Released by xrigidxdistancex
Summary: More is revealed about the sage of Oblivion in this sequel to "Realizations". More action, more comedy. While trying to figure out Ganon's intentions without being too conspicuous about their knowledge, they finally get the sage of oblivion to come to them, but she is not at all what they expected. New allies come abounds, as well as a few new adversaries. Cht:1:Links training with Impa ends, and he starts his own training regiment with a peahat. After defeating one, he has a sort of prophetic dream, but he doesn't know what its about at all. On his way back to the castle, two peahats ambush him. Wounded and alone in Hyrule field, an old ally comes to his aid. (2)
Categories: Fan Fiction Characters: Link (OoT & MM)
Genres: None
Warnings: None
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 10 Completed: No Word count: 36014 Read: 88724 Published: Mar 01, 2005 Updated: Sep 12, 2005

1. Eccentric Eminence by xrigidxdistancex

2. Sage of Oblivion by xrigidxdistancex

3. Are we there yet? by xrigidxdistancex

4. Infinite Knowledge by xrigidxdistancex

5. New Identity by xrigidxdistancex

6. Discovery by xrigidxdistancex

7. Training Ground by xrigidxdistancex

8. Captured by xrigidxdistancex

9. Escape? by xrigidxdistancex

10. Sorot Kinal :: Hidden Village by xrigidxdistancex

Eccentric Eminence by xrigidxdistancex
Helloooooooo my friends. I hope some of you are continuing to read. I know the first one went by quick, but I swear to you this one will last a while. New charries, yay XD hush hush on who they are until later, but all will be revealed. Do not fear. Ph34r is not a g00d 7h1ng 0r 50 1 h34r. Anyway -^^- I would like people to still review Realizations. I will be revising it when I get around to it, so when it says ::REVISED:: y’all better go back to it or I’ll cry. Thanks again for actually reading, guys. Oh, and I’m coming up with a chapter 5 to Funny funny. No one fear. My crazy rambling WILL go on! So, R&R -^^-

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Spinning blades chased him up the hill, just missing Links feet. He rolled forward, crouching just where the hill began to decline. Holding the shield over his head, the peahats blades whirled wildly just over him, one hitting it with a loud clack of metal on metal. Another slash before the peahat turned around. Blood dripped from his shoulder, and he quickly hopped up and chased it down.

Slashing, Links sword hit the dangling vulnerable root on its under side as he back flipped, avoiding another hit. Damn... I shouldn’t have stopped training with Impa yet... Links heart raced as he ran from his attacker, getting in a better position. He lunged, missing the twirling blades and chopped the root.

The peahat flew back, falling limply to the ground with a squeal. Link collapsed on the grass, gasping for breath. The clouds passed over him as he rested, motionless. I still can’t believe it... Link smiled faintly, but it quickly faded as he winced from the pain throbbing in his right shoulder. My sister is a princess... the princess... I’m a prince? No. I won’t take her role from her... Zelda’ll still be next in line for the throne.

Once refreshed enough, he stood, holding onto his shoulder. He removed his hand for a moment to see the amount of blood he had already lost. A bit of darker, dried blood came off onto his hand, the fresher of which was more in the center of the long line shaped gash.

"Ach...," He grimaced. "I need a red potion..." Link hung his head and started dragging his feet towards the castle. After I heal this, I’m going straight to sleep... Stopping to sit at a tree near the Kokiri Forest, he propped his back against it, and slid down to a sit. Why is this bothering me so much? It’s a pretty small wound, considering it was from a peahat... must’ve been the tip of the blade... Link’s eyes slowly closed, the inactivity and blood loss making him drowsy.

A large expansive black abyss. In the distance a dim white light appeared, slowly floating towards Link. He was standing on nothing, but that nothing made a solid sound when he took a step. The white light continued to journey closer, its luminescence growing until it was nearly blinding. He shielded his eyes, a dark form becoming present in the illumination. He took a step towards the figure bathed in the silvery light, but the light faded, the figure disappeared.


Link awoke with a start, eyes wandering around the scene before him. He sighed once he recalled what had happened. Getting up, he looked at the sky. Dusk. The blueish, pink colors beginning to bleed into one solid blue as the sun continued its descent.

The pain in his shoulder was finally dulled to a small sting as the blood had clotted entirely. It really hadn’t been a bad wound. He straightened himself up, the belts on his tunic getting pushed to the side as he had slept awkwardly against the tree. He fixed his boots as well before going on his way.

Stepping up the hill, and passed the fence, his ears twitched slightly. Link looked over his shoulder, but the source of the whirring sound in his ears was nowhere in sight. Shrugging, he walked on, ignoring it for the mean time.

Once closer to the ranch he could hear the sound louder, and more clearer. It sounded like another peahat. It was almost nightfall, so they’d have to sleep at some point. Peahats weren’t the fastest things in the world, so he wouldn’t have had anything to worry about... if two weren’t behind him.

He dashed, hopping over the small stone wall on the hill and rolling down it back onto the dirt path towards Castle Town Market. The peahats pursued mercilessly, until Link was forced to draw his sword. Dodging more blade showers, he repositioned himself so he had some distance between them and him. Room to attack.

Rolling beneath the blades, he sliced and then dodged again, having to reposition after each attack. But each attack he gave, he got two slices to thank for it. Heart racing, breath retreating back to small gasps, he tried to keep going. The blades danced around him, like a wall closing in on either side.

Link flipped out of their grasp as the peahats blades entangled, momentarily immobilizing them, giving Link a chance to fully retaliate. He sliced at their roots through the spaces between the blades that were slowly beginning to turn with each strike. The grating metal-on-metal sounded once more, and Link backed up as the peahats spaced themselves out enough so that wouldn’t happen again.

One of the blades sliced him in the back while he was dodging. A quiet gasp escaped his lips before turning to attack, ignoring the wound as best he could. Pivoting on his heel, he dove for another attack, getting slashed in the chest this time. Blood and bits of white and green cloth littered the grass from the peahats landed blows.

Link fell back after another swipe, dropping his sword. He reached for it as the blades closed the distance between them and his neck. His eyes clenched shut, fingers wrapped around the hilt and he swung, detaching the root from the peahat entirely. Back rolling, he got to his feet, ready to take down the second one.

Though his vision was blurred from the pain, he kept on, and took a nice chunk out of the root before he collapsed to his knees. It screeched and flew back, but started again on him. Link tried to raise his sword feebly, but dropped it. Another slice in his left shoulder had worn his entire arm out to the point that it was numb. The peahats blades crept closer and closer to him before it wailed, and flew back again, falling to the ground.

He had managed one last slice, falling face first into the grass, his consciousness fading away. Before his vision fully left him he saw two blue blots coming towards him.

~~

Something wet was pressed against his forehead, the cool liquid running down his cheek and over one of his eyes. He felt, somehow, restrained, like something tight was around him making it hard to move any of his joints.

Link opened his eyes slowly, vision blurred from water still falling over his oculars. "Wha-" He cut himself off when he saw someone nearby by. He sat up quickly, but fell back, clenching his teeth in pain.

"You shouldn’t be doing that..." The person said, a voice that seemed oddly familiar.

Link tired again, much slower this time so his limbs could fully adjust to the movement. He must have been out for a long while, otherwise the bandages that were restraining him were just too tight. Once up to a sit, he removed the dampened cloth that had stuck to his face and set it on a small night stand next to the bed he was resting in.

The house also seemed familiar, small white walls, exposed wooden boards. Another bed was next to his, both of them close to the floor, also uncovered wood. The door was to Link’s far left, as was the person who he had seen before.

Blond hair over one eye, the right bright and red. Bandages around his head, no ears to be seen. His features were covered by white cloth that went down to his chest with the sheikah symbol- the eye and tear drop. Blue armor plating that was very tight against his skin, and some bandages around his fingers.

"...Sheik!?" Link shouted, making another sudden movement to send him falling back against the back with a yelp.

"I told you, you shouldn’t be doing that." Sheik repeated.

Link looked up at him as best he could, vision blurring again. "How..? You can’t, unless....Zelda?"

Sheik left his post at the door and stepped over to Link, towering over him. "No. I am not your sister. That was magic to conceal her, I , however, am real."

"But how? If that was just a disguise for her, how are you real...?"

"Disguises cannot be forged without some truth. Impa aided her in choosing an appropriate form. I had left Hyrule long ago and have only just returned."

"So that’s how...," Link closed his eyes to try and calm his senses and muscles down.

"What did you think you were doing taking on two peahats at once, hero?" Sheik sat down on the bed next to Links.

"I was only fighting one before, and that one had gotten the better of me... so I was going to the castle and they ambushed-" He stopped to stare at Sheik momentarily, thinking back to what he had said only moments before. "You called Zelda my sister..?"

"I’ve known for just as long as Impa. Sheikah are caretakers to the royal family." He stood, arms crossed and walked back over to the door but stopped in the middle of the room. "How could I not have known when I was supposed to watcher over you, prince?"

Link sat up again, as slowly as he could. "You were... my care taker? ..My nanny!?"

"Don’t put it like that." Sheik scoffed, turning around. "Makes me sound like a woman."

"Sorry, just... how I’m used to hearing it..." Link looked to his left and saw a stove with a pot on it getting ready for a soup or stew of some kind. "...Who’s house are we in?"

"Those two nice lady’s that let people stay for free... only until you’ve recovered." Sheik replied, following Link’s gaze to the pot. "Hungry?"

"Very..." His stomach growled on cue.

"They should return shortly. I believe they’re making a broth for some meat." Sheik nodded over to the pot. "You should rest up until they do return. You were bloodied up pretty bad."

Link nodded, lying back down onto the soft cushion. "How long have I been out...?" He asked, looking back over at Sheik, his eye lids slowly drooping.

"Only two hours, not terribly long. It did take a while to drag you here, prince."

"Please don’t call me that... It doesn’t sound right for me..."

Sheik paused, watching him for a moment. "As you wish."
Sage of Oblivion by xrigidxdistancex
I know it’s rare for me to do an Author’s Note before any other chapter than the first one, but I just have to apologize for how long it’s taken me to even type up the first part I had written of Chapter 2. I just wasn’t compelled to write. Sorry again. So! Here we go!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Clouds billowed around the dark temple tinted by the darkening sky- a deep red. Gales surrounded the structure in a shield of wind, sending the far off white flowers into a maelstrom of swirling black, red and white.

It died down after the window panes began shaking from their holding, the corners of the glass cracking in long jagged lines that would have converged if the wind continued. DarkLink stepped down off of his perch, one of the towers support beams, and walked over to Ganondorf who was still infatuated with the Olinsita Oblivon.

“This should have worked... Let’s try this again.” He growled, waving a large hand over the worn and tattered yellowing pages. His palm slowly began collecting what light was left in the room, the swinging torches that had rekindled themselves after the intense winds were blown out again as the light in his hand was enveloped by darkness.

“Arugae ne oè kalum ot oblivon. Na horet shalè potempkin. Alanè atu rakshe mènaut holonè xalem!”

Come forth, you who controls the oblivion.
You, ruler of destruction.
Bound of Darkness and Light, you must return!



The book flew back out of his reach, taking in all of the dark energy from Ganondorfs’ palm. The wind shield formed again, the clouds outside swirling with the flowers in their maelstrom all tinted red. It dissipated once more, the same as before.

The book fell in the center of the floor, a dark circle pattern was etched in the ebony marble floor. A large orb that resembled a planet at the very center with four clouds swirling around it caught on the winds zephyrs. Around that were a few more designs, like more detailed renditions of each of the sages symbols, all of which orbited the center orb and clouds.

“Why is she not before us?!” Ganondorf snarled pinching the bridge of his nose.

“Would be pointless to try a third time...” A figure walked up beside DarkLink, placing a hand on his shoulder. “It is aiding his break, after all.”

“So it would seem.” Ganondorf replied to the figure, eyes drawn to DarkLink’s own. A fiery rage burned within them.

~~

Link was sore all over his body, every inch of him ached, but he knew his wounds were healing beneath those bandages. He limped, leaning on Sheik for support as they walked down the steps of Kakariko slowly.

“Thanks... I wouldn’t have made it.” Link laughed at himself, holding his ribs when he felt a sharp pain.

Sheik answered him with a simple, “No trouble.”

They crossed the white stone bridge, Sheik had to reposition Link against himself for the third time since they left the house, due to discomfort.

“Why have you only just come back?” Link asked through his teeth, grimacing as his leg twinged. He tripped slightly on the other foot and his hair fell over his eyes.

“I only just learned of you still being alive. Impa notified me of Ganon’s escape from the Evil Realm... You need another sage, it seems...”

Link’s blue eyes glanced at Sheik.

“Yes, I know about her. I’ve been studying.” He replied quickly, as if he had felt Link’s gaze on the back of his head.

“Do you know how we can bring her here?”

“...No.”

Link’s head hung. “We can’t fully seal him away unless we have her...”

“I said I didn’t know how, not that no one did.”

Once they were closer to the entrance of Castle Town, Link tried walking on his own. “Could we stop at a restaurant?” He requested, looking from Sheik to the entrance.

“I suppose...”

All sorts of cakes and treats glistened behind the glass, which Link almost pressed his face against. His mouth lolled open slightly at the delectable sight.

“I assume you have enough rupees?” Sheik inquired, staring at Link with an agitated look in his visible eye.

“I’ve got some... I won’t get a lot, I guess...” Nodding, Sheik walked inside, Link followed with a look of glee similar to that of a child just given a toy he’s wanted for the past year.

“So who do you think knows how to get her here?” Link poked at a few crumbs on his plate.

“A person. Dead as far as I know.” Sheik leaned back in his chair.

“What good will a dead person do?”

“All the good in the world. This person happened to write a book. Another person found a copy of this book and found a way, based on the original portal spell, a way to bring her through that portal.

“Olinsita Oblivion Part one has the portal opening spell, while Volume two has the actual conjuring spell. We will need both to bring her here.”

Link stared at Sheik, dropping his fork with a shrill clatter on the plate, eyes wide. “...How did you find all this out while not being in Hyrule?”

“For me to know. The point is that we have a way to bring her here now.”

“We should go and tell Zelda, then. I think she has Volume Two... that meeting was over a month ago, though.”

“We should return to the castle, then.”

The both of them stood and left after Link payed all of the rupees he had left in his wallet. Their pace was quick as they walked towards the castle. All of the guards let him pass, but not without a jubilant greeting to their prince.

“I hate this...,” Link told Sheik under his breath just after they passed the last two soldiers at the front. “Sneaking in was better.”

“You cannot expect so much from them. They are but simple soldiers addressing their prince.”

“But I don’t want to be the prince...”

“It will be dealt with.” Sheik opened the rusty side door, and they began their ascension to the top most level.

Zelda was pacing back and forth in one of the long hallways, small archway windows on one side, doors to guest rooms on the other. It curled along one of the outer towers.
“Oh! Li-“ Her mouth dropped open when her eyes locked onto Sheik who stood next to Link. “H-... ho-... how- how?!” She shrieked, pointing forcefully in Sheik’s direction.

“No! No. Don’t he can explain it all!” Link tried to calm her, and stepped closer to her.

“I see...” She murmured, resting her index and middle finger on her lower lip and chin.

“Yeah. Hey, you found the Volume Two of the Oblivion Records, right?”

“Oh? Ah. Yes,” She nodded. “...Why?” Zelda cocked an eyebrow.

“Because there is a way to summon the eighth sage onto this plane with it...”Sheik answered her, stepping forward. “Of course, we would need both volumes to do this.”

“What if that was a mistake?” Link suggested hopefully.

“How do you mean?” Sheik tilted his head quizzically.

“Well, I mean... What if we really don’t need the first volume to pull it off? It’s worth a shot, right?”

“...” Sheik didn’t reply, but gazed sternly at Link.

“I suppose it would not be much trouble to at least try...,” Zelda started, looking at the floor. “For preparation.”

“Very well. For preparation.” Sheik stepped over to them both. “Now where is the book?”

“My room.” Zelda turned, dress spinning around her legs and strutted towards her room at the opposite end of the hallway.

“Do you know how much of a long-shot this is? A very large risk. What if doing this spell prior to the portal spell messes up the entire balance and we are never able to summon her?” Sheik folded his arms at his chest and glared across the hall at Link.

Link sighed. “I know... but we’ve looked for Volume One before. Her- ... Our mother’s journal mentions it, it was here at some point, but we’ve turned the castle library upside down and haven’t found a trace of it.”

“Excuses. A book like that, at least the first one, would not just have a single copy... we will look again, even in shops if we must.”

“It’s to late for that now... We have to get the eighth here as soon as possible, and if this one book can give us that chance, I’m willing to take it.”

Sheik’s gaze wavered momentarily, darting from Link to the window, and back to Link. “You feel very strongly about this... What if it should fail?”

“Then I will take full responsibility. I would have been the one to endanger us all by doing this spell before the other, and no one else can take the blame.”

Seeming content with his answer, Sheik stepped away from the wall and walked over to Link as Zelda’s door opened and closed again. The clacking of her heels on the white tile reverberated through the entire hall until she reached them, holding the book awkwardly.

“Here it is.” She handed it to Sheik.

He took it and ran a hand over the cover, taking off a very thin layer of dust from being left untouched for a week or so. “Good. Now, we will need an open space where nothing can be broken...”

“Wait.” Link spat abruptly, holding his hand up. “I think we should tell the other sages first... Zelda?” He turned to his sister. “...Could you?”

“Of course.”

~~

“The day has finally come... we may be through with Ganondorf sooner then any of us could have anticipated.” Rauru responded to Zelda’s news.

“It is possible the spell may fail... but that was always a risk.” Zelda explained to all of them. “But if we do not try, then Ganondorf’s power will only grow to unimaginable proportions and Hyrule will see its destruction.”

The sages chatted in agreement, their voices calm and filled with anticipation.

“Link and Sheik are making the preparations. We will soon know our fate.”

Rauru nodded. “There is only so much that can be done, even by the sages. We must all keep that in mind during this time, and this battle.”

Zelda and the other sages nodded. “I will see over it.” She stated upon her departure.

~~

“Are you positive it’s all set up right?” Link asked after he moved the last table to the wall in the dining wing.

“Completely. There is not much to it aside from amount of power, concentration, and knowledge.”

“Which is why you’re doing it?”

Sheik gave him a look. “Would you rather I allow you to do this?”

“...No.” Link shook his head.

“Very well then.” He sighed and stood up straight, closing his eyes as he calmed himself. One hand up next to the binding of the book, the other holding it open to the desired page. Separating his legs a bit more so he was standing comfortably, he looked down the row of phrases that needed to be said, and then to the center of the room, eyes closed again.

“A raganaut molania illuminaut poroshei-yu ko orahentgae na tey nillauntra. Oblivon seccher ghengarious phantasma jollonji goria : Arugae ne oè kalum ot oblivon. Na horet shalè potempkin. Alanè atu rakshe mènaut holonè xalem!”

O mighty being, entity of this land, I summon you to this plane.
Oblivion holder, destroyer of virtue and hate:
Come forth, you who controls the oblivion.
You, ruler of destruction.
Bound of Darkness and Light, you must return!


Link took a step back, watching in awe at what was happening.

The book flew from Sheik’s hands in a blast of light, throwing Sheik, he slid across the smooth floor until he hit the wall. The book hovered in mid air, rotating slowly as the pages flipped back and forth, trying to find one in particular.

It fell to the floor with a clatter, all three of them remaining stationary as they awaited a response.

Nothing came.

Link straightened up, and Sheik got to his feet.

“...What was that about?” Link asked, eyes still on the book.

“I’m not sure... but I do not think it worked.” His red eye narrowed and went from the book to Link.

“What has happened?!” Zelda ran into the dining hall. “I heard a loud noise, and then-“ She stopped herself when she saw no third party among the two. “...It did not work.”

“I don’t believe so.” Sheik enforced her fear. “This does not bold well...” He muttered, going over and picking the book up in his arms. “Not well at all...”

“We will have to find Volume one then...” Link muttered, his head hung as he walked out of the hall.

“Where are you going?” Zelda asked, almost following him.

“To the market... He knows why.”

Her eyes darted to Sheik who nodded. “He knows what he is doing... let’s leave it at that...”

~~

Dark Link’s hand twitched at his side, catching Ganondorf’s attention.

He cocked an eyebrow at his adversaries physical twin, but thought no more on it and returned to the book.

His right hand twitched again, itching for the sword to be in his hands. Ganondorf responded to this and walked over to him.

“I would have thought he had more control over you than this... “ Ganondorf looked him over a bit more. “...No matter.” He walked back over to the large throne and seated himself again. “But you will not move again unless ordered.”

The lower corner of Dark Link’s lip twitched in response, but Ganondorf did not notice. His eyes darted through text, skimming every inch of the book for reasons why the spell hadn’t worked before.

“Maybe performing that spell twice was a wrong thing to do...,” He turned to Dark Link again. “But why would that be when he’s got such a strong leash on you? What would the power of oblivion have to do with you? A mere puppet.”

One of Dark Link’s fingers twitched.

“I will find out either way. Whether it be from him, or based on your reaction to when the sage finally reaches this plane.”

~~

Link had managed to get past the guards again without having to say a word to them- thankfully. He dodged around them and passed the gate successfully, and entered the Market without any passers-by addressing him at all.

His eyes scanned the area for anything in particular that may even have resembled a book shop. All he saw was the occasional food stand, the Bombchu Bowling Alley, and bazaar. He asked someone who had bumped him in the shoulder if the market was selling books at all, but they said they hadn’t the slightest clue.

Even more discouraged, he turned and started back for the castle before something caught his eye. At the distance he was from the Temple of Time it seemed like a blob more than anything, but it was definitely a person coming out of it.

He went closer so he could see the figure better. It was a girl, long and lanky. She appeared to be around five-seven so she couldn’t have been terribly young. Her hair was a milky-chocolate color, bowl cut at the top so that the bangs fell around her cheeks.

Two long wavy side burns fell from beneath the bangs, her ears completely concealed by her hair, and fell to her chest (which was brought out a bit more than it should have been by the tight shirt she was adorning) where they had small tufts of straight hair.

It was wavy in the back as well, falling to mid back where, same as the side burns, there was a large bottom layer of straight hair. Her eyes were covered by one of her long, pale hands and boney fingers.

The shirt was lighter than her hair, but not by much. The sleeves stopped just after her shoulders, and the shirt itself ended at her waist. Large white text was written in a language foreign to Link. It glittered, and there seemed to be a picture in the same form as the text, of a cup of tea. A silver cross pendant was around her neck, and another shirt collar started at her collar bone that was worn beneath the brown shirt.

White sleeves protruded from beneath the others and ended at her wrists that seemed oddly thin for someone her age. The girl wore very odd trousers* that ended well past her ankles. A dark green and much to big for her, they started beneath her navel so that the tip of whatever she was wearing underneath showed- hopefully by mistake.

There was a line that connect around both legs that seemed like it could be lifted to reveal something, and just above, as well as under those ‘lifts’ were large pockets. The very bottoms of the pants were torn from excessive use. Her feet were covered with black and red boots, it seemed, made from an odd material and were tied with black and red striped laces.

Once the girl seemed to be walking down the stairs steadily enough, she removed her hand from her face and opened her eyes. The right was green, and the left blue. They widened at something he could not see, perhaps a person she had wanted to meet. Something about the eyes clicked in his mind and a flash from a passage of the Olinsita Oblivion came to mind.

The sage holding the powers of the fourth goddess, Ryo, had long brown hair and two different colored eyes. It is a theory that her right eye; green, was meant to represent Farore, while the left; blue, to represent Nayru.


“...Her... it worked...” His eyes widened as well as he continued watching her in the same bewilderment she was showing. “...She’s here...”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Hell yeh! Ok, another A/N because of the * I only wrote trousers to please a few people that wouldn’t like me writing pants because in some other countries, as well as medivalness, pants means underwear. -^^- That is all
Are we there yet? by xrigidxdistancex
“What... the... fuck?” Link heard the girl half shout. Ignoring her foul mouth, he cautiously approached her. She didn’t take notice to him until he called out to her. “Uh... excuse me?” He said awkwardly.

She turned to him and stared for a few seconds before falling back flailing until she hit the ground hard on her back. “Shit! How?! How can... what the?!” She was trembling uncontrollably, staring at Link agape.

“It’s alright, it’s alright.” He put his hands up so she would know he wasn’t a threat. “Please calm down.”

“But you-“ She was breathing heavily, but had stopped shaking for the moment.

“I’m not going to hurt you. My name’s Link.” He tried a smile so that maybe she would be more at ease.

I know...

“I’m... Ani Bishop...”

“Ani... are you the eighth sage? The sage of oblivion?”

“What?” She seemed to be clueless.

“Are you a sage?” He prodded again.

“There’s eight sages?! Wait... why would I be a sage!?”She stood, starring down at him with her eyes as wide as they were the first time.

“Calm down, please.” Link pleaded with her once more.

“This is crazy... Agh!” Ani fell back onto her bum and held her head, pulled her knees up to her chin and rested her head on them. “This isn’t right... I’m having a dream... it’s a good dream, but I need to wake up.” She muttered, rocking back and forth.

A dream? What? “Look. Just come with me to the castle, we’ll explain everything there.”

Ani’s head rose slightly, eyes wandering. They landed back on Link after a bit of dodging around. “...Ok...” She nodded, looking behind her at the Temple of Time before she stood up again.

Link had managed to calm her down, though she was still jittery when they entered the castle. Sheik and Zelda stared at her when they entered the dining wing.

“Who is that, Link?” Zelda asked, stepping closer to them and eyeing Ani’s clothing.

“Look at her eyes.” Link answered simply, smiling excitedly.

Zelda did, and once she recollected the eye colors from the books description, she took a step back. “....It worked... Sheik, it worked!” She called, whirling around to him.

Ani stared at him as he walked up, testing her with his eye-noting all flaws mentally. “She does not have her power.” He stated flatly, looking her up and down once more. “She emanates no aura.”

“What!?” Link and Zelda shouted at the same time.

“Huh?” Ani just cocked an eyebrow at him. “Of course I don’t have power.” She retorted sourly, leading them all on for an explanation. “I’m weak.”

Sheik’s eyes narrowed, Zelda’s down-cast, and Link’s head hung. “...Why is that disappointing?” Ani asked curiously, completely oblivious.

Zelda stood in front of her, eyes narrowed condescendingly. “It is disappointing because you are the only one who can- mmf!” Sheik covered Zelda’s mouth. Ani gaped at him, one eye more open then the other.

“Uh... right. Why am I here?”

“There is a good reason... that we cannot divulge yet.” Sheik removed his hand upon answering.

“Why not?”

“It’s ... a surprise.”

Ani’s eyes lit up and she clapped, bouncing on her heels, giggling like a giddy child. She stopped all of the sudden and stuck her tongue out at them. “Fine be that way.”

This is the one who can seal Ganondorf away for good?


Ran through the trio’s mind all at once as they watched Ani act like a child.

A few days passed with more of Ani’s eccentricities. She was odd- a far odder person than any of them had ever seen, but she kept herself well occupied, and didn’t cause any trouble for them.

Link knocked on her door a week after her arrival. “Ani?” His voice traveled, muffled through the large wooden door in one of the guest hallways.

There was no answer.

“Ani?” He tried again, louder.

“Meh!” A whine came from the room and a soft thwack on the opposite side of the door.

“Ani, you have to get up. I know it’s early, but we need to find out how to get you your power...”

“Where’s my shitty temple? Find that fuckin’ thing and ...whee...” There was a much louder thump following her small ramble. “...Ow...”

“You alright?”

“No.” After some faint scuffling in the room, she opened the door and leaned her head out, arm resting on the doorframe. “What now?” Her eye lids were drooping, large bags underneath them.

“Ok, one: breakfast, two: we’ve got to figure out how to get your powers to awaken.”

“...Do I have a temple?”

“We’re not sure.”

Ani rubbed one of her eyes, a strand of hair getting in it. “Gimme five minutes...”

“Alright, we’ll be in the dining wing.” Link nodded and walked back down the hall.

She closed the door and glared at the dresser at one end of the room. “I’m so glad there’s a way to wash these clothes.” She shook her head and stepped over to it, pulling off the clothes Zelda had lent her to sleep in. Once dressed back in her usual attire, she fixed her hair as best she could in the five minutes she had.

She entered the dining hall with both hands raised in the air flaunting the ‘rock’ symbol (thumb over middle and ring fingers, index and pinky raised) and did a two second head-banger. “Ani-chan... is uber hungry. Let’s eat. Yum yum.”

Ani fell into her chair, the three staring at her. “So... what’s the deal? About the whole ‘find my power’ and ‘lack of temple’ issue thing?” She looked up at them from the table, bangs almost covering her eyes.

“Eat first, and wake up.” Sheik rolled his eyes after speaking and sat across from her. Link sat beside her, and Zelda at the end of the table.

“This breakfast will consist mostly of discussion.” Zelda started on her food.

“Uh... ok? Can we just not eat and tell me what the hell’s goin’ on? Huh? I’ve been here a whole fucking week and none of you have said anything to me about why my power needs to be awakened or what the fuck’s going on, so why don’t we just stop with the secrecy and spill it?”

All of them stared at her, Zelda for the fowl language, but Sheik and Link for the decent point she made, even in her tired state.

Link opened his mouth to answer, but Sheik interjected. “Tomorrow... you are far to tired to learn anything today.”

“...Can I sleep in tomorrow?” She asked, poking the table with her left index finger.

“‘Till when?” Link inquired.

“‘Till when I... get up... aloo... Uh,” She shook her head. “What time is it now?”

“About eight.”

“Ten or eleven...ish.” She nodded to herself and leaned back in her chair. “So, if I learn nothing today, what’s there to be done?”

“I have another meeting, but Sheik and Link will not be attending this one, so... “ Link finished for Zelda. “Whatever you want, I guess.”

A broad smile formed on her face, but her eyes didn’t move from the edge of the table. “Sweet... eating first, though.” She nodded, and straightened herself up. “I’ll probably just hang out or something. ... Or go back to sleep.” She shrugged, forking food from platters in the center of the table onto her plate.

“That sounds good.” Link glanced at Sheik who nodded in agreement, mouth showing for once as he, too, started on his food.

Link and Ani, once Link finally started, were eating at the same pace, which usually happened at breakfast, until Ani slowed down with stuffing her mouth.

“Yes... a nap is good...” She thought aloud once everyone was finished with their meal, and she was resting her head on the table cradled by her crossed arms. “Have fun at the meeting, highness.” She half saluted Zelda, who gave Ani a look of confusion, but awkwardly returned it just the same.

“What’re y’all gonna do today, then?” She looked at Link as she asked.

“We’re not sure. I think I’m going to buy a new shield... mine’s sort of cracking.” He replied with a feebly chuckle.

“It was that peahat, wasn’t it?” Sheik asked, the neck of his clothes back over his lower features.

“Probably, but it didn’t show up until now.”

“Woo, yay, peahat.” Ani rose from her seat, speaking in the most unenthusiastic fashion. “I’m off. Both y’all have fun.” She waved at them before putting her hands in her pockets and walking back up the long, winding staircase to her guest room.

Once Ani was out of hearing distance, Link turned to Sheik. “When are we going to tell her? We keep putting it off...”

“Tomorrow. As I said.” He replied, interlocking the fingers on either of his hands and bringing them before his face, resting his elbows on the table.

Link sighed. “Is it really right, though? Keeping it from her for this long?”

“She is only fifteen years old,... and eccentric... She is unpredictable, and thus we cannot take our chances with what information we give her.”

Link nodded, eyes drifting back to the staircase Ani had taken.

~~

Ani’s head was beneath her pillow, which was covered by the comforter and thin sheet. She narrowed her eyes, staring at the white wall in front of her. The tips of her fingers tapped the corner of the pillow.

So this is definitely Hyrule... Took me a week to figure that out. I’m retarded! Anyway... Hyrule will be different than the game, ... maybe I should go check it out... recon-Ani! Whoot! Maybe I can even find...

Her thoughts were interrupted by the night-guard making his usual rounds on this level. She sighed, and sat up, looking as disheveled as she did when she woke up in the morning. “...Can’t look like this, though...”

She hopped up from the bed and reached into the night stand on the other side of the bed’s drawer and retrieved a hair brush.

Once her hair was back in order and tolerable, she straightened her clothes again since the morning. Flopping onto the bed, she pulled her shoes on and tied them tightly.

She opened the door a crack to see if the guard was done with his nightly check, and left, closing the door silently behind her. Ani quietly crept down the stairs to the main hall. Passing through a few more corridors, she stood just before the rusty side door, freshly locked.

“Shit.” She fiddled with it carefully so it wouldn’t cause a racket, but was unsuccessful in the lock-picking. After cursing another time under her breath she walked down to the castle-basement and entered the library.

“Gah... bigger at night... and when... you’re alone...” She muttered, stepping down the three stairs to the entrance and walked through the labyrinth-like shelves of full rows. “The stupid... there’s gotta be another door... some where...” Her eyes darted around until she caught the tip of a door frame just over a few more bookshelves.

She picked up her pace, and reached the door without making a sound. She sighed, and opened the door, a small smile on her face when it worked, and she closed the door behind her. Let’s see... fence, She pointed out to herself just in front of her. Uh... hill.

“Dude... I’m on the left wall. ...Exactly the same as the right...” She looked over her should at the door she just exited from. “Except for stairs... hm.” She shrugged and slowly peeked from behind the wall.

Security’s tight like a bitch at night...

Guards were lined up at their regular posts, but double the usual amount. Fuck... not cool... Her eyes lingered on the four guards positioned at the front. “Odds are not good...” She sighed soundlessly before drawing in a long breath, and flattened herself against the wall.

Careful... She slowly crab-walked against the fence, trying to keep out of sight while still being a sitting duck. She turned the corner, still unnoticed by the guards, and turned around, climbing up the dirt ledge.

Once she was up, she laid down longways so no one would spot her from the top. Good... But maybe the guards really do sense changes in the wind currents rather than looking at people.

Ani scoffed silently at the prospect. Once it was all clear, she climbed down the other side and flattened herself against it. She watched the guards again, and moved forward when they weren’t watching.

The tall tree by the entrance was her target, to get close enough to it that it would obscure her from the two guards at the gate.

Success.

The eighth sage lingered behind the tree awhile before darting into the market. “Cool. Home free.” She smiled inwardly, passing by shops and houses that were all darkened- seeming devoid of life.

Where would it be different though...? It all looks the same... Ani stopped dead when something caught her eye for a second, bedimming the moon. When she did a double take, the moon was fully showing, not a cloud in the sky.

“Creepy...” She shivered, walking towards the entrance again, feeling something she rarely felt- like she was being watched. “...Why am I being paranoid?” She shook it off once more and proceeded.

Loud voices were calling from the castle, obviously her absence had been noticed. She dashed for the exit, but remembered the drawbridge was closed. “Fuck!” Footsteps sounded behind her, she turned, assuming it was the soldiers coming to retrieve her.

Nothing was before her save for the empty, desolate streets of the market. One eyebrow rose and she scoffed, turning around to smack her face into something hard. She fell back onto her butt.

“Ow! Mother fucker...” Ani felt at her burning nose, a thick liquid slowly drizzling out of both nostrils. “Great...” She grumbled in a whine, wiping her bloody nose with the rim of her sleeve. She sniffed some blood back into her nose making her cough and cringe.

Finished with her nose, she looked up at what she had slammed the fragile cartilage into- her eyes widened.

Towering over her was a cloaked figure, sword drawn and held before the person (which was what she hit her nose on, the flat of the blade). Ani stared back at the piercing crimson gaze the figure, seemed to be a man, was giving her.

Those eyes...

A shriek escaped her and she moved her arm out of reflex to block her face as he brought the sword down just next to her, crumbling the cobblestone street. She looked back at him, the rim of the cloak fallen down around his neck so his face was visible.

“Shit!” She flailed and jumped away from Dark Link as quickly as she could before he swung again, nipping a few small strands of hair from her bangs. Whimpering loudly, she directed herself back to the castle, Dark Link pursuing from the rooftops.

She yelped as he lunged at her, landing the tip of the blade not even an inch from her heel. He slashed at her legs, some how with her flailing dodges she missed all of his swings narrowly. She fell back after his blade finally skimmed her leg, ripping her trousers and some of the skin.

Rolling unintentionally, she held her leg when she stopped, wincing from the blinding pain as the blood flowed away from the wound. He stood over her again, sword at the ready.

Ani yelled, holding her head as she awaited the death blow. Clang! Her peripheral raised.

Dark Link was holding his own head, palms on either temples. His hair was blocking his eyes, but the contortion of his mouth seemed like he was calling in silent pain. Ani slowly reached her hand out to him, inching herself closer without moving her leg to much.

The tips of her fingers almost touched his shoulder before he swatted her hand away.

“What do you think you’re doing?!” Anger rang in his voice. She was taken aback, but replied.

“What’s wrong with you?”

He raised his head, eyes set in a glare between his parted fingers. The look was different from the one he had attacked her with. His eyes drifted around the area, lingering on a few shops before going back to Ani.

“Why am I here?” Ani stared at him like he was an idiot.

“You were attacking me!” She shouted, clinging to her bleeding leg afterwards. “Ow..”

“Wait...” He said aloud, unintentionally it seemed, as he never finished what he was saying. He stood up without another word, picked up his sword, and started walking away, still holding his head with one hand.

“Yo! Hold up!” She called after him.

Dark Link stopped but didn’t turn to face her. “Why did you attack me?” His hand dropped to his side limply. Her brow furrowed as his form seemed to disappear right before her.

“Yaah!” She fell back, the tip of the blade embedded into the cobblestone where her leg was a second ago.

His eyes were set back to the emotionless state. She yelped again when she fell on her front into the dirt path entryway towards the castle, and pulled herself into a curled up ball. She felt the swish of the blade close to her back, but it was stopped with a clang just before it was about to slash at her.

“Ani, go!” The familiar voice shouted and raised her eyes to Link who was shielding her from Dark Link’s sword with his own.

“Wha-“

“Go!” Link shouted again.

She scrambled to her feet, dashing erratically, occasionally falling to her hands before she got to the entrance gate. She was breathing in gasps, vision blurring as she made her way to one of the soldiers and collapsed at his feet in a blur on white.

...Is she alright? ...I don’t know... she looks pale as a ghost... she lost a lot of blood... what was she doing out? ...who knows...


Ani’s eyes opened the slightest bit, the colors of the room all meshed together. “...Uhn...wha?” She mumbled, her eyes opening a bit more so her vision was clear.

“Ani, are you alright?” Link asked, his face hovering over hers. It was dirty, and cut in a few places, his hat as well.

“You’re one to talk...” She laughed quietly. “I’m fine... I think... what happened?”

Sheik summarized what Link had told him after Dark Link disappeared, causing her to sit up and fall back down rapidly. Head rush. She sat up again, slower this time, and stared at Link.

“Where did he go?”

“What?” Link asked with a dumbstruck look.

“Where did Dark Link go?!” She repeated loudly.

“I don’t know, he disappeared... It was like he got eaten by black fire.”

“Oh, that’s astute, sounds like something I’d say!” She looked down at herself, still in a daze. “I’m wearing clothes, right?”

“Yes, why?” Zelda asked, just as confused as the other two.

“I need to find him.” She threw the covers off and stood for a second, falling on her face the next. “How much blood did I loose?!” Ani shouted, tears forming in the corners of her eyes.

Link helped her to her feet wearing a stern look unbefitting to him. “Why the hell would you want to find him? He tried to kill you!”

“It’s not revenge,” Sheik blurted. “Ani’s not the vengeful type.”

“No. No I’m not, but something was wrong with him. I think he’s being controlled.” Her gaze fell.

“I doubt that, and what does it matter?!” It was clear to Ani that Link was losing his temper with her. She made her way back to the bed and sat down, eyes on the floor.

“He has a point,” Sheik turned to her. “Dark Link is someone who wouldn’t hesitate to take out an entire village, let alone one person.”

“He hesitated with me!” Ani clenched one of her hands tightly onto the blanket. “...He hesitated before Link came..”

There was a long, awkward silence following her words. Ani continued once she was certain no one else would speak. “I don’t know why, but he did... and when he did, we spoke. He was confused, but when he was leaving, I called to him, and he attacked again... He was going to leave without killing me. Why would he change that in a second? He has a mind of his own, can make choices like any other person because he is any other person-“

“He’s a murderer!” Link shouted, silence befalling them again. Her head hung, eyes narrowed and forming tears that wouldn’t fall out.

“...I know...” She quietly responded, turning to Zelda and Sheik. Apparently Zelda had left without her knowledge. “I know what he’s done is wrong... and I know he could have killed me, but I honestly think he needs help!”

“Do you even think for a second that he would accept your help? Even if that is true?” Link’s recent tone was beginning to disturb her, she flinched each time he yelled. “A heartless bastard like that won’t accept anyone’s help. Especially from someone who’s helping us.”

“He can repent! Anyone-can-repent.” Ani retorted firmly. “I don’t care if you think otherwise, I want to help him!”

She and Link had a small glaring contest, in the middle of which, Link left slamming the door.

“...He’s mad at me now...”

Sheik didn’t reply as he made his way to the door. He stopped before opening it and turned back to Ani, hand on the knob. “Why were you out?”

She looked up, surprise glazing her eyes. “...Recon.”

“You’ll not be permitted to leave for three days...”

“What?!” Her reply was to late, he closed the door and left.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Heehee, lots and lots of A/N's in this fic, ne? So, how does everyone like Ani? Ang was silly for making her -^^-' but this FF wouldn't get very far without her. Anyway! There will be an uncolored pic of Ani I drew up very soon, as soon as Kasuto-sama gets his ass in gear. I will have a colored pic up eventually, as well as a small expression sheet I did today in french class. Go chibi Ani expressions! -dances like a retard-
Infinite Knowledge by xrigidxdistancex
The patter of her feet on the tile was probably the first thing that alerted them of her presence three days later.

Ani was going on actual recon this time, but her ulterior motive was still in her mind. Leaving through the basement-library, she hopped the black fence this time. She had taken a bag, black and slung over her shoulder.

It was stuffed with a blanket, and some food she had snatched from the kitchen on her way out. She ran as far from the castle as she could on the alien path, finding a small winding road made from aged, indented horse prints in the grass.

Out of breath, her weakened legs collapsed and she fell back. Ani felt her heart in her throat and heard the monotonous beating in her ears. Mouth and throat dry, she knew her voice wouldn’t work at the moment.

I never knew all this was here... the grass seems healthier than the field... She ran her long, thin fingers through the grounds lush, green mane. No brown spots...

Refreshed, she sat up, pulling her knees to her chest and hugging them. Her eyes drifted to the sky. Far off it looked much darker then it was just above her. “...Weird.”

Ani stood, eyes closed, trying to calm her heart down. It was still beating loudly. She began walking again, her pace slow. Behind her, the castle was just a speck on the horizon.

The sky was beginning to turn pink, the blue mixing with it and steadily growing brighter as the minutes passed on- excruciatingly slow.

“Wonder if they think I’m dead...” She looked over her shoulder and saw nothing. The dot of a castle was calm as could be. “Maybe they stopped looking...” She shook her head.

If she was really the eighth sage, they wouldn’t just drop the search. Ani rolled her eyes and picked up her pace, though her mind was against it from sleep depravation. She stopped again after a few more minutes.

“Christ! It just goes on forever! Like the fucking Labyrinth!” Her voice drifted through the area, not echoing or reverberating on a single thing. “Goddammit.” She started walking again. “How much farther before something happens?!”

Hours passed without a thing happening. Cold and tired, Ani pulled the blanket from the bag, took out some food and nibbled on it. She curled up, using the bag as a pillow and closed her weary eyes, drifting into the black abyss that stopped time and made it go faster all at once.

...it's ironic considerate rarity patron of love higher knowledge engulfs me...

...'cause the blast of fate a lesson to my eyes concerned...

...and overwhelmed theirs were of fear and I am feeling so empty inside...

...and yet it burns so awkward this time it's something with my pride lies...

...I cannot hide my true side and maybe in distress I can still come out laughing...

...that's the way I am this little boy proud of helping those in need...

...but he's not me but just maybe he could be...

...I can see it now because I am a hero to his eyes...

...temporarily blind this immature kid a spirit as well an angel hiding by helping...

...and wanting to understand me tears a waterfall of acid...

...cries from his eyes I need to recognize it's meant to be...

...am I hard to recognize what do I need to realize...

...why can't I see with my own fucking eyes what do I need to see...


Why do you always do that? A voice, close and yet distant asked.

What? Ani opened her eyes, but saw only the darkness of sleep. Who’s there?

Those words... The voice came again. Ani was certain it was a woman’s, though it was hard to tell through the thick echoing. Words like that always play before you sleep...

It’s a song...

A song? She scoffed. Never have I heard a song like that until a week and three days ago...

That’s when I came... Who are you? How are you in my head?!

Ani... The sound of clicking heels was the only noise that echoed through her mind, save for her erratic breathing. I am you...

“Wha-?!” She reached out, blanket falling from her front. Her breaths were rapid, pupils shrunken. “...What? ...Who?” A new song was stuck in her head and she smacked herself to clear her thoughts.

“Woah... trippy.” A chill ran down her spine.

The sun was finally out, the sky bright. She had to have been asleep for nearly two hours before that dream started, and only God knew how long the dream had truly lasted.

Blanket back in the bag, Ani started walking again and nibbling a piece of toast that would serve as lunch until she returned to the castle.

That’s so freaky... fuckin’ crazy. What the hell was my idiotic brain trying to tell me? “Ani, sorry we never told you before, but you’re crazy. Have fun in the asylum! ... Bitch.”

She pinched at the ends of her eyes, getting the tired out. “This place is fucking barren. Not a Goddamn scrap of life, save for this bullshit grass and-“ A small white flower pedal glided past her ear, a few more following it from a hill. “...Flowers.”

She ran up the steep incline, tripping once, but caught herself and continued on. As she neared the top, pain erupted from her temple, growing with each step. She reached the top, the grass ending at the bottom of the hill after a never ending row of small white flowers that flowed in either direction.

Past the grass was not just dirt, but dried and twisted ash running down into a valley. A tall cathedral was in the center of the valley, dark and brooding save for the door and window panes; all a silvery white glowing pearly in the still rising sun.

The ebony stricture seemed familiar and yet...

Ani fell to her knees clutching her head as the pain elevated again. She felt warm liquid running down her leg, the cut must have reopened from the fall.

-Gain your power-Let me help you-I am you-Help yourself-You can do this-Regain control-

The same woman’s voice came, her words overlapping sending Ani into a swirling delirium.

Ani...

The last came loudest and most clear, destroying all the others.

She blinked. Her vision seemed far off, as if looking through another’s eyes. She tried to move her hand, but it remained stationary.

What? She tried again, but to no avail. She stood, however. ...Oookay! I didn’t want to stand yet...

Her eyes traveled along the area before lowering to her hands. Ani slowly flexed her long fingers even though she was not commanding her body to do so.

What the hell?!

“I am alive again...?”

I didn’t say that! What the fuck?!

Her head turned, looking back in the direction of the castle. “...I have returned.” A small smile crept onto her face.

What the hell is going on?!

“Ani.” She stated to herself, ‘causing Ani to stare.

Huh?

“Do not fear... I can help you. I am you.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Confusing, no? This chapter started as a filler with no premise, but I decided to actually give it something and make it worth my time. No one will know what's happening! HAHA! -^^- Sucks for you. It better be confusing. I went around asking people all day if they didn't get it, people that knew what I was writing (duh) and they didn't understand the end at all. Purrrrrrrfect -dies from Cat Woman-
A note, the song is by Taproot: Mentobe
New Identity by xrigidxdistancex
‘Ani’ was just a few miles out of the way, now, gaining speed as she got closer to the castle. This ‘other Ani’ seemed confused, but just as infatuated with Hyrule as the original- knew all the monsters, the lay of the land, and something she never expected.

You know how?

“I would be able to use the power, but in this body, they are not awakened.”

Yeh... wouldn’t help that much anyway, I’m really weak.

“In body, but at least you have a decent amount of knowledge.”

Right... I’m an idiot too, so whatever.

“So critical of yourself.”

How much longer until we get back?

“Not much longer now... an hour at best.”

Cool... Hey! How come you’ve never come out before?

“I could not make contact with you, even though we inhabit the same vessel.”

What triggered it, then?

“That structure, apparently.”

What was it?

“I do not know... but it feels very familiar... As if I have been there before, but I ... do not recall.”

There was a long pause after the others response. Fed up with the silence, Ani spoke up again.

Do you think they’re worried?

“Who?”

Link, and Sheik, and Zelda... that I haven’t come back yet?

“I am not sure. Perhaps,... You are a necessity.”

Ani nodded mentally, her body still in a light jog. Without warning, something hit her like a slap in the face.

Wait! I noticed something weird about it, it kinda looked like Ganons old castle... is he back!? Is that why they need me? ...To seal him again?

“That would be the case.”

Damn... they never even told me... I’m gonna bust some ass when I get back!

“If I allow you to take control again.”

You- ...That’s not fair! C’mon!

“If you want to awaken your power, I suggest that you allow me to keep control for a while... I have not had a physical form in so long.” Her eyes raised to look at the sun setting at an angle from the castle. “...Hyrule looks so different...”

You’ve been here before?

No reply.

Come on!

She shook Ani’s head.

Fine, be that way! ...My body and you just take over, nir nir nir...

She continued to mock the woman with an odd high-pitched voice, as well as odd noises.

~~

Paced steps echoed on the ebony marble floor that could even be heard from the entrance hall of the dark structure.

“She was here...” A voice muttered with the pacing steps. A cloaked man was stepping along the circumference of the black insignia etched into the center of the room. “You came in contact with her...” The man drew out every syllable when he spoke, taking out their very essence. His arm was drawn out and pointed towards a darkened corner of the large room.

“You attacked her, but did not bring her back with you?” The man’s hand fell back to his side, concealed once more by the cloak.

It was Ganondorf’s turn to speak. “He was not ordered to. My control over him is limited to basic body control; he is devoid of thoughts he was not given.”

The man stopped pacing and turned his hooded head to face Ganondorf. One of his eyes was visible against lightly tanned skin, strands of dark hair falling around it. The pupil was thinner than a normal one, but still as a slit against the silver outer rim. Inside of the silver was a bright gold. “I understand this, but there is always me. I am more persuasive than you.”

Ganondorf nodded. “Even so, I don’t think it wise to do that just yet; his puppet state seems better for now.”

“Very well...” The cloaked man turned to Dark Link in the dark corner, he was barely visible with his own cloak. “Go and find the girl; the eighth sage. She should still be nearby...”

Without a response Dark Link dashed out of the structure in a blur. “Now,” The man turned back to Ganondorf after watching Dark Link exit. “What are you planning to do with her?”

“With her, if not dead, then at least on my side I can stay out for as long as I wish.” He responded, getting comfortable on the thick marble.

“I see... What fun can be had when time is on one’s side.” A smirk played across what was visible of the mans face, but it wasn’t cold- more like a playful grin.

“Also, so long as they cannot enter this place with her, we’re safe. They don’t even realize that this is her temple.”

“Again, most things are on our side, but...” He trailed off.

“But, what?” Ganondorf tried to provoke an answer.

“There is still the matter of Dark Link; He’s fighting back. He should not be doing that, are you losing your touch?” The man seemed to not even take a quick breath in the entire sentence.

“Doubtful.” Ganondorf scoffed. “I was not sealed away for so long that I have grown weak. Perhaps my absence has just made Dark Link stronger?”

“Perhaps... But the girls power... it is aiding him. He cannot stay around her for to long. Though her power is sealed, she still emanates a great deal of energy, allowing him longer breaks in your control each time. Dark Link nearly walked away from her last time and they even held a conversation.”

“Yes, it is troublesome... We shall have to keep her in the lower section. He won’t be able to get in there, even if I’m not in control of him.”

“Good.” He rose a hand to flick a few strands of hair away from his eye. “She seems interesting... I’d like to find out more about her.” He smiled, words and eyes filled with an eerie warmth that seemed unbefitting.

~~

You realize that this is exploitation!?

Again, no response came from the woman in Ani’s body. She continued to walk, just outside of the castle walls getting closer to the outer enclosing fence.

What do you think they’ll do when you waltz in and aren’t weird like me?

She paused, remaining stationary as she held her hand around the cold black steel of the fence. “...I shall just have to act like you, then.”

How do you intend to do that when you’re all ‘olde’ English, can’t do a southern accent, let alone an American one, and don’t know all of my vocabulary?

The woman fell silent, eyes gazing at the ground behind the fence. “...You make a good argument.”

So you’ll let me have my body back? Her voice was filled with childish glee, even with the thick echoing of the mental speak.

“No.” Was her simple response, and she climbed over the fence after getting a good foothold.

WHAT?! Oh, come on! After all that you’re still gonna be a bitch about it, just ‘cause you haven’t been alive for a damn long time or something?!

She stopped walking again, eyes wide. “...Alive...? I have... not?” Her hand slowly crept towards her mouth, covering it with her parted fingers. She convulsed and fell to her knees, using the castle wall as a crutch.

“They... Goddesses said... ,” Ani cut her off.

Goddesses? You were with the Goddesses?! Who the hell were you, anyway?!

She continued with her scrambled logic. “Said I would... be sleeping... Ryo, she-...” The woman fell silent again, dropping her hand to the ground just like her gaze.

...Ryo? ...Wait, who’s Ryo?

“Din... Nayru... Farore... .....Ryo... ...”

Another long paused followed this as Ani tried to comprehend who this woman could have been if she had met the Goddesses, as well as who this Ryo person was.

The hoarse voice of a soldier cut both of their thoughts short. “I heard someone over here!”

Fuck...

“Where have you been?” One of them said as they helped the downed ‘Ani’ to her feet. She was shaking terribly.

Another said, “They’ve been worried sick, you know.”

“...Link... Zelda... and Sheik...?” She muttered, forced by Ani so she would seem more herself.

“Of course! You are very important.” One other spoke up.

“How does she keep escaping, anyway?” The last of them muttered to another.

~~

Ani had been confined to her room once again after a loud ‘discussion’ of her escapes, mostly lead by Zelda. Ani had forced the woman to retort a few times, but had gotten no information out of it. Link hadn’t even bothered to speak with her about it, but Sheik had joined in with Zelda.

They’re gonna yell at me, but they’ve been lying to me this whole time... What the hell is up with that?!

She paused for a moment, but continued in a much calmer tone.

You never told me your name...

The woman didn’t respond immediately, she was infatuated with a knot in the wood floor, or at least that was where her eyes were drawn too. “...Lirin...”

Lirin? Heh... cool... What did you mean earlier? The Goddesses? ...Said you were sleeping?

She exhaled sharply as her response.

Ani nodded mentally, thinking it best not to pry on that subject at the moment.

So... Why are you in my body? ...Psh, and when can I get it back? She was trying to hold a more bubbly tone in the latter half of her question, but failed at it.

“...I am you... in a sense...” She let herself fall back onto the cushion of the bed, now watching the ceiling. “...But I am not...”

You’re me but not? ..Riddle?

“If you would think about it, it is not as difficult as it comes off... I was you. Had your position, at any rate... but that was...,”- Her eyelids drooped-“...So long ago...”

You were the original!?

“Please not so loud... I have a headache already...”

I’ve got a headache... She confirmed haughtily. Wow... The original sage of oblivion is in my head? Do you know how fucking trippy that is!? Her laugh echoed.

“And yes... I am- ...Was the sage of oblivion, but that has been appointed to you- my reincarnation.”

Ani paused, looking dumbstruck in the back of her own mind.

Re... incar-...nation? ...You’re my past life?!

“So it would seem.” Lirin replied flatly.

Lirin... When can I get my body back...? I can’t stand this...

“Once I am used to your body... Also... I am not certain I can relinquish my control to you... I have never been in this situation before- please don’t yell.”

She stopped Ani just as soon as she opened her mouth.

Great... What if I’m stuck like this forever?!

“I doubt that,” Lirin scoffed again, sitting up and stretching in similar way to Ani’s- cracking most of the crack able joints. “It should only last until either your power is awakened,”-she stood-“Or we go back to that building.”

You said it seemed familiar, ...right?

“Yes... an aura that I remember well.”

Did you have a temple?

Lirin paused before answering again. “...No. ...I do not think so, but... “

Hard to remember?

She nodded.

Don’t worry about it... We’ll find out eventually anyway... I think we both need some rest now, though...

“That is the most sane thing you have said this entire trip.”

Ani laughed, but yawned in the middle of it.

Yeh, yeh... Make me go to sleeeep!

“Very well.” Lirin got up and blew the two candles out that were lit from atop the dresser and crawled beneath the covers, not even bothering to change from Ani’s clothes into the night ones.
Discovery by xrigidxdistancex
...I have to get out of my head... That building was the original catalyst, so.. What would trigger the opposite reaction? ...Fuck... I’m screwed...

Ani ran her hands over her face, though nothing could be felt. It was a mental motion and not all of her sense were in use.

Lirin... wake up... Ani pleaded quietly, but Lirin didn’t budge.

Oi... guess I can’t blame her... She hasn’t slept since God knows when... But I wanna sleep too!

“Naw shoutink... pwease...” Lirin mumbled into the pillow.

...Sorry...

“Ish hokay...”

God, how tired do you have to be to slur ya words like me in the morning?

“I dun...”

No, no, sit up Lirin-chan. Can’t have the olde English girl talkin’ like a redneck American.

Lirin obeyed, looking as disheveled as Ani did when she woke up; frizzy hair all over the place, bags under her eyes, the whole deal.

“Why does your body require... so much slee-“ She was cut off by a yawn.

‘Cause I’m anemic.

“Anemic?

Lack of iron, spontaneous bruises, needs more rest than other people who don’t have anemia.

“I see...” Lirin gave Ani’s cheeks a few quick taps before taking the covers off. “Is there a brush?”

Dresser.

Hair back in order, Lirin flopped Ani back onto the bed in a rag doll fashion. “Must I leave this bed?” Her eyes were closing again.

Yeh... ya do... If we don’t go to breakfast they’ll think something’s wrong... which it is...

“But I cannot act like you.”

I know, it’s cool... just say you don’t feel great if they ask, so... yeh...

“Are you... certain this will work?”

No... I’m not certain, but it’s worth a shot. No matter how much I love to sit on my ass, you know, as well as I that it’s not very productive.

“True... true...” Lirin rose once again with a half-hearted sigh. “I am just not sure this is the best idea... What if they realize that I am not you, and believe me to be a sort of imposter?”

Naw, naw, I seriously doubt that. Even if they do... well... I’m in your head, and... Sheik’s smart, I guess... He’ll prolly realize that you’re not... I think...

“You are not very certain about anything, are you?”

Shhh... Don’t say that so loud... It’s my secret.

Lirin’s eyes rolled jokingly as she changed her clothes before exiting the guest room. “I just do not like this...” She muttered through her teeth, and Ani nodded mentally in response.

Link was the first to greet her with a giddy smile. “Hey, Ani. Hope you’re not thinking about sneaking out again.. It can’t be fun sitting upstairs all the time...”

Lirin gave him a confused look as she sat.

Don’t let anything slip out. Chill. Now, just say ‘Yeh, I’m not. I learn after a few times, I’m not that retarded.’

Lirin bit her lower lip for a few moments before she tried to recite. “Yeh, ...I’m not... I learn after a few times, I’m... not that... retarded.” The words flowed awkwardly from her, making Link look at her in response to her oddness.

“Eh?” Link blinked at her, having picked up the odd confused noise from her after the few days she had been with them.

“Uh.. Um.. Never mind...” She averted her eyes away from Link and looked at the floor.

“Are you alright?” He asked, trying to look at her face.

Just say you don’t feel great... come on...

“I don’t... feel great...”

“Maybe you should go back to bed?

Denied!

“No, that’s alright. I should eat.”

Link nodded as Sheik entered the room. His visible eye wandered between the two as he neared them, landing on Lirin when he sat. “Decided to stay, have you?” His eyebrow rose.

“Yes...” Lirin responded.

Ok, good, I thought he noticed something.

He did.

Fuck!

“Glad to see you’ve learned a bit.”

“Can we not talk about this now? Or would you rather be my target of projectile vomit?”

Ooh... nice ad-lib!

Sheik looked her over for a moment before grimly turning to Link. “Where is Zelda?”

“I don’t know if she’ll even be coming to breakfast. She had a lot of stuff to do last night, so I guess she’s sleeping in.”

Lucky her...

“What are we doing today?” Lirin spoke up, trying to look childish like Ani, but failing miserably.

“Anything that comes up, I guess,” Link shrugged.

“No. Something is going to be done today...” Sheik stood as he spoke, eyes focused on something in the corridor behind them.

The loud sound of clacking metal came to their ears, Link and Lirin turned their heads as one of the castle guards rushed in the room to join them.

“Your highness!” The soldier shouted to the absent Zelda, and turned to Link when he realized she was not present. “There is someone attacking.”

“Who?” Link stood.

“We cannot see his face, covered by a cloak, you see. He has black hair, though... and...crimson eyes...”

What!?

Who is it?

No response came from Ani that time, she waited for more to be said.

“I’ll get my sword,” Link muttered, walking towards the stairs.

“There is one other thing... He is demanding the... eighth sage.”

Link stopped dead and turned to lirin. “...He wants you? What did you talk to him about?”

“I... uh...” Lirin stuttered, taking a step back from the table.

“What did you say to him?!” Link shouted.

“...I don’t remember...” Her gaze fell.

Scoffing, Link turned away and ascended the stairs.

“He is still bent about it...” Sheik spoke as he passed her in the opposite direction. “You may want to get a weapon as well...”

Nodding, she darted up the stairs to the guest room halls.

You’re not gonna fight him, are you?

“Why not?”

Um... no weapon...

“That is not the real reason.”

Shut up! It’s... well...

“You are not going to tell me?”

I... can’t...

“We will speak of this later, but I cannot let him take us with out trying.”

Y-... yeh... but... shouldn’t we just stay here? If he comes up... then we retaliate?

Lirin paused after entering the room, about to pull a drawer open in the dresser. “...Perhaps that
would be smarter...” Her eyes lingered for a few moments on the drawer handle. “But the others will require aid.” She tugged on the drawer, a small dagger in it’s confides beneath a small red cloth.

Eh?! How’d you know that was there?

“Did you not?”

No!

“It is the norm that guests be given, at the very least a dagger with which to defend themselves incase of an enemy attack.”

Oh... well... Yeh! Okay!

She shook her head, picking the dagger up from the drawer by it’s hilt, and swung it once to get the feel.

You know how to use it?

“I can wield a blade.”

Good... I can’t...

“How do you intend on defending yourself?”

I can use guns... bah! Not the time!

“Right.”

Before fleeing the room, Lirin also took out the daggers sheath and placed it in Anis pocket.

Just... you know...

“What if he wounds us?”

I don’t think... he’s supposed to do that.

“What do you mean, supposed to?”

I met up with him before... he hit my leg, that’s why it’s ne... he did attack me, but... wasn’t aiming to kill...

“Do you mean he was stalling?”

No, not stall... I think he was just trying to incapacitate me...

“You had odd logic.”

Her steps echoed loudly against the white marble, speaking all the while as they navigated through the empty halls towards either the library exit or the rusty door; neither of them cared. Ani cursed loudly each time they met a dead end, but Lirin just voiced a small noise of disappointment and turned in another direction.

You’d think there’d be at least a few guards staying inside the castle..

“They are far to preoccupied with Dark Link.”

Must be... Oh, Lirin! There!

Lirin skidded along the marble as she quickly turned down another hall. “Which one would this be?”

Should be that one door...

Sighing, Lirin ran on, dagger jingling in her pocket. A small yelp escaped her and she slid, sneakers squeaking shrilly against the floor as she stopped just before knocking into two guards standing at the door. “Uh... hi?”

“What do you think you’re doing, miss?” One of them asked, leaning down slightly.

“I was ...trying to help outside...”

“No, no women in this battle. All exits have been barricaded until further notice.” The second said.

“What?! No, you don’t understand-“

“We understand our orders, miss. Back to the guest rooms with you.”

Lirin rubbed her eyes, looking around the room for any sort of exit.

There’s a hole... but I seriously don’t think we’re small enough...

...Worth a try.

She nodded at the two guards, and slowly began walking away from them, hands behind her back as if she were an innocent child who had just stolen a cookie.

In a moment, the sound of water around her was all she could hear as she crawled through the small hole in the wall that Link himself had used on occasions. Not even the shouts from the soldiers could reach her ears as the water trickled against the wall, slowed now from her.

Watch out, it’s an immediate dip.

Lirin noted that and managed to get to her feet before leaping across the small mote and landing on the two Lon Lon Milk boxes that were still there. “Do you hear that?”Lirin said, looking towards the front of the castle.

I hear lots of noise... lots of noise that I really don’t like...

“Yes, loud noises are your weakness...” Once steady again, she began walking cautiously towards the corner of the mote, hand on the hilt of the dagger. “Harien no tobane...”

What’s that mean?

“It is a prayer...’Death to the Enemy’.”

Refreshing...

She rolled her eyes, slowly creeping closer, the noise growing with every step.

Swords slicing at clothing, metal, skin. Falling liquid. “Raise shields!” Voices. The swish and flare of flames. Agonized screams. “Pull back!”

“Damn...” Her eyes narrowed, grip on the hilt tightening. “This dagger is not nearly enough...”

Didn’t you know that from the start?!

“Never mind that.” She hissed, gripping it tighter still. Soldiers fell nearly every step they took, there were only so many. Lirin wouldn’t have been surprised if Dark Link came out of this completely unscathed.

This is bad, this is bad... Link needs to go back inside, so does Sheik...

“Too stubborn.”

You don’t know them!

“Still they are.”

Ani fell silent once more.

“I am not trying to be condescending but-” She was cut off by the sight of mangled bodies within their armor, blood pooling all around what was turning into a hill of shredded soldiers.

...Oh my...Christ...

Her bottom lip quivered as she slowly approached, the sounds still whirling around them, blood still flowing freely from the remaining guards. Link and Sheik shouting came to her ears, but still was overpowered by the clang of metal and slosh of blood hitting the ground.


Lirin...

...Yes..?

...I can’t seem them... Her voice was wavering amongst the echoes.

I do not see them either... But I hear them... they are close...

Where...? ...Lirin? A noticeable sob was on the end of her words.

“...Close...”

She turned her head, eyes narrowed. The remainder of the guards had gone towards the gates, having backed Dark Link off enough to have him towards the entrance rather than at the castle drawbridge. Link and Sheik had gone there as well, and from what could be seen, they were wounded.

Lirin unsheathed the dagger and swung it once more, readying herself. She took off down the dirt path, running towards the gate.

...Don’t kill him...

“I will not be able too...” She responded quietly as she ran, leaping over the fence and taking a slash and Dark Link’s shoulder that he dodged easily. Cursing she tried once more, along side the other soldiers, Link and Sheik.

“What the hell are you doing, Ani?!” Link shouted at her, keeping up the onslaught.

Lirin hissed as she attacked, “Nothing I should not be,” and landed a blow on his arm.

Dark Link made no sound, but focused his attacks against Lirin now, knowing who she was.

Stop it... stop it... stop it... Ani continued to mutter in her mind, willing herself not to watch.

Lirin yelled as the cut on Ani’s leg reopened, sending her to the ground, blood leaking through the bandages. Dark Link tried to make another blow, but Link was in the way, sword against his own. “Sheik, get Ani and run!”

Sheik obeyed, but Lirin still pushed him away when he tried to grab her. “I am fighting!”

“You’re losing to much blood, you’ll die if you keep this up!” He snarled.

“Go!” Link shouted once more, trying to push Dark Link back.

Without waiting for a response from Ani, Sheik scooped her up in his arms, against her protests, and led her back to the castle.

Well this is wonderful...

...At least we’re alive...

Lirin responded with silence.

Ooh... right... sorry...

No matter... I do not like this turn-out, however...

Either do I... hey, did you... notice something?

What?

When you hit ... DL... Link started bleeding more, too...

...Did he?

Yeh...

What are you insinuating...?

I dunno... maybe they’re connected, I don’t have a clue! But... what if... one dies, ...the other dies...?

Dammit... that is not good... if you are right, then... there is much that needs to be addressed...

“Don’t think you can fool me.” Sheik spoke, watching where we he stepped instead of looking at her.

“What?” Lirin was jolted out of her connection with Ani and looked up at Sheik.

“You may be able to pull the wool over Link and Zelda’s eyes, but I can see through you. Your aura has gotten stronger; it could not have done that unless something was awakened.”

“...You know a great deal...”

“That I do. I also know that you are not Ani.”

“Indeed...”

“Where is she, then?”

“She is here... just... not in the same room...”

“Don’t speak in riddles.”

“Let us say, ‘I know where she is, would tell you if I could, but all is not as it seems’”

“Again with them...” Sheik groaned silently, stepping through the door and taking her to the infirmary in the right wing. Setting her down on the bed, he looked her in the eye as he sat down in a chair he had pulled up from a nearby desk. “Even your eyes are different than hers... you give off a more... ,” he searched for the right words. “...refined look than Ani.”

“I am much older than she.”

“Perhaps my suspicions were correct...”

“Suspicions?”

“...The Sage of Oblivion... the first, am I wrong?”

“No... you are correct.”

“How have you been awakened?”

“I am not certain.”

“Why, then?”

“Possibly to aid Ani in this venture.”

“Can you speak with her?”

“Aye.”

Sheik paused a moment, running a bare finger over another. “Your power is greater than hers, currently... yes?”

She nodded.

He looked away for a moment out of a window to see all that was happening. Dark Link seemed to be gone, perhaps called back or fleeing from cowardice-he doubted the latter. “Perhaps a test is in order... I am sure the Gerudo’s won’t mind a slight intrusion to the Training Ground?”

“Training Ground?”

It’s got a few things, mostly requires weapons, though... as far as I know...

What if you are wrong?

I don’t doubt that, it’s possible I am wrong, but that’s what I know. If what I know is wrong, so be it.

Lirin nodded inwardly before retorting. “I think... that would be fine.. Practice may awaken the power within her, instead of me being its outlet...”
Training Ground by xrigidxdistancex
A/N: @_@ This one took not only a while to start because I couldn’t find a suitable beginning, but I also procrastinated a shit load, and I do apologize for that, but I’m back now -^^-

===

Sleep. Something grand that always seemed to back away from you when you needed it most. It happened last night; Lirin tossed and turned, unable to sleep at all. She was lolling off the horses saddle, jolted to reality once more when she nearly fell off.

“Are you alright?” Link asked, it was noticeable from his tone that he was tired as well.

She rubbed her eyes before responding, “Slept in the infirmary... leg stung... no sleep’tall”

“Wow, Ani, you should really get that leg patched up...”

Lirin blinked and looked at him, quickly turning to Sheik. She saw him look away just as she turned to him.

He didn’t tell?

“I suppose he did not...” Lirin whispered back through her teeth.

Then how’d he get everyone to come along?

“I haven’t the slightest inkling.”

Zelda spoke; she was at the lead on a white horse, Link and Sheik just a bit further back adjacent to each other and Lirin was in the middle, both she and Sheik riding brownies, “Why exactly are we going to the Gerudo Valley, Sheik?”

“Ani needs an outlet of sorts, and the training ground may prove to be that catalyst she needs.”

“Let us hope...”

Link and Sheik nodded while Lirin was still speaking with Ani.


The sky darkened steadily, small droplets of rain falling onto them. Zelda had been prepared, as had Link, but Lirin and Sheik were getting soaked to the bone as the light drizzle turned into a strong downpour.

This is wonderful... Put my hair up, it gets so damned frizzy with humidity... like a fuckin’ racoon.

“A raccoon on your head?” Lirin cocked an eyebrow, but collected Ani’s hair that fell against her back and tied it up in a messy bun, bangs and the pieces that fell to her collarbone still hanging loose.

“How much farther? She asked any of the three who were listening.

“Just a few more minutes before we reach the entrance to the valley.”

Stupdeniforous!

Lirin didn’t voice any comments.

“The training ground’s pretty complicated... does she need any equipment?” Link asked, turning to Sheik.

“No. She will be fine. Each room is set to meet one’s strengths and weaknesses. It’s not meant to kill you, just train.”

Her thoughts had trailed off to what the Training Ground would turn out to be for her and Ani to truly test them. Ani, however, was listening through her scattered thoughts and the pouring rain.

It did only take a few more minutes to reach the entrance of the valley-to spot it, anyway.

Their horses glided down the steep decline, Lirin feeling a bit uneasy with her horse shivering. It was either from the rain, or fear because it had never ventured this way before. The chilly air turned frigid as they neared the desert and dusk took over them.

The bridge that connected the two sides of the deep chasm filled with three raging falls was drenched. The ropes creaked, the bridge swayed. The princess went across first of her own accord, and crossed just fine. Lirin went next, then Sheik, and lastly Link.

“Can we stop to rest?” Lirin asked, having to call through the pounding rain, just as Link finished crossing.

“Why?” he retorted loudly, barely able to hear anyone or even himself.

“I’m tired... and a wee bit nauseous.”

“Alright. We’ll see if they’ll let us stay in the tent...” Sheik said to her.

They led their horses beneath the towering piece of land that jutted out from the side wall so they could dry off as well. Using the blankets from the packs to help them dry a bit, at least that way they wouldn’t be too uncomfortable.

“‘Oo’s ‘ere?” a deep, scratchy voice called from within the tent just as the four came closer.

“The princess of Hyrule and her companions!” Zelda called in, awaiting a response.

Lirin was off in her own thoughts again, letting Ani to wonder why Zelda hadn’t said ‘Prince and Princess of Hyrule’. She let it go soon enough.

The carpenters to them in, lending them large wool blankets to dry off with and keep warm by the fire which had a stew burning. It was blatant that they were happy for the female company, but it was equally blatant that they were restraining themselves.

Let us hope your pickiness won’t go to me with this food, I’m bloody starving.

Ani ignored Lirin’s comment, watching through her own eyes-which still creeped her out to no end-the stew bubble disgustingly in its white froth.

“Wot brings ‘er ‘igness an’ ‘er companions to o’r ‘umble tent?”

Link opened his mouth to speak, but Zelda but him to the punch, “Just passing through, sir. I do hope our presence is not troubling you.”

“Nawt a all, me lady. Youre presence is a blessin’.” The leader laughed as the stew’s bubbling grew louder and louder. “Ah. Time to eat. Help yer selves an ‘ave as much as ya want.”

The carpenters and their leader scooped into the stew hungrily with their bowls, obviously lacking in spoons or a ladle. The four waited patiently until all of the carpenters were through, then Link and Sheik scooped out two bowls each for the girls, and then themselves.

It didn’t take long for anyone in the tent to finish the stew, though Ani regretted Lirin eating it when there was no meat to counteract the taste of the vegetables.

The pounding rain slowed so subtly that no one noticed until they were finished, mostly due to the whooping and hollering of the carpenters as they told old stories of encounters with supposedly ‘un-earthly’ creatures and near death experiences.

Lirin poked Ani’s head out, needing some movement anyway. The horses were still there, and most of the water seemed dried up alright, despite how much had fallen. The sand was probably scorching.

“I think we should go now...” she said lightly, crouching down next to Link and pointing with her thumb out of the tent.

“You’re probably right.” Link nodded his agreement and stood, dusting off his bottom.

“Aw, must ya?” one of the carpenters whined, only getting a curt nod from Sheik in return.

After saying their regards for the stay and meal, they walked back to their horses. “That may have been a good idea after all; we would have starved in the training ground had we not stopped.” Sheik spoke over Link’s yawn.

“What do you think the training ground will be like for me?” Lirin turned to Link as she mounted her horse.

“I dunno. It might be just like mine, in which case you’d need to borrow my equipment.”

“It won’t be the same, I’ve already said that,” Sheik snorted.

“What, then?” Lirin seemed more excited than Ani ever would've about this situation.

Training Ground. Training was the equivalent to work. This type in particular, the equivalent to hard labor. At least back home there were child labor laws-but she’d have to suck it up, no matter how lazy or out of shape the skinny girl was.

Quit worrying.

Why should I quit worrying? I’m weak and out of shape! My metabolism’s the only reason I’m so skinny! I’m a gamer, and gamer’s are-normally-lazy! I can’t do this...

Then this will be good for you. Don’t be a pessimist.

Pessimist my ass....

Lirin rolled her eyes, pulling back out of her subconscious and returning to reality.


A dry red earth, sand blowing every which way at the slightest breeze. And the heat. Lirin felt a sudden bout of nausea again-Ani’s body couldn’t handle a lot of heat without vomiting, but she prayed it wouldn’t get that hot. The Training Ground was partially beneath the earth, so it would be a bit cooler down there-unless there was a chamber containing magma. The mere thought made her convulse. The heat was sickening.

A box-like structure came into view, reminding Ani of numerous cardboard boxes stacked upon one another. The dark skinned guards slowly made their rounds about the sand each, golden eyes averting to any and all movement.

Zelda quickened her pace a bit and stopped next to one of them to speak. She had gone to far off for the others to hear.

Lirin turned to Sheik, head tilted as she silently inquired.

He just shrugged, and so she turned to Link who was occupying himself with Epona’s mane. She sighed and looked away again to watch Zelda’s mouth and hand move in time with the guard nodding along.

“How long will this take?” she sighed, shaking her head in a light huff.

“Not sure.” Link muttered.

Sheik sighed as well, “Not to long. The Gerudo’s can’t stall, especially when Nabooru is their leader.” She nodded, bowing her head and closing her eyes.

Let’s get this over with... Ani cringed.

Good move.

A quick sound made her head spin in the direction it originated from. It had been like leaves rustling in a light breeze, but only for a second as if it had been immediately silenced. She felt as though her ears should have popped, but they wouldn’t.

“What the hell?” she murmured out of habit from listening to Ani.

“What?” Linked turned to her with one eyebrow cocked.

She paused for a moment, and then shook her head, turning away. “Nothing.” Her horse snorted and swished its tail as Zelda approached.

She turned to Lirin and spoke, “We do not have a lot of time, the Gerudo’s are going to need it shortly for their own purposes.”

What are they preparing for, war!?

Lirin repeated the question with less enthusiasm.

“I do not know, but we only have two hours so we should hurry...”

Only took me ten minutes...

Different situation.

They hurried their horses on past the stairs and up the Training Ground entrance.

Wait, it costs money...
“Does it cost money?” Lirin turned to Link with her head tilted.

“It did for me, but I dunno about now...”

The white clad Gerudo stepped up and held out her hand. “Rupees, pass, or proof of identity.”

That was new.

Link took out his ‘membership card’ and Zelda merely pointed to her crown.

“And the others?” the Gerudo hissed.

Sheik spoke next, “She’s the only one”-he placed his hand on Lirin's shoulder-“who’s entering.”

The Gerudo tapped her lower lip with her index finger, slowly pacing around Lirin and staring at every inch of her. Her gaze lingered on the eyes and absence of pointed ears (though her rounded ones were hidden by hair).

“Very well.” she shrugged and looked back towards the chain fenced door to the Ground. “One hour.”

Guess that’s a good deal if it’s free.

Lirin nodded and dismounted, patting the horses neck lightly and received a nicker.

“I will wait for you out here,” Zelda said, “Sheik and Link will go back to the carpenters tent.”

They nodded, albeit in confusion, and bounded off back around and towards the tent’s area.

“I hope I do alright...” she muttered, gave a weak smile to Zelda and then grimacing at the door. “Or survive in this form...” the corner of her lip twitched.

Lirin stepped towards the Gerudo at the gate and sighed, “One hour?”

“One hour.” she repeated back firmly, clapping twice and the gate slid open from the side.

She stepped through, coughing for a moment as she was hit by a cloud of red dust air born from the gates movement. The air was much thicker even after just a few steps down into it, and she heard the gate close behind her.

Darkness was surrounding her for a few minutes, her eyes taking their sweet time to adjust.

The view of the two pillars that seemed to hold it up came, the only thing even close to white in this place, as well as the platform that surrounded her. Dark silver lion’s heads were now visible, in front of her, and on either side.

Doors were lined up in each of their mouths, and Lirin sighed when she was faced with the choice.

I dunno about this...

“Can’t back down now.” She took a step forwards.

It looks the same, but it’ll be different...

“Just re-“ that sound again; of rustling leaves that were silenced only a moment later. “...lax.”

What is it?

“You didn’t hear that?”

Mm-mm

“Strange... maybe it’s just me, then...”

Well if it is, then my ears obviously got fucked up.

Lirin shrugged. That wasn’t important right now. She took a few more steps forwards towards the large Lion head in the center and stopped before it. Something didn’t feel right. Not right at all.

Are you scared?

“No.”

Paranoid?

“Slightly.”

Why?

“...Some one is here with us...” she whispered sharply.

Ani fell completely silent. The air moved slowly in the cavern, which would make it difficult to fight if the person was hostile.

Lirin took a step back, fists clenched as they would be her only weapon for sometime.

Can you sense anything?

No...

Damn.

The air changed again. It became thicker for just a moment along side of the sound of water splashing against dry rock. Her head immediately spun to the right Lion Head entrance door.

“Shit.”

What? Ani whispered mentally.

Lirin didn’t respond, just clenched her fists tighter.

Water slowly seeped from beneath the door with-held in the Lion’s mouth, pushing at the sand in its path and slowly creeping towards Lirin. The door pushed itself up, allowing more water to flood into the room. It was still hardly enough to cover up the very top of the incline.

Lirin froze. Mismatched eyes widened, lips parted slightly, but she kept her fists clenched.

“You are a sight.” a male spoke, his form still concealed in shadow.

It was a light voice, but still deep enough that one could not immediately identify his age. There was a very prominent accent sliding along his ever word not like the normal hylian one.

It reminded Ani of Australia.

“A bit better than I expected.” there was a smugness in his tone that Lirin did not care for.

Finally, the male stepped out.

Golden eyes flashed in the darkness against dark skin off-put by pale hair, nearly silver. There was a small black gem on the center of his forehead, and most of his clothes consisted of black and red; crimson sleeves protruding from a black sleeveless vest that was connected at a zig-zagged angle with a long neck.

Two long black fabric tendrils in the back hovered slightly, not even touching the ground. His hands were covered in black and red gloves which stopped at his knuckles and allowed his fingers to protrude. Black pants and boots, slightly pointed at the toe, finished him off.

“What are you?” Lirin hissed cautiously.

He just smirked. “My identity isn’t important right now. What is, however, is that you come with me.”

The male turned his head, a few rings jingled on his right ear. One loop on the tip, one loop on the underside near the middle, and a dark one resembling a crystal that hung down a bit on the actual lobe.

“Why should I?”

“Because you’re the eighth sage...”

Lirin scoffed and crossed her arms, shifting her weight onto one side. “You’re mistaken,” she shook her head. “I was the eighth sage.”

The male lost his smugness as she spoke those words. Only for a moment.

“She must be somewhere in there, then, and we can test you while I draw her out.”

~~

Link dismounted Epona, and Sheik the brownie just in front of the tent.

“Why did she want us to go back here?” he asked, turning to Sheik as he dismounted.

“I do not know, but we’d best follow her wishes.” Link nodded.

Sheik sighed and turned, walking back the dusty path towards the large, carpenter inhabited tent. Link followed slowly, looking back at Epona for a few seconds. He didn’t like just leaving her there-but she was with another horse, so it wasn’t so bad.

He watched his boots kick up stray sand and silt, dust rising in small clouds with his every movement. Link lifted his head up, jumping slightly when he saw Sheik standing at the tent entrance frozen stiff. Good thing he looked up, or he’d have knocked him.

Sheik’s right hand was holding the tent open at one side, but Link wasn’t sure if it was the wind, or Sheik who was making it quaver slightly.

“...Sheik?” he said, stepping up and placing a hand on his shoulder. He was trembling. Raising an eyebrow, he looked inside the tent.

The fire had been put out, the pot pf stew they had was on the ground, on its side with water still dripping out of it, mixing with a bit of blood. The blood led back to one of the carpenters felled bodies. Dead. The other bodies were scattered around as well, blood pooling around their motionless forms.

One more thing was out of place.

A cloaked figure sat in the far back of the tent, brown hood concealing their eyes with shadow and hiding their entire form. Th skin was pale, a few strands of smoke black hair falling loose and ending at the waist from the front.

“Who’s there?” Link growled, pushing the stiff Sheikah aside for now.

A smirk crossed onto their features in the dim light, and the figure stood. “Where is the girl?”

The voice was feminine, bubbly, and an accent unfamiliar to Link. She couldn’t have been any older than sixteen.

“What girl?” Link retorted blankly.

“The eighth sage, of course.”

“I don’t know what your talking about.”

She took a few moments to respond now, smirk dying away. Slowly, she stood, and let her arms fall loose from the thin brown material. She was indeed pale, and hand black gloves that ended at the knuckles, where at the wrist seemed to be held tighter by a thin silver string with pale blue sphere’s.

“...That is a pity.”

Before Link had even blinked, the girl had thrown her cloak off and jumped at him for an attack.

She didn’t seem to have any weapons, as she fought with kicks, mostly, and a lot of the time she was just jumping on his shield-which he found annoying. Sheik had thrown a few needles, but she missed them, spinning on the rim of the shield with her nearly bare feet.

Her heels and toes were bare, the rest covered by a tight black material that ran up to a bit past her ankle-which again it was tightened by the same bracelets. One was around her neck as well, but this time it didn’t hold anything tighter. Her eyes were cat like, orange-ish it seemed, and her hair covered the ends of her eyes as it came down, separated at the top to show off a small black gem.

Her white shirt was folded slightly to one side, tucked in a bit, and a black tassel dangled off it at a tie. The shirt had no sleeves, they appeared to have been torn off at the shoulder, and the shirt ran down and was tucked beneath a black skirt, which parted close to her knee on one side, and seemed to be made of a much heavier material than all the rest. Her left ear, pointed, had three earrings as well-two loops and one black gem on the lobe.

Link pushed her off his shield, spinning so she’d loose her balance, but she back-flipped off and landed gracefully just after Sheik had tried the needles again.

She lifted her right hand, tightening the joints slightly so it seemed like they were sticking out a bit more then they should have. A red spark, and then her hand from the wrist up was engulfed in a red flame.

The girl laughed and ran at Link again, trying to punch her way through his defenses with the flame covered hand.

Sheik, with out much anything else at his disposal, let loose a chain from the armor plate around his wrist, and sent it flying at one of her ankles. She yelped and flew back, but flipped again and landed in a crouch, only to swipe at Link’s legs with her left hand and grab the chain with her right.

She tugged back and Sheik came flying towards her with the chain and jumped over her, kicking her in the side. The girl rolled and spun around, still keeping herself low to the ground as the two tried to charge at her with their weapons.

Link swung down, and Sheik’s needles hit, but there was a puff of black smoke in place of where she had been.

“What?” he blinked and looked back at Sheik with a surprised face as the smoke began to dissipate. Sheik looked just as confused as Link, until he received a swift kick to the lower back and lurched forward.

Link swung around, but she jumped over the blow and grabbed his neck, shoved her foot in his chest and flipped over onto her back to send him flying in the same position.

“Ready to talk now?” she asked the both of them, standing between the two with her arms crossed.

They didn’t respond, but tried to get back on their feet. The look in her eyes, Link noticed, was smug. She was strong, but had to be stronger than that with how smug she was. ...She was just messing around.

“No?” her smirk broadened, showing her teeth. “Well, I can’t really play with you anymore if you’re gonna lie there...” she shrugged. “Necrid’s probably already gotten her anyway.”

“Necrid?” Link repeated, staring up at her.

“My brother, of course.” she smiled, obviously trying to make her look more innocent. It didn’t work.

Sheik scoffed and moved to stand again, coughing slightly.

“Oh, no.” she kicked him back down lightly, pinning him. “You’re not leaving until my brother gets back with her.”

“Why do you want her?” Link managed to cough out, dust settling in his lungs.

She blinked, looking back at Link from over her shoulder with a curious expression. It didn’t take long for her curiosity to turn back to the innocent smile she tried to pull off earlier. “Orders.” she stated bluntly.

Great. Orders. That could have been from anyone at all. “Who gave you those orders?”

“That,” she started, taking her foot off of Sheik and standing straighter with her arms crossed, “I can’t tell you.” The girl’s eyes seemed to look behind Link now, but he didn’t really want to look, guessing what he would see.

She looked back at Link, her expression the same. “Lucky for you, my brother did find her.”

Link turned around to glance over his shoulder, and heard Sheik try to sit up.

“Naceal, come on, we’re going now!” a boy called with the same unfamiliar accent. They seemed opposites with his fair hair and hers dark.

“Dude, get the fuck off me, your hand is way to close to my ass!” was the next thing he heard.

Ani had been slung over this boy’s shoulder, and she was kicking and shouting more vulgarities, but they both seemed to ignore it.

“Damn.” Link clenched his eyes shut. That was it. Without Ani, they had basically lost, and it was doubtful that these two worked for anyone other than Ganondorf.

“Well, we’ll be taking our leave now, boys.” The girl, Naceal, smiled and waved at them as if they had just bumped into each other on a normal day. She disappeared in the same black smoke as she had before, and the boy, Necrid, as well as Ani were taken away by a fountain of water shooting up from the ground.

It fell back down, and there was no other sign of them save for the damp earth.

“Well... this does not look good at all...” he heard Sheik mutter, but gave no response. He just tried to stand up.

“Wait...” he thought out loud, turning around to look at the entrance to the Gerudo Fortress once he was back on his feet. “Where’s Zelda? Wasn’t she with Ani?” he turned back to Sheik.

He nodded, and then glanced towards the entrance as well. Another form was coming towards them-luckily this one was familiar.

“Link, a strange boy’s taken Ani!” she came, and stopped before them, looking back and forth between the two. “What have the two of you been doing?!” she shouted when she noticed how dirty they had gotten.

“We know, his sister attacked us.” Link snapped, sheathing his sword and placing his shield back on its strap.

“Oh dear... And you hadn’t... seen which way they had gone?”

They both shook their heads. “Disappeared with her...”

Zelda sighed, “Well... I suppose I’ll have to tell the other sages about this... there is not much else we can do, since we do not know why they captured her in the first place.” She started walking back to the entrance to retrieve her and Ani’s horses.

“Naceal said orders, right?” Link turned to Sheik.

He nodded, crossing his arms.

“Who else do you think would have ordered this?”

He blinked for a moment, and sighed, closing his eyes. “None other...”
Captured by xrigidxdistancex
A/N: Again, I want to apologize for taking so long with posting the last chapter, that, since it’s summer, I’d turn out two chapters in 24 hours. At least that should make some people less hostile towards me until my next chapter update... if anyone WAS hostile -sweat drop-

====

“Damn. Shit. Mother fucking, cock sucking. Hell.” for every syllable Ani spouted, she bumped her forehead against the cold metal bars that enclosed her in the front. “How-did-this-happen?” she paused a moment, glancing to the right with her half-lidded eyes.

There was a light clacking on the ebony tile above her, but it faded away.

This has got to be one of the worst situations I have ever been in.

“Run this by me again...,” she wrapped her fingers around the bars between her head. “How did we get here?”


“She’s in there somewhere, then, and I can test you as I draw her out.” the boy cracked his knuckles, smirking as he slowly walked forwards.

Lirin stepped back, eyes narrowing. This guy seemed powerful from how he had concealed himself from her.

“They won’t let you out until you’re done, and it’s a long while before an hour ends.”

Lirin snorted, backing up one step for every two he took. “Tell me who you are.”

“No, no. There’s time for that, but I have orders.” he shook his head, fixing one of his gloves.

“Who’s ordering you?”

“Is it that hard to figure out?”

“Where is he hiding at?!”

“Oh, will your questioning never cease?” he reached up with his right hand over his head, and the dark sand parted, allowing water to shoot up and stop at his eye level.

Without another word, he stopped walking and pulled his hand back; the water followed his hand motions exactly until he pulled back once more and shoved forwards.

The water roared towards Lirin, and the only thing she had time to do was jump The water rushed at her, slamming her square in the chest and knocking her back against the door in the Lion’s mouth.

Her body stuck for a moment, and she lurched forwards onto her knees to brace herself with her forearms. Lirin coughed, gasping for breath. The water had left her winded, and no doubt would leave a mark.

“Not out yet, eighth?” he stood over her, arms crossed.

Even without a response, he must have realized it was a no. “Can’t talk?” he seemed a bit disappointed. “I thought the eighth would be far stronger...”

Lirin tried to pull herself up, but she felt like she was slipping away, all feeling leaving her. She collapsed, eyes blank.

“Ugh... God... dammit..” she muttered, holding at where she was struck as she pushed off the sand, wincing, and got to a kneel. “Jesus Christ, you had to it right there, didn’t you?” she glared up at him.

He had lost all of his smugness by now, confusion sweeping over him in such an obvious way.

“Fuck...” Ani grimaced, rubbing at the sore spot again as she tried to use the wall to stand.

He just stared at her, completely bewildered. It seemed this was not what he had expected.

The male moved forwards and stared Ani over. Standing toe-to-toe, it seemed there wouldn’t be much height difference, but Ani was slouching and he seemed to be standing straighter than anyone normally would.

Shrugging, and without any regard for where she had been hit, he picked Ani up and plopped her on his shoulder before a large amount of water washed around them.

The next thing she saw was the entrance to Gerudo Fortress.

“Naceal, come on, we’re going!” he called and she tried to wriggle from his grasp.

“Dude, get the fuck off me, your hand is way to close to my ass!”

“Well, we’ll be taking our leave now, boys.” a girl’s voice came next, but she couldn’t see whose it was.

Again, the two were engulfed by the water that surrounded them from nowhere.

“Where the hell are you taking me!?” she shouted, kicking her legs and slamming on his back with her fists. The water disappeared again and they were in a dark room with a few cells.

“Oh shit...” Ani let herself go limp. There was no way she was going to get herself out of here.

The girl opened one of the cells and the boy sat Ani down on the cell floor and quickly closed the door, most likely incase she tried to run out, but she just sat still. The girl had already left Ani’s sight, but the boy stayed for a few minutes until the girl called him.


“Ugh... and that was just three hours ago. Fucking ridiculous...” she snorted, closing her eyes and letting her forehead just rest against the cold metal bards.

We still do not know their intentions...

“Yeh, or where the hell we are.” she fell back lightly, lying against the dusty stone. “Dammit, why does this shit keep happening!?”

Some thing’s cannot be explained.

“I know that already.” she grumbled, putting her hands behind her head and stared up at the ceiling. “Damn... fuck, fuck, fuckedy, fuck...”

Is that honestly all you can say?

“Shut up! There’s not a whole lot else to say right now, so I’m taking out my blinding rage by cussing... I can cuss all the hell I want...” she closed her eyes tightly.

Their conversation was cut by the slow, now familiar creak of the door just down the hall and some number of stairs away. The stairs creaked as well, with every step the person took, and they were taking their time.

Step, pause. Step, pause. Step, pause. With how long they were taking, Ani began to wonder if either they were stupid, crazy, or a zombie.

Goddammit, if you’re there, just come out already... she thought irritably, now glaring in the direction they would appear from.

Just as the person’s rythmed movements had struck a definite nerve, they ceased completely.

“...Huh?” she whispered to herself, sitting up and crossing her legs so she was sitting like a pretzel.

Only a few seconds later, more footsteps came to her ears, but at least these ones weren’t annoying and slow. Normal.

She stood up and moved to the bars, wrapping her hands around two again and trying to peer out at an angle. She still couldn’t see anything, though now there were muffled voices.

There were the slow foot steps again, going back up the stairs, and the normal ones coming back towards her. It was that guy that brought her here.

“I’ve got food for you.” he said, as if he were used to this situation, and stopped in front of the bars.

Ani cocked an eyebrow at him, and then looked down at the food. “...A piece of bread?”


“That’s all you’re being allowed, for now.” he stepped to the right, where there was a hatch and slid the small tray beneath it before walking back over with his arms crossed. “So what’s your name?”

“Huh!?” she stared. “What’s my name?! How the hell are you gonna ask me that after capturing me and throwing me in here?” she glared, trying to push her face through the bars at him.

“Just tell me your name,” he sighed, rubbing his right temple with his index finger.

She scoffed and let herself fall back onto her butt, a lot more roughly than she had before. “Tell me your’s first.”

“I’m not here to play games, tell me your name now, or I’ll take the bread back.” he moved to reach for the small hatch, but Ani pounced on the tray and moved it back out of his reach.

The male closed his eyes, letting his own head fall against the cool metal of the bars.

Victory.

“Necrid,” he muttered, opening his eyes and looking at her with great annoyance.

Ani blinked and tilted her head for a moment. No way, Necrid? Necrid, like, from Soul Calibur II?

“Necrid, huh?” she repeated, just looking at him with a blank face.

He nodded, and moved back to standing up straight with his arms crossed. One of his hands rapped its fingers on his upper arm, clearly she was trying his patience, but there were bars separating them. There wasn’t much he would be able to do.

“No last name to go with that?” she cocked her eyebrow.

He just shook his head, keeping his look stern.

Ani sighed and rested her elbow on her knee, moving her chin onto the flat of her palm and looked up at him as if she were bored. “Just Necrid, ... huh... who was that other girl?”

Necrid rolled his eyes, but answered, “My sister, Naceal.”

“Y’all don’t look alike at all...”

“That’s not really the point, is it?”

Fine. She was stuck in a rut, and her fun time was over. Ani sighed, moving herself back against the wall and closed her eyes. “Ani.” she mumbled, but saw him nod. She had hoped he wouldn’t hear it, but to late now.

“Alright, Ani, eighth sage, whatever I should call you...,” he looked to the left, where he had come from for a moment, and seemed to be satisfied as he turned back to her. “Where are you from?”

“Why are you interrogating me?”

“Well, I’ve got to, for now.”

“Who says?”

“My master.”

Eww, I don’t like that... she cringed mentally. Lirin scoffed.

“Who’s your master?”

“That’s none of your concern.”

“I think it is, if he’s holding me captive.”

“Then I can’t tell you.”

That worked.

“Where is this?”

“You should know...,” she tilted her head at that response. “It’s your temple.”

“Woah...,” she stared at him, her eyes widening.

Ani hopped up, a childish smile on her face and she moved closer to the bars. “Seriously? I’ve seriously got a temple?”

He took a step back, not expecting that. “Y-yes.”

“Sweet,” she laughed, sitting back down. “I thought maybe somebody blew it up or some shit, but I guess not. Yay! Ani’s got a temple.” she continued with the last four words, making a small song out of it until Necrid cleared his throat.

“Uh, sorry...” she laughed a bit quieter. “You don’t seem so bad, ya know... Why’re you workin’ for this master of yours anyway?”

He blinked at her for a moment, and looked away, giving a light shrug as his response.

“Come on, there’s gotta be a reason...” she smirked, picking up the bread and playing with it in her hands. It was dry, and a roll. Not the best bread in the world, but at least the inside would be soft... she hoped.

“Really, it’s nothing. We just get paid for doing what he says.”

She sighed, and moved back against the wall again, breaking the bread apart from either side. “Well, where are you from then? You don’t look like you’re from Hyrule, really...” she glanced up at him, just to see his expression before she went back to the bread roll.

Necrid didn’t respond for a few minutes, just shifting his weight to either side as he looked at the door down the hall. “Termina...” he finally said.

Ani mushed the ends of the bread in her fingers and looked up quickly at him. “Termina?”

He nodded.

“Termina...” she repeated again, as if trying to come to terms with it. She set the two halves of the bread roll back in the tray and stood back up at the bars. “How are you from Termina?”

“Why is that so strange?” he was the one to cock an eyebrow now.

“Eh-“ great, she had thrown herself into an even deeper rut.

From what she had assessed from the game and manga, Termina was a sort of alternate universe Hyrule with mostly the same recycled people, but new places, and gods in stead of goddesses. Nice going on her part...

“I mean,... Um. Wh-where in Termina?”

He just sighed and let it go. “Around Great Bay.”

She tilted her head, looking him up and down for a moment. “...You look kinda like a gerudo, but you still have hylian-...ter...manian? Ears.”

Necrid tapped the tip of his left ear and opened his mouth th speak, but the door atop the stairs burst open and a loud pounding came down the stairs.

“Necrid, what are you waiting for? Master Ga-“ the girl from before stopped dead with her words and looked at Ani for a moment, then back at Necrid. “Why are you talking to her?”

“I was getting information.” he stated firmly, crossing his arms again.

“What ever you want to call it, we’re going to be late. There’s a meeting, and Dark Link will be there.”

“What about him?”

“Yes, he’ll be there to. When is there a meeting without him?”

Him?

Ani blinked, looking back and forth between the two as they spoke until Naceal clambered back up the stairs in a huff.

“Who’s ‘him’?” she cocked her head quizzically.

“We’re not sure ourselves.” he said blankly before lightly waving and walking away from the cell.

“Huh... Him... So there’s Ganon, Dark Link, Necrid, Naceal, and Him?”

His name can’t just be him...

“But there’s nothing else to refer to him as...” she sighed. “Oh well, that’s who he’ll be for now. Just Him.”
Escape? by xrigidxdistancex
The musty smell of day old bread wafted through the small hallway that enclosed the cells. There were no windows, no way for any light source to intrude, but it always seemed a bit lighter than it should when meals came.

For cooperating and giving Necrid her name, Ani was allowed a bit more substance to her meals; two bread rolls that weren’t as dry, soup, and a bit of meat here and there.

Necrid was most often the one to give her the food out of him and Naceal, and they talked a bit more each time, without giving away to much information to one another.

Ani told him some funny stories about things her friends had done that were either stupid or hilarious-both of which made her laugh. Neither of the to made him laugh like she did, but he did smile occasionally at them.

“I wonder if he’s really sheltered,” she mumbled to Lirin as he walked off again, the second time that day. “I mean, I know I’m a crappy story-teller, but he should at least get some stupid humor from ‘em...”

He did smile...

“Yeh, but he doesn’t laugh. At all. It’s just really weird...”

She leaned back against the farthest wall and hugged her legs. That was her usual position, if not pacing around, tapping on the bars, or just lying there as she tried to sleep.

Her pillow was a folded up blanket, but there wasn’t need for a blanket as, no mater how far down the cell chamber was, it was a comfortable temperature for her-which she found very strange, but decided it better not to question it.

A few more days past in the same order; Wake up, pace around, have morning meal, talk with Necrid, pace around, get noon meal, talk a bit, nap, plan ways to escape, evening meal, and then about every other day, they would leaver her in a room for an hour to wash up.

That, she was very thankful for. The cells smelled musty enough without body odor, and she didn’t really want to be the cause of the odor either.

Most of her plans would have consisted of, some how, beating up Necrid from inside the bars and stealing the key.

She wasn’t even sure if he had the key on him, and she doubted it were possible for her to successfully thrash him, no matter how thin and long her legs were.

“Damn... there really isn’t anyway for me to get out of here...” she grumbled, kicking the empty tray into a nearby wall in what seemed to have been an eternity there (though, in reality, it was five days).

Well, there has got to be some way... but until that way makes itself apparent to us, we should probably find out as much as we can about that ‘Him’ person.

“Yeh... but it’ll have to wait a while... You heard Necrid, they’re not even sure who he is.”

But what about that Naceal girl?

“She probably knows the same amount as he does... and, frankly, I don’t like the girl.”

And you’re fine with Necrid?

“I,... guess, in a friend-ish way...”

Even after he captured you?

“But he’s not torturing me or anything.”

That is not the point.

“Oh whatever... we’ll find out what we find out, when we find it out.”

...You are very strange...

“No shit, Sherlock,” she rested her head against the folded blanket pillow. “...I’m hungry... why are they even keeping me here anymore? They got my name and they haven’t even asked me anything else, or tried to ‘use my unawakened powers’ or whatever the fuck...”

There must still be a reason...

“Yeh, there’s always a reason, but we’re never gonna find out that reason if we can’t talk to anybody but Nec-“the door creaked open gain, and Ani fell silent.

The steps were normal, but the creaks of the stairs were lighter, shorter as well, as if the person were trying to silence them.

Dammit, who is it now? she thought, eyes narrowing as she tried to hide her face in her arms, and block her eyes with her hair.

A dark form approached, taller than Necrid, so that ruled him out. She tried to move slowly, narrowing her eyes so they were almost closed incase the person was looking right at her. The face wasn’t visible at her angle, but at least she could tell it was, definitely a male.

Shit, who is this guy?

Perhaps that ‘Him’?

I dunno... Maybe... ...Or...

She rubbed her eyes, pretending to have just woken up, and she did look tired, but once she saw his face it didn’t matter anymore anyway.

“WAH!” she jumped back, pressing herself against the wall to distance herself as much as possible. “What the fuck are you doing here!?”

Dark Link didn’t respond, but narrowed his eyes at her and unsheathed his sword.

“Yo! Stop! I haven’t done shit!” she slumped down to a sit, covering her head like last time. Just like then, there was nothing to stop his attack, and the cell was rather small, longer than it was wide.

“Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit...” she muttered continuously as she heard the metal of his sword against the bars that, would now be her protection.

The sound stopped, but she didn’t dare open her eyes or raise her head to look, not until she heard the drop of his sword and a low growl escape from him. “...Huh?”

He was on his knees, one hand around a bar, the other near his temple. “Shit, not this again...” she heard him mutter, but just barely.

“You- ...uh... um...,” she shook her head and pretended to punch herself before she moved a bit closer towards the cell door. “A-are you ok?”

“Do I fucking look oka-“ he stopped and looked up at her, with narrowed eyes, but they still had a sense of life in them. Not like before. “Why do I keep seeing you?”

“Huh!?”

“I keep blacking out, and two goddamn times now, you’re there, asking me questions or talking to me,” he looked away, “Fucking annoying...”

She narrowed her eyes, stood up and crossed her arms, “Look. I don’t know why that keeps happening either, but be happy about it, ‘cause you’re actually talking now.”

Dark Link wasn’t paying attention, he was just looking around the area with an annoyed expression, but he still seemed curious. “Where is this?”

“I dunno... Necrid said this was my Temple...”

“Temple?” he looked back at her quickly, standing up as well. He was quite a bit taller than her, and Necrid. Her eye twitched a bit at the size difference, but she didn’t let it bother her that much. “So you’re telling me you’re a sage?” he cocked an eyebrow at her.

“I don’t get it either, ok, I don’t even belong here.”

“Makes no difference to me, I just need to get out of here,” he turned back towards the door.

“Wait! Wait... If you go back out there, Ganon’s just gonna put mind control on you again...”

That made him stop.

“Mind control?” he turned back, arms crossed. Good, at least now he was listening.

“That’s why you’ve been blacking out.. At least I think... there isn’t really any other explanation that I can find, since you don’t remember doing things, but remember the last time you saw me?”

“What of it?”

She sat back on her bum and rolled up her pant leg to show him the badly bandaged up wound. “After you ‘blacked out’ again, you attacked me and gave me this.”

There was a good silence after that, maybe he was actually processing this. Hopefully.

A scoff emitted from his lips as he shook his head and started walking back towards the door.

“Hey! Come on! Do you really want some one controlling you!?”

He stopped again, but didn’t turn around. Not yet, at least.

This might just be my ticket out of here...

Are you really going to trust your life in his hands?

It’s either that, or I rot in here...

Finally he came back around and placed a firm grip on one of the bars and gave it a shook. “Stand back.” he grumbled, and she obeyed. From his tone, she could tell that he thought he would regret this, but even if they split up just after escaping, at least she’d be out.

He placed his other hand on the bar just next to the other, and shook with both. “...Hm...”

Black flames whirled around both of his hands, making Ani jump back even more, wide eyed. She looked away for a moment, but looked back just a second later and her mouth nearly dropped open.

Two of the cell bas, all the way down, had been dislodged and now lay at his feet. Dark Link stepped back from the whole he made, and she stepped up. It was the perfect size.

“Thank you,” she blinked, and slid through with ease, a small smile on her face.

“Tch. Whatever.”he grumbled, and pulled the rim of his cloak up a bit so it covered his mouth again.

She shook her head and stepped behind him as he walked up towards the door and peaked out. The hall must have been empty, since he walked out without another word. She followed quickly, not wanting to loose sight of him.

The few halls they traveled through were narrow, with one set of stairs that wound up around the side of a wall and spiraled upwards. The main hall had two large doors on the right end, and low hanging, swinging lanterns.

“...Looks like a church...” she muttered, and received a grunt from Dark Link. She just rolled her eyes, and followed.

Nearest the window there was an odd looking throne, but she didn’t get a good look at it as Dark Link pulled her behind a tall black pillar and covered her mouth. She would have protested, but froze as she heard two sets of footsteps from either side of the hall.

“I cannot locate Dark Link.” a grizzly voice spoke, and she felt Dark Link tense up a bit next to her.

Another man spoke, but he sounded refined, like some posh man from her world, save for the fact he held a slight innocence in his tone. “I did tell you, Ganondorf, that he would not be able to break the control until–“

Ganon cut him off, “Yes, I realize that, Kage, but there still must be a reason for his disappearance.”

“Is the girl still in her cell?”

Ganon sighed, and she heard his footsteps again, dropping farther away from them.

The man from before chuckled slightly, and took a few more steps closer to the center of the hall.

She tensed up as well, this time, as she heard him getting closer with every rhythm paced step. Step, pause. Step, pause. Step, pause.

Ani clenched her eyes shut, and was about to whimper, when the larger footsteps returned with a petite, light set following them.

“Naceal’s just checked,” Ganon said, “and the eighth sage is gone.”

“Then so is Dark Link. A simple deduction.” the man’s footsteps got farther away from them, and Ani relaxed, leaning back against the pillar with a silent sigh.

“Two of the bars were slightly melted, and wrenched from their holding.” Naceal informed them both.

“Hold on,” Dark Link whispered to her, and she closed her eyes tightly, grabbing onto his cloak.

A silent roar of black flames surrounded them, and she held a bit tighter, but they weren’t hot. Slightly chilly, if anything. They dissipated, and she opened her eyes to blink. They were in Hyrule field, but exactly where, she wasn’t sure.

Ani let go, and Dark Link stepped back, looking around just as she was. “Thanks...” she said, moving to sit on a nearby rock.

He just grunted.

“Hey, um... you don’t... have anywhere to go, do you?” she looked over at him, head titled.

“What are you getting at?” he turned around to face her.

“I-I just mean, um, ... you helped me...,” she averted her gaze to the ground, “and.. I just sorta wanted to make it even...”

“Don’t be stupid,” he responded, looking forward on the path.

She sighed, and crossed her arms, looking in the opposite direction he was.

What are you getting at?

I was just thinking maybe he could stay at the castle with us...

You know none of them would allow it.

But it’s worth a shot... he did rescue me.

And he’d just as soon see you dead, but it’s only because for some reason you being near him breaks their control. He is only looking out for himself, Ani.

...I know...

But that is not the point... You still need to get back to the castle...

Right, right... She nodded before looking back at him. “Uhm... would you mind.. Poofing me or whatever to the castle?”

“What?”

“Uh, teleport... thingy with the fire.”

“Fine,” he grumbled.

She got up off the rock and held onto a piece of his cloak that was within her reach. The fire swirled around them, and fell back just a moment later.

Gasps came from all around the two, making Ani look around.

They had landed smack-dab in the center of the Market, in the middle of the day, when it was at its busiest.

All movement had stopped, and all attention pointed towards them.

“Mmm... shit.” she muttered through her teeth, biting her bottom lip.

Dark Link started walking, making Ani loose her grip on his cloak, and she turned around and stared at him.

Ani scoffed, walking after him. “Where are you going?”

“You’re here. We’re done.”

“You heard what that Kage guy said, what if the control comes back if you go away?”

He stopped for a moment, as did she, but he just whirled back around in a huff and started walking up towards the castle instead.

A small smile perked on Ani’s face, and she followed quickly behind him, triumphant.

“So does this mean you’re going to stay at the castle too?”

“You know, you talk to much...”

She blinked, and sighed, but followed with her arms crossed. “Sorry.”

He didn’t respond as they walked up the winding path towards the gate that was now guarded by two soldiers instead of one.

“Halt!” one of the soldiers stepped up towards them, spear readied and pointed towards Dark Link. It was then he must of noticed Ani, looking back and forth between the two in confusion.

“Uh-uh... He’s with me.” she raised her and feebly.

The soldier cocked his armored head quizzically and stared at Dark Link for a moment, then sighed. “...Very well.”

They moved past the gate, receiving odd looks from the remaining soldiers along the way until they reached the four at the drawbridge.

“We have to get in, please...” Ani tried to smile, “Could you please tell the princess that, um, Ani’s back?”

One soldier saluted and dashed back towards the side entrance.

“Hope they don’t take very long,” she sighed, putting her hands in her pockets and rocking back on her heels as she waited.

Dark Link was standing completely still with his arms crossed and eyes closed. He looked annoyed, but it was better than that blank stare he always gave when under Ganon’s control.

It didn’t take long at all for Zelda, Link and Sheik to come running out towards the two. “Ani, you-“ Link had started just as they trio rounded the corner, but they all stopped dead, staring at Dark Link.

“Uh, w-wait a sec!” Ani said, laughing slightly as she walked up the small slope and passed the other three guards. “Look, he, um... he helped me.” she pointed at Dark Link with her thumb as she stared at the ground. “I know... that’s not gonna count for much, but, I still think I owe him...”

Sheik was the only one staring at her after that, probably because he noticed she was definitely no longer being controlled by Lirin. Zelda had a hand over her mouth and was looking at the ground, and Link was glaring at Dark Link who was glaring right back.

“I know, I know... ‘But what about all that stuff he did?’ I was right, something was wrong with that,” she smirked and crossed her arms, feeling victorious. “Ganon and some other guy were controlling him, just like I thought.”

“That’s not even the issue!” Link shouted.

“...H-huh!? But then, can’t he stay?”

“No! He did more than all that, and he’s evil anyway!”

Dark Link scoffed, “Hold your tongue, or I’ll slice it off.”

“AH!” Ani jumped between the two, arms outstretched at either of them incase they moved. “There is going to be no slicing. Nooo slicing. None. There will be no slicing.”

“We heard you the first goddamn time!” Dark Link shouted.

Sheik stepped up towards Ani and pulled her off to the side, “...Why are you going to endanger yourself further by bringing him here?” his eyebrow twitched.

“I’m not, but I think, not sure why, that when he’s not around me, then they’ll get back control over him.”

“What gave you that idea?”

“When Ganon and that Kage person were talking...”

Sheik stared at her blankly when the second name popped up in her sentence. “...Kage?”

She just nodded, smiling happily.

“Ugh...,” he slapped his face and held the palm over it for a while before nodding. “Your highness, ...Dark Link will be staying...”

“What?!” she and Link shouted at the same time.

Sheik nodded.

Ani glanced back towards Dark Link, who seemed bored, and was just leaning against the fence with his arms crossed.

I do not think this is a good idea...

Well, you’re gonna have to deal with it. He’s gonna be staying with us for a while, until they relinquish control on his brain. Then they can explode, whee.

You actually sounded smart for a minute, and then you go and say that.

...Ow... that hurt, so bad... she made a sniffling noise.
Sorot Kinal :: Hidden Village by xrigidxdistancex
A/N: o.o I-am-so-sorry for taking so-god-damn-long with this. After I posted the last chapter, I didn’t even make an effort to even think about this one, but now I’m going to make a point of it.

Also, there will be a few new characters in this chapter that I must say before they come in, are not mine, but suit the plot and I have made sure it’s all fine with my friend that they be included. So, credit does not go to me for them. -nods fast-

X3 I hope you like this long chapter o.o I stayed on for nearly five hours to just start it off .___.

The village and it's inhabitants do not belong to me in anyway shape or form and are copyrighted by my friend. If either of us find any proof that someone's taken their atributes and things like that, expects us to find you and slaughter your cattle in your sleep...

-------------------------------------------------------------------

The faint chirping of birds accompanied the bright, early sun as it filtered through the thin white curtains that blew from the slight breeze allowed entrance by the bit of the window Ani had opened that night. The top comforter on her bed spread had been carelessly tossed off the end, clinging to it only because of the short, wooden chest that was at the foot of it.

Only a thin sheet was left overtop of her form, curled up save for one leg that dangled free off the side of the bed. She held tight to the pillow, practically smothering herself with it, keeping it and herself at an odd angle at the very edge of the bed.

A knock on the door just a few feet away from her only caused her to turn over, moving more to the center of the bed, sheet going with her.

“Ani, are you up?” Link’s voice came, barely reaching her.

She let out a tired groan and rolled over again to fall face first against the wood of the floor. “Ow! Shit...” Ani blinked, rubbing her nose that felt like it was bleeding again and rounded up the thin sheet around herself before she moved to answer the door. “What, Wa-chan?”

“I was just wondering if you were awake,” he responded, “Zelda said we could go somewhere today.”

Her face lit up from slight pain and tiredness, and she opened the door a crack to poke her head out, free hand holding the sheet tight to herself. “Like... where?”

Link shrugged and looked down the hall, “We haven’t decided yet, but if you hurry up and get dressed then you can still have a hand in choosing...”

She blinked, looking at the floor momentarily, then back up at him, “I dunno.. Who all is gonna come?”

“Well, me, you, Sheik... I don’t think Zelda wants to come. Or can’t, rather. She said she has things to discuss with the sage’s...”

“God, I’m never included in those...” Ani muttered, but shook her head to get herself back on track. “Uhm...,” she leaned her head lightly against the door frame, staring blankly past Link, “Uh, yeh, sure... Wait-is, uhm...” she trailed off again, and closed her eyes, blinking quickly a few times after that, making her eyes open wide. “Um...”

“Is Dark Link coming?”

She nodded.

“I guess.... if what you said was right, then I guess he’d have to, yeh?” he shrugged.

Ani took her hand off the door to rub her left eye and nodded again. “Yeh...”

“Right, I’ll... leave you to change and all” he swirled his index finger in the air before walking off, back downstairs.

Why was it so hard to ask that?

“I dunno.... I don’t.. Really like saying his name...”

Dark Link?

“Yeh, it’s just... I dunno... he should have his own name, he’s his own person, after all...”

You are a strange one...

“Shut up...,” Ani shook her head and moved to the dresser in the far corner of the room, dropping the sheet near her bed.

After she was dressed, the same clothes she originally came in, tight double shirt, baggy pants and sneakers, Ani ran down the white stone stairs and met everyone in the dining hall. Everyone save for Dark Link...

She blinked for a moment after sitting down and looked around at the other three, “Where’s he at?”

Sheik shrugged, Zelda crossed her arms and sank back in her seat. She turned to Link with an eyebrow cocked, blinking a few more times, but he just shrugged as well. “Well that’s no good... if he’s gone off again, then he might be back under their control...” she bit her bottom lip.

Zelda sighed and began picking at her food with a fork, “Yes, well... that aside, where is it that you would like to go?”

Ani just rolled her eyes and shrugged, putting her elbows up on the table and resting her cheeks on her knuckles. “I dunno... what are our choices?”

Sheik sat up a bit in his chair and counted off on his fingers, “So far we’ve been debating on the Market, Kakariko, Lake Hylia or just the field.”

“The field would be boring, so would the market... I dunno about Kakariko, there’s not really a whole lot to be done there, ...right?” she turned her head slightly to look at Link.

“Not really, just some shops, the shooting range and the graveyard...” he answered, taking a bite of food.

“Yeh, so... Lake Hylia?” she shrugged and sat up, moving to start on her food as well.

Link and Sheik nodded their approval and Ani turned to look at Zelda as she forked a bit of food. “So what’s with the whole sage meeting that I’m not invited to?”

Zelda cleared her throat as if she were getting ready for a big speech and set her fork down, “I just have to inform them that Dark Link will be staying with us, the fact that Ganondorf has no control over him while he is around you, that sort of thing.”

“Uh-huh... and... why aren’t I going?”

“Do you want to?”

“Not really, I’m just curious...”

“Well, really, it’s to do with the fact that your powers still have not truly been awakened yet, though Sheik has told us that your aura has increased which must count for something...”

Ani nodded again, poking at the corner of the table while she listened. “Right. That’s all well and good, but,” she pushed her chair back with her rear end and stood, setting the fork down on the side of the plate, “I’m gonna go find DL...”

“DL?” Link repeated.

“Yeh... that’s what I’m gonna call him from now on, ‘cause... I don’t like saying his full name...”

“You gave him a nick-name?” Sheik asked, staring after her as she walked down a separate corridor.

She called back "Yeh" , poking her head back around with a quick smirk and nodded, going back down the hall.

The corridor was one that lead to an open courtyard, set up much like that one that Link had first met Zelda in when they were both younger, except this one was a fair amount larger and more open, the walls a tad lower, and there were a few trees here and there.

Ani stepped in and stopped, stretching her arms and standing on her tip-toes before walking on, taking a seat on one of the white stone benches.

And when did you decide to change Dark Link’s name?

“I’m not changing it, just... that’s what I’m gonna call him... no one else has to...”

Interesting...

“What’s so ‘interesting’ about it?” she made on odd face and mocked Lirin’s voice during the quote.

Nothing, it is just interesting that you don’t like saying his full name...

“Right...” she sighed and laid down on her side, using her left hands as a cushion against the hard stone. “...I’m still tired...”

Why don’t you go back and have a nap until it’s time to go?

“Naw... I’d still be tired when I woke up...”

Your choi-

“Who the hell are you talking to?”

Ani nearly fell off the bench with a yelp, belt held tightly to the side of it to keep her face from hitting another type of flooring. She looked over her shoulder to see Dark Link, arms crossed and head tilted slightly to the side.

“N-no... uhm... myself,” she blinked, sitting up straight and trying to regain her composure.

He scoffed, “Really... Anyway, I came out here to make sure if I have to go with you fools to Lake Hylia.”

Fools, nice...

I told you it wasn’t the best idea...

Shh

“Well, I think it would be kinda smart, ya know?” she stood up, stretching again and cracked her back. “‘Cause, like... Lake Hylia’s at the complete other end of Hyrule, so your mind control thing,”-he grunted-“might be restarted and that wouldn’t be good...”

“Why are you so concerned about it? Has nothing to do with you...” he retorted, looking away from her.

She frowned and crossed her arms, still keeping her eyes on him, “I’m so concerned about it ‘cause one, it wouldn’t be good for you to go off on a rampage again, two, you wouldn’t be in control of yourself anymore, and three-,” she stopped herself, losing the frown and blinking.

“...Three?” he cocked an eyebrow at her, turning back.

“...Never mind. I over counted...”

He rolled his eyes and turned around, walking out of the courtyard, “Fine, I’ll go...” Annoyance rang on his tone and Ani dropped her gaze slightly.

Don’t think on it, that’s just how he is...

“Yeh...,” she nodded and walked after him.

~~

It didn’t take much longer for them all to get ready to set out for their trip. According to Link it would take around half a day to trek on foot, that being cut in half if they rode on horses. Ani had asked a few times about ‘warping’ with the ocarina, but apparently it would only take one person, which confused her slightly.

They were set up with their horses in a similar fashion to the one they used while going to Gerudo valley; Dark Link in front this time, to make sure he didn’t try and pull anything, Ani in the middle, and Link and Sheik beside, just a bit behind so they could see the both of them clearly.

Oi... Six hours? That’s like a trip from my father’s house down to North Carolina...

You realize I have no way to compare them?

Sorry, but it takes the same amount of time... fuckin’ ridiculous...

Whatever you say... Lirin sighed, falling silent again.

Ani did the same, coming back from her mind to look around. It was odd, being in this set up again, after what happened the last time... slightly uncomfortable. Dark Link being at the lead made it even more bizarre and unrealistic to her, but that wasn’t the biggest issue with her at the moment.

It was the fact that they always slapped her in the middle...

She turned to Link after scratching the back of her head, “Hey... why do I always have to be in the middle?”

“I dunno,” he shrugged, “Sheik said something about it being safer...”

“Doesn’t having no one behind me sort of defeat the purpose?”

Link just shrugged again and looked forward.

“Hmpf...” Ani shrugged as well and let her mind wander again, past thoughts and just to songs that had been stuck in her head for the longest time to occupy herself. Her stomach rumbled only an hour into the trip and she wished she had eaten a great deal more at breakfast instead of just picking at it, uninterested.

Maybe that was one reason why she felt a bit more tired than usual... she lacked any sustenance.

The hours passed on slowly, and the sun rose a bit higher for every one. Even with the horses it felt like the trip was taking forever, and there was no real way to make it go any faster since if she fell back asleep, she’d probably just fall off the damn thing and slow them up even more.

After what truly seemed like an eternity, the entrance to Lake Hylia was within sight, part of the fencepost rising over the next hill. Ani sighed and cleared her throat with a few small coughs she tried to silence, but was unsuccessful.

“Finally,” she muttered after her wave of coughs was finished.

“Ya alright?” Link asked, turning to her as he picked up the pace of his horse slightly.

She nodded, coughing once more and did the same as him, as did Sheik. Dark Link had already done so, and she assumed that was why Link had in the first place.

What is there to do at this place?

“Swim, fish... get freaked out by the Laboratory guy in that one house,” Ani rubbed her eyes again, taking hold of the reins and slowing down just a bit so questions wouldn’t be raised from Link and Dark Link about her talking to herself again.

Lovely... But are you really going to go swimming in your clothes?

“Wouldn’t bother me any... done it before...”

Mm..

“Besides, I haven’t gone swimming in forever, so I’d gladly take this opportunity.”

I see...

“Have you ever gone swimming?”

No, there was never time... I... never learned...

Ani blinked, shaking her head slightly before picking up her pace again. She was falling behind. “Well that’s ok... it’s not too hard to learn,” she shrugged. “Heh, I still have to hold my nose...” she looked off to the side, embarrassed.

“Hey, are any of y’all gonna go swimmin’? Or what?” she called to them once she caught back up.

Dark Link didn’t respond, and Sheik shrugged.

“I was thinking of going fishing... the poor guy’s only got me as his customer,” Link laughed feebly and Ani nodded.

“I might join ya after a bit... if... shit, I don’t have any rupees...”

“It’s fine, I’ve got a lot,” he smiled. Again, she nodded, remembering clearly.

They all jumped their horses and waited on the far side of the fence for Ani to join them, Dark Link going on a little farther than the others, obviously wanting to keep his distance. “Shit... this is why I hate fucking horses...”

She turned the horse around, leading it back up the hill a bit before even attempting to gain speed and squeezed her legs around the horse’s middle quickly. It bounded towards the fence and Ani clenched her eyes shut, trying to keep herself steady and balanced. She felt herself rise and fall twice, the second time the front of the saddle hit her oddly in the thigh.

“Mother fucker...” she leaned her head down, forehead against the horse’s neck as she held tight to the spot, other hand around the reins once the horse was at a full stop.

Link and Sheik moved their horses up towards her, “What happened?!” they both asked at the same time, Link sounding far more concerned then Sheik who, frankly, sounded bored.

“Thing... hit me. I’m fine,” she pointed to the saddle and sighed, sitting back up straight, one hand still holding tightly to the spot where she had been slammed by the saddle. “I’m fine,” she repeated, shooing them off so they could get back to where they were and set up for their break.

Once at the edge of the lake, they all dismounted and Link let Epona run off, the other three having to tie their horses down so they wouldn’t run away.

“Alright, so... Link’s goin’ fishing, I’m goin’ swimming, then fishing... what’re y’all gonna do? Just sit there an be boring?”

Sheik shook his head and crossed his arms, “I was going to relax and lay back,” she nodded and turned to where Dark Link was standing only moments before.

“...Huh? Where’d he go?” she side stepped slightly, leaning to the side to see around Sheik and spotted him walking down behind the scientists house towards where the waterfall from Gerudo Valley poured in. “...What’s he doin’?”

Sheik shrugged and walked off towards the edge of the lake to lie down. Ani just shrugged, mocking him, and walked to the edge as well, pulling her sneakers off and setting them by the sign just next to the large building’s door, putting her socks into them as well. She zipped off the bottoms of her pants and folded those up, putting them near her shoes before she went near the water at all.

“...Think it’s cold?” she asked Sheik as she heard the clinking of Link’s hook shot in the background. She looked to where it came from and he was already on the small cutaway piece of land that housed the fishing shack.

He didn’t voice a response, hands behind his head and eyes closed.

“Mm...” she knelt down, blinking at it before poking it with her right toe. It was comfortable. “HN,” Ani stood up again and waded, looking around a bit until all of herself was submerged but her head.

You alright, Lirin? Not to freaked out from the water?

I never said water frightened me, I just do not know how to swim..

Alright, alright... you wanna take over? Shouldn’t be to hard and there’s barely any current...

Lirin didn’t reply, but Ani knew she was contemplating it as she went under, holding her nose as she had to. She opened her eyes when she was nearly half way down, remembering that there was no chlorine, and almost let all of her air out-it was beautiful.

The sun nearing its highest point shone down into the water, giving the ground a pearly sheen that reflected onto every surface. It was only around the third island across the way that there was practically any shadow at all.

She swam up quickly to catch a breath and went back under, swimming towards it. It took longer than she anticipated and was forced to come up two more times for air before she made it all the way across.

Ani leaned up onto it, pulling herself out halfway so she could look at the branchless, leafless tree that raised one question; the origin of the scratch marks.

“Hey, Lirin-chan?”

Hm?

“You were here a while back... do you have any idea where those marks came from?” she pointed at them like a child would point at something they wanted.

There was another long pause from Lirin, but at least she responded this time. Vaguely...

“Where, then?”

I’m surprised it still even exists... but that must have been thanks to him...

“Him?”

Ryo’s griffin...

“Ryo had a- Wait, you told me shit about Ryo before!” she let her arm drop limply to the ground as she awaited Lirin’s retort.

None came.

“Oh come on, you could at least tell me who she was...”

One or the other.

“Damn, fine, the tree.”

It was around the same time I was killed... Before I faded off completely, I saw Takuri swipe at one of Ryo’s sisters, but missed, scratching the tree instead. I am quite certain Takuri is no longer living...

“...Wow,” Ani picked her head back up to scratch her head, “But how’s it still here, then?”

I do not know... but I suppose it isn’t as crazy as it appears...

“How do you mean?”

Again, no response.

“Come on!”

...

“Fine... be that way... Now, d’ya wanna swim or not?”

No thank you...

“Your loss,” she shrugged and dived back under, going as far as she could until she felt pressure around her ears and went back up for air. Each time she tried to go deeper, but was thwarted by needing to breath. Growing bored, she broke the surface again and turned to look at where she had last seen Sheik.

He had moved during the time she spent at the third island, going a bit further back from the water and away from the lab. Ani looked over to her left and saw Dark Link, sitting by the edge, seeming content in his own way. Even so...

She held her nose and went under again, moving towards him. The amount of air she took came up short and she was forced to resurface a little farther from him than she originally intended.

A piece of her hair stuck to her forehead at an odd angle, which she fixed before she even attempted speaking.

“You alright?”

“What’s it to you?” he grumbled.

“Just wondering, God, you don’t have to get snippy...” she snorted before moving closer so her feet touched the ground and she stepped out of the water, walking past him. Once up a little ways on the hill, she shook off, bouncing up and down to dry herself as much as possible before she moved back to stand next to him.

“It’s nice here...” she trailed off, wondering why the hell she had said that of all things.

“Whatever...”

She rolled her eyes, scoffing silently as she sat down. “...Thank you... for getting me out of there...”

“I didn’t do it for you, I just don’t want that bastard in my head...”

“Still... I’m grateful... so... I dunno, if you ever need anything...”

He sighed, lying back on the grass, eyes closed. For just a moment he looked peaceful...

“I don’t need anything from someone like you.”

A small sound escaped her lips, but she closed them, sighing, and looked back out to the water.

Are you going to let him treat you like that?

Ani was the one to stay silent this time, bringing her legs up to hug them and let her forehead rest against her knees.

Don’t think on it... I told you he’s only out for himself...

She just nodded.

Minutes passed between them, all spent in silence, only the sounds of guay’s and the rushing of water and seemed more like a trickle just next to them.

“I’m, uh...” she started after what seemed an eternity, lifting her head up, “Gonna go fish... I don’t know the range... on however this works, so... first sign... just call me, ok?”

He didn’t respond.

“Fine, whatever,” she muttered under her breath as she stood, agitated.

She moved back towards Sheik, poking him lightly to see if he was asleep.

“Yes’m...?” he murmured tiredly, not opening his eyes.

“Sheik, when we get back, can you change my bandage? It’s gonna get gross otherwise...”

“Mm-hmm...”

She rolled her eyes and went back into the water, climbing back out once at the fishing shack. One more time she stretched and opened the door to come face-to-back with Link.

“Hey, Wa-chan,” she said as she wrung out her hair.

He turned around and smiled, reeling the lure back in before walking over to greet her properly.

Movement behind the counter caught her attention and she turned to face the owner with a blank stare. She raised her right hand, as if she were going to swear to something, “Het, Itchy-man.”

He seemed taken aback.

After a short introduction, Link payed the fee and Ani moved to where Link had been when she first walked in, fishing rod in hand.

“Alright, I haven’t gone fishing since I was six, so I’ve gotta relearn everything,” she said to herself, shaking her head.

“It’s not too hard,” Link shrugged, casting.

“I should hope not,” she cast out as well, sitting on a flat rock. “How long’s it usually take you to get a bite?”

“Depends. It’s never the same.”

“Ah,” she set the handle of the rod between her knees and held it there as she rubbed her eyes as her vision blurred momentarily. She scoffed to herself, remembering the last time she had gone fishing and she dropped her pole into the water-they never got it back.

“What’s funny?” Link asked, keeping his eyes on the pond.

She shook her head, a faint smile on her face, “Nothin’... just... thing.”

It wasn’t too much longer before Link was reeling back in with a large fish attached. Ani groaned. She hadn’t even gotten a nibble yet. “...I think the dude gave me a sucky lure...”

“He won’t exchange it...”

“I know...,” she mouthed, rubbing her eyes again before repositioning so it was more comfortable. She cast out a few more times, each in a different spot, but still she didn’t get any bites. “...You’re cheating, aren’t you?”

“What?” he turned to her, looking confused.

“Nothing, never mind...”

Perhaps he’s just naturally good at fishing?

“No, really?” she muttered under her breath, throwing a glance to Link to see if he heard. Apparently not...

After nearly forty-five minutes of sitting completely still and watching Link reel in practically every fish in the pond every five seconds, her eyes felt heavy. “I think I’m gonna quit... maybe Sheik had the right idea, napping...”

“He fell asleep?” he reeled in another.

“I guess, he was tired when I asked if he could change my bandage when we got back...”

“It should be close to healing all the way by now... it wasn’t too deep.”

“Deep enough.. Still bleeds from time to time,” she shrugged and stood, cracking her back. “Good luck with your crazy fishing,” she waved feebly to him and walked back over to the owner at the counter and gave him back the rod.

“No luck, miss?” he asked, an oddly southern accent carrying on his words.

She stared at him for a second and shook her head fast before answering, forcing her words into the southern accent as well, “Naw, not really...” she turned from him and exited, moving towards the edge of the lake and yawned. “...’Least the day started off good...”

Well you can’t expect much with such a negative person around...

“Enough, Jesus..” she lightly rubbed her temples, closing her eyes as she let her feet dangle into the water, kicking gently. “I just wanna get back to the castle as quick as possible and go to sleep...”

That’s all you ever want to do...

“Well there’s nothin’ else to goddamn do here...”

Lirin stayed quiet after that.

Ani just sighed and leaned to the side, laying so that her head was propped up by her arm, using that as a pillow, her feet still dangling in the water. “‘M gonna take a nap...” she rubbed her eyes after closing them. It only took a few minutes for her to drift off.


A faint voice. Light taping against her. “..Hunh...?” she moved her hand, but nothing else.

“Ani, come on.. It’s time to go..” Link said, tapping her shoulder lightly with the tips of his fingers.

“ Mm..,” she sat up, rubbing her eyes again and opened them half way. “...Wha’ time is’it...?”

“I dunno, but Sheik said we should head back now...”

“Oh-oh, ok...,” she nodded, pulling her now cold feet from the water and stood up. She still looked half asleep.

“You ok to ride?” he asked as he removed his hook shot.

She shook her head and he just nodded.

Despite her being half asleep, she still let out a yelp as Link held her, sending out the hook-shot towards the nearest thing it would catch and brought them to the shore.

“...Woah..,” she blinked quickly and shook her head, holding it with one hand.

Link just laughed and put it back away, calling for Epona. She, Sheik and Dark Link untied their horses and mounted again, but some debating from Link granted her a ride with Sheik so she could sleep on the way back.

He tied her horse and his reins together, and Ani mounted the horse in front, Sheik sitting behind her. It wasn’t as comfortable as she first thought, the saddle being rather small. It took them a few minutes to get situated, but eventually they all got back on their way.

When they jumped the fences again, Ani braced herself by holding onto the horse’s neck, clinging tightly with her eyes clenched shut again.

She still wasn’t very comfortable with riding...

After that, it wasn’t so hard for her to get comfortable and again she fell asleep, waking several times during the trip back from the horse stepping awkwardly and such, but only for a few minutes at a time.

~~

The sun was starting to set when they rode across the drawbridge, Ani waking up when the sound of hooves on wood came to her ears.

“Mm...” she rubbed her eyes and sat up a bit, Sheik placing a hand on her shoulder to keep her steady.

They kept silent as they rode up to the castle, and they dropped their horses around at the castle stables, coming back around to the front entrance.

“I wanna get back to bed...” Ani mumbled, rubbing her eyes again.

“That’s all you’ve been wanting to do today...” Link muttered behind her as he adjusted one of his belts.

I was about to say that..

Ani shook her head and yawned, putting her hands in her pockets as they walked down the halls. The four split up, Link going off to grab some more food, Sheik going towards the library for some obscure reason, and she had lost track of Dark Link entirely.

“Mm... sleeeeep,” she let her head fall against her door as she opened it, nearly falling in. She didn’t bother to close it, or take her shoes off when she flopped on it, practically sinking in face first on contact.

Can you even breath?

“Hmpf...”

Get your head out of the pillow... I know you’re not tired enough to fall asleep, all together you’ve nearly gotten eighteen hours of sleep. How can you still be tired?

“I get tired from to much, too...”

Then get up and move around, at least. Tire yourself out even more so you can go to sleep at a decent hour...

“..Suuure. Let’s do all the things that you wanna do,” she sat up, rubbing her eyes and moved around to a sit, staring blankly out at the hall past her door, slouched. “...Right now?”

Right now.

“Fine...” she stood, stretching again and cracking as many joints as she possibly could, rounding a corner. “I’ll just walk around and be fla until there’s something better to do...”

She wandered around, circling about some halls and having to backtrack more often than her actually getting anywhere. At one point she came to a corridor with some small pillars acting as a sort of fence, the spaces between them emptied to act as windows.

Ani poked her head out of one of them to look down at the courtyard she had found earlier that day, where Dark Link had snuck up on her. “Hm...,” she yawned again and turned around, heading back down past her room and down the corridor she had ventured into that morning, stopping in the dining hall to stare at Link who was going in the same direction as her, a roll of bread shoved in his mouth.

“Where’re you goin’?” she asked after holding back a small laugh.

He pointed to the corridor, taking a bite of the roll, “Down there,” he said once he was finished chewing and placed it back in his mouth.

“Ah, me too,” she nodded.

Link just shrugged and started walking down, Ani right on his heels. They stepped out into the fresh air to find Dark Link, back turned to them as he sat on the same bench Ani had early, shoulder leaning slightly against the tree. Link just ignored him and finished his roll, walking to another corner to unsheathe his sword.

Ani blinked for a moment before taking a seat beside Dark Link, “You gonna train, Wa-chan?”

“Yeh, might as well,” he shrugged, readying himself in a stance.

“Special,” another yawned escaped her.

Dark Link grunted and readjusted himself slightly against the tree, “If you’re so tired why don’t you just go to bed?”

Because some one wants me off my ass... she thought irritably at Lirin, but she didn’t seem to notice.

“I’m not tired enough to,” she shrugged, crossing her arms.

“Look tired enough to me...”

“Yeh, well...” her words trailed off as Sheik stepped into the courtyard as well. “Dude, what is this, the new hangout?”

Sheik just blinked at her for a moment before shaking his head, “I’ve just come to train with Link...”

“Yeh, you do that...” she crossed her legs as well, pulling them up onto the stone bench as she sat like a pretzel.

Link and Sheik turned to each other, Sheik drawing a thin bladed short sword that immediately clicked in Ani’s mind-it was similar to a katana. She uncrossed her arms, holding onto the underside of the bench as she leaned back to keep herself from falling as she watch.

The two remained motionless for quite some time before Sheik sprang up, disappearing in a small puff of smoke and reappearing behind Link, swiping with his short blade. Link spun about, pivoting on his heel and shoving the blunt side of his blade out to block Sheik’s attack.

It was interesting, but still Ani found herself zoning out and tapping out the beats to a song as she hummed the tune and the word’s went by in her head. All sounds other than her tapping, the tune and the words in her head were drowned out from the distraction, until a new sound came.

“So this is the Sage of oblivion?”

“Waah!” Ani tripped forward, falling on her knees but was up again as quick as she fell, whirling about to face the owner of the new voice.

Standing at about five ten was a hylian girl looking around sixteen or seventeen, two piercing’s on either ear, the left one of a minuscule triforce, the right a silver medallion that looked oddly familiar.

A black, skin tight shirt showed off her near flawless form and Ani’s eye twitched at her bust size. In the center of her chest on the shirt was the triforce, all three of the triangles colored to the corresponding goddess.

The sleeves stopped just below her elbows and switched to a transparent fabric, black as well, that went to her knuckles. The girl’s hands were covered by black gloves with holes at the knuckles for her fingers to protrude, and a square cut hole on top of each.

A pocketed belt similar to the one Link had around his torso was tied around her waist, keeping up black trousers that were far baggier than the rest of her clothing. They were tucked into brown boots, also similar to Link’s, but much shorter.

Her eyes appeared red, but had a slight golden shine to them, perhaps a trick of the light. Black bangs, one side falling shorter than the other, nearly covered her right eye. The rest of her hair was a distinguishable brown, tied back with some black twine, the rest falling against her back.

“What the fuck?” Ani stared at her, but the girl just sighed, holding her hand out to her side.

“I guess now I’ll have to kill you,” a blue substance formed around her hand out of nowhere, swirling around and she closed her hand at something still invisible. The blue, smoky mesh blazed quickly, ebbing away into a sword, her hand around the hilt.

The blade curved slightly, and at one pointed dipped into itself, making a sort of curled hole, while the hilt, black, was considerably shorter. It had a silver winged bracer, much like the master sword, except it pointed downwards, and on the very bottom the triforce was inscribed.

“Wait,” she stopped a moment to look away, blinking before turning back to Ani and pointing at her. “You are the sage of oblivion, right?”

Who does she think she is?

Ani stared at her, dumbfounded. Out of the corner of her eye she saw Dark Link get up, probably angry that he hadn’t sensed her arrival, and no doubt Link and Sheik were behind her, staring, just as dumbstruck.

“Would it change anything if I wasn’t?” was the only thing she could think to say, blinking quickly and taking a step back.

“You’d live,” she answered quickly, looking down at her sword and tapping the blade lightly with her index finger.

Ani winced and muttered “Damn” which obviously the girl had heard, as she raised her head just after she said it.

Instead of raising her sword at Ani, however, she turned to Dark Link, pointing again, “...You’re Dark Link, right? You outsiders all look the same to me...”

Outsiders?

The same repetition of the word came from behind her, and she found herself even repeating it in her mind.

She heard someone step closer behind her, and then Link’s voice, “Who the hell are you?”

The new girl blinked, staring over Ani’s head at him, “Why should I tell you? I’m not here to kill you... yet- wait,” she jammed the tip of her sword’s blade in the ground and counted off on her fingers, muttering, “Sage of oblivion, Dark Link, Link... aaaaand Zelda.” She lifted her head up and blinked at Sheik, pointing a finger at him. “Are you Zelda?”

Ani held back a laugh and turned to look over her shoulder at Sheik’s reaction.

He was staring, visible eye wide for a moment before he closed it, shaking his head. “No.”

“Aw, but Ganon said you would look like that...,” she looked up at the sky for a minute as if it took a lot of concentration to remember, “and that Zelda was a cross-dresser or something...”

Ani couldn’t help but snort at that, but she quickly covered her mouth and turned back to face the girl again. “Ok, that’s all well and good, but, uh.... oh... never mind...”

The girl blinked, looking back at Ani, “What, am I confusing you?” she tilted her head, “It’s really simple, I’m here to kill you on Kage’s orders, ‘cause apparently you annoy him...”

“That Kage dude again?!”

Link made a confused noise behind her and mumbled to Sheik, who mumbled back, sounding rather peeved.

The girl nodded, “Yeh, but it’s really a waste of my time,” she ran a hand through her hair, “Suck weaklings, I really shouldn’t have been called on this...”

Ani blinked and turned to look a Dark Link, a hard glare on his face as he idly cracked his knuckles just by clenching a fist. “Weak?” he repeated, and she turned back to look at Link and Sheik. Link looked nearly as angry as Dark Link, as did Sheik. “...Mm..” she muttered, not really caring as she turned back, blinking up at the girl quickly.

She stretched, giving an agitated sigh before picking her sword back out of the ground. “Oh well, a job’s a job, at least I’m getting paid,” she prepared for an attack just as another new voice reached everyone’s ears, this one a male.

“Imari, stop!”

Everyone turned to look at this new comer clad in simply, from what Ani could see, a faded black cloak, hood-less it seemed. A large piece of brown hair curved down on the right side of his face, covering nearly half of his eye, both a bright emerald. His hair was long, reading about mid-back.

“What, can’t I have some fun? I’m getting paid for this...” the Imari girl asked, narrowing her eyes at the male, turning back to Ani who took a step back, forgetting all humor in the situation.

“You can’t kill them,” he protested again, much to Ani’s relief.

What in Din’s name is going on?

Ani ignored Lirin for the moment, listening to the two talk amongst themselves.

“But I want to,” Imari said as she stood up, turning fully to face the male.

“I know, but you shouldn’t.”


“Why not?”

“Because... Master said not to, she needs to talk to you. She said to bring the girl... and him,” he pointed at Dark Link through his cloak.

Ani broke in at that point, raising her hand hi to gain their attention, “Wait, wait, why?”

The male just ignored her and narrowed his eyes at Imari, “Put your sword away...”

She sighed, frowning, “Fine, be mean... just tryin’ to have fun...” she turned to Dark Link and Ani, letting loose an annoyed sigh, “Alright, you’ve got to come with me, my master wants to speak with you.”

Sheik stepped forward to speak, “How can we trust you?”

Imari turned to look at him, staring blankly for a moment before a smile appeared on her face. “Oh! You’re one of those Sheikah people! I thought those things were dead.”

Ani side stepped slightly, away from Sheik when she saw his eye twitch and his fists clench. “Most are...” it sounded like he was gritting his teeth as he spoke.

“Oh well, things die,” she turned back to Ani and Dark Link, “Alright, it shouldn’t take to long for you to talk with Master...”

Ani raised her hand feebly again, blinking, “Uhm... right, why are we going?”

Imari shrugged, “If I knew that, I’d tell ya.”

“Tch,” for the first time, really, since Imari came, Ani turned to look at Dark Link. He seemed a great deal more agitated then usual, which made her eye twitch slightly. Seeing him made... kind of scared her. “This is ridiculous. I’m not going.”

“Ack, wait! You’ve got to ‘cause of the thingy!” Ani waved her hands in the air wildly.

Imari tilted her head at Ani, “Thingy?”

“It’s ... this thingy... bah! I can explain later,” she shook her head and sighed.

As if Ani hadn’t even spoke, Imari turned away, back towards the male and glared, grumbling something about getting paid.

He sighed, shaking his head, “Just... get them to the village,” he disappeared in a small puff of smoke similar to the one Sheik had used during his and Link’s short spar, expect his was completely silent, no way of detecting it had ever happened if you didn’t watch it occur.

Imari turned back to them, running a hand through her hair again as she sighed. “Right, I have to kno-“ she rushed past Ani, knocking her on a specific point at the back of her neck. She fell forward, dropping to her knees. Before she fell entirely, Imari moved back around to Dark Link, using the same tactic as she had on Ani to knock him unconscious, picking them both up and practically flopping them onto her shoulders.

She turned to Link and Sheik, a sarcastic look on her face, “I’ll return ‘em,” and she disappeared the same way the male had.

~~

A powerful stinging sensation was the first thing to send Ani back to consciousness. She reached up to touch the spot on the back of her neck Imari had jammed her sword hilt into and winced, letting her hand fell back beside her. “Ugh...” she groaned, sitting herself upright before she opened her eyes, having to blink quite a few times so that her vision cleared.

Where ever she was, it wasn’t the most well lit place, but at least she could distinguish objects and colors and such. The walls were tan in color, flapping slightly around the wooden bars that reached up and connected together at the high ceiling.

There were some crates lined up here and there, but the most noticeable thing in the entire place was the amount of weapons. For the third time that day, Ani’s eye twitched, and she turned to look at one cornered she hadn’t examined before, jumping slightly as she saw Dark Link, looking as angry as he had what seemed like only moments ago.

“Where’s that chick?” she practically whispered, her throat feeling oddly sore.

“Hell if I know,” he answered, closing his eyes and frowning.

“...Fine...” she muttered, crossing her arms and turning away.

Christ, he’s so moody... she thought irritably.

One of the flaps at the front moved more than the walls around them, which caught Ani’s attention immediately as Imari stepped through, holding a bowl of food in her hands, mostly consisting of fruits and things.

“Oh, you’re awake,” she said plainly, walking over to set the bowl of food in front of her. “Pity, it was just getting quiet around here...” she added under her breath, “Children are so noisy...”

Ani scoffed, lowering her gaze towards the bowl of food to pick at it and see what was edible to her picky taste buds.

The flap moved again, and the male from before stepped through, cloak no longer on. Instead, it was a skin tight sleeveless black shirt with the same triforce pattern as on Imari’s shirt. He also wore similar pants and boots, only they were a bit lighter, more faded, like a dark grey.

“You’re always noisy, Imari,” he sighed, crossing his arms.

She stuck her tongue out at him before standing back up.

“Where are we?” Ani asked, picking out a slice of apple, taking a bit out of it after she spoke.

“My village,” Imari pointed around the room as she replied, which was thoroughly uninteresting save for the great deal of swords and other weapons.

She nodded, chewing the apple and swallowing before she spoke again, “Right. And where’s this master person of yours?”

“She’s busy right now, she’ll be here in a minute,” Imari ended her sentence unnaturally quick, and moved her hands to cover her long pointed ears as best as she could.

Ani blinked and turned to look at the male who just sighed and looked away, rubbing his temple with his index finger.

A shrill shout of “Imari!” answered Ani’s silent question quick as yet another newcomer rushed into the room and jumped up on Imari’s back, clinging tightly and squashing her face into her back.

This one’s hair was shorter in the back, spiked in quite a few places, most of it being a bright crimson while all of the spiked tips were black. Her eyes appeared violet, but like Imari’s with the red and gold, that could have been a simple trick of the light and angle.

Like the other two, Ani had spotted before the girl had basically tackled Imari without knocking her down, she had the same triforce insignia on the front of her shirt, which was short sleeved. The neck and sleeve hemming was black, the rest of it being a very light grey, nearly white.

Her trousers, similar to Imari’s, were a darker grey, like the male’s, but still a shade lighter. Her boots were the only real things setting her apart from the others, them being black and seeming more like simple shoes rather than boots.

“Your back!” the girl cried out again, tears rolling down her cheeks onto Imari’s shoulder. “I missed you so much...”

She sighed and turned her head, narrowing her eyes slightly, “Get off my back, Kainato... you’re not the lightest person in the world...”

The Kainato girl snorted, her tears stopping almost immediately as she stared at the back of Imari’s head, eyes narrowed. “You can carry five sacks of potatoes on your shoulders and still have strength, so don’t tell me to get off!”

“You weigh more than five sacks of potatoes...”

Kainato’s expression changed from irritated to hurt, and she turned, now looking angry, to the male. “So why are you two alone in here, hmmmm, Ichri? What’d you do to her?!”

Ichri snorted, walking over to her, “We’re not alone in here, and we have guests,” he hit her on the head with the side of his hand, “So behave.”

She let out a shriek of “Ow!” as yet another stepped in to join them.

The new woman sighed, placing one hand on her hip as she shook her head, “I leave you alone for five minutes and you all start fighting?”

Kainato leapt back off her back and bowed slightly before the three of them sat back in the corner, muttering their apologies.

The woman, apparently their master, turned to look at Ani and Dark Link, nodding to them. “Welcome.”

Her hair was short, just a bit longer then Kainato’s, and a vibrant green. Amber eyes peeked out from behind her bangs, and though she was smiling, there was a look of seriousness that couldn’t be overlooked in them.

The woman’s triforce symbol was different then the other three’s, what with it being gold at the three points, black in the center, and two upside down triangles, black as well, attached to the sides of Din’s piece.

A white piece of thin, nearly transparent fabric floated around her shoulders, hardly touching her at all. That caught Ani’s attention the most as she scrutinized this master of their’s.

Her shoulders were bare, the sleeves a cut away with what appeared to be small beads, the color indistinguishable in the light. The sleeves that ran down all the way to her fingers, the fabric narrowing ‘till it was only around her middle finger, as well as the rest of the blouse was turquoise. There was a detached bit of fabric around her neck which was green, matching her long skirt that covered all but the tips of her shoes, which matched her skirt.

She turned towards her three disciples and nodded towards Ichri, “Would you please take Kainato and yourself outside?”

He did as he was told, tugging lightly on Kainato’s ear to drag her outside, as she made a much bigger deal out of it than Ichri had initially intended.

Ichri and Kainato now out, the woman turned back around to Ani and Dark Link, gesturing for them both to move closer as she and Imari sat in the center of the room.

“My name is Ishi, this is Imari,” she waved her hand at Imari and Ani nodded, Dark Link remained silent. Ishi stood up again, moving towards a bookshelf that Ani had managed to over look, “I already know your names..”

She turned back, sitting with two books in her hands, both large, black, and worn, the pages looking yellowed. Ishi gave them both to Imari, who immediately flipped one open.

“I read this before!” she turned to look at Ishi, “When I was little.”

Ishi nodded, removing the second book from under the one in Imari’s hands and handed it to Dark Link, who leaned back against the wall as he started reading.

“I need to give you information would otherwise be unable to obtain...”

Ani scooched a bit closer, snatching another small piece of apple which she quickly shoved into her mouth.

“The keeper of the fourth quadraforce, the quadraforce of oblivion, is Dark Link...”

DL?!

I suppose it does make sense... That would explain why their control over him falters whenever you’re near; the two powers of oblivion react to one another and negate it entirely.

Ani stared at Dark Link, a look of confusion that she would usually wear plastered across his face as he gazed back at all of them. He scoffed and looked at the back of his right hand, ignoring them all again.

“It’s true, but I’m not quite finished...” Imari and Ani’s attention flitted back to Ishi. “The sage of oblivion, or Ani, cannot awaken her power without his,”-she pointed to Dark Link-“and the goddess’s help.”

Imari blinked, tilting her head at Ishi, “How are they supposed to find the goddess if she’s dead?”

“True, she is dead,” Ishi averted her eyes, observing everyone before allowing her eyes to fall back on Imari, “But she was reincarnated along with the eighth sage... into you, Imari.”

“What?!” Ani half shouted, covering her mouth partly from her volume, and partly because she thought she heard Dark Link about to speak, but when she turned to look at him he still seemed pretty caught up with looking at his hand.

Ishi just nodded, patting Imari’s shoulder as she stared at the ground, eye’s wide. “Now Ani, Dark Link,” she stood, smiling as she gestured towards the door flap, “Please go ahead and enjoy yourselves. I’ll send Kainato to fetch you at dinner where we can discuss this more.” She straightened her skirt and walked out, leaving the three to themselves.

“Um... I-Imari?”

Imari turned her head slightly toward Ani.

“Are you... gonna be ok?”

She nodded slowly, but otherwise kept still.

“Mm... well... we’re, uh... gonna go for a bit...”

Again, she nodded.

Ani sighed and stood, straightening her shirt and pants as she glanced over at Dark Link who was just standing. “Should we take the books?”

“We’ll get ‘em,” he shrugged, stepping past Imari and out of the room.

Lovely attitude...

She shrugged, following, looking back at Imari once before leaving entirely.

Close twittering of birds caught her attention and Ani nearly fell back as a guay flew right past her face, rising back into the sky and then ignoring her entirely. Despite nearly tearing her nose right off her face, the small encounter made her gaze around even more than she normally would.

Stony structure’s rose a few stories, some shorter than others, some higher. The buildings were all set apart on vast streets where people gave her and Dark Link odd looks as they passed by, some of the adults scurrying away with their children, most of which had the same triforce mark as on Imari, Ichri and Kainato’s clothes, as well as a small hoop earing in each ear.

Ani picked up her pace , slowing back a bit once she caught up with Dark Link, her arms crossed as she recoiled from the looks. Others, more the older set, just went about their business, but something set a good number of the parents off about them...

There was an opening past a few more buildings where some trees lined a way next to a river to their right. Just behind that was a towering stone wall that she couldn’t see the end of, past the roofs of the structures.

“Do you think this whole place is closed in?” Ani asked, looking around and trying to smile at people so they’d maybe calm down.

“That would explain why she called us ‘Outsiders’,” he responded, walking down the path as if he knew exactly where he were going.

“You’ve never been here before?”

He shook his head. “I don’t even know if this place is still in Hyrule,” he stopped, looking to his right and rounded a corner, going back to the left once he passed the building. Ani followed quickly behind.

After rounding a few more corners, Dark Link slowed a bit, looking more around the area, as was Ani.

In front of them was what appeared to be another town entirely, two sets of large wooden fences coming from either side and stopping just before they touched to create a frame-less doorway that groups of people came and went from at a time.

Upon entering, it was obvious what this other section of town was. A market. Stands, shops and stores were set up all around, with hundreds of people crowding around and shouting prices, or walking out of stores carrying their freshly bought materials.

A lot of the children, Ani found, were touting weapons.

“Man, what is this place?” Ani asked, stopping to look around again, but sped back up once she realized Dark Link was much farther ahead.

It was a little ways into it that the stoned streets (having odd colored patterns around some places) branched off in three directions. The far left it seemed consisted of mostly weapons shops, some books and pet shops here and there, the center a food area, and the right an open space lined around the walls with more small booths.

“It’s kinda weird... like Kakariko and Castle Town mixed together... except a lot more concerned with weapons...” she bit her lip, turning her head in all three directions the road split. “...Weird...”

“It’s not all that weird,” Dark Link scoffed, crossing his arms and shifting his weight slightly as he looked towards the weapons area. Ani turned to watch his head move as some people passed by, the vast majority carrying weapons they had just purchased. “Most of those weapons are for stealthy attacks... save for the swords and all,” he shifted his weight more to the side, “Didn’t Imari mention getting payed?”

Ani blinked, turning from one person holding a sword with an intricate hilt design. ‘Uh.. Yeh,” she nodded.

A smirk crossed his lips and he closed his eyes, letting his head hang slightly. “They’re assassins.”

She stared blankly for a few seconds, blinking, thinking it over. She did come out of nowhere... both her and Ichri were neigh undetectable until they spoke... and now all of the stealthy weapons. “Jesus Christ, you’re right!”

“Hey!”

They both turned around, Ani looking confused again, until she spotted Kainato in the distance waving her arms. She rushed up, running faster than Ani thought she could ever hope to achieve and put her arms behind her back, looking off to the side. She seemed disgruntled.

“Master wants you two to come back and eat with her now. I’ll lead you,” Ani nodded, walking right after Kainato turned around.

The trip back didn’t take as long as the initial wandering, and despite the obvious size of the area, they were back within a good ten minutes.

Smells of meat and fresh fruits wafted out of a much larger building than the one they had first exited, another, smaller building attached to the side of it.

“Dinner’s ready,” Kainato said, waving a hand towards the door before walking into the smaller, side building.

Ani pushed the door open lightly, nearly starting to drool as she saw the amount of meat laid out along a wide wooden table, Ishi sitting at the head of it, and Imari just a spot down from her.

“Ah, good,” Ishi said, standing to greet them. “Kainato took less time than I anticipated. Come, come, sit,” she nodded, opening her arms at the table before sitting back down.

Ani nodded, moving to the seat just across from Imari and Dark Link sat beside Ani-an empty chair separating them.

“I do believe you already know of him...” Ishi glanced at Ani and Dark Link before lowering her head slightly. “Kage?”

Ani nodded fast. Dark Link grunted.

“Good, well... knowing of him isn’t really knowing about him, now is it? If I may ask... do you know where he is taking up current residence?”

Ani looked around the table, watching Imari eating, her disposition from earlier changed to quite content. “Uhm... I sort of do...”

Ishi’s gaze turned to Ani.

“I know... he’s in my Temple...,” Ishi brought her hands up, interlocking the fingers in front of her mouth and nodded, “But I don’t exactly know just where it is... It’s behind the castle some amount of distance...”

“Ah,” Ishi nodded and sat back up, placing her hands in her lap. “Interesting that he would choose there... without your powers awakened it shouldn’t have any power.”

Ani let out a sigh and slumped back into her chair.

“I said shouldn’t not doesn’t.”

Ani closed her eyes tightly for a second at that and sat back up, nodding.

“At any rate, even a vague location is a good thing.. I’ve known Kage for a great deal of my life, and he can be quite... unpredictable.”

Ani furrowed her brow, jutting her lip out slightly as a thought occurred, and she raised her hand, index finger pointed towards the roof, “Is Kage... stronger than Ganondorf?”

Ishi scoffed, turning away, a hand over her mouth. It took her a moment, but she turned back, straight faced again and nodded. “Yes, a great deal...”

Ani nodded, dropping her hand into her lap, turning to look down at the empty plate in front of her. Sighing, she reached over and grabbed the nearest forked and stabbed some meat on a platter in the center of the table, forcing it onto her plate as quickly as possible. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Dark Link doing practically the same thing. It must have been hours since their last meal, possibly a day...

While she stuffed her face, Ani didn’t catch a lot of what Ishi said, getting enraptured with how good the food tasted, and how much there was, as well as side conversations with Lirin.

After what only seemed like five minutes, the other three got up from the table, leaving Ani to finished up. She blinked, looking around the room and sighed, gulping down the last bits of meat on her plate and draining the water from a glass.

Imari and Dark Link were both outside when Ani came to join them. Imari stood up from crouching on the wall and took out her blade again, smiling feebly at the both of them. “Well, I did say I’d-“ and in another flash of speed, she had knocked the two out again with the hilt of her blade, finishing her sentence just before Ani blacked out entirely, “Return you.”

~~

The same stinging. The same blackness from before. Ani moved a hand to the back of her head and scratched, wincing as she sat up on something comfortable, cushy. She opened her eyes to see Link and Zelda hovering over her, and her herself in a small bed with thin white sheets. Something felt tight around her head and she reached up, tugging on fabric. Bandages.

“Wha’ happen...?” Ani blurted, rubbing her eyes and looking around what appeared to be an infirmary of sorts.

Link sighed, sitting down on the edge of the bed and Zelda backed away slightly, her arms crossed. “That girl dropped you off again, and you were bleeding a bit... so was he,” Link nudged his head to the bed next to hers, and there sat an angry Dark Link having Sheik wrap the bandages around his cranium.

“...Ooh..” she nodded, turning back to them. “Uhm... right... so... Mm...”

“Also,” Link started, wincing slightly, raising his index finger, but was interrupted by the door creaking open, Imari stepping through. She moved over to a wall, sending Ani and Dark Link a silent 'hello' from eye contact, or at least it connected with Ani, he just seemed like he wanted to ignore her.

Ani returned the greeting with a small nod of her head, grimacing as an ache shot through her system, forcing her to bring a hand to her skull, "Remind me not to shake my head for a while... eh?" she muttered to Link, opening one eye to look at him as she rubbed her head through her hair.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

It was the ending =_= forgive me, I made Imari terribly ooc there, so I've redone it. Just to let you all know, I'm nearly half way done chapter 11, so that will be posted very very soon.
This story archived at http://www.kasuto.net/efiction/viewstory.php?sid=1279