Serena's overjoyed to see Blair -- "Nice outfit," they giggle at each other, not mentioning Blair's ongoing houndstooth issues -- but Blair's had such a motherfucker of a day and seeing the person you love most in a hospital bed is always going to be like getting hit with a sledgehammer in your guts, so the whole time Serena's being a sweetheart Blair looks like she's going to break into a million pieces and she finally grabs her and holds onto her so tight, crying and unable to speak, because it was bad enough when she was just losing Charlie Trout.
Like a wall of stars
We are ripe to fall
Charlie smells the hospital smell, and sees someone who is dying. He's pushing against something real, trying to get down the hallway to his sister. Serena was wearing a ballroom dress the night Bart died; she rushed him down the hall and into Bart's room. Lily was wearing a white coat over her dress and the doctor was explaining to her that Bart was gone. And in that moment, Charlie got scared, all the way down. He teared up and pushed Serena away when she begged him to stay with her and Lily, with his family, but he couldn't be there when they switched Bart off, so he ran. And he kept running, across the sea, and when he came back he was broken. And they were never his family in that way again.
Charlie falls down, against the wall, sliding, drunk; he curls into himself. Blair approaches, watching him carefully; there's an animal in there. She knows, because she's one too. She sits quietly with him while he breathes. Fresh terror makes him jump: "How's Serena?" he gasps, and she almost smiles. Serena's fine. "Lily's here? Eric's here?" She nods. Everyone's here. He was so scared.
And if you are a ghost
I'll call your name again...
"My father always thought I was weak. And in the moment that mattered most, I was. I couldn't be there when he, uh..." Blair tears up; he's left a space in the sentence, a blank he can't fill in. "I left. Ran away. I've been pushing myself to prove him wrong. And pushing you away." He's sad. Fuck suicide.
"I don't think you ran away because you couldn't handle death," Blair says quietly. "I think it's because you couldn't handle feelings." Charlie swallows. Her words are like punches thrown, but feel good too. He still doesn't have the hang of it, hearing people love you out loud. "But you're not like that anymore. You're strong." He breathes out, quickly: Too much. Too big. "You carry people. You carry me." Charlie looks down; it's like a punch to the chest. "You're becoming a man in a way that your father never was."