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Art: @liyue_so_good on Twitter

Xiao came over the next day. And Xiwangmu had her flute in hand.

His eyes slightly widened. The flute she held was the exact same one the green bard had, when he played.

"...that flute..."

"I taught one of my long friend from Mondstadt some old Liyue music, and even let him borrow my flute. You might have encountered him before."

"Who's you're friend?" Xiao sauntered over to her.

"Barbatos. But he goes by Venti to the mortals. You get it?"

"Barbatos, Venti.. so that's his name..."

"I was right! You have met him before I presume."

"Yes, I have. The green capped bard."

"Sounds like him."

"Do I also, uh.."

"Also what?"

Xiao thinks he shouldn't get so attached, once he thinks about it. Because once he's attached, he won't be able to stop be UNattached. And doesn't want the karmic debt to hurt anyone, and corrupt them in the process. But despite thinking it over, it was futile. Useless. Her smile, her song like voice. And overall her kindness and openness in a way, makes it so hard to step away. Besides, he wants to know more about her.

On that note, in a way Xiwangmu seems easy to read. But the more closer you get with her, those thoughts are immediately out of the bag. It's all a facade, is what one would say.

"Xiao?" She called for him. Ripping him from his thoughts, as he moved his head back up to see her staring at him with both confusion and curiosity.

"Almond tofu." Xiao's voice was small. And lower than intended. He had a small embarrassed pout.

"Of course! That's what you want?" She stood up from the rock she sat on previously. "I'll go make some for you right away." Xiwangmu hummed. Then trailed back to Xiao.

"Also, feel free to play the flute while I'm gone."

Xiao was left near the pond. On a rock. With a flute. The more he looked around her mountain, the more he became engaged by the place.

There were gold talismans with ropes, around some places. Presumably to ward off demons. And by 'heavenly presence' she mentioned of, she might have meant the gold talismans. And these made a borderline, like barrier.

He looked at her flute. And held it in his palm, staring at its wooden figure. The carvings seemed intricate. And made well. He didn't know a lot of songs. But he can play the flute. Just not as well as the professionals who've played for a while longer lasting than he has. Xiao placed his fingers lining them up with the holes. And played. This time, he seemed to know what he was doing. Mind empty, and just played a tune. Perfect for a great Mountain view on the west side of Liyue. The music would crescendo, then decrescendo. And some notes would be held, as it wavered.

He looked around a bit more, and walked further into the forest of trees. There was one tree that stood out the most among the others. A tree with red leaves.

'Why is there only one red tree?' Xiao walked over to it.

"Xiao!" Xiwangmu called out. And walked over into the trees, and found him. "Did you play my flute?"

Xiao didn't know why, but he lied, and shook his head no. Maybe he felt embarrassment.

"Oh. Are you more interested in the tree?" She inquired, while putting the dish, and the utensil in his hands.

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