Legend Of Zelda Fan Fiction ❯ The Legend of Link: Lucky Number 13 ❯ Something for the People ( Chapter 8 )

[ Y - Young Adult: Not suitable for readers under 16 ]

Author's Notes: To Shinigami: For starters, Zelda is portrayed through Link's eyes, and, in this chapter, Nabooru's as a scapegoat. As I've written him, Link's motivation to complete his quests came mainly from the idea that the two of them would be together in the end. After he reaches his goal [Zelda], she drops him after five years for someone else. Not only drops him, but insists that he still portray a boyfriend in some sense. To rational people, Link is clearly the fool and at fault for staying so closely attached to her. But, from his eyes, which are the eyes of a bitter ex-lover, Zelda's actions are purposely hurtful and malevolent, as you called them.

The last nightmare was supposed to represent Link's realizing that he had the power to walk away from her at anytime. He chose to stay near her. He chose to be reminded of what he lost for almost five more years. Zelda just asked a simple question, and from there the decision was Link's and Link's alone to make. There's also another [set of] reason(s) that occurs later on, but I won't spoil it, as I imagine this is your first time reading the story or perhaps you didn't read that far along the last time it was fully posted. Best advice I can give from here on in is don't assume anything that I leave open is as is, and the story will read a lot smoother. :)

I'm done now.

Chapter Eight

Nabooru couldn't believe her luck. A few minutes ago, she was asking the goddesses to let him be happy. The next thing she knew, Link was doing things to her mouth with his tongue that she'd only heard about. She'd moaned more than a few times, but couldn't do much else. It was pretty much a given, Nabooru thought at one point, that he could've had her naked three times over by now. Their experience levels varied too much for that, Link imagined. She seemed a little lost in a kiss, never mind what would happen if he laid into her.

She's got the softest lips, he thought idly. Okay, so I've only kissed one other person, but still.

Nabooru felt his lips slipping away, causing her to grunt objectively before it turned into a feral moan. Link, the great warrior and slaughterer of everything evil, actually nibbled on her lower lip like an infant at its mother's breast. It was so cute, yet degrading of someone so strong, Nabooru noted. Whatever it was, he didn't seem to mind doing it for her and that made it erotic.

From his side, Link noticed a familiar flavor on her lips. Apparently, raspberries went into making her lipstick, and he saw fit to lick more of it from them. So lost in the oral ongoing, Nabooru began to lean more of herself onto the bed, letting the items she was holding become distant memories, as the swell of emotions left her a little dizzy.

"Ouch," Link screamed suddenly, and not in the good way.

Nabooru dropped the bowl of water, startled by his voice, soaking her lap and the covers. He was massaging his lip, the same lip that Sepaaru had busted, and the same lip she'd attempted to suck in return. Left to her own devices, Nabooru had but one thought: "I'm an Idiot!" She wanted to sink into the floor, perhaps even lower, because this mistake was too stupid. She couldn't even kiss right. What would happen if they…

"Hey," Link said, "is any of the potion left?" He'd saw the familiar bottle from the old witch's hut, but wasn't certain-and that probably had something to do with his slightly blurred vision.

"Yes," Nabooru replied, picking up the potion with an offended eye. There she was supposed to be a master thief, and she was getting duped into buying snake oil-and now Link would know that, too. "I've been applying it to your wounds, but it hasn't done any good. I think I got ripped off." She sighed, but handed over the bottle, and what once resembled pride.

Link took a moment of grace to touch her hand while accepting the potion, rubbing her knuckles in a silent sign that things weren't that bad. Alas, his touch didn't have much of an outward effect.

"For starters, you don't apply it," he said, noticing she still lacked the metal to look at him. "You drink it."

Nabooru's head rose in time to see him tossing back the blue fluid, a look of panic washing over her as she recalled the dank little hut she bought it from.

"Link!" she shouted before even realizing it, watching the last of the vile-smelling liquid slide down his throat.

"Now watch." He sat the bottle down on the bed, and sat there with a goofy little grin as Nabooru continued to look at him in panic mode. She watched the cuts on his face quietly close, leaving not so much as a scar. The purple bruises on his jaw, the knot on his forehead, his black eye, and on down to the red welts and lumps around his ribcage all disappeared. The look on her face changed from amazement into lust and then embarrassment. "Thanks."

Maybe he didn't notice, she thought, looking back into his face, which was casually met with his off center smile.

"There a problem?" Link asked, genuinely oblivious to the alternate meaning in her gaze.

"No, I just need to change," Nabooru quickly spoke, looking down at her wet pants. "Link, can I ask you something first?"

"Didn't give me a choice," he replied, keeping his wits sharp.

"You know what I meant." She laughed, and gave him a light punch in the shoulder.

"Ask away," Link added, allowing his wisecrack to quietly end.

"Why were you out here last night?" His mood took a noticeable dive, Nabooru saw. "From the looks of your bag, you were going on a trip." Her eyes fell on the thoroughly stuffed object in the corner, waiting patiently for a response.

"I was planning to leave Hyrule… permanently," Link slowly stopped, as Nabooru whirled off the bed.

"You weren't going to let me know about this?" she asked in one-part shock and one-part anger, but looking hurt overall.

Link scooted off the bed, and went to his bag and picked up the Hylian Mirror Shield propped alongside it.

"Because," he said, before being interrupted.

"What does the stupid shield have to do with anything?" Nabooru nearly shouted, not so much at him as herself for waiting so long to admit her feelings. If Sepaaru hadn't caused such a ruckus, he would've left and… she shuddered to imagine any further past that. Link shook his head in the meantime, holding his shield up so Nabooru could see her reflection.

"That look," he said, "I didn't want another person I cared about to feel hurt when I left. I figured if you never knew, you'd never get a chance to miss me-especially since I haven't been out here in such a long while." He sat the shield down at the foot of the bed, clasping his hands behind his back… almost as though he expected to be dismissed.

"You don't think I've missed you?" she asked, stung by the insinuation that she wouldn't care about his permanent exodus.

"You used to come into town or Kakariko from time to time to hangout, and then you suddenly stopped." Link sighed, not exactly knowing what to say, because every word out of his mouth seemed to upset her. "Look, I know I stopped coming around here, too, but I was kinda tied to a pipedream."

"I stopped coming to those places because I fell… because I didn't want to see what I convinced myself as truth." She lowered her voice into a near whisper, but kept staring at him.

Ever inquisitive, Link asked, "And what was that?"

"I couldn't watch you sulk behind her anymore!" Nabooru struggled to keep her emotions in line, but it reflected in her eyes brighter than the sun. "She walks along, smiling, holding onto that walking mound of horseshit while a giant of pure gold walks behind her. How could she claim to possess the Triforce of Wisdom and be so stupid, and not to mention cruel? Every time I'd see you, you were with them… always sad and alone. Except when you came out here, then you looked happy.

It was like you forgot they even existed, and then one day you didn't show up. I went back into Castle Town and stuff, but I never seemed to see you. I just knew her piece of the Triforce must've begun to work again. I thought Zelda had finally realized her mistake and returned to your arms. The thought made me sick. After everything you did… and…" Nabooru let out a tiny scream, trying to hold back the emotions she felt in his absence, as she couldn't find anymore words.

Link stood dazed, but still he tried to consume what she said. It amazed him that someone made him out to be so great, almost the same way he'd done with Zelda. He didn't feel like a thing. People didn't care about things themselves; they only cared about what the thing could do for them. To deny that Nabooru cared about him as a person would be like moving the sun with kindling wood, both an exercise in the futile and the stupid.

"That didn't happen, though," Link replied, and, for once, it didn't seem to kill a part of him to admit that.

Her response wasn't the one he had in mind, as a low moan started to fill his ears. Nabooru…crying, even in his mind it didn't make sense. Instinctually, he put his arms around her small frame, arms and all. The proud queen, while enjoying the embrace, felt unusually dwarfed-and embarrassed again.

"Some queen," Nabooru sighed, silently praying that her nose wasn't running. "I don't think I've cried in the past… well, not since I was a child." She sniffled, and gave a small laugh at the absurdity of it all, but rested her head against his shoulder.

Link assured her that, "Being a child is a good thing." He kissed the top of her head, releasing a deep breath in having avoided his first crisis. Eventually Nabooru's nerves settled in the quiet time, but then she realized where she was and the silence became uncomfortable.

In an attempt to be rid of that weird feelings, Nabooru said, "I'm glad you weren't so big back then-probably would've split me in two."

Link pulled back for a second to gauge what she was talking about, before understanding the size was in reference to his body and not just a part.

"What can I say?" he asked, flexing a bit for her benefit. "Get dumped, and you'll be surprised how much muscle you can get doing everything to forget about the last reason you had to live." The laugh was forced, painfully forced, but that would hopefully change in time.

Nabooru swore under her breath having hit a sore spot so soon. More paining than that, though, was seeing that new fire in his eyes dim. An urge to throttle Zelda swelled within her throat, but the emotional energy was put towards a new question.

"Are you still going to leave Hyrule?" she asked apprehensively, trying to seem concerned but not too much so at the same time.

He let an eyebrow slowly arch, asking, "Are you saying I have a place to live in Hyrule?"

"You can stay here!" That sounded like desperation, but it wasn't… really. Still, she smiled as invitingly as possible.

"I'll stay, but under one condition," Link said, gaining a smile of his own somewhere in the process.

"Name it," Nabooru said just as quickly as the last time, praying he wasn't going to ask for something outside her means.

"Tell the others first," he said plainly, a look of worry creasing his brow now. "I know some of them don't like me, and I really don't want to get into a fight every time I decide to take a walk."

"Deal," an enthused Nabooru went on to say. Now, there they stood-that odd silence had returned, but it wasn't as weighty they noticed. "Kiss on it?"

Link kissed her before she had time to stumble through the half-thought suggestion. She didn't protest as much as giggle. Giggling-another word Nabooru's name didn't usually proceed. He took another mental note at the uncharacteristic sound, as it was odd, yet delightful, too. "Nabooru," he paused to say. "You're wet."

Her body locked in one giant knot, and began to turn as red as fresh clay upon hearing him say that. Link was unaware for a moment, watching Nabooru try to stare through the floor, but then his words caught up to his brain. "Oh! No! No! I meant from when you dropped the water on your pants!" He went red in the face himself, as they both shuffled around pointlessly for a second.

Taking one of those deep breaths that were supposed to calm a person down, but never really did, Nabooru said, "I'm going to change. I'll announce your arrival later on this evening."

"I guess it's too soon to ask if I can watch," Link said lightly, laughing as Nabooru flicked a few droplets of water at him from the bowl. "Joking, joking!"

"I bet," she snorted, watching him grab his sword off the back of her make-up chair. "What's that for?"

Fastening the shoulder strap around his bare chest and sliding a loop at the top of the shield over the sword's hilt, Link replied, "Figured I'd go swing this around for a little while out in the track. Funny, the one thing I despised most is also the one thing that relaxes me. Not much to look at, but you can watch if you'd like."

She regarded his last statement strangely. Was he talking about his sword routine or himself? Nabooru shrugged, adding, "I think I will watch, but let me get your tunic. It should be dry by now."

Link merely waved a hand to dismiss the idea. "Nah, this is usually how I do it anyway." He stepped into his boots, only bending over to buckle them up. For all of Link's intelligence, he seemed to forget about the woman behind him that all but stared a second hole into his ass. Once the boots were straight, he just needed his hat…

"Here you are, Hero." Nabooru sat the white cap on top of his head, and swung the end to the back.

"Thanks, Nab… ooo… roo." It was a lousy save, but-considering her reaction to the name last time had almost cost him his right arm-it was an understandable one.

"I don't mind, really," she said sweetly, almost encouraging it, while opening a door that was obviously a closet. "Don't just stand there, get moving." Nabooru smiled at him over her shoulder with a smoldering look in her eyes, which could've easily been interpreted as an invitation to have someone change her mind. Link obeyed her words and not his tights, because there was almost five years worth of sexual frustration racing through him. He'd have to work some of that energy off in the track first.

I need to hit something now, he thought idly, passing from the threshold of her room into one of the hallways.

Guess you must be bored out of your mind by now, huh? Still, isn't this a strange turn of events? Well, it isn't strange. I like the notion. It feels good to have someone appreciate all the hard work I put into that other relationship, even if it was from afar. Hold on for a second.

"Nabooru will tell you all about it later."

Nice to see they all aren't as uptight as… what did Nabooru call her? Ah, yes, Sepaaru. I don't think my head could take another walloping like that. Man, I haven't been here in ages. Nice to see this place is still just as confusing as ever. We're walking, we're walking… how do they keep themselves straight? Every hall looks like the last! No, we just came from that way. Let's turn right up here and see where it goes. Bingo! We're outside at last. Hmmm, looks like I should have brought that tunic. This isn't the Lost Woods; the sun actually reaches the ground over here. I'm gonna fry out here.

How do I plan to get down? The same way I usually do.


So that really sounds strange at this age, but, then again, who cares what it sounds like? Heh, I suppose they all do. Now, I know I don't have my pass, but do they have to look at me like I'm going to kill them? And why the hell are they staring at my chest? I know my face doesn't look all that bad, so I could understand if they were staring at that. You're probably right, though. It's not like I'm mangled or anything, but I guess a guy walking around in tights and scars must be a strange sight around here. Yeah, I know we're being followed. She's been following us since we left Nabooru's room; I think it was her room anyway. Anyhow, you know I like to train in quiet, so I'll speak with you later. I know it's been awhile, but let me train in peace, sheesh.

Link looked around briefly, readjusting himself to the old place. The track was maybe 75 yards long and 30 yards wide, grassless, and surrounded by high light-brown cliffs of sandstone. It was room enough for any horse to roam. With that knowledge, he found it odd that there wasn't a single Gerudo-bred horse anywhere to be seen. Under the cover night, it was easy enough to believe that the horses could've been tied up out of his sight. But in this early morning light, that theory proved false.

Pushing those thoughts aside, Link looked up and gave an appreciative sigh. Being so early, the sun wasn't shining directly into the track, leaving it substantially cooler than the main part of the valley. Drawing his sword and shield, he moved his arms around to adjust to the weight. Bones popping, muscles stretching, Link continued to warm up as his pursuer scaled the cliffs to observe him.


A familiar shout to those he'd killed, or anyone who'd ever seen him in battle, echoed amidst the stone walls. Today was proving to be a day for change. The battle cry wasn't shouted at someone about to die. It wasn't being used to release frustration in watching Zelda and her new love kiss. It was done because he felt good. After four years of solitude, Link was beginning a new relationship, and making a change of neighborhoods. It was a good deal all around in his book.

High on a cliff overlooking the Gerudo Archery Track, Sepaaru watched the warrior intently and cautiously. Nabooru's secondhand stories of his adventures made him out to be someone you could count on, yet, at the same time, you should have a healthy fear of, too. In reality, Sepaaru crafted the fear part in her own mind. By all truths, Nabooru's stories told of him as a kind and gentle person, who was just forced into fighting. She'd heard stories from some of the guards he'd fought, and they all told a different story. Some described him as some kind of monster in a child's clothing, which only added to the fear.

"He maimed us, and then left us to die horribly slow deaths. We all survived, but he is a cruel one," a particularly bitter guard named Varia told her.

If he could defeat some of the best guards as a kid, imagine what he could do now, Sepaaru thought, watching him swing aimlessly at apparitions of his imagination, and all while countering and dodging the attacks from his unseen foes. Link continued to push himself. His pace had tripled before long, his swinging harder and more intense, and now various flips and tumbles peppered his routine.

"Yah," Link shouted.

Sepaaru gasped, as he went through a pot and a crate in a single motion with his sword this time.

"How can he move that fast with all those muscles?" she whispered to herself. Link performed two back flips, neither hand touching the ground, before he rolled forward and slashed upward through another crate and pot. Sepaaru continued to watch him for the next couple of hours, consistently amazed at his abilities. He never even stopped to rest, and the sun had long since moved overhead and elevated the temperature down there to the sweltering point. "Maybe he did earn that pass," she whispered thoughtfully, as he handled the heat as well as any other Gerudo.

"Link!" Sepaaru looked over the edge to see her queen and a large group of guards following her up the incline into the track.

His sword paused above another old pot, before he quietly sheathed it.

"What took you so long?" Link asked, putting his shield on his back. He turned around, visibly surprised by the 20 or so women surrounding him. "Okay, I see why it took so long."

"Had to tell the others about you," Nabooru replied, pointing a thumb over her shoulder at the group several feet behind her.

"Um, why are they all here?" he asked her, leaning back against one of the few crates to survive his onslaught.

"They came to see you work," Nabooru said as she waved them closer.

Sepaaru saw virtually all the women in the tribe come to a half circle around Link and Nabooru. "Wonder if they're going to kill him?" she thought aloud.

Back on the ground, Link felt a little weird with all eyes on him.

"Looks like everyone's here," he said, throwing on an indifferent front to combat his nerves, "except for her." Link walked through the crowd and shouted up to the voyeur on the cliff, "Hey! You might as well come down now!" He chuckled to himself as Sepaaru jumped, once in surprise and then off the edge. "Impressive," he complimented her on such a large leap, and lack of painful reaction.

Sepaaru ignored the compliment, and said, "Heh, you move pretty well for a weakling."

She marched slightly ahead of him, head tossed back to show the swelling in her face meant nothing.

Link smiled to himself, replying, "You're the one who's all beat up."

"Ha!" Sepaaru shouted, simultaneously turning and walking backward. "You just got lucky, that's all! If we fought now that it's day, I'd…" Her boast stopped, as the peculiar grin on Link's face widened. It unnerved her to say the least. To say the most, he seemed to feed on her unvoiced apprehension.

"You'd what?" Link asked eagerly, perhaps a little too buzzed to take what would seem like revenge. In truth, he saw a chance to expand upon what he'd told her the night before.

"I'd win!" Sepaaru shouted confidently, though, her skin began to crawl as Link's smile seemed to grow.

"Someone care to loan her a weapon?" One of the women met his query and tossed the girl a lance. She wielded the same weapon the night before, but the guard still looked on with some concern. Sepaaru gave it a few twirls, mainly for show, and waited for Link to get ready.

"The first person to land five uncontested hits is the winner. Agreed?" He watched her, noticing her muscles beginning to strain as she set her feet. The poor girl was actually going to answer him and attack at the same time. "Amateur," Link muttered.

"Agreed!" Sepaaru shouted, and, as expected, swung for his head.

Link ducked the attack while drawing his weapons, which drew an unexpected growl from Sepaaru's throat.

The other guards all moved into seated positions on or around the remaining crates, preparing to see if this girl really could hold her own with the Hero of Time in daylight.

"Yah!" Link shouted, catching Sepaaru off guard and planting his boot in her stomach. It wasn't as forceful as he could have made it, but it was enough to get her moving. "One," he said with a nonchalance that aggravated his foe. And like experience dictated, he patiently waited for her to come to him.

Sepaaru fought through the pain in her jaw, and fell back into the Gerudo Swagger. For a brief moment, he noticed her glance toward her comrades, as if to make sure they were watching her approvingly.

"Don't focus on them," Link told her… guided her, one could say. "Just pay attention to me."

Her eyes, with bright blood-like red irises, narrowed before nodding to his instruction, deciding that there was no ulterior motive behind the words. They began to circle each other. Where as Link bounced from foot to foot, constantly shifting his weight to strike from any number of positions, Sepaaru moved ploddingly with her people's to-and-fro saunter technique, which left her feet planted and gave up a lot of mobility.

"Whenever you're ready," Link said of her growing frustration, egging her into striking before she was prepared to.

Sepaaru struck with the blade end this time, but only clipped his shield. She tried again, only getting air, as he ducked and tapped her right cheek twice with the flat side of his sword.

"Three for me," Link whispered, quickly backing off.

He was toying with her! Ugh, Sepaaru shrieked in lieu of the rising embarrassment, and launched into an over-exaggerated whirl of strikes and kicks. She attacked low, as Link ghost-walked through her flurry, and hoped the sudden direction change would throw him off.

Link, out of pure ego, laterally flipped over her leg and simultaneously hit her on top of the head.

"Four." He laughed, but stopped as he realized that he'd lost her behind his back.

"One, two, three, four for me-take that, you idiot!" Sepaaru shouted, as she rapidly landed four solid kicks up and down his back.

The Gerudo were quick to cheer. However, what everyone seemed to forget is that the fight was to five, not four. Sepaaru had even relented to play to the crowd, as Link silently gathered himself behind her.

"Hero of Time, what a j…"

The crowd's cheering and her bragging abruptly ended as Link placed his sword against her throat. He looked at the crowd for a moment before leaning down to Sepaaru's ear and whispering, "Five." Hearing that she closed her eyes, just as the broad part of his blade bopped her chin softly. Recalling her spiteful tendencies, Link snatched his head away from hers, lest his nose get smashed by a quick head-butt.

"It must take a big man to beat up a kid," one of the Gerudo shouted, making her way from the back of the group to the front. "Let's say we fight."

Nabooru was going to order the woman to sit down until she saw Link's unconcerned take on the challenge.

"I'm not doing this to prove I'm strong or stronger than she is," he assured them. "I'm just trying to show you all something I've noticed from the fights with you."

He was suddenly stifled as the woman approached him.

"And what have you noticed, besides our looks or bodies?" she demanded.

"I've noticed that, beyond Nabooru, you all fight very sloppy." He heard them all gasp like he'd killed one of their family members, and that couldn't have meant anything good.

"I won't kill you because Queen Nabooru has taking a liking to you, but I will make you regret saying that." She unsheathed the two scimitars on her back, and dropped into her people's fighting stance.

Link moved his sword away from Sepaaru's throat in preparation for his next battle.

"Get him, Varia!" she shouted, before running to take a seat with the rest of the women.

He dismissed the words of encouragement for his opponent, and said, "And I'll hopefully make you all see that every technique has its flaws."

For the first time during a battle there, he struck first. And, as expected, Varia crossed her swords across her chest to defend against the blow, a blow that never came.

"Stop," Link said. "Stand just like that."

"What?" Varia asked, watching for any tricks.

"I want you all to take note of this blocking stance." He pointed to the X the swords made across her torso. "Now, look at all the ways she or yourself could die." Link pointed his sword in between the V-shaped opening that exposed her throat. "Dead." His sword traveled to the V-shape that left her stomach open. "Dead. And if your opponent saw fit or was sadistic enough…" He pointed at each of her breasts, both of which were left undefended.

The Gerudo ego seemed to take a steep fall, as they saw the openings in slow motion.

"Would you like me to continue?" Link asked of the silence, succeeding in not letting his tone become condescending.

Everyone could see the question was asked to Nabooru, so they waited for her response.

"If this can improve the guards in any way, go ahead," she said with a nod to the statuesque guard.

"Alright, first thing, never try to guard a forward thrust by blocking."

It seemed as though Link had a third skill, that of a teacher.

"Tell us, oh great one, how should we defend against it?" Varia rolled her eyes, but continued to hold stance for his… tutelage.

Undaunted by the attitude, Link said, "Let's change weapons, and I'll show you." He stuck his sword in the dirt, hanging his shield off it like a coat.

Varia reluctantly disarmed herself, but kept her eyes on the man. She attempted to snatch up his sword but faltered.

"Not as light as they look," Link mused, as she struggled to lift both shield and sword.

Varia glared at him before adjusting to the weighty weapons. Once she'd done so, she asked, "Now what?"

To this Link replied, "Do what I did."

And with a little more joy than required, she thrust for his heart. Using her swords, Link deflected the thrust away with the sword in his right hand and quickly brought the left sword to the side of her neck, stopping shy of fatal contact.

"Always parry thrusts," he stated plainly. "Your opponent will be leaning their weight into the strike, so a quick change in direction and they'll lose their footing and become prone to beheading, maiming, or a quick haircut-stuff like that."

No one laughed at his little joke.

Tough crowd, he thought while laying her swords on the ground in front of them.

Varia, in her contempt of the man, had to take this valuable advice into memory.

They exchanged weapons again before Link went over more of their moves, telling them how to adjust certain ones, and which ones were useless and should be cut all together.

A few stray negative comments were heard when it came time to eliminate certain moves, until Nabooru cast a spiteful gaze upon the opposing party. Eventually, high noon blended beautifully into dusk, and dusk into a starry night. In that time, Link had talked the majority of the guards into pairing off in groups to spar amongst each other. This was done so they could get a better feel for how much they've risked by fighting in that manner. After a few hours, Link seemed to fade into the background, and only gave advice where it was needed. Whether or not the women wanted to hear it was another story, but his words were always considered.

"Come with me." Nabooru tugged his arm, and led him a ways down the track out of earshot of the others.

He followed her, and took a seat on the single crate under one of the taller targets facing away from his reluctant pupils.

"Didn't realize how long I'd been standing," he said of the eased stress on his knees and feet. "What's on your mind?"

"Actually," Nabooru began, "you're on my mind. How long have you been planning to say something about this?"


"And another thing, how long have you been watching us to notice all that?"


"Why do you notice all this?"

Link stared at her, and waited to see if the flood of questions had ended before attempting speech.

"Done?" he asked to which Nabooru nodded. "First, if you remember, I've fought the Gerudo on all four journeys through time. So, I really didn't have a choice in the matter. I either observed the techniques or I got killed. Second, I didn't really plan any of this. Third, I don't know why I noticed enough to fix it. I just see flaws in fighters' techniques, and memorize said flaws."

"Settle down, Hero," she elbowed him in the ribs playfully, "it was just a question… or three."

"It's alright," Link sighed, but smiled thereafter. "This all makes it seem like my life has some point."

"Your life always had a point, you just didn't know it." Nabooru watched him face her again, smirking some as he did similar.

"And what was that point?"

"To stay here with us, obviously, Hero," she whispered as sweetly as she could without letting her troops hear it.

"Ha, most of them loathe me." He laughed, but explained himself. "Even with something as simple as this, they act like I'm trying to be superior on purpose." That didn't come out right, so he tried a different spin. "I'm not saying I'm superior; I'm just saying if someone came along with my skill level and decided to be a prick, they could go through the ranks easily. Love me or hate me, I'm just trying to make sure that every woman here can defend herself as good as, if not better than, myself."

Nabooru looked at the masses that'd gathered behind Link closely. Obviously, he didn't notice the training had moved closer, but they kept an ear open for more supporting words from this man.

"While your sentiment is touching," Nabooru continued. "Your delivery lacks any sort of tact. True, there may have been some flaws in our fighting technique, but you didn't show any sort of kindness about pointing it out. It was all, 'This move is worthless' or 'Do this because that's stupid.' How would you feel if someone came along and called the same techniques your mother used worthless?"

Link studied her face for a long while, carefully looking for the right words to describe his inability to relate to that, but coming up empty.

"Maybe if I knew my mother, beyond the time it took her to take me to the Great Deku Tree and die, I could answer that properly. Nevertheless, I do understand your point." Link released a giant sigh, and moved his eyes upward to the moon.

Nabooru didn't know exactly what to say after hearing that. While he didn't exactly look hurt, it was obvious that was a subject of great pain and absence in his life. It was as if her foot was magically drawn to her mouth. And, sadly, she didn't have the means to pry it loose this time.

"So what did you do, cut her a few times and leave her to bleed to death like us?" Varia asked harshly, which obviously shocked Link in both statement and presence.

He turned to be faced with the previously fighting Gerudo all staring at him, but that statement held his complete attention.

"Varia, apologize to him at once!" Nabooru demanded with eyes so cold it made the brash warrior visibly recoil.

"She doesn't owe me any apologies," Link replied, getting up from his crate. "I would like to know what you meant by that, though."

"You were out here to rescue those boys, I guess. In our fight, instead of killing me like an honorable warrior, you simply cut me and let me run away to die slow." Varia turned around and ran her hand over two faded scars almost circling her waist, both created by the Great Fairy Sword on Link's back.

"Let me get this straight," he nearly shouted. "My dead mother becomes cannon fodder because I refused to kill you?"

Varia turned to answer, but Link was in a bit of a fight-back mode, and the anger showed clearly in his eyes.

"If I remember right, you said you'd add me to the collection. But you said that after you tried to cut my head off first!" He started pacing to purposefully distance himself from the woman as he next spoke. "Maybe it's just me, but I don't see the point in killing people where there isn't a need to. Ganondorf was your king, so I'm guessing he wanted the kids more than you all did for whatever reason. And given his mindset, I can understand you following his orders.

Now tell me, which are the better of the two choices? On one hand, I could have simply killed each and every last Gerudo I came across out of sport and belief in silly rumors. On the other, I could carefully tiptoe around, briefly knocking out the occasional guard and leaving her with as mild an injury or injuries as possible. In light of choosing option two, I get a woman who accuses me of killing my own mother.

And another thing, if you consider those tiny scrapes torture, consider this: Nabooru damn near cut my arm off! Not to mention the fact that she wiggled the blade out of my flesh and bone! That is torture! What I did for you and the others was sympathy. You were ruled by a madman, and I sympathized enough with your plight to not kill you. But if you want to die, why don't you just kill yourself? Because if someone choosing not to kill one of you is an insult, something is truly wrong here."

And with that, Link walked away from them.

"Where are you going?" Nabooru asked as she came out of her guilty stupor, and saw him part the quiet sea of women.

"I don't know," Link responded frankly. "Then again, I could be on my way to slice up an innocent family. You never can tell with Nutty Old Link!"

He wasn't extremely shocked Nabooru didn't give chase, but, then again, her whole crew was present and that would look odd by Gerudo standards.

"Your highness, go after him," one of the women said encouragingly, looking over her shoulder at the downtrodden warrior leaving the track.

"Yeah, forget about that whole arm thing," someone else said. "You've moped around here long enough. Don't be left alone because she can't accept losing a damn fight." Another woman shouted watching her queen's torn expression.

"I'll go," Nabooru relented, but stopped to deliver a warning. "If you fuck this up for me, you'll wish he had killed you."

"Y…yes ma'am." Varia kept her eyes on her shoes, even though she could feel her queen's eyes looking through her.

Nabooru was already leaving before the concurrence left the guard's mouth. Varia looked up knowing full well that Nabooru wasn't saying that for her to agree with. It was just a promise. If she caused Link to leave, that torturous side he spoke about would come out. Needless to say, when Nabooru "assumed" control of the Gerudo that side showed up, and the opposing parties were dealt with quickly.

"Let's get back to work," she finally said with a voice calm enough to speak, though, perhaps appreciating her arms a little more than usual.

A few guards laughed at her sickly expression, but she ignored it and began to focus on co-existing with Link. It wouldn't be that hard, seeing as how she knew he was right…