Dan busies himself with wine in the café, the better to look elsewhere than directly at the Total Eclipse of the Blair: "You and Chuck have been toying with each other forever. So you didn't win this one. You ever think maybe you should just, I don't know, let it go?" She tells him it's different, but they are speaking different languages and always have, and even though she's bilingual, her entire existence rests on never speaking Humphrey. Admit to need and the world will strike. He, for his part, asks why it's different, and she sighs and looks away. Which is close enough. His eyes go wide, but his voice gets so soft and serious that I kind of love him now. "Do you... Do you love him?" Somehow him saying it, the way he says it, makes him wonderful: like the whole world is going Magic Eye and he's seeing the Blair behind the headbands and the ... It's like Victrola for a second. She's just a girl.
Blair looks up at him, terrified, and he nods at her. "Wow," he breathes, so gentle with her now. "Someone loves ... Chuck Bass." Blair shakes her head and speaks Humphrey more eloquently than she knows, admitting for the first time that she's been in the weeds since Chuck turned the table. "I don't know. I just... I... I don't understand how it got to this place." This place where every weapon turns back on you, and every way you had to stay safe is now the thing that's tearing you apart? The way the things that make you strong are exactly where it's hitting now, and taking you down? That's love, baby. We only notice it when it moves the furniture around, but if it didn't we wouldn't call it love.
She's like a fox in his hands, her little heart beating so fast you could be ashamed for her, and Dan finally gets it: why Serena wouldn't ever, ever let her go. Why every time he pushed against Blair, thinking she was the problem, S pushed back with another exclamation point. There's an excruciating pleasure in dropping our defenses; in recognizing that one week of danger will stretch into infinity the second you let it. How much more excruciating if all you are is defenses? How much more pleasure is there in it? I went on about how I personally identify with this situation these two clods have found themselves in, before, but it's universal. Love's not a fairytale, it's a bloody massacre. Love means somebody else has the power to kill you, and that's all Blair and Chuck are telling us: Why would you ever do that? Why on earth would you ever put the most delicate part of yourself anywhere somebody can touch it, until you're sure? Giving yourself up to that particular wolf is the stupidest, scariest thing you could ever do. And needless to say, like any terrifying thing, that's what makes it the bravest, and most necessary.