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"Interim", chapter 1

NOTE: Please read "Ascension" and "Downfall" first!  :)  Oh and please note--this is the Termina that would be in the Zelda 1 and 2 (cartoon) era, so you can expect some changes I'm sure!


By : Alexandra Spears

Chapter One

Link and Zelda woke up the next morning, found that they'd slept in their robes. Reva was already on her bed, putting on a pretty pink dress Link had gotten her.

Reva sat at the table and played with one of the flowers from the vase sitting there while her parents went in the bathroom and changed. She looked up as they came out, Link wearing brown trousers and a green shirt, Zelda wearing a white blouse and an ankle-length green skirt.

Zelda took up a hairbrush Link had also gotten and stood behind Reva and began brushing out the child's sandy hair. Reva winced a little, as her hair was tangled. Zelda carefully undid the tangles and it took several minutes. "We have to look nice...your father is going to be looking for work and we're going with him," Zelda told Reva.

The family went into the inn's dining room and had breakfast. "What kind of work are you going to look for?" Zelda asked Link as they ate and Reva played with her food. "Reva--"

Link shrugged. "Anything I can be trained for and pays decently. You, my lovely queen, get to be a housewife."

"Great," Zelda muttered. She shrugged. "Someone's got to keep our little girl out of trouble." She smiled and gently tousled Reva's hair.

"It's not the prison sentence you make it out to be. My mother was happy," said Link. "Zel, I know you don't care for the idea a whole lot, but there's really nothing we can do about it. Unless you have other options."

Zelda thought about it for a moment. "You're right, Link," she sighed. "I'm just not that used to housework. I guess it's better than living on the run."

"I think there's more to this," Link observed, watching his wife closely. After eleven years of marriage he knew her extremely well.

"Link--I feel I've failed everyone. Some queen I am--just run," she said. "I might as well have handed Hyrule over to Balen on a silver platter."

"Zelda--we were caught by surprise and he had the Triforce of Power," said Link, reaching across the table and taking Zelda's hand. "He defeated the guards easily. I--I nearly lost you...Zelda...we had no choice but to run, every instinct I have tells me that we are absolutely not safe in Hyrule."

"I was so sure I'd die...that's why I wanted you to leave me there," said Zelda.

"There was no way I was giving up on you," Link told her firmly.

Reva paid scant attention as she ate her breakfast. For her part, she'd kept having dreams about the Triforce of Wisdom.

Link, Zelda, and Reva walked through Clock Town, getting a feel for the thriving village and getting something of an idea what life in Termina was like. It was late summer here, as it was in Hyrule. Signs were posted on the walls of buildings. The tenth incarnation of the Indigo-Gos, a Zora band, in concert next week. Advertisements for Goron powder kegs--for Gorons. Celebration of the Deku King's birthday at Woodfall Temple in two weeks--all Dekus welcome to attend, accepting outsiders too. Help wanted ads.

Help wanted. Link paused. "Zelda...look at this," he said, taking Reva's hand and going over to the sign. "Romani Ranch and Farm. Someone to take care of the horses," he said.

"You're good at that. How much does it pay?"

"Five hundred rupees a week. I have a feeling that's quite a bit."

"No wonder--look at these ads for Chateau Romani milk," said Zelda. "Apparently they're good. I'd try that, Link."

"Good thing I thought to buy some maps," said Link. "I thought of everything--I hope." He took down the ad and put it in his pocket. He took out the map and studied it. "Okay, we go down the old Milk Road, go southwest. Should be no problem finding it."

"Well, let's head there," said Zelda, taking Reva's hand.

They headed through South Clock Town. "Look--Clock Town Elementary School," said Zelda. "That reminds me...Reva's going to have to go to school."

"What about tutors?" asked Reva.

"You'll be going to school here," Zelda told her. "I'll have to see about enrolling Reva. I wonder if they start in the fall like Hyrule does?"

"Probably," said Link. "How about it, Reva? Other kids your age."

"Okay," she sighed.

They walked past a guard and through a tunnel, emerging in Termina Field. There were houses scattered here and there; apparently Clock Town was the central hub of Termina.

Reva walked along between her parents, holding their hands, as they walked along Milk Road. Occasionally riders on horseback would pass them and tip their hats as a greeting.

Finally after a ten-minute walk they came upon a beautiful, large farm. There was a wrought-iron gate marking the entrance, and it said "Romani Ranch and Farm." Up ahead, along the road, was a big farmhouse. The family headed up to the house and Link pulled the ad out of his pocket as he boldly knocked on the heavy wooden door.

After a moment the door opened and a pretty young redhead with blue eyes answered. "Yes?" she said.

"I'm answering your ad. My name is Link, and this is my wife Zelda and our daughter Reva."

"How much do you know about horses?"

"I used to raise them and care for them a lot," Link said truthfully.

The girl smiled. "I guess you're our man then. Come in, all, and have a seat." She stepped back from the door and gestured to the living room.

Link, Zelda, and Reva went and sat down on the couch. "My name is Romani. I'm a descendant of Cremia, the girl who founded this hundreds of years ago. I was named after her younger sister--Romani. My identical twin sister, Morani, helps me run the ranch and farm, and we're pretty well known for our milk. We need someone to care for the horses, as we just had someone retire. It's five hundred rupees per week. Everyone here is like family." She smiled. "Where are you all from? I've never seen the likes of you around here."

"Another country--Hyrule," said Zelda. "Our country was ravaged by an evil wizard and we barely managed to escape. We just came here yesterday."

"Oh, wow," Romani murmured. "So I guess you're all going to be starting anew here in Termina. It's a really lovely country," she said.

"With that in mind, do you know of any boarders or anyone we can stay with until we can build a house?" asked Link.

"You can stay here, for fifty rupees a week. Most places charge sixty or even seventy-five per week. I'd just pay you four hundred fifty."

"Sounds good," said Zelda. "Thank you."

The door slammed open and a girl who looked exactly like Romani came bouncing in. She was wearing trousers and a shirt tied at the waist. "My sister, Morani," said Romani.

"Got a new horse helper, Sis?" asked Morani.

"Yes, his name is Link. And this is his wife Zelda--and their daughter Reva." Romani laughed. "We're identical opposites. Morani doesn't mind getting dirtier. I do more of the administrative and bookkeeping duties around here. So, can you start tomorrow, Link?"

"Yes," said Link. "And we're paid for two more nights at the Stock Pot Inn."

"Perfect," said Romani. "Gives Morani and me more time to get two rooms set up--one for you and Zelda, and one for Reva. No extra charge for Reva." She smiled at the little girl, who smiled back shyly.

"When does school start here, in the fall?" Zelda asked.

"Sure does," said Morani. "First day of fall to last day of spring. Kids are on summer vacation right now, and summer is when we have fun, like the Carnival of Time right in the middle of the summer. I had a nice carnival last month."

The rest of the day was spent pricing houses. A nice one with three bedrooms, land included, could be built for twenty thousand rupees. They would need two thousand rupees down--ten percent--and five hundred rupees per month, which meant that the house would be paid off in three years, six years if they paid two hundred fifty per month.

Link and Zelda, along with Reva, went into this real estate office. It would take some time for Link to save up that much, but they should have it by spring. Once the down payment was made, work would begin, and they should have the house by the very end of the following spring. They picked a location for it, right outside South Clock Town.

West Clock Town had a bank, and Link started an account with fifty rupees. After that the family only had fifty rupees left, which they would use to buy food. After a week, though, they would have more money, most of which Link planned to put away in the bank. Link planned on making double payments on the house if he could; the least they could pay was two hundred fifty rupees a month.

Link had two days a week off, and it worked out so he had every other weekend off. The next week, after work, he took Zelda and Reva to an Indigo-Go concert. Reva liked the rather strange aquatic music, and she went home wearing a cap with a picture of the band on her head.

The week after that was the Deku King's birthday. Outsiders were welcome, and Zelda wanted to go. Link decided to accompany her, and they took Reva along.

At the party, Reva chanced to have a chat with the Deku Princess. "I had an ancestor, his name was Link, who saved a Deku Princess," Reva told her.

The Deku girl gave a squeak of excitement. "That was my ancestor!" she exclaimed.

"My mother is Queen of Hyrule. We were forced to come here when some wizard took it over," said Reva. "I'm a princess myself."

"I thought you were," said the Deku Princess. "You have the manners of a well-bred princess. Well, looks like I'll have a friend my own age! And you know what a drag royalty can be."

Reva sighed. "I won't be worrying about that for a while. My parents say it won't matter here. We really don't tell anyone because it doesn't matter."

"Actually you're right, but you are still a princess nonetheless," the Deku Princess replied. "Maybe one day you and your family will reclaim your land."

"I know we will," said Reva.

"Come, you must meet other Deku nobles' children!" squeaked the Deku Princess as she took Reva's hand. "They must meet my new friend!"

"Looks like our daughters are getting along fine, Queen Zelda," the Deku King said to Zelda, who'd revealed her status to him.

"She takes after her father in so many ways," Zelda smiled. "How potent is that Deku ale?"

"I've found your race to be more tolerant of it," the Deku King told her as they watched Link down some of the ale. "Judging from your husband's height and build, he can have up to ten more before it starts affecting him adversely." He laid a friendly hand on Zelda's shoulder. "Nice to have a fellow monarch around. Never fear, Zelda. You did not run out of cowardice. I have heard whispered rumors of a land called Hyrule. I know there are evil people there. You must prepare to fight and take back what is rightfully yours."

"I just have this feeling that it'll be my daughter doing the fighting."

"Heroism and royalty run in your family; so you've told me," said the Deku King. "I am confident you will prevail."

"Thank you, Your Majesty," Zelda said. "And happy birthday."

"Thank you," the Deku King smiled at her. He grinned mischievously. "You had best stop your husband. That ale can get to be addictive."

Zelda laughed and went over to Link, who was entertaining some Deku retainers with tales of his adventures. Apparently the ale had loosened his tongue a little, and the retainers were listening with awe.

"And here is my lovely wife Zelda," he said, sounding perfectly sober.

"Hello," said Zelda. She could remember Link accidentally imbibing too much maybe two or three times during their marriage. He'd had a terrible hangover each time and she didn't want to see that happen to him. Fortunately he wasn't an alcoholic, though he did like ale. "Link you'd better consider that glass to be your last or you'll be sorry in the morning."

"Oops," said Link. "This is really good stuff though."

"Good thing tomorrow's your day off and you don't have to be up at the crack of dawn," said Zelda.

"Yeah," said Link. He raised his glass. "To the Deku King."

The retainers squeaked happily and raised their glasses. "To His Majesty," they said.

Link finished off the last of the ale that was in the glass. "I seem to have a high tolerance for this stuff," he said.

"We would--higher than the Dekus," said Zelda. "But I can't imagine what kind of hangover it would give you, my hero."

Reva and the Deku Princess sat just outside the palace, in the cool night air. The Deku Princess was teaching her some astronomy.

"I'm so used to Hyrule's constellations," sighed Reva. "But this is very interesting."

"I've never really had a girl my age to talk to. I'm also ten," said the Deku Princess. "Those kids I introduced to you--they're shallow. You're not."

"My mom says I sometimes act like my dad. He's Hyrule's hero. Royalty and heroes are in my line."

"Your dad is funny," said the Deku Princess. "But he and your mother are perfect together, like two puzzle pieces that fit perfectly. Somehow that even sounds good--a hero and his princess, or rather his queen."

"Where's your mother?"

"She died a few years ago. I miss her. Sometimes my father is too busy for me but he tries."

"I almost lost my mother. I think I know how I'd feel," said Reva.

A retainer came out. "Your parents are looking for you, Your Highnesses," he said.

"Okay," said Reva.

"Party's about over," said the Deku Princess. "Thanks for being a friend. You're welcome to visit anytime. I'll tell my father."

The two princesses, now friends, hugged. "No problem," said Reva. "Thanks for the invitation."

"So you made a new friend?" Link asked as Reva got ready for bed in her room at the farm.

"Yes, she's really nice. Feisty too," Reva replied.

"You'll be starting school next week," Zelda reminded Reva.

"I know," said Reva as she lay down in bed. Her parents kissed her good-night, then left the room.