Rust Blaster is one of the earliest works of the Black Butler Mangaka Yana Toboso. It is also one of the first official works as she has written YAOI stories in the past.
It focuses on two students who attend the 1000 years academy which specializes in education in supernatural matters and mercenary lifestyles. The school is attended by both humans and vampires to keep the balance with one another. Its set in a world where humans and vampires co-exist with both viewing each other with suspicion. The story in concept is not the most original but the ideas used in it was interesting.
All vampires in the story is born with a lineage weapon from their family line that only they can use. Aldred is the adopted son of Kain Van Elrio, the current headmaster of 1000 years academy. He does not have a lineage weapon and is an outcast at the school. He is the polar opposite of what vampires are supposed to be like. But as the leader of the division 6 group of the 1000 years academy he is held in high regard for his leadership and his peers are always there for him.
Kei is a human transfer student who was raised by the catholic church. He is the safeguard for the holy lance that only certain vampires can wield so that it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Every time he is forced to use the holy lance, he loses all of his basic abilities like writing, hearing and walking and eventually he becomes paralyzed. Kai also never experienced any form of leisure or luxury until he started attending the academy and he starts to develop more individuality when he starts to be around Aldred. Ironically enough, Aldred is able to use the Holy Lance despite his adopted heritage.
Aldred is more energetic and flamboyant compared to his vampire classmates. Kei is more reserved and calm. Both Kei and Aldred have to work together to stop a looming threat happening to the academy and also to the outside world. Kei and Aldred work well with one other, have great chemistry and develop a strong friendship.
There was some character development for both Kei and Aldred even though it was a short story. The characters were generally likable for the most part despite and the reader cares about them. The art style compared to Kaori Yuki’s works are more Shonen but it is still nicely drawn and each character had his\her own unique design. The gothic atmosphere was there and its more horror focused and action oriented than Black Butler. It was ultra violent at times but with a fair bit of black comedy.
The worst thing that can be said is its short length as its only 6 chapters. This results in some storylines not being fully developed and something left unexplained. Background information on the characters and the lore of the world was sparse. The ending was also a bit vague. Certain things didn’t make sense such as baking a cake during a dangerous situation at the academy. There were too many story ideas and too many characters for such a short book which put off the pacing. But these are minor flaws in an otherwise entertaining read.
It gets 4 stars out of 5.
A full anime series of this would really work.