Chapter 22: The Final Sage Part 2
Chapter 22: The Final Sage Part 2
My growling stomach is what wakes me in the morning and I groan, turning over. I’m hungry, but I don’t want to move from the warm bed. It’s a nice change from the rain and wind yesterday. Then sunlight decides to shine in my eyes through the window and wakes me up. I glare at the window when I sit up. Can’t I just sleep in? Oh well. I look at the other bed to find that Sheik’s gone. Hmm, wonder where he could be. I kick the covers off and leave my weapons. I don’t want to look dangerous wandering around with a sword.
I walk down the ‘hallways’ of the tower, it still reminds me of the Palace with its wide rooms. I smile slightly when I look out the window next to me. I really hope that I don’t have to do this sort of thing all my life. After this is done and, if I’m alive by the end of it, I think I’ll be fine with just…not worrying about the entire fate of Hyrule. It would be nice to not have to go through this stuff again.
This thought makes me laugh a bit. Yeah, that won’t happen. Not with me being Zelly’s knight and having the cursed blessing of the Triforce.
“Good morning, Link,” I turn and smile at Nura. “Thanks for getting my glasses yesterday. I don’t want to go walking around completely blind again. I’m surprised Zelda’s magic worked so well for my blindness, but she said she’d used it before. For the doctor in Hyrule Castle Town,” I wrinkle my nose. I’ve never liked that doctor, he was always grumpy and bossy. “Do you think that after this we won’t have to worry as much?” I shrug. I can’t predict the future. “Come on, you’re probably hungry,” she says and leads me through the tower.
We come to a small mess hall and find that there aren’t many people here. “Gale was telling me that the people here enjoy being outside, in any weather. They usually just get their food and go outside to eat. He did mention, with a lot of spite, there is one boy who doesn’t like eating in the sun, be he never mentioned his name.” From what I can guess, it’s probably Avira. I want to get to know that guy more; he doesn’t seem to have many, if any, friends. At least I had Ilia growing up.
You know what? Food can wait. I want to find Avira. I motion that I’m going for a walk and Nura raises an eyebrow. “Really? You’re not going to eat? Alright then. See you around,” she walks off and I trot out of the mess hall, starting my search for the orange-eyed boy.
“Why do you want to find that kid? He’s a loner,” Midna asks, quiet to not attract attention.
‘He doesn’t seem like a bad guy. He seems very nice and, under that mask, he’s probably really sad.’
“Whatever. You’re better at judging people than I am. Any idea where he would be?”
‘I think he might be where we found him before, since he’s not a fan of being outside. But we found that place by accident, so I don’t really know where to go,’ I think.
Deciding to just wander around and see what happens, I go up some stairs and end up opening a door to a very dark room. I close the door behind me and wait for my eyes to adjust before walking around. I’m in a library, with dusty and ruined books scattered everywhere. Midna comes out of my shadow, giving a soft whistle. “Wow, okay. We can’t let Vaati see this room, or else he might rage a bit and destroy the upper tower.”
‘I don’t think he’s that possessive of books,’ I think, running a hand over some book spines. ‘This is actually sad. Why is this place so…empty?’ I wonder, spotting a particular book on the shelf. I try to reach it, but I’m just a centimeter too short to get it. ‘Midna, could you help me?’ I ask.
“Naw, you can get it,” Midna shrugs, looking at the shelves to the back of me. “You don’t need my help for everything.”
‘I just want one book,’ I mind-grumble, standing as tall as I can on my toes, but I still can’t get the book. I huff and look around, spotting a stool that can help. Smiling, I get it and place it down near the bookcase. I stand on it and grab the book, flipping the pages a bit before I spot something in the ‘D’ part. I go to the page and find Demons written in a fancy, curved writing on the left page, then it goes into detail about Demon rituals, customs, advantages and disadvantages. I read a bit of the first page and flip it over, finding a picture of a large demon with dark, shadowy/red skin, fiery orange hair and harsh red eyes. My eyes widen when I read the words beside the image.
‘This is a drawing of the first Demon King to exist, Demon King Demise. Long ago, he invaded the world of Hyrule, plunging it into a great war with high casualties. With no other choice, the Goddess Hylia created a piece of land with the last humans and sent them up to the sky, beyond the clouds. Then, with a harp and a sword at her command, she and the last surviving races of the land fought to push the monster and Demon threat back. Eventually, after many years, Demise was defeated and sealed away, thought never to return. The Goddess, who was protecting an ancient power the Golden Goddesses forged, gave her sword and harp to the people in the sky, and told them to guard it. They did so with honour, and the two items of the Goddess were sealed into safe keeping. All hoped to never have them used again.’
I look at Demise. This is the guy who cursed us, huh? He…looks a lot like Ganon. This is his form when he’s not the Imprisoned? Hmm, good to know more about this guy.
“I see you’re interested in the history of Hyrule,” I jump so badly I fall off the stool and land on my back on the ground. I sit up and rub my head, looking up to see Avira standing there, offering a hand up. “Sorry for surprising you. Not many people can hear me walk up to them,” he says. I shrug it off when I’m standing. He gives me an odd look, as if he’s looking into my thoughts. “You’re not running from me?” I blink. Why would I do that? I was looking for you! “You are a very odd person. Most people run from me just because of what I do.”
I frown. Okay, the people here are real jerks to Avira, and I’ll figure out why. “You look determined about something, could it do with the fact you don’t like the way others treat me?” I nod, he must be good at reading other’s expressions. “Why do you care about me? I’m the lowest in the tower, I live close to the top, and I’ve stayed here a year too long, according to everybody.” So, he’s twenty one? “I’m not a person who you want to know,” he sighs and turns, but I grab his arm and refuse to let him leave feeling sad. He glances at me, but keeps walking, making my feet drag across the floor. I try to stop him from leaving, but he just drags me out of the room and into the hall as if he doesn’t even feel me. When he comes to some stairs, he stops suddenly, and I fall back. He catches my tunic and lifts me onto my feet, a slight smirk in his eye. “You’re very stubborn. Has anyone ever told you that?” I nod. Oh, a lot of people have. Call it a Link trait. He shakes his head, his mask falling back into place. “Why do you want to help me?”
Jeez, here comes the hard part. I rub the back of my head, trying to think of how to tell him I want to be his friend. He waits patiently, and is quick to notice my struggle. “Well, why don’t we go somewhere you can write? It might be easier that way,” he offers and waves me to follow him. I trot quickly as to keep up with him. The size difference between us must be laughable. “So your name is Link. That’s not a very common name.” Don’t need to tell me twice. “But Avira isn’t very common either,” he grins, looking down at me. “You have got to be the first person not to shun me.”
‘I know the feeling of being an outsider,’ I think, gluing my eyes forward. ‘I’ve been one my whole life, until a few days ago.’
“So you understand,” he says. “It’s sad that you do, but it’s also nice to know someone else knows what it’s like. Not many do, since everyone sticks to their own friends. I use to have a friend, but he abandoned me when we were being pushed around by some older kids. It was either he joins them, or they beat the both of us. They still beat me,” I frown. That’s horrible! How could someone be like that? “There are many people who are cruel and twisted, but there are still a lot of people who are kind. I haven’t been so lucky with the kind, but every little bit helps.” He’s making fun of me, isn’t he? He chuckles, his eyes starting to shine. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to make a crack at your height. I can tell it’s something you don’t like to talk about.” No exactly, it’s just annoying when others mock me for it. “Don’t worry, I’m freakishly tall anyway.”
You’re not freakishly tall. You’re still not as tall as Ganon or a Twili, those people are freakishly tall. I hear a soft cough from my shadow and I grin sheepishly down at Midna. Oops, guess I thought that too loudly.
“Here we are,” he opens the door to a room and I see it’s a study of sorts. “There’s tons of paper in here, so you can ask away.”
We sit down and I write, as neatly as I possibly can, that I want to help him take down his mask a bit.
He shakes his head. “My ‘mask’ is the only thing that keeps me from letting others know that their words get to me. They wouldn’t be sympathetic, they would just laugh.”
‘Those guys are complete assholes. Why are they so mean to you? Gale seemed pretty angry last night when Sheik asked who you were, but he was so nice to me and my friends.’
“Gale and I have always been at each other’s throats. It’s a bit more than a rivalry, but we don’t necessarily despise each other. Gale’s nice enough to others, he just doesn’t like me, like most people.”
‘You seem nice enough too. Why don’t others give you a chance?’
“Rumours,” he says grimly. “I’ve been a victim of them for a long time. Other people think I’m an idiot who’s too stupid to tell left from right,” I don’t plan telling him I had trouble with that when I was little, “Or that I can read minds and plot against anyone who think bad of me. Honestly, whoever spread that rumour must be a moron if they can’t tell I’m good at guessing.”
‘If the whole ‘plot against people who think bad of you’ was real, I have a feeling the entire tower would be in flames. No offence,’ I grimace at the end. Even when I’m writing I speak my mind.
Avira shrugs. “Don’t worry about it. You’re right after all,” he looks up at the sun. “It’ll be almost noon soon. You’d better get something to eat. We’ll talk more later if we have the time,” he says, standing as I gather up the paper and quill I was using. I look for a place to store them and open a drawer. Putting the stuff away quickly, I run to catch up with Avira, waving to him when I find Adam and Nura. “Bye,” he waves back.
“There you are. Come on, we need to get to the Temple. Vaati thinks we’ll find the…yeah you know, there,” Adam says, being careful not to mention our goal.
“I wonder what his problem was yesterday. He seemed pretty pissed about something,” Nura says.
I could probably ask Shadow, but I’m not sure what he would know. He’ll be my best guess right now, though.
Once again, I find myself lost and try to block out Midna’s remarks, when I conveniently bump into Shadow. Sometimes it feels like someone’s planning everything I do. “Mind watching it? Your princess isn’t the only person on edge,” Shadow says.
‘Speaking of that, what’s up with Vaati? He didn’t seem to be in a good mood yesterday,’ Shadow shrugs, guessing what I’m trying to ask.
“Ever since we got to the castle, Vaati’s been saying something’s been sapping his magic bit by bit. He’s a Mage, so he is sensitive to that sort of thing. Any Mage, good or bad, gets snappy and short-tempered when their magic is being taken from them or is blocked off somehow. He’ll be fine if he stays away a few days. It’s a good thing I pestered him to come here, he would still be sulking in that library in Hyrule Castle if I hadn’t.”
I nod. That makes sense. But what could be sapping his magic? Why has no one else noticed? I guess it’s true no one at the Castle is at ‘Mage’ level of magic, so that could be why no one else has been affected by this. What I wanna know, is why Vaati or Shadow never told anyone.
“Don’t think we wouldn’t,” Shadow puts up his arms in ‘surrender’. “We may not like people, but we know when we’re in trouble. Vaati’s never the first to admit it though. We were always ready to tell the Princess or you, but something would happen, or we’d forget or just not find the words to say it. It was like something was preventing us from speaking of it.”
More to think about. I hum a bit, trying to piece together what this could mean. Is someone inside the Castle sapping magic and using a spell to stop Vaati and Shadow from speaking of it? Could an enemy be behind our own lines? My eyes widen fearfully. Could someone behind our own lines be a traitor?
Or… could it be someone behind our lines who was never an ally?
My eyes narrow as I growl lightly. I suspect that this person could be Pretty Boy. I need to know more though. I need proof to figure this out. I can’t just blindly accuse him of using magic against the Castle, anyone can see I don’t like him. They would just think I wanted him to get killed. I need to tell Zelda right now, when it’s fresh on my mind.
‘Thanks so much, Shadow,’ I think, running off to find a hawk or falcon I can send to the castle.
By some strange stroke of luck, I hear hawks screeching and follow the noise. I grin and grab a paper and quill, hastily writing down what Shadow told me. Good thing Zelda can read any kind of writing. I bring out a red tailed hawk and tie the paper to its foot, giving it a treat before letting it fly off. Hawks always seem so intelligent, they just know where to go.
I sigh, feeling my heart slow down as I turn. I blink when I see Alex standing there, arms crossed and his face emotionless. “Look, Mute, I don’t like being away from my wife when she’s so close to having her baby, but I’ll admit it, I like traveling around the land and seeing what is has in store. Just tell me one thing, I don’t care if you write it down or sign to me, I just don’t, but why do you put up with me? I know I’m horrid to you, and yet you still act as if nothing happens after a little spat we have. Why?”
I shrug. Hey, it’s not like I haven’t dealt with someone like you before, Coal-Headed Idiot. “That’s all I’m going to get from you, isn’t it?” he asks bitterly. I nod, smiling. “Fine. Just don’t think I like you any more just because I asked what I did,” he turns to the door and stops for a moment. “And…stop being stupid. The things you’re feeling for Sheik are no different from what I feel for Maria. Get your mind together, sit down, and figure out what you feel. I’m sick and tired of all the beating around the bush you two are doing, got it?”
He leaves and I stand there, dumbfounded. What I feel for Sheik, is no different from what he feels for his wife? The thought runs through my head a few times, and Midna comes out of my shadow during this time. “I’ll leave you to your thoughts. He’s actually the first one to give you such a blunt clue,” she laughs. “See you later,” she vanishes and I sigh, sitting cross-legged on the floor.
Alex must mean the butterflies and the giddiness. The funny feelings I get around Sheik. Sheik always looks at me more than fondly, in a more dreamy state, and he talks softly to me, he makes me feel safe, and when I’m with him, I feel like nothing can hurt me. I feel my own eyes soften when I see him, I still sometimes get giddy over the fact he can hear me, he trusts me with his life, and I trust him with mine.
Everyone gives us knowing, mysterious looks, they drop hints of the things I’m feeling, they try to give us time together, they get amused when we blush at each other.
My head is swarming, and the events of the last few weeks flash through my mind. I hold my head, closing my eyes until all the images of me and Sheik end with him kissing the side of my mouth. I loved that feeling. I loved blushing because of it. I love Sheik’s care for me. I love his gentleness. I loved it. I love everything he’s done. I…my eyes widen, my heart speeds up and a grin spreads on my face until it hurts. Is…is this…love? Do…do I love Sheik?
I stand up, going to the window and leaning on it to feel the wind that’s blowing. I take deep breaths to calm down my heart. Happiness is just running through me and I can’t help but cry a bit in joy.
I get it! I understand these feelings! I finally know what they are! I open my eyes, lean over far, and mind-shout. ‘Zelly! Guess what? I love Sheik!’ I put up a barrier so no one, especially Sheik, can hear, but I still wish for my though to somehow reach my friend. ‘I’m such an idiot!’ I laugh at myself, giddy. ‘No wonder everyone’s been looking at me like I’m a moron, I am a moron! I need to tell Sheik!’
A scoff from behind makes my ears perk up and my face falls when the owner of the scoff speaks. “Ah, so you have figured it out, have you?” I gulp and turn, instinctively reaching for my sword, but I wince when I remember I left it in the room. Ghirahim smirks, coming up to me and making me lean back as I try to find an escape route. “What a pity, I thought I could wait longer for you two to finally discover and/or confess your feelings. But apparently you are brighter than I first thought,” he puts his arms on either side of me, pinning me to the wall. Not again. “It seems that I’ll have to quicken my plans if they are to work properly.”
I spit in his face, much like when he had me pinned last time. He just shakes his head. “That childish behaviour is not one my Lady will have. I suppose I’ll have to take it out of you forcefully if you continue to do such things.”
Get of me you pig! I bring up my knee and get him in the place where it doesn’t shine, making him double over. I’ll scold myself for the cheap shot later, I need to get out of here! He grabs my shoulder and turns me around, pushing me to the floor where he pins my arms above my head. I look up fearfully as he grins, leaning his face close to mine. “There are many things I will have to do to change you. I can’t have you as my wife the way you are now. You’ll need discipline, and you cannot be ‘innocent’ like so many people claim you to be,” his grin widens. I struggle to try to get away from him, but he holds me firm and cups my cheek. “Hush now, the less you resist me, the more harm you will bring upon yourself,” he leans close to my ear. “There is only one way to turn you into the perfect bride. I will need to change you into a Demon, and only then can we rule Hyrule.”
I try to headbutt him, but he moves back and laughs at my attempt. “Cute,” he runs his hand down my face. I scrunch up my face at his touch. “Too bad that is something you won’t have when I turn you into one of my kind. Why don’t we go to my realm now? Get it done and over with?” he bumps his forehead on mine and I start to feel lightheaded. My senses dull and I become less aware of what’s going on around me. The only thing that runs through my mind is that I need to escape. I struggle harder, trying to wiggle away from the weight on top of me. It’s when hands rest on my shoulders that I come back to my senses. Ghirahim is still above me, but he seems to be smiling more deviously than before. “No, there’s no fun in that. Why don’t we have a little experiment? All you have to do is stay still,” he looks me up and down my body and a dark shiver crawls down my spine. “You really need to start wearing more fitting clothes, no one can see your body,” he runs his hands down my sides and I try harder than ever to struggle away. No, no, please Goddess no! Please tell me this isn’t happening! Memories of the Fire Temple haunt me, the clear memory of the Minotaur in that hole.
‘Sheik! Midna!’ I mind-yell as loud as I can, feeling tears run down my face as I try to push the Demon Lord away. ‘SHEEEIIIK! HELP!’
Sheik whistles as he walks through the tower, a blue flower in his hand as he looks for Link. His thoughts kept him up last night, and when he knew he’d never fall asleep, he went out for a walk and came across a garden, flowers of all sorts everywhere. He’s finally decided to admit his feelings for Link. It’s eating him up from the inside and he fears he might do something stupid if he attempts to keep his love in the dark. That’s what kept him up, he kept weighing the goods and bads of telling her, and eventually the goods outweighed the bads and it was decided. He’s going to tell her, and he’s going to show no fear. He needs to buck up the courage to tell her his feelings.
Suddenly, a cry for help cuts through his mind. His head snaps up and he sees Alex walking his way, seeming not to notice the cry. Sheik recognizes the cry right away. Link’s in trouble. “Alex, where’s Link?” he asks, catching the Hyrulian by surprise.
“She was sending a hawk to Zelda last time I saw here. Why?”
“I need your help,” Sheik tells him.
“You need to take me to where she is, now! Don’t ask why.”
Alex, confused and irritated, shrugs and starts walking back to the hawk room, only to get overrun by Sheik. Sighing, he runs after the Sheikah, thinking that this is stupid.
Sheik almost breaks down the door and rage builds up in seconds. His eyes narrow in on Ghirahim on top of Link, and the Hylian is trying her best to keep him away. “Get off her!” Sheik orders, grabbing Ghirahim’s shoulders and pulling him back. He punches Ghirahim in the face and tackles him to the ground, pure rage egging him on to beat the living daylights out of the Demon Lord. He eventually gets pushed off by magic and Ghirahim stands, wiping his split lip.
“Oh, did you just have to interrupt now?” he scowls. “Alright, Sheikah, I’ve had enough with you and your meddling,” Ghirahim grabs Sheik’s arms when he tries to strike the Demon. “We’ll finish this properly in the Ruins. You won’t interfere,” he glares harshly at Alex, who’s standing at the door awkwardly, knowing he doesn’t have what it takes to take on Ghirahim. The Demon and Sheikah vanish from sight, and Alex moves over to Link, who’s curled into a ball and crying.
“Uhh,” Alex feels very, very awkward being here. He crouches beside Link, coughing nervously and stuttering. “Eh, he didn’t…you know…do anything with you…did he?” Link shakes her head no. “Good, at least you won’t have freaky Demon/Hylian hybrid children,” wrong thing to say, she shakes more and tightens in her ball. What is she, a hedgehog? Alex rubs the back of his neck, putting a hand on her shoulder. “It will be…er…fine. Now, get up. We need to get you…out of here,” he helps her up and she smiles at him. He notices she has a bruise circling her eye, and he decides not to mention it. “Come on, Nura will want to tear off that Demon’s head.”
Link nods, looking down as Alex helps her out of the hawk room. It takes him a few moments to realize she stopped and he turns, finding that she’s looking around the room fearfully. He doesn’t need to be psychic to know who she’s looking for. “That Sheikah was taken to the Wind Ruins by Ghirahim. It seems that they have something or other to finish,” he tells her. She looks at him with wide eyes and Alex actually feels a little sorry for her, but not sorry enough to care. “Coming or not? Standing here won’t help him, Mute,” he turns and walks off, hearing her trot behind him. He’ll never admit it, but he’s actually starting to like Link. Before he thought she was just some knight who didn’t deserve what she had, but he sees that was sort of prickish of him. He’d never hear the end of it if Adam found this out.
“Nura? Yeah, we have a problem,” he says when they find the Gerudo and Adam outside enjoying the sun.
“What happened to you, Link?” Nura asks, walking to Link to feel her black eye. Link tries to wave it off, but winces when Nura touches it, telling her that it hurts.
“She had a run in with a Demon, and Sheik went ballistic to try and save her. The Demon took him away and they’re going to duke something out in the Wind Ruins,” Alex sums up what happened.
“Alright, we need to get there quickly, before Sheik gets hurt,” Nura says, spotting Gale helping a girl with archery. “I’ll be right back. Hey Gale!” she runs up to him and he smiles in greeting.
“Hey there, Nura. How have you and your friends enjoyed your stay?” he asks.
“Not very well. Link had a bad run in with a Demon who’s been on his bad side for a while. The Demon took Sheik into the Ruins and we need to help him,” she explains.
“What? That’s not good. A beast was sealed up there not long ago.”
“Yes, it’s literally a giant and the elders sealed it inside the darkest hole they could find. We haven’t been there for a long time, and that giant ate so many people,” Gale says, worry and fear on his face. “You’ll need help, that’s for certain. I’ll accompany you to the Ruins and help you get through them, if that’s alright with you.”
“That’s perfect, actually,” Nura sighs, smiling. “Thank you.”
“Don’t mention it. We should head out now, unless we want to find bones,” he says and Nura nods, forcing a smile and putting it in mind to not let Link hear that. Things could end badly.
“We’ll go for the Ruins in ten minutes, we need to get ready. Be warned, the giant will kill on sight if it sees you,” Gale tells them.
“Good to know,” Adam says. “I’ll get Link’s stuff,” he volunteers and runs off. The other two head off to get ready.
Link looks like she wants to do it herself, but Nura forces her to sit down so she can take some potion. She winces when Nura applies the potion-covered cloth to her eye, the stinging from the potion has never been a nice thing. It’s worse yet to drink it.
“Link, you really are unlucky,” Nura sighs. Link looks at Nura with shining eyes. Despite her eye, she looks as if she wants to tell the Gerudo something. “What is it?”
Link flicks her eyes down for a second before making a heart with her hands. Nura smirks, sitting beside her and almost not believing it. “So, you’ve finally realized?” Link blushes but nods enthusiastically. “It’s about time,” Nura claps her shoulder. “Don’t worry, we’ll save your boyfriend,” her blush deepens, but Nura’s happy to see that Link doesn’t protest. “Maybe you’re not as oblivious as everyone thinks.” They laugh and when they spot the guys coming back, they stand and grin once more at each other before going over.
It’s time to go to the Wind Ruins.
At least Nura is being cool-headed about it. If I had told Adam first, he probably would have gone and blurt it out for the world to hear, which would be awkward and embarrassing. It was embarrassing enough because of my obvious stupidity with the entire thing.
I shake my head. No, I can’t bother with this right now. I need to save Sheik again. A small smirk spreads on my face. Looks like we save each other’s skins every other day. It’s a never-ending cycle, isn’t it?
Stop getting distracted!
We follow Gale as he leads us away from the tower and towards the Ruins. I get the feeling of being watched and look over my shoulder to see a shadow standing at a window like when we first arrived. Like before, I wave to the shadow, I assume it’s Avira, and see the movement of a wave. I smile and turn back to the others, ready to find Sheik.
I put my hands in my pockets, letting out a soft sigh. I really should have noticed these feelings earlier, but with everything going on, I guess it made me all the more oblivious to what the butterflies meant. Well, I’m not so clueless anymore! And when we get Sheik out, I’ll need to tell him how I feel. I don’t care if it’s not smart to get attachments near a war, I’m gunna tell Sheik, and nothing’s going to stop me.
We go deeper into the marsh as fog starts to roll in, obscuring our vision. “Be careful here, you don’t want to run into anything or trip,” I stick my tongue out at Nura when she looks at me. “And we’ll need to stay close or we’ll get lost. I can’t tell you how many times it’s happened to me, and I’ve lived here all my life.”
Every so often, I look behind us, alert to anyone possibly following us. I’ve had enough run-ins with the creepy Demon Lord to start being paranoid.
The fog steadily thickens as we keep going through the marsh. Gale had pulled out a torch from his bag and that is our only source of light. I just hope he doesn’t lose it or something, I might be able to see in darkness, but fog is a different matter. I hear the caw of a crow and look up, seeing its shadow overhead. If I was superstitious, I would probably be freaking out. The older people I have met always get scared when crows or ravens are about, saying that they signal death or something. Honestly it’s all foolish nonsense to me, but each their own.
I blink when the ground suddenly shakes, as if it’s an earthquake. Once the tremor passes, Gale looks back at us. “Everyone alright?” after he asks, a loud roar comes from ahead, making all of us look in front of us to see the fog clear, reviling a crumbling building covered in vines and fungi. A shiver goes down my spine for some reason, but no one else notices.
“What was that?” Adam asks.
“That was probably the giant the elders put in here. I would have thought it would starve to death right about now. Just hope it doesn’t find your friend,” my ears fall and my eyes widen at the thought. Nura puts a hand on my shoulder, giving me a comforting squeeze.
“He’ll be fine,” she whispers and I can only nod.
“Alright, now whatever happens, try not to get split up. This place is a maze and a half and you will get lost if you have no idea where you’re going, regardless if you’re good with directions. There’s only one guy I know who can find his way through them, and I’d rather not mention him,” Gale mutters bitterly as we enter the ruin.
Seriously, what is his problem with Avira? Did they have some close-to-death fight or liked the same girl? Avira mentioned they don’t exactly hate each other, but from what Gale says and how he acts when Avira is even thought about, I think it’s just Avira who doesn’t despise Gale and that Gale really does hate him. What created that hate though? That’s the million Rupee question.
A bonk on the back of my head wakes me from my thoughts. I rub my head and glare at Alex as he walks passed. “Quit daydreaming, or do you want to get lost in this place forever?” he asks rhetorically and I run to catch up to the others. I look around at the walls, feeling unnerved by their lack of strength. It’s as if the walls could cave in at any moment and forcefully separate us.
With my horrid luck, that’s probably what will happen. Either that or we’ll fall into a trap that leads to the giant.
The Ruins are pretty simple, a lot of halls with multiple ways to go, but it all looks the same. Gale wasn't kidding of how easy it is to get lost here. Every now and then we hear the roar of the giant and the ground shakes. Every time this happens I have a mini panic-attack, thinking the walls will cave in. Thankfully, they haven't yet. But what makes me the most worried of all is that I see nothing other than us wandering this maze, so does that mean they got lost or did the giant get them? I shiver at the thought of seeing bones and meat in one of the corridors.
“Hmm, I don't trust this hallway,” I look up to see everyone stops and look around them, seeing rubble covering the floor. “Be careful, this could well be a trap set up by my Tribe thousands of years ago,” Gale warns and walks forward, being careful not to move too fast as if that will prevent the walls from falling in. Nura puts an arm out in front of me and shakes her head.
“Guys, don't go yet,” she says and picks up a pebble. She tosses it forwards and it lands down the hall. The moment the pebble hits the ground, the floor opens up into a gaping hole for a few seconds before closing back up. “If the floor can't hold that, there's no way it can hold us.”
Then another earthquake shakes the ruins, making me stumble into a wall and use it as support. Once the shaking stops, I tentatively open my eyes, expecting to see the way caved in. Surprisingly, nothing's different. The only thing I notice is that dust is now covering the floor. I blink and look around to see the others getting their footing back, no one seems to be hurt though, which makes me sigh in relief. I look around again, being careful for an aftershock, and push away from the wall.
“It's like the giant is having a temper tantrum,” Alex mutters, dusting off the front of his tunic. “Have these tremors been here since it came?”
Gale furrows his brow in thought. “I believe so. Granted, I wasn't with the elders when they put that thing in here, so I can't be sure. The Tower is strong enough that it won't shake even under the most dire earthquakes, so no one felt them there either.”
I wonder if there's something else here other than just the giant.
“We should head back and see if we can find another way,” Adam suggests.
Then I hear something that makes my heart stop for a moment. I look down the hallway, not spotting anything, but I think I heard something make a cracking sound. I hum quietly, about to shrug it off, when a larger, louder cracking sound alerts the others, making them tense. “What was that?” Adam asks.
“What do you think?” Alex says rhetorically.
The ground beneath our feet breaks in two and I find myself with one foot on each side. Without thinking, I push off my right foot and slam my back against the wall, closing my eyes as the place shakes. “Guys!” I open my eyes and see that the entire hallway split in half and the other side is at least twenty-five meters away, which is where Adam and Alex are. “You alright there?” I turn my head to find Gale and Nura to my right.
“We're fine,” Alex calls back, helping his brother to his feet. “What do we do now?”
“There's a door over there for you guys,” Gale nods to a small out-hang to their left, parts of the floor are still solid despite being detached.
“There's one for you too. We'll try to find another way to meet up. Be careful,” we nod and they walk to the door. Lucky them, we're stuck with having to sidle across the bit of flooring we have to get to our door.
“We won't get anywhere if we don't move,” Nura points out and we start going, concentrating on not slipping or falling. “Gale, why did this place split apart? Does it do that normally.”
“Not that I know of. Most of us from the Tribe don't bother with learning about this place, since none of us come here. It's forbidden for many to come here in the first place.” My head snaps to Gale, if it's forbidden, then why did he come? He didn't even have to really, we could have gotten through ourselves. Nura seems to be on the same line as me.
“If this place is forbidden to you guys, why did you come along with us inside?” she asks, raising an eyebrow. I see Gale's eyes widen for a nano-second before he calms.
“You guys need help to know what you're dealing with here.”
“But you just said your Tribe doesn't bother much with the history of the Ruins, why would you come not knowing what you're dealing with?” During this time, I've make it to solid ground and wait for the other two, leaning on the wall with my arms crossed. Nura's bringing up good points, and Gale can't seem to answer them. I notice his gaze flick to me every now and then, which makes me tilt my head wondering why he's looking at me like that.
He opens his mouth to say when he slips. With a gasp he, probably by instinct, grabs Nura and they start to fall, but somehow I manage to catch them before they fall into the open-mouth pit that goes who-knows-how-deep. I tighten my grip on Nura and try to pull them up, but with both their weights I find they're too heavy for me to get them up. Shoot.
Nura tugs one of her hands away and I instinctively hold her other hand tighter, closing my eyes and gritting my teeth as my arms scream from holding up two people. How can I wrestle a Goron but not lift two people?!
“Link, don't get frustrated. For one thing, you might still be tried from all that's happened, for another, this isn't something easy to get out of, you're only half on the ground yourself,” Nura tells me. “Just calm down, okay?”
“How is someone as small as him even holding us?” Gale whispers, but Nura shushes him as I look behind me to see if there's anything I can grab onto so they can get up. I spot a rock, but I'll have to let one of my hands go, and I know I don't have the strength to hold them up with just one arm. At the thought of my arm, a jolt of pain makes me wince. I can't hold them forever, even now I can feel Nura's hand slipping from mine, but I can't let them fall. Who knows if they'll survive? I just hope I can wait it out for someone to help.
Oh right, we're in a Ruin that's supposedly forbidden. Does anyone even know we're here? I shake my head from the thought and squeeze my eyes shut as I tense, my arms slowly getting weaker. For the Love of Nayru, somebody help!
Just after finishing my thought, I feel a hand grab the back of my tunic and I'm lifted back, pulling Nura and Gale up with me. Once I see they're on solid ground, my first instinct is to punch at whoever's holding me up, but they put me down gently. I rub my upper arms and look to see-
“What are you doing here, Avira?” Gale scowls at the other boy.
Avira shrugged nonchalantly, putting his hands behind his head as if we hadn't almost fallen to our deaths. “Just out for a stroll and saw you three hanging around. Thought you would need the help,” he risks a small smirk before his mask falls in place. “The real question is; why are you here, Gale? Last time I checked, you hated anything to do with this place.”
“What I do in my time is none of your business,” Gale says curtly as I shuffle away from the two rivals, nursing my arms.
“Thanks,” Nura claps my back and I grin, happy they're fine.
“Gale, you really shouldn't be here without knowing about this place's traps.”
“Oh, and you should?”
“I took the time to read up on this place, and it is filled to the brim with booby-traps, as you see here,” Avira waves lazily to the pit. “This is only the beginning. It would probably be best if I help you out.”
“We don't need your help,” Gale growls, balling his hands into fists.
“Would you prefer falling into that? Because that would have happened if I hadn't shown up,” Avira says, calm as ever as he turns to the door. Gale's neck turns red and it doesn't take a genius to figure out he knows he's wrong. That just makes him all the more angry.
We go through the door and find ourselves in a square room that has greenish-yellow water splitting it in half. A door is on the other side and I step forward when Avira pulls me back. “Not so fast, Link. That 'water' you see is acidic. I doubt you want your skin to melt off,” I step further back from the water. Oh. That could have been bad.
“Well, Master of the Ruins, what's your plan?” Gale asks bitterly.
“Give me a moment,” Avira says and crouches by the acid water. His eyes go over every detail of what's before us and I see them flash with light for a second. That was quick. He stands and claps his hands. “I got it. We need to weaken the roof so that parts of it will fall in the water, then we can step across them like stepping-stones.”
“And how, pres-tell, are we supposed to know the roof tiles won't break apart?” Guess who?
“Don't you see? The roof is made up of the same kind of stone the ground is. The ground isn't being dissolved or destroyed by the acid,” Avira says. “But how will we weaken the roof?”
“Link, do you have your bombs on you?” Nura turns to me. I nod and take them out. I only have three left, so we'll have to make this count.
“Perfect. Mind if I take one?” Avira asks and I hand it to him. He squeezes it to light the fuse and throws it at the roof. It explodes on contact and causes parts of the roof to fall. The impact causes the acid water to rise for a few seconds before settling. Luckily it doesn't touch us. “This should be fine for now. Who wants to go first?”
“I vote for you,” Gale mutters. Avira hears him and shrugs, walking over to the edge of the floor and deciding which rubble to jump to. He decides quickly and leaps over the water with ease, landing on a piece of rubble in the center and lifting off that to land on the other side. He does all this in a few seconds, and it makes me wonder if he's faster than Sheik. “Show off,” Gale walks to the edge and steps on a piece just at his ends reach of his leg. He hops to it, then to a bigger piece not far from it. He looks at his feet and steadies himself, his legs are a little wobbly, probably from nerves.
“Better get this over with. Be careful, this would be a bad time for you to be clumsy,” Nura warns and jumps to some rubble, leaping ahead of Gale and to the other side.
I take a deep breath and look at my options. There's a small piece that's the closest, a bigger piece that's a wide jump from where I am, and the largest piece near me that's a bit too far for me to jump to. I don't want to risk it, so I jump to the smaller piece, balancing on one foot, and quickly jump to the biggest piece before I can fall. Nura suddenly calls my name and I look up, wondering why she sounds so urgent.
“Don't look at me! Look at that!” she yells and I turn my head to look behind me, seeing our first monster smash down the door. A Moblin enters, how it got here I have no idea, and I gulp as I look back to the acid water and jump to the next bit of rubble. I make it to the biggest part in the middle when the rubble tilts dangerously to the side. I yelp and pinwheel my arms as I turn, finding the Moblin is not affected by the acid. He's standing right in it and is pushing down on the rubble with his fist. He pushes down a little more and I gasp as I loose my footing and start to slide towards the Moblin, my eyes widening in panic.
I kick out my feet when I'm near the Moblin and stop myself, pressing my back to the rubble and keeping out of the acid. I risk looking down and see I'm only a few inches above the water, making me gulp as I look back up at the Moblin. He snorts at me in irritation, probably because my feet are pressing into his stomach, and he pulls out, making me stretch my legs in fright of falling down. Before I can fall, I push off the rubble with my back and grab the Moblin's nose ring, making him roar. My face gets the full blast of it. I ignore the pinging in my ears and the stench and use this time to climb onto his shoulders, grabbing his ears to stay on.
He starts flailing, tossing his head around in an attempt to throw me off, but I can't help but laugh. This is like riding an angry Ordon Goat! I forget about the acid water and keep laughing, my blood pumping as I tighten my hold on the Moblin's ears.
“What? Why is he laughing?!” I hear Gale yell.
Nura laughs. “Link may be a Hylian, but he was raised as a farm-boy in Ordon. This must be like riding a goat to him.”
The Moblin suddenly pulls forward, I'm still laughing, and he charges at a wall. I risk standing on his shoulders and jump off before he hits. When my feet land on some rubble, I hop from piece to piece, making it to the other side and collapsing on my back, holding my stomach. What a ride!
Nura helps me up, rolling her eyes. “Come on, before it wakes up,” she tugs the shoulder of my tunic and makes me stumble forward a bit after her. I see Avira smirking and Gale's staring at me as if I had just spoon-fed myself poison.
“You are absolutely crazy,” Gale says and I nod.
We go through the next door and I notice a single column of light in the center, the rest of the place is pitch black. I let my eyes adjust and notice about ten suns on the walls, dull coloured and with faces. Three doors are in this room, the one we came through, one across from us that is barred shut and a third to our right. I look back at the suns, what significance do they have? Or do they have any purpose at all?
“Hmm, I feel a weird power coming from the door ahead of us,” Avira says. “I think we'll need to get through there.”
“Really? I had no idea,” Gale says sarcastically. I ignore them and head to the unlocked door, opening it and stepping inside. The door shuts loudly and a shing sound follows behind. I wince and glance behind me. Shoot, I should have known this room would do that. This is what I get for going alone.
I examine the room, it's brightly lit; with chandeliers hanging from the roof and tapestries falling down the sides of the wall. There are so many that the walls themselves are hidden behind them. There are eight columns on either side of a red, velvet carpet, four on each side, and the carpet stretches to a big, brown throne-like chair with a large suit of armour sitting in it. I shiver when I see the armour, it's like its staring at me. I walk towards it cautiously, there's no telling what can happen. A thick layer of dust covers the armour, but it's polished to a shine, not a speck of rust can be seen. My face reflects in the armour and I crane my neck to look at the head again. My eyes make contact with the visor and I see a fleck of light for a second before the armour stands, making me yelp and stumble backwards, tripping over the carpet and landing on my butt.
I crab-walk away from the suit of armour as my heart pounds in my chest, it looks down at me with a blank expression, the glowing orbs in its visor acting like eyes. It summons a large, double-headed axe and stomps towards me, its footsteps making the ground shake. I flip to my hands and knees and run forward, stumbling when the axe lands where I was moments before. I look behind myself to see the armour following me, its movements slow and heavy.
With no other choice, I unsheathe my sword and shield, taking a deep breath as it comes at me. It swings its axe and I jump back, slashing forward and hitting its chest-plate. But it swings the axe back before I can react and knocks me across the room. I hit a column with my back and slide down it, wincing when I land on my tailbone. I guess it's still bruised from my time as a puppy. I get to my feet and sprint from the armour as it brings the axe down. Before it can recover, I jump and strike its back, making it grunt and almost collapse on its knee.
If I can hit it hard enough in the back, could it be easier to destroy?
Worth a shot, I guess. I walk backwards to get away from its next swing and stab forward when it tries to pry the axe from the ground. I stab right at the armour on its shoulder and the armour there breaks off.
I get it. This thing is similar to a Darknut, so if I can get the armour off, I may be able to destroy it easier. All I can hope is that it doesn't become crazy fast once the armour's off.
Being extra careful, I manage to get more of its armour off, but it gets faster every time. Soon I have to run far from the suit before I can risk attacking, and that's only if the suit makes the first move. My back suddenly bumps into something and I look up to see I hit a column. Then something crashes over my head and sends me to the ground. My sword and shield fall out of my hands and clatter on the floor as I lay here in a daze. Slowly, I try to get up, but a foot on my back forces me down and the more I struggle, the more the foot presses down.
I turn my head, seeing the suit of armour raise it's axe high, when Midna jumps out of my shadow and grabs the back of the armour's suit. She flings it across the room and it crashes into the wall. I can't help but a smile a little as I get to my hands and knees. She helps me up, by 'help' I mean she yanked me up harshly, and she summons some magic in her hand.
'You couldn't help before?'
“Sorry. I couldn't get out of your shadow for some reason,” the Twili says, shooting the suit of armour with her magic.
'What?' I wonder when the armour charges at us and Midna picks me up like a kid before teleporting to the other side of the room.
“We'll worry about it later. We need to get rid of this first,” she says, putting me down.
'What is it anyway?'
“Like I would know,” Midna says, shooting the armour again. “Now get your bow out already.”
I do just that and shoot the armour between the visor, blinding it momentarily. I pull out th Megaton Hammer and crash it down on its foot, making the leg armour fall off. The suit falls back, making the ground shake, and I lift the hammer up again to bring it down on its head, but a flash of memory from when I killed that troll in the Cillage comes back to me. I get knocked out of the thought when the suit hits me with the flat of its axe, sending me across the room again.
I sit up and see the suit falling apart, unmoving. I stand and wince under Midna's gaze, knowing what's coming.
“Okay, what was that? Why did you just stop yourself from killing it?”
'...Were you there when I told Zelda about my little magical mishap?' I ask.
Sighing, I tell her what happened. Every time I say this I feel more and more like an idiot. Midna flicks my ear, making me look up in surprise. “You moron, you didn't think me or Zelda would think your were stupid, did you? You had no control over yourself, and sometimes it's the seemingly littlest things that can cause someone to snap. You're uncle almost getting killed was a good reason to lose it in my opinion. But I never thought you of all people would use such powerful magic to transform into something.”
'I didn't either. I don't even know what I was,' I think, hearing something fall. We look over and see a shield. I pick it up and hum in slight awe. The face is polished much like the armour of the suit we just fought, but even more so and a design of a gust of wind is on it. 'How is this going to help? My shield works just fine.'
“It's not a normal shield, moron,” Midna rolls her eyes. “It's a mirror shield. You can direct light with it. Back in the other room, there was some light and suns. Maybe if you hit the suns with the light, the door will open.”
'Ooh,' I think, looking at the door and seeing a sun above it. 'I get it.'
“Good girl,” she pats my head before going into my shadow.
I roll my eyes and look around. Maybe there's a window behind one of the tapestries. I go behind them to take a look and find a bit of light. I step back and tug the tapestry hard, making it rip off and fall on me. It surrounds me and I kick at it to get it off, falling over once my head gets out. “How graceful,” Midna comments as I kick the rest of the tapestry off.
'Thanks,' I mind-mumble and get up, seeing a stream of light coming from the window. I bring the mirror shield up and point it at the light, seeing the gust design on the all. I guide the light to the sun and it turns a brighter yellow as a creepy smile shows up on its face. The bars on the door rise up and I walk out to see Avira and Gale arguing. Well, Gale yelling, Avira's just standing there with his arms crossed, looking more annoyed than anything. Nura looks over at me when the door opens and rolls her eyes.
“See, what did I tell you? Link's fine,” she says, making Gale and Avira look at me. I wave a little.
“What are you? A puppy? We can't look away for two seconds before you go running off,” I fight to hide a straight face at that comment. Gale has no idea how close he is to his statement.
“You've got the Mirror Shield,” Avira says, walking over. “This will help us a lot in here. Perhaps it can even distract the giant when we come across it.”
“Wait, 'when'? What makes you think we're going to see the giant at all?” Gale asks.
“The demon probably took Sheik there already. If they're fighting, the demon will want back up in case something goes wrong.” I gulp. That is not what I want to hear. “We need to go there if we want to save the Sheikah.”
“Right,” Gale nods, acting as if he knew that. I can't help but roll my eyes at that. Give it a break, Gale.
“Okay, now we just need to figure out which sun opens the door,” Nura says, looking around at the suns. “So do we just shoot any random sun?”
I wouldn't risk it. What if one of them's a trap and gets us killed? I bet my hat that at least two of them are traps. But the other questions is how we determine which ones are safe or not.
“They're all the same, none of them stand out from the others,” Gale says, walking towards one. “How will we know which ones will work at all?”
I look at each of them, once again grateful for my Twilight Sight. Gale's right, they all do seem similar, but there must be some difference between them. One of the suns catches my attention, the one above the door we entered to get in here. It's slightly bigger than the others. Perhaps this is the one we need to hit? I go to the center of the room where the light is and direct it to the sun, making it brighten up and bars grind as I look over my shoulder to see the door unlock. Wow, that was lucky.
But the luck is short lived when a pair of Dinalof come out of the opened door. I didn't even know they could open doors. I shake my head from the thought as one of the Dinalofs breathes fire my way, singing my clothes a little, but at least it didn't get my skin. Burns hurt a lot. I jump forward at the lizard creature, slicing its collar bone and making it cry in pain. It retaliates by snapping at me and grabbing my arm. It tosses me aside and leaps on me, crushing me under its weight. I turn my head to see Gale and Nura fighting the other Dinalof. Where's Avira?
“Don't you know it's not the enemies you can see you should worry about?” my ears twitch harshly and I look around. It sounds like his voice is coming from all directions. Even I can't tell where he is. The Dinalof snaps its head around to look for Avira, tasting the air with its tongue. I try to wiggle away, but it grabs my ankle and holds me upside-down so I can't get away. It suddenly lets out a cry of pain as a cut appears on its forehead. It lashes out, trying to hit Avira, but it clearly misses and gets a harsh blow to the back of the head. It drops me and I land on my head, groaning as the room spins. I'm really surprised I haven't gotten brain damage with all the times my head has been hit/landed on.
I roll away from the Dinalof before it can grab me again and I sit up, still dizzy, to see three Dinalof swim in my vision, coming at me with its claws raised to strike. But its left arm suddenly snaps harshly behind its back and it's pushed forward. It trips over me and I feel a foot kick my shoulder as it's taken to the ground behind me. I stand as fast as I can and spin around, finding that Avira is overtop of the lizard, a broadsword held in both hands and the Dinalof's head decapitated. I feel like vomiting at the sight, remembering the troll. Jeez, guess that made a deeper mental scar than I thought.
Choking back the vile, I stumble over to Avira, who nudges the Dinalof away with his foot. “Are you okay?” he asks. I merely nod and look over my shoulder to see Nura and Gale finish off the other Dinalof.
“That sure caught me off guard, but at least we won't have to worry about them,” Nura shrugs, opening the door the Dinalof came through. We follow and see that we're once again in a labyrinth of a maze. I groan, hoping another earthquake doesn't rip the place in two.
A fowl smell suddenly makes me choke on air and I feel a hand thump my back as I fight to breathe. I smile gratefully at Nura and cover my nose with my tunic, eyes watering from the smell. It's like rotten flesh and old blood. What's making that smell?
Avira shushes us, waving his hand for us to stay, and moves forward. He carefully looks around the corner of the maze and pulls back, his mask falling enough for me to see he's surprised and worried. “Guys,” he whispers, stepping back and pressing his back to the wall. “This isn't just a maze. It looks like it all leads to the center area of the Ruins. Right around this corner is the giant.” So soon? “It's sleeping right now, so we'll have to be extra careful and get by. If we can get passed it, we might be able to find Sheik and the Demon in no time. No talking, and tread cautiously. Even the slightest sound could kill us,” he warns and heads out, his footsteps weightless.
Gulping, I follow and look around the corner, blinking in astonishment. Avira and Gale weren't kidding, this creature, which looks quite similar to an Orc or Troll, can only be described as a giant. It's bigger than any monster I have fought/seen and looks as if it can eat Castle Town like it was a piece of lettuce. I shiver as we walk towards the giant, I really hope it doesn't wake. Avira leads us down a small crack in the wall that is only about half a meter wide and we come out the other side to see the giant roll over in its sleep, turning its head to us. I look down the hallway we're now in, there's no place to go but straight, where it ends in a fork in the road. If the giant wakes up, it will see us and we'll be in deep trouble.
Avira puts a finger to his mouth and points down the hall. I get the message and tiptoe beside Avira, arms spread to the sides to keep balance. Suddenly, a sharp, stomach turning pain stabs me in the gut, making me bite onto my fist to keep from crying out. I feel my gut and find that nothing's wrong, and the pain leaves as soon as it comes. What?
I don't have a full time to register the feeling when another, more painful stab goes through my chest, right above my heart. I tumble over and land on my hands and knees, breathing heavily and trying to be quiet. Then it feels like hands are wrapped around my neck, squeezing the air out of me. I hear a voice. The voice of Ghirahim. But how?
“It's so nice to have such powerful magic.” Another stab in the gut. “Being able to silence anyone has its benefits, especially when there's a hungry giant near us.” A slap across the face. My vision is blurry, and I can see an image of a person looming over me. But...it's not me. “You really are foolish. Thinking you can really take me on. Do you not know about what I can do? Have you ignored those valueless lessons of yours.” Fire surrounds me, licking my skin with its hot touch. How do I feel this? I know it's not happening to me, but I can feel the pain as if I'm experiencing it first-hand. “No simple human can defeat me.” In an unfair fight, I can't help but think. My vision completely turns and I can see perfectly, and yet, I'm not seeing a ruined hallway, I see I'm on a platform, risen above the giant with my hands and feet bound, and a gag across my mouth. Ghirahim turns his head suddenly and a smirk rises in his eyes. “Well well, looks who it is,” my hair is grabbed and Ghirahim forces me to look to where he was. A jolt of surprise sends a chill down my spine when I see myself doubled over, jerking and twitching in pain. Nura's trying to help me up, but she can't seem to even touch me without getting her hands burnt. “Why don't we watch the fun of them running through this dull maze, hmm?” Ghirahim chuckles and glides onto the giant's head, pulling a sword from his sheath. “Time to wake up, big guy.”
With a forceful tug, I'm sent back to my body. I fall back and pant, looking up at Nura in fear. She risks the chance to help me up and gets me to my feet when a rumble shakes the floor. We look behind us to see the giant opening its huge eyes. Even from here I can see our reflection in the tunnel-like orbs. The giant's face changes from surprise, to anger, to hunger in only two seconds before it stands, reaching out for us.
Silenced by fear, we sprint down the hall. Nura yells at the guys to look behind and they see the giant awake and ready to feast. Avira speeds ahead with Gale not far behind, Nura's just trying to help me keep up. I see a shadow appear below us and risk look up to see the giant's hand closing in. I push my legs to the limit to run faster and faster, sensing the hand only inches away from us. Avira looks over his shoulder and runs at us, Gale right on his heels to help. Gale and Avira each grab one of my arms and lift me off my feet, running with Nura in the lead. I desperately try to get my feet to touch the ground, but neither Wind Tribesmen will let me.
This becomes a problem when we come near the fork in the road. I can already tell where this is going. I try to tug my arms free, but they both hold me tighter and start to go opposite ways, making me yelp and causing them to take a few steps back. Gale glares at Avira and Avira sighs in annoyance. My arms hurt from being tugged different ways and I look up in time to see fingers wrap around us, squishing us together. How lucky of me, I get caught between the two. I try to breathe as the two of them try to escape, but their struggling only makes it worse for us.
“Oh great going, Ruin Master. If you had just let go of him, then we wouldn't be in this mess!” Gale yells, making me wince as his mouth is right by my ear.
“So everything is my fault now, is it?” this is the first time I've heard anger in Avira's voice.
“Everything is your fault! If you had left the Tower, than your pathetic life wouldn't me so miserable!” I lower my head, trying to make myself as small as possible. I see the giant looking over us and nudge Avira to get his attention back on the problem.
“Maybe my life wouldn't be so miserable if any of you treated me like I was human,” Avira growls. Oh boy. “In all my years at the Tower, Link was the first one to not judge me solely on what I looked like and how I acted.”
Guys! I knock my head back, seeing the giant pulling out a sack the size of a small shack, but neither of them notice. The giant's hand loosens and we fall down. I land on my back and shake my head, looking up in time to have Avira fall on top of me and crush me. I gasp and try to push him off, but Gale lands on top of him and adds more weight to the problem.
Avira lifts his shoulder a bit and looks behind himself to see me and winces. “Gale, get off of me, now,” he orders.
“What?” Gale asks, dazed from the fall.
“We're crushing Link!” Thankfully the two get off and I sit up, moving so I'm not behind Avira or Gale. I look up and see the top of the sack close, leaving us in total darkness.
Not long after the sack closes, I hear deep breathing coming from Avira. I look at him and my eyes widen. He's looking around in complete panic, his eyes wild and scared. He pushes on either side of him and his breathing grows quicker and shorter as he looks around, desperately looking for a way out. I put a hand on his shoulder, but he jumps and jerks away from me. Gale feels the jerk and scowls. “What's your problem?”
“Where's the exit? Where's the way out?” Avira yells, pure panic and fear in his voice. I gulp, remembering when me and Ilia were playing in the forest, she fell into a small hole and panicked horribly. I later learned from Rusl that she has Claustrophobia, a fear of small spaces. It looks like Avira has the same problem. Oh man oh man, how did Rusl and Bo help Ilia? I wrack my brain to try and remember how they helped her with her fear, but nothing comes up, it was so long ago.
I suddenly get kicked in the face and hold my nose as I come back to reality, Avira is in full-out panic-mode and is flailing around, causing the entire sack to move and spin around, making matters worse. We all get tossed around and I knock heads with Gale more than once in Avira's panic. I fall back and shake my head, only to get crushed by Avira again, only this time I get pushed further into the fabric. He presses his back onto me and I look at Gale from over the older boy's shoulder, pleading for help.
“Avira, calm down!” Gale says firmly, grabbing Avira's shoulders and slapping him across the face. “That giant is going to eat us, and you're more worried about this small sack? Get over it!” he slaps Avira again and his snaps the orange-eyed boy out of his flailing.
“Wha-what?” he asks, dazed, when the sack is turned upside-down and we tumble out, landing harshly on a stone floor. I get to my hands and knees and look up to see Sheik lying on the floor on the other side of the room. I crawl towards him, but bars stop me. I grab onto a bar with one hand, feeling tears fill in my eyes at the sight of him. Bruises cover his face and cuts go up and down his arms, a large stab wound is just above his heart, but it looks as if someone healed it. Still, how could Ghirahim do this to Sheik? My Sheik?
'Sheik. We're here. I'm here. You're gonna be alright. Sheik...' I stretch my arm out, trying to hold his hand, but I can't reach.
His eyelids twitch and he lifts his head, smiling wearily when he sees me. “Link,” he says slowly, reaching out and grabbing my hand. I can't help but smile at him.
'Don't worry Sheik, we'll all get out,' I tell him, looking back at the others to find they're knocked out. I feel a hand touch my cheek and look at Sheik to see his other hand caressing my face.
“I know you will. I saw you running from the giant. When you got caught, Ghirahim knocked me over the head. I guess that's how I wound up here,” Sheik explains, sitting up with a grunt. I squeeze his hand.
'I know. Somehow I saw through your eyes,' I feel my own eyes burn. 'He hurt you so much, Sheik. I hate him.'
“I'm not fond of him either,” Sheik says, attempting a joke. I smile fondly and give his hand one last squeeze before letting it go.
'How can you joke at a time like this, Jerk?'
“The same way you can, Shorty,” he retorts. I let out a soft giggle and stand, looking back at the two Tribesmen.
'I need to wake these two up before we escape. One second,' I think and walk over to Avira and Gale, shaking them awake. They easily come to and Avira sits up, rubbing his head. He looks around before looking at me sheepishly, clearly embarrassed.
“Sorry,” he scratches his cheek, which is still red from Gale's slap. “I have a bad case of Claustrophobia. I can't think straight in small spaces. I never would have thought Gale would help me,” he looks at the other boy as he sits up.
“Don't think I did it for you. You were crushing Link.”
“But why didn't the giant eat us? Why did it just dump us here?” Avira wonders out-loud.
“Because that wasn't a real giant,” Ghirahim's voice makes me jump and he comes out of the shadows, standing in front of our cells. “The giant was just a decoy and never existed. The tremors you felt where my magic shaking the place, the crack was part of my plan, and the rest of the traps were just coincidence that you ran into them at all. I made the giant not long ago, knowing I could never control something so large, and I sent it here to camp out. I knew you would come here eventually to look for the Sage,” I wince when Avira and Gale look at me. There goes our plan to keep the mission secretive. “And I thought it would be prefect. And it was. I got the Hero, the Sheikah and two Tribesmen who are possible candidates for the rite to be called Sage. Now, Hero, you're coming with me,” Ghirahim opens the cell and Sheik swears.
“You touch her, and I swear I'll fucking break your arms off!” he yells. Avira and Gale stare at me, but I ignore them as a small blush rises on my cheeks. I can tell Sheik's not lying, he really will break Ghirahim's arms.
“You stay out of this, Sheikah,” Ghirahim snaps and goes to grab me, when he stops and grins at Sheik. “No. I've got a better idea,” Ghirahim knocks me over the head and I fall forward in a daze, unable to move. I hear scuffling and can only guess that he put Avira and Gale to sleep. A hand grabs the back of my tunic and lifts me of the ground, I'm helpless to react. I stiffly lift my head to see Sheik being dragged along in Ghirahim's other hand. He gives me a reassuring smile and I return it, feeling my love for him burn.
Ghirahim takes us to a large room with chains on the walls and hanging off the ceiling. He tosses me aside and hangs Sheik above us by his wrists, making my blood boil. I count to ten quickly. No, I won't lose my temper. Not again. Not ever again.
The Demon chains me to the wall so I'm sitting and summons a whip, making my eyes grow wide as saucers. No! Not Sheik! Ghirahim raises the whip and Sheik yells at me to close my eyes. I do so and wince when the crack of the whip sounds through the hair and Sheik's hiss of pain follows. I gasp, feeling pain in my back as if I am the one being whipped. Sheik is whipped again and I feel his pain. I. Feel. His. Pain.
I shake in rage. That Demon, that monster, is hurting my Sheik. My love. The one I've loved for so long but have only now realized. I'm not going to loose him so soon after I discovered what these feelings mean. My blood boils, my temper rises, and I feel my muscles bulge under the chains, straining the metal. My eyes close and when I re-open them, I'm glaring at Ghirahim with pure, true hatred. I hate him. I hate him more then I hate Ganondorf. I'm going to kill him!
No! The last bit of my sanity screams at me. Yelling at me to stop the transformation. I don't want to become that thing again!
The chains start to crack.
No please! Don't take over me! Don't make me kill like that again!
One breaks silently, as if even the metal wants this to happen.
Another crack of the whip. More blinding pain. More cries. The sound of dripping blood. Tears roll down my face, and the other chain breaks. I stand, holding out my hands, and the helix sword I once had returns as I grow taller. Silver-green armour covers my torso, arms and legs, my hat grows longer and turns the lightest shade of blue I have ever seen, my hair turns snowy white and my skin tans drastically. A light blue tunic, much like the hat, grows under the armour and heavy boots and gauntlets cover my arms and feet. I feel emotionless as I look up at Ghirahim and Sheik, who are both oblivious to what just happened.
Then, everything goes black.
Metal hits metal.
Metal hits flesh.
Whip cracks through the air.
More pain. Stinging pain.
A cry of rage.
More metal on metal.
A snap of the fingers.
“Twi! You need to wake up!” a familiar voice that I have not heard for a while breaks through my mind and I sit up fast, knocking heads with the one leaning over me. I hold my head and look up, seeing Time, holding his head and looking at me in concern. “Thank Nayru, you're alright,” he helps me sit up slower and I look around, finding that I'm in the Sacred Realm.
“What happened?” I jump, I forgot I could talk here.
“You lost control of my powers, again, is what happened,” a low, grouchy voice snaps and I look over to see a very tall man standing there, arms crossed and looking unimpressed. He looks exactly like I had when I lost control, except he has milky-white eyes and red and blue markings on his face. I imagine I had the same markings and eyes. “You do realize that whenever you use your uncontrollable magic, it sends a part of my magic to deal with it, and exhausts us both?” I just tilt my head. “Mortals, always so stupid.”
“Give her a break, Oni, it's not like she knew what she was doing,” Time says before looking back at me with a smile. “Twi, this is Oni. He helped me in Termina when I was fighting Majora.”
“Majora?” my voice cracks, I don't bother to cover the blush on my face. “You mean the crazy lady with the scratchy voice? You fought her?” again, my voice cracks here and there.
“With Oni's help,” Time corrects.
I look at Oni, he glares back at me. I don't think he likes us very much. “I take your power when I become like that? I'm sorry,” I say, my voice cracking more than once. “I never knew what my hidden power was, I didn't think I would sap your magic to become that. I didn't mean to.”
“I know that, stupid girl,” Oni snaps. “But that's not why we brought you here. I have a favour to ask,” I nod. “Inside those Ruins, my earth form is waiting. It waits inside a mask, my mask, and will let you control your transformation and what you transform into.”
“That sounds more like information than a favour,” I say, wincing and clamping my hand over my mouth. I. Hate. Talking. Oni glares, but otherwise ignores my comment. Time hides his snicker behind a cough.
“You didn't let me finish. You may have heard Majora mention a brother, and that only the power of that brother can completely take care of her-”
“You're her brother?” I ask, tilting my head. Oni raises an eyebrow.
“So you aren't completely stupid after all,” I huff, biting back a rude comment that could end with me in a pile of ashes. “Yes. I'm Majora's older brother. It's a long story of how things went wrong, but details don't matter. I will help you fight Majora when the time is right, if your keep control of your transformation. I'll be able to contact you through the mask you'll be wearing, so don't fret over that. Got it? Good. Send her back, Time. Her lover's worried,” Oni waves his hand passively and walks away.
“He's kinda jerkish,” I comment.
“I know, but he's right. Be careful looking for his mask, it's very powerful,” Time warns and sends me back to reality.
“Link, are you alright?” Sheik is the first one I hear and I open my eyes, seeing his face in a blur.
My eyes grow wide in fear and I huge him, shivering. 'It happened again, Sheik,' I think, burying my face into his shoulder, not wanting to see the damage I caused.
“I know it did, but nothing happened. You fought Ghirahim, but he escaped quickly. You didn't hurt me, you just destroyed the room,” he assures me and I take my face away from his shoulder to see the walls crumbling and the ceiling no longer exists. “Come on, we should find the others and get out of here.”
'Yes and no,' I think, remembering Oni's words. 'There's something I need to find first. I need to find a mask.'
“A...mask?” Sheik asks, helping me to my feet. I nod, feeling a sting on my shoulder. I feel it to see a cut. I'll worry about it later.
'Yep. I need to find a mask that will help me control my powers and defeat Majora when the time comes,' I explain as we leave the destroyed room. We find Gale and Avira still sleeping in their cells and wake them before starting to leave.
“Hey! Don't forget us!” I grin at the familiar voice and look in another cell to see Adam and Alex chained to the wall. “We got taken by the demon right after we went through the door. He thought you would be with us. Or, he hoped you would be,” Adam says as we help them out.
“We just need to find the Gerudo and we'll be out of here,” Gale says.
“Is she alright?” Adam asks.
“I'm sure she's fine. She's a Gerudo, after all,” Alex rolls his eyes.
“There's just one thing I want to ask,” Avira looks at me and I shrink into myself. Uh-oh. “Why are you pretending to be a boy?”
“Long story short, she was already being mistaken for a boy because of her short hair, and since she can't talk, she couldn't deny it. It also helped since she was going around Hyrule. She would have attracted a lot of unwanted attention,” Sheik explains for me.
“Doesn't make sense to me, but whatever,” Gale says.
“It makes perfect sense. The only women people see with weapons are Gerudo, so it would make a low profile,” Avira says.
“Is there anything you don't know?”
“I don't know magic, I don't know archery, I don't know how to ride a horse, I don't know how to live in a forest-” he begins.
“Nevermind,” Gale grumbles.
'If you didn't want to hear it, you shouldn't have asked,' I think.
It only takes about ten minutes to find Nura, who smirks and holds up a map. “Found it after Linky pushed me away. By the way,” she hits me over the back of the head. “That's for being stupid and risking your life.”
I roll my eyes and Sheik tells them about the mask we need to find. Avira hums, tapping his chin. “Mask mask mask...” his eyes shine. “I think I know where it is. We need to head back to where the fake giant was sleeping. It will probably be there.”
“That would make sense, with all the things we've seen. But why is a mask so important?” Adam asks.
'I'd rather not go into details,' I think to myself as we head to the labyrinth for a final time.
“So, the real reason you guys are here is to find a Sage?” Avira asks.
“Yeah, it was Link's mission since the Twilight Smog was threatening to take over. She's been going around finding and awaking Sages for the last, what, two months?” Nura says. I nod. About that.
“Twilight Smog?” Avira and Gale both ask. Gale glares at Avira.
“It's a bog that is going to take control of Hyrule if it's not stopped. We need the Sages help, so we've been finding them. We just need to find the last one, which is a Wind Tribesmen,” Sheik says.
“So that's why the demon thought we were candidates for being the Sage,” Avira concludes.
“Most likely,” Alex says as we come to the center of the maze. The 'giant' had been sleeping in a large pit, and I can't even see the bottom of it. On the other side, I see a small pedestal, something resting on top. Could this be the mask Oni and Time told me about? It really was being kept here.
“How are we going to get it? It will take too long to go around, and we might get lost again in the process,” Adam wonders, looking into the pit.
“I think I can get over,” Sheik says.
'But you're hurt,' I think, seeing him straining to keep standing.
'I'll be fine,' he thinks back, but I see him wince slightly and feel the stab wound on his chest. I look him in the eye and he sighs, nodding. 'Alright, I won't go. You're right. But how do we get over?'
I rummage through my Never-Ending Bag, wishing I hadn't gotten the Double Clawshot taken in the Forest Temple. I don't find anything and shake my head, shrugging. Then a bit of light catches my eye and I look up to see a cracked part of the roof. Maybe if we break it, sunlight will come in. But how would that be useful? I look around and see another sun on the bottom of a platform hanging off of some chains on the ceiling. Ah.
I pull out a bomb and toss it up, exploding the roof and making everyone jump. I grin sheepishly as the light pours in, maybe I should have warned them first. I use the Mirror Shield to guide the light to the sun, which brightens like the ones before and a clicking sound is heard. The floor in front of us stretches to the other side where the pedestal stands and a ticking sound goes off, like a timer. Uh-oh. I start sprinting across the makeshift bridge before anyone can stop me and get to the other side with seconds to spare. The floor retracts into where it once was, but I don't bother to pay that much attention to it, what catches my interest is the mask. This is definitely Oni's mask.
I take it, cringing and waiting for a trap to go off, but nothing happens and I look over my shoulder at the others. “Well that was anti-climactic,” Midna states from my shadow. “Now to get back. Any ideas?”
'Nope,' I bite my lip and tap my foot, trying to think. I lean on the wall behind me when it turns, making me yelp as I fall forward. I get to my hands and knees, looking around and letting my eyes adjust. I expect to see Ghirahim or something, but all I see is a Darknut. Fighting time.
I try not to panic. Really. But it's so hard when Link is being her usual, reckless self to finish a job. With no other choice, the rest of us have to follow to make sure she's alright, but we can't get over without something to reflect the sunlight.
Wait. I reach into my own Dimensional Bag and pull out my harp. Of course! I can use this. Remembering what Link did, I let the sunlight hit my harp and point it to the sun. “That's brilliant,” Adam says and they head over first, I keep the sun shining until they get on the other side. I run after them, ignoring my injuries, and make it to the other side when it feels as if something knocks me over the head. I get dizzy for a moment but shake it off in favour of making the wall turn. I see Link lying on the floor at my feet, holding her head.
“Are you alright, Link?” I ask, helping her up.
'I'm fine, just look out for the Darknut,' she thinks, standing and shaking her head. I look to see the living suit of armour and pull out my throwing knives. I glance over my shoulder, but find that the wall is stuck, leaving the others on the other side.
“Looks like it's you and me,” I say, getting ready to throw when a second Darknut appears out of the darkness. “You ready, Shorty?” I smirk.
'Always, Jerk,' she retorts, also smirking and we go back to back, shooting the Darknuts with knives and arrows. Much like the other times we fought together, we don't look or tell each other where to go or what to look out for, we fight as if we're twins, reading each others thoughts and movements without actually talking. We take down both Darknuts with ease and smile at each other, when a large thud causes the ground to shake. We snap our heads to the source and see a giant Darknut the size of a house tower over us, just as the others get in.
“Looks like we're going to have a tough fight,” Avira says, pulling out his broadsword.
“For once, I agree with you,” Gale says.
Darknut Lord: Deathknox
Deathknox roars and swings his sword at us, but we roll separate ways to dodge it. Alex stays back by the wall, trying to stay away from the fight. It's understandable, Alex has never seemed to like fighting.
I pull out my chain-whip and get it ready, coming to Link's side as she brings out the Megaton Hammer. We jump away from the sword when it slams into the ground and see Nura throw her twin glaives like boomerangs to hit Deathknox's head. He looks in her direction, but she's already gone and Adam sends a bomb arrow at him. He swings the sword again and almost hits the redhead, but luckily it misses and Adam stumbles away.
Gale takes this as his chance and brings his sword down on the Darknut's leg. He roars and kicks Gale, sending him back, but he lands on his feet and rushes back in. Avira suddenly jumps from nowhere and catches the Darknut's arm, making the armour fall off. Gale glares at him for some reason or other but goes back to fighting.
Link hops onto Deathknox's foot and slams the Megaton Hammer down. The Darknut lord lets out a cry of rage and goes to swipe Link, but I send my whip out and catch his wrist before he can hurt her. I pull back with all my strength and manage to throw him off balance for a few seconds, enough time for Nura to land another blow to his denting armour.
“We can't keep going on like this,” I say to Link when we are standing side-by-side, shooting Deathknox. “We need to find a weakness quickly, or we'll just exhaust ourselves uselessly.”
'Okay,' Link shrugs and runs to Deathknox. Shoot, I should have known she'd volunteer to find it. I stay back, as much as I hate it, and distract the Darknut with the help of everyone. Even Alex manages to play decoy. Link climbs up Deathknox's armour and comes to his shoulder. 'I found it!' she waves at me and I see the side of Deathknox's helmet is worn and cracked, showing a gem underneath. I smile, but that fades when Deathknox notices Link and flicks her off.
I run and catch her before she hits the ground, but the impact sends us both into the wall. I knock my head on it and find myself only half-aware of what's going on. Link sits up and shakes her head, turning to look at me. I see her start to panic as my chest wound starts stinging. I can only imagine it's bleeding again. Link rips a part of her tunic off and presses it on my wound, keeping pressure to stop the blood.
Link and Sheik aren't the only ones getting knocked away. While fighting, Nura and Adam get hit by Deathknox's sword and sent to the ground, knocked out by the blow. Alex goes to help them, but he's slapped away by the Darknut. This all happens so fast that both Gale and Avira have trouble registering it.
“Great, this is all going to shit,” Gale mutters, finding himself back-to-back with Avira as Deathknox slams his arms into the ground on either side of them.
“We need to think. We know where the weak spot of him is, but how we get up is the question,” Avira says.
“You're over-thinking, Weirdo. Why not get him down here? If we trip him, we can hit the spot easily,” Gale rolls his eyes. Avira looks at him from over his shoulder, a spark in his eye.
“That's not a bad plan. Let's get it into action. Stand back, and wait for my signal,” Avira says.
“No time, just stand back,” Gale runs to the side just as Avira dashes around the room, an unseen blur the the naked eye. “Hey, Deathknox,” the Darknut Lord looks around, trying to find the orange-eyed boy. “Why don't you pick on someone your own size?” Avira jumps from the roof and kicks down into Deathknox's face, making him stumble back and knock a part of the wall away, reviling yet another pit.
Gale whistles, for once impressed, before rushing at Deathknox, who is struggling to get up. He raises his sword but is smacked away by Deathknox and flies towards the pit. He grabs onto the edge just in time and fights to stay on. Avira kicks Deathknox again and sends him back to the ground, not noticing Gale's predicament. He only notices when he's about to send the final blow to the gem in Deathknox's head. He sees Gale's hands slipping and a million thoughts go through his head. Ultimately, he drops his sword and runs at Gale, grabbing his hand just before he falls. Gale blinks, why would Avira save him, after all he did to the guy?
Avira helps Gale up and smiles. “You alright, Gale?” he asks. Gale just nods mutely when Deathknox grabs Avira, crushing him in his hand.
With a cry, Gale shoots Deathknox, but the arrow deflects and thuds into the ground near Link and Sheik, making the Hylian look up and see what's going on. She stands and runs towards the Wind Tribesmen, grabbing Avira's sword off the ground and having a hard time holding it with even two hands, and throws it with all her might at Deathknox's helmet. It hits directly and the gem explodes, causing the enchanted armour to fall apart. But the damage has been done.
Gale stares at the remains of the Darknut, waiting for Avira to come out and say something witty, but he waits uselessly. Link gulps and taps Gale's shoulder, looking as if she's asking if he's okay.
“Avira saved me,” he mutters, almost in disbelief. “And he was killed just by that?”
Link's ears fall and she looks on as Deathknox's remains turn to ash. Death spares nobody. She sighs sadly and goes back her friends, helping them up and letting Sheik drape an arm around her shoulders. A blue column of light appears and the six of them leave, Gale last to look around one last time.
“Maybe...he wasn't a complete loser after all.”
We arrive in the Sacred Realm, and I smile. I was sad about Avira's death, but I have had my suspicions for a while. My suspicions are confirmed when I see Avira appear on the last circle, arms crossed and smiling. “Heh, who would have though someone like me would be a Sage?” he laughs.
“Wait, you're not dead?” Gale asks.
“Of course I am. Sages have to die to awaken. Though the way of awakening sucks,” Avira grins. “Oh, you're welcome, by the way.”
Gale just looks away, seeming ashamed. “I'm sorry for all the thing's I've done to you.”
“I forgave you after each,” Avira says before looking at me. “Well well, looks like you've done it. You've found the new Sages of Hyrule and we'll be at your service when the time comes. Now that your quest is over, you need to go back to Hyrule Castle and explain all you can to the Princess. I'll see you again,” he gives me his medallion and, like the many times before, everything flashes white. “Good job.”
We find ourselves back at the Tower, it's night and the stars are glistening in the sky. Gale walks stiffly, staring in front of him in a daze. “Thanks,” he says. To who he says it to, I'm not sure, but he runs to the Tower before any of us can ask.
“We'd better get some rest,” Nura says. She and Adam head in. Alex follows not long after and I smile at Sheik.
“Thanks, Link,” he says before looking like he remembers something and flushes. “Um, I just remembered something I needed to do. I'll see you in the morning,” he says and runs off.
I'm a bit disappointed, I want to tell him that I love him, but I guess it's really important. I go and sit by the swamp, not minding the damp grass as I stare up at the stars. They seem to be dancing. It's so pretty.
I hear muttering and look behind me, ears perked. That's Sheik's voice. Whatever it was he had to do, he sure did it quickly. I get up and follow his voice, finding that he's behind a tree, a blue flower in his hand. “I need to tell you...no no. I'm in lo...no that won't do,” he mutters, pacing the ground. I make sure to keep hidden in the shade of the tree as he takes a deep breath, looking into a puddle. “Link, there's something I've been wanting to tell you for a long time now. At first, I didn't want to think about the feelings I had, I wanted them to keep locked up away forever. But every little thing you did made my emotions run wild. Your smile, your laugh, just the look in your eyes. I was in denial, I was trying to tell myself that the feelings weren't real, that they were just a petty thing, that they didn't matter. But they did. They mattered more to me than you could ever know. The moment I saw you, I felt a strange, familiar tug. One I hadn't felt for a long time. At that moment I thought your were a guy, and I was a little more than freaked out. But when I found out you were a girl, it made more sense. But the feeling wasn't very strong then. My feelings grew when I danced with you, not knowing it was you, and I lost myself in your ocean eyes. You're beautiful, wonderful eyes,” I feel a blush turn my entire face red. He thinks my eyes are beautiful? “I wanted to find out who the girl was behind the mask, and I found her not long after. When I met you again that rainy day in Jabu's lake, I was surprised to see you at all. When Jabu pushed you into me, my heart fluttered and I had glared at him, knowing he thought we should get together. Still I denied it. I denied it through the time when you were a pup, and only started to really fall out of it when you were back to normal and in my arms. But the last straw of denial was drawn after I told you my past. You didn't hate me, you didn't hate Sonja, you hated nobody but Osamu and Rosalie. That was when I couldn't deny the feelings I have for you. Link...I love you,” a smile so large that it hurts breaks onto my face. He loves me! He loves me! “I've loved you for so long, but I was scared that you wouldn't love me back, or would get distracted from the task at hand and get hurt. I would hate myself if you got hurt because of me. I know it's not smart to have a lover in a war, but I can't help it. I love you and I never want to let you go,” he takes a deep breath before sighing sadly. “No, she would never accept that.”
Still smiling and blush still burning my face, I sneak behind him and tap his shoulder. I shrink down when he turns his head so he can't see me and run through his legs, growing when I'm in front of him. He turns his head back, confused, and I fling my arms around his shoulders, kissing him on the mouth. He tenses for a few seconds before relaxing and wrapping his arms around me, kissing me back. When we break the kiss, I see him blushing and know that my face is even redder.
'What makes you think I would never accept that?' I ask jokingly. He smiles and lowers his head so we're touching foreheads. 'I've loved you for so long Sheik, from when I first saw you, but I didn't know what the emotion was. My mind wasn't processing it properly. But through all the clues and hint, I realized it just before Ghirahim took you. I'm sorry it took so long Sheik, but I love you.'
“Don't be sorry, I never blamed you,” he kisses the top of my head and hugs me tighter. I sink into his embrace and take in his sent, feeling my legs become week with relief and happiness. “I love you so, so much.” I squeeze him, burring my face into his chest. I can stay this way forever.
Off in the distance, Nura, Adam and Alex stand, watching on as the two lovers finally confess to each other. “About time,” Nura says, laughing and smiling. Adam nods, putting an arm around her. Alex merely looks on, arms crossed and stony-faced, but inside he was happy for the Mute and Sheikah. They deserved to be happy after all they've been through.