Charles Bass, informally known to friends and prostitutes far and wide as "Chuck," enters his erstwhile sister's bedroom, pretending to speak to someone on her lost cell phone. Serena van der Woodsen is exasperated but possessed of a healthy affection for him nonetheless, as Chuck explains that he was searching it for any new or changed numbers for their friend Blair Waldorf. Since of course her contact information has not changed in the last 24 hours, Serena suggests that he assumes Blair is currently disinclined to speak with him. "I went to see her last week," Charles reveals. "She never came home. It's not like our girl to be out all night, I know something's going on. This is more than her having her dirty laundry aired on Gossip Girl." Serena nods, her hair untamed as a prairie horse and twice as beautiful, and reveals to him that Blair has now been rejected for matriculation by Dean Berube, of Yale University, for the seventy thousandth and final time.
"The only thing she wanted more than me," Charles muses. "That would be painful." Serena spares him a flash of her eyes for this admittedly endearing sentiment, but underscores her rôle in this story, as caretaker: "Chuck, she's embarrassed. So we just need to give her some time to lick her wounds." Charles immediately replies with a suggestion that shall not be reprinted here, as scandalous in its implication as it is questionable in its logic, and Serena pushes her brother from the room by force -- by two feet of height, at least, his master -- and dials Blair's voicemail for herself.
Art buyer Bex Simon, last seen taking personal interest in a small gallery owner named Rufus Humphrey, sits on the divan with his past and current mistress, the lovely and not entirely secretly pregnant Lily van der Woodsen-Bass. Her newest quarry: an untitled Cecily Brown piece from 2007, a lovely abstract in pink and white, as shown on her laptop. As perspicacious Reader Ezra notes, is a perfectly timely and appropriate choice both by Bex and for her client. Brown is au courant, perfect for the fashion-forward and house-proud widow, and furthermore known for her style, which presents abstracted figures usually in a state of frenzied undress. And so Bex mentions it for the bedroom, before their conversation is interrupted by a telephone call from Rufus.
While Mrs. van der Woodsen-Bass puts her lover off with well-meant inanities, Miss Simon is seized by a sudden discomfiture. Upon the end of the call, she makes up her mind and speaks. "Lily, I just want to thank you for handling this so gracefully. The whole Rufus thing..." Lily nods, not quite understanding yet her implication. "The whole 'Rufus and I used to date' thing?" Lily stares at her for a moment before recovering, and assures Miss Simon she is fully aware of the complications in their romantic history, and they return gratefully to the picture. "So you were thinking above the bed?"