I do not own Degrassi, any of the characters, or anything associated with Degrassi.

This is my first story. I hope you enjoy it. Review it, if you please. Sorry, it's a bit long. Clare's Point of View:

Summer was a clock-tick away, and I simply could not wait any longer to be done with this exam. I looked back down to my desk, though, to finish my double check. School had never been difficult for me; the social skills were what I needed to work on. Not that I didn't have friends, because I do: Ali, Adam, and…Eli.

I shook my head as if doing so would physically remove the thoughts of him because if I did let my mind wander to thoughts of Eli, which my mind often did, I would never finish checking this exam.

'Focus,' I scolded myself mentally, 'You only have two questions to check over before you can think about Eli all you want.' I took a deep, refocused myself, and reread the questions and my answer. It all looked good to me, so I walked to the front of the room, handed the teacher my test, and walked confidently toward my summer full of nothing but lazy days with my friends.

As soon as I was in the hallway I started to search for Eli or Adam since Ali no longer attended Degrassi, and the likelihood of her being anywhere in the halls was slim. Since I was really looking for Eli, it surprised me when Adam tapped me on the shoulder.

"Those exams were brutal, huh?" Adam started as we headed toward our lockers. "How do you think you did?"

"Fine," I said, somewhat distractedly. Adam was a wonderful friend, and I was truly happy to see him, but there was only one person I wanted to talk to right now, and he seemed to be mysteriously MIA. "How did you do?" I asked as I stopped by my locker, and started to clean it out. I paused only a moment to look at the locker next to mine where Eli should have been doing the same.

Apparently, it wasn't a very discreet look because Adam noticed. "He finished his exam, and skipped out early. Said he had something special to plan," Adam winked at me. "Well, I have to find Drew, and we should get to my mom before she explodes with impatience." Adam chuckled to himself, patted by arm as a goodbye, and headed off to look for Drew, slinging his full backpack over his shoulder.

'Something special to plan,' I thought suspiciously, 'I wonder what he's up to…'

I packed up the rest of my stuff, hiked my bag higher on my shoulder, and headed home. It was such a nice day that I told my mom, who was staying in the house with me this week, that I wanted to walk home. It was a perfect summer day: the sun was bright, leaving everything with a buttery glow, and there was a light breeze. I closed my eyes, took a deep breath of the summer air, and let my mind wander as I walked home.

Of course, when I let my mind wander, it wandered right to Eli. There was no doubt in my mind that I was falling in love with him. We've only been dating for a few months, but they were, hands down, the best months of my life. Even though I had simultaneously gone through my parent's divorce, Eli still managed to make the past few months full of bliss. Although he was very attractive physically, the best part about Eli was his personality, his heart. He was the kindest, sweetest, and most thoughtful person in the world. His deep forest green eyes, the ebony shaggy hair that sometimes fell over his eyes perfectly, and the full, soft lips were all just icing on the cake. Granted, it was a whole lot of icing, but still not the substance of the gorgeous cake that was Eli.

Just as I was thinking this, I arrived home. I poked around, not finding my mother anywhere, and decided to head up to my room and take a nap. A much needed nap in which I dreamed of Eli. Surprise, surprise.

I woke an hour later to the sound of my phone buzzing on my night side table. I rubbed my eyes, and grabbed it, reading the text.

I smiled; it was Eli: Got plans tonight, Edwards?

I responded immediately: Nope. Care to save me from my lonely night?

Luckily, I didn't have to wait long for a response, or the anticipation might have killed me. I'll pick you up in an hour. Dress for activity. You're in for a wild ride. ;)

Something special, indeed. I got out of bed, and immediately ran into the bathroom to wash my face, brush my teeth, and apply some light mascara and a little bit of gloss. I re-curled my hair, trying to get it to lie perfectly. Lastly, I turned to my closet and stood there for a few minutes surveying everything I owned. I finally pulled out a pair of Bermuda shorts and a lacy blouse that was cute enough for a date, and yet still not too dressy. I slipped it on and surveyed my reflection in the mirror. 'Not bad, I suppose,' I thought to myself just as I heard the beep of a horn from outside. My heart skipped a beat, and I quickly grabbed my phone, shoved my wallet in my packet, and leaped down the stairs, taking them two at a time. I raced into the kitchen and quickly scrawled a note to my mom letting her know who I was with, and then I was, finally, out the door.

I couldn't help the smile that immediately jumped to my lips when I saw Eli standing there, holding Morty's door open for me. He was such a gentleman. I walked up to the car, but didn't get in just yet. Eli was taking in my outfit, head to toe, a devilish smile playing on his lips. I took in his appearance as well. He was wearing a pair of his signature black jeans, a gray button down with the sleeves rolled up, and a black v-neck under the button down. He was, in a word, perfection.

And just as I was finishing my once over of him, he caught and held my gaze, those deep eyes telling me that he, magically, saw in me everything I saw in him. "You look ravishing tonight, Miss Edwards," he whispered to me before leaning down to give me a quick peck on the cheek. "Your golden carriage awaits," Eli gestured for me to get in the hearse, so I slid in, and he closed the door behind me.

I took a deep breath to settle my beating heart as he slid in next to me on the driver's side. "Are you ready for tonight's festivities?" Eli asked me playfully.

"What exactly are tonight's festivities?" The curiosity was killing me.

"Oh, you'll see," Eli flashed a signature smirk at me, and winked. 'Swoon,' I thought to myself, and then blushed. Eli's smirked grew more pronounced; almost as if he could read my mind.

A few minutes later we pulled into the parking lot of an ambiguous building that could have housed anything. Clearly I was not getting any clues. Eli put Morty in park, and turned to me. "So, this may seem a little weird," he started out, "but we've never done anything like this before, and I thought it could be fun." He paused for a moment, and I simply raised my eyebrow, waiting for more of an explanation. "Of course," He continued, "I always have fun when I'm with you."

I laughed, but blushed with pleasure. "As I, with you, Casanova," I shot back playfully, "And you have officially rekindled my curiosity. Let's go in, shall we?" I asked, already getting out of the car. He met me in the front of Morty, and, as we walked in together, he smoothly slid his hand into mine. Our fingers intertwined, and I smiled. It was like they were a perfect fit.

Eli led me into a small room with a desk, a few plants, some posters, and not much else. Eli walked up to the desk and slid the lady behind it a few bills. "Two please," he said to her, but never taking his eyes off of me. I, for once, was not returning his gaze. Instead, I was reading the posters until finally I understood what we were doing here: laser tag.

"I'll admit, it is out of our norm," I started, "but it does sound like lots of fun." Eli looked relived that I felt that way, and pulled me into the next room where we donned our gear. After some quick instructions we were sent out into the field to play.

There was only one family of five and another couple our on the floor playing with us. It was a pretty big room, so it didn't feel cramped at all. And it was great fun, running around, mostly trying to shoot Eli before he got me- which wasn't often. Eli even managed to corner me a couple times. When he did it the fourth time I finally held my hands up in surrender.

"This has been wonderful," I said, slightly out of breath, "but I think I'm done."

"Not a problem," Eli smiled, leaning closer. "We have one more stop to make before our evening is complete." He put his hands on the wall on either side of me, and leaned in so his lips were just touching mine, no pressure, just lightly brushing. My breath caught, and I could feel his slightly labored breath against my lips and on my cheeks. "You hungry?" he asked his lips moving against mine; a bright gleam in his eyes.

"Starving," I replied, my voice, barely above a whisper, shook a little bit, and I felt myself blush.

"Perfect," Eli smirked, pulling back, but grabbing my hand as he did so. We stopped to return our gear, and then walked back out to Morty.

Once again Eli would not tell me where it was we were headed. He just kept one hand on the steering wheel, and the other interlocked with mine, keeping relatively quiet. It was times like these when I wondered what was going through that mind of his. But it was fascinating, almost enthralling, watching Eli think. You could just tell he completely lost himself in his thoughts.

Before I knew it we were parked at a trail head. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but this certainly wasn't it. "Don't you think it may be a little dark for hiking?" I asked.

"Scared?" Eli shot back, a sarcastic edge to his tone. I could just feel the dare in his voice. "Because you know I'm here to protect you, right, Clare?" He smirked at me again, then handed me a flashlight. "You take this," he said as he leaned into the back to pull something out. "And I will carry this," Eli announced, producing a full picnic basket. I smiled. That was so romantic. "There is this great spot of the end of the trail," Eli explained, "It's actually perfect for stargazing, as well as a private little picnic."

We both got out of the car, and started down the trail. Eli was right, at the end, there was a quaint little spot where you had the perfect view of the night sky when you looked up, and was a great spot for a picnic. Eli spread out the blanket he brought with him; we both sat down and started to eat the sandwiches Eli packed. We talked and laughed, and eventually ended up lying down on the blanket, Eli's arms around me, looking up at the stars.

"This is beautiful, Eli, thank you for sharing it with me." I sighed contentedly, and settled my head down on his chest.

"I wouldn't ever want to share this with anyone else, Clare," He said earnestly. "And the sky's beauty is paled in comparison to yours." He whispered, planting a kiss on the top of my head.

"That is such a line," I chuckled

"That may be so," Eli agreed, "but it's still true."

Before I could stop myself, the words slipped out of my mouth, "I love you, Eli." I grew stiff and waited for his reaction.

He paused only a moment to chuckle, "I love you, too, Clare. More than anyone else in the world." He pulled me tighter against his chest.

I propped myself up on my elbow, and stared right into his eyes. As I leaned in a smiled played on his lips, until finally, our lips met. It started out just a soft kiss, his lips silky smooth under mine, but then it grew deeper, and I could feel the truth of our words. This is what it meant to be in love. This was the perfect moment, and I never wanted it to end.