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PRINT: I Power Up With Every Monster Girl I Defeat (Monster Girl Tamer #1) (SIGNED Paperback)

PRINT: I Power Up With Every Monster Girl I Defeat (Monster Girl Tamer #1) (SIGNED Paperback)

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Book One in the Monster Girl Tamer series. Published by Spice Rack Press.

About this premium SIGNED PAPERBACK:

Signed by Edie Skye. Contact us at holowriting (at) holowriting.com for personalization requests.

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A red hot, fiery demon girl. A goblin girl obsessed with wood. An oni girl who loves to grip a big sword. And they’re going to help him save the world … how?

Axel Hunter Radcliff has trained his whole life to be a hero. Once every generation, someone in his family is called upon to be a Chosen One, and Axel’s prepared himself extensively, just in case it’s him.

He just wasn’t prepared for the portal.

Now he’s in another world brimming with dangerous monsters beneath a sky full of magic portals … and with no idea what he’s been summoned to do. All he knows is that every Chosen Radcliff has been aided by a support staff of skilled women: a tactical harem.

When mysterious monster girls start wreaking havoc in this new world, Axel is ready to answer the call. He’ll have to draw upon insight borne from every tabletop RPG he’s played and every harem novel he’s read to face them, because these are either the women he’s destined to gather … or the force he’s been summoned to stop.

Either way, these monster girls need to be tamed!

WARNING: Monster Girl Tamer is a fun LitRPG fantasy adventure with a healthy side of heat: sensuous demons, lustful goblins, voluptuous oni, and saucy language to match. (So don’t read it and then complain about the spice. Y’all know exactly what you’re getting into.)

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Enjoy a sample from I POWER UP WITH EVERY MONSTER GIRL I DEFEAT!

CHAPTER ONE

“Son, it’s time for The Talk.”

Axel had known those words were coming since last night.

The Talk meant something different in his family. Oh, he’d gotten the, “We’ve noticed how you look at girls, here’s a condom, don’t get anyone pregnant” talk when he was thirteen, but that was small potatoes compared to the talk every man in his family got at twenty. That Talk was a Very Big Potato.

Which was why his dad’s nonchalance surprised him. When Axel came through the front door, his dad simply waved the same distant hello as usual, then went back to the kitchen sink, cleaning the last dishes from the birthday party Axel had been called away from—not that anyone blamed him.

When you made a hobby of running toward fires, you had to go when the fire summoned you.

“Can I clean up a bit first?” Axel said. He still smelled like smoke from the night’s job.

His dad waved again, and Axel went downstairs. He’d left his gear in his locker at the firehouse, but despite the hours spent cleaning the gear and tools, the scent and soot of his work still lingered. He was always vigilant about maintaining his gear, as much to preserve its reliability as to fend off the inevitable carcinogens he’d encounter; he was just as vigilant about his own body, and so he took a long shower to fend off the rest. It was an irony, he reflected, that so many firefighters spent their lives saving others, only to be killed by their own work, either in a fire or the slow cancer resulting from the things that burned around them.

Then he chuckled darkly.

Given what his father was about to say, he was not likely to die of cancer. Few of the Radcliffs ever died in such mundane ways.

When he came back upstairs, his father greeted him by cracking open a beer. He wasn’t even twenty-one yet, but he recognized the beer, one that only emerged on serious occasions. The brew was based on one his grandfather had brought back from overseas.

Well, “overseas” was only loosely correct. The bottle was a recycled original, and its label was in a language he’d never seen on this earth.

“Damn, that’s good beer!” Axel exclaimed after his first swig.

“There’s a reason your grandfather founded his microbrewery once he came back,” his father said, taking his own as they flopped onto the living room couch. “Glad one of your grandmothers knew how to make this stuff.” (Grandpa had a lot of adventures.) “If you’re lucky enough to survive whatever’s coming, you’ll inherit the recipe, too. For now, though, you get this.”

On the coffee table before them was positioned a thin, hard-shelled carrying case that resembled the ones Axel used to transport his wargaming miniatures. His father clicked it open with all the slow pride of an uber nerd about to show off an unholy amount of money spent on plastic and paint.

“Axel, meet Mel.”

The case did not contain painted miniatures.

It contained a whole-ass M4 carbine, fully assembled and maintained to such perfection that it looked fresh off the production line, but Axel knew that wasn’t true. First off, because there was a sparkling pink cat head on its grip that had likely been slapped on as a joke. Second because, if the family stories were true—and all the family stories were true—that thing had already delivered some top-quality dakkas.

World War III had been in progress before Mel and his father had gone to fight.

World War III was no longer in progress.

“I’d hoped to present her to you at the party last night, but well …”

“Duty called.”

“As it does. And given how often duty called you even before your birthday, I thought I should equip you sooner rather than later.” He lifted the carbine from the case and extended it toward his son, like a blessing. “Axel Hunter Radcliff, if she’ll have you, she’s yours. Take her.”

If she’ll have you.

That was the key, and why every man in the family trained. Because there was no way of knowing who Mel would choose until …

Axel braced his muscles to accept the heirloom. He hadn’t even fully gripped it when the weapon began to glow. Little streamers of sparkling light whipped off its form and then came back to envelop it, like some over-the-top magical girl transformation sequence, but with a badass gun. When the magical ribbons finished encasing it, its shape changed.

Its protruding bits withdrew into the main length of the gun, which then stretched out and back in a curve, except for one glob of light. This separated and hovered before him, stretching into a rectangle—no, a cylinder with a strap—which then zipped around to his back. In front, he could see additional details working into the piece still in his hands. Multiple layers of cables slipped around what looked like pulley wheels on each end of the elaborate curve. A final whip of luminescence encased his forearm and hand in the shape of an archery gauntlet, and when the light flashed away into a rain of sparkles, Axel’s suspicion was confirmed.

Resting in his hands was a shining silver compound bow, complete with that weird little cat head on the grip.

“Huh,” Axel mused. “That’s … not what I expected.”

“You were expecting anything?”

“Dad, it’s hard to have a family history like ours and not expect some kind of weirdness. Granted, I didn’t expect the transforming anime weapon, but once I saw what it was doing, I didn’t expect a bow, either.”

“That ‘transforming anime weapon’ is formally called The Arsenal, and it adapts to the user. It’s been passed down through our family for generations.”

“Oh! So the ‘Mel’ grandfather used was the same as your carbine, and the same as my bow? I thought it was just the name that got passed down.”

His father shook his head. “Nope, it’s both.”

“Why’d grandpa get a whole tank?”

“Different time, different place, very different threat.”

“Where’s the name Mel come from, anyway?”

“Actually … I don’t think even your grandpa remembers. We’ve always called her Mel, as far as I know.”

Axel positioned Mel in his hands and tested its stability and tension, then drew an arrow from the quiver that had materialized on his back.

“Not in the house,” his father said. “We’ll never hear the end of it if you blow up your mom’s new couch. Let’s take it outside to the range.”

 

***

 

“The Range” was a bit of a misnomer. Oh, there was definitely a shooting range in their backyard, both for firearms and bows. But there was also a variety of obstacle courses, such that anyone flying over might mistake it for a little boot camp, were it not for the children’s playground positioned on the other side of the house. Even that was an intense, elaborate structure, meant to teach its users to fall down hard and get up quick.

Both were necessary skills in the Radcliff family.

Axel went to his favorite spot on the archery range, put his beer down, and nocked an arrow to his new bow. He was amazed at how familiar it felt, like he’d been using this very bow since he’d picked up the sport.

“Our family has a great destiny, son,” his father said, creaking down into a nearby lawn chair.

“I’m aware of that. Hard to miss when your grandpa’s sucked into a war in another world and your dad fought off the elder gods.” (World War III had been complicated.)

“It goes back further than that. And it’s stranger than you realize.”

“But isn’t the short of it that we’re all called on to be heroes?” Axel asked.

It was one of the reasons he’d been given a name like Axel Hunter Radcliff, in fact. One only had to pay half-attention while growing up to realize that, at least once in a generation, someone in his family earned a place in a history book somewhere, and like hell were any of them going to go down in history with names like John Smith or Chris Jones. His father had lucked out with the normal-sounding name of Byron, but most Radcliffs had names that sounded like they’d been pulled from old pulp adventures—and were expected to live up to them whether they were that generation’s Chosen One or not.

And so Axel had prepared as best he could.

It was not as simple a task as it sounded.

Chosen Ones were an immutable fact in his family, but there were few ways of knowing what the One was Chosen for, which meant the best approach was a well-rounded one.

Most of the family heroes benefited from physicality, so he’d participated in every sport he could when he was in school. Competitive archery was the only one he’d pursued after high school, but that was primarily because his work in the family landscaping business met a lot of his exercise demands. (After defeating the elder gods, his dad had wanted to do something low-key.)

Axel didn’t find the job all that fulfilling, though, which was where volunteer firefighting came in. He’d never considered taking the career route, because like most jobs that were essential to the functioning of society, the pay was shit—but it allowed him to both test his limits and, more importantly, to do something meaningful. Heroic, even. Plus, he couldn’t deny that he enjoyed the surge of adrenaline that flooded his veins every time the alert came. He didn’t wish fires on anyone, of course, but the joy he felt facing them was real—and specifically, the joy of taming such a volatile force.

It was like conquering a part of nature itself.

And the money he made off posing for the yearly firefighter calendar wasn’t bad, either.

He let the arrow fly. The cable thumped against his gauntlet with a powerful crack, and the arrow pierced its target with a near-silent swish. A good shot, but mundane otherwise. No magical sparkles or anything. He prepared another.

“We’re all called to be heroes,” Byron Radcliff continued, “but we’ve never told you the full story, nor what it means for each generation’s Chosen hero.”

Axel let the arrow fly. It landed, again a good shot, but again mundane.

He suspected he knew more than his father thought—after all, kids picked up a lot when the adults thought they weren’t listening—but he also knew his father wanted to tell the story. He’d probably been looking forward to this for years, and so Axel returned to his beer and took the seat next to his dad.

“It’s not that we’re called to be heroes, like some holy vocation. It’s that we get summoned, and we have no choice in the matter. And we have to make it work, because if we don’t, awful things can happen. Whatever you’re chosen for, you’re not destined to win. You’ll need to make clever use of the resources available to you. Mel, for one, and … let’s call it your support staff.”

The way his father said it suggested there was more to the phrase than allies. Namely, the way his eyebrows raised.

“Some Radcliffs are sucked into conflicts around our world, but not all. Your grandfather was one such exception, summoned to another world to fight a demon king and his four generals. It was a fantastic situation to say the least, but the thing that got him through it was not his weapon, but his harem.”

Axel had just taken a swig of beer, and now it shot up through his nose.

“Did you just say harem?”

“You know the phrase ‘Behind every great man is a great woman’? Well, when you’re in extreme situations, having more can help.”

“Wait, so … that was an intentional, organized thing? It wasn’t just that grandpa slept around with a bunch of women on his adventure?”

“Oh, he slept around for sure. But mainly with women who brought some kind of skill to his cause. They were his support as much as his lovers.”

“Even the crazy cat lady?”

The crazy cat lady was the only one Axel had ever heard described in any detail, and now that he thought of it, something else about her was odd. Namely, that she’d never been described as having any cats. And given what kind of world she’d come from …

“Was one of my grandmas secretly a catgirl?”

Byron shrugged and took another swig of beer. “She certainly had … cat in some form. But that’s not my point. My point is that he’s not the first Radcliff to succeed because of his harem.”

“You, too? Then why do I only have one mom?”

“Because after the elder god thing was over, she was the one I chose. You don’t have to marry them all. You just need to build a harem that helps you win the day.”

“How will I know what my challenge is, then? What kind of skills I need to gather?” Axel asked urgently. This complicated things. More than his father realized. “Dad, I’ve always avoided getting a girlfriend because I didn’t want to endanger her. I don’t know how to flirt!”

“You’re a firefighter. Just take your shirt off and they’ll come.”

“That’s not my point. Have you seen the size of my wargaming collection? No girl I bring to my parents’ basement is going to see that and want to stay with me.”

“She will if she’s cool.”

“Oh god, I live in my parents’ basement, too!”

His father set his beer aside and looked him dead in the eyes. “Axel. The only reason we didn’t tell you this before is because we didn’t want your hormonal teenage self to take advantage of it. Your mother and I have, in fact, soundproofed the basement in anticipation of this day, so that you can freely get up to wargaming or … not. Whatever it takes to build your harem and save the world.”

Axel froze with his beer halfway to his mouth. He’d thought he’d had some idea of how this day would go, and it had not involved his father telling him, “Go forth and fuck to save the world.”

It had especially not involved the portal.

Nonetheless, he became aware of a sudden sparkle beneath his chair. Before he could register that it wasn’t coming from Mel, the sparkle whirled around his feet like a circle drawn by a speeding comet.

He didn’t even have time to scream before he fell, nor before the circle closed, leaving only empty ground and his father, who said:

“Huh. That happened faster than expected.”

And then he drained his beer and went inside.