As freshman year passed, Austin and Sam soon settled into life at Princeton. In early November, they hit a big milestone by being together for a year. As an anniversary gift, Austin got Sam a stuffed tiger.
"Why a tiger?" asked Sam.
"Well, we are at Princeton," said Austin. "Princeton is the tigers."
"Oh, right," said Sam. "I love it!"
Freshman year seemed to fly by. Austin was studying writing and working on potential stories to send to publishers. Sam was also very focused on her studies as well. And of course, they kept in contact with all their old friends.
One day, in May, Austin was planning on moving out of his freshman dorm into an apartment. And he wanted Sam to join him so they could be together once sophomore year started. He ended up having a big argument with his dad over it.
"Austin, you know how I feel about this," said his dad.
"Dad," said Austin, "why don't you stop trying to run my life! I thought we had already settled this when I walked out of that game a year and a half ago! I want Sam to move into my apartment with me!"
"Austin," said his dad, "you're nineteen now. If you're intent on this, I can't stop you. But I'm just letting you know that I do not approve of it."
"I wasn't asking for your approval, Dad! I just wanted to let you know what my plans were!"
"Austin, look. I already told you, I can't stop you. But..."
Austin cut him off. "Dad, I know."
Soon it was Memorial Day weekend. Sam and Austin went to the Jersey Shore for the holiday. During a barbecue, Austin finally found the chance to ask Sam to move in with him into his apartment.
"You know how I found an apartment to move into?"
"Yes," said Sam.
"Well, I'd like you to join me there."
"Really?" said Sam, a little surprised.
"Yes," said Austin. "Do you want to?"
"I'd love to," said Sam. "What did your dad say, though?"
Austin sighed. "He said he doesn't approve of it, but that if I'm intent on it, he can't stop me."
Sam was a little surprised by Austin's request. Although they'd been together for a year and a half, she wasn't sure if they had reached that point in their relationship yet. But she figured it couldn't hurt to do it. What's the worst thing that can happen? she thought.
May 31, 2003
"Is that the last of it?" asked Austin. Sam had just finished unpacking all her stuff from the dorm into Austin's apartment.
"It sure is," said Sam. "Looks like we're moved in now."
"This is a big step for us," said Austin.
"Sure is," said Sam. As she looked around what would hopefully be her home for the next three years, she smiled. It was actually a pretty decent-sized apartment for someone in college. Austin also was smiling, as he thought about the future.
Little did both of them know it would be setting off of a domino chain that would completely change their lives.
Author's Note: I kind of skipped over their freshman year since I wanted to get to the really good stuff. Please send some reviews!