January 29, 2018 in Book 2: Benta
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Page 13 (Book 2)

Page 13 (Book 2)
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Author Notes:

NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete
NiaNook
That death glare at the end, tho
__________________________
Story time!
So back in middle school, I was starting a new(then) comic, thus drawing Sikue and Tatsuma a lot. Classmates would curiously look on my desk and ask "who's he?" or "what's that guy doing?" This would be referring to Tatsuma, of course. I didn't like it, at first. I never wanted Tatsuma to look like a dude, but apparently it just came out that way! (Guess I'm bad at distinguishing the two) Even people closer to me, like my older sister, would point it out! In my head, I was pouting "just because she's not covered in pink bows and obvious curves doesn't make her a man!" I never understood where the confusion came from! (Didn't help that this was that awkward, insecure, puberty-age when this stuff was a much bigger deal)

After so long, I decided to just roll with it. It was adopted as canon and poking fun at it made it worthwhile.

This scene is pretty similar to the old pencil comic's, though I think the old comic pulled it off better. It was one of my favorite parts XD

Anyway, I apologize to you, readers. All this time I've been having to carefully word and reword my sentences to avoid referring to her as "she" or "her" @_@ Because I wanted to test if Tatsuma would still be mistaken for a boy after all these years with my art style changing. So far, I think most of you caught on!(?) Whew!

TLDR; This scene wrote itself because people in real-life would confuse Tatsuma for a boy, much to the young author's dismay.
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Comments:

snuffysam 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
snuffysam
I guess I didn't realize Tatsuma was a girl? But that's mostly because I didn't particularly care...
NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Understandable. Not everyone cares much about those details.
MST3KFan 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
MST3KFan
LOL Poor Tatsuma. Though with how she acts and stuff, I suppose some people could get confused.

That second to last panel for some reason made me think of this one scene from an episode of Spongebob...

Sandy's a GIRL!?
NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Pfhahaha! That scene fits so well!
TheMario360 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
TheMario360
Her face in the last panel. XD
Zor15 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
Zor15
That death glare XD
deerwithgoggles 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
deerwithgoggles
for whatever it's worth, i figured she was a girl!

also, god do i know that feel. people are always getting gender confusion for certain characters of mine.
NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Ohey!

For cartoonish styles where everyone is drawn somewhat neutral (as opposed to styles that exaggerate such as making the guys super buff and the gals all having long eyelashes/lipstick or something) I guess I'm not surprised you'd have that issue since your style looks more neutral. Throw in a long haired guy or a short haired gal and people get confused!
Stever 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
Stever
Nice twist! Although, he may need a nose clip after getting Tatsuma's stink eye. XD
NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Or a nose bandage... for getting punched in the face! Uhuhu
Jason Moon 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
Jason Moon
LOL!! Ladykiller right there XD
NiaNook 29th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
He's working his way up to having a harem. A flower-girl for each arm. What a smooth playa'.
CiciEnixa 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
CiciEnixa
I kinda just assumed "hermaphrodite at best" with them being flowers, though I think some plants do have a single gender XD Also now we know the flying cat is way more tactful.
NiaNook 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
You know, I wondered if anyone would think "hermaphrodite" considering flower anatomy. It would actually make sense. Too bad my younger self never knew that, lol.
There's somewhat of an explanation, but it's nowhere near being revealed, so for now... just write it off as lame fiction-science
xwindows 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
xwindows
At her first appearance (book 1 page 2), I thought she was a guy too. Though I decided she is likely to be a girl once her full body/clothing view was revealed on the page after (book 1 page 3).

But the confusion is understandable, given Tatsuma's own demeanor...
NiaNook 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Oooh, I see. It must not be too hard to tell if it only took page 3. :)
pkrankow 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
pkrankow
Since flower gender is complex I assumed their personality was their gender, rather like Yokiro did apparently.


This lists over 20 terms that identify "gender"
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plant_reproductive_morphology
NiaNook 30th January 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Plant biology can be so fascinating! (and definitely complex)

They should technically be hermaphrodites. If this comic were more science-based and less BS fiction-magic-based. There is a vague explanation behind their biology, and it has more to do with their personalities than the anatomy of the plants they originated from.
Nestnuuka 2nd February 2018 edit delete reply
I started to read your comic a while ago, but finished latest pages just now. I love your style and storytelling :)

I have to admit that I thought Tatsuma was a boy :D Nice twist!
NiaNook 2nd February 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Thanks! I'm glad you're enjoying those :)

Haha, I wouldn't blame anyone for thinking either one!
Icefall Kitsune 6th February 2018 edit delete reply
Icefall Kitsune
I admit that Tatsuma's behavior nor appearance was very indicative of a "typically established" girl. Tatsuma is however an excellent example of "Tom Boy". Well done in keeping us in the dark!
NiaNook 7th February 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Haha, thank you XD
Eve Z. 10th February 2018 edit delete reply
Eve Z.
I always thought Tatsuma was a guy. XD
NiaNook 11th February 2018 edit delete reply
NiaNook
Mwahaha!

You're in good company XD It seems divided pretty evenly!