As Lorelai sat on the end of her bed on the morning of her wedding, she couldn't help but think back to the day earlier in the week that Luke sat and took in all the rules that Lorelai and Rory had instituted years ago. Fingering her engagement ring, she could picture the dress hanging above her closet both on her body and on the floor later that night. Dirty as it was, she was looking forward to it. Then, she could let the dress wrinkle for as long as she wanted it to.
She got up and stretched. She smiled as she caught sight of her wedding dress again as she made her way downstairs. Rory sat at the kitchen table, looking through the rule book she had gone through with Luke. When Rory heard Lorelai come downstairs, her head shot up. "Here comes the bride," she teased.
Lorelai smiled. "The bride needs coffee," she said sleepily.
Rory nodded. "It's on the counter. Luke brought some over this morning," she said, gesturing toward the coffee.
"I knew I was marrying him for a reason," Lorelai said, grabbing a 'to go' cup and taking a sip out of it.
She watched Rory as she flipped through the handbook, giggling softly at the funny rules, sighing at the more serious ones, and shutting the book when she was done, stretching out her arms. She looked at Lorelai. "Were you staring at me?" she teased.
"You really like the rule book, huh?" Lorelai asked.
"I think it's so… us, Mom. This handbook has pretty much everything you've ever taught me in it. I don't know, I just… it means a lot."
Lorelai nodded. "And you know, we never added anything to it?"
Rory giggled. "I still think we should have added the alliteration rule," she mused.
"Well, it wouldn't be the same, would it?" Lorelai asked. "And plus, I vetoed. Remember? Has to be unanimous."
Rory nodded. "I don't know, though, maybe we should add something to it. Now's as good a day as ever, right?"
Lorelai shrugged. "Depends on what you want to add to it, sweets."
She grabbed a pink pen from the drawer. She took a piece of scratch paper and wrote, scratched out, and made arrows on the paper. When she was finally happy with what she'd come up with, she handed it over to Lorelai. "I think you'll like it," she said softly.
Lorelai smiled, put down her coffee and read what Rory wrote. "'On this third day of June, 2008, I, Lorelai Leigh Gilmore, promise to share these rules with my stepsister April, and to teach her the concept of being a Gilmore at heart. I also promise to share my mother, Lorelai Victoria Gilmore-Danes, with my new stepfather, Luke Danes. May there be many more Gilmores to share these rules with.' Oh, Rory," Lorelai said, on the verge of tears.
Rory smiled. "I'm guessing that you liked it, then?"
Lorelai nodded. "Pen it in, your handwriting is so much better than mine," she said, handing the paper over.
"I'm so happy you like it," Rory said. "I like the last part."
Lorelai gasped. "So you were pushing a sibling in Rule 8!"
Rory giggled. "Just a little bit. A teensy bit."
Lorelai got up from the table to give her daughter a hug. "I'm getting married," she said.
"Isn't that exciting?" Rory asked.
Lorelai knew just how exciting it was. The butterflies in her stomach were impossible to get rid of and the grin on her face wasn't going away any time soon. She was finally getting married, and to the right guy. She knew it was going to work. She knew it was right. In fact, she knew that if she could get through Emily's opinions on the wedding, she could get through anything. When the doorbell rang, and Emily arrived with her makeup team, Lorelai, surprisingly enough, couldn't have been happier.
"Hi, Mom," she said, opening the door.
Emily politely greeted her daughter and started ordering the three makeup artists she had brought with her around. "Juan, I need you to give her a natural look. Not clown makeup, but enough not to wash her out in the pictures. Frances, I need you to do something classy with Lorelai's hair. However, it needs to be left down, per request of the bride. And Marcia, the manicure must match the bouquet. This pink is the only color that matches, don't pull any funny business on me, or else you will be very sorry."
Lorelai sighed. "Mom, relax. Enjoy the day, all right?" she pleaded. "It will be okay."
Emily consented. "Fine. Where shall we do the manicures?"
"Follow me," Lorelai said, ushering everyone into the kitchen.
Rory's eyes widened as she pulled some chairs in from other rooms. "Wow, the SWAT team has arrived," she teased.
Lorelai smiled. "We're happy today, remember?" she reminded Rory.
"Of course!" Rory replied.
Emily cleared the magazines off of the table and placed them on the chair beside her. "Raul, I need you to start with the bride, please, the maid of honor will have to wait." Emily picked up the stack of magazines to make room for Rory to sit down. "Come, Rory, sit here. We even have reading material."
Emily picked up the Gilmore Handbook and looked it over. "Was this a school project of yours?" she asked.
Rory shook her head. "It's basically a book full of rules Mom and I live by. How to treat people, enjoy life, so on and so forth."
"That's very nice," Emily said softly, passing it to Rory. "Your mother's taught you very well."
Lorelai turned her head. "Uh, are we sharing secrets without me? Because secrets, secrets, are no fun, unless you are a part of one!"
"No secrets," Rory replied. "Grandma and I were looking at the book."
Lorelai smiled. "Good book," she said.
After the manicures and makeup, and when the girls were almost prepared for the big day, Lorelai stood upstairs in her wedding dress, still unable to get past the fact that she was getting married. April, Rory, and Emily were finishing up, and then they'd make their way to the town square. It was going to be the wedding that Lorelai had always dreamed of.
"Lorelai, come downstairs, please!" Emily called.
Lorelai took a look at Paul Anka and adjusted his bowtie. She shooed him downstairs first, and then gingerly picked up her dress so she could walk downstairs. Her father was there to escort her to the square. "Lorelai, you look lovely," Richard said, getting slightly sentimental.
"Thanks, Dad, you look really nice, too," Lorelai replied. She linked her arm in his and they began the walk to the town square.
"You look very happy," Richard said.
She grinned, turning toward her father. "I really am," she replied. "Luke's a good guy."
"I am aware," Richard said with a slight smile. "I'm very happy to be gaining a son-in-law like him. I'm very happy for the two of you."
Lorelai wasn't shocked to hear that about Luke, but she didn't expect to hear it at that moment. "Thank you, Dad, that means a lot to me."
They reached the square and Lorelai forced herself to take it all in. She knew she wasn't going to remember everything about the day, but she was going to try to remember as much as she could. Kirk was taking pictures of everyone as they walked down the aisle, trying to capture as much as possible. Emily's photographer was also snapping pictures. Babette and Patty were sitting in the front row, next to Liz, TJ, Jess, and Doula, crying their eyes out and passing tissues back to anyone who needed them.
Her eyes suddenly darted to the chuppah, where Luke stood, smiling. He looked so handsome. He had gone with the tux after all. He'd threatened a few times to show up in his civilian clothes, but he followed through on his word. As Richard gave his daughter away, and Lorelai and Luke were presented to Reverend Skinner, Lorelai took a quick peek at Luke. She gave him a slightly tearful wink, and he gave her a smile. The ceremony was finally about to begin.
"Family, friends, fellow citizens of Stars Hollow. We are finally, finally gathered here today to witness the union of Lorelai Gilmore and Luke Danes in Holy Matrimony," Reverend Skinner began. "For years we've watched these two get to know each other, become friends, make it through some hard times, and fall in love. And now they finally stand before us on this beautiful day in June, ready to become man and wife. Lorelai, Luke, please join hands."
Lorelai and Luke took each other's hands, ready to get married. Lorelai recited her vows without crying, which she didn't think she could possibly do, and Luke nearly got emotional during his. Lorelai made a mental note to tease him about that someday. The rings were exchanged, the vows were said… and there was only one thing left to do.
"By the power vested in me by the state of Connecticut, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride."
Luke pulled Lorelai in for a gentle, tender kiss. He pulled away and smiled at her. "We're married," he whispered as he took her hand.
"Isn't that amazing?" she asked.
"Pretty amazing," he replied.
Well wishes from the town were coming all at once as Luke and Lorelai made their way to the gazebo for pictures. "Lorelai, doll face, you look amazin'! I'm surprised that dress is still on you, with the way you look!" Babette said. "And Luke, you better keep an eye on Patty. She's tellin' everyone about that ass of yours."
Lorelai giggled. "Thanks, Babette," she said.
Luke blushed. "Yeah, thanks."
"Mom!" Rory said, giving her mother a hug. "Luke!" She gave her stepfather a hug as well. "That was such a nice ceremony. I cried. A lot."
"It was nice, wasn't it? I tried not to cry myself, but this one over here…" Lorelai said.
"Jeez, Lorelai, you never cease to make fun of me, do you?" Luke asked. "You have to share this stuff with everyone."
Lorelai kissed her husband. "It's because I ADORE you," she teased.
"Congratulations, I'll let you take pictures. And I won't let them do anything to the cake," Rory said with a wink.
Lorelai pumped her fist. "You are your mother's daughter."
Luke looked to Lorelai. "So is there a rule about telling someone how much you mean to them?"
Lorelai nodded, slightly surprised that Luke remembered. "Rule 7," she answered softly.
"Well, I love you. You mean the world to me. I am so… happy."
Lorelai smiled. "You did listen, after all," she said.
He nodded. "Yeah, I did remember a few of those rules. Some of them were actually pretty good."
"Yeah, you owe me a sitting down and telling me about something for hours upon hours. I promise, I'll listen," Lorelai said.
Luke kissed her. "You've got a deal."
A/N: I am so sad to see this story end. I am so thankful, however, that each and every one of you read and reviewed. It means the world to me. I am feeling a little empty now, that my longest and most intensely written fic is finished. Thanks to the powers that be for letting me borrow dialogue from the show... it's appreicated. If you want more… there's a sequel coming, "The Danes Family Album". Please read that if you are so inclined! Thanks again to everyone, for everything! -Java