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31 January 2010 @ 05:24 pm
[o57] gossip girl : storybook endings  
Title: Storybook Endings
Author: In Fair Verona
Genre: Romance + Adventure
Pairing: CBN
Rating: T
Summary: Blair Waldorf never believed in fairy-tales. However, weeks after her best friend left for boarding school, Blair finds herself enthralled by the pages of an old book, and is thrown in the midst of a strange new world, at the center of a war, and in between a prince and a knight.

PROLOGUE | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13

A/N: Not much to say this time! These last few chapters have been looking at the 'bigger' story outside of C&B but within the next chapter or two it's going to be very C&B-focused! Also, I think I have decided... there will be 18-ish chapters? I can't believe I've been writing this for over a year! I'm so slow!

It was like time suddenly stopped working properly and instead decided to tick torturously on by like moving molasses. The door flung itself inward, cascading light from the crystal chandeliers across otherwise oblivious and intertwined pair. Hair, disheveled. Hands in places they really shouldn't have been. It was very much like watching a car crash, and Blair was unable to pull herself away.

The sounds of jaws dropping all around the room finally pulled Aaron out of his trance. He blinked in the light, furrowed his brow and pulled away abruptly, looking at the girl in his arms as though he too were equally surprised with her presence. To be honest, he actually was. "You…" Aaron held the girl at arm's length, "are not Lady Freya."

"And you…" Jenny furrowed her brow in disgust, shifting her accusing gaze away from Aaron and towards the scarlet-clad brunette, "are not who I thought you were either."

"Mr. Rose, what is the meaning of this?" Lady Catherine demanded, placing a hand on her hip, "Trying to make a fool out of me at my own party?"

"Oh, no, of course not, m'lady. It was an honest mistake…"

"…and here I thought we shared something." The lady looked at him scornfully, though she was quickly interrupted by a staunch red-head who scampered to the front.

"I don't see why you should be so upset Lady Catherine. It wasn't you whom Mr. Rose swore to love every day until his last." At this, Lady Catherine's eyes piqued with curiosity, but they practically jumped out of their sockets when other socialite shoved her way in front of the rest of the party-goers, fingers pointed accusingly at the first woman.

"Yes, because that would be me," The second socialite insisted, throwing an intimidating stare in Aaron's direction, "Isn't that right, Aaron darling?"

"Ladies, ladies…" Aaron held up his hands in defense, "I assure you, this is all just a big misunderstanding."

"Yes, it is, and one that I don't intend to be a part of." Jenny remarked dismissively, making a move away from the artist and towards the door. Much to her disappointment, the gathered women were not ready and willing to let the young girl get away. At least, not without so much as a scratch.

"Like it or not, blondie, you already are." Poppy Lifton emerged like a vulture hunting for its prey, effectively blocking the younger girl in her path. "You know, for someone who claims to be the prince's soulmate, you seem to rather enjoy throwing yourself at men who are already spoken for." The raven-haired girl narrowed her eyes at the blonde, eyeing her with scrutiny.

"Does it look like I'm enjoying it?" Jenny asked in frustration, trying to weave her way around the taller girl.

"No, you look like a pathetic wannabe who got caught playing dress-up in mummy's closet." Poppy responded icily, reaching forward and grasping Jenny's arm with an iron grip, "A word of advice… in the future, I would watch where you put your filthy little hands." She released her grip on the girl's arm and Jenny shoved herself past the intimidating socialite hurriedly. The blonde pushed her way through the disapproving crowd until she found herself face to face with her royal rival.

"This isn't over." Jenny mumbled, as eyes that were on the brink of tears narrowed themselves into a vengeful glare.

"Really?" Blair Waldorf glanced quickly around the room, "Because I'm pretty sure that it is, Little J." The brunette dead-panned, tilting her to the side with a forced smile and a light-hearted dismissal. "Run along now." Jenny walked angrily past her before stalking out towards the foyer in a huff of mortification. Blair watched her retreat, at the very least admiring the girl's tenacity. Not wanting to witness Aaron's own persecution, Blair quickly made a beeline for the back of the room, where Nathaniel was waiting for her.

"Everything went according to plan." Nathaniel stated obviously, "But you don't look all that satisfied."

"What? Well, I am." Blair reassured him, "I'm more than relieved that this brief yet disruptive Jenny debacle has been effectively dealt with." The girl dusted off her hands, turning to Nathaniel with a victorious smile. The boy was focused on something just behind her head, and Blair slowly turned her head to find Lady Catherine quickly approaching them.

"Well, well, Miss Waldorf." The lady stopped shortly in front of them, looking at Blair with a mixture of respect and resentment. "Employing the playboy's five-star reputation to humiliate your adversary… I am impressed. Though, not entirely delighted that it had to take place under my roof." Blair fidgeted awkwardly under her gaze and opened her mouth to speak, but the elder lady was quick to interrupt, "Don't worry, I won't say anything of your orchestrations. Women who think like us… well, we have to stick together." Blair smiled in relief as the woman turned to leave. "Oh," Lady Catherine stopped, turning to face them once again, "but I will gladly take Mr. Archibald as my new escort for future events, seeing as to how you've pretty much destroyed the the integrity of my old one." The woman offered the pair a mischievous wink and a light-hearted farewell before taking her leave.

"Do you think she's serious?" Blair asked worriedly, looking at Nathaniel with the most sincere of apologetic looks.

"Probably." Nathaniel exhaled, "But it could be a lot worse. She's not horrible looking." As soon as he had spoken the mirth from his voice dropped an octave, as did his smile when he witnessed a most displeased looking exile barreling in their direction. "Uh… oh." Blair looked at him strangely but didn't have the opportunity to inquire about the boy's sudden attitude change before Aaron's icy voice sent a chill of regret down her spine.

"You couldn't have at least given me a warning?" The artist inquired over her shoulder.

"Aaron," Blair turned around, looking at the boy apologetically. "I know, I should have filled you in on the plan…"

"Fill me in, or ask my permission?" The boy suggested heatedly, "I guess it's all the same to you."

"Well, I didn't think that it would be that big of a deal. I mean, I just assumed you'd say 'yes' anyway. When do you ever turn down the offer to hook up with a half-decent looking girl?" Blair reasoned light-heartedly. The other boy did not find her sentiments so amusing.

"What's that supposed to mean?" Aaron asked, "That I have no standards? That I'll chase after anything in a skirt?"

"Well, to be fair, that's kind of the image you project." Blair rebuffed, folding her arms and looking at the boy expectantly.

"It might be what other people see, but I thought you knew better. I thought we were friends."

"We are!" Blair insisted, placing both hands on the boy's shoulders, "Honestly, I don't know why you're so worked up."

"Well, for one, you've just gone and soiled my reputation in front of the whole lot of the kingdom's most reputable noblewomen and two, now their husbands want my blood."

"Your reputation?" Blair scoffed, "Aaron, everyone already knows you're the village man whore! Those women just act oblivious to protect their own reputations!" As soon as the words left her lips, the brunette knew they shouldn't have. The way his face fell, and all of the trust and respect he had for her drained from it, nearly broke a part of her.

"Oh. I see." Aaron responded quietly, "Well, you're not that much better than those women, Blair. Sleeping around with a playboy prince, a boy who has his own harem, and yet you're still surprised when he tells you that it meant nothing." The artist reminded her, "He didn't even bother to lift a finger to help you when Jenny accused you of being a fraud. He could have ended this in seconds just by saying the word, but he didn't. I did." He shook his head, "I guess involving yourself with a 'whore' is okay with you as long as he's high-class."

"Aaron, that's enough." Nathaniel interjected, worried at Blair's lack of response throughout the artist's tirade. It was a rare moment when the brunette had nothing to say in retaliation.

"It'll happen to you, too, you know?" He looked at Nathaniel seriously, "You'll get pulled into her little schemes, and go from being seen as an ally to being seen as an advantage."

"Aaron, no, it's not like that-" Blair protested, looking at the boy pleadingly. He briefly afforded the girl a spare glance before turning and walking away from them, away from her. Unlike their parting in Ivalice, this time it truly felt like he was going away for good.

"The pieces are in place." Carter Baizen declared, staring down at the marble chessboard before him. He glanced over his shoulder at the amazonian blonde draped across the brocade blue chaise behind him. "Serena…"

"I'm sorry," Serena mumbled incoherently, drawing herself from her thoughts, "did you say something?"

Carter forced down his mild annoyance at the blonde's short attention span, instead flashing a charismatic smile as he stalked towards her, "I said… pieces are in place." He walked around the lounge chair, placing his hands at the base of the girl's neck and massaging gently, "This is where you come in, Serena, my dear."

"We're going to save Blair?" Serena inquired, closing her eyes and relishing in the tension being released by the prince's expert hands.

"…Indirectly, yes." Carter agreed, sweeping some of her blonde hair behind her shoulders. "You know Blair better than anyone else. I think you'll agree with the sentiment that she's not exactly the type to come willingly, if she believes she is where she needs to be."

"It's true. Her tenacity knows no bounds."

"Which is why… you're going to have to make her come to us." Carter instructed, walking around the chaise and coming down on his knees in front of Serena. "While earning the trust of those around her. Remember, Blair isn't the only one being swindled by Prince Charles. There's… Nathaniel, and Daniel, and Vanessa. All innocent souls; little lambs who are looking for a shepherd to lead them away from the lion. That's where you come in."

"I don't know, Carter. How am I supposed to convince them to join us? They all seem pretty happy where they are."

"Oh, but they are anything but." Carter insisted, "You just have to be yourself, Serena. They won't be able to resist." He reached forward, tucking a stray blonde lock behind her ear. "I've already made the arrangements. You will leave within the hour." The prince explained in a way which left no room for arguments. Placing his hands back on his thighs, the boy rose to a standing position, placing a quick kiss on the girl's forehead in the process. "Remember, Serena. We're the good guys." He gave the blonde a meaningful look before quickly turning away and towards his next order of business, leaving a contemplative blonde in his wake.

Blair paced nervously back and forth in front of the throne room's elaborate doors, twiddling her thumbs as she contemplated her future. Beyond those doors lay her fate; and while she was fairly confident that she had the upper hand, even the smallest sliver of uncertainty was enough to unnerve her. Especially when the stakes were so high. Like, you know, life or death. It almost made her miss the misdemeanors of her youth, although usually those were Serena's doing and Blair was just bailing out the troublesome blonde. Nonetheless, what she wouldn't give for a slap on the wrist at the hands of public authority. It seemed so much more civilized than "off with her head".

Fuck. At least in Manhattan you have the right to a fair trial.

Also, what exactly happened when one died inside of a book? If she were sentenced to death, would this– could this be her wake-up call? Perhaps she would find herself back in New York, in the comfort of her own bedroom with her ever-loyal maid nearby. If it wasn't the happy ending she was hoping for, then the only other real option was that she would actually… die. Her parents wouldn't even be able to give her a proper funeral. Nobody would be there to speak words in her praise or to scatter her ashes from the top of the Eiffel Tower or commemorate a plaque in her honor. Instead, she'd probably be lucky if they bothered to wash the dirt off her decaying corpse before throwing her out as a midnight snack for the vultures. Yes, such a death was definitely not an option. Not for Blair Waldorf.

"Blair. Are you ready?" Nathaniel's voice drew her from the thoughts as the dusky haired boy approached her. Blair nodded with reluctance as she slipped her hand into his, seeking comfort in the reassuring squeeze the knight offered. "Everything will work out, Blair." He said it to appease her, but it came out sounding like he was also attempting to convince himself. It was a detail that didn't go unnoticed by the other girl.

"Do you really think so?" Blair asked, "When this all started I thought I had at least four people on my side. You're the only one left, Nate. You're the only one who still believes in me."

"Well, I'm not going anywhere." The knight reassured her, placing his free hand on the knob. "Shall we?"

"No time like the present." Blair resigned, hitching her breath in anticipation as the knight turned the knob and pushed the door ajar. The pair stepped into the lavish throne room, approaching the lithe blonde who stood resolutely in front of the prince. Aaron was, unsurprisingly, absent, and Jenny barely even graced the girl with a glare. It was Daniel who acknowledged their presence, stalking heatedly towards her with an exasperated Vanessa in tow. The scribe stopped short right in front of Blair, lowering his voice to an angry whisper.

"How do you live with yourself? Even after everything I said to you… you still had to get your way." He spat accusingly, "Well since you don't need my help to ruin people's lives, enjoy not having it ever again."

"Dan-" Blair looked at him sympathetically, reaching out a hand which was aggressively pushed away.

"No, don't. I'm done." The boy brushed past her angrily, stalking over to the back of the room to watch the scene play out before him.

"Now that both parties are present," Charles announced loudly from the throne, "Shall we get this over with?" He looked at Blair expectantly, watching as the girl left Nathaniel's side and approached the throne, stopping when she came to settle in beside Jenny. The prince turned to face one of his many servants, beckoning the young man forward with his expectant stare. "The results, if you will?" The prince drawled with disinterest, while most of his attention remained on the one unpolished spot on his shoe.

The servant stepped forward, unraveling a roll of parchment and clearing his throat. "According to a kingdom-wide poll held this morning, the people have nominated… Miss Jenny as their prophesied savior."


Blair felt her stomach sink into itself. This wasn't possible. It was impossible. Not possible. If her feet gave way, she wasn't able to feel them, the only evidence was Nathaniel's strong arm supporting her. Her cheeks were flushing with fear, despite her attempts to maintain her dignity. From the corner of her eye she could make out a delightfully victorious Jenny, fawning all over herself in relief. If Blair had to lose, did it have to be to that insufferable little twit?

"Therefore," The servant continued, "Miss Blair shall be held guilty on a count of treason, which according to law is punishable by death." Two guards quickly removed Nathaniel from her side, instead placing their iron grips on her arms and holding her in place.

"Charles!" Nathaniel exclaimed in alarm, struggling against the guard that was holding him back, and easily shrugging the bigger man off of him. He looked at his friend expectantly, pleadingly, hoping for him to do the right thing. Hoping for him to do anything.

"Don't touch me, you filthy-" Blair struggled against the grip, writhing this way and that. It only made them lock down on their grip even harder, searing red welts into the pale skin of her arm. Blair gasped from the pain, stopping in her attempts at escape and instead turning to face the throne where in a split second her eyes locked with Chuck's. He had the most curious expression on his face. If he hadn't proven himself to be such a dick, Blair would have almost been led to believe that he actually looked concerned.

"Take her away," The servant instructed to the guards as he rolled up his scroll without a second thought. As if sentencing people to their death's was a daily habit along with eating breakfast and brushing one's teeth. Blair gasped as the guards tugged harshly on her arm in their attempt to remove her from where her feet were rather resolutely positioned.

"Wait!" The prince sat up in his seat, looking about the room in alarm. He almost hadn't realized his exclamation until after it left his mouth; something in him, well, it had just snapped. Impulse. Instinct. Whatever you want to call it. He just knew what he needed to do. "The poll is incorrect."

"Excuse me?" Jenny piped up, looking at the prince scornfully. "The people have made their opinion quite clear. They chose me."

"That may be but this is not a democracy." Chuck clarified, putting the young girl back in her place. "You all know the prophecy." He stated matter-of-factly, "That the prince shall fall in love with the queen." He was met with the several intrigued stares from those gathered in the throne room, though nobody looked as curious as Blair herself. "Well… I… I love Blair." He announced boldly, "She is my queen."

What happened after that was pure chaos. The guards quickly released Blair, simply to shove her aside in their attempt to finagle a shrieking and volatile Jenny. Even more curious was Dan's very vocal expression of displeasure at the turn of events. Nathaniel, now too free of the guards, breathed a sigh of relief, quickly joining Blair by her side and looking entirely too unconcerned with Chuck's proclamation.

"Your highness, she's fifteen! You can't possibly do this!" Dan insisted, held back by an alarmed and indignant looking Vanessa, who narrowed her eyes in silent anger at the unconcerned prince.

"Fifteen or fifty, it doesn't matter." Chuck drawled, "Treason is treason, and punishable by death."

"She's a child, Chuck." Vanessa tried to reason, softening her expression to look at the prince imploringly, "Children are innocent. To sentence one to death would make you no better than a murderer."

"Innocent?" Chuck questioned, scratching his chin curiously. "Judging by the way Jenny so purposefully tried to throw herself at me and her little ministrations with our resident artist and exile… innocent, is hardly the word I'd use for that harlot." The prince explained dismissively.

"You're a murderer!" Dan screamed accusingly, shaking himself free of Vanessa's grasp and taking a vehement step forward towards the prince.

"What the hell is the matter with you?" Chuck snapped, and within seconds Dan was under the weight of three of Dalmasca's finest. "Your concern for this insignificant creature is curious, Humphrey." Chuck sank back into his seat, "But I'm already bored. This case is dismissed, as are you all."

At this, Nathaniel quietly tugged on Blair's arm, slowly leading her towards the door, "You don't want to be around if things get ugly," Nate whispered knowingly, pulling a still shell-shocked brunette out after him as the rest of the prince's many attendants began to filter out. This left the prince alone with a stubborn scribe, worried wench, and tearful teenager. He looked at a defeated Dan pointedly; purposefully.

The two men engaging in a silent but dark and heated exchange, before the corners of Chuck's lips curled upward in a self-satisfied smile and he uttered with finality and no room for argument, "Take the girl to the dungeons."

Chuck was still seated upon his throne, with his elbow resting on the arm of the chair and his head cradled thoughtfully in his hand above it. Brows furrowed, he was clearly lost in his own thoughts, so much so that he didn't notice Blair's presence in the room until she cleared her throat. Lifting his head, the prince eyed the girl curiously, wondering what would bring her here on her own. The last time he checked, the girl thoroughly despised him and he knew her to be obstinate enough that even him sparing her life wasn't going to earn him her forgiveness.

"I just wanted to… thank you." Blair spat out, staring at the floor. It was obviously taking a great deal of effort for her to manage the simple display of gratitude. "For what you did." The girl shook her head, willing her eyes to look up at him, "I mean, don't get the wrong idea. I still think you're incorrigible, but I appreciate… you know, still having a head on my shoulders."

The prince nodded in acceptance and acknowledgement of her gratitude.

"Anyway, I thought I should tell you, before you heard it from somewhere else, that… I tried to win on my own. Not by my own merits, but by making Jenny look bad. I doubt it had anything to do with your decision, but… you need to know that I'm not entirely innocent. Nor do I feel very happy about what was done. Not in the end, anyway."

"Well, I know you're not entirely innocent." The prince drawled, earning a roll of the eyes from the exhausted brunette. "Nathaniel already told me about what happened at Lady Catherine's," The prince stared absently at his hand, "and it did have something to do with my decision."

"How so?" Blair folded her arms, looking at the prince expectantly.

"It was the exact proof I needed to know that you really are a queen."

"Do you want to elaborate a little?" Blair prodded, looking at the prince in confusion. He seemed perfectly content with the means she had taken to reach an end, and given the verbal lashings she had received by the others, she found it hard to believe.

"My father taught me that sometimes being a ruler requires you to do the things that others aren't willing to. The gold and the glamour, well, that's not what being royalty is really about." After years of believing his princely state to be a privilege, recent events and the sudden responsibilities forced upon him in wake of his father's injury and illness had led to the boy seeing things in a new light. "It's actually not very glamorous at all. You did something that most people would not have had the bravery to do. Sacrifice a friendship for the greater good."

"Well, yes, but-"

"Jenny wasn't going to go down easily. You did what you felt you had to do."

"In the end, it didn't even matter. They still picked her."

"Another reason I had my doubts. I would never trust the opinion of the uneducated bourgeoisie." Chuck commented lightheadedly.

"Exactly! I could have spared Aaron all of that humiliation and in the end the result would have been the same… none of this-"

"Ugh, would you just… shut up?" The prince interrupted. "What do you want from me? If you're looking for a verbal berating you've come to the wrong person. I don't see anything wrong with what you did… and neither should you."

Blair swallowed the rest of her words, looking at the prince in surprise. "Well, that's reassuring," the girl replied with unhindered sarcasm. She turned to leave but then stopped quickly, glancing at the prince over her shoulder, "Oh, and thanks again. For that whole… pretending to say that you're in love with me because you didn't want me to die…thing." The brunette offered a weak smile, "Don't worry, I won't misinterpret it." With that she quietly departed, leaving a contemplative prince in her wake.

"Actually… I didn't want you to die because I very well may be in love with you." Chuck mumbled, more so to himself. It was something he was beginning to fear, that whole… being in love thing. The prophecy coming true. The feelings he was fearing had to have been real… otherwise, why bother to push her away the way that he had? It was his fear of intimacy as well as his blistering pride that had driven the wedge into his rocky relationship with the girl.

What was even more pathetic was his vain attempt at forgetting her by taking himself up with nearly every girl in his harem. The thing was, he shouldn't have needed every one of them. It should have just taken one, or two, or five to put him back in the place he was before Blair arrived and wheedled her way into his life. Well, he failed at his performance with the first, the second, the fifth, and fifteenth; naturally displacing the blame to the girls who left his room mortified at their inability to arouse the notoriously impassioned prince. After all, he couldn't very well let them the know the truth, he still had yet to admit it to himself.

Jenny Humphrey's hands were black and blistered from the bars of the stone cell that the palace guards had so roughly thrown her in. They were dark and damaged from grasping against the metal rods with all of her might, muffling sobs and pleading for her life to be freed from this place, this prison.

Blair Waldorf was supposed to be here. Not Jenny. The people had made their decision and they chose her. This was further proof, further reason for why Jenny had gone to the lengths she had to try to thwart the prince's plans. He was an egotistical dictator who didn't even think of the wants of his own subjects; much less those of his neighboring kingdom. He didn't deserve his power. He needed to be stopped. The girl sank to her knees, choking out a dry sob in disappointment. Everything she had been through, all of the hard work and preparation, feigning interest in that… that… pig, and all for what? To not even be able to see her father before she was martyred for a lost cause?

"Jenny!" Daniel Humphrey darted forward from the darkness, lowering himself to her level and reaching one of his hands in between the opening in the cell bars to grasp her own, "Jenny, oh… Jenny." He squeezed her palm tightly.

"Dan!" Jenny whimpered hysterically, holding his hand to her heart with desperation, "Please! Please don't let them take me! Don't let them kill me!"

"Jenny, I would give my own life before I let that happen." He promised her, reaching forward and drawing the girl into a loose hug that was obstructed by the metal in between them. "Everything's going to be okay, it's going to be all right. I'm here and I won't let anything happen to you."

"Jenny," Vanessa approached the pair, settling down onto her knees and eyeing the siblings with sympathy. "I tried to talk reason with him… and even Nathaniel…" The bohemian barmaid bit her lip, hanging her head as a sign of failure. "They wouldn't listen to me."

"I'm going to tell him," Dan decided, looking at both girls with determination, "I'll tell him that you're my sister… Rufus' daughter. He wouldn't dare slap our father in the face like that… after everything he's done…"

"No! Dan!" Jenny protested, "You can't! He'll only use it as a means to convict both you and father of being accomplices! I can't… I can't let that happen. I couldn't bear it."

"I think she's right, Daniel." Vanessa agreed, "Charles… he's in a dark place right now. It's clear that he's not the person that we thought he would be when we agreed to help him."

"Jenny…" Daniel looked at his sister tragically, "You are too brave for your own good. You know that?"

The sound of approaching footsteps drew all three to full alert. Daniel stood up quickly, placing his body protectively in front of his sister's as he faced forward, expecting the worst. Much to their surprise, revealed by the dim light of a lantern, was a tall young woman with long blonde hair like waves of grain and sapphire eyes that popped against from the steely grey of her floor-length cloak.

"Who are you?" Dan demanded. He hardly expected for Jenny's executioner to look more like her fairy godmother.

"I'm here to help." The woman replied succinctly as she quickly approached the trio. Still wary, Dan refused to move his spot, rooted stubbornly in defense of his younger sister. "You have to trust me, Daniel. I'm with the good guys."

"How do you know my name?" Daniel inquired suspiciously, however the blonde was quick to ignore him as she shoved her lantern into his hands and then withdrew from her pocket a set of five large keys on a ring.

"I know it's one of these…" The girl mumbled, picking one at random and inserting it into the cell's lock. With no such luck she quickly moved on to the next one.

"Once again," Vanessa prompted, staring at the girl with disapproval, "Who are you, what are you doing, and why?"

"Not to mention, where are you from?" Daniel chimed in, arching a brow in curiosity.

The blonde stopped what she was doing, standing up straight and looking at both of them in frustration. "My name is Serena and I'm trying to save your sister's life because she doesn't deserve to die." The blonde looked at Daniel expectantly, "Is that okay with you or should we resume this game of twenty questions? We don't have much time if we're going to get her out and to a safe place."

"Right." Daniel back away, looking back and forth from the mysterious girl to Vanessa with a puzzled expression. The blonde let out a quiet yelp of accomplishment when she found the right key and quickly proceeded to unlock the cell, pulling the barred door ajar. "Jenny!" Daniel breathed, pulling his younger sibling into his arms protectively, planting a relieved kiss on top of her head. He glanced up at Serena, who was watching the pair with a pleasant smile. "Thank you."

"There's no need." Serena insisted, "Now, you must follow me. At the end of the tunnel is access to a river which flows into the sea. There's a boat waiting there that will take Jenny to safety… but both of you must promise never to speak of this and never to speak of me."

Daniel nodded quickly, "Yes, of course… but where are you going to take her?" He inquired as the foursome proceeded down the tunnel away from the prison cell. He almost tripped over the unconscious body of a knocked out guard, but quickly righted himself just in time to evade the slumbering giant.

"The Zaibach Empire."

"What?" Vanessa looked at her incredulously, "Absolutely not! There is no way she's going to that foul place."

"I'm sorry, last time I checked it was Prince Charles of Dalmasca who sentenced Jenny to death, not Carter Baizen. In fact, he's the one who sent me." Serena replied simply, leading them further down the tunnel.

"Why would he send you personally to rescue me?" Jenny asked suddenly, furrowing her brows. "I've never even met the guy."

"Because despite what people may believe, Lord Baizen would never allow an innocent soul to be caught in the crossfire of his feud with the Bass family." They reached the end of the tunnel, stopping at the edge of the water. An inconspicuously dressed young man sat in a tiny row boat that was tied to the nearest wooden post, watching the group anxiously. Serena turned to face the youngest girl, "We don't have much time, Jenny. You're either in or you're out."

"Jenny," Daniel gripped his sister's arm protectively, turning her to face him, "We'll find another way."

"No," The younger girl pulled herself out of his grasp, looking at her brother in earnest. "I want to go." Jenny glanced over her shoulder at the tiny row boat, "I want to go to Zaibach." The blonde admitted, "It will be easier for me to get back to Alexandria from there."

"Jenny…" Dan sighed, trying to find the words to stop her from going. He was afraid of his sister making yet another reckless decision.

"I'm sorry for causing you so much trouble." Jenny breathed, throwing herself at her brother in a tight embrace. The scribe returned the gesture, squeezing her tightly. He released the girl, who took a few steps back and then turned to bid her farewell to Vanessa.

"Take care of him, will you?" Jenny asked with a sad smile, to which the raven haired girl nodded reassuringly. The young blonde inhaled deeply before taking a few decisive steps towards the edge of the water, looking at an expectant Serena and nodding in acquiescence. "I'm ready."

"You're making the right decision." Serena reassured her before turning to the young boy in the boat and summoning him towards them. The young man rowed the tiny raft over to the water's edge, holding it steady for the girl. "Damien, you will escort Jenny to Zaibach and take her to the imperial palace as soon as you dock. Is that understood?" The boy nodded obediently as Jenny slowly stepped into the boat, awkwardly settling into the cold and cramped space. "Be safe." Serena bid the young pair earnestly, watching as the tiny boat floated away into the dark distance; Jenny waving her brother a bittersweet farewell. The mysterious woman turned to Daniel and Vanessa, looking at them both very seriously, "Remember what we agreed upon. You will never speak of me, again." Serena reminded them, quickly taking her lantern back from Daniel and retreating quickly back in the direction from which they came.

"Wait!" The scribe reached out for the retreating blonde but it was too late; she had already gone, becoming very much the vesper she swore them to treat her as.


Ramona Falls - Melectric Aaron & Blair fight; Chuck & Blair talk; Jenny escapes....
(Deleted comment)
honeychuckleshoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:41 am (UTC)
Thanks, hun! I just (aka finally) uploaded the next chapter so please check it out!
(Deleted comment)
honeychuckles: chuck&blairhoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:44 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for the comment! It's actually pretty fun weaving in the plot elements from the show, especially when I see something in the new episodes that I know will translate perfectly into the story. :)

Anyway, just letting you know I uploaded the next chapter, and thank you so much for the comment!
Kiss of Death: distractionartemisphoenix on February 1st, 2010 01:59 am (UTC)
Chuck admits he's in love. Naturally Blair assumes it's just to save her. That, too.

Gah. *sobs* I WISH SHE DIED. Oh well, as long as I don't see her anymore.

Serena's back. It'll be interesting to see what happens with her and Blair.

And Blair/Chuck.

I feel bad for Blair, losing Aaron, Dan, and Vanessa. But Nate's always on her side. (And Chuck loves her and likes what she did..hehe)
honeychuckleshoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:46 am (UTC)
Chuck is the only person who can accept her for who she really is ^_^ So he will always be the one who's still there when everyone else has abandoned ship.

Anyway, just letting you know I finally updated the next chapter! Thanks so much for your review, it means a lot!
courtneybelle: Audreycourtneybelle on February 1st, 2010 09:51 am (UTC)
Yay! Was very excited to see this had been updated. =] Great chapter... I absolutely adore that Nate is so so so on Blair's side, but I understand where Dan is coming from too. ...But obviously, he is wrong. Team Blair all the way.

Chuck was awesome in this chapter. <3 Cannot wait for more (greedy greedy greedy me), and it was brilliant.
honeychuckles: chuck&blairhoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:47 am (UTC)
Haha, thanks so much for your feedback! It's fun writing Blair even though she does some questionable things, it's what makes her human.

Anyway, sorry for the super long wait, but at least the next chapter is now up!
Lisa: kroatoan9lisal825 on February 1st, 2010 10:28 pm (UTC)
Ooh...I just love this story! It is so unusual and brilliant! You have a lovely mind - bravo!

How ridiculously cute and unsure is Chuck and his "profession of love!" Blair is most certainly a queen, indeed.

Can't wait to see where you take us next!
honeychuckleshoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:48 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for your review, I'm so glad that you like the story! The next chapter is now (finally) up, so please read! :D

catrinellecatrinelle on February 1st, 2010 11:59 pm (UTC)
This was superb! I loved how Chuck saved Blair by shouting his love for her.
But I hate how Dan and Vanessa were willing to let Blair die just so Jenny won't. They were supposed to be Blair's friends. I hope Blair won't forgive them 2 soon.
I have no words to descibe how much I loved this chapter but you know what I'm going to ask. When are you posting the next chapter? I'm desperate for more. I mean it. Help a girl out. lol
honeychuckleshoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 03:50 am (UTC)
It's unfortunate that D/V won't support her, but definitely not out of character, I was thinking of how Dan totally sold her out at Georgina's party. Such a jerk thing. :P Anyway, thanks for commenting and I'm sorry for the long wait again, as always, but the next chapter is now up!
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honeychuckleshoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 04:17 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked the chapter! The next one is finally up so please take a read :D
fateiselegantfateiselegant on February 7th, 2010 10:49 pm (UTC)
I felt so bad for Aaron. As much as I love scheming Blair, it's true that she often uses people and this is the first time I've actually felt bad for one of those people.
And I hope Serena wises up soon because Carter cannot be trusted.
CB... oh my gosh. When Chuck declared his love... AH! I was squealing like a fangirl the whole time. Especially when he reveals he's actually in love. *SQUEE*
Although I would have been fine with you killing off Jenny. >:D
Great chapter, update as soon as you can!
honeychuckles: max&lizhoneychuckles on April 2nd, 2010 04:19 am (UTC)
I'm glad you liked the chapter! Haha, killing Jenny would be too easy, plus her being saved has other consequences. Yep, Blair doesn't really think when she uses people, but that's just who she is... but I'm glad you loved the CB moment! The next chapter is finally up, so I hope you enjoy it!
iheartverdi on April 5th, 2010 11:05 am (UTC)
"Well… I… I love Blair." He announced boldly, "She is my queen."
*sooo sweet. good thing chuck saw the light and the error of his ways.

"Don't worry, I won't misinterpret it." With that she quietly departed, leaving a contemplative prince in her wake.

"Actually… I didn't want you to die because I very well may be in love with you." Chuck mumbled, more so to himself.

i fell in love with this story more after reading those lines!

carter is here... oh gosh. i can feel action brewing already.