There are plenty of spirit ashes for you to hang out with in Elden Ring, but a new mod lets you summon your favourite NPC or boss.
Despite Souls games often having strong themes of a solitary struggle, they do frequently let you summon other players and certain NPCs to help out every now and then. Of course, when it comes to in-game NPCs, this is generally limited to very specific characters, so unfortunately for you, if you want to hang out with Ranni, you're fresh out of luck. Unless of course you download this very cool sounding mod that lets you summon a few fan favourite NPCs à la Skyrim (thanks, PC Gamer).
The mod, very aptly titled NPCs and Bosses Spirit Summons (available over at Nexus Mods) lets you summon characters like Melina, Sellen, Millicent, Ranni, and the best boy in town Blaidd the Half-Wolf. It doesn't stop there though, as there are plenty of bosses to chill with too, like Malenia (who is, as you probably know by now, the Blade of Miquella), Radagon, Godfrey, or even the worst pair of bosses in the game, the Godskin Duo.
For characters like Millicent and Ranni, modder Satoshi made some specific customisations as they don't actually fight at any point in the game. As an example, Ranni was given the Carian Regal Sceptre, with a total of seven spells at her disposal.
Satoshi98 explained in the description of the mod that they just simply wanted to travel with someone like companions do in Skyrim, hence this mod was born. Funnily enough, Skyrim also recently received an Elden Ring-style mod that lets players leave messages behind, so they can leave classic messages like 'try finger but hole'.
There have been plenty of mods for Elden Ring released too since its release, like this mod that makes things a touch easier.