The Amazing Race:
Nintendo Universe

By Stephen Stephano



Final Race Leg – Hyrule


“This is Katina Frontline Base.  This massive Cornerian Army outpost stretches for over a square mile across the scrubland of Planet Katina, and includes interior and exterior fortifications in case of attack.  This heart of Cornerian military technology is now the starting point of the final leg in this race around the world.”


“Twelve teams started this journey, but only three have made it this far.”


“As a pair of space-shooting mercenary lovers, Fox and Krystal have been a display of passion, fortitude, and brashness.  Despite some early struggles, it became quickly apparent that this was a power couple capable of taking it all.  They won their first leg of the race in Zebes, and then took a big gamble in the DK Isles by going for the fast forward at Rickety Race roller coaster.  They finished in first for the second leg in a row.  But disaster struck in Tellius, as they were forced to wait almost two hours for another team to complete the intersection.  They would eventually finish last in the leg.”


“However, the team was saved thanks to Tellius being a non-elimination leg.  They overcame a speed bump in Hocotate and then pulled off another high-speed maneuver, barrel-rolling over another competitor’s F-Zero racer on the racetrack in Mute City.  This propelled them to victory once again, and then a fourth victory came in Corneria last leg.  Having won the most legs overall with four, and having won the last two, this is a team with their hands on the trigger, ready to fire the last shot for 5 million dollars.”


“A team of medieval mercenaries, Ike and Lady Lyndis had a lot in common with Fox and Krystal.  They were strong workers, strong fighters, and carried themselves with honor and dignity.  But where they were different was in their respectful demeanor and much calmer emotions.  Ike’s raw power came in handy during the roadblock in Onett, where his home runs propelled them in front of the other teams to win the leg.  They toiled on, finishing in the middle of the pack for the next few legs.”


“Finally, the eighth leg saw them return home to Tellius.  Their solving the sliding puzzle of the Fire Emblem the fastest led to their second victory of the race.  Feeling the momentum, the sword-wielding duo followed it up with a third victory in the logistical hub of Hocotate.  Having proved that a team of the past can be as formidable as any, Ike and Lyn are a good bet to walk home with the cash.”


“If there is a mashup to be had between the passionate, brash lovers of Lylat and the medieval fighters from Tellius, Link and Zelda would fit nicely.  The Hyrulian princess and hero displayed a fierce resiliency as well as cunning mind, often making alliances with other teams and even helping other teams in certain challenges in order to secure assistance later.  The team was consistent throughout the early legs, often finishing middle or upper-middle of the pack.”


“The breakthrough came in the seventh leg in Kanto.  There, Link’s sense of observation and closeness with animals allowed them to speed through a challenge at the Safari Zone.  This put them into the lead, which they kept until the Pit Stop at Articuno Cave.  That was their only stage victory of the race, but to count this medieval fairytale out would be unwise.” 


In the production truck, members of the production crew are seen discussing plans for the finish line with an unknown person on the phone.  It will be extravagant and will involve all the competing teams returning for a reunion at the finish. 


“Fox and Krystal won the last leg of the race, so they will depart first, at 8:33am.” 


Fox: Alright, last leg!  Here we go!  **tears open the clue.  Make your way via transport ship from Katina to the Kingdom of…


Fox stops abruptly and tosses the clue to the ground.  He lets out a moan. 


Krystal: What’s wrong Fox?  **picks up clue and reads it.  Oh…I see…


“Teams must now board a transport spaceship which will take them nearly four hundred thousand miles across the Nintendo Universe to the Kingdom of Hyrule.  Once they land in the vast prairie of Hyrule Field, they must travel on foot to Lon Lon Ranch, where they will find their next clue.”


Fox: Shoot me now, we have to go to Hyrule.  Uggh! 

Krystal: It’s such a backward country from what you’ve told me.  And Link and Zelda are from there too.  This is bad.


Ike and Lady Lyndis are the next to depart about ten minutes later. 


Ike: Make your way to the Kingdom of Hyrule!

Lyn: Not bad…we get a country similar to our own.  You know the foxes are going to be fish out of water in such a backward society.  Let’s go! 


Fox and Krystal arrive at the transport ship to find out that it is a 6-seater.  They will all be on the same flight. 


Fox: Oh boy…nothing we can do about it now, just have to hope that the challenges are fair. 

Krystal: You’re working yourself up too much.  We’ll be fine.  Trust me. 

Fox: You haven’t had to travel there as much as I have.  Their main SSBB arena is a stone bridge over a canyon nearly five hundred feet deep, and there’s no guardrails of any kind.  They toss people over it for sport Krystal! 

Krystal: Yeah well tell me you’ve never randomly whacked an Androssian patrol with your blaster for a hell of it.

Fox: That’s different.  That’s perfectly legal in a warfare situation! 


Link and Zelda reach the transport ship with beaming smiles on their faces. 


Zelda: I told you Hyrule was going to be the final leg!  This is perfect.  We’ll be able to cross the finish line and win on home soil!

Link: Man Zel, I’ve never seen you this animated in my whole life.  I’m sure they aren’t just going to hand us the victory, we’re going to have to fight for it. 


The day passes slowly aboard the ship.  Unlike the other long travels, the teams do not discuss strategy or talk about much of anything for that matter.  They keep their thoughts to themselves.  Their focus is obvious during the dinner meal, where their gazes could cut like butter. Finally, they tuck themselves into bed.  The ship continues its journey, landing in Hyrule Field about an hour before dawn. 


When the doors open, all three teams sprint out into northern Hyrule Field.  The vast ranch of Lon Lon is immediately visible up ahead to the south.  Fox and Krystal take off running for the entranceway, but hold up when they get there, making sure they do not lose sight of Link and Zelda.  The two teams enter the ranch and locate the clue box near the starting line of the horse track.  The co-owners of the ranch, Talon and Malon, are standing right next to the clue box. 


Fox: Saddle up and cross Hyrule Field on horseback to Gerudo Valley!


“Teams must now head out of Lon Lon Ranch to the west, crossing into the western deserts of Hyrule until they reach Gerudo Fortress.  This fortress is the home base for a society of female warriors known as the Gerudo.  Built in 1998, the gerudo people designed the fortress to be virtually impenetrable by a standing army, containing dark corners and corridors that turn only at ninety degrees.  Once they reach the fortress, they will head inside the Gerudo Training Ground, where they will receive their next clue.”


Ike and Lady Lyndis come in just behind the other teams, and cross into the ranch just as all the cuccos in the place start crowing for the sunrise. 


Ike: Aaah!  Too many chickens!!  Make it stop! 


Lyn tries to make Ike feel better by slicing one of the cuccos with her sword, but it’s a big mistake.  Within seconds, the injured cucco calls upon the others and they start swarming after Ike and Lyn.  They start running away from the swarm as quickly as they can, eventually running all the way around the track before taking refuge in the horse stables.  The camera pans back to Malon and Talon, who are seen laughing heartily at the whole incident. 


Talon: They should know better than to mess with my special Super Cuccos! 

Malon: Dad, a normal cucco is potent enough to mess up just about anybody.  I don’t think your Super Cuccos are special in that regard. 


Locked in a race across Hyrule Field, the foxes do their best to fend off the royals of Hyrule, but it is only a matter of time before Link and Zelda take over the lead.  They go ahead before the bridge across Zora’s River, and reach the fortress several minutes ahead of their adversaries from Corneria.  The gerudo immediately recognize Link from his clothes and let out cheers.


Zelda: Roadblock!  Who’s good with a blade?  That’s definitely you Link. 

Link: I’ll do it!  **looks at flip side of clue.  Outfit yourself with traditional gerudo attire and weaponry and fight against one of their own!


“In this roadblock, the teams must send one of their members into an old-fashioned gerudo swordfight against one member of the tribe.  Their objective will be to win the battle by either disarming the gerudo, forcing her to submit, or by landing a blow strong enough to knock her down for at least five seconds.  If a team member loses in one of these fashions, they will be forced to yield for at least two minutes before the battle can restart.  Once the team member has defeated the gerudo in one of these three possible ways, they will receive their next clue.”


Fox: Roadblock, who’s good with a blade?  Oh boy, I’m not sure.  I’d guess me though.  Ah, it’s a swordfight.  Figures. 

Krystal: Just don’t be intimidated, you can do this!

Link: The clue says I have to outfit myself in traditional gerudo attire.  So I have to wear their clothes too?

Zelda: Hahaha.  I’m sure you’ll manage well enough. 

Gerudo: Actually there’s different attire for the male of our tribe.  Follow me. 


Link and Fox are outfitted in traditional male gerudo garb, which is basically black armor with boots, a cape, and several pieces of jewelry.


Zelda: If I didn’t know better, I’d say you look like Ganondorf. 

Link:  Uh…

Zelda:  Which is odd.  The clue said we were going to Hyrule but this isn’t the Hyrule I know.  We must be in a different time period.  Excuse me, can you tell me what year it is? 

Gerudo: We’re three years past the Ocarina War. 


Fox enters the arena and sees his adversary, a young woman wearing a red top and similarly colored leggings. 


Fox: Nice, a female opponent.  This should be a piece of cake. 


The gerudo says nothing at all.  Once the signal is given, Fox charges her, but her agility is unsurpassed and she rolls behind Fox, giving him a sword handle right to the back.  Fox stumbles to the ground, upon which the gerudo crosses her curved blades at his neck. 


Gerudo: Yield

Fox: Okay, maybe this won’t be so easy after all…


On the other side of the training ground arena, Link comes face to face with his adversary.  She is several inches taller than him and has red hair down past her waist.  Unlike the other gerudo, her top and leggings are pink, signifying her leadership within the tribe. 


Link: If I know my hyrulian history, you must be Nabooru, the original sage of spirit. 

Nabooru: So you’re the hero of time’s descendant?  It is a privilege to meet you. 


The signal is given, and the two fly into action.  It is a virtual blur of blades flying through the musty air of the training ground, both trying to get the upper hand.  After about a minute, both are thrown back after their blades clash in a game of chance.  They are both panting hard. 


Nabooru: Your technique is sound and your strength taxing, but you lack the speed and agility of a gerudo.  I will exploit this. 

Link: You’re welcome to try. 


Nabooru starts zigzagging around the arena.  Eventually she does catch Link off guard with a spinning attack followed into a front flip.  Her blade comes down on his shoulder, knocking him to the ground.  Link is visibly dazed for a minute before getting back to his feet. 


Link: Sweet mother of Farore, that was unbelievable. 


Lady Lyndis reaches the arena and quickly dresses in traditional gerudo female attire, her top and leggings a royal blue.  Her opponent wears purple, the main gerudo color for commoners.  When the signal is given, Lyndis moves quickly to confront her adversary.   Not used to carrying a shield, Lyn is frustrated by having to defend against two blades to her one.  She tries in vain to attack, but leaves her midsection unprotected, and the gerudo cuts forward with her left, knocking right into the breastplate underneath her top. 


Lyn: Ike, this isn’t fair she’s got two and I’ve got one! 

Ike: Try using your shield as a weapon! 

Lyn: Hmm, didn’t think of that.  Alright I’ll give that a shot. 


The two minutes having passed, Link re-enters the fray against Nabooru.  Before the last attack, he noticed that Nabooru had a tendency to overswing with her left, leaving her right open.  He came forward with an attack, and then pushed her back after engaging in a another battle of chance.  Then he did the seemingly unthinkable, and switched his sword to his right hand. 


Nabooru: Kid, you are either extremely confident in your abilities, or extremely dumb. 

Link: Only one way to find out. 


Nabooru comes forward, aiming for Link’s midsection.  Link blocks twice, and then rolls around Nabooru, hitting her in the back.  He tries to subdue her but the gerudo sage ducks, causing him to tumble over her.  He gets back to his feet to block a thrust.  Then Nabooru goes for a downward slash with her left.  Link sees the opportunity and rushes forward with his right, knocking the sword out of Nabooru’s hand.  With just one sword, Nabooru goes on the defensive but it isn’t long until she is defeated. 


Nabooru:  You sure know how to scout an enemy combatant.  With knowledge like that I bet you have good thieving skills like your ancestor. 

Link: Thank you.  **receives clue.  Ride down Zora’s River to the Lakeside Laboratory!


“Teams must now head back to the bridge leading across Zora’s River.  Once there, they will grab a hyrulian sailcloth and bungee jump into the river, riding the flow down through the canyon to the river’s mouth at Lake Hylia.  From there they will swim to the lake’s north shore, where they’ll reach the Lakeside Laboratory.  It is in this facility dedicated to marine biology and research into the hyrulian hydrosphere, where they will find their next clue.”


Across the arena, Fox keeps losing.  His slashes come nowhere close to finding their mark. 


Fox: Krystal this is infuriating.  I’m as quick as she is but every time I get close she strikes and I fumble too much with the blade. 

Krystal: Try to lure her into a trap, then spring it on her!


Lyn continues to battle with her adversary.  Noticing that her raw power is starting to show through a bit, she pushes forward.  After several mighty swings, the gerudo flips to try to outflank her.  Lyn ducks and pivots back toward her foe, eventually driving her back toward the edge of the arena.  With a mighty thrust, followed by an uppercut, she knocks the gerudo to the ground.  Amazingly, the gerudo does not yield and tries to defend with both blades in the corner.  Lyn is about to thrust straight toward her chest when Nabooru comes racing in from the right, breaking up the fight. 


Nabooru: That’s it, that’s it, you’ve won!  I don’t want to see anybody hurt or killed here!  Good swordplay my lady.  You look like you’ve been practicing from a young age. 

Lyn: Thank you, I actually started when I was just six years old.  I pulled a sword out of a stone and destiny took its course.

Nabooru: That’s younger than a lot of us get started with our training.  Good luck to you, and know that you are welcome here any time my lady.


Ike grabs the clue as Lyn watches Nabooru verbally berate her comrade for failing to yield.  Within seconds they are headed toward Lake Hylia.


Up ahead, Link and Zelda reach the mouth of Zora’s River.  They get dumped off the raft at the waterfall, so they swim the short way to the north shores of Lake Hylia.  It doesn’t take long for them to spot the clue box outside the Lakeside Laboratory. 


Link: Route info…go through the warp under the lake to reach Zora’s Domain.  Proceed to King Zora’s throne where you will receive your next clue.


Link and Zelda dive through the warp tunnel, surfacing in Zora’s Domain.  Amid the crowd of cheering zoras, the hyrulians wind their way up the stairs, to where King Zora and Princess Ruto are sitting on the waterfall throne.  The clue box is directly in front of them. 


Zelda: Roadblock!  Collect the rupees by diving off of the waterfall.  You must collect at least one hundred rupees in under a minute’s time.

Link: Note, the person that did the last roadblock cannot do this one.  Well I guess that means you Zelda.

Ruto: Aww…I wanted to see Linky-poo do this.  Oh well, more time to chat with my hero’s ancestor.

Link: …


Ike and Lady Lyndis arrive several minutes later, just in time to see Zelda atop the waterfall of the Domain.  She leaps off of the ledge and falls nearly fifty feet into the water, scrambling to collect the rupees on the Domain’s bottom floor. 


Lyn: This looks like fun!  Let’s find the zora king and go to it!


Zelda, with knowledge of what colors to go after, grabs several blue rupees before seeing a purple one at the lowest point of the domain.  She breathes in hard, then dives quickly for it.  She grabs it quickly then moves to surface. 


Ruto: You know, she’s pretty good at this.  Probably better than you even. 

Link: Her ancestor did rescue you didn’t she?  I have no doubts about her aquatic talents. 

Ruto: That was ice…but I see the point.  Besides, I’m glad she’s with you.  It wouldn’t have worked out between us. 

Link: That’s music to my ears.


Ruto slaps Link with her fin.  He stumbles off the ledge and falls into the lower pool of the domain just as Zelda collects the last blue rupee, giving her one hundred. 


Zora: That’s it, she’s got it!


Link swims over and grabs the clue.  Looking back to the waterfall, he notices Ruto giving him a devious smile. 


Link:  Go to the Pit Stop!  The Temple of Time!


“When all tasks have been completed, the teams will ride down Zora’s River until they reach Hyrule Castle Town.  Once there, they will head across town to the most important sanctuary in Hyrule, the Temple of Time.  Built in 1998, this structure is the link between Hyrule and the Sacred Realm, often referred to as the Golden Land of the Triforce.  It is now the Pit Stop for this leg of the race.” 


Zelda: This is it, the last stop.  If we make it there first we win!

Lyn: This is it Ike, you have to collect them all on this try or we’re not going to win!


Fox and Krystal reach Zora’s Domain and quickly make it to the top of the waterfall.  Fox is visibly bruised and cut following his encounter with the gerudos, so he is more than happy to let Krystal do the hard work diving. 


Zora: I’m sorry, you only collected sixty-five…you need one hundred to pass.

Krystal: Oh man, I knew I should have spent more time down at Cape Claw.  My swimming abilities never were the best. 

Fox: Don’t let it get to you Krystal, you can still make it!  Just try harder next time!


Krystal quickly realizes her mistake from earlier, noting that she had picked up lots of green and blue rupees in the last try.  She decides to go after the few red ones as well as the purple one in the next try.  This time, only about thirty seconds have elapsed by the time the zora tells her that she has enough. 


Krystal: Stupid me, I should have known they were worth different amounts! 

Fox: Go to the Pit Stop, the Temple of Time! 


It is nearly high noon in Castle Town, and the city is bustling with merchants peddling their wares, customers getting a bite to eat, and travelers moving all about the city.  Over at the Temple of Time it is much quieter.  Four of the Hyrulian Sages, Rauru, Saria, Darunia, and Impa are standing on the mat next to Phil, right in front of the Spiritual Stones.  Link and Zelda are the first to arrive, and they immediately start hugging one another and jumping up and down, thinking they have won.  All of the sages are smiling, Saria and Impa in particular. 


Saria: Welcome to the Kingdom of Hyrule.


“Link and Zelda.” 


Link: Yes Phil? 


“You are the first team to arrive.” 


Zelda: Yes! 


“I have some good news.  As the winners of this leg of the race, you have won a trip for two from Koopa Air, and you will be traveling to the island of Koholint!”


Link: Whoa…that is good news!


“You will spend five nights at the luxurious Instruments of the Sirens Resort at Toronbo Shores.  There you will have candlelight dinners on the beach, treatment in their luscious spa, tours of Mabe Village and Animal Village, and a safari across the island ending in a climb up Mount Tamaranch, the site of the Wind Fish’s Egg.”


Zelda: I’ve read about Koholint before, this is going to be special.  But, what about the money?


“Now comes the bad news…this is NOT the finish line of the Amazing Race.”


Link: What?!  This isn’t the end?!


“You are still racing.”  **hands them a clue.


Zelda: **tears open the clue.  Proceed to the chamber of the master sword, where you will travel into the future?


Zelda turns to Link, who is wide-eyed at the turn of events.


Rauru: This will transport you into the future.  Good luck.


Rauru pulls the Master Sword out of the Pedestal of Time.  A vivid blue light surrounds all of the sages as well as Link and Zelda.  When the light dims away, they find themselves in a heavily wooded forest, within the ruins of what used to be the Temple of Time. 


A clue box is visible right in the center of the Sacred Grove.  Zelda grabs the clue.


Zelda: Hitch a ride on a golden cucco and fly across the canyon to Faron Woods, then travel on foot to Ordon Village where you’ll receive your next clue!

Link: Excellent, the land of my birth.  Let’s go!


About ten minutes after Link and Zelda pass through the Temple of Time, Ike and Lady Lyndis appear at the mat. 


Darunia: Welcome to the Kingdom of Hyrule!

Ike: Thank you.


“Ike and Lady Lyndis…you are team number 2.” 


Lyn: Oh man, we didn’t win. 


“However, I have good news.  This isn’t the end of the race.  You are still racing.” 


Ike: Wha…for real?  **receives the clue.  Head into the chamber of the master sword where you’ll proceed into the future?

Lyn: This is cool!  We have second life, let’s go! 


Zelda and Link wind their way through the confusing trails of the Sacred Grove, eventually reaching the canyon where Rusl, Auru, and Ashei of the Adventurer’s Guild are waiting. 


Ashei: So you’re in first place yea?  Our cuccos will help you stay ahead. 

Rusl: Just hang on tight and let them fly you across, we’re all pulling for you!


Zelda and Link grab on to the cuccos’ talons and before long are in flight toward the Forest Temple.  They land there about three or four minutes later and immediately head south into the dark mist of the northern Faron Woods. 


About thirty minutes off the pace are Fox and Krystal.  They enter the Temple of Time worn out and unhappy. 


“Fox and Krystal, you are the third team to arrive.” 


Fox: Yeah, we pretty much stunk but I hate this place anyway. 


“Well I had good news but you might not like it considering that.  The race isn’t over, you are still racing.” 


Krystal’s face suddenly beams.  She receives the clue with vigor. 


Krystal: Fox, this could be our big chance to come back!  Proceed to the chamber of the master sword where you’ll travel into the future.  Oh, this is great.  We must be dreaming.

Fox: Oh joy, this place has figured out time travel?  That’s more like a nightmare. 

Krystal: You have to admit, this place isn’t so primitive after all.  I mean, even we haven’t figured out time travel yet. 


Fox sticks his tongue out at the sages as they stand before the pedestal.  Saria laughs hysterically.


Link and Zelda reach Ordon Village early in the afternoon.  Malo, Talo, Colin, and Beth cheer them on as they pass Link’s house.  The clue box is found standing next to Bo and Ilia’s house in the center of the village. 


Link: Roadblock!  Who’s herd the word?  Oh this is definitely me.  **reads clue.  Head to Ordon Ranch and herd twenty goats into their pens.  Awesome, this will only take a few minutes. 

Zelda: Go get them Link!  Herd them in like you have for years!


Link immediately heads to the shed where Fado is standing.


Fado: Link, you and Zelda are in the lead.  Keep going strong.  We’re all rooting for you!


Link, without taking any of the equipment out of the pen which includes shovels, hoes, whips, and other equipment meant to entice the goats along, gets to work.  He gets down on their level, even dropping to all fours at certain points, almost as though he is talking to them.  One by one, the goats start entering the pen.


Zelda: His time as a wolf must have been quite a life experience.  He knows exactly how to get each of them to do what he wants.

Fado: When did he get turned into a wolf? 

Zelda: The day the bulblin attacked Ordona, he was dragged away into the area occupied by the Twili invaders.  Princess Midna of the Twilight Realm found him there; the twilight’s effect had changed him into a wolf. 

Fado: Maybe that’s why he talks to animals so much; he probably did that every day back then…


Ike and Lady Lyndis show up around the moment Link finishes up. 


Ike: Roadblock!  Who’s herd the word?  Oh boy, probably a mental challenge of some kind.  Lyn, I think you’d be better for it.

Lyn: Okay Ike.  **reads clue.  Herd twenty goats into their pens.  Definitely not a challenge of brains, but I’ll try to manage!


Ike and Lyn see Link and Zelda just grabbing their next clue as soon as they arrive at the ranch. 


Link: Head by covered wagon north to Kakariko Village.  Once there, head to the house of Renado the shaman, where you’ll receive your next clue!

Zelda: Alright, let’s get out of here!

Ike: The pressure is on Lyn, you need to finish this quickly to keep it close!


Lyn gets out there and decides to utilize the shovel as her prodding weapon of choice, mostly because it is the closest thing to a sword.  Lyn’s antics intimidate several of the goats.  Some run away to the far ends of the ranch.  Many are coerced though, to enter the pen without any trouble.  Lyn eventually scatters out to the ends of the ranch to try to herd the remainder.  She finds that several have gone down the path leading into Ordon Village.


Lyn: Oh, didn’t plan on that.  Ike can you see where they went?

Ike: Hurry up and get them before you lose them!  I’ll help track them down but I can’t touch them because it’s a roadblock. 


While Ike and Lyn come bounding into the village that Fox and Krystal arrive at Bo and Ilia’s.


Fox: Roadblock!  Who’s herd the word? 

Krystal: I think I should do this one Fox.  **reads clue.  Herd twenty goats into the pen.  Well I’ve herded dinosaurs before, so this should be fairly simple. 

Fox: We have a chance to pass Ike and Lyn.  Hopefully Link and Zelda have trouble up ahead. 


Krystal and Fox head to the opposite side of Ordon Ranch, where Fado has opened up a second pen.  Krystal immediately springs into action and grabs a long wooden pole.  Using it like her staff back on Sauria, she blocks the goats and herds them expertly.  A few try to run away but her explosive agility allows her to stay a step in front of them.  Before long, all twenty are herded into the pen.  Krystal leaps up into the air and gives a shout.  Fox quickly runs out to grab the clue from Fado. 


Krystal: Make your way by covered wagon to the house of Renado the shaman, where you’ll find your next clue. 

Fox: They might have time travel, but at least they’ve developed the wheel too!  Maybe they’ll get around to developing the steam engine next!


Up ahead on the trail, Link and Zelda are crossing Kakariko Gorge. 


Zelda: I have a feeling we’re close to winning.  There were two challenges on the front end of the leg, and we’ve done one so far on this end.  I don’t know what’s awaiting us in Kakariko, but this might be the last challenge of the race. 

Link: I hope you’re right Zelda.  We’re so close.  Just imagine it, us coming into the finish line with throngs of our countrymen and women cheering us on to victory. 


Zelda hugs Link.  Their carriage continues toward Kakariko. 


Lyn’s face is red and her brows heave with sweat.  With great exertion, she pilots the final goat into the pen.


Ike: Great job Lyn!  We’re on to the next stop!

Lyn: I stunk.  I’m sorry, we’re way behind now. 


Ike: Don’t worry about it.  I’m not giving up.  This situation may seem hopeless but so was the time when Daein invaded Crimea.  I know you remember that and how bad it was.  We can come back from this too!


Lyn: You’re right, let’s do this!

Ike: Ride by covered wagon to the town of Kakariko where you’ll receive your next clue.  


Link and Zelda arrive in Kakariko, where they are again met by throngs of cheering supporters.  They spot Renado and his daughter Luda, who are standing outside next to the clue box. 


Link: Roadblock!  Who’s got the power? 

Zelda: Well, Ganondorf does.  But in all seriousness, that’s not much of a tell as far as the challenge is concerned. 

Link: I’m physically strong, but you’re the heir to the throne.  You’ve got more power than I by virtue of your blood.  I think you should do it.  Maybe it’ll be looking through scrolls at the Kakariko Library or something. 


Zelda: Maybe you’re right.  I’ll do it!  **reads clue.  Strap on a pair of iron boots and engage a goron in a bout of goron wrestling?  Note, whoever did the challenge in Ordona cannot do this roadblock; it must be the opposite partner.

Link: …


Fox and Krystal cross the gorge.  The sun is sweltering, but is just starting to drop a bit on the western horizon. 


Fox: Hey you, how much further to Kakariko?

Driver: About fifteen minutes. 

Fox: Well step on it!  We need to win this race!


Zelda is stone-faced as she gets helped putting on her iron boots.  She tries walking around in them but isn’t used to having to exert so much force to move her legs.  She stumbles to the ground several times. 


Link: Try not to use your hips so much.  You have to pull with your thighs and go straight forward. 

Zelda: What if I have to turn? 

Link: Then you’re probably going to fall.  Lateral movement in these boots is very difficult. 


Zelda steps to the outside of the circle, where one of the three goron fighters stands on the other side.  The goron elder, Gor Coron, stands in the middle of the circle.


Gor Coron:  Okay, I want a good, clean battle.  There is no punching, kicking, or head butting permitted.  Grappling is okay but nothing below the belt.  Victory is attained by pushing your opponent outside of the circle. 


The goron steps into the circle.  Zelda hides her fear poorly as she enters the circle.  Gor Coron signals the start of battle.  It takes all of three seconds for Zelda to get tossed. 


Undeterred, Zelda tries again and suffers virtually the same result.  The third attempt goes awry as well. 


Link: Try to get beneath him.  You need to have proper leverage.  If he’s beneath your center of gravity he’ll toss you out every time.


Zelda nods to Link and tries again.  This time she succeeds in giving the goron a nudge backward.  The goron responds by wrapping his arms around her midsection.  Zelda whimpers as she feels the wind getting squeezed from her lungs.  He pushes her back and she staggers.  She tries to get around him, but ends up falling, after which the goron nudges her out gently. 


Link: That was better.  Just remember to stay in a low position and attack the midsection.  You could even go for the legs if he has you down, it’s a legal maneuver. 


Zelda continues to struggle.  After about the tenth time her arms and midsection are in pain.  She badly tries to think of a way to outsmart the goron, but her wisdom could only do so much to make up for the vast physical disadvantage she faces. 


As Zelda gets tossed out for the eleventh time, Fox and Krystal arrive in Kakariko.  Fox quickly goes for the clue box. 


Fox: Roadblock!  Who’s got the power?  Oh that’s me.  **reads clue.  Strap on a pair of iron boots and face off in a bout of goron wrestling. 

Krystal: A physical challenge.  Should be right up your alley Fox.


Unfortunately, Krystal is wrong.  Like Zelda, Fox isn’t used to being weighed down so much in his movements.  His agility completely gone, Fox is forced to face the goron head on, and while his strength is greater than Zelda’s, it is still no match for his goron adversary.  He fails again and again.  After the third time getting thrown out, he walks back to Krystal. 


Fox: Krystal what am I going to do?  This guy is as strong as an Earthwalker, and moves as well as a Cloudrunner.  With these things weighing me down, how am I supposed to defeat this guy?

Krystal: Have you tried rolling on the ground and outflanking him that way? 

Fox: I suppose not.  I’ll try that. 


Fox goes for this angle of attack in the next battle, but his left foot knocks against the goron’s leg, causing it to rest on his chest.  Weighed down by the boot, he cannot get up.  The goron easily rolls him out of the circle. 


Fox: Doggone it.  This is impossible. 


Zelda continues to try her best, but is taking a physical pounding.  Bruises and cuts begin to show on her arms.  After getting thrown out for what seems like the twentieth time, she sits down next to Link and starts crying. 


Zelda: We’re so close to winning, and I’m failing.  We’re going to lose because I can’t do it!  And look!  There’s Ike and Lyn!  There’s a lad that has the physical ability to do this challenge!

Ike: Roadblock!  Who’s got the power?!  I do!  **reads clue.

Link: You have to go for the lower body and get them on the ground. 

Zelda: That’s illegal Link.  You know I’m not about to cheat.  I would rather lose than cheat to win.

Link: Well, then think about the training the Adventurers Guild gave you.  Surely there must be something they showed you that is effective for this situation. 


Ike walks up to the circle with the iron boots on.  A big smile crosses his face.  When Gor Coron signals the start of the fight, he goes full bore into his goron adversary.  He pushes him back several feet but the goron doesn’t panic, and moves sideways, gaining the leverage.  He pushes Ike out the same direction he was pushing before. 


Ike: Aw man, I thought I had that one. 


Fox makes the same mistake on his seventh attempt.  Like Zelda his arms are becoming bruised and his outfit probably only masks his injured ribs and midsection.  He tries again for a frontal attack, but again the goron is able to outflank him and drive him out the same direction. 


Zelda: Hmm…I’ve got it. 


Zelda walks back into the circle, and then signals that she is ready.  Gor Coron signals the start of the battle.  Instead of engaging, Zelda drops back several feet, encouraging the goron to come at her.  He does, but pushes gently.  Zelda takes the push and drops back almost to the edge of the circle.  The goron finally does come forward fully, and Zelda drops her body down, moving laterally as much as possible.  In an attempt to use the goron’s momentum against it, Zelda pulls sideways, then back toward the edge of the circle.  The goron staggers down to one knee, and Zelda pushes with all her might.  With the goron on the ropes, everybody in Kakariko suddenly comes to their feet. 


Zelda keeps the pressure on the back of the goron’s leg.  He struggles to hang on.  Zelda pulls back for a split second, and then comes forward with a massive push.  The goron, realizing his weight is too far to the edge, provides no resistance.  They both go crashing out of the circle simultaneously as the crowd erupts into bedlam.


Link immediately goes running for the clue, but is blocked by Gor Coron.  The cheers immediately turn to boos.   


Gor Coron: She did not complete the challenge.

Link: What?!  She tossed the goron out!  She won! 

Gor Coron: They both went out of the circle simultaneously.  By our laws the battle must be restarted until there is a clear winner.

Link: You’ve got to be kidding me.  The goron hit out of the circle first, we all saw it!  This is outrageous!  I’m going to tell Bo about this and he and I will come beat all of your behinds!   

Zelda: Link stop.  You’re embarrassing yourself and me.  I’ll do it again if I have to. 


Ike gets back into the circle and engages the goron.  He pushes hard, but lays off when the goron tries to move laterally.  His strong legs move the boots in a quicker, easier fashion than Fox or Zelda.  They battle for over a minute, pushing and grappling to gain position.  Finally, the goron comes straight for Ike, and he drops to the ground, grabbing the goron around the waist and tumbling over him.  Their resultant momentum takes them both out of the circle. 


Lyn goes for the clue, but she too, is rebuffed by Gor Coron. 


Link: Well at least the rules are consistent. 


The day wears on, the sunlight dropping into twilight.  Finally, on his fifth attempt, Ike manages to get his goron opponent on the ground.  He pushes straight forward.  The goron attempts to get on his feet, but Ike twists his ankle around, sending him to the ground on his belly.  One more push on his back and he was out of the circle.  Ike raised his arms into the air in victory. 


Lyn: Yes!  You’ve done it!  **reads clue.  Travel to the finish line, the fountain in the center of Hyrule Castle Town!


“When all tasks have been completed, the teams must head by covered wagon to the center of Hyrule Castle Town.  This fountain created in 2006, is a sculpted image of the Triforce held up by the hylian eagle.  Standing in the geographic center of the Hyrule Castle region, this fountain is the finish line of the race.  The first team to check in here…wins.”


Twilight gave way to night as the three teams made their way across the plains of Eldin.  Eventually they crossed the Lanayru frontier.  The stars emerged, showing their brightly shimmering features.  The future would indeed be right for the first of the teams to make it to the finish line. 


The first wagon pulls into the south steps of town. 


Driver: The fountain is straight ahead down the South Road. 


The team takes off running down the South Road.  The run is long, but they are encouraged by the Hyrulian citizenry lining the road, cheering them on all the way.  Up ahead they see the mat.  Phil Keoghan stands on the mat, with King Harkinian of Hyrule and Princess Midna of the Twilight Realm standing beside him.  The other teams in the race line the road next to the mat.  All are clapping and cheering loudly for the winners.  Flaming arrows are shot into the air from the castle balcony and bomb arrows explode high overhead as Ike and Lady Lyndis cross the line first.  The sword wielding duo from Tellius explode into cheers.  They hug one another and let out twelve legs worth of energy. 


Harkinian: Welcome to the Kingdom of Hyrule!

Ike & Lyn: Thank you, your majesty.

Midna: You have arrived in first place.  You defeated every challenge that came before you.

Ike & Lyn:  Yes, we did.  Thank you.


“Twelve legs, eighteen days, thirty-seven tasks completed, and nearly six hundred thousand miles traveled.  Ike and Lady Lyndis, you are team number one.  You are the winners of five million dollars!  And, and you have earned the title of Champions of the Amazing Race: Nintendo Universe!


Lyn: Oh my gosh, this just feels so amazing.  We’ve come so far, and raced so hard since the very beginning.  To actually win is incredible.


“You fell behind on this leg and fought your way back.” 


Ike: This was a tough leg, we struggled in the early roadblock but Lyn, she never gave up and fought so hard.  And then when we got to Kakariko, it was a goron wrestling challenge and I came up big.  It was a lucky break for sure.  Had the challenge been easier for the others we might not have had time to catch up. 


“Well it speaks to your attitude and strength; you were both so positive despite it all. 


Lyn:  It just goes to show no matter who you are, popular or not, you can accomplish anything if you put your mind to it.  We are proof of that.


About ten minutes later, Fox and Krystal come bounding up the South Road.  They reach the mat and immediately congratulate Ike and Lyn. 


“Fox and Krystal, you are team #2.”


Krystal: Well, we did all we could. 

Fox: I tried my best, but Ike was just better at the end.  It was a close battle. 


“You two raced really well, won the most legs throughout.  No regrets?”


Fox: Well we wanted to win, but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be.  This country being last really didn’t benefit us at all, but that’s not the reason we lost.  They were just better. 


About an hour after Fox and Krystal arrive, Link and Zelda come racing up the South Road.  The crowd lends boisterous cheers to their hero and princess. 


“Link and Zelda, you are team #3.” 


Zelda: Oh my gosh, I think I’m going to die. 


“That goron wrestling really proved troublesome didn’t it?”


Harkinian:  Wrestled with a goron?  My daughter, you wrestled a goron??

Zelda: That was the last challenge, in Kakariko.  By Nayru, I never thought I would make it and I cried and cried so much, but the crowd kept cheering for me.  I couldn’t let them down. 

Fox: That challenge was as tough as anything I’ve ever had to do.  Ike, you earned it. 

Ike: Thanks Fox. 


The 12 teams all come together for a brief photo shoot before being whisked away into Hyrule Castle for a post-race banquet.  All throughout the race, they had battled each other and themselves, but as they came together at the end, they realized that the journey had not been without purpose.  Their countries had shown their colors, their culture, their rough spots, and their grandest of jewels.  Upon going home, the contestants all knew that their worlds were interconnected, and when brought together, were capable of feats they never thought possible. 

They couldn’t wait for the next race to start.

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