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    After hearing his question, Yang Ye flashed a quick smile and said solemnly, “Who would dare to admit that in front of someone who wants to kill the [Detective]?”

    Gu Liang saw the look on Yang Ye’s face and asked himself, is he playing dumb, or is he playing with me?

    Gu Liang thought the possibility of him just trolling was higher.

    A moment later, he said carelessly, “I only asked the system that question for the sake of testing out the game rules, not because I actually wanted to kill the detective.”

    “Killing the detective is allowed, but not necessary. Everyone can vote. Just because the murderer killed the detective doesn’t mean he won’t get voted out; there’s no point. Unless —”

    Gu Liang met Yang Ye’s gaze and said with an undertone, “Unless the detective has other privileges, like holding a huge clue. Do you have it?”

    Yang Ye tsked and drily commented, “You’re really trying to get it out of me right in the open huh.”

    “If you’re not the detective, what are you scared of?” Gu Liang replied lightly.

    What a sharp tongue.

    Yang Ye couldn’t help but ask, “What do you do for a living?”

    Gu Liang ignored him and drew his gaze back, eyes losing focus again. “Since you deny it, it’s whatever.”

    Yang Ye opened his mouth, wanting to say something else. But at this moment, a voice cried for help in the hallway outside. J

    It was a crisp, boyish voice. “Help! Help me!”

    Gu Liang didn’t budge, only glanced up apathetically. Yang Ye stood up and went to open teh door.

    The youth running outside for his life was roughly 17 years old. Seeing that someone opened the door, he darted in immediately.

    Yang Ye took a look at the hallway, then closed the door again.

    After entering, the boy leaned against the wall, panting violently. A while passed before the shock in his eyes faded. He looked at the two men in front of him. “I…I’m Son Bai. You guys are?”

    Yang Ye replied, “I’m your step-mom.”

    Yang Ye was tall and imposing, and his looks bore an intense, aggressive look.

    The tightly-fitted suit didn’t hide his muscular physique and smooth, well-defined muscles either. All in all, his figure reeked of strong male hormones.

    So, when he said “I’m your step-mom”, Gu Liang furrowed his eyebrows, a bit disgusted by his remark.

    The boy took his time with that one. “You…you’re Girlfriend Huang?”

    “Mhm, accidentally got a female role.”

    Yang Ye pointed at Gu Liang, who still hasn’t moved an inch and was sitting there like Mount Tai, “He’s Lawyer Zhang.”

    Son Bai nodded.

    He first squatted, then gave up and just sat on the ground, hugging his knees.

    Yang Ye asked him, “So what happened to you? Who’s chasing you?”

    “It’s…it’s Boss Bai who wants to kill me!” Son Bai said, bringing his knees even closer from the flashback and lowering his head.

    “Why does he want to kill you?” Yang Ye asked again.

    Son Bai swallowed hard. Perhaps because he hadn’t yet recovered from the shock, he didn’t raise to meet Yang Ye’s eyes.

    Yang Ye squatted down in front of him. “Don’t rush it, just speak slowly.”

    Son Bai thought about it, then mumbled, “According to my script, I just found out that my dad, Boss Bai, killed my biological mother. So I bought some poison, and I’m planning to poison him during lunch today.”

    After hearing this, Gu Liang now learned two things.

    One, just like he thought, everyone except the [Detective] in this script had some sort of motive for killing Boss Bai, and had all prepared a plan to do that.

    Second, the kid is not too dense. He didn’t tell them the detailed timeline, nor the name of the poison.

    Son Bai continued, “I was just in my room earlier. Boss Bai, my dad, for some reason, came to find me. I literally just dug out my box of poison and haven’t had a chance of putting it somewhere safe. He saw the box and immediately took out a knife. He said that he won’t die if he killed the murderer first.”

    The situation roughly cleared up for Gu Liang.

    Earlier downstairs, Boss Bai was brought back to his room by the two men in black after fainting. When he woke up, he didn’t want to just be like a sitting duck waiting for his death – he wanted to turn the tables.

    Of all the players, the easiest one to deal with is probably this 17-year-old boy.

    This is probably why Boss Bai went to him first to see if he was the murderer. Maybe he doesn’t know that multiple people want to kill him today, so when he saw the poison, he naturally thought that Son Bai was the real culprit.

    To avoid being killed himself, Boss Bai could only Uno reverse and kill Son Bai. He didn’t expect Son Bai to react fast enough to escape, though.

    — Would what Boss Bai did be considered a violation of the rules?

    The unmoving Gu Liang finally stood up from the sofa. He walked towards the door and opened a small seam to peek through.

    — Boss Bai was being carried into his room by two men in black. He was completely still, and it seemed he had fainted.

    Then, Gu Liang heard the familiar broadcast voice.

    “The following is a report on the unexpected incident. Boss Bai tried to kill Son Bai, but had failed to do so. He has been brought back to his room by the NPCs.”

    “The following is the judgement for Boss Bai’s behaviour. Because the character of Boss Bai is a complete piece of shit, his actions were in character. The system will not his action as a violation. Thus, Boss Bai will not receive any special punishments.”

    “According to the script, the timeline for each player will soon unfold. To prevent Boss Bai from affecting the plot, the men in black will strictly monitor his following actions to ensure that everything happens according to the script.”

    The system claimed that everything would unfold like it’s supposed to, which means it would guarantee that Boss Bai dies in the way that is written.

    Currently, the men in black have appeared twice. The first time was to give Boss Bai emergency treatment, and the second time was to forcefully remove him and simultaneously control his actions, ensuring that he would wait obediently for his death.

    In this game, the person who immediately pulls the [Deceased Card] is definitely the unluckiest.

    Few would accept their deaths willingly; naturally, they would choose to stir up trouble. 

    As such, the setting of the men in black was reasonable. They must control the [Deceased] to prevent them from disrupting the script enactment.

    Then, is there a way to intercede these NPCs?

    Gu Liang shut the door and sat back on the sofa. He drummed his finger against the arm of the sofa, deep in thought. It was a while after that he realized Son Bai was crying, hands covering his face.

    It’s probably because he was too focused on running just now that he hasn’t had the chance to be terrified. It was only when he heard the broadcast that he realized – clearly now – that he came to a horrifying world. The fear set in, and the anguished cry began.

    After silently watching Son Bai cry for a long while, Gu Liang furrowed his eyebrows slightly and said, “Alright, that’s about enough; there’s no point if you keep crying. Be strong.”

    Hearing that, Yang Ye was a bit surprised — as curt and sarcastic as Gu Liang, he was really comforting someone?

    The slap in the face was immediate. Yang Ye heard Gu Liang ask, “Oh, right. When are you using the poison?”

    What an abrupt change of topic.

    So he wasn’t trying to comfort the kid, but rather to coax some information out of him. Son Bai probably figured out his intentions too, though.

    Son Bai finally raised his head. He glanced at Gu Liang with shock, then turned to Yang Ye for help. “You’re my step-mom, can I trust you?”

    Yang Ye chuckled, sending a shiver up Son Bai’s spine. After a good laugh, Yang Ye asked him, “How are you planning to poison him? What is your modus operandi? Why don’t you read your script for us?”

    Son Bai: “……”

    He suddenly felt that the two people in front of him were scarier than the NPCs and the broadcast.

    “For the timeline and all that… If you guys are not telling, I’m not telling. Not only was I mysteriously sent to this dreadful game, I also have to meet people like you? You stick a pin in whenever there’s room just for the sake of worming out some information. I…I’m really…”

    Son Bai sat on the floor, dazed, looking dispirited.

    Gu Liang glanced at the clock hanging on the wall, and looked back to Son Bai and Yang Ye. “You two should leave. I saw a room in the first floor hallway that had a sign that said ‘Discussion Room’. Go to that room if you guys have more to say; my room is not for tea parties.”

    Done speaking, Gu Liang got up and picked up the strawberry shortcake on the square table. He took a bite, then a sip from his black tea.

    Son Bai’s eyes widened at his movement. He jumped up from the floor and stared at him in disbelief.

    Noticing his barely-concealed astonishment, Gu Liang looked at him and asked, “What?”

    “No…nothing…” Son Bai swallowed a mouthful of saliva, looking away, “Aren’t you… afraid that it might be poisoned?

    Gu Liang said, “Poisoned by who? The system? Certainly not– it needs its players to be alive and well. Or you two? You haven’t even come near to the food.”

    “But…eating the props isn’t against the rules?” Son Bai furrowed his eyebrows and whispered, looking anxious. After a while, a strange expression appeared on his face. He chose his words carefully before speaking again, “I keep thinking that this scary house is haunted by some gods or ghosts or – something – and everything in here should be left untouched.”

    “You can wait three seconds and see what happens to me,” Gu Liang commented calmly.

    In the end, Son Bai chose to wait three minutes.

    After three minutes had passed, Gu Liang scowled, showing a slimmer of annoyance. Seeing that, Son Bai finally dashed over with lightning speed and took some fruits and a slice of cake. “I’m hungry anyway. I was sent here before I got the chance to eat breakfast.”

    Gu Liang: “……”

    “Alright. You’re a man; have some snacks, get some rest, and stop being a wimp. What you need to do now is clear your thoughts and think about how to survive.” Yang Ye patted his shoulder and finally said something sensible.

    In the end, Yang Ye turned back to examine Gu Liang one last time before he left the room.

    It’s finally quiet in the room.

    Gu Liang sat for a bit, then walked towards night stand. He opened the drawer with the insulin and thought about his next course of action.

    The script only told him to lace the food, but there was still a lot that he was missing: how much he should use, and how long it would take for Boss Bai to die after taking it.

    The missing information would change Gu Liang’s judgement on whether he would be the real murderer. So, he continued to rummage his room for more clues.

    Soon he found a piece of paper under his pillow, which looked like it had been faxed over.

    It read: “Lawyer Zhang, what I’m giving you is a newly developed insulin that can be taken orally, which I researched independently. When an individual without diabetes takes 3mg, they will immediately experience dizziness, spasms, and shocks, and they will die after 30 minutes. Please use prudently. — From, a doctor fond of research and development.

    So this is how the game is played.

    Not only do they have to find related evidence and proof themselves, they also have to prevent other people from finding them.

    Gu Liang turned his room upside down and eventually found a lighter. He decided to burn the paper. In fact, not only the paper, he’d also have to burn the medicine box after he poisons Boss Bai.

    When the time came, nobody would find any evidence that would lead back to him even if Boss Bai actually ended up dying from the insulin.

    Nobody would’ve guessed that, just as Gu Liang started burning a corner of the paper, the broadcast began.

    “The following is a report on an unexpected incident. Lawyer Zhang attempted to destroy evidence —”

    Gu Liang furrowed his eyebrows and quickly realized something. He tossed the paper to the ground and put out the fire with his foot.

    The broadcast paused, then continued, “and had failed to do so.”

    Gu Liang: “……”

    Broadcast, “Lawyer Zhang’s actions triggered a warning: Regarding any evidence that might point to you being the real murderer, you can use whatever method to hide it. However, you are forbidden to destroy it as it will be treated as a violation of the rules, and you will have to receive a severe punishment!”

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