writing hard, even with the massive amount of free time that being furloughed from work has given me, so all I'm capable of is angsty drabbles :TTTT sorry :D

also sorry for inadvertently making my 100th fic on here titled "Finale" but it's definitely not the end of me posting fanfics, I promise!

In the quiet of the Cloud Recesses, it's easy to get lost in thought, even with a lifetime of practice.

Lan Xichen struggles to clear his mind. He tries to close his eyes and rid himself of any distressing thoughts, only for the final moments of Jin Guangyao's life to play out in an inescapable repeat.

He slips into the cold springs and tries to use the quiet to soothe him and the chill to freeze his distress. Instead, it reminds him of the icy grip of death, inevitable and irreversible.

He tries to paint and stares at a blank canvas for weeks.

He tries to play music and the notes die in his throat, leaving the heavy silence in his room.

He tries to reflect on his mistakes so he can move forward, and the loneliness of isolation reminds him that his future holds nothing but this, because his friends all met with untimely deaths. Lan Xichen isn't sure if he should consider himself lucky for living such a long life in comparison.