When Fate Finds Us
Manta Studios

Production: Manta Studios
Publisher: Manta
Publication Date: September 19, 2023
Rating: All ages
Genre: Webtoon (S. Korea), Romance, Fantasy

When Fate Finds Us is a recent and exclusive addition to Manta‘s library. We are invited to tag along with our two protagonists in a faraway, fictional land as they meet each other and take their first steps on their fated journey.

Noemi, the wife of god Olak, is a priestess gifted with the ability to see the future of anyone she touches. On the surface, she’s revered by all and showered with money and valuables. However, the truth is she’s kept under strict control of the priests, isn’t allowed to disclose the visions she sees fully, and is to be sacrificed when she’s of age.

She doesn’t expect her path to cross with Theo’s again, a noble looked down upon by the other nobility for choosing to do trade. Theo is critical of the church and the priestess’ powers, but when an accidental kiss between the two shows Noemi a future completely different from the bleak one she’s been trapped in, they decide to put their faith in each other to get what they want.

When Fate Finds Us Art
Manta Studios

Manta has been consistently licensing romance and BL (boys love) titles from the same studio. With only 13 chapters, When Fate Finds Us is one of the newest releases.

At first glance, what sets When Fate Finds Us apart is that it doesn’t immediately rely on some tropes that heavily occupy the current heterosexual romance genre: reincarnation, transmigration, or getting a second chance at life. Instead, this series goes down the less complicated road and brings us a straightforward, fated meeting in a world where certain supernatural powers exist.

Even though the chapter count is barely over 10, the events progress quickly. Noemi is a confined woman under the constant watch of the priests around her, all the while being haunted by the visions of her death. Yet, even after spending her whole life under the watchful eye of those who were supposed to protect her, her will to live is rekindled when she sees a way out, no matter how narrow—this determination isn’t depicted as mindless optimism either. Having been cut off from the outside world, she learned what she knows solely from the books that she was provided with, and with that comes a naivety that leads to funny instances and desperation when things don’t go according to plan. Still, she’s brimming with curiosity and energy to explore a world that’s been kept away from her.

Meanwhile, Theo, in a couple of flashbacks we see, comes off as a rather laid-back and fun character. We haven’t been given many details about his circumstances yet, but he isn’t concerned about how others, especially his relatives, perceive him.

Compared to Noemi, Theo’s more jaded, which makes them a balanced couple-to-be. His skepticism towards Noemi has even led him to blame her for certain outcomes, but he’s quick to accept after confirming that Noemi’s visions are the real deal and she would be the key to reaching his personal goal. Hence, our main characters quickly find themselves in a “he needs her, she needs him, so they join hands” type of agreement, and it’s up to the reader to see where this alliance will take these two.

Noemi and Theo in When Fate Finds Us
Manta Studios

I also appreciated that although the inhabitants of Slaan, a country where “people are free to love and marry whoever they want,” as Theo puts it, are wearing clothes inspired by traditional (and somewhat stereotypical) Middle Eastern garments, they thankfully aren’t portrayed as barbaric. On the contrary, the citizens of Slaan are their own people and a part of the political intrigue brewing behind the perfect facade that the people in power are trying to maintain.

Bringing this story to life is an uncomplicated and clean art style. The background art and character designs are pleasant and convey the atmosphere and emotion of the story–a must-have in romance webtoons are good-looking characters, specifically male leads, if we are talking about a female main character. When Fate Finds Us has four male characters, some allies and others foes, all corresponding to different archetypes that a seasoned romance reader will immediately pick up and feast their eyes on.

Overall, When Fate Finds Us is a competently done webtoon with lovable characters. It introduces an interesting world and an array of instances that spark curiosity in the reader, making you wonder how they will manage this or what’s going to happen after that. If you enjoy titles where characters get to know each other through their journey, you are looking for a new fantasy romance series to start, or simply want to dip your toes into the webtoon world and see what the rage is about; this series is definitely for you.

A new weekly chapter of When Fate Finds Us hits Manta every Tuesday.