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Wicked Whimsy

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The Wen were holding the Cultivation Conference this year, and apparently it was strange because of the sudden change in Sect Leaders.

Wei Wuxian didn’t understand why, but it was interesting to be somewhere else instead of shoved off to Cloud Recesses. Sure, that would probably be a thing still next year, but currently he was exploring the interesting Nightless City on his own.

Jiang Cheng had gotten stuck in an argument with one of the Nie, and he’d used that as his chance to escape his chaperone and have some fun.

Little Qi fires dotted the hallways in hanging glass orbs, pretty and practical and interesting because he didn’t understand the mechanics of how it burned without fuel. When it wasn’t directly being fed Qi to sustain it.

It didn’t take long – after dodging guards and a few overly concerned Jiang Disciples – to come upon an inner garden. Compared to everything else, it was remarkably temperate, covered in subtle, lovely talismans everywhere that seemed to act as a reverse to a glass house. Standing amidst the flowers and surprisingly a pool of lotus flowers, were two men.

One wore primarily black with red edging and embroidery on his robes, the other red and black and gold, with the impressive hairpiece of a Wen cultivator.

The one in black was cradling the other man’s face, and suddenly Wei Wuxian felt a little embarrassed. Normally he didn’t mind when he came across intimate moments like this, but the way that the other man leaned into the touch, eyes closed as a pale thumb slid over his bottom lip…

Well. It brought heat to his cheeks when normally such a thing wouldn’t be terrible cause for worry.

Long hair restrained by a dark red ribbon only slid in an unfelt breeze, and Wei Wuxian froze as dark eyes in an eerily similar face turned to him, pinpricked with red. In a startled blink and a flicker of shadows from firelight, Wei Wuxian felt those long, callused fingers alite on his own jawline. As if the man had simply appeared from one blink to the next within his space, drenched in dark energy.

For reasons he couldn’t fathom, his golden core shuddered in his stomach, and for a startling moment he felt stark fear.

“Wei Lianxi!” a textured voice came from the side as the man in red grasped the wrist of the man who stared down in Wei Wuxian’s eyes, fascinated. “Please do not assault the guests.”

“Oh, but my A-Xu,” the darkness swathed man in the surname Wei spoke with a curling smirk. “This one is looking for trouble. And is there anyone more troublesome than I in the Nightless City?”

The tall man who breathed resentment softened as he reached up to brush his fingertips along the Wen’s cheekbone, as if tracing an invisible line over and over. Still, he did not release Wei Wuxian, who shivered at the heat the unknown Wen gave off and the peculiar chill of the hand on his face.

“Um, sorry for interrupting!” pink slid over his cheeks and he stared wide eyed up at the Wen, who seemed the safer option, oddly enough. “I was just exploring.”

Those dark eyes studied his face for only a moment before the Wen hummed contemplatively.

“You are part of the Jiang party.”

“Ah, yes!” stepping out of the cold grip, his heart pounded hard in his chest, cheeks still warm as he saluted. “Wei Ying, courtesy name Wuxian, Head Disciple of the Yunmeng Jiang Sect.”

“Wei Wuxian…” the Wen drawled out slowly, sounding each character carefully, making something squirm in his stomach as those dark eyes looked him up and down slowly. “I am Wen Xu.”

Oh.

Oh no.

Jiang Cheng was going to strangle him, and then Madam Yu was going to bring him back to beat him to death.

“Um.”

“You’re cute,” the unintroduced Wei Lianxi had slid behind Wen Xu, sliding an arm around his waist in what looked to be a familiar motion, chin hooked on his shoulder. “Wei Wuxian is cute, A-Xu.”

The man made an exasperated face at that and sighed.

“Yes, I suppose he is.”

Despite realizing that there was more going on than he knew, he still felt himself flush awkwardly at the words from these two men. He’d never heard of a Wei Lianxi before, and even if they perhaps shared a surname and most of a face, it didn’t mean anything.

And neither did them calling him cute!