yoptics Asked me “Thanks for the analysis!!. It was quite enjoyable to read you :). Any t(h)oughts about how the lenses issue will be approched?. I mean, how do you imaging they (Y and D) will talk about them?”

My feeling is that it will remain an undertow in the narrative. Something there and under the surface, but with enormous significance.

Page 206, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 1

In the story, it is only ever indirectly referenced twice, and always by Yashiro and in the most side winding ways, asking where they are. Remember he asks Kage what happened to his contacts, even though he knows damn well what happened to them.

Page 208, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 1

 

He stole the contact lens case from Kageyama because Kageyama was blind to him and his feelings. He stole Kageyama’s love and his ‘sight’ from him. In Yashiro’s head, he was keeping it safe as well. A part of Kageyama he could keep and hold, protect and horde.

The only other time we see Yashiro mention it at all is when he asks Amou where it is.

Page 190, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 2
Page 191, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 2

 

We see Yashiro, go get it, take some licks (a beating) from Hirata, but we never know he’s actually retrieved it until the fucking moment Doumeki steals it.

This is an object representative of Yashiro’s most secret self, you understand? The part of him no-one gets to see, and the part of him he doesn’t acknowledge. He just keeps the contact lens case, and Kageyama, around.

He introduces Kage to Kuga, knowing that Kageyama would fall for Kuga. When Kuga wakes up in Kage’s clinic, the FIRST thing Kuga does is break Kage’s glasses. It’s like a point, Kage never went back to wearing contacts after he lost the ones Yashiro stole. Yashiro even offers to pay to replace Kageyama’s glasses.

He is releasing Kageyama in one way… but thought he could still hold on to the case. And so it would have all stayed. Fixed and in place. And Yashiro figured he would have continued to crumble and dissipate unopposed. I still think Yashiro set his own world to crumbling with this, and he did it just to see that world fall apart. He said he formed the knife that came towards him. He was quite prepared to let Kageyama fall in love and would have gone on to ‘enjoy’ (wallow) his own misery.

But he didn’t expect my Darling Doumeki to come along, and certainly not to be clever enough to put it together and steal his own love away. It’s not hard to imagine Doumeki holding onto the contact lens case. Post time skip, the metaphor in this story is Yashiro losing sight in one eye, and refusing to have it checked. What we will see is that Doumeki kept Yahsiro’s love and his own, in a safe place, waiting for the day when Yashiro could see his (Doumeki’s) heart.

In my head as a writer, I’d predict one of two scenarios:

1. If Yashiro directly asks Doumeki about that contacts lens case, it would be an allegory for coming to Doumeki and letting his feelings show, asking Doumeki to love him again. This would be good in one way, because they are at a point in the flow of things where Yashiro needs to be open with himself and Doumeki about what he really feels. It would show a level of maturity and self acceptance that I don’t think he’s shown to date (not even in chapter 46). Yashiro needs to be pushed. Almost like he needs his choice taken away from him in order to make a decision about things. I think if he asks about the case, my choice would be to put the question after they’ve crossed the bridge. That it becomes something subtle as part of the resolution between them. Tossed in, in some satisfying way, as part of their final coming together. Or,

2. Yashiro will discover the contact lens case, in some offhand place, in possibly an offhanded way, but it will be one of the boulders that sets off the worst/best of an avalanche. Either one of rage, a flood of tears, or a raging flood of tears, either way, it’s the perfect tool to set off a whirlwind of emotion in Yashiro (I am here for disturbing Yashiro’s status quo), and, I can always hope, helps lead him to seeing and accepting the love in front of him. But it will lead to him being direct about his feelings in a far more proactive and mature way. He will never mention the case, but it will be a spur. This is my personal preference.

I do not want them to have even have a direct discussion about the contact lens case. The perfect scenario is that Yashiro steals it back from Dou, gives it back to Kage or directly pitches it into the sea.

I want it to remain as subtle as it is. One of the many pearls to dive for in the course of this story. Satisfying because you work emotionally as hard as the characters. Maybe the loss of his sight in one eye, will give him a different kind of sight, and it will allow him to make an important connection. Maybe Yashiro’s blindness  is psychosomatic, maybe it really is something physical. Maybe it is a bit of both. There’s a good chance he may need contact lens of his own.

My point is, these things are connected to each other.

I am reminded of the scene just before Yahiro got shot, after Yashiro busted in on the party at the restaurant, shutting Doumeki down ruthlessly when he began pouring out his observations of Yashiro’s feelings to Kageyama. I am reminded of Doumeki’s internal monologue when they were walking to the theatre:

Page 110, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 2
Page 111, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 2
Page 112, Saezuru Tori wa Habanakanai: Vol 2

 

This theme of ‘seeing’ and ‘not seeing’ repeats through out the story, hardened through the symbolism of the contacts lens case. As blind as Yashiro is to his own feelings, Doumeki sees almost everything. At this point in the story, he hasn’t found the contact lens case yet, and he hasn’t connected Yahiro’s feelings for Kageyama as being something Yashiro actually is aware of. For Doumeki, Kageyama is his rival, but he his furious because Yashiro seems incapable of seeing ether one of them.

Doumeki wants to be seen. Yashiro is fixated and constantly and easily undone by Doumeki’s eyes on him. Over and over, seeing… not seeing, seen and not seen. As I wrote in “About Kageyama’s Contact Lens Case”, the ability for Yashiro to actually return love is something that Doumeki doesn’t realise until he holds the case in his hand.

I can see Sensei treating this with a continued subtlety. I don’t expect the contact lens case will ever be more that a passing mention, or glimpse, a symbol of the ability to see and accept love.  That Doumeki will still have it is undoubted and that it will be connected to the release of Yashiro’s real feelings, his true face, I am certain.

It will be a point in the chain linking and binding the Yashiro that loved, lost and feels unworthy of love, with the Yashiro who is loved so deeply by the steadiest most reliable kind of love, the kind that takes care of you and helps you to heal.

That was Doumeki’s intent in stealing it in the first place. To completely bind Yashiro body and soul, one way or another, and to love him; to be allowed to love Yashiro.

To be seen.

UPDATE: Translations being what they are (like, I swear they change so much), I found this other view of Doumeki’s monologue that changes things slightly.

2 comments

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  • “He introduces Kage to Kuga, knowing that Kageyama would fall for Kuga. When Kuga wakes up in Kage’s clinic, the FIRST thing Kuga does is break Kage’s glasses. It’s like a point, Kage never went back to wearing contacts after he lost the ones Yashiro stole. Yashiro even offers to pay to replace Kageyama’s glasses.

    He is releasing Kageyama in one way… but thought he could still hold on to the case. And so it would have all stayed. Fixed and in place.”

    I’m so glad you highlighted the connection between Kuga breaking Kageyama’s glasses. But their interaction is all out in the open and direct. There’s no cloak and dagger / history element that the Yashiro and Kageyama dynamic has. Kuga and Kage are just free to pursue their attraction because it’s way less complicated in Kage’s eyes.

    BRILLIANT – The fact that Doumeki steals the contact case and his righteous indignation on behalf of Yashiro for Kage’s blinkered inaction sets him free, is a hugely important layer I didn’t see on my own. SO crazy!

    Thank you!

    • I think this metaphor of seeing and being seen, sight and no sight is going to pop up again. And I too agree, Kage and Kuga have the luxury of being unencumbered. They are the light/dark negative of this story. For them it was easy. The way love should be. Simple, and pure. With Yashiro and Doumeki it is a dark and twisted road.

      Thanks soooo much for commenting. I really appreciate your feedback!

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