Chapter 1: Chapter:1
Jin Zixuan is dying. Literally.
This wasn't supposed to happen. He is supposed to be celebrating his son's one-month celebration with his beautiful, amazing wife.
Instead, he is here, at Qiongqi Path, dying while his brother-in-law watches, horrified.
For a moment, he thinks of his wife, who is eagerly waiting for her brother's arrival. He thinks of his son, who would grow up without a father.
Then, everything goes black.
And then, he opens his eyes.
He barely has a moment to comprehend the ridiculousness of the whole situation before a solid punch lands on his face.
He reels back, startled. Then he lifts his face and his eyes meet Wei Wuxian's, who looks ready to punch him again.
But something about this Wei Wuxian is different. He looks young, his face still has the boyish charm his older self lacked.
Then he looks at his surroundings and a horrifying realization dawns upon him.
He is in the past.
Which means he still hasn't managed to woo A-Li. In fact, he just insulted her in front of her brothers.
But, it also means that he can fix the future.
He can hear his douchbag cousin's outrageous shouts in the background.
By the time he has fully come in terms with the situation, Lan Qiren has already arrived.
"What happened?" He asks strictly.
In the past, Jin Zixuan had reported Wei Wuxian for punching him, which resulted in the latter getting expelled. But this time, because he knows he was being an asshole, and also because he doesn't want to give A-Li’s family any more reasons to hate him, he says,
"Nothing, Grandmaster Qiren. I provoked Wei-gonzi by insulting his shijie, so he punched me. I will accept punishment."
Lan Qiren doesn’t look like he believes him.
"Physical violence is forbidden in Cloud Recesses. Both of you will receive 15 strikes and then copy Virtue and Conduct. Wangji will oversee your punishment." Saying this, Lan Qiren leaves the place.
On the other side of the room, Wei Wuxian could not believe his ears.
"Did the peacock just speak in my favour?"
The first thing Jin Zixuan does after receiving the punishment is to make a list of things he needs to do to prevent the fucked-up future. It goes something like this:
1. Convince the others that the Wen Sect is going to attack real soon.
2. Also, convince the others that not every person who carries the Wen surname is evil.
3. Try to control his father's tyrannical behavior. ('Try' being the keyword.)
4. Impress A-Li and her family.
This should be enough for now. But first thing first, he needs to warn the Gusu Lan sect and the Yunmeng Jiang sect without revealing the truth (as if anyone would believe that he died and time-traveled).
The next morning, he tries to put up a brave front and marches towards Lan Qiren's study.
He can do this.
He cannot do this.
Turns out, even after all these years, he is still afraid of Lan Qiren. And besides, that man won't be easy to fool. So he changes his plan and approaches Lan Xichen, who is known for his pleasant personality.
He finds him in the library.
"Zewu-jun, I need to speak to you."
Lan Xichen greets him with his signature smile.
"Of course, Jin-gonzi, what's the matter?"
"I think you should strengthen the wards around the Cloud Recesses. Also, try to make another copy of the important scrolls in the library. Just in case." He adds hastily.
Lan Xichen's face is full of confusion and doubt.
"This is... very sudden."
Fuckfuckfuck. "Well, I was thinking, since the Wens have already driven the Waterborne Abyss in our region, it's only a matter of time before they start attacking us directly."
Lan Xichen looks like he is thinking over his words. Finally, he says, "While I do not think the Wens will attack anytime soon, your words cannot be dismissed either. I will get some disciples to copy the texts. Thank you for your concern." Lan Xichen says sincerely.
Jin Zixuan mutters an awkward "Have a good day" and walks (runs) away.
Wow. That went better than expected.
Now, he just needs to convince Sect Leader Jiang and warn the others about the indoctrination camp.
He should also start looking for Meng Yao. Poor boy went through so much misery and humiliation last time.
Classes are surprisingly easy.
Well, not very surprising considering he had already learned the lessons in the past (he hadn't ranked third in the list for nothing).
Last time, he was too busy studying to notice his classmates. But now, he is way ahead of the lessons. Bored, his eyes start wandering until they land on a certain white-clad cultivator.
Lan Wangji, the epitome of discipline, does not seem to be following the lecture. Weird.
Instead, he is too busy looking at something.
Intrigued, Jin Zixuan follows Lan Wangji's eyes.
Lan Wangji is looking at Wei Wuxian.
Lan Wangji, the flawless Gusu Lan disciple, is gazing at Wei Wuxian like he has hung the moon.
He is definitely going to think about this later.
For now, everything is going smoothly.
There is a little problem though. Apparently, he is not as good at acting as he thought, and more or less everyone is surprised by his sudden display of maturity.
Jin Zixun is convinced that he is being possessed by an evil spirit. Jiang Cheng and Wei Wuxian keep shooting him confused glances all the time. And he is sure he saw Nie Huaisang looking at him with narrowed eyes during lunch.
Speaking of which, if he wants to impress A-Li, he should probably start by getting in Wei Wuxian's good graces.
So, he braces himself for the second awkward conversation of the day.
The peacock is acting weird. Yesterday, he defended Wei Wuxian in front of Lan Qiren! And today, his arrogant bratty attitude is gone!
If things go on like this, Wei Wuxian is going to suspect he has gone mad or something. Seriously, he didn't punch him that hard!
Wei Wuxian is immersed in his thoughts when a voice calls out from behind.
Oh, speak of the devil, it's the peacock.
Jin Zixuan looks like he wants to be anywhere but here. Which is strange, considering he was the one who approached him.
This is so embarrassing.
"I said I'm sorry. For insulting your shijie."
After a very awkward pause, Wei Wuxian replies.
"I would also like to fix our relationship."
Great. Now, even Wei Wuxian thinks he is nuts.
"I was thinking, since we will be brothers-in-law in the future, we should try to have a civil relationship."
Wei Wuxian seems to be mulling over his words.
"Would you like to meet for drinks? Tonight?"
He has no idea why he said that.
"Sure. My room or yours?"
Wei Wuxian is way too on board with this. Probably because of free liquor.
"Mine. See you tonight."
Before Jin Zixuan can say anything else, Wei Wuxian is dragged away by Nie Huaisang, who is busy chatting about some exotic bird he saw.
He is about to leave as well when he sees Lan Wangji glaring at him from the corner of the room.
Glaring is an understatement. Lan Wangji is looking at him like Jin Zixuan has murdered his whole family in front of him.
It sends a chill down his spine.
Not wanting to risk it any further, Jin Zixuan runs away (once again).
Conversing with Wei Wuxian is extremely easy when they are both inebriated. They mostly talk about how awesome A-Li is, perhaps the only thing they agree on.
By the end of the night, he thinks he has managed to (somewhat) befriend Wei Wuxian.
The next morning, he is approached by Jiang Cheng, who looks angrier than usual. Jin Zixuan didn't know it was possible.
"What do you think you are doing?"
"What?" He isn't doing anything, except trying to mend the future.
"Firstly, you defended Wei Wuxian. Yesterday night, you even got drunk with him! Are you saying that you don't have any selfish reasons behind all of this?"
"I... I don't! I'm just trying to make up for my mistakes!" Can't he have just one day without anybody suspecting him?
Jiang Cheng looks skeptical.
"I've got my eyes on you."