Al screamed and fled the forest.
A plant monster’s spear-like branches were in hot pursuit and hoping to skewer him, but they did not leave the forest.
He was safe, so he stopped to catch his breath.
“That receptionist at the adventurer’s guild lied to me! ‘The map is so straightforward even a beginner or one-man party can handle it’, my ass! The monsters are strong as fuck!”
He had it in him to mimic her voice, so he could not be doing too badly. Really, he had only panicked from the threat to his life and he was entirely unharmed.
Still, that summed up his situation.
Al was an adventurer.
In this case, an adventurer did not refer to a hero who made a courageous journey to defeat the Demon Lord. It was a profession where people hunted monsters or treasure to make a living.
An adventurer would visit the adventurer’s guild locations across the continent, purchase a treasure map, accept various jobs from the local residents, and hopefully earn enough to live off of.
Different adventurers had different strategies. Some accepted extremely difficult jobs in order to get rich quick and others took smaller jobs to make enough to live for another day.
Needless to say, Al was the latter type.
But he had grown sick of that life, so yesterday he had half-jokingly complained to a guild employee that he wanted an easy job that would also make him rich and the receptionist had given him this map.
It had been a long journey here, but he had not wasted any time on exploration since it was one long path. There had been few monsters along the way, but the treasure at the end was estimated to be worth 5 million daccas. That was enough to retire comfortably on.
Yet here he was.
The instant he had entered the forest on the map, a monster had attacked and he had tried to fight back with his sword, but that had accomplished nothing and he had been forced to flee.
The receptionist had nonchalantly declared he could easily reach the treasure, but he was never trusting anything she said ever again.
“Then again, it’s my fault for being so weak.”
He did carry a sword with him, but it might as well have been for decoration.
The jobs he normally accepted were to herd livestock, help with farm work, and exterminate wild dogs, so he was more of a handyman than an adventurer.
He had been wrong to attempt a dungeon on his own.
“I only really have the one option left now.”
Once he caught his breath, he got up and pulled some white chalk from his bag.
He used that to draw a magic circle on the ground.
Al could use summoning magic.
Summoning magic could call forth something that existed elsewhere in the world.
If you had already drawn a corresponding magic circle below the thing you wanted to transport, you could summon it to you with almost no consumption of magic.
Alternatively, you could summon a magical being by using the magic within them. If that being had some kind of desire and he could grant it, they could be bound by a contract and they would temporarily work for him.
Al had chosen to learn summoning magic to avoid having to carry heavy things around with him, but he had found it so fascinating he had continued training to the point that he could summon fairly powerful magical monsters.
Of course, he might not be so hopeless with a sword if he had put so much work into using one of them.
Once the magic circle was complete, Al opened his magic book and recited a spell written within.
“All who hear my name, answer my call. My name is Altisla Fortune.”
As he recited the spell, he considered what kind of monster would be best for clearing the treasure map he had.
Many different lifeforms came to mind.
The truth was, Al had memories from a past life.
In that life, he had been a student in a country called Japan.
His father had been a vet and his home had doubled as a veterinarian hospital.
In this world, ordinary doctors treated both humans and livestock, so it would be hard for people here to believe anyone would raise animals for no reason or that you would need a doctor specifically for animals.
That aside, his past life had given him a lot of knowledge about animals.
He had not been an expert, but he had often heard his father talking about them and he had read the many animal-related books in his home.
After being reborn in this world as Al, he had grown interested in this world’s lifeforms.
How did they live?
What ecosystems did they form?
How did they interact with humans?
He had been especially interested in the monsters which had not existed in his past life’s world.
Those were lifeforms that had undergone unique changes thanks to the energy known as magic they carried within them.
It may have been his interest in them that had motivated him to learn how to summon them with magic.
The map he hoped to follow required passing through four areas to reach the treasure at the end.
Area 1 was a forest full of plant monsters.
Area 2 contained ruins teeming with small monsters (primarily rat types).
Area 3 was a volcanic region in which fire monsters lived.
Area 4 was a cave where undead monsters lurked.
(The plants would be weak to fire, so something with fire magic would be good. The rats I might be able to keep away without fighting if I have a snake monster with me. The volcanic region would be easier with something that can use water magic. For the undead monsters an undead monster of my own would be best.)
He thought about the monsters he needed to summon as he recited the spell.
But then some unnecessary thoughts intruded on his mind.
Thinking about the map may have turned his thoughts toward the receptionist who recommended it to him.
(I haven’t talked with any cute girls in a while.)
The receptionist had been fairly good looking, but she had worn too much makeup for his tastes. And she had been even older than him.
He preferred someone…
(Smaller and younger…oh, whoops. I need to focus on the magic.)
It was a bit late for that.
He was already reaching the end of the spell, so he only had the final line to go.
Summoning magic could not be cut off partway through, so he went ahead and finished it off.
“Answer my call and enter into contract with me!”
The magic circle glowed.
The glow grew into a pillar of light that shined bright on his surroundings.
Once the light finally faded, four monsters had been summoned there.
Could you even call those monsters?
“Since you summoned me, I can only assume you’re hoping to fuck.”
One was a Succubus with brown skin, horns, wings, and a tail.
“Just tell me what you want already.”
One was a Lamia glaring at him with narrow-pupiled snake eyes while her serpentine lower body slithered behind her.
“Ah ha ha ha! Whery-ery-ery-ere am I!?”
One was a Slime shaped like a girl with twintails who wiggled her translucent blue body around.
“Ugh, it’s too bright. I feel dizzy.”
One was a Zombie girl whose patched-together body was a pale blue and who looked about ready to collapse.
All four were monster girls.
More than that, they were all lolis.
Al shouted at the top of his lungs, but he knew he only had himself to blame.