A/N: So I was watching Hi, Society (again, shocker) and I realized that the geneology of GG just fascinates me. They talk about Nate's grandparents and Serena's grandparents and I wanted to do something with... well, you'll just find out. And it's quite obvious. It sort of mirrors my fic Parallel but with grandparents, but I had to write it anywhere. The last half of the fic took me like days to finish. I kept rewritting it and I had to cut some stuff that I liked (dialogue mostly) but I like how it came out (finally.) And I tried to make the last names as WASPy as possible. I hope the beginning is okay because it introduces a lot of new characters (though some familiar, I hope) and has absolutely no Chuck and Blair (obviously.) I hope this wasn't a miss.
Summary: "See how she said my name just now?" he asked. "I can tell when she's not being satisfied. Which is coincidentally whenever she's with you."
Disclaimer: Nothing belongs to me besides Beatrice Gansevoort and Henry Buck.
Manhattan, New York
Hotel Waldorf-Astoria, 1965
"Beatrice Cordelia Gansevoort, escorted by William Vanderbilt."
The light was brilliant and she was sure that she was about to go blind by the amount of white garments that reflected the lighting, but Beatrice Gansevoort had never felt more thrilled. On the arm on one of the richest men in Manhattan, she was coming out to New York society.
She was so thrilled that she didn't even bother rolling her eyes at Cecelia's hubris. The diamond on her finger sparkled brilliant but this time, Beatrice didn't even have to pretend that she wasn't jealous with her always best friend and often rival. And even if William wasn't fluttering around her like he was desperate for even her cruel attention, she had too many things preoccupying her mind. And none that she actually wanted to think about.
"So," Cecelia said as they watched the pretty girls in their white dresses cavort around the dance floor. She swept her fair hair from her face, letting the light catch her ring. "William Vanderbilt."
Beatrice was hardly paying attention, glowering at the floor.
"Yes," she finally replied, snapping back to attention. "He is quite the catch."
"So why are you acting as though you haven't caught him?" Cecelia inquired. "And you haven't glared at my ring all night."
"Yes," Beatrice actually did roll her eyes this time. "We are all very pleased that Richard proposed."
"William is a Vanderbilt," Cecelia reminded her. "Don't you think he'll ever propose marriage?"
Beatrice couldn't help the very unladylike snort through her nose. Cecelia's icy eyes narrowed.
"Pardon me," Cecelia said, "but I don't seem to see what amuses."
"William Vanderbilt?" Beatrice sneered. "I don't think so."
"And why not?" Cecelia asked. "He's descended from Johannes Vanderbilt."
"Don't you think that's what's the reason problem with marriage?" Beatrice asked. "Do you even love Richard?"
"Of course I do," Cecelia said indignantly. "I just think that you marry where money is."
"Money marries bigger money," Beatrice recited. "I suppose I will end up with the likes of William Vanderbilt."
"Please explain the downside to that," Cecelia replied. "If any of my children wanted to marry some... commoner, I don't know what I would do."
"What if they were in love?" Beatrice asked interestedly.
"Are you in love, Beatrice?" Cecelia asked.
"Me?" she asked. "Who would I be in love with? And you're acting sort of hypocritical, aren't you?"
"What of?" she asked.
"Richard Rhodes isn't even New York," Beatrice said.
"I told you," Cecelia said. "I'm marrying where money is."
"I suppose that explains your little excursion with Henry Buck," Beatrice said.
"It wasn't an excursion," Cecelia said with detestation. "It was a date."
"So why are you acting so disgusted?" Beatrice asked.
"Well," Cecelia said, "he's nouveau riche. And don't act as though you're so above that. You yourself take any chance you can to proclaim what a drunkard he is."
"Because it's true," Beatrice said.
"Speaking of," Cecelia said. "Where were you that night? I didn't have you as a buffer between me and Henry. You two usually get along so well. Despite the insults."
"We don't get along," Beatrice said uncomfortable. "I suppose we just... understand each other."
"Yes," Cecelia said. "Social destruction and manipulation. What isn't to get?"
Beatrice was about to reply indignantly that she was not someone so morally bankrupt but then she heard it. And cringed.
She knew he would have found her sooner or later. Not that she would be too difficult to find on the night of the Debutante Ball.
"Oh my god," Cecelia said, disgust definitely coloring her tone. "Speak of the devil and he doth appear. Especially completely past drunk as he is."
"I thought he was in Southampton," Beatrice said, forcing herself not to look at the display.
"He wasn't escorting anyone," Cecelia replied. "That didn't mean he was on vacation."
Beatrice put her gloved hand to her face, knowing this would be her failed attempt at hiding.
"What is he doing?" Cecelia asked. Beatrice kept her dark eyes on the table, wishing this embarrassing display would just disappear.
Henry Buck's dark voice permeating the air much closer than she wished it.
"Beatrice," Cecelia said, recognition coloring her tone. "What is Henry doing?"
Beatrice finally looked up to see the very real form of a very inebriated Henry Buck staring her down. As soon as eye contact was reached, he casually sauntered towards her in that gait she was too familiar with.
For the first time, Beatrice was relieved that William was following her around.
"Your behavior is unsuitable for the ladies," William informed him. "I think you should leave."
"Is that what you think, William?" Henry sneered. "Why don't we ask Beatrice?"
"Why would we have to ask Beatrice?" Cecelia asked coldly. And she knew there was no way of getting out of this besides that hard way.
Beatrice gathered her white skirts in a swift motion and with the other hand, took Henry roughly by the elbow to drag him out of the ballroom. It came easily, his drunkenness making it difficult for him to resist.
Not that he wanted to.
"Have you gone completely insane, Buck?" Beatrice hissed as they made it out of the Waldorf-Astoria.
"I should ask you the same question, B" Henry mocked in her tone. "William Vanderbilt? Really?"
"So that's why you came?" Beatrice demanded. "You ruined my cotillion without any thought of what you would do to me for petty jealousy?"
"Beatrice," Henry protested, grabbing her wrist. "I didn't-"
"Then what the hell are you doing, Henry?" Beatrice asked.
"And yet again, I ask you the same question," Henry replied. "Vanderbilt pop the question yet?"
"And what if he did?" Beatrice asked. "What if I was to become a Vanderbilt? What concern would it be of yours?"
"Considering you gave if up to me so free and willingly," Henry grinned underhandedly, "I would say, it was very much my concern."
"Lots of girls have given it up to you," Beatrice retorted. "What makes me any different?"
"Don't you see?" he asked. "We're the same. Now stop trying to fight it."
Beatrice was about to argue that she would fight until her last dying breath when he caught her off guard. His tongue slid easily into her mouth and she gripped the back of his jacket.
"Told you," he rasped in her ear. She thrust out her foot into his shin and he grimaced. But when he looked back into her eyes he was smirking. "You really think you're the same as the likes of Cecelia. Don't you?"
"Meaning?" she asked tersely, not sure why she wasn't backing away.
"I could tell that first night," he said, sliding easily towards her despite the growing bruise on his leg. "I was forced into that horrendous excuse for a date and I saw you with him."
"It was just a party, Buck," Beatrice said, trying not to recall the vivid images of that night.
"Did you tell your date how you only show your true colors when you're with me?" Henry asked. "You looked so bored that night."
"William is a gentleman."
"Yeah?" Henry asked. "Gentlemen don't get your blood going. Not like I do."
"You're despicable," she spat.
"That wasn't what you said when you got into my car that night," he said, his body heat making it truly difficult to think clearly. "You remember."
"Under the haze of acid?" Beatrice shot back. "Barely."
"Please," Henry snorted. "You barely had a sixteenth of that. You were completely coherent. Especially when you started crawling on me in that very unladylike fashion. What do you suppose the ladies at the Colony Club would say to that?"
"Nothing," Beatrice responded. "Because it was one lapse in judgment."
"There, I would have to agree with you," Henry nodded before looking back at her slyly. "If it only happened once."
Her hand came so quickly across his face, he barely registered the sting until her hand was back at her side again. He just laughed.
"You know I love you, B," he said. "What are you doing?"
"You're nouveau riche," she whispered.
"Didn't stop you before," he said cockily. "You pack a hell of a punch. And you know that no one is your match save for me."
"You caused a scene in the middle of my coming out," she said, stamping her foot petulantly. She sort of hated the way he was gazing at her adoringly.
"You've run out of excuses, Gansevoort," he grinned. "We both know you're going to be my wife. So just give it up."
"Wife?" Beatrice sputtered. It hadn't really occurred to her. That scoundrel Henry Buck wanted to chain her to him legally. He didn't do commitment. Then again, he didn't do the same girl more than once.
And they had definitely done that more than once.
More than more than once.
His hand lingered at her flushed neck as she thought about it and she looked into his dark eyes.
"I almost forgot how precious you are when you think about our encounters."
"Don't presume to think you have any idea what is going in my mind."
"But I do, my love," he sighed. "I know you miss me. Like I miss you. And that you should really care about what society thinks of us. You pretend to be chaste with a moral compass. But I know better."
Beatrice was aware this was one of Henry's versions of sweet talk so when his mouth descended upon hers again, she couldn't find it in herself to push him away. In fact, she wove her fingers through the buttons on his shirt and pulled him closer. His hand went to the back of her head, caressing the nape pf her neck for a moment before intertwining them through her immaculately coiffed hair.
She should have realized she couldn't just be making out with some new money man on a street in New York. Henry hit the sidewalk with a deafening thud as William Vanderbilt's fist came out of nowhere.
"What are you doing?" Beatrice demanded before falling to her knees, holding Henry's tender head.
"She's my girlfriend," William shouted and Beatrice couldn't help but sit back on her heels with Henry's head in her lap and her white dress getting all dirty, feeling appalled. Because although she traveled to parties with William, she did not recall ever having that conversation.
"I beg to differ," Henry sneered remarkably well while a bruise was forming on his jaw. "I think Beatrice would to. Especially after what transpired between us in the back of my car."
"Henry," Beatrice snapped.
"See how she said my name just now?" he asked. "I can tell when she's not being satisfied. Which is coincidentally whenever she's with you."
"You have no right..." William snarled.
"I have no right?" Henry asked. "I can tell you if she ever even considered marrying you, it would not be a white wedding. That dress she's wearing now is very misleading. She's anything but a vestal virgin."
"How dare you?" Beatrice demanded, her wrath now directed at the opposite party. Her emotions could turn on a dime and that was what made her so different from all the other girls. Because he loved her and her tempestuous personality. She stood up quickly, letting Henry's head fall back to the sidewalk with a crack.
"Ow," Henry muttered, massaging the back of his head.
"How dare you?" Beatrice demanded again. "You've ruined everything. You've ruined my cotillion. You've ruined my reputation."
Henry watched as she ran back towards the Waldorf-Astoria in her white dress that was dirty at the knees and her hair coming loose from the meticulous updo.
And he knew he was going to see her in a white dress again.
"Gansevoort," he yelled after her, sitting up. "You're going to be taking my last name, too."
"When hell freezes over," she called back over her shoulder before she entered through the revolving doors.
He was definitely going to marry that girl.
Manhattan, New York
1136 Fifth Avenue, Present Day
"Stop following me."
"Really? Because showing up spontaneously in my foyer every Monday constitutes as stalking."
"Been stalked before?"
"Only by you."
"Besides. You and I both know this isn't spontaneous."
"Following me down Fifth Avenue in your limo isn't the most healthy behavior."
"Blair. We have to talk."
"We have. And I'm ending the conversation."
"That wasn't what I meant."
"Well it's what I meant."
Blair Waldorf stared down the insufferable Chuck Bass who didn't seem to be leaving her foyer any time soon.
"So that's how you speak to your suitors these days."
Both Blair and Chuck turned to face the speaker. The older woman stood right behind her, her dark eyes lit with amusement.
"Beatrice," Chuck said charmingly, going to kiss her hand. "So lovely to see you."
"Can you please refrain from hitting on my grandmother?" Blair snapped.
"If you hadn't been so quick to yell at me, you would have heard that you look stunning as well."
Blair glared at him. "Keep your attempts at flattery to yourself."
"To the common observer, darling," Beatrice said lightly, "it would appear that it's working."
"He isn't one of my suitors," Blair interjected.
"True," he acknowledged. "I'm the only one."
"What part of 'I never want to see you again' did you not get?"
"The part where you never want to see me again," Chuck said easily. "We both know that I am like oxygen to you and you won't go on suffering without me for long."
"Is it hard keeping your ego so inflated?"
"There are lots of things about me that are hard and inflated."
Blair couldn't bear the horror that was overcoming him speaking to her as though her grandmother was in the very room.
"I think you just lost my grandmother's support," Blair finally breathed.
"Actually, I find it quite amusing that you're so stubborn to resist," Beatrice shrugged. Chuck flashed a grin.
"Oh, of course," Blair said mockingly. "He makes sleazy remarks in front of the matriarch of my family. Be still my beating heart."
"It's not my fault what you like most about me are my darker qualities."
"I don't like anything about you," she relayed. "I don't even like you."
"Right. Love," Chuck waved it away. "But I thought that was a given ever since I started proposing."
"Get out of my house," she swore.
"I think that would be up to the matriarch," he said stubbornly.
"Charles, why don't you come back later?" Beatrice suggested. "She might have cooled down by then."
"She is standing right exactly here," Blair snapped. "And she is not cooling down anything."
Blair stomped up the stairs to hear Chuck's clear, "that is something I am pleased to hear," before the distinct sound of the elevator.
She was sitting at her mirror when she heard her grandmother's approach. Blair stared stubbornly at her own reflection. Beatrice sighed and took a seat next to her, gently stroking her long dark hair down her back.
"Everything has to be so melodramatic when you're young," she finally said.
"This isn't just me and my melodramatic tendencies," Blair said. "This is Chuck Bass."
"And you don't want to be the one to give in," Beatrice replied. Blair finally looked into the eyes that mirrored hers exactly.
"I remember when your grandfather first proposed," Beatrice replied. "It was at my cotillion."
"He proposed at a debutante ball?" Blair asked dubiously.
"He wasn't the type to have escorted anyone," she remarked. "It did cause quite a scandal when I married someone with new money. But I suppose things are a little different than they were back then. Your mother seems to be supportive of this union."
"If I was more insecure about what Mother wanted than obsessive about this... thing, then I would have married Nate Archibald by now. But the truth is, she wants be to get married so badly, she doesn't care to who."
"I don't think that's true," Beatrice reasoned. "She told me he comes by every Monday to propose to you."
"He's stubborn," Blair said, twisting her hands in her lap.
"And so are you, my dear," Beatrice said lovingly. "The perfect match."
"Did you say yes?" Blair asked. "That night when he asked you?"
"No," Beatrice laughed. "I let him get punched by one of his rivals."
Blair laughed lightly. "Why not?"
"I was so... frightened of his devotion to me," Beatrice replied. "I didn't want to take it seriously. But I think that you're past that in your relationship."
"If we can break each other so easily now," Blair said, "what is stopping us after we make the final commitment?"
"From what he tells me, it sounds as though you already have."
"You've been talking to him?" Blair didn't sound so much as angry but dazed.
"He already asked your father for permission," Beatrice said. "What's stopping you?"
"I want to see how far he'll go," Blair said, smiling secretly.
"You remind me so much of the way I was when I was younger," Beatrice reminisced. "I was as stubborn as you. And that's how I knew that I was going to marry your grandfather."
"He was stubborn too," she replied. "So convinced that this was the way we would go that he went as far as telling the entire society of how very unchaste I was. It took me some time to rebuild my reputation after that ball."
"He ruined your coming out," Blair murmured. Beatrice gazed at her beautiful granddaughter.
"Only a Gansevoort descendant would find that romantic."
"What did he say?" Blair asked. "To ruin you?"
"It had something to do with me losing my virginity to him in a haze of LSD," Beatrice said truthfully.
"What?" Blair asked in surprise. And also a little bit of disgust. Not that she could afford to be a hypocrite, but that was not something she wanted to hear about from her grandmother.
"He was much more eloquent than that," she replied. "I never told your mother that."
"And why isn't he here now, trying to convince me to ruin my life?" Blair asked.
"He's in Southampton," she replied. "He says he won't bother coming down until you say yes to your young man."
"It seems he is as in favor of me ruining my life is everyone else is."
"If it were truly ruining your life, you would have gave him a definitive 'no.'"
"I have," Blair said. "In so many ways."
"So not so definitive that he's going to take it seriously."
"That was the general idea," Blair smirked.
"You knew you were going to say yes all along," Beatrice said in fondly.
"He's going to have to work for it a lot more," Blair still said stubbornly.
At the feeling of his breath on her neck, her eyelids began to flutter. Still subdued by semi-unconsciousness, she murmured in her sleep, turning slightly, unaware of the body hovering over her. His lips descended her neck, gently prodding her awake.
"Are you ready to say yes, yet?"
Blair's eyes snapped open. In all honesty, she truly should have been disgusted and petrified by this strange display of affection. But it wasn't strange because this was Chuck Bass and uncomfortably, this wasn't exactly the first time that this had happened.
"You are by far, the creepiest person I have ever met," she vowed, glaring defiantly up at him in her bed. He laughed with his quiet smugness, balancing himself over her, his hands on either side of her head.
"That's something at least."
"Go away," she told him, trying to roll over. He stopped her by kissing her fiercely on the mouth. She brushed him off easily, rolling in her side. He rolled onto his back on the other side of her bed.
"I don't hear you leaving," she said in annoyance.
"That's because I'm not."
"Bass," Blair snapped, finally facing him. "Stop sneaking into my room at all hours of the night. I'm surprised Dorota hasn't mistaken you for an intruder. In fact, I'm surprised that Dorota hasn't thrown you out just on principle."
"Dorota's at her apartment in Queens," Chuck said lazily. "She told me herself when I called her to tell her I wasn't leaving without an affirmation this time."
"It isn't Monday anymore," she told him.
"This isn't just because I don't want to lose," he told her. "This is because nothing I have told you in the past was a lie."
"You mean the part where you compared me to your father's Arabians?" she asked bitterly.
"Stop being so melodramatic," Chuck said. "You would have done the same were you in my position that night."
"Whatever," Blair muttered.
"You know what I'm talking about, Blair," he said gently.
"Yeah," he sneered. "And you plan on seducing me tonight as well or you wouldn't have taken me to bed."
"Excuse me," Blair said. "You were the one who crept in here at all hours of the night like some pervert."
"Stop acting so offended," he said. It was true that she still found his strange actions of affection sort of flattering. She was still about to open her mouth again before he pressed his own to it. "And stop talking."
Her hand fisted in the front of his shirt before she realized he wasn't wearing a jacket. She pulled away to see that he had removed his shoes as well near the door.
"Planning on spending the night?" she asked.
"So close," he whispered to himself wistfully.
"Get out," she said, facing her back towards him. Instead, he wrapped his arm around her waist, pulling her to his chest.
"I made a promise that I wasn't leaving until I had an affirmation."
"You're not getting one."
"Then guess I will have to spend every moment by your side," he remarked.
"Don't make it sound so torturous," she said.
"Never," he promised into her ear. She tried to shrug him away but he held fast. "Waldorf."
"What?" Blair asked, sleep overcoming her.
"You're going to take my last name too."
"Yeah," she snorted. "When hell freezes over."
a.n.: I really hope you're not getting tired of these sorts of fics because I can't seem to stop writing them.