Foreword by Nanya: This manga was originally titled Yabai Kimochi (in Japanese) but the English licensed version is Desire. I don’t think the title is very appropriate because the word "desire" is neutral and does not convey the "dangerous feeling" as in the Japanese title 💡 (end of foreword). Anyway, you can purchase the English version HERE and the original version HEREï¼Ž
"Love without sex… or sex without love" Toru is a generally drawn back and shy student who harbors a secret crush on his best friend, Ryoji. While Toru hides his feelings and tries to treat Ryoji as simply a ‘friend’, Ryoji makes a comment one day that will change Toru’s life. Where it seems Toru is attracted to his friend, it might also be the same for Ryoji who can’t seem to keep Toru out of his head when he’s making love to women. Poor Toru’s world gets thrown for a whirl when Ryoji suggests sleeping together to hopefully cure his ‘confused’ lust. How long can Toru keep his true feelings at bay, and will he really let Ryoji have his way?
When the first volume starts, Ryoji’s first words are "I wonder why when I look at you I get turned on." This startles Toru enough that he drops the rice he’s eating for lunch and kind of stares for a minute. He manages to rise a bit of courage to ask why, while his brain is fussing over whether Ryoji might know that he has a crush on him or not. We see a few flash back of how things were before Toru fell for his friend and you also learn why. "I became attracted to his positive attitude" Toru feigns indifference, asking how he should know why Ryoji feels that way and Ryoji passes the situation off as nothing, which appears to be out of character for him.
You quickly meet Tadashi, another close friend of Ryoji and Toru’s who appears while they are eating lunch and begins bickering with Ryoji over school work and teachers. He also errantly introduces Kashiwazaki, a fellow art student of Toru’s. Ryoji is soon cornered by a woman who wants to date him and Tadashi pulls Toru away to ask him if Ryoji has mentioned his ‘problem’ yet. He give’s Toru a word of warning about not taking it serious as he didn’t want to see his friend hurt. When Ryoji returns he mentions that he agreed to date the woman, in which Toru ducks out politely and runs off to the art room. Obviously upset about the news he debates what it would be like to have breasts, making Kashiwazaki, who happens to be in the room, worry about him.They talk about an assignment and go home.
A new day starts (I’m unsure if it’s the day after or some time after, they don’t specify) and everyone is complaining about Ryoji’s new girlfriend and her intimidating nature. Ryoji once again mentions to Toru that he becomes aroused by him, asking if he had thought about it after he’d mentioned it to Toru the first time. Toru gets really flustered and shouts that he had been totally over it, trying very hard not to let his secret out about loving the other male. Toru and Tadashi talk again, and Tadashi explains to Toru that it’s a pretty natural thing for one male to think about another in such a situation his interpretation of it all is "Amoung guys who belong to sports clubs, I hear it happens quite often…giving hand jobs to each other…" Toru ends up being called out of art class later by Ryoji who proposes that they sleep with each other to "…see if I can satisfy myself with you…"
Of course after some hysterics, Toru agrees as long as Ryoji promises to stop if he says so. After school we lead into our first sex scene, yum. The action starts out in the shower, Ryoji helping Toru release some ‘energy’ before their real session. I find Toru rather cute in this shower scene because he gets rather flustered and angry when it doesn’t take very long for Ryoji to get him off. They move on to the bed where Ryoji gets in his first kiss, it’s an adorable scene because the smile on Ryoji’s face reminds me of some sort of overly satisfied animal, maybe a bear? Now, although Toru shouts several times for Ryoki to stop he never does, pretty much breaking the deal they made. Ryoji only makes the situation worse when he comments that "It was different from what I thought" Toru’s brain clicks that Ryoji must be disappointed and goes home.
The next day, Ryoji acts rather as if nothing happened, Toru seeming to have a lot of trouble forgetting. He settles on trying to make things ‘normal’ again, though he tends to get rather tense around Ryoji. Ryoji asks Toru if he wants to stop by his house to pick up a cd, seeming to be rather insistent on getting Toru to come over. When they make it to the house Ryoji ends up pinning Toru to the bed and Toru becomes a little hysterical as Ryoji advances on him, crying out about how Ryoji had been disappointed. Ryoji destroys that lie with his next line "It was better than I thought, it was beyond my expectations" Toru questions why he spent so much time crying over something his mind had made up and tries once more to get away from Ryoji. Toru and Ryoji end up having sex again, confusing poor Toru even more than he already was.
Toru contemplates over why he can’t seem to stop loveing Ryoji despite the pain he’s caused him. Kashiwazaki enters the art room where Toru has ended up, questioning his classmates lack of appetite. They once more talk about the class project that’s due before being interrupted by Ryoji, who appears a little jealous of the two. Toru’s inner monologue runs on about he is just the ‘in toy’ for Ryoji and eventually he’ll be abandoned. By this point Tadashi has noticed the change in Toru, easily guessing what the problem could be. It’s thrown out in the open that Tadashi is very aware of Toru’s feelings for Ryoji and how it’s wrong that Ryoji is simply using Toru for physical pleasure. Toru once more runs off, worried that he might end up losing two friends because of what he’s allowed to happen.
Toru meets up with Kashiwazaki who asks about his problems. After assuring Toru he could at least be a good listener, Toru tells him about having sex with his friend and how he has feelings for the man but it isn’t reciprocated. Kashiwazaki suggests Toru date him as a sort of ruse to keep Ryoji from using him. Toru is persuaded into agreeing and pretends to see Kashiwazaki, managing to break things off with Ryoji who was rather reluctant. Tadashi shows up at Ryoji’s door, asking Ryoji how he could be so horrible as to treat his friend that way. Ryoji tells him that he won’t sleep with Toru anymore becomes Toru seems to be very much in love, Ryoji of course believing it’s with Kashiwazaki. Tadashi becomes confused when he hears this from Ryoji, sure he had been right when he pegged Ryoji as Toru’s love interest.
It ends up being found out by Toru that Kashiwazaki is not just pretending when Kashiwazaki kisses him during a flase date. Toru refuses to continue with the charade because he doesn’t want Kashiwazaki to feel the way he does, but while he’s riding the train home he decides to get off at Ryoji’s stop. They happen to run into each other and once thing lead to another, where they end up having sex again. They seem to admit afterward, that things are no good and the next scene we see is Toru working on his painting for class. What he paints, Kashiwazaki explains, is his thoughts, his ‘flame’ "I am a deviant" Toru now asks Ryoji to come see his painting, which seems to have won an award. He explains to Ryoji that it is him in which Ryoji asks about why the painting is called Desire. Toru tells him that it is how he feels for him, and finally confesses to his long-lived crush; his way of getting over it all so that he can have closure and move on. Ryouji admits that at the beginning everything had been out of curiosity but after a while Toru had become something special to him. "You know I only get aroused by you" In which Toru replies "I thought I was the only devious one".