Chapter 2: Power’s Tragic Price
Ganon was furious. Completely livid. The battle had not gone the way he wanted at all. It was true that they had taken the castle, but that was not his point in attacking. The Princess had been captured, but the King and Prince had escaped. Several Hylian soldiers seemed to disappear off the face of the planet. They had not acquired the Triforce of Wisdom. This infuriated Ganon most of all. He needed the strength obtained from the Triforces of Power and Wisdom to conquer Hyrule with ease. The Triforce of Courage would also be useful; with it, he could take on the entire world. However, it had been lost for centuries. There was no known way to even find a clue about its whereabouts. Ganon yelled and smashed his desk, his powerful hands flaming as he did so. A thought came to the dark sorcerer’s mind. It was desperate, but necessary. He called to his lieutenant, Mandrag.
“Yes, my lord?” said Mandrag, bowing as he entered. He was a gaunt-looking Hylian man, with long black hair pulled back in a ponytail.
“We must begin the ceremony at once.” Mandrag was shocked.
“My lord, why now? Without the Tri-”
“Much must be risked for glory. Gather the Mages.”
“Y-yes, my lord.”
It was a few hours before midnight, and Link and Nathan were in their room at an inn in the small town of Rauru, planning. Impa had told them about the attack on the castle, the saving of the Triforce, and the Princess’s capture. She implored them to rescue Zelda. After some discussion, they finally agreed to do so.
“They’ll be in the Lost Woods tomorrow morning,” Link said, pointing at the map. “We can easily ambush them.”
“You’d think that someone like Ganon would have used magic for this.”
“Probably doesn’t have enough power.”
“Maybe. Or he was focusing on the castle. He probably doesn’t expect a couple of guys with swords to run in and ‘save the day,’ either.”
“You’re probably right, Nathan. Anyway, Impa said that there was a group of Moblins and Goriyas escorting her, right?”
“Right. I don’t see a problem with that, unless there happens to be a ton of them.”
“Okay. Leave at dawn?”
“Fine by me. Just one question. What do we do after we save her?” Link hadn’t thought of that.
“Well,” Link sighed, “I don’t know.”
“We’re not soldiers, Link. And there’s no way that the two of us could make a real difference in this war.”
“I know, Nathan, and I didn’t say that we would. I’m not planning on fighting Dragmire, anyway. The army can handle him.”
“Imagine facing Ganon himself…”
“Sure, Nathan. Like that will happen anytime soon.” They both laughed. “So… have you ever seen the Princess?” Link asked.
“No, but I’ve heard that she’s really pretty.”
“I’ve heard the same thing.”
“That’ll be a relief. Remember the last so-called ‘fair maiden’ that we rescued?”
“How could I? We were told that she had been taken by Moblins.”
“And she turned out to be a Moblin herself,” Nathan finished. He shuddered.
“Didn’t she fall for you at first sight?” Nathan hung his head at the memory.
“Yes, Link. She did.”
“I never would have guessed that your first kiss would be from a Moblin.”
“Shut up, Link.”
The next morning…
King Harkinian of Hyrule was a noble man. His hair was brown but graying. He had a small beard on his chin. His 21-year-old son, Prince Talius, rode alongside of him. A company of soldiers followed them. They had known about Ganon’s plans for quite some time, but had been dead wrong in the assumption of when he would attack. Because of this, many had died. There was a hidden underground tunnel leading out of the castle and into the fields. They had used this to escape. Luckily, Ganon’s minions were unable to find it. Harkinian couldn’t stop worrying about his daughter. He didn’t know what had happened to her. She was so much like her mother. If he lost her, it would have been like losing his wife a second time. Another worry came. If Ganon had retrieved the Triforce… The King’s thoughts were interrupted as arrows flew into the group. Wolf-like Goriyas jumped out from behind trees and bushes, flailing crude swords.
“Return fire!” Harkinian ordered, drawing his sword, his son and the other soldiers doing the same. The archers quickly fired a volley of arrows into the mob of Goriyas. A battle ensued.
“Spread out! Don’t let them surround us!” The sound of swords clashing filled the air. Screams came from both the Hylians and the monsters. Harkinian turned to see a Goriya raise its sword, about to strike him. Suddenly, its arm had been chopped off.
“Are you all right, my lord?” asked Ammon, the captain of Harkinian’s bodyguards. He stabbed the Goriya.
“Yes, thank you, Ammon.” Ammon, Harkinian, and Talius stuck together and fought, blood flying through the air. Loud, high-pitched sounds were heard, as if something was flying over the combatants. Wizzrobes appeared along the nearby ridge. Each wore long black robes with red symbols, their demonic faces barely visible beneath their hoods. One fired a stream of burning flames from its hand, hitting a Hylian in the face. He screamed shrilly as the skin on his face was burned off. When it was over, only his charred skull remained, his armor now smoking and black. He fell off his horse and onto the ground. In response, the archers again open fired, killing several Wizzrobes, each letting out ear-piercing screams.
Finally, after what seemed like hours but had only been minutes, what was left of the monsters began to flee. The Hylians continued to slay their foes as they left. Only a few Goriyas made it back to the forest. Harkinian glanced at Ammon.
“Yes, my lord,” Ammon said, slightly bowing his head. He turned to a group of men. “Hunters! Forward!” Ammon and a group of twenty men rode off into the forest to hunt down the remaining Goriyas.
“Are you all right, my son?” Harkinian asked.
“Yes, Father.” Harkinian sadly looked towards the forest.
“You understand that we cannot let them escape and give our position to Ganon.”
“Good.” He looked back towards the men. They had not lost much. Harkinian sighed with relief.
Princess Zelda was frightened. She desperately wanted to escape, but had no chance. There was a spell on the carriage that kept her from using any sort of magic, and she knew that she didn’t have the strength to break open the carriage door. She rested her head against the barred windows. She didn’t know what Ganon wanted with her. All she knew is that she didn’t want to be his prisoner. She had heard of the physical and psychological torture that he dealt his prisoners, and certainly did not want to be a victim of that. Suddenly, the carriage stopped. She heard one of her guards growl.
Nathan and Link boldly stood in the middle of the road, looking at the carriage. Five Moblins and five Goriyas flanked its side, with another Moblin driving it. Nathan held something behind his back.
“What do you want, pointy ears?” a Goriya demanded.
“We are citizens of the great nation of Hyrule, and willing servants of King Harkinian. We demand the release of our country’s Princess,” Link responded. The monsters laughed at the youths.
“We not give her back. We kill you!” a Moblin responded.
“Wrong answer,” Nathan said. A hissing sound was heard. Nathan suddenly threw a bomb at the monsters. It would only be three seconds until it exploded. It landed at the feet of the Moblin. The creature stood there, paralyzed in fear, while the other monsters backed off. The fuse was growing shorter and shorter. The monsters began to push each other to get away. It quickly reached its end, but nothing happened. The monsters laughed a second time.
“You fools,” said the Moblin, looking back at Nathan and Link. But they weren’t there. Suddenly, a Goriya in the back cried in pain as the blade of a katana was thrust straight through him. A Moblin did the same as a broadsword poked out of his stomach. The monsters roared and turned to attack. Nathan ran up to a Goriya and rolled over its shoulder, stabbing it in the back as he did so. He quickly ducked below a second Goriya’s attack, and slashed it across the stomach. Nathan elbowed the next one in the face. It hit its head against the carriage’s metal bars and fell. Nathan slammed his foot in its throat. The last Goriya kicked him in the chest, knocking him back to a nearby tree. Nathan dodged its next attack, the Goriya’s dark sword hitting the tree instead. It quickly ripped its blade from the tree. Nathan punched the Goriya, knocking it down on the monster that Nathan had just hit beforehand. Its sword stabbed its comrade, and Nathan finished it off.
Meanwhile, Link was battling the Moblins. He cut the first across the chest. The next fired its crossbow. Link quickly moved his blade in front of his face, barely deflecting the bolt. He knocked the crossbow away and stabbed the Moblin. He chopped off the head of the next one, and raised his sword to attack the next. It upper cut him in the face, knocking him down. It raised its halberd, about to strike. Link rolled out of the way and kicked it in the stomach. The Moblin bent over in pain as Link jumped back up. He stabbed him in the chest.
Nathan grabbed the driver of the carriage, who had been sitting there the entire time, completely terrified. He threw him to the ground and thrust his sword beneath his chin. The Moblin gulped.
“Now,” Nathan said slowly, “I want you to get out of here. Give me your keys, take a horse, and go tell Ganon what happens when he tries to overthrow Hyrule.” The Moblin nodded and did as it was told. Link and Nathan watched as it rode off. They wiped the blood from off their swords and faces and sheathed them. Nathan unlocked the back of the carriage and opened it. The Princess slowly got out as the two adventurers backed up and kneeled before her.
“No, don’t kneel, please,” she said. They both nervously stood up. Princess Zelda was ecstatic over the amazing turn of events. “Please, what are your names?” The Princess studied her two rescuers. She thought that they were both rather handsome, despite their sweaty faces and dirty, bloodstained clothing.
“I am Link, son of Arn,” the brunette said.
“I am Nathan, son of Tannis,” the blonde responded.
“I am Zelda, Princess of Hyrule,” she said, feeling that it was appropriate to properly introduce herself. “I thank you both for your service.”
The large Gathering Room was made of black stone, its roof held by thick, tall, dark marble columns. To Ganon’s minions, a wonderful event was about to take place. To the people of Hyrule, and the rest of the world, a terrible one. Ganon stood in the center of the room. The Triforce of Power was on a pedestal in front of him. Cloaked magicians were on his left, right, and behind him. Each was in a group of six. Ganon turned to his minions.
“My people,” Ganon shouted, “our time has come!” The monsters roared. “Long ago, the Dragmire family ruled this country! We had but one mistake; we let impurities in the nation flourish! They rose up and destroyed their government! They took over the land, and have ruled it ever since! But no longer, for restoration has come! Now, we will have all the glory, and we will make them pay for what they’ve done! We will show them that we are higher! We must defeat this vermin, and purify Hyrule!” The monsters roared again. Ganon gave the signal to the Mages to begin the ritual. Ganon’s minions quieted down as the Mages began to move their hands in a ceremonious manner, chanting in a dark tongue. Red beams shot from their hands towards Ganon, raising him and the Triforce into the air. The beams disappeared, and one shot from Ganon to the Triforce. He closed his eyes, feeling more powerful by the moment. Lightning flashed outside, and thunder shook the world. Frightening images of thirteen wolves ran all around the room, snarling, blood dripping from their fangs. Eleven hissing snakes appeared as well.
Suddenly, Ganon felt pain. Intense pain. He bent over, screaming, but an unseen power forced his back straight and his arms and legs outward. His head was forced to look upward. The images of snakes and wolves entered him through his mouth. The pain was unbearable, but the unseen power clutched his throat, keeping him from crying out. Light shot from his eyes, mouth, hands, and feet. His minions were terrified, and quickly began to flee from the room. Eventually, Ganon was alone. His body began to change. He felt his muscles bulge. Three spikes shot out from his arms, his blood running down each. His eyes bulged. He felt like they were being ripped out of their sockets. The pain stopped, and his eyes began to glow red. His skin became an olive green.
The Triforce was glowing brightly. It suddenly came to him, and became one with him. Ganon slowly floated to the floor. He stayed on the ground, exhausted. Ganondorf Dragmire had achieved immense power, but he had also paid a tragic price.
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