In Usotsuki Lily, Volume 10, we met Kanae and Keiko, two women who clearly like each other, but who don’t know how to tell one another, and Taiyou, the young man who asks Kanae out while working for her.
At the beginning of Volume 11 of Usotsuki Lily (うそつきリリィ), this is the status quo: Taiyou is in mega-bummer mood because, although he really likes Kanae, he knows that she and Keiko like each other. And he can see that, although he and Kanae are “going out”, they aren’t really. But he really likes Kanae.
He asks his older sister for advice and, rather sensibly, she suggests owning the relationship. But it’s Ten, the lead, En’s, younger brother, who makes the real breakthrough in Taiyou’s funk. Ten is open about liking guys. Although “gay” is not used here – dousei 同姓- “homosexuality”or “same-sex” is. Ten explains that he’s on Keiko’s side.
Taiyou and Ten embark upon an ill-advised plot to get Keiko and Kanae together. Let me be clear here. I, personally, believe every single plot complication in all of fiction that is not “tell the person the truth” is ill-advised. ^_^
So Taiyou and Ten (who actually is interested in Taiyou) appear before Kanae to tell her they are going out. Kanae is confused by this, unsurprisingly. To convince her, Taiyou kisses Ten, at which Keiko appears, and kicks him in the head while shouting the PG-rated version of “What the fuck is wrong with you!?!”
Keiko yells at Taiyou that Kanae chose him instead of her, so he’d better treat her well. Kanae is shocked to hear this – yes, of course she likes Keiko, but didn’t know she felt the same, etc, etc. And so, the chapter comes to an end with Kanae and Keiko together. Taiyou girlfriendless and Ten having been kissed by the guy he actually likes but as a fake thing.
One of you lovely folks mentioned in the comments of the Volume 10 review that this arc ended all d’awww… and I see your point, that Keiko and Kanae are together at the end and all, but felt that Ten takes absolutely unnecessary lumps in the process. In fact, he’s the best character of the arc, being the only one able to see the truth, speak the truth and handle the truth. In my mere two volumes of this series, Ten is my favorite character – and my candidate for “I hope he get plucked out of this needlessly complicated drama and plopped into a nice story.” ^_^
But there we go – we know from Girl’s Lily that Keiko and Kanae will go on to live happily ever after and consider marriage. So for them, definitely, d’awww.
Ratings are for this arc only:
Art – 7
Character – 7 for everyone but Ten, who is a 9.
Story – 6 Still ‘Story A’ with adults, and the handwave of young men as catalysts.
Yuri – 5 Same as above
Service – 1 Taiyou and Ten kissing, for the crowd that is interested.
Overall – 7
Not bad, certainly addresses some real issues. There was a lot of room for improvement, but for a Margaret book, pleasantly positive, reasonably realistic.