"Sire, Loora wishes to speak to you." A young guard informs the young man.
Ganondorf sighs, standing up from his chair. Nabooru shifts uncomfortable in her own chair. The king turns to face her.
"Stay here. She would not dare murder me. Or so I hope." He gulps, playfully.
The guard bows as he passes through the door.
"Loora?" Ganondorf asks, knocking on his caretakers door. A girl of about his age opens the door. She flushes.
" G-Good day, Sire."
" Yes, good day." He says, distracted. "Is Loora in?" The pretty girl steps aside, her purple eyes looking hurt.
" Yes, Sire. She's outside in the yard." Feeling sorry for the girl the king leans over and places a kiss on her forehead before exiting the room.
The young caretaker looks up from the fountain she's sitting on. Her lavender eyes sparkle kindly as soon as they fall upon her young charge.
" Ah, your Majesty, you have answered my call." She states, standing.
" Of course I did, Loora. How can I not?" He sits down on one of the many stone benches, placing his elbows on his knees.
" You wished to see me?" He asks, resting his head on his hands.
" Yes I did." Loora says, remaining standing. " It is about time to choose the girls for the Confirmation. Do you remember what that is?"
Ganondorf sighs, lifting his head. " Yes, Loora. It happens about every hundred years. A group of Gerudos are picked to go to the sacred Spirit Temple to make their vows and to take the veil." He states, blandly.
"Correct. It has been about a hundred years, so we must choose." Ganondorf nods his head, patiently.
"Sheraa, bring paper, ink, and a pen!" Loora orders.
The young Gerudo Ganondorf had seen earlier enters the courtyard, carrying the said articles. She places them on one of the stone tables near the king. She smiles at him, shyly, before leaving. The young man sends the smiling Loora a disgusted look.
" Really, Loora." He groans, rolling his strange eyes.
Loora ignores his comment and picks up the pen.
" Now let's see..." She pauses. " I believe that Ayla will be a good Prioress."
"Certainly. She is calm and well natured. She will be a grand leader."
"Then there's Asrai."
"Yes, she has been talking about this for weeks now."
"Then there is that girl who guards the training ground.
What's her name?"
The two continue to discuss the subject, until they get about fourteen names.
" One more should do it." Loora states.
"Let me think..." She pauses. " Nabooru." She remarks, quietly.
"What!?" Ganondorf whispers, his eyes growing wide.
"Yes, that young girl will be perfect. She's very good at adjusting and she can get along with anyone." Loora rambles, ignoring her charge.
Ganondorf stands up, abruptly. " Loora, no!" He states harshly. Loora looks up at him with surprise.
"Never! You will kill her!" The king states. His orange eyes cast their endless gaze upon the young woman. "Loora, how could you ever suggest such a thing?" He whispers.
"I think she should go." Loora remarks, regaining herself. " Besides, you two spend too much time together. She may become a bad influence."
" A bad influence!? Think a minute, Loora! Nabooru, a bad influence?"
Loora picks up the pen and faces her charge. " You know that as soon as I trace her name upon this paper there is no way you can get her out of this."
Ganondorf's gentle eyes fill with tears involuntarily. "
Loora; Mother, please!" He begs.
Loora stops. " Mother?" She questions, her eyes suddenly shinning.
" Yes, Mother! I will call you anything. Just don't make her go!"
Loora looks at him coldly. She dips the pen in the ink well.
Ganondorf resorts to begging. "Loora, I beseech you, do not make her go! You will ruin her spirit."
With a flourish, Loora traces her name upon the paper.
Ganondorf moans, falling to his knees involuntarily.
" Loora..." He croaks.
"That is enough girls. They shall leave at the end of the month." Loora states, completely ignoring the boy on the ground. She stands up and exits the yard.
Ganondorf sinks down, his head in his hands. He knows her fate is sealed.
" The king and I have decided that the we shall send fifteen girls to the Spirit Temple..." Loora drones on.
A large group of Gerudos swarm around the stone dais on which Loora was standing. A large throne sits behind her, in which Ganondorf, in his finery, sits, slumped over. His orange eyes have lost their shinning intensity, they have become dull. His eyes wander across the crowd, not looking for anyone in particular. His sad eyes come upon Nabooru, who looks at him with concern. The king lowers them quickly. He had not dared to talk to her since that awful day; only a half a week ago.
"Ayla, you shall be the Prioress." The young Gerudo known as Ayla steps upon the dais. She bows before the king and his caretaker. Loora smiles at her pleasantly. She continues.
"Your fellow priestesses shall be Asrai, Eliorilwen, Eldawen," She pauses, all the girls stepping up when she announces their name. " Rhianna, Danna, Mebril, Curila, Eludia, Nydith, Galunia, Elvenwen, Fandra, Ganalyn, and..." she pauses again, as the girls filter onto the dais. Ganondorf closes his eyes; wishing he could disappear. "... and, Nabooru." Loora finishes.
Ganondorf clenches his teeth to keep from uttering a word, as a murmur washes through he crowd. He opens his eyes and watches his friend mount the dais. She bows to Loora civilly. Then she turns towards the King, a look of confusion on her face. The young king gives her a helpless look, sinking deeper into his chair. She bows and steps next to her other sisters.
"You shall be leaving for the temple at the end of this month. Your practice shall take you at least five to six years at least." She places her hand on Ayla's shoulder. " I believe you shall make one of the best Prioresses we've ever had. You shall learn all the regulations from Priestess Galadia." Loora points to an elderly Gerudo dressed in the garb of the Gerudo Priestesses. A white, beaded, shoulder-less top with white, wide harem pants, over which she wears a loose fitting, white mantilla.
"You may all go now. Be here at this time, in a month."
Loora motions to Ganondorf, who stands somewhat machine-like. The caretaker hands every girl their own mantilla and sends them over to the King. Ganondorf congratulates them as they pass, half-heartedly. All the girls bow and smile, as is a usually display. When it's Nabooru's turn, Ganondorf lowers his eyes. He takes her hand and presses to his lips, placing a note between her fingers.
Nabooru walks to her room, smiling and nodding at all the praise granted from the other Gerudos. As soon as she enters and shuts the door, the young Gerudo pulls the note out of her pocket. She unfolds it. It says:
Nabooru, meet me in the Sanctuary as soon as possible.
There is much I need to tell you. I just hope I can.
Singed- Ganondorf Dragmire.
Nabooru crumples the paper in her fist. She throws it on the bed and hurries out the door. Ganondorf barely writes her notes, he usually asks her in person. There had to be something of importance.
As she walks down the hall a thought creeps into her mind. It had to be his fault she was chosen. He must have suggested it. Maybe he hated her.
Nabooru scolds herself. How could she ever think of that. Yet the evil thought remains in the back of her mind as she starts to run down the hall.
" Nabooru, wait!" A voice shouts after her. Nabooru pivots around and stares at he young Gerudo behind her. The girl stops running and her blue eyes grow wide.
" Nabooru, do you know why you were chosen?" The younger girl asks, hurriedly.
" No I don't, Malakili. " She starts to walk again. " I'm going to find out."
The young girl bounds after her. " You have to know something." She protests.
" Mala, I told you I don't, so I don't." Nabooru snaps.
" Fine." Malakili states shortly, turning away. Nabooru stops.
" Wait, I didn't mean it!" She yells. The young girl ignores her, turning the corner. Nabooru sighs, continuing on her way.
" I have to talk to my friend before I go." She mumbles.
Nabooru stops in front of the two story Sanctuary. This is one of the King's favorite places, since everyone leaves him alone. Nabooru sighs. He had told her that years ago.
She pushes the large door open slowly. It is dark in the room; all of the window curtains are draw. Nabooru descends the eight steps leading to the floor of the slightly below ground Sanctuary.
This room is one of the most beautiful in the whole fortress. The ceiling is a dome of gold, special, brightly colored Gerudo pictures carved into it. Large tapestries line the walls. The floor is marble with a thin velvet carpet covering it. Gerudo designs are caved into the gilded walls. Large arched windows with thick velvet curtains allow little light to enter.. Engravings of the almighty Triforce adorn the walls, but the biggest one is engraved in the marble floor. An altar stands at its tip. In the middle of the Triforce is a small velvet covered bench.
" Ganondorf?" She questions. No answer, only an eerie silence. " You wanted me to be here, remember?" The young girl ventures. Still no answer.
Nabooru steps towards a window and throws back the blind. The blinding desert sun sweeps into the room, illuminating everything. No king.
Nabooru drops the blind and charges out of the room. Her worst fear had come true. He had already forgotten her. Choking back tears she hurries down the lonely hall.
" Nabooru!" A familiar voice shouts. Nabooru doesn't stop. She hears someone run up behind her. "Nabooru, please." The young girl swerves around and comes face to face with Ganondorf.
" It seems you did remember." She remarks, bitterly.
" Loora kept me." The young king states, slowly.
" You wanted...?" Nabooru asks, gruffly.
" I-I wanted to...e-explain." The king stutters, quietly.
" Go ahead."
" Well...you see..." Ganondorf stutters.
" You're not doing a very good job, Sire." Nabooru remarks coolly , starting off again. Ganondorf grabs her arm and turns her around.
" Come, with me and we can talk about this."
" Talking won't do me any good. I'm going anyhow." Nabooru snaps, shrugging off his hand. She turns to leave.
" Nabooru, listen to me!" The kings voice is harsh. Nabooru turns around in surprise. Ganondorf glances at her earnestly.
" I did not want you to go. I still do not. It was not my choice, it was Loora's. She is the one."
Nabooru glares at him. "You could have stopped her."
" I tried; I truly did. I even resorted to pleading. Yet that woman is made of steal and cares nothing for you or me." The young king finishes bitterly.
Nabooru snorts. " How come I doubt you did anything. You probably asked her too." She pauses. "Besides, from your conduct today it seems you've already forgotten about me. Besides, you'll be better off..." The young girl's voice cracks. "...without me." The young girl turns away violently. She runs off down the hall .
" Nabooru!" Ganondorf calls after her. Nabooru ignores him. She runs around the corner of the long hall and sinks to the floor.
"Nabooru, please." Ganondorf's voice pleads. " Please reconsider." Receiving no answer he tries again. " Nabooru..." His voice trails off.
Surprised at this change of events, the young Gerudo peeks around the wall. Ganondorf's figure stands alone in the large hall. His head is bowed slightly, eyes closed. He looks miserable.
Nabooru stands up. She can't stand seeing him like this no matter how hard she tries.
"Ganondorf, I..." She starts, stepping towards her friend. The young man looks up, his orange eyes dull. He waves her apology away with a gesture, opening the door to the Sanctuary.
"I'm sorry." He whispers, before disappearing through the door.
" An intruder!" A voice screams. The young king starts up from his kneeling position and hurries from the Sanctuary. A guard meets him outside.
" Sire, an rider approaches the fortress. He appears to be male, thin and of medium height. He carries no weapons that I see, yet he carries a pack. He rides at a good speed, heading straight for the fortress."
" He must be insane." Ganondorf mumbles, dismissing the guards. Pushing his other thought away, he heads for the Throne room. Guards pile into the large room.
The throne room is the largest room in the whole fortress. A large balcony overshadows a large dais, on which sits the king's golden throne. Windows line the walls, reaching floor to ceiling; heavy velvet curtains, trimmed with gold, are strung up beside them to add color, tied with gold rope. Tapestries add color to the walls, while a thin red carpet adds to the marble floor and dais.
"Ah, Sire, there you are!" Isabelle, a guard, shouts from across the room. She scurries across the floor over to him.
" Do we have him?" Ganondorf asks, coldly.
" Yes, we have him locked up." The Gerudo informs.
" Clear the room and have him brought here." Ganondorf orders, turning towards his throne.
"Are you insane? It could be a assignation attempt or something!" Isabelle shouts, over the noise. Ganondorf turns back to her.
" I can defend myself, can I not?"
" Then do what I asked."
" Yes, Sire!" The young girl shouts. " Everyone, OUT!" She screams, running off. The King smiles, wryly.
" Your Majesty." The pretty Gerudo says, bowing. Ganondorf turns around and smiles, disclosing to them thirty-two magnificently white teeth.
" Ah, it is you, Malakili. I thought I told Isabelle to do it." He states, his smile disappearing.
" Well, she became busy, Sire." The guard pushes the stranger forward. " Here's the prisoner."
Ganondorf takes one look at the strange, then he turns to Malakili. " Bring some water and a change of clothes."
Ganondorf motions towards the door. " Go on, you can do it." The pretty guard disappears.
The stranger shrinks back as soon as he realizes he is alone with the king. Ganondorf sits down, scrutinizing the stranger.
The man is pale with shoulder length dark hair and piercing emerald eyes. He wears a dark blue tunic, which is in poor condition. His slender fingers, on one hand, are wrapped around his cap, the others wrapped around his pack, with the grip of a drowning man. He is trembling slightly, as if deathly afraid. He stands about 5'8"and seems to be about twenty years of age.
" Your name?" The young king, question, softly.
" A-Ailian." The poor man stutters.
"You come from?"
" H-Hyrule, your M-Majesty. "
" And what is you business here?"
" I-I don't know." The man states, slowly. " I really don't know."
A small smiles creeps onto Ganondorf lips. He stands. " Well ,since you do not have anything of importance to do, let me speak to you." He steps down from the wide dais.
" You come from Hyrule with no business, correct?"
" Yes, My Lord."
" Or so you state. " He bends down to the older man's level. " I believe you had business."
" Y-You do?" The young man, sputters.
" Yes, you were committing suicide."
The young man drops everything. " H-How..." He gasps. The King stands up to his full height.
" What has made you so unhappy?"
" Why should I t..." The young man stops himself. Ganondorf places his hand on Ailian's shoulder.
" If you wish you may stay here. I could use a manservant." Ailian's eyes light up. " Yet, on one condition." The young man frowns.
" Which is?"
The king smiles. " That you not be afraid of me. I am no different." He laughs. " Besides, I am younger than you." The young servant laughs.
" Isn't that grand."
" Ailian, you must tell me more about yourself." Ganondorf states, sitting down.
" Sire?" Malakili's voice asks, timidly, from the doorway.
" Bring it in." The young girl comes in and hands the articles to Ailian. She smiles shyly.
" Let it be known that the young King has earned a servant." Ganondorf remarks, smilingly. Ailian bows to the girl, who laughs.
" You always make fine choices, My Lord." The young girl inclines her head. " I shall spread the word." With a last smile at Ailian the young girl leaves.
" As I said before, Ailian. You must tell me about yourself." Ganondorf starts again, as the two watch Malakili leave. Ailian turns quickly.
" No, no, Sire, you first."
Ganondorf rolls his eyes. " There is not much about me you cannot read in our never ending history book."
" Sire, I-I cannot read."
" That is no problem. Can you write?"
"No." Ailian remarks, timidly.
" Then you shall learn. I will ask sister Malakili to teach you; since you two seem to get along." The young king smiles. Ailian blushes, slightly.
"Hmm...oh, well there is not much about me either." Ailian states, hastily.
" Then why did you commit suicide?" The Gerudo asks, quietly. Ailian hangs his head.
" I-I was born to two Hylians as their first child."
"Hylians?" The king questions.
" Ye- well, no." Ailian whispers.
" Sheikahs, then?"
" Yes, Sire."
" Did you know that Gerudos and the Sheikahs have a thick rivalry for each other?" Ganondorf questions.
Ailian's eyes grow wide." N-No."
" But it is nothing to worry about. I do not believe in it." The Gerudo whispers, smilingly. " You need not be ashamed of your race, Ailian. I will not judge you on that." Ailian's thin lips curl into a smile.
" Continue with your story. I am most interested.' The king remarks, resting his elbow on the gilded arm of is chair, placing his head on his hand.
Ailian gulps. " As I told you before I'm the eldest son in my family."
" Well..." Ailian pauses, then breaks down , saying the rest quickly. " My father got rid of my mother as soon as he got all the children he wanted out of her. Workers for his farm where of want, so my siblings and I became some. He put me to work as soon as I became the age of five. I worked for years, my father treating me like I was nothing. I got fed up with it and attempted to run away; each time I got caught and beaten by my own father. Until the other day. My father had sent me to do some work on the road leading to the farm. I attacked my supervisor and fled. Not knowing what to do, I ran to the market place. There I heard of your people and how they kill intruders. I decided to end my troubles, so I came here." Ailian takes a deep breath, letting his head fall.
" What horror." Ganondorf whispers. He stands up and places a hand on Ailian's shoulder. " I never knew people where such monsters. I have lived a sheltered live."
Ailian smiles, shakily. " Yet, I believe that my life will shape up, young master."
Ganondorf casts down his eyes, his mind racing back to his private thoughts. " I do hope so, Ailian. I do."
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