Stray Ch80

Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong

Translator: Kinky ||

Chapter 80: The Two Lights

When leaving the witch’s residence, Nemo couldn’t help but look back.

The courtyard full of flowers was as peaceful and lovely as it was at first, but at this moment it felt a bit lonelier. The orange cat that they first saw was nowhere to be found. The witch should still be sitting in front of her workbench. After she planted the last of the Earthsea Orchids, her entire body seemed to meld with the workbench. Bottles after bottles of medicine were prepared, labeled, and put together with a small wooden sign with a name on it.

Except for the sound of glassware bumping and the thin sound of clothing rubbing, it was too quiet.

Nadine stuffed the bottles belonging to Nemo into Oliver’s hand, gave a few instructions, and then waved casually. She then gave them an ordinary farewell, as if they would meet again.

After withdrawing his attention from the courtyard, Nemo looked at Oliver’s face. It was the first time he saw Oliver Ramon show this expression. Oliver had never really been discouraged. Even if he was confused, even if he couldn’t see what was ahead, he usually forced himself to march forward. But now…

“Nemo.” Oliver noticed his gaze. He seemed to want to withdraw the heavy expression on his face, but failed. “I… Sorry, I’m a bit confused now.”

“I may not be able to empathize,” Nemo subconsciously stretched out his hand and rubbed the other’s short light brown hair. After realizing that this method of comfort might not be appropriate, he shrank his hand back embarrassedly. “After all, I’m not from the Lopez family, but I… can imagine it.”

They could kill wolfhounds, repel worms and demons, and even stop a small-scale war. They may have power far above an ordinary person, but they couldn’t change stupid and stubborn thoughts. This was enough to make him feel frustrated. From Oliver’s point of view, the executor of this foolishness was very likely to be his own blood relative.

“Let’s meet everyone first.” Nemo tried to dispel this powerless atmosphere by changing topics.

Unfortunately, as soon as the words were spoken, his tension returned instantly. After discovering his identity, he hadn’t communicated with his other companions, especially Adrian Cross. Even if he wasn’t a typical Knight of Judgement, Nemo wasn’t sure whether the former Chief Justice could withstand this.

Now his mind was also a mess. The two walked side by side, lifelessly as their faces turned blue. They looked as if they were sleepwalking hand in hand in broad daylight. During this time, he was almost knocked down by a fat lady running wildly.

“Sorry!” the barrel-like lady shouted with a loud voice without turning her head back.

The precious time they spent in a daze always passed by quickly. Even if there were more episodes, the village was pretty small, so they quickly found the inn. Nemo was stunned for a few seconds when he saw the “Earthsea Orchid” sign.

“Why did both of you come back?” The last companion Nemo wanted to face, however, had appeared first. Adrian was holding the leashes of the two fuller goats, but this scene didn’t dampen the knight’s momentum one bit. He squinted his eyes and looked at Nemo from head to toe, and then asked a question that neither of them wanted to answer.

“It’s a long story… You haven’t booked a room yet?” Oliver diverted the question with another question.

“The room has just been vacated. You arrived just in time.” Adrian raised his brows, as if he had read the subtext of Oliver’s words. “We can talk about it once we settle down.”

Oliver nodded in low spirits. It seemed that it was aware of his low mood as the fake goat pulled on the rope and bleated comfortingly. Oliver patted the goat on the head a few times.

This pause made Nemo the first person to enter the inn.

He stared solemnly at the wood grain and dust on the floor, racking his brains to think about what kind of expression would be appropriate to face his other companions. However, after only a few seconds of deep contemplation, a scream belonging to a girl entered his ears and something rushed straight at him like a cannonball that was fired from a siege artillery. Nemo’s body reacted first. He dodged at a speed that was normal for humans, and the rushing object flew into the air.

Nemo raised his head stiffly. Ann Savage was standing in the lobby directly opposite of him, but the scream didn’t emanate from her. The face of the female warrior was puzzled. That was normal, Nemo thought nervously. After all, he should have stayed with the witch, Nadine. He rubbed the stiff muscles on his face and was just about to squeeze out a smile…

When the mysterious attacker slammed into him from behind.

A pair of slender arms encircled his neck, with a rod in one hand. However, this wasn’t some type of new attack, because the owner of the scream spoke again with a voice that was filled with vibrant joy.

“Nemo!” She yelled. “Why are you here? God, how could you be here?”

The girl let go, turned to Nemo, and gave him a tight hug that seemed like it could break his ribs.

Ann’s expression became more complicated, and Nemo now knew why the female warrior was puzzled. Ann must’ve witnessed the entire scene just now. He lowered his head numbly, facing this strange girl who was too enthusiastic for a first-time meeting. Her facial features were subtle and looked familiar.

“……Debby?” Nemo asked blankly. His gaze swept over the white tin badge on the young girl’s chest that was exactly the same as Flint Lopez’s. There was no doubt that she was part of Horizon.

“How can you use such an interrogative tone?” Debby Light let go of Nemo angrily. She was frowning, but her voice was full of laughter. “I recognized you from a single glance! It’s not fair, you’re such a mean guy—”

Ann raised her brows and glanced at Oliver, who had just stepped through the door, then at the young female mage who was acting coquettish; her brows rose even higher. A few steps away, when Nemo appeared, the gray parrot had shrunk into a ball and squeezed into Jesse Dylan’s pocket. The blond young man made no attempt to hide his ambiguous smile as he watched the excitement unfold.

Oliver froze visibly to the naked eye. He had originally looked a little lifeless, like a vegetable leaf that had been scalded by boiling water. After seeing this scene, the vegetable leaf named Oliver Ramon changed from “scalded by boiling water” to “thoroughly overcooked”.

“Wow, why are you here?” The Horizon female mage’s attention was still completely on Nemo. After the hurricane-like excitement, the girl looked calmer. “Hey, you have become a Black Chapter… and a snake level?”

She turned her head and glanced at Ann. “If you’re a snake-level, you should be acting with Ms. Savage. I see. Which special bastard in your team raised the danger level for all of you?”

Ann instantly turned her gaze to Jesse, causing the smiling face of the latter to freeze.

“Even though I don’t mind this evaluation… I haven’t joined the team yet!” He cried aggrievedly.

Nemo rubbed the top of the girl’s head. When he sent Debby Light away, she was about the height of a pitchfork, and now the top of her head was almost to his chin. Now Nemo remembered very clearly. Back then, when he hadn’t understood the world, this girl had copied him and stuck her fingers into the flame—Debby Light might have had more guts than all the children in the orphanage combined, and unlike Nemo, who was unable to use any magic at the time, her magical talent was also terrifying.

These two characteristics add up to form the former bully of the Light Orphanage.

The younger Debby gave him a headache, and her iconic scream could almost collapse the roof of the orphanage. Even on the day he sent her away, she was busy tossing around and rolling all over the floor, asking him to carry her to the candy store for an all-you-can-eat.

It was only at that time that she actually cried.

Six years later, the little girl who misbehaved that year had become a regular mage of a first-class mercenary group.

She really grew up, and Nemo couldn’t help but cock the corners of his mouth. At that moment, “superior demon” and “Black Chapter” seemed to have once again become words that belonged to another world, and he had returned to Roadside Town. This was a reunion between ordinary people after a long separation.

“No,” he replied softly. “It’s true… something happened on my side.”

“Nemo, you should introduce this lady first,” Ann retracted her gaze from Oliver, coughing dryly. She tried her best to hold back the smile in her voice. Their leader was nervously frozen at the entrance, as if he had been petrified.

“This is my big brother.” Debby pointed to Nemo and spoke first. Adrian was stepping into the door and joined the stiff ranks when he heard the words. “I am a mage from Horizon, Debby Light, who also came from the same orphanage in Roadside Town. Old Patrick was unreliable, so I was basically raised by my big brother. Ms. Savage, what did my brother do? Why is he Black Chapter?”

“Demon worshiper,” Jesse interjected with a smile. “At least that’s what the warrant says.”

“……What?” Debby frowned. “What? Sorry, I may have heard it wrong just now—”

Ann sighed and nodded, “Demon worshiper.”

“He’s… a demon worshiper? Where is his familiar?” The female mage’s voice instantly revealed her professional mercenary background and had even a hint of murderous intent. “Where is his familiar?”

Jesse pointed to the gray parrot in his pocket, desperately trying to reduce its sense of existence.

“Nemo,” Debby curled her lips and raised her head again. “Let’s talk about it. Did you pick it up, or did it pick you up? Such a thing…” She wrinkled her nose, as if looking for a more suitable sentence. “If this is what they call a demon worshiper, then I can call myself a rabid dog worshiper when I go out with my puppy.”

For a few seconds, the gray parrot stretched out its head, as if trying to spray abyssal magic at the girl, but its little eyes swept past Nemo in front of Debby, and then shrank back silently.

“But I have to be honest. For a demon worshiper, the snake level is too exaggerated.” There was a bit more seriousness in Debby’s relaxed voice, and the fingers holding her rod tightened stiffly. “If I’m not mistaken, Alban’s side will charge you with some messy crime to deal with you… but it won’t be that big. Even if you participated in the Black Chapter test, it should’ve been capped at a jackal at most.”

She looked into the eyes of the relative in front of her very seriously. “I’m not joking. I only have two questions, big brother. Did you participate in the promotion of the snake level? …Are you really serving that demon?”

Nemo smiled at the familiar yet unfamiliar girl in front of him. He knew her concerns. Six years was indeed enough time to change a lot of things, and she didn’t deliberately ignore this.

“Don’t worry, I didn’t do anything that would get me scolded by Old Patrick.” Nemo chose a compromise and calmly responded to her gaze. “As for that demon, I have no contractual relationship with it now.”

“Okay, I believe you.” Debby nodded solemnly, the smile on her face relaxing a bit. “After all, the team you are in is quite good. Ms. Savage’s rating has always been good. Our commander wanted to recruit her before… The leader of your team?” She casually glanced at the other two Black Chapters at the door, and the end of her words trailed off.

“No, you’re not the leader, right?” She stared at Oliver, raised her rod slightly, and her expression became serious.

“That’s our leader.” Nemo pressed her raised arm down. “It’s a bit complicated.”

“But he looks like Godwin…”

“Uh… This question can’t be answered so briefly. Maybe you can ask Mr. Lopez yourself.” Nemo scratched his head. “Let’s not talk about this, Debby. How have you been—”

“Light.” A low male voice interrupted Nemo’s questioning. A tall, heavily armored warrior greeted them blankly.

Debby and Nemo looked at him at the same time.

“The commander is looking for you.” The armored warrior swept past the crowd in the lobby, but his eyes remained on Oliver’s face for a few seconds, showing no special emotion. “…Are these Black Chapters your friends?”

“Sort of.” The girl scratched her nose. “A friend I just met.”

The Horizon warrior nodded politely but was alienated towards them. “I see. Hurry up, Light. These people seem to be staying in the same inn, so you still have the opportunity to visit them later.”

Debby glanced at Oliver curiously again, then blew a kiss at Nemo. “Big brother, don’t run away,” she said in a crisp voice. “I have so many things I want to catch up on.”

As Miss Light left with her companions, the horn-braided girl next to the wooden platform began to tap on the guest list.

“Do you still want to check in?” Her voice sounded annoyed.

“Of course,” Ann said as she propped an arm on the counter; her voice was quite lively. “How big is the biggest room here? We need a spacious interrogation room.”

Adrian held his forehead, Jesse nodded approvingly, and the female warrior’s eyes swept between Oliver and Nemo. “We also have… so many questions to ask the two of you.”

The author has something to say:

Obtains [sister] × 1. Do you want to pick it up?

Nemo: Choose [yes] with relief


Obtains [cousin] × 1. [Cousin] forcibly bound to your inventory.

Oliver: Solemnly delete repeatedly, and even want to contact GM.

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