THE BIRTHDAY PARTY

April's birthday party brings an unexpected twist that changes Luke's and Lorelai's lives forever. Late sixth season.

Disclaimer: See previous fifty-nine chapters.

Chapter Sixty: Author's notes

So we've reached the end of our story. If you've stuck with it this long, thank you! And if you're still brushing the fluff from the last few chapters out of your eyes. . .sorry, but hey, I am all for happy endings.

The germ of this story stemmed from a moment when I was watching reruns of the sixth season and started wondering how Luke and Lorelai would handle things if Anna was suddenly out of the picture. I thought this would be, like, ten chapters maybe? But these characters just kept talking to me, telling me things I needed to explore. As I went on, I also got curious about the process people go through to create a new family. And, as I love trying to figure out what makes people tick, I also wanted to take an in-depth look at the ways that their feelings and past experiences influenced their present behavior and interactions, especially since we got very little of this from the show and I just couldn't understand a lot of their behavior in seasons six and seven. The result was this epic. I have enjoyed writing it more than I can say. It's been a large part of my life for the past three months.

I want to thank everyone who read it. Particular thanks if you took the time to send in a review. I had hoped to list everybody who reviewed along the way, but there were just too many, so I won't, but you know who you are. However, I would be remiss if I didn't give special thanks to the small band of loyal readers who faithfully read and reviewed almost every chapter, or at least multiple chapters, even if it was only a line or two. They include (alphabetically): AchillesMonkey, Andy 0723, Anna Luna, chloe 2007 (see, you got your pregnancy after all!), Copop, Emiiily, itzcheeseball, Javajunkie 86, Jeremy Shane, Mountain Lass, sarahb 2007. If I have missed anybody, I truly apologize. I don't write for reviews, as some authors say they do, but they sure are a nice cherry on top.

Some have asked me if I'm planning a sequel and at the moment, I'm not, and for a very specific reason: the magnificent "Good at Dating" series posted by my favorite GG fan fiction writer, the wonderful Mag68. This four-part series (two of them deliciously long) explores one version of Lorelai and Luke's courtship, engagement, wedding and the early years of their marriage. As far as I'm concerned, the story has been told. I can't imagine a better or more thorough look at our favorite couple, and I certainly couldn't write one. I've tiptoed close to plagiarizing her a few times and I don't want to risk that. So, if you want to read about their marriage, and haven't yet done so, go to her series. You have an enormous treat in store for you.

At the moment I'm a little dry on ideas for future fics, but I thought the same thing after my last one, too, and obviously I was wrong. But I'm still watching the reruns and who knows what will pop into my mind? So. . .good-bye for now, thanks again and, hopefully, see you later.