Mars 12

February 29, 2012

Fuyumi Soryo – Tokyopop – 2003 – 15 volumes

Rei’s family is the 100% focus this time around. There’s a bit of happiness at the beginning of the volume, as we get a taste once again that Rei and Kira are doing what they want with their lives, then Kira’s dad wakes them up and tells them they’re only 18.

Kira’s dad is an interesting character. Normally, a character like him is the bad guy, because he’s stopping the happy couple from living a carefree life. Everything he says is immediately rejected by Rei as self-serving. He only wants them to live with him because he can’t stand his son living in squalor. He’s only paying for Kira’s art school because he wants her to have a degree. He just plain doesn’t want them to be happy.

Except… Rei’s father really doesn’t come off that way. In a twist, Rei is the one that seems like a sulky teen when he throws his father’s goodwill back in his face with comments about how he’s not his real son. There’s no malice in anything Mr. Kashino says, and he really does seem to want what’s best for Rei and Kira. In one sweet scene, he thanks Kira the best way he can for helping Rei move away from a delinquent lifestyle. He’s not very expressive, but everything he does seems to show he genuinely cares.

But the relationship between Rei and his father is far from resolved. There’s also hints later in the volume that there might be some rough water as far as Rei’s mother is concerned, too. There’s also a tragic death in store for Rei’s real father, and if that wasn’t enough, the end of the volume also… *cue dramatic soap opera music* includes a storyline where Kira find’s Sei’s suicide note.

Oh, the drama! I love it, though. It’s all very realistic, other than Rei’s father being a millionaire head of a corporation. And even that isn’t really thrown around. He seems to want Rei to study business, and he has the means to help Kira achieve her dream of going to art school and a large enough home that Rei and Kira can live comfortably with him. No corporate espionage plots, no salarymen hanging around jealous of Rei.

I do also like that the relationship is taking a backseat to other plot elements at the moment. It’s a nice break, even if it is still drama-tastic, and it helps when you’re reading the series all the way through, like I did.

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