He was nothing if not meticulous about his brand, careful not to publicly share the Fitzgerald life he'd created in the aftermath of his failed marriage. Honing his craft. Lemonade from lemons. Devoted father. Imminently reasonable. Self-assured. Mirth man. In this way, he cast himself as the hero to his ex's antiheroine, cementing an unstated narrative that the townsfolk wanted to believe. For they only had one hand with which to throw stones; the other was busy high fiving him.
She had a bigger problem. She didn't know her place. For starters, she refused to remain silent, as instructed. Selfish, ambitious, not buying it. Unsympathetic on a good day. And worse: happy most of the time.
This dichotomy served everyone involved (and not).
The unscripted contretemps--ab initio and post finem—of the formerly connubial, however, revealed a less delineated tale.
As if long-term marriages were complicated by ... reality.