News that Kyle Richards and Mauricio Umansky have separated came as a shock to many loyal Bravo fans.
The couple, who have been married for 27 years, and their family have been one of the few constants throughout 12 seasons of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, with their relationship often playing out in front of cameras.
But what's come as even more surprising is the rumours, speculation and deep dives that have many convinced there's more going on here: and it involves Kyle, a country music star, and... matching tattoos.
On July 3, People magazine reported that "Kyle and Mauricio have been separated for a while," and remained amicable and living under the same roof.
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Later that day, Kyle posted a statement on Instagram.
"Any claims regarding us divorcing are untrue," she said, although she did not specify on the report they were separated.
"However, yes, we have had a rough year. The most challenging one of our marriage. But we both love and respect each other tremendously. There has been no wrongdoing on anyone's part.
"Although we are in the public eye, we ask to be able to work through our issues privately. While it may be entertaining to speculate, please do not create false stories to fit a further salacious narrative."
The statement was signed off with both Kyle and Mauricio's names.
Unfortunately for them, the gossip horse had already bolted.