I listened to Bon Iver and St. Vincent's 'Roslyn' and OAR's 'Love Is Worth The Fall' while writing this.




On the night before her wedding he fucks her standing upright, the two of them framed in the tall window. Her forehead is pressed up against the cool glass, and as they groan simultaneously it feels like he's trying to push himself through her; to tear chunks out of the wall and destroy everything beyond the slender frame which is his only obstacle. Like trying to break free of an addiction, there is nothing loving about this parting – it is raw and bestial, and hot tears slide down her cheeks as she sobs out his name in a final, frantic release.

It's too hot a night to sleep under the sheets so they lie on top of them, and even the slightest touch leads almost instantaneously to more sex and more exhaustion. The sky is dark and cloudless, and yet the moon is nowhere to be seen – it has abandoned a city where lovers choose pretence over passion and no longer love each other tender beneath the caressing silver light.

He wakes up at one am, and she is gone. The day (for it has begun, though the sun has not yet risen and never shall again, as far as he's concerned) begins with a tumbler of scotch. And another. And another. By ten (the time when the wedding is due to take place; the time when he should've been by his friend's side, best man and second best) he is so deep in a vortex of alcohol and drugs that he can barely remember his own name, let alone hers.

This is good.

By three, he is beginning to piece together the parts of his brain and to imagine a life without her. This is when the door bangs open and in strides Blair Waldorf (or Archibald, as she now must surely be), resplendent in ivory silk and looking as if she's been dragged through a hedge backwards. Before Chuck can even say anything, she has thrown herself at him, and her mouth is bearing down on his with all the speed and ferocity of a hunting lioness. He is hallucinating, he supposes.

Until he sees her stockings.


"Why?" He asks, several hours later. She is propped up on one elbow, the sunset bathing her face in rays of deep, rosy pink.

He adores her.

She blinks once, twice, then answers. "I was getting ready to go in and it hit me – I didn't want Nate to pick up his firstborn and go 'hey, this looks exactly like Chuck'. In fact, I didn't actually want Nate to be there at all. I didn't want Nate to be at the end of the aisle, looking at my maid of honour as if she was something to eat; I didn't want Humphrey making goo-goo eyes at Brooklyn Barbie in the front row because they're his guests. I didn't want the party, the lying, the engagement ring – I didn't want any of it."

"Why?" He repeats, waiting.

Her small hands frame his face like the wings of a bird. "Because I love you, and it wasn't you waiting in the stupid suit, shuffling your feet and looking like you were about to piss yourself with nerves."

"Did you want it to be?"

"Yes." Her kiss is lighter than a feather. "Oh yes."