A/N: So I've recently re-read Anne of Windy Poplars, but I couldn't fully enjoy it because of the lack of Gilbert - I mean, L.M. Montgomery had many opportunities to at least have him say "hi", but unfortunately, she did not take them. So I decided to write my own little one-shot, based of chapter 6 of The Second Year of Anne of Windy Poplars. This is my first FanFiction story, so bear with me if you see any errors. I did read it over, so there shouldn't be any, but something may have passed by my eye. It's very sweet and fluffy, so if you don't like that, you've been forewarned.

Gilbert smiled to himself as he drove along the rough road. He was finally back in Avonlea—he was finally home—to Anne. Kingsport, he thought, was all good and well, but Redmond without Anne was dreadfully forlorn…like three years prior when she had rejected him. He couldn't wait to finish medical school; the sense of accomplishment he would feel would be glorious—and then he and Anne would be married, moving off to their own little House of Dreams. They would be so happy; he would make sure of it. But now—only a year and half before they could have the things they dreamed.

Marilla, Mrs. Rachel Lynde and Davy met him at the Green Gables fence when he drove up, slowed the horse and hopped out of the buggy. They smiled as they greeted him; but their smiles were not the smiles he wanted to see, nor were theirs the voices he wanted to hear.

"Where's Anne?" He asked Marilla, whose eyes were alight with happiness. This Marilla Cuthbert was not the Marilla Cuthbert that had lived at Green Gables before Anne; that Marilla was cold and distant, without a motherly bone in her body…but now…the difference was indescribable.

"Anne's out walking in the woods with Dora and Miss Brooke," Marilla told him. "You should come inside, Gilbert. She mightn't be home for a while."

"You'll catch your death out here if you wait for her, that's what," Mrs. Rachel Lynde said, putting her two cents in.

Gilbert merely laughed as they led him in to the warm living room at Green Gables. He had wanted to see Anne instantly; it had been months, and yet, waiting a few minutes seemed as though it would drag on forever. And indeed, the second hand seemed to shift slower every time he glanced at it. The door seemed as though it were an enemy…as if it were keeping Anne from him.

Finally, after what seemed like an inexpressible amount of time—although in reality it was only forty-five minutes—Gilbert heard the sound he had been wanting to hear for months…a sweet voice, one he recognized instantly…the sound of an angel, muffled by the walls of Green Gables. She was coming up the pathway, laughing as she did so. Gilbert sprang from his spot on the old, worn couch and ran to the door, flinging it open, only to compose himself once he got outside. He couldn't act crazy in front of Anne—her ideal certainly wouldn't.

You are her ideal, the voice inside his head said. He smiled slightly—and then Anne came into view. She looked just as he'd remembered…but somehow, better, wiser, merrier; and yet she was still the same dreamy, imaginative, eleven-year-old redhead he had fallen in love with.

He watched her, a smile playing on his lips, as she stopped walking and stood in between Dora and a woman whom he could only assume was Miss Brooke. She shielded her eyes, as if the sun were tricking her…that couldn't really be Gilbert Blythe, could it…was it Gil? He looked so much older and more mature that it couldn't possibly be Gilbert…but it couldn't be a stranger, either.

Anne uttered a little cry of delight. And then, with a swiftness and gracefulness that could rival a racehorse, she ran to him and flung her arms around him, kissing his cheek as she did so. Gilbert could no longer hide his smile; it now reached from ear-to-ear as he wrapped his arms around her slender waist.

"I've missed you so much," exclaimed Anne. "Oh, Gilbert, it's so…wonderful doesn't seem like quite the right word…it's so—so—so magnificent! I've been waiting for this for so long…letters are all good and well but paper and ink can't substitute for the real live Gilbert, in the flesh."

"Does that mean you really missed me, Anne-girl?" he asked her, looking into her bewitching gray-green eyes.

"Miss you!" she cried joyously. "Of course I missed you, you goose! I'm afraid, Mr. Blythe, that I'm scandalously in love with you, to the point where it is almost criminal. Oh, where are my manners?" Anne said, turning to Miss Brooke and Dora.

They were standing awkwardly off to the side, like they weren't quite sure what do with themselves. It didn't seem right, watching Anne and Gilbert…there was something so loving about their relationship, something so sacred, that it seemed invasive to watch; like it was meant for Gilbert and Anne, and only Gilbert and Anne. Anne introduced him to Miss Brooke, and despite the early letters Anne had written about her prickliness, Gilbert knew he could like her.

Gilbert took Anne's hand in his own, and together they walked inside. In that moment, the two of them felt, perfectly, ideally happy. "I've got so much to tell you, Gil," she told them once they were inside Green Gables. "I know there are some things I haven't written you…I think. Sometimes my letters are so long that I can't even remember what I've written. Sometimes I feel like I'm back to my girlish self, talking everyone's ears off. But you don't mind, do you, darling?"

"You can talk as much as you please," he said to her, staring at her with adoring hazel eyes. "I've missed that voice of yours, Anne."

"I've missed yours—no," said Anne decisively, "I've just missed you, Gil."

"And I've missed you, Anne. I love you."

Anne smiled a brilliant smiled that lit up her entire face. "I love you more than words can describe. Oh Gilbert, this is going to be the loveliest Christmas ever…I can feel it."

Gilbert smiled and looked at Anne—his ideal—and while he looked in her adoring eyes, he knew at once, that he was her ideal, and all doubt and uncertainty in his mind were silenced as he drew her close to him and kissed her tenderly.