Manga Review: Chrono Crusade Volume Two, by Daisuke Moriyama

The second volume of Chrono Crusade opens with a story about a ghost that is haunting the New York branch of the Magdalen Order. At the same time, we see that Rosette is having some problems staying awake. It takes everyone a while to figure out that the two are connected, and that the cause is Rosette’s pocket watch, which has apparently caused her soul to separate from her body. (We are reminded that the watch keeps Chrono from accidentally stealing all of Rosette’s time at once.) While Rosette is out of body, she has a strange dream that she finds very disturbing and decides to blame on Chrono.

Next, Rosette gets a call from Father Remington asking her to come pick her up at the train station. This turns out to be a trap set by a demon who seems to know where Joshua is. (Specifically, the creature states that she is going to take Rosette to Joshua.) Rosette and Remington are able to defeat the demon, which flees. We learn that Joshua has been sighted.

This leads to a long flashback that reveals how Rosette and Joshua met Chrono, why Aion wanted to kidnap Joshua and how Rosette ended up making a contract with Chrono. (Unlike the anime, Rosette and Chrono visit the orphanage where Rosette and Joshua grew up alone.) During the flashback, it is slightly hard to take Aion’s villain grandstanding serious because he is the scrawniest dang eagle ever. (If anyone ever meets Mr. Moriyama at a convention, could you please ask him what he used for a reference? Even for a manga-eagle, that bird was just wrong.)

After the visit to the orphanage, Rosette tries to get permission to go after Joshua. Rosette’s methods involve a lot of screaming and inappropriate language. When this does not go over very well, she attempts plan B which is sneaking off with Chrono. This is also not very successful: Rosette and Chrono get caught by Father Remington.

Remington sympathetic, and recommends Rosette apply for the Militia, since members of the Militia are allowed to go on missions on their own time. Rosette agrees to this idea, and Remington decides it would be a great idea to give her the exam in secret and then show the evidence to Sister Kate after the fact. (Because it is likely that Sister Kate would never have okayed having Rosette take the exam.) Remington sets up the Order’s obstacle course and sends Rosette down alone.

What Remington does not know however, because he did not bother to check, is that Azmaria is down in the obstacle course. Azmaria was supposed to be doing a simple beginner’s exercise, supervised by Sister Kate. What Azmaria gets is stuck in a “level twenty” obstacle course with an extra special bonus: Remington thought it would be a good idea to set loose a real evil spirit to test Rosette’s skill. This means that poor Azmaria gets possessed and Rosette has to rescue her. Sister Kate quite understandably wants to send in reinforcements, but listens to Remington when he says they should give Rosette a chance to prove herself. Rosette is successful in evicting the spirit, and Azmaria is able to manifest her wings for the first time since she lost her powers at the end of volume one. Rosette successfully passed the test, and now she, Chrono and Azmaria can go find Joshua.

At the end of the manga, we meet Joshua. (In person this time; the first time we see him, he is in a dream that Azmaria is having. Of course, it is equally possible that Azmaria was a dream that Joshua was having.) He is a very calm, dreamy kid who says spooky things, and he is attended by a young woman named Fiore who is wearing a maid’s uniform, cuffs, and a collar. Their conversation is interrupted by Pursuers who demand to see Aion. Joshua very politely tells them that “Master Aion” is not in. When the leader becomes belligerent, Joshua obliterates them. (This scene like so many others is much, much better in the manga than the anime.)

We end the volume with Joshua talking on the phone to Aion, telling him about what had happened. Aion is apparently in Las Vegas. We learn that Aion is looking for “Apostles,” that is to say, kids like Joshua and Azmaria. In the next volume, Chrono, Rosette and Azmaria make the acquaintance of Satella Harvenheit a bounty hunter known as Batman Hexen der Juwel.


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Filed under Chrono Crusade, fantasy, manga/anime, Review: Manga, science fiction elements

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