Chapter   Ten

A few months later....

"I can't believe this is happening," Karen said out loud.

"I'm really sorry, Karen," the doctor said. "But it was caught in time to do something effective about it. It could be gone within a year. That's was something I always regretted with your mother."

"So there is a chance that this could go away," Karen asked. "You're sure?"

"We did detect it in time, so, yes, there is a chance the cancer will go away."

Karen blinked back tears of sorrow. Why me? Why is this happening to me again she thought. She thanked the doctor, set up another appointment to start treatment and left the hospital. When she got home, Karen listened to her messages.

"Karen, this is your father. Just wanted to know how the doctor's appointment went. Give me a call when you can." Beep "Hey, Karen, this is Taylor, Zac, and Isaac, otherwise known as Hanson. Just kidding. We're having a little party to celebrate Taylor's birthday. Better late than never. Call us and let us know if you can come. Bye!!" Beep "What's up, Kare Bear? It's Kev. Just wanted to give you a call to see how you were doing. I haven't heard from you in a while. Give me a call. I miss you." Beep

Karen teared up when she heard her father's voice full of worry. Karen cheered up a little with the Hanson invite, but she floated back down when she heard Kevin's voice. Listening to Kevin made tears of anger well up in her eyes. How can I put my dad and Kevin through something like this again? I can't do it. It stops right here.

Karen picked up the phone and dialed the Hanson's home number. Taylor picked up. He sounded happy to hear from her. Karen told him she'd be able to make to his party and asked if she could bring a guest with her. Taylor said it was fine. He told her it was going to be in LA, since the group would be there for some concerts and appearances. Then Karen called up Leonardo DiCaprio and asked him he'd go with her. It took some persuading, but she finally got him to agree. He was still riding high on the success of "Titanic", but that didn't make Karen like him any more. There was an idea in her head that Leo might be good for something after all.


A few more months later....

"That's it for MTV News. Be sure to watch for more news ten minutes before the hour, every hour." Kurt Loder nodded towards the camera. "MTV News...." TV clips flash onto the screen. "Where you hear it.... first."

Karen turned off the TV. She had just seen a segment on the Backstreet Boys talking about their US Summer Tour. She was glad to see Brian back on his feet after having surgery. Karen almost passed out when she heard Brian had to have heart surgery. She did a little editorial on it for the LA Times. Karen hadn't spoken to Kevin since he called her about a picture he saw on People Magazine with Leonardo DiCaprio the day before. The cover story was couple's in Hollywood. The picture was taken at another movie premiere Karen attended with Leo as her date. Karen drifted into her thoughts as she heard the phone conversation in her head again....

"What's with the picture, Karen?" Kevin asked.

"What picture?" asked Karen, although she knew what he was talking about.

"The picture of you and Mr. Perfect on People Magazine."

"I went to a movie premiere with him. So what?"

"I thought you couldn't stand him?" Kevin was getting angrier by the second, Karen could tell.

"Well, he's been really sweet to me and I thought I'd give him a chance. It's not like we're exclusive or anything."

Kevin was quiet for a minute. "I thought we had an understanding between us, Karen. I thought you really wanted to be with me."

"How can I be with you when you're never around, Kevin? It's been six months since I've seen you. The only thing I have is MTV News to keep you close to me. I can't do this anymore."

"That isn't fair. You knew my career keeps me busy."

"That's just it, Kevin. You're busy with your career and I have my own to contend with...."

"So you want to stop seeing each other?"

"Yes." It was the hardest thing in the world to tell him this. "It's not working out between us. I'm sorry."

"Don't be." Then Kevin hung up.

Karen wiped away the tears that started falling down her face. Just thinking about it made her cry. But it was something she had to do. Karen had started her treatment with no real results. She didn't want to put Kevin through her type of situation again. It was hard enough telling her father she had cancer, the same type her mother died from.

"No," Karen said out loud. "It's better this way. Even if it tears us apart."

She looked at a picture of her mother and picked it up. Karen didn't stop the tears from falling down her face this time. She just sat there and cried.


"How you doin', Cuz?" Brian asked Kevin.

"I can't stop thinking about her, Brian," Kevin said. "There something she's not telling me."

"Kevin, I think 'People Magazine' said it all," Nick told him. He held up the mag.

"No, I'm not talking about the picture. It has to do with her, personally."

"If there was another reason, Train, I'm sure she would've told you," Howie reasoned.

"But we're talking about the 'Ice Queen' here," AJ said. "She doesn't have to have a reason for anything she does."

"Shut up with the stupid name," said Kevin, heatedly. "She's not like that. I know she isn't."

"Think about it, Kev," AJ continued. "How well did you really know her?"

Kevin looked at him for a second. Then he got up and walked out of the room, leaving to others to look at each other worried.

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