it. Not tonight." A lump rises in her throat as she looked back up at him. "Tonight has to be about Rory. About saying goodbye to her. About letting her-- go." Her voice catches on the last word, and she swallows to keep the tears away. "I'm sorry."
Luke shakes his head. "Don't apologize. You're right -- tonight is for you and Rory. We can talk tomorrow, or the day after. Take the time you need." He kisses her forehead, then lets her go. "But before you get back to the party, can you hold on a second?"
"Sure," she says, and he goes behind the counter to rummage in the drawer next to the register. The last thing she expects him to pull out is a long, narrow box -- a jewelry box. He sets it on the counter, and she lifts the lid. Nestled inside is a necklace, a delicate silver chain set with aquamarines, and she sighs as she pulls it free. "Oh, Luke." She glances up to see his soft smile, his look of hopeful wonder. "When did you-- why?"
Luke shrugs. "I was in Liz's workshop, buying Rory's graduation present, and when I saw it, I knew it was meant for you. And you'd sung that song, so I thought, maybe you were trying to tell me something. And maybe I wanted to say the same to you. But then you said-- I overheard-- and then I thought--" He shuffles from foot to foot, then shakes his head. "Sorry, I know we aren't talking about this right now. And it doesn't matter anyway, What matters is that you're here now, and the necklace belongs with you."
"It's beautiful," she murmurs, leaning over the counter to kiss him. She coils the necklace into a loop and gently places it back in the box. "Thank you."
He covers her hand with his, and kisses her again, and it takes an act of will for her to pull free. But she does, taking another look at the party as she turns, still going strong under the tarp that Luke built. Like the chuppah, she realizes, an act of love constructed with his bare hands, to make space for celebrating the changes of life. "We should get back," she says. "I seem to recall that Cesar was waiting for more charcoal."
"Yeah." Luke follows her to the door, then stops. "You go first," he says. "If we show up together..."
"Right." Lorelai chuckles, shakes her head. "So much for the night being about Rory -- those gossip jackals would be all over us."
"Exactly," Luke says. "Go ahead. I'll just be another couple of minutes."
Lorelai starts to open the door, then stops. "And then, tomorrow?"
He nods. "Tomorrow. Hey, what time does Rory need to leave? You could come by for breakfast."
"Early," Lorelai says. "We need to be on the road by seven."
"Then I'll open at five-thirty." Lorelai opens her mouth to object -- he's done so much for them already, but he holds his hand up. "Nope, I know what you're going to say, and don't. I'll be up anyway, and I'm happy to do it. For Rory, and for you." He takes her hand again, and Lorelai grasps his back. "All in, remember?"
"All in," she echoes, and then she lets go, heading toward the tent and Rory, bursting with joy and good news. She won't tell her tonight, though -- the spotlight will remain firmly on Rory, where it belongs. It can keep until tomorrow, she thinks, raising her hand to acknowledge Rory's wave. Tomorrow, and hopefully forever after that.
This entry is also posted at http://owlmoose.dreamwidth.org/734169.html. There are currently comments on DW.