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Chapter 7: Queen of denial

When they walked to the house Luke wasn't feeling the cold surrounding him. He was nervous and his heart nearly beat out of his chest, while Emily's words echoed in his head. The fear was rising with every step that he took towards the house. He wasn't paying attention to Emily, who was walking beside him the whole time.

Only when she stopped when they had arrived and opened the door he realized that she was still there.

Emily held the door open for him and wondered what he was thinking. He looked nervous and scared. Really, really scared. She wondered if it was because of the things she had threatened him with or of the state he would find Lorelai in. Scared he couldn't fix it, fix her.

Luke passed her and walked into the living-room where he stood sheepishly and looked at the stairs, debating with himself if he really had the courage to walk upstairs.

"She's upstairs", Emily informed him unnecessarily to urge him to walk up the stairs.

"Yeah", he said and nodded, but didn't move.

Emily wasn't sure how long they stood there and looked at the stairs, but when the first sob echoed through the house Luke closed his eyes, like it could prevent him from getting hurt by it. When he opened his eyes with the next sob he started moving towards the stairs. He glanced shortly at Emily and then slowly walked upstairs without realizing that Emily was following him.

He took a deep breath when he reached the open bedroom door and then looked inside. The room was dark, but he could make out Lorelai's figure on the bed, because the light from the corridor was streaming into the bedroom.

Without realizing it he tried to walk extremely quiet so that Lorelai wouldn't hear him. Slowly he neared the bed and then sat down, while Lorelai was facing in the opposite direction.

"Hey", he whispered and touched her shoulder. He was a loss for words and had not idea what to say in this situation. A part of him wanted to take her I his arms and hold her and kiss her and tell her everything would be alright, but he just couldn't.

Lorelai froze when she heard his voice and for a second she thought she was imagining it. But then she felt him beside her on the bed, felt the heat from his body and could smell his scent. It was comforting and torturing her at the same time.

Slowly she turned her head and looked at him.

Luke's breath caught in his throat when he saw her bloodshot, read and swollen eyes.

"Lorelai", he breathed out when he could. He had to say her name, because she looked so broken, Emily was right. No joke, no smile, no masquerade. She was shattered in pieces right in front of his eyes and his task was to fit those pieces together again.

"What are you doing here?" she asked him and even her voice sounded weak and not like her.

"What are you doing? Lorelai this isn't you", he said and motioned to her tear stained face.

"Seems like that is me. The new me. The real me, maybe", she shrugged and sniffed at the same time.

"That's not true", he shook his head.

"No, well nice to hear that", she said and sniffed again. The sadness was still present, but now a bitternes swept over Lorelai. He was the reason why she was feeling like shit and now here he was, trying to chit-chat.

"So, I will ask again: What are you doing here? It's in the middle of the night and you told me more than once that you need your sleep. I don't think I wept so loud that I woke you up!", she said in an aggressive tone.

"Lorelai, please. Let's just talk about this", Luke sighed.

"Talk? Well that's what I am doing. If you would answer my question then we would talk. But okay, let's change the topic… Nice weather outside… a bit dark maybe", she said.

"Oh stop that. You know that is not what I want to talk about", Luke was losing his patience slowly but steadily.

"Ah, now you also want to decide on the topic? Okay.. let's see… maybe we should talk about why you didn't tell me about April for months? Or why you said you wanted to marry me although you didn't? Not good? Why didn't you tell me you don't love me anymore? Cause that's why you did let me walk away, right? You simply didn't care anymore.." she trailed of when another sob escaped her mouth.

Luke stared at her. He couldn't believe that she was lying on this bed, talking so bitter and questioning if he had really loved her.

"I did that", he said quietly and didn't realize that he had said it out loud until Lorelai asked him.

"What did you do?" He stared at her, understanding that she had heard it and that the stalling had to be over now.

"I did that to you. I turned you in this bitter woman in front of me, who is questioning everything we ever had", he explained and Lorelai remained silent.

"Lorelai, I love you. I always have and always will and it breaks my heart seeing you like this", he told her honestly. This was not the time to stay closed up.

"Why now?" she asked after another seconds of silence.

"What?" he asked confused.

"Why does it break your heart now seeing me like this? This is the state I've been in ever since you shut me out of your life. I was able to keep it in, yes, but before you always knew. You always knew how I felt because you cared", she said and looked him in the eyes.

"I never stopped caring about you. I know I was preoccupied and in my own head. I know I screwed up how I handled it when I found out about April, but I didn't keep quiet because I didn't care, but because I care so much about you".

"That's stupid and I wish I could believe it, but I can't".

"I didn't tell you because I found out the day that Rory came back. I wanted to tell you, I really did, but you were so happy and I didn't want to destroy that. It was always like that. I wanted to tell you, you smiled and I didn't want to ruin it by telling you. You had had such a rough time when Rory had gone nuts and then you were finally happy again. Who was I to destroy that? The day before you ran into April I wanted to tell you, I really did. And then you came down the stairs in your wedding dress and you looked… well, perfect… and again I couldn't tell you. I really did care", he emphasized.

"Why didn't want you to marry me then?" she asked and wiped away another tear.

"I wanted to, but at the right time. I wanted to prove you first that I was able to handle this thing with April. I wanted to show you that I am a good father. I didn't want to marry you and then get a divorce because you discovered that I am not good enough."

"God, why didn't I see how stupid you are? You think you could have screwed up? Well, what about me? I was scared I wasn't good enough and that's why you didn't want me around April. All other people were allowed to spent time with her, except me" Lorelai shook her head in disbelieve.

"Lorelai, why would you do that? You are a great mother. The best! Why would you doubt yourself?" Luke couldn't believe this. What had he done to her? Who was he that he had the ability to make Lorelai Gilmore doubt herself? He had always been the one who told her she could do anything she wanted. But here she was, a shadow of herself, full of doubts and bitterness and only because of his insecurities.

"I wanted to be included, I wanted to be a good stepmother and a good wife. I wanted to be with you, marry you and have kids with you. I so desperately wanted that", she said and her voice suddenly lacked any emotion, while she was staring straight ahead at the wall.

"I wanted that, too. I wanted all of that", Luke said.

"Why didn't we make it then? Why?" she asked and looked at him again.

"Because we both believed that the other one is a mind reader. We put the other on a throne, had this image of perfection and now we had to find out that it's not like that." Luke summed it up.

"Me perfect? You really are stupid!" Lorelai laughed bitterly.

"You are a great mother, you are intelligent and beautiful. You would do everything for your friends and those you love. You are the most selfless person I ever met and your laugh is contagious." Luke told her and gave her a small smile.

"I could say those exact things about you", Lorelai said and her tears stopped for the first time.

"I am not beautiful", he said and smiled at her, relieved that she had stopped crying.

"Handsome?" she asked and gave him a small smile in return, to which Luke only shook his head slightly.

"I am sorry about Christopher", she said then and both smiles vanished.

"Why did you go to him?" he asked her.

"Because I … I … I was hurt and I thought we were over. I though you don't love me anymore. So I went to him in order to get really drunk. When we kissed, I though what the hell, I thought it wouldn't matter, because you didn't want me anymore. I was disgusted by myself the next morning and I realized that I had also done it, because you had hurt me so much, that I just needed it to be over. I knew that if I would sleep with him there was no way in hell you would ever want me back. I was right about that, but what I thought would stop hurting, was actually driving me crazy with pain. I couldn't stand it. I couldn't stand the thought that I would be alone, without you. He distracted me so I wasn't going crazy, but at the same time I was going crazy 'cause I couldn't stand kissing someone else but you. So I ended it and now it's all hitting full force. The Queen of denial is getting bitten in the ass by it" she said and started to sniff again, what caused Luke to wince again, like he had done several times during her explanation.

Slowly he moved his arm to her shoulder and then pulled her into a hug. She sobbed against his shoulder and her arms went around him while she clung to him.

Luke was surprised when he held her and there were no pictures of her and Chris haunting him. There was no hate towards her. It felt so good to have her in his arms again after all this time and he discovered that he still wanted her. He discovered he was able to get past all this. He discovered that he could kiss her without thinking about her in Chris arms and he discovered that he was stupid to believe they weren't meant to be.

He pulled her tighter against him, laid his cheek on her hair and breathed her in, before he placed a kiss on her hair. Lorelai stiffened in his arms when she felt the slightest touch of his lips against her head and pulled back slightly to look at him.

"Luke?" she asked him timidly and looked into his eyes.

"I love you Lorelai. I still do" he said and kissed her on the lips for a few seconds, before he pulled back.

"Luke, please don't" she said, shook her head and pulled away from him.

"Why?" he asked her confused.

"Because we both know that you'll never be able to forgive me for what I did. And I can't get my hopes up, just that you'll tell me some time soon, that you can't do it, cause you can't forgive me", she said.

"I don't know how and I don't know when, but I already did. Please, let us try this again. If not know, then I'll wait until you are ready. I love you", he emphasized.

Lorelai looked at him and took another look into his eyes. During the time after he found out about April she hadn't been able to read him anymore. But now she was again. She could see that he spoke the truth and that he was being honest with her. He would wait for her, even longer than he already did.

"You already waited eight years", she said softly, after she had taken a deep breath.

"I have and I will wait another eight years if that's what it takes" he admitted, because he knew he would. He had no choice.

"Move in with me", she said then.

"Okay", he nodded and a smile appeared on his face.

"Marry me", she requested.

"You couldn't let me propose this time, could you?" he smiled even brighter and pulled her to him by her hands.

"Please" she said, her fore head lay against his forehead.

"When?" he just asked.

"Now?" she shrugged.

"Okay, let's go", he grinned and wanted to stand up.

"Nah, just a test", she laughed suddenly and pulled him back down on the bed.

"But you could move in when we finished here", she said and he nodded.

"Okay. But what is there to finish?" he raised his eyebrows.

"I can think of something", she smiled brightly at him, before she kissed him passionately. There was a touch of desperation in the kiss, a need to be together and make it work. Lorelai lay down on the bed and Luke followed her, their lips glued together. He lay down on top of her, on top of the wet tissues, the wrinkled sheets and on top of the bed she had cried for everything he would give her.

Emily had listened to the whole exchange just outside the room, scared these two would screw it up again. More than once she had been tempted to rush in and give them piece of her mind, but it hadn't been needed.

Quietly she closed Lorelai's bedroom door completely and tiptoed downstairs, where she took her bags and left the house, but not without leaving a note.

"I guess it is better I move back out, so someone different can move in. Call me if you need help moving Luke's things in. I expect you both next Friday. Love, your mother", it said.

The end

So, not how I planed to end this whole thing, but it needed to be done, becauseI think this story really started toget worse with every chapter. Thanks to all those who read and reviewed, without you I probably wouldn't even have finished it, even though I hate unfinished stories.

I will start working on OSD as soon as a new german story of mine is finished, but both won't be that much more chapters. (The german story exactly 4, that much I can tell). I already have an idea for a new story afterwards and it will be somehow similar to "Call my name and save me".

Thanks for reading again! I would love if you would leave me a final review!