There’s a mystery running through season 12 of The Real Housewives of Atlanta, and it began on Sunday’s episode with a bang.
In the wake of the friendship fallout between NeNe Leakes and Cynthia Bailey, a mutual acquaintance of the two former BFFs made a secret recording of Bailey slamming Leakes — and played that audio for Leakes herself.
The culprit, whose name has yet to be revealed, was dubbed “a snake” by costar Kenya Moore as news of the recording made its way through the Atlanta Housewives.
“That person needs to step up, because you need to be a sly dog and a little snake in front of everybody,” Moore said. “Don’t bring it up unless you can really show the receipts.”
Showing the receipts didn’t seem to be the problem. Leakes, 51, was eager to share them when she first brought up the audio during a lunch with pal Kandi Burruss, using them as an example of Bailey’s apparent shadiness.
“I don’t care what Cynthia has said, I’m just telling you that she has,” Leakes told Burruss. “Not only that, she spoke to someone else that we both know in common and talked about me like a dog and unfortunately for her, they recorded everything she said.”
“There is some sort of audio of Cynthia saying really horrible things about me,” Leakes told audiences, stressing that she’d be keeping the identity of the person who made the recording secret.
But Burruss wasn’t interested in hearing the recording, knowing all too well the two had been trading insults in the press for weeks. “Oh Lord,” she told Leakes, upon hearing about the audio. “Okay child, I’m not getting into that one.”
“She has the receipts. I just didn’t want to hear all the receipts,” Burruss later said.
Burruss, 43, was happy to tell Bailey about the recording, though.
“She knows that you’ve been dogging her out, because apparently somebody that y’all have as a mutual friend recorded you in a conversation dogging her out,” Burruss told Bailey.
So how did Bailey react? Surprisingly, she wasn’t too upset — calling the while thing “bulls—.”
“I don’t care what she has,” said Bailey, 52. “I’m quite sure that I have talked about NeNe in defense of all the things that she’s said about me. And if somebody felt the need to record it, then so what.”
“I don’t give a damn about the receipts. I don’t care what she has recording, I don’t care what she got to say about me,” Bailey continued. “The bottom line is, as long as I was kissing her ass and her friend, I was Michelle Obama. The minute that I wasn’t, I’m over here dirt on the floor. So she can keep her recordings and stick it them up her ass. And I mean all the way up her ass.”
“Honestly, I can’t believe NeNe’s entertaining this,” Bailey said. “It’s so low and dirty and low down to think that somebody would sit and record me.”
Still, Bailey had suspicions about who made the recording — mentioning Bailey’s close friends Marlo Hampton and Gail “Yovanna” Momplaisir.
Both are loyal friends of Leakes, but of the two, Momplaisir seemed to be the prime suspect. Just last week, she had told Leakes that Bailey was “going in on NeNe” during a private conversation the two had.
“Do you have receipts?” Hampton asked.
“Oh, I have receipts,” Momplaisir responded.
But when asked by Burruss on Sunday if she had been the one who recorded Bailey, Momplaisir said no.
“Who said I recorded Cynthia? No… I ain’t no spy,” Momplaisir stressed. “No, not at all.”
That seemed to be enough for Bailey. “Yovanna is adamant that she’s not the one, so I just have to take her word for it for now,” she said.
The Real Housewives of Atlanta airs Sundays (8 p.m. ET) on Bravo.