I found this chapter “Tadayoedo Shizumazu, Saredo Naki mo Sezu” separate from its collection Seazuru Tori wa Habatakanai by Yoneda Kou at Mangago.
Baka-Updates lists a breakout of the other chapters of Seazuru Tori wa Habatakanai (which appears, if I’m interpreting this correctly, to be the main story that gets continued in further volumes.) I’m planning on reading all of the chapters I can find scanlated, but because this does stand alone, I’m going to go ahead and review it separately from its volume mates. However, I will tag them all under the volume’s title. (I suspect it doesn’t really matter much to most of my readers here, what constitutes the full volume, but having read a lot of these one-shot collections I’m always curious how the official tankoban would read.)
So… continuing our theme of sadomasochism, our hero Yashiro is probably what we might label a sex addict. The summary describes him as “having… issues,” which he deals with by having tons of rough sex with a lot of different people, though lately mostly men, whom he lets (begs to) abuse him. Which is a bit squicky, as Yashiro is otherwise described as a “normal high school boy.” In fact, we learn he’s a second year, which makes him the equivalent of an American junior in high school.
The romance in the story, however, is age-appropriate. The sex, not so much; the romance, yes.
Our masochist hero, Yashiro, gets noticed by a classmate, Kageyama. Kageyama is the upstanding son of a family-practice doctor. He notices Yashiro’s rope burns on his wrists and, in a weirdly adorable gesture, brings him bandaids on the regular.
I guess this is what passes as a meet-cute when you’re a masochist, eh?
Yashiro mostly still tries to avoid band-aid boy until one day, after a particularly rough treatment the night before, he goes to the nurses office looking for relief from a dislocated shoulder. The school nurse is on vacation, leaving the student nurse in charge… who is, none-other-than Kageyama.
Kageyama treats Yashiro’s dislocated shoulder and then asks to see his other injuries. Turns out, upstanding Kageyama has his own secret: he has a paraphilia involving scars, cuts, scabs, etc. Yashiro, being almost perversely accommodating to any kink, is like, yay, feel free to let your hands examine everything!
It never goes further than this between them. Yashiro tells himself he’ll ask Kageyama to stop once the nurse is back from vacation, but instead they find a storage room to keep at it.
They don’t talk, so Yashiro has no illusions that they’re friends, but Kageyama feels differently. He’s never had anyone accept his weird fetish so easily, but, on the flip side, Yashiro doesn’t make things easy between them. If he’s ever asked about anything serious he responds with a sexual joke or a come on. Even the one time Yashiro goes out of his way to support Kageyama after a family member dies, he still tells Kageyama he only did it because the idea of seeing Kageyama crying was a huge turn on. (Note: that seems to be true.)
This is complicated by the fact that, while Yashiro is bi, Kageyama is fairly straight (neverminding his kink.)
A bunch of emotional stuff happens between them, but ultimately the relationship is untenable.
We end with a heartbroken, desperately lonely Yashiro.
It’s a sh*tty ending, make no bones about it, but I kind of liked this one? Normally, I’m not happy when the queer guy gets the shaft (and not in a fun way), but I don’t know… maybe I related to this one because I’m interested in the addictive personality type, which Yashiro definitely falls into, Yoneda-sensei’s intention or not.
Plus, I actually really tend to like the tension that Yoneda-sensei builds in her writing. I liked a lot of the the stories in the other collection of hers I read, NightS. She does, in my opinion, a good job with the interesting, twisty relationship stuff.
Plus, Yoneda-sensei often seems to rate a full-color, first page spread:
So, you know, that’s nice.
And there’s a nice amount of implied (and some on-screen) kinky raunchiness to counter-balance a very sweet, not-quite, but almost platonic romance.
Since it’s pulled out of its context, this is only one chapter. It’s a fast read. You have very little to lose, if this hits any of your buttons. For those sensitive to rape/non-con, you may want to pass on this one as Yashiro talks about a past rape, which seems to possibly be an on-going family sexual abuse situation with his stepfather, who is mostly absent, though we have hints in the story that his family sometimes makes reappearances in his life (he’s so flippant about it that it’s actually unclear if it’s entirely in the past or continuing.)
Also, there’s something very non-con about addiction, you know? It seems very, very clear to me that Yashiro is a sex addict in need of therapy and a twelve-step program. In the meantime, he’s very much a slave to his impulses, which is fairly explicit in one scene where one of his classmates confront him because they saw Yashiro go to a love hotel with an older man, whom they describe in very unattractive terms. You very much get the sense in that moment that Yashiro, who is explicitly NOT a rent boy, is helpless to his addictive need for sex. He will literally take anyone.
So, my caveat is that you should be wary if that sort of thing is a trigger or a turn-off for you, dear reader.
For me, alas, it’s kind of a turn ON, so… as I often say, milage may vary.