Title: Gozen 0-ji, Kiss Shite ni Kite yo (Kiss Me at the Stoke of Midnight)
Author: Mikimoto Rin
Status: 12 Volumes (Completed)
Licensed: Yes (11 Volumes)
Genre: Age-gap, Celebrity, Comedy, Romance, School life
At school, Hinana is an honors student, respected by all her classmates. She’s totally above things as juvenile as crushes and dating. Secretly, though, she has but one wish: To have a fairy-tale romance. One day, a super-hot celebrity named Kaede shows up at Hinana’s high school to shoot a movie, and it becomes difficult to keep up her act. By pure chance—or y’know, fate!—Kaede reveals his own ridiculous personality to Hinana, and her ordinary life turns breathtakingly romantic! Or just really, really … weird?!
Where to read:
Believe it or not, I’ve been reading manga for years now but I don’t think there’s a lot of series about showbiz that has left a great impression on me. But this series has climbed up to my list now whenever someone asks me about “age-gap” and “celebrities”.
I swear, I follow my “1-2 volume” rule where I give series a try before dropping them because I want to judge after the story’s world is built. But that also means I kind of judge them before I read, thus I end up shoving some titles on my “to read later” list. And that’s where Gozen originally was, on my “to read later”, because I wasn’t really a fan of Mikimoto Rin before.
I really need to thank my bored mood for always making me discover gems when I least expect it. Gozen is definitely on my top five favorites!! It’s crazy how this isn’t even angst (I love stories that makes me cry), and yet the title made the cut. If you ask why, it’s probably because of how adorable the couple are in this story (and I blame my mood when I read this, haha).
We start with Hinana showing how her day starts that’s pretty much on a mundane schedule. She wakes up, do chores, exercise, study, prep, then go to school. Pretty normal, right? People around her also thinks she’s the perfect high school girl who is not interested with love or anyone, but little did they know that she’s actually a hopeless romantic. She dreams of dating someone handsome that’s desired by everyone and who will fall head over heels for her first. It’s pretty delusional, so I get why she keeps that side of her a secret HAHA.
So, how can an ordinary high school girl meet a superstar? Simple, wish for luck to work its wonders and get that superstar to shoot a movie at your school! I mean, that’s how these two met. Hinana’s part of the student council, so she got the chance to work as an extra for his movie. Did this motivate you guys to join your school’s student council? LOL. Anyway, she’s extremely happy and excited to see a real life gorgeous superstar-in the flesh. All her delusions went down the dump when she accidently find out about Kaede’s real character, though. Behind that handsome face who she thought was enjoying life doing glamorous stuff, but in all actuality is just a weirdo who’s super into butts. He even saw her panties by accident when she tripped HAHAHA. Good thing it was an A-OK for Kaede LOL.
They had a weird start but they’re still natural. They got to know each other when they met by chance at a nearby arcade. Hinana was killing time before seeing a movie, while Kaede was on his break from the shoot. Seriously, how lucky can this girl be! She saw more of who the real Kaede is when she saw him being himself and playing some crane game with butt figurines as prize, which in return made Hinana shocked but also laughed at his ridiculousness. They ran away after that because some people were noticing who Kaede was and Hinana’s heel broke because of it. She also thought he pulled her away from the crowd thinking she’d spill his butt secret but he confidently told her how he’s sure she won’t tell anyone. We stand confident guys who are true to themselves and still trusts people!!
They met again at the nearby empty cinema where Hinana was gonna watch a movie. Kaede followed her because he noticed the way she was walking after they ran away earlier and figured her heel broke. They watched a movie together and Hinana shared how she is actually a fan of romantic movies, and that she wants to fall in love and have a fairytail-like romance. Kaede gave her his shoes and then left after that.
All stories have a main obstacle the characters need to face and if it’s not obvious yet, Gozen will be about the fact that Kaede is a freaking superstar. That means he doesn’t get any privacy, and people will use him for fame.
Hinana brought his shoes at the shoot the next day to return it when a classmate overheard her talking to her friend about it. That classmate stole the shoes and shared them on twitter which of course got Kaede’s manager upset assuming that the person who posted that on twitter was just using Kaede’s kindness to climb to fame. I mean, he’s not wrong. Some people are opportunistic, sadly.
Hinana tried to defend herself but she wasn’t able to as they got interrupted by Kaede who’s busy with the set leaving Hinana surprised and sad about the outcome. It does suck getting into a misunderstanding without having the chance to defend yourself. Feeling dejected, Hinana overheard the girls who stole the shoes complaining about how no one believes their tweet and even said they’ll unfollow Kaede since it seemed like he’s not that much of a hotshot as they thought he’d be. The audacity!! I got annoyed at this part so it’s understandable that Hinana would also be, as she definitely had fun with him, not because he’s handsome or famous but because he was fun to be with as a person. With those thoughts, she confronted the girls and took the shoes back.
Where it’ll finally start:
First chapter is freaking 100 pages long, so Rin-sensei literally built her story’s world in just one chapter LOL. She gave us a good introduction, interactions, and a peek to what we can expect in the future for the series. And now, it’s officially starting.
The shoot ended, everything is now back to normal. She thought she would never meet him again, that it was just a “once-in-a-lifetime” experience. I mean, how can you even meet someone famous again, right?? Unless that person is the one doing something to meet you. Which in Hinana’s case, is what happened. Kaede went back to her school and returned her now fixed shoes. He even put it on her like how prince charming did it for Cinderella! Just like the “fairytale-like” dream Hinana wanted.
Hinana chased him out to return his shoes and told him that she never posted anything on twitter, and Kaede said he knew. He explained how he only interrupted and left when his manager talked to her was because Shige-chan (the manager) gives a long-ass lecture so he wanted her to get away from it. The chapter ended with Kaede giving her his number, leaving Hinana in shock. She’s telling herself that they both live in different worlds, but really tho? Maybe that’s just what she think, since Kaede’s clearly either bringing her to his world or he’s making his way to her.
So, who doesn’t like reading stories where the guy falls for the girl first? I know, I do! Gozen doesn’t really have any childish drama in my opinion since the whole series covers their dating life. I promise you guys, these two are one of the most honest characters I’ve read in a manga. I scream every time one of them acts bold, and that make sense since there’s no need for you to be shy in front of your significant other. The obstacles they encounter are mostly the struggle of dating someone famous, Kaede’s backstory before he became a famous actor, and Hinana’s reasons as to why she doesn’t put herself first.
The series ended at volume 12. No news yet when the final volume will be released in English. Still hoping it’ll be this year, 2021. For the meantime, you can read summaries for the last volume on the button below!