Jiang Cheng fell in love with his Omega the first time he heard his laughter, clear and bright and as fresh as the water falls. He turned around and saw the most adorable and honestly the cutest Omega he'd ever seen.
And Lan Jingyi didn't have the same boring personality as the other Lans around him, which was a plus.
The first time Wei Wuxian met his Omega he'd been sneaking inside the Cloud Recesses after curfew, carefully holding two jars of Emperor's Smile so that it won't fall off.
He'd heard his Omega's voice even before his eyes laid on him, deep and chastising. He spun around and saw the prettiest Omega he'd ever laid his eyes on.
And promptly slipped on his feet, fell and hit his head on the hard ground.
The jars of Emperor's Smile broke but he kept smiling like an idiot.
He fell in love that night.
Jiang Yanli was very much aware that her chosen Omega disliked her and everything about her. But she wouldn't let it stop her from trying to win his affections.
The two of them were sitting on the wooden bench in the middle of Madam Jin's big garden. It was a sunny afternoon, with the gentle breeze of ruffling their hair and bringing with it the fragrant scents of flowers all around them. Jin Zixuan had a scowl on his face and was crossing his arms, sitting as far away from her as their seat would let him be. He smelled irritated and grumpy and without a hint of his usual magnolia scent.
Jiang Yanli narrowed her eyes. If the Omega thought that just by acting as obnoxiously as possible in front her then she would stop courting him, then he thought wrong.
She would win him over, by hook or by crook.
Lan Jingyi was a precious treasure that deserved to be loved and cherished for the rest of his life. He was funny. He was bubbly. He was also kind and would look after his younger companions, fussing over them and looking for wounds on their bodies after a training session.
He also loved chicken and dogs.
"You have it bad," Wei Wuxian accused one day.
Jiang Cheng just hummed, reading the very long list of requirements for the Lans to let him marry Lan Jingyi. It wasn't as long as the scroll that contained the 3000 rules of Gusu, but in Wei Wuxian's eyes it was long enough that by reading it he was sure that it would be in his nightmares for the following months to come.
Surely Lan Qiren wouldn't torture his shidi that much before letting him be married to Lan Jingyi, right?
"I mean, I know that the Lan family is very traditional and strict but you're a sect heir! Can't they remove half of their requirements for betrothal for you?"
Wei Wuxian shivered at the completely besotted look on his brother's face. "Give me that!" He snatched the list from Jiang Cheng's hands who let go of it without a sound.
"Let's see. Hmm... Three months of sending courtship letters every single day. Three months of working with the other Lan cultivators in taking care of missions outside the town. Have to memorize the 3000 rules of Gusu in one month. Has to kneel and bring offerings to Lan Jingyi's parents' graves for seven days. Has to find the legendary Vermilion Bird, capture it and bring it to Lan Jingyi. And after doing all of this you still have to wait for a whole year before you could marry him!" Appalled, Wei Wuxian threw his hands on the air, the list hitting his forehead but he didn't care.
"This is torture! Torture! Forget about finding the Vermilion Bird and capturing it, you have to survive memorizing the 3,000 rules of Gusu first! And what's with the year-long engagement? And you wouldn't be able to see him for six months and has to communicate using letters!"
Wei Wuxian almost cried in pity for his shidi. Jiang Cheng looked very calm, though
"Wei Wuxian, that is the traditional way of courting an Omega. And A-Yi definitely deserves the best. I will follow everything on that list so that the heavens will bless our marriage. It is because I love him that I am ready to face all hardships and sufferings in order to be with him in the end."
"Wait, who are you?! You're not Jiang Cheng! Give him back, you foul spirit!"
"Ow! Stay away, you lunatic!"
The two of them ended up wrestling the whole afternoon.
Wei Wuxian couldn't understand Jiang Cheng and why he was willing to follow the ridiculous demands from the Lans for love.
Until he'd spent a whole month with Lan Wangji.
He'd already known that he felt something special for the other boy but he wasn't really sure what it was until he tricked Lan Wangji into reading an erotic book which provoked the other boy into attacking him with Bichen. They circled around the Library Pavilion, Lan Wangji trying to cut him down with his sword and Wei Wuxian running away for his dear life. Lan Wangji's sandalwood scent was almost overpowering with his anger, which made Wei Wuxian want to tease him more. So he suddenly stopped, turned around and with a smirk, he opened his mouth to tease him until Lan Wangji's body collided on him, sending the two of them on the floor and their lips pressed together.
That was the moment Wei Wuxian realized that he was in love with Lan Wangji.
And his goals went from teasing Lan Wangji until his ears went red everyday into getting kisses from the other boy, who would just huff, glare at him and turn away. But sometimes he would catch Lan Wangji looking at him, face pink.
It wasn't very long before Lan Wangji allowed him to kiss him again.
It was exactly thirty minutes before four am. when Wei Wuxian suddenly barged into his shidi's room and with a cry launched himself on Jiang Cheng's sleeping form on the bed, who immediately woke up and began cursing and kicking at him.
Wei Wuxian bore the physical and verbal attacks, hugging Jiang Cheng and crying on his shoulder.
"Oh for gods' sake, shut up!" Somebody yelled from the room next to the one the two of them were currently occupying.
They quickly shut their mouths and Jiang Cheng stopped attacking him with his foot.
"What the hell, Wei Wuxian? What do you want from me at this hour?" Jiang Cheng asked through gritted teeth.
Wei Wuxian sniffed. "Jiang Cheng. I'm in love! Your shixiong is in love! I love Lan Zhan and I want him to be my Omega!" he whimpered, looking like a pitiful puppy stuck on the rain.
Jiang Cheng's eyebrows rose at the revelation. "Congratulations. You finally realized that you're in love with Lan Wangji after a month of teasing him and trying to gain his attention. So why do you look like you're going to a funeral?"
"But Jiang Cheng, Lan Wangji is a Lan! So I have to follow the list that Lan Qiren had given you, too!"
Jiang Cheng was beginning to get irritated. "What do you mean? Are you saying that Lan Wangji isn't worth being courted properly like other Omegas in this country?"
He shook his head. "No! I mean, I'm ready to court him just like how you're courting Lan Jingyi, but remember the whole one year of waiting before you could get married with him? And that you two have to be separated for six months? I don't want that to happen with me and Lan Zhan! I couldn't even last an hour without seeing his face or smelling his scent! How could I last for six months? I will surely die!" He wailed.
"Oh for fuck's sake!" The guy from the next room exasperatedly exclaimed.
Jiang Cheng groaned. It was too early for him to deal with his shixiong's shit. He also had little sleep after composing another love poem for Lan Jingyi, who seemed to love all the romantic poems he sent to him. He was tired, his head ached and he desperately wanted to sleep before five am. so he did blurted out the very first thing that sprang on his mind.
"Then why don't you ask him to elope with you?"
Wei Wuxian stopped crying, blinking rapidly. Then as if he'd gained divine knowledge, his whole face lit up and he grinned. "Thank you! Jiang Cheng! Thank you! You're the best!" And after bidding his grumpy shidi goodbye, he ran out of the door, slamming it behind him.
Jiang Cheng just shrugged, went back to sleep, and woke up to a loud commotion outside his door.
That day was a very memorable day for the Lan disciples and cultivators because for the first time ever they witnessed their highly esteemed and venerable Teacher Lan Qiren break the rules of Cloud Recesses in quick successions, running around while his nephew Lan Xichen followed , gleefully announcing every rule he broke just after breaking them.
"Uncle, running is forbidden in Cloud Recesses."
"Uncle, swearing is forbidden in Cloud Recesses."
"Uncle, threatening to kill someone is forbidden in Cloud Recesses."
"Uncle, breaking a furniture is forbidden in Cloud Recesses."
"Uncle, tearing a scroll, blank or otherwise, is forbidden in Cloud Recesses."
A twelve-year-old disciple followed Lan Xichen, writing down each rule that Lan Qiren broke with breakneck speed, a solemn look on his face.
It was a very entertaining sight.
During lunch, when Nie Huaisang informed him that Wei Wuxian had eloped with Lan Wangji just after leaving his room, Jiang Cheng facepalmed, groaning like a feral corpse.
Of course his shixiong would take his words seriously. Of course.
Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji was already very far away from Gusu when he decided to ask his Omega the question that had been bugging him since they sneaked out out Cloud Recesses and ran away.
"Lan Zhan, are you really sure that you want to elope with me? Your uncle and family will get angry at you and I wouldn't be able to court you traditionally. Are you sure that you're fine with this?"
Lan Wangji held one of his hands and kissed him on his lips. "As long as I'm with Wei Ying, I am happy. Don't think about useless things."
"Ahh, Lan Zhan! Lan Zhan! My heart is too full right now because of your words! Take responsibility and kiss me again!"
And Lan Wangji did. Again. And again. Until Wei Wuxian felt like passing out of sheer happiness.
Jiang Cheng decided that instead of stressing himself out because of his shixiong's idiotic decision, he would devote all of his time courting Lan Jingyi, sending him small tokens as gifts, composing more romantic poems for him and even once took him to Caiyi Town for dinner. And after going back from their date, Lan Jingyi kissed him for the very first time.
Jiang Cheng nearly passed out because of shock and joy.
Meanwhile, the Jin cultivators and the guards of Koi Tower ignored the sight of the petite Maiden Jiang carrying their bound and gagged Omega sect heir over her shoulders like a sack of rice. Jin Zixuan squirmed and sent them looks, silently begging them for help. And why were they ignoring him? He was being kidnapped right there for gods' sakes!
Jiang Yanli smiled and hummed cheerfully, purposely ignoring her Omega who continue to squirm and struggle on her left shoulder. No doubt he would've cursed at her and tell her to untie him and let him go. That was why she gagged him in the first place after all.
"Go, A-Li, take him with you," Madam Jin had told her, smiling at her fondly, before she left her room with Jin Zixuan.
There was a reason why nobody in Koi Tower move to help their sect heir till Maiden Jiang left while carrying him. Madam Jin's words were their law.
When Jiang Fengmian received two letters, one from Gusu and one from Lanling, he believed that there were nothing wrong with them and that they would be about ordinary sect matters. After he had read both of them, however, he became rooted on his spot, eyes wide and unseeing. He stayed like that for a few minutes before Madam Yu arrived, having been summoned by a worried disciple.
Madam Yu took one look at her catatonic husband, snatched the letters from his hands and began to read them.
Madam Yu had never been so proud of her daughter and Wei Ying before this moment.