By Ichiei Ishibumi and Miyama-Zero. Released in Japan by Fujimi Fantasia Bunko. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Haydn Trowell.
This may be the least horny DxD volume to date. Which, trust me, means it’s still ridiculously horny, and filled with consensual groping and non-consensual destruction of clothing. But the title is actually High School DxD, and this volume wants to remind you of the first part, as Issei and his class are going to Kyoto. And they actually do make an effort to put in the “look, I did the research” work. There are, of course, supernatural bad things going on on their trip. And they naturally seem to center around Issei. But his teachers say to leave it to them, and to try to have a normal fun school trip. Which makes sense. Most of our protagonists are either demons, fallen angels, or angels, and “high school romcom” is theoretically not high on the list of things they have to do. Unless you’re High School DxD, of course, where Issei cannot walk two steps without having another gorgeous young woman fall in love with him. This volume’s candidate is very young indeed.
As noted, everyone’s off to Kyoto!… well, almost everyone. Rias and Akeno are, of course, one grade higher than Issei, so aren’t going, much to their annoyance. That said, everything is official and they even have special thingummies that will allow them to visit the very religious temples without, y’know, bursting into flames or the like. Things are going well… despite a growing rash of breast gropers among the populace. And the elementary-school aged fox girl who demands that Issei give back her mother, who has been kidnapped. That said, if you recall the events of the seventh volume and wonder “if this perhaps the work of the guys trying to reverse engineer balance breakers so humanity can fight angels and demons?”, you would be absolutely correct.
I will admit that the human side does have a point here, in that if you happen to know about angels and demons and dragons and the like, and they’re all fighting each other, you start to feel like a pointless statistic in comparison. That said, if you want humanity to triumph, I’m pretty sure “terrorist acts” is not the way to go. As for Issei, he’s getting better not only at fighting but also at leading, which is good because without Rias the group seems to lack anyone to give them strategy beyond “hit things very hard”. (Or heal things very hard, in Asia’s case.) I was also amused to see that Issei’s power is very similar to Izuku’s in My Hero Academia (which came out well after this book), complete with prior users who give him cryptic advice. And are also a fan of his signature breast moves. Which is a real sentence that I just typed out, and I still can’t really believe that.
So we’ve had the sports festival, and the class trip, so I think I know what’s coming next. Till then, enjoy a solid volume in this horny series.