~Link, Zelda, Ganondorf, Nabooru, Navi, and other related characters and places are all property of Nintendo. No infringement intended
CHAPTER 6 - Joy and Peace Short-lived
Gavin cringed as a pain-filled cry emanated from behind the closed door of the bedroom. It took every ounce of his willpower to keep him from running into the room and offering to take her place; it was a foolish concept, but at least he would feel as though he was doing something. Of all things to be, helpless was the one he hated being the most. It had been almost a year since Gavin and Mariana had been wed. The wedding had been small and simple, but neither had wanted more, and shortly after the marriage they had moved into a small home in Hyrule Castle Town. Indeed the past, strangely peaceful, year had been the best of both their lives.
Gavin began to anxiously pace attempting to block out the moans coming from his wife in the bedroom. As he did so, several thoughts began racing through his mind; so many things could go wrong: what if the baby didn't survive? What if Mariana didn't survive? The death of both the mother and the baby was not an uncommon occurrence, oh but he couldn't bear to lose either of them.
Luckily his thoughts were interrupted by the piercing cry of a newborn baby; Gavin's heart leapt within his chest at the sound. At the same moment the door to the bedroom opened and the midwife stepped out, a wide grin on her face, "It's a boy!" she exclaimed happily. Gavin just sat there in awe, "A...a boy?" he whispered dubiously.
The midwife laughed, "Yes, mother and child are both fine. Go on and see for yourself!" Not hesitating to follow the advice, Gavin immediately entered the room. Mariana was propped up in bed holding a tiny bundle tenderly in her arms. As he approached, Mari looked up and smiled weakly, she felt wasted and ached terribly, but was more overjoyed than she had ever imagined possible. "He's so perfect," she said quietly as tears slowly began to make their way down her face.
Gavin could not hold back his emotions any better as he kneeled down beside his wife and peered for the first time on his newborn son. "I can't believe it. I'm a father," he whispered, the thought was humbling. His hand silently reached over and grasped Mari's as they both gazed with loving eyes on the tiny being.
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Ganondorf smiled evilly as he looked beyond the walls of the Gerudo fortress toward the large expanse of Hyrule field. The time had come to act and this time he would not be defeated. The king of thieves had waited almost a year and a half for this moment, but all his waiting would not be in vain. By this time the Hylians were sure to believe that there was no longer any threat from the people of the desert, a fatal misconception. This misleading thought would allow him to launch a surprise attack before they would be able to fully restore their defenses. Funny how peace softens the poor fools, Ganondorf thought to himself. "Matar!!" he yelled over his shoulder. A Gerudo woman immediately appeared by his side. "Begin assembling the troops, we march on the Hylians in five days." "B..but Mandrag Ganon, sir, the treaty...." Matar stammered.
"You heard me! Now go!"
Matar acquiesced and departed.
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Celine sighed contentedly as she ran a hand over the roundness of her stomach. Quietly she began to hum a lullaby, wondering if the unborn child she carried within her womb could hear. As she did so she glanced out the arched window of the bedroom at the broad canopy of stars that shone brightly over the peaceful land of Hyrule. How foolish she had been for believing so adamantly in her dreams, the past one and half years had more than proved wrong her supposed 'prophecies'. In truth, she was glad that her predictions had been false, it was as though a great burden had been lifted off her shoulders.
"Do you think it will be a boy or a girl?" Celine looked up in surprise, she had not noticed that the king had entered the room and was now standing next to her. She smiled up at him, "It is a girl, I can feel it."
King Trebonius leaned down and kissed her on the forehead, "How good it is to see you smile again, it seems as though it has been ages."
Celine rested her head against him, "I know, I have been awful, please forgive me." The king smiled and pulled her close, "No need for apologies, just as long as you are happy." He placed a hand on her stomach, "So you think it will be a girl?" "I know it."
A sudden pounding on the door interrupted the intimacy of the moment. "Enter," the king said somewhat irritably.
The door opened to reveal a panic-stricken soldier. "Your Majesty," the man exclaimed, "the Gerudo have mobilized their army and are marching right this way! They will be here in no more than two hour's time!"
King Trebonius straightened, "What!? Impossible! Quick, you must notify all the leading officers; have them assemble in the meeting hall in ten minutes!" "Already done sir."
The king was cut off by a pain-filled gasp and turned around just in time to catch the collapsing queen. Celine was clutching her stomach in anguish. "Celine! Is it the baby!?" the king exclaimed in alarm. His only answer was a distressed cry. Turning to the guard, the king yelled, "For Din's sake, find a midwife, a healer, Impa, anybody!!!" The soldier reacted immediately, instantly taking off down the stairs.
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"Must you go?" Mariana asked, her voice filled with concern, as she watched her husband dress quickly into his armor. In her arms she cradled their six-day-old son. "Mari, you know I must; the messenger said it was urgent," Gavin replied as he finished equipping. He turned toward her and gently lifted the baby from her arms. "Hey there Link, how are ya big guy," he cooed softly.
Mari smiled at the scene, momentarily forgetting her anxiety. "He's going to look just like you when he's older," she commented.
Gavin looked over at her proudly, "I know." It was true; despite the fact that Link had inherited his mother's deep-blue eyes and light-colored hair, it was obvious that he had acquired his father's good looks.
Tenderly, Gavin returned Link to his mother's arms and kissed him affectionately. His eyes then met Mari's worried gaze. "I fear for you," she whispered, a tear slowly sliding down her face.
Gavin placed a reassuring hand on her cheek, wiping away the tear, "Do not worry, everything will turn out for the better. Just think, after this is over we will all go up to your meadow as a family and have a picnic. The daisies should be in full bloom by now." Mariana smiled up at him through her tears, "I love you, sir." Gavin leaned down and they shared one last lingering kiss. "I love you too, milady," he said, gazing at her for the last time before turning and leaving the house.
Mari stood motionless clutching Link tightly to her and staring blankly at the door. An emptiness seemed to be consuming her and somehow she knew that she would never see her husband again. The baby seemed to sense his mother's sorrow and began to cry.
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