Lucian remained silent and leaned back in his chair with his eyes closed as if pretending to nap. He appeared pretty exhausted, with noticeable dark circles under his eyes.
Timothy, representing him as his lawyer, spoke first. “Miss Calista, the court hopes you and Mr. Northwood can settle this matter privately, Marriage is meant to last forever. It wouldn’t be good for you and Mr. Northwood to drag this out in court.” Harvey had informed her that this was standard before a divorce case went to court. It was part of the legal procedure. Typically, it would happen a few days before the court hearing, but it was postponed until now due to Lucian’s busy schedule, it was postponed until now. Calista replied, “If you can make him agree to the divorce, I will immediately withdraw my lawsuit. Timothy remained silent and unfazed. His previous statement seemed more like a routine inquiry, devoid of genuine concern. Shortly after, the judge and some marriage counselors joined them. They were experts in this field, offering various forms of emotional support and encouragement. Calista felt somewhat ungrateful for not appreciating their efforts but remained firm. She had to get a divorce! Seeing her unwavering attitude, everyone had no choice but to give up. Not long after everyone left, Calista received a call from Zachary, and she realized it was from overseas. She picked up the phone, recognizing the voice in an instant. “Withdraw the lawsuit immediately!” Zachary sounded furious. His breath was heavy as if he had just run a marathon. Upon hearing this, Calista’s first instinct was to look at Lucian. She couldn’t tell if he had been waiting for this moment or if it was just a coincidence. But when she looked at him, he had just opened his eyes and locked eyes with her. Calista silently mouthed to him, “You’re despicable.” +15 BONUS She hadn’t expected him to take the issue to Zachary. Did he think she would listen to him? Or did he believe his status as her father still held some power and could change her decision? “Did you hear me?” Zachary raised his voice when he didn’t get a response from her. It sounded deafening as he repeated, “Withdraw the lawsuit immediately! The Everhart family can’t afford this humiliation!” “Is that the case? Or you can’t afford to lose a precious son–in–law like Lucian?” Calista ran her fingers through her hair and drove the knife deeper into Zachary’s heart. “But despite his prestigious status, you haven’t enjoyed a single benefit. Look at the other fathers whose daughters married rich. They’re living a life of luxury. And you? You can’t even return home because of your debt. Do you still remember how the food here tastes after all these years?” Back then, Zachary used to have a penchant for local cuisine even when they dined out. Calista detested Zachary, but she equally despised Lucian. Therefore, she didn’t mind using either of them as a tool to hurt the other. She was happy to see both hurt. On the side, Harvey, who was watching the show, took a sneaky glance at Lucian. He had a calm expression. He was being put on the spot by Calista, and yet it seemed he was unfazed. Lucian was indeed able to keep his composure. Calista continued to taunt Zachary through the phone, “Look at you, you’ve me all these years and haven’t gained a single advantage. You might as well let me get rid of him, and then we can move on to another victim. Who knows, you might be able to return home freely.” Zachary was utterly speechless. There was a loud squeak from the bench as Lucian stood up. He glanced at Timothy blankly and said, “The court is in session.” The two walked ahead while Calista and Harvey followed, maintaining a distance between them Lucian asked, “When will it be over?” 214 Timothy replied, “Within half an hour.” +15 BONUS Harvey was flabbergasted. He knew Timothy was excellent. But the least he could do was spare him some dignity. Timothy was talking about winning with him right there! As this thought briefly crossed his mind, he felt Calista shoot him a look. His heart skipped a beat, and then he heard her sigh and ask, “Do you need to go back to university and get a higher qualification?” Calista was just making a sarcastic comment. Harvey was quite skilled. While he couldn’t guarantee success, he was still one of the best lawyers in Capeton. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have chosen him despite knowing the formidable reputation of the Northwood family’s legal team. Harvey kept his eyes forward and felt utterly defeated. “A lawyer is merely that. Timothy is in a completely different league. You can’t compare us with him. I might not win even if I get a higher qualification.” After spending time with Calista, he had become less formal in talking to her. Calista retorted, “You’re just undermining your ability to butter him up. I’ll file a complaint against you at your law firm.” Lucian remarked without looking at them, “He’s just self–aware, unlike someone else who’s like a fish trying to swim on land.” Calista was about to protest, but they had arrived at the courtroom. This was her first time in a courtroom, sitting in the plaintiff’s seat. Lucian was sitting across from her. He still wore the same weary expression, looking very distressed as the defendant. After the court confirmed everyone’s presence and announced the courtroom rules, they proceeded with the hearing. Timothy had predicted it would end within half an hour, and he was right on schedule. Although Calista had long prepared herself for the inevitable divorce, she didn’t expect the judge to pronounce the verdict right in the courtroom, leaving her with no hope. After leaving the courtroom, Timothy turned to Harvey and said, “Well done. You held out longer than I expected.” 3/4 Harvey replied, “Thank you. It was an honor.” +15 BONUS Calista saw the admiration in his eyes. He looked so pathetic she couldn’t help but roll her eyes and walk away. However, before she could reach the car, Lucian grabbed her hand and ushered her into the back seat of his car. “Let’s talk.” “About the divorce?” she asked. Lucian smirked, leaning toward her, surrounding her with his familiar scent. He gazed into her eyes and inched closer as if he was about to kiss her. Everything happened too fast! Calista instantly froze, and her back pressed tightly against the seat, and she even unconsciously held her breath. Lucian reached over and fastened her seatbelt. “We’re going to discuss your plan to find another sucker.” He stared at her with amusement in his eyes. “Why are you so nervous? Did you think I was going to kiss you?”