Chapter   Fourteen

A couple days later....

Karen and Kevin were sitting in a limo with the rest of the Backstreet Boys, waiting to reach the red carpet and face all the media and the fans. They were at the Universal Amphitheatre for the 1998 MTV Video Music Awards. Brian was with his girlfriend Leighanne, AJ was with his girlfriend Amanda, and Nick was going solo as well as Howie. Kevin was holding onto Karen's hand tightly. She looked over at Leighanne. The woman started acting like her best friend when she met her. As soon as Leighanne told her she was an actress, Karen understood why. She found it kind of funny that a woman, obviously older than herself, was kissing up to her. Amanda, on the other hand, was a little bit harder to talk to. She was like a giddy little girl stuck in an eighteen-year-old body. When she wasn't giggling, she was telling AJ about this bracelet or that ring she saw. Where did they find these women? Karen thought. Karen shook her head as she looked out the window at all the people waiting to see who was step out of the next limo. It wasn't long before it was time to show their faces. Kevin turned to Karen.

"You're gonna go in with Leighanne and Amanda, okay?" He looked at her.

"Do I have a choice?" Karen asked, flatly.

"Would you just handle being with them for a few minutes? I know you don't like them, but just be friendly."

"It's hard to be friendly to someone kissing your ass and another who won't shut up about money. AJ's girlfriend asked me how many room my father's mansion has. Brian's girlfriend asked if I knew any directors and producers."

"Just be civil then," said Kevin.

Karen had to smile. "I'll try."

When their limo reached the red carpet, Kevin gave Karen a quick kiss before she stepped out. Karen noticed the other two just got out of the limo and pretty much threw themselves into the limelight. They walked in together. Karen waved and smiled at the camera people and the crowd standing behind the media. When they got inside, Karen waited by the door for Kevin. She heard a big roar out of the crowd a few minutes after she left with Leighanne and Amanda, so she figured Kevin would be there soon.

It actually took a while for the Boys to get there, but Karen waited nonetheless. She just wished she was waiting alone. Before long, Leighanne kept asking how much longer it would take for the guys to get there and Amanda was going around talking to everyone then coming back and repeating all her conversations. It wasn't soon enough for Karen when the Boys finally got to them.

They were being escorted to their seats when all of a sudden they heard "Backstreet Boys!!" over the sound system. They all looked around and saw the skit the Boys did with Ben Stiller playing on the large screens set up around the stage. They quickly took their seats and watched, laughing the whole time. Sometimes, Karen would see Kevin looking around and watching some nearby celebrity laughing his or her head off at them. When it was over, Ben Stiller showed his face and asked the Boys how they liked it. They all said it was cool. It wasn't long before the first category the Backstreet Boys were nominated for came up. They sat on the edge of their seats waiting to hear who won "Best Group Video".

"And the winner is," Selma Hayek said. She opened the envelope.

"Backstreet Boys. 'Everybody'," Ruppert Something-or-other announced.

The Boys stood up and gave each other hugs. Kevin turned around and gave Karen a kiss, who was sitting behind him. AJ gave Amanda a kiss who actually stopped jumping up and down long enough for him to do so. Leighanne just stood there a clapped. The Boys went up to the stage, gave their acceptance speech, then walked off. Karen, Leighanne, and Amanda went backstage to congratulate the guys. When they got back to the seating area, they were seated somewhere else. Leighanne threw a fit when Brian wouldn't sit by her, but Brian ended up sitting by her anyway. Karen was once again sitting behind Kevin.

The Boys lost "Best Dance Video", but they had fun and enjoyed themselves. They went to the massive after-party and danced the night away. It was extremely late when Kevin and Karen got back to Karen's apartment. Karen threw herself on her bed. Kevin lay down beside her.

"Did you enjoy yourself?" Kevin asked her.

"Yeah, I did," said Karen. "Despite some things, I had a great time."

"I'm glad you went with me." Kevin looked at her lovingly. "You looked beautiful tonight."

"Thank you." Karen smiled at him. "You looked as gorgeous as ever. I'm so happy you guy won 'Best Group Video'."

"Me, too. When we first came up with the idea, we didn't think we'd win an award for it. I feel very fortunate to have the success the group has. 1998 has been our best year so far."

"It's been my best year, too."

Karen leaned over and gave Kevin a kiss. He pulled her closer and they proceeded to make love once again. Kevin felt like his life was perfect. So did Karen. They didn't think it could get any better. But they didn't think it could get any worse either.

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