With Mia in between, Tanya looked back at him. Fearing that she might wake Mia, her voice was very low and soft as she replied, “No, I’m not.”
Joel made a sound of acknowledgment.
Tanya thought that he was going to sleep, so she pulled the quilt over herself and closed her eyes.
It was summer, so the air conditioner in the room was turned very low. Tanya and Mia shared a quilt while Joel used another quilt.
When Tanya was about to fall asleep, Joel’s soft voice reached her. “Don’t worry, Tanya. I will definitely make Hillary pay for what she did.”
Surprised, Tanya turned to Joel. In the dark, she could see a cold look in his eyes. He didn’t raise his voice, but it was as if there was power in his words. “I won’t let anyone bully the two of you anymore.”
Tanya pressed her lips together. Her eyes reddened and sorrow welled up in her.
When she was young, she had tried her best and given her all for love, but she hadn’t known how to love. She would kick up a huge fuss whenever she met with the slightest bit of unhappiness and often threatened to break up whenever they quarreled.
It was as if she was fearless.
It’s only when one recovers what they have lost that they finally discover how precious the love is.
She suddenly hated her past self. Why had she called Joel when she saw the photo? Why hadn’t she gone to him with the photo and asked him for a clear explanation?
If she had asked him for an explanation, and if he hadn’t said those hurtful words in a flash of anger, the two of them might not have let these five years pass them by like that.
Mia probably would not have been lost, either.
Tanya suddenly reached over past Mia. She fumbled around and then held Joel’s hand. This time, she would never let go.
When they exited the bedroom after waking up the next day, they saw Justin coming out of Nora’s bedroom.
Joel subconsciously asked, “Last night, you…”
“I slept in the guest room.”
The beauty mark at the corner of Justin’s eye shimmered as he replied politely, “I just went in to see if she is awake.”
Joel breathed a sigh of relief. Sensing that he had made a mountain out of a molehill just now, he coughed and said, “Oh, I wasn’t suspecting you of taking the opportunity to take advantage of her. I just wanted to ask if you slept well last night.”
Justin glanced at him but didn’t expose his brother-in-law’s thoughts. After all, his father-in-law still disliked him for some strange reason at the moment.
He needed his brother-in-law’s help.
Justin nodded. “I slept pretty well. I’ll come to the court with you guys later.”
Joel said, “Actually, you don’t have to go to so much trouble. We’ve already prepared everything we need in court today.”
Justin coughed. “I’m going for Nora, lest she gets angry when she wakes up and finds out that I haven’t shown enough concern.”
The corners of his lips spasmed a little. He suddenly felt that his brother-in-law was getting more and more thick-skinned.
The group of people left the house, split up, and got into a few cars. Soon, they arrived at the court entrance.
As soon as they got out of the car, Hillary rushed out from somewhere and went straight up to the two of them before they even entered the court.
Behind Hillary was a large number of reporters.
Hillary knelt right in front of Tanya and Joel. Her eyes were red as she said, “Mr. Smith, Tanya. I can give the two of you my blessing and withdraw from the relationship, but you can’t do this to me. Please, I beg you. Give my daughter back to me! Mia is everything to me!”
The reporters whipped out their cameras and started snapping away.
Tanya and Joel looked at each other.
Joel said, “Ms. Jones, the court has the final say today, so please get up.”
Hillary, however, was crying very badly. “I was wrong, Mr. Smith. I shouldn’t have pestered you, and I should have withdrawn from the relationship myself, but you can’t just drive me out of the country. Mia was once part of my body, you can’t just separate me from my daughter like this! I believe that Mia wouldn’t be willing to leave her mother, either. Where’s Mia? Mia?”
She looked behind the two of them.
Some of the reporters also looked behind them. They immediately asked:
“Where’s the child?”
“Yeah, Mr. Smith, the court instructed you to bring Ms. Smith with you because they may ask the child some questions.”
“Did you not bring the child with you? You’re too much!”
Hillary cried even harder. “I haven’t seen Mia for a week, Mr. Smith! I just want to see the girl! Just a look would do!”
Joel and Tanya exchanged a look.
Tanya lowered her gaze. When she thought of all the pain she had suffered during those five years, and how reserved and timid Mia was every time she mentioned her mother, a wave of anger surged up in her.
How she wished she could rip Hillary’s face apart and cut her into shreds!
To think she still had the cheek to mention the child…
Tanya slowly said, “Hillary, you’ll never see the child ever again for the rest of your life!”
After saying that, she held Joel’s arm, and the two of them walked straight into the court!
Hillary’s tragic and miserable s**s rang out outside. “Tanya, how can you do this to me?! How can you?! My daughter! I just want my daughter!”
The reporters around them did not dare to approach Tanya and Joel—after all, they were outside the court. Thus, they surrounded Hillary.
“Ms. Jones, how confident of winning the lawsuit are you?”
“Ms. Jones, did you file a lawsuit for money or for your daughter?”
Hillary got up. She wiped the tears from her eyes and wept as she said to the camera, “I don’t want money! I don’t want anything except my daughter!”
With a sad and pitiful look in her eyes, she said, “I know I’m unemployed at the moment, but the Joneses are also rich. I receive dividends from the Joneses’ company. I am also willing to work for my daughter’s sake!
“My daughter is everything to me!
“I can withdraw from the love triangle, but my daughter is innocent!”
She burst into tears. “Please, everyone, help me! Help me get my daughter back!”
She wept fiercely. Her tears made the audience watching the live broadcast full of pity and heartache for her.
For a time, public opinion completely took her side.
Everyone was cursing Tanya and Joel in the comments of the live-stream.
“What makes Tanya think she can take such an aggressive attitude against Hillary? She’s so shameless!”
“Ahhhh!! That sight pisses me off so much! Hillary must win this lawsuit! Otherwise, none of us will accept the outcome!”
“Yes, the judiciary should not outweigh feelings. We will fight alongside you in this lawsuit!”
Hillary cried so badly that she had to be helped into the court in the end.
Outsiders were not allowed to enter the lounge at the back.
As soon as Hillary entered, she ran head-on into Tanya.
She cast her eyes down and said sadly, “Tanya, I can give you Joel, but not Mia. I will definitely win the lawsuit!”
Because she already had the upper hand in public opinion!!