A/N: This "story" is going to be a compilation of (generally) unconnected snippets of NS, most of which will probably be based on speculation or actual episodes of the rest of season three. Once the show comes back I'll probably want to write a lot of them, so this is a good way to keep all those smaller fics in one place. The song lyrics I'll be using are from Uncle Kracker's Smile, a song that fits them so well. That's all; happy reading!

Smile

February 14, 2010: you're better than the best

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"And, once again, as per usual, I kicked your ass," Serena gloats, twirling around triumphantly next to the pool table.

She comes to a halt, leaning against her cue as she kisses Nate.

He pulls her closer immediately. "But you give…the best…consolation prizes," he teases as he tries to speak without separating their mouths.

"Mm." She lets her cue fall to the floor, slips her arms around him. "I do, don't I?"

Nate walks them backward a couple clumsy steps, until her lower back is pressed tightly to the edge of the pool table. "Best everything," he agrees in a quick whisper, lips falling to her neck and leaving a trail of kisses toward her shoulder as one of his hands tugs her sleeve downward.

"Hey," she gasps out, her voice just as soft. "Maybe…" She grips at his shoulders a little. She came over just to hang out, not really expecting anything, but all of a sudden she's suggesting: "Your bedroom…"

His hand hooks underneath one of her thighs and she gets the message, hopping up to sit on the table with a little help from him. Legs wrapped around his waist, she sets her hands to work on the buttons of his shirt. Nate groans a little as he kisses her again, his tongue sweeping into her mouth.

"Bedroom…?" she murmurs again. She toes off her ballet flats; her dress is bunched around her hips.

"I need you to know…this isn't what I had planned for today…" He sounds a little far away and not entirely regretful.

"No?" Serena pushes his shirt off his shoulders, wiggles a little closer to the edge of the pool table, a little closer to him. She can feel her pulse through her whole body. "What did you have planned?"

"Bought you flowers…" He tucks his head into her neck, his breath hot against her skin. She shivers a little, and gasps when his hips press more firmly into hers.

"Nate…your bedroom."

He ignores her, kissing her collarbone tenderly. "Sunflowers…"

She smiles at that, turns her head toward his and lets her lips linger against his cheek. "My favourite."

He nods, catches her lips with his. "And those little hearts…the ones you like, the ones that taste like cinnamon…"

"Did you?" she asks absently, distracted by the way his hand is moving over the fabric of her dress. She moans into his mouth. "I like the way you taste."

Nate pulls away from her just a little bit, putting only an inch or two between their faces. He tucks her hair behind her ear lazily; uses the thumb of other hand to wipe smeared lip gloss from her bottom lip. "God, you're beautiful…"

She sucks in some air as his hands settle back on her thighs. "Nate…" she murmurs breathily, her hand going to the back of his neck as she pulls him into another kiss. She can't get enough of him. "Let's…"

But he cuts her off, pulling back again slowly, his nose nuzzling hers. They're both breathing hard. "I got you a card, it took forever to pick out…" He grins. "Had to call Blair for advice. Twice."

"You're so sweet," she breathes, her hands on his cheeks, because he is, he's adorable and perfect, but she just… "Natie, I just…I want you…"

"I want you, too. I've always wanted you," Nate tells her huskily.

"So –"

He silences her with a kiss, and she's tired of being interrupted but definitely not tired of kissing him, so she lets it happen. Slowly, sneakily, she moves one of her hands between their bodies and unbuttons Nate's pants.

He grabs her wrist to stop her from going any further, forehead pressed to hers as he takes a couple steadying breaths. "And I got you a giraffe. Not a real one, obviously, but this toy one that's wearing a blue bowtie…I thought you'd think he was cute."

"…think you're cute," she replies dizzily. "Nate, please, Chuck and Blair could come home any minute…" She wants out of their clothes and into his bed, and she can't quite understand why he's so reluctant to give in to her.

He presses a series of short, quick kisses to her lips. "Shh."

She grinds her hips against his just a little bit; feels satisfied when she shuts him up for once and all he can do is groan out her name, his voice strained. She kisses his jaw, whispers coyly, "Take me to bed…" Her teeth tug at his earlobe.

"And I got…champagne…" he mutters, practically groping her through her dress now; she lets him, leans into his touch eagerly.

"What a romantic," Serena replies sweetly, her fingers tangling in the hair at the nape of his neck as she drags him into another kiss. She sees a flash of a bar, of sunset through the windows, of sitting on Nate's lap. She nips at his bottom lip.

"Made you…a mixed CD…too…"

That makes her pause. She breaks the kiss, eyes roving over his face. "You did not, Nathaniel."

He frowns at her, their noses bumping again. "Hey. What did I do to deserve the full-name treatment?"

She ignores him. "Did you really?"

"Of course, really."

"Nate…" She trails her fingers down his chest, thinks of all the time when they were younger when this was all she wanted, this boy who would actually make her mixed CDs like they were in some movie from the nineties. It probably has cheesy songs on it, plus some of the stuff he knows she loves. She sighs, looks at him with half a smile. "Thank you," she says, kind of stupidly, because he hasn't actually given it to her yet, but she means it so very completely.

He smiles back, tracing meaningless patterns onto her legs. "You're welcome."

She wraps her arms around his neck. "Let me thank you thank you. Let's go to bed, Nate…"

He kisses her gently, teases, "In the middle of the afternoon?"

"Nate…" She tugs down his zipper before he can stop her, presses her face to his neck. "I want you so bad…"

His hands grip her hips, hard. "Serena…"

"Come on…"

Nate exhales heavily. "You know what else I was going to do…"

She whimpers, pressing herself even closer to him. "Torture me?"

"No, baby," he chuckles into her hair.

Her heart soars and her stomach twists; she relaxes a little bit against him, giving in. "Is this…" She breathes in. "Are you…trying to make me wait? Like I made you wait?"

His hands drift up to her arms, pulling their bodies apart gently. "No," he says firmly, his eyes searching hers. "Of course not, I would never –"

"Because I'm sorry. You know that, right? I was being stupid, and I…"

He touches her lips with a single finger. "Serena. You weren't being stupid. I'm not…I'm not mad about it or anything. You don't have to be sorry. I'm just…so happy to have you now." He kisses her, smiles brightly. "And if you would shut up and stop making this so hard –"

She giggles a little at that, unable to help herself. Nate sighs, kisses her again and swallows her laughter.

"So difficult to do," he corrects himself, "then maybe you'd know that."

"'Kay," she whispers, "tell me what else you were going to do."

"I was going to ask you to be my valentine. I was going to ask you to be my girlfriend."

She stares at him for a moment, their blue eyes locked together. "Oh."

"And then we were going to eat cinnamon hearts and listen to your CD and drink some champagne…kiss for a while…and then you were going to go home."

Serena frowns a little. "I don't want to go home."

"We said…" He lets out a huffy breath, presses his cheek to hers. "We said we'd do this slow. We said we'd do it right."

She takes a few shaky breaths; his hands are moving up her thighs, under her dress, fingers grazing her underwear. She lets her head fall to his shoulder. "But this feels…feels so right, you and me."

"Yeah, you and me…you and me, this is for real. I want it to be…perfect. I don't want to make any mistakes."

"And this would be a mistake?" She kisses his neck.

Nate laughs a little. "Doesn't really feel like it…"

She nods against his shoulder. "This is right, Nate. I know you know that."

He sighs, hands skimming down over her thighs. "Don't wanna lose you."

Serena lifts her head at that, gives it a shake. She links her hands at the back of his neck and tilts her head, smiling a little. "Ask me."

"What?"

"Ask me, Nate."

He smiles back, almost shyly. His fingers tangle in her hair. "Serena van der Woodsen, will you be my girlfriend?"

She leans in to kiss him. "Yes. There. I'm yours. You can't lose me now. You might even get sick of me."

Nate shakes his head, looking at her with solemn eyes. "Couldn't ever."

She grins. "Can I ask you a question, now?"

He nods.

"Nate Archibald…" She sighs, touches her nose to his. "Will you take your girlfriend to your bedroom and make love to her before you drive her absolutelycrazy?"

She tightens her legs around him as he lifts her off the pool table and asks, "I drive you crazy already?"

"You drive me crazy always," she retorts as he kicks the door of his room shut behind them and they fall onto his bed.

"Yeah, okay," Nate murmurs distractedly as he pulls her dress over her head. "I'm good with always."

--

TBC.