Chapter 32 - A Night Under the Stars
It was dark by the time they reached the desert colossus. It was unknown how long the monolith had stood at the edge of the desert, guarding the realm from an unseen menace. The Gerudo had made pilgrimages yearly to worship the Goddesses and perform rituals to increase their crops, fertility or anything else they needed assistance with. The loathsome Kotake and Koume presided over these gatherings and made their residence within the temple.
The colossus had been carved with meticulous detail into the immense pillar of stone. it was shaped into a woman sitting cross-legged with her arms outstretched with palms upwards welcoming all who came to her. The carcass of a snake draped over her head as its tail meandered down her torso covering her left breast, leaving the other bare to the elements. Link and the group had to stop briefly to admire the impressive sight. It simply took Malon’s breath away at its sheer magnitude.
Despite the initial cursing and complaining of Apolloni over Malon’s inclusion into their expedition, she ultimately had to concede that the girl’s skills were acceptable. Leevers were a prevalent hazard in these shifting sands; malignant plants that emerged from the soil with thorns adorning their bodies like a crown. They preferred to attack in groups and encircle their victims before slicing them to shreds with their sharp spikes. Some Hylian scientists had made the theory that they were an offshoot of the Peahat and that they could even be related by genus. Malon had proven her mettle to stand amongst the rest of the women as she plunged her spear deep into the quivering mass of leaves and thorns.
Apolloni surveyed the scene as she gazed down across the sands before the colossus. She spied an escarpment with a visible path that scaled its heights. She nodded her head as she pointed in the direction of their destination. Leaping down off the rocky knoll they had decided to rest on for a time, they followed their navigator towards the far crag. They carefully rationed the water canteens between the seven of them, especially now that they had an additional person to account for in their supplies.
Within the hour they were almost upon the steep pathway that would lead them up and over into the marshlands. A tinkling of rock alerted Zelda’s attention to the ledge above them, she thought she saw some shadows against the clear night sky before they darted out of sight. She surged ahead to the front of the group to warn Apolloni of the possible threat.
Without even looking up where Zander was pointing, Apolloni spoke with some irritation, “Yes, I’ve known we were being followed since before we came to the desert colossus. We are being tracked.”
Zelda questioned fearfully, “Why are they not attacking?”
Apolloni shrugged before hefting herself onto the rock face, searching purchase for her limbs, “I’ve no idea. They are probably only there to keep tabs on us. If they were a threat, they would have attacked by now. Now get climbing.”
Sweat rolled off their bodies in waves as they slowly scrabbled up the treacherous cliff face. Several times Zelda or Malon lost their footing or missed a precious handhold and nearly fell several hundred feet to almost certain death, if not incapacitation. It seemed like hours before they finally heaved themselves over the ledge and onto flatter ground.
Apolloni was impatiently tapping her foot as Link, Zelda and Malon attempted to recover from the arduous climb. They had trained for combat, not for acrobatics up steep mountains. The other three women merely smirked at their exhaustion. At length, she finally decided to set up camp a bit further up the sloped path underneath an overhang. With their backs to the rock wall, they could view the environs from a place of strategic comfort.
They quickly erected the two tents and placed them towards the back of the overhang. The three Gerudo warriors had instigated a fire from the scant pieces of wood they were able to find in the local area, it was crackling heartily by the time they settled down near its heat. Malon and Zelda sat on either side of Link; more for comfort than anything else, they hardly knew the other four women. Aveil, Lorva and Merin looked at Link and Zander in longing but dared not sit any closer to the trio for fear of Apolloni’s wrath. They opted to sit closer to their leader directly opposite Link and the others past the fire.
Uncomfortable with the pervading silence, Zelda offered to make conversation with their escorts, “So what is the story behind that structure?” She asked, turning briefly around to get a glimpse of its gargantuan silhouette.
Merin looked briefly at Apolloni trying to read her inscrutable face. After receiving no confirmation either way, she turned to three youths and began to explain, “That colossus has been there since before any of the Gerudo can remember. It has served as a holy place of worship; every 500 cycles, the current ruler of the Gerudo selects two special elders to serve as loyal stewards of our traditions and practices. They are brought here and learn the secret arts of magick, divination and many other mystical powers. Kotake and Koume have been the loyal servants of the Goddesses for the past 400 cycles.”
Malon whispered quietly to Link out of the corner of her mouth, “Something tells me they have been serving more than just the Goddesses.”
Link snickered at her comment before being cut short by Merin, “What was that?”
He shook his head briskly, “Nothing. Continue please.” He perched an elbow on his leg and rested his head in his palm, leaning forward feigning great interest.
Lorva shot Malon a dirty look as Merin haltingly continued, “We travel there once a cycle to sing, dance and praise the Goddesses for the coming harvest, among other things. The two caretakers of the temple usually come out as a medium between us and the Goddesses, to tell us what we should do for the coming cycle.”
Link picked up on a quick dodge on Merin’s part, “Among other things?” He inquired further.
Merin stuttered, “Well…we…er…”
“We have big orgies.” Apolloni blurted out coolly.
Zelda spit her current mouthful of jerky at the fire, making it hiss and spit. Malon and Link’s faces went pale at the subject. Zelda spluttered, “You…what? In the open? With only women?”
Aveil flashed a devious grin as she crawled past the campfire to sidle up next to Zelda, gently stroking her arm with her fingers. Zelda’s eyes bulged at the hunger in Aveil’s eyes, “Oh, you like that idea Zander? We do bring men we’ve captured to the yearly celebration and pass them around like cattle. It is utterly delicious.” Aveil licked her lips as she inched closer to Zelda’s face. Zelda quickly grasped Link’s hand tightly in hers, an action not lost on Aveil. “Not to worry, with just you two strapping men, we can have the yearly orgy right here and now!”
Without permission or reason to hold back, Lorva and Merin crept over to Link and Zander. The three of them began fondling the smooth male bodies of the group, each woman yearning for what lay beyond the clothes covering their nude forms. Malon started up indignantly as she attempted to pull Merin off of Link.
“They’re not just some cattle to pass around like trash! They have feelings too!” Malon exclaimed. She knew the reasoning was shallow, but her mind was jumbled with visions of seeing her two friends being physically assaulted.
Merin swiftly turned to Malon, quickly knocking her to the ground, tongues locked in a one-sided passionate kiss. Merin disentangled herself from the struggling girl to gutturally whisper, “If you’re feeling left out, you can have me tonight. I don’t mind being with another woman.”
“That’s not what I mea-” Malon’s protest was cut short as her mouth was assailed by Merin’s lips, her tongue quickly sifting in with impunity. Malon could do nothing but struggle against the woman’s stronger physique.
With Apolloni doing little but sitting alongside the fire, knees up to her chin watching the whole spectacle, it was open season on the three youth. Lorva surged her hands into Link’s ivory robe as she massaged his muscular abs. Aveil began smothering Zander with her salty kisses, trailing her lips along his neck down to the chest.
The women’s appetites were rapacious. They had not had physical relations with men in many cycles. Their inner urges overcame their senses as they sought to tear the clothes off their squirming victims. Zelda was panicking, she felt Aveil slowly weed her invasive hands towards her crotch. It would be only a matter of time before she couldn’t keep the stealth haze active any longer.
“Link!” Zelda managed to cry in-between attacks on her mouth.
Link twisted his head away from the vagarious Lorva to see Zelda’s face flickering between Zander and her true face. She was struggling to maintain concentration amid the confusion of having someone violate her in such an intimate fashion. A sharp click of Apolloni’s fingers snapped Lorva and Aveil out of their sexual reverie. They look at her dazed, unsure of why she wanted them to stop.
“Merin, stop!” Apolloni ordered as she noted the two still going at it.
Breathing heavily, Link turned to Malon and was shocked to see she was clinging onto Merin, passionately returning the kiss with fervor. Apolloni’s commands grew louder and impatient as they continued to slather over each other. Malon’s legs were already draped over the woman’s hips.
Zelda tentatively tried to get Malon’s attention, “Um…Malon?”
Malon opened her eyes, unaware of where she was or how she got there. She blinked twice before looking at Merin above her, their eyes lost in a sexual haze. Malon unconsciously moved her mouth closer before seeing Merin ripped away from her. Apolloni grasped the back of Merin’s robe and threw her to the ground, shattering her mood.
“Merin, you stupid woman!” Apolloni kicked the Gerudo hard in the stomach, causing her to buckle over into a fetal position in pain. “You stop when I command you to!” She turned to glare at the other two. They both visibly shrank from her ire. “This is not what we are here for! We are not a pack of wild dogs in heat! All of you get into my tent, now! We are retiring for the night!”
The three Gerudo quickly fumbled over to their tent and quietly slipped in through the flap. Malon shakily got up before attempting to head over to the Gerudo tent. Apolloni quickly placed an arm in her path.
“Where do you think you are going, wretch?” Apolloni spat with acrimony.
Bewildered, Malon looked into Apolloni’s seething eyes, “You want me to bed in the tent with the boys?” She asked oddly.
“That is not my concern. You are simply not going to be sleeping with any of us.” With a shove, she pushed Malon onto her rump. She gently massaged her backside, as tears slowly began to form in her eyes. Apolloni exhaled in disgust at this display of weakness, “Suck it up you wench! This is not the first time you’ve been hurt. Either sleep with the boys or sleep outside, I don’t care.”
Apolloni turned on her heel to join her fellow Gerudo before stopping just short of Zander, she turned her head to look down on the youth, “Besides, I think you’ll be in the majority in that tent.” Without another word, she continued walking. With a swish of fabric, she was gone.
Zelda’s heart went cold at the allegation Apolloni left them with. Did she see through the disguise while Aveil was on top of her? She swiveled to Link who was also thinking the same thing. Malon crawled over on her hands and knees before plopping down next to Zelda, a slightly pensive look displayed over her features. Malon’s attention was split between the two, confused as to what they were alarmed about.
“What’s going on?” Malon asked.
Link turned to her to stare a few moments before recomposing himself, “Uh…I think Apolloni saw through Zelda’s disguise.” He whispered.
Malon’s mouth shot open as her face pivoted to Zelda, “When did it happen?”
Zelda dipped her head in shame, “I…I think it was when she was…feeling me down there.” She gasped slightly at the appalling nature of it. Malon nudged closer to Zelda and placed a comforting hand around her shoulders. Zelda immediately turned into Malon’s shoulder and began weeping bitterly, staining her clothes with tears. “I couldn’t keep the spell up fully…it was too distracting.” Zelda continued muffled into Malon’s armpit.
Malon embraced Zelda fully as she stroked her blond hair to soothe her angst. She looked over at Link in despair, she had no idea how she could comfort Zelda any further. Link shrugged but made a signal that she was doing a good job and should just be there for her. Within minutes Zelda had exhausted her humiliation and settled down sufficiently so that she could attend to the matters at hand.
“We have to get ready for bed.” Zelda sniffed, moving away from Malon as she wiped away her tears.
They were at the threshold of the tent when they noticed Link was not following them. Malon turned to him curiously, “Aren’t you coming in to sleep?”
Link gave her that special smile of his, “You know that wouldn’t be appropriate.” He nodded in Zelda’s general direction.
Zelda huffed, “Like that ever stopped us from sharing the same room for over seven cycles.”
Malon had to agree with Zelda, “Yeah…you shared a room with her. What’s the difference now?”
Link’s face screwed up weirdly at her ridiculous suggestion, “Well, there’s two of you now.”
“So?” Malon persisted.
“So…I shared a room to keep up the ruse.” Link softly spoke.
“Well, aren’t we doing the same thing here?” Zelda probed.
“True, I could go into that tent with you to maintain the ruse, but then that would leave her outside.” He gestured towards Malon.
It finally dawned on Zelda what he was getting at. “I see. Well there seems to be one solution to this whole mess.” She turned to Malon and gently prodded her inside the tent, “You take the tent and we two boys will sleep under the stars.”
“Like heck you will! We’ll all sleep outside then!” Malon surged past Zelda before she could protest. With a running leap, she skidded next to Link who looked genuinely surprised at her decision.
“So it’s a real camp out then?” Link offered; eyebrow rising in disbelief.
Zelda shook her head at the whole situation, “Looks like you’ll be having company tonight then Link.” It was useless to argue with Malon once she had decided to do something.
Link grinned as he took his bedroll and expanded it out next to the rock wall. Utilizing his pack as a makeshift pillow, he pounded it into a form that seemed like it would be comfortable to rest his head on. The two girls followed suit and set up their bedrolls in the same fashion; one on each side of Link’s sleeping space. Lacking any real spot to ultimately change into their sleeping clothes, they opted to just slip into their bags and get comfortable.
Within minutes, the girls had rolled their bags against Link’s furnace of a body. “Why must you be so warm all the time Link?” Malon complained.
Link fidgeted awkwardly as he moved his body in-between the two girls who were crushing against him, vying for his warmth. “Hey! You two stop it. I’m trying to get comfortable here!”
“So are we!” Zelda argued; she snuggled closer to Link, suddenly feeling quite cold as the night breeze ruffled the fabrics of their bedrolls.
At length they finally settled into some semblance of order, the girls practically clinging onto him through their bedrolls, basking in the radiating heat from his body. “Are you two quite done?” Link sighed annoyed.
“No.” Malon stated.
“But this will suffice.” Zelda confirmed.
Link groaned in frustration at the two indecisive women. Couldn’t they just fall asleep as soon as their head hit their pillows like normal Hylians do? After what seemed like hours, he could finally hear the two of them softly snoring next to him. He smiled as his thoughts wandered. Surrounded by two of his best friends, he felt he had little to fear of the future. In time, his eyes started to droop; he was gone.
They made quite the sight to see the next morning. The three of them were all crammed into Link’s sleeping bag.