Disclaimer: I dont want to get in whatever trouble people can get into when using other peoples characters so - The Legend of Zelda, Link, Zelda, Ganon, Hyrule and other related characters and settings belong to to that wonderous console company, Nintendo. No infringement intended.
The Third Triforce
Juliet A. Singleton (Scullys@bigfoot.com) & Kirsty Singleton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dion and Damon arrived at North Castle the next morning after spending the night at some of Dion's actual brothers in Rarau. Dion approached the entrance to the castle but was stopped by a guard. "Sir what is your business here in North Castle," asked the guard.
"My friend, I am here to meet with his highness over business about the actual structure of the castle. My name is Dion Insequi by the way," answered Dion smoothly. The guard nodded and turned to Damon.
"And you sir?" "By invitation of her Royal Highness, Princess Zelda. Damon Owen," answered Damon.
"Very well, I will go and check and then if you check out you may enter," said the guard who wandered off. The two dismounted and waited for the guard to return. He did, several minutes later.
"The Royal Family are busy having breakfast, but the Princess invites you to share with them," the guard announced.
"Well kind sir, these horses need feeding, rubbing down and stabling. What's your name? I tip very kindly," said Dion handing the reins over to the guard.
"Ian sir, Ian Knight," said the guard leading the two horses away. After stabling the horses Ian returned and led the two into the castle and took them to were the family were dining.
"Your Highness, it is a pleasure to finally meet you at last," said Dion performing an over exaggerated bow. Damon also bowed towards the King and then the two sat in extra seats provided for them. "Well Dion, it certainly is a pleasure to meet you at last. The Insequi family are certainly one of the most respected families in the whole of Hyrule as well as the rest of the world," said the King.
"Oh, we try our best sir," said Dion flashing a brilliant smile.
"And it is also a pleasure to see you again Damon," added the King to which Damon just nodded his head. Near the end of the meal Dion stood and placed one hand on Damon's shoulder.
"Now, something that should most definitely brighten your day, a small gift that we two friends found whilst exploring the unstable caverns of Karia Island," began Dion. Damon quickly handed his pouch to Dion.
"This will almost certainly stop Ganon from ever completing any of the Triforces, two shards of knowledge and power. Behold," announced Dion withdrawing the two crystal shards from the pouch.
"And these two scrolls that me and my friend can sadly not read as we are both somewhat uneducated in the region of Hylian, were also found with these treasured shards," said Dion presenting the two scrolls. Zelda stood up and took the scrolls and crystal shards.
"However can we thank you? You must have gone to extreme lengths to find these," said Zelda turning the shards over in her hands.
"Oh it was nothing," said Dion somewhat modestly. "Nothing?" said Damon. "Well okay, we did nearly get killed by two cave ins and a Thunder Bird but, like I said, 'tis a mere nothing," said Dion grinning. "I do not need money, neither does Damon here. But how about, hmmm, 'tis a funny thing but I can think of naught that I need," said Dion mockingly.
"He bought a map to find this stuff. It cost him 12 hundred rupees," said Damon. "Damon, 12 hundred rupees is nothing. Money is not everything, if I ever think of anything I will remember your most generous offer," said Dion still grinning. "Now, lets finish dining shall we?" he continued sitting down. Zelda quickly read through the scrolls.
"There are references to the Temple of Rock, in these," she said.
"Temple of Rock?" the King enquired.
"Oh.... Just something I read about a few days ago," Zelda replied. She examined the shards closely. "These have got to be pieces of the Triforce. But how strange for them to have been with these scrolls," Zelda murmured.
"But this is great! Ganon will never complete either Triforce now! We have nothing to worry about," Link answered.
"But we need to find a Triforce! Without one, my magic isn't half as good. And by finding the Tri..." she stopped, realising her Father was seated at the table. He looked concerned.
"My dear, you can't possibly think you can find all the pieces of either Triforce?" he asked.
"Uh, no. I guess it's pretty near to impossible," she said quickly.
"Yes. I don't want you or Link getting into any of your fanciful escapades over this," he warned. Link and Zelda looked at each other.
"Of course not," they said together. A guard suddenly walked in.
"Your Highness, the men you sent us to capture smuggling, they've been found murdered," he said.
"What? Where?" the King answered.
"On the Great Coast Road, Your Majesty. Looks like the work of moblins," the guard explained.
"Moblins? Along the Great South Road? That's strange. It's usually the domain of Darias and the like," Zelda said, looking puzzled.
"Even stranger Your Highness, is that they appeared to take nothing. We found the caskets of the Moruge Bane plant, even gold coins. It was as if they were murdered in cold blood, my Princess," the guard said. Zelda studied the Triforce shards intently.
"Ganon's powers are growing stronger by the minute... yet it can't be possible. Not while we have these," she murmured.
Link called to Hayden, as he walked towards the stables. "Hayden! Are you coming with us, or what?" he asked. Hayden shook his head.
"I'm afraid I have to be getting back to Sosaria. I've overstayed my planned visit. It's been nice seeing you," he said casually.
"What, you're going already?" Link asked in surprise. Hayden nodded.
"Yes. My boss will be wondering where I've got to," Hayden answered.
"But, you're my brother! I haven't seen you in years. You can't go now," Link replied, feeling disappointed.
"I have to Link. I'll visit again sometime," Hayden said, quickly walking off. Link stood staring after him for a while, slightly hurt. He'd envisioned teaching his little brother lots of his own skills, in fact, Hayden would have made a good practising partner for Aaron. Link carried on walking to the stables, feeling slightly dejected. His new quest even didn't seem half so exciting now. He tacked up Carefree and Moonmist, and then led them out into the courtyard. He checked to see he had all the necessary equipment - sword, rope, bombs, lantern, bow and arrows, food.... Zelda came out into the courtyard, looking slightly troubled. However, as she approached she smiled, and then climbed up onto Moonmist.
"Ready?" she asked. "I think so," Link replied mounting Carefree. "The others should be here in a minute," she said. Selina and Aaron came out together, followed by Drake, Damon and Dion. By the time Sprite had come out, and everybody else was tacked up and ready to go.
It didn't take them long to get to Ruto Town. Link lead to the path which was the way up the mountains to the cave. They halted their horses on a flat piece land, and dismounted. "Okay," Zelda began, looking round at everybody. "There's only one way to this temple, but once we get there, I think we should split into groups and explore. It would be the quickest way, and less chance of us being caught by whoever's down there. Now, not counting you Sprite, there's seven of us. That works out as two groups of two, and one group of three," she said.
"Impressive maths, Princess," Drake called, laughing. Zelda shot him a displeased look.
"Anyway, I think me and Link should make up one group, then Aaron, Selina and..."
"Hold it right there, Your Highness," Drake interrupted.
"Oh, what now?" Zelda asked, sounding slightly annoyed.
"Well, this grouping system... I think we should be able to choose who we're with," Drake said, grinning.
"Drake do you have to be so awkward?" Zelda said tartly.
"Well, who said you were in charge?" he asked.
"I think I ought to be in charge, considering I'm almost Hyrule's ruler!" Zelda retorted..
"Drake, give it a rest. Zelda was doing just fine," Link interrupted. Secretly, he suspected Drake was winding Zelda up just for fun, but she wouldn't see it that way. Selina stepped forward.
"I have an idea. Aaron, me and you will pair up, Link and Zelda, and Damon and Dion. Drake, you'll have to be by yourself, since you were complaining previously," she suggested, smiling mischievously.
"Uh, I think I'll just tag along with one of the groups," Drake announced. He turned and smiled at Zelda.
"In fact, I'll make it up to you Princess, by joining you and Link."
"Hey, we can do just fine by ourselves!" Zelda shot back.
"She's right. She's with me, and we'll have no problems at all," Link added.
"Stop wasting time, all of you! It doesn't matter who's in what group. Let's go!" Sprite announced.
"Amigo, you join me and my bro," Dion offered. "Gladly," Drake replied, grinning.
Fayette watched the group climb into the dark cave. She wasn't so sure following them had been a good idea now. If it had just been Link or Zelda, she might have followed them inside, but they'd come in a group. Besides, she didn't want to go and get all dirty inside that horrible cave. She simply couldn't imagine why Link and Zelda enjoyed doing such meaningless pursuits. As she turned to walk back to her palomino coloured horse, Candice, there was a flash of smoke. She screamed in horror at the being that appeared. It was Ganon, but Fayette had never encountered him before. Ganon smiled evilly at her reaction. "Well, if it isn't the perfect little princess!" he sneered. Fayette backed away, terrified. Ganon leaned forward and grabbed Fayette by the material on the front of her dress, his sharp nails digging into her neck. "Tell me Fayette, have Link and Zelda retained any pieces of the Triforce?" he demanded.
"Pieces of Triforce?" she asked, shaking in fear.
"Don't act dumb!" he screeched, feeling pleased with himself. It was good to see her so scared. If only Zelda would react the same way...
"You know, pieces of glowing crystal!" he added. Fayette bit her lip. Then she remembered what Dion and Damon had given Zelda that morning at breakfast. That had to be what this monster was talking about.
"Uh, yes. They have two pieces. A blue one and a red one," she said, beginning to feel like she was about to faint.
"Good girl. Now, where are they?" Ganon inquired, still keeping tight hold of Fayette.
"I uh, I don't know," Fayette stammered.
"You must know!" Ganon screeched, looking extremely angry.
"Zelda... she, she had them this morning," Fayette said, trying to think. Ganon let go of Fayette, and she fell backwards onto the ground.
"You're lucky I'm not in the mood for kidnapping. Unfortunately, I doubt Link would want to come and save you, so you're of little use," Ganon sneered. Fayette stood up slowly, brushing the dirt off her dress. Ganon snorted. "It's such a shame you weren't likeable," he added. Fayette looked ready to cry but she didn't, and Ganon had to give her credit. Perhaps she was braver than she looked. "Where is Zelda?" he demanded.
"Uh, in there," Fayette said shakily, pointing towards the cave.
"I thought so," Ganon sneered.
"But she left the crystals at the castle, I think. She, uh, told Link to put them somewhere safe," Fayette added hastily. Ganon stared at her in suspicion.
"If you're lying, you little wretch, I'll see to it personally that you suffer!" he screeched. The necromancer clicked his fingers then vanished in a puff of purple smoke.
After an hour or so, Link, Zelda and the rest of the group arrived at the hall. "How in Hyrule do we get down there?" Zelda asked.
"Rope, of course. We climb down," Link said.
"I don't know. What if one of us falls?" Zelda replied, looking doubtful. "I'm sure no-one will, not if we're careful," Link reassured her.
"Well, I'll go down first," Drake offered.
"Okay," Link said handing him some rope. Drake tied two lengths of rope together, then tied one end around a large stalagmite. He dropped the rope down. It landed about two meters from the floor.
"Not too bad. All of you got no problem with jumping, right?" Everyone shook their heads, and so Drake began his descent. The rocky wall had plenty of footholds, and Drake was strong. He completed the climb quickly. Selina offered to go next. She took longer than Drake, but had no major problems. The rest of the group soon followed. Once all at the bottom, they separated into their respective groups.
"When shall we meet back up?" Sprite asked.
"Everybody brought a watch, so we should agree to a certain time," Selina said. "A few hours at least," Zelda decided. Drake squinted at his pocket watch.
"It's almost 10am now. How about 3pm?" he suggested.
"That should be ample, but let's make it broader. Anytime between 2.30pm and 3.30pm," Link replied. Everybody agreed, and so set off to explore.
Link, Sprite and Zelda took the largest passageway. It had arched walls, and was lit with torches at various intervals. "Link, wait," Zelda said, pausing to study the wall carvings. There was a small frieze that seemed to continue along the corridor. She stared at it for several minutes. "These carvings..." she began, looking puzzled.
"What about them?" Sprite asked.
"Well, they look Hylian, yet they're not like the patterns you see on ancient buildings. They're... different," she finally replied.
"Different, how?" Link asked. He hadn't noticed himself.
"They're cruder, more sharp. You know how the Hylians loved to do intricate swirling patterns, that had rounded, smooth edgings. It's almost a mock pattern. An attempted copy," she remarked, running her hands over the embossed decorations. Link took a closer look, realising what she meant.
"A pattern to fool ordinary people into thinking this place was Hylian?" Link suggested.
"Yes! But what I don't understand, is why someone would do that," Zelda answered.
"Perhaps we'll find out. Something tells me we shouldn't linger in this place too long," Link said, starting off down the passage again. After walking for a few minutes, they saw two openings in the left hand wall. Slowing down, they moved to the side of the wall. Link peered round into the first opening. It seemed to be some sort of room, deserted. They walked inside and looked around. The room was fairly large and filled with large wooden tables and chairs. A small doorway lead off into some sort of kitchen. The acrid smell of blood seemed to hang faintly in the Underworld air. A few assorted jars stood on the kitchen shelves, and there was a cauldron full of a brownish liquid.
"People eat here?" Zelda said in disbelief.
"Maybe. I did see some people last time I came," Link said. They stepped outside into the passage again. The next room seemed to serve simply as a store room, although the barrels and crates contained nothing but refuse and cobwebs.
"Perhaps you were mistaken. Perhaps you just saw some of Ganon's monsters," Zelda said. "It seems to me, that no-one has used this rooms in centuries."
Both Aaron and Selina nearly screamed at the sight before their eyes. Dead bodies everywhere, torture devices, the rancid stench of decay, rats. They appeared to have stumbled upon some sort of torture room. "Oh my god," Selina murmured.
"I thought these places only existed inside Death Mountain," Aaron muttered.
"Perhaps this is another of Ganon's rooms," Selina said, still looking disgusted.
"But Ganon's chambers aren't half as bad as this," Aaron replied.
"This was a bad idea. I think we should get out of here," Selina said. However, as they turned to leave, they came face to face with a hideous entity. Recoiling in horror at the un-dead mage, nothing but a robed skeleton skull, with burning red eyes, Selina and Aaron knew they were in trouble. They had encountered a Liche, an un-dead being who enjoyed foul practices, especially sacrifice and torture. They had come from Sosaria, but had thought to have been eradicated. The two adventurers now knew Hyrule was wrong. Very wrong.
Hayden felt guilty. He couldn't believe he'd blatantly lied, to his older brother. His own flesh and blood. But he'd done it, and now, his brother was going to walk straight into a very dangerous trap. Hayden should have told Link the truth from the very start. Several years ago, Hayden had set out to Hyrule from Catalia, because he knew he had an uncle there. However, when he'd landed his small boat on the far west coast of Hyrule, he'd been attacked by a group of people who named themselves the Carcastans, and been brought underground. He had had two choices - be offered in sacrifice to the people's Gods or become one of them. He'd chosen the latter. The Carcastans were not originally from Hyrule, and had been living in the underground caverns for several hundred years, led by an evil liche. They also worshipped a strange golden prism, which Hayden had later learned from Link, was called the Triforce of Courage. They had adopted the ancient Hylian language, although some people, like himself spoke the standard Hyrulian language. Recently, the Carcastans had detected that somebody had intruded into their realm. Trenon, who was second in command to the liche had identified the intruders as a young man named Link, and the other a faerie. Hearing the name, Hayden had suddenly remembered his brother, and wondered if they were the one and same person. It had been a long shot, but Hayden had offered to investigate into what Link had been doing there. He'd found out why, and found out he was also his long-lost brother. Being at North Castle had opened up a whole new world for Hayden. It would have been fun to learn from Link, and he'd gotten quite friendly with Aaron. And then there was Fayette. He'd thought Zelda was pretty, until he'd seen her step sister. Unfortunately, he'd had to report back, or he would be certainly marked for death. Perhaps he should have asked his brother for help. Time was running out. Link and Zelda had left not long after him, and they would be in Carcastan territory, if not already captured. And once captured, they would either be sacrificed by the liche, or forced to join the group. Hayden decided that, although it meant death if he was caught, he had to find his brother, before Trenon or anyone else, did.
Ganon sniggered to himself, hiding in the trees near North Castle. He turned himself invisible, then teleported on the castle battlements. There were guards on duty, but they did not see him. The wizard hoped that neither Link nor Zelda had cast a protection spell over Link's tower. It was so pure and good, that it was the only barrier Ganon could not cast aside. But without her Triforce, Ganon knew fine well that Zelda's magical powers would have dwindled to those of ordinary strength. The barrier would not have been created by the magic of her Triforce, but by the ordinary spell she already knew. It would be easy to break. Unseen, Ganon teleported onto the balcony of Link's tower. Ganon recognised the aura of magic around it, but it was weak. Ganon easily dispelled the protection field, and walked into Link's room. Although hidden, Ganon immediately sensed the presence of the shards. Smirking, he felt under the mattress of the bed, and pulled out the two glowing crystals.
Link suddenly pushed Zelda and himself back into a side room. "Link!" Zelda said, not liking his roughness.
"Shhh!" he warned, listening intently. Sprite hovered nearby, keeping a watch. A few moments later they heard the sound of footsteps. They retreated into the inky shadows of the room, hoping nobody would come inside. As the sound of the footsteps faded, they decided it was safe.
"That was close," Zelda murmured.
"Yeah. And the further in we go, the more likely it is we'll encounter these strange people," Link replied.
"I wonder if the others are okay?" Zelda said.
"We'll know when we go back to meet them," Link said, glancing at his pocket watch. "It's midday. Perhaps we should eat," he added.
"No. Let's wait a little longer," Zelda answered, walking back out into the passage again. They had been following the twisting passages for quite some time, and Link sincerely hoped that they weren't lost.
"Look!" Zelda said excitedly. The passage was beginning to open out into another large hall. It was empty, but passages branched off in several directions. Looking up, Link noticed some signs written in Hylian.
"That one," he said. The sign stated, 'Temple of The Golden One'.
Aaron and Selina were slung into a cell. The liche said something to them in Hylian, but neither of them spoke or knew the language well, so they didn't understand. "What are we going to do?" Selina wailed, looking around the dingy prison in despair. There was a shrouded guard standing nearby, keeping a close eye on them.
"I'm thinking, I'm thinking," Aaron replied. He stood up and examined the lock on the door. It might be possible to pick, he thought. They'd been disarmed from all their weapons, but the guard had missed the dagger Aaron always kept hidden in his boot. However, he didn't dare to try whilst that guard was stood there. Selina sat down on one of the wooden bunks.
"That liche will sacrifice us," she said quietly.
"I know. But perhaps if that guard goes, we can get out of here," Aaron said, trying to reassure Selina. She didn't look convinced.
"If only Link were here. He'd know what to do," she added. Aaron secretly wished that too, but was slightly hurt that Selina didn't seem to trust his capabilities.
"Perhaps he'll come this way," Aaron said hopefully. Selina just sighed. "Perhaps you have an idea?" Aaron inquired sarcastically.
"None," Selina replied. They both sat in silence, wondering about their predicament...
Link and Zelda paused cautiously at the threshold of the temple. "Over there!" Zelda pointed. There, on a golden stand, stood the Triforce of Courage.
"All those years it's been here," Link said in wonder. Zelda hugged him excitedly. Elated by the moment, the two forgot they were in possible dangerous territory and rushed forward into the cavern. They slowed down as they approached the plinth upon which the stand stood. Nobody was inside, but at once, Link and Zelda felt worried. The smell of blood hung in the air, fresher than ever. The room was lit by candles, and to the left of the Triforce stand, was a huge stone altar, decorated in the same, mock-Hylian pattern they'd spotted on the walls earlier. A huge jewelled knife was set down on the floor next to the altar. Zelda looked at Link.
"Surely no-one practise such barbarity! Not in Hyrule!" she said quietly, shocked.
"Perhaps these people aren't from Hyrule," Sprite suggested.
"We shouldn't hang around here. Let's get the Triforce and go," Link said. Zelda nodded.
"Good idea," she replied. She approached the stand and then picked up the yellow prism. It felt heavy, but she managed to hold it.
"Can you use it?" Link asked, still excited by their discovery. Zelda concentrated on trying to channel the artefact's magic, managing to project it's power through to her. She made a small beam of yellow magic hit the ground.
"Perfect," she said, smiling. Suddenly, the two were surrounded by dark, cloaked figures. Link hastily drew his sword and Zelda attempted to train the Triforce's magic onto them, but there was simply too many of them. Zelda was captured first, then Link. They were dragged before a tall, bony man with thick black hair. He shouted something at them in Hylian.
"What did he say?" Link whispered to Zelda.
"I have no idea. Spoken Hylian is rather different to written Hylian," she whispered back. The man seemed to get impatient. He shouted something else. To the best of her capabilities, Zelda finally said in Hylian, "Can you speak Hyrulian?". The man stared at them for a few moments. Then he replied,
"Who are you?".
"I am Princess Zelda of Hyrule. And this is Link, our most valiant hero," Zelda introduced.
"What are you doing here? And what where you doing to The Golden One?" the man demanded, not looking the least impressed by Zelda's title.
"That is the Triforce of Courage. And it rightfully belongs to me," Zelda declared.
"You made it kill men! How can you do that?" the man said angrily. Zelda remained quiet. She wasn't about to reveal how to use the Triforce's powers to these barbarians. "Tell me, else you shall be sorry!" the man shouted. Zelda remained impassive to his threats. The man turned to some men stood near him, and ordered them to do something in Hylian. Link and Zelda were roughly pushed down a small side passage by the men.
"Link do something!" Zelda cried.
"We're outnumbered and weapon-less!" Link answered, trying to think of a solution to their problem. They were quickly imprisoned in a small cell though, and left.
"I don't believe this!" Zelda moaned.
"Sprite isn't here. Perhaps she'll find the others," Link replied. "So long as they're not already imprisoned," Zelda answered bleakly. Link could not help thinking the same.
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