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What Lurks Beneath Lotus Pier

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When he’d first learned to meditate, he’d been taught to ignore the external. The rapping at his door was not stopping. It did not make sense. The Elders had ordered him into seclusion. No one would dare disobey.

Wei Wuxian would disobey. He opened his eyes. It could not be. Wei Wuxian was dead.

The knocking continued, harder now. “Hanguang-Jun. Hanguang-Jun.”

It was not Wei Wuxian.

“Hanguang-Jun.” The voice sounded agitated. It clearly violated rule one-thousand four-hundred and twenty-three: Do not give in to emotions. Wei Wuxian would have laughed at him for stating the rule. He rose, opened the door, and stared. This disciple had survived the fall of Gusu. Nothing minor could upset him to this extent.

“Hanguang-Jun. The Elders have summoned you.”

He nodded and followed.

The Elders were not calm. Even when they’d ordered his seclusion, they’d appeared calm. What could have happened to cause such distress?

His uncle rose to his feet. Lan Wangji had never seen him cry. “Your brother is dead.”

The world flashed, broke in two, and for a moment it seemed as if a chasm had opened below him, but when he looked down the floor remained solid.

He bowed before the Elders. When he rose, he spoke only two words. “Tell me.”