As his makeup artist for more than 25 years, Karen Faye knew Jackson's face almost as well as he did. She said one thing is certain: Jackson had vitiligo, a skin condition producing white blotches.
As for the eyeliner and lipstick Jackson preferred, Faye said: "He didn't like the line that was drawn between what's allowed for men and what's allowed for women."
Faye acknowledged that Jackson had plastic surgery. "He was always trying to perfect everything," she said. Faye denied, however, rumors that the star had a prosthetic nose.
"It was the tape that he used to wear on his nose to [help] keep it in form or else it would expand," she said. But she admitted that she personally thought Michael Jackson went a little too far with plastic surgery.
Soon after Jackson announced his final tour, "This Is It," Faye received a call from him asking if she would team up with him once again.
Faye says she sensed he was frightened of being judged again. He was still stung by the worldwide backlash against him.
"Standing up in front of an audience, all that fear, all that doubt, all the cruelty people directed at him, he was afraid," said Faye. "He didn't want to go through that again."
Faye said she was concerned that Jackson was too thin to do the show. As the clock ticked, the pressure mounted.
The tour was going to be his first major appearance since the trial ended, and it would be the first time his children would him see perform on stage. The stage was his element, a place he had electrified countless times, dazzling millions, since hitting it big as child superstar in 1969.
Faye, Bush and Tompkins couldn't comment on whether Jackson was taking any medications while preparing for the "This is It" tour, because the three anticipate being witnesses at the upcoming trial of Dr. Conrad Murray, Jackson's personal physician. But they say they were all extremely concerned about the star's well-being.
ABC News spoke to three of Jackson's dancers who said that, in the final rehearsal before he died, Jackson was "going all out." They said they were shocked by his death. As for Jackson's weight loss, the concert promoter, AEG, say they too were concerned about the star's weight, and had hired someone to monitor his eating.
But Jackson was nowhere near ready, Faye and Bush still insist.
According to Bush, Jackson was "bone-thin."
"I feared he was physically unable to do the shows," Faye said.
On June 25 last year, Karen Faye was waiting for Jackson at the Staples Center to begin rehearsals when she got the news she dreaded -- Jackson had been rushed to the hospital.
She then got a phone call from her boyfriend, who said he heard news reports that Jackson had suffered a heart attack.
"So many things went through [my] mind," Faye said. "But because of my fears I knew it was probably true."
According to Faye, the tour's director and choreographer, Kenny Ortega, instructed everyone to carry on as usual.
But then the moment came.
"I was headed back to my make-up room," said Faye, "and Kenny came out of his office and he put his arms around me and whispered, 'He's gone. We lost him.' And my knees just collapsed."
Faye said she believes that if people paid attention, the world would still have its King of Pop, Michael Jackson. She said she takes solace in remembering all the great times she had with the star, and the laughter that first brought them together.