This story is dedicated to pokey—for always being there when I'm freaking-out. lol ;) I love you my dear!

Definition of Forsaken: to give up; to leave… to abandon

No sooner had everyone settled in for the long wait and search that was surely ahead of them, than the news came.

Agent Cooper delivered the news to Bart, Eleanor, and Lily that they had a possible on Blair, the plane, and the men. They were waiting for confirmation before they went to the location.

Eleanor gripped Lily's hand, grasping it hard enough to make Lily gasp. Lily didn't mind though. She was too anxious herself.

Bart went with Cooper over to the area the FBI had set up, and waited for the confirmation.

On the way, Cooper explained that they had traced the cell tower Blair had used to make her earlier call to Serena, which was somewhere in Ohio. They did this by contacting her wireless provider, Verizon. They knew that the plane would be traveling that much faster and using the GPS to locate her might be difficult, plus, it was largely assumed that the kidnappers would have turned the phones off to avoid being tracked.

However, they had just ran the GPS data and it appeared as though the phone was, in fact, still turned on and had been targeted to a deserted area in New Mexico. They wanted to get visual confirmation from local authorities before heading there, but all looked well.

Of course, the kidnappers could have just decided to dump the phones in New Mexico and were traveling away instead of still in the state, which is why they were just waiting on the phone call before heading out.

Now, the situation they could potentially walk into, that was another story altogether.

Bart walked to the doorway to the side room he'd seen Charles disappear to earlier.

"Charles?" Bart said.

"Sir," Chuck said, swirling his glass and not even bothering to look at his father.

Nate was sitting with him and he looked up at Bart's question. "Blair?"

Bart nodded. Chuck looked up quickly at Nate's question and saw his father nod.

Chuck paused in his swirling and waited for his father to continue.

"They found her," Bart said. "She's fine."

Nate let out a sigh of relief, busting into a grin. Chuck was relieved, but he wasn't one to share his feelings, especially not with all the heavy thoughts weighing on him.

"What now?" Chuck asked, putting down his glass and slowly rising to his feet.

"She's in New Mexico," Bart explained. "Eleanor and I are leaving with the FBI to retrieve her and the men and settle things with the plane."

There was a beat of silence.

"Father, I—," Chuck started. He wanted to go with them. He had to see her. He couldn't take this much longer. He had a passing thought that they must not have told Serena yet or else he'd have heard her… displeasure at not going as well.

"Lily and I have decided it would be for the best if you and Serena stayed here," Bart explained hastily.

Chuck gave his father a disgruntled look. She had only been his stepmother for a week and she was deciding things like this for him?

"The plane was abandoned by the hijackers," Bart explained. "No one knows where they took off to or whether these people could circle around and come after you or Serena again. Lily… and I," he included himself at the last second, "would prefer that you both stay here. Lily will stay here as well, with a security detail to prevent any further problems."

Chuck didn't know whether to laugh or go tell Lily that she needed to mind her own business. It was obvious to him that Bart didn't agree with Lily's decision. And why would he? It was preposterous. Especially if he and Serena were with Bart and, oh, maybe the FBI? That would probably be the safest place for them.

"And what about Eric?" Chuck said with a sarcastic smirk, trying to not overdo it in his father's presence.

"He will remain at his grandmother's in Rhode Island until this situation has been diffused," Bart said tightly, leaving no room for argument. Eric had been visiting his grandmother most of the week, and when word came about Blair, Lily had told CeCe to keep him close to home and keep an eye out.

"Yes, father," Chuck forced himself to say sullenly.

He watched his father leave the room. He felt Nate's hand come up and clasp him on the shoulder.

"It's only a matter of time, man," Nate said, attempting to lighten the mood.

Chuck just nodded. Now that it looked like everything was okay, he was starting to get anxious about her return. Since when did he ever get nervous?

Probably since she started making his stomach do somersaults…

Not one person on board had managed to get the tape undone.

Blair was not surprised.

She was just glad that they hadn't needed to wait longer than two hours before local authorities had shown up. Of course at the time it felt like an eternity and she was ready to go insane with the rest of them at that point.

The sound of men yelping as the tape was removed made Blair smile. She was trying to find any form of hilarity in the situation that she could.

Of course they had pants on, so she would get to suffer double.

One of the officers got to her and asked, "Miss Waldorf?"

She nodded. He started reaching for the tape on her mouth as he explained, "Your mother is on her way."

She shrank back from his hand and shook her head emphatically. He looked at her in confusion. "You don't want me to remove the tape?"

She rolled her eyes. Stupid local deputies.

She nodded her head toward the floor and her legs.

He finally understood that she wanted him to remove the tape on her legs and wrists before her mouth. "Okay…"

Blair was glad for the tape covering her mouth because she didn't want to suffer the indignity of screaming like a banshee as he got rid of the rest of the tape. She could feel tears coming to her eyes at the pain. That's it! From now on if anyone decided to kidnap her they were going to have to use rope.

She would insist upon it.

As rescues went, this one was relatively boring.

Her knight in shining armor was a dimwitted local deputy who led her off the plane and into a department issue SUV.

She nearly rolled her eyes when she had to share a vehicle with three other men, including Ben.

"Um, Blair—," Ben started, nervous about what to say.

"Don't talk to me," she dismissed him.

He shut up after that and she enjoyed the rest of the journey in silence.

She had to gulp back a cringe of disgust when they finally arrived at the police station. It was small, dirty looking, and definitely had a lot of… old west character… to say the least.

She was told she'd have to wait in this little place until her mother and Bart Bass arrived. She informed them that she would wait, but she wanted her cell phone—which she had forgotten to retrieve before leaving the plane—immediately.

She settled onto a bench—after wiping it clean—and ignored everyone, trying to lose herself in her thoughts.

Eventually her phone was delivered to her and she tried to think of who she would call first. It was the longest and possibly worst day of her life—besides the day her father left and the day she found out Nate cheated on her… oh, and the day Chuck humiliated her in front of the entire school, she mustn't forget that one. She was just dead tired and wanted to rest and wasn't sure why she'd insisted on the phone, but she felt better when she was in charge. Now, if only she could sleep.

Of course, she wasn't going to sleep on a bench.

She decided that she was going to call Cabbage Patch first. Evidently he'd wanted to speak to her in a bad way, and since he was the reason she'd been stranded in a desert for over two hours with no hope of being retrieved, she wanted to know what the big deal was. Plus… she was still perturbed at Chuck for not following her to Tuscany. She knew that meant something bad, but until she'd had a chance to talk to him, she wasn't going to know what it really meant… and she'd rather have the conversation face-to-face and not over the phone.

"Hello?" came Dan's hesitant voice.

"Humphrey," Blair said smartly. "You called?"

"Uh, yeah," Dan stammered. "So you got your phone back… have you talked to Chuck?"

"Yes, I did, and no, I haven't," Blair replied impatiently.

"Oh," Dan stuttered.

"Was there something you wanted? Some reason you just had to call?" Blair snapped the question.

"I… assumed you'd seen the Gossip Girl post and I wanted to know… if it was true," Dan managed to say.

He knew he was being an idiot because he'd been the one to end things with Serena, so he shouldn't be jealous or even surprised to learn that she was potentially seeing someone else. He figured since he'd called Blair for help once before and they had this odd little understanding between each other that maybe she'd talk to him even though he was no longer seeing Serena. Plus, he didn't know how she felt about this latest development. Blair could be just as upset about it as him.

"Dan Humphrey," Blair snapped, "please do not tell me that you called me in the middle of being held hostage on a plane because of some post from Gossip Girl? You have got to be kidding me. I don't even know what you're talking about but I don't want to know. You and Serena are over. Any association I need to have with you has ended. Lose the number, and don't call me again." She closed her phone and gripped it in disgust.

For a boy who was second in his class, he was such an idiot at times. Fortunately, she wouldn't have to associate with him anymore.

But her interest was piqued.

What was in the Gossip Girl post? Some new lie about Serena? He really should have just called Serena about it. Then she realized… Serena had to deal with some new gossip while she was worrying about her. Blair felt anger toward Gossip Girl soar. Serena had to deal with enough things in the past week. Dan Humphrey had hurt her badly… her heart was broken, and though Blair had tried to help, she still had her own new… quasi-relationship?... with Chuck to wrap herself up in. She was so angry at this stupid no-name person who couldn't mind her own damn business!

But that didn't stop her from reading the post.

Gossip Girl here. I spy with my little eye… N and S out for the afternoon, walking the heated streets of NYC with smoothies in hand. Brain freeze anyone? Do we spot a potential new couple? And C and B are leaving for Tuscany soon. With B and Lonely Boy out of the picture, is S putting the moves on her BFFs ex? Wonder what our Queen has to say about that… Until next time, you know you love me, XOXO Gossip Girl.

Blair closed her phone slowly and looked out the window just in time to see Eleanor and Bart exit a car. They had finally arrived and she would be going home.

Yet, even after Eleanor and Bart left the window's view, Blair continued to stare out the window, alone in her thoughts.

It was time.

Chuck shifted restlessly in the elevator.

He was about to see Blair.

He knew she'd gotten in really late last night. He also knew that Eleanor Waldorf whisked her away and put her to bed immediately. Bart said something about Blair falling asleep on the plane and just being really tired.

Chuck didn't know much more besides the fact that Blair hadn't spoken to anyone except Eleanor and Bart and that she was home safely.

Serena wanted to call, but she was worried she might disturb Blair… plus, she was unsure about how Blair felt toward her. Chuck didn't have to guess at her feelings on the subject, he'd been stuck waiting with her and Nate for news and she'd said those words plainly enough.

Fortunately, she'd shut up after that.

But Chuck was still nervous.

He was going to have to tell Blair the truth, but he was also going to have to find out if Blair wasn't over Nate.

He didn't know which he wanted to talk about first. Either way, he had a feeling that things were not going to turn out well.

The doors finally opened and he walked inside.

There was no turning back now.

"Miss Blair," Dorota's accented voice spoke softly from the bedroom doorway.

Blair was awake; she had been for a few hours now. It was roughly one in the afternoon. She hadn't risen from bed yet because she'd rather burrow under the covers even if she couldn't sleep any more.

"Yes?" Blair asked, looking at the housekeeper. She wasn't an idiot. She'd heard the elevator ding. She knew that someone had arrived. She was pretty sure she knew who it was, but she decided to wait for confirmation.

"Mr. Chuck is here," Dorota said.

Blair nodded, barely covering her smile at the way Dorota pronounced the "ck" sounds in his name. "I'll be down in a few minutes."

"Very good," Dorota said before leaving. She hadn't wanted to shout for Blair. She was so happy to see her home, safe and sound, that she took every opportunity possible to check in on her and make sure she was comfortable.

Blair waited for Dorota to leave and decided to stay right where she was for an extra minute or two. She didn't know what to say to Chuck. She wasn't in the mood for an argument. He'd been different this past week, that was true, but when he didn't show up or follow her… that had changed everything. He'd blindsided her, and she didn't like it at all.

So between the dread of having to deal with more drama and choosing what to wear to go downstairs, she just laid where she was, hiding under the covers for a few minutes more.

Chuck was starting to get a little impatient, though he was hiding it rather well. He'd started off standing, then he sat down, and now he was back to standing again.

Dorota had come down the stairs after announcing his arrival at least fifteen minutes ago. Why hadn't she come down yet? Should he just go up there? He normally wouldn't have thought twice about it, but he didn't want to rile her and she had just been held hostage. He needed to just stay where he was at and wait for her to come to him.

"Chuck," she said softly.

He turned around quickly. He hadn't even noticed her coming down, so intent was he on not running up the damn steps himself.

She was beautiful, as always, though he couldn't tell why it had taken her fifteen minutes—make that twenty—to come down when she was still in her very fashionable but less than flattering pin-striped pajamas.

It didn't matter though. He took one look at her and hesitated for five seconds flat before he walked right over to her.

"Hey," he murmured. In that moment, he could forget about his purpose for being there and just remember the part where he was relieved that she was alive and with him.

He reached up and trailed his fingers down her jaw before brushing his lips across hers.

She let out a breath, one that she didn't even know she was holding, and relaxed for the moment. She'd ended up not changing her clothes at all. She knew she'd taken too long to decide and figured it wouldn't matter what she was wearing, she just wanted to be snug in her pajamas so she could go back to bed when he left.

And as much as she knew an argument was coming, she wanted this moment of peace first. So when he pulled her against him, she didn't hesitate to wrap her arms around him and burrow her face against his shoulder.

Why did he ever do anything to jeopardize this? he thought. Why was he ever scared of this? He couldn't help but feel as though nothing felt more right than to have her right where she was. He didn't want this feeling to go away. He didn't want to tell her that he'd doubted her and them.

But he had to. Or else Serena would.

"I'm sorry," he murmured against her hair. And he was. He wasn't one to apologize, but everything that had happened in the past day… it was too much. He'd almost betrayed her, and then she'd been held at gun point in his place.

She didn't respond, just burrowed deeper against him, wishing he'd shut up and let them have this moment for just a little while longer.

"There's something I need to tell you," he finally forced himself to say.

And then she knew.

She froze against him, not wanting to hear what he was saying but knowing that there wasn't any way he could take it back now.

She pulled away from him, not even looking at his face.

"Blair, I—," he started, but stopped talking when she turned away.

"Don't say it," she murmured before she started for the stairs.

She'd heard those words before, those same exact words, and she knew what they meant.

"Say what?" he asked, perplexed. How did she know what he was going to say?

She paused. "I've heard it before," she whispered. "I don't need to hear it again."

"Listen," he said, going up the steps behind her and taking hold of her hand to stop her. "It's not what you think." He wasn't sure what she was talking about, but he figured her reaction meant she had worked some of what he was trying to say out in her head.

She pulled her arm away but she didn't keep going up the stairs. Instead, she took a deep breath and tried to compose herself before she turned around.

"Why?" she asked. She cursed herself when she felt a burning in her eyes. She hoped that she could make it go away before she made an even bigger fool of herself by starting to cry. "Why would you do this to me?"

"That's what I'm saying, I didn't do anything," he insisted. "Just settle down. I'll explain everything."

"I don't want to hear about it," she snapped. "I want to know why you would do this. It makes no sense! And why did you have to come now to tell me? After everything that happened yesterday? Yes, let's hurt Blair a little more today, as if she hasn't been through enough!"

"I didn't do anything," he insisted, though he felt a pang at the thought that he was hurting her even though he didn't want to.

"Then what do you have to tell me?" she asked. "What's so important that you just have to tell me?"

"I almost did something, but I didn't," he finally said, knowing he sounded like an idiot.

"That doesn't make any sense at all," Blair rolled her eyes. As if he wasn't already sounding like Nate with his 'I've got something to tell you', now he was just saying stupid things that made no sense.

"None of this makes sense," he said, frustrated because he still didn't know what to say to her or how to explain.

"Just tell me this," Blair said. "Did your father get in late? Is that why you missed the flight?"

"No," he murmured.

"Was there traffic? Was there an accident on the way? Was there something, anything, that happened that was completely out of your control that made you miss the flight?" she asked.

"No," he repeated.

"Did you even bother booking a later flight? Were you going to meet me?" she asked.

He didn't say anything, but she could read the answer in his eyes.

"So much for doing it right," she said, disgusted.

"I do want to do it right," he said.

"Do you even know what right is?" she asked.

"I don't know what I'm doing," he admitted, feeling slightly off balanced.

"What's right is not abandoning me on a flight to another country," she snapped. "What's right is not doing God knows what with God knows who when a week ago you told me that you wanted us to be together."

"Look, Tuscany was too soon," he said. "And I—"

"Tuscany was your idea!" she said angrily. "If you thought it was too soon, then why even suggest it?"

"Spur of the moment?" he tried to excuse.

She raised a hand to her head. "I so do not need this right now." She turned away again.

"Why? Too much bad news? Angry at Serena? I was right to think it was too soon, wasn't I?" he snapped, angry that she was walking away and still plagued by his insecurities. "You're still not over Nate."

She turned back to him sharply. "What?"

"You're not over Nate," he accused again.

She opened and closed her mouth, trying to speak, but finding herself absolutely speechless.

"Go ahead, go upstairs," he snapped. "I don't know why we even tried this again. I'm not going to change for you, and I won't ever be Nate." He knew he sounded bitter, but he couldn't help it.

She knew she'd just lost control of one tear. She could feel it slipping out of the corner of her eye. But that was the only one that was going to break free.

"I got off the phone with Serena right before you arrived," she said softly.

He paused and waited, wondering why she was telling him this now.

"I told her that she could date whoever she wanted," she whispered. "Nate's not my boyfriend anymore."

It had nearly killed her to say it, but she knew it was time to let Nate go. Of course after she said that, Serena had rushed to tell her that the post was a lie and they were just friends. To which Blair had replied that Dan might not be as over her as Serena thought he was. That maybe she should call him. Serena said she'd think about it.

She wasn't telling Serena that to get her away from Nate or anything—she just knew that if Dan would call her in a jealous mess over Serena that there might still be hope. And Serena did still love Dan so… she'd decided to help her best friend out a little.

Chuck was shocked, and he felt like that area of his chest that probably housed his heart was about to explode with joy or happiness or whatever other foreign feelings that equated to the same thing. She'd told Serena that? But that meant…

"I can't deal with arguing with you right now because I've just returned from being held hostage with a gun in my face and scared for my life! All I want to do is go back to my room and pretend yesterday never happened because it was horrible and disgusting and just….," she cut off in a flurry of frustration, "I don't want to hear about what you did or didn't do with some other girl, because right now I just need to deal with me," she rushed through her words.

"Nothing happened," he was quick to interject, the only words that could make their way out of his mouth.

"Yes, something did happen," she said. "You left me alone. And then you came over here to tell me about what you almost did and you don't even ask what happened on the plane?" Her voice dripped with sarcasm.

"What happened?" he asked softly. Truthfully, he'd been avoiding asking about it. He knew she was safe and alive. He didn't know if what she'd said to Serena about being… touched… had happened. And since the FBI still hadn't tracked down the missing men—who appear to have flown into Mexico and disappeared—he'd rather not know.

She sighed and sat on the steps. "I don't want to talk about it."

He rolled his eyes. If she didn't want to talk about it then why was she so upset that he hadn't asked?

"And I never told you to change or to be someone else! I never asked you to take it slow or do it right either," she said sarcastically. "All I did was forgive you and let you know that I was willing to give us another chance, knowing exactly who you are and what you'd already done to me. The only thing I ever needed from you was for you to always tell me the truth and not cheat on me."

"Blair, I want to make this work," he said firmly, eyeing her with the pointed stare that could melt a thousand hearts. "I can make this work. I want to be with you."

She shook her head. "But I don't want to be with you."

"You don't mean that," he said softly, the joy that was in his heart moments ago upon hearing that she was over Nate enough to let her best friend date him had become this odd dull ache. He couldn't believe what she was saying. She was telling him that everything he'd ever worried or wondered about in this past week was false. She was telling him that she was over Nate and that she'd wanted him—Chuck Bass. And she was telling him that she wanted him for exactly who he was.

"I've been through enough," she said, barely holding on to the rest of the tears. "And I'm so tired of this. Go and do whatever the hell you want to do. That's what everyone else does anyway. I'm used to it by now."

"Forget about all this crap. Come to Tuscany with me, for real this time," he said, hoping that he could convince her with a wink and a hopeful smile.

"Sorry," she snarked sarcastically. "Tried that already. Now, I just need a break. A long long break," she said, standing up again and stepping up a stair.

"I was just…" he closed his eyes. He couldn't say it, "…confused." There, that was better than admitting he was scared. He opened his eyes again.

Blair just shook her head. She was sad and tired and wanted to climb into bed and forget this nightmare had ever happened.

"Say something," he insisted. He wanted her to just forgive him, pretend the last twenty four hours had never happened, to start back where they were twenty five hours ago before his father had returned from his honeymoon.

She was looking to the side, down into the hall, not wanting to look at him.

"My mother will escort me to France so I can spend some time with my father," she began. "I've made arrangements with Serena to join her later this summer in the Hamptons."

"Then—," he started.

"My summer plans don't include you," she said firmly.

"Would you stop?" he said. "Waldorf, you know how I feel about you."

She stared at him for a long moment, putting him on edge and hoping he hadn't screwed things up irreparably.

"Do I?" she whispered.

"Yes," he murmured, closing the distance between them on the stairs and standing close to her, making eye contact.

She looked away from him again, anywhere but at him.

"Look at me," he whispered. He ran his fingers down her cheek, turning her head gently to look at him again.

She knew he was going to kiss her again… but she couldn't let him.

She turned her head back at the last minute and pulled away.

"No," she said. "I'm not doing this right now. I can't do this right now."


"Goodbye, Chuck," she said, walking up one step. "Have a nice summer."

He wanted to get angry. He wanted to yell. He wanted to tell her that now she was the one not making sense. He wanted to do a lot of things, but he knew he'd lost and doing anything at the moment would only make things worse.

He struggled to find some miraculous words that would fix this, but he couldn't.

And then she was walking away, up the stairs and back to her room. Not even acknowledging him any longer.

He had an odd flash of all the times he'd seen her walking away from him like that.

The morning after their first time, through his limo window; at her birthday party when he made that bet with her; at her house when he embarrassed her in front of the reporter; at the Cotillion when she broke up with him; at school the day he'd humiliated her: she was always walking away from him, always abandoning him.

He wasn't even sure what had just happened. He didn't know why she'd turned away from him this time, especially if she didn't care about what he'd almost done—admittedly, that story turned out to be rather lame.

She always walked away from him like that when she was trying to dismiss him, when she was showing him that she didn't care… but he'd just heard her say that she did care… that he was capable of hurting her. Did this mean that all those times before, she had cared but she'd still turned her back on him?

Sort of like what he'd done to her yesterday…

He'd give her whatever the hell break she needed right now.

He wasn't going to go back up there and beg her to change her mind. That wasn't him.

But he would see her in the Hamptons; that's for sure.

And then all bets were off.


Catch Chuck and Blair in the Hamptons, on the CW, Monday nights at 8pm, starting September 1st 2008. (USA)