May 13, 2022
This is an incredibly sweet romance manga between a doctor and a nurse. Sakura fell in love with Tendo five years before the start of the manga, when they basically saved somebody's life together while she was in high school and it inspired her to become a nurse and get a job at the same hospital her first love works at. On her first day she confesses immediately and gets rejected... immediately, earning her the nickname "Valiant One".
She realizes that her first love is actually much more cold than she imagined (earning him the nickname "Dark Lord"), but she's your typical romantic lead which
means her tenacity and good attitude makes Tendo reconsider his rejection and they slowly begin to fall for each other. Or, he starts to fall for her and despite her claims that she hates him now that they've met again, she realizes that she's still in love.
Overall, it's quite a cute love story and despite his trope of the "cold and brooding" male romantic lead, Tendo is actually a very good character. He's dedicated to his job and rejecting a new co-worker who you only barely met once five years ago and getting annoyed when it seems like she isn't being a nurse seriously is actually very reasonable. His slow fall for Sakura is quite cute and Sakura's love for him becomes much less shallow over time as she learns more about him.
I also like that they start officially dating around the middle of the series, instead of at the very last minute and we get to see their relationship progress as a couple. There are still some stupid miscommunication errors that could easily be avoided, but Tendo has a lot of baggage and Sakura feels quite naive being that this is her first relationship, so the misunderstandings at least make sense for their character.
SPOILER (I would be remiss not to mention it though, since it's my biggest/only complaint)
The only thing that felt a bit off for me is that at one point early on when they start dating, it's revealed that Tendo might go study abroad and this (obviously) would be an issue for their relationship which is quite new at this point. Regardless, Sakura encourages him to go even though she doesn't really want him to and it's played up as this big dramatic moment... only for the opportunity to go away because of circumstances outside of both of their control when the doctor he was supposed to study under abroad dies and so neither of them actually have to make a decision or do anything. BUT, this exact same conflict comes up again towards the end of the manga and they have the EXACT SAME CONVERSATION OVER AGAIN. There's the exact same tension, and it's so weird, except this time he actually goes and then there's a time jump three years into the future when they see each other again and it's happily ever after which is very cute, but it's weird that it happened twice. Maybe this could have been an easy fix if they had rewritten the first time this happens a bit differently. It just felt very abrupt and noticeable, but besides that I would highly recommend this manga.
END OF SPOILER
It's refreshing to read josei romance with adult characters, rather than the typical high schooler protagonists and the hospital background felt well written. Give it a shot!
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