In the last volume, we saw a gimps of Issa’s past and how he used to be on the side of the Dracules. We then learn how Hibiki from Squad Six is after Issa’s Captain’s position—as if the issue with Sōsei wanting revenge isn’t enough. With this we open into the next volume.
On an infiltration mission, Squad Zero assists Squad Six. The purpose is to find the Yara Clan’s inside contact within the Mikuni government. During the mission Issa follows his special orders and separates from the group only to find himself at a dead end. Hibiki from Squad Six shows up, and at first Issa thinks this is an accident, but he soon learns it was a setup. Hibiki uses this opportunity to attack Issa (which is forbidden to do against a captain.) Unfortunately for Issa, his injury from before led to his downfall.
Later the Squad goes out to assist in a cleanup of spell notes, which have gone rampant when a VIUS truck turns over. Issa ends up getting separated (again) when following evidence of an escaped creature that has the same kind of restrictive collar that Issa and the dog have. He finds the creature (called an Igunido) in the sewer and ends up protecting it from a Dracule that snuck in.
Later still, Sōsei joins his old Squad on a mission of a possible virus infection within the city limits. He is faced with children protecting their supposedly infected mother and is reminded of his sister’s situation; where Issa had to kill her before she became a Dracule. It scares Sōsei when he almost comes to justify Issa’s actions that lead to her death. Thankfully for Sōsei, he did not have to make that decision, but this triggered Sōsei’s blind vengeance and so we end the volume with him pointing a sword in Issa’s face; challenging him to a fight to the death.
I laughed out loud when the “Dog”—that lurks in Squad Zero’s ready room—accidentally said “Thanks” to Leila. Yes, that’s right, human words. They both freaked out. Later, the dog shows up—in a short time from a far distance—after Issa called it to help him with the mysterious Igunido. There’s more going on here and I can’t wait to read more to find out what. If this series has not hooked you yet, then the comedy, tension, and character situations of this volume are sure to do so.
Things to consider:
As is the other books in this series, the rating stays at ages thirteen plus. There are two things that may be taken as inappropriate. (1) When Issa is asked what he likes about Aoi, he dreamily says he likes her breasts. (2) Later, when trying to get Leila to stop hounding him about the condition of his injury, he starts to say “Broken” and changes the “Br” to “Breast” then lightly pokes her breast with chopsticks. Of course she pounds him silly, but it worked: it changed the subject. Now, this is Japanese humor, and quite honestly, when read in the context, it’s pretty mild and pretty funny. Get that? Funny, not serious. But still, I have to warn the sensitive parent.
Opportunities for discussion:
It is sometimes unclear what the right thing to do is. As Sōsei discovers when confronted with the children protecting their mother. This is a good lesson for life, as things are not always so black and white. Ask your teen what they would have done in Sōse’s place. Now, sit back and listen without interrupting. The more you listen, the more your teen will feel like they can confide in you.
Past reviews in this series: