Chapter 5: Discoveries in Castle Town
"Stay close Lil Grasshopper. Castle Town is a very busy place, and it's easy to get lost if you don't know your way around," Agitha lectured Link as they stepped through the oversized wooden doors. Link was astonished at how many people there were. He'd never seen so many people in one place at once. Even Windfall wasn't as crowded as this, and it was supposed to be a merchant island! This place put Windfall to shame.
"My name's Link," he reminded his guide, hinting that he was not content with the name she had given him.
"I know, but your clothes are green like a grasshopper, and I like giving people nicknames," Agitha giggled grabbing Link's hand and dragging him deeper into the sea of people. They passed many different stalls that sold a variety of items like flowers, bread, meat, fruit, and many more odds and ends. Link would have liked to browse a little, but Agitha didn't allow him any time to dally. He was on a mission anyway. He had to focus and not think about the food that was silently mocking him. So close yet so far. Link sighed inwardly.
Focusing proved to be a hard thing to do in Castle Town as Link soon found out. People were constantly rushing by, their destination unclear, shouting words that were lost as soon as they left the mouth of their owner. All the bustle was starting to give Link a headache. Agitha seemed unaffected by it, but he supposed that was to be expected if she lived here. He, however, much rather preferred his quiet little island or even Tetra's pirate ship over this chaos.
A line of what Link assumed were the guards that his guide mentioned earlier marched past them. They wore silver armor and…was that the Hylian crest? Agitha continued to pull him past, so he could only catch a glimpse. Had it really been the Hylian crest, or did he just imagine it? If it was real, then what did it mean?
They had apparently reached their destination for Agitha opened the door to a building like she owned the place, which she probably did, and tugged Link inside. She slammed it shut behind him, but Link wasn't paying attention. He was more fascinated by the giant tree fixated in the middle of the room and all of the bugs creeping, crawling, and flying around. Link was amazed that this girl could live with all these bugs in her house.
"Welcome to Princess Agitha's Castle!" Agitha chirped, setting down the basket she had hanging from her arm.
"So…you live here?" Link asked.
"Oh yes!" she replied enthusiastically, "but that doesn't matter right now. I just had to drop off my basket. Now I can show you around town. Let's go!" Agitha then pulled Link out of her "castle" and led him through town stopping occasionally to point out places she dubbed important.
"…and that's Telma's Bar down those steps. I've never been in there myself. They don't allow kids, but I've heard that the owner, Telma, is really nice and helpful," Agitha explained about a half hour later.
"Is that it?" Link wondered, trying not to sound rude.
"One more place, Lil Grasshopper! Follow me!" Agitha exclaimed before turning on her heel and heading for the central square which must have been the busiest place in Castle Town. Link sighed inwardly for the second time that day. He really wished this tour would come to an end. This place was making him feel claustrophobic and a migraine was developing in his temples. He definitely wasn't used to this much life and energy in one place.
Agitha guided him to the fountain in the middle of the square and turned to face the castle. She pointed to it and cried, "And now the main feature! That is the whole reason for Castle Town's existence. Hyrule Castle!" Link's ears perked up. Did she just say Hyrule Castle?
"Excuse me, what did you just say?" Link asked, questioning his hearing abilities at the moment.
"I said Hyrule Castle. Why?" Agitha repeated. Hyrule! She said Hyrule! But Hyrule Castle is underwater. It's flooded. The King had flooded it himself and drowned along with it. Yet as he inspected it he noticed the similarities. Did they travel back in time? Back to when there was still a Hyrule? Before it was flooded? If that was the case then could he actually meet the Hero of Time, his ancestor?! So many questions and no one to answer them. That's when he noticed that Agitha had been frantically calling his name. He must have spaced out.
"Sorry," he apologized, "I was just thinking about something."
"Oh…okay then," Agitha smiled.
"Did you happen to notice any girls? Such as a nine year old that has eyes and skin like mine with blonde hair in pig tails wearing a blue dress with a flower on it? Or maybe a girl with tan skin, dark blue eyes, and blonde hair wearing a pale purple top, a blue vest, white shorts, and a red bandana tied around her neck?" Link questioned, trying to be as specific as possible.
"Hmmm…no. Sorry," Agitha said after mulling it over for a few seconds.
"Alright. Thanks for showing me around anyway. Would you happen to know a trick to finding people who are missing around here? Or someone that could help me with that perhaps?" Link asked, slightly disappointed by the younger girl's answer.
"Well, Hyrule's a big place. Who are you looking for?" Agitha wondered.
"My little sister and my friend. We got separated," Link replied.
"Are they both Hylian?"
"Then they could be anywhere, but usually finding specific people and tracking them down is tricky. If you want my advice, I'd look and ask around in the last place you saw them, but if that doesn't work the Princess of Hyrule is very wise. She may help you but getting an audience with her is difficult, and I think you need to be at least eighteen to arrange one. Otherwise, you need an adult. If you ever need a place to stay, stop by Agitha's Castle. It'll always be open to you and your friends, Lil Grasshopper!" Agitha left then, those her last words. Link made his way back to his companions who were waiting on the steps just outside of town like they'd promised.
Upon seeing Link they both brightened and got to their feet. "So? What'd you find out?" Medli wondered, eager to know every detail.
"We're in Hyrule," Link stated, still in shock at his most recent discovery.
"H-Hyrule?" stammered Medli in disbelief, "Are you sure?"
"Yes, Agitha plainly said that that was Hyrule Castle!" Link exclaimed gesturing at the castle visible over the stone walls of the town, "That song must have sent us back in time!"
"Whoa there. You're really basing this off of what that crazy little girl said?" Medli wondered, her previous bewilderment fading and turning into skepticism.
"Of course not, Medli! I saw the guards. They had the Hylian crest on their armor, and I even saw the castle up close. It looks really similar to the one that I know," Link explained.
"So you really think we were sent back in time by that song? How can a song do that?" Makar wondered as Medli processed this new information.
"It must be because we're sages," Medli concluded, "If someone else were to play that song it probably wouldn't do anything, but if people with some sort of blessed power, like us, played it then anything could happen."
"That also makes me wonder," Link spoke up, "I was conducting you both and you guys were playing your instruments. Tetra and Aryll were just standing back holding candles. Did the song only teleport us, or did it teleport everyone in the room?"
"So you're saying that Tetra and your sister could still be in that cave wondering where we went," Makar said, thinking aloud.
"Exactly, but what if they did teleport with us? You saw that light. It couldn't have enveloped just us." Link continued.
"Let's just say that everyone was teleported. We were all standing close to each other, so we got warped to the same place. I think that if Tetra and Aryll got teleported as well that they ended up in the same area, so they aren't alone," Medli speculated.
"Yeah, but where did they get warped to? They weren't standing too far away from us," Link pointed out, glancing between his two friends for an answer.
"I think we need a map. If this really is Hyrule then we don't know our surroundings at all," Medli suggested.
"Okay. I think I remember seeing a stand selling maps in town," Link recalled, "I'll go buy one and then come back here so we can look at it together." After his friends nodded in understanding, he headed back into the town he now dreaded almost as much as any dungeon.
With a bit of difficulty Link located the map merchant and purchased a map for more rupees than he would have liked to spend, but it was worth it if it would help them find the others. Then he made his way out of the overly populated town and back to familiar faces.
They spread the map out on the ground and held it in place with rocks on the corners, so the wind couldn't snatch it up in its invisible hands and whisk it away to some unknown place. The three companions then leaned over the parchment and studied it intently. It was written in Hylian that wasn't exactly ancient, but it definitely wasn't what they were used to either.
"I can't read it," Link stated blatantly after a minute of staring blankly at it as if he stared long enough it would morph into a language he could understand.
"Me either," the Korok squeaked sadly.
"I can, but only a bit," Medli announced after a while of peering at it.
"Really? Read us what you can decipher," Link requested.
"Okay well, it looks like there are different provinces that make up Hyrule," Medli explained taking a deep breath before continuing. She pointed to the area near the bottom of the map, "I think this province is called Or-Orda-no wait. Ordon. I'm pretty sure," she moved to the picture of Hyrule Castle in the middle of the map, "We're here in Lanayru," She continued, sliding her finger over to the right, "Then this one says El…din. Eldin. I can only decipher bits and pieces of the rest though."
"The Great Deku Tree sometimes tells us about Hyrule and how there used to be a forest. Do you see any type of forest?" Makar asked. Medli scanned the map but came up empty handed.
"No, I don't see anything. Nothing that outright states that it's a forest anyway. I'm sorry I can't decipher more," Medli apologized looking upset and bowing her head slightly.
"That's okay, Medli. You've been a big help already. You figured out more than I could have," Link reassured the Rito girl placing a comforting hand on her shoulder, "Let's put it side to side with my sea chart and compare the two." Link reached into his pack and rummaged around for a minute before pulling out his sea chart with a flourish and laying it flat next to the map, keeping a hand on it so it wouldn't be blown away.
"The Tower of Gods is in the relatively same place as Hyrule Castle which makes sense seeing as that's the first place that I descended into Hyrule. Windfall is to the northwest so I guess it makes sense that we got dropped somewhere around there in Hyrule, but if Tetra and Aryll were warped as well where would they go?" Link pondered biting his lip and thinking hard.
"Hmm…maybe since they weren't playing anything it put them somewhere random," Medli suggested.
"How does that help us? If it just randomly teleported them-" Link ranted, becoming frustrated.
"Maybe it wasn't completely random," Makar cut in, "What if it took them in the opposite direction. So if we went northwest, it took them southeast."
"That could be possible," Medli admitted after absorbing the information, "and if it's true then it means that they are somewhere in the Ordon Province!"