By Giovanni Vitacolonna (Circulation Supervisor, Smart + Strong)

For nigh on six years, POZ has been keeping tabs on Robin Scorpio, MD, the fictional HIV-positive denizen of Port Charles on the ABC daytime soap opera General Hospital. Recently, Kimberly McCullough, her portrayer, decided to move on from the show to pursue directing.

Robin ScorpioHer anticipated departure came much earlier than expected, and her many fans expressed some concern that Robin would succumb to AIDS after so many years living as a survivor with a loving husband and a child. Alas, it wasn’t the virus that did her in.

Dr. Scorpio was working on a new medical protocol to save her best friend from inoperable brain swelling. As her husband watched in horror, the lab exploded around her.

In an interview with The Daily Beast not long after, McCullough gave a hint that things might not be as they seemed in Port Charles. “I was of the hope that we would do something where the character was fulfilled,” she said. “I was intent that I wanted Robin to die, but because of the way it all went down, I wasn’t comfortable with that anymore. I didn’t feel it was earned. There wasn’t a good lead-up to it. The history of soaps is that you have a meaty story before you leave.”

And indeed Robin is still with us. In a recent episode, General Hospital let its viewers in on the secret. Robin has been sequestered in a hospital room somewhere. The show has uncharacteristically informed the public before a surprise reappearance down the line. The door is open for Robin’s return should the almost 50-year-old drama remain on the air.