So What If I'm a Summoner Who Only Wants Fluffy Creatures?
With my torso being skewed by the claws of a [Demon], I can see a Hp bar at corner of my vision, draining ever so steadily as blood leaves my system. The pain tells me this is real, but I can't tell whether or not the Hp bar is a hallucination either. Is this real? Or am I going mad? Whatever this is, it certainly isn't a game, no sane developer would put any of these things in a game, something people play to have fun with.
The [Demon] eventually pulled its claws out of me, and I could feel more of my flesh being sliced apart as the sharp claws pulled away. Form his big ugly grin, I could tell, that the bastard's having fun doing this.
With the claws leaving my body, I immediately collapsed, my body has apparently gone into shock and I can't move it at all. I was all too prepared to hit the ground and become like one of the several corpses strewn about this burning hellscape of a town. However, someone caught this body of mine and supported it with her small frame. Though I was turning cold due to blood loss, I could feel warmth flowing into my body from her slender hands. She's using healing magic on me, I could tell because that Hp bar I can't help but stare at is decreasing much, much slower that it was prior. However, it was still not enough, the [Bleeding] status effect is doing more damage than she could heal......... Shit! I must have lost a lot of blood, I'm thinking in gaming terms again. It's because of that damned icon at the corner of my vision, the same icon you get when you get the [Bleeding] effect in the game.
As the princess is healing me, the soldiers rush forward to defend her, only to be reduced to chunks of flesh with but a swipe of the [Demon]'s claws a mere moment later. Their warm blood splatters onto me as their bodies fall, reminding me yet again how all too real this is. I am torn, torn in between thinking whether if this is a game or if this is some kind of reality. However, whatever it is, my instincts is telling me that if I don't do something, I'm going to die, and my bleeding guts tell me that there will probably be no respawns, that all there is awaiting me is the cold embrace of oblivion.
Slowly, the [Demon] approaches the princess. I can tell that she is trembling, the arms holding onto me are shaking uncontrollably and yet, they still held onto me, they are still continuously healing me. The [Demon] relished in her fear, its ugly grin only growing wider and wider till a ball of fire struck the foul creature in the face. The men in dark robes, the ones that had performed the ritual to summon me here, with staffs in their hands, began launching offensive magic at the [Demon].
With its grin no more and clearly enraged, the [Demon] spreads its wings and takes off into the sky, evading the magic projectiles while simultaneously preparing a magic attack of its own.
"Princess, save yourself!"
The mages were shouting as they fought.
"Please leave us and run!"
As the battle play out, I feel my body getting colder and colder, I can no longer hear anything and my vision is turning dark. Even the warmth from the princess, I can no longer feel it. Am I dying? Throughout my sixty-odd years of living, I thought I had a pretty good run. It certainly wasn't perfect and there certainly were some regrets, but I thought I had it pretty good. I thought that I was fine with dying. I'm not exactly big on eating healthy and so I'm at the age where it wouldn't be odd for me to just drop dead after all. However, the truth is, I'm terrified of dying, terrified of dying alone, cold and by myself in my lonely apartment, only to be discovered weeks later by the neighbors via the smell of my rotting, vermin infested corpse.
"Someone, anyone, is anyone there? Aurelius? Aurelia? Is there nobody? I'm scared! Someone please answer me!"
"I'm here, master."
"You... is this really..."
"Just call my name. Just call my name like you always do, and I'll be there."
"...... Come... Come forth, [Sonic Rabbit, Peter]!"
From my blurred vision, I see a light, and then, more than seeing, I feel something running off at high speed, knocking into the [Demon], stunning it before it could use its magic. And as it was stunned, one of the soldier that were lucky enough to avoid being sliced into ribbons leaps forward and plunges a sword right into the [Demon]'s chest. Then, my vision turns dark... for only but a second before I can feel warmth again, and the Hp bar in the corner begins to fill, the [Bleeding] icon is also gone. Gradually, my vision returns, followed by my hearing.
"I'm here brave sir, there's nothing to fear."
The princess continues to hold me in her arms, continuously casting healing magic, and alongside her are the robed men, doing the same. With of all their healing combined, my Hp is quickly refilling.
By my hand, I feel something soft and warm, and when I look down, I see a rabbit-like creature snuggling up to my hand.
I caress the small creature's fur, feeling the softness, the fluffiness, the sensation I could never feel from across the monitor screen. I'm not going to ask how or why he's here. Those questions are beyond me at the moment. The fact that he's here for me is more than enough.
More of them approach from afar, the [Demons], there must be more than twenty of them for as far as I can tell in my immediate view, and from my [Insight], I could see from a single glance that they're no lower than Level 50, and going as far as Level 75. In gaming terms, they're not that strong. Heck, I'm at Level 185 and yet I was almost killed in a single hit. In the end, this isn't like the game I've been used playing, the numbers on top of their heads are merely estimate as far as I can tell. Level 185 I may be, I'm still a creature of flesh and blood, if you drive something sharp and pointy into me I'll bleed and die. This can't be a game, if it is, I'd like to meet the developers and give them a piece of my mind.
I stand back up, facing the [Demons], as I consider the option of running. Amongst them, I see that some of them could fly. We won't outrun them, and I doubt they'll leave us alone. That last [Demon] seems to be targeting the princess.
The princess looks at me, expectation fills her eyes. I have a feeling she wants me to fight, and really, if I were to summon something I'd expect it to fight as well, I'm a Summoner after all. Indeed, what should I do? I wonder about the numbers we have here, and just as I thought that, additional Hp bars popped up in the corner of my vision, five Sorcerers, one Knight, their Levels goes from about as far as 30, the lowest being 15. They won't be able to put up a good fight at all. And while I could probably do some damage, with just me and Peter, and with my build gearing more towards support than damage, can I really fight all these [Demons] when even one hit can be fatal. Rather than an MMORPG, it feels like I'm suddenly playing an ARPG, the kind where you're expected to die a lot. I don't think I have enough stamina to dodge roll through all of them.
Wait, if Peter is here, then perhaps the others are as well. As I thought that, an inventory window popped up, but there's nothing in it. Everything is gone, only the things I'm equipped with remained, namely the clothes on my back and the grimoire which for some reason only has Peter equipped to it and... What's this? It says here that something's equipped on my right hand, which by all means should be empty.
I look down at my right hand, there's nothing in it, but, stuck to the cuff of my sleeve, there is a card, a [contract], and this one is for...
"Sir, you've only recovered, there's no need to force yourself if you can't fight. Let us retreat."
As much as I would like to, we can't, the flying [Demons] would catch up to us in no time.
"No, I'll fight."
"It'll be fine, just leave this to me."
Did that make me sound like a reliable adult for once? Well, no time to worry about that. As for the [contract]... Let's see, first I'll have to equip it to the grimoire. Should I just stick it in between the pages?
I open the grimoire held in my left hand, and I place the [contract] in between the pages and shut the book. Once shut, the grimoire starts to glow and the light seems to be moving up and down the pages of the book. What a familiar light, where have I seen it before? When I flipped back to the page where I had left the card, I then understood why it looked so familiar. On the pages, a copy of the [contract] has been made, both the front and back of it. This book, this magical tome, this grimoire, it's a freaking copier! Which sort of makes sense, I suppose, as in real life, you usually want two copies of the contract for both parties to document.
As the [Demons] came close enough for me to see their ugly grins, I sincerely hope I'm doing things right. If I screw this up, we're all going to die and I have no reason to believe that it won't be a permadeath.
From the grimoire, I retrieve the [contract] and then held it up towards the heavens above, just like how it goes in the animation that played every time I summoned something in the game. And what was that Peter said in my head, call his name like always? Like the autochat or something along the lines? I begin to clear my throat.
"Come forth from the heavens above and bring us the light of salvation! By our covenant, I call upon you, [Guardian Angel, Michaela]!"
A pillar of light descends upon me, and from that light, an angel emerges.
"Yes, my liege!"
And before I even finished my command, Michaela spreads her wings and scatters her feathers to the surroundings, falling gently upon the fallen and shroud them in sacred azure flames. The corpses then start to piece themselves together, severed arms and legs would crawl along the ground up to their bodies and spilled guts would slither back where they have been dropped from. One by one, the dead returns to life, standing ready to fight the [Demon] scourge once more. At the same time, more Hp bars appear in my vision, far too many of it in fact, yet it is not clutter up my sight, as if I'm actually seeing them in my mind rather than my eyes.
Targeting Michaela, I cast the spell [Greater Magic Boost], and then, before I could even issue the command, she immediately casts [Holy Weapon] and [Holy Ward] on her own, as if she already knows my intention and acted upon on her own accord. This was something that was never in the game, neither her automatic action nor her actually speaking to me in any way.
With the [Holy Weapon] and [Holy Ward], the arisens charge at the [Demons], and while the [Demons] are at a much higher level than they are, upon contact with the magic boosted [Holy Ward] on the arisens, the [Demons] were burned by the azure flames, and with the [Holy Weapon], the arisens easily cut away at the [Demons], slicing into their hide like butter with a heated knife. It would seem that regardless of one's level, what kills you will kill you. In the end, the numbers were merely estimates after all.
By the time the sun had begun to set, we, along with the arisens had wiped every single one of the [Demons] clean from this town. And though the town was burned to ashes, so long as there's someone to cast [Resurrection] everyone can be revived and together, the town can be rebuild... Or so I thought. However, at the end of the battle, one by one, the arisens begin to fall, their bodies reducing to glittering dust under the setting sun.
"What's going on?"
"They have been called back to fight one more time, and after that, their earthly vessels have ran beyond their course and so returns to dust."
Michaela, like never before, provided me an explanation.
"Is there no way to bring them back?"
"Only in a twisted form, in which their souls will be bounded to this earth and suffer for as long as they're bound. There are certainly creatures that can do such a thing should you desire it, but the moment you do so, my liege, the covenant between you and I shall be rendered null and void."
So there's actual terms in the [contracts] now are there? Well, I don't intend to raise an army of undead anytime soon, so I suppose there's no worry about that for the time being.
"Thank you Michaela, you are dismissed."
The [Guardian Angel] bowed to me and then promptly disappeared, leaving her [contract] card behind.
So death is truly permanent then. And now I must be here? For how long? To do what? Am I going to have to continuously fight these [Demons]? Heavily, I sighed at the prospects of my future.
"You've done well, brave sir. It is a shame that the town could not be protected, but the [Demons] have indeed been repelled."
The princess came up to me with lone soldier that struck down the first [Demon] following behind her.
"Shall I help search for survivors?"
"I am afraid that there is no need. The Court Mages have casted a clairvoyance spell, there are no survivors."
"I see. Then where to next?"
"Next, we return to the capital, you deserve some rest, brave sir."
"That's my name."
"Sir Aurelius... What coincidence! To think our names would be so similar."
The princess smiles a little, though somewhat bitterly, the sadness of losing the town is not lost in her smile.
Since arriving at the capital, three days had went by in a flash. The days were peaceful and after living out these three days, eating, sleeping, waking up, taking baths, and everything in between, the reality of this world is sinking in. This must either be real, or I'm just extremely insane, or perhaps both.
Waking up on the morning of the fourth day, I stared at the ceiling that I am gradually becoming more familiar with while on the unbelievably comfortable bed that I'm quickly getting used to. Easily, I rise up from the bed, and though I am getting accustomed to it, this body, this body that is exactly like the character I have in Elysium Online, it is surprisingly energetic. Indeed, it's great to be young again.
I left my room and traveled out into the hallways. Already, the servants can be seen coming and going. This is the royal palace by the way, and upon arriving days ago, the princess immediately had a room assigned to me, along with servants. It looks like she fully intends to have me fight from now on, and I'm not quite sure how to feel about it. However, she did promise me something in exchange.
On the two side of the palace, there's a pair of huge balconies overlooking the capital city, one on the east, and one on the west, perfect for viewing the sunsets and sunrises. Today as well, I went to the eastern balcony to view the rising sun, feeling the warmth of the morning sunlight.
I am not sure what is happening, and if I were to follow my memories and assuming that there is no gaps, then it all began when that rift appeared after we defeated the [World Breaker Behemoth]. Somehow, I was sucked into this other world by it. Even while thinking it right now, it still sounds stupidly absurd. I can't believe how easily the protagonists from these kinds of novels just took the whole situation in stride. My mind must have gotten inflexible with age. Well, whatever the reality is, I'll assume three things moving forward, that I'm here, that I'm alive, and that if I die, then there's no coming back. That should be the safest way forward. Safety is first in everything after all.
"What shall you do from now on, my liege?"
Even without me summoning her, Michaela is still able to speak to me somehow. This too, is something that never happened in the game. This world is undoubtedly different from the game, and yet, part of the game's system seemed to have followed me into this world for some reason. I'm quite confused by what mechanics are at work here.
"For now, I'll fight back the [Demon] lines. In exchange, the princess will help search for the others. That was the deal we agreed upon and that is what I'll do."
The one that was sucked into that rift wasn't only me, the others had been as well, my guildmates, my friends. If they're here as well, then I have to find them. I hope they're doing better than I am.
At my feet, I feel something soft snuggling up to me, and so I reach down and pick the little fella up, caressing him in my hands. Since the Mp cost is rather low, I have Peter summoned at most times, in case I need him, and plus, he tends to snuggle up to me like this, which is most definitely welcomed.
I'm still scared at the prospect of actually fighting with a body of flesh and blood, but I'm not alone. Peter is here, Michaela is here, and I'm sure my other [contracts] are also out there somewhere, waiting to be found. I can do this, with them by my side, even though I'm scared, I can still move forward.
End of Chapter 3