Stray Ch148

Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong

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


Chapter 148: Heresy

To tell the truth, Adrian Cross wasn’t familiar with Clementine Cathedral.

Clementine Cathedral could be regarded as the most magnificent church in Alban. The Alban Royal Family had always respected the Laddism Church, especially the old school of Laddism. The exclusivity of the old school was extremely strong—putting it another way, like mosquito legs, small religions could survive in the corners of this country, but in slightly larger towns, other somewhat well-known religions had long been cleaned up.

The strictness of Alban law on demon-related matters had nothing to do with the prevalence of the old school of Laddism.

Adrian himself could be regarded as the more tolerant Wodenism Sect of the Laddism Church. It was just that, as a former Knight of Judgement, he wasn’t interested in the entangled interests between the two factions. In addition to going out to perform tasks, he usually goes back to Garland’s Church of Penitence for penance. In his memory, he had only been to the Clementine Cathedral once—it was when he met the Pope.

The Pope himself spent most of his time in Hatfield, the holy land of the Laddism Church, and occasionally went to Garland Church of Penitence or Alban’s Clementine Cathedral. It seemed that this time he bumped into the Pope again.

It was just that the last time he was to report on the task, while now he had become the subject of the report.

Adrian retracted his gaze from the spire of the church and dropped it to the ground.

Along the way, the Preceptor Bishop didn’t treat them badly. Except for a little indifference and a slight ugly face, there was no shortage of etiquette. And that attitude problem… In fact, he could understand, Adrian thought as he frowned, because someone didn’t have the modesty that a normal person should have in public.

For example, now.

Jesse Dylan was like a piece of thick syrup that had just been boiled out of a pot. His whole body was glued to the knight’s body as if he had no bones. Even now, waiting at the entrance of the church, his arm was around Adrian’s neck.

At first Adrian would frown and push it away, but then he simply didn’t bother to care about it. He stood upright, not squinting, as he let the vine named Jesse entangle him.

But even if Adrian Cross had already retired from his position as Knight Commander of the Knights of Judgement, as the “Shining Morning Star” whom the Pope once bestowed the title upon, his influence had not completely disappeared. The Knights of Judgement who stood around looked in other directions, as their faces were trying to suppress anger, disgust, and unhappiness.

Jesse didn’t care.

In front of him was a solemn church, and on both sides were Knights of Judgement holding murder weapons in shining armor. The beautiful young man, whose identity was a mystery, exuded the aura of a tourist. His fingers stuck into the collar of the former knight commander irregularly. If a person’s eyes were considered some kind of attack, he would definitely be pierced into a sieve by countless gazes at this moment.

Adrian sighed, held the dishonest hand firmly and threw it off his neck. “The communication crystal is on Mr. Dylan.”

“…You still call me Mr. Dylan!” Jesse shouted with dissatisfaction as his mouth curled while he pulled out the crystal. “Even if you don’t call me baby, you can at least call me by my name.”

Adrian planned to ignore him.

Fortunately, Jesse seemed accustomed to this mode of getting along, as there was no discouragement on his face. He expertly fished out the crystal from his pocket and cast a mute spell.

The Knights of Judgement once tried to break the array and end this blatant provocation, but the number of failures was exactly equal to the number of attempts. Originally, seeing that excessively beautiful face coupled with his poor popularity, they thought that Jesse Dylan had used some kind of powerful prop to show off that power. From the beginning, the Preceptor Bishop took away the staff that exuded the aura of the Abyss and sealed it carefully. The knights thought the rest of the work wouldn’t be too troublesome.

Facts had proven that reality was much crueler than fantasy.

They couldn’t break the mute array that hadn’t even been recited yet. This couldn’t help but make the knights wonder what the point was of guarding those two. If Mr. Dylan wanted to leave, let alone bring Adrian Cross, even if he wanted to remove the church’s spire and take it away, they weren’t sure they could stop him.

So the Knights of Judgement could only look at the two people in the open space. The blond young man leaned softly on their former leader, not even leaving them a chance to read their lips.

“The Clementine Royal Military Academy.” Adrian wasn’t under the influence of the mute array. He could hear clearly—Jesse’s voice seemed to be holding back a smile. “This is such an ingenious idea I’ve ever seen, truly! Oh my goodness, I can’t wait…”

“We need perfect background information.” Ann’s voice came from the crystal, interrupting Dylan’s musings. “Perfect information, Mr. Dylan. Looking at Cross’ attitude, he probably couldn’t find out any key clues. If even the former commander of the Knight of Judgement couldn’t find such a thing, you should be quite good at this aspect.”

“We are about to meet the Pope, dear Ms. Savage! Can’t you care about me a little bit? Why do I feel like I’m being used as a tool?”

“Ah, I’m so worried,” Ann said dryly. “…Hey, Dylan, Nemo says hello to you. He said you must have a way. Speaking of which, when did you two become so familiar with each other?”

“Don’t ask about this kind of thing. You see, I’m pursuing Adri wholeheartedly now.” Jesse glanced at the confused Knights of Judgement around him, as if he was a little eager to remove the mute array. “This kind of question sounds so ambiguous—”

“Oliver also said hello too. He smiled and asked you to please talk business,” Ann said. “By the way, I also agree. Let’s get down to business, Dylan.”

“The identity verification of Clementine Academy… I do know that it could be forged, but like I said, we’re going to meet the Pope of the Laddism Church.” Jesse made a point of sounding deeply aggrieved. “I repeat, the Pope. My darling Adri and I are not going to see rabbits on the lawn. Do you think I can leave anytime I want?”

“…I can help you. What do I need to do.?”

“Easier said than done.” Jesse grimaced at the Knight of Judgement who was staring at him closely. “I can help those two get two letters of introduction signed by a bishop. As for the origin information… You should be able to do this yourself.”

“Well,” Ann said, “just a letter of introduction?”

“Letter paper, ink, handwriting, signature, and seal are indispensable. All details must be matched—this is not just a letter of introduction,” Jesse shouted. “Do you know how difficult it is to make a fake one? How expensive? And it may not even be possible!”

“Yes, please. I can handle the other information related to origin.”

“Although I’m a little dissatisfied with the way you requested, I really like this idea.” The smile in Jesse’s voice came back. “So I’ll get this done within two days and keep in touch.”

After that, he terminated the communication and raised his shining blue eyes.

“My dear Adri,” Jesse showed a heartfelt smile, “I really can’t wait to return to the team—”

“We need to meet the Pope.”

“I know, I know. Trust me. I have a way.”

“…You’d better not go too far—”

“What do you mean?” Jesse smiled even more. “I’m just going to take you away from here.”

After all, he did it once. Jesse hooked Adrian’s neck again, lifted the mute array, and then rubbed the side of Adrian’s neck among the gathered gazes.

…Then of course, he could do it a second time.

In the territory of Alban, on a dirt road in the countryside.

“Dylan said he needed two days.” Ann, who was wrapped in a genderless cloak so one couldn’t tell if she was a man or woman, shook the whip, causing the thin horse pulling the carriage to snort. “Looks like we can make it.”

There was a great deal of excitement in the crude wagon. The fuller goat occupied most of the space, while Oliver and Nemo struggled to squeeze aside. The gray parrot finally woke up from its coma. It lay on its back on the thick wool near the goat’s neck and said nothing.

The rest of the space was almost full of books. Oliver’s armor and helmet were wrapped up in coarse cloth and stuffed in the corner of the carriage. The two of them changed into simple civilian outfits. Nemo even had the illusion—they seemed to have returned to the time when they first met Ann.

At the moment, Oliver was opening a book, pressing against the goat, struggling to read it through the bumps of the carriage. Nemo saw his lover’s face turning from white to blue, looking as if he was about to vomit.

“We have to find a… Er, safer place to read.” Holding down his churning stomach, Oliver bravely opened his mouth.

“Not a problem, but you don’t have much time,” Ann said mercilessly. “I need a few days to prepare our fake identities. Apart from this, there’s only time to rest at night. After all, we can’t go through the official teleportation array now. We can only rely on this broken cart—if this horse doesn’t have a sudden emergency, we’ll barely be able to catch up before the enrollment procedures.”

There was a big crack in the canopy of the carriage, which was hastily stitched by thick thread, but the outside could still be seen. Nemo poked a little hole with his finger and looked at the deserted wilderness outside.

He breathed a sigh of relief, his shoulders collapsed slightly, and he was almost immediately buried by the pile of books that had fallen on one side. Oliver subconsciously propped up the pile of books and protected the back of Nemo’s neck with his other hand. Only then did he realize the identity of the person in his arms.

The atmosphere got a bit awkward.

Their captain even forgot about his motion sickness and forcibly changed the subject. “Are these books really enough?”

“How much more do you want? This is enough, assuming you can memorize them all.” Ann stopped and went back. “Your friend is very quick to do things—Gray Fox basically gave all the information he could find outside. If we do this by ourselves, it’s estimated that we’ll expose more risk to our operational objectives.”

Then she was silent for a moment.

“I respect your secrets,” she sighed, “but I have to ask, Oliver, what happened to that gray mist?”

‘Here it comes,’ Nemo thought. In passing, he rescued an old book from the mouth of the goat.

It wasn’t actually a big deal.

Not so long ago, after breaking through the spatial rift, he found a big problem…

No matter how imaginative he was, the fuller goat didn’t look like a hidden powerhouse. There was absolutely no way for it to pass through the spatial rift, but they couldn’t delay their time on the road for this goat. The three people stood in silence around the fuller goat, and a trembling rift appeared not far away. The scene was indescribably weird.

“I can try.” Oliver glanced at the rift. “I always feel…”

He didn’t say much but grabbed a dandelion and threw it in the rift. The fresh leaves looked like they were about to pass through, but then split into several pieces at the moment of passing, becoming withered.

The fuller goat became so frightened that it stopped chewing.

Oliver thought for a few minutes, then plucked another dandelion. This time, he carefully wrapped it in gray mist and threw it in the direction of the rift again. When the dandelion fell to the other side and after the gray mist dissipated, it still looked green and vibrant.

“No problem.” Oliver rubbed his hands together. “I have the confidence to protect it.”

His lover succeeded, and Tumbleweed didn’t lose a precious member, the fuller goat. At that time, Ann looked like she was going to be choked to death by the problem, but they had too many things to do, and the experienced female warrior wouldn’t delay the planning process because of her doubts.

Ann looked at the present—the carriage was bought, and the books were in place. Oliver was still dizzy in the back, and they had wasted a lot of time.

“Let me explain.” Nemo cleared his throat. “The Withered Castle stripped Oliver from the surface magic system.”

“…Are you speaking the lingua franca?” Ann asked stiffly.

“Simply put, uh, Oliver’s power does not belong to surface magic anymore,” Nemo explained bluntly. “Actually, I don’t know what attributes his power has, but it should be harmless.”

“…This is not a question of ‘if it’s harmless’, Nemo. You mean, his power is now neither abyssal nor surface-traits? You…”  She swallowed with difficulty. “Do you know what you’re talking about? How on earth do you know this? Don’t tell me the Gatekeeper gave you a good lesson.”

He felt it. As the source of abyssal magic, his judgement couldn’t be wrong, but if this sentence was said, he would sound like a lunatic. Nemo shrank his neck, intending to rack his brain to try and tell a lie…

“Telaranea was there. Nemo told me.” Oliver took the words out of his mouth. “He asked for the contents of the Gatekeeper’s research from Telaranea.”

Ann pulled the reins and stopped the carriage. She jumped inside and began to throw books out. Before long, more than half the books in the carriage were missing.

“Congratulations,” the female warrior said with a sullen face while patting her dusty hands. “You have two choices left.”

Oliver and Nemo glanced at each other anxiously.

“Originally, I thought Oliver could be a soldier and take the opportunity to learn some command skills and tactics. Now he’s stripped out of the surface magic system, ha.” She smiled briefly. “If Clementine’s professors could find out, then Horizon would too. Listen, captain, don’t use this power in Clementine—and never in front of Lopez.”

“But…”

“This is a completely unknown force, isn’t it? If you’re not capable, this situation is abnormal at best. At the very least, you’ll be studied and observed for a lifetime. But you’re very strong. To be honest, stronger than any human I’ve ever seen.”

The female warrior sighed. “You may become the most dangerous heresy in human history.”

The two were speechless. Oliver glanced at Nemo, then at his hand, and then even smiled.

“You said two choices.” Feeling uncomfortable, Nemo tried to change the subject. “I’m definitely not able to use my power, and if Ollie can’t use it either…”

“Yes, in the case of Alban Academy, only two majors will recruit students with extremely low magical abilities. Logistics and nursing.” Ann’s expression became distorted. “Choose.”

“Which side needs more knowledge to prepare?” Having no idea about the two majors, Nemo could only start from the most practical point of view.

“Nursing.”

“Then Ollie will go for logistics.” Nemo’s face was expressionless. “I don’t need much time to memorize.”

But Oliver didn’t seem to be paying attention to what they were talking about. When he raised his head again, Oliver straightened up and brought the conversation back.

“I still have no way to completely control this power,” he said sincerely, “but I’ll practice carefully… Thank you, Ann.”

The female warrior nodded with a livid face. She even looked dazed, and she didn’t want to talk anymore. She crawled back to the front of the carriage without turning her head, and the carriage began to move forward again.

The familiar sense of bumping reappeared. Oliver lowered his head slightly and muttered very quietly in Nemo’s ear.

“Look, you don’t have to be too anxious,” Oliver’s tone was very calm as he reached out and wrapped his arms around the back of Nemo’s neck. “Now I’m also a monster.”

“I’ll always be with you.”


The author has something to say:

Everyone really thought about a lot of cool majors for Nemo hhhhhhh

Probably the strongest logistics and nursing graduates in history√


Kinky Thoughts:

The fuller goat is an honorary member of Tumbleweed! Can’t leave it behind!

Nurse Nemo!!!


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