"Calm down, Rachel, it's just another date."
Rachel Berry turned on her heel to face her best friend, arms full of dresses.
"Just a date? Just a date? It's not just a date, it's...it's...symbolic! This is Finn and I's first date since we got back together! I need everything to be perfect!" she cried, exasperated. "So, once again, which one?"
She held up her dress laden arms. Kurt sighed.
"Is that the dress for Sectionals?" he asked, catching sight of the black and red outfit.
"Mr. Schue let me keep it," Rachel explained. Okay, well maybe she had stolen it, but it's not like they were going anywhere but the dumpster.
"I like it. Symbolic. You and Finn coming together for the first time, even if he did screw it up. Plus, it looked excellent on you," Kurt said, taking the dress from her.
One hour later
Finn Hudson rang the doorbell of the Berry household, his heart hammering like it never had before. Mr. Berry and Mr. Berry opened the door, standing there menacingly. Finn gulped.
"Hello Finn," Leroy greeted him coldly. Hiram glared, unsuccessfully. Hiram could never really be scary.
"Hi, Mr. Berry, Mr. Berry. Is Rachel ready?" he asked nervously, glancing around.
"Coming!" Rachel's voice carried down the stairs, followed by hurried footsteps. Kurt wasn't far behind.
Finn couldn't speak. He couldn't move. All he could do was stare, at this gorgeous creature coming down the stairs to him.
She was wearing the dress she wore at their first Sectionals. Her hair was perfectly curled and kept in place by a red hairband, tumbling down her shoulders beautifully. Her dainty feet were adorned with simple black ballet flats. She wore little makeup, but it accented her face wonderfully. She looked like a princess.
His favourite part, however, was her jewelry. Sitting on her collarbone was a silver chain, with one word attached to it:
"You look...amazing," he breathed, surprised he could even get any words out. Rachel blushed and smiled sheepishly.
"You don't look bad yourself," she said, straightening his tie.
"That's the dress for Sectionals," he stated dumbly. "I like it. It's symbolic, or whatever."
Kurt grinned. "That's EXACTLY what I was going for!"
Everyone in the room turned and stared.
"Killing the mood?" he realized.
"Should we go?" Rachel asked. Finn nodded, a stupid grin plastered on his face. She took his arm and they walked out to his car.
Later that evening
"Oh, come on Rach. Are you really going to start criticizing my singing on a date?" Finn teased Rachel as she laughed, hanging onto his arm.
"You know that I think you are a wonderful singer," she reminded him. "I'm just pointing out that-"
Finn's mind wandered away from his girlfriend's surprisingly constructive criticism. All he could do was stare at her mouth as it moved. God, she was beautiful. And smart. And talented.
This was the start of something really great.
Later that year
Finn's eyes never left his girlfriend as they walked into the gym. It had caused him to walk into a couple of doors and walls, but that just made Rachel laugh. He couldn't help it. She looked beautiful.
Her dress was of course, pink. It was a soft baby pink hue that made the gorgeous dress borderline tacky, but she was Rachel Berry, and she was going to have a pink dress. The mermaid gown made her slender figure look longer than it was, completed with little chiffon cap sleeves and a sweetheart neckline. She had fretted over her hair for hours, incapable of deciding whether or not to leave it down. Eventually it ended up in an elegant bun, thanks to Kurt.
Prom night. Perhaps the best night of their high school lives.
He couldn't imagine a better person to share it with.
June, Senior year
Rachel couldn't breathe properly. This should be the best day of her life. She and Kurt had both gotten accepted into NYADA, she was graduating with full credits and was finally leaving this town behind.
But there was something else she was leaving behind, and that killed her.
She loved Finn. More than anything in the world. Logically, she knew that she wouldn't find her soul mate in high school, but she did. Finn wasn't perfect. She wasn't perfect. They argued, they fought, they broke up, they made up. They were different in many ways. But she really, honestly, truly loved him.
And now she was leaving him.
She felt his strong hand in hers. She looked over at him, wanting to memorize every inch of his face. He smiled down at her, a mischievous glint in his eyes.
"Rach, there's something I forgot to tell you," he said, unable to keep a straight face. Rachel looked at her boyfriend, confused.
He bent down (quite a trip for him), and whispered in her ear.
"I got into NYU."
That was the day that Rachel Berry got in trouble, on her very last day of school, for screaming and tackling her boyfriend in the middle of the graduation ceremony.
Four Years Later
"It's not really that bad," Finn lied as he looked around the apartment.
"It's disgusting," Rachel sighed.
Finn stared pitifully at the peeling wallpaper. They were broke. Finn had his job as a bartender, but he wasn't bringing in much. Rachel was trying to get auditions, but had little luck. They were fresh out of college, and desperate.
"Look on the bright side," Finn began, but was unable to finish the sentence. Rachel wrapped her arms around his waist, clinging on like he was the only source of comfort she had.
This wasn't going to be easy.
Two years later
Finn was shaking with excitement. He finally had enough money to pose the question he had been sitting on since he was sixteen. Tonight, his every dream would come true.
He had never been the romantic type. He was happy lying on the couch, with Rachel in his arms, watching a movie and eating vegan pizza. But Rachel was his princess, and she deserved a big romantic gesture. It was everything she had ever wanted.
Hence Kurt's involvement.
The entire apartment (beautifully renovated by Rachel) was covered in rose petals. Candles were lit in bunches, casting a golden glow over everything in sight. The music for some song from Funny Girl was playing quietly, without lyrics, of course. Everyone who knew Rachel would know that she would start singing. Finn didn't know the name of the song, but he had heard it a million times, and he knew it was about some married woman or wanting to be married, and something about a Sadie.
Everything was perfect.
All he had to do was wait.
His heart leapt out of his chest when he heard Rachel's key turn in the lock. He held his breath as she opened the door, so nervous he was afraid for his health.
"Finn? I'm- oh."
Realization spread slowly across Rachel's face. She looked from the candles, to the roses, and finally to Finn, kneeling on the floor, holding a small, black, velvet box.
"Rachel Barbra Berry," he said, his voice shaking. "Will you marry me?"
Okay, maybe that wasn't the most romantic way of saying it. Generic, shaky, and he just kind of blurted it out unceremoniously. Rachel didn't care.
All his years of football would have never prepared him for the feeling of a 5'2", 98 lb, 26 year old woman tackling him to the floor, screaming "YES!" in between kisses.
One year later
"You're sure everything looks okay?" Rachel asked frantically, pulling at her white ballgown.
Kurt rolled his eyes for the millionth time that day. "Yes, Rachel. My expertise combined with those of Quinn, Santana, Brittany, Tina, and Mercedes have made you look perfect in every way."
Santana rolled her eyes and sighed. Brittany giggled. Quinn smiled softly. Mercedes laughed affectionately. Tina stroked Rachel's perfectly tended to hair.
"He would love you dressed in oily rags," Quinn reassured her.
"Don't worry, Berry. The guy asked you to marry him, making him clearly blind, deaf, and delusional. Seeing you in a wedding dress won't change much," Santana offered up. Rachel wasn't sure if that was a compliment or an insult.
"He'll be too busy thinking out tonight to actually notice what you're wearing," Tina interjected. Someone had to say it.
After many more consolations and compliments, the music started playing. 6-year-old Emily Schuester bounced down the aisle, throwing pink tulip petals as she went. She was followed by Kurt (playing the part of both best man and maid of honor), with Blaine on his arm, Tina with Mike, Brittany with Artie, Quinn with Puck, and Santana with Mercedes. Just one woman remained.
Finn's breath quickened as his fiancee came into sight, her huge, pouffy ball gown overwhelming her tiny frame.
"And the winner of the 2021 Tony Award for Best Lead Actress goes to...Rachel Berry for her role as Fanny Brice in the Broadway Revival of Funny Girl!"
Rachel had tears in her eyes as she walked on stage to accept her award. Truly, this night could not get any better. Her first Tony Award. What she had been dreaming of for years.
She instinctively put a hand over her stomach, thinking of the tiny bit of life growing inside of her that very moment.
Not even a Tony could outshine the news she had to tell Finn tonight.
9 months later
"Is she healthy? All ten fingers and toes? Actually, I don't care about that, some people have six fingers, right? And they're always fine? There's nothing wrong. Right, doc, there's nothing wrong?"
"Is she okay? Do her vocal cords look okay? Her diaphragm?"
Rachel and Finn were both harassing the doctor over their newborn child's health. Even after 36 hours of labour, Rachel had enough energy to worry about her child's singing ability.
The nurse smiled at them. New parents.
"Your child is fine. You have a beautiful baby girl. There were no complications, and she is completely healthy," she reassured them. "Have you two started to think about names?"
They had. They had thought about names constantly. It was the deciding part that got them.
Finn had recommended Barbra. Rachel shot him down, arguing that when her child was a famous Broadway star she deserved her own spotlight, a name where people only had to say the first name, her surname would be irrelevant.
Rachel recommended Carole. Finn took this into consideration, but wanted his child to have her own name.
Finn recommended Madison. Rachel pointed out Madison Hudson wouldn't work.
Rachel recommended Patti. Finn protested.
Finn recommended Drizzle. Rachel refused as politely as she possibly could.
"Veronica," Finn randomly spurted. He looked to Rachel.
"Veronica Hudson," she repeated.
They had their name.
Five years later
Veronica boarded her school bus. Rachel cried.
Thirteen years later
Veronica graduated, with an acceptance letter from NYADA. Rachel and Finn both cried.
Forty years later
Rachel and Finn sat on their porch, watching their grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren (how did time fly?) play and laugh. Finn took his wife's hand in his, and looked her in the eye.
"Did you ever think we'd make it this far?"
Rachel smiled back at her husband.
"Finchel always makes a comeback in the end."
A/N: Okay, so I kind of lied about getting the epilogue out quickly...schoolwork caught up with me. But here is the end to the very first fanfiction I ever wrote. *tear* I hope you all enjoyed it. There's a lot I wanted to include in here that I didn't, like Rachel and Finn fighting over whether Kurt would be best man or maid of honour, but I decided not to kill you guys with every scene from their life. Thank you to all my wonderful readers and reviewers, I love you all. Oh, and I apologize for the prom dress. I tried my best with the fashion terms, but I was kind of out of my depth there. I hope it was semi-accurate vocabulary.
So long and thanks for all the fish.