Retreat is a Summoner ability in Final Fantasy XI learned at level 1. It orders a summoned avatar or elemental to stop attacking and return to the Summoner. It can be recast every 10 seconds and lasts until the Summoner orders the Avatar to Assault or the Summoner grabs hate or aggros an enemy, causing the avatar to automatically Assault. This ability ends the Assault command, and is often used to ensure that an avatar stops attacking an enemy that the party wants to put to sleep, or to pull distant enemies to the party (if the avatar has hate, the enemy will follow the avatar as it retreats back to the Summoner).
This ability does generate enmity for the Summoner, and if that enmity puts the Summoner at the top of an enemy's hate list, the avatar will automatically begin to Assault that enemy, even if it was the one it was told to retreat from.