Chapter   Nineteen

Two years later....

Karen was lying on the couch, watching Angela play with her toys. Kevin was at the recording studio with the rest of the group. It's been very interesting the last two years for her and Kevin. The Backstreet Boys remained successful over that time. Karen watched from behind the scenes as their fans grew up with the Boys. They still toured around the world and the US, and Karen went along with them sometimes, but most of the time she stayed in the house she and Kevin bought.

Lately, though, something's been bothering Karen. She didn't know what it was. She'd been feeling more tired than usual lately. Angela got up and walked to her mom, who smiled at her daughter. Karen sat up and picked up Angela, sitting her in her lap.

"Where's Daddy?" she asked.

"He's working right now, honey," Karen told her. "He'll be home soon."

"I wanna see Daddy," Angela said.

"I know you do. I wanna see him, too."

As if on cue, Kevin walked through the door. He walked into the living room and saw Karen with Angela, talking to her softly. Kevin smiled at the picture before him. When he first started his career, it seemed like it would be impossible for him to find the woman of his dreams, yet she was sitting right in front of him and she gave him the gift of a beautiful daughter. Kevin thought Angela look so much like Karen, with her long black hair, but when she looked at you, you'd see two beautiful blue-green eyes. He thought it was kind of strange that Angela had blue-green eyes instead of just blue or green, but they just seemed to fit her so well.

"How's my little Angel," Kevin said, walking over to them.

"Daddy!" Angela yelled. She jumped off Karen's lap and ran to her dad.

Kevin picked her up and held her close, giving her a kiss on the cheek. Then he looked at Karen. "How are you feeling?"

"Tired," said Karen. "Kevin, I think I should go see the doctor."

"If you really feel like you need to."

Karen looked at Kevin. "Why do you sound like that?"

"Like what?"

"Like you don't believe me."

"What? All I said was if you really feel like you should go see the doctor, go ahead."

Karen leaned back against the couch and sighed, closing her eyes. "Nevermind. I can see it's not that important to you. How'd did the session go?"

Kevin looked at Karen for few minutes, trying to figure out what was wrong. Then he put Angela down.

"Angela, go upstairs to your room for a little while," he told her.


"I want to talk to your mommy, just the two of us. I'll come get you afterward and we'll get some ice cream, okay?"

"Okay, Daddy," said Angela. She didn't really know what was going on, but she picked up her toys and took with her to her room.

When Angela disappeared upstairs, Kevin sat down next to Karen. "All right, Karen. What's going on?"

"I feel like something's wrong with me. I'm always tired and it's driving my crazy. Kevin, what if...."

"Don't say it," Kevin told her. "Don't even think it. Baby, you've gotten this far. It's been you, me, and Angela for the past two years. Angela just celebrated her second birthday a few weeks ago. You can't leave her now. She still has a lot of growing up to do."

"But just what if it's back," Karen said, with tears in her eyes. "I thought it was just because we've been traveling a lot, but the group has been off for the past month and the effects haven't worn off. I'm feeling really scared right now."

"Everything's going to be all right." Kevin put her arms around her. "I'm not gonna let you leave me and Angela."

"I don't think we're given a choice on this, honey."

Karen sat with Kevin's arms around her for a while. Then the two of them got up, got Angela, and took her out for ice cream. When they got back, the two of them tucked Angela into bed and watched her sleep. Karen started crying softly. All Kevin could do was try to comfort her. Please, God, don't take her away from me and Angela, he pleaded. Angela needs her mother. I need her mother. Tears came to Kevin's eyes and fell down his face.


The week later....

"I guess I'll be joining you soon, Mom," Karen said. She was in Los Angeles, visiting her mother's grave. Tears fell down her cheeks. "I don't want to leave Kevin or my daughter. But I feel like the end is drawing near. All I can hope is that once I'm gone, my family will learn to carry on with their lives. That Angela will grow up to be a wonderful person, just like you."

Karen and Kevin found out that her cancer had come back, but this time it hit her harder. There wasn't much the doctors could do and Karen knew she was losing her battle. As soon as she found out, Karen and Kevin flew out to LA, so Karen could be with her father. William Davidson was devestated. But he, and Kevin, continued to pray for Karen's recovery.

"I don't understand it, Mom," Karen went on. "Why is this happening to me? I love Kevin so much and I want to be here as Angela grows up. But I guess I can't have everything, can I?"

Karen finished changing the flowers at her mother's grave, then walked back to her car. As she was walking, Karen felt a warm breeze surround her. She looked up at the sky. Thanks, Mom, she thought.

Karen suddenly felt like she was ready for anything. She didn't want to leave any loose ends before her time came, so she went back to her father's house to start taking care of them. Kevin noticed the change in Karen. He also came to realize that her time was coming near and there was most likely a lot she wanted to get done. Kevin watched her sleeping later that night and he pulled her close, as if he was holding her for the last time.

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