Summary: Clare and Eli indulge in a bit of nostalgia.

Disclaimer: Don't own Degrassi. 'Nuff said.

Author's Note: Sorry, I'm a little behind on this.

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Fort
By: Lady Azura

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It came out of nowhere, right in the middle of a study session.

"What's your favorite childhood memory?"

Eli glanced up at his girlfriend, his fingers hovering over the keys of his laptop as he allowed her question to fully register. He could feel Clare's eyes on him and met her gaze. She arched a brow expectantly, waiting for his answer. Eli sighed.

"My favorite childhood memory?" He repeated.

"Yeah. Come on, you have to have at least one." Clare insisted.

Eli frowned, thinking hard. For the longest time, only sadness and tragedy seemed to plague his life, most of which stemmed from Julia and her untimely death, and the guilt that had all but consumed him. Furrowing his brow, he tried to recall a time before that – before Julia, before Mike, before the hoarding and the anxiety and the Bipolar Disorder. It took him a while, but after sifting through a number of painful, unpleasant memories, he finally remembered one.

"I was… five. Cece and Bullfrog took me to see a Smashing Pumpkins concert. They had VIP tickets, so I got to meet the band backstage and everything. It was really cool." He said with a grin.

"Wow. That must've been something."

"Oh, it was." Eli turned his attention back to her. "What about you, Edwards?"

Clare beamed, leaning back against the couch. "When we were little, sometimes me and Darcy would build these forts – out of, like, chairs and blankets. Then we'd spend the whole day in there, playing Barbies and stuff. It was so much fun and we never wanted to stop playing, so when it was time for bed, my dad would always have to threaten to tickle us until we did." She smiled sadly as she thought about her sister, who she hadn't seen in almost three years, and when her family was still that – a family.

Eli watched her closely, the sadness in her eyes – the longing for what no longer was – not lost on him.

"Let's make one." He said, snapping Clare out of her reverie.

She threw him a confused look. "What?"

"A fort." Eli elaborated, shutting off his laptop and setting it off to the side.

"Are you serious?" Clare asked, staring at him incredulously.

"Why wouldn't I be?" Eli asked, standing up. "Come on, Edwards. Let's do this."

Clare rolled her eyes in amusement, but did as she was told.

"You're unbelievable, you know that?" She told him.

Eli just smirked at her.

oOo

They spent the next half hour retrieving spare blankets and sheets from the basement. After pushing the coffee table out of the way, they set up chairs from the dining room around the couch to give the fort more height, before draping the sheets over them. Eli used some pillows to keep one half secure while tying knots around the chair legs for the other half. Once they were done, Clare took a step back to admire their work, a small smile tugging at her lips.

"Well?" Eli said expectantly.

"Hold on." Clare replied, getting on her knees and crawling through the small space between the couch and one of the chairs.

It was a lot smaller than she remembered, although then again, the last time she'd built a fort, she was about seven. When Eli joined her inside, it only got that much harder to move around. There wasn't a lot of room to accommodate them both; they were practically shoulder-to-shoulder. She brought her knees to her chest while Eli sat cross-legged.

"I think we did pretty good, don't you, Edwards?" Eli remarked.

"Yeah… it's kind of cramped, though." Clare said.

"I know a way we can make it more roomy." Eli teased, wiggling his eyebrows in a suggestive manner.

Clare scoffed and rolled her eyes, nudging him playfully.

"You're such a dork." She said.

"But a cute dork." Eli added hopefully.

"Oh, the cutest." Clare assured him, her eyes twinkling mischievously as she leaned over and kissed him softly.

She felt Eli smile as soon as their lips touched, his hand reaching up to cup her face, but before he could deepen the kiss, Clare drew back.

"That's it?" Eli pouted. "After all the blood, sweat and tears that went into this fort, all I get is a peck?"

"Oh, shut up." Clare said playfully, pushing him back and laying on top of him.

Their eyes locked and Clare smiled sadly, touching his face.

"I don't want you to leave." She confessed quietly.

Eli placed a comforting hand over hers. "Clare…"

"I'll miss you too much. I know it's selfish, but… what am I going to do without you?" She asked.

"You'll have Adam." He assured her, bringing her hand to his lips and kissing her knuckles.

"It won't be the same without you there." She said.

"Probably not… but we'll Skype every night. And I'll visit whenever I can." Eli replied. "Every birthday, every Christmas… you name it."

"Even my graduation?" Clare asked uncertainly.

Eli smiled. "I wouldn't miss it for the world."

Clare smiled back, before leaning down and brushing her lips against his. It started out sweet, but before long desperation kicked in. Rolling over, they nearly knocked over a chair, causing them to laugh, breaking the kiss briefly before resuming where they'd left off. Before long, their clothes were shed, leaving them in only their undergarments. It wasn't their first time together, but it was still awkward trying to maneuver around in such a confined space. Eli pulled back momentarily to fish through his pockets, eventually finding what he was looking for. Tearing open the wrapper, he rid himself of his boxers and rolled on the condom. Clare shimmied out of her underwear before laying back and parting her legs, just as Eli knelt between them.

Then he was inside her. Tilting her head back, she let out a sigh when his lips found her neck, peppering it with small kisses. He moved slowly at first, trying to find a steady rhythm before settling on a comfortable pace. Clare moaned, squeezing his hips with her thighs, begging him to go faster. Eli obliged, his thrusts quickening with every moan and sigh that passed her lips. She gasped, arching her back and raking her nails down his back, eliciting a hiss from the boy above her. It was true, what they said. It really did get better every time they did it. She could barely control the noises emitting from the back of her throat – not that Eli minded. She knew he took great pride in pushing her to the brink of ecstasy.

"Eli…" She breathed, squirming beneath him as she neared her peak. "Eli, I'm so close…"

He slammed his hips into hers, his free hand slipping down her body and teasing the bundle of nerves between her thighs. Her breath hitched, toes curling in delight as she came undone. Eli claimed her mouth then, swallowing her cries as she rode out her orgasm, the feeling of her walls clenching around him finally sending him spiraling over the edge as well. His body stiffened above hers, a deep groan erupting from the back of his throat, before he gave one last thrust and slumped against her.

Too absorbed in the blissful aftermath of their lovemaking, neither of them heard the front door open. It wasn't until, in the middle of her nuzzling Eli's neck, they heard a throat clear.

"You kids having fun in there?" Jake's voice teased from outside the fort.

Clare's eyes snapped open in horror. "Jake! Get out of here!"

They could hear him laughing all the way upstairs. Clare buried her face in Eli's chest, completely mortified.

"Oh my God…"

Eli chuckled. "Well, guess we have nothing to hide anymore."

"Shut up, Eli."

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FIN

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I've been meaning to write this for a long time, but I've just been so busy lately with school and personal stuff that it took me longer than I thought. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed.

Please REVIEW and let me know what you think.