A Life Debt Repaid

Chapter 698

Zoe wanted to challenge herself-she would abandon Cora’s interpretation of the character and make a
completely new character instead. However, doing so had its risks; the audience might not be used to
the new character since it went against what they remembered, which in turn would lead to her being

After thinking things through, Zoe decided to stick to Cora’s interpretation.

The audience began to vote after the contestants’ performances before the program moved on to the
judges’ comments.

Hailey was the most experienced amongst the judges, and she had been watching solemnly.

She was even more solemn after watching Zoe’s team’s performance.

Zoe, Wynn, and Candice felt their hearts racing nervously.

They more or less managed to recreate the performance as it was, but had no idea if the judges and
audience would buy it. 1

Hailey then spoke, “First and foremost, it’s commendable that the performance overall was replicated
without obvious mistakes. Naturally, there were some minor mishaps. For example, corpsing, aren’t we,

Wynn smiled in embarrassment and nodded. The studio audience laughed in amusement.

“Also, Candice made some mistakes in positioning. You were too quick with your lines,” Hailey added
bluntly, pointing out all their mistakes. “It may be normal to make mistakes while you’re on stage, but
even if you didn’t have much time to prepare, mistakes should always be avoided.”

“Yes, Miss Zimmerman.” Both Wynn and Candice were quick to respond humbly.

One must admit that Hailey was as serious as she was meticulous; it was as if no one on stage could
pull the wool over her eyes.

She turned to Zoe then. “But in contrast, even if she made zero mistakes, Zoe’s performance is the
worst among your trio.”

The studio was left in an uproar by those words-the one who made zero mistakes, somehow gave the
worst performance?!

Zoe, however, kept smiling, afraid to react at all since the cameras might capture her murderous intent.

“Do you know why I said that?” Hailey asked.

The host promptly passed the micto Zoe, who replied, “Please enlighten me, Miss Zimmerman.”

“Your performance was immaculate, but it had neither soul nor uniqueness. I could even put it this way:
you were playing Cora Levine, not Zoe York,” Hailey said, cutting straight to the heart of the matter.

Zoe began, “In my opinion, Cora’s interpretation of the character was perfect, and-”

“That’s an excuse. Take Hamlet for an example—the character had been played by countless
characters over centuries, but new interpretations always surface. Your behavior is undoubtedly

Hailey was merciless, and Zoe nodded, too fearful to defend himself.

Moreover, it was true-she had simply copied Cora’s interpretation.

“Anyone can put up such a brainless performance and do well. In contrast. Candice and Wynn were
breathing new life to their characters despite their mistakes. On the other hand, you didn’t, and I

actually find your performance a waste of time.”

Hailey’s exceedingly sharp critique left Zoe embarrassed.

She did not know how to explain that she wanted to stave elimination, and was therefore afraid to get

However, that would also invite the backlash that she was prioritizing winning and disrespecting the

In fact, whatever she said now would be a mistake.

“I will do better next time,” she said.

“That’s something I must point out as well. You show the right attitude in apologizing on each occasion,
but you let everyone down in each case. There is only one stage and one opportunity, Zoe-you won’t
get far if you don’t get serious.”

“Thank you for your critique, Miss Zimmerman.” Zoe flashed a smile of gratitude.

Hailey stopped, while the other two judges each made their critique.

They briefly touched on Zoe with formal encouragement, and it was soon Jay’s turn.

Before he could speak, Hailey seemed to remember something else, and added, ’I had mentioned
before rehearsals that you shouldn’t cut corners and stay grounded. You didn’t take my words to heart,
did you?”

Zoe was left bemused. 1

She had no idea what she did this time-aside from rehearsals, she had been keeping her distance from

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