single dad lwj brings ayuan to the library where wwx is a librarian, ayuan takes out books often. One day, ayuan forgets to return a book (he's 7)and it's past due. He panics, so he hides it until it's deemed missing and accrues A LOT of fees, wwx has to call the guardian on file
When wwx calls, a very deep voice answers and for a second wwx is like, oh wowza, but he's at work! So he says, "Hi, I'm calling in regards to Wen Yuan, is this Lan Wangji?"

Lwj instantly is worried his son is hurt, or in trouble (it's school hours so ayuan isn't home)
"Yes," lwj responds, pressing his phone closer to his face.

There's shuffling of papers on the other end of the line. "Hi, I'm Wei Ying, I work at the public library. We're calling about the fees accrued on Wen Yuan's account."

Lwj scrunches his brow. Fees?
"Fees?" lwj asks.

"Yes, the book--uh where was it--yes, 'Bunnie's Paradise' has been past due for three weeks, so those late fees, plus the cost of the book since it's been deemed missing at this point."

The librarian finished but lwj is shell-shocked. There has to be a mistake
His sweet A-Yuan would never keep a book past it's due date, or, gods forbid, /steal/ from the library.

"There has to be a mistake," lwj says with conviction.

"There...um, isn't. It's all clearly in our system here, the book has a specific number you see, which is currently-
-missing from our inventory."

Lwj shakes his head even tho the man can't see him. "Then there is issue with your system perhaps, my son would never fail to return a book that is due, I did not raise him that way."

The librarian huffs out an awkward laugh.
"Listen, I'm sure your kid is a gem and all, all parents tell me this, but there is no fault in our system, I coded it myself. The book is missing, /sir/, and the fees need to be paid for. Until then we are suspending Wen Yuan's library card access."
Lwj can barely form a sentence, he feels like he's been catapulted into space.

"Well, until next time, Mr. Lan!" the librarian says, oddly cheery despite lwj's world crashing around him, and then the line disconnects.

Lwj stares at his phone for a long time. Surely his-
-perfect son didn't....hide somethin from him......did he?

As a good dad, lwj frets all day. When A-Yuan gets home from school, smiley as ever, lwj feels his heart break a little over the fact that lwj even has to ask the question. (Obvs it's the system not his son!)
"A-Yuan. I received a strange call from the library today--" lwj says, eyes watching his son. All notion that the library was at fault dissipates the second lwj watches his son stiffen up comically and stare at him with big, wide eyes.

A-Yuan blinks a few times.
"I've....got no clue what a library is, never have I been inside one, I have lot of home work baba I gotta go--" A-Yuan makes a break for it but lwj is quicker.

"Wen Yuan," lwj says, full dad-mode using his son's full name.

A-Yuan squeaks in response, then turns those big-
-eyes onto lwj, blinking up through quickly forming tears. "Baba, I didn't /mean/ to," he says through the beginning of a breakdown and lwj can't help but console him.

"Tell me what's happened."

So A-Yuan does explain how he just didn't have it in his bag on the due-date, and-
-that the fees were so scary he couldn't go back to the library. Then they kept accumulating and accumulating, and then the full price of the book was added!!! And it was ~$75, a number so astronomical to a 7-year old he couldn't bear to deal with it!
Lwj holds him and listens thru the entire story. His poor son! How traumatizing, how dare this library use scare tactics on his son. But also, understanding the value of deadlines and responsibility is a good lesson, so he does not debase the library in front of his son.
(Although he does later rant on his priv twitter instead) The next day they return to the library hand-in-hand to pay off the fees.

Lwj recognizes the librarian's voice while he's tending to the patrons in front of them on line and twitches.
"Hello, we are here to pay off account fees," lwj grits out.

The librarian perks up. "Oh? Mr. Lan? Is that you?"

A curt nod of lwj's head.

"Ah, so this must be the perpetrator in question, Wen Yuan."

A-Yuan's jaw drops and he looks up at lwj for help, lwj frowns.
"Do not call my son that," lwj says.

Wwx waves him off. "Oh, relax relax. We've all been an enemy to the public library before."

Lwj has /not/. A-Yuan tightens his grip in lwj's hand, chin wobbling.

"Alright--" Wwx looks at the paper on his desk, "--A-Yuan, how would you-
-like to serve your sentence?"

Lwj is going to lose in it 3 seconds, how did this man get hired?!

"I will pay for it," lwj says, (obviously).

Wwx shakes his head. "It's not your library card, Mr. Lan."

Lwj opens his mouth to protest, A-Yuan is looking down in grief.
Wwx winks at him, and lwj does /not/ understand what that means.

"Here at the public library, you can read off your debt," wwx says and A-Yuan looks up.

"Read off my debt?" A-Yuan asks.

Wwx nods. "Each book you read is $10 off of your debt. That way, you can pay it your-
-self and not rely on Baba over here."

Lwj scrunches his brow, he has no issue paying for his son's affairs.

A-Yuan lights up next to him. "I can pay it myself?" Wwx nods, handing A-Yuan a program flier. "All I have to do is read? That seems too easy! I love to read!"
Wwx nods. "Easy as a piece of pie. It'll be gone in no time, all by your hands! What do you say, Gusu library's most notoriously wanted offender?"

A-Yuan lets go of lwj's hand to salute the librarian. "I will do my time!"

Lwj is looking btwn the two of them like, what the fu-
"Can I start now??" A-Yuan bounces next to lwj and wwx flashes a heart breaking smile.

"Mhm, follow the signs to the reading nook, someone will help you there," wwx says.

A-Yuan says thanks and runs (speed-walks) off.

Lwj squints at the librarian, the librarian squints back.
"Listen, Mr. Lan, I didn't mean to overstep in any way, I just spent /a lot/ of time with children. And I've seen first hand which kinds of lessons stick, and which don't. If you always pay off the mistakes your son makes, he's never gonna learn not to make them, trust me."
Lwj does /not/ want to co-parent his son with this hot--

Lwj presses his lips together in dissatisfaction. It's not the way he would have done it, but A-Yuan was very quite clearly receptive of the technique.
"Next time you'd like to act as a second father to my son, please notify me beforehand so I may be prepared," lwj says.

Wwx's smile broadens. "Oh? Are you trying to wife me up, Mr. Lan?"

Lwj's entire body heats up. The audacity of this man. He doesn't deign a response.
Wwx laughs, far too loudly for a librarian. Lwj watches the long column of his neck as he does. Hm. He makes a decision.

"Mn," lwj says.

"What?" wwx asks.

"Mn. I can make you my wife."

Wwx's eyes go comically wide in his small face, and very red. "W-What!"
"Please watch over our son, I will be back at 4:30 to pick you both up."

"Mr. Lan-"

"Then you will present yourself for me on my bed, like a good wife would do, and I will show my appreciation for your motherly duties so thoroughly that you will not be able to walk the tmrw."
Lwj watches wwx all-body shudder and groan out a, "Lan Wangji."

"It's Lan Zhan. I will see you at 4:30, Wei Ying." Then he leaves with a satisfied smirk on his face.

At 4:30 he does pick up his wife and son from the library, and make well on his promises.
~ Fin ~

Don't ask me how I went from library fees to wifexian, i couldn't tell you honestly. I was supposed to be doing schoolwork and here we are ! Anyway! Thanks for reading!

ko-fi.com/yunmenglotus if you feelin saucy xoxo
Deff based on my exp w the public library as a kid who accidentally stole 4 books, (you can imagine the fees) and ran away from the law--anyway.

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