Disclaimer: Obviously, I don't own any of the characters, etc. Have at it.
AN: This was written as a response to a prompt to the livejournal community, gossipgirlanon (.com/gossipgirlanon). Check it out some time!
Comfort in Threes
It took the three of them three hours to find her tears soaking through the mattress of some seedy motel in Queens, just three blocks off of Queens Boulevard. Chuck and Serena had exhausted their resources and it had been Nate who suggested that they looked off the island, even if they knew there was little chance that she would willingly go to the outerboroughs without a purpose. The receptionist gladly traded the spare key for three benjamins before going back to his copy of Maxim and pack of peanuts.
Chuck's hand shook even as he heard her sobs on the other side of the door and he pushed it open with his shoulder, stumbling into the dimly lit room painted a sick shade of green. The color of the walls bled onto the cream colored sheets where she laid, except for a quarter-sized dark stain by the edge of the bed. The game of Where's Waldorf ended in her curled to her side, grasping cheap sheets around her in her torn shirt-dress and her panties lying on the floor.
She saw them somehow and led out a pitiful cry for her best friend, who flew to her from behind the two boys and wrapped her arms around the smaller girl, her blond hair falling familiarly over the skin on her shaking arms. They didn't quite know what to do with their hands in their pockets, eyes on every corner of a room they would never otherwise be caught dead in, jaws so tight their teeth were about to break. Whispers floated to their ears: "it'll be all right," "we'll fix this," and her cries, they overpowered her everytime Serena tried to mention the police or letting anyone else know and as much as they wanted to see Carter Baizen get what he deserved, they knew they couldn't do anything Blair wasn't ready for.
So they did what they could when Serena became exhausted, giving in to her own sympathetic tears. Nate gently picked her up, as gentle was what he did best, while Chuck filled the bathtub with warm water. The white lights and walls in the bathroom were harsh and did nothing to save their eyes from the onslaught of bruises and blood on her body, now limp with a face still and hollow from exhaustion. Nate sat behind her to hold her body up from the temptation of disappearing under the water and Chuck undid the remaining buttons at her waist, ones that were done half-heartedly by herself to preserve what dignity she had left while she laid alone for those hours. He peeled the sides of the dress apart and nudged the sleeves down her arms while Nate lifted her body slightly for him to slide the material off.
Chuck was washing off the left side of her waist with a hand towel when her body started shaking. Her empty stare haunted him and he looked past her to find his best friend's face screwed up in tears, the choked breaths shaking his entire body and vibrating hers even as he buried his face in her hair to calm himself. Now Chuck was the only one of the Non-Judging Breakfast Club who hadn't cried for the night.
That ended when he heard her sharp gasp at the feeling of the towel, tentative as he was being, brushing softly between her legs. And as Nate held her to him around her chest and waist in his strong arms, her legs kicking in the cooling water and her eyes screwed shut, he had to wipe his eyes and nose on his the forearm of his sleeve between holding a leg in one hand and the towel in the other.
When she started to cry out, they relented until she relaxed and decided they were done. Nate was thoroughly soaked and the front of Chuck's suit and face were wet from her kicks and he was grateful that when Serena came in with a change of clothes she managed to buy from the couple four doors down for three times the original price, she couldn't find the tear trails on his cheeks.
Chuck sent a bogus blast to Gossip Girl about Blair jetting off to France for Roman's birthday even if it weren't for another three months because it took her three days to talk about going back to school. Two whole weeks to actually do it.
Everyday at three o'clock, Chuck got off of work and picked up Nate, Serena, and Blair from school back to the Waldorf penthouse. They stayed until she kicked them out, insisting that she had homework or things to do for her mother, all the while worrying about what went on in her head when they weren't there to occupy it with idle chatter and gossip.
Two months later, it was decided that she was ready to go on a date to get over her fear. Instead of six o'clock, the boys were kicked out at five while Serena stayed to help her get ready for Roger Ashcroft, a boy they'd known since the third grade. Someone Nate had played soccer with for seven years and trusted.
The next day, Nate was suspended for starting a fight in the boys' locker room while Roger was recounting how the frigid Queen B freaked out and practically fell out of his car when he put his hand on her knee.
Blair never showed up.
They had to beg Serena to go fulfill Cece's summon to her estate for the weekend and she only conceded to avoid raising suspicions. She called Blair's on Friday night to make sure they were there and they spoke in hushed voices with the brunette on the bed between them, curled up in slumber in the blue light of Breakfast at Tiffany's playing in the background. She hated sleeping alone if she didn't take a pill and they were trying to ween her off of it with Serena sleeping over every other night.
She had been tense when she came out of the bathroom dressed in a long sleeved white cotton night gown that reached the floor like a perfect virgin sacrifice. They weren't sure of what to do when she flinched at their touch, but clung onto their undershirts when they tried to leave. Chuck rolled out of her bed, leaving her back cold for a minute while he found the DVD. Sure enough, as soon as Moon River drifted in the room, she hummed along with haunted eyes and her fist uncurled from Nate's wifebeater.
When Serena hung up, the credits rolled and the silence that followed weighed down on them, their faces illuminated in the faint light of the screen. In that uncomfortable silence, they closed their eyes and searched for a place where neither their world nor their girl was crumbling.
She woke up at three a.m. with a scream bursting from her lungs. Their eyes snapped open and they were met with her shaking back, her hands clutching the sheets to her chest. They looked at each other for an instant and Nate put his hand on her shoulder, feeling the customary flinch before putting his cheek softly on her back while Chuck wondered how often she woke like this. Nate murmured against her skin. "Breathe, baby. Breathe." She took long drags in and out of her mouth until she felt the air fill the sacs in her lungs again.
Chuck felt awkward in the silence but made the effort. "C'mon, Blair. Let's go back to sleep. You're safe. You're okay." She sobbed and shook her head and he cursed at himself - why couldn't he be good at things that mattered?
"I'm not - this is not okay. I can't... I just want to be normal." She threw herself off the bed between the corner bed posts, her feet running those two steps on the plush carpet before reaching the bathroom and closing the door behind her.
"Fuck," Nate muttered before leaning forward and burying his face in the sheets that still held her scent. Chuck locked his jaw and stared at the door. "I swear, when I get my hands on Carter Baizen-"
"-My men would have gotten to him first." When a Bass puts out a hit on someone, it was only a matter of time before the mark was shot. Even if it's a cretin who ran the minute he realized he'd signed his own death certificate. "The question is, what do we do now?" Chuck Bass was a man of action - one had to be when running a multi-billion dollar corporation - and he became frustrated with himself at the lack of progress he was making. "This can't go on much longer. She can't go on like this."
Nate sighed, his shoulders slumped and the happy-go-lucky sparkle gone from his eyes. "We should go see her." She was in the next room but it felt like they had to cross the country just to reach her. Their steps dragged until they ended at her door and Nate rapped his knuckled softly with a hand on the gold handle. "Blair? Can we come in?" Chuck nodded at him when they didn't get a reply and the door creaked open beneath his hand.
They saw themselves in the reflection of the mirror over her counter, the bright light bulbs lining the top made them squint and avert their eyes until they landed on her reflection. She sat at the edge of her bathtub, the fingers on her left hand playing with the hem of her dress with one leg propped up on the side and the other on the floor. Her eyes caught theirs in the mirror and she had never looked more beautiful than she did now, her hair mussed and her lips in a pout, her doe brown eyes vulnerable and her body swallowed in her angelic white dress. "I can't fix me," she whispered.
Nate's brows furrowed, but Chuck saw. He saw the way her right hand was caught in the valley of material between her thighs as they clenched tight, her knees awkwardly banged together beneath her dress. He saw the things she wanted but were too afraid to ask, even of herself. And so in his undershirt and pajama pants, his bare feet cold against the tiles, he walked over and knelt at her feet, his eyes holding hers a long minute before he put his own hand on her right wrist and pried it out of her grasp. She couldn't look away from him even as her hands automatically gripped the edge of the bathtub until her knuckles went white and her lips trembled. She couldn't look away even as he oh-so-slowly placed his lips on her cloth covered knee and breathed.
She felt his hand on her bare ankle and the hairs on the back of her neck stood straight at the feel of a man's hand on her skin. As he slowly, yet determinedly in a comforting and grounding grip, ran his hand up her calf, taking her dress with him, she drew in deep breaths through her mouth.
He threw the material over her knees and pressed another kiss there, his hands on her thighs right above them and he felt the barrier again. Her muscles tensed under his fingers and she whimpered and when he gave a soft tug, he felt the resistance of her legs' refusal to part. He had to take a deep breath to calm himself when his mind flashed with the image of the bastard defying her body's request and prying her apart and taking what wasn't his to take.
"Chuck, let's just get her back to bed." Nate knew where this was going and while he wanted above anything to help, he hated seeing her fight herself like this. The Blair he knew was always so in control, especially of her own posture and presentation, that to see her struggling for breath, scared of them was nearly too much. He also hated to admit that the sight of her silky skin, exposed so tantalizingly inch by inch by his best friend, was causing his own body to react in a way that made him feel disgusting.
As much as he hated to do this, Chuck knew it was now or never. It was what she needed and for once he was going to be there for her. Her eyes were squeezed shut as tightly as her legs and she bit her bottom lip, her head thrown back. "Blair, look at me." She refused. "Look at me," he urged again. Her eyelashes fluttered and there she was, peeking from behind the bushes at him, ready to slink back any second. "I won't hurt you. We can stop anytime. Nate and I are here for you. You can trust us."
Nate felt his cue when Chuck looked at him and made room for him on the other side of her. So they knelt before her, subjects to their broken queen, and pled for her permission. "It's us, Blair. We'll take care of you." He placed his own kiss on her knee, his lips lingering and his tongue hot against her skin. "Let us be here for you."
Her hands let go of the porcelain just so she could bury her face in them. They could hear her muffled voice. "How could you still look at me? How are you not disgusted? I-I'm ruined."
Because he was the steadier one at the moment, Chuck stood on the edge of the tub with her and brought her with him by the touch of her hand, careful not to let her slip. He placed one foot on either side of hers and wrapped her in a hug around her shoulders while their eyes met in the mirror. "You are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen." He took advantage of their proximity and turned his face to place a kiss on her cheek. "That will never change. No matter what happens. No matter what you do or what other people do. That will never change." He kissed her again on her jaw and she leaned her head back onto her shoulder, a sigh escaping from her body as it slumped against him, a hand reaching up to touch his.
Nate kissed her right foot, feeling right at home worshipping her body as he had in his mind for as long as he could remember. He kissed and licked his way up her legs, her nightdress bunched up in his fingers and he pressed on palms against her skin, slowly sliding upwards. He took his time, feeling each muscle tense and kissing and massaging it into submission, hearing Chuck whisper all the things he said through his kisses, but knew Blair needed to hear. He kissed her hip bone, up her waist and in a joint effort with Chuck, pulled the material over her head and he too, balanced dangerously beside them on the ledge with Blair between them. He pressed his back against the tiled wall on the side for balance.
The light bulbs were harsh on them and her skin looked pale between theirs, even against the white of her underwear set. Her curls fell on her breasts to her waist from months of neglect. and her eyes shone as she stared at her own reflection. "How could you not see how beautiful you are?" Chuck asked, finally finally tilting her chin towards his for an intimate, close-mouthed kiss. Nate kissed her bare shoulder from behind and both felt their own shoulders sag in relief when they heard Blair sigh and lean into the kiss, eager to feel something other than disgust in her own vessel.
After they parted for air and Nate had his turn breathing his breath into hers, he picked her up, bridal style, and smiled fondly at the way her arms came up around his neck and her head tucked into his chest like they had done for years. Chuck turned off the light in the bathroom, closed the door, took a lighter out of the pocket of his neatly folded pants and walked around the room, lighting candles while Nate laid Blair on her bed. This was what was familiar to her - the romance, the candles, the flower petals. This was about her and creating that perfect image of sex to rebuild her own confidence so even if they gagged at this girly stuff on a normal basis, Chuck dutifully lit the candles while Nate kissed her tenderly, his hands rubbing the goosebumps from her arms and gently palming the tension from her thigh.
Chuck slipped in behind her and kissed the side of her neck, readjusting his body so that it wasn't completely pressed against her. "Beautiful swan neck," he murmured against her skin. He was slightly ashamed at the way his body parts naturally reacted to her skin bathed in the glow of candles and the sounds she was making at the back of her throat. He felt her turn and he waited patiently, his eyes trained on her and after holding her pretty doe-eyes for a second, leaned in and kissed her in the way he should have kissed her when she was with him all those times while he grieved for his father. He would never be gentle like Nate, and his passion wasn't one that could be reined in, but he made up for it in the way he cradled her face and the back of her head with his hands like he'd never done for anyone else before. Not in the way he did when he was forcibly prolonging a kiss, but in that special caress that she tore from the depths of his hardly existent soul.
Her breath hitched and he felt the cups of her bra loosen, the straps led off her shoulders by Nate's soft hands and he kissed her again to steal the worry from her breath. Her hands fisted in Chuck's shirt and he helped her pull it over his head, understanding silently her need for contact. He could feel her heartbeat through Nate's hands, still and protective over her breasts and she pressed her palms against his chest, undoubtedly feeling his own racing rhythm.
"You okay?" Nate asked as he nipped at her earlobe. The sound of his voice, familiar in her memory, calmed her and she nodded, giving him the permission to move his hands over her. He felt her react under his hands, her nipples puckering up to his touch and her breath raced, her back arched. "Your breasts are perfect." And they were, for him, for his hands to hold. He kissed her right behind her ear. "So responsive." He froze for a second when her cotton-clad bottom pressed again his erection, uncertain of how she would react to his reaction to her, and only relaxed when she rocked gently against him and the first glean of dewy sweat appeared on her skin along with a satisfied sigh.
Chuck's mouth was warm around her nipples and his hands gripped her waist and at that moment, they knew that he was to be the first. The way her body arched in to his mouth and trembled when his tongue trailed to her belly button. The trust in her eyes as he slid her underwear down her legs ("your gorgeous, gorgeous legs"). It was only fitting, after all. He had been her first the first time around, and in this rediscovery, he would know exactly the things she was worried about the first time.
So just like that night, Nate held her against him and the two laid on their backs on the bed - she completely naked and the two boys bare on their upper halves. Chuck knelt at the foot of her bed and kissed her behind her knee in the way he knew she liked and she threw her head pleasurably back onto Nate's shoulder, giving him the perfect access to the spot between her neck and shoulder. He worked at the spot while Chuck worked his mouth up her thighs, her perfect thighs that were trembling in their recently acquired instinct to snap shut.
Chuck and Blair locked eyes when he placed his mouth on her and he was relieved to taste the moisture on his lips - to know that she was at least positively affected and aroused by their gestures. He savored her taste, a broad stroke down, because he knew there was a very definite chance that he may never get to have her this way after this night, when she's healed and whole. He drank from her, sucking and stretching his tongue, his fingers inside while he pressed his lips on the button that made her tick.
She whimpered when she came, her ankles crossed behind his head and Nate pressed painfully hard into her back. He stayed through her orgasm and after, crawled up her body and kissed her cheek. They laid like that, one on top of the other, and felt her chest rise and fall as she floated back down between them. It woke them up real quick to feel her hands creep down the front of their pants in a grip around them.
Chuck nearly leapt up and Nate involuntarily groaned, hardly able to handle being touched skin to skin after holding out for so long. "B-Blair. You don't have to-" he said breathlessly even as she squeezed him.
"I want to," she said in the steadiest voice either of them had heard from her in months. "I- We have come so far tonight. I-" she struggled with her words while they struggled with their breaths. "It's not about thanking you, even though I'm grateful. It's like... It's ripping off a band-aid. I want to be able to do everything I could before - before that. You two were the only ones I willingly gave myself to. I need you. Both of you." They looked to each other, feeling more awkward than ever. "Please."
Chuck conceded first. He could never stand to watch his queen beg earnestly. With his hands on his waist, he turned her around to straddle Nate and she giggled a little (finally!) as she tried to balance on the mass of sheets and soft mattress. Nate looked like he was about to burst from the relative light-heartedness from her and he kissed her fully on the lips, hands cupping her face.
He felt her tense when she saw him, his pants and boxers discarded on the floor and he waited, feeling slightly self-conscious as she stared. She had that expression on her face again, the solemn, waiting-for-the-world-to-turn face and he kept his hands on her arms, comforting and respectful in case she changed her mind. He should have known better though. She was Blair Waldorf, after all. She didn't change her mind that easily when she made a decision and with that determination she gripped him at the base and positioned herself on top of him. He held her face, his thumbs on her cheekbones, and watched her eyes closely to detect any fear as she slid slowly onto him. It was a struggle to keep his eyes open as her muscles tightened warmly and deliciously around him but he watched still and held her when he was fully inside.
Trembling, she put her hands on his strong shoulders and pushed herself up before pressing herself back down, steadily establishing a rhythm with which she was comfortable and relied on Nate's hands on her waist to steady her. She leaned forward, her breasts pressed to his chest and kissed him sweetly - there was hardly any other way to kiss a childhood sweetheart - and with each kiss she gained confidence. The pressure built inside her and she rode him faster and harder, eliciting grunts and moans the likes of which she had never heard from him before. The hands around her waist tightened in a possessive and attractive grip and she heard his murmurs, "my Blair. Oh God, Blair. Mine. That's it, sweetheart."
He came inside her in a guttural moan and she slumped against him before rolling off, still shaking from her own pleasure. She crashed into Chuck, who had been observing from the side, waiting for any indication that she didn't want or wasn't ready for either of them. She smiled at him, a true smile that he hadn't seen in months, and he reciprocated with a bitter one. He doubted she would ever open up to him like that again, not after what he put her through. Not after he ran like a coward the first time she opened up to him. She was just in her haze and after that... after that, she would be back to being the scorned woman, and he, the remorseful dope who lost the best thing he had going for him.
"Mr. Bass, I do believe it's your turn." She rolled over him and splayed herself on his chest like she had done so many times before that dreadful summer. She looked at him with a soft look in her eyes and brushed a piece of hair from his forehead. She laughed when Nate turned to his side and gave her a kiss on the small of her back, but she quickly turned her attention back to Chuck and placed a soft kiss on his lips, their skin reluctantly parting and their faces remained close.
"You're tired. I don't want you to be too sore in the morning." That and if he made love to her tonight, he would go through withdrawal every night and day thereafter.
"I don't care. I want you now. Unless you're the one who doesn't want-" He cut her off with his lips before she could finish the blasphemous thought.
"Don't say that. Don't even think that." He sat up and rolled her back onto Nate, who immediately cradled her in his arms and pressed loving kisses along her neck. Chuck rid himself of his remaining clothing before leaning back to her, kissing her lips and hair and nose and eyelids and chin and whatever else he could reach. His hands ran across her skin in feather light touches before resting on her hips, pressing her onto Nate as he dipped his hips toward hers.
He could never forget the sensation of being inside her, but remembering it and experiencing it were too different animals and even if he had been dreaming of it nearly every night, he still could not withhold the growl from the back of his throat at the feel of her warm and tight around him. He stopped, like he had their first time together, to make sure she was all right and nearly laugh when she impatiently rolled her hips toward his.
And so they moved. They moved like they always had and Nate bore all their movements into his body and rained kisses on her shoulders from behind, never hesitating to remind her how beautiful she was to attract two men of the uppercrusts of society to her bed at once. Chuck showed her how much he wanted her with every thrust and kiss and nip he managed and she met them with unintelligible cries until she finished with her third orgasm of the night, pumping Chuck with her tightening muscles, and bit down on her jaw before letting out the yell at the feel of Chuck's lips brushing her neck on one side and Nate kissing her on the other. Chuck followed her soon after, with a quick prayer in his mind that this would not be the last time he would get to unravel so intimately with the love of his life.
They laid there together, the girl sandwiched between two best friends. The candles had long since burned out and the darkness settled upon their slowly calming breathing once more. But the sky was turning light with dawn. Their limbs tangled in each other and she had never felt safer or more loved. She knew now, at least, that she could always count on her boys. Just the three of them, they watched the Manhattan skyline in shadows against the rising sun and felt, at least for the moment, at peace.