Did you ever wonder if there was a yaoi manga for hand fetishists? Well, yes, there is! And, Ote o Haishaku is it! Yaoi hands for the hand fetishists!
I was instantly charmed by the beginning of this manga. You get a panel of two hands reaching for the same book and colliding, with, script that reads: “This is very typical. But, a fated meeting…such a beautiful thing. His hand.” To which, the other party says, “Just the hand?” At this point we find out that our hero narrated that whole opening out loud, “like a creepy prologue.”
This seems accurate to my own life. I narrate a lot of my own life, and this is totally something I would be caught doing.
So, I liked Arimura Satouru instantly.
Yuasa, the object of Arimura’s hand obsession, is less than impressed. He’s a handsome. popular guy, who has adopted an icy persona in order to keep the fan girls (and boys) away. But, he’s never had to deal with someone like Arimura who really only wants one thing… his hands.
For this reason, Yuasa tolerates Arimura. He even lets Arimura sketch a picture of his hands.
When Yuasa leaves his backpack at school, he has a chance meeting with Arimura after he’s had a few drinks with his BFF/roommate, Katou. When Yuasa is looking though Arimura’s designs (naturally Arimura wants to be a ring maker), he gets a paper cut.
This leads to… possibly one of the longest, most erotic finger sucking series of panels I have ever read in a yaoi manga.
I mean, this REALLY is yaoi for hand fetishists.
This little encounter, however, freaks out Yuasa. Well, truthfully, he’s kind of into it until he realizes that it’s made Arimura hard, THEN he has to run away.
The next chapter starts with Arimura trying to apologize and best friend Katou running a little interference for our boys. Katou tells Arimura not to give up. We find out that Yuasa only picks friends who aren’t interested in his looks. In fact, he seems to prefer otaku–anyone who is more focused on their own interests to notice his looks. Katou himself, we’re told, is into magical girl figurines. But Yuasa has opened up far more to Arimura, so that’s a precious thing, Katou tells us.
This gives Arimura the heart to keep apologizing until he gets through to Yuasa.
Yuasa, meanwhile, has problems of his own, in the form of an overbearing fellow named Kamijou, a colleague of Yuasa’s from his part-time job at a design firm. Kamijou really wants to TALK BUSINESS over a few drinks, and the way he asks involves a lot of leaning in close and touching, if you know what I mean.
So, yeah Yuasa is super not interested.
Luckily, Arimura blunders in, hoping to apologize again, and so Yuasa grabs him and acts like they had plans. Yuasa decides to accept the apology since Arimura rescued him, in a way.
But, Yuasa can’t entirely blow off the guy from work. He really, really wants to, and wonders why everything in life involves having to be so damn accommodating. (Again, I can relate). He just wants to secure a job after graduation, why does it have to involve being nice to people! But so, when Kamijou texts him, Yuasa agrees to meet up again. We find out in a flashback that Yuasa isn’t just an anti-social curmudgeon for no good reason. When he was a kid, he loved being complimented for his good-looks and he worked very hard to be pleasant and please everyone.
And that instantly led to unwanted (lewd) advances.
From all sides.
He feels he can’t even smile at someone without them taking it the wrong way.
And… it turns out, that’s exactly what sleazy, pushy Kamijou is after: all the lewd! When they meet up again, he pushes Yuasa into the back seat of his fancy car and proceeds to force himself don Yuasa.
Luckily, Arimura is a total stalker. This time he confronts Kamijou more forcefully, and Yuasa escapes… by pretending Arimura is his over-protective boyfriend. This, of course, grosses out Kamijou, who might have wanted to rape Yuasa, but OMG GAY IS SO ICKY. (Not a strategy I would have thought of, nor would I have thought it would actually WORK… but the vagaries of yoai men escapes me.)
The chapter ends with candid talk and a lot of romantic handholding.
And, unfortunately, that’s all there is.
The other chapters have not been scanlated, and since it came out in 2014, I doubt they ever will be–which is a shame because I would have liked to have read more of this.
Arimura’s hand fetish isn’t something I share, but it was nice to see pages devoted to a different kind of lovemaking than we usually see in yaoi. I think, too, because it’s an unusual attraction, Sakutmoto-sensei put a lot more effort into the character building, really working to make sure these characters stand out in other, more likable ways. You get the sense they were headed for a more traditional affection/attraction. Like, for all of his hand obsession, we see Arimura at the end of the second chapter starting to want to see Yuasa’s expression, more than his hands.
I also really enjoyed the art school setting and the fact that our main hero, Yuasa, comes with a BFF who seems like a genuinely nice guy, if a bit odd, himself.
If you’re interested in reading what’s out there, you can find it here: http://www.mangahere.co/manga/ote_o_haishaku/c001/