He wanted to, it wouldn't have been a problem, but some things are too true, and some words are too big to come out; they stick in your throat. "It's not the type of thing you blurt out on the way to school. I was waiting for the right time." The opposite of which, of course, is dinner with Georgina. Serena apologizes for G, and for herself: she came back just for him, to save him and keep him safe, and then abandoned him all over again. He looks her in the eye and speaks slowly, so she'll know he's telling the truth, that it's not a lie or a gloss: "This isn't like before. I'm fine. Really." And she's here now.
"When I was at Ostroff... I met this guy. We were going through a lot of the same stuff. And now that guy is dating Jenny," he says, this last so sad I got a little misty, I won't lie. I mean, maybe this is a part that's hard to get to, because when you're queer you get used to being a commodity -- symbolizing, more than actually existing -- but: his boyfriend was kissing a girl in the courtyard of Constance Billard. His first boyfriend. His first love, that he met at the bottom of the well, in a place where you either come out okay or you don't come out at all. He came out of the cave with this guy, the one guy who understood what he was going through, and actually cared about him enough to share it.
I mean to say that it was a dream come true, a fantasy: It was a story about a cute boy, found in the unlikeliest place, and how after a year of shit, his life finally started turning perfect, because he was in love. He could have it all, and somebody understood, and his dreams could start coming true. And out in the real world, Asher couldn't hack it, because it turns out he's a coward: only brave at night, and in the dark. Never in the real world. And that's how Eric van der Woodsen spends this episode heartbroken, in a way that has nothing to do with being gay at all: because he's smart, and brave enough to tell the truth, and because it's fucking exhausting waiting for the rest of the world to catch up.
"Wait, you're the mystery guy that Asher was spotted kissing? I know this isn't how you wanted this to happen..." Eric shakes his head, because Gossip Girl could always go fuck herself: "Yeah, I guess the important thing is that it's happening." Awesome. The total calm with which he says this, the strength of the kid. Apparently therapy is good for you. Serena just shakes her head at him, impressed, in awe. "I'm so ... proud of you." Not like a big sister, like a person. (And she'd never admit this, but once again Eric's just told her what to do, how to be wonderful, and strong like him, without doing anything but being honest.) She throws her arms around him. "I love you. No matter what you do, who you like... Whose boyfriend kisses you..." She laughs. He throws her a smile. "The people who care about you will always stand by your side. OK?" (Say it a couple more times, S. Maybe then you'll believe it.) Eric decides to drop by Asher's party: "There's one more person I have to talk to." She nods, sweetly, and doesn't ask, but it's her Oh, Blair face. She already knows what he's going to do: tear it down, stop everybody lying, and get things healed, one way or the other.