AU where Lan Clan has a tradition ever since Lan Yi, the assassin Clan Leader, first benefited from it-- the firstborn child is raised as the heir and the secondborn as the heirs supporter, as the guqin to their sword, the whip to their mercy, the eyes watching from their shadow.
LQR was such, too, before QHJ did the absurdest thing and tried to secede and give his position to LQR. Ofc, such a thing was unthinkable to the point where even after a decade of running the sect, LQR was still only the Acting Sect Leader and could never take the position fully.
LWJ was also raised as the sharper half to his older brother. He was as naturally capable at this --at discipline and music and chord assassination, at being a cold, silent phantom at his brother's back-- as his brother was at smiling and connecting to people.
Then, the Wens started stirring trouble. In this AU, compared to canon, it was obvious that the Lans were monks but they were also assassins. Several disciples were assigned to go infilirate the Wen Sect and collect info. At their lead was, naturally, LWJ.
LXC had protested this. LQR, in his quiet and sharp way, had also tried to outrule it. However, QHJ was still alive and in seclusion, and LQR had no real power over the elders.
When LQR had asked QHJ to save his son from being sent away on half a suicide mission, QHJ had said, "Why not? It's his duty."

LQR refused to speak to QHJ from then onwards, all the way to his death.
However, LWJ was sent to the Nightless City. One by one, as the days and weeks went on, his fellow clansmen disappeared from their posts and appeared in bits or pieces. WRH was onto them. But WRH, paranoid tyrant that he was, was onto anyone, so LWJ had no choice but to persist.
It took him months, longer than any of his clansmen, before he was caught. It was the middle of the Sunshot Campaign. Contact with his clan was long since lost, the last news being that the Cloud Recesses were under siege. LWJ had still continued to send all the info he could.
His brother was out there, trying to lead the clan through a war. LWJ had to do all he could to support him. That was his duty. It was also all he had ever wanted to do.

That was why, when he was caught and thrown into the dungeons, he never once let out a single clan secret.
Even when that sweet smiled, short man --Meng Yao, WRH's advisor-- was called in to invent newer and more agonising ways for WRH to break LWJ's bones and carve his flesh, LWJ never once spoke. Even when tears of pain spilled down his lashes, he never once cried out of despair.
He refused to give in to these people. His clan needed him. His brother needed him.
The war kept on, for much longer than the one in canon. The Jiang Clan stood tall, unburnt, populous, led by JFM. Even months into the war, their only significant loss were a few battalions of newer disciples and their one and only head disciple, the young but illustrious WWX.
WC's grudge against WWX was well known. Not so well known was the fact that WWX had killed a dozen Wen disciples before allowing the remaining ones to capture him in exchange for JC.

That day, WWX had spat on WC's face, and WC had declared something that would tilt the future:
"Throw him into the Burial Mounds! See if he likes rotting there, heh!"

And WWX had fallen into the Burial Mounds.
When he got out, he first destroyed WC and his entire army of disciples. Then, quietly, tiredly, he had trudged back to Yunmeng.

JFM had taken one look at what he could do and ordered him to get cleansed of the resentment to return to proper cultivation. WWX had refused.
In the dregs of the argument that followed was YZY's sharp eyes and clenched hands. The moment JFM left, YZY cornered WWX. "You and I both know this war can't be won this way."

"Yes," WWX said, voice hoarse and too-low after so long in the BM. "You need me, Madam Yu. Don't you?"
"Wei Ying," YZY said, her lips in a firm scowl, "Go prove your worth. A-Cheng is leading a siege at Jiangnan. Get WRH's attention away."

WWX harrumphed, high on the slow creeping of his own death and the sheer power he had at his fingertips. "You have a week at most," He said.
He left for Qishan the next day. He led an army of corpses across the Nightless City, spread out and disstended enough that it couldnt be blocked out but strong enough that it was a threat. He, on his own, entered the palace to wreak havoc inside.
The first thing he did was to enter WRH's personal dungeons, distastefully located at the back of his room, and set free every halfway sane person he found there. At the last room was a shredded man hung from his wrists, covered dark red dripping blood and matted black hair.
WWX leant against the doorframe. The man in the dungeon was breathing hard, his abs rising and falling, sweat dripping down his bruised and bleeding skin.

"Hey," WWX said, twirling his flute, "Wanna help me destroy WRH?"

The man's hair parted when he raised his face up.
His eyes shined golden through the darkness of the dungeon, like a panther stalking through foliage. The killing intent in them was so strong that WWX's grin sharpened at the sight.

Now THIS was someone you shouldnt keep chained in your bedroom. WRH was truly seeking death.
WWX whistled a quick turn and one of his ghosts cut through the two thick chains. The men fell down with a clank.

"Can you stand? Fight?" WWX asked, "I need someone to come along with me to the thick of things. Are you too tired, hm?"

"Do not insult me," The man growled.
WWX laughed and turned around to leave. He saw from the corner of his eyes that the man was collecting his bloody hair up into a half-bun, as if that was the most important thing he had to do with all those wounds still littering his body.

Interesting guy, this one.
By now, the other prisoners must have made enough of a commotion that they should be looking for WWX. He would have to lead them further into his army. He set out deep into the palace with the sounds of the man setting his own bones at his back.
"Do you have a string?" The man's voice came, quietly.

"String?" WWX hummed, glancing over his shoulder again.

"Or chord," The man said. "Thread, rope..."

"I got it, I got it," WWX huffed, "I don't have any of that, but we can get some. That looks like a storage over there?"
The man nodded and melded through the shadows to enter the room, dealing with the two surviving Wen guards in a jab of his elbows. He appeared back at WWX's back a moment later, having found some meagre string and nothing else.

Huh, WWX thought, disappointed.
What WWX didnt realise at the time was how fucking deadly the man would become, equipped with nothing but a spool of sewing thread.

As he made his way across the palace halls and abandoned corridors, thoroughly making a distraction of himself with his summoned ghosts and corpses
the man went around him, lopping off heads with mere flicks of his wrists, creating a three meter radius of carnage around WWX.

"Wen Ruohan?" The man asked as they turned away from an ostentatious hall in favour of a plainer one.

"Best not yet," WWX said, angry and frustrated.
"You're not strong enough," The young man decided after a moment spent studying WWX.

WWX's smile became cold. He turned to glare at the man. "You'd better not bet on that staying that way, young master."

The man nodded. "I would not."
It was the dead of the night, when WWX first entered the palace. Now, dawn was rising bleak and grey behind bloody windows, and their time was running out. Not only that, but their energy was also spent to its last drops.

The man was limping. He had a trail of blood behind him.
Before WWX could head towards the guard barracks for one last rampage, he turned towards the man and saw him sway on his feet.

"Careful.. I," The man mumbled, and then he was pitching forward, his bladed gold eyes gone hazy and soft with pain as he collapsed.

WWX caught him.
Later that night, when WRH had furiously pulled most of his forces back to Qishan in a pointless manhunt, WWX and his small retinue of ghouls took over a now abandoned supervisory office at the corner of a misty old town.

WWX had his ghouls set the young man down on the bed.
The man's injuries were... extensive. The sort one would expect -or more- from a prisoner of WRH. WWX only knew the most basic of treatments, but the young man had tremendous spritual power, and the more superficial scratches started knitting together before the 2nd night ended.
All WWX could do for the deeper wounds was either to treat them as best he could and wait for them to heal, or to take the man to a doctor and leave him there. Being a busy man, WWX decided on the latter.

"Wa..wait," The man gritted out, panting, flushed and sweaty with fever.
It was still dark, only a dim starlight passing through the window, hitting the spider-web covered bedframe.

"I'll take you to the town doctor," WWX said, arms crossed, "I'll even pay. Thre's nothing to worry about."

"You--" The man managed to say, "You want to end the war."
WWX leant back on the balls of his feet, looking down at the man who was trying to straighten up where he was sitting on the bed. He let out a single laugh. "So?"

The man's eyes, blurry from his fever, looked unsteady. "My duty... is to sabotage WRH," He said, "I will help."
WWX laughed again. "What are you going to do like that?" He asked, "I don't have the time to nurse you to health, young master. Just stay in bed!"

He turned around to leave. He took one step forward.

Within a moment, without anything but a rustle of cloth, WWX was on the floor.
The man had caught him like the threads he had made such deadly weaponry of, wound around WWX and pressing his back on the cold ground. He looked down at WWX, panting, hair in disarray around them, still hazy-eyed. Just an ill young man.

The thread was tight around WWX's throat.
Slowly, with growing ferocity, WWX grinned up at him. "What are you doing, young master?"

"You will... find my aid opportunate," The young man rasped out, quiet. He was no longer tightening the thread, because WWX's entire contingent of ghosts were bearing down on him.
WWX raised a hand to grab his chin, fingers digging into his blood-crusted cheeks. The young man refused to react to WWX's grabby hands moving his face down, sitting silently over WWX with his dignity somehow still intact.

"Oh?" WWX asked, mocking, "I'm going to find it what?"
"Opportunate," The young man gritted out, cheeks still squeezed between WWX's fingers, "It means--"

"Ah, he jokes too!" WWX laughed. The thread was starting to dig in, blood welling up. The ghosts were growing restless at the sight of it.
"You told me," The man said, "That we would destroy WRH."

WWX raised a brow.

The man's expression as he looked down at WWX --cheeks squeezed, eyes hazy, hair dishevelled-- was coldly, incandescently bloodthirsty.

"You will follow through," The young man whispered.
WWX swallowed deeply. "And?" He managed to ask back, quiet too, "I'm going to have to wait for you to heal, you know? Are you worth so much of my time, young master?"

One side of the young man's soft pink lips tilted up. "You cant do it without me." He said, "You're vulnerable."
Softly, silently, WWX started chuckling. This man sure didnt hold back in angering people. It was truly difficult to hold his ghosts back when he kind of wanted to release them just to show the man up.

This man could have killed him before he had a chance to summon the ghosts.
On the battlefield, when he was controlling thousands or millions, it would be even easier.

"You have a week to get better before I'm leaving," WWX said, shaking the young man's face with his hand on his chin. The man gave him a contemptuous look, comically squished as he was.
"You underestimate me," He said, "We will leave in three days."

WWX's brows rose. "I'm not carrying you off with broken bones, young master."

The young man didnt bother answering and just got up, unravelling the thread around WWX and pushing through the ghosts without a pause.
"I need to sleep," He said. And just like that, he slipped into the dusty bed to lie on his back and clasp his hands together, the pose of a corpse at burial.

WWX pushed himself up on the floor. He looked up. The man had closed his eyes. Was he really going to sleep like that?
"I'm Lan Zhan, courtesy Wangji," The young man murmured before he fell silent. He was completely still.

It seemed that he really was going to sleep that way.

Wei Wuxian let out a small 'pfft'. "Wei Ying," He chuckled, "Wuxian."

Then he left the room to get more clean cloth.
He was going to have to nurse an ill, feeble man to health for the next week after all.
((I promise I'll finish this one tomorrow! Promise!!!! 😂 Too many threads lmao. Let's thank @/BurningTea for the inspiration🥳)))

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More from @enigmatree

10 Oct
Modern AU where LWJ is a blind musician and WWX is a painter who has recently become deaf and mute due to brain damage after a bad accident. LWJ is trying to get outside of his family's influence, which has been overwhelming ever since he lost his sight at age six, and its awful.
He sits at the park nearby to play his guqin in some peace and quite. Then, one day, someone sits next to him.

It's WWX who's still in a stage of perverse denial after his discharge from the hospital and couldnt resist approaching the pretty musician and trying to hear a song.
They're both having relatively terrible times, right then. WWX feels like he's lost all of his connection to the ppl around him. He doesnt know how to convince his family to learn sign language or if any of his friends would ever even bother. He himself is struggling with it.
Read 9 tweets
10 Oct
Modern AU where LWJ was a social worker. He went to work after a week's vacation. At six pm, he saw a man sitting at the lobby, leaning his exhausted face on his knee. He learned that the man came every day at six o'clock and rarely left before eleven.
As they talked, LWJ learned his name was WWX and that he was searching for his kid A-Yuan. WWX had been wrongly incarcerated for the last two years and as he was disowned and without family, his kid was taken away.
As soon as WWX was proven innocent, he came here for A-Yuan. However, A-Yuan couldnt be found, now lost in the system. So with no one but his lost child and nothing to do but his new job, WWX spent all of his free time either at the lobby or helping the workers search for A-Yuan.
Read 10 tweets
1 Oct
@iliacquer Well in THAT case.......... 👁️👄👁️
@iliacquer WWX knows that he's hearing... something, from over the brothel next door. Someone is singing quietly enough that it can barely be heard, but the songs are all spiritual songs and there is spiritual energy threaded into the low, clear voice like sunlight in spring water.
@iliacquer At this point, it has been more than a decade since the Lan Sect was destroyed. There are older cultivators who remember their techniques, but not many. Wei Wuxian, most certainly, doesnt know of them.
Read 151 tweets
1 Oct
@iliacquer LWJ is sold to a brothel in Yiling at a young age after the lan Sect is destroyed; so young that he's only just started learning instruments. But he makes sure to remember all the lan spiritual songs by humming them in his room every evening even as the years pass and he grows.
@iliacquer He wasnt old enough at the time for him to remember the Lan Sect as anything but a beautiful place, a set of beloved people, and some songs. He doesn't even know that he was the second heir. His ethereal looks and mysterious origin are just more fodder to interest the clients.
@iliacquer But he has always had exceptional musical memory, and he remembers every single song he heard in that misty place he thinks was his home, before.

Years pass. With the foundation set when he was a kid and the daily spritual songs, LWJ gains a golden core, small and weak.
Read 16 tweets
30 Sep
Okay, so. What about a modern au with LQR-WWX becoming the tightest friends in the Lan family

It's been 4 years since LWJ broke off from the Lans after a bad fight about his choice of husband (and WWX's son A-Yuan). He finally agrees to try a family dinner with everyone together
LQR is like: ah, finally LWJ is coming back! I shall firmly make it up to him by acknowledging A-Yuan as my grandnephew!
LXC: ...what about WWX??
LQR: Whomst?
LXC: Wangji's husband??????
LQR: No thank you.
Neither LQR nor LXC like WWX, at this point. WWX has some terrible reputation amongst the "highsociety". He got involved with the Wen Scandal, apparently is an addict and even made it so that LWJ was fired from the company. He's altogether a known mess with a criminal record.
Read 70 tweets
29 Sep
Superhero+amnesia AU where madscientist "Patriarch" attacks a bank with his evil machine army to steal some documents but is intercepted by superhero Lightbearer just as he's leaving.
LWJ attacks Patriarch -a dangerous, notorious supervillain- and manages to take the papers back.
LWJ has fought Patriarch enough times that its known that Lightbearer is an enemy of the villain. That's... basically all that's known about Patriarch, except that he once broke into the city prison and set many of the prisoners free.
Patriarch keeps his face hidden behind a black mask and red scarf. He lives in the Scrap Mounds where not even plants peek out from under metal waste. His mad genius and knowledge of machines dont have an origin to be found. It's near impossible to find anything to identify him.
Read 39 tweets

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