Stray Ch155

Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong

Translator: Kinky ||

Chapter 155: The Starting Point of the Story

Screams, splashes of blood, and dark faces full of murderous intent.

Oliver frowned while half asleep and half awake and subconsciously stretched out his arms to his side, but didn’t touch the warm body of his lover as usual. It seemed that countless pieces of ice had exploded deep in his mind, and he was in a cold sweat. Before his brain was completely awake, Oliver’s body took the lead. He rolled out of bed and almost instinctively retracted into the corner like a cat. In less than two seconds of the whole process, his two arms were already in a defensive posture, perfectly protecting his heart.

The desk was hit by a dull noise, and two books that he hadn’t finished reading before going to bed collapsed and scattered everywhere.

Holding his breath and hiding for a while, his mind began to turn slowly.

The memory of the day slowly surfaced from the depths of his mind. Yes, he visited a new campus and came back to have a brief exchange with Nemo for about half an hour. Before Nemo’s roommate came back, they also laughed at Bagelmaurus’ new look together. Oliver looked at the dark and empty room in front of him and wiped the cold sweat from his forehead with a wry smile.

It’s over. Oliver breathed a sigh of relief and rubbed his face hard. The Withered Castle had disappeared, and he had left that hell, but those fragments of death still visited his dreams from time to time—waking Oliver up from his slumber. It was just that in previous days, he could hug Nemo in the next second and fall back into a deep sleep with the breath of his lover.

But today, he only felt cold. Hazily, he almost regarded this reality as a dream again.

‘Habits are a terrible thing,’ Oliver thought to himself. Instead of turning on the light, he sat in the same place and inserted his fingers into his hair soaked in cold sweat. He wasn’t very proficient at detecting, but he felt relieved when he felt the familiar breathing two doors away, and even the small snoring of Bagelmaurus.

Nemo was still sleeping, and everything was safe.

Nemo didn’t need to know this. He could get rid of the influence of this matter sooner or later. Oliver moved his shoulders and finally decided to stand up. Fortunately, his roommate wasn’t here, as what he did made a lot of noise. Classes would officially start tomorrow. It wasn’t good to disturb others.

The academy had no mandatory regulations on the first night’s accommodation. Many people came with friends and family. Tomorrow, the academy would be officially closed off. Many people would choose to stay with their relatives and friends at a nearby inn for the night. Clementine Academy had prepared all the details well. Students could even pack their bags in advance and come back in the morning to change clothes and get their books.

Most likely, his roommate was one of these people. Since the dinner ceremony, the big young man had left the group early, and that was the last he had seen of him so far.

However, as he propped one hand on the floor, and before he could exert his strength, the dorm door slid open silently. Oliver’s back exploded in hot sweat and his left hand directly grabbed the ukulele not far away, almost subconsciously pulling out the Rest in Peace. The door had opened.

His burly roommate was standing in the doorway, with his mouth slightly agape.

The soft light from the corridor cast into the doorway early in the morning. It wasn’t to the point of being blinding, but it was enough to reflect the things in the room clearly. The burly young man who fought for Nemo at the ceremony was standing stiffly at the door, looking silently at his roommate, who was nestled in the corner in the middle of the night.

Oliver coughed dryly, put down the ukulele in his arms, and quickly stood up straight.

His new roommate was indeed quite large. Just from sitting alone, he was intimidating. Oliver roughly guessed that the height of the burly young man was probably over two meters tall. The other party’s muscles were equally strong and exaggerated, almost bursting. Oliver thought he wasn’t thin, but he would be considered skinny standing next to him.

Since both of them were awake, there was nothing to worry about. Oliver lit the magic lamp and hardened himself to continue this awkward stare.

“Oliver Ra…Borne,” he coughed dryly and stretched out his right hand. “It seems I haven’t formally introduced myself. I remember you are, uh…” The name on the nameplate on the door popped into his head.

“Oliver Elmer.” The big young man smiled, revealing a mouthful of snow-white teeth. He extended his large hand and shook Oliver’s hand warmly. “I’m used to it. Don’t worry—how about this. I’ll call you Oliver and you can just call me Elmer.”

“Thanks, Elmer.” Oliver held his smile firmly. “I still have something to do here, so it may take a while for me to go to sleep. It’s late now. Do you want to rest first…”

“Just in time.” Elmer shrugged. “It’s four in the morning. I have to pack a little early. If you’re awake, it just saves me some energy from not having to cast a soundproofing spell. How about you give me a shout when you’re going to sleep.”

Oliver glanced at the time. It was indeed four in the morning. He didn’t know if he could fall back asleep again, so he could only nod.

Right now, Elmer wasn’t wearing his uniform but a simple linen shirt. It was so wet that it was almost dripping with water, giving off an inconsiderable smell of sweat. The big young man seemed to have just returned from a strenuous workout outside. His entire body was radiating heat, and when he turned around, Oliver noticed a huge sword on the other man’s back; but even in the dim light, he could immediately distinguish its material.

It was a wooden sword.

Oliver didn’t make a sound. His roommate was packing his bags carefully next door. Even if he knew Oliver was awake, his movements were still very light. In order to show that he didn’t mean to fall back asleep, Oliver simply picked up the ukulele and played a song Nemo had taught him, albeit poorly.

“You play well.” Obviously perceiving Oliver’s intention, Elmer’s voice was full of laughter. The movement on the opposite side instantly became louder. Matching the rhythm of the sound, Elmer cleaned up a lot faster. “Oliver, from your accent… You’re Alban, right?”

“Yes, from a small town.” Oliver took his origins lightly. “Thanks to the help of a Lord Bishop.”

“Me too.” Elmer took it naturally and didn’t notice the abnormality. “But I… I’m not that good yet and our family has to pay part of it at my own expense.”

“Did you go to practice your swordsmanship?” Oliver decided to leave this touchy topic behind and asked inadvertently. “I saw you carrying a sword on your back. We also have swordsmanship classes in logistics?”

“No, no. It’s just a personal hobby,” Elmer quickly denied. His voice was mixed with a muffled sound of books hitting the wooden table. “I won’t hide it from you. My magic power is actually… reasonable, but definitely not on some genius level. My hometown is small, so placements are limited, but when I’m here, if I practice well, I might get recruited by some nobleman to… At least I can work as a guard or something.”

Oliver stopped playing. For a while, he didn’t know what to say. If he could be admitted to Clementine Academy, Elmer wasn’t weak, but…

“My brother is the real genius.” Elmer’s personality was equally cheerful, and he had now completely become a chatterbox. “It’s a pity that he, uh, for some reason, can’t really study. He paid for my tuition with his wage. If I could find a family that would sponsor me as soon as possible, Hamlin wouldn’t have to work too hard.”

“Wage?” Oliver couldn’t help but ask.

“Yes! Although my brother is young, he’s very strong. He told me he got a job at the Laddism Church. Alas, if it weren’t for Hamlin being born… with a bad leg, how could it have been me here? To tell you the truth, if his legs could be cured, I’d rather go to the docks to move goods and give up being a powerful warlock, but now…”

“Have you tried finding a healer?” Nemo may be able to cure it. Maybe he could discuss this with his lover, Oliver mused. If the situation was really bad, they might be able to help a little.

“It’s useless. I’ve looked. You see, I’m already twenty-four, and this is the last year I can drag it out.” Unfortunately, Elmer quickly interrupted his thoughts. There was a bit more bitterness in the tone of the burly young man’s voice. “To be cured, the body must theoretically ‘exist in a healthier state’, but Hamlin’s situation isn’t like that. He… He was born that way and God shaped him like that from the beginning. Isn’t there a saying? People who are born with abnormal powers always have irreparable physical defects. Occasionally, a few lucky people who aren’t disabled will appear, but Hamlin isn’t so lucky.”

“…I’m sorry,” Oliver whispered while he fiddled gently with the strings.

“It’s okay. Don’t take it personally. It’s just casual talk. ” Elmer’s voice became cheerful again. “It’s not that there is no precedent for this kind of thing. Maybe things will turn around. You see, aside from the ending, the Lopez brothers are the same way, right?”

Oliver almost snapped the string. “What?” His voice became louder.

“You don’t know? Ah, that’s right, you probably may not have cared for it,” Elmer sounded excited. “I especially admire Flint Lopez. He’s really amazing! Did you know that he dropped out of school before he even reached our level? This is what my neighboring senior told me, and it’s absolutely true.”

“Oh, oh…” Oliver responded weakly, pouring himself a glass of water. “Then what?”

“The brothers hit a rough patch that year. The bishop who had been funding them passed away unexpectedly, and it was just around the time of the Laddism reformation, so no one took over the matter for a while. In order for his younger brother to continue learning, Flint Lopez dropped out of school and founded the Tin Soldiers to do tasks to earn money. You should know the rest. The Tin Soldier Mercenary Group is a legend—”

Oliver swallowed a sip of cold water numbly. “I’ve heard a little about them. Having said that. He… What happened to his brother?” He was a little curious about who Godwin Lopez’s father was.

“His younger brother was also competent. Emanuel Lopez directly climbed to the position of Chief Justice of the Knights of Judgement, and his reputation was very good. Chief Justice of the Knights of Judgement! I haven’t seen anyone able to achieve such a status like that. Praise Zenni. Little Lopez— Oh, it’s Emanuel. I heard that he also respected his brother immensely. It’s a pity that the ending of the brothers was inexplicable. Alas, Little Lopez died of an acute illness and Big Lopez is still missing. I hope he’s still alive.”

Placing the water cup in his hand gently on the table, Oliver lowered his eyes and trembled slightly with his right hand. “…Let’s hope.”

“Hamlin is also working in the Laddism Church now, and I heard that the treatment is very good, so I have to work hard too. Maybe we can also earn a bit of fame. Well, I’m all packed up. I’m going to take a shower and go to bed… Are you still not sleeping? The sun is about to come out soon.”

“Right away,” Oliver said, stepping barefoot on the fleece blanket and pressing his knees against the bed. “Speaking of which, what kind of work does your brother do in the Laddism Church?”

Maybe Mr. Cross knows him. Oliver grinned, trying to use this thought to pull himself out of his bitter grief.

“He didn’t mention much, saying there was a confidentiality requirement. I have heard people say once in a while that he seems to work in a choir or something,” Elmer said happily. “The internal regulations of the Laddism Church… I don’t know much about it, but ‘choir’ sounds pretty good, right?”

“Well, good night,” Elmer responded happily.

On the other side, there wasn’t much peace.

Nemo woke up early. Habits were quite terrible, as he was no longer used to falling asleep alone. He yawned, opened the bed curtains, and then found his new roommate standing upright outside his curtains.

Hayden Wilheim almost frightened the great Mr. Demon King back to bed. Nemo waited for a long time but still failed to squeeze something out of his groggy head. The thin young man glanced at the parrot sleeping soundly by Nemo’s pillow and lowered his head again.

Following Hayden’s movements, his hair shook slightly, and the corner of his forehead revealed a dazzling greenish-purple color. After ten seconds or so of hesitation, Nemo’s new roommate finally opened his mouth.

“I—I want to talk to you, can I? White… No, Nemo?”

The author has something to say:

The newlyweds husband and wife (×) slept in separate beds, which was really miserable.

And Jesse, on the other side begins rubbing his hands together (????).

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