A Field Guide to Dating Monster Girlsby Paul Jensen,
The non-human ladies of Monster Musume have gotten a lot of attention this season, but actually dating a monster girl seems like quite a challenge. In the unlikely event that you find yourself in a relationship with a mermaid or a centaur, you'll need all the help and advice you can get. In order to promote inter-species cultural exchange, we've compiled this handy field guide to keep you from getting crushed, trampled, drowned, or otherwise injured by your non-human girlfriend. Along with some useful tips and warnings, each species has been rated on the riskiness of pursuing a relationship and the likelihood that your life together will be worth the danger.
Lamias are cold-blooded, and prolonged exposure to cold air or water can pose a serious threat to their health. They will actively seek out sources of warmth, and have a habit of wrapping themselves around their warm-blooded roommates at night. If this happens to you, be aware that you are in immediate danger of being crushed by the lamia's tail, resulting in broken bones and even death. Try to ignore the sudden intimacy of the situation and escape by any means necessary. When all else fails, remember that a lamia's weak point is the tip of her tail.
Danger Level: 4 out of 5. Love hurts when your significant other can break your bones while attempting to cuddle.
Relationship Prospects: 4 out of 5. Lamias are an upbeat and passionate species, so you'll likely enjoy whatever time you spend out of the hospital.
Harpies possess a mix of human and bird traits, and can be identified by the feathered wings that act as their arms. Harpies’ legs are also distinctly bird-like and feature sharp talons. While it's not uncommon for harpies to boast an impressive 13-foot wingspan, their lack of fully formed hands means that they're terrible at holding things. Buying a harpy an ice cream cone is generally considered an exercise in futility, as she will most likely drop it immediately. Harpies will occasionally lay eggs, which are considered extremely valuable on the black market. If a harpy lays an egg while you're dating, don't panic. The eggs are unfertilized, so it's safe to assume that your lovebird hasn't been seeing someone else behind your back. Just be sure not to sell the egg to anyone suspicious and store it somewhere safe.
Harpies have poor short-term memory and a limited attention span, which makes it very tempting to describe them as “bird-brained.” They can be incredibly impulsive, so do your best to avoid a harpy's sharp talons if she gets too excited. It's also common for harpies to forget that other species are incapable of flight, causing them to drop their wingless acquaintances out of the sky without warning. If you live with a harpy, you may want to consider investing in a parachute and wearing it whenever possible.
Danger Level: 5 out of 5 unless you've got wings of your own.
Relationship Prospects: 3 out of 5. Harpies aren't the sharpest tools in the shed, but they're generally very friendly and can get along with just about anyone.
Bearing a striking resemblance to the descriptions offered in ancient human mythology, centaurs possess the upper body of a human and the lower body of a horse. Their four muscular legs allow them to run extremely fast, with most adults capable of reaching a top speed of over 35mph. Their offspring are relatively large, so female centaurs tend to have busts that are truly bodacious by human standards. Due to their cultural history of serving as knights, many centaurs speak in an excessively formal manner and may even seek out a “master” and pledge lifelong loyalty to him or her.
Centaurs display a few horse-like behaviors, and can be extremely dangerous when startled. Potential hazards to bystanders include kicking, trampling, and assault with a high-quality replica sword. Do not, under any circumstances, attempt to ride a centaur who has not pledged personal loyalty to you. This is considered an especially grievous form of assault, and will likely result in swift retaliation. Centaurs also have a habit of chasing down criminals with little regard for their own safety, so you may need to rein in their vigilante instincts from time to time.
Danger Level: 3 out of 5. Spending time with a centaur is usually safe, but that can change very quickly if you're not paying attention.
Relationship Prospects: 3 out of 5. While centaurs make excellent companions, all that knightly stoicism can make it tough to ignite the flames of romance.
While their name may conjure up images of low-level video game monsters, slimes are actually a mysterious species that we are still struggling to understand. They generally have a gelatinous and slightly transparent appearance, but are capable of changing shape to mimic other species. While they can read human minds through physical contact, slimes seem to have very limited conversational abilities. They can repeat words after hearing them, but seem unable to construct original sentences. No one is entirely certain if they have personalities of their own or are just very good at imitating others.
Slimes are in constant need of water, and their height and measurements tend to change depending on how hydrated they are at the moment. While too much water can fatally dilute a slime, it's much more dangerous for everyone else to let them become dehydrated. An especially thirsty slime will attack anything wet, including living things. Just sweating can be enough to draw their attention. The unique consistency of a slime's body also makes it possible to get stuck inside one, which can result in drowning. On the positive side, slimes can compact themselves down enough that they can be conveniently carried around in a bucket when necessary.
Danger Level: 4 out of 5. Slimes may not mean any harm, but their apparent ignorance of humans’ need for air is a major concern.
Relationship Prospects: 2 out of 5, unless you don't mind having a lot of one-sided conversations.
As many readers will already know, mermaids resemble humans with fish-like tails instead of legs. Closer observation reveals a number of less obvious aquatic traits, including webbed fingers and gills on the upper body. Mermaids are able to live out of the water for extended periods of time thanks to a layer of moisturizing mucus on their skin, but you'll still need to put in a fairly large pool if you're planning to live with one. Unlike lamias, mermaids’ tails are essentially useless on land, so many choose to use wheelchairs to move around.
Of all the common monster girl species, mermaids are perhaps the least dangerous to humans. They have no significant violent tendencies and are generally conscientious of other species’ limited mobility in the water. It's worth noting, however, that some specimens seem to have an unhealthy obsession with their role in human folklore and will seek to emulate the relationships that they've read about. Mermaids’ slippery skin is also poorly suited to wearing human clothes, and wardrobe malfunctions are a common occurrence.
Danger Level: 1 out of 5 as long as you know how to swim.
Relationship Prospects: 4 out of 5, but you may want to have a serious talk about all those love triangle fantasies.
Despite going through official channels, arachnes have had an unusual amount of difficulty integrating into human society. Their visual similarity to spiders appears to be the root of the problem, as many people seem to find their appearance unnerving. Arachnes have six eyes and the lower body of a spider, complete with eight legs and a hardened exoskeleton. They are capable of spinning large webs in a short amount of time, and often seek out dark corners and high places. If you're searching for a missing arachne, make sure to look up.
While arachnes tend to be fairly composed and even-tempered, humans’ instinctive dislike of spiders and insects has led to some tense relationships between our two species. If threatened, an arachne will use her silk to immobilize her attacker, generally choosing to leave her target hanging helplessly from the ceiling. It has been suggested that some arachnes also do this as a hobby and enjoy devising new ways to tie up humans and monster girls alike. In the right environment, however, arachnes are relatively easy to get along with and have much better control over their overwhelming strength than other species.
Danger Level: 2 out of 5. Arachnes look more dangerous than they are, but getting on one's bad side could land you in a sticky situation.
Relationship Prospects: 5 out of 5 if you're not afraid of spiders, 0 out of 5 if you are.
If you do find yourself dating a non-human, relax and remember that most monster girls just want to be treated like everyone else. Be aware of her unique characteristics, but try not to let them define your relationship. Whatever you do, however, don't bring up the topic of marriage unless you're prepared to barricade yourself in your bedroom every time there's a full moon.
This field guide is based on the best data available, but we're always looking for more anecdotal evidence from the field. If you have any disagreements with the ratings assigned to these monster girls based on personal experience, please let us know in the forums.
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