Ten Count Volume 2
While Ten Count volume 1 established the characters and premise — OCD, germ-phobic guy meets a therapist who wants to help him — volume 2 remembers that it’s a yaoi manga and concludes with an explicit sex scene.
Shirotani has quit coming to work, and his co-workers are concerned. Kurose, the counselor, told Shirotani that their work together is over, which sent Shirotani into a downward spiral. This volume opens with a dramatic re-meeting and some key revelations about how they feel about each other.
I found this volume really satisfying due to Rihito Takarai’s great balance of motivation and desire. Kurose wants to touch Shirotani, but he knows that is nearly impossible, due to his compulsions. Shirotani is overwhelmed but knows he needs to keep seeing Kurose, although he has yet to admit to himself why.
The faces are emotion-packed and lovely to look at. I’m not sure of the ethics between combining friendship, caring, medical advice, and sex, but Shirotani’s concerns about touching make even the simplest contact really sensual and heightened. Of course, this being the genre it is, those encounters quickly become more explicit, which is satisfying in a different way. (The publisher provided a digital review copy.)