Dan runs threading through the school crowd, up the steps and down the hall, and S meets him halfway: "What? You're here!" She throws herself on him, and points out that he's late. "I know. I come bearing apologies, and an invitation. What are you up to tonight?" They head off down the hall, in love and relieved to be with each other again. "I know what I'm not up to: having fun. The SAT tutor was over for four hours last night." He gives her a sweet moue and asks if the guy's cute. "Well, if hair in the ears is your thing," she muses, and laughs. "I hate that since I'm not gonna use the score Chuck bought for me, I have to study every night. I can't even be distracted by..." He kisses her. "Mm. That." He agrees, and asks if she can finally have dinner with Sarah instead. "Sarah again, what is she? Your new girlfriend or something?" It comes out much softer and sweeter than it looks on the page. He nods seriously, and she smiles. "Just kidding, but she's new in town, and she does want to meet you." While Bart and Chuck are out of town riding unicorns over the Pyramids or whatever, Serena's agreed to a quiet family dinner in the old van der Woodsen suite. I love how that whole family just bops around from floor to floor like the biggest slumber party of all time.
She offers tomorrow for Sarah, but Dan's distracted: Jenny and Asher are at it yet again. "My sister and tongue, two things that don't go together so well..." Serena laughs, and tells him to lighten up. After all, our younger brothers and sisters are sexual beings, and deserve to kiss in the courtyard or the street, don't they? It's not gross until around tenth grade, I think. Then you'd better cut it out. "You have been down on him since the beginning! Give him a chance and then judge. Maybe he'll surprise you, like I did?" She kisses him again, and he wonders how it is that she's always so right. (I know, Dan. Thank you.) "It's easy when you're always wrong!" He makes a super cute face, and I have to say: this conversation has been a long time coming, and it's so Gossip Girl that it would occur in the one episode where Dan Freaking Humphrey is right about every single thing.
It's not a mistake that Serena just drew an allusion between herself and Asher, either, just like Jenny did last week: there's nothing wrong with either of them except for their secrets, eating them from the inside out. It's those secrets that cause all the behavior soon to be freaking everybody out, and it's sad, but that's it: Dan and Jenny are doomed not because of the money thing, but because their very first loves -- just like their dad's -- are people with secrets and because of the UES, the lines they have to draw around those secrets are scary as hell. Serena's a girl, and G is her girly secret, connected to serious stuff: she can do the Serena thing and just cry and stare and refuse to answer questions. Asher's a guy, and his secret is a guy secret that puts guy stuff on the line, so he has to act. Serena keeps her Georgina secret while trying to carry on with Dan, just as Asher keeps his secret while carrying on with Jenny, and every step is mirrored in their paths to honesty in this episode. (And meanwhile there's Jenny lying her ass off, and Dan doing his Dan thing, and Eric as usual just being a tad bit cooler than anybody else, and going to the right people for advice, and dealing with it. Because if anybody's love could protect you entirely from shame, it's Chuck Bass.) Serena tells Dan he's got first period off anyway, so why not beat it down to the courtyard and get to know him? She kisses him again, to make him do it, and he runs off adorably, to make friends with Asher Hornsby.