Hailey scoffed. “So, I’m right. Zoe was trying to buy your vote.” “I’m merely giving a thespian the fairest
assessment from my own personal perspective,” Jay replied.
“Me too,” Hailey said sternly. “That’s why it doesn’t matter what her objective was, or what dramatic
events she experienced before that affected her life. I can’t bring myself to appreciate cutting corners,
because the stage demands a grounded performance. Either way, she won’t earn any points with me.”
Jay was about to argue when Zoe quickly said, “Thank you, Miss Zimmerman and Mr. Parker. I
profoundly understand that I had been lacking. I’ll correct myself should I still have the opportunity to
show my respect for the stage, the judges, and the audience.”
She nodded solemnly, afraid of having the judges argue over her and in turn getting flamed online.
She yearned badly for a resurgence, but the less she was involved in any scandals, the better; she
wanted a clean pedestal.
Still, she was surprised Jay would help her in such fashion, although she had no idea if it was doing her
harm or good.
In fact, she had no idea what was going to happen after today’s stage. All she wanted was to get away
and avoid the crossfire, and survive in showbiz without drawing trouble.
Jay seemed to sense that feeling from her, and stopped himself right then.
While the situation was left hanging awkwardly, the host promptly tried to smooth things over, “Do the
judges have anything to add?”
No one said a word, so he said, “Very well. Zoe, Wynn and Candice, you may now head backstage for
a break. Good work.”
After Zoe headed backstage, she breathed a huge sigh of relief.
If she knew that returning was this difficult, perhaps she should not have put in so much hope for
“Zoe,” Wynn called out to her.
As a partner, he actually felt sorry for her. As an actor, he found everything that Hailey put Zoe through
unacceptable; not to mention, Zoe was an actress like him. In fact, he wouldn’t be able to say for sure
he wouldn’t snap at Hailey in retaliation right then and there.
Zoe had been taking everything Hailey dished out; she would be thoroughly demolished had Jay not
stand up for her.
Having rehearsed on stage with her all the way, he knew all too well how much effort Zoe had put in.
Even if Hailey didn’t like the final outcome, she really should not dismiss all of Zoe’s hard work so
Zoe forced a smile nonetheless. “It’s fine.”
After all, there were still cameras around them. No, cameras were ever present in the studio.
“I’ll do better next time,” Zoe continued, before adding, “if there’s a next time.”
“Don’t be so pessimistic,” Wynn told her. “I think your performance is good. Even if the judges didn’t
appreciate it, that doesn’t mean the audience doesn’t. I’m sure you’ll do well in the audience vote.”
“Yeah,” Zoe said, not pressing the issue. She just had to keep her pessimism to herself and not get
capricious around others.
Still, it took two hours before the other groups finished their acts. After that, every thespian was once
again invited on stage.
Everyone in the act that ranked first made it through to the next stage. The groups were announced
first as well, but naturally, it wasn’t Zoe’s group. As for the rest, the judges and the studio audience
would decide their fate.
Then came the announcement for the thespian who placed last in the audience’s votes.
Zoe took a deep breath. It wasn’t her, but she was in the last five nonetheless.
The rest safely made it through, while Zoe and the other four selected stepped forward on stage,
waiting for the judges’ decision.
Since the next round was a competition between each judges’ respective group, they would be directly
picking their teams from the remaining thespians right now.
Update Chapter 701 of A Life Debt Repaid by Cheng
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Key: A Life Debt Repaid Chapter 701