Er-hem. Uh... Merry Christmas? Sorry for the heavy page for the holidays. It's just kind of the way things lined up. ^^;
I think it's a good discussion page though. Do you think Aiken's research has any hope of getting through to Kellen? She says she "really hates this", but what exactly do you think this is that she hates? And how do we feel about Aiken's attitude? Last time we're seeing them for the rest of the chapter, so get your thoughts on the siblings out now.
Rain, all characters and all other aspects of the story are copyright material belonging to me.
If Aiken managed to get along with it I'm hoping Kellen will too.
Now show us some RainxEmily ships so we can sail on it.
@pretty jodye flacko:
I concur with Jodye Flacko, the ship must sail!
I've been waiting for something like this to be mentioned. I've considered for a long time, and came close to attempting a few times. Still trying to get rid of the urges. Too bad this had to be on christmas :/ but still, very good page.
In regard to Aiken's attitude: it's better. It's not really the best, or even good, but I would consider it a solid neutral. This is a phase of acceptance a lot of people go through on their way to being, you know, actually respectful of trans people's gender. My own parents went through this phase, and while I was glad that they weren't trying to fix me, I was also pretty depressed that they saw me a mentally ill individual that needed to be fixed. I may be putting my own experiance into this, but I think that over time Aiken will shift to seeing Rain as just a girl as opposed to the weird justification thing he has going right now. Kellen though? That girl has major insecurity issues, and needs to get help/deal with it in some kind of constructive way before she can fix her relationship with Rain. She wants everyone to be the way she wants them to be, and when they aren't she isn't happy. That is about as far away from a helpful attitude as possible, especially for someone in transition.
Did this hit me in the feels? It kind of hit me in the feels.
@Erin: neutral would be genuine acceptance. But this reluctant faux acceptance is better than he was before. Hopefully it will become genuine acceptance over time. My mum had a similar journey
I've got to say, I think this is very positive. Yes, it isn't ideal that Aiken is currently seeing it as a mental illness, but I think the twins NEED that phase. I think, ultimately, more of their rejection is due to that feeling of "losing" their baby brother Ryan. If they drop their prejudices, they will quickly start seeing that Rain is essentially an happier, more confident Ryan and that her femininity is simply a part of herself she had to repress rather than a new thing.
In short, this step of "rejecting Rain is more likely to lead to permanently losing our younger sibling than accepting her" is an important one. It's also a fabulous bit of character development in which we get an inkling of how important family is, at least to Aiken.
I hope he saw genderfluid along the way. To be transgender with no hope of transition ever because you are constantly bouncing between every conceivable gender identity.
@Nesagsar: I'm right there with you, friend. 'Tis difficult.
I want to say that I think both Aiken and Kellen are making progress with this conflict. I also want to remind that Aiken has had a fair while longer to adjust to the situation; and that while Kellen's behavior so far has been every bit of disrespectful and rude, she hasn't shown the same -degree- of rejection that Aiken did initially. They both certainly have a long way to go, but I think Kellen might EVENTUALLY warm up to her little sis' more so than Aiken will.
I want to say that as unpleasant as the situations the characters are often in, I think you've done an excellent job of portraying them. Given the length of this work in time or in number of pages, having not lost the focus to do so is impressive. I absolutely look forward to seeing where you continue to take this.
Aiken gets my approval in that his response when confronted with something he doesn't understand is to research it so that he knows more. His biggest resistance now is that he wants his 'Baby Bro' back, which will go away now that he's starting to see that Rain is the same person she always was - just happier.
I'm withholding judgement on Kellen until we see what 'this' (as in "I still really hate this") is.
Maybe later someone will point out to Kellen (and Aiken?) that "ticking time bomb of a litte brother" is not an option on the table. Baby Bro is gone forever. The choice is now between Baby Sis and nothing.
Kellen doesn't have to like that fact, but she does have to accept it. Rain does't like it either; she would much rather have been Baby Sis all along.
Also, I think Kellen choosing "nothing" would damage her relationship with Aiken. Because he's chosen to start working through his own difficulties with the situation and, eventually, have a Baby Sis. His attitude isn't really good, but it's moved substantially in the right direction and that is largely as a result of his deliberate choices. And I don't think he believes he's done.
But... Aiken learned about Rain shortly after learning that his fiancee is transgender. When he'd probably never thought about (possibly never heard of) transgenders before. He was already under substantial emotional stress because of gender-identity issues. And Rain was right there in his face. He didn't have time to calm down and really think about things; he just had to react. He reacted as a jerk. In context, that's understandable (which doesn't exonerate or justify it).
Most likely Aiken called Kellen and told her about Rain either while he was at Fara's apartment, or shortly after Fara tossed him out. Kellen was not, as far as we know, under a similar emotional stress. And she's had weeks to think about how she feels, and to do research, before having to deal with Rain in person. What's her excuse for being a bigger jerk than Aiken was?
I think I needed this page, too.
It's little things like this which keep me going. In my case, I not only have to deal with being a transwoman in a bigoted household (a situation I am trying to work myself out of), but also bipolar disorder on top of that. Every little bit helps me.
Typo in balloon 4 of panel 1: "[..] had to be a our little [..]". Nothing bad this time :)
I think Kellen's saying that she hates (more accurately, is scared of) change. I get that it's scary to change your understanding of the world. Not that her old understanding was right, but I get that she needs a little time to process this.
What's that about this being their last page in this chapter? I thought they were all four going to the con? Or is something big coming up with other characters? Eep o_o
Hmm. Maybe I was wrong to say I was disappointed in her... I don't think she's misgendering and misnaming Rain to be malicious or anything, but because she just can't stand to see Rain isn't the little sibling she thought she always had. At least, I hope so. It's only that that makes me have faith that Kellen will eventually come around.
I have to give Aiken some massive kudos; hes taking this quite well for practically disowning Jessica for being transgender and being basically Kellen level here before when he was at christmas break with Fara and Rain.