Sorry for taking forever to review. I hope my readers didn't give up on me!

When I woke up this morning, I felt like I was starting my first day of high school all over again. I was nervous, like really nervous. I mean, it is the beginning of my sophomore year, but I don't even care about that. I don't know what to expect, and I don't know how to mentally prepare myself. So I just… don't.

I sit down and stare into my bowl of cereal. My father left already, so I'm alone. I twirl my spoon around, hitting the sides of my bowl. My cereal is now mushy, and my milk has turned into different colors, but I don't mind, I wasn't that hungry anyway.

I throw out the mush in my sink and rinse out the bowl. When I'm done, I walk into the living room and grab my back pack off of the coffee table. I look at the clock hanging on the wall, and I have a half hour until school starts. I'm walking there, and it only takes about ten minutes, so I decide to sit out on my porch. I need some air anyway.

I sit down on the step and stare at my hands that are cupped on my lap. I don't feel like the old Ally today. I'm definitely not the same girl I was before the crash. I can feel the changes within myself, and I can't say if I like them or not.

I'm so far into my daydream, that I hear someone clearing their throat, causing me to come back to reality. When I look up, Austin is standing on the bottom step, smiling wide at me. I stand up and look at him, "What are you doing here?" I ask with a smile.

"Oh, I can leave if you want…" he says and starts to turn his crutches.

"Hey! That's not what I meant. It's just; I was supposed to meet you at school, so I'm surprised." I say, and walk down the stairs and stand beside him.

"Yes, I wanted to surprise you." He says and leans down, kissing me softly.

"Surprises are good." I say with a smile.

"Let's go." He says.

I raise an eyebrow, "I don't know Austin… Should you really be walking to the school like that?" I ask him.

"Yeah it's fine, trust me." He says.

We walk together in silence for a while. The only sounds around us are the birds chirping and the sounds of cars driving by. I want to Austin to say something… anything. But he doesn't. So I decide that I mind as well do it myself, "So, are you nervous?" I ask him.

"Me?" He asks and laughs, "Of course not." He says.

"Of course not…" I repeat and sigh. Is Austin ever nervous about anything?

"What's the matter?" He asks.

I shrug, "I don't know. I'm kind of nervous I guess." I say.

"There's nothing to be nervous about really, no one's going to act different." He says.

"Are you sure? I mean, they are going to be totally shocked that thee Austin Moon is dating lame Ally Dawson." I say.

"Please don't talk about yourself like that. And plus, I don't care what anybody thinks, even though I doubt that's what they are going to think." He says.

Before I can reply, he speaks again, "And another thing, why do you care so much what people think?" he asks.

"I don't really know." I say, because honestly; I don't. I've always cared so much about what people think of me but I haven't really realized until now that, their opinions do not matter.

"Well you really shouldn't. You're better than that Ally." He says.

"I think you're right." I say.

I follow Austin into the front doors of the school, where everyone is just doing their own thing, like usual. He walks me to my locker, and that's when people start staring, but I don't think they are staring because we are together, I think they are just staring at Austin.

I open up my new locker and shove my notebooks and bag into it. Austin leans casually against the locker next to mine, "Austin…" I whisper.

"What?" he asks with a small smile.

"I think everyone is staring at you." I say, eyeing a girl leaning against a locker across from us, who is visibly staring.

"So?" he asks while his smile widens.

"Isn't it freaking you out?" I ask.

He laughs, "No, are you kidding? I expected that. I mean I'm like a cat with nine lives. Everyone knows about my story by now." He says.

I roll my eyes, "I see you've changed a lot." I say in a sarcastic tone.

I see Wanda notice me from down the hall and she runs over. She squeals my name and grabs me in a big hug. I've pretty much gotten used to them.

"Hi Ally!" She says.

"Hi." I say and hug her back.

"You should hear what people have been saying!" She says happily.

I cringe and look at Austin who shakes his head at me. He grabs my wrist and pulls me to him so he can put his arm around me as he leans against the locker for support.

"What have they been saying?" Austin asks.

"That you and Ally are the new cutest couple ever!" She says, "Well, beside me and Rick."

My mouth drops slightly, "Really?" I ask.

"Um… Yeah. Couldn't you tell Rick and I had something between us?" She says.

I laugh, "Yes, I wasn't saying really to that." I say.

"Oh, you said it about you and Austin. Yes really." She says.

"I told you there was nothing to worry about." Austin says.

The bell rings loudly, and everyone scatters to their classrooms. Wanda waves goodbye and goes off in the other direction. I hand Austin his crutches and look at my paper, "I have history." I say.

"I do too." He says.

"Awesome!" I say.

We both walk into the classroom and everyone falls silent and stares at us. I stop too, and Austin practically runs into me. The teacher notices and walks over to us. I've seen her around before, her name is Miss James.

"Welcome back to school Miss Dawson and Mr. Moon. I speak for the whole class when I say, I'm glad you're both okay." She says with a smile.

"Thank you." Austin says, and I nod with a smile.

The whole class is still staring at us when a girl that was in one of my classes last year stands up, and does the oddest thing… She starts to clap. I look at her confused and that's when the rest of the class stands up and mimics her actions. Why are they clapping?

"Why are they clapping?" I whisper back to Austin.

"They are welcoming us home Ally." He whispers in my ear.

And this is when I know… Everything's going to be just fine.

I'll always remember this experience; the terrifying parts, the traumatizing parts, the sad parts. I know they will haunt me forever, but I know that I have Austin to help me get through it, just like he helped me get through it before. It's made me a stronger person, and even a different person.

I think of life differently now. I think I just sort of took it for granted before, but after watching people I know die, it made me realize how short life really is, and how it can be taken from you in a second. From now on, I'm going to live everyday like it could be my last and I'm not going to hide from my fears.

Tragedies change your life, but you don't have to let them change you forever.

The End.

Author's Note: I hope the ending wasn't too terribly cheesy for you guys, but that's what i came up with! I hope you liked it! I am so sad to be ending this story, because i feel like i really accomplished something with this story because of... you guys! Your reviews have mean't the world to me and i'm so happy you liked my story! This won't be my last story, i am definitely going to continue writing so i hope you check out my future projects!
Love you guys!