Remember those days of innocence when we feared that 90 Day Fiance star Ricky was being catfished?
He wasn't. Melissa was real -- and so was Ximena, his other long-distance girlfriend. Also, he was married.
But his wife insists that she wasn't part of his scheme to become famous by breaking Ximena's heart.
So, 90 Day Fiance viewers began Ricky's story with the fear that the too-hot-to-be-real Melissa was some sort of cruel prank.
She was real. She showed up incredibly late, joined Ricky at dinner, and then departed. And then she ghosted him.
Ricky then turned his attentions to Ximena, the other woman with whom he had been flirting online.
She was deeply wounded to learn that he had come to Columbia for Melissa, not solely for her.
As you may recall from our 90 Day Fiance recap, Ximena told him that he could prove his love by jumping in the water.
Ricky can't swim, so it was the production crew who had to fish him out of the water.
Some viewers are of the opinion that they should have left Ricky in the lake where he could join the other bottom-feeders.
Instead, however, he dropped to one knee -- and proposed to Ximena.
He did this with the ring that he purchased for Melissa, by the way, filling everyone with horror.
Ximena said yes ... even though he literally mentioned Melissa during his proposal to Ximena.
We know that Ximena is currently in Colombia, but that she recently spent time in the United States -- in Florida.
She has not posted any sign of Ricky on her social media, which previously led some fans to believe that she dumped Ricky and made her own way to the U.S.
In light of Ricky's proposal, however, she may have settled for being his "second plate."
Except ... in September, she used social media to shoot down rumors that Ricky had sent her money.
And Ricky's wife, Natalia, says that she and Ricky worked on reconciliation when he returned from Colombia.
Natalia and Ricky are both implicated in a conspiracy theory that they planned this together to make Ricky famous.
After being confronted on Instagram over her alleged involvement, Ricky's wife Natalia defended herself.
"Let me make one thing clear, I was not involved and never will be in this show," Natalia writes.
"I knew he was going to Colombia," she admits. "I was told the day before our anniversary, when I was already living somewhere else, that he was moving on."
"Had I known it was to this magnitude," Natalia says. "I would have prepared myself."
"After his trip, there were lots of regrets and promises," Natalia writes. "So blame me for being dumb -- but that is all I was."
She confesses: "I gave a man I loved another chance."
"I did nothing to Ximena," she insists. "As soon as I saw the direction he had for the company, I stepped away"
"There is not enough money in the world to justify doing that to her, or putting myself through this," Natalia affirms.
"Now," she continues. "Did he have feelings for her? 100 [percent] but as we have all seen, his feelings change rather quickly."
"I read the article, that I was involved," she says, referring to the theory. "It’s nonsense."
"As soon as I found out he was going," she concludes. "I emailed TLC to tell them he was married, how they chose to proceed with this is beyond me."
The theory is that, for Ricky, this was never about Ximena (obviously) or even about banging Melissa.
Instead, this was allegedly to, get this, build hype for his production company.
We get it -- he's in debt and this looked like a promising platform for him to become famous.
But using real women and their actual feelings to do that is ... unconscionable. And the disgust that viewers feel isn't going to help him.
We understand why TLC was happy to have him on the show, however. His outrageous story makes for great television.