The absence of evidence is evidence. On August 3rd, a Friday, Watts finally communicates some of what’s bothering him. The truth comes out, or part of it. Watts tells Shan’ann directly how he feels about what’s happened between her and his folks.
It’s the right decision, right, to communicate honestly with his wife about how he feels about something? It’s in the same ballpark as “why didn’t he just ask for a divorce?” But there’s a difference between the right thing and what people tend to do.
Probably the deal with his parents is bothering him some, but it’s not the real kernel of the problem, is it? Still, it’s a useful way to test the waters with her.
But you wouldn’t think any of this by looking at the single, apparently harmless entry on August 3rd.
Late at night what’s the Silver Fox up to? Secreting another image of Kessinger into his Secret Calculator app. This must mean he has some space in the evening to look at the image and move it. [Perhaps to receive it too and comment on it]. This also reinforces the notion that Watts and his wife didn’t sleep in the same bed that night, or any night during the course of his stay in North Carolina. This also suggests that each night once the children were in bed there must have been drama and tears.
August 3rd is different to August 1st and 2nd for the simple reason that Watts finally plays [and thus reveals] a card. It’s a big moment for him, and an unusual one. He tells Shan’ann how he feels about something. To repeat, this is also a test of sorts. How will she react to the card he plays [revealing how he really feels about something, and thus how he feels about her].
Watts probably doesn’t confront Shan’ann as much as she pushes, she prods and she pokes him to get him to talk to her about what’s bugging him. Watts eventually takes the bait and tells Shan’ann that something that’s bothering him has to do with her. It should be emphasized that of the five issues facing Watts then and there, Nut Gate is the lowest priority.
In order of priority, what’s bugging Watts is:
#1 The reality that he is having an affair and he’s still stuck in a marriage.
#2 The pregnancy, making the feeling of “stuckness” worse, and complicating things in terms of his mistress.
#3 Specifically the big house they can no longer afford.
#4 Generally the state of the finances, and what to do about them.
#4 Nut Gate.
When Watts is pushed to the brink by Shan’ann interrogating him [just as Coder and Lee did], he stalls, he diverts, he denies, he tries not to give anything away [because that will get him into trouble]. Finally, when he’s cornered, he admits to the least important thing.
He doesn’t like the fact that he’s in North Carolina and there’s this ill will going on with his parents, especially his father. Perhaps on a Friday the thought has come up to go see his parents over the weekend [he’s already seen hers, and in fact Shan’ann’s father Frank has been with them the whole time]. But Shan’ann has no intention of seeing her in laws, and what’s more, her children are not to be allowed to see his parents either.
The critical aspect here isn’t what they’re arguing about, but how they’re arguing. He’s trying to avoid a confrontation, and we’re about to see why.
How does she react to him bringing up his parents?
How does Shan’ann react to criticism?
And how does her reaction inform what happens next?