A/N- So I usually only write for One Tree Hill, but due to a lack of focus (mainly because there seems to be no hope for the main reason I watch the show-Brooke and Lucas as a couple), a new love for Gossip Girl, and a renewed love for Josh Schwarz, I thought I'd try my hand at a Chuck/Blair one-shot. So will it be any good? I guess you guys will decide :)

Lyrics are from Dashboard Confessional's 'Vindicated'

Gracie xxx


Slow Spinning Redemption

Hope dangles on a string, like slow-spinning redemption winding in and winding out, the shine of which has caught my eye.

And roped me in so mesmerising, so hypnotizing , I am captivated.

"Blair wait." Chuck calls, his lips still wet from the piercing whisky. He hadn't even been sure why he was drinking it in the first place, but the bitter chocking after taste seemed to match his mood unlike the stupid pink sweater he's wearing.

She turns around and he suddenly feels more self-conscious.

"You've come out here to shoot me down some more?" She questions, a raised eyebrow all that she allows herself to give. The coat she's wearing doesn't provide much warmth, and her arms pull it around her body tighter, as if to shield herself from him. "Go ahead, I can take it."

He knows she can't though. All these years of Blair Waldorf's pretence has taught him exactly what to look for in her lies, and now he wishes more than anything that he couldn't see right through her.

When he wasn't in love with her she wasn't so easy to read.

"I didn't come out here for that." He tells her, inching closer as she takes a step back. It's cold out, their breath swirling between them, making patterns in the air as Blair's eyes avoid his, and his only stay fixed on her lips. Maybe if he kissed them it'd stop them from shaking.

"Then what? You've come to let everyone know that you don't want me because I'm not a virgin any more?" She shouts. It doesn't matter that everyone's staring. They all know anyway. "You know, you were the one who took that from me. It wasn't yours to take, and…"

"Blair would you just stop?" He cuts in, placing a hand on her arm, but she snaps away sharply, letting his hand fall. "I came to apologise. I shouldn't have said those things."

She only shrugs. "Well you did and now I don't have to listen to this."

She walks away the slowest she's ever walked in her life, just hoping that he'll stop her. But when he doesn't, when he lets her walk away, it's like Nate all over again and the empty house she arrives at doesn't let her forget it.

-

He's able to sink mouthful after mouthful of liquor and none of it makes him feel any better, none of it removes that look of disappointment and shame written across her face from his head.

He eyes up the barmaids, makes a pass at one of them and when she offers him a wink, he's ready to get up off that stool and head back to his suite. But then he doesn't, Blair's voice spins around and around in his head and he just sits there staring into the glass, because the only one he really wants up there is the girl that he'd just called a slut. To her face.

He wonders if she cries. Not just over him, over their situation, but over anything. Blair Waldorf isn't as cold-hearted as she makes herself out to be, he knows that (wishes he didn't), and her showing up tonight only confirms his suspicions further.

She needs him.

Just like he needs her, really.

It's the first time he'd witnessed her leaving a bar, leaving a fight without getting the last word in. Maybe she's weakening, maybe this is going to be her downfall and the only time he'll hear anyone mention her name is when she's been spotted trying to rope naive juniors into running her errands.

He'd always admired that she did everything in her power to get what she wanted. Maybe he's supposed to tell her that.

Or maybe he's just supposed to finish this drink and then go upstairs alone, have a shower and fall asleep as fast as he can without thinking about her.

It won't work. He's tried before.

And failed.

-

She owned him a few weeks ago. It wasn't supposed to turn out like this, she knows it, so does he, so does the rest of the school. The downfall of Blair Waldorf began long ago, and she hadn't even seen it coming.

She remembers when her father was still at home, and the way he'd make her a mug of hot chocolate with mini marshmallows if she was upset. There's nobody here to do that now, not the maids: they won't understand.

Her eyes flick to her ringing cell phone, and she closes them quickly when she reads the caller i.d. Chuck.

He's persistent, she'll give him that. Even if it is only to throw out more insults, he doesn't stop until he's done.

She was done long ago. It doesn't mean she'll stop.

She fingers her hair, sitting in perfect curls to frame her face, the corners of her mouth twitching into a sad smile, one which would tell Chuck everything he didn't want to know (if he was here to see it), not that she knows it.

She doesn't want to guess what she means to him, because the answer is something she's afraid of. If she meant nothing, she's almost sure she can cope with that, perhaps if she didn't see him. But if she meant to him what Nate had meant to her, what Nate means to her, then she can't know. Because all of that would just get too much.

-

He's given up. Eight calls later and still won't answer, he figures that's it. Perhaps he'll have to resign himself to a life without Nate, without Blair, probably without Serena because even though his father has decided to embark on another doomed marriage, this time with her mother, it doesn't mean she has to talk to him. Serena has that low-class loser now. She'd never needed him anyway.

So he flicks off the bedside lamp, snaps his cell shut and closes his eyes, the sheets resting on his chest. And then the door opens and shuts just as quickly, and she's stood there, pretty as a picture in a belted trench coat with what looks like stocking underneath.

"I didn't come because I accept your apology." She says, unbuckling the belt as he sits up, the lamp switched back on again so he can see her in all her glory.

Blair's beautiful. Every physical thing about her screams perfection: her cheekbones, her ruby lips, her dark eyes, that milky-white skin, the body…

But she doesn't need to know that, he doesn't need to tell her because he's not sure what it would mean if he did.

"And I didn't come because there's only me and three maids in that stupid big house." She continues, slipping out of the coat to reveal fabulously lacy red underwear.

Chuck feels his breath hitch in his throat, and then he has to remember that it's her stood in front of him, and that feelings don't count in this game.

"So why did you come?" He asks, an eyebrow raised at her as she slips off the shoes she's wearing, Manolos or Louboutins probably.

She shrugs, planting herself on the bed so that she faces him, watching his chest heave with a satisfied smirk.

She won't tell him she came because she needs him, or that she's going to France in the morning. Minor details don't matter, it's the fulfilling of that desperate desire that counts now.

"I was starting to dry."

His lips are on hers before he has chance to work out what she means, but then it hits him, right as she's tearing off the white vest, and he shudders involuntarily as he realizes she's talking about what he's said to her earlier.

"Look Blair, I didn't mean…"

"I don't care what you meant." She interrupts before beginning her assault on his body, from his collarbone, across his chest and down to the hemline of his boxers . She can't have him apologise to her. That's not the Chuck she wants to believe in.

She's removed her bra before his hands can reach the clasp, and now they're left: her in tiny panties and him in the boxers she'll have her hand on in any second.

"We're not friends." She breathes heavily as his eyes shut to her touch. "We're not enemies, we're nothing any more."

"So what's this?" He asks pants, kissing her another time before she responds.

It's not supposed to be this way but she's here, her body pressed against him and he figures he'll have to take what he can get from her now.

"This is me being horny and you…" She trails off to get one last look at him staring up at her. "Well I don't know what you're about."

"I…"

"And I don't care." She finishes quickly, as she shuts her eyes, his hands roaming across her skin as she presses herself underneath him. And he pauses then, the last thing separating them, her panties, lacy and perfect.

She frowns at him, but then realizes, and takes his hand, placing it on the top of her underwear. "They're yours to take…off."

He gulps, knowing that whenever it was that they were able to read each other should have been they day that they decided this could never start. They'd forgotten though, either that or they'd not cared, not noticed perhaps. So when she nods, just like she had done in the back of that limo, he does what she wants, and kisses her and kisses her in hope that all feelings will subside.

That lump in his throat only gets bigger.

Defence is paper-thin, just one touch and I'll be in too deep now to ever swim against the current.

Slight hope, it dangles on a string like slow-spinning redemption.