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XBlade - Ch 1 to 4

XBlade
Summary: Four years ago, a large scale disaster in Tokyo claimed two million lives. The remaining thirteen districts of the city were isolated into the Tokyo Barricade Zone. Morisaki Harumi, an unruly kid with great fighting strength, is his family's sole survivor from the incident.

One day, in a traffic accident, Haru gets pulled into a world of violence and meets Mana, the girl who turned herself into an ancient sword.

Impressions
The action is good and there is a lot of it. Our hero, Haru, is a fighter and a damned good one at that. In fact, his fighting ability almost seems unnatural and there's a good chance his ability was brought about by being the sole survivor of the catastrophe 4 years ago. Mana is not how I expected her to be (was thinking maybe a Enma Ai from Jigoku Shoujo type girl). She's blunt, violent, knows what she wants and is not going to take shit. It was actually a nice surprise to see her first request to be for food, seemed natural after being cooped up for a few hundred years.

The supporting characters, Haru's two buddies Kazunari and Sunae (in order of appearance) are alright. Since I've only read the first 4 chapters, and those being focused on getting the mystery/hunt for Mana developed, there hasn't been much about them yet. Both seem to just be looking out for their friend who seems to get into fights more than any normal person should in a lifetime. Kazunari looks to be the sensitive, long haired bishi. Sunae is a harsh mouthed girl who has a soft spot for Haru. Rather generic but hopefully they'll become something more later on.

Its a good start, I'm definitely interested in reading more of this series as it comes out, especially to find out exactly what Mana would need to do 300+ years after going to sleep as well as to figure out what the two groups (Seven Sheaths and Hollyhock). Only thing I don't want to find out about is Haru's little problem (Sunae feels the need to bring up his phimosis a few times to torment him...).
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March 2008

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