Love That Counts
“You can’t just sit there and put everybody’s lives ahead of yours and think that counts as love.” The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Also known as: Hamliet compares and contrasts Touka and Kaneki’s relationship to the relationships Kaneki has with three other characters who love Kaneki: namely, Tsukiyama, Mutsuki, and Hinami.
PSA: This is not specifically about romantic love and is therefore not about ships, as I think Tsukiyama’s and Hinami’s feelings are too complicated to be classified as strictly romantic (Hinami’s I feel is more like hero worship with maybe a tiny crush mixed in, and Tsukiyama’s while it started as romantic affection has moved beyond that as shown in how he planned Touken’s wedding), and also while Mutsuki’s love for Kaneki has a blatant romantic aspect, it’s complicated too. (I’m not discussing other characters who love Kaneki like Hide or Saiko because their arcs in :re are just beginning.)
Let’s first examine how the characters have responded to Kaneki leaving them/appearing to die on them. Touka sets up her own business and hopes for his return, but never presses.
Hinami, on the other hand, joins a terrorist organization to become stronger.