Gu You continued, "‘g57’ was skilled in information technology. He rewrote the forum’s source code, and also tampered with some of it. I only discovered this later. He modified the algorithm for assigning missions to one another. Our missions were originally randomly distributed. After he modified the algorithm, everyone received the missions that he had designed to turn fake crimes into real crimes. On October 18th, I was assigned a mission to delete some computer files. I snuck into a room, turned on the computer, and saw... I saw many nude photos of my classmates, which were secretly taken in the bathroom, including my own!”
"At that time, I received a text message from someone without a number displayed. It told me that the owner of the house was a worker at our university. He had installed a camera in the bathroom a long time ago, took nude photos of girls, and sold them to some porn sites. The person was currently anesthetized, and there was a knife near the bed. Although I really wanted to kill that person at that moment, my reason stopped me. I realized that it was a trap and immediately deleted the photos from the computer before leaving. The scumbag who worked at my university was called Zhang Jutian. I reported him anonymously. You can all find this piece of news."
Gu You looked at the three, "You’ve received similar missions, haven't you?"
kk suddenly burst into tears. "I killed someone. He was an old man... I remember it was in November. The mission I received was to replace a box with another. I performed the mission easily. After I left, the police suddenly came, and I quickly found a place to hide. I received a text message telling me that the box contained the medicine that the elderly man took every day and that the box I had exchanged it with was poison. The person who sent the text message had already reported it to the police and the police had happened to be on patrol in the community. If I stood by, the old man would die; if I wanted to save him, I would be caught by the police. I was too scared, so I didn’t go back. When I passed by the neighborhood the next day, the funeral for the old man was already being held... I killed him! I killed him!"
Chen Shi kind of wanted to beat kk up on impulse, but restrained himself. It was all Zhou Xiao’s plot. He was the real killer.
Chen Shi recalled, "My mission was this. I received a normal prank mission. When I entered the room, I heard a girl crying. A girl was locked in the bedroom inside the house. The door of that bedroom was welded with iron railings. The girl was dressed flimsily and covered with bruises. I received a text message saying that the owner of the house was a father who committed domestic violence. They had already tampered with the electric blanket. As long as I pulled the bedside table lamp’s cord twice, he would be electrocuted to death... Although I was extremely angry, I didn’t follow the instructions. I pulled out the electric blanket from underneath the man, which of course awakened him. Then I beat him violently.”
"The noises in the house alarmed the neighbors. I failed to escape and was arrested. That incident almost ruined my future. One person saved me and allowed me to atone for my bad deed and redeem myself..." That person was Song Lang's master Li Mu.
Gu You asked, "Who saved you?"
The phrase "I'm actually a policeman" stuck in Chen Shi's throat. He hesitated, shook his head and said, "I don't want to say it yet."
Everyone turned their attention to Sun Zhen, and Sun Zhen covered his head in pain and said, "I can't remember... I can't remember anything at all..."
"It seems like you also got caught in his trap!" Gu You said. "He arranged a convenient murder scene for everyone. Some members fell from grace while others noticed something wrong. Li Xiaochuan was part of the group who fell from grace. After he had experienced killing someone, he couldn’t stop talking to me about how it felt to commit murder. His thoughts were being changed by Zhou Xiao. I proposed that the group should be disbanded, but he disagreed. You still remember that the forum was in an uproar and everyone was trying to guess who had issued those missions right? Then there was the tragedy at the villa, which was Zhou Xiao’s official showdown. He selected some members who were willing to follow him and ordered them to kill those who didn’t.” Touching upon the unfortunate past, Gu You supported her forehead with her hands.
Chen Shi asked, "Did you go there?"
"I went. I was very stupid. I wanted to persuade Li Xiaochuan at the last moment. But when I got there, I was attacked. When I woke up, I was tied up and wearing a black cloth cover over my head. I heard crazed cheering and a voice booming, 'This world is made up of false appearances and order. Those who follow the order will be crushed, and those who break the order will become immortal. We are strong. In this world where the strong devour the weak, we deserve to live another kind of life. The crazy but gorgeous way of living that others can only envy. I don’t expect or hope to change those idiots. They should die, and it’s up to all of you to execute this!’ Then there was another wave of people cheering like madmen. What broke my heart was Li Xiaochuan's voice could be heard among them.
"I heard Li Xiaochuan say ‘I'm sorry’ before stabbing me in the stomach. I lay on the ground. The air was full of the pungent stink of blood, and the moans of my dying companions. I kept crying and my body became colder and colder. I didn't know how long I had laid there when Li Xiaochuan ran over to untie me and sent me to the hospital. Fortunately, he had deliberately avoided a fatal wound and my life was spared. I asked him why he did this kind of thing. He responded that he had been obedient ever since he was a child. He thought that what that person said wasn't wrong. Together, they could become the most fucking amazing criminals in the world. If you had this kind of ability, why wouldn’t you use it? Why would they still want to live according to convention, working nine to five while getting trampled on by rich people for a lifetime?
"I knew that I couldn't change him anymore, so I just cried. As the expression says, ‘If you possess a weapon, the intent to kill will arise.’ Endless evil is hidden within human nature. After these ordinary people had learned superb criminal skills, they only needed a gentle push from a lunatic before they fell into the abyss. Later, the name Zhou Xiao appeared. He was a serial killer created by a group of people. They left no traces when they appeared and they couldn’t be tracked after they left. The police couldn’t do anything about them. As for Li Xiaochuan, he also appeared as one of his victims. That happened a year later. I think they discovered his disloyalty and they killed the chicken to warn the monkey."
After Gu You finished speaking, everyone fell silent. Chen Shi smiled miserably, "Are we actually weak or kind in guarding the bottom line?"
Gu You said, "Kind-heartedness is precious, but it’s difficult to maintain and stick to."
kk still seemed to be regretting indirectly killing the old man, and continued squatting down on the sofa, crying.
Sun Zhen covered his head and said, "I participated in a project in 2007, but my brain is like a blank sheet... That person might have worked with me... That's why he spared my life and just brainwashed me."
Chen Shi said, "Perhaps you used to be close friends."
Sun Zhen shook his head in distress. "I can't remember!"
At that time, Chen Shi received a text message. Lin Dongxue sent over a name-list. She explained, "This is the list of people that the police investigated back then. I don't know if it helps though."
Chen Shi picked up his copy and compared it with Lin Dongxue’s. He said, "Guys, Dongxue gave me a list of people that the police investigated for that fire. The two lists only have one overlapping name... Zhou Tiannan!"
Upon hearing this name, Sun Zhen screamed in agony while holding his head. It seemed like they finally found him.
1. To punish one person in order to warn all the other people who weren’t in line.
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