She doesn't trust him. Deceit falls too easily from his lips. He is a smooth practioner of the art. She's seen him in action, so she knows. He smiles and says, "I'm spending the weekend with a buddy, OK honey?" She nods because he is going to do it regardless of how she feels about it. He's not asking for permission, he's stating a fact. He's been doing this twice a year for several years now. She's never met his buddies, though she sees the receipts from the trips. He brings them to her. "See? I told you I was in Boston" or it could be Atlanta or it could be East Podunk. It doesn't really matter where. It's like he feels she needs to see concrete proof of his veracity. Just enough evidence for plausability. Hotel receipt. Airline ticket. Baggage receipt. Restaurant tab shows up on the credit card statement usually a dinner for two. Joe bought lunch and I bought dinner was the explanation.
She suspects, but she doesn't ask. She doesn't really want to know. Sometimes the buddy is Joe, sometimes it's Pat. There are many calls to the same two numbers on the cell phone bill, split pretty evenly between Denver and Abilene. She hasn't gotten the nerve up to dial the numbers. She does not really want confirmation. She wonders if Joe knows about Pat or vice versa. It's unlikely she will ask, because she doesn't want to face another failed relationship. It's easier to pretend that he would not lie to her. Afterall, she was his first buddy, the one that got the trips, that split the bills, the one that sat quietly while he made the phone calls home.
She kisses him goodbye. "Have a nice trip, Dear. Call me when you get there, I love you." And when he calls, Mikala will try not to notice the soft breathing sounds in the background that are far too close, nor his slight pauses in conversation when he becomes momentarily distracted. She doesn't want to formally acknowledge her suspicions. She will pretend she has no doubts when he returns home with dirty shirts scented faintly of Chanel #5. She will welcome him home with open arms, grateful for the other 360 days that she is no longer alone. But she doesn't trust him. She probably never will.