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Manga / A Room For Two

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Sakurako and Kasumi

Sakurako Kawawa is a high school first-year and has just moved into the boarding house attached to her school. The boarding house pairs students with roommates, so it's not long after starting to unpack that Sakurako meets her new roommate, the absolutely gorgeous Kasumi Yamabuki. While Sakurako is smitten with the beautiful girl at first sight, Kasumi quickly reveals herself to be something of an absent-minded layabout who not only didn't pack many belongings but didn't even bring a bed. Kasumi's personality awakened Sakurako's big sister instinct, and it wasn't long before she began caring for Kasumi's every need.

A Room for Two, also known as Futaribeya (ふたりべや) in Japanese, is an ongoing Slice of Life manga by Yukiko. It is set up in the Yonkoma style and began serialization on July 30, 2014 in Comic Birz Magazine. It is licensed in English by Tokyopop.

Tropes Present in this work are:

  • Ambiguously Gay: While Sakurako's feelings for Kasumi are pretty explicit, it's hard to judge how Kasumi feels. While she certainly doesn't mind Sakurako's affection and will even show some in return, it's usually more shown as indifference, making her seem more asexual than anything else.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Hinako often gets on Sakurako's nerves by insisting on spending time with her, or demanding that Sakurako help her study.
  • Big Eater: Kasumi is a complete glutton, whose capable of eating more food by herself than a whole family. Quite a few characters have lamented the fact that she can eat so much and not gain a pound.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: Sakurako has such weak alcohol tolerance that she gets drunk on alcohol-flavored chocolate.
  • Chastity Couple: Sakurako and Kasumi. Neither seems particularly interested in taking their relationship in a sexual direction. The most they have done is the occasional kiss here and there, but even that is rare. It's not until the two are adults, living and working together, that the thought of even defining their relationship comes up.
  • Don't Call Me "Sir": Shouko spends much of Chapter 27 trying to get Seri to stop using "-san" on her, eventually succeeding.
  • Dope Slap: After Tenka protests that she's too tired from being introduced to everyone and asks to take it easy, Takao bonks her on the head with a training manual and says she doesn't have time for that.
  • For Want of a Nail: One chapter shows the outcome of certain changes to the characters or the setting, such as what would happen if Sakurako was lazy, or Kasumi gained weight from eating so much.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Kasumi, of all people, complains that Tenka is lazy. When Sakurako asks if Tenka is lazier than Kasumi, Kasumi says, "Okay, rude. But also, yes."
  • Inconsistent Dub: The first few volumes of the localized manga forgo honorifics entirely, but they're included in later ones.
  • Iyashikei: Nothing really serious happens in this manga.
  • Japanese Sibling Terminology: Mostly averted with the Kawawa siblings. While Sakurako uses "Onee-chan" on her older sister Riko most of the sisters use "-chan" on their sisters; for example, Hinako calls Sakurako "Saku-chan."
  • Lost in Translation: The main plot of Chapter 27 involves Shouko trying to get Seri not to use "-san" on her, as well as references to Sakurako and Shouko's own use of honorifics. Since the localization doesn't use honorifics, it's changed to saying that Seri speaks to Shouko formally, when her speech isn't noticeably more formal than anyone else's.
  • The Ojou: Seri comes from a wealthy family, and is unused to the more modest accommodations of the boarding house.
  • Opposites Attract: Sakurako and Kasumi could not be more different but these differences end up being the reason they get along so well.
  • Say It with Hearts: When Kasumi asks Sakurako why she's the only one Sakurako uses "-chan" on, Sakurako says that she feels like a "Kasumi-chan" to her, adding a heart after Kasumi's name. Kasumi then wonders why.
  • The Seven Mysteries: One chapter has the cast investigate seven mysteries of the boarding house they live in.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: Played With when one of Sakurako's friends, who's currently in a lesbian relationship, refers to Kasumi as Sakurako's girlfriend, Sakurako says that is not really what they are, but that it is not an unfair assessment of their relationship, either.
  • Shout-Out: Kasumi once recalls an argument that she and her mother had over which end of a chocolate cornet is the head.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Sakurako has eyes only for Kasumi.
  • The Slacker: Kasumi's new coworker Tenka is even lazier than Kasumi herself. She proudly says that her favorite things are "weekends and leaving work on time," and got hired by pretending to be a workaholic during her interview.
  • Third-Person Person: A variant. Sakurako mentions that her father, mother and older sister sometimes call themselves, "Dad," "Mom," and "Onee-chan," respectively, as some Japanese parents and older siblings do.
  • Tsundere: Subverted for Sakurako in a "What-if" chapter. She tries to act the part, but after one standard "It's not as though I like you," she immediately goes back to being as affectionate toward Kasumi as she is in the main story.
  • Western Zodiac: In one chapter, the girls discuss their horoscopes and how compatible they are with each other.
  • Yuri: While subtle at first with each volume it has become increasingly obvious the main plot is a love story between the two leads.