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The girl in my story has always been you

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One of Anne’s new favourite places was upon the porch of their very own House of Dreams. For two whole weeks they were undisturbed by the rest of the world, just her and Gilbert caught in their own little bubble of new matrimonial bliss. Unfortunately it must come to an end, and Gilbert was expected at the Doctors’ office on tomorrow. The past evenings had been spent with them sat in the fading summer light. Perhaps Anne would read while Gilbert lay with his head in her lap, listening contentedly. Or perhaps Gilbert would hum a peaceful tune to her as she wove flowers into a crown or decoration for their small but cosy parlour.


On this final evening together, before the real world caught up to them, Anne was happy just watching the sunset. She tucked her knees up as she sat on the steps, leaning her arm on her hand, her hair falling loose from its updo. 


Anne looked over to see Gilbert staring at her with an intense concentration on his face, notebook open. She tilted her head and he broke into a goofy grin, bashfully hiding his notebook.


“Gilbert Blythe what are you doing?” she reached over, trying to grab it from him but he held it above her head, his free hand coming down to playfully swat away her curious hand.


“Nothing…” he said with a mischievous grin. 


She jumped at him, and he wrapped his arms around instinctively as he fell back on the porch, taking her with him. They were in fits of laughter, before Anne closed the gap between them. He was distracted, so she was able to grab the notebook out of his hand, sitting up triumphantly.


“Hey, that’s not fair. You distracted me.” he sat up, folding his arms with a slight pout on his face.


She shrugged, but the smile faded from her face when she saw what he had been doing. He had been drawing her as she watched the sun set, and her hand ran across the paper. 


“Anne? What’s wrong?” he scooted closer to her, wrapping an arm around her waist as he looked over her shoulder.


When she turned to look at him, she had a tear in her eye. “You...drew this?”


He nodded.


“The only reference of what my mother looks like was from a drawing my father did of her. It looks like this...I look so much like her.”


“She must have been beautiful.” Gilbert said, leaning his chin on Anne’s shoulder, and her hand came up to brush against his cheek.


“Is this how you see me?”


He lifted his head and turned her so she was facing him, “How could I not?”


She wiped her eyes, scared of a tear falling and smudging his art. Her hand brushed delicately over it, over the freckles and the soft curls, and her heart felt full. Gilbert was not shy about expressing his feelings, always telling her how much he loved her, but seeing herself through his drawing brought it home to her. That he loved her enough to draw her when he could have drawn the most beautiful sunset she’s seen. She was the object of his desire.


Her hand stopped when she reached Gilbert’s neat handwriting, with the words: “My Anne with an e”.


She turned, raising her hand to cup his cheek, “My Gilbert.”


He leaned into her touch as she pressed her lips against his. She laughed as she felt the book being lifted from her lap, and Gilbert’s arms wrapping around her waist. The sun set could wait.


School was out of session for the summer, and for the past few days Anne had barely noticed since she had Gilbert to keep her company. But he’d gone back to work, leaving her alone. She’d spent the day exploring the area around their new home, picking wildflowers to decorate their parlour, but now she’d decided she could make Gilbert’s favourite pie for when he comes home.

He came home earlier than expected, but Anne didn’t hear him as he entered through the kitchen, sneaking up behind her and wrapping his arms around her, lifting her up.


“Gilbert!” she shrieked, flour flying everywhere. 


He let her go, and she brushed flour across his face. “Hey!” 


She laughed backing away from his outstretched hands he’d covered in flour. “No!”


“Anne Shirley Cuthbert Blythe!” he called, reaching for her hand and spinning her around.


She allowed him to spin her and suddenly she wasn’t in their little kitchen, but in the old school house; the sun breaking through the windows with the sounds of Moody playing the banjo in the background. Gilbert was looking at her in the same way: his jaw have sharpened, his chin may have slight stubble, but his eyes were still the same. They hadn’t changed, not one bit. 


“You know I realised I had a crush on you when we first danced.” Anne said, feeling his hand in hers.


“It took you that long?” he raised an eyebrow jokingly.


“At least I didn’t almost propose to someone else.” they could laugh about it now, Winnie was still a close friend to them, but it was fun to see his face wrinkle whenever she brought it up. 


“Touché.” he pulled her hand so she was inches from him, her hands instinctively coming up to rest behind his neck. “I was young and foolish.”


“Very foolish.” she whispered, pressing her forehead against his.


He slowly started moving their feet so that they were gently swaying together in the kitchen. It was moments like these that Gilbert treasured, that he would play over in his head and commit to memory so that when he was old and grey he could remember them as they were right now. 


Anne leaned her head against his chest as they swayed, hearing him hum a song under his breath. She knew she was going to feel this way about him forever.