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'Lady Ningguang excelled herself with such elaborate ornamentation.'

 

'Surely a job only Liyue's adept designers are able to accomplish.'

 

'This auction plays a crucial role among the upper class in Teyvat.'

 

Those were parts of conversation that drew Ningguang's interest as she moved through the crowd filled with aristocrats, the wealthiest people in all of Teyvat. Nobles from Fontaine, Sumeru and other nations of Teyvat were all gathered in the jade chamber to partake in the grand auction. 

 

The treasure every single one of them desired to obtain. An archaic yangcai ruby-ground enameled vase portraying a phoenix. Beidou actually discovered this relic on a deserted island during one of her travels and Ningguang instantly knew that this was her bread and butter. Beidou requested that a portion of the earnings go to orphanages and to low class regions in Liyue. Ningguang gladly accepted and announced Beidou as the co-host of the auction.

 

There was only a small inconvenience. Beidou was nowhere in sight and the auction would have to start soon. Archons, this woman. Ningguang had mentioned several times how this auction was one of the biggest events in Liyue in many years and everything would have to be perfect, but there she was. Before Ningguang could have a fit, a waitress jumped in front of her to offer her a drink. Ningguang whispered a small thank you and made her way to the balcony hoping that the cool breeze would ease her mind.

 

"I see that your little Captain is running late in her own auction", Yelan smirked at the sight of an irate Ningguang. 

 

"This is no such time for foolish words, Yelan. You acknowledge the importance of the auction.", Ningguang crossed her arms and leaned on the railing, stirring the liquor in her hand. 

 

Yelan huffed "Maybe she was caught up in one of her pirate duties"

 

Ningguang side eyed her as she took a long sip of her drink. If Beidou didn't make an appearance in the next ten minutes, Ningguang would go herself to the Alcor and drag the captain to the jade chamber. How could she be so irresponsible? Ningguang's mind flooded with possible causes. What if something had happened to her? Beidou wouldn't stand her up. She would at least send a letter that something urgent had occurred and she wouldn't be able to participate. What in the world had this woman got herself into?

 

Ningguang was now overthinking. Splendid. Before panic could get the better hold of her, she chugged the whole glass of wine and let the liquor burn the insides of her throat. 

 

"I assume you are aware that gulping down wine won't make any difference"

 

"I appreciate your concern but it's necessary to cope with this…unfortunate situation i'm in.", Ningguang summoned her pipe and blew a long puff of smoke into the dark night sky. Yelan sighed and motioned to Ningguang to let her take a drag of her pipe. 

 

Ningguang allowed Yelan to take a puff and turning her head to look at the sky, she exhaled the thin puff of smoke.

 

"I hope the auction runs smoothly", Yelan nearly whispered. 

 

"Me too"

 

The sound of heels clicking on the concrete floor drew Ningguang's attention. Those familiar legs came soon in sight and Ningguang made her best efforts to look indifferent and intimidating at the sight in front of her.

 

"You're late", Ningguang spoke, her tone flat with a tint of irritation. 

 

"I apologize for my late arrival but what's the point of hosting the most important auction in years and not making a spectacular entrance?", Beidou chuckled. 

 

Ningguang observed Beidou, her scrutinizing gaze never leaving Beidou's toned body. Ningguang had never been this grateful before in her life for her decision to request this dress be made for Beidou. Oh how it emphasized her sculpted body, the perfect curves, her biceps and the small cuts that exposed her thighs, how they flexed with each small move Beidou made. 

 

She sighed. The auction would have to start soon. She shouldn't let herself get distracted. If this auction closed successfully, the benefits for both her and Liyue would be inconceivable. Before she could step fully into her jade palace she turned her head and gave a quick glance at Yelan and diverted her gaze back to Beidou, putting on a small smirk in the process. 

 

"Time is money, we better not keep our guests in anticipation any longer", Ningguang spoke and turned on her heel and walked inside. Yelan nodded at Beidou and soon the two other women followed Ningguang. The room was filled with nobles muttering to each other, holding onto their breath, anticipating the beginning of the auction. A few of them were gathered around the guarded treasure, Ningguang could guess to inspect the quality. 

 

She took her place beside the counter and clapped her hands to get everyone's attention. Beidou was leaning against a wall and observed the people nearby. No matter the safety measures, Beidou still could place her full trust in those people, archon knows what ulterior motives one may have. These were people whose souls were filled with greediness, self-centered bastards that life happened to be kind to them and granted them an easy beginning. They did not give a shit about the starving children, the citizens that never had something to call home or people who lacked the bare minimum human right. Freedom

 

Yelan remained silent behind Ningguang as she spoke. All eyes were drawn on Tianquan announcing the beginning of the grand auction. Ningguang had suggested to Yelan to stay close to her during the auction just to ensure the safety of the vase. Although Ningguang didn't elaborate much on her reasoning, Yelan understood that neither Ningguang nor she trusted fully those people. 

 

"Everyone, it is truly an honor to be the host of one of the most special auctions in the history of Liyue. It is true that many unfortunate events have happened the past few months, putting Liyue in a challenging position many times. However, we shouldn't allow sorrow to dominate our hearts. Let this auction mark the start of a new era where humankind shall be dependent from adepti. Thank you all for coming here today, I sincerely hope for this auction to proceed smoothly. ", and with that Ningguang smiled and observed the crowd as they clapped softly. Her gaze drifted to Beidou who was smiling as well and nodded reassuringly. 

 

Ningguang sighed mentally from relief. Was Beidou's approval she needed to calm down? Did she have the desire and need to look at Beidou's beautiful form to gain confidence? Either way it worked and Ningguang did not like how desperately she wanted to pull Beidou into her and slide that god forsaken dress off and expose her perfect sinewy body. 

 

"Let's start at 50.000 mora", she announced. 

 

"80.000!"

 

100.000!"

 

"I offer 180.000 mora!"

 


 

 

Beidou found Ningguang on the lower floor, within the absence of any crowd, leaning against her desk, away from the nobles' prying eyes. Other than having a moment for herself to escape the sultry atmosphere, Ningguang hoped for a chance alone with Beidou. 

 

"They'll soon start looking for you", Beidou said. 

 

Ningguang sighed conjuring her pipe. "I'm aware, unfortunately, so let's make good use of our remaining time alone", a smirk

 

One step, two steps, another one . Beidou stood inches away from Ningguang. Her hand stroked Ningguang's loose locks. 

 

"I'm actually jealous of the people who had the luxury of seeing you so beautifully dressed", Beidou murmured in her ear. Her other hand went down on her waist to pull her closer.

 

"If i'm not mistaken, they were not the only ones that never left their gaze off of me", a teasing smile from Ningguang. 

 

Beidous moved her hands so both could wrap around Ningguang’s waist, pressing their bodies together in a tight hug, while Beidou rested her chin on Ningguang's shoulder. 

 

"Ah i'm just glad that none of those fuckers attempted to harm you. You did so well in the auction, my Tianquan. Only you have the ability to sell even the smallest of valuables for 2 million mora.

 

Ningguang kissed Beidou's neck to hide her small blush and let her hand stroke Beidou's back. She could feel her muscles through the black thin fabric. 

 

"If i'm also not mistaken you haven't lifted your eyes off of me from the moment I entered the chamber.", Beidou chuckled and proceeded to kiss softly the skin under Ningguang's ear. Leaving a trail of tender kisses along Ningguang's collarbone, she lowers Ningguang's dress to gain access to her breasts. 

 

Beidou nibbled into Ningguang's nipple, causing her to gasp softly. Ningguang could only focus on Beidou’s flexed thigh between her legs and the small moments of bliss she enjoyed. Beidou took her chin in her hand to press their lips together in a hot kiss. Ningguang couldn’t help but moan at how lovely Beidou’s thigh felt, her wetness spread on her even through Ningguang’s black panties. 

 

Beidou pulled her leg from Ningguang's slit and fixed Ningguang's dress. They had to stop before it was too late, Ningguang understood despite her whining at Beidou's abrupt attitude shift.

 

"We have to go back before your friends begin to worry about your absence." Beidou took Ningguang's hand and kissed it gently. 

 

"I know", she sighed. 

 

Beidou was the first to go upstairs to minimize the raise of suspicion. Soon after Ningguang followed after her and she couldn't help but smile proudly while thinking about the red lipstick mark on Beidou's neck that the other woman was very much not aware of.