Calling You v.1 by Otsuichi and Setsuri Tsuzuki – 176 pages
In the first of two stories, Aihara, a lonely girl without a cell phone creates an imaginary one in her head, only to find out it actually works. She is able to talk to an older woman in her mind, and accidentally dials a boy, Nozaki. They discover they live in different parts of Japan, and are actually communicating from different points in time. A friendship develops as they help each other with schoolwork and talk about their interests. The shy girl works on her speaking voice so she can try to make friends. However, when the boy and girl agree to meet each other in real life, tragedy is waiting.
In the second story, the two young boys Keigo and Asato meet each other in reform school. Keigo learns that Asato can heal the wounds of others by moving them on to his own body, or on to the bodies of others. Keigo protects Asato, and filled with anger at his dying father who used to beat him, believes the adult world is hypocritical. Both boys feel like outcasts and wonder what the worth of living is. However, Asato takes the facial scars from a kind girl in order to give her a better life, and both boys share the wounds of people from the hospital where Keigo’s father dies. Keigo is able to recognize some kind memories and find some peace with his father. “Just like anyone who deals with pain and sadness, we’ll change,” Keigo says.