"Chuck, remember how in the eighth grade, you used to help yourself to the decanter in the Captain's library?" Chuck nods: it's where he first got the taste for single malt. "That's right," Nate says sweetly, and firmly. "And you'd have to go home to a four-course dinner without passing out in your consommé?"
"I didn't want my father to think less of me. What does that matter now?" The worst, the very worst thing about high school is realizing this fact: that nobody's watching. This show is about how everybody's watching you, all the time, but there's a way in which it's inordinately comforting to know you're being reined in. But down among the orphans, once that's taken away, you have a very serious set of choices to make, because nobody's going to tell you otherwise. Nate had to become a man when the Captain went away the first time, and Chuck must become a man now. That's a secret nobody is going to tell you because it hurts too much to repeat. How much stronger would Lily be, without CeCe and her meddling and her money still smothering her after all this time? How much stronger would Blair be, without Eleanor? There are some questions you shouldn't ask.
"Chuck, am I gonna have to stick my finger down your throat?" The signs are there, and nobody's seeing them. We're not seeing them, right in front of our faces. She gleams impossibly brightly for a moment, warped and scary, flirtatious and inviting: come inside this place with me, and look what I am showing you. Listen to the words that I'm saying. We're always feeding each other. This is love: "Nate'll hold back your hair," she says, wheedlingly, and Nate recoils. "What," she spits at him, seeing herself from the outside, begging him to listen, to pay attention. "No, no. Sorry, Blair. You had me and then you lost me." There are madnesses no three can share; there are madnesses no two ever should. Another arrow lost in the forest; another flare put out by the rain. "Just... straighten his tie." Nate does; that's what Nate does.
Was my love not strong enough to bring you back from the dead?
Lily embraces Dan, and thanks him for his concern and care for Serena -- "And for our whole family" -- and Dan tries to sucker her into the it's-so-natural conversation again ("I can't imagine it any other way"), but Lily's not really talking about Dan, or about Serena, or about their family, or about Bart: "You are a true gentleman. Your father raised you kids right." Dan thanks her, confused, and CeCe pulls her away again, into the awful whirl of the funeral.