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 Order of Fate
Juliet A. Singleton (Scullys@bigfoot.com) & Kirsty Singleton (email@example.com)
Brianna walked out into the garden, wrapping her cloak closely around her. The September morning was bright, but a little cool. She strolled leisurely down the centre of the courtyard, her long golden hair stirring slightly in the breeze. Red-gold leaves floated to the ground all around her, signifying that autumn truly had arrived. Brianna was glad that she had been born in summer, when the weather was always fair, and all the flowers were in full bloom, but, autumn was also nice, with its myriad of golden colours, the harvest, the gentle breeze upon the air. She walked towards the ornamental gardens, and saw a figure over by the lake. She hitched up her skirts, and jogged over quickly, reckoning it to be her brother. It was. Ewan was staring into the water, his hands in his pockets. He didn't hear Brianna approaching.
"Good morning, dear brother!" she called out, in a sing song voice. He turned away from the water, looking a little surprised.
"Bri..." he started. Brianna noticed that he looked a little troubled. She walked over to the water's edge, and stood next to him. They both turned to look over the lake.
"Happy birthday," she declared.
"Thanks," he replied. Silence.
"I got you a present, but... well, I thought you'd probably want it later," Brianna finally remarked. Ewan nodded.
"So what's up?" she questioned.
"Nothing much," Ewan replied. Brianna folded her arms and turned to look at him.
"Yeah, right," she remarked unbelievingly. Ewan didn't say anything.
"Don't try to kid me. It's your birthday, and you're not happy?" Brianna continued.
"I am happy. It's just..." Ewan began.
"Just what?" Brianna asked.
"Well... I met this girl... this... woman," Ewan said. He quickly grabbed hold of Brianna's arm. "Bri, you mustn't tell mother, or... or dad, or anyone," he added pleadingly. Brianna's lips curved into an amused smile.
"Oh yes? Who is she? Oh, and give me one good reason why I shouldn't say anything to our parents," she said.
"Bri, you know I'd do the same for you!" Ewan replied, looking hurt.
"As if! Ewan, you'd probably totally kill the guy for even looking at me in the first place!" Brianna laughed. Ewan suddenly grinned.
"Well, maybe you're right. But, you're my baby sister, I have to protect you," he said.
"I'm your only sister," Brianna retorted, smiling. "And," she added, "I'm not a baby, I'm a young lady."
"You'll always be my kid sister, to me," Ewan stated, grinning.
"And you'll always be my totally sad big brother, who I'm just not related to!" Brianna replied, giggling. Ewan punched her lightly in the arm, then his expression turned serious.
"Promise me, Bri," he said earnestly.
"Promise you what?" Brianna questioned.
"That you'll not tell our parents about..." Ewan started.
"Tell me who she is, first," Brianna interrupted.
"You don't know her," Ewan said quickly. Brianna noticed him blushing.
"Ooh, my big brother's in love!" she sang out loud.
"Shush! Someone might hear you!" Ewan said, glancing around nervously. Brianna laughed.
"Out here, at this time? I highly doubt it," she replied.
"Brianna, please. I'm begging you!" Ewan said. Brianna stepped back, and regarded him in amusement.
"My big brother is begging me!" she stated.
"Bri!" Ewan said, looking angry. The young princess narrowed her eyes.
"I want to get something out of it," she said.
"Brianna, you can have anything you want, just so long as you don't tell them," Ewan replied.
The princess strolled away from the lake slowly. Ewan quickly followed her, and caught hold of her arm.
"Brianna..." he began. She stopped.
"Look, of course I won't tell them! But on a few conditions," she said slyly.
"Name them," Ewan said. Brianna looked thoughtful for a moment, before replying.
"Alright. First of all, you tell me who she is."
"But..." Ewan started.
"Be quiet! Second, I want you to accidentally give me, Renee, Ally and Beth some wine tonight, instead of punch," Brianna continued, grinning mischievously.
"Bri, no!" Ewan protested. Brianna grinned.
"Third of all, I want you to tell Tim that he had to dance with Beth at least once," she finished.
"Why?!" Ewan asked.
"I should think it was obvious," Brianna replied. Ewan sighed.
"Alright. I'll tell you the first one. Her name is Leigh," he said grudgingly.
"Oh, Leigh is it?" Brianna said, laughing.
"You know her?" Ewan asked in surprise. The princess nodded.
"I've seen her around, yesterday in fact. I asked dad who she was, and he told me she was an old friend. I must say Ewan, she's rather a bit old for you, isn't she?" Brianna remarked.
"No! She's only about twenty-six or something," Ewan answered.
"Well, she's still older than you," Brianna said, grinning.
"Not that much older. Besides, uncle Nick is ten years older than aunt Selina," Ewan pointed out.
"I suppose," Brianna admitted.
"Second of all," Ewan said, trying to get off the subject of Leigh, "is the fact that I'm not letting any of you have any wine at all. You're all far too young, especially Beth. Perhaps next year," he said. Brianna smiled prettily.
"You're right. It was rather wicked of me to suggest such a thing, wasn't it?" she said, in a sweet tone. Ewan stuck his hands in his pockets again.
"Of course, I might try a sample or two," Brianna added.
"At your own risk. I'm not bailing you out when you make a fool of yourself," Ewan replied. "Then I shall tell mother and dad about your little... affair with that Leigh," Brianna answered promptly.
"Brianna, you wouldn't dare," Ewan replied. The princess grinned.
"I might," she threatened playfully.
"I'll get Tim to share a dance with Beth, then," Ewan said quickly. Brianna smiled.
"Good, 'cause she simply adores him, you know," she said.
"She's a bit young for him, I think," Ewan replied.
"Ahem, and who's a bit young for Leigh?" Brianna questioned. Ewan blushed and looked a little uncomfortable.
"Bri, please, I'd rather not discuss this right now," he said.
"Fine," Brianna replied. They walked back towards the castle together.
"So, have you kissed her, yet?" Brianna asked, beginning to giggle.
"Bri, that's private," Ewan said shortly.
"Do tell me. You never know, my tongue may just happen to slip, especially if mother or dad happens to be around," Brianna said, smiling slyly.
"Brianna Grâtia-Illustrísquídam, you are a wicked, terrible girl!" Ewan exclaimed. His sister laughed, and then patted him on the arm.
"I wouldn't, you know I wouldn't," she said, her tone becoming sincere. Ewan nodded.
"I know. Thanks, Bri," he said, looking grateful.
"Anytime, brother dear," she smiled.
"I sort of kissed her," he suddenly admitted. Brianna gazed at him in surprise.
"How can you 'sort of' kiss someone?" she questioned, laughing.
"I don't know, you just can," he replied. Brianna nodded.
"Alright. If you say so," she said solemnly. Then she burst out into peals of laughter.
"Just you wait Bri. Just you wait till you fall in love, you'll never hear the end of it from me!" Ewan threatened.
"I'll be too much in love to care what other people say," Brianna replied in a carefree tone. Ewan smiled at his sister.
"You probably will," he agreed. Brianna smiled back, and gave him a kiss on the cheek. Then she stepped back, her expression turning serious.
"Ewan, if mother and dad see you at the party with Leigh..." she started.
"I've already thought of that. I think I shall try to stay away from her, when they're around," Ewan replied.
"You'll have to tell them sooner or later," Brianna stated.
"I know... and I will. Just... just not yet," Ewan said.
"Why not now though? Are you afraid that they shan't approve?" Brianna questioned.
"I... it's all a little complicated right now," Ewan said.
"Complicated? How?" Brianna pressed.
"I'll let you know when I figure it all out myself," Ewan promised. Brianna raised her eyebrows, then smiled.
"Alright, fair enough," she said.
"Bri, did I ever tell you that you were the greatest sister in the whole wide world?" Ewan suddenly asked. She grinned.
"No... but thanks. Wish I could say the same about you though!" she replied jokingly.
"Why, you..." Ewan began. Brianna giggled, and then dashed back inside North Castle. Ewan grinned to himself, and then proceeded to follow her inside.
As Leigh made her way back to her room, she saw another person leaving one. She stopped dead, as she realised who it was. Selina Rowen, or at least that's what she had been. She had certainly changed, her skin was more tanned than it had been, making her look more like a Gerudo than anything. Her hair was still a mass of full, red curls, and her smile hadn't changed. "Leigh," called out Selina in surprise, walking over. Leigh swallowed, managing to muster a smile back.
"Selina," she managed to say, stuck for words.
"How are you feeling, I heard you weren't feeling all too good," said Selina sympathetically. "Oh, I'm fine," Leigh, lied not wanting to make a big fuss.
"How come we haven't seen you around the castle?" questioned Selina. Leigh looked down at the ground.
"I can't face them," she admitted.
"Who?" asked Selina. Leigh looked up again.
"Everyone. It's alright, just one on one, but with a whole group of them. You have all aged, and look at me. It's not like it hasn't happened before. In Sosaria, when I've returned to my homeland, I've come back and friends, who have only been your age now have passed away from old age. But this time, this time it's different," explained Leigh.
"How?" asked Selina.
"I don't know. It just is," retorted Leigh. She sounded miserable.
"But Leigh, we're your friends here," started Selina.
"Some of you. But the most important person in the castle, in the land, hates me. I'm surprised she allowed me to stay in the castle for this long," said Leigh bitterly.
"She's changed a lot over the years you know, she's far more calm and balanced," said Selina. "But I haven't, I'm still the same person that I was when I left Hyrule. It's not just a question of her forgiving me, I have to forgive her first, and I know I can't if she still hates me," said Leigh.
"Perhaps if I were to have a word with her..." suggested Selina.
"No," Leigh shook her head firmly, "she'll just think I'm trying to turn you against me or something, and that would make matters worse," concluded Leigh. "
I still think..." started Selina. Leigh cut in.
"Do we have to dwell on this? Even Link thought Zelda would never drop her grudge, so it's not worth the effort. Besides, what about you? Marrying the king of the richest country in the Demiari," said Leigh, her tone lighter. Selina smiled at the mention of her husband.
"Oh Leigh, you should've been there, at the wedding it was so," began Selina happily. Leigh smiled.
"Exotic?" she suggested, assuming the wedding had taken place in Nick's homeland.
"Yes, and romantic," agreed Selina.
"I'm so happy for the two of you, I know that statement is about fifteen years too late, but," said Leigh, half apologising.
"No, don't apologise," protested Selina.
"And Link told me that you had children," said Leigh vaguely.
"Yes, two twins. Renee, and Alexander," said Selina proudly. Leigh nodded.
"I've met Link and Zelda's son, he seems...nice," she said, thinking back to their most recent meeting. She felt herself blush a little, but luckily for her, Selina did not seem to notice.
"And Brianna?" asked Selina.
"No, not yet. I'm surprise Zelda hasn't locked them away so to reduce the chances of them ever meeting me," said Leigh, half smiling.
"She's not that bad, she really isn't," protested Selina.
"I know, it's just I doubt you were ever on the receiving end of one of her grudges," said Leigh. Selina smiled slightly.
"Actually, when we met we hated one another. I can remember it quite well in fact. I was fighting of a gang of moblins or something, and Link and Zelda came over to save the day. Being my independent self I wasn't best pleased and asked them exactly who they thought they were. Zelda retorted that she was the princess of Hyrule, and Link that he was its hero. I scorned their story until she showed me the Triforce. It wasn't the most comfortable of meetings," recalled Selina.
"Yeah, but she didn't hold it against you for fifteen years, did she?" pointed out Leigh, wondering what Zelda's expression would've been like. She supposed it would've been very similar to many she'd seen, after certain comments. At that moment, the breakfast gong rang out. Selina looked to the stairs and then to Leigh.
"Will you join us?" she asked hopefully. Leigh glanced down at the stairs, then shook her head. "I really don't think it's a good idea. If I go down there, everyone will be asking about me, and Zelda won't like that one bit. Besides, this'll be Ewan's birthday breakfast. I don't want to spoil it for him," said Leigh with a sigh.
"Well, if that's how you feel, I don't suppose there's any way of talking you out of it," said Selina reluctantly.
"You're right, but thanks anyway," said Leigh, before walking off to her room.
"I'll see you then, perhaps tonight, or at dinner," said Selina hopefully.
"Maybe," said Leigh, turning to smile. Selina smiled back, then proceeded down the stairs to breakfast. Nick would already be down there, so there was no need to wait.
"And finally, a gift from me and Gwen," said Drake with a big grin, handing it over the table. "Thanks," said Ewan, grinning back as he admired the present. It was a dagger, with a beautifully carved ornate handle. It may not have been bedecked in jewels, as some of his weapons were, but he found it equally beautiful, if not more so, the patterns in the handle so intricate.
"It may not be covered in jewels like some bloody weapons, but it's just as sharp!" said Drake. Ewan tested the blade on his thumb, drawing a little blood.
"I can see," he remarked. He looked around the table at everyone present. To his disappointment, he saw that Leigh was not present, but it did not matter. He wouldn't have been able to speak with her anyway. "Well, thanks everyone, much appreciated," said Ewan, with a big smile.
"Well, that's about it, we can all go now," said Zelda standing up. They had eaten all before handing out the gifts. The rest of the table stood, and left the room, all talking and chatting.
"I saw Leigh this morning," Selina told Nick as they left the room, heading for the gardens of the castle.
"You did?" asked Nick.
"We talked a while, it's true about her not ageing. I could hardly believe it," said Selina. "I doubt I'll truly believe it 'til I witness it myself," said Nick.
"She seemed pretty down, and confused. She already knew about us, Link must've told her," continued Selina.
"What of her health?" asked Nick.
"She said she was fine, I know she wasn't," said Selina. Being a healer, and a good one at that, she could sense when all was not right in a person.
"Did you say anything about it?" asked Nick, holding the door open for his wife as they entered the courtyard.
"No, I thought it best not to. She told me she couldn't face us all, that's why we've all seen barely anything of her. I think it's just Zelda she can't bare to face," said Selina, as they strolled towards the ornamental gardens.
"It hardly surprises me. After all, Zelda is Queen now, and has far more power than she did. It must be quite intimidating for the both of them really. Zelda knows she did wrong, and entirely over-reacted, but she's hardly going to apologise. And I think Leigh knows that she was hardly an innocent party," said Nick.
"But that's just it Nick. I happen to think she is. Okay, she like Link, she liked him a lot. And he was married, to Zelda. But still, she only kissed him the once, and she claims she didn't even know he was married," said Selina.
"That's true, it was Fayette more than anyone who made the situation so bad, filling Zelda's head with all that rubbish," said Nick.
"Zelda should have known not to trust Faye, she's a conniving little witch," said Selina, who knew only too well about Fayette and her scheming.
"Do you think she'll make an appearance at the party tonight?" asked Nick.
"I don't know, I really don't," said Selina truthfully.
"Well, not to worry about it. Both of them, Zelda and Leigh, I mean, will be both fearing their first meeting, I'm sure," said Nick.
"I know. I just hope they don't upset things too much, what with Ewan's celebrations and so on. They'll definitely be meeting tomorrow though," said Selina.
"Oh, how?" asked Nick.
"Link said that Zelda would be holding a meeting between all the countries leaders that were present, he also said that Leigh would be there, as she was the last to speak with British," said Selina.
"Good thinking on Zelda's part, I must admit. I just hope, with Leigh there, that they don't pick up were they left off fifteen years ago," said Nick.
"Me too," agreed Selina, nodding her head solemnly.
Molasar looked across at the castle. He was standing on a hill, overlooking North castle. It was beginning to get quite dark, he supposed the party must've started by now. It was just a question of entering the castle. He didn't have an invite, so he wouldn't be able to enter, not through the main portcullis anyway. As he began to descend the hill, pondering his problem, he heard the sound of hooves against the road. He turned around, to see a lone traveller approaching. He held up a hand motioning for him to stop. The stranger drew to a stop, giving Molasar a friendly smile.
"Excuse me friend, the castle, is that were you are headed?" asked Molasar.
"Yes, indeed I am, for the celebrations of Prince Ewan's 21st," said the man, smiling.
"I see, it's just," started Molasar. In one swift movement, he withdrew his dagger from his belt and plunged it into the man's side. The man let out a surprised gasp and toppled from his horse, which reared and ran off. Molasar stood over the man, gripping the dagger in his hand. The man was still alive. He rolled over, and drew his own sword, preparing to defend himself. Molasar smiled, and readied himself to rip open the man's throat when a flashing pain ripped through his head. He dropped his dagger, and held his hands to his head.
"What's happening?" he asked himself aloud.
"Not anymore, I won't let you," murmured a voice. He turned wildly around, looking for who had spoken. It hadn't been his father, it had been a woman. He began to back away, when another voice entered his mind.
"Don't listen, kill him so you can enter the castle," boomed his father's deep voice. Molasar nodded.
"I will," he murmured, looking at the man, who was feebly waving his sword about. Molasar kicked the man in the stomach, causing him to moan in pain, dropping his sword.
"Can't you see what you're doing? This man, could be someone's husband, father, son, brother or friend. Why kill him, he has never hurt you," asked the woman's voice gravely. Molasar squeezed his eyes shut for a moment, trying to block out her words. He bent to his knees and scooped up the dagger, stabbing the man squarely in the chest. He was dead. Molasar smiled, then a great feeling of guilt washed over him. He didn't like it. He looked down at the man, feeling awful.
"I'm sorry," he murmured, reaching into the man's jacket and pulling out the contents. Sure enough there was an invite, for a Mr. A. Sparrow. He hoped the man wasn't well known, but thought he must be if he been invited to a royal celebration. He just hoped he wouldn't be recognised as a fake. Looking down at the body, he supposed he would have to hide it, so that no one would know. He grabbed the man by the collar and began to drag him into a nearby bush, hoping no-one would arrive. Just the thought of killing another person sickened him. Once he had disposed of the body, he wiped the bloodied knife along the grass, ashamed at what he had done. He had never felt this way before, never. He didn't like it either. He looked down at the invite one last time, before placing it into his coat. He was not wearing the same attire that he had worn when he had met the beautiful Brianna, but a smart tradesman's coat and trousers. He had thought they would be more appropriate for the occasion and had purchased them from a shop in Mido, where he was currently staying. He slipped the dagger back into his belt, before making his way towards the castle. As he neared it, he could feel that his destiny lay inside the walls of the castle. That of the Golden Power he had only ever seen in his dreams, and that of the beautiful maiden who resided there.
"Leigh, come on, you have to come down," chided Selina to her friend. Leigh just sat on the bed.
"I can't. I'm not ready for one thing, and another, I have nothing to wear!" sighed Leigh, even though the second excuse was hardly a reason.
"Well I have plenty of gowns to wear, you could at least borrow one. We have figures that are pretty similar, it shouldn't be a problem," said Selina persuasively. Leigh glanced out of the window at the arriving guests.
"I wasn't even invited," she protested as she saw a young man handing an invite to one of the guards. He was promptly let in.
"Nonsense. You're staying in the castle, how can you be NOT invited?!" exclaimed Selina.
"Just because I'm staying here, it doesn't necessarily mean I'm invited to the party," argued Leigh.
"Well I'm invited, and I'm allowed to bring as many guests as I want, so I invite you," reasoned Selina. Leigh managed a small smile.
"I still don't think it's a good idea," she said.
"Good, that means you've agreed?" said Selina grinning. She grabbed Leigh's hand and hauled her up.
"Now, you're coming with me to choose out a gown," said Selina, pulling her out the door. "Won't Nick still be getting changed?" asked Leigh.
"He's a guy, he may be a king, but it still takes him less than five minutes to find an outfit and put it on," said Selina firmly.
"I suppose that is true," conceded Leigh. They stopped outside the room, and Selina pushed open the door, to see Nick pulling on his boots.
"Hi," he greeted as he saw his wife, but when he saw Leigh enter he quickly stood up and smiled. "Leigh," he said, his eyes widening in surprise.
"Long time no see," retorted Leigh, giving him a half wry smile. He stood forward and kissed her hand, smiling at her warmly.
"So good to see you again Leigh," he said.
"It's so good to see the both of you again, and married!" exclaimed Leigh, immediately feeling at ease in the company of the two.
"Leigh will need a dress to wear, naturally, so I should she could borrow one of mine," explained Selina.
"Oh, right. Well I shall leave you to it," said Nick tactfully. He gave Leigh a small smile before turning to Selina and giving her a brief kiss. Then he left.
"He's such a gentleman," said Leigh, smiling.
"I know," sighed Selina dreamily, walking over to the wardrobe and pulling it open.
"How old are your children?" asked Leigh.
"Both 14, we married shortly after Brianna was born, after, you know," said Selina.
"After I performed my little disappearing act?" asked Leigh.
"Well, yes," said Selina, looking relieved.
"I'm wearing this one," said Selina, taking out a beautiful sari-type outfit. It was made from a pale blue silk, and comprised of a long wrap-around skirt, a short top, and a long piece of sheer fabric, that went diagonally across the chest from the shoulder down to the waist. It glittered with the shiny gold thread which was stitched decoratively around the edges of the outfit. Leigh walked over.
"It's beautiful," she said truthfully, fingering the silky fabric.
"Traditional Dalsonian attire, but I have some Hyrulian gowns too, just chose whichever one you like," said Selina, standing away for Leigh to have a look.
"They're all beautiful," she said, admiring the many gowns.
"I know, I feel so lucky just to own one, never mind a whole wardrobe," admitted Selina.
"I really don't know if I could wear any of these, I mean, I'd be afraid of damaging them or something." Selina let out a laugh.
"I felt exactly the same, believe me, but go on, just take one. I'm sure you'll not do anything too drastic to them," said Selina.
"No really, I don't think I could..." started Leigh.
"Look, just choose one, you'll be fine," said Selina, walking behind the dressing screen to change. Leigh looked through all of the dresses, trying to find one that didn't look as though it would rip too easily. She was also hoping to secretly find something quite plain and under stated, as so she wouldn't get to much notice taken of her. No such luck, every gown was beautiful, many of them extremely elaborate. There were a few that were not so elaborate, but were no were near the desired plain kind she wanted. She finally chose one, a silken white gown, with long sleeves, which trailed to the ground. It bore no kind of pattern, but the material just seemed to shimmer in the light.
"What about this one?" she asked, holding it up to herself. Selina turned to look and smiled. "It'll probably look better on you than it ever would on me, I'll have to keep you away from Nick so that he doesn't see what he's missing out on," said Selina, smiling warmly.
"Oh, I doubt it. You two are perfect together. Even a fool could see it," said Leigh.
"You'll look stunning," Selina added, stepping away from the screen. She herself looked beautiful in her dress, and Leigh thought the woman never looked in her forties.
"You look beautiful," commented Leigh truthfully. Selina smiled.
"I wouldn't go that far," she said shyly. Leigh just smiled. Selina walked over to the dressing table, and began to rummage through a small jewellery box whilst Leigh changed into her dress.
"You can borrow any of my jewellery if you want, just feel free," commented Selina as she pulled out some earrings to go with the dress.
"I couldn't, not after you let me borrow this," said Leigh.
"Really feel free, I've not got all that much with me, but there's enough to go around," said Selina, taking a matching necklace from the box and slipping it around her neck. She turned to see Leigh as she stepped from behind the screen.
"I look stupid don't I," grimaced Leigh when she saw Selina's wordless expression.
"No, anything but. I know who's going to be centre stage tonight," assured Selina.
"Maybe I shouldn't go, not in something so beautiful anyway. I really don't won't to be noticed," said Leigh.
"Oh but you must, you look simply stunning. Mind you, you probably could pull off wearing a sack and still look amazing," said Selina with a laugh.
"I seriously doubt that," said Leigh.
"Jewellery?" asked Selina.
"No, I'm fine how I am, you've already given me enough," insisted Leigh.
"I've got this anyway," she said, reaching down her neck and pulling an Ankh from under the material, and placing it on show.
"You don't know how jealous you make me," said Selina, laughing.
"I make you jealous? And that comes from a woman who is the Queen of the most prosperous and beautiful country in the whole of the Demiari and married to one of the most handsome and considerate man in it!" exclaimed Leigh disbelieving her friends statement.
"True, I suppose it would be too much to ask for looks like yours as well," said Selina.
"You don't even need them!" said Leigh, still flattered by her friend's compliments.
"Well, if you say so. Now, you get your stuff and we'll take it back to your room, and we'll make an entrance no one will forget in a long time," promised Selina.
"I'm not really sure if I want to do that, like I said, I pretty much want to go unnoticed," said Leigh cautiously.
"With that face? Dream on," said Selina. Leigh shook her head and picked up her discarded clothes.
"I'm beginning this is a really bad idea," she remarked nervously.
"Nonsense! You are going to go down there tonight and have a fantastic time, I guarantee you!" said Selina.
"I'll hold you to that," joked Leigh as they left the room.
"I'm sure of it," remarked Selina.
Molasar smiled as he walked freely into the castle. It had been easier than he had thought. He had felt fleetingly guilty as he handed over the invite, but that had soon passed, and now he was here. There were many guests, probably into the hundreds, so it could be a task of finding the one he sought. Then again, she was so beautiful she would stand out in a crowd of thousands, perhaps it wouldn't be so difficult. He soon spotted her, with a group of people who looked her age, younger perhaps. Smiling, he began to approach through the crowd, but then decided against it. He wanted her alone, not in front of her friends. He didn't want people to ask questions, or even see him. He quickly turned, and made his way across the hall, and back out into the courtyard for some fresh air. He knew she would come out to, to savour the stars, the air. He walked across to a fountain that stood in the middle of the courtyard and gazed deeply into his reflection.
"Do not waste your time on her, you are close, to me, and the power. You must act now, or never again," spoke his father suddenly. Molasar blinked as his reflection rippled in the water.
"I am no longer your pawn father," he mouthed at his reflection. "Not anymore."
As Ewan stood talking with Timothy, and a few other friends, Greg, one of their friends turned his head and let out a low whistle.
"Who is that?" he asked looking up at the stairs. Both Tim and Ewan followed Greg's gaze. It was Selina, and Leigh. Although Selina was stunning for her age, they all knew who the lad was referring too. Leigh, in her simple white gown, looked radiant, heavenly.
"That's Leigh Temple, she's a guest here," said Ewan quietly.
"She's gorgeous," commented another guy.
"Hey, we aren't blind," said Ewan, feeling a little jealous. He knew he shouldn't, it was irrational but...
"I bet she knows how to show a guy a good time," commented another.
"Ah jeez guys, can't you think of anything else?" protested Tim with a laugh.
"Not with someone like her around," said Greg grinning.
"Guest of who?" asked another of their friends, Edward, glancing at Ewan. Ewan shrugged.
"My parents I guess," he said. Edward looked down at Leigh.
"How come your parents know her?" he inquired.
"Uh, long story," said Ewan, not willing to give out anymore. Edward just nodded, then followed the gaze of the rest of the young men around. Apparently, they weren't the only ones to have turned to look at the two women coming down the steps. Fayette was another of them.
"Who's that mother?" asked Rosella snidely. Fayette looked at her daughter, then back to Leigh. There really was no competition.
"It's," she started, wondering whether to tell the truth.
"It's Leigh Temple," she said reluctantly. Rosella gaped at Leigh.
"He likes her better than me?!" she asked, as if offended.
"She looks at least four years older than him!" she added in disgust. Fayette looked down at herself in dismay. Her dress, elaborate and pretty as it was, just did not compare to what Leigh was wearing. Where had she got it anyway? Selina also looked stunning, perhaps not as much as Leigh, but still, it made Fayette feel sick. She had seen Nick arrive earlier, and had tried to speak with him, but, as he had for the past fifteen years, he brushed her off. He looked as handsome as he ever had, if not more so. She had really messed things there, she thought. What made things worse about Leigh of course was that she hadn't aged, whereas Fayette had. Now she couldn't even try to compete.
"Perhaps he likes the older woman," said Fayette, not really bothering with her daughter now. "Well, I shall certainly have a word with her about her cradle snatching!" said Rosella firmly. Fayette knew she should warn her daughter against getting on the wrong side of the Avatar, but she really couldn't be bothered. Besides, it might be entertaining to watch.
Brianna watched as she saw Leigh walk into the room. She was with Selina. The woman looked absolutely beautiful, Brianna had no trouble imagining why Ewan liked her so much.
"Renee, I have something to tell you!" she suddenly said, unable to contain the secret any longer.
"Yes? What?" Renee questioned, looking immediately interested. Alyssand and Beth had gone across to the buffet to get some food, so they were alone.
"It's about Ewan," Brianna stated, leaning closer to her friend.
"Oh yes?" Renee asked. She grinned a little.
"Listen, you have to promise not to tell anyone though," Brianna said.
"Oh Bri, you know me. I'm as trustworthy as they come!" Renee laughed. Brianna didn't look convinced, but she nodded anyway.
"Alright. Ewan... he... he has a girlfriend!" she said. Renee grinned.
"Oh really? Who?" she pressed.
"Well, you see, he was being awfully cagey about it, I think he thinks my parents won't approve," Brianna replied.
"What? Oh goodness, is it some... some...well, you know?" Renee asked, looking a little horrified.
"Oh, no-one like that," Brianna said quickly.
"Then who?!" Renee questioned. Brianna smirked.
"Oh... some... woman," she remarked cryptically.
"Woman? So she's not younger than him?" Renee asked.
"Oh, certainly not! In fact, she's rather a bit older!" Brianna replied.
"Older? How much older?" her friend questioned eagerly.
"Well... let's say at least five years," Brianna said. The Dalsonian princess looked disappointed.
"Only five years? I thought you were going to say she was old enough to be his mother or something," Renee said, frowning.
"Uh, well... I guess it's not that bad. But you see, I don't see his problem. This person is quite respectable, I think, I don't know his big deal," Brianna wailed.
"Who is it?!!" Renee asked, for about the third time. Brianna turned to look over at Leigh. Renee followed her gaze, and then gasped.
"Her?!" she asked. Brianna nodded silently.
"But... but... she's..." Renee began.
"Yes, I know. Totally gorgeous. It makes me feel jealous. I saw her the other day, and she looked pretty normal. Now look at her!" Brianna said, looking envious for a moment.
"That dress..." Renee breathed. Then she began to laugh.
"What's so funny?" Brianna demanded.
Renee grinned, and began to walk over towards the buffet table.
"That dress, my mother has one just like it! In fact, totally like it!" she said.
"You think she's wearing your mother's dress?" Brianna asked in surprise. Renee shrugged.
"I dunno. I guess they might have the same dress, or something, it just struck me as funny," she stated.
"Speaking of funny..." Brianna began. "My dad said she was an old friend of his, but she's only in her twenties, and well, my dad is in his forties. I don't remember ever seeing her around at all, so how could they be old friends? She's far too young..." she said.
"Unless she was lying about how old she was! Maybe she's older, and Ewan doesn't want your folks to know that he likes her, because in reality, she's much older!" Renee said, snapping her fingers. Brianna put a hand to her mouth.
"Oh goodness," she giggled.
"That's gotta be it, it has to be!" Renee continued.
"But she doesn't look old!" Brianna protested.
"Some people don't. I mean, I don't mean to boast, but I think my mother looks younger than her age," Renee said.
"I suppose," Brianna admitted.
"But still, she's too pretty for words. I bet even Tim fancies her," she added, frowning slightly. Suddenly, Renee grinned. "What?" Brianna asked.
"Since when did you care so much about Tim?" Renee questioned slyly.
"I... I don't! I was just saying, that's all," Brianna replied weakly.
"Oh... sure. But Bri, I wouldn't blame you if you did. Timothy Westley is very, very handsome," Renee grinned. Brianna cleared her throat.
"She's called Leigh Temple, and like I say, Ewan reckons he and her have something going," she said quickly. "Well... not quite. I think he's really just fantasising about her, I mean, they haven't even kissed properly yet!" the young princess added.
"No? Then maybe tonight..." Renee began knowingly.
"Yes, maybe indeed," Brianna replied.
"This was not a good idea," said Leigh quietly to Selina.
"Why not, I think it was a fabulous one!" remarked Selina.
"I can hardly stand and talk with you lot, not if Zelda's there!" said Leigh.
"Of course you can, come on," said Selina, taking her over to a big group of people.
"Selina, I'm really not sure," protested Leigh, but it was already too late.
"Leigh, uh, hi," said Link as he saw her. Zelda wasn't around, yet, but he was dreading the moment she arrived. Leigh smiled at the hero, greeting him. She noticed others, familiar faces like Damon and Dion, as well as Nick and Selina. And Drake.
"Hi everyone," she offered meekly. Everyone greeted her with warm smiles.
"We can't believe you're back," commented Dion.
"Neither can I," replied Leigh, smiling a little.
"Well, let me say, it's good to see you again Leigh," said Drake, grinning. At that moment, Zelda appeared, and when she spotted who was standing next to her husband and best friend, she felt more than unhappy. Leigh. Not only that, but she looked stunning. And, like Link had said, she hadn't aged.
"Leigh," she greeted, still quite aloof.
"Zelda," replied Leigh, as civilly as possible. There was a few minutes of uncomfortable silence.
"Well, does anyone want anything to drink?" asked Drake.
"Uh, yeah, I wouldn't mind one," said Dion.
"Me too, said Damon.
"Yeah, I wouldn't either, Nick?" said Selina a little nervously. Nick nodded. They all left. Link quickly followed, not wanting to be alone with the two women. Leigh watched in horror as they all left, but decided perhaps it was the best.
"I see you haven't aged," commented Zelda.
"Observant, aren't you?" said Leigh. She regretted the words as soon as they left her mouth. "I see you haven't changed at all," said Zelda, looking displeased by Leigh's previous comment. Leigh opened her mouth to apologise, but saw Zelda's expression and decided against it. She was the one who deserved an apology, after what Zelda had put her through. That whole court thing, it had been a complete farce. Not only that, but she had been sentenced to death! Leigh had saved her life at least once, if not twice, and she still had no apology nor thanks. She was the last person who had to apologise.
"Well, it looks like you haven't either. At least in all aspects of you hating my guts," said Leigh coolly.
"Excuse me," said Zelda primly.
"You heard what I said. I'd be surprised if you didn't throw a celebration when you thought I was dead," said Leigh harshly.
"I did nothing of the sort. Do you think I'm that tasteless?" demanded Zelda hotly.
"Perhaps not," conceded Leigh. There were a few more minutes of hostile silence between the two. "I was surprised you allowed me to stay here, in your home. But I suppose if Fayette's still around," said Leigh casually.
"You should be grateful I allowed you to shelter here, after what you did!" said Zelda angrily. "After what I did?! What about what you did?" said Leigh incredulously, her voice raised slightly.
The small group watched the two women, as they conversed. Link shifted from one foot to the other, feeling a little uneasily.
"Do you think it was wise to leave those two alone?" asked Dion.
"At the time it seemed a good idea, but now I'm not so sure," sighed Link.
"Those two have to discuss things, they need to clear the air, it's the only way they'll sort out this stupid argument," said Selina. There was a short period of silence.
"You don't think they're going to fight, like last time I mean?" asked Damon, referring to the infamous scrap the two had had when Zelda had arrested Leigh.
"I sure hope not," murmured Link.
"Surely not? Both of them will have learned not to cross each other, not after last time," said Nick. Sprite appeared, her eyes immediately following the gaze of the rest of the group.
"I'd be more than happy to take the minutes!" chirped Sprite, before flying towards the two.
"You'll do nothing of the sort Sprite, it's your fault this is happening in the first place!" accused Link. Sprite turned to her owner, and put her hands on her hips.
"Well! I only thought Zelda should know, she is my friend you know," said Sprite.
"A lot of strife could've been prevented, if it weren't for your and Faye's plotting Sprite," said Drake gruffly.
"I can tell when I'm not wanted! I wasn't here to see you lot anyway, I was here to see my god children," said Sprite huffily, referring to both Ewan and Brianna. And with a flip of faerie dust, the small faerie flew away from the scene.
"Well, there aren't any raised fists yet," commented Drake dryly.
"And hopefully there won't be," said Link.
"What did I ever do, except try and get a little justice?!" retorted Zelda.
"Justice! That's what you call it round here? That whole thing was a fix!" said Leigh, dropping her voice again, so as not to attract attention.
"It was not, and besides I think trying to seduce my husband was hardly dignified of you," said Zelda, her voice also dropping.
"If it weren't for me, you and this whole country would be in ruins. I, after all, managed to trap that damn sorcerer of yours!" said Leigh in a low voice.
"You hardly did it single-handedly," muttered Zelda. "It would be nice for some gratitude though," said Leigh.
"Fine. I won't have you thrown into the palace dungeons, that enough gratitude?" asked Zelda. "On what grounds?" demanded Leigh.
"A lot has changed in fifteen years Leigh, I'm not just the King's daughter anymore, I'm the ruler of Hyrule. I don't need grounds to lock you away and throw away the key," said Zelda in a menacing tone. Leigh folded her arms across her chest and shut her eyes for a moment, trying to calm down. She had no idea why she had just acted like that, she'd just flipped.
"I need some fresh air, it's got stuffy in here all of a sudden," she finally said, before turning on her heel and leaving. Zelda watched as she left, smarting. People just stepped away to let her through, as if she were royalty or something. Turning angrily away, she walked in the opposite direction, in search of her husband, who would hopefully, provide some council.
As Leigh made her way to the French doors which led out into the courtyard, she heard someone call out her name in surprise. She turned and saw someone approaching her. Fenella, Fayette's mother. She rolled her eyes and sighed as Fenella bustled over.
"It really is true then! You're alive, it's a miracle!" gushed the Sosarian.
"Uh, well, yes, as you can see," Leigh said, smiling.
"You look simply radiant dear, far better than what I had heard," continued Fenella.
"Look, it's been lovely seeing you, it's just I have to see someone," said Leigh quickly.
"Oh but of course, I'll leave you to it dear," said Fenella smiling. Leigh smiled back then quickly continued to the doors and outside.
Ewan watched as Leigh left the room, then quickly put his drink on a nearby table, and followed her.
"Hey, Ewan, where you going?" called Timothy from behind him. Ewan turned for a second.
"Uh, I'll be back soon. Something I need to sort out," said Ewan.
"Okay, see you in a bit," called Tim, Ewan stopped and paused, turning to Tim.
"Uh, Bri made me promise you'd dance with Beth," said Ewan, suddenly recalling his sister's request.
"What?" asked Timothy. He liked Beth and everything, but she was quite a bit younger than her. He tried to catch up with Ewan, but the young prince was already out of the door. Timothy sighed, he glanced around the room looking for Beth. He supposed if it was a request of Brianna's, it wouldn't harm to fulfil it. He spotted Beth, put on his nicest smile, and began to walk over, with the intention of asking her to dance.
"Look, he's following her!" exclaimed Renee suddenly.
"Who?" asked Brianna turning to watch her friend's gaze.
"Your brother is following that woman, the one he 'lurves'," said Renee with a giggle.
"He is?" asked Brianna.
"Yeah, come on, let's follow him, perhaps they have organised some kind of secret rendezvous!" said Renee mischievously.
"We really shouldn't," said Brianna, smiling a little.
"Oh, we really should!" insisted Renee. She grabbed Brianna by the hand and dragged her friend in the direction Ewan had gone, intent on following the prince.
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