Little Butterfly

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Kojima and Nakahara

Little Butterfly is a three-volume Boys Love manga by Takanaga Hinako (who is also the author of Challengers, The Tyrant Falls in Love and Awkward Silence) about the relationship between reclusive student Nakahara and the cheerful - almost Keet Kojima.

Kojima sees Nakahara sitting in the rain one night, crying and alone and offers him his umbrella. The two end up in the same class years later and Kojima asks Nakahara to be in his group during a school trip. Nakahara begrudgingy accepts but disappears. Kojima finds him about to get onto a bus and chases him. Nakahara reveals that he has a horrible life at home and wants to cross the sea, like some butterflies he saw on the TV who flew over the sea for miles and flourished in a far-off land. They form a friendship but Nakahara grows attracted to Kojima, who stuggles to cope with this.

Possibly the cutest, most heartfelt yaoi manga in existence, it has been described very accurately as "so sweet it hurts". It has less focus on the sexual side (although that does play a part in the development of the romance).

Tropes used in Little Butterfly include:

  • A Date with Rosie Palms: After Kojima is scared of getting hurt when having sex for the first time, Nakahara solves the problem with mutual masturbation instead.
  • A Man Is Not a Virgin: Kojima's friends are amazed when they find out Nakahara has had sex before, and admire him because of it. Nakahara himself is less pleased; he barely remembers the incident, which was a barely-consensual encounter with an older woman who offered him a bed for the night after he'd ran away.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: Shortly after Kojima and Nakahara become friends, Nakahara realises that his feelings have grown into more than friendship. Kojima is a little weirded out, but allows him to remain friends on the condition he doesn't do anything "weird".
  • Asleep in Class: Nakahara.
  • Big No: Happens the first few times Nakahara comes on to Kojima.
  • Cool Uncle: Nakahara's only sane, loving family member.
  • Determinator: It is revealed that Kojima has tried time and time again to become Nakahara's friend, but was always knocked back or not even noticed. Nakahara doesn't even remember all the times Kojima had tried to initiate conversation before the school trip, but he perservered.
  • Erotic Eating: While attempting to revise for his upcoming college exams, Kojima keeps getting distracted by his tutor biting his pen while thinking.
  • For Your Own Good: Nakahara's parents' excuse for putting so much pressure on him at such a young age.
  • Generic Cuteness: It's a shoujo manga series, what do you expect?
  • High School: The setting for most of the manga until the protagonists go to college.
  • If It's You It's Okay: Kojima's attitude to Nakahara's attraction to him, although he still takes a little persuading.
  • Legal Jailbait: Kojima looks pretty young for his age. It gets better later on in the manga, when he's canonically supposed to be starting college, but he still looks like he's in his early teens. His height is about right for a short guy of his age, but he has the face of a child.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Nakahara.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Every classmember except Kojima treats Nakahara like this.
  • Luminescent Blush: Kojima is prone to this, and it even happens to the usually aloof Nakahara during his Anguished Declaration of Love.
  • Odd Friendship: The main couple, at first - one is a reasonably popular, happy and energetic guy who is attracted by the mystery of the disaffected, moody loner in his class to try to become friends with him.
  • Oral Fixation Fixation: Nakahara with pens, while he's studying and thinking hard.
  • Parental Neglect: Nakahara. After he failed an exam to get into an elementary school attached to a private junior high, Nakahara's mother had a breakdown and his father blamed him for it. His mother is no longer in a fit state to care for him and his father no longer cares.
  • Sex as Rite-of-Passage: Nakahara's one sexual encounter is treated like this by his classmates because Sex Is Cool, even though he himself did not particularly enjoy the experience and would rather just forget it.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Kojima.
  • Sleep Cute
  • Teens Are Short: Heck, even when they're supposed to be in college neither of the main couple are tall. This manga also provides an aversion of the One Head Taller rule - although Nakahara is taller than Kojima, it's not by very much.
  • The Quiet One: Nakahara.
  • The Runaway: Nakahara right at the start of the first volume. He is revealed to have tried this many times before.
  • Troubled but Cute: Nakahara definitely qualifies as this - his parents were abusive and he tried to run away from home several times when he was younger.
  • Will They or Won't They?: They did.