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Two manga high school students, one boy and one girl, stand face to face in a deserted hallway. The guy pounds his fist into the wall behind the girl, executing a perfect kabe-don as he stares into her eyes with a serious look on his face and asks her an earnest, possibly life-changing question. After pausing for a second, the girl gives him her answer: yes.

Is this the birth of another girls’ manga couple? Nope, not this time, as the question the boy just asked isn’t as romantic as “Will you be my girlfriend,” but is no less important.

Twitter user mwiwai was riding the train in Aichi Prefecture recently when he spotted and shared this public health poster, commissioned by Toyohashi City.

So what’s the burning question this dreamy guy is asking his classmate?

“Will you go get tested for AIDs with me?”

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The girl’s response, “…yeah,” shows that while their hearts may or may not be bound eternally by the red string of fate, these two teens have definitely crossed the line that makes them more than just platonic friends. At least for the guy, it doesn’t look like this was an exclusive arrangement, either, as it’s unlikely he’d be the one broaching the subject if he didn’t have multiple partners.

The poster was created as part of National HIV Testing Awareness Week, which runs from May 31 to June 6. While Japan doesn’t see sexual activity as being as much of a moral issue as some other countries, the dichotomy of a society where open sexual fetishes and prevalent pornography are widely tolerated, while at the same time many schools explicitly prohibit students from dating and many adults are so embarrassed at showing affection that they’ll hide having a romantic partner from their coworkers, means that there can be a huge divide in the level of knowledge of sexual health issues among the two members of a physical relationship.

By taking a visual image that originated in flowery fantasies and slapping a real world issue on top of it, Toyohashi City has come up with a powerful and instantly relatable image, especially for teens like the two portrayed in the illustration. So remember, just like you should keep your IT passwords secure, it’s important to choose your partner carefully and use protection when you’re having a between-the-sheets duet.

Source: IT Media
Top image: Twitter (edited by RocketNews24)
Insert image: Twitter (edited by RocketNews24)