This is a prequel to my Ocarina of Time series “Link Meets His Darkness.” Its existence is purely to add depth to the story and a few of the characters back stories I felt weren’t explored thoroughly enough. It will not be written in first-person like the rest of the series and the main character and narrator from that series will only be mentioned briefly on a few occasions. It’s going to be a little different (and hopefully better) than the actual series itself. I also hope it helps to make the entire series better than it is right now (I’m actually not too fond of it. Can you tell?). Anyway, that’s it. Thank you for reading this and anything else of mine.
“I will only ask you once more. Leave us in peace. My son and I mean you no harm. We were merely passing through. We will leave without trouble if you will not follow.”
The man who spoke was brandishing an old, heavily damaged, sword. He stood in a defensive position; standing protectively over the boy he had called his son. The boy, who was only six years old, looked on with fear in his eyes. But he wore an angry look. He wanted to be brave for his guardian. The situation he looked upon was not exactly a good one.
He and his guardian had travelled outside of their village called Verul. They were on a trip to the Hyrule Castle Town Market. The trip required them to pass by the
. The danger of being robbed was supposed to be reduced unless one actually crossed fully into the valley. But the Gerudos were growing more aggressive, almost as much as they had been five years earlier, having caused outright war across the kingdom. Gerudo Valley
The man and the boy had been ambushed by a group of Gerudos and were surrounded quickly by five women. They were all clearly well trained warriors and they all held deadly looking scimitars that glistened in the sunlight. The man had immediately drawn his old broadsword, though he had little idea of how to use it.
The Gerudo leading the others spoke up. She stood off to their right.
“I already told you, trespassing will cost you. Pay the toll or be punished.”
“My son and I have nothing but what must be spent at the market. We will starve without it.”
“That means nothing to us. You trespass, you pay.”
“We aren’t even within your lands! We are only passing by!” the man shot back, angrily.
“If you won’t pay, you will be punished.”
The man stood stock still for a moment. There was no good way out of this situation. If he gave up their money, they would starve and the boy could die. If he didn’t, they would be attacked and likely both be killed. He had made a promise to himself to protect this boy and all youth from harm and he wasn’t about to break it. He had to make a decision. He reached down into his pouch and pulled out a small bag of rupees.
“A wise decision, traveller” the lead Gerudo said.
The man held the wallet in his hand and hesitated.
“What is the meaning of this? Hand it over!” the lead Gerudo said, impatiently.
The man turned to the boy and looked him in the eye. The boy stared back and the two shared a fearful glance as they both knew what was coming. The man turned and threw the wallet as far as he could and then suddenly leapt at the lead Gerudo, flailing his sword at her.
“Run, Joran!” he shouted as he leapt forward.
The boy took off in the direction of the wallet and picked it up as he ran by. He then turned and headed back toward their home village. The Captain of the Hylian Knights, a man named Guran, would still be there, having visited his guardian earlier that day. He could get his help.
The Gerudos reacted to the most immediate threat as their leader was being attacked by the man. The leader jumped back as the man leapt at them.
“Fools, one of you get after the boy!”
The man heard this and saw one Gerudo split off from the group. He immediately ran after her and cut her off, lowering his shoulder into hers. As he connected, they both fell to the ground in a heap. The Gerudo was agile and got up faster than the man had. She turned to bring her sword down on him but he quickly rolled out of the way and jumped up nearly as quickly as the Gerudo had. But he was wary to do battle with this Gerudo.
He was friends with Captain Guran but he had only learned basic defensive techniques from him. Plus, he would soon have four other Gerudos to contend with. But he had long since resolved to hold them off until Joran had reached safety.
“That was not a wise thing to do, traveller” the Gerudo said.
“I will not let my son starve and I certainly won’t let him be killed by filthy thieves.”
She was quickly upon him as he blocked the first blow, but the Gerudo’s swiftness was on full display with the next two blows and one sliced into the man’s shoulder and the other caught him in the chest as he tried to leap back.
“You’re overmatched. You’d best surrender now and we’ll let our king decide what to do with you and your boy.”
“You will not take my son!”
The man lunged at the Gerudo but she stepped aside deftly and tripped him as he moved forward. He fell to the ground on his stomach. He quickly rolled to the side again and heard the Gerudo’s scimitar strike the ground as she thrust it toward him. He quickly stood up to face her and felt his heart drop when he did. The other four Gerudos had reached the other and were standing in front of him. The leader stepped forward.
“That was a brave display, traveller. But it will cost you dearly. Once we track down the boy, you will come with us to the valley. Our king shall decide your fate from there.”
The man looked her in the eye but said nothing. He knew he would die if he went with them and he would die if he continued fighting. At least he stood a chance of protecting Joran if he fought.
“Drop your weapon” the lead Gerudo said.
The man continued glaring at her as she issued her ultimatum.
“I said drop it.”
Still, he would not move. He continued his hard glare. He would protect his son.
“Fine. Kill him.”
The four moved toward him and attacked all at once. The leader simply looked on, impatiently. The man attempted to defend himself, but as he did, two scimitars struck his sword and it shattered into several pieces. A shard flew backwards and caught him just above his left eye on his forehead, leaving a third wound on his body. His sword was now a third of the length it had previously been. Adding to that, blood streamed from the cut on his head into his left eye and he could no longer see out of it.
He could not stop to wipe the blood away as the Gerudos slashed away at him. His broken sword was able to stop them from further wounding him. He continually backed away and was far quicker than the Gerudos had anticipated. They tried surrounding him but he was still quick enough to move away. If not for his lack of sword skill, it would have been a fair fight because of his sheer speed.
At last, the lead Gerudo had had enough and drew her scimitar and got behind the man. He kept backing up and she waited, patiently. He would soon reach her and she would run her scimitar through his back. Just as her group readied their attack again, they heard a sound in the distance and they all stopped.
The man used this opportunity to wipe the blood from his eye and survey his surroundings. He noticed the lead Gerudo behind him and quickly moved aside so he had them all in front of him. As he held his broken sword in front of him, he noticed that the Gerudos did not pursue. They had stopped to listen to something. The lead Gerudo ran over to the others and said something to them in a strange language. She then turned to the man.
“You get free passage this time, traveller. But if we cross paths again, I will kill you myself.”
“I look forward to that day, madam” he said, sarcastically.
The Gerudos then disappeared quickly and the man was left alone in Hyrule Field. He then heard the sound the Gerudos had heard. The hooves of a single horse. He could not distinguish the sound from any other running horse but when he saw who was coming, he understood why they had run. Captain Guran was riding toward him with Joran sitting behind him.
Captain Guran was revered by all for his fighting skill. He had been trained under the tutelage of the great Captain Harik, a man widely regarded as the greatest warrior Hyrule had ever seen. Guran was so revered because he was the only man who had ever bested Harik. Harik challenged many of his knights to fight him in non-lethal duels and Guran was the only man to ever win one of these duels. He was Harik’s Lieutenant before Harik and his family were killed in a raid by Gerudos in their own home.
It was incidents like this that caused the war on the Gerudos as they attempted to kidnap many of the children of the kingdom. Their intent was to raise them as soldiers to conquer Hyrule.
Guran became greatly saddened and enraged at Harik’s death and soon after he became Captain, he hunted down and killed as many Gerudos as he could. It was his ambition that helped to drive the Gerudos back and is what led to their ultimate defeat. As a result, he won praise and respect from the other races in Hyrule. The Gorons and their patriarch, Darunia, in particular were impressed so much so that Darunia declared Guran a Sworn Brother to himself and the Gorons for as long as they both would live. But the Gerudos both hated and feared Guran. Because of that fear, they avoided crossing paths with him at all costs.
Guran reached the man with Joran sitting behind him and stopped his horse upon getting there. He got off the horse and helped young Joran to the ground as well.
, your son reached me and told me you were being attacked. Are you all right?” Kiel
“In spite of my wounds, I feel much better now” he said with a smile to Guran.
“I’m just glad you’re not in any worse shape,
. Come on let’s get you to Kiel . We need to get those cuts looked after.” Castle Town
“Of course, Guran.”
to his horse and helped him climb on the back, just behind the saddle. Guran then helped Joran onto the front of the horse and climbed up himself, just behind the boy. Kiel
“Hang on to me,
. And don’t worry about Joran, I’ve got him.” Kiel
“Thank you, Guran.”
Captain Guran then snapped the reins of his horse and they took off for
. Hyrule Castle Town
It took a while but
received proper treatment for his wounds and he had fully healed. He wouldn’t be without a few scars, though. The wound on his forehead he received from his own shattered sword would remain a scar for the rest of his days. Kiel
Guran took care of Joran at his house in
where Joran met his daughter, Zelda. Castle Town
progressed, Guran would visit the hospital with Joran every day. When Kiel was finally allowed to leave, he was grateful to see Joran again. When he met the boy, he noticed something odd. Joran was happy to see him but seemed confused as to why Kiel was in the hospital to begin with. Kiel
“What’s happened to you, my boy? Is something wrong?”
“I’m afraid he remembers nothing of this little excursion. I haven’t the slightest idea why. Perhaps it’s from the shock of seeing you injured,
” Guran said in response. Kiel
“You may be right, Guran. I think we should head home to Verul now.”
“I shall accompany you. Those Gerudos have been acting strange again, lately.”
“All right that sounds fine. But there is something I would discuss with you when we get back.”
“Why not discuss it here?”
looked down at Joran with a worried expression. “I have my reasons, Captain.” Kiel
The two retrieved some horses from Guran’s stable and they rode off for Verul.
When they returned, night had fallen and
put Joran to bed. Then, he stepped outside and met with Captain Guran. When he saw Guran, the Captain was holding a small satchel in his hand. Kiel
“Before your discussion,
, I have something to give you.” Kiel
Guran tossed him the satchel and
found it surprisingly heavy. Kiel
“What is this?”
“I know you worry that you won’t be able to take care of your boy,
. Well, worry no more, my friend.” Kiel
looked at Guran, puzzled, and opened the satchel. His eyes widened as he gazed upon a veritable rainbow of rupees tucked inside this satchel. Kiel
said “what is this about?” Kiel
“You need help,
. It is part of my duty to help those in need. Your need is great, so I provide a solution.” Kiel
stared at the satchel a moment and then tossed it back at Guran, who caught it. Kiel
“We’ll be fine, Guran. I don’t need you to take pity on me. I need something different from you.”
Guran was a little taken aback by this, but decided to accept
’s decision. Kiel
“Very well. What is it you need of me then?”
“I am rather inept with a sword; I need you to teach me how to fight.”
“What? Why would you want to do that? Are you trying to become a knight?”
“I would if it didn’t carry such a glamorous title. All I want to do is protect the innocent, particularly my son. I don’t need a ridiculous title to do that.”
Kiel, the honor that is carried with such a title is the greatest that-“ interrupted him. Kiel
“Guran, I would love to be a knight; it was a dream of mine as a boy. But now, I realize that I would hate having such a glamorous title. I hate all the attention that is paid to people like that. I like being hidden in the background.”
“You could always change your name or something.”
Guran had wanted
to consider being a knight for quite some time. Kiel had the right sort of instinct and had demonstrated his strength and speed on numerous occasions. All he needed to know was how to fight. Kiel
“Guran, I don’t want to be knighted. I just want the means to protect my son.”
. I shall train you. But we must do so in secret. I’m not allowed to train anyone who isn’t going to be a knight. If any of the knights found out, they’d report me to the king. And I’m not up for losing my title, even if you think it’s silly.” Kiel
“That sounds fine, Guran. Thank you.”
“You are quite welcome,
. Shall we begin?” Kiel
“No one else is about. It would be the perfect time to start. Here, I’ve got a spare sword.”
Guran walked over to his horse and detached a sword and sheath from the saddle. He then walked back to
and handed it to him. Kiel
“This sword is yours now,
. Are you ready to earn it?” Kiel
unsheathed the thing and stared at it for a good long time. It was an oddly coloured sword. It was a bronze colour and the hilt and handle were coloured orange. Kiel
“It’s beautiful, Guran. Why the strange colours?”
“It was my wife who suggested it. She wanted a sword that reminded her of autumn, her favourite season. She wanted to hang it in our house as a decoration. I made sure that the smith made it strong enough to use in battle, though. It’s never a bad idea to have a spare sword. She died only two months after it was made.”
“I decided to carry it with me to remind me of her but it only caused me to remember her death. I know she’d be happy to learn that it would go on to be the weapon of a child’s protector. It should bring you better luck than it brought me.”
“You’re giving me a cursed sword?”
“It’s not cursed,
. It is blessed by my wife. I know it may seem like I act like it’s cursed, but I need to move on from the pain of losing my wife. I need to remember her life, not her death. You also need a new sword. Yours was broken, correct?” Kiel
“She knew of you,
. She respected you very highly and would be proud to give you her sword. This one shall guard and protect both you and your son.” Kiel
looked at the sword again. Kiel
“You’re right, Guran. I’m sorry I doubted you. Thank you for this.”
“You are quite welcome,
. Let us go and we’ll see just how you’re going to use it.” Kiel
Long into the night, Guran taught
everything he needed to know on how to use the sword. They practiced on an old dead tree behind their house. Kiel
hoped he wouldn’t wake Joran. He didn’t want Joran to grow up with a life of fighting. The boy had had a hard enough life as it was. But Joran did hear the two of them outside and watched Kiel admirably through the window. Kiel
was a fast learner and had already impressed Guran with his skills. Kiel
“Before we finish” Guran said “there is one more thing we should do.”
Guran then distanced himself from
and drew his sword. Kiel
“I would like you to spar with me. We need to put those skills to the test.”
almost laughed when he heard this. Kiel
“Spar with you? Do you honestly think I am ready for that? You’re surely joking.”
, I am not joking. You have amazing natural skill. Spar with me and we shall conclude for the night. I will be back tomorrow, but I will not stop training you until you can best me.” Kiel
“That’s not going to happen, Guran.”
“I wouldn’t have believed it myself at first, but you have shown enough natural skill that you will become a better swordsman than me.”
“No, that’s not possible. You bested Harik. No one has ever beaten you.”
“In time, you shall be the first.”
thought it strange that Guran was giving him this vote of confidence. Kiel
“I guess if you believe I can, then I should as well.”
“Come at me, then” Guran replied.
The two men met and their swords clashed against each other again and again. It was evident, though, that
would not best Guran on this night. Kiel was fast and eager, but Guran was measured and experienced. Kiel
did was quickly countered by Guran. But the duel lasted longer than any Guran had ever experienced, with the exception of his duel with Harik. Kiel
Kielattacked once more, Guran made one swift motion and with a flick of his wrist, ’s sword was dislodged from his hand and fell to the ground. Guran pointed his sword at Kiel ’s chest. Kiel
“Well fought, but you still lack experience.”
Guran sheathed his sword and then retrieved
’s for him. He handed Kiel his sword. Kiel
“I’ll be back tomorrow night,
. Be ready.” Kiel
“I will be, Guran.”
The captain then walked to the front of
’s house and mounted his horse. Kiel followed behind and saw Guran off. He then went to open the door when he nearly tripped over something. He looked at the ground and lying on the doorstep was Guran’s satchel of rupees. Kiel bent down to pick it up. He held it in his hand then turned around in the direction Guran had gone. Kiel
“Damn you, you stubborn mule. But thank you” he muttered.
He carried the satchel inside and closed the door behind him.
At the castle, the mood was far more grim. The Knights of Hyrule convened in their hall without their captain. Guran was still travelling back after helping
. The Lieutenant, a man named Phineas, was addressing the rest of the Knights. They were discussing the king, named Ridlef, who had fallen into poor health. He was showing no signs of progress and had even had his condition worsen over time. Kiel
His story was a bit of a tragic one. He had no family left and thus, no heir to the throne. His only son was killed when he tried to help in the fight against the Gerudos and his wife had died of an unknown illness less than seven months prior. He never wanted any advisors so none had ever been appointed. Therefore, they all knew who was next in line for the throne. The one man who would take the throne should the king be unable to recover was not present at the time, however. Their hearts were heavy because they were fiercely loyal to their king.
Most of them were, anyway. There was at least one man who couldn’t have cared in the slightest. All he wanted was to hopefully become the king himself one day. He didn’t care what happened along the way, he simply craved power. This man’s name was Toro Beldar. He was a good knight and did what he was told, but he was very cold and abrasive with the other knights.
“I assume you all know what I am going to bring up” Lieutenant Phineas said, addressing the men in the room.
He saw various heads nodding throughout the room.
“This is very difficult for me to talk about, but it’s just something that seems inevitable. The great King Ridlef remains in poor health and I have been informed that in his current state, recovery seems a very slim possibility. It has been estimated that he may be dead before the week is out.”
Some of the knights bowed their heads at this news. They had not expected it so soon.
“We can only pray to the gods that he does not leave us that soon, but if he does, then we know what will happen after that. Our Captain, Guran, shall be next in line to be king with his daughter, Zelda.”
A young man, who had only been knighted that very month, an eighteen-year-old boy named Jon, raised his hand.
“Sir Jon, you have a question?” Phineas asked.
“Yes, Lieutenant. If we all know this already, then why are we discussing it?”
“Sir Jon, I bring this up because once Captain Guran becomes our new king, he shall have to appoint a new Captain of the Hylian Knights. Now, we must remind everyone that we are not to try and “compete” for Guran’s favour. That is not our duty. He will choose a Captain based on who he believes is the best man for the job.”
He paused for a moment and looked straight to the back of the room where a man in black armor leaned up against the wall. Toro looked up and saw the Lieutenant’s eyes boring into him. Phineas had seen Toro show his true colours in the past and saw the lust for power in his eyes. He knew that Toro would try something to get Guran to pick him as the next Captain.
“I just want to reiterate that we are all brothers here. We shall not act as enemies during this difficult time. If anything, it should only strengthen our resolve. We should be strong for our king until his final hour.”
“A fine speech, Phineas” came the deep voice from the door way.
Every knight in the room turned to look in the direction the voice had come from. Standing in the door was Captain Guran.
“You’ve always had a way with words, Lieutenant.”
“Captain Guran, it is good to see you have returned” Phineas replied.
“It is good to see you all as well, my brothers.”
Guran strode through the hall and stepped up to the front and stood next to Phineas. As soon as he got to the front, another young knight, named Colin, raised his hand.
“Sir Colin, what have you to say?”
The boy, who was only eighteen himself, was still rather shy and was wary to ever speak in front of the other knights. But he decided to speak his mind.
“Captain Guran, I just want to say that, no matter what, I shall be loyal to the Hylian Knights no matter who the Captain or the King is. My support goes with all of us.”
“Well said, Colin. Thank you for you kind words.”
The Captain smiled at Colin, and he managed to smile back.
“I think we could all use a good night’s rest. So, this meeting is adjourned. Thank you for coming, my brothers, and I apologize for being so late.”
The knights began filing out of the meeting hall until only Guran, Phineas, and Toro were left. Toro approached the Lieutenant after everyone left the room.
“I saw the way you were looking at me, you know. Do you really think I’m that petty?”
“Sir Toro, I will not discuss this right now. Please, for both our sakes, leave this alone until tomorrow at least.”
Guran stepped between them.
“What is this about, Phineas?”
“I think Toro is a little self-conscious, Captain.”
Toro was angered by this and grabbed Phineas by the scruff of the neck and pulled him closer.
“You’d best watch your tongue, Lieutenant! I think it is clear which of us is the better warrior and you don’t want to get on the wrong side of me!”
Guran again stepped between them, pulling Toro off of the Lieutenant.
“Toro, that’s enough. Go home, both of you. I will not have fighting and bickering amongst the Knights of Hyrule. Is that clear gentlemen?”
“Yes sir, Captain” Toro said, glaring at Phineas. He then turned and walked angrily out of the hall, slamming the door behind him.
“Well, Lieutenant? Is that clear?” Guran said when Toro had gone.
“Of course, Captain. That’s exactly what I was saying earlier.”
“Yes, I heard you. But you did antagonize Toro when it was not needed.”
“I’m sorry, Guran. It’s just that my trust in him has been dwindling with each passing day. I hate to say it, but I question the king’s decision at knighting that fool.”
“Toro is no fool, Phineas. He is a fine warrior and a good knight. He may be a little callous but he has always fought by our side.”
Phineas sighed and shook his head.
“Captain, surely you’ve seen it in his eyes.”
“That lust for power. Anytime anyone mentions the king or you of late, he gets this look in his eye” Phineas said, pointing to his own eyes with two fingers. “It is a hungry, dangerous look and I don’t like where it may lead him.”
“Toro is ambitious, Phineas. We knew that when he was first knighted. He strives to be the Captain someday and that kind of ambition has got to be admired.”
Phineas shook his head again. Sometimes Guran can be too trusting, he thought to himself.
“I admire your kindness and loyalty, Guran.”
“I think you should head home now, Lieutenant.”
Phineas saluted the captain and then walked out of the meeting hall. Guran followed suit and closed the door. He then headed for his home in
. Castle Town
The next night, Guran met with
again. They met behind Kiel ’s house in Verul once more. After another sparring session that ended with Guran once again being victorious, Kiel wanted to ask something. Kiel
“Guran, I know of the situation with the king. I know that you will be his successor.”
, that is true. But why do you speak of that?” Kiel
“I must know, what will become of this? My training? I can only assume that you would have no more time for me as the king of Hyrule.”
, I assure you, we will complete your training. I will make time. You deserve my help and I intend to help you until you no longer need it.” Kiel
“Thank you, captain. Although I guess I’d better start calling you ‘your highness’.”
“Not yet you don’t,
. I do not look forward to the day when I will have to take the throne after the passing of the great King Ridlef. I can only hope that, by some miracle, that day never comes. Good night, Kiel . I shall see you again tomorrow.” Kiel
“Good night, Captain.”
Guran made his way over to his horse and climbed up, taking off out of the village.
entered his house again, closing the door behind him. When he got in, he noticed Joran staring at him. Kiel
“Joran, what are you doing up? I think you should go back to bed, young man.”
“What are you doing,
?” the boy asked. Kiel
“What do you mean? The Captain has been checking up on us for the past few nights. It’s nothing important.”
“What about that new sword?”
looked to his side and noticed he was still wearing the sword on his belt. Kiel
“Did the Captain give it to you?”
“Yes, Joran. He gave me a new sword because the other one broke. I guess you still don’t remember that?”
The boy shook his head. He lowered his head and stared at the ground for a moment. He then raised his head again and looked straight into
’s eyes. Kiel
“Will you teach me to use a sword someday?”
“I would, Joran, but I still don’t know how to use one.”
“But, isn’t the Captain showing you?”
At this point,
knew that Joran had seen everything the last two nights. Kiel
“Yes, Joran. There’s no sense in lying to you about it. The Captain is training me how to use a sword.”
“You’re very good,
. Will you teach me how to use one?” Kiel
didn’t want this. He never wanted Joran to grow up with a life of fighting. He wanted only peace for the boy as he grew up. He was the only member of his family to survive. He had to watch the boy’s parents die during the attacks by the Gerudos. Kiel
He had tried to save them all but when he went back into their house, all he saw was Joran lying on the floor, crying. His father dead, his mother dying and his brother was nowhere to be found. He presumed Joran’s brother Rilon had been kidnapped by the Gerudos, but he was never found after Hyrule banded together to get their children back.
had tried to promise to the boy that he would never have to see that kind of violence again, but he had already broken that promise after their confrontation with the Gerudos. He was thankful that Joran had forgotten that incident, but here he was, asking Kiel to teach him to use a sword. Kiel
“Why would you want to do that?”
asked, his tone turning very serious. Kiel
“I want to be a good protector like you,
should have known that the boy would have traits like this. He had the will of a warrior, just like his father. Kiel sighed as he thought of what his answer should be to the boy. He had shielded the boy from so much, even the fate of his parents and brother. He would have to tell him eventually. But he was still too young for that. With the way the land was going, if Joran didn’t know how to defend himself, then he wouldn’t live very long into adulthood. Kiel wanted Joran to be prepared for adult life more than anything. Kiel
“Joran, when you are old enough, I promise to teach you to use a sword.”
The boy ran over to
excitedly and wrapped his little arms around him. Kiel
. I can’t wait.” Kiel
“But of course you’ll have to, son. Now off to bed with you.”
The boy let go of
and ran off to bed. He would hardly get a wink of sleep that night. The boy would stay awake for awhile and imagine himself as a bold knight when he grew up. He’d hope to be like the Captain someday. Guran was a man he greatly admired. Kiel
After Joran ran back to his room,
still stood by the door. He shook his head. What a terrible shame, he thought, to have to have Joran grow up in a world like this. He felt as though he had no choice in the matter. Kiel walked over to his bed and lay down. He stared up at the ceiling and felt that he wouldn’t sleep much that night, either. Kiel
The king lay in his bed within his chamber and a sickly cloud seemed to float around him. Guran and some of the knights waited outside the king’s chamber.
Guran had rallied as many of the knights as he could to meet with the king. He hoped that they could help lift the king’s spirits and maybe that would help in his recovery process. Guran had no medical knowledge, so all he could do was give the king his support.
He stood outside the chamber with Phineas, Toro, Jon and two other long-time knights named Darius and Benn. They had both served under Harik when he was Captain.
They were fiercely loyal to their king and were insistent upon seeing him. They were so loyal, in fact, that Darius named his son after him. Benn had named his son after King Ridlef’s father, Verne.
Guran looked at the steward standing outside the king’s chamber. The steward nodded and Guran opened the door to the king’s chamber. He cast his eyes to the bed immediately and his heart sank at the sight of it.
The king’s health had grown even worse. Guran walked over to him and looked down at the king’s face. His skin was a sickly pale colour and his face was sunken in from all the lost weight. He had been unable to eat because nothing would stay down and as a result, he was starving.
Guran knew that there was no recovering from this and that King Ridlef was surely to die soon. Guran didn’t know if he should try and speak to get the king to wake up or if he should just let him be. He watched the king’s chest and could hardly see it move his breathing was so faint.
Guran turned back to the knights at the door. Guran’s voice lowered to a soft whisper.
“I think we should let him be, men. If you want to get a last look at the king, then you’d best do it now. I’ll not disturb some of his final moments of peace.”
Phineas, Darius, and Benn all walked toward the bed and looked down upon the king. Toro simply glanced toward the bed then turned and walked back out of the room. He didn’t care to ever see King Ridlef again.
The other four stood by the bed and silently bowed their heads to their king. Then, one by one, they began filing out of the room. They silently left the king in his bed chamber as the steward closed the door behind them.
They walked silently through the halls before Darius finally spoke.
“That was a terrible thing to see.”
Guran nodded his agreement.
“Yes, Darius, it is terrible. I’m sorry things have to be this way.”
“At least he shall have a fine successor, right Captain?”
Guran sighed and shook his head.
“I’m not so sure about that, Darius. But I’ve really got no choice.”
“Don’t be foolish, Captain. You’ll be a fine king.”
“I certainly hope so.”
No more words were spoken after that as the knights left the castle and their dying king behind. They all eventually parted ways and went back to their respective homes. All except Guran, of course, who was headed back to Verul.
He hoped that
’s training would be completed soon. The two had only been training for two weeks, but the king was at death’s door. He had survived longer than expected but Guran would be forced to take the throne very soon. He feared that Kiel was right and he wouldn’t have enough time to train him once he became king. He did not know that Kiel had been practicing on his own and would soon ease Guran’s worry. Kiel
was doing this now as he slashed away at the old tree behind his house. Joran once again watched him from the window, admiring his guardian’s skills. The tree now had many gouges and scrapes of bark missing from the constant abuse it was taking. He would ensure not to hit it too much, however, so as not to do too much damage to the blade. Kiel had spent nearly all of his waking moments practicing at that old tree, waiting for Guran to return. Kiel
He was very dedicated to learning how to use a sword, wanting desperately to make sure he could protect Joran. He hadn’t been able to protect the boy’s family from harm, but he would ensure that the boy would grow up safe and happy.
His focus was intense as he practiced all he had learned from Guran. He was so intent on the tree that he did not hear a horse approaching his house. Its rider stepped to the ground and walked to the back of
’s house. He stood and watched Kiel moving around the tree, slashing away at it. He finally turned his head and saw the man staring at him. Kiel
“How long have you been standing there?” he asked.
“Long enough to see your great improvement,
. Have you been doing that a lot?” Kiel
“Yes, Guran. I needed to make sure I was ready. You won’t have any time for me soon.”
“Unfortunately, that may be true,
. Just promise me one thing.” Kiel
“What’s that, Guran?”
“Make sure you get that sword repaired by a blacksmith when we are finished. I don’t want you to have another sword break.”
nodded. “It will be done, Guran.” Kiel
“Good. It was my wife’s sword, it should be respected. Well, all swords should be respected.”
“Of course, Guran. Without respect for the sword battles would not be won.”
“I’ve taught you well. Are you ready to best me?” Guran asked, drawing his sword.
“We aren’t going to practice first?”
, there’s no need. You’ve shown me enough skill. You are ready.” Kiel
“Very well then.”
raised his sword to the captain and both adopted fighting stances. The duel was long and evenly matched. Kiel had learned far more quickly than any Guran had ever taught in his life. Not only that, but he was far better than Guran had ever expected he would be. Guran was experienced, but Kiel ’s skill was at least equal to his now. It was nigh on miraculous that Kiel was this good so quickly. Kiel
There was one trait
had that Guran did not. Kiel was faster and more agile than his mentor and it was soon showing. Guran was growing tired and could feel his strength giving in. Guran could not keep up with Kiel ’s speed for much longer. As Guran made an attempt to dislodge Kiel Kiel’s sword, deftly stepped back out of the way and quickly rolled on the ground until he was behind Guran. He quickly stood up and swung his sword forward, stopping just behind Guran’s neck. The captain smiled and looked Kiel in the eye. Kiel
Guran did just that and dropped his sword on the ground. He turned to
and continued smiling. He was very proud of Kiel at that moment. Kiel
“And so on this day, the student surpasses his teacher. You’ve done well,
lowered his sword and sheathed it at his side. He could hardly believe what had just happened. Guran walked up to Kiel and clapped a hand on his shoulder. Kiel
“By the Gods, you are a fine student,
. Never in my years has anyone learned that quickly, nor been that good. I feel I must ask you once more if you would consider joining our ranks.” Kiel
smiled at Guran’s words, but shook his head. Kiel
“Guran, you know what my answer will be.”
Guran stepped back and picked up his sword again, sheathing it.
“Yes, I do know. I can’t say I agree with your decision, but I do understand it.”
The two stood there in silence for a moment, taking in the situation. Finally,
spoke again. Kiel
“I guess this means we’re done now.”
“Indeed it does,
. I will come back to see you once more after I am crowned. That I promise you.” Kiel
“Thank you for teaching me these skills, Guran.”
. Thank you for making me proud. I’m certain Harik would have been impressed with your skill as well. I will see you later.” Kiel
Guran then walked back to his horse and climbed on. He quickly took off for
leaving Verul behind. He would deliver on his promise to Castle Town but the way this night had gone could not have made him happier. Kiel
It was not long after
’s training had completed when King Ridlef finally succumbed to his disease. A funeral was held for him within a few days, attended by people and races from all over the kingdom. It wasn’t too long after that when the new king was crowned. Guran and his daughter Zelda were crowned as king and princess of Hyrule in front of the entire kingdom. Kiel
attended both Ridlef’s funeral and Guran’s coronation with Joran at his side. Whenever the boy saw the new King Guran, he expressed great admiration and respect for him. He had said that he would hope to help the king sometime in the future. Kiel
“I’m sure you will someday, son”
said in reply. Kiel
Within a few days it had become time for King Guran to name who the next Captain of the Hylian Knights would be. He had mulled it over for a while but decided that he wouldn’t make up his mind until he visited
. Maybe Kiel could even help him decide, he thought. Kiel
He informed a few of the castle staff that he was taking Zelda and going to Verul. With his daughter walking by his side, they headed out to the west.
and Joran were sitting down at their table discussing the new king when they heard a knock at the door. Kiel
“Is it the king?” Joran asked.
“We shall have to find out. Though I doubt he’d have time for us now.”
got up from his chair and walked over to the door. When he opened it he saw the king and the princess standing in their doorway. Kiel
said, bowing down before them both. Kiel
“Princess Zelda, it is a pleasure to greet the both of you.”
“Thank you for your formality,
, but it won’t be necessary this time. I have something I’d like to ask of you.” Kiel
“Of course. By all means, come in.”
Guran and Zelda entered the small house of
and Joran. The children immediately greeted each other and started talking excitedly. They walked around the house together while Guran and Kiel sat down at the table. Kiel
“All right, what would you discuss, King Guran?”
asked as they sat down. Kiel
, I have two things that I wish for your input on. Now that I am king, I think you know the first one.” Kiel
lowered his gaze for a moment and the children both stopped talking. Joran fixed his gaze upon Kiel , eagerly awaiting his answer. Kiel looked back up at the king and looked him straight in the eye. Kiel
“King Guran, you have asked this question many times. My stance on it has not changed and I’m not about to do so now. Besides, I need to look after Joran and I have no time for being a knight.”
, it is well within my power to make you a knight now more than ever before. I sincerely urge you to accept this offer. Of course, the decision is entirely yours to make.” Kiel
“I’m sorry, King Guran, but I cannot accept your offer. But I thank you for extending it and showing me such great respect.”
Guran leaned back in his chair and let out a slight sigh. He had wanted
to be a knight and greatly considered naming him Captain had he accepted. It now only left him with one choice. Kiel
“What else would you discuss, King Guran?”
“Well, I would have consulted with you on who the next Captain should be. It was down to Phineas and you, if you had accepted my offer of knighthood.”
looked at the king in silence for a moment as he thought about what he had just been told. Guran wanted Kiel to not only be a knight, but he wanted to name him the Captain? Kiel took a while before finding words to say. Kiel
“King Guran, I am honored that you would consider me for the most highly touted position among your soldiers but wouldn’t it cause dissent among them? They’ve no idea who I even am.”
questioned Guran’s logic on this. Kiel
, after you learned so fast in your training, you are the finest swordsman I’ve seen since Harik. With your skills, the only place you belong is as Captain of the Hylian Knights.” Kiel
thought again about Guran’s words. He wasn’t so sure Guran was thinking clearly on this. Kiel
“Even if I had accepted I would have told you to pick Phineas. He was your Lieutenant, correct?”
. Yes he was.” Kiel
“Well then I would advise that you choose him.”
Guran sat back again and mulled this over for a moment. It was evident that
would not accept his offer and Phineas was really his best option. Kiel
. But know this. If you should ever reconsider, the position of Captain will open to you.” Kiel
“Thank you, Guran. But I don’t think I’ll be reconsidering on this decision.”
“Your decisions are your own,
. Thank you for your time.” Kiel
“Thank you for your visit, King Guran.”
“Zelda and I shall be off to the castle. I’ll have to share my decision with the Knights. Goodbye,
and Joran” Guran said, turning his attention to the boy standing next to his daughter. Kiel
Zelda walked back over to her father and turned and waved goodbye to Joran. He waved back at her as
stood up. He walked over to Joran and put a hand on the boy’s shoulder. Kiel
“Goodbye, King Guran and Princess Zelda” he said.
The king and princess then turned and left as
walked to the door and closed it behind them. Kiel turned around and looked at Joran. The two said nothing to each other. They merely shared a silent glance as they reflected upon what had just happened. Kiel
King Guran returned to the castle with his daughter. He was ready to name the Captain of the Hylian Knights and had made his decision. He asked them to convene in their usual meeting hall. He stood at the front and waited for the knights to begin filing in. When they had finished and taken their seats he began speaking.
“Knights of Hyrule, the time has come. You all know what I am referring to, of course?”
The king watched as several heads nodded and a few muttered the word “yes”.
“I was proud to lead you all as your captain but, of course, that is no longer possible. The time has come for a change in leadership. Just know, brothers, that I do not make this decision lightly. My decision is made. Lieutenant Phineas” Guran said, turning to his former Lieutenant.
“Yes, my king?” Phineas said.
“You did yourself and your fellow knights proud serving as Lieutenant. Your leadership has been proven time and again. That is why I have decided that you will be my Captain of the Hylian Knights.”
There was a brief pause before the room erupted in applause and cheers for the new captain.
“Thank you, my liege. I am honored to hold such a title” Phineas said when the cheering and applause had died down.
The king was only half listening because he had noticed one among their rank who did not celebrate the naming of their new captain. He watched Toro at the back of the room intently and was disturbed by the look in his eye. King Guran glared at the back of the room, equalling the intensity of Toro’s stare. After a rather long pause, King Guran realized that the room had fallen silent and that the rest of the knights were waiting for him, expectantly.
“Is everything all right, King Guran?” Phineas asked, knowing what the king had seen.
Guran stopped staring at the back of the room and looked back to his new captain.
“Everything’s fine, Captain. What could be finer than the naming of a great new captain?”
The new king was troubled, though. He didn’t like how Toro had reacted to the announcement. He didn’t want to believe it, but he feared that Phineas was right about him.
“Captain Phineas, you shall soon need to be introduced to the rest of Hyrule. It is then that you shall name your Lieutenant. I know you’ll make your decision carefully.”
“Of course, your highness.”
After one more cheer for the new captain, the meeting of the knights ended and everyone returned to their homes. Guran was hoping for a chance to speak with Toro but he had disappeared very quickly. The king was concerned that Toro may cause unrest and he intended to put a stop to it.
Within a few days, King Guran had introduced Captain Phineas to the rest of Hyrule. At the ceremony Phineas chose his Lieutenant, Benn. Again, Toro was the exception from the rest of the knights who were happy for their new Lieutenant. This time, however, Toro approached Phineas afterwards.
“You are a fool” he said.
“I beg your pardon? Benn is a fine Lieutenant and you shouldn’t judge-“
“I wasn’t talking about Benn, idiot. I was talking about you. You are a weakling and a fool and don’t deserve such a title as captain.”
“Sir Toro you have no say in this matter. Your disruptions over these past few weeks have been, frankly, a bother and I’m getting tired of it. You’re suspended from duty for the next month. Go home, knight.”
Toro was incredulous but decided not to argue. He would have to bide his time before he made his opinions heard, loud and clear.
Throughout the first year of King Guran’s reign constant reports of Gerudo attacks outside the valley were flooding in. He decided, however, that he would not act upon it unless such crimes began taking place within his own kingdom.
He had hoped to hear something of
and Joran but after a while, he forgot to ask about them and had nearly forgotten them entirely. He became so consumed with trying to be a good king that he simply didn’t have time to remember much about the past. Kiel
After another three months, the reports of Gerudo attacks and robberies do not cease. King Guran still does not act, instead hoping that the Gerudo King will put a stop to it. His reasoning behind this was so as to not provoke the Gerudos into another war. This latest piece of news he was about to get would change everything, however.
As he and Zelda sat with each other in the king’s drawing room, a man burst through the door.
“What is this? Why would you interrupt my time with my daughter?” Guran said, trying to keep his anger in check.
King Guran had been trying very hard of late to spend more time with Zelda. He had neglected to be with her as often as she would have liked in his first year as king. So he vowed that he would do what it took to keep his daughter happy. He had Impa to look after the young princess and act very much like the mother Zelda no longer had. But she had not been around the castle that day as she was in Kakariko. So he had decided to spend the day with his young daughter. Being interrupted like this made him very angry.
“My deepest apologies, your highness” the messenger said “but we’ve just heard of a massive riot in
.” Castle Town
“Riot? What is this all about?”
“Apparently, several Hylians who had been captured by Gerudos have ridden into the town. They started burning shops and stands and stealing from everyone in sight. It’s caused a massive uproar in town.”
“Have the knights been summoned?”
“Not as of yet, my lord. Only the guards of the town are down there.”
“Well summon them. I will be going down there, too.”
“As you wish, sire.”
King Guran turned to his daughter as the messenger left.
“Zelda dear, I have to go away for a little while. I won’t be far and I hope to be back soon. Be careful and don’t leave this room, no matter what.”
Zelda nodded when her father finished speaking.
Guran then quickly made his way out of the drawing room into the castle halls. Several people were scrambling around as he entered the hall. He noticed young Sir Colin passing by.
“Colin” Guran called “come here a moment, lad.”
Sir Colin heard the call of his king and instantly made his way over to the king.
“What do you need, your majesty?”
“Colin, guard this room with your life” King Guran said, pointing to his drawing room.
“Let no one enter and tell them that is a direct order from me. If anyone tries to break that rule, the penalty will be treason.”
“Understood, King Guran.”
“Thank you, Sir Colin.”
Without another word, Guran ran back to his quarters to grab his sword. He then began running down towards
. Castle Town
He met with the rest of the knights just outside the gates of the castle.
“King Guran, what are you doing here?” asked Captain Phineas.
“Come men” the king said “this unrest shall not plague our kingdom.”
Guran then ran forward directly into the middle of the town and began fighting off the looters and thieves.
“Don’t just stand there” Phineas shouted “go down there and protect our king!”
The knights ran forward and immediately began helping their king.
“Do not harm them, knights!” King Guran called to them.
“We will not let this town bear witness to any bloodshed!”
The knights did their best at getting people to calm down and arresting those who were causing mayhem.
The king did his best to reason with people and most of them listened to their king’s words.
He did not see one man sneak in behind him, however. He was one of the captured Hylians. They had been specifically trained by the Gerudos to coax the king out of his castle by causing this riot. His goal was simple enough as he pulled a large dagger out of a sheath at his side.
There was a boy, a teen of roughly fifteen years of age, who did see this man. He noticed that the man was looking at the king of Hyrule. He had been actively helping the knights try to calm the situation in the town. He tried getting the attention of the knights as he saw the assassin creep closer to the king. But the knights were too busy and the noise in town was still too loud. Even though he wasn’t a very good fighter, he would still protect his king.
He quickly ran up behind the man and grabbed his arm, attempting to knock the dagger from his hand. The man struggled with the boy but was eventually able to throw him off. Enraged, the man turned his attention to the boy. He lashed out with his dagger, slicing into the boy’s left arm. The boy cried out in pain and the king turned around at the sound.
He noticed the wounded boy and a man carrying a dagger. The man lunged at the boy again and knocked him to the ground. They rolled around on the ground, grappling with each other.
The king leapt into action and pulled the man off of the boy.
“You will not harm this boy. He has been helping the cause. You will be tried for this crime. As King of Hyrule, I order you to drop your weapon. You will be brought to justice.”
The man did nothing of the sort and lunged at the king this time, slicing at him with his dagger. The king had not drawn his sword and could not block this. He was cut in the same place the boy had been as the man’s momentum carried him past the king.
It was then that the king drew his sword. But he didn’t have time to react as the boy leapt at the man, furious.
“You should burn, filth! How dare you attack the king!?”
King Guran rushed forward and pulled the boy off the man as he was beating him senseless.
“That’s enough, boy. Though I appreciate the gesture, you could get hurt even worse. Go and see a doctor immediately.”
“I will not do that until you are safe, my king.”
“Boy, as your king, I order you to-“he was cut off as the man leapt at him again.
Guran had had enough of this man with the dagger. He swung his sword at the man’s hand, knocking the dagger from his hand. As the dagger hit the ground, the man bent to pick it up but Guran placed his sword between the man and the dagger.
“If you move toward that dagger again, I will put you down” the king said, in an authoritative tone.
The man ignored the king and reached for the dagger again. At this point the king moved forward and sliced at the man’s throat. The man reached up and clutched his throat as blood poured from the wound. It was then that the king thrust his sword through the man’s chest. He pulled it back out and sheathed his sword again. He noticed that the entire town had gone quiet and saw what the king had done.
“This man attempted to take the life of this young boy” Guran said to the crowd staring at him.
“I am sorry that it had to be this way. But this man was going to kill the two of us. Perhaps even more. A murderer cannot be allowed to walk amongst the great citizens of
.” Castle Town
The citizens continued to stare, some with admiration, some with fear.
“I suggest you all find your way back to your homes. This has been a trying day, I know. But I promise to re-house those who may not have homes anymore and repair your businesses so that you may go on living again. But know this, my friends.”
The king paused as he let his words sink in.
“This shall not happen again. Those who committed this act shall be hunted down. And any further crimes of this nature shall be severely punished. I will be sending the knights across Hyrule to put a stop to further acts like this. Anyone who wishes to assist the knights must ask to speak to me and I will allow those I see fit to assist them. Go now, help us restore the peace.”
The citizens of
began quietly shuffling away back to their homes. Apart from the man King Guran had killed, no one else had lost their lives on this day. Castle Town
The king turned to the boy who had fought beside him.
“What is your name, lad?”
“Orlin, your highness.”
“Well, Orlin, you displayed great courage here today. Have you ever considered being a soldier?”
“I have, sire. Would you like me to sign up to be a guard?”
“I would like you to do more than that, young Orlin. Go and speak to Captain Phineas. We are going to see about getting you knighted, my boy.”
“Really? You want me to be a knight?”
“Of course I do, Orlin. Go on then. Hop to it.”
“Of course, your highness. Thank you so much.”
“No, Orlin. Thank you for doing what you did. I’d surely be dead if not for you. I knew that man was an assassin as soon as I saw him. You’ve served your kingdom well, Orlin.”
The boy beamed and then quickly went off in search of Captain Phineas. The king then turned and made his way back up toward the castle. He had promised to spend more time with Zelda and that was exactly what he intended to do.
The next few years passed by very quickly. Joran, who was nine years old now, had begun wandering away from his house in Verul alone. It was a habit
had been trying to break for a few weeks now, but the boy was a curious one. Kiel
Joran wasn’t one to go out looking for adventure, but he did enjoy exploring. But under the watchful and protective eye of
, the boy rarely got the chance to do this fully. Kiel knew he’d have to let Joran be his own person eventually, but for now he was obsessive over protecting the boy. Kiel
On this particular day, Joran wandered further away to the point he was now outside of the village. He could see the entrance to the
from here. He was about to turn back when he noticed something odd. A boy, roughly his own age, was headed directly into the valley. The boy he saw wore a green tunic and appeared to have a short sword and wooden shield on his back. Gerudo Valley
Something stirred in Joran’s mind when he saw the boy entering the valley. He had lost his memory during the fight
Kielhad had with the Gerudos but he remembered that something bad had happened to the last time they got too close to the valley. Kiel
He decided right then to warn the boy before he entered the valley. Even though the boy appeared armed, Joran had recalled hearing of the ferocity of the Gerudos and didn’t want this boy to suffer some ill fate.
Joran summoned all the courage he could muster. He needed to fight the terror that now swept over him as he moved closer to the valley and to the boy. He slowly walked forward and then suddenly burst into a run. Joran didn’t stop until he had nearly crashed straight into the boy, tripping on a rock and tumbling to the ground in front of the strange boy.
The boy looked down at him.
“Are you all right?” he asked.
His voice was soft and kind and his sparkling blue eyes shone with both kindness and determination. His blond hair hung down over his forehead as he looked down at Joran.
Joran got up slowly after falling over, trying to catch his breath.
“What were you running over here so fast for?” the boy asked.
Joran was struck with how much the boy seemed to speak like an adult. He seemed beyond his years. Joran was also confused that the boy seemed to expect this and acted like he recognized him.
“Don’t go in there”” Joran replied, pointing into the valley. “It’s too dangerous.”
“I’ve dealt with dangerous. I think I can handle whatever this valley can throw at me.”
“You don’t understand! There’s a dangerous tribe living in there. They’ll attack you.”
“What, the Gerudos? I’ve dealt with them before. Besides, I’m going straight past them anyway.”
“But they’ll attack you as soon as they see you! I don’t want you to get hurt.”
The boy smiled when Joran said this.
“Why is that?” he asked.
“I’m not sure why. I feel like you’re good. But I can’t say why.”
As the two spoke,
emerged from the village and spotted the two boys dangerously close to the valley. His heart began to race as he ran toward them. Kiel
“Joran!” he shouted. “Get away from there!”
Joran couldn’t hear
as he continued talking with the boy. He couldn’t understand why, but he felt like he had met this boy before. He felt that this very same meeting they were having now had already happened. Kiel
“What did you mean when you said you are going past them?”
The boy seemed hesitant but he felt like he could trust this caring young stranger.
“Can you keep a secret?”
“All right then. I’m going to go past them with this.”
The boy reached into a pocket behind him and pulled out a beautiful bright purple object. Joran looked at it but he had no idea what it was.
“What is that?” he asked.
The boy continued holding out his hand as Joran looked it over.
“This is an ocarina. It’s a musical instrument. But this is no ordinary ocarina. This is the Ocarina of Time.”
“What’s so special about it?” Joran asked.
“It’s got magical properties. If I play certain songs on it, I can go to different locations all over Hyrule.”
“Wow! That’s pretty amazing.”
The boy put the ocarina back in his pocket.
“I should be going. I need to see someone. She apparently wants to tell me something before I see the king.”
“You’re going to see the king!?” Joran asked, astonished.
“Yes. Princess Zelda has arranged for me to tell him something very important. But I was told to come here to meet with one of the Gerudos.”
“Wait, you’re meeting with one of them?”
Now Joran was confused. Just who was this boy?
“Yeah, I helped her out and I guess she wants to see me again. Actually, she’s the sixth person in the kingdom who wanted to give me a blessing of some sort. I guess that’s what she wants to tell me. It will apparently help with my meeting with the king.”
“You helped her?”
“It’s a long story. If we meet again I’ll tell you all about it.”
“I hope we do.”
“Before I go I should at least tell you my name. I’m Link.”
“It’s been nice meeting you Link. I’m-“Link interrupted him.
“Joran, I know. I guess I’ll have to explain how I know your name the next time we meet as well.”
Before he could answer, Joran felt something strange. He felt a strange warmth against his chest suddenly. He felt his chest and noticed something was there that was not before. Something was around his neck like some sort of charm. He pulled it out and noticed a small, triangular, shard of gold attached to a piece of fine string. He stared at the object and was suddenly flooded with memories.
Joran let the shard of gold hang back down again and looked back at Link, meeting his gaze.
“I think I know. I know.... everything, somehow. You are the Hero of Time.”
A smirk crept across Link’s face as he realized what had happened.
“You and I have a destiny, it seems. With what just happened, I’m certain we’ll meet again. Where was it you lived again? I may need to come and find you at some point.”
“Verul. I live in Verul. It’s not far from here, actually.”
“That’s right. I’ll have to come visit you. I’m sure you’ll make a fine friend. Well, I was sure the first time I met you.”
“But this is the-“Joran stopped himself.
He was about to say that this was the first time that they had met, but he somehow knew that they had met before. In some strange twist in time, the two of them had met before.
“I guess I’ll see you later, Joran.”
“I guess so, Link.”
With that, Link turned and entered the valley, just as
reached the very spot where he had been standing. Kiel
“Hey wait! Don’t go in there!”
But Link couldn’t hear him. He was gone.
“Joran come with me. We’re going after him!”
“He’ll be fine,
turned to Joran, incredulous. Kiel
“What’s gotten into you? First you go wandering off by yourself, into the valley no less, and now you’re saying that that young boy will be fine in there!?”
. That boy is a hero. His name is Link. I’m sure you’ll hear about him soon.” Kiel
didn’t know why, but he trusted what Joran had said. There was something about the certainty in his voice that convinced Kiel that Joran was right. Kiel
It was then that
noticed the charm around Joran’s neck. Kiel
“What is this?”
asked, kneeling down and resting the charm against his hand. Kiel
“I think I know what this is, but I’m going to ask Link later to make sure.”
“Well what do you think it is?”
Joran paused as he couldn’t believe it himself.
“I think it is a shard of the Triforce.”
looked at the object and knew there was something special about it, but he wasn’t sure about it being from the legendary Triforce. He just thought it was Joran’s young imagination running wild. Kiel
“Where did you get it?”
“When I was talking to Link it just appeared around my neck.”
“It just appeared?”
didn’t understand what had happened to Joran and just kept getting more and more confused as he learned more. Kiel
“So this Link gave it to you?”
“I guess so.”
stood up again and put a hand on the boy’s head. Kiel
“We should head back home. You’ve caused enough trouble for one day. You had me worried. You need to stop wandering off from home.”
. I just wanted to explore.” Kiel
“If you want to explore, come and talk to me. We’ll go together. You’re still too young to go off on your own.”
The boy looked sad as
spoke to him. Kiel
“But something good did come out of this. You seem to have made a friend. That’s good. And really, I’m sorry too. I’m sorry for being so overbearing on you. I just need to protect you, son.”
Joran nodded when
had finished speaking. Kiel
“Let’s go home, okay?”
said softly. Kiel
He held out his hand, which Joran grasped and the two of them walked back toward Verul.
The king sat in his throne ruminating about the past. He was trying to remember something. It had something to do with a man. He was trying to remember a man. He couldn’t remember his name nor why he had been so significant.
Guran had so consumed himself with being a good king that he hardly even remembered the names of some of the knights he used to serve with.
One of them was approaching the throne room now grasping the arm of a young boy, clad in green. The princess was following behind, imploring him to at least let go of the boy.
“You don’t need to do this. He’ll willingly come on his own.”
“Young princess, it must be this way. The king has to deal with trespassers, no matter how young.”
“He’s not a trespasser, he’s a friend. He’s a hero!”
The knight ignored the princess’ words and continued pulling the boy toward the throne room. The guards saw their approach and immediately opened the doors to the throne room. It was this sound that broke the king from his thoughts.
The knight silently pulled the boy across the room and stopped just before the steps that lead up to the king’s throne. Princess Zelda stood up next to the boy as the knight finally relinquished his grip.
“My liege, this boy was caught sneaking around the castle courtyard, trying to get to the princess.”
“Actually, her and I had been talking for a while before any of the guards even saw me. They’re pretty easy to fool.”
“Silence boy!” the knight said.
“What shall we do with him, your highness?”
The king stood up from his throne and walked toward the boy. He looked down into the boy’s eyes and then looked up at the knight.
“I see no malice in this boy’s eyes, Sir...” King Guran hesitated as he struggled to remember the young man’s name.
“Colin, sire. Sir Colin.”
“Yes, right. I do say your being so rough with him is not merited in this situation, Sir Colin.”
“Malice or not, this boy was trespassing on royal ground and harassing a member of the royal family.”
The king looked into the boy’s eyes again. He was surprised at the absolute lack of fear in them.
“Well, what do you have to say for yourself, my boy?” the king asked. “Surely you know that what you’ve done is a crime.”
The boy stood in silence briefly before answering.
“I was called here by the princess. We’ve met once already. Well, actually... never mind. That’s too complicated for right now. But I came here to deliver a warning to both her and to you.”
The king stood and let the boy’s words sink in.
“You know, you are in the presence of Hyrule’s king, lad. You’d do well to address me properly.”
“Sorry, your majesty. I forget myself.”
The king was puzzled by this boy’s incredible maturity and by how much he spoke like an adult. He moved his gaze upward, back to Sir Colin.
“He is only a boy, Colin. I’m not certain all of this is necessary.”
“Sire, he could be a Gerudo spy. Remember that man who tried to kill you in the market?”
King Guran remembered back to that day and could only just barely recall it.
“Yes I do. There was a boy there that saved my life. Did I knight him already?”
“Yes, sire. That boy is currently the knight known as Sir Orlin.”
“Yes that’s right. Orlin. I remember now. But anyway, I hardly think this boy to be a spy for the Gerudos. Their king pledged his allegiance to me and Hyrule.”
“How can you be certain, your highness? Tensions are still high and they’ve already made an attempt at your life. Even with this supposed allegiance with the Gerudo king, this boy could be intended to lower your guard.”
The king mulled this over for a moment. He looked into the boy’s eyes again and then looked back up at Sir Colin.
“Sir Colin, if this boy had any ill intent I believe he would have demonstrated as much already.”
“But he has, sire. He snuck onto the castle grounds in order to get to the princess. That speaks volumes to me.”
The king once again paused to mull this over. When he looked down at the boy again, he spoke to him.
“What have you to say for yourself? You’ve been awfully quiet while Sir Colin has thrown around these accusations.”
The boy stepped forward and looked the king straight in the eye.
“I thought it best to let him finish. Even if this is all conjecture on his part he deserves to have his say as much as anyone else, including me.”
The king was once again stunned at this boy’s maturity and intelligence. It was as if he were a man trapped in a boy’s body.
“I do have something important to tell you. But with your good sir knight here, I feel my voice may not be fully heard, your majesty.”
The king stared in silence for a long while before looking up at Sir Colin.
“Sir Colin, I would like to hear what this boy has to say. I request that you leave my presence. You may return when I summon you again.”
Sir Colin thought to object. He didn’t like the situation but he decided to trust his king. He merely nodded, saluted the king, then turned and walked out of the throne room.
King Guran sat back down on his throne and motioned for the boy and Zelda to move toward him.
“Before you begin I would like to learn your name, boy. We have yet to establish that.”
“Of course, your highness. My name is Link.”
“Well Link, say what you must. I will listen.”
Link paused before beginning. He told the king about everything that had happened to him and what would become of the kingdom in seven years time. He told him of the evil, power hungry Gerudo king Ganondorf and what he was planning. He spoke of the great battle he had with him and how Zelda was there beside him, helping him along. He regaled the king with his tale for quite some time.
“So, your highness” Link finished “you must find Ganondorf. He has to be stopped before this can begin. For the sake of all of the kingdom and its future, Ganondorf must be stopped.”
The king was silent for a while as he let Link’s words sink in. He found everything the boy said to be so extraordinary and unbelievable.
“That is quite the story, Link. But how can I know for certain that you are telling me the truth? The Gerudo king swore fealty to me just a few days ago. He came to me seeking peace and did not act at all like you say he did.”
“Link is right!” Zelda said. “I’ve dreamt about that man. In those dreams he is only evil! He can’t be trusted.”
Guran sighed as his daughter spoke. She had told him this very same thing when Ganondorf had visited the castle.
“Zelda my dear, you are imagining things. It simply can’t be true.”
Link stepped forward again.
“I can prove it.”
The king turned his attention back to Link as he said this.
“Really? I doubt that, boy, but if you can then by all means prove it.”
“After my fight with Ganondorf’s beast form, I gave the Ocarina of Time back to your daughter.”
The king raised an eyebrow as Link mentioned the ocarina. Link couldn’t possibly know about it. Guran started to doubt his own words and was made to think twice about Link’s story.
“Before she sent me back to this time she gave me this charm. I believe she said it belonged to you.”
Link reached into his pouch and pulled out a charm with a Triforce emblem and wings in flight. He presented it to the king. Guran was stunned. It was the exact charm he had been given by King Ridlef when he was knighted. In fact, he still wore it. He reached to his neck to find it and it was still there.
He pulled it off of his neck and compared the two. They were identical. The one Link had given him looked aged, as if it had come from the future. Guran’s engraved name was faded but he still could read it clearly.
The king sat on his throne, speechless at what this boy had brought before him. There was no other possible explanation. The king considered that it could be a copy but how could this boy even know what it looked like? Not even his daughter was aware of every small detail on this charm.
Guran looked over his own charm and the one Link had given him before finally looking back up at Link.
“By the Gods, boy, you’re telling the truth. I don’t know what to say.”
“Surely now you believe what I told you of Ganondorf’s intentions. You must find him and do whatever you can to stop him.”
Guran sat and stared at Link in disbelief. But he knew that what he said was the truth.
“Yes, Link. It will be done. The knights and I shall set out immediately. We will find this Ganondorf. From there, well, that will be up to the sages.”
Link and Zelda looked at each other in relief. They had accomplished their goal and exposed Ganondorf for the evil man that he was. Guran got up from his throne. He put out a summons for his knights and, with Link and Zelda following, headed for the knights council room. They were headed for the
. Gerudo Valley
It was a few days later. The king and his knights were successful in finding Ganondorf in the
. After a lengthy interrogation, Ganondorf confessed to his plans, yet he seemed oddly content with his situation. He was taken to a place known as the Arbiter’s Grounds, a place where the worst criminals of the kingdom were taken and condemned to their fate. Gerudo Valley
What exactly went on was never spoken of by anyone outside the grounds. But word reached the castle that the King of Thieves had been executed. For exposing Ganondorf, the king intended to reward Link for what he had done. But before he could, Link had disappeared.
The king learned from his daughter that Link went out in search of a lost friend. Zelda had given him the Ocarina of Time once again to help him on his journey. Link said he would not be gone long as he travelled into the forest.
With this deed done, the king breathed a sigh of relief. He believed that with Ganondorf gone, his reign as king would be one of peace. He would never believe something so foolish again.
Before Link’s meeting with the king something happened that would cause a terrible chain of events. It was the chance meeting of a disgruntled Knight of Hyrule and the Gerudo King. It was this meeting that would change the destiny of many of Hyrule’s Knights.
As Ganondorf was leaving the castle, he bumped into Toro.
“Pardon me” he said politely to the knight as they accidentally collided.
Ganondorf could feel his anger rise but he needed to keep up appearances.
“I’m dreadfully sorry.”
“My fault entirely” Toro said, equally as angered but equally as determined to keep up appearances.
“I was ruminating and getting a little too lost in thought there. I should have been paying more attention” Toro said.
“That’s quite all right” Ganondorf said, getting tired of wasting his time on this knight.
“I must take my leave” Ganondorf said before turning to walk away.
Toro thought for a moment and then decided to take action. He could use this man as a means of advancing his own position. He needed to find a way to get rid of the captain and a few other knights so that he might be named captain. With nearly everyone being so distrustful of the Gerudos, their king was perfect for what he needed to do.
“Wait just a moment” Toro said.
Ganondorf stopped in his tracks. He closed his eyes and took in a deep breath. He couldn’t hold off his anger for much longer.
“What is it?” he asked, turning around to face Toro.
Toro sensed the anger in his voice and chose his words carefully. He could tell just how much evil this man carried about him and the power he was capable of.
“I was just wondering if you could help me” he said, his voice lowering to a whisper.
“I know how you really feel about this kingdom, its king and its people. Why not start taking out some of that anger with me? We could work together. There are a few knights I need taken care of. What do you say?”
Ganondorf paused as he let the words of this knight sink in. Surely he must be joking, Ganondorf thought. If he isn’t then he’s even more idiotic than he looks.
Ganondorf took a step forward, leaning toward Toro’s face. His eyes blazing, he spoke in a malicious whisper.
“I don’t know what type of fool you take me for. Why would I help you? Not only would I risk losing this alliance but it could be the final spark that incites another war. That is something I simply cannot afford. A war would ruin everything. I will not suffer you any longer, fool.”
Ganondorf was careful not to reveal anything of what he was truly planning. He had been clever in his words so as to make it seem as though he genuinely wanted peace. With this man being a knight, he may use any information against him.
Ganondorf turned and walked away, leaving Toro there to think. While Toro had failed in getting Ganondorf to help him, his plan would not be stopped. But because of this setback he decided that he should continue to bide his time. But with this meeting the wheels were in motion.
It had been nearly five years since the meeting with Ganondorf. Toro had waited for a long time but he finally felt that this was the time to strike. He had nearly gone mad from the wait. His behaviour changed so much so that others began to take notice. Others like those outside the Hylian Knights. Those who came to help the king in his edict for justice. People like Joran, who had just turned sixteen.
Joran was determined to help the king after he moved out of
’s house and onto his own. He remained in Verul but had his own small house. Working for the king is how he earned his living. He had crossed paths with Toro a few times and the two took an immediate dislike for each other. Joran had a sense that he and Toro were fated to clash swords someday but that day was yet to come. Joran had other business to attend to. There were rampant worries about the Gerudos again. This is why Toro felt the time to strike was now. Kiel
The knights had a meeting one night and Toro was sure to attend so as to avoid suspicion. After they were finished, Toro was the first to exit the meeting hall. He immediately disappeared from view as the rest of the knights filed out of the meeting hall. He had sent false letters to each of his three targets. He had managed to forge the Captain’s signature for two of them and for the third he used the Lieutenant’s signature to coax out the Captain himself. He intended to get each of his targets alone.
He watched from the darkness of the castle’s looming shadow as the knights went their separate ways. He watched his first target, Lieutenant Benn, as he headed toward his
home. Castle Town
Just as he was about to step out and follow from a distance, he heard a young man’s voice call out his name from behind him.
“Toro? What are you doing over here?”
Toro turned to see the young face of Sir Orlin staring at him from the darkness. Apparently he had seen Toro wander off in this direction and became confused by his odd behaviour.
Toro and Orlin had struck up a friendship of sorts since Orlin became a knight. Toro held no real respect for Orlin but he felt a strange, begrudging, attachment to the young man. Toro felt like he saw a lot of himself in Orlin. He seemed to hold all of Toro’s good traits. The traits he had long since buried deep within himself.
“I should ask you the same question, boy” Toro replied.
“Toro, I was wondering what you were doing. I noticed you walking in this direction and found it odd. Is something wrong?”
“Mind your own business, Sir Orlin” Toro said, his voice on the edge of anger.
He eyed Benn in the distance, trying not let Orlin figure out what he was doing.
“I would ask you to leave me. I need to be alone right now.”
“I could help you, Toro. You’ve no need to hide anything from me. We’re brothers in arms.”
“I said leave me be!” Toro said, angrily. He kept his voice low to keep the others from hearing.
Orlin lowered his gaze when he heard Toro’s tone of voice. He felt angered by Toro’s reaction to his presence. He was only trying to help and Toro dismissed him. He decided to oblige Toro and leave him alone. But he wouldn’t head home just yet.
Without another word, Orlin glared at Toro. He then turned and left the knight alone in the darkness again.
Toro found Benn once again and started off in his direction. He did not notice a pair of eyes watching him from a short distance away. The young man watching him moved on when Toro was out of sight and went his own way.
Benn had found the letter addressed to him. It told him to meet Captain Phineas in Hyrule Field alone that night. Lieutenant Benn had an uneasy feeling about it, but he fought against those feelings. Whatever the captain wanted to speak about was urgent but obviously not ready to be brought up with the rest of the knights yet.
Benn reached an area of Hyrule Field just outside the castle walls. The torch he was carrying flickered slightly in the breeze, illuminating his face with an orange glow. He looked around for Captain Phineas and did not find him. He decided to call out for him.
“Captain? I got your letter. Are you out here? I came as quickly as I could.”
Benn heard nothing but the fluttering of his lit torch in response. As he turned to look somewhere else, he was suddenly struck with a stinging pain on the left side of his torso. He dropped his torch and it hit the ground and it extinguished. He fell to his knees as the pain hit him.
He clutched at his side and felt an arrow there. He pulled at it and, with great effort, managed to pull it from his side. He climbed back up to one knee and continued holding his side. He felt the warmth of his blood pouring from the wound.
“Who’s there? You will pay for attacking a knight of Hyrule!” Benn said as he reached for his sword with his now blood-covered right hand.
He had only managed to put a hand to his sword and had not pulled it out its sheath when he saw the tip of another sword pointed in his face.
“I wouldn’t do that” said a deep voice.
Benn’s vision had become blurry and he tried to focus on his attacker.
“Who are you? Why would you attack me like this? What will injuring me accomplish?”
“Oh, Lieutenant, my goal is far worse than that.”
Not too far off in Hyrule Field, another knight was also looking around for Captain Phineas. He, too, had received a letter for a meeting out in Hyrule Field. As he searched the darkness, he heard a cry of pain from nearby. He recognized the voice of the man in pain.
He hurried his way toward the cry of pain when he heard another sickening sound. It was the sound of a sword piercing flesh followed by another cry of pain. After another sickening sword slice there was silence. He continued on in the direction he heard these sounds coming from. When he finally reached their source, his eyes adjusted to the darkness and he was aghast at what he saw.
He saw the Lieutenant of the Hylian Knights lying on his back, the grass around him stained red. The knight ran over to the Lieutenant. He knelt down beside him and felt his throat and his chest. There were no signs of life.
“Benn, how...?” the knight couldn’t speak as he saw his friend lying dead on the ground. He then stood up and drew the sword at his side.
“Where are you, coward!?” he shouted to the darkness.
“I know you’re still here! Show yourself and fight me like a man! You will taste my blade for what you have done!”
The knight did not know that a man stood a fair distance behind him with a bow drawn and an arrow ready.
“You always were a fool, Darius” he said before letting the arrow fly its deadly path.
The arrow hit Sir Darius’ back and he fell face down onto the ground. The arrow pierced through his chest as well and he clutched at it, trying to get up. He still had a firm grip on his sword but he was now badly wounded.
Darius managed to stand up and turn around. When he did so, the tip of a sword was pointed at his throat. The face of Benn’s murderer and his attacker was illuminated by the moonlight.
“Toro. Phineas was right. We’ll have your head for this.”
“Don’t give me any ideas, Darius. I might just take yours as a prize.”
“You will pay for this. How do you expect to hide what you’ve done here?”
“Gerudos did it. I saw them. No one really trusts them anyway. Besides, the only ones who know the actual truth are you and I and, well, I guess you know what that means.”
Darius stood stock still as he tried to think of what to do. He suddenly leapt back and then swung his sword at Toro’s head. Toro simply ducked underneath this and thrust his sword forward, straight through Darius’ chest. His wound made him too slow to react to this.
Toro pulled his sword back out as Darius collapsed to his knees. Darius looked up at Toro and saw his fate in Toro’s dark, angry eyes.
“The Gods will curse you, Toro. You are damned! There will come a day where you will pay with your blood.”
“That may be, Darius, but before that day comes I will have what should be mine!”
Toro put his sword through Darius once more. Darius did not make a sound as he finally collapsed onto his stomach, blood pooling around him. It was only moments before he was dead as well.
Toro sheathed his sword and turned to lie in wait for the captain when he realized something. Darius and Benn had come at roughly the same time. Why hadn’t Phineas arrived yet? As he walked away from his dead former comrade, he heard a familiar voice call out his name.
“Toro” said the voice.
Toro grew enraged when he heard whose voice it was.
“You dared to follow me, boy!?” Toro shouted as he turned in the direction of the voice.
“Didn’t I make myself clear the first time?”
Toro drew his sword as he walked toward the direction of Orlin’s voice. When he reached him, he lunged forward and tried to grab Orlin’s throat. Orlin stepped deftly aside and landed a punch to Toro’s head that knocked him to the ground. It was then that three swords were pointing in his face.
“What is this, Orlin? You would betray your own? And who is that with you?”
Toro could make out the faces of Colin and Jon standing beside Orlin. He then heard another voice from behind Orlin.
“It is not Orlin who has betrayed his own, Toro. I knew this day would come, I just didn’t expect to pay such a heavy price.”
Captain Phineas stepped up from behind the three young knights and glared down at Toro.
“By order of the King of Hyrule I place you, Sir Toro Beldar, under arrest for the crimes of murder and treason against the
.” kingdomof Hyrule
Phineas took hold of Toro’s sword.
“Jon, Colin, take Toro to the castle dungeon. We will let King Guran decide his fate. Orlin, stay here with me a moment. I would speak with you.”
Jon and Colin roughly grabbed each of Toro’s arms and dragged him to a waiting horse and prison cart. Soon they were headed back to
. Hyrule Castle
Phineas and Orlin walked over to where Benn and Darius lay on Hyrule Field.
“These men were my friends, Orlin. Look at what that power hungry bastard has done to them. If only we’d gotten here sooner.”
“Captain we wouldn’t have been able to overpower him like we did had it been just you and I. We had to get Jon and Colin. It’d likely be you or me or maybe even both of us lying there with them had we not done it. We made the right decision.”
“Given the circumstances, Sir Orlin, this decision does not feel right at all. I could’ve taken him” Phineas said, with anger and sorrow in his voice.
“Sir, with all due respect, Toro would have done the same to you as he did to these men. You wouldn’t have stood a chance on your own.”
Phineas stood in silence as he lamented not being able to save these brave knights. He did his best to collect himself before speaking to Orlin again.
“I am grateful to you, Orlin, in spite of our terrible loss. You exposed this traitor and he will be punished for his crimes. I guess I’ll take that into consideration when choosing another Lieutenant. But that will take time, of course.”
“Yes, sir. Of course it will. Thank you for your gratitude.”
The two knights then set off for their horses. They would be at the castle for Toro’s trial and then set to making preparations for the burial of Benn and Darius.
The king sat on his throne, waiting. He was leaning forward and clasped his right hand over his eyes. The disappointment and anger he felt had nearly overwhelmed him. He also felt a pang of guilt over Benn and Darius. Phineas had been right about Toro when he first brought it to Guran’s attention. But the king had dismissed him at the time, thoroughly believing that Phineas was overreacting and that Toro was a trustworthy man.
All he could think was that if he had listened to Phineas and acted then, this whole terrible situation could have been avoided. Now he was forced to try one of his former brothers in arms for treason and murder.
Guran heard the doors to the throne room open. He heard footsteps approach his throne. He didn’t even raise his head. He knew from the sound that Toro was being led toward him by two other Hylian Knights.
He didn’t want to raise his head and face this grim situation. His guilt at his own inaction threatened to overtake him.
Finally, after a long silence and no motion from anyone in the room, Guran lifted his head. He saw his knights standing before him and the traitorous Toro in chains. The king took a deep breath and then he began to speak.
“Toro Beldar” he said, his voice shaking.
“You stand accused of the crimes of murder and treason. You have betrayed your kingdom, your fellow knights and your king. How do you plead to these charges?”
Toro stood stock still as he allowed the king to finish speaking. He knew he had no way out of this situation so he chose to make this as quick as possible.
“I plead guilty to all charges placed against me” Toro said in a cold voice.
The king sighed and lowered his head as Toro finished speaking. He raised his head again a few moments later.
“Toro, you have disgraced the honor that King Ridlef placed upon you and the honor of your fellow knights and your current king. But because I am not the one who gave you the honor of your title and the man who did is dead, I will leave the decision of your fate up to your fellow knights.”
King Guran looked around the room at the four knights that remained.
“His fate is in your hands now. I ask that each of you make your choice. Whatever you choose will not be held against you. But in this case the majority rules. And if there is a stalemate, then your Captain’s decision will be the deciding vote. Speak when your decision is made.”
After a short pause, Sir Orlin was the first to speak.
“I say give him death. I feel it is only fair for what he has done.”
After a much longer pause, Sir Jon spoke up.
“I agree with Orlin, sire. Death for the betrayer.”
The king sat quietly on his throne as he waited for the remaining two, Colin and Captain Phineas, to speak. It took a long while. Guran knew Phineas was reserving his decision for last so watched Colin pace the floor and mull his decision. Finally, Colin stopped pacing and spoke.
“After much thought, I feel death is too extreme. He was a knight once and I feel in light of his service to the kingdom I think banishment is the best option for everyone.”
The king turned to the Captain when Colin had finished.
“It falls to you, Captain” he said softly.
Phineas turned to look at his king.
“I will not make my decision until I hear from our king. I feel as though we need to hear what he thinks the traitor’s fate ought to be.”
As soon as Phineas had finished speaking, Guran motioned for him to approach his throne. Phineas did as he was told and approached the king. Guran stood from his throne and met Phineas beside it. He put a hand to the Captain’s shoulder and turned them both around so that their backs were to the rest of the men in the room.
“What are you doing?” Guran whispered “I’ve left the decision in your hands because it is what is right. I don’t deserve to weigh in on this.”
“King Guran you were his Captain once too. You have as much say as anyone else in this room” Phineas whispered in reply.
“No, Phineas, I don’t. I didn’t listen to you when you came to me about Toro. I should have acted then. What happened today was my fault. Since you were the one who was smart enough to recognize the traitor, you should have the final decision.”
Phineas would have none of it.
“Sire that is nonsense. What Toro did is his fault and his alone. When you dismissed my claims you showed faith in your knights like any good Captain should. Besides, I never foresaw that he would go this far to achieve whatever he was after. I will not make my decision until I hear your input.”
Guran decided that he could not sway Phineas to speak his mind until he gave his own opinion.
“Very well, Captain” Guran said.
The two of them turned around to face the rest of the knights once more.
“I have decided to give my own opinion on this matter. But be aware that the Captain’s decision will still be the final one.”
The king took a deep breath as he began.
“What Toro did was heinous and terrible. The murder of two fellow knights is something that cannot go unpunished. However I, too, feel that death is too extreme. Perhaps you would call me soft and perhaps you would be right but I feel that banishment is the much better option.”
The king took another deep breath when he finished.
“But let it be known that my opinion holds no bearing for this and I will leave the final decision up to Captain Phineas.”
The room fell silent as the men stood there, eyes fixated on the Captain. As he stood next to the king, he closed his eyes for a moment. He breathed deeply as he spoke his decision. He would leave it to one word and everyone in the room was hanging on it. He opened his eyes and spoke.
After another short silence, the king spoke for the final time that day.
“The decision is made. Toro Beldar, as a result of your crimes against Hyrule, you are hereby stripped of your title as a knight of Hyrule. And as your former comrades have decreed, you are banished from this castle and its kingdom. May you walk forever with shame and bear the guilt and ghosts of the men you have slain.”
With the king’s decree finished, Toro was led back out of the throne room by Orlin and Colin. The king dismissed the other two of his knights. As soon as they left the room, Guran slumped back into his throne and resumed holding his forehead as he had before.
For weeks after the trial, the king remained beside himself for quite some time. As a result he decided to take leave of his castle and his kingdom. He wanted to take Zelda with him but he needed to leave someone behind to watch over the kingdom for him.
It almost made Guran feel worse saddling all this responsibility on a teenage girl but she reassured him that she would be fine and her sincerity and willingness to accept responsibility helped put Guran’s mind at ease. He wouldn’t have left otherwise but he felt the need to clear his mind of the shroud that now covered it.
The business with Toro’s betrayal and subsequent banishment caused much grief, sorrow, and guilt within the king’s heart. He thought leaving on his own and exploring the lands surrounding Hyrule, like he used to when he first became a knight, would help put his demons to rest.
So he did, leaving his daughter in charge of the kingdom. Zelda did everything to make sure her father would be assured that she would be fine. He kept telling her that he would not leave if she was not comfortable with all off the responsibility. She would simply say
“I’ll have to take on this responsibility eventually, won’t I? This will be good practice. I’ll be fine. The only thing I want is for you to get through this state you’re in and get better.”
Guran finally relented and left to wander the surrounding lands.
After her father was gone, Zelda took command as though she had done so her whole life. The people were very receptive to their princess and she commanded a great deal of respect, just as her father did. She was very calm and collected in her high pressure situation and handled everything with grace and dignity. Having the responsibility of the entire kingdom on her shoulders took its toll on her but she worked through it.
On one particular day she sat on her throne, the one next to her father’s, refusing to take his seat out of respect. She was approached by a steward.
“My lady, there is a young man here to see the king. He says he has completed a task set to him by your father. He says his name is Joran. How should we proceed?”
Zelda and Joran had been friends since they were children and she always enjoyed his visits when he would come to her father and ask about what he could do to help the kingdom.
Joran had been a big part of the king’s edict of justice. He and the knights grew quite familiar with each other as Joran would often bring them criminals he had apprehended. On this particular task he was after a notorious horse thief who had stolen several horses from various stables across the kingdom, including the horse of Captain Phineas.
Joran had managed to set a trap for him and apprehended him. He brought him in to the knights along with the Captain’s horse. He couldn’t ride the horse so he had walked the entire way with the horse and thief together without incident.
He had returned to the throne room to report his success to the king. Zelda had already been informed that a horse thief had been brought into the dungeon but did not know that it was Joran who had brought him in.
“Send him in, please” Zelda responded.
The steward bowed and left the throne room. He stepped outside and greeted the teenage boy who stood there.
“I’m afraid the king is not available today but the princess has requested your presence.”
Joran looked a little puzzled by this but he entered the throne room without a word to the steward. He entered the room and noticed that the king’s throne was indeed empty and he saw Zelda was sitting in her throne.
“Good day to you, princess” Joran said with a bow, after approaching Zelda’s throne.
“I come with news for the king but I see that he is not here. I guess I can tell you that the horse thief your father sent me out to find has been found and brought to justice.”
“So I have heard, Joran. I’ll have to tell him when he gets back.”
Joran looked behind him and noticed the steward still standing in front of the door.
“Is there any chance we can speak privately?” Joran asked.
Zelda nodded and looked to the steward at the door.
“Would you mind leaving us alone for a moment? We must have a private conversation.”
“Of course, my lady” the steward said before turning and leaving the room.
When the door closed, Joran and Zelda looked at each other again.
“Is anything wrong, Zelda? What happened to your father to make him leave his kingdom behind?”
“By now you must have heard of Toro’s betrayal, Joran. The entire situation and Toro’s banishment have really shaken him up. He needed to take a few days to try and collect his thoughts. That’s all.”
Joran paused before speaking again.
“Well how are you doing, then? It’s an awful lot of responsibility. Have you been holding up all right?”
“I’ve been feeling very well, considering the circumstances. There is one thing that’s been bothering me, though.”
“You can tell me, Zelda. If you need to get something off your chest, I will listen.”
Zelda hesitated. She stood up from her throne and walked over to where Joran was standing. She turned to the side and began speaking in a lowered, quiet voice.
“I’ve been thinking about Link for a long while now. Do you remember when my father made him a knight?”
Joran nodded. King Guran had knighted Link when he was just 14 years old. He had demonstrated his amazing sword prowess to the king on a few occasions. The king was impressed and immediately offered Link knighthood, but it was a different sort of knighting. Link wanted to accept the title but didn’t want to have to constantly live around the castle. After everything he had been through, it left him with wanderlust.
He found himself getting depressed if he stayed in one place too long. He was young and restless and the he chose to tell this to the king. As a result, Guran decided to allow Link to be a sort of “roaming knight” for the kingdom. Link also requested that he not be addressed by his title unless it was absolutely necessary. The king granted this as well.
“Well, ever since then he has come to see me a lot. Each time I get even happier to see him and even sadder to see him go. I feel myself wanting to be with him. He’s got such strength and courage. He has kind eyes and a soft voice.”
Joran knew what she was saying but simply stood back and listened.
“I’m in love with him, Joran. But I fear he will never share those feelings. I feel like he feels beneath me, you know? Like he has no place being with a princess. I wish he wouldn’t feel that way. He isn’t beneath me or anyone. He has the purest heart in the entire kingdom. I just wish he would share it with me.”
There was a short silence as Joran and Zelda stood facing each other. Joran finally spoke up.
“I’m sure he’d be willing to share something with you, Zelda. All you need to do is tell him. Next time he comes here, tell him how you feel.”
“I don’t know if I can do that, Joran. What if he doesn’t feel the same way? I’ll feel like a fool. I already feel like a fool but then I’d be a bigger fool.”
“It would be foolish to keep these feelings bottled up. Not that I’m calling you a fool, my lady.”
Zelda flashed a glance at Joran after he addressed her. Zelda had told him not to address her formally when they were in private, only when they were in front of her father or others around the castle. She considered him a friend and wanted that to be free of politics.
“Sorry, Zelda. It’s becoming a habit. I also do hold you and your father with the highest regard. But, anyway, you really should tell him how you feel.”
Zelda paused as she thought for a moment.
“Joran, I don’t know if I could do it. I’d like it if you found out for me. You and Link are friends, right?”
“Well, yes but we don’t see each other very often.”
“But you do speak to him sometimes?”
“Will you find out how he feels about me? I know I should ask him myself and I feel bad for having to ask you this. I know I’m being a fool but I just can’t work up the courage to talk to him about it.”
“Come now, Zelda. You’ve got more courage than that. I’ve seen it. Plus there is surely someone better to tell him. Impa, for instance. Why not just ask her to do it? She sees Link often enough.”
“I’m afraid you’re mistaken, Joran. My courage has left me in this case. As for Impa, I already asked her. She refused and said it would be best if I told him. Please, Joran?”
Joran considered her request for a moment and then decided upon his answer.
“All right. I’ll see what I can do. I won’t make any promises but I’ll see if I can pry it out of him. I guess then I’ll have to come back here and let you know.”
“Yes I would like that. But I would like you to make at least one promise to me.”
“Promise me that you will not mention this conversation to him. I don’t want to seem pathetic and petty to him.”
“You could avoid all that by just telling him yourself.”
Zelda shot Joran a look as he said this.
“All right, all right. Consider this conversation forgotten. But in exchange for this I want you to make me a promise. After I find this out and tell you how he feels, will you please just tell him how you feel?”
Zelda lowered her head and then looked back up at Joran.
“Very well. I suppose it’ll be a great weight off my chest. You’ve been a great help, Joran. Thank you.”
Zelda gave Joran a hug when she finished speaking, an act which Joran returned.
“You can talk to me anytime you need to, Zelda. I’m here all the time.”
Zelda nodded as Joran turned to leave.
With that, Joran opened the throne room door and left the princess alone once again.
As soon as he left the throne room, Zelda heard a voice from behind her throne.
“I’m disappointed in you, girl. That boy was right. You’ve more courage than that.”
Zelda jumped when she heard the Sheikah’s voice.
“Impa! Were you eavesdropping?”
Impa stood from behind the throne and walked around to the front, facing Zelda.
“I had a feeling you would ask him. I wanted to see if I was correct. Like I said, I’m disappointed.”
“I only did it because you wouldn’t help me.”
“Zelda dear, doing that for you wouldn’t be helping you. These are things you have to do for yourself. You may still be young but you’re not a little girl anymore. You need to learn to act like an adult.”
Zelda frowned as her nursemaid spoke and did not reply to any of this.
“I guess you’ll find out now. At least there’s that. Maybe then you’ll act more grown up.”
Impa and Zelda stared at each other for a while until Impa turned around and left the room, leaving Zelda truly by herself in the throne room.
Sir Orlin awoke from his bed with a start. He had taken his leave of the castle and was resting at home in
. He had decided to lie down for a while but didn’t realize that he had drifted off. Kakariko Village
He was still dressed in his royal attire but he had left his armour by the bedside. He looked to the window and noticed the sky was pale with the late evening twilight. He hadn’t known why he had awoken with such a start. He was now standing upright beside his bed. He thought for awhile and remembered dreaming that he heard a woman’s scream.
It was then that he realized as it was no dream as he heard another shrill cry from outside. Followed by another, deeper shout. Then another. He grabbed his sword, which sat atop his haphazard pile of armour and pulled it from its scabbard and immediately rushed out the door.
A woman nearly knocked him over as she ran past, shrieking in fright. Startled, Orlin looked around for the source of the woman’s fear. He saw a scrum of several of the village dwellers surrounding a figure in black. They seemed to be trying to hold this figure back.
Orlin ran into the melee and called out to the people.
“What is the meaning of this? Let me through, I am a knight of Hyrule. What is going on here?”
The group of people was suddenly flung backward with some strange dark magic.
Orlin barely held on to his footing as the edge of the magic blast caught him. He shielded his face with his right arm and gripped his sword tighter to avoid losing his grip.
“A knight, you say? You’re just in time. I’m sure your death would create a marvelous amount of fear.”
The deep, dark voice was that of the figure Orlin had spotted in the middle of the fray of Kakariko townsfolk. Orlin lowered his arm and looked toward the spot the figure had been standing.
There stood a boy in his mid to late teens dressed in a black tunic. He held a dark sword and shield but that wasn’t his most striking feature. He seemed to have a dark misty aura surrounding him and he had bright, menacing, red eyes. He also noticed that this boy looked exactly like Link.
Orlin had only met Link a handful of times but had a clear image of the boy in his mind. The boy that stood in front of him now looked identical to him.
“Link, what has happened to you? Why have you done this?”
At the name, the boy scoffed but he could not hide the rage in his voice when Orlin mentioned his name.
“Link? No, that is not who I am. I am his dark reflection. I am the creation of the great Ganondorf. I am
Dark Linkand I shall do what I was created to do.”
“And what is that?” Orlin asked, confused but wary of the boy. He didn’t know whether to believe him or not. In the few times he had met him, Link never spoke like this.
“I was created to kill the Hero of Time and that is what I intend to do. I have returned from the depths of oblivion to slay the hero and avenge my master!”
“Hero of Time? Who is that? I’ve never heard him spoken of before.”
“Fool! He is my antithesis.”
“Link? He’s certainly extraordinary but I’ve never heard anyone call him that before.”
“Enough of this! You’ve wasted enough of my time. I’ll let you live for now but if you dare to cross my path again you will not be so lucky.”
“No you don’t! I will kill you here and now! You can’t just attack this village and expect no consequences!”
Dark Link’s glowing red eyes appeared to widen in surprise.
“Did you say you would kill me? That’s a strange thing for a knight to say. Aren’t knights supposed to be noble and just?”
Orlin did not respond to this. He simple ran forward and swung his sword at the boy’s head. The boy disappeared just before the sword hit him. He appeared behind Orlin and knocked him to the ground with his shield.
“There is darkness in your heart, knight. I can feel it. It is strong and just needs the right motivation to coax it out. I should kill you but I shall let you live. You may of some use to me later.”
Orlin growled in frustration as he got up. He turned around to strike the boy down but he was nowhere in sight. He searched around him frantically, looking for the boy in black.
“Coward! You attack this village and then you flee? Face me! You will die by my sword!”
Orlin heard nothing in reply other than his own echoing voice. It was then that he realized that people in the village would need help. He was certain at least a few of them were wounded.
It was this thought that reassured Orlin that what
Dark Linkhad said was wrong. He told himself that he was a good knight and he would always be. But somewhere deep within himself there was a nagging doubt. He pushed it out of his mind but it was clear that Dark Linkhad sown the seeds of doubt in his mind.
Deep in the desert fortress there sits a new king on the throne. He is an anomaly among the Gerudos, a second man born within one hundred years. He was Ganondorf’s cousin, Fandoron. Only he has chosen to keep the Gerudos to themselves. There were a few scattered incidents but this king had decreed that the Gerudos attempt peace with the kingdom. The best way to do that right now, he felt, was a life of seclusion for his people. It was a way to atone for what they had done over the years under Ganondorf’s rule.
When his thoughts turned to his cousin, he remembered the terrible things he had done. He remembered what Ganondorf made him do. He even remembered the events of the Hero of Time and the even worse things he did under Ganondorf’s rule. He was glad that those events were now erased from this era of time. The dreadful memories, however, still plagued him.
Fandoron still had nightmares about the things he had done. He wished he could forget but he never would. That was why he so strongly vowed to turn the Gerudos into a peaceful race.
He was distracted from his thoughts when he heard someone enter the room. A woman approached him quickly and he stood from his throne to meet her.
“Haruna, what is it?” he asked when she entered.
“You seem to be in an awful hurry.”
The woman was slightly out of breath as she had been running until she entered Fandoron’s throne room.
“Fandoron, we have received news that
has been attacked.” Kakariko Village
“Haruna, that is very unfortunate but there is hardly anything we could do to help. They would shun us if-“
Haruna interrupted him.
“You didn’t let me finish! Fandoron, it was
Fandoron hadn’t heard that terrible name in years.
“Are you certain? Who saw him?”
Haruna could barely hold back her emotions as she spoke to the Gerudo king.
“There was a knight, I think he lives there. We have reports of him saying that the boy he saw looked like the boy, Link, only completely evil.”
“Did the boy tell this knight his name?” Fandoron was beginning to worry.
“Yes, Fandoron. I managed to run into him on his way to the castle. I managed to get him talking a little bit and he specifically used the name
Fandoron paused as he weighed their very dire situation.
“Haruna, I must find Link. I have to warn him. We cannot allow Olan to resurrect my cousin. Link defeated his brother before, he can do so again.”
With that, Fandoron quickly left the throne room. He found his horse and headed off toward Verul, hoping to find information on where Link may be. He couldn’t bear the thought of Ganondorf coming back into this world. Olan needed to be stopped.
Joran was just returning to his house in Verul when he heard a voice from behind him.
“Pardon me, young man, but I need some help. I was wondering if you could tell me something.”
Joran turned around and immediately drew the sword at his side when he saw the man’s face.
“Who are you? What do you want? If you are who I think you are then you are a dead man!”
The man raised his hands and back away from Joran at this response. He replied calmly.
“I am not you think I am. My name is Fandoron. I am a Gerudo. I am looking for Link. We are in dire need of his help.”
Joran relaxed slightly but did not sheath his sword.
“What do you need his help with? Why should I tell you anything?”
“You don’t understand!” Fandoron replied, urgency now entering his voice.
“I know you won’t know a thing about what I am saying but
Dark Linkhas returned! We need Link to defeat him again and prevent the kingdom from plunging into darkness!”
Joran finally sheathed his sword. He stepped closer to the man and remained silent for a while. He thought about what Fandoron had said and his memory clued in to something. It was his shard of the Triforce of Courage. He knew who
Dark Linkwas and what he had been created to do.
“If what you say is true then we do indeed need Link.”
Fandoron sighed with relief but then became puzzled.
“Wait, how do you know who
Joran lightly waved his hand and said “It’s complicated.”
Fandoron was still puzzled but decided to let it go.
“Do you know where Link is? I must find him. He defeated Olan before. We need him to do so once more.”
“Olan? Who is Olan? I thought you said
Dark Linkhad returned.”
Fandoron explained to Joran exactly who Olan was and how he came to be. He was one of the children kidnapped by the Gerudos during their raid on the kingdom. He was Link’s brother who Ganondorf had managed to hide away. He trained him and convinced him that he was the evil entity,
Dark Link, giving him his own power thanks to his own Triforce of Power. He told Joran everything about how Ganondorf corrupted Olan and even had Fandoron play a role in it all.
When Joran questioned why he would do such horrible things, Fandoron had no adequate answer. He could only say that he had to do these things for fear of Ganondorf’s wrath. Joran asked Fandoron how he knew of the events of the Hero Time and he revealed that he, too, had been granted some power by the Triforce of Power.
He told Joran of some of the things that he had done with some prodding. Joran chastised him for not standing up to his cousin. Finally, the conversation came to an end as Joran told Fandoron where to start looking.
“Link grew up in the forest and is likely to be somewhere around there. Tell him what you have told me and then retreat back to the dank hole you crawled out of. Just hope that the Hero of Time doesn’t mistake you for your cousin. I honestly hope he does and he ends your miserable life.”
With that, Joran entered his house and slammed the door behind him. Fandoron felt Joran’s words cut him like a knife but he felt that the boy was right. After what he had done, he deserved such a fate. He finally turned around and made his way toward Hyrule’s forested region. He only hoped Link was willing to fight his own brother like he had before.
Within a few days, Link was knocking on Joran’s door. The two of them entered Joran’s house and spoke for quite some time about Link’s encounter with a Gerudo man in the forest. After their long conversation, they had agreed to head to Lon Lon Ranch. As they headed out of Joran’s house, someone was watching them from afar.
The aged man watched the two teenage boys and worry ate way at his heart. He worried after Joran and what he was getting himself into. He decided that he would follow, but at a distance. He didn’t want Joran to know that he was following. Joran had already let him know that he was fine on his own. He also knew that Joran was protective of him.
saw the two boys climb on top of Link’s horse and ride for the ranch. He spoke to Joran as if he were in front of him. Kiel
“I feel you will need my help this time, my son. I must be there to protect you. I cannot let what happened to your family happen to you. I took you into my care for a reason and I’ll be damned if I’m going to abandon you now. I am your protector, your guardian. So I will follow you, Joran.”
was silent once more as the wind tossed his short, faded blonde hair. He walked around and, with Guran’s bronze and orange sword at his side, found his old russet horse. He climbed into the saddle and, keeping an eye on the two boys, started his horse at a slow trot in their direction. All he knew at that point was his desire to protect Joran. He would follow him to the end of the world until he knew that his boy was safe. Kiel
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