FANDOM: Mo Dao Zu Shi
PAIRING: Lan WangJi / Wei WuXian
NOTE: Modern AU; Professor Lan Zhan (30) x Ice-Cream Man Wei Ying (22).
A/N: Daily update until the end of the story. Around one week of continuous updates.
It makes no sense for a handsome, intelligent man like Wei WuXian to be selling ice-cream in front of the university, under horrible weathers. It piques Lan WangJi’s curiosity.
Lan WangJi had never brought anyone home before.
Not because he didn’t have a decent house. But because there’s never a need for it. His home was like his personal space; besides his brother, he can never imagine having someone else setting foot into his home. Yet, here he was, blurting a perfunctory ‘yes’ when a man he only knew for a few days was clearly joking.
Something must have gotten into him. Perhaps the rain from a few days before was affecting him.
He should get his temperature checked later.
“As expected from Professor Lan, your house is so clean. And neat!”
Wei WuXian looked around the house, seemingly intrigued. Lan WangJi was a bit inapt when he brought him over but Wei WuXian’s reaction lifted the weight off his chest. His house was a simple apartment in a nearby neighborhood, an opposite direction with where Wei WuXian stayed. It had two bedrooms, one that was often left empty, and a study room. It was also a habit for him to tidy up the house every once a while and since he didn’t have many things, everything was placed neatly in the right place, not too much, not too little.
Like he liked to think, it’s a pretty decent house.
While Wei WuXian checked out the kitchen, Lan WangJi left for a while, coming back with a clean towel in his hand.
“Shower,” he said.
Wei WuXian was momentarily perplexed, his expression one of confused. Once again, Lan WangJi thought he’d said something wrong, his mind immediately ran on full speed, analyzing the consequences of his behavior.
He (accidentally) invited someone over. And then.
Wei WuXian, however, laughed and took the towel over. This was the second time he pulled him out of his own demise now.
“You’re also very considerate, Professor Lan. How do you know I’m thinking of taking a shower?”
“I’m sweaty. Actually I should’ve showered first before moving around. So sorry if I dirtied your floor or…” Wei WuXian looked around. “anything else.”
“It’s not that,” Lan WangJi quickly said. It’s only because he thought Wei WuXian would feel uncomfortable and he thought it’s his responsibility to make sure a guest was comfortable when they’re here. No such thing as he thought Wei WuXian was dirty. But how was he supposed to tell Wei WuXian?
“You’ll feel uncomfortable,” sounded too intimate.
“Do you want to shower?” Based on how Wei WuXian was always so careful with accepting offers (the trauma when he got rejected from before still vivid in his mind), there’s a 50% possibility that he’d say no.
“Do you happen to have a change of clothes?” Wei WuXian had proceeded with the conversation when Lan WangJi was grappling with his brain, with no signs of refusal whatsoever, even sounding like he was more than happy to play along with Lan WangJi. “Can’t be wearing the same dirty clothes when I’m done with the shower, right?”
He walked towards Lan WangJi, coming so close to him that Lan WangJi can distinctly see the sweat on his face, even his neck, all the way down his collarbone and…
“Our body sizes are pretty similar too. Would you mind borrowing me clothes? I’ll wash them before I return to you,” Wei WuXian spoke, acting like he hadn’t noticed how Lan WangJi had turned stiff just from him brushing his hand on his shoulder then at his own.
Like he was escaping from Wei WuXian, Lan WangJi hurried out of sight, rushing to take what Wei WuXian had required of him.
The sound of the shower was too loud in his ears. Dripping water, items being taken off the shelf then being put back, legs stepping on the damped floor.
Lan WangJi sat on the leather couch in his living room, back straight as he stared right ahead.
His fingers were intertwined together, his gaze a daze.
This was the only time he can bring himself to calm down.
He and Wei WuXian had turned from strangers to acquaintances in a mere few days. They shared conversations that weren’t awkward, pretty sensible from a pair of acquaintances. He visited Wei WuXian’s house, Wei WuXian was now in his house.
…he had absolutely no clue what had led to this.
Sure, he was curious about the ice-cream man; the young man who looked so incredibly out of place, a young man who he’d like to know more about, perhaps even… help him if he can.
But this was too fast.
Everything was happening too fast.
He knew nothing about the man; he only knew his name, where he lived, where he worked.
Wei WuXian probably knew everything about him, though. He said he’d heard about him before. He used terms like ‘as expected’. And then there’s Lan WangJi, who knew nothing at all.
He should probably have a higher sense of alertness. What if Wei WuXian approached him on purpose, just to take something from him? Rob him, maybe? Or blackmail him?
But he had nothing secretive for him to blackmail.
Besides, it’s always Lan WangJi who approached him first. So he can’t be accusing Wei WuXian of possessing any sort of ill intention towards him when he’s the one who’d walked right into the trap himself.
Still. There’s something about Wei WuXian that’s bugging him. It’s his carefree attitude, the way he grinned at him when he caught him looking at him, the way he spaced out on that raining day, drenched like a lost child.
Wei WuXian was…
Lan WangJi heaved a heavy sigh.
What was he doing?
When Wei WuXian came out of the shower, the tips of the short strands of his hair were still dripping water. He wore a casual t-shirt – one of Lan WangJi’s – and a pair of pants with one hand rubbing his hair dry with the towel.
“Professor Lan, thank you very much for borrowing me your shower. It was great! The one in my house is always faulty, sometimes I get warm water instead of cold water, haha!”
Jokes. He was the one who’d pushed Wei WuXian into the shower. No such thing as Wei WuXian ‘borrowing his shower’.
Lan WangJi simply nodded in response. Wei WuXian came to sit by his side then. From a distance as close as this, Lan WangJi could clearly smell the scent of fresh shampoo, the clean tanned skin of Wei WuXian’s protruding his muscle lines even more. While Wei WuXian continued to wipe his hair dry, Lan WangJi also caught sight of his slender neck, the flesh on it tightly woven, springy, the caramel-color of his skin tone so beautifully balanced it looked as if it was painted onto his skin.
“What’s the matter, Professor Lan? If you keep staring at me like this, I’ll get shy,” Wei WuXian looked at him with a narrowed, sideways glance, a small smirk curved on his lips.
Lan WangJi coughed softly.
“Hahaha! I’m just joking. Stare all you want. I bet you have tons of questions too, right?” Wei WuXian said.
“…What makes you think so?”
“Well, let’s see…” Wei WuXian stretched his legs forward, palms pressed on the couch as he tilted his head upwards, pondering. “A man approaching another man all by himself, offering to send them home, coming over to his house when he’s sick, even bringing him back to his own home. What does that sound to you, Professor Lan?”
Lan WangJi’s fingers curled up on his lap. It’s everything he’d been thinking about when he was left alone earlier. But being described so explicitly by Wei WuXian like this made him feel even more embarrassing than ever. He didn’t know the answer himself, let alone being able to answer Wei WuXian.
Wei WuXian scrutinized his reaction for a bit, noting the stupor in his expression, then chuckled cavalierly. Shifting over to sit closer to Lan WangJi, he pressed his tanned arm against Lan WangJi’s fair-toned one, the contrast distinct, the mere body contact drawing a slight tremble out of the quiet man when he felt cold skin touching on his own warm one.
“Do you want to know what does that sound to me, Professor Lan?” Wei WuXian spoke. The vibrancy in his voice from before was non-existent, his tone an octave lower, and it sounded so suggestive it had Lan WangJi swallowing down his throat.
“It sounds like you’re courting me.”
Every word Wei WuXian said rolled into Lan WangJi’s ears with the weight of an iron. He couldn’t bring himself to deny nor agree. Wei WuXian spilled the truth. But he wasn’t sure how he himself felt now, let alone knowing how Wei WuXian felt.
It’s true that he’d never approached another person by himself like this, let alone letting another person come into such a close contact with him.
It’s true that he was curious about Wei WuXian, enough to want to bring him closer, to ask him questions, or just to look at him.
It’s true that his attention was entirely attracted to this 22-year-old ice-cream man, a man who was eight years younger than him.
“So, based on this flow, I assume you will keep me for dinner?” Wei WuXian’s voice returned to one of springy. When Lan WangJi turned to look at him, he winked at him.
“Do you want dinner?” Lan WangJi asked instead.
“If it’s with you, then okay,” Wei WuXian said offhandedly.
Lan WangJi breathed in, closed his eyes, and nodded.
“Stay for dinner then.”
If he’s really courting him, then so be it.