Bingo 21: Sex
So, when the main character of a fantasy romance game whose regained her memories of a past of life of being a modern mundane teen has absolutely no concept of sex at the age of 17, and everyone around her does, it makes for some mild cringe, but mostly entertaining hijinks. By this point in the manga, Katarina has managed to make her fiancée the Prince fall for her and express his desire (totally confounds her, an she pretends it didn’t happen), her adopted brother does the same (but Katarine thinks it’s because he was totally out of it at the time), and at least one of the other girls in the gang is overprotective to the level of crushing but never going to realize/admit that’s her actual feelings (it’s unclear how much Mary might understand about that; she totally gets the men attracted to Katarina though and does her best to put a stop to that). Then there’s Maria whom Katarina seems obsessed with finding a male partner for, but Katarina continuously thinks about in almost partner-like terms. What does Katarina notice? Food. She’s definitely into sweets, but all she ever seems to want to do is eat.
Volume 8 sees Katarina and the gang rescue Keith (the adopted brother) and his confession to her about his non-brotherly feelings, but because he’s just been seriously zonked by black magic, Katarina flusters herself into justifying it as he must just be out of it. Then there’s a rival for Prince Jeord’s affections, sort of. Katarina has no idea what’s going on, being totally clueless about a lot of things most of the time, but Jeord isn’t. Neither is Mary, and they actually team up in spite of being rivals for Katarina’s attention to save her/Jeord from a girl who thinks Katarina can’t possibly be good enough for him. Katarina is knocked out for a good bit of this bit, and she wakes up momentarily to tell Jeord to stop being slightly evil, and passes out again. But was she still asleep or half awake at the time? The difference in how Jeord and Katarina understand that bit is both amusing and slightly cringe because how can Katarina be so deliberately dumb about so much? It’s like she’s trying to be ignorant; still it is kind of funny to imagine what’s going to happen when she and Jeord figure out what’s actually going on in the other’s head. Not that the story is likely to ever do that, because apparently in this world you can’t be both nice and smart; Jeord is smart but has a very not nice side. Ditto for Mary. Keith has some awareness and he’s definitely got trauma which means he can’t be all nice all the time. Katarina is nice but beyond inobservant to the point of obtuse. Even Maria who is at least a little more balanced has the learned helplessness about her (social differences) which takes away from the nice/smart that she could have had the capacity for.