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Thread: Kid + Adult = friends. Is that too creepy?

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  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW The Second Moon's Avatar
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    Jul 2018

    Kid + Adult = friends. Is that too creepy?

    In my Upper MG SF collection, there is this 12 year old kid, Barney, who lives with an inventor, Mr. Thomas. I know what you're thinking. A kid and an adult can't be friends. It has to be a strictly formal relationship. No friendships allowed. That's the most disgusting things I've ever heard! (just writing hypothetical thoughts makes me want to cry because I know people are thinking it ) But here is some backstory before you judge.

    Barney has this thing where he turns into an alligator creature when he gets too emotional. He can't control the alligator creature. He also doesn't remember anything before he was six or seven. All he knows about his mysterious past is what Mr. Thomas told him: that he was the alligator creature terrorizing a swamp outside of a town, until Mr. Thomas found a way to make him human again. After turning Barney human again, he took Barney in and made him his inventing assistant.

    Basically, Mr. Thomas was the first person who ever tried to help Barney and Barney will always care about Mr. Thomas because of that.

    Until Barney was 12, he had no friends. The only person he was close to was Mr. Thomas. Even when he's 12 and in sixth grade, he still would rather talk to Mr. Thomas than his few friends. Barney just feels like he can always trust Mr. Thomas, unlike his friends who could betray him (and slightly do).

    Now on to Mr. Thomas.

    Mr. Thomas had a hard childhood and tries not to get close to people. But then he took in Barney and he felt something change inside him. He was worth something to someone. He had a purpose. In response to this feeling, he built the wall around his heart bigger and pushed that feeling away. He doesn't want his heart broken again.

    Even though Mr. Thomas has friends, he would prefer to hang out with Barney instead of them He just feels that Barney--who also had a hard childhood (even if he can't recall it) just like Mr. Thomas.

    Now you see how the kid and the adult feel about each other. I now what to know if Barney asked to be Mr. Thomas' best friend, would it be creepy? What if Mr. Thomas (because he's afraid to get close to people) said no at first, but changed his mind later?

    At the end of the series (eight books and growing rapidly) Barney and Mr. Thomas finally confess that they love each other in a father-son way. Is that creepy, too?

    *sigh* I just don't know. I want them to love each other, but I think the first step would be to become friends first.

    I HATE that we live in a world where a kid and adult being friends would be considered creepy. I honestly don't think it is creepy. I think it is cute, but what does society think?

    I don't think a middle grade reader would think it as creepy, but they wouldn't think it as cute either. I gave my collection to a beta who didn't comment about them being friends as being creepy, so there's that...

    Please help me figure this out.
    Last edited by The Second Moon; 07-05-2019 at 03:03 AM.

    Barney and Mr. Thomas = (8/8) stories finished {In the process of being beta read}

    Barney, Mr. Thomas, and the Alligator Creature = (3/8) stories finished {on the 1st draft now}

    Apocalypse Stoppers = {first draft}

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