Stray Ch105

Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong

Translator: Kinky || https://kinkytranslations.com/


Chapter 105: Sheep and Poetry

This was a genuine provocation.

If one were to say this elsewhere, although it would be annoying, it wasn’t a problem in a strict sense. The current major religions are more lenient. If a religious person were to hear it, they would give a stern glare. Jesse Dylan wouldn’t be burned at the stake, nor would he be hanged by a noose and tarred and feathered.

However, this wasn’t a bustling tavern nor a crowded street at dusk. It was the nave of the main church of the Abyssal Church.

Adrian stood quietly besides Jesse, slightly lowering his upper body, like a leopard waiting to pounce. The demon warlock behind the sermon table was silent for a few seconds; a few tentacles stuck out of his cuffs, pointing straight in the direction of the blond young man. The color of the tips of the translucent tentacles gradually turned black, like the eyes of a snail sticking out.

“Please continue,” the demon warlock said politely, but his tone was much colder than before. “Forgive me for not understanding your point of view.”

As a preacher, this response was truly qualified for the position he held. Adrian, however, didn’t plan to let down his guard. He stared at the swinging tentacles and clenched the metal bow in his hand.

Jesse let out a long “oh”, and the glee in his tone became a bit heavier. “According to what you just said, you seem to be pretty sure that your enemy… Well, humans have turned their backs on your God.”

“You’re right,” the demon warlock responded. The tentacles sticking out of his cuffs move slowly. “I was also a human once, and I was blinded by the various religions. Demons are evil and need to be exorcized. This concept has been deeply rooted in people’s hearts, and the opposite of the Demon King is God—Who regulates all this? Few would seek the truth.”

“After thinking one step further than others, do you think that what you see is the ‘truth’?” The blond young man sneered. Adrian could hear the sarcasm in his voice. “It’s better to say, you hope that it’s the truth—I have read your teachings, the Demon King… Oh, sorry, your God is the image of a victim. It endured betrayals and killings but doesn’t say a word. What a ‘kind’ and ‘great’ sacrifice.”

“Now that you have an understanding, then you should know very well. It was a miraculous life, and surface creatures—especially humans—fed themselves with this miraculous remnant. They consciously isolated demons and excluded those of us who wanted to worship and stand on their side. Evil? We are just following the laws of nature, working to overthrow this unnatural…”

“This is the question I want to talk about,” Jesse interrupted unceremoniously. “Do you think you are important?”

Adrian’s brows slightly furrowed.

Over the years he had been on the battlefield, he had gained confidence in his vision of people. This was also the reason why he didn’t take Jesse Dylan’s love bullshit seriously. This man was full of lies and the smile on his face could hardly reach the bottom of his eyes. The beautiful words in his mouth were like a script, and after stripping them off, they were simply full of banter and indifference. Long gone were the days when he was a teenager. As a warrior who had seen enough blood and fire, it was impossible for him to be confused by that beautiful face.

He was suspicious and vigilant about every word that Jesse Dylan’s mouth uttered.

But now Dylan’s momentum had changed. The casual look on the surface was still there, but Adrian suddenly felt that what Dylan was saying now did have some seriousness behind it.

“Of course, it’s a bit rude to say that. After all, you’re not the only one with this problem. Let me avoid it. In view of the fact that humans have the most religions, human beliefs, human love and dedication, will always be extremely important to the so-called omnipotent ‘Gods’. And mankind’s virtues… Ha, ‘virtues’ always apply to said Gods, don’t they? Even for most humans, they can’t even agree on the standards of virtue of their own ethnic group more than a hundred years ago.”

“And the appearance of God… Well, let me see. Zenni taught by the Laddism Church, is a wise and majestic old man. Unfortunately, Celestine, the God of the Forest, is the image of a female elf. Mansfield, the God of Fire, has a beard that all dwarves envy, while the Dragon God Dimitrius has the most noble golden scales.”

“This just shows their superficiality and arrogance,” the demon warlock said as his tone became icier. The tentacles continued to stretch longer, and their tip was no more than an arm’s length from the blond young man. “Those are all imaginary gods who have never appeared before. Our God exists—”

“Indeed, and it happens to be the appearance that is ‘closest’ to you and ‘most beneficial’ to your cause.” Jesse clapped his hands. “Is there any difference between you and other races from the perspective of believing in ‘being loved by God’?”

“This is pure sophistry. It’s the inevitable result of my God’s protection.”

“If you need all sheep to love and respect you from the bottom of their hearts when shearing wool, and imagine yourself as a sheep, then you can continue to think so. Wool is exchanged for gold coins, and gold coins are exchanged for poetry, but can a sheep really imagine human poetry?” The blond young man showed a perfect smile. “…Even if the sheep disappear from the world one day, it’s still fine to raise other livestock and grow more crops. What do you think? At least that’s what I think.”

Adrian suddenly felt a chill on his back for no reason.

“If that’s your argument, then you’re in the wrong place.” The demon warlock walked out from behind the sermon table and showed a weird smile on his face. “You should go to the ’Gatekeepers’ for a long talk. They’ll welcome you.”

The other party didn’t have the attitude for any more equal talks. The demon warlock decided to take the lead and teach this ignorant madman a small lesson. However, the next moment, he was horrified to find that his human body was completely unable to move, and only the part mixed with demon flesh could still struggle.

Without hesitation, he directly activated the alarm array on the sermon table. At the same time, the outstretched eyes on his tentacles stared straight at the dangerous uninvited guest and saw the other party’s blue eyes turn golden.

As soon as the word “charm” crossed his mind, his thoughts turned blank.

When a Knight of Silence guard arrived, there was already a peaceful scene in the nave. The preacher was still preaching calmly, and a beautiful blond young man was sitting on a bench, listening very seriously.

“An unexpected magic diffraction.” The demon warlock behind the sermon table turned his head. “It’s just a false alarm. Don’t mind.”

“What’s the origin of magic? We have reason to think…” After that, he continued his preaching.

When the alarm sounded, Hagen Ingram was making final preparations in her room.

The alarm lasted for a very short time, and she carefully explored it at that time but didn’t find any hostile magic fluctuations. The Knights of Silence could handle it, she thought as she dragged out a huge python suitcase from the dark cabinet with great care. The suitcase that was carefully taken out was then levitated by a spell and landed firmly in the magic array.

A series of small magic arrays instantly floated above the suitcase, and as Hagen’s fingers crossed, they burst like bubbles one by one. It seemed whatever was inside had noticed the disappearance of the shackles and it started to struggle frantically. It impatiently opened the lid of the suitcase and gushed out the window.

“Go,” she said softly, cocking the corners of her mouth slightly. “Help me record everything, my lovely children.”

When the first surveillance bug flew out the window, Nemo was rushing to the nave of the Church of Silence. After the short alarm sounded, he subconsciously moved his attention to the nave and then found a new visitor at the Abyssal Church.

It wasn’t Oliver. He was depressed for a few seconds, but decided he had to count on Jesse Dylan for the time being. No, it wasn’t just Jesse—Adrian Cross’ aura was also there in the same place as him. He should be concealed under some kind of illusionary spell. Nemo glanced at the biscuit tin in his arms and decided to find a chance to practice his illusionary skills from the Abyssal faction.

He was startled when he saw a swarm of surveillance bugs flying over from outside a window.

They looked very similar to the surveillance insects he saw during the Black Chapter’s test, though they looked a bit different. The surveillance insects of the Mercenary Guild had a fat abdomen covered with stripes, but these insects had that replaced with an eyeball. After retracting his gaze, Nemo immediately hastened his steps. From what he read; the rituals of the Abyssal church didn’t include this step.

Fortunately, meeting his teammates went smoothly.

The sun was about to set, and there were a few more wandering demon worshippers in the nave, which allowed him to mix in easily. Nemo sat down not far from Jesse, and Jesse recognized him instantly by his iconic ponytail.

“Darling… Sorry, Mr. Light.” Seeing Nemo cracking his fingers, Jesse wisely changed his tone. “Are you alright? Did you find anything?”

“Aurorae is coming early,” Nemo whispered, even discreetly adding a confounding effect. “They want to advance the sacrificial time.”

“…Do you remember what your goal is?”

“Mr. Virgil and I have to get things done as soon as possible.” Nemo hesitated for a while, not thinking this was the right time to discuss the truth about this church. “If I’m not mistaken, you came here because…”

“Because Duran Virgil’s details are unknown, and my sweetheart Adri knew enough about this god damn place.” Jesse spread his hands and glanced at the biscuit tin Nemo was holding. “The captain decided that we should keep up as support in case something goes wrong on your end. In a sense, I’m merely a bonus, so don’t mind me.”

“Just in time.” Nemo cut to the chase. “As usual, they got a group of civilians as sacrifices. If you can… I want to help them escape.”

“Now? It’s not impossible, but I have to say—”

“Not now,” Nemo sighed. “I have to act with Virgil, so I need someone to help me pay attention to the movements over here. Once they decide to use the sacrifice, you can notify me in time. Uh, find a way to delay if necessary. If it’s Mr. Cross—” he had no intention of hiding it and looked directly at the position where the knight was standing, “There should be a way.”

“Your tone is becoming more like that of the captain of the team.” Jesse raised an eyebrow. “…But the captain will at least explain to us the entire picture of the plan.”

Nemo was silent.

“I’ll tell you,” he said succinctly, “but not now.”

“You can’t do this! I don’t like being stringed along.” Jesse showed an expression full of grievance, while Adrian remained suspiciously silent. “Well, if you’re willing to give a tiny piece of debris to the captain—”

“Aren’t you a diviner?” Nemo glanced at the blond young man. “Guess it yourself.”

“You’re so cold,” Jesse muttered.

“I have more important questions to ask than this.” Nemo raised his eyes and looked at the statue of Ulysses again. He suppressed the convulsions in his stomach, forcibly ignored the constriction in his throat, and asked his questions as calmly as possible.

“Considering your abilities, Dylan, did you know my identity earlier on? If you have a definite answer, I want to know,” he asked bluntly. “And if you really know, then who are you… and why do you insist on joining us?”


The author has something to say:

It’s not a very traditional Western fantasy worldview. _(:D”∠)_

So magic has nothing to do with faith, and laws don’t exist out of nowhere (?

————————

Nemo: If you don’t understand, just ask. That’s the job of a librarian.

Jesse: ? (Hold on to the melon in his hand)


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