A/N: Thank you so much to everyone who reviewed. I apologize for not replying to them yet...I will do that this weekend! After some requests, I decided to write a conclusion to this. I was a little hesitant because I didn't want to ruin the first part. So...hopefully you all like it. NOW it's definitely complete.
Thanks to Sarabrowncolorado for reading over this for me :)
**ETA: Someone pointed out a careless mistake of mine ;) She said that Dan had already turned Milo's room into an office on the show. Can we forget that didn't happen for the purpose of my fic? Totally my mistake...thanks.
Disclaimer: I do not own GG or any of its characters.
Two months later—Spring
It's just after two in the morning when he hears the door slam. His heart jumps in his throat at the intrusion, but when he hears the click of her heels tentatively walk across the floor, it settles. She throws her coat and clothes on the ground and nudges her pumps off, sighing with exhaustion. As softly as she can, she peels back the covers and slips in bed behind him.
She mimics his position, lying as close as she can without touching him in fear of waking him up. But he surprises her a moment later by turning to face her.
"Hey," he whispers through the darkness.
"Hi," she replies softly.
"Are you okay?"
"Shh," she shushes him. "Go back to sleep." She touches his eyelids, coaxing them to close.
It's silent for a minute—so silent, she thinks he's fallen asleep again.
He ignores her, naturally, and repeats, "Are you okay?"
At this, she cracks. "No. But it's all right. I'll deal with it tomorrow."
"What's wrong?" he pressures gently, his hand traveling down her lower back to pull her closer.
Her lip quavers and her eyes line with tears. "I'm just...tired," she sighs. "I may have gotten a divorce, and that's all over, but I...I haven't slept in days." Her breath quickens. "Every time I'm about to fall asleep, I start thinking about Serena and how much she must hate me. And how I've disappointed my parents. And all the money I wasted on the wedding and the media and how I—"
His kiss silences her for a moment. "Shh," he says against her lips, before kissing her again. "Just...stop. Take a breath." He wipes away her tears with his thumb.
She sniffles. "I'm just really tired."
"Then sleep. Just stop worrying...and sleep."
He doesn't know what's on her schedule for the day, but he doesn't care. It's noon, and she's still asleep, so he doesn't want to play with fire.
She pads in an hour later, curls askew and his t-shirt slipping off her shoulder.
"Afternoon," Dan says from his spot on the couch, setting down the paper and sending her a warm smile.
"Coffee?" she asks, her face crumbling into a sleepy grimace as she rubs her eyes with her hands.
He gets up and fixes her a mug while she steals his spot on the couch. After wordlessly trading the coffee for a kiss, he settles beside her and pulls her legs across his lap. She's resting her head against the arm of the couch and cradles the steaming mug in her lap; although she still looks exhausted, her eyes sparkle with love and the whole picture is an image he can get used to.
She stifles a yawn. "Thanks for last night."
He shrugs. "I didn't do anything."
"Yeah you did." She threads her fingers through his and smiles. "You listened to me and held me while I fell asleep. And you didn't make a move once."
Dan lets out a laugh. "I could've, you know. You were an easy target," he teases. "You looked irresistible."
Her lips twist into a smirk. "I always do."
Her first stop is Louis. Ironically, this is the easier of the two.
"What are you doing here?"
"I..." She pauses, feeling suddenly nervous. "I want to talk to you."
"I have a flight to catch."
"I know, I know. I just...wanted to thank you for convincing your mother to drop the dowry. Even though I broke the contract."
Louis nods, his face softening a little. "It was a ridiculous clause anyway."
"Well...thank you." Blair fiddles with her hands. "Also, I wanted to let you know that I will follow through with the charities I committed myself to. The schools still need help, regardless of our marriage status. I may not be the Princess of Monaco, but I still know how to throw a successful fundraiser."
"Thanks, I appreciate that." He gives a small smile and adds, "The children will too." He glances at his watch and then looks at her expectantly.
"Well...goodbye. And, again...I'm sorry." She's just about to leave, when she remembers the most important thing. "Oh." She reaches in her purse for the small, grainy picture.
He takes the ultrasound photo instinctively when she hands it to him.
"I wanted to make sure you had a copy." She clears her throat, hoping it will diminish the thick emotion welling up. "I feel like a lot of people forget that it wasn't only my child. It was just as much yours at it was mine."
His eyes are misty. "Thank you," he says, his appreciation clearly evident in his voice.
She lingers in the doorway for a moment. Then, after saying a final goodbye, heads to the next apology.
"What happened to Chuck? What happened to forever with him?" Serena questions quietly. They're sitting on the floor of her bedroom, finally face-to-face after two months of silence. They'd been tiptoeing around each other for too long. "I thought you loved him. You said so at the wedding."
Blair lets out a breath. "Yeah, I did say that. But..." She's at a loss for words; this just all seems too big for words. She looks at her friend—her oldest, dearest, and best friend—and her face softens. They love each other more than any man can, and yet they always seem to hurt each other the most. "Serena...do you still love Nate?"
Not expecting the question, Serena straightens. "Do I love Nate?" she repeats back.
"Yeah. Do you look at him and still love him?"
Serena looks to the side in thought. "Well...yeah," she answers honestly, surprising them both. "I think I'll always love him."
"And you also love Dan?"
Serena gives a barely-there nod and finally understands it all.
"I wish I could love something the way you love writing," she suddenly says one day, looking up from her textbook. They've just started their senior year, and with all the homework they have, they spend most of their nights quietly doing it together.
Her statement rings in his mind for weeks.
She's not living at the loft, but it certainly looks like it. As the days go by, her presence not only increases in her true form, but also among his belongings.
As he steps in the kitchen for coffee one morning, he notices a mug on the drying rack so ornate and whimsical, it could only be bought at Anthropologie. Not Crate & Barrel...like the rest of his.
His book and movie collection hasn't changed, as theirs are pretty much identical, but his magazine collection has. He spots a Vogue and InStyle lying haphazardly on the coffee table, with little post-its (monogrammed with BCW, of course) sticking out of the pages.
It goes beyond that, though. After complaining about his worn, wool (she deemed them "scratchy") blankets for too long, she finally buys him new ones. As he sits down to turn on the nightly news, he wonders how long they've been there. The colors match the pillows—which he also notices are new—so perfectly that it seems they've always been there.
There's a new, cleaner bathmat in the bathroom, which she's paired with a new shower curtain. Before, the old bronze sink and shower fixtures seemed outdated; but somehow Blair Waldorf had worked her magic enough to make it all look chic.
It isn't until she brings up Milo's old room does he finally know he was right.
"Have you thought about changing the nursery into an office?"
"Why would I do that?" he asks warily, resting his mouth against her hair. He loves these conversations. After they've kissed and explored every inch of each other's bodies, she's so tired, she just says whatever's on her mind. The conversations range from amusing to serious, and he loves waiting to see what she comes up with next.
Blair's eyes are closed when she answers, nudging his chin with her head so she can tuck her face in his neck. He feels her shrug. "I don't know. It just seems like...if..." she chooses her words very carefully, "Milo isn't here, maybe the space could be put to better use." She breathes against his skin and he resists the urge to shiver. "You spend all your time writing in here, and I think that may be one of the reasons why you get so stuck."
"What do you mean?"
"I just think that a change of scenery can help sometimes. I could never write essays in my bedroom at NYU. Mainly because of the noise and my roommates and the chairs that nearly ruined my posture." Her voice doesn't hold back disdain. She continues, "But also because I just...couldn't give my mind a break. I'd look over and see that I needed to give Dorota my laundry, or see my heels on the ground and remember I needed to pick a new dress for a dinner I was invited to." She shrugs again. "Even if the room is ten feet away, I think it'll do you good."
She pulls away to look at his face. "Really?" she asks in hushed excitement.
She smiles and resumes her position under his chin. Tracing his bare chest with her fingers, she says, "Just think of what you can do with the space. You can get a new desk and have a little seating area for meetings with your editors. Oh, and that window! You can build bookcases around it. And I once read that a bluish-gray color increases productivity, so you could definitely paint it that hue."
Dan smiles at her rambling. "Hey, can I ask you a question?"
She stills. "Uh...sure."
"Have you ever thought about interior design?"
"What do you think I've been talking about this whole time, Humphrey?" she chides. "If you're going to redecorate your office, you will need to think about the interior design of it."
A laugh rumbles through his chest and he loves her so much in that moment, he doesn't think his heart can take it. He leans down to press his lips to hers, and he feels her relax into the comfort of the kiss.
When he pulls away, he asks again. "I mean...have you ever thought about studying interior design? You're obviously good at it. We've been dating for, what, eight months? My apartment already looks better."
She's silent for a few moments, and he can tell her mind is working through his idea. "I honestly have never thought about it."
"Well, do you think it's worth thinking about? I think you'd be amazing at it."
"Yeah. I even, uh..." He runs a hand over his face to hide his blush. "I picked up a few brochures for you."
"You did?" she breathes out.
"Yeah. I can show them to you tomorrow if you want."
She's silent again. Thinking.
Then: "Can I see them now?"
The next week, after meetings with her advisor and reading through countless brochures, she decides the best decision is to stay a business major. Then, after graduation, she will apply to the best Interior Design programs in the city for graduate school.
Her smile is wider, her step has more pep, and she looks about a thousand times happier than she's looked in years.
It takes Serena until the middle of their senior year to fully be okay with Dan and Blair being together. Her website is thriving and takes up most of her days and for the first time in her life, she isn't worried about dating or boyfriends or anything of the sort. And when she isn't working, she's with Blair. Ever since their talk, they've been back to the old days; the ones of girl talk, sleepovers, and shopping.
To her surprise (and liking, if she's going to be honest), Dan and Blair have minimal PDA in front of her. They're never all over each other like Chuck and Blair or Nate and Blair were; but when they are affectionate towards one another, Serena recognizes how...real it is. Even when Dan simply laces his fingers through Blair's, Serena picks up on the sparkle in Blair's eye. The genuine, happy smile. The carefree laugh that bubbles out of her. They seem to balance each other well, and in the end, just like all of their friends and family, Serena can't help but love them together.
When he picks up his cell phone, Blair's voice nearly gives him a heart attack.
"Daniel Humphrey, meet me at the loft this instant!"
His blood runs cold. "What's wrong? Are you alright?"
"The pipes burst and there's water flooding everywhere!"
"I'm on my way."
He's half-expecting for water to be spilling down the steps by the time he arrives, but to his relief, they're dry. He braces himself before he opens the door—braces himself for a panicked Blair Waldorf and a ruined apartment. He rushes through the doors, heading straight for the bathroom, but to his shock, he finds it completely dry.
"Looking for this?" her voice drawls saucily from behind.
She's sitting on the kitchen counter, wearing an unbelievably revealing outfit and dangling a wrench in her hands.
He drops his bag. "Blair...what's going on? Where's the flood?"
"Nothing's going on," she shrugs, flashing a sly smile. "There's no leak." She lays the wrench beside her.
He scoffs. "Babe, I just rushed out of a meeting because you said it was an emergency."
"Oh, you were in a meeting? I'm sorry." The mischievous grin returns on her face. Feigning casualty, she continues, "I just thought you'd want to get a look at Parsons The New School's newest Interior Design student."
His jaw drops. "What?"
She just simply nods, but her face glows with excitement.
"Oh my god." He slowly walks up to her. "You got in?"
"I got in—" She barely finishes her sentence before he scoops her up in his arms. She breaks into a fit of squeals and laughter as he spins her around, before smothering her face with kisses.
"I'm so proud of you," he says into her ear, breath tickling her skin. "I'm so so proud of you."
She kisses him soundly then, because...he's the reason this all exists. He's the reason why she is where she is today.
He adjusts his hold so that her legs are on either side of his waist and, lips never parting, carefully makes his way into his room. She unbuttons his shirt by the time he makes it to the bed, and wasting no time, he quickly removes the rest of his and her clothes. He hovers over her once all her clothes are off, and leans close to her face.
"Do you realize how amazing you are?" he asks, kissing her jaw, her neck, her breast. She whimpers impatiently when he slowly makes his way down her body, avoiding the spot she needs him most. She pulls him up so that their mouths are an inch apart.
And with that, he slips inside her, making them both moan at the magnificently tight feeling. Eagerly rocking against him, Blair matches his fast rhythm and invades his mouth with her tongue. With each thrust, their breaths grow more ragged and needy and just when Blair thinks she'll come undone, Dan slows their pace. "No, faster," she begs, desperate for more friction. "Faster," she repeats.
He obliges, increasing his speed, and reaches his hand down to where they're connected. The feeling of his fingers sends her immediately over the edge and she comes with the cry of his name. Feeling her clench around him, he comes a moment later, shuddering against her with a moan.
"You are amazing," she corrects, still catching her breath. "So amazing." She curls her body against his, resting her head against his chest. She closes her eyes and focuses on the beat of his heart. "I love you."
"Marry me," he whispers.
She pulls away. "What?"
"Marry me, Blair," he repeats, sitting up. "I know this is probably the least romantic proposal in the world, but I can't wait any longer. Please spend the rest of your life with me."
Gasping, she breathes out, "Oh my gosh." She sits up beside him and pulls the sheet around her body. Realizing she hasn't answered, she screams, "Yes, yes, yes!" before showering his face with kisses.
"Really?" he mumbles, in awe of her answer.
"Yes, really!" She laughs against his lips. "I love you, I love you, I love you!" She accentuates each with a kiss.
"I love you too." He pulls away and reaches into the side table drawer. "I've had this ever since you told me you first loved me," he admits, holding up the exquisite diamond ring.
She gasps. "Really?"
His face reddens. "Yeah. I've wanted to ask you since that night."
"Why did you wait so long?"
He laughs. "I don't know."
"Well stop waiting, Humphrey!" she scolds. "Put it on my finger."
"Dan," she says, looking into his eyes. "Put the ring on my finger."
He smiles and does as he's told.
"Now you're officially stuck with me," she whispers, before kissing him again. "You've shown me love, Daniel Humphrey. You showed me love even when I didn't deserve it." She smiles and admires her glimmering hand. "I think...right now...you just made me the happiest woman in New York."
"You ready to do this?"
She takes in a nervous breath, but there's a smile wide across her face. "I'm ready."
They both sign the papers with confidence and excitement and just like that: they're homeowners.
Not in Brooklyn and not on the Upper East Side.
They compromise happily on Soho. It's in the middle of Brooklyn—where Dan still uses his loft office—and the Interior Design firm Blair works at. After touring what had seemed like one hundred homes, they finally settled for a three-bedroom apartment. The windows give them picturesque views of the city, the rooftop gives them an outdoor entertaining space, and the size gives them room to grow. Blair uses the apartment as an experiment for what she's learned in school thus far, designing every inch of the space. It's a fixer-upper, so after gutting nearly everything inside, they slowly turn it into their dream home. It's perfect in every way and once it's finished, there's only one thing left to do.
They elope in Paris.
Blair wears a fitted ivory dress that stops just above her knees. She pulls her hair back in a loose bun, loose tendrils falling down, and tops it with a Parisian-looking hat with delicate netting that veils her face. Pink peonies in hand and long strands of pearls draped around her neck, she looks the picture-perfect vintage glamour girl. Dan wears a classic navy suit, complete with a slim tie and a smile so happy everyone stops to look at him. They exchange vows and rings at the city hall, with their hired photographer acting as their only witness, and walk along the Seine instead of having a reception.
They keep it a secret. Blair keeps her engagement ring on and they tell everyone they got engaged in France. She leaves her wedding band on a chain around her neck, hidden from the world, and wears Dan's on the middle finger of her right hand.
Blair loves the secret aspect of it. Loves being the only ones who know. Dan, on the other hand, hates it. He wants to flaunt the fact that she—Blair Waldorf—is his wife. He wants to scream it from the rooftop. (Not to mention, he feels extremely guilty when they attend family brunches and dinners...especially while in the presence of Serena and Nate.) But after being reminded of the old idiom happy wife, happy life, he wisely keeps his mouth shut.
"Dan," she whispers.
He doesn't wake.
She says it again more loudly. "Dan." She leans over and kisses his scruffy jaw. "Wake up."
He groans, shifting in his sleep. "I love you, babe, but it's..." He glances at the clock and groans again. "Three am? Why are you awake?"
"I can't sleep."
He yawns, but forces his eyes open again. She's lying on her side facing him, her head propped up on her elbow and curls spilling down her arm. She looks wide awake.
"Why can't you sleep?"
"I have to tell you something."
"Can it wait until morning?"
She pouts. "Nooo I have to tell you nowww."
Despite his exhaustion, he can't help but smile at her childish nature.
"Besides, I'm your wife now. You have to listen to me."
Laughing, Dan obliges. "Okay." He mirrors her position and props up on his elbow. "Tell me."
She waits a beat before whispering, "I'm pregnant."
He doesn't say anything.
Slowly, she asks, "What are you thinking?"
He moves closer to her, prompting her to lie flat on her back so he can hover over her form.
He presses his lips to hers, parting her mouth with his tongue and erupting a moan from her throat.
He pulls back slightly. "I think..." he kisses her again and repeats what she told him months ago. " I think you just made me the happiest man in New York."
Even though he has yet another secret to keep, this time...Dan covets it. He loves being the only one to dote on his wife. His beautifully glowing wife. He's so happy he waves at every single person he passes on the sidewalk.
Before she gets too far along, they exchange vows again. They marry the same way they did in Paris. She's done the whole big affair already, and it's ending, obviously, wasn't ideal. Dan agrees whole-heartedly. They both want the marriage, not the wedding, so they keep it simple and romantic.
They marry at City Hall, again. In addition to another photographer, Serena and Nate are there—together—as are their parents. Eric and Jenny come home from college, rounding out the gang. Chuck replies regretfully, saying he can't make it due to business, and although they're all on good terms, it still seems better that he can't attend.
The small reception at the Waldorf penthouse is everything Blair's first reception was not. They start the night off by admitting they've been married for two months, and before their parents express their annoyance, they announce her pregnancy. Everyone immediately forgets about Paris and instead celebrate the upcoming arrival of the first grandchild.
And as the night winds down, Blair and Dan dance their first dance to "Moon River." Except this time, instead of her husband whispering her biggest nightmare in her ear, he instead whispers their dreams.
Their first dream comes in a tiny six-pound package. Genevieve Rose is born one May morning and is every ounce of perfect. They spend their days huddled in their bedroom just staring at their little girl.
She's their Eve—the small symbol representing the beginning of new and better adventures. And every night, as Dan kisses his second favorite girl, he whispers the promise that he tells his wife every night. That he'll be there always, and love her always.
And he is.
A/N: I'd love to hear your final thoughts! :)