Hidaka Shoko: Arashi no Ato

Sakaki begins his story in Signal. Miyama-kun’s story continues in Hatsukoi no Atosaki… seems he’s got a thing for meganes. Hatsukoi also contains “Double Line,” a look at Sakaki and Okada, 2 years later.

I love Sakaki in all his fastidious glory. It’s a very attractive quality and he wears it well. And he’s also a megane. I was very pleased with the way his relationship with Okada developed. A lot of stories use the “disruption of pace” to help illustrate the wearing down or winning over of a character. Used thusly, it is a way to convince the reader that character_X is falling in love. Soon they find some of the annoying things endearing and the point where character_X comes to terms with it in some manner is almost always marked with the line “it can’t be helped.” However, not here, not Sasaki. He was troubled and frustrated with his feelings for Okada and Okada’s seemingly free form living until the end and beyond. I enjoy when fiction takes liberties, but I also enjoy when characters act like people. Not everyone is so easily convinced or goes into everything with all hesitations put to rest. Beyond logic or common sense people are often compelled to go against their better judgement even when a potential (or present) disaster is staring them in the face. And they don’t go blindly either; simply believing in what may be a baseless idea that “this is love.” I like that Sakaki was bothered and said as much and I like that Okada didn’t seem to care that he was bothered and just wanted what he wanted. But what I liked the most was that, at the end of the story, they were still the same characters they were when we met them at the beginning.

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