10: A day as a wolf
Colin had fallen asleep after he had drunk his fill, hoping to wake up and be himself inside Telma's bar.
Wolf Colin slowly rose up on all fours, silently cursing his fate. He started walking towards the castle, or the rough direction of the castle anyway. He noticed how hungry he was a few pawsteps in.
He heard an unearthly shriek above him and looked up, panicked. A Kargorak, a monstrous bird, was above him and diving down towards him with all speed, claws outstretched to kill.
Colin began running, much faster than he had ever did while human. Not that he particularly cared - it wasn't fast enough. The Kargorak closed in like a determined meteor.
Colin instinctively sidestepped, and the Kargorak ended up clutching air fruitlessly. This angered the bird all the more, and it turned towards Colin.
The chase could have continued all day, with Colin eventually losing, when something else happened.
Something came over the transformed Colin, and he opened his mouth, baring his teeth and leaping at the monster. The bird had time to shriek in surprise before the wolf was on it, slashing at it.
Colin's newfound claws sank into the birds flesh as his mouth gouged the screaming Kargorak.
It all happened in a flash, and Colin didn't realize what had happened until the bird was dead. When he did, he recoiled in horror. He had just...killed...He shook himself. Link had killed these birds in self-defence too, and he was gonna be killed...but Link had a sword and he...
His stomach growled uncontrollably.
Resigningly, but not as uncomfortably as he would've thought, Colin had a meal of meat for breakfast.
Link and Rusl were starting to panic.
"And you haven't seen him either?""No sir. Sorry."
Link and Rusl paced up and down the town's corridors, worried. Where was Colin? He had disappeared overnight, and no-one knew where he was or what became of him...
Rusl sat down, more upset then ever. "I can't believe this is happening!"
Link concurred. "Me neither. But we shouldn't panic..."
"Bit late for that." Rusl tried to reassure himself. "He's smart, I've been training him...he'll be okay...I hope..."
Link sat down beside him and silently thought things over. Colin was leaving Telma's bar last time they saw him, and they had checked around the area...and then there was that howl...
Link shook it off as irrelevant.
Rusl started moping again. "This is happening again...that's TWICE I've lost my son...sigh."
It had been the second time, Link recalled. The last time had been the Twilight incident. He had been a wolf then, and he was able to scent him down... If he could only be a wolf again, he might...
Link looked up and saw that they had been sitting in front of the Happy Mask shop.
The wolf mask! Maybe...
Link shook his head. No, it wouldn't help. Masks don't transform people...did they? Shad's book mentioned masks that did...No. It wasn't possible.
Rusl stood up. "Well, it won't help to sit here moping. Let's head back to our rooms and rest." Link got up to follow him.
"Colin will be alright."
Link looked at Rusl. It could've been either of them who said that, and neither cared which it was. But they knew...hoped it was true.
At the Mask Shop, two squinted eyes watched the two warriors leave sadly.
"You'll figure it out...and when you do... you can have the precious item of the original hero..."
Colin had put himself under a tree for shelter after his meal, trying his best to calm himself down.
A Voice rang out from above, and Colin darted up growling, expecting it to be Majora again. But he could see nobody...
"What's you're name? I'm Teeka."
Colin looked around helplessly, as he could see nobody.
The voice gave a slight groan. "I'm up here, doggy."
Colin looked up and saw a brown squirrel perched on a branch. Was he the one who'd been talking?
The squirrel answered that question quickly. "So NOW you see me. Heehee. So again, what's your name?"
"Er...Colin?" the wolf answered in a language he never heard but understood perfectly.
"Colin? Funny name for a wolf."
"I'm not a wolf!" Colin shrieked out abruptly.
"Riiiiiiiight. You're a wolf. That's why I'M up HERE." Teeka retorted.
"But - but" Colin stuttered before realizing it was hopeless. "Sigh. Look, Teeka, I was on my way to Hyrule castle town...do you know a way?"
Teeka tilted his head. "Hyrule castle town? What's that?"
"The town by the castle!"
"What town and castle?"
"The only one around here!" Colin growled, getting more and more frustrated.
"What is a castle?"
Colin let out a loud snarl. "A BIG BUILDING WITH STONES!"
"Stones? Oh, you mean the funny mountain with six peaks." The squirrel helpfully pointed the direction. "Keep going that way until you see it, and then..."
"Keep going until you reach it, of course! What did you think?"
Wolf Colin groaned, but at least he had a way to go. "Thank you Teeka. Goodbye."
"I dunno if you'll get in...You're small but kinda scary. Oh, you're welcome. Bye." And with that, the squirrel vanished into the trees.
Colin rolled his eyes before heading in the direction the squirrel pointed. So he could talk to animals now...that might help...or not. The young wolf, the kargorak's blood still plastered on his snout, wearily trudged towards Hyrule castle.
Link had returned to his room to rest and think abut Colin. He paced the room troubled and sat down.
Link stood back up and looked at what he had sat down on. It was the mask the salesman had given him, the wolf mask with the markings identical to his twilight wolf form.
Link picked it up and sighed. If only...
Link remembered what Colin had been looking for in that mask shop. A mask that could make him brave as Link. Link smiled at the memory as he rotated the mask in his grip.
On a whim, he decided to try it on for nostalgia. He moved the wolf mask that the Happy Mask Salesman had given him towards his face.