Nov 29, 2020 12:00 AM
eclipse bell in mdzs
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"I'm not acquainted."

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"Jin Guangshan was Mo Xuanyu's biological father and an infamous womanizer. Jin Zixuan was his only legitimate son. Jin Ling is Jin Zixuan and my shijie's son." 

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"Wow, that's a mess."

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"Yep. The current leader of the Jin sect is Jin Guangyao, another one of his bastards."

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"I'd heard the name but did not know the family history."

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"Well, that's the family history." 

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"Aren't you an interesting font of gossip."

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"Gossip? Don't you know that gossip is forbidden?"

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"Perhaps I forgot."

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"Good thing we're not in the Cloud Recesses right now." 

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"Gossip is fairly ill defined anyway."

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"You think so?"

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"Sure. Is telling me all this gossip or is it important background information that I as an outsider did not have the opportunity to learn in a more gradual organic manner over time? Rules don't specify."

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"You're the one who said it was gossip first!"

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"It's my second language, pardon my imprecision."

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"Ohhh, I see." 

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She giggles.

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Isabella and Wei Ying continue to get along in a friendly but non-flirtatious manner that gives Lan Wangji fuzzy feelings he doesn't really want to have to admit to out loud. Wen Ning will participate in conversation if prompted but is largely shy; Lan Wangji keeps a tight throttle on any feelings of jealousy he may have when Wei Ying is openly affectionate with the fierce corpse. 

Lan Wangji quietly confirms to Isabella at one point that yes, this is just what Wen Ning is like as a person and was when he was alive, too. 

Wei Ying seems to have forgotten that at one point he forbore to attempt to compare standard sex acts between dynamic and nondynamic societies only due to the presence of tender ears that are not currently present. This is excellent for Lan Wangji's blood pressure. 

The finger that had been pointing the way curls up into the fist with the rest of them when they reach a small city in Qinghe. 

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"Damn, I was hoping we could use it to narrow it down farther than the city. Pick a search pattern, I guess."

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"A search pattern? You mean like combing the city in a grid looking for resentful energy?"

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"Yeah, and then I can see if that'll get you there within six hours. Did you have a different plan?"

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"If it's anything like that arm, and anywhere near here, surely somebody will be talking." 

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"Your search pattern can be interviewing people if you like, makes no difference to me."

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He's about to respond when the sound of a dog barking reaches his ears. 

He freezes immediately, trying to locate the source of the sound so he can get away from it. 

Someone yells something about a mad dog, and the crowd parts, and a black dog races out of it towards a young man on the other side of the street. 

Wei Wuxian shrieks in terror. "Lan Zhan, save me!" he cries, ducking behind the other man and cowering away from the dog. 

Sect Leader Jiang, standing beside the dog's target, turns and narrows his eyes suspiciously. 

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...is the dog actually going to attack anyone -

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