Chapter 14: The Light of Memory
"I know you...but I don't remember you!" Saria sobbed, she didn't stop, the tears just continued to flow.
"Saria, what happened to you?" Link whispered, trying to wipe the tears of her face, "I'm sure you remember me...tell me you do."
Saria stopped sobbing, though tears were still pouring down her cheeks. "I'm s-s-sorry...Link? I can't even remember your name!"
"What did he do to her?" Malon asked, dashing over to her friend, "Do you remember me Saria?"
"No...I don't remember anything! Please stop asking me!" Saria shouted, pushing them both away. "Please, just stop asking me..." she said softly, standing up..."I'm sorry. I'm just so scared, I don't...I don't remember any of you, please, don't get angry at me..."
"Saria...I understand...I'm sorry." Link said.
"Thank you, I just need some space." The Kokiri girl said with a sad smile.
Ruto stepped in between the two Kokiri, "Link, I was wondering when you'd come here again, though I doubt it was to see me." She folded her arms, "However, contrary to what I said, I won't throw you into prison now that I've seen your face again." She smirked, before giving him a hug. "Good to see you again, I'm sorry." She pulled away, smirking, before moving back to stand by Saria.
Link chuckled, "Thank you Nayru! I didn't want to deal with a pissed of Ruto! Thank you!"
"You know each other?" Saria asked, her face was mournful again, "That's funny, wait, is this the boy that changed you Ruto?"
"Yes, I'm surprised as you are that apparently you know each other." Ruto smiled, placing her hand on the girls shoulder, "Look on the bright side, with people who know you personally, you'll probably get your memory back faster!"
"Or they'll just torment me with memories that we once shared, and now I have lost." Saria muttered, Link was suddenly very afraid, Saria was never pessimistic, to hear her talk like that placed a black feeling in his heart.
"Saria, don't ever think like that again!" Link shouted, "Your not supposed to the the cynical one, that's my job!" Malon giggled at this. "I know that you'll get back your memory, if you had truly forgotten us, then you wouldn't have recognized me!" Link grasped Sarias hands, "I believe in you, you believed in me once." he whispered, "Just trust yourself."
A small blush came over Saria, "Yes Link...you're right...thank you."
"Um...did I miss something?" Ruto asked, "Because I'm confused, how well did you two know each other?"
"I'll explain Princess." Malon said cheerfully, she walked over to Ruto, and whispered into her ear.
"They're what? How long?"
"About six days or so, I think three of those they were unconscious though." Malon continued.
Link rolled his eyes, count on Malon to keep everybody up to date on his personal life. "That's nice Red, just don't tell her my shoe size in your excitement."
"What are they talking about?" Saria asked, still close to Link.
"I think it's best you find out once you regain your memory." Link replied, "That way we can avoid any major shocks."
Saria turned back to the two other girls, "I guess I can wait...It must be pretty big huh?"
"You could say that." Link smiled, she was starting to act normal, she'd have her memory back in no time!
There was a flash of green light, and out of the Gilded Sword, formed Makan, the Kokiri sprit, he floated in front of Saria, smiling lecherously (At least, in Links opinion it was lecherous.)
"So you're the new Forest Sage. I was right, you are cute."
Saria and Ruto screamed, at the top of their lungs.
"Makan! You idiot!" Link shouted, "you just scared them out of their wits!"
This time Makan was interacting with the physical world, so when Malon hit him on the head, he felt it.
"Get back in the sword you pervert!" Malon growled, "Come out later! Preferably when their aren't any girls for you to torment!"
"But Miss Malon...I was merely-"
"Oh fine, if only to keep you from screaming your lovely voice hoarse." Makan faded, the glow that surrounded him flowing back into the Gilded Sword.
"What was that?" Saria whimpered.
"Oh that, his name's Makan, he's a ghost that lives in your sword." Link said cheerfully, "That means your stuck with him, you have my pity."
Saria groaned, "Great, I have a haunted sword, maybe there are things I don't want to remember."
Unnoticed by all, tiny cracks began to form on the ice pillar.
Kasuto was following Sheik, the young Sheikah was leading the way to his horse. Kalo was using her head as a chair apparently, not that Kasuto minded, he was a cute little fairy, though she doubted that he would like to hear himself described as "cute." She wondered if Sheik would like being described as cute. Gorgeous is more like it. I mean...bad thoughts Kasuto! Bad thoughts! Her face became flushed, she forced herself to think of something else..."Hey Kalo? You alive?" She poked the fairy that was using her hair as a cushion.
"Gah! Don't do that!" Kalo pushing her finger way, "So what do you want?"
"Ah! We're here!" Sheik said quickly, sure enough, there was a horse grazing on a bit of grass.
"Wow, Sheik, he's beautiful! Is he yours?" Kasuto asked.
"Unfortunately no. I borrowed him from a ranch near Castle City. His name is BrightFire." Sheik grinned sheepishly, "Though I do own a horse, I just couldn't take her because I was in such a hurry, her name is Marial, named after my mother."
Kasuto nodded in understanding, it made some sense. "So where are we going? Hyrule Castle City?"
"I think so." Sheik answered, they approached BrightFire, Kasuto noticed something.
"There is a spell cast over this horse." She said, "did you cast it?"
"Um, yes, how did you know?" Sheik sounded surprised.
"I can see a strange distortion over him, it's blue." Kasuto walked closer to BrightFire, placing her hand over the ripple, taking care not to touch the saddle.
"You can see magic?" Kalo asked, "I'm impressed, the last known non-fairy able to truly see magic was the Sheikah Erain, who sealed away the demon Bongo-Bongo."
"Wait, you mean...I'm special?" Kasuto whispered. "I didn't think..."
"Nonsense! Kasuto, I think your special even if you didn't have any unique talents." Sheik said matter-of-factly. "You've helped my feel much better about some of my troubles." He smiled, making Kasutos heart skip a beat, "anyway," he turned toward the BrightFire, removing the spell he had placed over the horse. "If you had touched him, you would have gotten a nasty shock."
"Um...thanks." Kasuto smiled weakly, "So I guess you should get on first."
Sheik coughed, "actually Kasuto, I think you should, I mean, you are taller then me." It was true, Kasuto was about a head taller then Sheik, "It would make sense if you were in front."
"Oh! Of course...that makes sense..." Kasuto was really starting to wonder if the Goddesses were laughing at her. She pulled herself onto BrightFire, luckily she was at least capable of riding a horse.
"Alright, now I'll get on, I'll tell you in we're going in the right direction." Sheik climbed on the moment Kasuto grabbed the reins. "I'll have to hold on, do you mind?"
"N-not at all." Kasuto managed to stutter out.
"For the love of Farore..." Kalo muttered.
Sheik put his arms around her waist. Kasuto struggled to keep her composure.
"All right, Ya!" Kasuto snapped the reins, and BrightFire moved foreword.
Don't think about those strong arms wrapped tightly around your- Gah! Bad thoughts!
Saria clutched the sword, the sword Link said was hers, in her hands. It felt familiar, when she held it there was a comfortable feeling that reminded her of home, wherever that was, flowed from it. It felt good, she liked the feeling.
Though she could live without the ghost.
Link, Malon, and Ruto. All of them she was sure she knew before losing her memory. Link in particular stirred something in her soul, a warm feeling which spread throughout her entire body. But who were they? Ruto claimed she hadn't met her, but then how come Sarias heart said she had? What was her heart telling her about Link? It confused her, she wished her memory would come back soon, she really hated being in the dark about things.
Though she was pretty clear about what her heart was telling her about Shadow. That was that she feared him, hated him, and strangely enough, pitied him. Of course, that was a moot point now, seeing as he was incased in a huge pillar of ice that extended from the floor to the ceiling.
Saria really doubted that anyone could survive that.
She looked down at the blade, Link called in the Gilded Kokiri Sword. He said that she was a Kokiri, what a Kokiri was she really didn't know. All she knew is that she was one.
"Link? How old am I?" Saria suddenly felt the need to know. "I'm..." She thought about what she had learned from Ruto about ages, "twelve or thirteen, right? I mean, I don't have that many memories to regain, right?"
Link and Malon looked at each other nervously. That was not a good sign in Sarias book.
"Well?" Ruto said, "How old is she? She wants to know, do you know?"
"Um, I know..." Link said, "are you sure you want to know? I mean you'll remember on your own eventually."
"Link, your dodging the question. Tell her, it can't be that bad!" Ruto tapped her foot.
Link sighed, "Fine, Saria, please sit down, I think your going to get a shock." He took a deep breath, "Saria, you are one hundred and three years old. Give or take a year."
Saria realized that perhaps she should have taken Links advice to sit down first, judging by her sore behind.
"Th-that's impossible!" Ruto shouted, "Anybody who lives that long...well...they get old!"
"Not Kokiri." Malon said calmly. "They never age, they are young forever. They also live a long time, Saria and Link will out live both of us Princess."
Saria was surprised, not by what Link said, but by the fact that it seemed right. She believed him, she was one hundred and th- wait. "I'm ten and two Link." She found herself correcting him. "Wait. I remembered my age! I remembered something about myself!" Saria jumped into the air with glee. "I remembered something!"
"That's great Saria! At this rate, you'll be recovered in no time!" Ruto was clearly proud of her.
"Great job!" Link showed his happiness in a bit more direct way, he gave her a huge hug.
"Link..." Saria felt her face grow hot again, the warm feeling in her grew stronger.
"Hmm? Yes Saria?" Link looked into her eyes.
His eyes...they're like the surface of the water... "Link..." she said, she could barely hear it herself, but Link heard her perfectly. "I...remember..."
"Remember what?" Link asked, concern in his voice...how sweet of him to worry...
"I remember...that...I love you." She whispered, shocked at her own realization..."I..I love you." She felt herself beginning to black out again..."Thank you..." she said. As everything became black.
"Saria!" Link shouted, holding her as she went to sleep once more.
The cracks grew larger.
Kalo had to admit, Kasuto had nice hair, naturally soft, very comfortable to sit on. Plus he didn't have to use any energy to move around! That was a plus, seeing as he was still recovering from the Magic Fatigue. She also didn't seem to mind, then again, maybe she thought that the fact that he was with her a novelty, so it simply amused her for him to be sitting on her head.
He knew if he tried this stunt with Saria she would probably brush him off, call him lazy, and tell him to fly like he should. Which he would reply with some semi-sarcastic remark and grab onto her hair and hold on as tight as he could. Oh he couldn't wait to find her again, and reconcile with her, after all, he had made a stupid mistake. He hoped she would forgive him.
"Hey Kasuto, what is it you wanted to talk to me about?" Kalo remembered the Gerudo poking him
"Well...I was just wondering if you could tell me about yourself? I mean, it's not like we have anything better to do." Kasuto looked pretty focused on riding the horse, but she still could talk.
"Hey, I'm curious myself, I only knew one fairy before I met you, and she didn't talk to me much." Sheik added.
"Well, I don't see why not." Kalo chuckled, "Gather around children, and I'll tell you a story," he laughed "Sorry, that's just what I always say before telling a tale, it's what's expected of me."
"No problem," Kasuto said, "Let's just hear your auto-biography."
"I'm sure it's a best seller." Sheik quipped.
"Very funny. Anyway, I'm a Forest Fairy, I was born in the Forest of Life's Beginning, otherwise known as the Lost Woods, there I lived simply as a free fairy, no real duties, I just did what I pleased. Most boring time of my life I tell you. Never think that being free of all responsibility is fun, it's not."
"Thanks for the lecture." Kasuto added.
"Quiet you. Now, I drifted through life, mostly floating around the Forest, though sometimes I left to explore. Now this was over a hundred and fifty years ago mind you, so Hyrule was a lot different then it is today. Small wars and skirmishes were frequent, and hostility towards anything that wasn't like you was high, I did a lot of stupid things back then, but I won't get into those, seeing as I'm sober and those tales are best told drunk.
"Anyway, I lived like that until the age of sixty or so. When I received a message from one of the higher ranking fairies around, I believe you know her Sheik."
"Wait, are you talking about Navi?" Sheik asked.
"Yup, Navi's pretty high up on the hierarchy, there are betting pools on whether or not she'll become a Great Fairy to this very day. But seeing as she's been AWOL these past six months they've died down somewhat. However, that really isn't important. What is important is that she had a message for me. I was to report to the Great Deku Tree the next day."
"What's the Great Deku Tree?" Kasuto asked.
"A minor god. Takes the form of a giant tree. His domain is the Lost Woods. From what I can gather, he's worshiped mainly by the Kokiri, though some minor cults do so as well." Sheik answered.
"Partly true Sheik, yes the Great Deku Tree is a god. But he doesn't take the form of a tree. He is a tree, a tree planted by Farore herself. And the Kokiri don't just worship him, they serve him quite literally, their village is right next to his clearing. I could take you to meet him if you want.
"Back to the story. Now the next day I went to the Deku Tree, and what should I find? The whole Kokiri population was there! Then, the moment I show up, he announces it right there (With no warning for me, but from what the others tell me that's the norm. You'd be surprised at the sick sense of humor gods have.) that I was supposed to be the Guardian Fairy for one of them!"
"Hey, what do you mean by that?" Kasuto was very curious about everything.
"Well, a Guardian Fairy is supposed to be a kind of parent figure for the Kokiri, seeing as they never grow up and all, in theory. In practice most of them become like siblings, or close friends. I even heard a story about a pair who didn't speak to each other for two hundred years!
"Now where was I? Oh yes! Now I, of course, was shocked. I didn't know how boring life was back then, so I was pretty angry. Who was he to take away my freedom? I asked myself, I asked him that too. The Great Deku Tree, in his wisdom, told me to ‘shut thy mouth and take it like a man' to quote him. Yes, he did say that. And stop snickering! Now, of course, hearing the god of the Forest tell me that kind of scared me a little, but I saw Saria for the first time.
"All reservations left me as I saw her. She was so adorable back then! A baby Kokiri is an amazing thing really, they look similar to normal children, but a few differences. One of which was the light of intelligence that was already there. Saria was a smart baby, I'll tell you that. Of course, I couldn't raise her alone. The fact that her head was three times my size mad things difficult. Sheik, what did I say about snickering?
Now, the first decade or so of Sarias life was hectic, to say the least. It is the only time Kokiri age, so naturally it's a very awkward time for them, the fact that their brains grow faster then their bodies doesn't help much either. But Saria proved to be a Guardian Fairies dream. She is arguably the wisest Kokiri alive today. She is also one of the kindest, she always looks on the positive side of things, and rarely causes trouble.
"Raising Saria is the most fulfilling thing I've ever done, it still is to this day, even..." his voice took on a note of sadness "...even though I'm not as needed anymore."
"Don't say that!" Kasuto said, "I'm sure you're needed, she's just older now, and needs some time alone. Heck, I bet she's missing you right now!"
"Thanks Kasuto, you really are a kind girl, you actually remind me of her somewhat.
"Back to the story. Now taking care of Saria was wonderful, but I noticed something. While everybody liked her, she didn't have any friends. I mean sure nobody disliked her, but she was a loner, preferring to play music on her homemade Ocarina then interact with people. Of course this all changed when she was twenty four, when the newest addition to the Kokiri was added, a boy named Link."
"Link? Wait, haven't you mention him before Sheik?" Kasuto questioned.
"Yes, I know him. We're...friends." Sheik answered.
Yeah, and you want to be more, Zelda. Kalo thought, before continuing. "Now remember how I said I couldn't raise Saria on my own? Well, I had help. You see, the Great Deku Tree assigns a Kokiri to help raise a new baby until the child is ten, when he or she goes off on their own, guess who got assigned to take care of Link?"
"Bingo! Yeah, Saria never knew what hit her. Now this is around the time the War of Unification was going on, so the Forest was in a bit of trouble, people were cutting down trees at a faster rate then the forest could replenish them, so the Kokiri had to do damage control. This meant that Saria did a lot of the work herself, when normally the whole village at least helps out. She and Link became close. They practically became inseparable. She finally found her friend. I too became sort of a authority figure in Links life, to quote him. ‘Kalo, your like the crazy uncle who spoils me rotten' And I guess that's somewhat true, I was a bit more lenient with him that I was Saria, of course there was the time he put prune juice in my Sweet Tea...oh I yelled at him for that...
"Well, that's my life in a nutshell!" Kalo smiled. "I hope you found it interesting."
"Well, it made the time pass by, I'll tell you that." Kasuto looked around.
"Yeah, it's sunset now, thanks Kalo, you saved us from boredom." Sheik added. "I think we should set up camp, we'll reach Hyrule Castle City tomorrow."
"That sounds like a good idea." Kalo yawned "I'm pretty tired, haven't had a good night's sleep in a while. We should stop.
He did not know how long he had been trapped here, in this cold prison. Hours? Minutes? Seconds? He did not know.
How could this have happened? He was supposed to have perfect plans. How did Link interfere? Purhaps, he had been to obvious. Yes, that had to be the answer. Taking the Sages in plain view of everyone exposed a large part of his plan. So they had been able to predict his next move.
It could not be helped now, his plan was nearly complete, all Malon had done was delay him. Unless they had moved, getting the two Sages as far away from each other as possible, then he could still get what he came here for. If not...well, he'd have to make a backup plan.
He will not fail.
-Yet, part of you wants too...-
Link hadn't left Sarias side since she passed out.
Malon had to admire his devotion. Ruto said that Saria had passed out once before, when she had remembered something, this meant that passing out seemed to come with regaining memory.
"Ungg..." It was Saria! "Link? Are you there?"
"You're safe!" Link pulled the girl close, "what do you remember?" he asked, looking her in the eyes.
"I remember...some magic, my song...and that...I love you." Saria smiled, her eyes shining brightly, "I'm sorry I forgot that, I really am."
"It's alright, I forgive you." Link kissed Saria, it was a soft, romantic kiss. Malon guessed Saria enjoyed it.
"What is going on!?" Apparently Makan had decided to irritate them again, "Why are we still here? Saria and the Water Sage should be as far away as possible!"
"Oh shut up!" Malon growled, "Saria needs medical care, and Ruto, the Water Sage, is the one providing it! Besides, how can Shadow even be a threat, if even alive? He's in a huge block of ice! It hasn't even begun to melt! What threat could he possibly-"
The noise was like glass shattering. Within a few seconds, shards of ice filled the air. Link protected Saria and Ruto, casting Nayrus Love. Malon felt that strange reflex come over her again, Nayrus Love protected her as well.
Hovering in the air, wreathed in white flames, his red eyes glowing like coals, was Shadow. The ice melted as his heat spread, soon the room felt like a hot summer day. Finally, the fires around him died, and he landed on the stone floor.
"Did you honestly think that would stop me?" He hissed, rage boiling over every word,
"No, but I kind of hoped it would slow you down for at least a few more hours." Link answered.
Malon pulled out her Fire Rod, this time she was going to burn him.
"If there's one thing I've learned, it's that they don't go down the first time, you usually have to take them out one or two more times. So how many lives do you have left?"
"As many as you have, Link."
Malon swung the Rod.
"I have learned this Link, you see, when dealing with magic users. The best offence is a good defense." Shadow spun around, he was suddenly holding a strange shield, it reflected the light like almost nothing else. The Fiery attack hit Shadows defense.
"Score!" Malon knew that the Fire Rod would make that shield too hot for Shadow to hold, possibly burning him, maybe even destroying the shield.
Link, however, seemed to not have such a good feeling about that. "Crap! Malon, move!"
"What are you talking about?" Malon asked, the shield looked red hot, she was surprised Shadow could stand holding it.
Wait...the red on the shield, it wasn't glowing red like hot steel. In fact, it looked...almost like a red light being reflected off a mirror...
Malons instants took over, she jumped out of the way. And not a moment too soon, because the second she jumped, a stream of fire shot out of the shield! It scorched the ground Malon had been standing. Leaving her shocked.
"A Mirror Shield." Link cursed, "What don't you have?"
"A Soul." Shadow replied, "Anyway, I think I'll take what I came for."
Rutos eyes widened, she shouted, "Help! Assassin! I'm being attacked by an Assassin!"
The Zoran guard, already on their way from hearing the sound, rushed their even faster, and ten of the best Zora warriors were in the room in an instant.
Shadow turned towards them. "Assassin? Please, if I wanted to kill the Water Sage, I would have done so already."
The soldiers charged.
Shadow disabled them in ten seconds, hitting them with the flat of his blade, knocking them out. "Pity, really, the Gerudo were much stronger opponents. I guess Zoras are just weaker."
Ruto was stunned, to say the least. Malon could understand how she felt, really.
"Now, let us finish this!" He charged past Link, the blue crystal formed around Ruto
"Saria, help m-" Ruto began to say before the crystal engulfed her, and it shrunk down to fit in Shadows sword.
"To much I didn't predict." Shadow whispered. "Congratulations, with your help I have managed to nearly complete my plan, I will see you all again, but I wonder who soon it will be? I'm sorry to say that I have nothing else to manipulate you poor souls with, other then the five Sages I have hostage, of course. Until then, farewell!" Shadow faded once more.
"That's the threat he could be, Miss Malon." Makan said simply.
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