Deaths of Cangse Sanren and Wei Changze
Wei Wuxian does not recall much about his parents, who died during a night-hunt while he was still quite young. One of his few memories involves riding on his silent father's shoulders while his mother smiles at him from her seat on their donkey.
After his parents' deaths, he lived on the streets of Yiling, and developed a fear of dogs from traumatic experiences fighting them for food. He tended to stare at people and spent his time picking up the rinds that others did not want to eat. If someone gave him a leftover bun, he laughed and gave them a very happy smile.
Joining the Yunmeng Jiang Clan
Jiang Fengmian eventually finds Wei Wuxian in Yiling when the latter is about nine or ten. After feeding him a piece of melon, Jiang Fengmian carries Wei Wuxian home to Lotus Pier. That night, Jiang Fengmian even allows Wei Wuxian to sit on his arm, arousing Jiang Cheng's jealousy and Yu Ziyuan's fury, since Jiang Fengmian is rarely affectionate to his own son.
Unfortunately, Wei Wuxian's intense fear of dogs prompts Jiang Fengmian to force Jiang Cheng to give away his puppies. Although Jiang Fengmian tells the boys to share a bedroom, Wei Wuxian is promptly locked out by the frustrated Jiang Cheng. After begging his brother to let him in, Wei Wuxian flees Lotus Pier once Jiang Cheng threatens to send dogs after him.
Jiang Yanli eventually finds Wei Wuxian hiding in a tree later that night. After Jiang Yanli persuades him to return, Wei Wuxian falls from the tree and Jiang Yangli fails to catch him. Still, Jiang Yanli manages to carry the injured Wei Wuxian back home on her back. Along the way, they encounter Jiang Cheng, who has also injured his leg while searching for him. In the end, Jiang Yanli carries both boys to Lotus Pier on her back. By the end of their excursion, Jiang Cheng and Wei Wuxian are friends, and Jiang Cheng even promises Wei Wuxian that he will chase dogs away for him if he sees them, after Wei Wuxian promises Jiang Cheng that he will not to tell Jiang Fengmian what he did.
For the first month after his arrival, Wei Wuxian is too afraid to eat extra portions or to use too much bathwater, because he worries that Jiang Fengmian will decide he is too expensive to raise."
Studying at the Cloud Recesses
"It's Emperor's Smile! I'll give you a jar, can you pretend that you never saw me?"
At the age of fifteen, Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng are sent to study with the Gusu Lan Clan's famous teacher, Lan Qiren. Unable to sleep their first night, Wei Wuxian slips away from the Cloud Recesses to purchase the renowned wine Emperor's Smile. When he attempts to sneak back inside, he is caught by Lan Wangji.
Wei Wuxian earns further disapproval in class, when he suggests that the harnessing of resentful energy could enable cultivators to bypass need for a Golden Core. Lan Qiren forces him to copy the rules as punishment, but Nie Huaisang quickly offers to do the work for Wei Wuxian, so long as Wei Wuxian assists him on his exams. The two are ultimately caught by Lan Wangji, and as punishment, Wei Wuxian is ordered to spend the next month copying the clan rules in the Library Pavilion, with Lan Wangji as his supervisor. He frequently falls victim to the Gusu Lan Clan's Silence Spell during this time.
As his month of punishment ends, Wei Wuxian gifts Lan Wangji a beautiful portrait of himself with a flower drawn in his hair. Lan Wangji is irritated, but, a moment later, he discovers that Wei Wuxian has switched out the Buddhist text he had been reading with a book of erotic illustrations. Lan Wangji reacts with horror and fury, and, while Wei Wuxian continues to tease him, ultimately destroys the book Wei Wuxian had borrowed from Nie Huaisang.
Their classes take a brief break when Lan Qiren departs for the Qinghe Nie Clan's Discussion Conference. During this time, Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng are invited to accompany Lan Wangji and Lan Xichen to investigate reports of Water Ghosts in Caiyi Town. Upon investigating, they discover that the water ghosts come from a Waterborne Abyss that the Qishan Wen Clan has driven downstream after they failed to purge it. In the process, Wei Wuxian attempts to save Su She from the abyss, but in the end, both have to be rescued by Lan Wangji. During his rescue, Lan Wangji holds Wei Wuxian by his collar, claiming that he dislikes touching others.
Upon their return to the Cloud Recesses, Wei Wuxian agrees to purchase liquor for Nie Huaisang, Jiang Cheng, and the others. He is caught once again by Lan Wangji. In desperation, Wei Wuxian topples the both of them outside the walls so that, technically, they have both broken curfew. Although Wei Wuxian expects Lan Wangji to let it go, Lan Wangji instead punishes both himself and Wei Wuxian with a beating, to the latter's dismay.
Jiang Cheng insists on carrying Wei Wuxian due to his injuries, although Wei Wuxian's theatrics earn the concern of Lan Xichen. After noting that the wounds are indeed severe, Lan Xichen tells Wei Wuxian to use their clan's cold springs to heal himself. At the cold springs, he once more encounters Lan Wangji, to Lan Wangji's apparent distress.
As their lessons become less frequent due to troubles with the Waterborne Abyss, Wei Wuxian ventures outside to catch two rabbits. He presents them to Lan Wangji to cook, but Lan Wangji reminds him that killing is also against the rules. Both are surprised when the rabbits suddenly begin to mate in front of them, although they are both male.
While learning the life story of Lan An, Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng overhear Jiang Yanli's fiancé Jin Zixuan insult her. After Jin Zixuan doubles down on his displeasure with the arrangement and insults both Jiang Yanli and Jiang Cheng, Wei Wuxian punches him. The two brawl, and are forced to kneel outside in punishment. Lan Wangji approaches Wei Wuxian in concern, only to discover that Wei Wuxian's shoulders shake from laughter, not tears, as he amuses himself with an anthill.
The following summer, Wei Wuxian often speaks of Lan Wangji to the rest of the Yunmeng Jiang Clan disciples, indicating that he likely does not find Lan Wangji as boring as he claims.
At some point during his youth, Wei Wuxian ventures to Tanzhou, determined to see the secret face of the Damsel of Annual Blossoms. In order to see her face, whenever he came to the garden, he purposefully recites poetry wrong to anger her into striking him with flowers and throwing him out of her garden. But every time he awakens, he crawls back inside and continues to recite incorrectly. After over twenty incorrect recitations, he finally glimpses the Damsel’s face.
After this, he goes about praising her beauty. However, the irritated Damsel refuses to appear for a while, and whenever Wei Wuxian returns, she pounds him with a rain of flowers.
Archery Competition in Nightless Sky
About a year after their time in the Cloud Recesses, Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng attend the Qishan Wen Clan's grand Discussion Conference and participate in their archery competition. On his way to the competition, Wei Wuxian notice Wen Ning practicing archery in a garden. Wei Wuxian bursts in to compliment him, and the shy Wen Ning promptly flees.
As each clan chooses archers for the competition, Wei Wuxian overhears Wen Chao express doubt about Wen Ning's archery ability. Wei Wuxian advocates for his skill, prompting Wen Chao to order a demonstration from Wen Ning. Unfortunately, Wen Ning's nerves fail him, and he misses the target. Despite this, Wei Wuxian seeks him out to encourage him before the competition began.
Wei Wuxian also encounters Lan Wangji for the first time after the Cloud Recesses shortly before the archery competition begins. To Lan Wangji's vexation, Wei Wuxian teases him that his forehead ribbon is crooked, although it truly is not. During the competition, however, Wei Wuxian notices that the ribbon truly is crooked, and in his attempt to fix it, he accidentally pulls off Lan Wangji's sacred forehead ribbon. Wei Wuxian is stunned by Lan Wangji's emotional response and subsequent departure from the competition.
Despite leaving early, Lan Wangji manages to place fourth overall, and Wei Wuxian is also among the top four winners.
Night-Hunt of the Xuanwu of Slaughter
About a year later, the Qishan Wen Clan summons twenty junior disciples from all of the major clans to attend their training, claiming that the other clans teach poorly and waste talent. Wei Wuxian quickly declares his wished to attend alongside the required Jiang Cheng. Yu Ziyuan expresses frustration that Jiang Cheng cannot choose while Wei Wuxian can, lashing out at the boys, Jiang Fengmian, and Jiang Yanli in the process.
Wen Chao is the primary overseer of the indoctrination, and, as he had fared poorly in the archery competition, he particularly bullies the three winners who attend the training: Lan Wangji, Jin Zixuan, and Wei Wuxian. The guest disciples are repeatedly forced to participate in night-hunts that result in Wen Chao killing the prey they have put much effort into severely wounding. Additionally, all of the guest cultivators are forced to hand over their swords to Wen Chao. Despite their frustrations, Jiang Cheng warns Wei Wuxian not to cause trouble, noting that the presence of the renowned Wen Zhuliu as Wen Chao's bodyguard.
Tensions come to a boil during a night-hunt on Dusk-Creek Mountain, when Wen Chao forces all the guest cultivators into a cave to fight an unknown creature. The creature fails to appear, so Wen Chao suggests bleeding someone as bait, and his mistress Wang Lingjiao promptly suggests Mianmian. Lan Wangji and Jin Zixuan allow the frantic Mianmian to hide behind them, and refuse to move when Wen Chao orders and threatens them to step aside. This leads Wei Wuxian to begrudgingly respect Jin Zixuan.
As the situation escalates, Wei Wuxian intervenes, using a quote from Wen Mao to humiliate Wen Chao. A fight soon breaks out, and Wei Wuxian easily disarms Wen Chao, taking him hostage atop an island in a pool of water. However, the island is actually the creature they had been hunting – the legendary Xuanwu of Slaughter.
Wei Wuxian releases Wen Chao to escape Wen Zhuliu's attack, and promptly saves Mianmian's face from being branded by the jealous Wang Lingjiao. In the process, he strikes Wang Lingjiao, and her Branding Iron strikes his chest, leaving a permanent scar.Wen Chao flees the skirmish with the members of the Qishan Wen Clan, and blocks the cave entrance to trap the guest cultivators inside with the Xuanwu. Lan Wangji, however, notices that there must be a second way out: the pool in which Xuanwu of Slaughter hides contains maple leaves, yet there are no maple leaves by their first entrance.
As Jiang Cheng locates the exit in the pool, Wei Wuxian distracts the Xuanwu of Slaughter so that the others can follow Jiang Cheng to escape. However, when Su She attempts to help by shooting an arrow towards the Xuanwu, he accidentally shoots Wei Wuxian. The Xuanwu attacks Wei Wuxian, and Lan Wangji leaps in to save him, though his already-injured leg is bitten by the Xuanwu. Wei Wuxian carries him away from their exit to save his life, and consequently, the two are trapped in the cave alone.
While treating each other's wounds, Lan Wangji expresses annoyance and jealousy of Wei Wuxian's flirtatious antics with Mianmian, eventually biting him to vent his frustrations.
Lan Wangji reveals to Wei Wuxian that the Gusu Lan Clan cannot save them, explaining with tears that his father is dying and his brother is missing. He also surmises that the Xuanwu of Slaughter is likely a legendary creature from four-hundred years ago, and, eventually, they decide to kill the Xuanwu of Slaughter together if no help arrives in three days.
After three days, Wei Wuxian ventures inside the Xuanwu's protective shell to force it out. There he discovers waist-deep corpse sludge from all of the devoured victims, along with an iron sworn infused with such powerful resentful energy that, from the moment he picks it up, his ears fill with piercing wails. Once Wei Wuxian forces the creature outside of its shell, the waiting Lan Wangji uses the Gusu Lan Clan’s Chord Assassination Technique to kill the Xuanwu. The process takes six entire hours, and in its death throes, the Xuanwu destroys their underwater escape.
As the two are forced to wait for help, Wei Wuxian develops a fever from their days of unrest and his contact with the pool water and corpse sludge. Lan Wangji cares him, and even sings him Wangxian as comfort. Although Wei Wuxian asks Lan Wangji the name of the song, he falls unconscious before he learns it.
The two are finally rescued after spending one week in the cave. When he awakens in Lotus Pier, Wei Wuxian is fed soup by Jiang Yanli before Jiang Fengmian comes to speak with him.
Wei Wuxian is stunned to hear that Lan Wangji had given him most of the credit for the kill, and insists that Lan Wangji deserves more credit than himself. Jiang Cheng attempts to lecture him for causing trouble, and when Jiang Fengmian attempts to correct his son, Yu Ziyuan arrives to vent her anger over her husband's favoritism.
After the arguing Jiang Fengmian and Yu Ziyuan leave, Wei Wuxian insists that he and Jiang Cheng speak plainly, not hiding anything in their hearts. Jiang Cheng expresses despair that his father does not like him, and Wei Wuxian encourages his shidi that he can be a good clan leader even if he is different from previous leaders of the Yunmeng Jiang Clan. Wei Wuxian promises that when Jiang Cheng becomes the leader of Yunmeng Jiang, Wei Wuxian will be his right-hand man, and they will be the Twin Prides of Yunmeng, much like the Gusu Lan Clan's Twin Jades.
Massacre of Lotus Pier
Half a month later, Wang Lingjiao soon arrives at Lotus Pier. She arrests their Sixth Shidi on trumped charges of ill intent towards the Qishan Wen Clan. When Yu Ziyuan confronts her, Wang Lingjiao announces that she has originally come to punish Wei Wuxian for 'distracting' Wen Chao while he killed the Xuanwu of Slaughter.
Yu Ziyuan initially gives the appearance of compliance, beating Wei Wuxian with Zidian while Jiang Cheng begs her to stop. Although Yu Ziyuan claims that Wei Wuxian will not heal for a month, Wang Lingjiao insists on more punishment: specifically, that Yu Ziyuan cut off his hand.
As Jiang Cheng pleads with his mother, Yu Ziyuan orders her maids Jinzhu and Yinzhu to close the doors. As Wang Lingjiao delightedly informed Yu Ziyuan that Lotus Pier will become the Qishan Wen Clan's new supervisory office in Yunmeng, Wei Wuxian resigns to losing his hand to keep peace.
To everyone's astonishment, Yu Ziyuan then slaps Wang Lingjiao rather than harm Wei Wuxian. Jinzhu and Yinzhu quickly slaughter the rest of the Qishan Wen Clan cultivators, but as Yu Ziyuan prepares to kill Wang Lingjiao, Wen Zhuliu rushes in to save her life.
In the resulting fight, Wang Lingjiao fires off Signal Fireworks to summon many members of the Qishan Wen Clan to Lotus Pier. Yu Ziyuan drags Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng to a boat and binds them with Zidian. She blames Wei Wuxian for the disaster unfolding, and orders the two to flee to her Meishan Yu Clan to find Jiang Yanli. Finally, she requests that Wei Wuxian that he protect Jiang Cheng with his life. As the boat is carried away by the current, she returns to Lotus Pier to prepare for battle.
As they drift in the current, the two encounter the returning Jiang Fengmian. Although he initially removes Zidian, upon hearing the name of Wen Zhuliu, he rebinds the two and again orders Wei Wuxian to protect Jiang Cheng.
When the two finally manage to return to Lotus Pier, they find their entire clan massacred. They overhear Wen Chao console Wang Lingjiao that both Jiang Fengmian and Yu Ziyuan are dead.
In despair, Jiang Cheng flees before attempting to choke Wei Wuxian, demanding to know why he had tried to defend Lan Wangji and Jin Zixuan in the cave of the Xuanwu of Slaughter. Eventually, however, both boys devolve into tears and begin to make their way to Meishan.
Loss of the Golden Core
A few days later, Wei Wuxian is alarmed to find Jiang Cheng missing after he ventures out to the market. He returns to Lotus Pier, presuming his shidi had attempted to return for his parents' bodies.
Fortunately, Wen Ning had also arrived at Lotus Pier, and quickly offers to help Wei Wuxian recover the captured Jiang Cheng. Wen Ning then smuggles the two fugitives back to his sister's supervisory office in Yiling.
Wen Qing is infuriated by her brother's recklessness, but she agrees to help the grievously injured Jiang Cheng for a few days while Wen Chao is away. However, when Jiang Cheng awakens, he reveals that his Golden Core has been melted by Wen Zhuliu, and insists to Wei Wuxian that his life is worthless if he could not cultivate.
Aware that Wen Qing had once written a paper theorizing on golden core transplantations, Wei Wuxian pleads with her to transfer his own golden core into Jiang Cheng. Although she warns Wei Wuxian that the chances of the operation working are only fifty-percent, she reluctantly agrees.
Not wanting his brother to feel poorly upon learning the truth, Wei Wuxian tells Jiang Cheng that he recalled how to find his mother's teacher, Baoshan Sanren, and that Baoshan Sanren can restore golden cores. He then directs Jiang Cheng up a mountain in Yiling, where Wen Qing and Wen Ning spent two days and a night extracting Wei Wuxian's golden core and implanting it into Jiang Cheng. Because of the high risk of damaging his golden core, Wei Wuxian is awake without anesthetic the entire time.
Wei Wuxian waits in a small village for Jiang Cheng to return, but upon entering a teashop, quickly realizes that something is amiss. He is caught by Wen Zhuliu, but when Wen Chao and Wang Lingjiao expresses a desire to torture him, Wei Wuxian taunts them with the possibility that he will haunt them as a vicious ghost.
Invention of Demonic Cultivation
For the next three months, Wei Wuxian takes to refining his original idea to harness resentful energy for power without a golden core. He crafts the flute Chenqing to use music to control Fierce Corpses and other demonic creatures, and invents the beginnings of the Spirit-Attraction Flag through reversing the script on typical spirit-suppressing Talismans, using human blood as ink.
Death of Wen Chao
Wei Wuxian is missing for the first three months of the Sunshot Campaign. However, once he masters his demonic techniques, he seeks out Wang Lingjiao, Wen Chao, and Wen Zhuliu as his first targets. He finds them in a supervisory office, and drives all the Wens inside mad with the exception of Wen Zhuliu, whom he spared to torment by showcasing his inability to protect Wen Chao. Under Wei Wuxian's methods, Wang Lingjiao bites off Wen Chao's penis before choking to death as she attempts to swallow a chair leg. Wen Chao, meanwhile, devours the flesh of his hands and legs before Wen Zhuliu flees with him. Wei Wuxian follows them for several days, tormenting and killing all of the members of the Qishan Wen Clan he finds along the way.
Accompanied by a ghoul woman and a demonic baby, Wei Wuxian finally reveals himself to his prey as they shelter in a courier office. Lan Wangji and Jiang Cheng, however, had also been pursuing Wen Chao, and upon recognizing Wei Wuxian, immediately leap into the station.
Jiang Cheng restrains Wen Zhuliu with Zidian before expressing relief to see his sworn brother alive, and returns Suibian to Wei Wuxian. Lan Wangji demands to know how Wei Wuxian controls the creatures at his commands, before attacking Wei Wuxian with talismans. Lan Wangji warns him that this dark path will affect his heart, but Wei Wuxian scoffs at the idea that anyone else should care about his heart. This further angers Lan Wangji, who then requests that Wei Wuxian return to Gusu with him.
Wei Wuxian interprets Lan Wangji's request as a desire to punish him, and Jiang Cheng intervenes, insisting that Lan Wangji had overstepped his place, as Wei Wuxian is not a member of the Gusu Lan Clan. Both of them dismiss Lan Wangji from their presence as they prepared to torture Wen Chao and Wen Zhuliu to death, while forcing Wen Chao to kneel in the direction of Yunmeng.
Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng continue to work alongside with Lan Wangji on the Jiangling front. Although Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji maintain a working relationship, they frequently argue over the latter's methods. Lan Wangji believes that Wei Wuxian caused too much bloodshed in his methods, and at one point, Lan Xichen comes to help maintain their cooperation.
Wei Wuxian's methods are notoriously brutal, as he digs deep into the earth to overturn all of the Qishan Wen Clan's cemeteries. The Fierce Corpses he raises are used to attack their descendants, and for every cultivator killed, he turns them into Fierce Corpses to kill their friends and family.
Unbeknownst to them, she also been provides Jin Zixuan with an extra bowl. However, another woman takes credit for it, and when Jin Zixuan discovers Jiang Yanli in his room one day, he accuses her of lying to get close to him when she confesses the truth.
Wei Wuxian arrives to see his shijie in tears, and immediately pounces on Jin Zixuan. After the other woman is summoned and the truth came out, it takes Jiang Cheng, Jin Guangshan, and Jiang Yanli to keep Wei Wuxian from continuing to beat Jin Zixuan.
During the Sunshot Campaign, Wei Wuxian also develops the Yin Tiger Tally from the iron sword he had originally found in the Xuanwu of Slaughter. He uses it to control hundreds-to-thousands of corpses at once. Although the time and location of its use are not specified, he evidently uses the weapon in the presence of Jin Guangshan, rendering Langya a possible location for its use.
Flower Banquet at Golden Carp Tower
In the aftermath of the war, the Lanling Jin Clan holds a lavish banquet. Wei Wuxian reluctantly attends with Jiang Cheng, and attracts the criticism of Nie Mingjue for not carrying Suibian. He soon leaves the banquet after another argument with Jin Zixuan.
Night-Hunt at Phoenix Mountain
Wei Wuxian rides at the head of the Yunmeng Jiang Clan’s riding formation alongside Jiang Cheng, receiving flowers tossed by many female admirers. He keeps the flower Jiang Yanli tosses to him, and even throws flowers of his own towards Lan Wangji to tease him.
At the archery competition to start the hunt, Wei Wuxian scoffs at Jin Zixuan's arrogance. Determined to beat Jin Zixuan, Wei Wuxian asks Lan Wangji to borrow his forehead ribbon to use as a blindfold, but Lan Wangji refuses. Ultimately, Wei Wuxian uses the ribbon from his wristguard to blindfold himself and shoot straight through the target.
After the hunt begins, Wei Wuxian remains blindfolded as he plays Chenqing to drive evil spirits towards the rest of the Yunmeng Jiang Clan for capture. He falls asleep, and is stunned. when someone pushes him against a tree and passionately kisses him.
Surprised, Wei Wuxian removes his blindfold and searches the area. He eventually finds Lan Wangji hacking a tree with Bichen. He teases Lan Wangji about never having kissed anyone, while simultaneously claiming to have kissed many girls – a claim he laters admit is a lie.
The two then encounter Jin Zixuan and Jiang Yanli. Believing that Jin Zixuan is upsetting his sister, Wei Wuxian leaps between them and confronts him. Madam Jin arrives to scold her son, and Jin Zixun leads multiple cultivators, including Clan Leader Yao, to confront Wei Wuxian for taking too much prey.
Jin Zixun dismisses Wei Wuxian as the "son of a servant," and Jiang Yanli earnestly defends him against the complaints and insults. When she prepares to leave with Wei Wuxian, everyone is stunned as Jin Zixuan blurts out his feelings for Jiang Yanli in front of the crowd... before bolting away.
Meeting Lan Wangji in Yunmeng
Meeting in Yunmeng
A month later, Wei Wuxian encounters Lan Wangji in Yunmeng. He conspires to have several female Ghosts shower him with flowers, before tossing a pink peony himself. Wei Wuxian invites Lan Wangji to join him in the tavern, but when Lan Wangji attempts to invite him to Gusu once again, Wei Wuxian reacts with dismissal and annoyance.
Incident at Qiongqi Path
That same day, Wei Wuxian is stunned when Wen Qing arrives at Lotus Pier dressed in rags. She begs his help in finding her brother, who has been taken by Jin Zixun. Wei Wuxian then approaches the Lanling Jin Clan's private banquet, drinks the alcohol Jin Zixun has been pressuring the Jades of Lan into drinking, and demands an audience with Jin Zixun.
When Jin Zixun tells him to wait for at least several hours, Wei Wuxian grows impatient. After informing Jin Zixun that he wished to find Wen Ning, a remnant of the Qishan Wen Clan that Jin Zixun had captured, their argument escalates until Jin Guangshan steps in. However, once Jin Guangshan mentions the Yin Tiger Tally, Wei Wuxian mocks him for his ambitions to replace the Qishan Wen Clan. He then takes out Chenqing and gives Jin Zixun to the count of three to tell him the location of Wen Ning, or he would summon corpses to Golden Carp Tower. Jin Zixun finally tells him to search Qiongqi Path, and Wei Wuxian departs.
Wei Wuxian and Wen Qing find the enslaved members of the Qishan Wen Clan abused, shamed, and made to carve off the engravings of their own clan's history which had once marked the walls of the valley road to make way for new dramas detailing feats of the Lanling Jin Clan. When Wei Wuxian questions the guards on the missing Wen Ning's location, they insists that he must have been there, as they would never kill people.
Wei Wuxian quickly accuses the guards of not considering any member of the Qishan Wen Clan people. Using Chenqing, Wei Wuxian awakens those who had died and been buried to cover the guards' abuse, including Wen Ning. Wei Wuxian allows him and his fellow walking corpses to take his revenge on the guards who had killed them, before the freeing fifty-or-so remnants and taking them to the Yiling Burial Mounds to live under his protection.
Leaving the Yunmeng Jiang Clan
Jiang Cheng visits the Burial Mounds to warn his brother that he could not protect him if he insisted on protecting the members of the Qishan Wen Clan. Wei Wuxian angrily reminds him that Wen Ning and Wen Qing had saved them, but Jiang Cheng insists that society has already made up their minds against anyone with the name of Wen.
Jiang Cheng becomes furious when Wei Wuxian explains that he promised the devastated Wen Qing that he would restore the consciousness of Wen Ning's fierce corpse. In response, Wei Wuxian declares that he will leave the clan so that Jiang Cheng does not have to protect him, and the two arrange a duel. In the end, Jiang Cheng stabs Wei Wuxian, Wei Wuxian summons Wen Ning to break Jiang Cheng's arm, and the two leave cursing each other.
Life at the Burial Mounds
Several months after, taking pity on the toddler Wen Yuan, Wei Wuxian brings him to Yiling to shop for food. Unfortunately, Wen Yuan wanders away, and Wei Wuxian is stunned to find him crying and clinging to the leg of Lan Wangji.
Wei Wuxian eventually intervens, distracting Wen Yuan by asking if he wants to buy toys from a vendor. However, Wei Wuxian had only meant to tease the child, not to buy the toys. Lan Wangji steps in to buy as many toys as the boy wants.
Lan Wangji then takes Wei Wuxian and Wen Yuan to a restaurant to eat, where he informs Wei Wuxian that Jiang Yanli and Jin Zixuan will be married the next week. However, their meal is suddenly interrupted by a burning talisman from the Burial Mounds, signaling trouble.
Wei Wuxian, Lan Wangji, and Wen Yuan return to discover that Wen Ning's unconscious corpse has gotten free. As Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian both play melodies to control him, Wei Wuxian successfully restores his consciousness.
Lan Wangji departs soon after, expressing further concern that Wei Wuxian cannot control his cultivation. Wei Wuxian, however, is treated to a celebratory meal by the Wen remnants, including Granny Wen and Uncle Four, who are delighted to have Wen Ning back.
Not long after, Wen Ning and Wei Wuxian venture into Yiling and encounter Jiang Cheng and Jiang Yanli. Jiang Yanli has made soup for her brothers and even gives some to Wen Ning, though he cannot eat. She wears her bridal robes for Wei Wuxian to see, and requests that he choose a courtesy name for her future son. Wei Wuxian chose "Rulan," and Jiang Cheng scoffs at his use of a homophone for the "Lan" of the Gusu Lan Clan.
Death of Jin Zixuan
After Jin Ling is born, Jin Zixuan invites Wei Wuxian to his nephew's one-month celebration. Overjoyed, Wei Wuxian carves a charmed bell for his nephew, and adorns it with a tassel pendant he purchases from Lanling's treasure pavilion.
But as he and Wen Ning walk along Qiongqi Path, Wei Wuxian realizes that the path is too quiet. Wen Ning saves him from an arrow, and Jin Zixun appears with three-hundred cultivators to ambush him.
Jin Zixun reveals that he suffers from the Hundred Holes Curse, saying that if Wei Wuxian will not remove it, he will kill him to free himself from the curse. Although Wei Wuxian insists on his innocence, he escalates the situation by adding that that if he wanted to kill Jin Zixun, he would do it a thousand times worse.
When Wei Wuxian attempts to summon corpses with Chenqing, Jin Zixun taunts that he had already removed every corpse along the path. As a last resort, Wei Wuxian controls Wen Ning to attack the three-hundred cultivators while he faces off against Jin Zixun.
Jin Zixuan suddenly leaps between them, having been informed of the ambush by Jin Guangyao. As he insists that Wei Wuxian should submit to Golden Carp Tower's questions, promising his release if he was innocent, Wei Wuxian expresses disbelief, and accuses him of knowing of the attack. In this moment, Wei Wuxian loses control of his anger and cultivation, and as a result, Wen Ning puts his fist through Jin Zixuan's heart.
Wei Wuxian collapses in horror while Wen Ning kills Jin Zixun, before returning Wei Wuxian to the Burial Mounds.
When he regains consciousness, Wei Wuxian is further horrified when Wen Qing and Wen Ning announced that Golden Carp Tower has demanded the Wen siblings' surrender as conditions for a truce. Wen Qing paralyzes Wei Wuxian for three days, and her last words to him are "Thank you", and "I'm sorry."
Immediately after regaining the use of his limbs, Wei Wuxian rushes to Golden Carp Tower, where he observes Jiang Yanli and Madam Jin kneeling before Jin Zixuan's coffin. Madam Jin alerts the guards before Wei Wuxian can speak to Jiang Yanli.
Bloodbath of Nightless Sky
Wandering from city to city in a daze, Wei Wuxian overhears a group of low-level cultivators discussing him. They claim that that Wen Ning had lost control during his surrender, killing cultivators from multiple clans, and that he and his sister have been burned alive.
Wei Wuxian brutally beats the men before seeing the announcement spread across the city gate: a pledge conference to oppose the Yiling Patriarch, to be held in Nightless Sky.
Hiding among the heavenly beast statues atop the Palace of Sun and Flames, Wei Wuxian witnesses Jin Guangshan pour out the supposed ashes of Wen Qing and Wen Ning, before pledging to lay siege to the remaining fifty or so members of the Qishan Wen Clan on the Burial Mounds.
Wei Wuxian then makes his entrance, reminding Jin Guangshan of his word to forget the deaths of Jin Zixuan and Jin Zixun if Wen Qing and Wen Ning surrendered themselves. Jin Guangshan replies that Wen Ning's loss of control has nullified their agreement, and, during their argument, an archer shoots Wei Wuxian in his chest.
Wei Wuxian retaliates by hurling the arrow back into the archer, killing him and devastating his young brother. A battle begins once Wei Wuxian used Chenqing to raise the many corpses around Nightless Sky.
Lan Wangji attempts to reason with him, but Wei Wuxian is convinced that he wishes to kill him, even claiming that he has always known they were destined to fight each other. However, he regains some control over himself when he hears Jiang Yanli crying out his name.
Wei Wuxian, Lan Wangji, and Jiang Cheng all rush for her, but in his current state of mind, Wei Wuxian cannot control the corpse that slashes her in the back. Fortunately, she is not mortally wounded, and Lan Wangji quickly dispatches the corpse.
Jiang Yanli wordlessly expresses that she had come because she wished to see Wei Wuxian again, and aloud, requests that he stop the corpses. Wei Wuxian agrees, and the battle begins to abate.
Suddenly, Jiang Yanli shoves him, and a sword pierces into her own throat instead. The brother of the archer has attempted to gain revenge on Wei Wuxian.
Hysterical at his sister's death, Wei Wuxian breaqks the boy's neck, only to be chastised for his cruelty. In despair, Wei Wuxian takesthe two halves of the Yin Tiger Tally and places them together to commence the battle known as the Bloodbath of Nightless Sky.
In the aftermath, Wei Wuxian staggers away. Fearing for his life, Lan Wangji takes him away on Bichen and hides him in a cave in Yiling. He lends him spiritual energy and confesses his feelings, but the traumatized Wei Wuxian tells him to "get lost." When they are found, Lan Wangji fights thirty-three elders of his clan with his sword to deliver Wei Wuxian back to the Burial Mounds. The traumatized Wei Wuxian recalls none of this.
In the few months between the Bloodbath and his death, Wei Wuxian successfully destroys half of the Yin Tiger Tally. Jiang Cheng ultimately leads the First Siege of the Burial Mounds that results in the slaughter of the Qishan Wen Clan remnants and Wei Wuxian's death from spiritual backlash.
Resurrection and Second Life
Wei Wuxian awakens to Mo Xuanyu's cousin, Mo Ziyuan, beating him for reporting that Mo Ziyuan had stolen his cultivation artifacts. Wei Wuxian is amused by the petty audacity this young man has to beat him, not knowing he is actually the dreaded Yiling Patriarch.
After reading Mo Xuanyu's scribbled story, Wei Wuxiaan noted that although his body has four wounds for the four people his spirit had been asked to seek revenge on, Mo Xuanyu has not written down the names of his intended victims. This concerns Wei Wuxian, as the price for not fulfilling Mo Xuanyu's revenge is the destruction of his soul.
Wei Wuxian eventually bursts into Mo Manor to humiliate the Mo family before the cultivators who are supposedly visiting. He is surprised to see junior disciples of the Gusu Lan Clan, but, improvising his role as a "lunatic," Wei Wuxian makes a scene to embarrass the Mo family. To his dismay, the wounds does not heal, indicating that Mo Xuanyu likely wanted the entire family exterminated.
As he wandered outside Mo Manor, Wei Wuxian realizes that the juniors are using using an array of Spirit-Attraction Flags, his own invention. He promptly steals one from Lan Jingyi to ensure it is written correctly. Lan Sizhui intervenes when the indignant Lan Jingyi threatens Wei Wuxian.
That night, however, Wei Wuxian is dragged out of his home and accused of murdering Mo Ziyuan, whose body has been found in the courtyard. The Gusu Lan Clan juniors defend him, noting that the work is of an evil spirit, rather than a human. In fact, a Spirit-Attraction Flag was found on Mo Ziyuan's body, indicating that his theft of cultivation tools has inadvertently caused his own death.
Wei Wuxian realizes that one of his cuts has healed, as the curse deems the death by Wei Wuxian's invention as fulfilling Mo Xuanyu'srevenge. Still, three cuts remain.
When husband of Madam Mo dies in the same way as his son, Wei Wuxian realizes they are facing an extremely vicious opponent. He elects to stay for the juniors' sake even as Lan Sizhui sent off a Signal Firework for help, even though staying risks revealing his identity.
Mo Ziyuan's frequent accomplice A-Tong strangles himself with his left hand, providing an insight into the nature of the spirit. Wei Wuxian realizes that A-Tong was not left-handed, and that a Demonic Left Arm is possessing him.
Only one cut should have remained, but it, too, vanishes. Wei Wuxian realizes that Madam Mo must also be dead, and soon enough, she too is revealed to be possessed. When the arm reveals itself, Wei Wuxian whispers "wake up" to Mo Ziyuan, his father, and Madam Mo, using the three fresh corpses to attack the Demonic Left Arm.
To his surprise, the three fresh corpses are still no match for the arm, but just then, Lan Wangji arrives at the estate to subdue the arm. Afraid of being recognized by his perceived enemy, Wei Wuxian promptly flees the village.
Wei Wuxian steals a donkey from the village, a stubborn mount he later names Little Apple due to its love for the fruit. As he travels, he encounters lower-level cultivators, including the kind Round-Faced Girl, on their way to Dafan Mountain to hunt a soul-stealing entity.
Intrigued, Wei Wuxian heads for Dafan Mountain himself. Passing by Fojiao Town, Wei Wuxian encounters A-Yan, the only villager to have her soul-returned, before investigating the mountain. His search leads him to discover several cultivators, including the round-faced girl, held in Deity-Binding Nets by a Lanling Jin Clan junior who refused to free them.
The junior then recognizes him, leading Wei Wuxian to discern that the licentious Jin Guangshan is likely Mo Xuanyu's father. Wei Wuxian mocks the boy for his arrogance, asking if his mother never taught him manners, and is surprised when the boy reacts with rage. Wei Wuxian uses his cultivation to summon a ghost to weigh the boy down so that he can free the trapped cultivators.
His own escape is then interrupted by Jiang Cheng's arrival, revealing that the boy is none other than Jin Ling. Jiang Cheng commanded his nephew to kill "Mo Xuanyu," as he earnestly hates cultivators who imitate his former shixiong. Before Jin Ling can strike, however, Lan Wangji intervenes, followed closely by the Gusu Lan Clan juniors.N
Lan Wangji reveals he has destroyed the many deity-binding nets, considering it an unfair advantage for Jin Ling. With Lan Wangji standing between Jiang Cheng and "Mo Xuanyu," Jiang Cheng eventually retreats with Jin Ling. Lan Wangji nods towards Mo Xuanyu in thanks for his help in Mo Village before leaving with the rest of the junior disciples.
Once alone, Wei Wuxian slaps himself for his remarks to Jin Ling, blaming himself for the death of Jiang Yanli and Jin Zixuan.
After speaking with a ghost, Wei Wuxian realizes the truth behind the soul-stealing events on Dafan Mountain. The Round-Faced Girl gives him directions to the cave of the Heavenly Maiden, and as he rushes towards the location, Wei Wuxian encounters Lan Sizhui and Lan Jingyi. He explains why their use of his Compass of Ill Winds failed to work, and helps the two conclude that the Heavenly Maiden has received enough prayers to become a goddess. In exchange for granting a person's wish, she steals their soul.
As Jin Ling attempts to fight the pursuing Heavenly Maiden, Wei Wuxian becomes desperate to save the nephew he had never met in his first life. He forms a makeshift bamboo flute and attempts to summon the most powerful ghostly creature within reach.
To his astonishment, that creature is none other than Wen Ning, despite his supposed burning thirteen years ago. Wen Ning defeats the Heavenly Maiden, and Wei Wuxian quickly realizes that his friend is no longer conscious. Afraid that Wen Ning will harm the cultivators, Wei Wuxian attempts to lead him away and calm him down by playing Wangxian. This inadvertantly reveals his true identity to Lan Wangji.
When Jiang Cheng arrives on the scene, he quickly surmises Wei Wuxian's identity. Wei Wuxian tries to flee, only to be struck by Zidian in a futile attempt to expel his soul. He continues his charade as the lunatic Mo Xuanyu, complaining against Jiang Cheng's use of power, even asking if Jiang Cheng wishes to take him back to Lotus Pier for sexual purposes, before adding that Lan Wangji is more his type.
Although Wei Wuxian's goal is to disgust both men into leaving him alone, Lan Wangji suddenly declares his intent to take "Mo Xuanyu" back to the Cloud Recesses with him.
Return to the Cloud Recesses
Upon their arrival at the Cloud Recesses, Wei Wuxian wails loudly to avoid entering. When Lan Xichen approaches and greets Wei Wuxian, before noting his brother's happiness. He then departs to plan the upcoming Discussion Conference with Jin Guangyao.
Although Wei Wuxian continues to cry and refuses to enter, Lan Wangji tells Lan Sizhui and Lan Jingyi to drag him inside once he finishes crying. To the everyone's surprise, Lan Wangji requests that Wei Wuxian be taken into his personal quarters, the Jingshi.
Aware that he needs a Jade Token to escape without activating an alarm, Wei Wuxian attempts to poach a token from a man bathing in the the cold springs. He ecomes distracted, however, by the dozens of scars from the Discipline Whip across the man's back, and a Wen Clan brand on the man's chest that matches the brand Wei Wuxian had borne in his first life.
To his astonishment, the man is Lan Wangji, and he promptly returns Wei Wuxian to the Jingshi.
That night, Wei Wuxian attempts to steal Lan Wangji's jade token while he slept, aware that he keeps it on his person. However, after he is again caught, Wei Wuxian refuses to move from his position lying atop Lan Wangji. Lan Wangji then places a Body-Locking Spell on Wei Wuxian, preventing him from moving for the entire night.
Wei Wuxian awakes late the next morning to Lan Sizhui and Lan Jingyi's knocking at the door to the Jingshi. After flabbergasting them with his claim that Lan Wangji had done him all night, the two juniors inform Wei Wuxian that Little Apple is causing a ruckus.
Wei Wuxian goes to calm Little Apple, and is amused to discover that Lan Wangji keeps many rabbits around the Cloud Recesses. However, an alarm soon rings out, and a disciple manages to tell the three that a ritual has gone wrong before collapsing.
Leaving the disciple in Lan Sizhui and Lan Jingyi's care, Wei Wuxian races to the scene, where the Gusu Lan Clan elders, including Lan Qiren, had attempted to perform Evocation upon the Demonic Left Arm. The resentful energy summoned was so powerful that the elders are severely injured. Lan Wangji is the only cultivator left standing, and with the help of Wei Wuxian's bamboo flute, their duet of Rest finally manages to pacify the Demonic Left Arm.
Noticing that the arm points Northwest, Lan Wangji tells Lan Sizhui and Lan Jingyi to watch over Lan Qiren while he and Wei Wuxian search for more dismembered body parts.
Wei Wuxian's many attempts to escape along the way to Qinghe are met with failure. Eventually, the two arrive near Xinglu Ridge, and Wei Wuxian promptly becomes distracted by a charlatan posing as a cultivator. He is appalled to see that the man sells Evil-Suppressing Portraits of the Yiling Patriarch that Wei Wuxian as a grotesque, hideous man.
As Wei Wuxian attempts to argue with the charlatan, Jin Ling suddenly appears and kicks over the stall. As Jin Ling vents that he despises anyone who mentions the name of the man who killed his parents, Wei Wuxian grows concerned for his nephew's arrogance, and decides to "do some tinkering."
Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji are directed to the "man-eating castles" at Xinglu Ridge as a possible place to locate another piece of the Demonic Left Arm's body. They promptly discover the Stone Castles on the ridge. Wei Wuxian reacts with terror when barks ring out, but his fear transforms into concern when Lan Wangji notes that the dog is Jin Ling's.
Entering a castle through a broken wall, Lan Wangji plays Inquiry to speak with a nearby spirit. The spirit is none other than Jin Ling, and Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian are able to rescue Jin Ling moments from a suffocating death inside the walls of Stone Castles.
Jiang Cheng captures Wei Wuxian before he can assist with the curse mark. Jiang Cheng drags his former shixiong into a shop, where he interrogates him, and Wei Wuxian acknowledges his true identity.
Jin Ling soon interrupts the two, claiming to have seen Wen Ning. After Jiang Cheng departs to chase the Ghost General, Jin Ling reveals that he had lied and, as he believes that Wei Wuxian is his uncle "Mo Xuanyu", declares his intent to save Wei Wuxian in thanks for saving him from the Stone Castles.
Wei Wuxian apologizes for his words to him on Dafan Mountain, and adds that there are two phrases everyone has to say in life: "Thank you" and "I'm sorry." He then knocks Jin Ling unconscious to transfer the curse mark from his nephew to himself.
When the reuinite, Lan Wangji is displeased to find the curse mark on Wei Wuxian. He finally calls him by the name "Wei Ying." Acknowledging his identity, Wei Wuxian asks how he knew, and Lan Wangji merely tells him to think of the answer himself.
Given his curse mark, Lan Wangji insists on carrying Wei Wuxian to meet the person who had fled the Stone Castles. The person is none other than Nie Huaisang who is currently the Qinghe Nie Clan leader. Nie Huaisang reluctantly explains the purpose of the castles as the Qinghe Nie Clan's ancestral hall.
That evening, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji note how strongly the Demonic Left Arm reacts to the curse mark on his leg. They return to the Stone Castles in the morning to find Nie Huaisang rebuilding the Stone Castle that Jin Ling disrupted. Wei Wuxian concludes that Jin Ling must have been in the vicinity of the Demonic Left Arm's leg to receive a curse mark on the leg, and Lan Wangji cuts through the pants of all the corpses buried in the walls to find the legs of the mysterious victim.
Graveyard of the Yueyang Chang Clan
Following the Demonic Left Arm's lead, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji next arrive in Yueyang. Wei Wuxian suggests a tavern as the perfect place to glean information, and their waiter eagerly informs them of the massacre of the Yueyang Chang Clan, and the survivor Chang Ping's subsequent murder a few years later.
Wei Wuxian is appalled when "Wei Wuqian" ("without money") is identified as the killer. Lan Wangji leaves the tavern with Wei Wuxian and explains the truth: that the Lanling Jin Clan's guest disciple Xue Yang had reconstructed the Yin Tiger Tally and used it to wipe out the Yueyang Chang Clan for revenge. The man who apprehended Xue Yang was called Xiao Xingchen, and he came from the same sect as Wei Wuxian's mother. Xiao Xingchen himself vanished years ago, alongside his friend Song Lan.
Dusk falls, and the the coffins in the Yueyang Chang Clan's cemetery begin to bang again. Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji leave venture inside the cemetery to encounter a Gravedigger, who attempts to fight the two. Although the mysterious man eventually escapes with the aid of a Transportation Talisman, Wei Wuxian is alarmed by how familiar the Gravedigger seems to be with Lan Wangji's moves,.
The disturbed grave holds the torso of their victim. After placing it in another Qiankun Bag, Wei Wuxian invites Lan Wangji to drink with him back at the tavern. He is surprised when Lan Wangji agrees, and further surprised when Lan Wangji falls asleep after one drink.
Taking advantage of the situation, Wei Wuxian leaves the inn to summon Wen Ning. He quickly surmises that something had been implanted in his friend's head to disrupt his consciousness, and removes two long needles from his skull. Realizing he needs Bichen to release Wen Ning's chains, Wei Wuxian turns around to return to the tavern. He is shocked to see Lan Wangji standing behind him.
Afraid that Lan Wangji will kill Wen Ning, Wei Wuxian attempts to speak on his friend's behalf. However, he quickly realizes that Lan Wangji is drunk when the latter strikes and pushes Wen Ning, telling him to "go away" like a child.
Wei Wuxian sends Wen Ning away and guides Lan Wangji back to their room. He questions Lan Wangji on his opinions of people like Jiang Cheng and Wen Ning, before pointing towards himself. When Lan Wangji replies with "mine," Wei Wuxian assumes he has mistaken pointed to Bichen, and laments that he finally understands why liquor is prohibited by the Gusu Lan Clan.
When he awakens the next morning, Lan Wangji expresses concern about what he might have done while drunk, though Wei Wuxian attempts to reassure him.
After Yueyang, he Demonic Left Arm leads the two towards the foggy Shudong area. They encounter a Yin Muscleman lying along the path to Yi City, and overhear mysterious footsteps and a bamboo pole. Upon entering the city, they discover the juniors, including Lan Sizhui, Lan Jingyi, Jin Ling, and Ouyang Zizhen.
As the bamboo pole continues knocking, seven or eight Fierce Corpses approach them. To Wei Wuxian's alarm, they do not respond to his attempts to control them, just as corpses under the Yin Tiger Tally would not respond. Moreover, several junior scontract Corpse Poisoning from the corpses' bodies. The Gravedigger then appears a second time. While Lan Wangji engages him in battle, Wei Wuxian takes the juniors to find a cure for their poison.
They arrive at the shop of a living corpse, where Wei Wuxian promptly sets the healthy juniors to work preparing rice congee to cure their corpse poisoning. However, as Wei Wuxian has an extremely spicy palate, the juniors are appalled by the congee he serves them.
The ghost of A-Qing then appears outside a window, and Wei Wuxian seizes the opportunity to teach the juniors observational skills. They are interrupted, however, by the arrival of more fierce corpses, who are destroyed by a blindfolded man. After Wei Wuxian rescues the man, Lan Jingyi identifies as the missing Xiao Xingchen from the sword he carries.
As Wei Wuxian attempts to learn more from Xiao Xingchen, a Fierce Corpse leaps down from the roof. Wei Wuxian quickly recognizes his resemblance to Wen Ning – a conscious Fierce Corpse. He summons more effigies to subdue the corpse, and Lan Sizhui uses Inquiry to determine that his identity is Song Lan.
After Song Lan implies that the man behind him is not Xiao Xingchen, Wei Wuxian is taken captive by the blindfolded man.. He allows the juniors to leave before Xue Yang exposes his true identity. Xue Yang likewise recognizes Wei Wuxian's true identity, and attempts to persuade him to restore a shattered soul. Wei Wuxian refuses, thinking the task impossible.
Soon after Wen Ning arrives to fight Song Lan, Lan Wangji arrives to fight Xue Yang. Wei Wuxian then leads the juniors to follow the ghost of A-Qing into a coffin house with the body of Xiao Xingchen. He engages in Empathy to learn what A-Qing knows.
After learning A-Qing's story, Wei Wuxian leaves the coffin house to aid Lan Wangji, telling the juniors only that "Xue Yang must die."
Wei Wuxian discovers that Wen Ning had subdued Song Lan, and quickly removes the needles controlling his consciousness. He then joins the fight between Lan Wangji and Xue Yang, and, using his own empathy skills, attempts to distract Xue Yang by insinuating that he regretted killing Xiao Xingchen, and in fact, had only killed Chang Ping to avenge Xiao Xingchen.
A-Qing aids them in the thick fog, using her bamboo pole to indicate Xue Yang's position. When her soul is shattered by a talisman, Wei Wuxian uses another spirit-trapping bag to salvage what remains of her soul.
After Xue Yang's arm is severed and the Gravedigger steals his dying body away with a Transportation Talisman, Wei Wuxian notices that Xue Yang's severed arm still clung to the last piece of candy Xiao Xingchen had given him, even though it had long since turned rotten.
Wei Wuxian leads Lan Wangji back to the coffin house to speak with Song Lan. They present him with the Spirit-Trapping Bags containing A-Qing's and Xiao Xingchen's shattered souls, and Song Lan declares his intent to roam the world nursing their souls back to wholeness.
As they leave Yi City, Wei Wuxian informs the juniors of A-Qing's story. The boys insisted on burning paper money for her, and when they are confronted by a huntsman, Wei Wuxian realizes that someone lured the juniors to Yi City to die, though he is unsure why.
The group stops at an inn for the evening, and Wei Wuxian again persuades Lan Wangji to drink with him. Once more, Lan Wangji falls asleep, and Wei Wuxian summons the fully-conscious Wen Ning to speak with him .
Although they had left the inn, the two are interrupted by Jin Ling's argument with Lan Sizhui on the subject of Wei Wuxian. Jin Ling makes it clear that he refuses to tolerate any remarks that do not fully condemn Wei Wuxian.
The drunk Lan Wangji makes his appearance soon after, again pushing Wen Ning. When Wei Wuxian attempts to lead him inside, Lan Wangji ties his forehead ribbon to Wei Wuxian's wrists.
Although Wei Wuxian tries to move to their room discreetly, Lan Wangji holds up the forehead ribbon for all the juniors to see. As Wei Wuxian tries to explain the awkward situation as a new use for their forehead ribbons, the juniors are shocked speechless.
Back in their room, Lan Wangji plays hide-and-seek with Wei Wuxian, and Wei Wuxian cannot resist briefly kissing his lips, an action that startles himself.
Night-Hunt in Tanzhou
The next morning, Wei Wuxian accompanies Lan Wangji and the juniors of the Gusu Lan Clan to meet with Lan Xichen at Tanzhou. While Lan Wangji leaves to set up a safety Array while they camp at night, Wei Wuxian seizes his chance to ask the meaning of the Gusu Lan Clan forehead ribbon. He is flabbergasted to learn how sacred it is. Unfortunately, his frenzied thoughts are interrupted by a headless Fierce Corpse – the Demonic Left Arm's body had pieced itself together.
Wei Wuxian manages to keep the juniors still to avoid attracting its attention, and even tosses pebbles to draw the corpse back to himself. Taking advantage of its missing head, he eventually begins to shout for Lan Wangji. Fortunately, Lan Wangji and Lan Xichen soon arrive to subdue the corpse.
Wei Wuxian then confers with Lan Wangji and Lan Xichen, all of whom suspects the corpse to be none other than Nie Mingjue, Lan Xichen's elder sworn brother. After Wei Wuxian acknowledges Jin Guangyao as his main suspect, the three agreed to conduct an investigation at the upcoming Discussion Conference at Golden Carp Tower.
One month later, Jin Guangyao personally greets Lan Xichen, Lan Wangji, and "Mo Xuanyu" for the conference, though he departs quickly to prepare a room for Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian. Jiang Cheng also arrives, greeting the man he knew to be his former brother with heavy sarcasm.
At the evening banquet preceding the conference, Wei Wuxian notices many cultivators of the Lanling Jin Clan watching him with suspicion. Nervous, he requests that Lan Wangji stay close to him, but eventually, his curiosity propels him to seek out Jin Ling for an explanation. Wei Wuxian discovers Jin Ling facing off against several bullies, including Jin Chan. Although he bonds with Jin Ling while demonstrating how to beat the boys in a fight, he is frazzled to learn that Mo Xuanyu had been expelled from Golden Carp Tower for sexually harassing his own brother, Jin Guangyao.
Back in their room, Lan Wangji supervises Wei Wuxian as he affixed his soul to a piece of paper to spy on Jin Guangyao. Wei Wuxian observes a disturbing argument between Jin Guangyao and his wife Qin Su, which culminates in Jin Guangyao taking her inside their secret treasure room.
Inside the room,Wei Wuxian's paperman encounters the heavily sealed head of Nie Mingjue, alongside a land deed for Yunping City. Nie Mingjue's resentful energy forces the paperman into Empathy, where Wei Wexian observes Nie Mingjue's perspective on his relationship with Jin Guangyao.
Lan Wangji's call eventually frees Wei Wuxian from Empathy with not much time to spare in his paper body. As he escapes, he discovers Jin Guangyao lying in wait. To escape, Wei Wuxian uses none other than his own Suibian, kept as a treasure. As he does, shock crosses Jin Guangyao's face.
Once Wei Wuxian returns to his physical body, he and Lan Wangji and rush towards Jin Guangyao's bedroom room, though Jin Ling bars the way. Eventually, however, Lan Xichen's insistence that Jin Guangyao show them the room wins out, revealing treasures such as the Assassin's Dagger and Suibian, but no head. However, despite her calm appearance, Qin Su suddenly commits suicide with the Assassin's Dagger.
When the seemingly grief-stricken Jin Guangyao attempts to attack "Mo Xuanyu," Wei Wuxian again uses Suibian to defend himself. Unfortunately, as Suibian had sealed itself after Wei Wuxian's death, his use of the sword accidentally exposes his identity as the Yiling Patriarch.
Hiding at the Cloud Recesses
Wei Wuxian awakens four days later to discover that Lan Wangji and Lan Xichen had hidden him in Lan Xichen's own quarters, the Hanshi. Although Lan Wangji advocates for Wei Wuxian's trustworthiness to Lan Xichen, Wei Wuxian understands that Lan Xichen is reluctant to trust the Yiling Patriarch over his sworn brother.
On a hunch, Wei Wuxian plays the song he had heard Jin Guangyao play for Nie Mingjue in Empathy. Lan Xichen is concerned to learn that a portion of the music was not Cleansing, the song he had personally taught Jin Guangyao. The three investigate the Room of Forbidden Books to identify the music, and Lan Wangji happens to find missing pages from Collection of Turmoil, adding to the growing evidence that Jin Guangyao had hastened Nie Mingjue's qi deviation.
Distressed, Lan Xichen takes Wei Wuxian to Madam Lan's cabin, and, fearing that Lan Wangji will never tell Wei Wuxian himself, explained the harsh circumstances he and Lan Wangji had been raised in. When Lan Wangji approaches with Emperor's Smile for Wei Wuxian, Lan Xichen even permits the drinking.
Jin Guangyao visits the next day, and Lan Xichen allows Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian to observe their conversation. After Jin Guangyao explains that corpses had begun heading for the Yiling Burial Mounds and suggests a second siege, Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian agrees to investigate the Burial Mounds while Lan Xichen accompanies Jin Guangyao to Golden Carp Tower.
Second Siege of the Burial Mounds
Along their way to the Burial Mounds, Wei Wuxian realizes that the song he had played for Wen Ning at Dafan Mountain is the same song Lan Wangji had sung for him in the cave of the Xuanwu of Slaughter, and the means by which Lan Wangji had recognized him. While hiding in a young couple's barn, the two reunite with Wen Ning, who uses his roar to allow Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji to escape.
Arriving at the Burial Mounds, Wei Wuxian attempts to control one of the Fierce Corpses they encounter. When he cannot, he confirms his suspicions that the Yin Tiger Tally controls the corpses. Together, he, Lan Wangji, and Wen Ning make their way up the mountain to the Demon-Slaughtering Cave, where they discover about a hundred juniors held captive, including Lan Sizhui, Lan Jingyi, Jin Ling, Jin Chan, and Ouyang Zizhen.
After freeing the juniors, Lan Sizhui expresses relief, and Lan Jingyi expresses fear that Jin Ling will attack Wei Wuxian again. Just then, the adults of many clans arrive for the siege, including Jiang Cheng and Lan Qiren.
Although the juniors defend him, Wei Wuxian is confronted for his past by his victims, including Yi Weichun and Fang Mengchen, and by those who proclaim their desire to oppose him for justice – Clan Leader Yao the most prominent among them.
Although Wei Wuxian maintains his innocence in the current situation and argues that Jin Guangyao is the culprit, not many believe him. Their argument, however, is interrupted by the arrival of the first wave of Fierce Corpses. Outnumbered, the cultivators are pressed back against the Demon-Slaughtering Cave, when suddenly all of the adults lose their spiritual powers. The juniors and Nie Huaisang convince the adults to retreat into the cave, and Lan Qiren helps repair an old array written on the floor of the cave.
As Wei Wuxian begins to speculate on the cause of their temporary loss of powers, he is met with angry mockery from Su She, leader of the Moling Su Clan. Lan Wangji quickly places Su She under the Gusu Lan Clan's Silence Spell for his remarks.
Wei Wuxian's suspicions settle on Su She, and after consulting with Lan Sizhui, Lan Jingyi, and a begrudging Lan Qiren, he surmises that Su She had used music to accomplish his task. Ultimately, Lan Wangji tricks Su She into exposing that his sword Nanping still glows with spiritual power.
When he escapes with a Transportation Talisman and thereby reveals himself as the mysterious Gravedigger, Su She disrupts the array. Fierce Corpses begin to enter the cave, with only Wei Wuxian, Lan Wangji, Wen Ning, and the juniors to defend everyone present.
Eventually, the adults join in to use their sharp swords despite their lack of spiritual power, but when another wave of Fierce Corpses approaches, Wei Wuxian elects to draw a Spirit-Attraction Flag on his own body to allow the others to escape, with only Lan Wangji and Wen Ning to protect him.
The juniors refuse to flee, especially Lan Sizhui. Suddenly, bloody corpses emerged from the Blood Pool – the remains of Granny Wen, Uncle Four, and the fifty or so remnants of the Qishan Wen Clan who had been slaughtered in the First Siege of the Burial Mounds.
Recognizing that Wen Ning, Wei Wuxian, and Lan Sizhui are in danger, the corpses annihilate the remaining onslaught of Fierce Corpses. Overcome with emotion, Wei Wuxian manages to thank them and give them a heavy salute. The corpses then fade into red ash that Wen Ning quickly collects.
Return to Lotus Pier
The cultivators decide to rest at the nearby Lotus Pier to recover their spiritual powers. Concerned about their next move given Jin Guangyao's evident guilt, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji decide to accompany them, and to Wei Wuxian's surprise, Jiang Cheng scoffs but does not forbid him.
As they travel by boat, Wei Wuxian becomes alarmed by Jin Ling's sudden outburst at Lan Sizhui's developing friendship with Wen Ning. When Wei Wuxian insists that Jin Ling put down his sword, Jin Ling bursts into tears, leading Wei Wuxian to realize that Suihua is the only thing Jin Ling has left of his father Jin Zixuan. Wei Wuxian soon collapses of exhaustion himself, and though he has not lost consciousness, he is carried into a cabin by Lan Wangji.
Upon arrival at Lotus Pier, the group is met by Sisi and Bicao.After listening to both stories, Wei Wuxian expresses concern that Jin Guangyao is being set up, as his kinder actions seem inexplicable. Although Wei Wuxian indicates belief in Sisi's motives, he also expresses suspicion that Bicao has been paid to speak out, given the expensive bracelet she wears. Lan Wangji supports Wei Wuxian's suspicion, but the two are drowned out by Clan Leader Yao.
As everyone suddenly believes the worst rumors about Jin Guangyao, Wei Wuxian realizes that Jin Guangyao has been given his former position as "enemy of the entire cultivation world." He and Lan Wangji depart the meeting.
Wei Wuxian shows Lan Wangji around his childhood home, and even climbs the same tree he had once fallen from as a child. On instinct, he falls a second time, and this time, Lan Wangji catches him. The two then share an embrace.
Wei Wuxian subsequently takes Lan Wangji to the ancestral hall. They light incense and bow twice to Jiang Fengmian and Yu Ziyuan, and Wei Wuxian even prays for the chance to perform a third bow to Lan Wangji. They are interrupted by the arrival of Jiang Cheng, who angrily reminds Wei Wuxian that his attempt to save Lan Wangji in the cave of the Xuanwu of Slaughter is precisely why he lost his parents.
As Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji attempt to leave, Jiang Cheng accuses them of having romantic intentions towards each other, an accusation that stuns and infuriates Wei Wuxian. He demands that Jiang Cheng apologize to Lan Wangji, and throws a talisman towards him. After a few moments of fight, however, Wei Wuxian realizes how inappropriate it is to fight Jiang Cheng in front of his family's ancestral hall, and begins bleeding from his qiqiao.
Lan Wangji again attempts to leave with Wei Wuxian, but Jiang Cheng tries to continue their fight. Just as Wei Wuxian falls unconscious, Wen Ning emerges to step between Wei Wuxian and Jiang Cheng.
Once he regains consciousness, Wei Wuxian suggests traveling to the nearby Yunping City, recalling the land deed he had seen besides Nie Mingjue's head. While Wen Ning hides due to the crowds, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji discover that the deed belongs to a Guanyin Temple. As they investigate they notice an array to suppress an unknown spirit surrounding the temple.
Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian stay in an inn that night, and Wei Wuxian again convinces Lan Wangji to drink with him in an attempt to learn Lan Wangji's real feelings. Their resulting adventure includes Lan Wangji stealing chickens and picking jujubes, and graffitiing the city walls with their names.
Back at the inn, Wei Wuxian suggests that he bathe Lan Wangji, and, while doing so, touches him suggestively. Lan Wangji responds by kissing him fiercely, before destroying the tub and throwing Wei Wuxian onto the bed. They kiss and use their hands to pleasure each other, and, overcome with satisfaction and peace, Wei Wuxian attempts to confess his feelings.
However, Lan Wangji suddenly shoves Wei Wuxian away and hurriedly dressed. Believing Lan Wangji only acted due to his drunkenness, Wei Wuxian attempts to tell him not to take it to heart, and Lan Wangji repeats those words in horror. The Innkeeper then interrupts to investigate a complaint that water was leaking from their floor, and, horrified at his cruel actions, Wei Wuxian requests separate rooms for the rest of the night.
Incident at the Guanyin Temple
Too ashamed to sleep, Wei Wexian slips out of the inn and finds Wen Ning chiseling out Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian's names from the wall they had graffitied. Wei Wuxian suggests investigating the Guanyin Temple at night, and they quickly realize that, though it appeares dark and silent, there is actually a barrier to mask its true activity.
Climbing the temple wall, Wei Wuxian notices Lanling Jin Clan disciples and monks bustling about, and Lan Xichen standing in the middle. After telling Wen Ning to fetch Lan Wangji, Wei Wuxian sees none other than Fairy below, and Jin Ling attempts to climb the wall. Afraid that the archers will shoot the intruder, Wei Wuxian sacrifices his bamboo flute to keep Jin Ling safe, and tells the boy to run. Unfortunately, both are swiftly captured by Jin Guangyao, though Fairy escapes.
Lan Xichen then explains that his spiritual powers have been sealed, so he can be of no help to them. As Wei Wuxian attempt to inquire as to what Jin Guangyao wants dug out of the temple, Jin Guangyao and Lan Xichen become alarmed at his declaration that he was acting separately from Lan Wangji.
At Wei Wuxian's resulting confusion, Jin Guangyao remarks how hurtful Lan Wangji's unrequited pining must feel. Lan Xichen is initially furious by Wei Wuxian's obliviousness, but quickly realizes that his memory is damaged. Afraid that Lan Wangji will never tell Wei Wuxian, Lan Xichen then reveals how Lan Wangji had saved him after the Bloodbath of Nightless Sky and received thirty-three strikes of the discipline whip for his actions.
Lan Xichen asks Wei Wuxian why he had constantly teased his brother if he did not know that Lan Wangji loved him. Wei Wuxian, in turn, realizes that it was precisely because he did not know that he dared to tease him. In his frenzy, he lets down his guard enough for Jin Guangyao to slip a guqin string around his neck at the moment Lan Wangji arrives.
Jin Guangyao demands that Lan Wangji seal his spiritual powers, and, despite Wei Wuxian's protests, Lan Wangji quickly obeys. Unable to wait any longer, Wei Wuxian then shouts to all present:
"Lan Zhan! Lan Wangji! Hanguang-Jun! Back then, I - I really wanted to sleep with you!" 
Jin Guangyao drops the string in shock, and Wei Wuxian finds himself into the stunned Lan Wangji's arms. Jin Guangyao insists that everyone retreat into the temple due to the impending rain, and Wei Wuxian continues confessing his love to Lan Wangji inside.
Su She then arrives carrying the unconscious Nie Huaisang as another captive, and proceeds to mock Lan Wangji. Lan Xichen and Wei Wuxian intervene to defend him, and Wei Wuxian's remarks even prompted a rare laugh from Lan Wangji.
Suddenly, Jiang Cheng arrives, having been directed by Fairy. While he initially holds the upper hand against Jin Guangyao, the latter uses his suspicions of the Golden Core issue to distract his opponent. Jiang Cheng is ultimately injured protecting Wei Wuxian from Jin Guangyao's sudden attack.
Wei Wuxian realizes with horror that Wen Ning has told Jiang Cheng, and that Lan Wangji must also know. Jiang Cheng, although injured, confronts Wei Wuxian with rage and bitterness before breaking down in tears. In the end, he demands to know how Wei Wuxian could not tell him, although Wei Wuxian thinks to himself that he had kept the secret precisely because he never wanted to see Jiang Cheng react like this.
Jiang Cheng also demands to know if Wei Wuxian remembers his words that they would be the Twin Heroes of Yunmeng, and Wei Wuxian can only respond that he is sorry to have broken his promise.
Suddenly, screams break out from the monks and the Lanling Jin Clan disciples who had been digging in the back of the temple. Su She returns with an injured Jin Guangyao, whose arm has been poisoned. When everyone returns to investigate, Wei Wuxian notes Jin Guangyao's genuine distress at the empty coffin they had unearthed, and suggests that the poison has been a trap. He warns Jin Guangyao that tonight, he is likely the hunted, not the hunter.
As their two captors treats their injuries, Lan Wangji notices the backlash marks of the Hundred Holes Curse on Su She's skin. Infuriated, Wei Wuxian asks what he had ever done to Su She, and Su She replies simply that he had not done anything. The curse originally had nothing to do with Wei Wuxian, even though he bore the blame.
Recalling Jin Zixun's arrogance and Su She's hatred of anyone he deemed arrogant, Wei Wuxian realizes that this is likely true. The cause of his downfall was a coincidence that had not been intended to harm him, a ridiculous fact that Wei wuxian finds difficult to accept.
Jin Guangyao then suggests that Wei Wuxian stop pitying himself, remarking
"Even if Su She didn’t curse Jin Zixun, Master Wei, you’d receive a siege sooner or later, because of some other reason... Because that’s what kind of a person you are. At best, you’re the untamed hero; at worst, you offend people wherever you go. Unless all those whom you’ve offended lived their lives safely, as soon as something happened to them or someone did something to them, the first person they suspect would be you and the first person they seek revenge on would also you. And this is something you have no control over."
In response, Wei Wuxian smiles and replies that Jin Guangyao makes "a lot of sense." Still, Jiang Cheng curses Jin Guangyao as the "son of a prostitute," and Jin Guangyao reminds him of his failure to stand by Wei Wuxian's side. Wei Wuxian points out that the phrase "son of a prostitute" is Jin Guangyao's weak spot, and implies those words are precisely why Jin Guangyao had killed Nie Mingjue.
As Jin Guangyao prepares to reseal Lan Xichen's powers before departing, Wei Wuxian uses his cultivation to remove the seal array in the temple. The burning spirits of men and women emerge; while some shrieks at Jin Guangyao, others quickly begin engaging in sexual relations before everyone.
Lan Xichen regains his powers and takes Jin Guangyao captive. Wei Wuxian, somewhat embarrassed to have released these ghouls, agrees to send them away, but not before using Empathy to understand their grudge against Jin Guangyao.
In empathy with the spirit of a prostitute named Anxin, Wei Wuxian realizes that the temple is built on the same grounds as the brothel in which Jin Guangyao was raised. He witnesses Jin Guangyao's and his mother's abuse at the hands of customers and, with the exception of Sisi, prostitutes like Anxin.
After confessing to burning the brothel, Jin Guangyao tearfully pleads with Lan Xichen to allow his escape. Embarrassed for him, Wei Wuxian asks if they could just fight instead of talking.
Lan Xichen, however, questions Jin Guangyao on many of his alleged misdeeds, receiving explanations in turn, including that his father had asked him to set up Wei Wuxian's downfall. Wei Wuxian, however, is infuriated that Jin Guangyao had sent Jin Zixuan to Qiongqi Path on purpose, although Jin Guangyao maintains he had not expected Wei Wuxian to kill him.
Unfortunately, Jin Ling rushes towards his uncle, and Wei Wuxian is horrified when Jin Guangyao takes his nephew captive in an attempt to escape. However, they are interrupted by the arrival of Nie Mingjue's Fierce Corpse, now with its head intact, and Wen Ning, who had battled him all the way to the Guanyin Temple.
Seeing that Jin Guangyao is shaking with terror, Lan Wangji uses Bichen to severe his hand to keep Jin Ling from being accidentally beheaded. Wei Wuxian quickly checks his nephew over for injuries, and is relieved to find none.
As Lan Xichen and Lan Wangji attempts to suppress Nie Mingjue's corpse, Jin Ling's shout for Jin Guangyao to run causeS Nie Mingjue to mistake Jin Ling for Jin Guangyao. Jiang Cheng thrusts his nephew behind him, and Wei Wuxian throws many talismans, but the attack is only stopped when Wen Ning takes the killing blow instead.
Wei Wuxian gains Nie Mingjue's attention by whistling and leads him towards the empty coffin. Just then, Nie Huaisang cries out that his ankle had been cut by Su She, who is attempting to escape with Jin Guangyao.
Nie Mingjue kills Su She before turning to Jin Guangyao. Jiang Cheng then hurls Chenqing to Wei Wuxian, revealing that he has kept it this entire time. With Lan Wangji's guqin duetting with Chenqing, Wei Wuxian successfully seals Nie Mingjue inside the coffin.
When Lan Xichen attempts to treat Jin Guangyao's many wounds, Wei Wuxian recommends using the Silence Spell to keep him from twisting the truth again. Lan Xichen agrees, but when he turns to ask Nie Huaisang for pain medication, Nie Huaisang suddenly shouts for him to look out. Lan Xichen immediately stabs Jin Guangyao without looking, delivering a mortal wound.
Wei Wuxian discerns that something is amiss. Jin Guangyao also breaks the Silence Spell to insist that he would never hurt Lan Xichen, and accuses Nie Huaisang of tricking him. He wrenches the sword from his chest and approached the coffin, destroying its seal.
When Lan Xichen grabs him, Wei Wuxian shouts in alarm. Although Lan Wangji throws Bichen, Nie Mingjue has already burst from the coffin. Jin Guangyao himself pushes Lan Xichen away with leftover strength, before his neck is broken by Nie Mingjue.
Lan Wangji lifts the Guanyin Statue to seal the coffin, and Wei Wuxian hurriedly paints an array to keep Nie Mingjue inside.
In the aftermath, Wei Wuxian began to question Nie Huaisang. He reasons that, with his low cultivation, Nie Huaisang had likely been unable to find much of his brother's missing body. To expose Jin Guangyao and find his brother's body, Nie Huaisang had then prompted the fearful Mo Xuanyu to sacrifice his body in the Sacrificial Ritual, summoning Wei Wuxian back to the world of the living. Nie Huaisang had then thrown the Demonic Left Arm into Mo Village to attract the Gusu Lan Clan's attention, killed the cats to lure the juniors to Yi City so that their deaths could be pinned on Jin Guangyao, freed Sisi and paid Bicao to approach Lotus Pier with their stories.
However, as he has no proof, Wei Wuxian speaks none of this aloud. Still, reasoning that the coffin likely held the body of Jin Guangyao's mother, he asks Nie Huaisang what he thought the tamperer would have done with it. When Nie Huaisang replies that they likely destroyed whatever was so precious to Jin Guangyao, Wei Wuxian speculates that they had actually cut up the body into pieces, much like Jin Guangyao had done to Nie Mingjue.
The bark of Fairy sends Wei Wuxian into panic, but Lan Wangji holds him tightly. Many cultivators, including Lan Qiren, subsequently enter the temple. As several cultivators note the similarities between the Guanyin statue's face and Jin Guangyao, Clan Leader Yao eagerly asserts that he had intended for people to worship him as a god. Wei Wuxian, however, quietly reflects that the statue is actually the face of Jin Guangyao's mother, not himself.
Taking Little Apple with them, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji slip away from the confusion to elope. After telling Lan Wangji what he had witnessed in Empathy with Anxin, Wei Wuxian suggests that he tell his brother later to comfort him with Jin Guangyao's kindness in sparing Sisi. They are interrupted, however, by Lan Sizhui and Wen Ning.
Wei Wuxian is amazed when Lan Sizhui blurts out his identity as Wen Yuan, and Lan Wangji confesses to having rescued him. The three embrace for a while, before Lan Sizhui departs with Wen Ning to journey to Qishan, find something of his sister's, and build a cenotaph for her and the remnants of their family.
Not long after, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji make love together on the forest floor for the first time. During their lovemaking, Wei Wuxian also realizes that Lan Wangji is the person who had kissed him on Phoenix Mountain.
Three months later, the couple attempt to help villagers who claim to suffer ghosts from a disturbed graveyard. Deducing that the villagers had robbed the graves themselves and were merely experiencing a backlash without any deaths, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji frighten the villagers away.
As they began to kiss, a little girl happens upon them. They then encounter her parents – Luo Qingyang and her husband, who have also come to help the villagers. After introducing each other and exchanging a brief conversation, they depart. Wei Wuxian begins to tease Lan Wangji again, realizing that his husband's money purse is actually the perfume satchel Mianmian had originally given Wei Wuxian in the cave of the Xuanwu of Slaughter.
They stop at a small town in the Guangling region, where they overhear cultivators gossiping vile and untrue rumors about Jin Guangyao. Wei Wuxian reflects again that Jin Guangyao has taken his place as the pariah of the cultivation society.
The Gusu Lan Clan Family Banquet
After their honeymoon, Lan Qiren begrudgingly agrees to tolerate Wei Wuxian's presence in the Cloud Recesses. Wei Wuxian encounters the Round-Faced Girl feeding Lan Wangji's rabbits, and promptly realizes that his husband has taken her in as a guest disciple.
Although Wei Wuxian is permitted to attend the family banquet, he struggles to eat the Gusu Lan Clan's medicinal cuisine. To his surprise, Lan Wangji eats his portions for him, despite invoking Lan Qiren's displeasure.The junior disciples decline to speak with him during the banquet, but meets him later in secret to confess that Lan Qiren had forbidden them from speaking to Wei Wuxian. They also relay that Wen Ning lives nearby, and often assists them on their night-hunts with Jin Ling.
Lan Wangji then surprises Wei Wuxian with Hunan cuisine, knowing he had not eaten at the banquet. Although he allows Wei Wuxian to believe he had purchased the food from a restaurant, Wei Wuxian later discovers that Lan Wangji had prepared it himself.
The two continue to live happily in the Jingshi, participating in adventures such as helping the juniors night-hunt, using the Mo Incense Burner to visit each other's erotic dreams, and winning a turtle statue to display in Lan Wangji's classroom to commemorate killing the Xuanwu of Slaughter together.
Hook Hand Investigation
Upon the Bai Residence's request for help, Jin Ling invites Lan Sizhui, Lan Jingyi, and several other juniors to investigate the White Room with him. To his surprise, Wei Wuxian also comes; it is their first meeting since the Guanyin Temple. During their adventure, Wei Wuxian commends Jin Ling's growing maturity and even referred to him by the familiar "A-Ling."
After examining the body of the thief and the White Room, Wei Wuxian and Jin Ling hear the story of the Hook Hand from a maid in a tea shop. Wei Wuxian tells Jin Ling to re-examine the body, and the juniors discover a face reflected in the eyes of the thief that was not his own, indicating that he had died after witnessing the ghost's memories.
At Wei Wuxian's direction, the juniors then investigate the grounds around the Bai Residence, and Lan Sizhui discovers a rusted, bleeding iron hook. When the juniors' talismans fail to suppress its resentful energy, Lan Jingyi attempts to remove the energy with salt. When even that fails, Lan Sizhui melts the hook in the hearth.
Wei Wuxian insists that someone should stay outside the White Room to ensure that the ghost is truly gone. Jin Ling stays, using a mirror to safely observe any spirit through the paper windows. To his dismay, he too witnesses the Hook Hand's final murder.
Wei Wuxian forced Lan Jingyi to be the front observer the next night, although he and the juniors remain close by. The light inside the room turned scarlet red, reflecting that the ghost had blood in his eyes when he had died. They watch the Hook Hand torture what appears to be a woman. However, when the Hook Hand attempts to remove her tongue, the victim reveals himself as a man and stabs the Hook Hand, who dies of blood loss as he smothers the victim.
The juniors search for five days before finding the tongue of the victim in a grave, which had turned black with resentful energy. They perform an exorcism and burn it, expecting peace to be restored to the Bai Residence.
However, after two nights of peace, the Bai Residence is awoken on the third night by the sound of someone screaming. The ghost screams for several days, to Jin Ling's alarm and frustration.
Wei Wuxian then explains that the ghost had long suppressed his screams to defeat the Hook Hand, and only with his tongue could he finally release all the pain and terror he had kept inside. After a couple of months, the ghost departs the world and leaves the Bai Residence in peace.
Incident at Young Master Qin's Residence
Realizing that the juniors are too dependent on his assistance with night-hunts, Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji took Lan Sizhui alone to night-hunt with them alone. By chance, they encounter Young Master Qin, who is troubled by a Fierce Corpse with a crippled leg who visits his household at night.
Although Young Master Qin entreats their assistance, Wei Wuxian senses that he is lying, and so Wei Wuxian lies in return. Wei Wuxian tells Young Master Qin the hopping fierce corpse cannot breach his threshold, and thus he has no need of swords or talismans. The three cultivators return to rest in the small, elegant Bamboo Cottage nearby.
Young Master Qin returns to Wei Wuxian, Lan Wangji, and Lan Sizhui the next day, after discovering that, despite its crippled leg, the corpse can, in fact, leap into the air and enter his courtyard. He admits that he did know the corpse after all: The crippled fierce corpse was once a servant of his grandmother's, who had even been allowed to attend schooling with Young Master Qin and his classmates. When the servant stubbornly refused to believe he was wrong on a matter, Young Master Qin and his classmates chased him away. The servant had died two years previously, after suffering a fall while drunk.
When the corpse reappears that night, Master Qin again approaches the Gusu Lan Clan cultivators and confesses to having given the servant a jade pendant of his grandmother's, then beating him when he lost it. Discerning that the entire truth is still withheld, Wei Wuxian gives Lan Sizhui a talisman bearing nothing but a random scribble to present to Master Qin.
Wei Wuxian inquires if the beating was responsible for his broken leg, and Young Master Qin amends his story to clarify that he had sent his servants to beat the servant. Thus, he does not know about the leg, and is not responsible.
Wei Wuxian then insists that Lan Sizhui guard the doors that night, as he is the only virgin with considerable yang energy around. When Young Master Qin requests that Lan Wangji guard the door instead, presuming him to be a virgin, Wei Wuxian bursts into laughter. The need for a virgin, however, is another lie Wei Wuxian had made up for Young Master Qin.
That night, Lan Sizhui battles the corpse, leading Lan Wangji and Wei Wuxian to realize that he is mixing the techniques of the Gusu Lan Clan, the Yunmeng Jiang Clan, and the Qishan Wen Clan. When Wei Wuxian asks why the fight is taking so long, Lan Sizhui claims that the corpse keeps evading him, as if it does not want to harm him. Wei Wuxian then kicks open the door and allows it to approach Young Master Qin.
In the corpse's hand was the jade pendant the servant had lost. After tying it around Young Master Qin's neck, the servant's corpse punches Young Master Qin and departs at last.
The animation softens the gruesome nature of Wen Chao and Wang Lingjiao's deaths at Wei Wuxian's hands. In addition, Lan Wangji does not kiss Wei Wuxian during the night-hunt at Phoenix Mountain; instead they battle a mutated Measuring Snake together. Moreover, the bloodbath of Nightless Sky begins when the captured Wen Ning lost control after a mysterious light emerges, rather than Wei Wuxian killing the archer as in the Novel.
After Wei Wuxian's resurrection, his search alongside Lan Wangji for Nie Mingjue's body parts begins not with the Stone Castles, but when they encounter evidence of Xue Yang's experimentations with the Yin Tiger Tally after being alerted by a nearby watchtower. This leads to another confrontation with the suspicious Jiang Cheng before their meeting in Qinghe, and a meeting with Jin Guangyao and Lan Xichen, in which Jin Guangyao advises "Mo Xuanyu" to learn from Lan Wangji.
Web Series Divergence
In the Web Series, the Qishan Wen Clan invents Demonic Cultivation; Wei Wuxian merely becomes exceptionally proficient in it. The Fierce Corpses, likewise, are not truly dead but more of a soulless state called "puppetry."
Wei Wuxian meets Wen Ning and Wen Qing while studying at the Cloud Recesses, rather than an archery competition and as a fugitive, respectively. Wei Wuxian also encounters Xiao Xingchen and Song Lan while both were alive, and expresses interest in the fact that Xiao Xingchen was from the same sect as his mother.
In comparison to the Novel, Wei Wuxian's relationship with Lan Wangji becomes significantly deeper during their youth, from the time both promise Lan Yi that they will work to seal all pieces of Yin Metal. Rather than leave the Cloud Recesses early, Wei Wuxian runs off to accompany Lan Wangji on his journey to investigate the whereabouts of the Yin Metal fragments. Their resulting journey quickly brings them into contact with the Heavenly Maiden, Nie Mingjue, and Xue Yang.
During the Sunshot Campaign's battle at Nightless Sky, Wei Wuxian is strangled by Wen Ruohan following his use of the Yin Tiger Tally. Jin Guangyao kills Wen Ruohan to save Wei Wuxian, instead of Nie Mingjue.
Overall, many of Wei Wuxian's darker actions in the novel are attributed to other characters in the Web Series. At the Bloodbath of Nightless sky, Wei Wuxian fights because he knew the Qishan Wen Clan remnants had already been killed, and, once he attempts to stop the fight, a second flute player commences the bloodbath. Ultimately, Wei Wuxian discovers that Su She and Jin Guangyao are responsible for this, as well as the deaths of Jin Zixuan and Jin Zixun.
Wei Wuxian's death occurs at the Bloodbath of Nightless Sky, rather than in the First Siege of the Burial Mounds. He attempts to throw himself off a cliff, only to be caught by Lan Wangji. When Jiang Cheng approaches and fails to stab his brother, Wei Wuxian seizes the chance to fall.
Smaller changes include that Wei Wuxian's resurrection into Mo Xuanyu's body is sixteen years later, as opposed to thirteen. Additionally, the ritual transforms Mo Xuanyu's features to resemble Wei Wuxian's, prompting him to require a mask.