She sipped a Coke and listened to what Lora said. She actually wasn't listening, but it seemed like it was and no one noticed. Lora was talking about meeting a super-cute guy at the wedding, and hooking up with him. Oh wait, Lora had just asked her a question. She better answer, or they would ask her if she was okay. As if they didn't know! Katie decided not to answer. She was actually thinking about Katie's funeral. It was tomorrow. Actually, it was exactly a week from her death. Saturday morning. " What's wrong, Kate?" Madison asked. " Oh, nothing." She had lost her chance to tell them. Oh great. Damn it all! Damn Madison and Lora, and all of them! Why did she feel this? Why couldn't she become just another clone? Because, in the long run, it wouldn't matter if she had a cute boyfriend in middle school, it would only matter if she were smart and successful. " Hey, where's Lauren?" Katie asked, trying to change the subject. " I don't know. Maybe she's sick or something. So what are you guys all doing tomorrow?" Lora asked. Why was she asking that? Katie got a funny feeling like it wasn't to see if she could catch a ride to the funeral. " Nothing. You want to go to the mall?" Madison asked. Katie stood with out moving. She could not decide whether to tell them or keep quiet, because she did not trust her won voice. Luckily, Kerry's old boyfriend spoke up. " We're all going to Kerry's funeral, remember?" Kevin asked in a funny, strained voice like it hurt him to talk about her. " Oh, screw that," Lora joked. But no one laughed but Madison. It made Katie feel better to know that she wasn't alone but it just wasn't the same. Where was Lauren? Lauren hadn't been at school for the last 2 days. Lauren would know what to do. " Well, I guess we have to go Lor," Madison said, wrinkling her nose in annoyance." The mall will have to wait." And that's what threw Katie over the edge, the fact that Madison and Lora considered the mall more important that Kerry. " How can you say that?" Katie asked, tears brimming in her eyes. " Oh, take a chill pill, Kate. Kerry's dead. C'mon, out of sight, out of mind." How could they talk that way about her? Kerry was the one that had told Katie to stop bad-mouthing Madison's constant efforts to date. Kerry was the one that held Lora's hand as she went up to see her brother's coffin. Kerry was the one who cared, and no one had appreciated her, and now it was out of sight, out of mind? Katie couldn't stand it. She ran from the hall, from the school, from Madison and Lora. She stopped only when she had reached the forest, right next to the school. Panting, she sat down on a tree stump and cried.
Kevin caught up to her and kneeled beside her, holding her hand as the tears flew freely. Finally she stopped and looked up. " How can they say that?" Katie asked quietly. " I don't know," Kevin replied, gazing at Katie with such intensity that she had to look away. " She was the best of all of them, it should have been Madison, it should have been me!" she cried out angrily, angry at the world for taking poor, helpless didn't say anything because he knew Katie was right. When he did speak it was only to comfort Katie, Kerry's closest friend, the closest living thing to his devoted girlfriend. " Katie- you being here now says that it shouldn't have been Kerry or you. Madison, yes, Lora, yes, but not you Katie and you know it." " We should be getting back."