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Miley had known, coming to Fandom four months ago, that there was a time difference between here and home. Because at home, it had been September when she'd first showed up, whereas here, it had only been the beginning of July.

However, apparently over the past few months, that time difference had evened out – so when she woke up on January first in Fandom and her phone beeped to remind her that college applications were due today, a quick text to Lilly confirmed that the same was the case at home as well.

Which meant she absolutely had to work on her Standford essay. And it was… coming along.

TO THE CEILING AND BACK: A GIRL, A ROPE AND A DREAM

By Miley Ray Stewart

I'm Miley Stewart and I've been told that I've "got nerve." Usually, I do. One time I went exploring and discovered a rattlesnake in my school library (long story). Another time, my brother and I almost drove over a cliff (shorter story, but still long).  But the time I had the most nerve was the Day Of The Rope.

 I'm not sure when I developed my fear of rope. Maybe it was the time in gym class that Joannie told me that if anyone beat her time on the rope-cllimb, she'd make them eat the spare gym uniform that smells like pit sweat. Or maybe it was when May Kim broke a nail climbing the rope and when it was my turn, I ran out and yelled "See ya, suckers!" and got detention for it. Either way, I've been afraid of that rope for a long time. And I never would've climbed it if it weren't for my Best Friend Forever, Lilly.

I have a horse named BlueJeans. He's great. We got him when I was six and lived in Crowley Corners. Then we moved to Malibu and he didn't come with us until this summer, when Uncle Earl brought him up. Also sometimes he talks. But this story is from Crowley Corners. When Lilly was visiting me two summers ago. I had just gotten back from a ride on BlueJeans, and as I was leading him back to the stables, I tried to explain to Lilly why she would enjoy it.

"Lilly," I said, "you have GOT to come with me next time. It is SO much fun."

Lilly, who normally has WAY more nerve than me, was quick to scoff. "SO not going to happen," she told me. She was drinking my coffee, but since I'm a nice, caring person, I decided to let it go.

"You don't know what you're missing," I said.

"I think I do," Lilly said. "And it looks like it chafes."

Because I'm mature and sensitive, I realized that the reason Lilly wouldn't ride BlueJeans is because she was scared. And Daddy's always telling me that we should overcome our fears, so I knew the best way to handle the situation.

"Well at least BlueJeans has hips, you gutless little weenie," I said.

"I'll make you a deal," I said maturely. "If you ride BlueJeans, I'll do something I'm scared of. I'll climb the rope in the gym."

But, and I'm not proud of it – I tricked her. I distracted her and had my friend Saint Sarah pull me up on a string, like the kind I dancers use at a concert, then let Lilly see me at the top. It was pretty impressive. But it was a LIE, and when Lilly rode BlueJeans later that week, I felt bad. I felt… guilty. I felt something had to be done.

So I climbed again. And this time, it was real. I overcame my fear! I pushed my own boundaries! And when I smiled down on the dusty glistening gym floor, I realized one thing for sure: life WAS a climb. And the view was great. Just like Travis said back in Crowley Corners that one time and I put it in my song.



Miley read it over once, then twice, sent it to Lilly for a quick proofread, and then hit send.


Standford was going to love this.

[[Oh god the world's worst essay behind the cut. WORST. Essay inspired by (but not taken from) Hannah Montana 4x09, "I'll Always Remember You," and events in her story are taken from 4x07, "Love That Lets Go." Mistakes are Miley's, obviously. Open!]]

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