Legend Of Zelda Fan Fiction ❯ The Legend of Link: Lucky Number 13 ❯ A Couple's Union Pt. 01: The Hero and the Thief ( Chapter 20 )
Author's Notes: Take a moment to bring your expectations down to normal for this chapter involving Link's wedding day. Okay? We're all relieved and not expecting something outlandish, like Zelda and Nabooru trading kicks, or Link in a massive orgy (although…)? Good. Go forth, read, and hopefully enjoy.
It's already been three or four months since we last spoke? Wow! Well, I'm sure you know a lot has happened since then. I guess I should start with the biggest event and work my way backward.
Before things returned to normal after that day on the track, Nabooru did something that shocked us all. Somewhere after my spontaneous breaching of her parents' afterlives, she decided to become a surrogate mother to Sepaaru, effectively adopting her on the spot. Hey, I said I was starting at the biggest event and working my way back-and taking on your former enemy's child is as big as it gets for someone that holds a grudge like Nabooru. As I was saying, Sepaaru continued the surprises by accepting the offer. And after stewing in my own brain juices for a minute, I decided to throw out some surprises of my own.
Basically, I came to the conclusion that I'd replace Ganondorf as her father. I know, I know. My body shook for a minute too, but the way her spirits lifted made the choice worth it, I suppose. (Besides, I couldn't do any worse of a job.) We'd figured it would be in Sepaaru's best interest to have some stable parental figures-and if you laugh, I'll gut you with a rusty butter knife-in her life, and by the ease in which she embraced us, I'd venture to say we were right. Although, having a kid over half my age is more than a little disturbing, I did my trademark adjusting and all was well.
Well, everything was well in my life besides my relationship with Nabooru.
After my little exercise in "making a point," she sort of kicked me out of bed for a couple of weeks. Of course, this was nothing for yours truly. Then again, I'm still at a loss as to how the female mind works. Thus, she made me promise not to use any powers to ease my sleeping discomfort and if I did use any I didn't love her. Naturally, I agreed not to. All things considered, I thought I got off pretty light. But seeing as I find lying awake pretending to be asleep annoying, I made better use of my time.
And what's better than sleeping on a hard floor?
Why teaching your daughter how to cope with killing her own father of course!
Yeah, it wasn't a day in the forest to say the least. Often times, I'd find her wandering the halls mumbling incoherently about it. Other times, she'd seek Nabooru or me out to cry. I offered plenty of times to remove the memories from her mind, but she always said, "No, they'll make me stronger."
"Whatever doesn't kill me will only make me stronger." It's a cute ideology, but it's not for everyone. Sometimes the saying's true, but that's if it doesn't drive you insane first. Anyway, this led to late night training sessions, which she figured would keep her mind occupied and away from that day. Nice guy that I am, I went along with this therapy of abuse and began where we left off. Maybe it's the psycho in me, but I swear killing Ganondorf is the best thing that ever happened to that girl… fighting wise, anyway.
Her offense gained more precision. Her defense gained more stability, and, by god, her feet actually began to move! The coordination just came into play last week, but it's there so I'm not complaining. Keep in mind that I didn't let her know any of this. I mean, after all this hard work, she'd probably let her ego inflate like a Dodongo's belly. I kept what encouragement I gave out in short doses, mainly unspecific little bobbles like "Nice" or "You're getting there." Still, I felt proud of her.
I guess in some respects, I rather enjoy being a teacher. There's nothing like seeing your hard work pay off through someone else's. Yeah, I know. But still, if turning her into the Gerudo equivalent of me makes her happy and partially sane, it's worth it. Sure, she seems fine out there now, but no matter what anyone says, your first kill does something to you. You never see the world around you the same, and no matter what type of killer you become, the first always haunts you the most. I'd like to tell her things got easier, and that sooner or later hacking through people will be as easy as killing stalfos. But the truth is it won't. No matter how well adjusted Nabooru and I may seem it still gnaws at us.
"You two seem so normal though," Sepaaru had said when I told her about how mentally draining it is to kill. "How'd you get over it?"
I just smiled, and told her that she obviously didn't know what normal really was and held my tongue. Why? Are you sipping the juice again? Put yourself in her shoes, and imagine hearing this as an answer: "Yeah, I'm warped. It's one of the side effects growing up so afraid of the next dark room that once I kill a threat or something that scares me I'm fine-no guilt, no remorse, no nothing."
That builds character, right? It sure does… gimp.
Now don't get me wrong, I wasn't saying she'd necessarily feel like shit once she'd killed some creep who was out to get her. My point was that she shouldn't freak out when she heard that person's voice in the dark when she was alone, because it will happen. Nabooru lives with the voices of the possessed Gerudo that she was forced to kill. And me, I live with more voices than anyone will ever know. I do find if you keep yourself occupied the voices aren't as readily available to haunt you.
Well, enough of the gloomy stuff, this is my wedding day after all.
"So, ladies, how do I look?" I ask my personal assistants, who I'm pretty sure Nabooru put here to make sure I didn't run away. Heh, like I need to run.
"You look great," the duo chirps in unison, which only proves I need to find them all a date.
No, not because of what they said, but because of the way they said it-not to mention all the lustful staring. Geez, I feel like I'm the last steak at a table full of wolfos. Ah well, I suppose there's always a few of the knights for them to hook up with depending upon if said knights speak to me again. I'm sure you're wondering just where this little shindig is going to occur, right? Before I tell you that, a quick question: hat on or hat off? Good, I was thinking off too. I figured it was time to let my hair see the sun for a change.
"Would you be so kind as to hold onto this for me?" I ask one of my assistants, who happens to find no trouble fulfilling this request. Now with hair that doesn't move (even when wet), I'm off to get married at the feet of the Dessert Colossus, which isn't even in a desert anymore. Don't worry about it. I'll explain it later.
Dressed in a gold tunic, black tights, and a white, long-sleeved undershirt, Link left the tint that'd become his makeshift dressing room, escorted by two hyper Gerudo. He whistled the familiar hymn that accompanied him on his trips through the field, admiring the forest that had sprung up by his hand in the former Haunted Wasteland. Also from his perspective, the attendants were all looking back in anticipation of his arrival. As usual, Link didn't disappoint.
Link approached the altar in step with the music via the emerald colored grass, a bit surprised by the sheer amount of people who'd turned out to see his marriage take place. There were people there that Link had saved, talked to, and only seen around Castle Town or Kakariko. Still, they all smiled at him, just as proud as any parent would've been of their own child. Indeed, it would appear the entire populace of Hyrule (and even some from Termina) had turned out to see their longtime protector's day of happiness. Rich next to poor and old next to young-they all put their differences aside for this event. Nearing the seemingly endless sea of pews, Link spotted his personal guests lining the front rows: Ruto, Mikaru, Saria, Darunia with his son Link, Malon, Ingo, and their soon-to-be-born son. Of course, Malon and Ingo didn't know the child would be a boy, but that was Link's "secret" to reveal at his choosing.
"You look so cute!" Saria whispered, which made Link smile a little brighter.
As his walk came to an end, he turned to face the same aisle he'd just walked in preparation of his bride-to-be. Coincidentally, Zelda and Arthur both sat amongst the front row, which allowed a perfect view of her slightly twisted face. Here her Link stood decked out in a tunic that looked to be made of solid gold threads with her favorite flower woven along the dark edges of the Triforce emblazoned across the back of said tunic. And there he stood preparing to be wed to a woman she'd only seen three times.
Link had to use all of his resolve not to burst into a fit of laughter as more jealousy-inspired thoughts spilled from her mind. In his moment of reflection, though, Link remembered his ranting from outside the castle walls, and how it'd come to pass in a way. He had the bigger castle (or fortress, at least), his wealth was only limited by his imagination, and all that he needed to fulfill his prophecy was a child.
"Heh, I can't believe I'm being this petty," Link muttered in his thoughts. "I'm happy, so who gives a rat's ass about beating Zelda?" Taking a minute to look at her without looking directly at her, he realized that he didn't. His decision was reached just as the invisible band began to play again, which signaled the arrival of his bride and her maids of honor, which also doubled as a group of attractive groom's women for him.
Taking a page from the Big Book of Etiquette, Link twitched a finger and a dazzling white carpet rolled itself down the gigantic expenditure to where Nabooru's toes would eventually be. This would prevent the ruination of a dress she wouldn't even let him see off her, let alone during fittings. Most patrons failed to notice the show of magic, but those in eyeshot only gasped or gave a quizzical look, as if to ask, "How did he do that?"
True enough, the Hylian part of the crowd showed up of their own accord once they'd heard about his wedding via Zelda's Royal Announcement, but the announcement didn't include his semi-exposed birthright. But the crowd he'd personally invited-Zora, Goron, and Kokiri-was well aware of his newfound abilities. Each group had been witness to their fair share of his mystical ability over the last few months, so a little carpet rolling wasn't that shocking. More importantly, the anxiousness spread across his face as the bride's party came into view. They walked in two lines, all in ornate versions of their patrol gear-golden armbands, red slings of cloth supporting their breasts, matching red slippers, and white pants embroidered with various symbols of a language long forgotten to the Gerudo of now.
The symbols, however, were clear to Link and his expansive knowledge of the forgotten and overlooked. They read: "Life's shortest walk, when done right, will always lead to the longest road of happiness."
This, in his book, symbolized his walk down the aisle; it was a short walk, but it also led him to the place that would ensure infinite happiness. And as the approaching group came closer, row after row of patrons stood in honor of the hidden Gerudo Queen. From the startled expressions and lustful drooling of the male audience, Link assumed Nabooru had made one hell of a dress.
"Two-hundred yards and closing," Link thought, as his heart began to beat like Bongo Bongo's drum.
The first pair of guards to reach him bowed their heads to their king, before they took up a position on either side of him. Still, the anxiety continued to prod the usually docile warrior, and this was only further highlighted as his fidgeting caused the surrounding ground to shake until Link forced himself to calm down. The process of bowing guards repeated a total of 16 more times, ending with a single Gerudo and her adopted daughter holding her train.
Now it was Link's turn to gasp like his guests. Standing perfectly still, Nabooru smiled proudly as her fiancé soaked in her colorful ensemble. She wore a crimson dress-if it could even be called a dress-that was more so an ankle-length skirt, baring a slit up the left side that almost allowed a view of something only Link would ever see. This slit also allowed her delicately muscular legs to show, and at the same time stay hidden among the wrapped material.
Scanning upward, Link couldn't stop ogling her now if he even wanted to. She was so smooth… soft… shiny… shiny… the look in his eyes turned openly lustful, as the powerful emotion caused them to glow to the surprise of the audience. Nabooru's smile widened, as she was enjoying the lurid gaze with fervor. Eyeing her bare midriff, taught stomach, and breasts that sat perfectly in a top that crossed her chest in a material that seemed to shine with every color of the rainbow, Link's face lit up like a big-ass candle. The seductress behind the red veil had done well, and the look on his face told her that.
Beyond his smile was a singular thought. "Whoa…" This was projected to Nabooru, who modestly laughed at him.
"Is that all you have to say?" Nabooru thought back, as she took her place beside him.
Not one to miss a beat, Link replied, "I'll say something else when I can think. Seriously, though, you look beautiful."
Her face automatically softened, as she looked up at him. "And so do you, Hero."
And with Rauru finally making his appearance from inside the colossus, everyone took their seats and listened intently as the proceedings began. Staring adamantly at each other, the couple seemingly ignored the elder sage's words, as their conscious minds only held places for one and other. Before long, Rauru was asking Link if he took Nabooru to be his bride, which Link overlapped by repeating "I do" through every syllable of the man's ritualistic saying. Not expecting any less from Nabooru, the old man simply said her name and paused, which sent "I do" flying past her gums.
"Now, place your ring upon her finger," the old sage said, looking up with an auspicious smirk at the giant behemoth in Kokiri's clothing.
Needing no further encouragement, Link lifted her hand and materialized a ring with a diamond the color of blood-red being her favorite color, after all.
Nabooru had one question to ask after looking at his handy work: "Could you take a little off the sides?"
Intrigued by this, Link did as instructed. And for a few moments, they stood talking amongst themselves, shaping her ring to the desired cut. The guests muttered some, a little confused as to what was happening.
"Stop, that's perfect!" Nabooru yelled a little louder than she'd intended to, as noted by her nervous laughter afterward.
Link, nevertheless, recognized the shape of the diamonds that encompassed the top of the braided silver vines. It was the Triforce, this time in a triangulate of red diamonds instead of gold. The symbol seemed to represent sadness just as well as it did happiness.
Now, the next question was what did he make for himself?
After several silent seconds, Link relaxed under the spectators' mounting curiosity and said, "This'll have to do."
He tapped the back of the hand Nabooru had nestled into her bouquet of various orchids picked from the surrounding forest. Nabooru opened her hand and found a rather simplistic gold band-no jewels, no fancy artistry, no nothing-it was just a plain gold ring. She looked up at him for a moment, silently wondering if Link even realized how symbolic the ring was of him. He was the unassuming creature that silently played out his life in the background, yet shined brilliantly in any light when the time called for it.
"Nabooru, place the ring upon his finger," Rauru instructed, nodding appreciatively to her after the act was completed. "Is there anyone here who sees a reason why these two should not be wed? Speak now or forever hold your peace."
Rauru waited. Link waited. Nabooru… dared anyone to breathe loud enough to be considered actual objection.
"No objections? Good. Then by the power vested in me, I now pronounce you-Link of Kokiri Forest, Zora's Domain, Gerudo Valley, Goron City, Kakariko Village, and the land of Hyrule and Nabooru of Gerudo Valley-husband and wife. You may now kiss the bride," Rauru gasped, sucking in a long breath of air after getting through all of Link's various citizenships.
Everything seemed to slowdown as Link lifted her veil, but it wasn't that type of slow that he wished would speed up. It was the kind of slow where it seemed like time was trying to capture the perfect moment for all eternity. As their lips met, time got one hell of a pictograph. While the crowd cheered the greatest hero in Hyrule's history, they were treated to a sudden downpour of flower petals via a small Deku Shrub floating leisurely around the treetops, hovering under the power of two large, rotating flower petals sprouting from its back. To accent the petals, a lone Zora guitarist stood atop the colossus's right hand strumming in time to a rhythmic drum beat provided by the Goron in the statue's left hand.
"So, who are they?" Nabooru asked, still amidst that flushed, happy feeling.
Her husband only smiled, but eventually said, "You remember the spirits I told you were inside the masks? Well, that's them."
Nabooru's surprise was momentary, but quickly dulled as she realized they were still being watched. Link felt the silent eyes observing them, as well, but he couldn't be bothered to care.
"I'll assume you're all starved by now," Link said to the crowd, some of whom arrived hours ahead of schedule, not even bothering to look up at his guests; he just smirked when they shouted "Yes!" to his bellowed statement.
Tearing his eyes away from his wife, he said, "Then don't wait for us."
No one had time to understand what'd just happened. All they knew was that they were now in a dining hall that more than accommodated the entire population of Hyrule and all points in-between, complete with eloquent seating and enough food to gag a king's legion of men.
Sensing a fair share of concern and fear among some of his patrons, Link added, "I guess a lot of you didn't hear, but the Goddesses gave me the Triforce for services rendered."
He waited to see if that flimsy-ass excuse would hold. It took a moment, but, like the cattle that they tended to be, the Hylian sect of the crowd took not a second moment to question what he'd said before digging into the food before them. Playing the roles of spectators, the newlyweds maintained their distance whilst simply discussing random things and making small conversation with guests who approached to offer their best wishes.
"Hmm," Link hummed lightly, taking an inquisitive look at Nabooru, who raised her eyebrows in acknowledgement. "I think this is the first time I've seen you with your hair down." She smiled mischievously, and Link corrected himself. "I mean before we do that. And speaking of that, what say we go do some of that now?"
Considering the time she'd spent on that dress and the lack of intimacy she'd had over the last two months, Link's offer was tempting… almost painfully tempting the way he was grinding her into his lap. Of course, the arrival of his friends cut the grinding off at the knees. Nabooru sighed under her breath, but put on a smile for Link's benefit if no one else's.
"So what's the happy couple up to?" Malon chirped, as she was eased into an adjacent seat alongside Link and Nabooru by Ingo.
"From the looks of things, the same thing you two have been up to." Link's cute comment only got two very annoyed glances from the women.
"How far along are you?" Malon asked, taking into contrast how Nabooru's stomach looked untouched by potential motherhood.
"You'd never be able to tell thanks to him, but I'm actually about four months in," Nabooru said to the wide and envious eyes of Malon.
"Yep, and all because someone didn't want to look puffy in her dress," Link added, as Nabooru flipped a flaming wave of red hair in his face for the humorless joke. "I haven't bombed this much since I was first on Death Mountain."
There were blank looks, and a dry cough by Ingo, which indicated another stinker.
Link shrugged, saying, "Tough crowd."
Their discussion soon led to things of a more personal nature-where the baby was to be exact. Not going into too much detail, Link told them in no short order that the baby was resting comfortably in another realm and that it would return to its proper home once their honeymoon was over. The farming couple didn't even bother to delve any deeper than that. Silence loomed, as questions rose and died in the silent void. Thankfully, the couples found themselves in the company of quite a few familiar faces-Zelda and Ruto with husbands in tow-and that'd save this failed conversation.
"Why are you two all jammed up back here?" Ruto asked to break the eerie silence, but figured it was probably something to do with Link's sometimes introverted nature.
"No reason," Link said shortly, but with a cryptic smile, which led to another moment of silence, marred only by the volume of those talking at the various tables.
"Could I speak with you for a moment?" Zelda asked after a time, a question that was automatically assumed to be for Link's ears even though it was obviously aimed at Nabooru.
"Nab, I think she's talking to you," Link projected into his wife's head.
Feeling her "war" with the blonde woman was officially over, and that she was the undisputed victor, Nabooru stood up and walked away with the Queen of Hyrule in step beside her.
"You think it's wise to leave those two alone?" Ruto asked with a margin of concern.
Taking Zelda's confused look and Nabooru's constant brooding, it did seem like the situation could turn messy.
"They'll be fine," Link assured her, before chuckling at the idea bubbling up inside of him. "Although, I can't say that I'd totally object to seeing them roll around for awhile." The amused smirk on Link's face spread to his male counterparts, but their perversions were soon coughed away beneath their wives' angry glares. In the meantime, Arthur subtly studied the supposed god, observing his mannerisms and noticed that Link didn't appear to be aware of anything beyond the tip of his nose.
"It goes beyond the nose, oh, king of mine." Arthur jumped, as Link's voice pierced his thoughts. Before he could even begin… something, a few children approached the adults, and stood there.
"Ah, so there you are, Link," Saria shouted. "We thought we'd never find you!"
"What's up?" Link mused, going out of his way to stick his tongue out at the grumbling kid behind his friend. "How are you enjoying things outside of the forest?" he asked, waiting for the torrential downpour of complaints from Mido.
"It's alright, if you like everything so big." He snorted his disgust, adding, "Uh, I've climbed trees easier than those things that you call chairs. And another thing…" Saria slapped him across the back of the skull, and he got the point. "Ow! Um, nice wedding, Link," Mido said through his teeth, holding the knot rising off the back of his head.
Everyone hid their amusement for the little boy, but waited to hear what the sighing Forest Sage had to say next. She calmed her nerves enough to talk without grinding her teeth, but Mido hadn't heard the end of this by the looks of the sideways glance she gave him.
"We're having a wonderful time," she said through a slightly forced smile. "But, I'm here because a few of the others wanted us to ask you something." Saria paused thoughtfully, getting Link's immediate nod to continue, and then said, "Want to play tag? I know it's your wedding and all, but how about a game for old time's sake?"
The adults surrounding him all gave varying looks, but none knew that he'd last played the game when he was 25 years old… a mere four months ago. A 7-foot-tall god was about to play… tag, as if he was a kid again.
"Seeing as how my wife ran off with Zelda, I guess I can play for a little while," Link said with an impassive shrug, sliding off his chair and back into his 10-year-old body. "Oh, and Mido, you're it!"
With that, he pulled the boss Kokiri's cap over his eyes and fled into the mob of green, which scattered itself throughout the crowd. There were no words that could be said amongst his friends. Their eyes were popped with shock, noting it was a lot easier to accept hearing of his godly abilities than it was to see them. Nonetheless, they settled in watching the Kokiri and now actual children at play, all under the tunes of a ghostly band consisting of a dead Goron, a Deku Scrub, and a Zoran that played a mean guitar.
Standing in a recessive corner, Zelda and Nabooru stood in facetiously peaceable company waiting for the other to start the conversation.
Growing agitated with the silence, Nabooru asked, "What do you want to talk about?" Her tone was flat, and near monotone.
And in a way Link had come to expect, Zelda showed her bluntness right then and there by asking, "Is he still good in bed? I mean, he was good before, but I can't even begin to imagine things if he's what he claims."
Caught off guard by the icebreaker of all icebreakers, Nabooru's immediate response was laughter. The laughter didn't last long before the Gerudo woman found her calm and replied, "Why?" In truth, Nabooru hoped Zelda was admitting that her own sex life sucked, but she kept the hopeful look off her face.
Zelda caught the look, but decided to ignore it. She answered by saying, "Because every time I see you, you don't seem all that happy. And I know if Link was doing half of what he did to me to you, there's no way you could be mad about anything."
Boldness had just been newly defined in Nabooru's eyes.
Not only did the woman have the gall to ask such a prying question, but she also seemed to imply that Link wasn't any good in bed because he was too crippled by her… or at least that's how Nabooru interpreted it. Needless to say, the Gerudo Queen didn't find that amusing in the slightest.
"Who says I'm mad? And as far as sex goes, there are no words great enough to describe his performance," Nabooru said in the most prideful of voices, not even giving the blonde the benefit of eye contact, but letting her absolute tone deliver her sincerity.
"So if he isn't the problem, what is?" Zelda asked, continuing her prying spree, but also in genuine confusion. "I mean, there has to be some reason you look so downtrodden all the time."
Deciding enough was enough, and that no harm could come of her anyway, Nabooru let her emotions run rampant.
"You're the problem!" she began, bellowing just loud enough to convey shouting, but low enough as not to arouse suspicion. "Goddesses damn it! How the hell could you do that to him? For years, using your leverage on his emotions to keep him attached to your dress tails, all the while he was miserable." Nabooru had showed the full rage behind her calm façade, but it was controlled. A few years ago, an outburst like that would've been followed by a kick or a sword. But, since the blonde twit was obviously with child, the urge was pacified for its sake.
Now it was Zelda's turn to be stunned. And as her mouth moved to deliver a worthy rebuttal, only air seemed to flow out for a time. Sound eventually caught up, but it felt empty.
"Don't get it twisted. I didn't mean to hurt him. I honestly hoped we could remain friends despite everything, and besides, he always could've said no," Zelda said in her defense, as the bearings were finally gathered enough to talk clearly.
"Say no," Nabooru repeated, almost insulted at the mere thought. "In five years with him, when did he ever tell you no?"
Hyrule's Queen turned on her heel to give Nabooru her full attention, and then said, "Never. But I thought he always knew that was an option. I just figured I never asked him anything beyond his doing."
Nabooru could only give a sarcastic snort in reply to that bit of contemptible horse shit. However, snorting wasn't enough so she added, "Surely he's told you of his trips through time and how it was expressly done for you?"
Zelda's confused expression signaled she had no idea. To Nabooru, that didn't seem shocking. Knowing Link, he probably told her the storybook version.
Determined to shatter that veneer, Nabooru quipped, "After all that, he was entitled to your stupid kingdom. But no, all Link wanted was you. No money, no lands, no fame-all he wanted was you, and then you up and leave him on a whim. All of his blood, sweat, and tears for absolutely nothing! You were his world and you actually think he could say no to you? Heh, if all he amounted to in your eyes was a good screw…" her voice froze, because she couldn't think of a term hurtful enough to bestow on the woman.
"I'll dare you!" Zelda replied, a bit shocked, a little angry, and plenty hurt to have her love for Link boiled down to simple sex. "I may have missed some key elements in our relationship, but I never thought of him as some kind of sexual object!"
"Did you even think of him at all?" Nabooru fired back, which crushed Zelda's defense before it got out of the gate. "Or was he just a convenience, a servant that you could be seen in public with without being looked down upon?"
It had become easily apparent that Zelda had opened a can of worms that she wasn't prepared for. She felt like crying, running away even, but this subject had to be addressed, because Nabooru had obviously thought about it long and hard.
"That's not fair! He never said anything about doing all of that for me. His exact words were something like: 'I did what I had to.' How was I supposed to know he invested that much into our relationship?" Zelda asked, more like pleaded, to her former lover's wife.
"Are you crazy, drunk, or on some form of mushroom?" Nabooru asked with nil a humored expression. "Think about it, I mean really think about it. He visited you every day, not so much as looked at any woman in his presence, and wouldn't have hesitated to kill anyone you deemed worthy of death, and you're telling me that you didn't know he invested that much in your relationship? Hell, you weren't even in the damn relationship if you missed all that!"
"You're trying to make it seem like I should've automatically known all of this…"
"You should've had your eyes open to it," Nabooru interjected, as her counterpart continued to flounder.
"It was my first relationship! I made some mistakes, but you can't seriously blame me for enjoying his treatment…" The skeptically raised eyebrow let Zelda know that Nabooru did in fact blame her. "Link was nice, charming, sweet, and no matter what I felt bad about, he tried to fix it. Under that type of onslaught, any woman can become jaded to her own flaws! In other words, he was perfect… too damn perfect. It was like dating a servant, as you put it. Nothing I ever did was wrong or questioned. It was just, what Zelda says goes. Even when I said stuff that was purposely stupid, I was still right! I can handle the servants lying to me or being Yes men, but not my boyfriend." Zelda stood flushed, turning a bright shade of red during her outburst. Somehow, though, she'd switched the surprise back to Nabooru's side of the floor.
"So if it upset you so much, why didn't you ever say anything to him about it?" Nabooru asked quietly, despite the feeling that she was arguing in favor of Zelda and Link as a couple.
"If I told Link that, he would've gone to the extreme not to treat me the exact opposite," Zelda replied in earnest, sighing as she wished it could've been like that. "It would've never been that neutral, normal relationship that you two have. Don't misunderstand me-I'm not saying that I'm better than you are or that Link thinks more of me than he does you-I'm just saying he made me out to be more than I am. Arthur treated me like a normal person, though. He didn't jump through hoops that weren't there, yet, at the same time, he knew when to jump without over doing it." Zelda smiled, waving across the floor at him. "That's probably why I thrived on sex the way I did. Link treated me like I was a person then, as opposed to some kind of brittle little doll."
Turning from anger to thought, Nabooru couldn't help but understand where Zelda was coming from. A relationship with a partner who couldn't be honest with you was a worthless one, and imagining Link as some nodding fool made her stomach turn.
"So basically, he was too nice," Nabooru said, "and because of that you couldn't see the truth?"
"Yep," Zelda added to confirm.
"I suppose that makes sense," Nabooru said purposely ignoring Zelda's reference to Link and sex, all the while searching the crowd for her now absentee husband.
Zelda chuckled a little, saying, "Oh, so you're agreeing with me?"
"You never heard that from me." Nabooru smirked at her, a small show of agreement, but continued to look over the crowd. "Speaking of husbands, where the hell is mine?" How could she lose sight of a man that tall? Ugh, it was all so frustrating…
"You know me," a small boy said, as he came through the crowd in front of them, "I'm always around."
Zelda looked shocked to see the boy she'd met some 16 years earlier, where as Nabooru seemed oddly unfazed.
"What? How are you doing that?" Zelda demanded to know, immediately earning her a pair of blank stares. "Right, right, Link, the Big Spooky God-I get it."
"No, I'm Link, the Undisputed Tag Champion," he announced, completely oblivious to the encroaching forms of Saria and three other Kokiri until it was too late. "Damn, well I was champion. Anyhow, I have Kokiri to tag and games to win, and I trust you two are finished discussing my sexual prowess… or potential lack thereof." Link flashed a grin up at Zelda, who was turning a nice shade of plum in embarrassment, just as he bowed at the waist to his wife, and took off through the crowd again.
"Think that's surprising, he actually had the nerve to transform like that while we were in the middle of… well, you know." Nabooru laughed aloud, shaking her head at the outrageous sense of humor the man sometimes possessed.
"Figures he'd do something like that," Zelda added, chuckling at the slightly disturbing idea. "If you don't mind me digging any further into your personal life, is he really a god? Or is the Triforce of Power driving him like Ganondorf?" Before the question was even done, she sensed the hostility return.
"For the last time, he is a god!" Nabooru shouted through her gritted teeth. "Ganondorf couldn't touch him with a 10-foot pole now." Calming down enough to think rationally again, she thought to bring up a more worthy topic. "And speaking of the green menace, I don't appreciate how your people treat mine because of that. Thieves, yes, but we didn't spawn Ganondorf, which is what most of your people treat us like. My husband isn't insane, either. So, you can tell yours to call off his watchdogs."
Zelda didn't try to pretend that wasn't in the back of her mind, even as she saw a few of her husband's men watching the little god at play.
"Understood," she concurred without hesitation. "But you have to admit this is a peculiar circumstance. Every time some immense power springs up in Hyrule it comes from Gerudo Valley."
"True, but unlike the bastardized madman of old, this one is peaceable," Nabooru added, enjoying the calm road her conversation had reached.
"Ah, so you're calling Link a madman?" Zelda asked in clever reply, obviously twisting her fellow queen's words in jest.
"Funny, Zelda, funny. We're all a little mad, but I don't think Link could ever be that bad," Nabooru said of her husband, but grew suspiciously quiet. "Maybe not that bad, but he does seem to come undone when someone threatens the people he loves." Hyrule's queen solemnly nodded in agreement, as she had more than enough memories to back up her fellow queen's addendum. "Now, as much fun as it's been talking to you, I want my husband's company now."
"All right then, Nabooru," Zelda assented. "I suppose I'll go dance with my lug before this damn baby sinks me." To that comment, Nabooru unconsciously laughed a long, thorough belly laugh, as she'd said similar just last week. "And I'll look into improving the treatment of the Gerudo in Hyrule. Although, I don't think I'll have to look too hard." She nodded her head to the Gerudo dancing with palace guards and men from town. "Seeing as how Link is worshipped in some ways, his marrying you automatically makes the Gerudo accepted in most everyone's eyes."
"I see," Nabooru stated solemnly, as she hadn't spotted a single twisted look from anyone the whole time. It was odd that more than a decade's worth of apprehension had been erased in a matter of minutes, but this was Link's influence. He wasn't taken for granted, as she'd thought, if simple association with him could bring Hylian and Gerudo together without question or violence. "On the upside, at least I get to take a week off from my pregnancy. But after that, I'll return to my swollen state."
"The perks of being with a god," Zelda said wistfully, curling the longing sigh into a cough to take the sideways glance out of Nabooru's eyes.
"It's a perk until he puts that thing back in me, and then it's a large boulder strapped to my waist," Nabooru said listlessly, but with a smirk of anticipation about becoming a mother. "In the meantime, let's go find our men."
And so the two queens set off onto the dance floor in search of their husbands. Of course, in Nabooru's case it was easier than most would ever know, as Link always tended to keep an eye out for her. It was slightly uncomfortable to be on the receiving end of so many well-wishes and congratulations without him there, but she continued to wander even deeper into the crowds of people. And when it looked as though finding Link was impossible, she found two strong arms closing around her belly.
"May I have this dance?" Link asked, as he stooped to nibble the point of her ear.
Nabooru turned eloquently and said, "Let's."
As if to silence the bustling crowd, Link darkened the entire room, sans the dance floor. His tactic worked, as the first music by a living band-the Indigo-go's-began with a single, piercing note of a guitar. As the band's melodic renderings started, Link intertwined his fingers with his bride's, while allowing a hand to rest upon the small of her back, and began to slowly dance. Nabooru's thoughtful expression turned into a radiant smile as this was a fantasy come to life. Everything she had wanted for so long moved nimbly around the floor and married to her. Today was a very, very good day.
"So what were you two talking about?" Link asked, as if he didn't eavesdrop on the whole thing. "Comparing notes?"
"You wish," she said, as Link dipped her. "We weren't comparing notes so much as we were coming to an understanding."
"Understanding about what?"
"It was an understanding that neither of us likes you as some kind of mindless flunky."
Link pretended to pout as he said, "What, nobody likes me to agree with them? Gee, and here I thought she dumped me because Arthur was the better lover."
"From the sounds of things, I don't think that's possible," Nabooru said in between her fits of laughter at her husband's protruding lower lip. "And speaking of lovers, what's this doll treatment you've been ladling me with?"
Link didn't respond to her question, an old question. He focused more intently on the dance, which left his bride confused as to why he would outright ignore a query of such importance. True enough he'd always skipped around answering it before, but he had never ignored the question. It'd always been in the plan to incorporate a new position, a harder thrust, or a faster pace into the mix, but that had all changed with the Goddesses visit. He had imposed a great deal of self-restraint to preserve her life when it came to their trysts in the sheets.
"You're right," he said, twirling her around to face him again, "I have been treating you with kid gloves."
"And what do you plan to do about it?" Nabooru asked, catching that same restrained, pent up look in his eyes. Unlike other times where that look surfaced, this time it didn't hold. A smile slid across his lips, as a rather sinister laugh rumbled in his throat.
"You'll see," Link told her. "And if you're lucky, you may see it three or four times over."
That was perhaps stretching it, Link idly thought. But, at the same time, if he couldn't trust himself, whom could he trust?
"So, you're telling me that after all this time, I finally get to see the real you in between the sheets?" The question lingered there for a seemingly infinite moment before Link spoke.
Nabooru took notice of his lopsided grin, and unconsciously shivered as he whispered, "Who needs sheets?"
The smiling newlyweds in all their sex-crazed glory forgot a minor detail. They were in the middle of a crowded banquet hall, and more than a few people had heard their conversation. Still, it wasn't as if Link and Nabooru cared, because today was theirs. Yet there was a pang of annoyance in Nabooru's mind. If Link performed via his days with Zelda, wouldn't that mean she'd end up fucked to death?
"No," she thought, "he wouldn't, would he?"
And as if Link couldn't hear such thoughts at such distance, Nabooru found herself startled as he shook his head no in contrast to her thoughts. A little over four months into the relationship and she was still being surprised that her thoughts could reach him. She always felt so stupid when that happened even though Link never made mention of it. As the Indigo-go's shifted into a more upbeat tune, the couple danced as though they were the only people in the room, only to snap out of the reverie when their subjects took command of the floor.
Dancing was one of the few activities the Gerudo had even under Ganondorf's malignant thumb, Nabooru recounted as she joined the crowd and cheered her sisters in arms. The entire room seemed to be inspired by the cluster of dancing women, as the floor soon filled with people who felt they too could contribute to the fun-loving atmosphere. The whole room was alive with happiness and laughter, quite possibly dwarfing the celebration that came on the heels of Ganondorf's defeat-and Link, as always, was at the epicenter of it all.
"What are you doing, Hero?" Nabooru shouted over the crowd's noise, laughing wildly as Link bopped to the beat with a very odd sway. She'd never seen him in Kamaro's Mask, but even if she had, he'd probably still look foolish doing that dance. It didn't matter, though. He made her smile, and that was his main goal now and always.
"Did I ever tell you that I was once a dance instructor?" he mused back at her over the music, laughing himself as he added a ridiculous spin.
Nabooru laughed even harder, unable to reply he looked so silly. And before she knew what'd happened, Link was doing his silly little number around her, as if it was the most seductive thing in the world. "I… I think I'll… I'll die laughing if you don't stop!"
Naturally, Link sped up until it looked like he was having a fit, and Nabooru howled, clutching her sides and spilling tears from her eyes. Thankfully, the song came to a close before Link's dance did irreversible damage. On the crest of that came the time for presents, as decreed by Zelda, who made the announcement after Lulu and the band took an intermission to go and wet their gills in refreshments. There were legions of gifts, which had all been stacked haphazardly on the tables leading into the once Haunted Wasteland.
They'd also been transported to the banquet hall on the whim of Link.
He and Nabooru took their seats in the middle of a table that stretched the entire length of the back wall, waiting patiently for everyone to find the gift they'd brought and present it to the newlyweds themselves. It took a while, but once everything was sorted out, the wedding presents came in a surprisingly wide range. From the small words of appreciation from poorer guests, to the exotic Wedding Mask from Anju and Kafei, to the extravagant offerings of cash, weapons, to the farm animals from Malon and a weird woman that kept referring to herself in the third person named Romani. The topper of all the gifts, in Link's eyes, was not only a throwback to the past, but an oddly accepted one.
"I figured this would be an adequate gift, but after what Nabooru said, I'm a little reluctant to give it to you," Zelda said softly, nodding for one of her guards to hand Link a rather ornate, lacquered, wooden box. "If you don't want it you can always give it away or something."
The winged Triforce on the outside, the Royal Family's crest, was made of pure gold. Link seemed more focused on that design alone than opening the box, most noticed. Before drawing too much speculation, he flipped the latches and looked inside. It was in that moment that his face took on an unreadable expression. He looked up at Zelda and then to his wife, back to Zelda, and then back to Nabooru, and then back into the box. The anticipation grew from the crowd, as they all muttered and mumbled about what it could be.
"How did you get this?" Link asked, nowhere near cordially.
"Without the Triforce around, anybody can pick it up," Zelda retorted nowhere near intimidated. "So I got it from the Pedestal of Time where you left it. I figured you deserved it… and a lot more."
Picking up the restored Master Sword, Link simply inspected it in complete silence-eyes checking the blade for past imperfections, his hands grinding into the grooves of the metallic hilt, all the while admiring the weight-bringing back moments of nostalgia. People were obviously confused as to whether or not they should cheer or be quiet, because his face definitely wasn't one of elation but nor was it one of anger or sadness.
"Link, is everything all right?" Nabooru asked, as he continued to hold that far off look in his colorless eyes that only she could see.
"Me, I'm fine. Just wondering why I didn't throw this thing into Death Mountain Crater," he said bluntly, garnering a room-wide gasp. "Then I always remember something," Link added, this time his voice was a lot more upbeat and friendly, as he began to unscrew the hilt of the sword from the blade guard. He sprinkled a pinkish-red powder out of the unattached hilt onto the fine linen tablecloth, and he smiled.
"What's that?" Nabooru and Zelda asked simultaneously.
"It's the only reason that I'm sitting here right now," Link replied in kind, this time staring at the green-haired Kokiri girl to his far left. "For years, I tried to figure out why he didn't kill me then, and it was all because of you."
Saria looked more than slightly confused, as noted by her surprised expression. "Huh?" she asked, pointing to herself, and trying to ignore the uncomfortable feeling of all the big people staring at her.
"Back when you gave me the ocarina, I only had the pocket inside my tunic," Link told her as though that should clear everything up, which it didn't. "And every time I got to that drawbridge and Ganondorf shot me, he always aimed for the heart."
No one got his meaning of course, so the ex-hero had to explain further.
"See, all this time Ganondorf thought he couldn't kill me. But the truth is, I'd be as dead as he is if it weren't for you," Link said it again and with more conviction, but he still forgot to make the point for everyone else. "That ocarina, this ocarina, I always carried it in my left breast pocket. And each and every time Ganondorf fired on me at that drawbridge, it absorbed the attack and got destroyed in the process. I just thought it was the heat, but the damn thing took the shot for me!"
"So, because my ocarina saved your life, you're happy?" Saria asked to recap. "And stop using naughty words!"
"Sorry, Saria," he said sheepishly, as though a child caught pilfering cookies before supper. "But, yeah, I am happy," Link assured her with a wide grin, which brought a sigh from the crowd. "To think, all that time I thought I was screwed to spend eternity fighting with him when, in fact, I was actually surviving by a loophole! Aha, ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!"
Everyone exchanged glances of concern as the Hero of Time laughed until his face literally glowed.
"Oh, man, Ganondorf has got to love this! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!" Link continued to laugh. He laughed long and he laughed hard, imagining the look on Ganondorf's face if he found out his quest for global domination was stopped due to a hunk of clay.
Soon, like a disease, the ironic downfall of the King of Evil sent a laugh through all in attendance. All he had to do was aim a few inches higher and blast the boy's head off, and the world would be ruled by Ganondorf. Instead, he was a dead man, five times over no less, and being laughed at like a fool rather than cautiously whispered in the shadows like death. Alas, the alternate of this joyous reality soon became apparent, a reality where Hyrule could've been destroyed and Link's corpse would've been the one rotting in a field. That alternative soon quieted the crowd and the Hero himself.
"Anyway," Link said, "I believe this belongs to you."
Saria's original ocarina returned from the clay crumbs of old the picture of perfection amidst the expectant gasps and surprising applause.
"I have a no return policy on gifts," Saria told him simply, sliding it back across the table. With a nod, Link placed it into the tunic pocket in front of his heart.
"Well, did everyone enjoy themselves?" Link asked the crowd of smiling spectators.
"Yes," the crowd replied.
He smiled, and then asked, "Was the food good?"
Again, they replied, "Yes!"
"Good, we'd like to thank you all for showing up unannounced, but you're going to have to get the hell out," Link said with a sincere laugh to convey his joke. "Seriously, thanks for witnessing our big day and for the gifts. Although, I'm gonna have to figure out somewhere to house four cows and a horse."
Malon and Romani both giggled, which caused them to eye the other oddly. They shrugged it off, and joined hint-taking crowd and made their way towards the doors after giving the newlyweds a few more well wishes. Before long, everyone was back outside among the nighttime nature. Horses were mounted, carriages drawn, and Goron rolling out in mass, as Link and Nabooru waved goodbye to their departing guests.
"Brother Link," Darunia bellowed, having opted to leave later than his brethren did. "Since I didn't have a chance earlier, I wanted to give you and your bride my present now."
Figuring in Goron standards again, Darunia presented Nabooru with a necklace of precious stones… each about the size of her head. She accepted the gift graciously, but it was obvious that her knees were about to give out beneath the yoke of rainbow-colored stones. And for Link, in a fashion similar to Zelda, a weapon was presented-the Megaton Hammer to be exact. Link laughed to himself, but thanked his "brother" nonetheless, before being embraced in a hug that usually required healing time afterward.
"Hero," Nabooru said through her gritted smile, as the necklace continued to drag her down.
Link hooked his fingers under the back of the necklace and said, "I'll hold onto this." The necklace was thankfully removed, much to Darunia's confusion, but to the adulation of its new owner. "Thank you, though."
"I guess I better roll this old body home, and let you two get cozy," the old Goron laughed as he spoke, but bid his brother goodbye to get a head start on the day's long roll he had a head of him.
There were still quite a few people around, Link noticed after seeing Darunia roll off into the distance. That wasn't a problem, not for a god anyway. All of them disappeared into their homes behind a thought, only leaving behind those of Link's choosing-Ruto, Zelda, Malon, Arthur and Ingo with their soldiers.
"Gee, I hope you didn't put him in the well this time," Ruto said sarcastically in reference to her missing husband.
"Don't worry, my aim is perfect now, right, Nab?" Link asked, and then noted the silence. "Uh, honey?"
Ruto only sighed with a smile, as she pointed behind him, where his wife and former girlfriend, along with Malon, were talking.
"Figures I'd end up being the gift rack at my own wedding," he muttered with a little shrug, seeing the Master Sword, Darunia's necklace, and the Megaton Hammer all disappear.
"Letting your little powers spoil you, huh?" Ruto asked, noticing how he summoned a stump to sit on rather than one of the vacant pews.
"Me, spoiled?" Link asked incredulously, pointing up towards the sky for some reason.
A shrill scream echoed throughout the former desert, as Ruto was met with a gigantic image of Link's face on the moon… the moon that was within spitting distance.
"When I feel the need to do that on a regular basis, then you'll know I'm spoiled," the face of Link said via the moon, which suddenly moved back to its original position. "Too much?"
No one said a word, all simply marveled at what had just happened. After a minute or so, Ingo broke the silence with, "And on that note, I think we'll be leaving."
Link apologized for the scare, which saw people quickly claim to be unfazed. All in all, the day's activities did start to wear on the remaining guests, mainly the pregnant women, and the need to go home reigned supreme. Ingo and Malon were the first to leave on their wagon for the lengthy trip, but not before wishing Link and Nabooru good luck in the future. The next guest to part ways was Ruto. The Zora Queen, remembering how Link's last warping of her went, actually agreed to his method of travel, leaving with more kind words for her longtime friend.
This all boiled down to the couple of couples, Zelda and Arthur.
"I guess we've taken up enough of your time," Arthur said genially, but with a side of condescension.
"No, really?" Link added sarcastically, earning a stiff elbow from his wife. Although he barely felt it, he got the point.
"Wow, you up and die at our reception and you're complaining about us staying a few extra minutes?" Zelda tossed out without giving it much thought, but immediately cringed once the full reality dawned on her. "Sorry, mood swings and all…"
"Oh, I'm not complaining and I wasn't that dead," Link told her, but motioning his head very obviously toward Nabooru, who happened to be preoccupied with Varia at the moment. "I'm just saying that I have places to be."
"Then by all means, don't let us stop you," Arthur said, but considering the odd looks from Zelda and Link added, "Geez, not like that! Are all of you Hylian people so sexually orientated?"
Neither made a motion to deny it.
The king let out an exasperated sigh, smacking his face. Seeing Zelda through his fingers, however, turned that exasperation into elation. Sexual dynamos weren't that bad, he thought, not that bad at all. Saying their good-byes, the Hylian couple made tracks into the night air, leaving the inhabitants of Gerudo Valley to themselves. More importantly, it left Nabooru alone with her husband, and him with his wife.
"Excuse us," a voice of ghostly origin said just as Link began to approach his wife, "we can't exactly stay here, you know?"
Link sighed as his kiss was so close, but so far away and so ultimately destroyed by the dead Goron, Darmini.
"Fine, fine, where do you want to go?" he asked, struggling to keep his anxiety in line.
"We've already decided," Darmini informed the impatient deity. "Our time has come and gone in this world. Therefore, we all choose to move onto the next world."
"Are you sure?" Link asked for confirmation, only to be greeted with three concurring nods. "So be it then."
Without fancy smoke or loud explosions, the Deku Scrub, a Goron warrior, and the greatest of all Zoran guitarists left the realm of the living for the last time.
"Now where were we?" Link asked, as he wrapped his arms around Nabooru's waist, selfishly snatching her out of her conversation.
"I believe we were just leaving," Varia said, "come on, ladies." The guards, fresh off the first celebration in ages, along with the former outcast Sepaaru strolled back to the fortress, chattering childishly about the men they'd seduced or entranced.
"Have fun you two," Sepaaru called over her shoulder to her adoptive parents.
Link and Nabooru were already lost in the moment-kissing heavily beneath the glow of moon, which was a perfect way to end the perfect day. As he removed his lips from hers, Link whispered, "I love you."
And taking the initiative to stand on her tiptoes, Nabooru wrapped her arms around his neck and looked him in the eye and said, "And I love you, too."
Correction: That was the perfect way to end their perfect day, they thought. They faded away, as did the changes Link had made to the inside of the colossus and the wedding dressings added to the forest. Rauru stood poised on the fingertips of the statue's left hand, smiling at the young man he'd tried to warn of his impending fate a decade earlier. Rauru, in all of his wisdom, never foresaw such an outcome to Link's life, but he couldn't deny that today's events were infinitely better than what he'd originally foreseen.
"Congratulations," he whispered as his body dematerialized into an orb of light and shot across the sky.
A lone feather danced hazily down from the sky and landed quietly on the steps in front of the colossus, as the silhouette of a large bird flew past the moon with a hoot… that sounded strangely enough like laughter.
Author's Notes: Hello there. I know what you're thinking. "You generic bastard! Why didn't you think of something original for Rauru to say as he was marrying them?" To that I say, "I couldn't!" Anyhow, chapter twenty-one is on its way, and we all know what that means, right? After that chapter, I'll release the following 15 chapters in five chapter bursts every weekend in the same format-and by format, I mean the way they were when I did little changes to them after reading them up on fanfiction.net, but nothing major-they were a year ago, culminating with the long-awaited chapter 37. Furthermore, for those of you who care, I'll begin work on the revisions of my Tenchi Muyo story again, which will take ridiculous amounts of time considering every chapter is nearly four or five times the size of one of the Legend of Link chapters. Once all this damn revising is done, I might even get a chance to *gasp!* write a new story! Lastly, if you have a question or comment that needs an answer, use firstname.lastname@example.org.