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The Wrong Goodbye is the 22nd episode of the fourth season and the 87th overall.
Transitions in life are usually marked by major events: birthdays, graduations, weddings. But the greater transitions often come out of smaller moments, when we stop and look at who we are. Because each time we see how far we've come, we also see how far we still have to go. In order to fully transform, we might need to free ourselves of everything we've been holding onto to send us on our new path: the right one. But if at the end, you find the person you've become is not the person you want to be, you can always turn around and try again. And maybe the next time you won't be so alone when it's over. Too late to turn back now.
Georgina Sparks turns up looking to get into trouble, and finds out a secret Charlie has been keeping. Meanwhile, Serena and Vanessa reluctantly join forces to find Charlie, who has not take Dan's rejection of her well. Blair must make a choice between the men in her life when her life is put in danger.
The episode begins with Serena and Vanessa on their way to the Constance party to find Charlie. Serena says that Charlie's behavior is not her fault, but Vanessa is unconvinced. They begin to argue but eventually, Serena says they should just tell Dan together and find Charlie together. At the party, Dan realizes that something is wrong with Nate, but he refuses to talk about it. Instead, he points out that Dan looks shaken up and Dan admits that Charlie asked him to call her Serena while they were kissing. Nate is surprised, but Dan is distracted when he sees Chuck arrive as he thought he was going to rehab. Nate promises to explain everything later. Elsewhere, Chuck approaches Eleanor and asks where Blair is. Eleanor says she must be there somewhere but advises Chuck to let Blair go to ensure her happiness. Meanwhile, Dan asks Eric if he has seen Charlie, when suddenly Serena, Vanessa, Chuck and Nate approach, all trying to talk to each other. Chuck asks about Blair, but Dan doesn't know where she is. Vanessa and Serena are looking for Charlie and Dan admits that she was acting strangely earlier. Eric brings Kati and Is over, and they explain that they saw Charlie run somewhere. Chuck decides to go to The Empire in case Blair is there and Nate goes with him. He reveals that he told Raina about what her father did and Chuck is furious, explaining that there will be repercussions. However, he is more interested in finding Blair. When they arrive at the hotel, Raina emerges and apologizes for her behavior towards Chuck. He asks if she has seen Blair, but she hasn't. Elsewhere, Russell takes Blair to Chuck's new hotel site and traps her in a room. She manages to secretly call Chuck so that he can hear what is going on and she asks why Russell is doing this and he explains that she is the one thing Chuck loves most in the world. He keeps flicking on a lighter.Back at Constance, it's revealed Georgina is also in attendance; but with her new husband Philip Becker. She admits that she married him to secure Milo's future and live in his loft and that he only married her to have a trophy wife. She walks away and runs into Dan, who she sees is on a mission. She begs to be involved, but he refuses to fill her in and walks off. Meanwhile, Eric calls Lily to tell her about the party. Rufus asks if Charlie has been found yet but Lily isn't worried and just asks Eric to get Serena to call her. Meanwhile, Dan discovers Charlie drunkenly dancing and pulls her away. Charlie is annoyed with him but Dan apologies for overreacting earlier and suggests they go somewhere to talk. However, Charlie criticizes him for leading her on and pushes another guest over so that she can run away. Vanessa arrives and Dan suggests that they need a new plan. Unbeknownst to them, Georgina watched the whole thing. Elsewhere, Serena is looking at old school photos when Headmistress Queller approaches her and asks how she is, and introduces her to Cecily von Ziegesar (the author of the Gossip Girl novels). She adds that she is slightly disappointed that Serena decided to go to Columbia as she wanted her to get away from New York. When she has gone, Serena is approached by the same young girls who talked to Chuck and they ask whether she chose Nate or Dan. Right after, Georgina arrives and asks to be let in on whatever is going on. Serena refuses, but Dan and Vanessa arrive explaining that they've lost Charlie again. They all receive texts from Charlie, reading: "I'm sorry, goodbye". They agree to split up to look for Charlie but refuse to involve Georgina. Later, Georgina walks past Charlie, who has overheard the conversation. Back at Chuck's building site, Blair asks why Russell keeps flicking his lighter and he explains that things are taking longer than expected. Chuck, Raina and Nate arrive and run up to find Blair, and Nate pauses to call 911 after smelling gas. As they arrive, they hear Blair trying to placate Russell by saying that she managed to find a way out of hating Chuck and the Bass' and he can too. Russell is not convinced and again begins to flick the lighter, but Chuck bursts in with Raina. Raina says that she forgives Russell for the fire, saying it was an accident, but when he hands over the lighter she announces that he is going to jail and she will not be visiting him. Later, as Nate and Raina give their statements, Blair explains that she needs to go and find Louis. Chuck offers to drive her and Blair thanks him. She explains that she called him because she couldn't see to dial 911 and he was still on her speed dial. Chuck apologies for his behavior and suggests they have a drink to calm Blair's nerves. She agrees. Meanwhile, Raina tells Nate that she wants to go home to Chicago, and they part ways.
Instead of having one drink, Blair and Chuck crash a bar mitzvah and begin to dance and have fun together. Meanwhile at Constance, Georgina finds Charlie, who is looking for an open window for some to get some air. Georgina tells her to go to the top floor. Right after, Serena arrives, and after some prodding, Georgina tells her where Charlie went. At the loft, Vanessa goes to find Charlie but instead finds the manuscript to Dan's novel Inside. Back at the Constance, Louis is waiting for Blair, and Sophie tells him that Blair isn't coming. He insists she is. Back at the bar mitzvah, Blair pulls Chuck into another room and the two start kissing and have sex. Serena arrives in a room on Constance's top floor and discovers Charlie standing by an open window. She begs her not to jump but Charlie tells her that she knows everyone thinks she's crazy. Serena says that Charlie can be helped and offers to get Dan, but Charlie says he doesn't like her. She says she'll never be like Serena, and Serena replies that it isn't that great being her. Meanwhile, Dan calls Vanessa to find out if she has found Charlie. She says she's hasn't, but reveals she read Inside. Dan becomes furious that she went through his belongings. Vanessa is impressed with the book and admits that she never realized Dan actually wanted to be part of the Upper East Side group. Dan says he could never publish the book as he would be an outsider forever, but Vanessa tells him not to care about who he hurts or what people think of him. Dan reminds her that these people are now his friends and family, but Vanessa tells him to man up and publish it. Dan hears from Serena that Charlie has been found and ends his conversation with Vanessa, telling her to put the book back and get out of his room. They end the call on bad terms and Vanessa steals Dan's manuscript as she leaves. Meanwhile, Chuck and Blair head to the party and Blair admits that she will have to tell Louis that it's over. Chuck asks if she loves Louis, and Blair says she does, but not like she loves Chuck. She explains that with Louis, her love is lighter, more simple and makes her happy, but with Chuck it's intense and all-consuming. She expects that Louis will have left by now as she has been so long. Chuck tells her to drop him off at Constance and then take the limo to the consulate. When they get to Constance, Chuck is surprised to find Louis still waiting. Louis says that he believes in Blair and knows she will figure it out and arrive. At that moment, Blair appears as Chuck left his jacket. She turns to Louis and says they need to talk, but Chuck interrupts and says the pair have his blessing and he is pleased they are getting married. Right after, Blair finds Chuck and asks him why he did that. They talk, and he admits that he only wants her to be happy and if Louis gives her that, that's good enough for him. They tell each other they will always love the other, and she leaves with Louis.
Back upstairs, Charlie says that everyone wants to be like Serena and she can do everything she wants. Serena reveals that she has never made any choices for herself, and all her decisions were about making other people happy but she only succeeded in hurting them. Charlie asks if she could choose between Dan and Nate again, who would she choose, and Serena calls them to ask them to meet her there. When they arrive, she apologizes for leading them on and not making a choice. They forgive her, and thank her for the apology. Charlie also apologizes for everything she did and Dan decides to take her home. Downstairs, she steps aside to call Carol, but when she does so, she tells the person that things went perfectly. Georgina approaches, and informs Charlie that she knows she was never on medication and gives her her phone number to call if she is ever around again.
Three weeks later at the VDW's, Rufus reads that Russell will be in prison for twenty years. Blair is preparing to spend the summer in Monaco with Louis, and is civil when she says goodbye to Chuck. She and Dan agree to link their queues on Netflix so they can still watch moves together. Charlie emerges from her room with her things all packed, and explains that she is ready to go home to Florida by bus to think. She and Serena hug goodbye, and she also says goodbye to Dan. At The Empire, Nate and Chuck talk about recent events. Chuck admits he wants Blair to shine, and she does when she is with Louis. Nate is surprised at his maturity, and suggests they have Lost Summer together. They spin the globe and pick their point. At the Waldorf's, Blair and Serena are finishing packing for their trips. Serena explains to Blair that she's going to California to be with CeCe to find herself by being alone, and she finally made a choice for herself. Back at the VDW's, Dan announces he wants to head to The Hamptons and invites Eric to come. Rufus asks if it has to do with missing Charlie, but Eric says it isn't Charlie he is missing. Rufus then suggests Dan do some writing, and he admits that his writing days are behind him. Meanwhile, Vanessa meets with a publisher who is very impressed with Inside. He asks who the author is, and she says she can't reveal but they can send the check to her; and she will pass it to the author. When she hands her address over, she explains she is moving to Barcelona because nothing is keeping her in New York anymore. In California, Serena runs into a guy reading her favorite book, The Beautiful and Damned. While they talk, she discovers he works for David O. Russell, who is planning to turn it into a movie. She agrees to help him do a scene by scene comparison before his meeting. Meanwhile, Charlie arrives back in Florida and is greeted by Carol. When she gets off the bus, she hands over a bag of blank checkbooks for the trust fund of Charlie Rhodes. Carol thanks her, and calls her by her real name, Ivy Dickens, as she pays her. She adds that now her family will never come looking for the real Charlie now. Once Carol walks away, she pulls out Georgina's phone number and it's revealed she took one of the checkbooks. At the Waldorf's, Dorota empties the trash in Serena and Blair's shared bathroom, but a quick shot reveals a positive pregnancy test lays on top of the trash.
- Blake Lively as Serena van der Woodsen
- Leighton Meester as Blair Waldorf
- Penn Badgley as Dan Humphrey
- Chace Crawford as Nate Archibald
- Ed Westwick as Chuck Bass
- Jessica Szohr as Vanessa Abrams
- Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey (Credit only, as she does not appear in the episode)
- Kelly Rutherford as Lily van der Woodsen
- Matthew Settle as Rufus Humphrey
- Connor Paolo as Eric van der Woodsen
- Michelle Trachtenberg as Georgina Sparks
- Margaret Colin as Eleanor Waldorf
- Nan Zhang as Kati Farkas
- Zuzanna Szadkowski as Dorota Kishlovsky
- Hugo Becker as Louis Grimaldi
- Michael Boatman as Russell Thorpe
- Tika Sumpter as Raina Thorpe
- Sheila Kelley as Carol Rhodes
- Jan Maxwell as Headmistress Queller
- Joanne Whalley as Sophie Grimaldi
- Nick Cornish as Philip Becker
- Nicole Fiscella as Isabel Coates
- Cecily von Ziegesar as Herself
- David O. Russell as Himself
- Rolling in the Deep by Adele
- In Safe Hands by Badly Drawn Boy
- Perfection by Oh Land
- All For a Woman by The Airborne Toxic Event
- Changing by The Airborne Toxic Event
- Cherry Tree by The Duke Spirit
- Space + Time by The Pierces
- The Great Unknown by Figurines
- Hook and Line by The Kills
Eleanor (on Blair to Chuck): She is finally getting her fairytale and she doesn't need the big bad wolf to ruin it.
Eric: Just tell me that no one's trying to stop a wedding, runs a ponzi scheme, give anybody fake cancer or turn into a justifiably vengeful townie.
Georgina: I haven't been this bored since I believed in Jesus.
Serena (to Georgina): I'd ask how you are but I don't really care.
Georgina: If Milo isn't in trouble in 17 years then I've done something wrong.
Vanessa (to Dan): Be a great man instead of always being a good boy.
Vanessa: When are you going to realize you were a better person before the day you asked Serena out four years ago?
Dan: When are you going to realize I had a better life before you climbed up my fire escape four years ago?
Blair (to Chuck): What we have is a great love. It's complicated, intense, all consuming, no matter what we do or how much we fight it will always pull us in. What's mere happiness in the face of all that?
Chuck: There's a difference between a great love and the right love. I left The Empire State Building last year two minutes after you didn't show. Louis waited all night. This is your chance at happiness. You think you shouldn't want it because you've never had it and it scares you, but you deserve your fairytale.
Blair: We make our own fairytales.
Chuck: Only when we have to. You don't. How do you feel about tonight?
Blair: Awful. I just- terrible. In fact, I've never felt like this before.
Chuck: Guilt. I feel it too. Maybe I'm actually growing up after all.
Blair: I didn't want to let you go just yet.
Chuck: Don't ever let anyone tell you you're not powerful. You're the most powerful woman I know.
Blair: It's taking all the power I have to walk way from you.
Chuck: I know. But I need to let you go. You need to let go.
Blair: I will always love you.
Chuck: I will always love you.
Chuck: You're a good friend.
Nate: One of us has to be.
- This is the second finale that features Dorota, and the first to feature Jack and Ivy. It is also the first to not feature Jenny.
- Gossip Girl author Cecily von Ziegesar makes a cameo in the episode, and she tells Serena that while she has never met her she has read a lot about her.
- This is Jessica Szohr's last appearance as Vanessa Abrams and Connor Paolo's last appearance as Eric van der Woodsen until the series finale New York, I Love You XOXO.
- This is the last time Taylor Momsen as Jenny Humphrey is listed as a member of the main cast.