I just realized how well Jeph did his homework. It was so subtle I didn’t even realize I do this exact same thing, most likely for the exact same reasons.
2nd panel, Claire says, “I just worry about that sort of thing.” - she didn’t say exactly what it is she’s worried about, but any trans person knows. Fear of rejection. “Ew, I cuddled with an icky t****ny.” Internalized transphobia… you begin to assume everyone else is too disgusted by the idea of touching you to even assume they might see you as a normal person. How sad, that so many of us think we’re not worthy of something so simple like human contact.
Well played, Jeph. Well played.
EDIT : And then Marten does EXACTLY THE RIGHT THING (which is why they should be together 5ever, but that’s a different post topic)
He not only TELLS her that he’s not afraid to touch her, he SHOWS her by asking to hug her. “I’m not grossed out. In fact, I’m going to wrap my arms back around you right now, of my own free will (if that’s cool?) See?”
So much GOOD is happening in this comic I can’t even…