Wish is an older four volume series by CLAMP that has languished unread on my bookshelves for a few years, so I figured the CLAMP Manga Moveable Feast was a good excuse to finally read it.
Shuichiro, a doctor with magnificent eyebrows, is walking home one night when he sees a cherub stuck in a tree being attacked by crows. He rescues the tiny being only to discover that he’s been saddled with a new companion. Kohaku is an angel who has been sent to earth on a mission from heaven, but since Shuichiro saved her she is determined to return the favor and grant him a wish. Unfortunately the stoic Shuichiro doesn’t seem to have anything he wants to wish for.
Kohaku draws her power from the sun, so at night she’s in chibi form. When she introduces herself to Shuichiro the next morning as a statuesque woman, he turns around and goes back to bed because he assumes he’s having visions due to sleep deprivation. Shuichiro steadfastly refuses to make a wish, so Kohaku decides to stick around until she has a real opportunity to help him. Wish isn’t a manga that focuses only on the charming domestic scenes one might expect from a story of a doctor with a literal angel in his house. Kohaku’s devilish nemesis Koryu promptly appears on earth to torment her.
As Kohaku and Shuichiro spend more time together, she keeps attempting to help him but never manages to quite pull it off. They develop a certain amount of companionship and familiarity with each other. He keeps her supplied with milk, the only substance she can consume on earth. Kohaku shares some of the details of her mission, she is charged with finding a lost angel named Hisui. It turns out that Hisui has found herself caught up in an unconventional romance with Kokuyo, a son of Satan who also looks like he could be Shuichiro’s long-lost older brother. Shuichiro seems to have a rather laid-back attitude about house guests, as soon Hisui and Kokuyo move in with him as well.
Kohaku learns more about Shuichiro when his grandfather shows up to visit. It turns out that the good doctor has has plenty of tragedy in his past due to his mother disappearing and his father dying a year later. Koryu baits Kohaku into time traveling to view Shuichiro’s past, and she observes his relationship with his mother, which seems more than a little bit creepy. Shuichiro’s mother is a young, doll-like woman who can’t see and she relies on her son to carry her around and dress her. Kohaku finds out that she wasn’t Shuichiro’s first encounter with non-human beings.
Kohaku puts off going back to heaven as long as possible, but she soon can’t dodge the issue any longer. She leaves and she and Shuichiro aren’t ever able to discuss their relationship, whatever it is. In heaven she finds herself missing him, and she starts using her angelic powers to check in on earth. In the meantime everyone’s favorite denizens of Hell begin to expect that Shuichiro isn’t exactly what he seems. Kohaku starts acting in a most non-angelic manner when she decides to return to earth. There’s a confrontation about both Kohaku and Hisui, and while Hisui’s punishment for falling in love with a devil is actually somewhat manageable, Kokaku is stripped of her spells and sentenced to remain in chibi form for 100 years.
As all of Kohaku’s friends deal with the aftermath of heaven’s judgement, the truth about Shuichiro is revealed and so is the reasoning for Kohaku’s punishment. Wish is a rarity for CLAMP in that it is short, self-contained, and has a somewhat coherent and satisfactory ending. While the art isn’t as developed as CLAMP’s later series, Wish shares with Cardcaptor Sakura a way of depicting innocence in a absolutely charming way. The extended cast of characters from heaven and hell was entertaining, and even though many of the characters were on opposing sides, they all came together to support Kohaku and her budding romance. This wasn’t the most profound CLAMP series that I’ve read, but it was a pleasant series to read to finish out my weekend.
And now that I’ve read Wish, you can win the whole series from me. Since Kohaku was only able to consume milk on earth, comment here with the name of the beverage you would consume if you were trapped on earth as an Angel. I think I would have to go with coffee. Giveaway will be open for one week!