is a Manga*
written by Shinya Murata
and drawn by Byun-Jin Kim
. It chronicles the life of a mercenary
named Nichol, son of another mercenary, in Friedrichs town of Cicero City, which also houses other mercenaries generally grouped under the Jackals
and two major gangs, the Mafia-like
Gabriella and the Triad-like Tennouren. The story kicks off when Nichol, after finishing one of his jobs, is assaulted by a Gabriella executive and kills him in retaliation, causing the rest of Gabriella to hunt him. However, they are impeded by the ever-growing Tennouren, who just loses their former leader who is swiftly replaced by his genius daughter.
Jackals provide examples of:
- Absurdly Sharp Blade
- Always Save the Girl: Nichol.
- Animal Motifs: Alligators for Nichol, snakes for Arshela and bats for Franco.
- Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy
- Ax Crazy
- Badass: Pretty much every combatant who has more than three chapters worth of screen time qualifies.
- Berserk Button: Julio Angelo hates being called a kid.
- Big Bad: Lee Mei Lang. Actually, it's Franco
- Blood-Splattered Innocents: Sheryl when Roxy died on top of her.
- Break the Cutie/Harmful to Minors: Nichol.
- BFS: Nichol's Alligator and Huya's Requiem. Isaac's claymore may also count.
- Cat Fight: Averted. When Domino and Arshela fight, given the nature of both opponents, there's nothing "cute" about their fight.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: A Gabriellan, Vampire Franco seems to have this trait.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Blood Witch Domino's specialty. So much that vivisection is her hobby.
- Combat Medic: Inoue used to be a doctor during times of war. And since he's also Bad Ass...
- Conservation of Ninjutsu
- Crapsack World: Thanks to the gangs and the crimes. The irony is lampshaded by the head police officer, who laments that Friedrichs town, whose name means peaceful, is anything but.
- Dark Action Girl: Roxy, Arshela and Domino.
- Dark-Skinned Blond: Nichol and Roxy.
- Death by Origin Story: Nichol's mom and Huya's dad. The former turns out to be alive though.
- Diagonal Cut: Too many examples.
- Died Standing Up: Isaac.
- Distressed Damsel: Sheryl.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: Roxy is very badly injured in her fight with her son, enough so that he's convinced he killed her. She then marches up who knows how many flights of stairs just in time to do a Big Damn Heroes for Sheryl via decapitating Shao the Decapitator. She then proceeds to Human Shield Sheryl from Franco's machineguns long enough for Nichol and Huya to get the drop on Franco and his guards. BADASS, THY NAME IS ROXY.
- Enemy Mine: Hans just hates the idea of teaming up with Nichol.
- Enfant Terrible: Julio Angelo.
- Equal-Opportunity Evil: Unlike her father, Lee Mei Lang is indiscriminate when it comes to hiring people for Tenouren.
- Eyepatch of Power: Don Salieri is the leader of Gabriella as long as he wears his eyepatch. Which somehow has a bunny picture on it.
- Fake Defector: Cornelio. He is always a Gabriellan, but when Tennouren takes over Gabriella thanks to Franco's betrayal, he pretends to side with Tennouren until he reveals to Arshela he's always been a Gabriellan, after goading her to kill him with Domino to atone for the 'betrayal'.
- Feel No Pain: Domino once gets stabbed at her heart. She then proceeds to torture her assailant as if nothing happened. A few chapters after that, she also happily slices her own tongue in the midst of torturing her victim. Cornelio eventually finds out her trick, allowing Arshela to finish her off.
- Femme Fatale: Arshela, complete with the snake-headed whip.
- Hot Mom: Roxy.
- Human Shield: Poor Nichol once became one during the night her mother was 'killed'.
- Roxy herself becomes one for Sheryl.
- Iaijutsu Practitioner: Claude.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: Shao to Sheryl. This eventually ends when a very badly wounded Roxy decides enough's enough.
- Insistent Terminology: Don Salieri demands that he be called Don only if he wears his eyepatch. This is mostly because he is also the mayor of the town.
- Karmic Death: Huya cuts Franco into pieces. Shao the Decapitator is decapitated by Roxy while molesting Sheryl in front of Nichol. Roxy dies after protecting Sheryl for the sake of her son Nichol.
- Knife Nut: Julio.
- Knight Templar: One police officer is hellbent on upholding the law by punishing (read: executing) anyone who breaks them. For example, he kills both a mugger and his victim, the former because he tries to mug, the latter because she is in the street past the curfew.
- Mama Bear: Roxy knows just how much Sheryl means to Nichol and so uses the last of her life to protect her when Franco and Shao try to use her as leverage against Nichol.
- Mentor Occupational Hazard/Killed Off for Real: The Don to Isaac, Isaac to Hans and in a twisted way, Roxy to Nichol.
- Missing Mom: Roxy.
- More than Mind Control: Lee Mei Lang's specialty. She can compel people to join her with a select few words.
- Mr. Fanservice: Nichol and Huya.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Basically everyone with a title, but Shinigami Roxy tops them all.
- Never a Self-Made Woman: So deliciously subverted it makes the series stand out for this. Not only has pure Badass Nichol been trained by his... MOTHER - you read that right - but also the Big Bad is... a WOMAN, and she is even better than her father in her evildoing. Although she ends up not being tha actual Big Bad, but nevertheless still a Magnificent Bitch.
- No, I Am Behind You: Isaac's favorite trick.
- No Shirt, Long Jacket: Nichol and Huya, the latter of which sometimes mixes this with bandages.
- Off with His Head!: Bye-bye, Shao!
- Only in It for the Money: Well, the Jackals are mercenaries... Also, this is Don Salieri's thought on why Vampire Franco follows him. Unfortunately, Franco is greedier than that.
- Pet the Dog: While Lee Mei Lang does escape with Sheryl for practical reasons, she also did it as a favor to Roxy (for Roxy's reasons, see Mama Bear) and because if Sheryl DID hang around while Nichol and Huya fought, she'd definitely get hurt somehow.
- Poisoned Weapon: Specialty of Cornelio, Gabriella's poison expert.
- Professional Killer: Members of the Jackals are assassins-for-hire.
- Rasputinian Death: Roxy tanks a truly frightening amount of damage before death.
- Razor Wind / Sword Beam: Claude, in tune with his iaijutsu. If he ever unsheathes his sword, Oh Crap.
- Red Baron: Each important executive of Gabriella and Tennouren has one/two word as their title, such as Cyclone Claude, Bear Shao etc. The best Jackals mercenaries also have one, such as Alligator Nichol and Shinigami Roxy.
- Revolvers Are Just Better: Richard, The Bolt.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Shao really doesn't know his place.
- Smug Snake: Franco. Eventually, this catches up with him.
- Stuff Blowing Up: Hans's specialty. His favorite trick is to hide a small but highly-explosive bomb in a white rose.
- They Call Him Sword: Nichol's and Huya's nicknames come from their respective weapons, Alligator and Requiem respectively
- Too Dumb to Live: Shao really isn't good at figuring out when he should or shouldn't Kick the Dog.
- Torture Technician: Domino.
- Training from Hell: Those whom Meilang wants in Tennouren will be subjected to this. Not only they will have to fight several powerful opponents at once in a dungeon, their bodies are weakened first.
- Turn Out Like His Mother: Roxy laments this with her son Nichol while dying.
- Whip It Good: Arshela.
- White-Haired Pretty Boy: Nichol who is the son of a...
- Worthy Opponent: Nichol and Huya.
- Would Hurt a Child: Oh no, we're totally NOT going to show a woman kill an innocent child, this is just SO wrong... oh wait... Did Roxy just bisect this 7 year-old child???
- You Are in Command Now:Isaac to Hans.