Link sat on the edge of his bed and thought back to that day seven years ago. Zelda was in her courtyard in front of the window. Link was standing in front her. "Link," Zelda said, softly, "Now is when we part. I shall return you to your own time. Please, relive your seven years, for I had no right to take them away."
"It is ok; Zelda," said Link, "When will I see you again?"
"Once you return the sword to its pedestal, go home and wait seven years. Once that has passed, you can return to the castle. Please, do not return a day earlier, we must wait, do what the Gods have asked of us."
"Ok Zelda, I will not return until seven years have passed." Link placed the Ocarina in Zelda's hands. As the blue crystal surrounded him, he let go of her hands. He floated up, looking down at Zelda who was looking up at him. "I love you...." Link mouthed those words. When Link came back to his original time, he slammed his hands on the floor. "If only I had actually said it.....If only she was able to hear....." thought Link, hopelessly.
He had not actually thought or said it, but his emotions were saying,"Why? Why does she have to marry...him? Why?" Link's tears would begin to form every time he thought about it. There was a knock at the door. Before he could ask who it was, Saria pulled back the sheet that acted as his door and came in.
"Link, you've been cooped up in this house for three days since you want back to the castle." she said wordily, "You seemed so happy and excited to finally get to see Zelda again and here you are now. Moping and pouting. But why? That’s what everyone is wondering."
Link looked up at Saria. His eyes were swollen from crying. "Oh Link, what's wrong?"
"Zelda....I went to see her three days ago...." Link was straining to keep his voice, but it drifted off.
"And...? What happened?"
"Really?!" Saria jumped up in happiness, smiling, then looked down at Link. "Oh, I see....."
"7 years. 7 years! I waited 7 years and she springs on some guy I've never even seen and says she going to marry him! What am I going to do?"
"You're asking the wrong girl. I don't really know love, so I have no idea how you feel. But if you're serious about this whole marriage thing, why don't you ask someone who has been in love once and been rejected."
"That's silly I don't.....wait a minute. I know someone! Thanks Saria! I've got to go." Link jumped up and ran out the door. He leapt off the balcony out of the forest. He played Epona's song and she came into view. Link rode off to Lon Lon Ranch. Just because Zelda had brought him down, doesn't mean that he forgot all about Malon. The ranch looked just the same on the outside, but the inside had been changed a lot. There were more horses and cows. Pigs were in a small pen, and there were more people working there now. The ranch house had grown bigger too.
Link found Malon grooming a horse in the stable. As Malon looked up and saw Link, she knew exactly who it was. She screamed so loud that even Link was afraid. Malon jumped on him, laughing and smiling. "Link! You've finally came back!"
"Yeah, it's me." said Link with no enthusiasm but with a smile.
"So....what've you been up to these past seven years?"
"Nothing really. Just stuff."
"Link. I know that face. You're upset aren't you?"
"No there's nothing wrong."
"Yes there is. Tell me what’s bothering you."
"Well....I went to see princess Zelda a few days ago after not seeing her for seven years."
"Oh! The princess! Did you hear she's getting married?"
Link frowned at her, waiting for her to know why he was so upset. But she just smiled and stared. Link sigh, "That's the problem. She's getting married. To him!"
"Who, Prince Roy?"
"So are you in love with her or something?"
"What? No! Of course not!"
Malon continued to look at Link with a look on her face that showed she knew Link was lying to her. "I think you're lying me."
"I am." Link spoke softly.
"What? I can't hear you."
"I'm in love her! There I said it! Happy?!"
"Well, you admitted it not only to me but to yourself. So your love for Zelda has been interfered with by Roy. And why no be mad? I mean, he's rich, handsome, and rules an entire kingdom! It's not hard to figure out that you're jealous."
"I'm not jealous."
"Yes you are. I know you are, say it-"
"I'M NOT JEALOUS!" Link screamed at her.
Malon turned around, holding back tears and fear. She went back to grooming the horse. Link had never felt so evil and disgusting in his whole life. His jealousy had caused him to yell at even one of his best friends.
"I'm sorry Malon. It's just, I'm a little upset right now."
Malon turned around, as if he hadn't yelled at her at all. "Link, if Zelda's happiness is your main concern, then you should let her marry the one she loves. I used to like when we were little, but.....I grew up and accepted the fact that you loved Zelda. Now you have to do the same for her. She's taking a big step in her life right now and what she needs is her friend that she has known for so many years. Go help her with her problems. Even if you can't have her, you can still be her friend that she can talk to."
Link smiled. "You're right. Zelda's having enough trouble already. The last thing she needs is one of her friends turning his back on her. I'm going to go see her right now!" Link made a run for the door.
"Wait Link!" called Malon.
Link paused and turned around. "What?"
"Remember these words, 'It's not too late.'"
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"You'll know when the time comes."
Link waved goodbye to her and flew out the door. He called Epona and mounted her. As he rode off to the castle, he kept thinking of the echoing words that Malon had said. "It's not too late. It's not too late."
When reached the castle, he jumped off Epona and walked towards the bridge. Halfway crossing it, he froze. He knew what Malon meant. "It's not too late! Zelda hasn't been married yet! There's still a chance!" Link wanted to go back to the ranch and give Malon a big hug for opening his eyes to the truth. He ran past the market and to the castle.
The guard standing at the gate asked Link something. "Hey, is your name Link?"
"Uh, yeah." he said confused.
"The Princess has requested us to let you in the castle and to meet her in the throne room if you came back. Seeing as how you did, we'll let you in. Impa will lead you to room."
Out of nowhere, Impa appeared next to the guard with her sheikah disappearing trick. "Impa!" Link said happily.
"Hello there Link." said Impa motioning him to come with her. Link followed Impa up the path to the castle. "Princess Zelda has been very upset ever since you left. She seemed so happy to see you."
"Yes well, it wasn’t really my intent to run away."
"Link, you don't have to explain it to me. I know you were upset to find that Zelda had been engaged to Prince Roy. And I have to say, my feelings for him are not different than yours."
"What do you mean?"
"Zelda was never really in love with Roy. Roy's father and Zelda's father are close friends. They've bee trying since their childhood to make them fall in love. It troubled me so to find that Zelda might have to marry Roy. He treats her just as a woman, not Zelda. That’s makes me hate him. But you, you treat Zelda like Zelda. Not just as Princess or Highness, but as a human being."
"Yes, but we cannot change what has already been commanded."
"Zelda is not being forced to marry Roy."
"She's not!" Link beamed.
"No. But her father is getting old. And all he wants to see before he dies is his only daughter gets married to his best friend’s son."
"So, Zelda is doing it for her father, not for herself."
"Correct. But if Zelda is to choose not to marry, it will make her father unhappy, and she thinks he will hate her. I keep telling her he won't, but she insisted. I don't think she remembered you when she made that choice."
Impa and Link came up to the door to the throne room.
"Zelda is waiting for you inside. I shall tell you now, you both will be alone. So do not hide anything." Impa said sternly.
Link nodded as Impa opened the door. Link walked in and saw Zelda standing in front of the throne. She didn't say anything. She took 2 steps. Then paused. Then ran towards Link and into his arms. They both stood there. Holding each other.
"Link, I'm so sorry." said Zelda, crying. "I should’ve told you before. But I-"
"There is no need for explanation. I know everything." Link cut her off, so she wouldn't cry more.
"We aren't getting married for another 2 months. Until then, I'm going to spend everyday with you."
"No Zelda, you don't have to."
"Yes I do. Once we are married, we will go to his kingdom, a world over. I will live there and I'll never see you again."
Link eyes filled up with tears. "Ok Zelda. Everyday together."
Zelda went off to tell Roy that she would be gone for the next 2 months until the wedding. Link found this as an opportunity. Maybe in the course of the 2 months he would be able to get Zelda to change mind. He just needed a good plan. This was the hardest adventure he would ever go on.