Illustrated by Flaviano, colored by Rico Renzi
Jessica, Eddie, and Marcel start off still trapped in Las Vegas, having learned some secrets to Jess’ lineage. Meanwhile, all over Earth, people aren’t dying like they’re supposed to, as the Reapers are not there to collect the newly departed and the Afterlife is thrown into chaos from Jess’ revelations. Despite not being able to return to the Afterlife, the three find some other figures straight out of Greek Mythology, including the Three Fates that tell Jess how she can fix everything by taking up the mantel she clearly doesn’t want. To make things a little more messy, an embodied form of Life gets entangled with Jess’ mom and tries to pay her a good deal of money for a special necklace in her possession.
Now that the Japan Defense Force sort of trusts Kafka to not lose himself to his kaiju form, they assign him and and Kikoru Shinomiya go to battle against Kaiju No. 9 with their new squad, an elite group headed by Captain Narumi. Kafka has some initial difficulties transforming into his Kaiju self because he’s afraid of the struggle with the Kaiju he's had internally - the fight he overcame was a little too close for his comfort, and he's worried about losing his humanity completely. Kaiju No. 9 has learned some tricks since last we all saw him, and he's able to transform in the middle of a fight with Captain Narumi.
Takano has precious little time to finish solving the mystery, as the clock has started again, and there are only a few classmates left. Suddenly, he realizes what he's been missing the whole time. We get a few scenes of flashback to fill in some details between Takano and some of the other students, including the one who took their own life and set this all in motion. There are a couple of other reveals that make the timeline of events make more sense, and there are a few characters who have been illustrated similarly that Arakawa makes sense of as well.
Akihito relives the day of the festival when their classmate commits suicide, and particular focus is on one student who Akihito could have done more for. Akihito witnesses him constantly being bullied, and often stands up for him, but lets a couple of encounters slide without helping. Akihito wonders if this is the person who committed suicide and trapped them here, and whether it was entirely his fault. After this, Akihito disappears and doesn't get a chance to discuss with the others what he has discovered. Rika also gets separated from the group and has a flashback of her own and also disappears.
Illustrated by Flaviano, colored by Rico Renzi
Jessica Harrow is a Reaper, responsible for helping the recently dead realize their death and then take them to the afterlife. On one of her many routine missions, Jessica suddenly crosses into the world of the living and interacts with people who are alive! This leads Jessica and her two friends, Marcel and Eddie, to start investigating what could be different and why she has this power that only one other reaper has ever had: the big guy himself, Death.
Owner, the spirit who runs the inn, is back again taking secrets from desperate folks or saving them from interesting predicaments. A odd-couple husband and wife come to Owner and find out their individual secrets could have saved them a lot of heartbreak over the years. Owner later tasks Butterfly and Spider to care for a baby who mysteriously shows up at the inn, and the two are terrified when the child starts disintegrating into cherry blossom petals. Afterwards, the two accidentally break one of Owner's clay vessels he uses to contain secrets, and the secret escapes. Spider and Butterfly must now learn how to make a new vessel out of bone clay, and they must retrieve the secret to replace it.
Kafka in his Kaiju form battles the powerful Kaiju from volume two and gives him a run for his money, but the bad guy ultimately escapes. Kafka also goes toe-to-toe with Vice-Captain Hoshina. He barely escapes with his life, and Hoshina vows to take down Kaiju No. 8 the next time. The bad Kaiju Kafka fought is given the code name Kaiju No. 9 and becomes a top target for the Japanese Defense Force. Kafka is finally promoted to Officer from Cadet, but there’s hardly any time to celebrate before a new group of Kaiju attack the base itself - tons of wyvern are working together, which they never do, and there's a main humanoid, high-level Kaiju pulling the strings.
Illustrated by Natsuko Uruma
Kiyoharu Saeyama is currently posing as a high school biology teacher, but that's only because he's really a Curse Breaker on the hunt for the next Curse Killer. He's contracted to find those who make pacts with Curse Gods, and break their contracts before too many people die. He has some special abilities that help him trace Curse Killers - he's able to ask the dead one question about their contractor in the hopes of narrowing down the suspect pool. Curse killings also come with several unbreakable rules, and they're not exactly spelled out for the Killers. So, while they're busy making sure they meet their quota of kills per month, Killers must also find out the rules and make sure their kills go off without a hitch. If they successfully fulfill the terms of their contract, the Curse Gods will bestow on them immense power.
This volume picks up at right at the moment Volume 1 ended, which means the recruits are still in the middle of their entrance test. All hell broke loose right at the end as a very powerful kaiju started sabotaging the test and bringing dead monsters back to life. Kafka and Leno come to Kikori’s aid as a humanoid Kaiju takes her to her limit. Kafka transforms in front of her but ultimately saves her life. The test concludes and the recruits get their results - Leno is in as an officer, but Kafka nearly fails. The review panel brings him in as a cadet as some feel he is a hard worker and can provide some comic relief to the squad. Kafka now has to work twice as hard if he’s going to catch up to Captain Mina, his childhood friend.
Yuki and Zero are part of the Discipline Committee at their high school, Cross Academy, tasked with keeping the Night Class and the Day Class separated. When it’s time for the Night Class to go to school, they herd the rest of the Day Class to their dorms like a batch of cats in heat. All the girls have the hots for the beautiful guys of the Night Class, but Yuki and Zero know the deadly consequences of letting the two classes mingle. That's because the Night Class is full of vampires. These vampires are "pacifists" and agree not to feast on humans at least until they're done with their schooling. Both Discipline Committee members have tragic backstories: Yuki was saved ten years ago from a vampire attack and adopted by the headmaster of Cross Academy, while Zero's entire family was slaughtered by vampires in front of him. A budding romance may derail the efforts to keep the classes separated, while Zero goes through an unwanted transformation that will completely change the dynamic of the Discipline Committee.
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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