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shiver and shine

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“Lan Zhan,” Wei Wuxian calls, his head hanging upside down from the end of their bed. “Lan Zhan. Lan Zhan Lan Zhan Lan Zhan Lan Zhan Lan Zhan!”

Wei Wuxian has been acting out today.

Lan Wangji’s brush is steady as he marks Lan Jingyi’s latest night hunt report: grade jia. He will exult—perhaps in excess, but not where Lan Wangji can see or hear it—to read it, as it is the first jia Lan Wangji has given him. Lan Jingyi’s articulation has improved through sustained practice.

“You hate me,” Wei Wuxian wails, rolling into a mess of robes on the floor. A sad puddle indeed. “You’ve grown bored with me. You want me to die. You no longer find me fuckable.”

Lan Fuling is not so lucky. The bing he receives is deserved, but Lan Wangji anticipates his mother will assign him additional study on his hands in the evenings.

“You’re not even grading,” Wei Wuxian continues, barely breathing before each new statement, “you’re reading through the endless love letters sent to you daily and looking for my replacement.” This is an argument Wei Wuxian is fond of. Whenever he gets into such a state, he enjoys making it seem as though he is a plain and comely servant’s son, whose marriage to the esteemed Hanguang-jun was the shock of Caiyi Town. Just a nameless bride who must suffer in a bath of vinegar for all his days, tormented by the beautiful and famous lovers Lan Wangji might have taken.

It took Lan Wangji a few performances before he realized it was an insincere ploy for his affections, but he’s comfortable ignoring it now. He begins to read through Lan Ziying’s report.

Wei Wuxian’s face pops up from the mass of black robes; Lan Wangji studies him out of the corner of his eye. “My dear, my dearest, none of them will make your heart race as I do!”

He does not drag things out to be cruel. Wei Wuxian interrupted his lessons three times today—not his typical behavior. Something has set his teeth on edge. Whatever that is, Lan Wangji will need to tire him out before Wei Wuxian will let himself be cared for properly.

“Lan Zhan.” Wei Wuxian pleads, sitting up, robes in disarray, “Lan Zhan, you are so cruel to me, your husband in every life we shall have, all of them together. Do you think you can escape me?” He shuffles over to be more readily in Lan Wangji’s path. While he isn’t looking, it’s not hard to imagine the face Wei Wuxian makes, his eyes bright and a little misty, dominating his delicate features while his lower lip trembles. “I’ll have you know that even if you never look at me again—not so hard to imagine, as you haven’t looked at me all day—I’d still beg you from my knees.” Lan Wangji catches him clasping his hands before himself, truly pleading. “Won’t you look at me? Lan Zhan, I really miss you so much.”

While he would probably benefit from further cool treatment, Lan Wangji must admit to himself he has read not a single word of Lan Ziying’s report. He sets it down and looks in Wei Wuxian’s direction. It is a relief, for games such as these, that the beating of Lan Wangji’s heart is not audible across the room. “From your knees.”

The attention clearly sends a thrill through Wei Wuxian. He leans forward, propping himself up from the floor with his palms. “I’m already there, right? Do I look pretty?”

Yes. “Then do it.” Lan Wangji cannot properly care for Wei Wuxian with simple indulgence.

Wei Wuxian blinks. His mouth hangs open just a little, damp and glistening.

“What?”

“Beg.”

Even saying the word makes Lan Wangji’s face hot, though it won’t show. Wei Wuxian’s eyebrows furrow.

“You want me to beg? Where is that romantic I married who said he could not deny me anything?”

Wei Wuxian is certainly begging for something today. Lan Wangji feels a flare of genuine annoyance, followed by a rush of overwhelming fondness. He’s settled on what Wei Wuxian needs at last.

“Come here.”

Wei Wuxian gets a very specific look on his face when he thinks he’s won. It is easily recognized, and Lan Wangji finds joy in what follows: the surprise at being caught off guard, at having his clever mind matched by the man he’s chosen as his equal in this world.

He starts to scramble to his feet, but Lan Wangji holds up a hand. “On your knees.”

“What? Why???”

“It is as you said.”

Wei Wuxian falls back onto his ass with a huff. “That’s not very righteous,” he mutters.

Lan Wangji waits.

It only takes a few moments for Wei Wuxian to obey. He crawls over, irritated rather than flirtatious, but his lips are so pink, and the swell of his ass still curves so sweetly, even and especially when he’s not bothering to show it off.

Lan Wangji is half hard by the time Wei Wuxian reaches him. He makes no effort to hide it, satisfied by the way Wei Wuxian’s eyes keep sliding down off his face before hastily correcting himself.

“At least one of you is paying attention,” Wei Wuxian quips, shaking his hair out of his eyes. “You do think I look pretty.”

Obviously. Lan Wangji cups Wei Wuxian’s small face in one hand, thumbing over his cheek. Wei Wuxian nuzzles into it like some small, defenseless thing, eyes never leaving Lan Wangji’s features, though he mostly looks through his lashes. Slowly, Lan Wangji slides his hand up and into Wei Wuxian’s hair, gathering it into a tight fist and pulling him forward.

“Lan Zhan!” Wei Wuxian tugs at his arm, but he did not start fighting until Lan Wangji had given plenty of time for him to make an escape. His nails leave pale pink welts in Lan Wangji’s arm, little scratches that won’t last—Lan Wangji wrenches his arm upward anyway, tugging Wei Wuxian’s hair more severely. “Ow!”

“Behave,” Lan Wangji chastises. Wei Wuxian’s gaze remains defiant.

He struggles a little more when Lan Wangji guides him back down, but not enough to be punished. Good boy. He does not say so aloud—Wei Wuxian would not enjoy it, not until he feels it’s earned. Lan Wangji loosens his hold a bit and waits.

“What now?” Wei Wuxian asks when he can no longer take the silence.

Lan Wangji eases his grip and returns both hands to the low table in front of him. “Occupy yourself.”

“What?” Wei Wuxian splutters. “I thought—but you—Lan Zhan!”

“If you were less idle,” Lan Wangji instructs, “you would not harbor doubts.”

Wei Wuxian actually bares his teeth. Lan Wangji turns away from him and picks up another report. “My attention is finite.” The act of proving himself will subdue the wild need beneath Wei Wuxian’s skin.

He manages to interpret a few sentences of Lan Ziying’s report before Wei Wuxian gives in, snarling out “Fine!” as he fumbles with the ties of Lan Wangji’s robes. He lets himself watch, knowing Wei Wuxian is more focused on his task than checking whether Lan Wangji is enjoying the show, as Wei Wuxian ducks under the wide expanse of Lan Wangji’s sleeve and exposes his cock.

Wei Wuxian does not wait. He licks his lips and slides them over the head, leaving a wet, open-mouthed kiss before he slides down to take him in. His eyes are rimmed red when he looks up at Lan Wangji again, still practically emitting sparks of flame.

Lan Wangji runs a hand over his hair, down to the back of his neck, and squeezes. Wei Wuxian’s eyes briefly widen before sliding shut, lashes fluttering as he swallows around the head of Lan Wangji’s cock and lets it invade his throat. It takes him a few slow glides up and down before he can take more, the angle not quite right, but the sustained effort eases the strain from Wei Wuxian’s shoulders.

“Lay down.” Wei Wuxian blinks up at him, eyes already turning from the sharp metal of a sword to the daze of fog and mist. Lan Wangji exerts slight pressure at his neck. Wei Wuxian lays his ear against Lan Wangji’s lap and shuffles closer, breathing in deeply through his nose. Lan Wangji watches as Wei Wuxian’s leaking mouth wets the robes beneath his head.

He runs his fingers through Wei Wuxian’s hair and feels his answering moan. “Stay,” Lan Wangji says, the word an octave lower than normal as he staves off the overwhelming urge to thrust into Wei Wuxian’s willing mouth, “I will finish soon.”

Wei Wuxian paws ineffectually at Lan Wangji’s sleeve, shifting a little and suckling sweetly, like he’s worried about Lan Wangji getting wet. “Stay,” he says again, listening to Wei Wuxian attempt a sigh. “Be good.”

Three reports left, but it takes him twice as long to review them. When Wei Wuxian gently curls his hand around the base of Lan Wangji’s cock he nearly doubles over with how badly he wants to take him, to throw him down on the floor and fuck his way inside, to hear Wei Wuxian beg him to stop while he thrusts back with his hips, greedy for whatever Lan Wangji will give him. Every time he pulses in Wei Wuxian’s mouth he swallows, the tight clutch of his throat even tighter around Lan Wangji’s cockhead.

He can only hope that none of these disciples will ask for a more in-depth review. Lan Wangji will not be able to remember their words without remembering the bliss on Wei Wuxian’s face as he curled his knees up against Lan Wangji’s side, whimpering softly, tonguing lazily at Lan Wangji sometimes as if he can barely remember to do so.

Lan Wangji sets the last report to the side, clearing away his brush and ink to be put on the proper shelf later on. He runs the back of his knuckle very lightly down the side of Wei Wuxian’s face, who blinks up at him, not quite waking from sleep but perhaps waking from a daze. He tries to say something but it’s muffled around Lan Wangji, reverberating through him with a jolt.

“A-Ying,” he murmurs, his fondness all-encompassing, “you’ve done well.”

Wei Wuxian’s eyes crinkle like he wants to smile. Lan Wangji is forced to catch his breath. Soon he will carry Wei Wuxian to bed and make him be good a little while longer. Soon Lan Wangji will fuck him until he remembers how to complain and demand, and when he is sprawled across Lan Wangji’s chest afterward, he will perhaps feel good enough to talk about what was bothering him.

But Lan Wangji will give him a little more time to simply be good. To be good, and to think of nothing else.