Over forty years after the attack of the D Virus–which wiped out a huge amount of the population by turning them into monster-like Dracule–humanity survives by living in protected cities guarded by members of an organization called VIUS (translated: Epidemic-preventing City System.)
The leader of the VIUS Squad Zero, Issa Kazuma, gathers together new members for his team after losing his old ones from a mysterious disbandment. His first new recruit is the intelligent Leila Mikami, who one day hopes to poses Issa’s secret Dragon Eye.
The second recruit is Sōsei Yukimura, who temporarily left his squad to investigate Issa’s involvement in the death of his twin sister. When we left off in the first volume, the team was facing a high-level Dracule who had entered the Mikuni city limits.
After covering Issa in a pile of rubble, the Dracule searches for another VIUS to challenge. It comes across Leila, who swore to protect the guy who somewhat-unknowingly brought the Dracule into the city. Sōsei comes in after having carried a couple of children to safety. Issa returns shortly after and remembers a deal he made with this Dracule a long time ago. The creature agrees to leave the city and fight with Issa in private.
Upon request, Issa shows the Dracule his Dragon Eye. Seconds later the Dracule dies in what seems to be a satisfying way. Issa says they will meet again someday, with both of them human next time (A hint toward’s Issa not being totally human?) As always, Issa gets punished for the way he handled the Dracule situation. He gets dropped and spun off a tower several times on a long rope. His stomach becomes an uneasy mess, but he doesn’t have time to recover as Squad Zero is called to another mission, accompanied by a new volunteer team.
One of the team members is an old friend of Issa (whom he happened to forget) named Kajiyama, who’s task is to record Issa’s actions. Should Issa make more bad decisions, a demotion may be in order. After what seemed to be a simple mission, the team gets split up: Issa and Sōsei in one group, and Leila and the rest in the other. Shortly after, it becomes apparent that a huge number of highly skilled Dracule are gathered together and it’s up to each team to investigate and come back alive.
I continue to really enjoy observing the characters and how they interact. There’s a lot of good mystery and we learn a little more since the last volume. In addition, there’s some really good humor. This is at the top of my manga list at the moment; I highly recommend it.
Things to consider:
This is rated for thirteen plus, and I would agree with that for the most part. It’s also geared towards boys. There is a poster of a sexy girl that gets mistaken for an instructional document, but the characters treat it with a fair amount of distaste. There’s little to no cursing, but there is a fair amount of action violence. I didn’t see anything inappropriate for this age group.
Opportunities for discussion:
I want to focus on something the bird-like Dracule said to Leila: “This is why you humans are such fun! You contain both fear and hope simultaneously.” This is a good statement, and contains much truth. We face many fears in our walk, and yet as believers we hold onto a hope that surpasses all understanding. Ask your kids what some of their fears are, and if they have any hope that they will be overcome. If they have none, share with them.
Past reviews in this series: