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Aug 13, 2022 2:20 PM
f!ranwan with bonus mom and some surprises
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"I've been doing much better, Xianjun! Mother scowls so whenever I try to do anything stupid." 

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"Why do you try to do stupid things?"

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"Don't you ever just really want to get up and run around when you've been sitting still for a long while?"

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"No. But I believe that that's normal for children."

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Pout. "I'm not a child, Xianjun!" she protests. 

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"How old are you?"

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"That is still young. Young enough to become a proper disciple, if you train here. Is that your plan?"

It was the assumed plan for Xue Zhengyong's nephew, but Xue Zhengyong's niece will not face the same pressure.

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She nods, smile turning a little shy with excitement. "How could I not?" 

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"It will be difficult. You are behind the other students your age."

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"Of course it won't be easy. Nothing's ever easy. But then I'll be able to help so many people! I want to beat up horrible bullies and save innocent people like you!"

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She sniffs, a little endeared and a little annoyed. "I'm not in the habit of needing to be saved."

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"--I mean, saving people like you saved me, not saving innocent people, of whom you are one such. I mean, you are! And I would if you needed it! But I don't think you need it!"

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"Ah. Yes, many other people out there need help."

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"Yeah." 

 

"Thank you for bringing my mother away from there. And not just me. Even though I was the one who was hurt."

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"Part of helping innocent people is not separating them from their loved ones unless necessary. And I don't believe your mother was particularly safe there either."

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"She was...valuable to them. A famous dancer, in her youth, and more sought even now than a prostitute her age would be. But after I prevented Mo Nian from being taken away to a better life--no. Not safe anymore."

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"She will be safe here."

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BEAM. "I know. Thank you so much, for us both." 

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She nods awkwardly.

 

Okay great, good talk, Chu Wanning has nothing left to say and she’ll be going now.

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A few days later, when Chu Wanning has failed to show up at Mengpo Hall for dinner, there is a knock at the door of the Red Lotus Pavilion. 

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Chu Wanning is busy working. She scowls and ignores the disturbance.

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She knocks again, and if there's still no answer she slides the door open just enough to set the tray down inside and leaves.

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...was that the door?

Chu Wanning hisses and calls Tianwen to her hand as she rises, preparing to beat off intruders. Did she not punish the last interloper badly enough for the warning to stick?? What the fuck is wrong with people -

But when she reaches the door she only sees a tray sitting on the ground. Chu Wanning frowns and crouches to inspect it, sniffing the air.

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There is a lingering hint of the perfume Duan Yihan uses. 

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