Nate asks why she kept this from him, and she leans if possible even further into the pillar, and uses small words to explain that dating is fun, and Nate is fun, and fucking is awesome, and why mess that up? Last time she tried to be a grownup woman -- with the grownup version of Nate, note -- that turned out to really suck. So if she's rebounding with the guy destiny picked out for her, why rock the boat with her grownup problems? Nate says that dating is good, and Serena is good, and fucking until you break hotel furniture is awesome, but also that he's not quite the cretin that everybody thinks he is, and is actually a phenomenal boyfriend (which we know to be true and Jenny takes as an article of faith), so how about she treat him like a person? Serena's totally not sold on that, but smiles sweetly and says she wants them to be that person for each other. An option she had not considered. At least we burn trying.
So while Nate offers the opinion that maybe vdDubs just sort of sucks if he doesn't even want to know his awesome daughter -- verbatim what Carter Baizen told her approximately thirty-seven years ago in a wooded area, by the way, but we cut both Nate and Serena a lot of slack around here because they're doing as well as they can with what they have to work with, brainwise -- and they hug and are sweet, Elizabeth wraps up the story of how she was so uninterested in marrying Bart Bass that she cooked up a byzantine fake-death strategy which caused Chuck a lifetime of abuse so severe that he became a seer of ghosts and occasional rapist.
"And I thought my father was the heartless one," he says when she's done, and Blair's a little bit appalled. He tries to bust out the checkbook some more, but she hands the check over and says she doesn't care about any of that, and in fact no matter how much he tries to bum her out, the incredible issues of Serena have so blown her mind that she finds herself immobilized in NYC for the foreseeable future. Blair smiles a tiny smile, since she's gotten the outcome she forced herself not to work for, and when Elizabeth stands up, Charlie looks younger and smaller than he's looked in a long time. He comes up against the old wall, how it's hard to be soft, and looks into this woman's eyes, and offers to at least buy her a drink.
Back in bed with Dan Vanessa giggles, because she is a giant lesbian, that she thought it would be less good without Olivia up in the mix. (WHO SAYS THAT?) and they laugh and say they did even better without her movie star moves, and are adorable for awhile before the conversation turns chilling. "The reason I was freaked out when you told me how you felt was because with us, it feels like it's all or nothing." (The overlapping dialogue is once again gorgeous here.) Dan, far from being scared off by this obvious gambit, jumps in with both feet: "I know! If we hooked up, then it puts everything in fast-forward!" Less than one second later, they are discussing marriage with these fake shivers about how much more grownup they would be than everybody else if they became a couple forever and ever, and fake-agree to take it slow and not become the mutually obsessed boring stay-at-home one-creature-in-two-bodies couple they are obviously going to become in five seconds. It's so cute!