Forum › Posts by Heavensrun

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joined Dec 11, 2017

That bit wherever she said 'Don't go'? I suspect the cause of that will also have something to do with why she didn't believe Kozuka's confession. Hopefully we'll get to learn a bit more about that

I imagine she suspects that Kozuka's efforts to make more money are an attempt to get out of their arrangement. Which they are, but not for the reason she thinks. She thinks Kozuka wants to be free of her, Kozuka actually wants the arrangement to get out of the way of their relationship.

we are approaching dangerous levels of mommy roleplay

wait... when she looked at that mom with her kid, was she jealous of the kid?

edit: also this chapter needs an insane amounts of head pats tag.

We don't know her home life or background, so it's possible, but it's also possible that she was thinking about the whole lesbians/children thing. There are a lot of barriers to same-sex parenting in Japan, and wanting children is often a reason past relationships have failed in yuri manga stories. It's a common fear among gay people, especially people who have feelings for someone that is straight or bi, that they'll eventually want to move on to a relationship that can lead to children.

Heavensrun
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I think the person who suggested that this is the author rushing through the plot points they had planned is spot on. I think they had this beautiful mental image of a slow burn arc where Uta goes to college and has somebody crush on her while Kaoru sorts her life out while taking strength from Uta's love, and they were told to just finish it because readers are losing interest and this is the author just going "oh goddammit fuck fuck fine here's what it was going to be whatevs i'm done"

I mean, I'm pretty sure the idea here is that Uta and Kaoru are effectively married at this point.

Fun point to note, We're all saying double timeskip...I think there's actually three. First we skip to immediate post-divorce Kaoru, THEN we jump to Uta in college, THEN we jump to domestic bliss.

Heavensrun
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This kind of amuses me, like, there was all this grumpiness here in the forums about the prospect of a time skip?

WELL HAVE TWO OF THEM, YA WHINY BASTARDS.

I know it's probably not a direct reaction, but it honestly kind of feels like one. ;p

(Edit: Oh, but srsly my hot take is that this has "canned by the publisher" energy.)

last edited at Oct 19, 2020 9:16PM

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I hope the mods never give in to the pressure to add the spoiler tags. The entire point of the manga was to shock readers, and that doesn't happen if you know the girl is a yandere from the start.

maybe there are people who have zero interest in edgy dark twists but end up having to read all of the stories that are like this because some people think it's some sort of sacred experience that can't be hinted at by the tags.

Actually, "spoiler" tags would be a neat functionality. Like tags that say "spoiler" and when you click on them they turn into the appropriate tags? Then people who want to spoil the twist could do so, and to anybody else, it at worst suggests that there's -some- kind of reveal, which could be virtually anything.

No idea if it could be implemented, though.

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joined Dec 11, 2017

Come on Tetsu, I expected an immediate hug after that. I guess it's time to confront the parents. Gotta say tho that wasn't a very nice thing Mogu said to their mom. Could have been handled better but then again dad isn't exactly father of the year.

Mogu is a child in an abusive household. Their mother is also struggling and confused, but the dad is an abusive shithead who treats his kids like shit just because he's never bothered to understand them. You shouldn't hold an abused child responsible for lashing out in frustration.

Heavensrun
Image Comments 02 Sep 13:06
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1295517616380039176

Catra explicitly ran the horde extremely efficiently and was a dangerously effective second in command for Hordak. She also regularly figures out how to use things to her advantage, often on the fly. Like, girl had never seen a teleporter before in her life and she shoved Glimmer in one and just figured it out.

Everything dumb Catra ever does is explicitly motivated by her psychological problems, not a lack of intelligence.

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^I feel like Yashiro exerts some kind of influence that makes others take her presence for granted as one of her supernatural traits. Though I don't think what her deal is will ever be fully explained, her mysteriousness is part of the joke/charm.

It was fun at first as far as I'm concerned, now for me, it's just starting to really really wear off :\ and I don't even think she particularily adds anything to the story, although I was waiting for her to have some kind of importance.

i didn't particularly MIND her til this last chapter. i mean, COME ON who doesn't notice a whole fucking (scuse the language but reading that was really stupid >.>) CHILD in their bag??? and how the hell is she just carrying her around???? i know they mention she's light, but not THAT light,

I mean, yes she is. She literally is. This has come up before, whenever anybody lifts her up, it's like she's barely even there. She's impossibly light.

I think a lot of people here are suddenly realizing that no, the joke is not that Yashiro is a reasonably normal girl with blue hair that claims to be an alien.

Yashiro is a bizarre freak of nature who defies all understandings of physics and biology. Simply by getting inside Shimamura's bag, she has transformed it into a sort of bag of holding, from which she can easily retrieve any object asked for and store any object given. She probably literally swims around in the space inside. It's like a Tardis in there right now, is my point.

and you CAN'T just hide the angles of her body!! jesus christ lol. it REALLY pulled you out of the amazing mood of that last chapter. really disappointed that was put in there.

I vaguely remember reading some cultural commentary when I was first getting into anime, which suggested that because of the sort of open, malleable structure of the classical shinto religion, and the way the country was rebuilt after WWII and incorporated bits and bobs of western culture alongside Japanese traditionalism, Japanese people don't really have any problem blending seemingly disparate elements into a larger whole. Modern and ancient, Grounded and fantastical, realistic and cartoonish, there's no sense of dissonance in that culture. Or maybe even the dissonance is literally part of the culture. This is why so many anime have this weird, fundamentally distinct combination of sex appeal, existential angst, slapstick humor, visceral tragedy, etc.

It's part of what makes anime and manga (along with japanese video games) so distinct, and it means, basically, if you're gonna keep enjoying this stuff, sometimes you have to just be aware that occasionally your cute grounded slice of life coming of age lesbian romcom is going to have weird aliens that can hide in luggage without being noticed.

last edited at Sep 2, 2020 12:55PM

Heavensrun
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A wild childhood male friend appeared. He used misunderstanding. It's super effective!

For fuck's sake, man.... Also what's with Kuro? I don't quite get her mind set...

She wants Fujishiro to be off the market so she doesn't have to confront her own feelings, probably.

Heavensrun
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Yeah this introducing a male character to move the plot is kinda dumb. Hoping he becomes like YagaKimi's Maki instead.

Given how quickly this series dealt with most other drama, this is what I'm expecting (and hoping for).

Honestly given the structure of the story and the scene, I think it's likely his entire purpose in the story is to trigger a misunderstanding by having Fujishiro see them talking and conclude that Kurokawa lied and went on a date with a boy.

Heavensrun
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Ha ha ha ha what

Heavensrun
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joined Dec 11, 2017

Is Mikanuji trying to pass off OoT as a multiplayer FPS? This is an outrage! Time to drop an otherwise enjoyable manga I've been following since the beginning! Harumph!

Streamers sometimes play more than one game. ;p

Heavensrun
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Am I the only one who has absolutely zero idea what’s going on? I can’t tell the new characters apart, I don’t understand their relationship to one another, no idea.

The Blond with long hair is a manga artist (pen name "Heke") and a bit of a slacker. The darker haired girl is her editor, Shinohara, who is also a streamer who goes by Lala (or "Rara" in earlier chapters) online. They're friends online who game together, and they're both secretly in love with one another. We -thought- that Heke was oblivious to the fact that her friend who she loves is also her editor, but it turns out she's known from the very beginning and has been trying to drop hints to get Shino to make a move, but Shino thinks that Heke hates her, so she's afraid to reveal that the editor (she thinks) Heke hates is actually also the online friend she loves.

Shinohara is also friends with Iori from way back, they went to school together, which is how these two tie back to the main cast.

Heavensrun
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So for this part, I'm gonna do my best to stay calm, but there's a lot here that actively made me angry, so forgive me if that bleeds through, and if I'm misunderstanding your point, feel free to correct me.

Honestly I feel like Kaoru deserves better than to settle for somebody just because they like her, too.

Sick people deserve treatment, not palliatives. I mean, it's not like I think Uta is incapable of helping her, or that it couldn't work out, but it's not an ideal starting place for a relationship.

Reiichi was the palliative, Uta has been helping her grow and confront her issues, it is literally right there in these last few chapters.

Uta is definitely good for Kaoru right now, which is why I said Uta isn't incapable of helpling her, but depression is an illness and emotional trauma is an injury, and Uta is not a doctor.

A friend can nurse you through a cold, but you should go to a doctor for a broken leg, a heart attack should be treated at the hospital, and crippling mental health issues deserve a trained therapist.

Even though Uta left before she woke up and she hasn't seen her since, plus the last few chapters seeing her worst fears essentially confirmed Kaoru hasn't completely broken down the way she did when she was "lost".

I'd be more worried about a relationship where the partners don't help each other than one where they do. Just so long as you are mindful of their needs too, recognizing someone who can meet your emotional needs can be a sign of healthy self-awareness.

There is nothing particularly magic about therapy, people should reach out for help however works for them. Kaoru's problems aren't unusual or complex - she needed to confront her fears (and her hopes) - and now she is doing that. No magic words are going to "fix" the fact that she doesn't like being alone, and wants to be loved; nor should they: most people "need" close friends/family to some extent. It is even perfectly human for her to fear being alone, just so long as she doesn't let fear stop her living her life.

Yeah, but also Kaoru has episodes of acute depression that are literally paralyzing, her trauma and loneliness resulted in her entering and staying in a loveless marriage, and when she was living on her own, she was explicitly shown to have difficulty taking care of herself. This is the kind of thing that a therapist is specifically trained to help a person deal with.

I don't expect her to end up in therapy, because way too many japanese people think like you apparently do and think therapy is unnessecary. And that's WRONG AND BAD, because it undercuts the many reasons why people might need an actual medical professional because friends and loved ones can't always give the kind of support they need.

The classic trope of chronic "confessionals"/life-coaching with a therapist (American TV style) is just a symptom of having no one in their life they trust enough to confide in (also handy for writers to drop emotional exposition, lol).

(deep breath) (exhale slowly) I love my family and friends dearly and I trust them with my life. But they are not doctors. Therapy is NOT a symptom of not having anyone to confide in. It's medical treatment. And the way you seem to dismiss it is actively harmful bullshit.

Even if you trust and want to confide in your friends, family, or lover(s), that does not mean that you always -can-. There are things you might not necessarily want to voice to just anyone, or insights that specifically come from someone being a trained health professional. Therapists do more than just listen to you talk, there are a variety of different kinds of therapies for different sorts of mental health problelms. But more importantly, they can help to identify underlying problems and disorders that hinder your ability to help yourself.

Heavensrun
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So there's a lot here, and I might not get every single point, but I'll try to apply the broad strokes.

You are worst-casing this scenario. "Society" is just made up of people. Uta and Kaoru in a relationship would have little noticeable difference in public (PDA isn't much of a thing in Japan), only those close to them would know the difference (even if they notice, people who don't know them don't know the "famiily" connection anyway, so no worse than any other yuri). Reiichi is easygoing to a fault, and his only consistent motivation has been their wellbeing, it is extremely unlikely he would disown either of them for being together (it would also be nice growth for Reiichi to realize he can support Kaoru in ways other than just marrying her; the implication is he was more comfortable as her onii-san anyway).

First of all, you have to consider the worst case and how likely it might be when considering your future. Dismissing something entirely because it is the worst case scenario is incredibly naive. Worst case scenarios often happen, and sometimes they're actually pretty likely. Secondly, We're not just talking about the family connection, we're talking about the family connection, the age gap, the fact that Uta's underage and can't take care of herself, as well as the fact that nobody there has a really robust friend group, so if it turns out that Kaoru got a bad die roll on her "are my friends bigots" check, she could find herself more isolated than ever in very short order. Sure, they seem chill, but you never know. We know Uta's friends aren't judgemental, but they are also underage and not financially independent.

And it's a small world. Your boss's neice turns out to be your neighbor. The lady that works at the cafe you applied to turns out to know your best friend. The bitchy coworker in HR turns out to be from your high school, and your circles of friends overlap. If your living situation is perfectly accepted by society, then that's harmless enough, but if you're gay and closeted, it's something you have to worry about. If you're also dating somebody many years younger, and you have a family connection that is unusual, that's a greater worry. If it's actually illegal because they're underage, that's straight up dangerous.

I suspect you've never had a friend who faced death threats because somebody lied about their lifestyle. I have. And they didn't even -do- the thing they were accused of. Rumors can ruin lives.

Now if you have two adults in independent living situations who are spending time together, it's pretty easy to dismiss that as not-your-fucking-business buddy, BUT when one of them is a minor? And the sister of the ex husband? And they've been close since Uta was really small? Like REALLY small?

WE know there's nothing predatory going on, but from the outside in that looks cringe as fuck, and a lot of people would look at that situation and leap straight to the conclusion that Kaoru is a straight up predator. There are REASONS adults aren't supposed to date high school students. It isn't just some arbitrary thing.

And it doesn't take much to kick that off. Even if they have the wherewithal to try and hide it, maybe a neighbor sees them kiss, or even just hug, and hears from another neighbor that Uta called Kaoru's ex "Onii-chan" and now they're on somebody's radar. Gossip starts. Maybe Kaoru's boss hears about it and is worried about how it could reflect on the company. Maybe Uta's classmates get word of it and start spreading rumors, and now her daily life is full of bullying and social ostracization.

It isn't a whole lot different than the stay-apart for a time-skip option - they would still have to "make their way", just a question of doing that separately or together. There is a good chance Uta is aiming for a scholarship, since there is no way she wants her mother calling the shots until she graduates. Uta's mother could try to make trouble, but the clear implication is that anyone who knows her doesn't like her, so her disapproval may have limited impact. Kaoru still has to figure out how to support herself, the only difference would be whether she has a supportive relationship while she does that.

Yeah, it doesn't matter if nobody likes Uta's mom, she's her MOTHER, and she has legal guardianship of Uta, because Uta is a minor. Popularity does not matter in criminal or civil court. But we don't actually know anything about how much influence she has in general. She could be besties with the prime minister for all we know. literally all we know is her home life.

We weren't given any info on the financials and we have been preconditioned to think of handmade jewelry as something middle class housewives do as an indulgent hobby, but there are people who make a living off it too.
There is the possibility that what seemed like a background detail was setting the scene for Kaoru's financial independence (mostly just that it doesn't have to be literally getting a job; but we also know she has managed to hold down a job in the past).

I'm well aware that Kaoru is almost certainly capable of self-support and may in fact be helping support her household as it is. I've made that argument myself on these pages. But supporting yourself and supporting yourself and a high school girl (especially if she intends to go to college) are two very different things. And if Kaoru is supporting Uta financially, that puts a troublesome power balance in the relationship that is problematic in it's own right, to say nothing of how it looks to others.

Finally those are all practical difficulties. Unrequited or not, this is a romance story, traditionally they tend more to overcoming practical difficulties than surrendering to them.

And as I said, if you want drama to put the characters through the wringer, than by all means have them get together right away, but if you want a happily ever after in short order, that's going to be more credible if they focus on improving their respective situations first, and the passage of time is the only remedy for some of their specific challenges.

I'm not saying they would have to leap into bed together, but I think they would have to at least address the relationship possibility before any major time skip. Without setting the scene and putting characters on a justified trajectory a time skip coming back with everything "fixed" is just deus ex machina.

That is not what deus ex machina means. A time skip in which the characters have continued to live their lives normally and have attained better self-sufficiency is not a deus ex machina, it's arguable whether you would even call it a contrivance, because you don't have to contrive the passsage of time.

There is scope for time skips, but not as a fixit. They have a lot of things to work though, so time intervals where they are dating (or even pre-dating, in each others lives, working out their feelings without labels) would be quite reasonable before it came to sex or moving in together.

Yes, but one of the problems is explicitly that Uta is a high school student, and you cannot fix that problem with anything besides graduation and employment.

I mean, the BEST case scenario, in all of this, is that Reiichi and Uta's parens and Kaoru's friends are all chill and understanding of Kaoru saying "Hey, I'm divorcing my husband because he doesn't love me but I'm gonna go out with his sister because she does." Then she could have some innocent, non-sexy-times dates with Uta while she's still a minor, Uta wouldn't have to worry about being disowned and homeless because her mom is cool with it, and nobody's judging them. They'd have a supportive friend group to help them deal with any external threats. And most people would read that and go "PFFFFFFFT YEAH SURE WHATEVER" but yeah, it isn't impossible. It'd definitely be a jarring swerve from the tone of the rest of the series.

tldr: shutting off all contact and trying desperately to quit each other for four years, then doing a complete about-face because of some arbitrary social milestone doesn't feel like it makes a whole lot of sense.

I didn't say a single word about shutting off all contact or trying to quit each other for four years. I said they shouldn't rush into a romantic relationship while Uta is still a high school student who is dependent on her parents.

Heavensrun
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Honestly I feel like Kaoru deserves better than to settle for somebody just because they like her, too.

Emotionally Uta is about as important to Kaoru as Reiichi is, that part wouldn't be settling. Sexually, who knows.

Yeah, but Uta likes Kaoru romantically, and Kaoru hasn't expressed that kind of feeling for her before. She's had some quasi-romantic substitute-for-my-husband behaviors, but that's not much of a foundation. Right now Kaoru's in rebound territory, and that's a problem to any relationship she might start to pursue with -anybody- right now. Is she actually into Uta, or is she just trying to salve the injury of realizing that Reiichi isn't going to love her back the way she wants? This is another part of why them getting together right away is a bad idea. It's not like rebound relationships never work, but there are a lot of factors in Kaoru's situation that could leave her predisposed to grab the first thing available to her, and that can mean diving into a relationship she isn't -actually- interested in. Going out with someone because they're the only person that's ever really shown interest is the literal definition of settling.

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joined Dec 11, 2017

But is it -cross dressing- if that deception has no bearing on what you choose to wear, since "dressing" is specifically part of the term? Isn't it just a -lie- at that point, and not the specific behavior of cross dressing?

I see that it's definitely a case that's up to debate and it's okay to disagree, but I think Kanda wearing a corset to, however ineffectually, hide outward signs of her being female, does constitute choosing what she wears to pass as the opposite gender.

I mean you say it's the addition of deliberate deception, but deliberate deception isn't even a necessary part of cross dressing. Drag queens and crossplayers usually aren't trying to deceive anyone at all, they're just wearing clothes they like or dressing as characters they admire.

There are required parts to a definition, and sufficient parts to a definition. Deliberate deception is not necessary to crossdressing, but if you dress a way to deliberately deceive and pass for the opposite gender (or whatever different gender, depending on how you view the spectrum), I would say that is sufficient to classify the act as crossdressing.

I feel like the element that makes cross-dressing what it is isn't deception, but a deviation from expected norms, be they personal or societal. An intent to deceive -can- be part of that, but it isn't necessarily.

Even if we ignore my argument that deliberate deception is sufficient to call it crossdressing, isn't it true that she, through the way she behaves and dresses, deviates from expected norms and is by your definition crossdressing as well?

Eh, but there's what's normal for the person, what's normal for society, and what's normal for a specific person operating within society. Generally it isn't considered weird for a girl to wear things like pants, jeans, t-shirts, button-up shirts, and jackets. if it wasn't for her slender figure and....(ahem) understated busom, I don't think anybody would think her mode of dress was unusual for a girl. It's tomboyish, but cross dressing just seems like a high bar. I think the fact that she bound her chest with a corset is probably the closest she's come (which turned out to be unnecessary anyway)

But my point is that it's ambiguous; not that she definitely isn't cross dressing. So if it's ambiguous at all, the question becomes "when is the tag most appropriate in ambiguous situations?" If the tag is to alert to people who want content related to the tag, then using it in ambiguous cases might be disappointing or misleading. If the tag is to ward people away from content they -don't- want, then using it in ambiguous cases is "better safe than sorry". Thing is, in this case I think even the purpose of the tag itself is ambiguous, because I think both of those scenarios come into play sometimes, which further complicates the question of "should it be tagged crossdressing".

I just feel like the answer to the question is pretty fuzzy in this case.

Heavensrun
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Kaoru needs to take her ass to therapy ASAP

Correction *Everyone in this manga needs to take their ass to therapy, after rereading the series, everyone seems to be going through some sort of shit.

*Reiichi: Doesn't love his wife, still in love with his ex, chained up to a fake marriage born out of pure guilt, has been carrying the weight of a promise for years and can't let go.

*Risako: Cannot accept or understand her own feelings and ends up destroying them, even went as far as to get between a marriage, lack of empathy.

*Kaoru: Has been showing signs of depression for a while now, is in a fake and toxic marriage.

*Uta: Doesn't really have "issues" infact she's actually distancing herself and recovering from the hurt of unrequited love, which is a good thing, but she's sure as hell gonna catch some if she doesn't stay away from Kaoru, but what are the chances that'll actually happen?

Uta is actually shockingly well adjusted, all things considered. I mean holy shit just look at her parents.

Heavensrun
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It would be a clusterfuck, which, I mean, if you want drama, then yeah, it'll definitely get that, but I have the suspicion that the person saying they don't want a time skip just wants a happy ending, and that is -not- a happy ending.

You think this author doesn't have the ability to handwave problems away or to ass-pull a happy ending? I don't believe you've been paying attention in class . . .

I mean I'm not saying they -won't- do that, I'm just making an argument that they shouldn't. ;p I mean, for all we know, there is no time skip, but the protagonists will just run blindly into all of the hurdles I mentioned and this will be a thirty-volume long shipwreck soap opera of epic proportions. ;p

But you're right that a time-skip would be the most rational way to get to a Uta-Kaoru romantic ending (which I am opposed to on humanitarian grounds--plucky Uta deserves far better than Depresso-Denial-san--but which I favor on the grounds that trainwrecks are spectacular events when they happen).

Honestly I feel like Kaoru deserves better than to settle for somebody just because they like her, too.

Sick people deserve treatment, not palliatives. I mean, it's not like I think Uta is incapable of helping her, or that it couldn't work out, but it's not an ideal starting place for a relationship.

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joined Dec 11, 2017

But that's the thing, she -isn't-. This is her normal style, and while it accidentally led to Ookuma thinking she was a boy, she wasn't. So in this case her "cross dressing intent" consists of wearing what she normally wears while also wearing an (apparently unnecessary) corset and not correcting a misconception. That's pretty ambiguous.

Pretty sure it's the addition of deliberate deception - however nonmalicious - that makes the difference here ya know.

But is it -cross dressing- if that deception has no bearing on what you choose to wear, since "dressing" is specifically part of the term? Isn't it just a -lie- at that point, and not the specific behavior of cross dressing?

I mean you say it's the addition of deliberate deception, but deliberate deception isn't even a necessary part of cross dressing. Drag queens and crossplayers usually aren't trying to deceive anyone at all, they're just wearing clothes they like or dressing as characters they admire.

I feel like the element that makes cross-dressing what it is isn't deception, but a deviation from expected norms, be they personal or societal. An intent to deceive -can- be part of that, but it isn't necessarily.

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joined Dec 11, 2017

How would a girl crossdress anyway? There isn't really a lot of "masculine-gender-locked" clothing anymore.

Well if she's deliberately trying to pass for the opposite sex rather than, say, buying male-pattern trousers simply because those have proper useful pockets like my mother does, I'd say the intent makes the difference.

But that's the thing, she -isn't-. This is her normal style, and while it accidentally led to Ookuma thinking she was a boy, she wasn't. So in this case her "cross dressing intent" consists of wearing what she normally wears while also wearing an (apparently unnecessary) corset and not correcting a misconception. That's pretty ambiguous.

Heavensrun
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18-year-olds are not as mature as 22-year-olds--except for the ones who are. 25-year-olds are more mature than 18-year-olds--except for the ones who aren't. (I can name a half-dozen childhood friends who haven't matured past the mental age of 17 in several decades.)

Exceptions don't make the rule, and these exceptions shouldn't be used as examples for taking away the right for the teens to be treated as teens, or for immature adults to be treated as adults.

There are some kids who get a bachelor's at 11, should we bend the rule and expect from every kid the same? If the divergence from the norm is too extreme (like some people remaining exactly the same at 50 as they were at 12) then this is more of an anomaly.

So I kinda figured that offhand comment of mine would stir things up a bit, so let me clarify exactly what I meant and why it's a problem.

I'm not talking about the relative maturity of the characters, or whether they are emotionally ready for a romantic relationship, and I'm not particularly concerned with the age gap.

Uta is a minor, with no means of independent support, currently depending on abusively neglectful parents. If she gets together with Kaoru here and now, not only would that be an actual crime, but she wouldn't have any means by which to support or care for her. They'd have no support structure outside of maybe Kuro and maybe Reiichi? Society at large would just absolutely tear them to shreds over that relationship, not just because homosexuality still isn't that well-accepted in Japan, but because you have an adult woman who will be perceived to have "seduced" a minor within her own family.

It would be a clusterfuck, which, I mean, if you want drama, then yeah, it'll definitely get that, but I have the suspicion that the person saying they don't want a time skip just wants a happy ending, and that is -not- a happy ending.

If Uta gets together with Kaoru now, either Uta has to work part time or full time and has to drop out of school, or Kaoru has to support and provide for her. We already know Uta isn't satisfied depending on Kaoru and Reiichi, plus all of those create pretty messy power dynamics for the relationship.

The best thing for them, to have a stable, balanced relationship, is for Kaoru to get therapy (Probably unlikely) and a job, and for Uta to graduate and get an independent living situation so that they can FINALLY interact as peers and equals.

Heavensrun
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IIRC Kaoru had a job that she quit after marriage.

She worked in an office. She also used to work at the cafe that Uta worked at and seems to have an etsy store or something because she makes jewelery at home and sells it online.

I keep forgetting that we had big plotlines around Kuro and her girlfriend, and that other student who sleeps around a lot. Been so.long since we saw any teenager...

Well, part of that is the emphasis recently on Kaoru and company, and the fact that Kuro and the other teens had really nothing to do with the core storyline, which is a big part of why their stories always felt like such a frustrating cul de sac whenever the author focused on them.

Heavensrun
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Only a time skip will fix this. Kaoru becomes an independent woman and seeks Uta for a real relationship.

Bah, I'm sick of time skips! I want to see Kaoru/Uta now, as they are. Besides, a time skip would mean Uta's "wean myself" didn't work.

Except Uta is a child.

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Ok, maybe I'm remembering wrong, but didn't the husband lie about being out of town so he could spend time with his ex? That's not something you do just to talk...

No, you're right. About both the fact pattern and the implication there.

I was skeptical for the same reason. When Kaoru spotted them walking together in the rain, he had just lied about extending his trip, on his birthday, and suggested he would be out of town for days, when he was actually in his own neighborhood. That is...I mean, there's just no way he didn't think he was getting laid. I think his protests that everything was innocent are dishonest. Not that I think he necessarily was actually getting it on with Risako, I'm still kinda 50/50 on that, but if he didn't, it wasn't for lack of trying or expecting it.

I think the best explanation that fits the facts is this:

Reiichi reconnected with Risako thorugh work, they started talking and meeting up. She went along because of some combination of the following: Pity for Reiichi's kinda pathetic pining after her, Envy of his marriage to Kaoru and a desire to break it up, and curiosity about Kaoru and an earnest desire to learn more about her. (her stated reason) Reiichi, OTOH, mostly just thinks Risako is hot and is chafing against what has been clearly shown to be a marriage of obligation.

I think she was meeting with him regularly, leading him on just enough to keep things going, probably not actually doing anything with him but always leaving just that little bit of hope that maybe she might at some point. The thing on his birthday was either Risako finally taking the plunge to pull him into an actual affair, or him resolving to make a concerted effort to get with her and win her over, but whichever one it was, it got derailed when Kaoru saw them and got hurt.

Either way, unless we get a Reiichi or Risako POV chapter, I don't think there's any way for Kaoru (or us) to know, but it doesn't really change her situation in any event. Reiichi loves her platonically, not romantically, Risako wants to bang but can't be trusted, Uta's the only one that's been straight (heh) with her this whole time.

last edited at Jul 30, 2020 3:49PM

Heavensrun
Tron-legacy
joined Dec 11, 2017

Sounds like Risako would rather be asexual/aromantic, or is already one of those but but the other. "Stupid feelings for other people!" Or is low grade sociopath wishing she was more so.

I honestly just assume it's simpler than that: good old gay angst. She doesn't get relationships or have interest in guys, so she just assumed that's her identity and who she is, and then one day she's looking at Kaoru and is all "I want to kiss all her things" and then suddenly her world is twisted in knots, popular culture is telling her that none of this is okay, Kaoru isn't even into her, she's into this hopeless doof that's chasing after Risako herself, and it's just all so stupid and hurtful and she wants to just cut it off like a dead tree branch because holy shit unrequited love sucks so much.