Stray Ch213

Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong

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


Chapter 213: The Original Pope

The golden autumn leaves were no better than the thick curtains, and the early morning sunlight spilled down.

Nemo opened his eyes with difficulty. He was lying on the thick fallen leaves, and the gray-black robe had already turned into large rags scattered everywhere.

The woods were quiet and silent, and Nemo didn’t know how long they tossed around for until the early hours of the morning, before they fell groggily asleep. At that time, he was so tired that he didn’t bother to raise his fingers. He threw a cleaning spell and didn’t even have time to mend his clothes.

But there was also a benefit to not mending it.

Oliver’s head was resting on his chest, fast asleep. The weight pressed up by the other party was reassuring, and the dry and warm skin against each other felt good. Nemo gently stroked his lover’s back with his right hand—The remaining scratches on Oliver’s back had long ceased to bleed, and at this moment, it was only slightly red and swollen, with a line of dried tan scabs protruding from the center of the marks.

Nemo didn’t intend to treat them.

At present, Oliver had no way of leaving traces on him, but Nemo was keen on it. Hickeys, bite marks, and minor cuts from his fingernails when he lost control. He hoped that they could cover the ugly scars left by the Withered Castle, so as to dispel the remaining darkness.

Unlike in the past, even in the craziest moments before, Nemo could feel Oliver’s inexplicable restraint and caution. And last night, in the long darkness—because the environment was too absurd, or the despair brought about by the prophecy really pierced his emotions, both of them went a little harder and threw away the last of their reservations.

At first, it was more like they were venting and warming up. It was like tearing a crack in their emotions that was about to explode, letting the toxic pus and blood overflow.

Then anger and despair gradually turned into love and sadness, and finally into mutual demand that abandoned reason.

Bitter and heavy emotions mixed with loving strokes, like unsweetened absinthe; until now, that unique sense of paralysis had not dissipated. Nemo should have had complete control over his body, but he couldn’t even control his breathing last night.

Oliver’s ability to learn was quite amazing. None of the tiny movements that once made him uncomfortable appeared this time.

It seemed that his mimicry was spot on—no physical injury or blood loss; just continuous tingling and pleasure that made his brain scorch blank to the brink of dizziness.

This might be a good way to decompress. Nemo seriously considered it as he slowly rubbed the skin on the back of Oliver’s neck with his palm.

In the brightening dawn, Oliver let out a comfortable grunt and finally woke up. He wiped his eyes, then propped up his upper body, slowly moving up Nemo’s chest with kisses, and then bit his lover’s throat lightly.

“Good morning, Nemo,” he whispered a little vaguely.

“Good morning.” Nemo grabbed the soft hair on the back of Oliver’s head and pecked his lips before deeply kissing him. “Ollie, I was… Sorry last night, but I don’t regret getting angry with you.”

“Me too,” Oliver said, then smiled. “I wish I could keep arguing with you like this.”

Nemo laughed. He let go of the hand holding Ollie’s hair and patted the back of his lover’s head briskly. “Okay, get up.”

“Actually, I thought about it carefully.”

Nemo mended his clothes with the dark shadow and put them on tidily. Oliver dressed neatly and spoke again in a serious tone. “If the prophecy is really describing the Hero, and that happens to be me… The last person to kill you is destined to be me. Maybe that’s not bad.”

Nemo’s movements paused.

“That means I’ll finally catch up to you, lose you, and personally fulfill my promise to you,” Oliver said softly, buttoning the last buckle on the black light armor.

The forest in the morning was filled with a little mist, and the soft sunlight fell on the ominous black armor. The helmet that was transformed by the skull of an earth dragon was dyed golden red by the brilliance of the rising sun. The smile on Oliver’s face came from the bottom of his heart this time—bitter and soft, not stiff at all.

“If one of us is destined to be left alone, it’s not bad if it’s me.”

The air mixed with woody fragrance and moisture from the forest filled his lungs, and Nemo only felt that he was going to drown in this humid morning. It took a long time for him to get his breath back and give the other party a similar smile. “…I won’t leave until then, Ollie.”

After that, he took a step, and then his expression was slightly distorted. Oliver raised his eyebrows.

“Oh, let me add two points,” Nemo said dryly, rubbing his waist. “First of all, your skills have passed—I prefer this way as a stress reliever than quarrelling. Secondly, my back is a little sore, but I don’t mind it.”

Oliver laughed this time, but his face was still a little red.

It’s just that when the two packed up their things and rushed to the horse, neither of them could laugh.

“I’ve actually cared for a long time, Ollie.” Nemo’s gaze was a little dull. “Don’t you think it’s looking at you with a particularly deep look in its eyes?”

“I feel the same way. But this situation should have nothing to do with its eyes… right?” Oliver responded as if he was sleepwalking.

There was naturally no problem with Nemo’s protection arrays and the rein reinforcement. The horse wasn’t killed by any beasts or demons that infested the night. At the moment, the black army horse was leisurely gnawing on the grass leaves by the tree, seemingly in a good mood.

…If they ignored that its body was passing through the trunk of the tree.

It wasn’t stuck in the trunk of the tree. The dark horse even moved a few steps from time to time. The trunk seemed to pass directly through its abdomen, but there were no skin and flesh flaws, no sawdust valgus. The horse’s body and the stout trunk were more like two colored phantoms superimposed on each other, without interfering with each other.

The reins were still firmly tied to the trunk of the tree, creating an odd scene.

Noticing the two approaching, the dark horse raised its head and continued to stare at Oliver very seriously and deeply.

“Can you communicate with it, Nemo?”

Oliver took a step closer and patted the long face of the dark horse. The roughness and warmth of his hands made him sure that this wasn’t an illusion. He gulped a few times at the tree trunk being passed through, then turned to Nemo. “I remember you can communicate with the Bluebirds and Cat Whiskers.”

“The Bluebirds themselves possessed intelligence, and Cat Whiskers could be considered my dependent, but its thinking isn’t very clear anymore.” Nemo hesitantly stepped forward. “This horse… I don’t know if it has its own ideas.”

As he spoke, Nemo also stretched out his hand and tried to touch the horse, but he only touched air. His white slender fingers passed directly through the long thin face, and his fingertips were exposed from the other side of the horse’s face.

“…” Oliver was silent for a few seconds. “I think it has a mind of its own. It doesn’t seem to want to be touched by you.”

Nemo stretched his other hand to the horse’s neck in shock, and it passed through without hindrance. His hands seemed to be immersed in hot air, and it felt strange. Unfortunately, before Nemo could try a few more times, the horse turned around and showed its butt towards Nemo with a vague hint that it was going to kick.

“…I’ll try to communicate with it, but there is no guarantee of success.” Nemo coughed dryly. “After all, it is not my dependent, and I may only get the simplest information.”

Half a minute passed.

“It doesn’t want to talk to me,” Nemo admitted bitterly.

“Hey, what’s wrong with you?” Oliver patted the horse’s hot neck with his hand. “Nemo won’t hurt you, I promise.”

The dark horse snorted.

“…” Oliver put down his hand extremely slowly. His expression was a little stiff.

“What’s the matter?”

“I… Uh, it just seemed to take the initiative to say that it likes me and doesn’t like you.”

“…It’s acting pretty obvious. Wait, Ollie. How did you know? Is it… Wait a minute.”

Nemo picked up the staff, and countless dark red light filaments drilled out of the black bone ball at the top of the staff. The symbols and formulas that Oliver couldn’t understand intertwined. Nemo seemed to be calculating something.

After a few minutes, he opened his mouth thoughtfully, “Creatures born using abyssal magic will give me pure energy almost all the time… Now you know the identity of Jesse, for the same reason, species that uses surface magic will also give power to Jesse. Ollie, I don’t know the previous situation, but the current situation should be like this.”

The mysterious formula written in the air disappeared, replaced by two circles. The larger one showed “Nemo” and the smaller one was “Jesse”. They were surrounded by countless light spots. The light spots were divided into two groups and leaping filaments of light connected the two circles.

“I understand.” Oliver tried to ignore the horror of this topic.

“You know, some creatures don’t have magical talents.” Nemo took a deep breath and explained patiently. “The next thing is my personal guess.”

“One type of life span is really not long. The personality is docile, and the intelligence isn’t outstanding… This is also the case in the abyss. In general, you can understand it as ‘the benefits of giving magic aren’t as good as consumption’. These creatures reproduce and change the community, all of which has nothing to do with us, unless there’s a new species of good talent.”

“Ah, I can still understand up to here.” Oliver pushed away the arched horse’s nose with one hand.

“The other category is nothing special. It’s usually selected and domesticated by other species. With sufficient energy, Jesse and I shouldn’t have to bother with these marginals piecemeals.”

“For example, let’s see. Mr. Fuller successfully domesticated the dangerous magical beast Thunderbolt Goats like the fuller goat?”

“Nn.” Nemo nodded. “In a nutshell, the magic circuit is like some kind of special organ. We have not responded, and those species have never had the opportunity to use it. Then, as they reproduce, the loop will gradually disappear. These two types of species are considered ‘masterless’.”

“But what does that have to do with this horse?”

“Ordinary horses are also masterless,” Nemo said carefully. “It shouldn’t have magical talents, but it’s now using some kind of magic. Ollie… Can you feel anything in it? I mean, except for its eyes?”

“Fluffy.” Oliver pressed his hand on the horse’s head and replied stiffly.

“…Is there anything else? You close your eyes and feel it carefully… Oh god, I understand what Jesse means. This kind of thing is really hard to describe.”

“There’s a flickering spot of light. It’s difficult to describe the feelings clearly. Maybe it’s because I haven’t eaten breakfast yet, but my vision is a little blurry—”

“That’s it! Maintain this state!”

Nemo concentrated and looked at the horse. The extremely weak force was drifting away from the horse, pointing directly at Oliver.

“Ollie, I have good news and bad news. Which one do you want to hear first?”

“The good one.” Oliver still had his eyes closed.

“At your current level of strength, you have one more way to catch up with me. Before the Withered Castle stripped you from my magic system, your power got rid of my instinctive suppression and exceeded a certain standard. Now you have, uh, the ability to collect a ‘magic tax’ like us—you must have inadvertently transformed that horse on the battlefield and turned it into a dependent.”

After a pause for a few seconds, Nemo continued embarrassedly, “As for the bad news. Ollie, if this story unfortunately spreads, everyone will know that your original Pope… is a horse.”

“…………”

Three days later.

Praedo was located on the south side of Garland and was a beautiful small country with spring-like seasons. There was a giant city at the junction of it and Garland, where Hatfield, the holy land of the Laddism Church, was located.

Despite the chaos of the world, Praedo had always been safe and stable. It was small enough, had no military advantages in terrain, and had no special mineral deposits or special products that made people jealous. It had always relied on simple commerce and agriculture to be self-sufficient.

It was such an ordinary country that was neither too poor enough to be turbulent nor rich enough to attract much attention, and at the same time, it lacked ambition. At the first sign of war, it quickly jumped out to declare neutrality, and then locked its borders tightly.

It could be said it was like the epitome of chicken ribs*.

*Metaphor basically describes something of little value or interest.

Considering the position of the Mercenary Guild, there was no better place to set up headquarters than here.

On the ground floor of the headquarters of the Mercenary Guild, Telaranea made itself a cup of coffee and threw sugar cubes into it one after another. As a demon who liked to collect intelligence by nature, this was simply an excellent playground, a grand, luxurious, and never-ending dinner party.

Its body had been working here for decades, and it had had no relatives for a long time. Even if it behaved abnormally, it wouldn’t arouse anyone’s suspicion. This was almost the least troublesome of all the ones in its body.

If one insisted on something it was dissatisfied with, it was probably that this body was too old and had too low of magic power, which was very inconvenient to use. Anyways, it itself took fancy to the knowledge and intelligence of the old man’s mind, so his weakness was also its weakness, which wasn’t a big deal. The body worked and it lived pretty well off here and had countless amounts of intelligence and information at its fingertips.

This was enough to make the Sage of the Abyss happy.

Although the female professor of Clementine Academy had a younger body and a lot of intelligence around her, she still had to deal with a group of annoying students and control a delirious husband. In the end, there was still a lot of unnecessary trouble.

It was a pity that he had just drank two sips of tea today, and was enjoying the feeling of the sweet, creamy liquid flowing through his throat when he almost choked on it…

“It’s been a long time since I saw you, Telaranea.”

Nemo Light greeted him in a menacing tone. Oliver Ramon was standing next to him, with a very standard, but not so warm, polite smile on his face.

“We’re here to make a trade. I’d like to ask for directions—how do I get to the ‘Butcher Shop’?”


The author has something to say:

Ollie got a long-faced believer with deep eyes (……

————

The skill of this horse, in fact, my first reaction is to break the mold (X


Kinky Thoughts:

Now we know the origins of the fuller goat (and why it’s called that)!

For those lost, basically, Oliver has now become a new god, which has its own magic system. Nemo presides over all abyssal magic, Jesse over surface magic, and Oliver over… whatever this new magic is.


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4 thoughts on “Stray Ch213

  1. It’s… Oliver magic!
    I wonder what kind of crazy religious system will be born put of this…
    For Nemo, the Abyssal Church.
    For Jesse, the Ladism Church. (I find it so ironic that Jesse’s religion is Ladism… Really)
    For Lavinia, the bluebirds.
    Now for Ollie… A horse tribe (? Maybe it will be called Horseism/Horseiny

    Liked by 1 person

      • Every time I imagine Adri learning the truth and realizing that he banged his god in a prayer room — while turning a statue of said god around so he couldn’t “see” the action is making me 🤣🤣🤣

        Like

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