Author's Note: After rereading this fanfic recently, I've decided to rewrite it. As most of you may not know, “Feelings and Memories” was my first piece of fiction-related writing ever completed back in the year 2000. It was the first time I sat down facing the PC screen and started writing. It was the first piece of writing I published online; first in the now-dead site "hyrule-dot-com-dot-ar" then eventually posted in "fanfiction-dot-net". I would never forget that moment when I completed the first paragraph of this story. Now…after six years…my writing has gotten much better…and it wouldn't be that way if I had not had the motivation to write this story in the first place. Thank you, “Feelings and Memories”. Thanks to everyone who reviewed the old version of this story.
This story takes place a couple years after "A Link to the Past's" ending. Enjoy.
Hanging in the deep blue sky was the bright sun of a new day, sending its rays of light throughout the land and awakening its creatures from their slumber. The crystalline water of Zora's Lake warmly received some of the sun's rays, making its surface twinkle continuously almost as if hundreds of fairies were swimming in the lake. The glimmering lake followed its usual currents calmly, producing beautiful and hypnotic sounds which would remind the listener of a tropical beach. However, the Lake's 'older sibling', the Waterfall of Wishing, played a different instrument - the water raged and whooshed as it came down falling from the rocky mountains on to the calm Lake, slapping its surface hard. It was as if the Waterfall was spanking the Lake for being so quiet all its life. Moreover, this Waterfall had a brighter glimmer to it than any other part of the Lake; hence the rumors of a magical fairy domain hiding behind it. No one would dare to investigate though; the currents were just too strong one would need the Zora's own flippers to swim through.
More creatures started to join in the symphony which was started by Zora's Waterfall. The birds sang their delicate tune, the wind wailed as if it was badly hurt, the trees and grass rustled about dancing to the birds’ beat – indeed, it was a melody which soothed anyone who embraced it with open arms and ears.
Death Mountain stood in its place, towering over everything else beneath it. It was so huge that its shadow covered a most of the grassy fields when the sun reached its peak. It was said that whoever scouted this hazardous highland vanished without a trace. Ironically, that was why the hilly places of Death Mountain were terrific hideouts for bandits and thieves.
The mysterious Lost Woods remained as foggy as ever that day. Not even the sun's spears of light could pierce through that foggy shield soaring above the trees. The symphony of these woods was different from the outside world; for the moaning of the wind, the rustling of the leaves, and the hooting of the owls created a terrifying melody, threatening who tried to intrude. Nevertheless, there was only one place in these horrifying woods that was free from this curse, a place which started as one legend and through the eras turned into a different one. It was said that this sacred area was where the Great Deku Tree and Kokiri Tribe lived many centuries ago. Now, that place was known as “the Meadow of the Master Sword”, where no fog was found and light seeped through the thick leaves which hid these sacred grounds from the world. Rabbits, squirrels, birds, and dears freely wandered about; each animal giving the towering pedestal a glimpse and a nod before continuing their activities. Light shone brightly on the pedestal, signaling out the treasure of all treasures…
There it was in all its glory; the Master Sword. The blade of evil's bane left its home for a short time to aid a hero in a quest, but it came back even stronger than before. The blade itself was now of golden hue thanks to the Fat Fairy of the Dark World. Now, it could sleep easy knowing that it was the strongest relic of all, knowing that it would still remain a legend, knowing that it tasted Ganon's foul blood for one last time. Indeed, it deserved to be honored. Even the animals respected it.
The soft melody of Mother Nature continued to spread throughout the land, enlarging as time moved on.
Yes, the Kingdom of Hyrule was safe once again. The evil wizard Ganon was exiled from this beautiful earth by the slayer of evil, the courageous lad who would remain as legendary as the Master Sword itself; Link. Yes, the sound of his name struck fear in the hearts of all villains and monsters.
The Triforce, the divine relic that was the basis for Hyrule's providence, slumbered in The Sacred Realm finally free from the evil touch of Ganon and his followers. The Sacred Realm was once called the Dark World, but never again would it take that name. Gone was the Pyramid of Power, gone was Ganon's Tower, gone were all the other tainted dungeons and palaces, gone were the monsters that occupied this place. Everything was back to the way it was, for after Ganon's defeat Link claimed the power of the Triforce. He was the new master until the day he died. Yet even with a power as great as this, the green-clad hero proved to be noble and humble; all he wanted was one wish, one wish to bring back the glory days to Hyrule. He did so, and left the sacred relic to rest peacefully. The essence of the Triforce had repaid Link by granting him access to the Sacred Realm. He could come and go from the Realm anytime he wanted. He could live with kings and sages. He could live in heaven, where he would wake up each and every day and see the Triforce instead of the sun, towering upon this land and lending its golden hue to every nook and cranny. But Link refused that offer for the time being. Part of his decision was because the humbleness in his persona, yet his main reason was that he wanted to go on a journey of his own. He also wanted to spend time with everyone close to him. Unfortunately, the closet person to him, his uncle, disappeared with no word when the hero returned from his personal journey beyond Hyrule.
There he stood alone on the balcony of Hyrule Castle, reflecting on his past memories, his past life. He had never seen his parents. He fought many battles. The green-clad warrior had nobody to turn to when he was hurt physically or emotionally. It was a miracle that he was still alive…still sane…he suddenly remembered someone important who aided him through everything…
Thank you God; if I had never met Zelda, I wouldn't be the man I am today.
This was one of these moments when link reasoned with himself. Many thoughts and images lingered in his head.
I beat Ganon…so why am I still afraid? Why do I feel that this is far from over?
Why am I even thinking about him? Why is he haunting me?
Zelda changed my life; she made me realize my capabilities.
So it seems that she returned the favor…I did save her life after all. So is it supposed to be all over…do we have to part to our different paths?
But we’ve known each other for a long time. So maybe she feels differently about me now…or maybe I feel different about her?
Nah it can’t be. She’s a princess and I’m her guardian – that’s the boundaries of our relationship. All ‘extraterrestrial’ feelings must be put aside.
No, I can’t just throw my feelings away! I’m not just a guardian…I’m her hero; I’m her knight in shining armor.
…Do I love her? Does she love me?
That was the question Link could not answer. Second after second the same question circulated in his mind, halting everything else. He even felt that his whole body was going to shut down any second now. It was like a shaky bridge that could not be crossed unless someone would take the risk.
Just stop thinking about it Link, he told himself. You’re spinning in circles, going nowhere fast. I will know when the time comes…
The wind started blowing on his face, the long ends of his chestnut-brown hair fluttering about. He felt like he was floating on a cloud, heading where it would take him...and he didn't care, as long as he was alive and happy. It took him long to realize that. He smiled as he reenergized himself with newfound beliefs.
I'm on top of the world!
She entered the balcony, her face expressing concern. Her voice slashed through the images of Link's daydreaming like a sword slashing through paper. Link startled at first, but then turned slowly to face her.
"Hey Zelda…you scared me. What's wrong?"
"Nothing much…just looking for you all day. I haven't seen you for a while, you know," she said, smiling at him in delight. Link couldn't take his eyes off her. What an angelic beauty. She is the most beautiful maiden I've ever seen, Link thought.
He gazed at her azure eyes, and he kept on gazing like there was no tomorrow. Zelda blushed, as she almost understood his look - the look of amazement, the look of friendship, the look of love…which one was it?
"Are you all right, Link?" Zelda asked. She asked in wonder, hiding her feelings towards him. Her feelings were like shadows lurking in her mind; she couldn't express it to herself or to Link.
Do I love him? Does he love me?
"Sorry. I don't feel well today."
"I think your imagination is running away with you. You look fine to me. Come on. Cough it up. I know you're hiding something." She said in an amusing way.
"Ok, you win," sighed the valiant hero. "It's about my uncle...I've been having strange dreams about him. I hope he's alright…wherever he is."
Link shifted his gaze to the ground, wondering what happened to his dear uncle. He wished that he could see him one more time, but it seemed hopeless. The only way to see him was in his dreams…and that was exactly what Link had in mind…he dozed off, crossing the silver lining between reality and imagination, as he started visualizing happy memories of his time together with his uncle...
"Hey Link! Hand me the hammer will you?"
The afternoon sun was fading in the western horizon. The wind whispered unknown words. Orange joined the azure sky to formulate an unusual yet hypnotizing hue as the cottons of clouds began to dematerialize. The singing of the birds softened, and the sounds of the crickets and owls began to take over. The gentle surging of Zora's Lake became higher and higher, as if it were begging to be heard.
"Well Link; hard work does pay off after all. We finished before dark," Wil Evans panted while wiping the sweat off his forehead. He was a handsome man, chocolate brown hair with a matching beard, sparkling green eyes, thick bushy eyebrows, a chiseled face defined by elevated cheeks and a prominent strong-looking chin. He wore typical worker's clothes - Brown trousers, a pair of leather boots, and a tight sleeveless red shirt which showcased his large muscular arms. Indeed, for a man in his late thirties, he had a very fit body.
"It's a masterpiece, Uncle Wil! I don't know how you do it," the fourteen-year-old child yelled with enthusiasm.
He smiled as his energetic nephew jumped around him. "Ok you little rascal, time to go inside. It's getting dark."
Link quickly rushed inside the newly-built wooden house. Wil shifted his gaze to the deep, orange sky above him, reveries of his departed brother flashing before his eyes. I wish that you could see how happy your son is.
He entered the house, and noticed Link jumping on the bed.
"This is great, Uncle Wil! I like what you did with the furniture." The boy never felt happier in his life.
Wil sat down on a chair next to the window. Looking outside, he wondered if there was still a world out there waiting to be discovered by an adventurer, an adventurer who was willing to go the distance. Someday, I shall be Hyrule's greatest adventurer.
"Hey kid," he suddenly blurted out, breaking off his own chain of thoughts. "Bring up a chair and sit next to your uncle. I want to talk to you about something."
Link obeyed. They both stared out the window for a while in silence.
"Well uncle, what's wrong? You look troubled."
"You remind me of your father, Link. He really loved you."
"If he really loved me, then why did he leave me?" A single tear fell from his azure eyes, dropping on his lap.
"Where is he now uncle? Where is he?"
"He is in a place far, far away from here."
"Is…is he coming back?" The sad lad hesitated.
Silence was in the air once again. The uncle's emerald eyes were locked on his nephew’s sparkling azure-blue eyes, as he felt great pity for him.
"Don't let your hopes down my boy," Wil encouraged. "You're all grown up now, Link. You are a person with many skills and gifts; you have feelings, you are good with the sword, and most of all you are gifted with great courage. I'm sure everybody in Hyrule will realize what a great individual you are once you join the Knights of Hyrule and protect our land."
"I wish my father could see me now," Link said.
"Trust me lad; if your father were here, he would be very proud."
Link's frown turned into a smile. He hugged his uncle tightly.
"T-thank you, uncle Wil." Link stuttered as his eyes were shaded with tears.
Stars began to fill the jet-black sky. Suddenly, lightning struck, thunder roared, and rain started pouring hard. Wil tucked his nephew in bed, grabbed his coat from the rack, and headed straight for the door.
"Get some rest lad. I'm going out. Don't wait up for me. I won't be late." Wil said before cloaking his head and slamming the door shut.
Is he mad? Nobody in his right mind would go out now, Link thought.
"Be careful, uncle!" Link shouted, hoping that Wil heard his voice through the door and thunder.
It was all coming back to him now. He remembered when the princess contacted him telepathically…He remembered when he went to the castle…He remembered when he found the secret passage…He remembered when he found his uncle hurt…He remembered when his uncle gave him his sword and shield to fight the soldiers…He remembered when he entered the castle and saved Zelda…
...flash...Zelda's voice broke through Link's daydreaming once again. Link diverted his attention from the ground to Zelda.
"Sorry if I worried you, Zelda. I was just…lost in thought."
His childhood memories affected him very badly, as if he was still going through them. Noticing his pale face and disappointing expression, Zelda attempted to cheer him up.
"Link, I know I cannot possibly feel what you're feeling now...after all you have gone through." She started, "We all admire your courage and we still do; that is your symbol." She was determined to cheer Link up, so she continued. "Forget about the past and start thinking about your future," she said as she walked out the balcony.
Destiny was what joined Link and Zelda; they both had the same ambitions, they both had the same enemies, and they both would risk their lives to defend Hyrule. Link knew that, but in some way, he wasn't convinced. This was the first time Link was not thinking clearly.
He closed his eyes, trying to meditate; trying to fight his fears, his confusion; and most of all, trying to forget about his painful past. He was in deep thought, so deep that he visualized his uncle standing beside him, advising him to follow what his heart desired...Zelda...
Link opened his eyes, as realization finally donned upon him, brightening his face with an expression of surprise. He rushed down stairs and looked for Zelda frantically, and after a few minutes he finally found her walking in the royal garden.
"Zelda, wait!" He yelled, as he ran towards her.
When he reached her side, he immediately started to speak. "You live your life once. But if you live it well, once is only enough," he managed to say in between huffs.
Zelda was puzzled from what Link said. But before she could say something, he continued, "You were right. I wasn't thinking clearly. I didn't think of the good things in my life. My courage, my adventures, and most of all, your friendship, are very important to me. I care for you because you are a part of my life. Destiny wasn't what joined us. It was friendship."
What about beyond friendship? Link asked himself.
What if it's love? Zelda wondered.
Zelda's smiling face shone brightly as the orange sun sank down the horizon, its rays reflecting on the princess' hair, shading its color from golden to crimson-red.
She hugged Link tightly, and she would never let go, never.
"Where would I be without you, my hero?" She whispered.
"We would be lost forever without each other. I promise that I will never leave your side…I'll be there for you…as long as I live, my fair princess."
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