Disclaimer: I do not own "Gossip Girl."
Author's Note: Thanks to everyone who's reviewed, you really make my day. :)
And here's just a little something extra...
"Open it Miss Blair."
Blair eyed the box with wariness. "I need to think, Dorota." She snapped.
The card she held in her hand, said simply, A memento from our night of relaxation, -- C.
That meant anything could be in this box. Liquor, condoms, drugs, waffles even, she shuddered a little.
It'd been two days and she had only been marginally successful at erasing the entire episode from her memory.
They'd spent the rest of the night at the Palace, in 1812. They'd ordered ice cream and Blair had fallen asleep to a debate about rocky road versus plain chocolate—only to be awakened by a glop of the former falling on her temple.
"Maybe she won't wake—"
The cold, gooey sensation slipping into her hair and their whispered words pulled her out of a light sleep. Her hand came up to touch the cold away and found a lump of something, she squeaked, sat up, and the lump slid down her face.
She screamed then.
"What IS this!?" She cried, bringing her hands out in front of her. They were smudged with…
"I wanted Chuck to try it." Eric offered sheepishly, sticking the spoon in his mouth.
Chuck shook his head, "I pushed it away. I'm not defacing my chocolate with marshmallows."
Eric sighed, "But it's—"
"Did you drop ice cream on my head!?" She shrieked, reaching out and rubbing her hands against Chuck's sleeve. "Is that what you're saying!?"
"Hey!" Chuck reared back, "Don't get it on me!"
"Ex-cuse me!" She shouted, "It's in my hair!"
Chuck shrugged nonchalantly, "Just barely."
Her eyes narrowed and he realized probably one second too late that, that was not the proper response. She reached over and grabbed the entire contents of Eric's bowl and then smeared it in his hair.
"BLAIR!" And maybe he shrieked too as he leaped off of the bed.
Eric gaped. Because not only was one entire side of Chuck's face dripping with ice cream… it was his ice cream.
He looked down at his bowl, the scoop of ice cream missing. "Blair, I was eating that," he protested.
She didn't get a chance to respond, Chuck was advancing on her with a menacing look on his face and she squeaked and jumped off the bed too.
It was no use.
"Eric, hand me the container." Chuck said calmly, wiping at his face; melted ice cream dripping from his chin onto the carpet.
"Which one?" Eric asked.
"Don't you dare!" Blair said a little hysterically as she backed away, "I was sleeping! You woke me up! I had a right to… to… retribution!"
Chuck eyed her. "Both of them."
But Eric did; enamored as he was his big brother, Chuck gave me the scarf, Blair, he'd prattled on and on; he handed Chuck both the rocky road and the dutch chocolate and after apparently getting some signal from the Chuck he whirled on Blair and picked her up…
He. picked. her. up.
She was slung over his shoulder when Chuck approached and dumped half-melted chocolate ice cream into her hair.
It dribbled all over her shoulders and onto Eric's neck and back. He jumped under her, surprised at the cold, hadn't expected to get it on himself, "Chuck!"
"I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!" Blair shouted and lunged for Chuck, while still on Eric's shoulder; tipping the other container in his hands towards him and shoving it at him so the contents spilled down the front of his shirt.
"Stop moving!" Eric yelled, staggering backwards from her momentum.
"Put me down!" She yelled back, kicking her feet.
Eric faltered, unbalanced, started falling backwards; Blair latched onto Chuck's shirt as they fell. Eric turned suddenly and they collapse onto the bed in a mess of legs and arms and ice cream accompanied by the popping of the buttons on Chuck's shirt.
They laid there for a moment, catching their breaths, and then Chuck looked over at Blair, eyes glimmering with amusement, "You could have just asked if you wanted to undress me so badly."
Blair fully intended to gut him like a fish for that comment, but then Eric laughed, breathy and exhausted, "Dude. Quit. She's gonna fry us alive."
And some, just a tiny bit, of her steam left her.
Chuck laughed, just as breathy and relaxed, "I'd protect you, E."
"And just who's going to protect you, Bass?" Blair inquired, "Do you see what you've done!? I'm covered in— I'm like… filthy!" She cried, sitting up slowly, "And cold and sticky and—"
"So am I," he retorted, motioning to the mess she'd made of his poor shirt.
"You deserved it…"
Chuck smirked, eyed her slowly, her cheeks flushed and hair a teased into tangles, eyes glaring fire at him, "I could help you get clean…" he offered, "And warm."
She stopped wiping at her hair, puckered her lips a little, "Really?"
He watched her; she brought a finger, sticky with ice cream, to her lips, licked it.
"Yes." He murmured, voice low, and then he was standing, saying, "Eric, entertain yourself," as he reached for Blair and scooped her into his hold.
"Chuck!" She cried, softer this time, giggling.
Eric sat up, Chuck was carrying Blair, "Where are you guys—"
And then they disappeared into the bathroom.
She blushed a little remembering their shower and shower-time activities.
"Miss Blair?" Dorota asked again, eyeing her a little suspiciously now.
Blair swallowed hard and sighed, ran her fingers over the box. It was nondescript, seemed harmless enough, but for all she knew there could be exploding ice cream in it.
Eric had been asleep when they'd emerged, flushed and grinning, from their shower— considerably less sticky than when they'd entered. They'd been exhausted, had eyed him for a moment and then shrugged; pulled the chocolate stained coverlet out from under him, tossed it to the floor, and then piled in for the night.
In the morning it had all seemed like a dream; a crazy, sugar-high, alcohol-induced, drugged up dream.
And for a beat, she knew they'd all considered pretending it hadn't really happened likethat; that nutty and hysterical and uninhibited.
But then Eric had grinned a little sheepishly and said last night was fun and Chuck had quietly agreed and then she had too… because it had been. Maybe the most fun she'd had in a long, long time.
Until Lily's phone call.
"I'm sure you three are aware of why I asked you here."
They'd stared at her in silence. It was mid-afternoon, the apartment was devoid of Humphrey's, and maids were still working to restore the Van der Woodsen suite to its usual state. Apparently they'd spilled alcohol on the rug and wet cheeto dust stained; and the Humphrey items needed to be allocated since they'd been displaced from their storage.
"We may have gotten a little carried away," Eric admitted.
"My painting has a scratch on it, Eric." Lily admonished.
"It was my fault, I—"
"I am not asking whose fault it is, Charles," Lily cut in, "I am—"
"That's good," Blair interrupted, "Because it's not actually his fault. I'm the one who—"
"I broke the waffle maker." Eric confessed, before Blair could continue.
Lily stared at him and then sighed softly. "Eric honey, if you're upset about... something... there are other ways to express that."
Eric blinked at his mother and then said mildly, "It was an accident."
"Well, those happen." Lily agreed, "And as upset as that has made everyone, I'm sure, in time, a replacement can be found."
And then her gaze landed on Blair. "I cannot say the same about your indiscretion, dear."
Blair stiffened, "I can't imagine what you're referring to."
"I volunteered to speak with you on this matter… Dan is a bit upset. He claims you've stolen something from him."
Blair's chin lifted, "Hardly."
"So you didn't leave here last night with a…" Lily paused, seemed to look for another term and then gave up, sighed again, "A doll of his."
Blair avoided Lily's gaze. "I hardly stole it." She equivocated a moment later.
"Darling, you must give it back."
"She's in possession of it Lily."
Lily rolled her eyes, "Charles, I am not going to argue the ownership of a cabbage patch." She huffed delicately, "Let's simply do what we can to put this incident behind us, hm?"
Blair remained obstinately silent.
Lily pressed her lips together, "Blair I hate to resort to such an old mechanism, but… well, please return the doll or I will have to speak to your mother."
Blair's eyes widened a little, "You'd speak to my mother…"
"I'm afraid so."
Blair resisted the urge to pout, she was an adult— a Grace-Kelly-like adult.
She swallowed hard, could feel Chuck's gaze and Eric's resting on either side of her face as she plastered a smile on and said steadily, "That won't be necessary, it was just a silly dare after all..."
She'd had a courier deliver the doll that evening; and hadn't made a big deal out of it either. Because she was sober. And there were certain lows you didn't go to without a high blood-alcohol level.
She drew in a deep breath now; bit her lip, as she pulled the bow loose on the box. "Step back, Dorota."
Dorota made a gaspy sound and stepped away, "Is trouble, Miss Blair?"
"Isn't everything Chuck?" She murmured softly, but there was a hint of a smile her face.
He'd been with her when she'd sent Cedric away; hadn't said a single word about her having made him find it or her not even getting a chance to take it to Hyacinth… or even the fact, that Blair had Hyacinth.
He'd been nice about it.
Another reason to suspect the contents of this box.
She stood as far away from the box as she could while she lifted the top off of it and tossed it aside.
Nothing exploded—that was a good sign.
She neared it again and peered inside.
And then she gasped, a hand to her throat, mouth dropping open, eyes going wide— because lying on a pink silk pillow was a Cabbage Patch Kid.
It had a bush of dark curls and painted dark brown eyes, wore brown corduroy pants and a lavender striped vest over a pale rose shirt accented with a dark purple bow-tie.
It was Chuck Bass, if Chuck Bass were a deformed potato doll.
"Oh Miss Blair, i's doll… like yours…"
Blair didn't respond, reached in and lifted the card lying atop the doll. It was written in Chuck's scrawling script and she was smiling, grinning, maybe even a little teary at the short, simple sentences.
This is Harmon Bass. He would like to politely request the honor of Miss Hyacinth's favor. He heard there was an opening.
It came to her then, a conversation from a year ago.
"Chuck Bass, is a romantic, who knew?"
"Now you do, that's all that matters."
She shook her head slowly, still smiling as she set the card down gently. Then she very carefully reached in to lift the doll out of the box, "Oh Chuck," she whispered as she hugged it to her.
Dorota nodded, smiling, "I take box, Miss Blair, you play with doll."
Blair smiled, nodded, "Thanks, Dorota." She took both cards with her as she left the living room. Her proof he could be unspeakable sweet.
She walked into her room very slowly, still holding the doll close. When she walked in she set the cards on her dresser and then moved to open her closet door.
Her doll was sitting on a shelf, chubby cheeks and smiling face greeting her every time she slid the doors open.
Hyacinth was a gift from her Dad.
She'd been four years old when he'd presented her with Hyacinth; he had told her the doll was beautiful, almost as beautiful as her, and she was the most beautiful girl in the entire world. He had purchased matching dresses for them on multiple occasions and Blair had loved the admiring glances and praising words she'd received when she'd walked around holding a matching Hyacinth in her arms.
As she'd gotten older the doll hadn't always represented such unabashed joy. Sometimes the doll had been just chubby cheeks and painted eyes and a mocking smile…
But mostly, Hyacinth was her Daddy's big smile and his warm hugs and his loving voice, pretty darling's…
She smiled at the memory, carefully reached up and set Harm next Hyacinth. She grinned a moment later— they made quite the striking couple.
And then she pulled out her phone, snapped a picture, and sent it to Chuck with the line, Hyacinth thinks Harm is quite dashing, attached to it.
A beeping sound made her jump and she looked up-- found Chuck standing in the doorway to her room, wondered briefly if he'd been here all along, Dorota had a habit of accommodating his wishes.
He retrieved his cell phone, read the message and nodded knowingly, "Well, I would imagine so," he murmured, coming into the room, as he waved a hand towards himself, "Just look at his inspiration."
Blair grinned, shook her head and stretched out her arms so he could walk into them. "You're going soft, Bass," she murmured, wrapping her arms around his neck, her nose nuzzling his.
He smirked a little, gaze soft as his arms came around her waist, pulling her close; pressed together, nose to nose, and smiling, he whispered, "Only for you."