A/N: So, yes. I decided to continue Allusions. This is under a different name because obviously Allusions was getting to a ridiculous length and its Season 3 time! I really hope this is up to all of your expectations. And this should be up to a higher caliber of writing as a whole because now I have a beta when I didn't before.
Summary: He could never see her laughing and flirting with other men because if he had deported and ruined men of hers when they weren't even together, he didn't know what he would do if he found another man hitting on his kept woman.
Disclaimer: Quotes belong to GG and all thanks should go to the amazing comewhatmay.x because she's actually going to beta this entire fic. Let's hope she doesn't get bored.
Thank you. It's been three hours. I've missed you.
Let me make it up to you. Let's get out of here.
Or we could stay...
Blair felt his eyes on her face as she leaned up against the bar. Their game had always contained this moment of anxiety. She could never look at him as he scoped out their target. She was always afraid of that flash of desire, and then she would be tossed aside like last season's Louboutins.
But she needed this.
She needed him to humiliate those models, tourists, and Upper West Siders. Because in that instant, when he looked at her with that provocative smirk, she knew she had him. And that was something that no Ashley Hinshaw could say.
Blair finally forced herself to look into his slanting eyes. It was always a push and pull with him. A simple look from him could make her insecure in a way even her mother couldn't. But then there was this look. This look that forced her to smile and laugh like no one else could ever make her do.
"I'm getting a little bored of these model types," he elaborated.
"Are you?" Blair asked.
She wasn't convinced.
"Don't look at me like that."
"Like what?" Blair sighed.
"They're all the same," Chuck said. "Predictable."
"As opposed to..." Blair pushed.
There was that smirk again. Chuck leaned into her. She had forgotten what it was like to see that smirk so often throughout the day. But at the last second he pulled away.
"You'll find out when you find me," he taunted.
Blair hated the bitch already.
Chuck Bass was bored. There would always be that initial rush with the mark who never know what was coming. Because apparently even those who had the code to George Clooney's castle weren't privy to one fact.
Blair Waldorf was the crazy bitch around here.
Now Chuck Bass was bored and impatient and the slightest flash of blonde hair only reminded him more that models would forever abuse the term 'fashionably late.'
Not that she knew she was on a schedule or anything.
Blair checked her Cartier watch.
She knew how Chuck felt about those who didn't have anything less than impeccable timing.
Ironic, because she was always the one who seemed to be waiting on him.
It was one of their rules. They had to have a fasting period between hits otherwise it wouldn't work. Otherwise the real and true feeling of complete, irrational jealousy—paired with the need to punish him—wouldn't consume her.
Even in text, he could still make her laugh.
Patience, my love.
But there was still the subtext that allowed her to spy on him.
Just because she could.
This better be worth it.
That made her scowl.
Arent I always?
She hoped he could sense her outrage through print.
I hope ur wearing ur La Perlas
When this game had first begun, he had been worried. He remembered that turning point the very first time he saw his one and only lover shriek obscenities at the skank who was hitting on him.
He couldn't get her clothes off fast enough. He knew that Blair had her own reasons for doing what she did, but he would rather not know them. He would rather just get turned on by the fact that she marked him as hers. It was nothing that he had ever envisioned for himself.
Then again, his fifteen-year old self had never seen her naked.
But it had still worried him. When model after tourist after Upper West Sider was drawn into Blair's flawlessly spun web, he had begun to worry. He remembered her insecurity during the Reign of Nathaniel of people as close to her as her best friend. And he was highly aware of the fact that had become a recurring theme.
He was sure it would all blow up and all he would have left of her was a sparkling slip and the remnants of his heart that had ceased to be. He was worried because if there was one thing he wouldn't be able to take, it would be her playing the cheating bitch and him being the scorned man. He understood that it wasn't fair but he was certain of one thing.
No matter how jealous Blair got of his conquests that had been—and would always be—in the past, it could never even come close to the irrational jealousy he felt when another man even deigned to look her way.
He knew it was wrong. But Blair could get over her problems. Though he was constantly comforted with smug relief with the memory that he had been the first one to touch her, there was still the problem of his best friend. There was still all the rest. There was Marcus, Carter, Jack. There were the men that followed her perfection, perfection that she couldn't even see.
She couldn't. She saw her best friend's beauty, but she was blind to the many pairs of eyes that followed her.
It was easier that way. Then she wouldn't stray from him. He wouldn't let her.
It still worried him.
He didn't want the tables to be turned on him. He didn't want her to one day suggest that maybe their roles should be reversed.
Because he could never, never play that game. He could never see her laughing and flirting with other men because if he had deported and ruined men of hers when they weren't even together, he didn't know what he would do if he found another man hitting on his kept woman.
So for now he would do this.
Because at least a male model with no imperfections wasn't hitting on Blair.
Blair knew that Chuck couldn't see her. But she saw him. She saw that frayed dress walk into the bar. But she kept her place. Because that was the game.
He knew she was watching him. It made him relieved. At least she wasn't killing time with the bartender who he could have fired in an instant.
Chuck was supposed to be the predator. Blair was supposed to be the predator. But the second that Ashley Hinshaw walked in there, she had her eyes set on Chuck Bass.
If she was lucky, she wouldn't have her American Girl hair torn out.
Chuck was worried again. It was easy to display his indifferent facade for the world to see, but when Blair walked out of the bar, he was worried. He knew he had things under control. He could manipulate a woman like it was going out of style.
Even though there was always the exception. And that exception had just left him to his own devices.
It didn't matter. He would humiliate this girl for Blair.
He would make her proud of him. He would make Blair never leave him.
"Where's your limo?"
She was the exact sort of girl Blair loved to humiliate. Blonde. Poreless. Model. Certainly, Chuck couldn't understand the fascination. He knew it was just a creative outlet for Blair who still held those destructive tendencies towards her best friend.
Chuck was more than happy to oblige.
But it was that one word that had almost ruined his facade. The very notion that this unworthy could gain entrance to the sacred limo, where no one else was allowed, was sacrilege.
And he would make sure she was aware of it.
"I gave my driver the day off."
For a moment, he could feel his features morph into a dark expression of disdain. But it was only a second and after all, she was just a model.
"It's better to wait."
And it was all he could think of through her hysteria. It was how beautiful she looked in that dress and how her summer highlighted hair shone as her curls shook with aggression. He wanted to keep playing the part of the cheating bastard but it was just so hard.
"Blair. I can explain."
She was just too irresistible. It was lucky, really, that his lines were limited and hers was full of anger and beauty.
And Blair was nodding and the girl was leaving and it was all he could do but hold back his smirk at her admittance of just how horrible she was.
Haven't you heard? I'm the crazy bitch around here.
He loved her. And he would never stop telling her that.
His back hit the wall hard and all he could taste was her tongue plundering his.
He could tell she had just drunk a cranberry vodka.
"Again," he whispered into her ear.
"I missed you," she promised, her light laughter echoing around him. He tried to remember, but he truly couldn't recall the last time she was so carefree like this. Never with Nate—certainly not with Marcus. And although there may have been others he couldn't possibly care because she had just said the one thing that got him every time.
Or we could stay.
He could read Blair euphemisms like his native tongue and he knew exactly what that meant.
"And what if we get caught?" he asked teasingly. He knew that this was a game, just like all the others. If anything, she wanted to get caught.
He taught her to want to get caught.
"I suppose that the most eligible bachelors of Manhattan will just have to see me in my indecency."
He knew she was playing with him but that fire licked his insides and he grabbed her roughly by the shoulders, spinning her around so it was her back against the wall.
"Is that what you really want?" he asked. "You want them to hear you scream louder than you ever have with anyone else?"
Her tone could be construed as coy but he just didn't care anymore.
He was finally looking at his girlfriend in all her sordid pleasure, skirt hiked up past her waist, legs locked around his back, and he wondered why this was something that he had ever resisted.
This was Blair Waldorf—his girlfriend.
"Just try not to shriek my name too loudly, lover."
And he was never letting her go.
Sleeping with the enemy is hot. Why do you think I had the whole Ivanka thing?
There was a rule. It was implemented at the exact same time that Georgina Sparks raked the virginity out of him, and maybe for that exact reason. But there was a rule. And Chuck had to admit, he had Georgina to thank for it. Because if it hadn't been for her, Chuck never would have devised the rule that he only slept with the same woman once.
And that was that.
It was the summer before junior year that Chuck realized it wasn't exactly that rules were made to be broken. It was just that there were certain exceptions to the rule.
Ivanka Trump was the first.
At the time, Chuck, of course, wanted to believe that she would be the only exception—now and forever. Because just like Bart's detestation of the color purple, Chuck would do anything that his father loathed.
Including the daughter of the arch nemesis of Bart Bass' company.
At the time, it made perfect sense in the fifteen-year old's—soon to be sixteen—mind. Ivanka was older and experienced, and if his father discovered this indiscretion, Chuck couldn't help but not care. It wasn't solely because Ivanka was hot. The situation was. For a moment, Chuck considered alerting the old man who abhorred the very name.
Until someone beat him to it.
Blair Cornelia Waldorf.
Chuck really shouldn't have been surprised. Ever since Blair had somehow manipulated her way into Nathaniel's good graces to gain the title of girlfriend Chuck had realized that the very life of his best friend was being sucked out of him.
Chuck hated her. More than the harpy Georgina and at the moment, even more than himself. If there was one thing that Chuck had been focused on other than bedding women since the seventh grade, it was ridding Nathaniel of the leech that had attached herself to his very being.
And now this.
Blair Waldorf smiled that deceptively polite smile, shouldering past Chuck with an extra jab to his ribs. In front of his father, Chuck refused to cringe at the bitch's sharp elbow.
He was used to deflecting her attacks by now. Physical and and social.
"Ivanka Trump, Charles?" Bart demanded. "You know how detrimental this will be to the company."
Usually, Chuck took his father's criticism to heart. Almost always he promised he would never disappoint Bart again. And yet there was something wrong this time.
He couldn't understand it. He couldn't understand why he hadn't seen that devil disguised as a pristine angel and her bid for his destruction. He couldn't help but berate himself for the fact that this was Blair. And Blair hated him more than she hated the way her flirty best friend would drape herself all over her boyfriend.
More than she hated secrets.
Blair and Chuck hated each other with the most fundamental passion. He should have seen this coming.
That was why what came out of his father's mouth next completely disturbed and took Chuck by surprise.
"I can never understand your compulsion to completely humiliate this family," Bart said.
"I'm sorry, sir," Chuck said genuinely.
He truly was. He hated disappointing his father. Then again, it was his father that taught him the virtues of his arrogant self-absorption. Really, it was counter-intuitive.
"The first sign you show of settling down is with a Trump," Bart said with disdain, as though Chuck were a thirty-year old and not the fifteen-year old not even close to graduating high school. "Why can't you entertain a nice girl? Like Blair Waldorf."
Chuck couldn't help the incredulity seething from his voice and Bart's cold eyes snapped to him with disapproval. Chuck looked to the ground.
"With all due respect, sir," Chuck said tersely, "Blair is the devil incarnate. I wouldn't touch her if she gave me her entire trust fund."
"You would be blessed to have a high class girl such as Blair to even look at you," Bart said coldly. "She's a Waldorf, you know."
"I hadn't been aware of that," Chuck responded dryly.
"This dalliance with that Trump girl is over."
It wasn't a question, but as Chuck left his father's office, it occurred to him that it wasn't even necessary. He was mulling this over as he turned the corner, only to see Blair leaning against his father's secretary's desk.
She had been waiting for him.
"So," she said brightly, "have you gotten yourself shipped off to Switzerland yet?"
"Switzerland?" Chuck asked half-heartedly, trying to discover what had changed in such a short period.
"I hear they have fantastic boarding schools there," Blair answered. "Maybe you can come back to the city for college. Though even with your father's connections, I doubt that's a viable option."
"Listen, Waldorf," Chuck said darkly, cutting off the banter that usually ensued between the two of them. "You don't want me as your enemy."
"Chuck," Blair said laughingly. "We became enemies the day I started dating Nate. Don't fool yourself otherwise."
"You just brought out my worst self," he warned her.
"I'm shaking," she taunted him. "But let's be honest, Bass. This was just a warm up. Outing you to your father about a Trump? Hardly even worth my time. But seeing your face after walking out of that office was worth every wasted second."
"One day," Chuck said, "Nate is going to find out about you."
Blair sighed, and for the first time, Chuck wondered if what he saw was even a trace of humanity.
Not that he had any himself.
"Nate is the only redeeming quality about me," she answered. "I suppose that's the only thing we have in common."
"Don't believe for even a second that you and I will be anything other than at war," Chuck said. "And you are going to lose."
"Just try and convince yourself," Blair said. "Because from where I'm standing, I'm already the victor."
Blair began to slide away from the desk but before she could make her escape, he caught onto her elbow, turning her to whisper savagely in her ear.
They were caught for a moment in what seemed and endless rift of time, staring into the other's bottomless eyes.
"Forever," she sneered before ripping herself from the grasp he didn't realize was so hard.
As he watched her walk away with her perfect poise, he wondered why he cared about the exact fragrance she was wearing that had just rubbed off on him.
And how good it smelled.
Being accepted for who you are is crucial, Nathaniel. Like Blair accepts me.
From an early age, all Nate could remember was trying to make Chuck and Blair act civilly towards each other. But there were times where he strangely felt like the third wheel to a combat mission that he wasn't briefed for or even aware of.
This was his life from age twelve onwards. The constant battles grew tiresome, and from the verbal barbs being flung at each other with such ferocity, he felt like he was at Wimbledon.
And then he fell in love. Real love. Not the puppy love or slight affection he felt for Blair. He saw his destiny and even though she was twirling on the bar of the Campbell Apartment, it didn't matter. He knew what he had to do.
And the fact was that he had to mope around and brood for a month after he realized that Serena van der Woodsen had departed for Cornwall, Connecticut—something that she never even bothered to tell the love of her life that she was doing. Nate thought that he had a right to know.
It got to be too much. It was his fourth week while listening to Evanescence and Death Cab for Cutie that he became aware of exactly how pathetic he was. Serena was going to come back one day and she wouldn't want this shell of a man he had become—even if she was the one who resorted him to it.
He almost choked on his own air when he saw something that had to be impossible. The fates wouldn't be that cruel. There was no possible way that Chuck and Blair could ever be on the same side.
This had to mean Armageddon.
Suddenly, two pairs of dark eyes were on him and he had to wonder why he felt as though he were intruding on something private. But it was just his girlfriend and his best friend sitting in the corner of the party together. It didn't matter that Nate had never seen a skirt of that length on Blair, nor Chuck's arm strewn so casually and audaciously over her bare shoulders.
He was the common denominator between them. They wouldn't even talk to each other of it wasn't for him. He had nothing to worry about.
Chuck raised his eyebrows at Nate in some sort of nonverbal cue that Nate didn't understand. It was suddenly occurring to him as he neared the dark pair how comfortable they seemed next to each other. Chuck was leaning back in his casual position, and Blair was his foil, sitting with perfect posture.
But as soon as she laid her eyes on Nate, she was on her feet, clad in sky-high heels (another new edition) and breezing right by him. Nate looked back at his best friend, who was suddenly sitting up very straight as Blair picked her way through the party. Nate waited, always accustomed to Blair doting on him but she was suddenly past him, not even seeming to notice he was there.
Nate spun suddenly, catching her arm. "Hey."
Blair turned coolly, looking at him with icy eyes he couldn't remember ever seeing before, easily extricating herself from his light touch.
"Oh," she remarked, "so you're talking to me now."
Nate looked to the one who could usually defuse these situations, but Chuck was already there, shouldering between the two.
"I..." Nate said, startled.
"Why don't you sheath your claws for a second, kitten," Chuck said dryly. Nate expected a snap retort, but instead he felt uncomfortable watching the two of them watch each other intently. "Nate was at his grandfather's the past month."
"Interesting," Blair said, her eyes never leaving Chuck's face. "Do they not have phones at the van der Bilt compound? I can't recall. It's been so long since I've been there."
That was the exact moment. That was the moment where Nate suddenly felt displaced from his own relationship. For a moment, he felt like he was looking at two people who knew each other so well they didn't even have a need for words. He was sure he had just stumbled upon some bizarre alternate universe, but through the rest of the summer, he realized something had changed drastically while he was wallowing in his bedroom, eating cookie dough and watching Love, Actually.
"So," Chuck said outside of the Hamptons estate, "you finally decided to stop whatever complex you've developed in the past month and receded from your hermit ways."
"What does that mean?"
He really didn't know. Chuck smirked.
"She's not wrong you know," he finally said. "No one's heard from you in a month. We were speculating on whether or not you found my good stash from Thailand."
"We?" Nate asked. "Since when are you and Blair such close friends?"
"You missed a lot," Chuck said in explanation.
Nate looked at Chuck expectantly.
"Blair's been going through some things," Chuck shrugged. "And you weren't there. Thanks, by the way, for making me the default boyfriend. I will never forgive you."
"I miss Serena too, alright?"
Nate reached out for the roach, however, Chuck just looked at him with something that he could only think was a glare. But that was reserved for Chuck's enemies. Not him.
"You do know that Blair's parents are getting divorced," Chuck articulated. "Harold just moved to Paris."
"Why do you think she's been calling you nonstop?" Chuck asked. His voice was escalating and Nate couldn't understand why he was getting so upset. It was Chuck. Chuck didn't feel, he just did. "I thought she would at least wear you down enough so you would answer the phone."
"Sorry," Nate said indifferently.
"Sorry," Chuck stated incredulously. "How do you think she's feeling right now? First her best friend deserts her. Then her own father and now her boyfriend? No wonder she sought me for comfort."
In retrospect, he suspected that was where he went wrong. While Chuck was holding a joint and staring at him, he should have done something. He should have made some sort of effort.
This was only evident when it was made apparent to him by the two most unlikely of sources.
"I need your help."
Sitting next to Blair, Nate turned immediately to his friend. But it was then he realized Chuck hadn't been addressing him at all.
"Tell me," Blair said, though not looking up from her phone as she texted.
"So last night-"
Nate jumped suddenly because Blair was actually laughing and it wasn't something he had remembered hearing from her for a long time.
"Really, Bass?" she asked. "We go through this every week."
"Some of them just can't take a hint," Chuck shrugged.
"I think you need to refine your technique," Blair replied.
"I think you need to turn on the Queen B terror so she leaves me alone," Chuck replied.
"The things I do for you," Blair rolled her eyes before getting up.
"What was that?"
Chuck had been watching Blair's departure, seeming to just realize Nate was actually there.
"What?" Chuck asked.
"You and Blair," Nate said.
"It's just a scheme," Chuck said.
"But you're talking," Nate said. "Like you're friends."
"We are friends," Chuck said.
"You don't have friends that are girls."
"There's a first time for everything."
End of conversation.
So Nate just stopped thinking about it. Blair was his girlfriend and even though scandal spread through this town like Chuck's paranoia of STD's, there was no reason to doubt them.
"What's that all about?"
The ball hit the hoop and Jeremy caught the rebound before returning.
"What's what all about?" Nate asked, dribbling the ball. Jeremy looked over his shoulder to the two that were on the bench, seemingly watching the game.
"You know that Chuck doesn't really play basketball," Nate shrugged. "He doesn't consider something a sport unless it has two legs and a skirt."
"Yeah," Jeremy said suspiciously. "I mean what's he doing with your girlfriend?"
Nate looked back to the bench to see Chuck and Blair deep in conversation.
Nate was starting to get annoyed with the interrogation and in his frustration, made the ball rebound off the rim.
"They're just talking," Nate replied.
"He's Chuck Bass," Jeremy laughed. "Don't you think you should check the status of your girlfriend's virginity before-"
"Before jumping to conclusions?" Nate demanded. This was definitely ruining his buzz, not to mention the fact that had never occurred to him. "He's my best friend. He wouldn't do that."
"And Blair's a hot chick with a pool on Gossip Girl betting on when she'll finally give it up," Jeremy said. "Are you willing to bet on that?"
"Do you want to sleep with her?" Nate asked. It came out more curious than threatening and that was what made Jeremy laughed.
"Dude," he said. "She's Blair Waldorf."
Nate wasn't sure how he felt about that answer and it was on the night of the Kiss On The Lips party that he discovered why.
Blair wasn't anything he found himself painfully desiring. She was just Blair. A girl he had been dating since the seventh grade who wouldn't even let him past second base.
But he stood there, sipping a beer as he watched his girlfriend in her strapless dress, his best friend behind her, watching as a cab sped into the night. It didn't make any sense. Chuck's eyes were full of bloody vengeance and when Blair turned to greet his gaze, Nate didn't like what he saw.
Nate walked back into the party, watching as Chuck wiped blood from his nose and he couldn't help but notice it.
Blair and Chuck were together all the time. He knew that he had neglected Blair in the past, but the way she looked at Chuck was a way she had never looked at Nate. They were alone in another corner and Nate didn't understand it at all. He didn't understand the hushed voices and furtive glances and he definitely didn't get why Blair was getting ice for Chuck's eye.
"What are you doing?"
Blair looked back at him in confusion and for a moment, he wasn't sure if she heard him or not.
"Getting ice for Chuck's eye."
She was staring at him like the obviousness of it was painful and he had to gather his bearings again.
"He got punched."
"Did you ever think he did something to deserve it?"
Nate didn't know what was coming over him. He would never double-cross his best friend like that, but what Blair was doing was so unwonted he couldn't even grasp it.
"I have no doubt," Blair said. "That's why people get punched. And considering it's Chuck, that's not exactly surprising."
Blair thanked the bartender and was about to return to Chuck, who was looking impatiently in her direction. Nate was finding it strange how she was smiling at him.
"Why are you friends all of a sudden?" Nate finally asked. It was something that had been bothering him. Mortal enemies couldn't be brought together through pure loneliness. It didn't make sense.
"Listen, Nate," Blair snapped. "I don't know what your problem is, but Chuck's your best friend. And some interloper from Brooklyn just crashed my party and assaulted one of my friends. I didn't realize you wanted to be across the bridge so badly."
"That was the girl's brother," Nate said. "Chuck took some freshman up to the roof."
"Why does this surprise you?" Blair asked. "You've been friends with him practically since birth."
"I'm not surprised," Nate said. "I just don't understand why you're suddenly so okay with it. You hate Chuck."
"I did," Blair said. "Things are different now."
"Why do you care?" Blair asked. "I thought you'd be happy that we're getting along now."
To be honest, Nate didn't know why he cared so much. He wasn't jealous. Chuck and Blair being amicable would make for a lot less civil wars on the Upper East Side. But Blair was Blair. She didn't consort with hedonists or lechers.
"But he's Chuck Bass," Nate said.
"Exactly," Blair answered. "I just realized that we have a lot more in common than I thought."
"He's a scheming manipulator," Nate protested. He knew there was disgust in his voice when Blair recoiled as though she had just been slapped.
"Yes," Blair said. "He is. And I understand him. Now if you don't mind, my hedonist manipulating friend just got punched in the face."
Nate stared off at her as she walked over to the couch. She crossed her legs, her skirt riding up her thighs as she placed ice across Chuck's eye. Chuck flinched for a second but then after a moment they were both smirking at each other strangely and Nate finally understood.
Chuck and Blair accepted each other for who they were. Nate wasn't completely oblivious to Blair's vengeful tendencies but seeing them together truly worried him. Blair was always reminding Nate of how he would be going to Dartmouth and her to Yale. How they had endless parties to go to. How his mother would be devastated if he came to one of her functions high.
And then there was Chuck. Chuck, who never looked at a woman in they eye unless there was something in it for him. Chuck, who swaggered around parties buzzing on his father's single malt. Chuck, who knew every legitimate dealer in town.
And he understood.
Blair accepted Chuck. The way she would never accept Nate.