⚠️Content note⚠️ This page contains mentions of domestic violence.
Tatsuki Nakagawa is the main character in the one-shot Sazanka (2018).
Author Kamiyama Aya stated that she decided to create this story because she'd never read a manga that both explicitly state the main character has a developmental disability, and have the story be told from their own perspective. Tatsuki was originally designed as a 12-year-old boy.
Tatsuki Nakagama is a 19-year-old in an abusive relationship with 24-year-old Keita Mashiko (who also works at the same place as Tatsuki). She tells him that she has Asperger's, and although he initially seems accepting, he also is adamant on working to "cure" her. Keita is both physically an emotionally abusive towards Tatsuki, and starts using her disability to put her down and guilt-trip her. She does eventually break up with him, and quits her job as well (since they work at the same place). After not having met for a while due to Keita's abuse, Tatsuki meets up with her friend, Aoi, again. Aoi notices some leftover bruises on Tatsuki's arm, and although the latter initially tries to cover up what happens, she eventually tells Aoi both about the abuse from her boyfriend and about her Asperger's.
Tatsuki is a 19-year-old woman with long black hair. She usually wears long-sleeved clothes to hide her bruises from the abuse.
Tatsuki herself states that she has Asperger's. She has trouble following along with conversations, and is rather sensitive to noise. She is afraid to tell people about because she doesn't want to seem like she's using it as an excuse.
- Keita Mashiko. He works at the same place where Tatsuki has a part-time job, and initially approached because he figured that due to her age, she'd be easy to deal with. He is abusive towards her, both physically and emotionally.
- Aoi Tsurata. They've have known each other since middle school. Aoi has always known that Tatsuki was different, and says she doesn't mind her Asperger's, but does feel a bit hurt that Tatsuki didn't tell her earlier about it.
- Friend A. Tatsuki and Aoi's unnamed friend. She jokingly calls Tatsuki "aspie" when she does things like lose track of the conversation, without knowing that she actually has Asperger's.
- The title of the manga, Sazanka, refers to the sasanqua camellia tree. Its flowers mean "being earnest" and "overcoming difficulties" in the language of flowers, referring both to the hardship in Tatsuki's life and the fact that she'll eventually get out.
- Sazanka manga