A/N: Thank you so much to all who reviewed. I appreciate it more than Tristan and Tori appreciate Westdrive. About this chapter…I really just need to accept the fact that my "Clare" pieces will likely always be longer than my "Eli" pieces.

Disclaimer: If I owned Degrassi I wouldn't have recycled the "rich girl loses money" storyline as quickly as their Powers That Be did.


It's eleven forty-five before I give up on sleep and stop tossing and turning in my bed. I should be sleeping; I have a long day of snowboarding lessons ahead of me. I never used to care much for physical activity, but it really helps my moods. I'm glad my therapist recommended exercise. Something about getting my blood running in a healthy way just makes me feel damn near high. I've been looking forward to this vacation for a month.

My parents thought getting away for the holidays would be good for all of us. My mental health has taken a toll on our family; there is no denying that. I've become so accustomed to my routine that's often enforced by Cece and Bullfrog. I never thought they'd interrupt it and wisk us off to a little cabin in Maine for a vacation, especially a vacation involving SPORTS. Cece wants to try ice-skating on the nearby lake in the morning and I'd be lying if I said the very thought of it didn't amuse me; she has about as much grace as me (which is to say she has none at all). We've only been here for a day; our flight landed at noon and we spent the rest of the day just relaxing in the cabin CeCe found online. "We have to stay here!" She'd said. "It looks like a goddamn Norman Rockewell painting, Mom," I told her. "Shut your mouth, baby boy," she'd replied. Bullfrog shot me a warning look and that was that.

Today Cece baked in the tiny kitchen, Bullfrog and I played darts in the little den, and now I'm pacing in my small room. I want to call someone and talk about what happened with Clare. I NEED to talk about it, because I tried writing about it and nothing came out. I want to talk to Adam, but…I just can't bring myself to call him. Calling him would make this real; the kind of real I can't come back from. If anything bad happens again and Adam knows about it…I won't be able to pretend it was all a messed up fever dream. I need to hold on to that option for now, so no, I'm definitely not calling Adam.

I need to be sure before I talk to Adam about any of this. The problem is that I'm not quite aware of WHAT it is I need to be sure of.

I grab my phone and throw on my coat before heading outside. Waking my parents would be a bad thing; they would assume I'm having an "episode", and the walls in our temporary home are paper-thin. I am not looking forward to the night during this vacation my parents will surely do thinks I'd rather not think about, let alone hear.

Who do I call? Adam's out. Imogen? No. I know we're friends, but it just feels too soon to talk about this stuff with her. As I contemplate whom to annoy with my angsty teenage bullshit, the phone rings and I see the face of the person I should have know I could call all along.

"Hey, Fiona," I answer.

"Eli! Oh my God. I have so much to tell you." I laugh at the excitement in her voice. It's always good to hear her happy.

"Really?" I ask, raising my voice an octive. "That's funny, I have so much to tell youtoo."

"Don't mock me, or you won't get details."

Details of what? "Uh…Fi?"


"What the hell are you talking about?"

"Okay, don't hate me!" I hear her take a deep breath. "I KISSED IMOGEN!"

Whoa. Holy fucking shit. WOW. I know I should be forming words at this point, but the male part of my complex brain cannot get certain images out of my head. Very hot, very explicit images.

"Uhhh….um…" How does one voice words again?

"Haha, I wish I could see your face right now. I bet you have that stupid horny-teenage-boy look."

I doubt she's wrong. "So…uh…"

"Do you remember how to speak English, Goldsworthy?"

"…how about those details?" I smirk even though she can't see it.

"Oh good! You're not MAD, you're just a PERVE!" She sighs with relief, and I chuckle.

"Fiona, I told you…Imogen and I are better as friends." It's true. She's hot, I can't deny that due to the fact that I have working eyes, but we never really connected. I don't think, even for one moment, she ever truly understood what I needed or wanted out of a relationship. I don't fault her for that, though; it just wasn't meant to be. Never was.

"So you're really okay with this?"

"Yes." A facetious thought overcomes me, and I can't stop myself from voicing it out loud: "Pics or it didn't happen!"

"See, this is the reason I like women. They are so much more mature and sophisticated than your kind."


"It's true."

"No it isn't. You like women for the same reasons I do: their soft skin, their small lips, their silky hair, their voluptuous-"


I try not to laugh too loud into the night. "So…at least tell me this: did she kiss back?"

"Yeah." I can almost see her smiling face. "She says she likes me. She doesn't know what it means, but we're going to try to figure it out together. Eli, I am so, so happy."

"Even though you don't have access to your money?" I tease. I probably shouldn't. Fiona sounded devastated when she called to inform me of her familial problems a few days ago.

"Yes! That's how good she makes me feel! LikeI don't even need money!"

"Wow, you've got it bad," I note.

"Ha, you're one to talk. Need I remind you of your former obsession with a certain blue-eyed girl?"

"Uh, yeah, about that…"

"Oh my God, Eli Goldsworthy, what did you DO?"

"I didn't do anything!" I defend. A beat goes by before I add: "SHE kissed ME!"

"WHAT?" She sounds more like a banshee than a human being.

I pull the phone away from my ear, afraid she will deafen me. "…yeah."


I relay the entire story to her, and when I'm done all she do is murmur something about the frostival being an aphrodisiac of sorts.

"Fi, what do I do?"

"Eli, you're the one who said you'd probably always love her. Can you really deny yourself of exploring that love again?"

"Who's to say she even WANTS to?"

"I think her LIPS said so! When they KISSED you!" I smile for what must be the thousandth time in the past twenty-four hours.

"I can't stop grinning. I don't know what's going through her head, but I can't wipe this stupid-ass grin off of my face."

"Just take this break to think about it. Think about how to approach this. Give her some space; let her miss you."

Space. The one and only thing I denied her when we were together.

"Yeah, I think that's a good idea," I agree. "Fiona," I sigh, why is she the only one who can make me float on the clichéd cloud nine we all speak of when we're in love?"

"Like I've said before, I will never understand the power Clare Edwards has over men."

A/N: I have a hard time writing Fiona. Review, please. I'm working on the next chapter now. Clare and…everyone! (Niner throwbacks, anyone?)