Kneel to MeChapters List
Chapter 44: Second Arc 
Wen Zhulian was ridiculed. Her grievances, her plea for Song Juyao to return home, and the hints about her poor adoptive parents and Song Juyao's jealousy towards her, etc., all turned into weapons against her after the revelation that Song Juyao's brother was Evans came to light.
She was going crazy in her heart but maintained a stiff smile for the invisible audience of the Judgement reality show, as she commented, "Wow, I've been outplayed. Song Juyao is truly remarkable. I was on my guard, but I never expected her to outwit me like this. I have been in contact with her for so many days, and she has not disclosed the situation of her adoptive parents at all..."
With Wen Zhulian's words, some voices in the livestream chat that was mostly mocking her, turned to support her. They believed that Song Juyao did it on purpose as if she had been waiting for this day to embarrass Wen Zhulian. They began to think that underneath her calm exterior, Song Juyao had a much deeper strategy.
Wen Zhulian finally managed to somewhat turn the tide of public opinion.
Seeing this, the production team felt that Wen Zhulian was relatively smart, at least compared to the two participants from the first episode and the foolish Jiang Mi, who was eliminated before the game even began. They could look forward to her performance.
Wen Zhulian also inoculated the audience in the live broadcast room by giving them a precautionary note: "Fortunately, I didn't underestimate her. For this reason, I even used many classic songs from the real world in the virtual world, and finally I am at a level where I can compete with her. I'll do my best to bring out all the unknown sides of her!"
【There are so many people with distorted values. This is a reality show, not some cool feel-good drama. The trial judge is being oppressed, this should makes people angry.】
【Zhuzhu, let go of your hands and feet and give it your all!】
【Give Song Juyao a good beating! 】
【Hehe, to be honest, Zhulian shouldn't have used real-world songs in the virtual world. It looks really strange.】
Wen Zhulian was prepared for a counterattack, patiently waiting for the right moment.
Meanwhile, another celebrity judge took action.
Before entering Survival Island Paradise, Song Juyao visited the site of the former orphanage.
After all this time, the orphanage had not been renovated, preserving its original appearance. When the police went undercover there for a few days, they saw the director abusing the children. There were both witnesses and physical evidence, so the orphanage was closed immediately.
【Does she know what happened to Jiang Mi in the virtual world?】
【To be honest, shouldn't she be held responsible for Jiang Mi death in there?】
【??? What does this have to do with Song Juyao? Jiang Mi is the one who lifted a rock and smashed her own foot, right?】
【While it's true that Jiang Mi brought this upon herself, feeling guilty about it is another matter. Anyone would feel guilty, right?】
【Song Juyao should indeed feel guilty. According to the script, when she was 18, the Wen family found her, and would have brought those two perverts to justice. Now that Jiang Mi is dead, who knows how many innocent children they've harmed in those past eight years.】
【Every time I see these holier-than-thou statements, it makes me question how people's brain circuits can differ so drastically.】
The appearance of the holier-than-thou remarks and moral kidnapping suddenly caused another quarrel in the live broadcast room.
In the virtual world,
Song Juyao walked over to the swing and sat down, slowly rocking back and forth. Autumn leaves had fallen all around, casting her shadow on the ground, evoking a sense of loneliness.
How was Jiang Mi doing? Although Song Juyao didn't know the exact details, as someone who had been eliminated even before the live broadcast began, there was a possibility that Jiang Mi might try to reverse the situation by claiming that Song Juyao had devious intentions, to manipulate public opinion. This possibility was quite high, so it was highly likely that the audience in this episode would be viewing her through a lens of hostility.
Of course, there was also some probability of a situation that could work in her favor, such as some powerful person of some sort stepping in to help and letting the recording screen play earlier.
But this probability was too small, she certainly couldn't rely on such slim possibilities.
So, there were some loose ends to tie up before she could move on to the next phase. Song Juyao's fingers moved along the swing rope.
At that moment, the door of the orphanage swung open, and Song Juyao looked up, locking eyes with a tall, handsome man.
Both of them were momentarily taken aback.
"Hello," the man spoke first.
"Hello," Song Juyao nodded in response.
"Are you also an acquaintance of this orphanage?" Wei Yan took a few steps closer to her while maintaining a polite distance. He looked sideways and spoke with a tone of nostalgia with a bit of reflective ambiguous tone, "Before this orphanage closed down, I used to volunteer here often. There was a little girl who left a deep impression on me. She was excluded and couldn't hide the chocolates I gave to her. But looking into her eyes, I couldn't resist the urge to share them with her…”
He spoke with a smile and shook his head.
Song Juyao was momentarily stunned, obviously recognizing him.
"May I sit on that swing?" Wei Yan asked.
The swing was right beside Song Juyao, slightly beyond the safe distance. A woman's vigilance would not allow a strange man to sit so close in such a desolate place so quickly, unless she had let her guard down.
She recognized him and had a favorable impression of him.
Wei Yan's lips curled slightly.
【Song Juyao won't fall into Wei Yan's gentle trap, right?】
【There's one thing to say, Wei Yan doesn't seem to be as handsome as Evans......】
【But Wei Yan laid the groundwork when they were younger. It's normal for Song Juyao to like him.】
"By the way, may I ask who you are...?" Wei Yan inquired.
"I used to be at this orphanage," Song Juyao replied.
"I'm sorry. Are you missing your friends from back then? They were transferred to another orphanage. Don't you know? Shall I give you the address?"
Song Juyao shook her head, her somber mood made her need to talk to someone, "I used to have a good friend. She was like an angel. Later, she was adopted, but..."
Song Juyao hadn't been taken from the orphanage by her adoptive father for two days, she heard that she was going abroad. She requested her father to take her to say goodbye to Jiang Mi. Her adoptive father agreed. He drove her to a stop on the side of the road, leaving her to say goodbye to her little friend on her own.
Song Juyao knocked on the door, and the door opened, revealing the man's unhappy face. When he saw Song Juyao, he was momentarily stunned, and a strange luster flashed in his eyes.
After Jiang Mi's death, his strange feelings for Song Juyao appeared again. He bent down, asking gently, "Aren't you one of the kids from the orphanage? What brings you here?"
"Uncle, I miss Mimi, so I came to play with her," Song Juyao flashed him a sweet and innocent smile.
"I see, you specially came from the orphanage." The gleam in the man's eyes intensified, and his smile took on a somewhat sinister edge.
"Come on in."
Unsuspectingly, Song Juyao walked in unguardedly.
In order to avoid the risk of a real NPC unexpectedly vanishing from the virtual world due to exiting it, the system promptly generates an NPC image to take real NPC's place when they decide to log out. Thus, when Jiang Mi departed, her physical presence remained, but all signs of life were absent.
Jiang Mi's tiny body still lay in the basement, dismembered in half.
Because he had committed murder once, this man's nature had subtly changed. He used to be somewhat timid, but now, after spilling blood, his courage and desires began to increase infinitely.
He watched Song Juyao's retreating figure and thought that this young girl seemed like an easy target. Coming out of that orphanage to find a friend, even if he did something to her, when she went back and Auntie found out, Auntie would probably choose to sweep it under the rug, pretending nothing happened. All he had to do was be cautious and not go as far as killing anyone.
He laced the milk with sleeping pills and handed it to Song Juyao. However, Song Juyao, with her strong sense of caution, didn't drink it. Instead, she placed the glass of milk on the table and kept asking about Jiang Mi's whereabouts.
"She's gone out with her mom and will be back shortly. Why don't you have some milk in the meantime?"
Song Juyao stood up, saying, "I'll come back later to look for Mimi, Uncle, goodbye."
Song Juyao wanted to leave, the man lost his patience and expression suddenly darkened. He grabbed her arm, throwing her onto the couch and pounced on her.
Song Juyao was terrified; she screamed loudly. The man tried to muffle her cries, but soon he found himself being grabbed by the collar and thrown aside. The imposing man, who resembled a butcher, struck him with powerful punches until he lost consciousness.
He then called the police, and they arrived quickly. In the basement, the "corpse" of Jiang Mi was also discovered, and the husband and wife were arrested without the opportunity to harm the second child.
【Wow!!! That's great! This disgusting couple was sent to prison by Song Juyao!】
【The person who just criticized Song Juyao, does your face hurt? Huh? Does it hurt?】
【What's the fuss about Song Juyao? It's just a coincidence.】
【Song Juyao's fans are just trying to portray her as an angel whenever they can.】
【Whether it's by chance or not, Song Juyao has done justice by saving so many children who could have fallen victim to them. The merit should go to her!】
【Haha, it's quite amusing. Previously, someone said that Song Juyao should feel guilty for unintentionally putting innocent kids at risk by not getting adopted by a pedophile. Now that she has unintentionally saved numerous children, some are questioning why we should pay attention to Song Juyao. Don’t be too hypocritical; it's really disgusting.】
Wei Yan didn't expect to hear Jiang Mi's ending, and he was dumbfounded. He and Wen Zhulian had thought Jiang Mi had some special action that caused her to disappear. It turned out she was eliminated? It was supposed to be Song Juyao who got adopted, but how did it end up being Jiang Mi adopted by that couple?
And she suffered such a gruesome fate, being brutally killed and dismembered. It was horrifying!
His expression stiffened, but he didn't forget to continue with the act.
"So, you're... Song Juyao, right? It's quite a coincidence; it seems fate has brought us together," Wei Yan gazed at her with complicated eyes. "I'm Wei Yan. I never expected such a twist of fate. It turns out that we actually met when we were young. You're the one the Wen family mistakenly took as their daughter, and you and I were supposed to be..."
He hesitated, filled with implications. If Song Juyao had any feelings for him, her heart would surely have raced, and she would have automatically completed the sentence: that he and she are the real engaged couple.
However, Song Juyao simply smiled.
Wei Yan felt that she was forcing a smile and suddenly changed the subject: "By the way, I'm actually a director."
Song Juyao replied, "I know. I've seen your work; it's outstanding. You truly deserve the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Director. You're the youngest recipient of that award."
Wei Yan smiled, saying, "Thank you."
Wei Yan and Wen Zhulian were from the same company, and their career plans were similar. He directed the critically acclaimed and commercially successful movies in the real world, just like Wen Zhulian. They had both become famous, sweeping up major awards, and Wei Yan became the youngest-ever recipient of the prestigious Hong Kong Film Best Director award.
This title was the pinnacle of achievement that countless directors in the real world pursued throughout their lives!
At times, Wei Yan was quite flattered with all the praise he received. It turns out that this is how it feels to be a prodigy.
"I have a fantastic script. Would you be interested in auditioning for it?" Wei Yan suddenly asked. Of course, this role would be for Wen Zhulian, and it was a trap set for Song Juyao. No young girl could resist the allure of the star-studded entertainment industry, especially with Wen Zhulian already inside it. If Song Juyao had even the slightest interest in her, a desire to compete with her, she should also want to enter this industry.
Afraid that this was not tempting enough, Wei Yan added, "It's based on a book I managed to secure the rights for, you know? It's "The Nightingale and the Dragon" by the famous fantasy novel Queen, the Dragon Slayer Princess."
【Inviting the author to audition for a movie adaptation of her own novel, hahaha!】
【I'm really curious about the novel Song Juyao wrote! It seems really amazing!】
【Imagining myself in Song Juyao's shoes gives me a satisfying feeling.】
【I can't wait to see the expressions on Wei Yan and Wen Zhulian's faces when they discover the truth. It's bound to be quite a spectacle!】
Song Juyao seemed to be amused and her eyes twinkled with a smile. Her eyes sparkled like glistening water, and the way she looked at people was gentle and affectionate, which instantly made Wei Yan's heart skip a beat.
Song Juyao replied, "No, thank you. I'm not interested in the entertainment industry, and I'm not a good actress. I should be going."
Wei Yan stood there, watching Song Juyao's retreating figure, still immersed in the charm of those beautiful eyes. Then, he couldn't help but smile.
Song Juyao felt a slight attraction towards him. He was quite certain of it.
They would see each other again soon.
Three days later, all the invited guests were preparing to head to Survival Island Paradise.
At this point, the online mockery of the fake heiress Wen Zhulian had reached its peak. Some people appeared to have an inexplicable backlash mentality, Wen Zhu Ren knew that the time to fight back had arrived.
A massive wave of internet water army appeared, and the silent Zhuzhu fans (pearl) began to take action.
A prominent influencer was the first to speak out, saying: "I really can't comprehend the recent online trends. Evans is undoubtedly talented, but what does that have to do with his sister? It's as if Evans's achievements are being attributed to her. I'm not even a fan of Wen Zhulian, but I just can't fathom it. Wen Zhulian is only 18 years old, debuted at 14, released three hit albums, the first of which is a classic hit. Undoubtedly she is a well-deserved genius, she has left an indelible mark on the nation's music history. And what about Song Juyao...? Well, she has a 'King of the Music Industry' brother. And then? Nothing."
[I used to really dislike Wen Zhulian, but seeing so many people bashing her incessantly, I'm starting to like her a bit. It's like a reverse psychology effect.]
[Evans's fans, don't lick too much, stop shouting 'sister.' Does she even know you exist?]
[What did Wen Zhulian do to deserve this mockery? She didn't even know Evans was her brother. If you ask me, the real heiress is strange. If she didn't want to go back with them, why didn't she just say so? Being evasive only makes things worse, was she waiting for this day?]
[It feels like Wen Zhulian has fallen into a trap.]
[Song Juyao is a real heiress, which means she's not blood-related to Evans... Hmm... Are they really just siblings?]
[...Ahhhhhh, shut up, shut up, I'm not listening, I'm not listening!!!]
[Tomorrow, they're going to Survival Island Paradise, right? Whether it's a person or a ghost I think we'll soon be able to see it clearly]
With this change in rhythm, those who were previously emotionally charged suddenly became calm, as if they had finally come to their senses and began to ponder—Right, what's so special about it? Evans is Evans, and Song Juyao is Song Juyao. What's remarkable about a person is whether they have an incredible family member? No matter how you listen to it, that just sounds useless.
On the contrary, Wen Zhulian was different. She was going against the flow; she was the "incredible family member" herself.
Wen Zhulian was content. Is Evans her brother? What's the big deal?!
Evans was fond of his little sister; if he saw this, he would surely be angry. Would he come to Song Juyao's defense? Although he might, the more he supports her, the worse people's perception of her may become.
Evans has many wife-fans. Even though he didn't depend on these fans for his livelihood, there were inevitably some overly passionate fans among them. In such a large fanbase, many people disliked Song Juyao, after all. Because, let's face it, who would like a boyfriend who was a sister-con? Especially when this sister is actually adopted and has no blood relationship with him.
However, it was difficult to say all this before. After all, she was an idol's sister, and it might anger the idol. Now that someone was changing the rhythm, they felt more comfortable speaking up. At this point, the more Evans would speak up for Song Juyao, the more they would dislike her. They might even start thinking that Song Juyao was a vampire, clinging to Evans.
[Counting the gifts Evans has given to his sister over the years... and bringing her along to Survival Island Paradise this time, is he trying to take advantage of the opportunity to help her debut? She's grown up, hasn't she thought about making it on her own without relying on her brother? Clinging to her brother like this doesn't seem right, does it?]
Oh, someone's already saying it like that.
"Zhuzhu, have you packed your things?" Li Xin came over and knocked on the door.
"Mom, I've already packed everything. Why haven't you gone to bed yet? Go to bed quickly. You should get some rest. We're leaving at six in the morning tomorrow."
"I'm just a bit excited; I can't sleep." It was her first time appearing on a show, and it was a live show! Oh dear, I must wear those pearl earrings! So many people will be watching.
Li Xin went back to pack her things again.
The Wen family of four had already packed their belongings.
The other guests had also finished packing, and the next morning, as dawn broke, they set off from their respective locations.
Wen Zhulian didn't wait for Evans to speak up for Song Juyao. She was a bit disappointed, but more than that, she was delighted. She also didn't like the fact that her idol was a sis-con.
Survival Island Paradise was within the Whale Fall Sea, a sea that was vibrant and teeming with life because of the frequent whale fall phenomenon.
The island was quite large, and the guests had taken a nap on their respective helicopters. It was only as the sun became blinding that they were about to reach their destination. Looking down from the windows, they could see the lush green island.
The sea was calm, shimmering with the glint of sunlight, and the water near the shore was crystal clear, revealing coral reefs and sea turtles below…
The host was waiting for them on the beach and waved vigorously. The live broadcast began at that very moment.
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