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By Kelly
So Wags the World
Gilbert's Decision

By Jamie
The First Bride
A Valentine Story
Beauty for Ashes

By Steffi
Matthew is Dead
Terrible News
A Wrong Decision
A Bend in the Road
Lost Hearts
True Love
Evacuation Hospital

By Rebekkah
Anne's Life as an Orphan
A Blythe Misunderstanding
The Blythe Orphans
Life Longing for Love

By Alli
The Product of Our Love

Friendship, Courtship and Love

By Becca
The Announcement
You Cannot
The Last Connection

Candy Hearts
Finally Home
Living Without You
Vignette of Life

By Nellie
Destiny Gives

By Alizabeth
Coming Together

By Beth Mott
Joyous Announcement

By AngelRose
The First Walk
Anne's Magical Mystery Tour
Mr. Blythe's Spirit
Entering the Brave New World
My Sweetheart's Cal


By Jen
She's In Love

By Beks
Memories at the Alter

Love Letters
Rilla and Jem
The House of Dreams

By Queensgirl
Anne of the Glen

By ElleJay
Rilla's Castle O Dreams

By Shorty
All's Right in the World

By Darien
Davy's Beau

Anne of Green Gables
Fan Fiction

All Characters are the property of LM Montgomery and her heirs and Sullivan Entertainment.  These are for entertainment purpose only. Others may have their own opinions as to how these fan fiction stories should take place.  If you have a better idea we would like to read about them.


The First Bride of Green Gables

By Jamie

The fiery sun dipped low on the horizon, creating a shimmering diamond-strewn path across the wide blue gulf. A little dusky breeze whispered among the tall sea grasses, danced across the red-gold sand, and sent gulls soaring into the majestic sunset. The very air held romance, even for the unimaginative-- which was certainly not the case of the silhouetted figure on the shore just out of reach of the crashing waves.

Upon closer look we find a pretty young girl, knees drawn up to a petite chin, eyes wide and gray and sparkling with the wonder of the magical evening. Red-gold tendrils curled around a small, white face, drawn loose from a thick braid by the playful breeze. A wide-brim straw hat was tossed aside in the sand beside a pair of pointed leather boots and a light woven shawl. A sharpened pencil was held in the slim white fingers of the right hand, small leather bound journal propped on the bent knees.

The girl's lips moved in a whisper as she wrote, a rosy blush of pleasure tinting the pale features but a saddened shadow in the deep gray eyes. "I suppose we have come to another bend in our roads, dearest of Gilberts. This summer has been hard, with you being so horribly far away in New York. But at the end of this week we will be together, forever. No more living from vacation to vacation, hardly knowing when we will see each other again. Just think of it, darling-- being together, eating, sleeping, walking, talking, laughing, just being It hardly seems possible after such a long five years, but I'm so glad because I miss you so desperately."

She paused a moment to look out over the ocean with a passion hardly hidden in the lengthening shadows. "Five years sounded so endless at the beginning, dearest. And now they are gone like a watch in the night. I'm a wee bit tired from all the last things, and for a week I'm going to be lazy do absolutely nothing except roam free in a green world of summer loveliness and just enjoy being Anne Shirley-- Anne of Green Gables. And when the week is ended you will be home and I won't want anything else."

Anne's eyes again lifted to the beauty playing out before her. The pencil was forgotten as fingers unconsciously rubbed the circlet of pearls gracing her left hand. In the reflection of the sun on the water she was taken back to the years past where two young girls, one red-headed and one raven, were running gleefully through the blowing grasses, their laughter joining the rhythmic rolling of the waves. Then a vision of a young man was standing in the golden fields, tall and strong and handsome with dark brown hair curling to his head and deep brown eyes that told a story. With a special tenderness only he could possess, his hand reached out to her...

A wave of loneliness swept over Anne's features and she penned a few sentences in silence. Then she began to murmur again as the pencil scratched along the paper. "The sunset tonight will be beautiful, and I find it in my heart to wish I was here with-- guess who? Do you know, Gilbert, there are times that I strongly suspect I love you!"


The deep whistle blew two long shrieks as the stately, stark-white ship steamed into the harbor. The beginnings of a stunning sunset turned the shoreline an amber gold, reflecting against the tidy township nestled into the rolling hills. Aboard the ship, the wide deck was awash in khaki and the empire flag, boasting for some and reminding for others of the war in far off France. Leaning forward into the salty wind and posing a striking difference to the masses was a sturdily built young man, handsome in the sharp gray tweed suit and hat. Two brown suitcases were at his feet, ready to be picked up and hurried off the ship as soon as the dock was reached and the plank was lowered.

The man had the faint beginnings of creases in his tanned face, but they were mostly from years of laughter rather than hardship. The lips still displayed that irresistible grin and eyes still twinkled merrily with the joy found in his journey. Propping hands against the sturdy railing, he leaned further into the wind, lost for a moment in the beauty that no other eyes saw but his.

In the midst of the sun-streaked sky he saw the face of a certain waif of an orphan, pale and freckled, with a shapely nose, pointed chin, and eyes and hair of gray and red that was unlike any other girl Prince Edward Island had ever borne. A sorrowful smile, tinged with years of love and doubt, was on his youthful face. The next thing he knew he was being pressed along with the crowds of uniforms heading for the shore; upon realizing the ship had been docked the two suitcases were promptly scooped up and the gray tweed suit was momentarily lost in the throngs of people.

"Gilbert! Gilbert Blythe!" the voice, belonging to a matronly and somewhat plump black haired woman, carried above the dock's noise and reached our gray-suited traveler. He emerged from the flow of the soldiers with some difficulty and raised a suitcase in acknowledgement.

"Really, Gilbert, five years is quite enough," said Diana Wright indulgently as Gilbert greeted her with an embrace and a quick kiss on her rosy cheek.

"Too long," echoed her husband Fred, extending his hand to meet his long-time friend.

"I agree," said Gilbert with laughter in his voice. "And I promise it will never be so long again."

Diana shook her head in good-natured response. "God only knows, Gilbert."

Gilbert only grinned, letting Fred take one suitcase and following the shorter man over to the waiting automobile with the other.

"Thank you both for meeting me today," he said gratefully as he climbed in the back seat. "I really appreciate it."

"Think nothing of it," asserted Diana from the seat beside her husband, her cheeks dimpling as they did in the old Avonlea school days. "It is worth it just to think of how Anne will be surprised."

With that comment, Gilbert finally voiced the thought that had not left his mind since New York. Leaning forward anxiously, he asked in a soft tone, "How-- how is Anne?"

"Fine. Just fine," was Fred's casual non-lover observation.

Diana frowned at her oblivious husband, then turned to beam at Gilbert with the secret insight of Anne's 'well-being.' "You mustn't take our word for it, Gilbert. You'll see for yourself in just a few moments."

Gilbert nodded, settling down in the seat with a resigned sigh. After so long, why should the last few minutes seem so unendurable? The sun was continuing to sink as he looked longingly out over the rippling gulf. He would just have to wait.

With shy Fred not much for conversation, Diana was the one to inquire politely of all Gilbert's latest news. Gilbert, his anxious mind on other thoughts, replied just as politely. Since brief answers were all Diana received, she was ready to give up and lapse into silence when the automobile was suddenly halted by a stampede of sheep. The nervous shepherds were running around, trying their best to get the herd back under control. Sheep dogs barked excitedly, only adding to the loud clamor filling the streets.

"Can you believe this? And right on the main road!" exclaimed Diana, although there was laughter in her voice.

"Only in Avonlea," was Fred's remark as he had no choice but to stop the car. The wide road was completely impassible.

"It's quite all right." Gilbert had to raise his voice to be heard over the chaos of the shouting shepherds and bleating herds. "I've been dying to walk after being cooped up on the steamboat so long," he explained hurriedly, although that was not the true reason for his restlessness.

"But, Gil--" Diana's protest was ended as he jumped over the door and hopped to the ground. An excited grin lit Gilbert's features and eagerness sparkled in his eyes as he called over his shoulder to the surprised couple, "I'll cut around by the shore and meet you at Green Gables!" And he was gone, one-handedly leaping the nearby fence and heading off by the ocean, destination clear in his mind.

A few moments later, Gilbert crested the last hill before the crashing sea. Hot and winded by the headlong run, he paused only to remove his coat and hat. Then he resumed his walk at a slightly slower pace, rolling his shirtsleeves to his elbows as he went. His intent was on the shorter bypass across the sands to Green Gables, but a lone figure far away on the beach halted him.

"Anne..." he murmured, almost to himself. He was still too far away to see clearly, but surely the pounding of his heart would not tell him wrong.

He began to run again, suddenly finding the breath to shout aloud. "Anne!"


As the sun drew closer to the horizon, Anne laid aside her pencil and paper and let her whole being absorb the ethereal beauty. She had not moved from her earlier position, except to wrap her arms around her knees and curl up tighter against the balmy breeze.

Suddenly an odd cry reached her ears, enough to bring her head up and listen closely for a moment, but it was so distant she soon dismissed it as the wind and seagulls circling high above. She lowered her chin to touch her knees, soaking in the fiery glow, when she heard the sound closer and more clearly.

Anne cocked her head to one side; instinctively knowing it was not her imagination but a human shout. A thousand feasible possibilities raced across her mind, but it was at the most impossible one her heart began to race.


"Gil--" whispered Anne, suddenly breathless with anticipation. Closing her eyes tight and hoping against all hope, she turned her head in the direction of the cry. When she finally dared to peek, there was a figure running across the sandy beach toward her. Even from the distance she could make out the familiar silhouette of the young man, tall and handsome, with jacket and hat in hand.

Anne was on her feet in an instant, a joyful shriek escaping her lips. "Gil... Gil!" she cried, taking off for him, barefoot and with reckless abandon.

She was nearly to the welcome embrace of his arms when she tripped, sprawling headlong into the sand with a very unladylike grace and squeal.

"Anne!" Gilbert threw aside hat and coat as he fell to his knees beside her. "Are you all right, darling?"

"All right?" Laughter bubbled from the face still buried in the sand. "I'm wonderful-wonderfully wonderful," giggled Anne, picking herself from the ground with the help of Gilbert's strong arms.

"Nothing bent or broken, I'm glad to see," was the young doctor's teasing observation.

"Only blind as a bat and a fool to boot!" Anne said giddily and turned her smiling face to him, eyes still closed.

To this Gilbert said nothing, captivated by holding her face in his hands and brushing the sand away from her eyes with quiet tenderness.

"My beloved Gil," Anne murmured, suddenly serious as her hand found his face. Her eyes still closed, she felt his cheek, his eyes, then ran her fingers through his hair. "Oh, that I were blind, I would never forget your face."

With one last brush, Gilbert removed enough sand so Anne could open her eyes. His heart skipped a beat as the shining grayness openly met his gaze.

"It really is you. You're really here," she whispered with the wonderment of a child. A line she had just penned came to her lips, "And I won't want anything else."

Anne's face was tipped adoringly upwards, and Gilbert suddenly couldn't help himself. Not caring a bit what wayward eyes might be watching or how horrified Mrs. Rachel Lynde would be if she ever knew, he leaned forward and met Anne's lips with his own.

Any other thought was chased from Anne's mind as she melted into Gilbert's arms and let herself be thoroughly kissed. When he finally pulled away, tender hazel eyes stared deep into hers. "I have something to ask you," he murmured, pushing the windblown red curls back from her face while not tearing his gaze away.

But Anne was not to be brought back to the harsh prosaic reality of earth just yet. "I do," she whispered meaningfully, pretending they were saying vows.

A smile played on Gilbert's lips as he gathered her closer and kissed her again.


The sun had given up its watch over the earth, finally willing to dip into the land of dreams just beyond the horizon and leave the last golden rays for the two people strolling dreamily along a little path known not by its actual name, but by the more poetic and appropriate title of Lover's Lane. The moon was slipping big and full over the gulf, ready to take over its shift, and together with the dying sun created just enough light to dance through the boughs overhead and play with the shadows across the lane.

Here underneath the canopy of birch our reunited lovers are walking leisurely along. Anne, shoes replaced, hat in hand, and her customary dreamy smile in place, was marveling in the evening's beauty and thrilling at the young man by her side. Gilbert, coat still in his hand, was vaguely aware there had been a sunset but was far more enraptured by the girl whose arm was tucked in his and whose red head was resting contentedly against his shoulder.

"Thanks be I'm done with geometry, whether learning or teaching it," smiled Anne as they strolled along. "Gil, I can't tell you how glad I am to be through."

Gilbert grinned down at his redheaded wife-to-be. "Girl's school couldn't be as rough on you as we used to be on poor Mr. Phillips," he said with teasing in his voice.

Anne laughed richly, it echoing silvery in the twilight air. "I'm afraid not," she agreed, squeezing his arm meaningfully. "At least I don't have to deal with the unruly boys calling the girls horrible names."

"Better for them," said Gilbert staunchly, kissing the top of Anne's carroty-red tresses. "Maybe they'll never know the bitter punishment that I did."

Anne tucked her hand deeper in Gilbert's arm and gave him a smile that once again carried the sweetened regret. To change the subject, she asked softly, "Wasn't there something you had to ask me, darling?"

"Yes." A tiny sigh escaped Gilbert's lips, knowing he couldn't put off the inevitable. He took a deep breath and squeezed the small white hand that wore his ring. "Anne, I've been extended an offer-- a very impressive offer at that, at least for a young doctor such as myself--"

"Why, Gil, that's absolutely wonderful!" interrupted Anne with excitement.

Her outburst only made it worse for him. "If-- if only that were so, Anne," he said, very slowly. "To tell you the truth, I don't know what I'm to do about it."

"Gil-- what is it?"

Gilbert looked deep into the wide gray eyes. "My uncle, Doctor Dave Blythe, is getting along in years, and is ready for someone to come alongside of him-- and eventually inherit his entire practice. No one would be good enough for Uncle Dave except a Blythe, and-- well, he's offered that position to me. Anne, it's just what I've always wanted to be-- a respected country doctor-- but..."

Anne's gray eyes were sparkling with pride in this tall young man beside her. "Gil, it's wonderful! Everything we ever dreamed of together what's wrong? Why--?"

Gilbert stopped in his stride and turned Anne to face him. "Anne, I have to give my answer by the end of this week. This week, Anne. And it's not everything we dreamed" He tenderly brushed the hair from her face and stroked her cheek. "The practice is in Glen Saint Mary, over sixty miles away. We wanted to settle right here on the Island." Suddenly the hand dropped and Gilbert sighed, stuffing his hands in his pockets and resuming his pace down the lane.

Anne stood rooted to the spot, trying to fully understand and absorb what Gilbert was saying. A play of emotions crossed her face, but none were strong enough to claim the pretty features. She ran to catch up with him. "Gil--"

"Don't worry, Anne," said Gilbert before she could finish. "I'm not taking it. You don't have to worry."

"Why ever wouldn't you take it?" demanded Anne, nearly running to keep up with Gilbert's long thoughtful strides.

Gilbert suddenly stopped, taking Anne's hand and drawing her close again. He smiled gently as he gazed down at her. "Because I love you, Anne Shirley. I love you more than anything else in this world and I want to marry you. The last five years have been murder enough. I wouldn't ever think of leaving you for my work."

Laughter bubbled up in Anne as she grabbed Gilbert's other hand and squeezed them both. "Don't be a goose, Gilbert," she said indulgently. "Why would you have to leave me behind?"

"Because all I want is for you to be happy, and you've said you could never be happy anywhere but here."

"Oh, Gil," whispered Anne, instantly contrite. "I used to think I could never be happy anywhere but this beloved place, but I know now I was wrong. Place or time doesn't matter anymore, darling, honest it doesn't. All I know is I love you more than I ever thought I could love anyone, and I'll be happy-- wonderfully happy-- so long as I have you, whether Glen Saint Mary or the moon. Gil, we belong to each other; and, no matter what life might hold for us, it can never alter that."

Gilbert hadn't moved, staring at her as if he were in a daze. "You mean you'll go?" he asked softly, incredulously.

Anne nodded, a small smile tugging at her lips. "I'll go."

Gilbert tipped his head back and laughed. A joyful laugh, full of relief. The next thing Anne knew she was up in his arms, being spun around in dizzying gratitude. Finally he stopped, setting his breathless and incredibly happy bride down and leaving one arm around her. With the other hand he tipped her chin up and bent his forehead down to touch hers. "I love you, Anne Shirley," he whispered simply, smiling into the flushed face with emotion so eloquent words could not express its fullness.


A lone house perched atop the rolling pastures, surrounded by tall trees and several scattered outbuildings. Once the grounds had been immaculate, but now signs of age and unintended neglect were evident if one looked close enough. But the June lilies still bloomed in bowers around the veranda, and, though the white paint was pealing, the gables were just as green.

Inside the antiquated kitchen, somehow left in its rich original furnishings despite the upheaval of so-called progress, a graying woman puttered over the stove. Straight salt-and-peppered hair was pulled without fuss into the familiar tight knot, a stained apron tied about the ample waist, and a face wrinkled and marked by age and hardship-- though the latter not in any recent years.

"Tis an ill wind that blows no good," clucked a second plumpish lady dismally from the corner where she sat, hands rhythmically knitting with the daily newspaper spread on the table before her. Never let it be said that Mrs. Rachel Lynde did not believe industriousness was a virtue to be praised. "These war reports are downright harrowing to read, Marilla. I sure hope the old gossips are right that it won't be long in resolving, but I just don't know."

Marilla Cuthbert sighed in reply. She would much rather leave the predictions and forebodings to the old gentlemen gathered outside the apothecary than have it in her kitchen, but she knew that Rachel was the gossip of the town and could not, for the sake of her reputation, leave the giant subject alone. In earlier days the comments from the corner would have brought a sharp rebuke from Marilla, but now she chose simply to let Mrs. Rachel have her say and hope well enough would be left alone.

Finally Rachel Lynde had enough of the gloomy news from overseas and turned her attention to the kitchen window. Squinting in order to see the faraway road, and upon not finding what she wanted, the tattling tongue clucked again. "Where, oh where can those children be, Marilla?"

Marilla's faded brown eyes rolled heavenward, a habit that had strengthened over the years of sharing her home with her closest friend and dearest rival. It was one thing that Mrs. Rachel's keen eyes missed, since she was still intent on figuring the fate of the two young lovers. "They'll be along, Rachel," Marilla said easily, stirring the pot simmering on the stovetop.

"It's been nigh on an hour since the Wrights came and went," said Mrs. Rachel. "I just don't know what could be keeping them!"

"They've a long time to catch up on," Marilla reminded.

"Humph. Likely they've run off and gotten married without a word to any of us," decided Mrs. Rachel gloomily. "You know how young folks are these days. I just wouldn't be surprised, that's what."

Marilla Cuthbert had softened vastly since the day a little redheaded orphan descended upon her life, but Rachel Lynde was the one person who could draw out the old sharpness. "Anne wouldn't do that, Rachel," said Marilla dourly. And Marilla could be very dour.

"Now I dunno about that, Marilla. Love can sure make a person do strange things, that's what. Though I will haft a admit that Anne's turned right respectable of late," Mrs. Rachel conceded rather benevolently. "Quite different from the harum-scarum girl that treated me to such a scene the first evening I came up to meet her. Yes, many things have changed since then, Marilla. And it's a credit to you she's changed as much as she has, that's what."

Marilla looked thoughtfully out the window, the dishtowel turning absently in her hands and a faint smile on the weathered face. "Oh, she hasn't changed that much, Rachel. Not really."

"Well, thank goodness Anne and Gilbert are to be married after all. It's what I've always prayed for," said Mrs. Rachel with a sigh and the air of one whose prayers were sure to avail much. "It's a great relief to find she didn't take to that rich Boston fellow after all. Gilbert is poor-- at least to begin with; but he is an Island boy."

"He's Gilbert Blythe," said Marilla with a certain satisfaction. She would have died the death before admitting the regret she had carried with herself for giving up her one chance at romance so long ago, but deep down she felt that Anne's marriage to Gilbert would somehow set something right that hadn't been right for years.

Then her eyes lifted to the window once more and upon catching sight of two familiar forms coming up the shadowed lane, she proceeded to make Mrs. Rachel sure she hadn't been concerned for one moment. "Rachel, you worry far too much. There they are now."

The needles silenced as the window curtain was whisked back for a look. Mrs. Rachel clucked her tongue again. "Oh-h, they sure look happy, Marilla," she bemoaned.

"And that is exactly what they should be," Marilla said, some of the sharpness still lingering in her voice.

"Well, I dunno. 'Tisn't good to be too happy. It tempts Providence too much. One day the rainbow world will end-- and if Anne thinks to hold the young doctor's infatuation forever well, I'd rather not even speak of it," said Mrs. Rachel with impending gloom.

The eyes rolled once again, and Marilla turned to face her friend. "For goodness sakes, Rachel, leave them and their happiness alone." She looked out the window once more and murmured more to herself than Mrs. Rachel, "If anyone deserves it, they do."


The week flew by on wings, and before anyone dared acknowledge time's passing it was the eve before the wedding. A hundred things still remained to be done, and Marilla was scurrying around a kitchen more cluttered than it had ever been. But with the wedding looming so frightfully close, carefulness and cleanliness were thrown to the wind and Marilla was in her element, baking every imaginable delicacy favored by the bride and groom-to-be.

As for Anne, she and Diana Wright had spent the day in the corner gable with a mysterious white bundle of fabric slowly taking its intended shape. Despite cautions that she wouldn't have the time to complete it, Anne had girded up her old stubbornness and insisted on sewing her wedding gown with her own hands, and thus Diana was called upon for some measuring and clippings and such to hurry the process along. The two girls were obviously having a grand time of it, for laughter often traced down the back stairs and filled the kitchen along with its delicious aromas.

Suddenly and surreptitiously the giggles were replaced by a squeak of the old phonograph, then the tinny rendition of the wedding march invaded the air. Anne, gowned, veiled, and happily humming along, descended the stairs regally with Diana right behind.

"Marilla, look!" she entreated, gleefully spinning around to show off the fine handiwork. "Isn't it absolutely the most beautiful dress you've ever seen? Oh, I'm ever so glad I decided to make it myself! That way it's so much more meaningful than a store-bought one from Eaton's."

All this had been chattered as Marilla turned from the stove. Upon seeing Anne, her breath caught in her throat and she had to blink away sudden unexpected tears. It hadn't been so long ago since she had descended upon Green Gables a small orphan with brilliantly wild red hair and those vivid gray eyes that told tales even her tongue could not express had it?

You don't want me? Marilla could once again hear the utter heartbreak in the little girl's voice upon discovering the dreadful mistake that had brought her to the family of her dreams. You don't want me because I'm not a boy? If I were very beautiful, and had nut-brown hair, would you keep me?

Then Marilla envisioned a younger account of herself, a husky voice saying the words that she had felt but had been so difficult to murmur. You might just be a kindred spirit after all.

The sudden memory of the spirited youngster that had captured the hearts of Avonlea was enough to lend Marilla a mood of melancholy despite the happy occasion approaching. She fought quickly for control and smothered the homesickness enough to blink away misty eyes and set about assuring Anne hers was the dress of all dresses.

"Oh, you needn't be convincing me, dearest of Marillas," sang Anne gaily, clasping girlish hands and twirling once more for good measure. "I get my old achy thrill just thinking of the dress!"

"It's not the dress you should be so concerned about, Anne," scolded Marilla gently, determined to instill one last lesson of virtue.

"Oh, dear me, no, Marilla!" Anne exclaimed. "I only get achy thinking how Gil will love me in it."

At that moment Mrs. Rachel entered the kitchen and gasped in horror at the scene to which she was treated. "You really oughtn't to be gallivanting around in your wedding dress, Anne Shirley! What if Gilbert was to see you in it? Why, that's the worst luck on a wedding you could imagine!" The solitary thought was enough to evoke a moan and cause Mrs. Rachel to clasp trembling hands over her heart.

But even Mrs. Rachel's pessimism wasn't to spoil Anne's moment. "It's quite all right, Rachel," she assured. "I only tried it on for a final fitting anyway."

"And you know Gilbert is staying over at our house," Diana spoke up from the shadows.

"You mustn't count on that too much, dear. The young doctor does far too much popping in and out without so much as a 'phone these days."

"You needn't worry, Rachel. I'm 'biding me-self away' now." The happy bride-to-be gave Marilla one last beaming smile and turned for the stairwell.

However, Anne and Diana were only at the foot of the stairs when a knock on the door confirmed Mrs. Rachel's worst fears. Diana's shrieks rang through the house and her frantic effort to hustle Anne up the stairs only ended with both of them tumbling into a heap on the floor and nearly causing Mrs. Rachel a heart attack.

Gilbert suddenly realized the havoc he had wreaked and turned swiftly away, though more to escape a wild fit of laughter than to spare his marriage bad luck. Anne had no such escape, however, and it was a mirthful bride that Diana safely tucked away in the hall closet.

"Gilbert Blythe, have you no shame?" demanded Diana unmercifully through the screen door.

The accused back was still turned, the shaking shoulders trying to muster dignity. "I-I'm sorry," Gilbert stammered through smothered chuckles.

"Oh, now you've done it!" wailed Mrs. Rachel despairingly. "The whole make of the dress will have to be changed, that's what."

"Oh, you two, really!" giggled Anne through a crack in the door. "Surely it's not as bad as all that."

"I'm quite certain it isn't," assured Marilla calmly, speaking up for the first time since the escapade. "You just come back in half an hour, Gilbert, and we'll have your Anne ready and proper to see you."


In exactly the correct amount of time, Gilbert came again to claim his fiancé. This time Green Gables was returned to order, and Anne was suitably clothed and eagerly waiting. Even though there were dozens of impending chores to be done, Marilla allowed Gilbert to steal Anne away as long as he promised to return her in a respectable hour.

Gilbert was nearly to burst with his news by the time he got Anne out of the house, but he insisted on waiting for the privacy of Lover's Lane and no amount of imploring, goading, or dragging of wild horses could force it otherwise. Finally Anne declared his stubbornness to the world and settled in for a resignedly long and quiet walk.

Once they reached the shelter and solitude of the birch trees by the brook, Gilbert grabbed both of Anne's hands and twirled her around to face him. A wide grin claimed his handsome features, but he forced his voice to be relatively calm as he announced his secret. "Anne, I've found us a home."

Instantly Anne bubbled with a thousand excited questions, each tumbling out right on the heels of the one before and none of it making a bit of sense. "Oh, where, Gil, where? What's it like? Is there a garden? Trees? Does it have a brook? Oh, I suppose asking for a brook would be too much, but"

"Whoa there." Gilbert placed a finger to Anne's lips to quiet her. When the animated chatter ceased and he held her full attention, he began to speak slowly and easily. "It's a small cottage outside of the Glen, a little hamlet called Four Winds Harbour. We won't have many neighbors, but we are right near the sea. Yes, there's a garden; and you won't believe it, but there is a small brook running through the corner of our property."

"Oh, Gil!" exclaimed Anne in delight, then turned serious for one more moment. "The house, Gil-- is it, well, pretty?"

Gilbert smiled in his easy manner. "Anne, I do believe we've got the prettiest spot on the whole shore." He could see the pleasure in her eyes again, but also the questions that accompanied it and so declared before she could begin, "But that's all I'm telling. I want you to wait and see for yourself."

Anne sighed with resignation, but her face was happy. "I don't have to wait, Gil. I'm quite sure you've truly found my house o' dreams."

They stretched every minute of their allotted hour, strolling along and talking in lover fashion of their new life together. No foreboding thoughts planted by either Rachel Lynde or the world as a whole could not enter their minds tonight. For on the morrow they would be husband and wife, and it was a joy no one could steal from them.


Green Gables was nearly full to bursting from all the excitement from the very moment the sun peeked above the eastern horizon. Anne came bounding down the stairs as soon as she woke, carelessly tossing any "grown-up" ways to the wind. It was her day of days, and once again she was the old Anne, her eyes sparkling and her happiness infectious.

The sound of Anne's laughter echoed through the old house, memories of it being etched into the very woodwork to haunt as years went by. At long last Marilla was touched by the unspeakable pain a true mother must feel, all the emotions crowding in and threatening to spill over if not guarded with carefully practiced ways. She longed for the eloquence Anne possessed, that somehow she might discover the perfect words to convey her intense feelings. But Marilla had never been much on confession of that sort, and was forced to endure the morning in sad silence, wishing she could do what she knew she could not.

She had her work cut out for her, however, making all the last minute preparations with Rachel Lynde and Diana's small fry under foot. For upon arrival Diana had been whisked away to the garret and the pleasurable job of gowning the happy bride.

The garret was shadowy and suggestive, as all garrets should be. And on this particular day it was filled with laughter as it worked its magic over two women, transforming them once again into girls as they shared the most sacred memory of womanhood.

"Can I peek now?" asked Anne, curious but not impatient. She had set her head on enjoying and savoring every moment of this long-awaited day, so impatient she simply could not be.

"Uh-uhm," rebuked Diana around the pins pressed between her lips. Busy hands tucked and braided and coiled the long copper tresses expertly.

Anne allowed herself a little sigh. She wouldn't have admitted it for anything, but she had some doubts over letting Diana set her hair in the latest style. But Diana had implored with her wide brown eyes and Anne hadn't the heart to deny her the pleasure.

"Almost done" Diana reached for the waiting veil. She nestled it down into Anne's coiffed hair and used the last two pins to fasten it securely. "There now, and you're the most fashionable bride poky old Avonlea's ever seen!"

Anne took a deep breath and turned toward the mirror. Any distrust she might have had in being "fashionable" was erased as she peeked at her reflection. "Oh, Diana!" she gasped in delight.

Diana smiled satisfactorily, having all the praise she needed in that gasp. Frosted over with the lacy veil, Anne's long reddish hair was wound up very becomingly with little lovelocks curling around her slender neck. Diana knew it suited her old-fashioned friend just perfectly, and she was happy to know that Anne felt the same way.

"I'm glad you like it, Anne," she said, and meant it with all her heart.

Anne was still peacocking before the mirror when the sound of an automobile reached Diana's ears. "Oh, dear me, it's the minister. I'll be right back, Anne," she called over her shoulder, slipping down the back stairs and leaving the bride alone.

Anne tiptoed over the window, lest she break the shadowy silence filling the garret. The wide lawns of Green Gables were a hubbub of people, so she let her gaze search for beauty elsewhere. Red-gold birches glistened on the horizon; gulls swooped and soared among the feathery white clouds; the Lake of Shining Waters rippled with sunshiny diamonds. Or at least what diamonds should be if they were not the purpled dreaminess she once thought.

Anne sighed. Not out of disappointment, but out of sheer blissful happiness as she reveled in the beauty of her day of days. She reached out a slender, white hand; fingertips gently touching her reflection in the windowpane.

"You're only Anne, Anne of Green Gables," she whispered tremulously, just as she had done so long ago. But this time the words were filled with love instead of loneliness.

The tender face turned upwards, lips stilled but heart whispering out a prayer of thanksgiving. The sun shone with softness atypical to the season, flooding in its warmth and paling in contrast to the radiant bride.

Anne was blissfully unaware that a world even existed at the moment, and there is no way of telling how long she would have stood there had the sound of quiet sobs not startled her from her reverie. She turned to find Marilla in the doorway, calmly and stoically weeping with hands pressed firmly to her aching heart. Not once could Anne remember the woman so openly overcome with emotion, and immediately she swept across the floor to throw herself into Marilla's embrace.

This was the moment that Marilla had pined and prayed for. She held Anne in her arms, stroking the coiffed copper tresses with a trembling hand. Rehearsed speeches failed her, the silent weeping too eloquent for mere words.

"I've no right to be here, holding you like this," whispered Marilla at last, though not relaxing her hold. "After how cold and hard I've been, here treating you like you were my own little girl I've no right."

It was Anne who wriggled from the embrace, eyes wide as she faced Marilla's tear-streaked face. "I am your little girl-- yours and Matthew's-- and you've every right in the world. I-- I could never ever tell you what you mean to me-- ever," repeated with quiet vehemence. "I-- I love you."

Tears began to trace down the withered cheeks at the open acceptance and affection. "I--" Marilla's voice cracked with intense emotion. "I-- I love you, too."

The simple words were spoken with such heart-wrenching sincerity they would have invoked the hardest of souls to weeping. They were the words Anne had longed to hear all her life. "Oh, Marilla!" she cried, and was welcomed back into the comforting embrace.

At length Marilla blinked away tears and held Anne at arms length. "Goodness, look at you," she said huskily, almost guiltily. "I've crumpled your dress, and oh, you're all flushed and teary-eyed. What will Gilbert think when he sees you?"

Anne smiled a sweet, tender smile that reached her eyes and glistened through the tears. "He'll love me."

In the simple answer, Marilla felt she had been tried, found guilty, and completely forgiven. She managed for a smile in return, creasing the weathered features with gentle warmth. "Yes, he will," she agreed softly, her hand brushing Anne's rosy cheek. "He'll love you just like he has ever since he laid eyes on you."


However fashionable, it was a happy and radiant bride who descended the homespun stairs-- the first bride of Green Gables. Gilbert was waiting for her on the landing, and the sight of her was enough to steal his breath away and his heart right along with it.

Anne was tall and slim in her bridal array, as pure and delicate as an iris with virginal curves of rose-laden arms slipping out. Around her slender neck was a thread-like gold chain with a tiny pink enamel heart as a pendant snuggled in the hollow of her throat. As she drew nearer, Gilbert noticed the old trinket and smiled. The memory it conjured up was the fatal day he called her "Carrots" and vainly tried to make his peace with the then-lovely necklace. Other Avonlea schoolgirls were dutifully envious, but upon his knowledge Anne had never worn the trinket. So, she had saved it after all. It warmed his heart at the meaningfulness of her wearing it today.

Standing there such as he was, waiting, adoring from afar; it was as if he were but a schoolboy once again, looking upon Anne with the reverence that might be deserving of queens. And here she was, this long evasive, sought-after Anne, coming to him in the sweet surrender of a bride.

Anne's eyes were starry limpid pools of gray as they met his gaze, the love reflected in them hindered not by any amount of maiden veil. She was at his side taking his hand and giving it a meaningful squeeze that only added to the flush that had burned in his cheeks when he first caught sight of her.

Gilbert took the small white hand, tenderly tucking it into his arm to escort his bride through the open doors and into the realm of sunshine and happiness beyond. They were to be married in the orchard, "'neath the dome of the great cathedral" of whispering apple trees in accordance of long ago fancies. Bronze leaves and stray wildflowers carpeted the bridal aisle lined with the kind and loving faces of long-familiar friends, murmuring in general approval of the handsome couple. Even folks that deemed Anne a lesser beauty than their own offspring were rendered to admiration of the beaming bride.

But neither bride nor groom were aware of such whisperings as they came to stand before the robed minister and witness the ceremony that would bind them together for all of eternity.

“Do you, Gilbert Blythe, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold, for better or worse, in sickness and in health, till death do you part?"

Gilbert's voice carried in strong, tender tones. "I do."

"And do you, Anne Shirley, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold, for better or worse, in sickness and in health, till death do you part?"

"I do," low and tremulous, yet in glad certainty.

"Then with the power invested in me, I now pronounce you man and wife." The minister bestowed on them as close to a beaming smile a man of such dignity was allowed. "You may kiss the bride."

Larks don't often sing in September, but as Anne and Gilbert sealed their eternal covenant with a kiss one twittered a most beautiful wedding benediction from the lofty branches overhead. Anne heard the song and thrilled to it; Gilbert heard and only wondered fleetingly that all the larks in the world shouldn't burst into jubilant song.


Just as twilight was descending folks were summoned to line the front lane for a last farewell to the departing bride and groom. Anne said tearful goodbyes to Diana, Mrs. Rachel, and finally Marilla before she let Gilbert lift her into the old-fashioned buggy. And then, amid showers of rice and old shoes, the newlyweds were off.

As they pulled out of the lane, Anne turned for one last look at the house that had been her home for fourteen happy years. A lone candle flickered wistfully in the east gable window and Anne believed it was a symbol of her passing from girlhood into this delightful new world of a wife. All the memories she cherished so dearly were there, yet she was not willing to, with Lot's wife, cast back a faithless look.

A small sigh escaped her lips as she settled back into the seat, closer to her husband, and tucked her arm in his.

"Are you sad?" asked Gilbert softly, perhaps a little worriedly.

Anne turned adoring eyes to him and leaned her head against his broad shoulder in perfect contentment. "How could I be sad," she replied just as gently, "when I'm going home."


Long after the buggy had disappeared over the horizon and the lingering guests had dispersed, Marilla stood at the gate. One hand resting on the latch and the other fingering absently her lace shirtwaist, her thoughts were wandering far away from the earth on which she stood.

Rachel came to stand beside her, silent for once as she shared Marilla's heartache.

"Anne always said there would bends in the roads," whispered Marilla at last, with great feeling. "Awful hard bewildered I was trying to understand what she meant." Now I know, carried unspoken in the air.

"I'm not one that won't own up to a wrong, Marilla," said Mrs. Rachel. "And I was wrong to criticize their happiness. It will last," she predicted resolutely.

Marilla blinked hard, unwilling that Rachel should see her dewy eyes. Rachel, not seeing but understanding just the same, put an arm around her in a gesture of true friendship. Both women turned to face the house that would seem awfully empty without the vibrancy and laughter Anne had filled it with in her years there.


In just a couple of hours, the newlyweds were alighting from the train in Glen Saint Mary. Gilbert had just retrieved their luggage when a small urchin slipped up to them.

"Doctor and Mistress Blythe?" he questioned in a fidgety manner.

"Yes," replied Gilbert politely, though the question was rather obvious. His bride was still gowned, veiled, and blushing at his side.

A smudged hand opened to give Gilbert two keys and from the lad's hasty gesture he concluded one must be for the automobile waiting in the station's glow.

"Compliments of the senior Doctor Blythe," said the urchin dutifully, then disappeared into the deepening shadows.

Although Anne was at first disappointed at the thought of traveling to her new home in the horribly prosaic automobile, she soon forgot all about such inconveniences as she absorbed everything about her new surroundings.

The night was radiant and the drive was all together lovely. Even lovelier still, if possible, was the view spreading ceaselessly before them. The sea rolled rhythmically in the distance, beckoning and alluring and yet ever eluding from sight. Tall poplars whispered in the evening breeze, answering the gulls' cries as they soared out over the water. Over-harbour lights gemmed the shoreline and glittered in the mysterious sea.

"Isn't that beautiful, Anne?" asked Gilbert when they topped a hill that commanded an even better panorama before them.

"No, 'tis not beautiful," whispered Anne dreamily. "Nor wonderful neither. They just don't go far enough. Oh, Gilbert, I shall love Four Winds!"

Gilbert smiled into the darkness, her initial response quelling the doubt that had tortured his mind.

"Gil?" ventured Anne a moment later. "Where is our house?"

He took special pleasure in telling her. "Not far, though we can't see it just yet. The birch in the cove hides it from view. It's two miles from the village and we won't have many neighbors. I hope you won't mind it when I'm gone 'doctoring', Anne."

"Mind? Not with a garden and brook and trees for company! And the sea-- oh, the sea is simply beyond words, Gil."

Gilbert smiled again and pointed to her right. "There's our nearest neighbor. It doesn't look-- exactly-- like they would be kindred spirits, Anne, does it?"

Anne looked accordingly-- and laughed. The house was a large one; painted such a vivid green the landscape seemed quite faded by contrast. The entire establishment-- house, barns, orchard, garden, lawn, and lane-- was all painfully neat. Marilla had been immaculate in her grounds keeping, but there was nothing to outdo this starkness.

"No-o, Gilbert, it doesn't seem like one could be a kindred spirit with a house like that."

Gilbert chuckled in agreement, then suddenly grew very serious and excited all at once. "Look, Anne-- over there."

Anne didn't need to be told. "Our house," she murmured and promptly forgot kindred spirits, neighbors, Four Winds, Canada, and the world as a whole.

The first glimpse of their new home filled her with delight. It was deliciously nestled in a quaint fir wood along the shore, a full moon dipping near the eastern horizon and creating a splendid aisle across the reckless sea. Peacefulness filled the very air as they drove up the poplar-lined lane, welcoming and accepting the new inhabitants of the little white cottage.

Gilbert was guardedly watching his bride's reaction, and he couldn't have been more pleased with her enthrallment. He silenced the engine, lifted Anne from the automobile and led her into the garden, through the little gate between the ruddy-tipped firs, up the trim red path to the sandstone step.

Some understanding benefactor had left a hearth-fire for the newlyweds, so when Gilbert opened the door they were surrounded by the glow from the dying embers.

Silhouetted in the doorway, Gilbert stopped and drew Anne to him. She melted into his embrace as he kissed her, drew back to say I love you with his eyes, then thoroughly kissed her again. Then in one effortless motion she was scooped up into his arms.

"Welcome home, my love," Gilbert whispered against her cheek as he carried his bride over the threshold of their house of dreams.


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