The series finale of How I Met Your Mother offered a look back through the show’s most enduring gimmicks over the course of its nine seasons – including the blue French horn.

How I Met Your Mother Finale Recap

“Last Forever Part One and Two” began with a flashback to McLaren’s on the day that Robin (Cobie Smulders) first became a member of the gang. When Robin gets up to order a round of scotches, Lily (Alyson Hannigan) stipulates that the guys cannot sleep with her – unless they intend to marry her. Flash-forward to the present, and the group can’t believe that Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) and Robin actually – finally – tied the knot.

While dancing at their reception, Barney spots The Mother (Cristin Milioti) and rushes over to Ted (Josh Radnor), hoping for the chance to employ the “Haaaave you met Ted?” tactic one more time. Ted brushes him off, insisting that it’s time for him to head back to Manhattan so he can get himself ready for Chicago. Cue the group goodbye in the rain: Ted and Robin salute to the “major pleasure” of knowing one another, Marshall (Jason Segel) offers a hug, Lily is finally able to stop tearing when Ted makes a creepy ET reference and Ted and Barney exchange a "high-infinity" that results in both men needing some ice for their hands.

After Ted rushes off to the Fairhampton train station, he finds himself waiting for a delayed train in the rain on a bench next to an older woman. He talks to her about how he thinks he may have met someone, but has to go to Chicago. The woman talks to him about fate, and signs, urging Ted to follow his heart.

Barney & Robin Divorce

In 2015, Ted is plotting the final details of his wedding to the Mother. He wants a castle, a horse drawn carriage entrance and a hot air balloon exit. Yet, the plans get curtailed when the mother announces that she’s pregnant – and wants to be able to fit into her dress when they get hitched. A couple years after the baby is born, the gang reunites and learns that Lily is pregnant again, Marshall hates his job in corporate law – and Barney and Robin have gotten a divorce.

Following their wedding, Robin’s job with world news sent her traveling around the globe. When Barney wasn’t traveling with her, they were miserable. When Barney was by her side, they were miserable. After one last night of drunken sex together, the two decided that it wasn’t working. Lily is devastated, but the split pair promise that they can still be friends within the group.

Robin Leaves The Gang

But, of course things changed. Robin not only had to watch her ex-husband hit on girls nearly half her age, but watch how happy Ted and the Mother were and Marshall and Lily welcoming their third kid. Everything came to a head for Robin at Marshall and Lily’s Halloween/apartment moving party. While trying to shady dip, Lily – pregnant and dressed in a white whale costume – stops her. Robin opens up about how they’re no longer the group they once were, causing Lily to cry, knowing on some level that she’s losing her best friend.

Flash-forward to 2020. Marshall, Lily, Ted, the Mother and Barney are taking in a robot-wrestling match, when Barney reveals that he tried to have “The Perfect Month.” Technically, he was successful, sleeping with 31 women in 31 days. The problem is, 31 is pregnant. Leading up to the child’s birth, Barney is his worst self, hanging on to the hopes he’s not the father right up to the big day in the hospital. However, when he holds his daughter, Ella, he realizes he has in his arms the girl that’s forever going to change his life. “You are the love of my life,” he says to her. “Everything I have and everything I am, is yours. Forever.”

Ted's Two Forevers

Five years after their engagement, Ted and the Mother finally tied the knot in a small affair in which the five friends came together and posed for a group shot at McLaren’s. Talking to his kids, older Ted summarizes his marriage to their mother – the ups and downs of a beautiful relationship and how it never would have happened had he not had the courage to introduce himself to her, Tracy McConnell, on the train platform that day.

Their meet-cute was duly adorable, complete with the origin of the yellow umbrella, but it’s now six years after her death and the kids think he sat them down to tell them this story for a reason he’s yet to admit to himself. His kids think the point of his protracted narrative was to show that he loved their Aunt Robin. Instead of admonishing their father, they urge him to ask her out on a date. A phone call not being enough for the ever-romantic Ted, he goes to Robin’s Manhattan apartment and presents her with the blue French horn from their first date, from the first episode of How I Met Your Mother.

– Chelsea Regan

For More How I Met Your Mother News:

> 'How I Met Your Mother' Finale Spoilers: What To Expect In 'Last Forever'

> 'How I Met Your Mother' Recap: Barney & Robin Tie The Knot; Marshall & Lily Renew Their Vows

> 'How I Met Your Mother' Recap: Ted & The Mother Go On Their First Date In 'Gary Blauman'

> 'How I Met Your Mother' Recap: Marshall Finds Out Lily Is Pregnant; Robin Gets Marriage Advice From Her Mom

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