Yes, I know that this idea has been done millions of times before, so much that some may find it sickening, but I couldn't help it. I felt like writing some pure, good old CB fluff, and what better way to fluff than with a wedding story? Anyways, this story is a futurefic, based on the TV show (though I stole one detail from the book b/c I liked it). It's only one chapter, but I don't think I'd call it a one-shot. It's more of a short story. I can only hope that it's not too similar to any other wedding futurefics. I also hope you'll like it! Please R&R, reviews keep me writing!
"The Green against my Lace"
Blair Waldorf threw her veil over her head and sighed. She examined herself from the top of the lace veil down to her white, bowed high heels. Her dress was flowing and gorgeous. Her makeup was perfectly done, and her nails were manicured with white tips. She knew she looked great, and she knew her guests looked great, and she knew the church was decorated great. Everything was perfect, just as she always imagined it would be.
So why wasn't she happy?
She wondered what Nate was doing. He was probably putting on one last spray of cologne, or maybe running a comb through his golden shaggy hair for the millionth time. She wondered if he was as nervous as she was. She always wondered what he was thinking about, because ever since high school she couldn't tell.
She glanced at the clock and felt her stomach drop. Fifteen minutes. In just fifteen minutes she would become Mrs. Nathaniel Archibald. Just like she always dreamed she would. Nate and she were twenty-five now, and looks-wise they hadn't changed a bit. Nate was still the handsome, crystal-blue eyed boy who every Upper East Side woman wanted. Gossip Girl had died out after they had graduated, but Blair still hated how women would look at Nate when they were out. She despised how they flirted with him, even in her presence. The only thing she despised more was how he flirted back.
He was probably done now, she figured. He might be out talking with Serena, Blair's maid of honor. Serena was pregnant now with the second child of her husband, Dan Humphrey. They had gotten married two years ago, when Serena discovered she was pregnant for the first time. Dan popped the question after she broke the news, but he had already been planning it for a little while. He hadn't quite known how to ask her. Serena spared him the trouble. It killed Blair to think that her gorgeous beau was probably talking with her best friend at the moment, looking at her and wishing it was her he was about to marry. He could even be flirting with Serena's sister-in-law, Jenny. He could probably be doing the same with Kati Farkas and Isabelle Coates, Blair's other friends and bridesmaids. Just who wouldn't he flirt with was what she wanted to know.
There was a sudden knock on the door, interrupting her thoughts. She figured it was Serena coming in to check on her.
"S, is that you?" Blair called out. There wasn't a reply. Puzzled, she now suspected Nate.
"Nate, you can't come in. It's bad luck for the groom to see the bride before the wedding."
"It's not Nate. It's an old friend."
Blair's eyes turned as wide as saucers. She recognized that voice. That slow, deep voice that she had first appreciated that fateful night in the back seat of a limousine…
Before she could stop herself, Blair was running to open the door. Once she did, she nearly fainted. Chuck Bass stood before her, looking positively stunning.
He had grown taller since she had last seen him, even a little taller than Nate. He stood very upright and confident. He wore an army green dress uniform, which looked crisp and freshly pressed. Blair noticed how it enhanced his broad shoulders and sturdy figure. A few traditional army medals hung from his coat on the left side of his chest. Her eyes moved upward towards his face. It was more chiseled, more shaped than it had been when he was newly eighteen. His skin was still a handsome pale, and his hair was still dark brown and nicely shaped. Blair's eyes moved to his, and she felt her breath leave her. His eyes were exactly the same. They were the same chocolate, intense eyes that had held her captivated in his limo and her friend's bedroom many years ago.
Blair hadn't realized that she was staring. Chuck cocked an eyebrow and smirked.
"Weren't expecting me, were you?" he asked smugly. Blair wanted to roll her eyes, seeing as his attitude hadn't changed. She didn't, for her eyes were too busy being focused on him in awe. She pulled them away in embarrassment and looked down at his black, shiny patent leather shoes.
"No, I…no, I wasn't," Blair stuttered. Chuck smiled again, a bit less overweening.
"How have you been, Waldorf?" he asked smoothly. She looked back up at him and noticed for the first time that he wore a green hat with a black visor to match his uniform. She couldn't believe it was him. He was gone. He wasn't supposed to be back.
"What are you doing here?" she asked. She wanted to say it crudely, but something held her back from doing so. "You weren't invited to this wedding." This time she spoke more defensively. Chuck looked amused.
"Still sassy, aren't you?" His eyes seemed to tease her. She wanted to turn away again, but she couldn't. "I know I wasn't invited." Chuck didn't sound the least bit hurt. Blair wondered why that was. Then she wondered why she even cared.
"I came to give you and Nathaniel something," Chuck interrupted. Blair smiled, even though she didn't want to in front of him. She couldn't deny that she loved when he called Nate Nathaniel. When anyone else called her prince charming by his full name they butchered it. When Chuck said it, the name flowed from his lips like pleasant music. Blair pushed her mouth muscles downward into a small frown.
"What?" she asked, as if she hadn't heard clearly the first time.
"I have something for you both." Chuck reached a white-gloved hand into his coat pocket and pulled out an envelope. He handed it to her. On the front it was addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Archibald. "Consider it a cheap wedding present." She held the envelope with two fingers and gazed back up at him with a puzzled expression. Why would he want to give anything to her and Nate?
"Should I open it now?" Blair asked.
"No no, do it later. With Nathaniel." He smiled at the corners of his mouth. Chuck's alluring eyes held Blair's in such a dazzled trance that she couldn't focus on anything else. She felt her heart pounding in her chest, the blood beginning to rush in her veins. She forgot what it was like to have a man look at her which such feeling in his eyes. After looking into Nate's blank stares for so many years, a puzzle was all she knew.
"Thank you," she said, putting her hands and the envelope to her chest.
"You're welcome," Chuck replied causally. He leaned forward and glanced inside the bride's room, over at the clock on the wall. Blair drew in a breath as he got close to her, memories of their nights spent together returning too vividly to her memory. She could still hear him moaning, still feel excited goose bumps on her skin as his hands ran down her back…
"What is this Bass, no scarf?" Blair asked, trying to get her mind off of the past. Chuck had leaned back out after checking the time. She saw a pink color forming in his white cheeks.
"I ditched that when I went to military school," Chuck said. He flicked his wrist up and tilted the front of his hat upward slightly. "I'd better get going." He turned around and looked over his shoulder at her with a small smile. "Goodbye, Waldorf."
"Chuck!" Blair reached out her hand and grabbed his arm. She gasped as she did it, not believing how quickly she had reacted to him just turning to leave. Chuck turned back around slowly, eyeing her with surprise. Her big doe eyes looked at him with concern. She felt herself trying to calm down her fast breathing. "You're just going to leave?! Just like that?!" Her hand dropped from his sleeve, and her voice took on an angered tone. "You just show up here, after not speaking to me for seven years, minutes before I'm about to get married, and you're just going to leave?! Hello goodbye, that's all?!" Chuck's eyes seemed bigger, his mouth pursed in a straight line. He shrugged his burly shoulders slightly.
"What else is there to say?"
Somehow that hurt her heart, although she wasn't sure exactly why. Blair went from full-fronted to vulnerable in a matter of seconds. She looked at him with pleading eyes. "Just tell me what you've been up to. Just say anything," she insisted. Serena was Chuck's stepsister, but she never talked about Chuck around Blair, information that Blair was secretly dying to know. Her attempts at not sounding desperate were futile. Chuck took it as an opportunity. His traditional smirk returned to his face.
"Why Waldorf, it sounds like you missed me." Blair's eyebrows lowered, and she straightened her face back to normal.
"No, it's not that I've missed you. You were just a good friend, that's all. It's only human to want to know what has happened to your friends." Chuck looked like he wanted to say something back to that comment. Instead he just looked at the clock nervously and then back at her.
"That's not a good idea, Blair. You're walking down the aisle in ten minutes."
"Give me the short version, then." Chuck smiled a little, pleased at knowing that she cared that he had been gone from her life. He took a step forward and Blair stepped to the side, allowing him admittance to the bride's room. She closed the door shut behind him, then turned to face her ex-lover. After glancing about the room, Chuck's dark eyes fell on her again. A curious smile played on his lips.
"What do you want to know?" he asked. God, was it just her, or had his voice always sounded so seductive?
"Well…what have you been doing?"
"You mean like a job, or-"
"Yeah. Like a job," Blair said curtly, knowing how Chuck would have most likely finished that sentence. Chuck smirked and sat on a tan, round table in the center of the room. He pushed himself up until it supported his weight, and he let his long legs dangle off the side. He looked directly at her as he spoke, his straight-forwardness taking charge of the conversation's tone.
"I went to military school up north and graduated. Then I was shipped to the Middle East and I've been on duty there ever since," Chuck explained.
Ever since she had broken off their "thing" junior year and after Chuck had told Gossip Girl about it, Blair never spoke to Chuck ever again. Neither had Nate, who had been so angry with him for sleeping with Blair, even though he was technically broken up with her at the time. Nate forgave Blair for the ordeal, finally seeing that he would have been a hypocrite to be angry with her (he did, after all, sleep with Serena a while before). Chuck's eyes always haunted her, though. Blair remembered walking in and out of Constance Billard, looking to the St. Jude's side for a glimpse of Nate. Many times, Chuck caught her eye, and he would stare her down before leaving the scene. Blair remembered hearing that Chuck had decided to go to military school. Rumors spread that it was because he couldn't get in anywhere else, but Blair always thought it was because they had once joked about him serving the U.S. Nate personally thought that Chuck couldn't care where he went, though he didn't know. Nate showed no remorse for his ex-best friend.
"He's such a loser," Blair remembered Nate saying senior year. "He doesn't really talk to anyone much anymore. Asshole. He would've had me as a friend for life if he didn't ruin it." Nate's hatred of Chuck was the only emotion he ever displayed, if any. Despite his anger, Blair continued feeling like Nate was sorry that the two weren't friends anymore.
"What about your father?" Blair asked, remembering hearing about the aging Bart Bass. "Aren't you going to take over his business?" She swore she saw Chuck stifle a saddened laugh.
"No, I don't think so. I let him down, and he really likes Eric. I don't think he'll trust me with it."
"Even now? God, you must still be sleeping with a lot of bimbos." In just a second, Chuck's face turned very solemn. Blair zoomed in on his eyes, swearing she saw a distraught glint.
"I don't do that anymore, Blair. I haven't since high school," Chuck said. Blair's mouth dropped open. Never had she thought she'd live to hear that Chuck Bass had given up his womanizing ways.
"So you haven't had sex in seven years?!" Blair asked in disbelief. Chuck suddenly smiled widely. Unable to control himself, he started laughing. Blair forgot what his laugh had sounded like. She loved hearing it again, but she was too annoyed to acknowledge that.
"What's so funny?!" she asked. Chuck ceased his laughter and looked up slightly.
"Waldorf, you are still too innocent." He still smiled a wide toothy grin as he continued to speak. "I may have given up sleeping around with a million people, but I'm a soldier for God's sake. I need something to come home to." Blair nodded, understanding. She found herself growing jealous as she remembered how good he was in bed. Some random tramp was getting all the good stuff while she faked with Nate ninety-nine percent of the time.
"What's her name?" Blair asked.
"Shelley. She's a Lower East Sider."
"What does she look like?"
"Long, curly brown hair…brown eyes…" Chuck didn't need to continue. Blair realized the girl resembled her more than a little bit. Chuck's eyebrows lowered naughtily. He grinned, and Blair noticed for some reason that his right index finger was rubbing his thumb. "Size D bra size…" he said lowly. His voice dripped over every word. Blair sighed and rolled her eyes, the very reaction he expected. He laughed to himself as her face formed into a look of revulsion.
"You're disgusting," she stated sharply.
"You couldn't get enough of it at one time." She wanted to say something back, but only stuttering syllables came out of her mouth. Chuck smiled and looked down, knowing he had got her. Blair turned her shocked eyes towards the clock. Only five minutes were left to go. "So how's Nathaniel?" Chuck asked. She turned back and faced him. His eyes moved from his shoes to her in curiosity.
"He's fine," Blair said. "We're fine," she added after a small pause.
"He liked Dartmouth?"
"Yeah. He and Dan Humphrey actually became very good friends."
"It doesn't surprise me. They had the same taste in women."
"Dan never liked me," Blair said. She crossed her arms and Chuck smirked.
"Who said anything about you?" he asked. Blair gasped, aghast at his audacity.
"You know, you really haven't changed!" she exclaimed angrily.
"Neither have you," Chuck stated. Blair inhaled deeply, trying to calm down. He made her so angry. He looked at her, his now-softened face expressing that he felt bad for bringing it up. Blair felt her lips forming into a smile. He looked so cute when he wanted to tell her sorry but didn't want to admit it. She always found herself knowing exactly what he was feeling. He turned away from her gaze and looked back down. "How was Yale?"
"It was perfect."
"Everything you thought it would be?"
"That's great," Chuck said. He was still not fully looking at her, but Blair saw the brightness in his face as he looked down. She beamed, delighted that he was happy for her.
"Yeah, I got my fashion designing degree there," Blair continued. She wanted to gloat in the moment. She adored getting his approval in the past and hearing him compliment her. Chuck looked up and smiled, his face glowing.
"I'm glad. You're living your dreams." Blair nodded, feeling herself getting giddy. The feeling vanished when she looked back at the clock. Three minutes. She breathed out and faced him again. Butterflies formed in her stomach; she didn't want to ask the question that they had been avoiding but needed to be discussed.
"You still like me, don't you? After all these years, after I was such a bitch…"
"Hey, I was a bitch too," Chuck said teasingly. Blair laughed, something she hadn't done in a long time. Chuck smiled a little, but it faded quickly. "Behind every joke is some truth," he commented. "I did sent that text. And told you off in the bar." Blair stopped laughing and looked at him earnestly. She knew he was feeling guilty about that.
"If it weren't for my bitchiness you wouldn't have had to do either," Blair stated.
"If I didn't pull that shit at the cotillion you wouldn't have been a bitch." They seemed to be bantering on exactly whose fault it was, and they each blamed themselves.
"You only did it because you wanted to be with me," Blair said. Her eyes widened and she gasped. She had said it. She had said what she had never wanted to admit for so many years. Chuck gave her a weak smile.
"It doesn't matter now. It never mattered, in fact." Blair shook her head slightly, pitifully. Then she became upset that he thought that, no matter how true it may have seemed. He had made an extreme impact on her life.
"Of course it mattered!" she exclaimed. Chuck laughed a little through a closed mouth. He hopped off of the table and crossed his arms behind his back.
"No, it didn't. What I wanted never mattered to you." He continued to speak with an edge to his voice as he walked closer to her. "All that mattered was being with Nate, even if he never loved you. Even if he never could love you the way you should be loved. Even if he would never have devoted himself to you the way I did." Blair stepped forward defensively, about to shout something back. Then she realized there was nothing to defend. By now Chuck stood directly in front of her, looking down upon her with forgiving eyes. He brought a hand behind her head and straightened her veil. "It's alright," he said, calmly this time. "Really, it is."
They stood and stared at each other for a few never-ending moments. All was silent around them except for Blair's quick breathing. Chuck brought his hands up and laid them gently on her shoulders. He leaned down slightly, and she closed her eyes and parted her lips. Instead of closing them with his own, Chuck planted a kiss on her cheek. Blair's heart broke. He had accepted that she was Nate's. Despite the sadness weighing down her heart, she also loved the feeling of his soft lips on her skin. It was almost like he had never left. She kept her eyes closed, not wanting him to see the tears. She felt the closeness between them begin to separate, and his warm hands soon left her shoulders. She still refused to open her eyes. Her lips folded inward and her teeth bit down as she tried to control her tears. She wanted so badly to look up at him once more so that she could remember his face forever. She breathed and finally opened her eyes, which bore right into his chocolate orbs. They were a mystery to her once again, as they looked more tender than usual. She remained fascinated until his eyes suddenly closed. He opened them after a few seconds, looking at her wishfully.
"I'm happy as long as you're happy," Chuck said. He gave her one last little smile before walking slowly away. He turned and looked at her once more before heading for the doorway. Her back faced him, for she couldn't bear to watch him walk away. Chuck closed the brown door behind him when he left.
Blair kept staring ahead as if he was still standing in front of her. The room was quiet, the magical essence that was present a few moments ago dissipated. The voice that filled her with joy had blown away, leaving a desolate silence in its wake. She was alone. Alone, like she had been for the last seven years. It was what she denied to herself every day. Blair suddenly started to cry, letting her emotions take over her. She wiped the tears away with her lace-gloved hand, knowing that her mascara was going to be completely ruined. She looked at herself in the mirror and noticed the water droplets on her eyelashes. She then viewed the clock's reflection in the mirror, and she tried to stop her sobbing. It was time.
"Who am I kidding?!" she thought. "The man I love isn't out there waiting for me to walk down the aisle." She heard organ music beginning to play. Her shoulders heaved up and down as she tried to calm herself. She turned around and looked at the door, debating about just what she was going to do. That was when she caught sight of the envelope lying on the table that she had been standing by. Blair ran over to it and opened it quickly, not even thinking about Nate. She pulled four pictures out of it and she began to look through them with a heavy heart.
The first one was of Nate, Chuck, and her altogether. They were sitting on the concrete steps of Chuck and Nate's high school, St. Jude's. The sun was shining, making the picture look bright. In the photo, Blair was grinning and sitting on Nate's lap. Nate was showing off his straight white teeth, and his blue eyes shined beautifully in the sun. Chuck sat smiling next to Nate, and Blair's outstretched hand clasped around his red and yellow scarf. Blair smiled, thinking back to a time when everything was alright between the three of them. The second photo was a little blurred, though Blair made out that it was she and Nate in the picture. Blair laughed, remembering that Chuck wasn't the best photographer. She recognized the Central Park water fountain in the background behind them. Blair had her arm around Nate's shoulder, and Nate just smiled normally.
The last two pictures were young ones. In the third one Blair saw herself, Chuck, Nate, and Serena riding the carousel at Central Park. They looked about seven or eight years old. Blair smiled as she looked at all of their young, laughing faces. She remembered that day quite well. She recalled swinging on the lampposts, on an extreme sugar hype. Nate had run off with Serena to roll down a hill and left her to dance alone.
"Blair, don't hurt yourself!" Blair remembered Chuck's little voice of caution. She put down the photos and remembered the scene in her mind.
"Catch me Chuck, catch me!" she had called out. He had ran to her and allowed her to fall in his arms. She remembered laughing and looking up at his concerned face.
"Are you alright?"
"You really thought I was going to fall, you dork!" Then she had brought her fingers up and ran them through his hair.
Blair felt the tears returning to her eyes. She flipped to the last picture and let out a moan of shock. It was the exact scene she had remembered. Little Blair was laying on the lap of little Chuck in Central Park next to a black lamppost, bringing her fingers up through his hair. Blair laughed a little at their cute smiles. He had always made her smile. He had always made her happy.
Blair went to put the pictures back in the envelope, and noticed a small posted note stuck on the inside. She pulled it out and read the neat manly cursive:
"I found these a few months back when I was packing to go overseas and cleaning out crap. I wish you guys the best." It was signed with a capital C.
Suddenly the door swung open, and Serena burst in frantically. She picked up the bottom of her ruffled, rose pink bridesmaid dress as she ran.
"Blair, what are you still doing in here?! Everyone's out there waiting for you!" Blair turned to her best friend, and Serena saw the tears and the mascara on her friend's red cheeks. "Blair, what's wrong? Did something happen?" Blair sighed. Something happened, alright. She made a sudden motion with her hands too fast for Serena to see.
"I'm not doing it, S. I can't." Serena was shocked at the certainty in Blair's voice.
"Everyone thinks about backing out on their wedding day! It's natural to be nervous, but-"
"No. You don't understand. And you probably never will, nor will anyone else."
"Blair, I-" Blair suddenly put something into Serena's hand and closed her friend's fingers over it.
"There's something I have to do. Tell him I'm sorry." Blair ran out, taking the envelope with her. Serena watched her go, dumbfounded. She opened her fingers to see just what it was Blair had given her.
It was Blair's engagement ring, better known as Nate's mom's Vanderbilt ring.
Chuck looked out the dirty window of the train, his eyelids heavy. He saw a few unkempt houses with bare lawns. The sky was grey outside, and it looked like it was about to rain. A clanging sound ensued as the train's wheels hit a rickety rail. Chuck sighed and looked down at his watch. It wasn't long before he would be in the city. It was six months since he had been in New York for Nate and Blair's wedding. He had to beg really hard to get the leaf of absence and he had to stay on duty for two extra months before going on a break, but it had been worth it. He enjoyed seeing Blair again and telling her everything that he felt, even though it didn't change a thing. He didn't expect it to. Soon he saw a few buildings out his window. Everything about New York reminded Chuck of his past, both the good times and the bad. While the bad times lingered in his mind and his heart every day, he refused to move somewhere else. He would miss it all too much to leave it. The sights and sounds of the city was his home, the one thing that couldn't be taken from him.
Chuck leaned his head back against the brown seat and moaned, feeling tired and weary. The army had done a number on him. He remembered his youthful days, when he was full of energy and always up for a party. Ever since he had joined the armed forces he desired nothing more than to relax when he returned home. He saw some awful things overseas, things that he didn't dare tell anyone else about. Chuck felt his eyes closing, and he wanted so badly to drift off to sleep. He loved when he was asleep, because then he couldn't think about Blair or Nate or any of the terrible events he had witnessed.
The train bounced and made another loud noise. Chuck's dark eyes opened slightly and he glanced out the window again. It was drizzling out, like he had suspected that it would. It was as though the weather was letting out the tears that he was too manly to cry himself. Chuck knew he wasn't happy. The only time he had ever felt truly happy was when he was with Blair. He had tried many times to get over her, but no one was good enough. Yet when he had her he lost Nate, the only person he ever met who he could consider a best friend.
Chuck sighed. Every muscle in his body seemed to ache. He never imagined that he would have joined the army. It had been so long since he had been to an Upper East Side party, even though his dad and stepmom were prominent socialites. He looked down at the cuffs on the wrists of his dress uniform, remembering that he had all those suits in his closet that he never wore anymore. He missed those days so much. He looked back out the window at the land outside. He appreciated his old life and his country so much more now than he had before. If only defending it didn't wear him down so greatly.
The train finally began to slow down. There was one last clanking noise before it fully stopped. Chuck picked up his black suitcase (which had his hat and a few extra clothes inside) and walked out of his seat. A little old lady smiled at him as he walked down the train's aisle. He smiled back politely. When he stepped off of the train he discovered that the rain had stopped, and a golden sun was trying to reappear from behind the clouds. The smell of fresh moisture in the air entered Chuck's nostrils. He waited to the side for a few moments to let other people pass by.
"Chuck." Chuck thought he heard his name, but he wasn't positive. Many people were talking as they headed away from the train's platform. There could have been another Chuck there. "Chuck!" That time he knew he was being called, for he knew that voice too well. He turned in the direction of the sound.
The people began to clear out, and Chuck spotted her. Blair was seated on a wooden bench, close to the door of the mini-station. She stood up and began walking towards him. She wore a long sleeved, royal blue silk blouse and a knee-length black skirt with a royal blue flower pattern. She smiled widely as she approached him, and he couldn't help but smile as well. He usually arrived without anyone waiting for him. He was secretly overjoyed to see Blair there. She wanted him in her life, even if it was just as friends.
"How did you know I'd be here?" Chuck asked as she stopped in front of him. Blair nodded her head to one side and looked up at him brightly.
"Maybe you looked so ravishing that I didn't need clues to find you," she replied. Chuck grinned, remembering how he had told her that at a masquerade party many years ago. Blair straightened her head back up and tossed around her long brown curls before crossing her arms. "Actually, I knew when you were coming back for six months. I made a call to the nearest army base."
"Really?" Chuck asked with a satisfied smirk.
"It's not like I had a choice." Blair's face turned serious as she looked back up into his eyes. "After looking at those pictures, and after passing Serena my wedding ring to give back to Nate, and after running down blocks until my feet killed me, there was only one other option left." Chuck's eyes widened, not believing what he had just heard.
"You told Serena to give Nate back the-!"
"I didn't marry him." Blair shook her head slightly and quickly. "I couldn't marry the groom if he wasn't the man I love." Chuck wanted to reply, but his throat went dry. Blair laughed at his flabbergasted expression. "Are you alright?" she asked.
"It's just…I mean…" He looked like he was about to explode from both excitement and astonishment. "Why didn't you tell me earlier?!" Chuck asked. "You could have called me or wrote me or-"
"I know I should have. I was scared," Blair admitted. She looked a little ashamed, but he didn't judge her.
"Why would you be scared?" Chuck asked. Blair shook her head again, laughing a little.
"You're going to think I'm so stupid."
"I'd never think that," Chuck said with certainty. Blair blushed. She adored him.
"I thought you'd hang up the phone. I thought you'd toss the letter in the fire." Chuck laughed a little at her language, and Blair joined him for a moment before continuing on a more somber note. "I deserved nothing but rejection from you after the way I acted. I figured you would tell me about how late my apology was and let me go. I know how long it took me to realize how much I love you. I know I was redundant by going back to Nate a billion times. But you have to believe me: I love you Chuck." Tears began building up in her eyes; she let them. "I love you more than anyone else on this earth." Her voice trembled, and she began talking with her hands. "I know that a second chance is the last thing I deserve, but I couldn't live with myself anymore if I didn't try to ask for it." Chuck was still looking at her in complete amazement. She didn't know what his response was going to be; she just prayed it wouldn't be the rejection she felt she deserved.
Suddenly Chuck dropped his bag and threw his arms around her. Blair grinned and eagerly embraced him back. She cried into his shoulder, leaving wet tear marks. She felt his hand rub her back up and down soothingly.
"I did some stupid things too," Chuck said, thinking back to the debutant ball. Only to him could she admit that she was wrong, and only to her could he admit the same. Chuck laughed a little, sure that he was in some sort of dream. He was the happiest he had been in years. "God Blair, you should have called me."
"I know, I know!" Blair exclaimed. She wrapped her arms around his neck. She took her head off of his shoulder and smiled as she looked into his eyes, like she had done so many times before. They were the eyes that had always watched out for her, even before he loved her. "You had no idea how hard that was. I kept thinking you were going to get killed and I never would have had the chance to tell you that I love you." There was a small pause as the incredible reality sank into Chuck's mind.
"Yeah, what if I had moved on?" Chuck asked with a joking smile. Blair's face scruntched in thought.
"I never really considered that. I only had eyes for you, and I just kept hoping that you would still feel the same." Chuck smiled.
"I do," he said. Nothing could stop what came out of his mouth next. "I love you too."
Blair took that as her cue. She took her one hand and pulled his head down so that his mouth met hers. They stayed that way for many minutes, basking in each other's sweetness. Blair giggled as she felt Chuck's tongue run against her lips. Her stomach flip-flopped, and her hands moved up and stroked the sides of his freshly shaven face. She had wanted him to kiss her so badly on the wedding day, but she felt how much it was worth waiting for. He was amazing at it, and she knew it was because he loved her with his entire being. It felt so right to be in his arms; she never wanted to leave again. When they finished, her hand moved up to touch his soft hair. They seemed to resemble the one picture he had given her, only an older version.
"You ran out on the wedding?" Chuck suddenly asked. Blair laughed and nodded, her fingers toying with a few of his front strands. "What did everyone else think?" Blair stopped laughing, but her longing to continue was apparent.
"Kati and Is went absolutely nuts when I told them, and my mom had a classic Eleanor Waldorf meltdown. Serena was shocked at first and she still doesn't understand why I bailed on Nate for you. Once she thought about how we would be sisters-in-law, though, she cheered up a bit."
"What about Nate?" Chuck asked. Blair smiled.
"I just explained it to him. He begged me to reconsider at first, but eventually he accepted my decision and gave up. He's experienced enough to know that the heart wants what it wants, no matter how impossible the chase for it may seem."
"Isn't that the truth." In a matter of milliseconds, Chuck's irresistible lips were on hers once more. Blair welcomed them, feeling as exhilarated as she did when he kissed her for the first time.
Her laced gloved hand reached for his. His hand grabbed it, and his thumb gently stroked her palm. The voice of the priest droned until it became nonexistent. The people in fancy garb behind them fell away, and soon they were standing together, two souls standing amidst the frightening silence.
"We'll make it through this, won't we?" she whispered nervously. He smirked confidently, though she detected insecurity when he didn't answer right away. It was the first time he ever seemed unsure about something.
"Of course." He suddenly became reassured. "Is there anything we haven't made it through?"
"Not that I can remember." She smiled. "And if things do get stressful, we can always go catch some butterflies." He looked at her adoringly, and she suddenly felt like the most beautiful person on earth. He was capable of making her feel that way with just one affectionate glance.
"I love you, Blair." She beamed, knowing that she was going to feel that way for the remainder of her life.
"I love you too, Chuck."
Neither of them ran from the other on that day, nor on any other day that followed. The thought never even entered their minds.