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Like all mysteries of the Kardasho-Jenner universe, this latest one is densely layered, intricately complex, and above all, pivotal to the future of the entire human race. Therefore, it's important that you follow along carefully.
It starts the same way so many of them do: Instagram. Yesterday, Blac Chyna, the model, beauty salon owner, and Nicki Minaj stunt double (she acted as a body double in the music video for "Monster"), posted a photo in which she's looking downwards and smiling while a tattooed arm embraces her. It's a close crop, but TMZ reported that the tattoos look suspiciously like those of Rob Kardashian. Her caption: "The beginning," followed by a shamrock emoji.
The full meaning of the shamrock can only be understood with a little context. In 2011, Blac Chyna dated the rapper Tyga after meeting him on the set of the "Rack City" video shoot. The two were at one point engaged and they had a child, King Cairo, together in 2012.
If you've been on the internet at any point in the last year or so, you'll know that Tyga is currently dating Kylie Jenner, Rob Kardashian's half-sister. Also worth nothing: Blac Chyna is reportedly close friends with Amber Rose, the ex-girlfriend of Kim Kardashian's husband, Kanye West. Last winter, Rose also got into a Twitter feud with Khloe Kardashian over comments Rose had made during a radio interview about Tyga's relationship with Kylie Jenner.
So when Khloe Kardashian tweeted the following Godfather quote shortly after Blac Chyna posted the Instagram, many were quick to assume it was directed at Rob for getting involved with his sister's current boyfriend's ex-girlfriend:
You can do anything. But never go against the family— Khloé (@khloekardashian) January 25, 2016
She quickly clarified that the tweet was directed at another family member, however:
You guys do know I have about 100 family members correct? I was referring to a family member who just bailed out of doing my talk show today— Khloé (@khloekardashian) January 25, 2016
But then (possibly) backtracked, adding:
But hey, maybe my quote can go towards a few people today.— Khloé (@khloekardashian) January 25, 2016
Another piece of evidence that the rest of the Kardasho-Jenners are uniformly uncool with the new pairing: Kylie Jenner posted, then deleted an Instagram meme that implied that Rob Kardashian was the devil.
Neither Khloe nor Kylie's current opinion on the situation is clear. What is clear, though, is the significance of the shamrock emoji in Blac Chyna's original caption.
A simple scroll through Blac Chyna's account will reveal many shamrocks in her captions, but only as of the past two weeks. This could lead to the plausible theory that she's simply going through a phase of a random favorite emoji, as one would with the ice cream cone or the "COOL" sign.
But the photos she has captioned with a shamrock are, for the most part, thirst traps — see here, here, and here. This one here is more of a message. Is the shamrock a substitute for a handle? A subtle shout out to someone who merely mentioning would send media engines into a tizzy? Probably.
And then there's the reason that makes far more sense: As many a Twitter bystander has pointed out, Rob Kardashian was born on March 17th, 1987, i.e. St. Patrick's Day, an Irish holiday devoted a saint whose most recognizable symbol is the shamrock.
Lending credence to the theory that the shamrock represents coded emoji language between lovers, Rob Kardashian Instagrammed a tweet that features Blac Chyna with the shamrock emoji and captioned the post with a shamrock emoji today. Plus, the post itself implies Black Chyna is about to become pregnant with his baby:
Fans, too, have started commenting on all of Blac Chyna's photos with the shamrock emoji, even on photos that weren't previously captioned with the clover. This is to presumably signify their approval of the relationship. Blac Chyna/Rob Kardashian anti-shippers have yet to come up with their own emoji code, but stay tuned.
Additional reporting by Cam Wolf.