She knelt down and stroked through soft grass, which uniquely grew on Hyrule Field. It swayed softly in the wind.
Just like it always did, she thought, knowing, that even the wind would stop to breeze very soon. Here, in old Hyrule, in a familiar past, with no future.
She touched the cold, dusty earth, which slowly, almost unnoticeably, ceased to live.
It has begun.
She folded her arms, gently touching the velvet of her pinkish gloves. A little chilly…
There always seemed to be a cool breeze on Hyrule Field, even when the sun stood high in the sky, caressing the lands with its hot, fire red rays. She slowly closed her eyes, lonely tears shimmering in them. The wind stroked her blonde hair, which always looked well-kempt. Some of her golden strands of hair playfully flew around her face. She slowly removed her swell gloves, tossed them on the ground like something useless, grabbed the fancy barrettes and furiously tore them out of her hair. Finally she threw away the ornamented tiara. No neat appearance any more – there was no use for that now.
Her fists clenched, she stood upright, loosing her thoughts in nostalgia while looking at the valley before her. The path which had served as road for merchants, who would barter for their goods on the marketplace in front of the castle – it now lay there, empty, like a dried out vein between the hills. She looked eastwards, where vast woods with giant trees dominated the landscape, westwards, at the nearing desert with its merciless sandstorms. She wanted to memorize as much of the whole picture as possible, for it would be the last time she could marvel it. Far away she could see the proud and mighty DeathMountains, enshrouded in smoky thunderclouds.
None of all that would exist in very few hours…
Like entranced she spread her arms, imagined, how it must be to fly, to turn into a mighty eagle, floating over the world. Its eye seeing everything, its call for freedom heard by everyone. She wished she could be one of these majestic animals only once.
She also wished she had had the strength to protect this world of hers, which she loved above all. Why, just why did the last hour have to come, the last minutes of Hyrule?
Her eyes, blue and clear, looked at the sky, saw the dark shreds of clouds, saw the sun sinking behind the horizon. Old pictures of a red, bleeding sky pierced her mind, hurting her incredibly. Absentmindedly she whispered: “It always was his fault… and now he ultimately got his will, satisfied his desires. His longing for possession of all Hyrule, his greed for power… and I could only watch powerlessly.”
Hate dominated her feelings. Anger boiled in her royal veins, all the way up to her porcelain-colored hands. The ancient power she never asked for, parted from her and rose towards the vast sky.
“Look, you gods. Is this all? I should be burdened with a part of the power, and I still carry it – even now, when Hyrule slowly fades. Is this fair? Tell me!”
She screamed in desperation: “It simply isn’t fair!”
She had always been thinking of nothing but Hyrules well-being. When outside the sun shone brightly, she studied old books or practiced magic, and at night she would neither sleep nor wake but cower away from the darkness. She did everything in her power for Hyrule and for it alone. She cast her feelings aside, suppressed her fears, all for this world. But now she was forced to run away like a damned coward, something she never wanted to be.
The Triforce-Fragment sank back and entered the back of her hand like a glowing piece of metal, with no pain, but no feeling of comfort either.
Then she heard someone wandering silently through the high grass. As much as he tried, she noticed the sound of his maroon boots, when he stepped closer. She looked aside, about to open her mouth, but found she wasn’t able to say anything any more. The feelings of emptiness, of doubt and powerlessness stunned her and sealed her voice away. The being behind her gently placed his hands on her shoulders.
With a soft voice he said: “Zelda. It is time.” Rarely had she heard him speak with such sentimentality. The sound of his soothing, sensitive voice comforted her a little. The rage left her slowly, but the pain in her soul refused to go away. She felt completely at her sad feelings’ mercy – she had to accept them. Even though he could keep any evil or harm away from her, stopping these sentiments was beyond his power. She slowly turned and looked directly into the deep dark blue of his eyes. These eyes have always given her more than only comfort, courage and the feeling of being needed. His look had always made her find hope. But today, here and now, in this moment…
He gently pulled her into a loving embrace. He had never ever hugged someone like this before. Only now did Zelda realize that he also was torn inside. He did not want to part with this world just as much as she did. He would have given everything for Hyrule. She knew it and never should have doubted it.
“Link”, she said cautiously and almost without sound. He didn’t answer, but started caressing her back with his hand.
Zelda started to cry, but didn’t want him to notice it. She felt silly for trying to hide her tears from Link, she knew perfectly well that she couldn’t conceal anything from him. But still…
She wanted to be strong enough for them both. Just for once.
But Zelda cried for another reason, which even Link didn’t know about yet. They both stood in their embrace for a long time, until the sun finally vanished behind the horizon. With a last glow, a last flicker of its fire-red rays it was gone.
Link took Zelda’s lovely face into his warm hands and mumbled: “Someday…”. He stopped when he discovered something in her eyes, that told him about another farewell. He felt powerless when his princess cast him these special looks. He anticipated what she wanted to do.
She broke the embrace, looking at the ground. She couldn’t help but bursting into tears. “Please forgive me, but I have no choice. I cannot live with the hylian lands, nor without them.”Zelda really intended to stay, to perish together with Hyrule.
“And I cannot live without you…” Link whispered, confessing his feelings for the girl opposite to him for the very first time.
Zelda looked at him for one last time, tried to smile a little and turned around, walked towards the valley, slowly at first, every step a little faster until she ran. Link remained standing numbly, silently. He extended his arm towards her for one last time, trying to suppress the feelings of sorrow in his heart. He felt as if everything dear and important to him was suddenly lost. Everything he fought for has waned. He felt his heart cramp, as if it wanted to burst into a thousand bloody splinters.
Zelda was merely a tiny dot on the vast plain now. She seemed more unreachable and far away than ever before, more than in the alternate timeline, which was forgotten, where no hero existed.
“Zelda…” Link sank down on his knees, trying to keep his head clear. It must not end like this, not here. No! He had never given up and he never would. Even now, when all magic had left Hyrule and all power had disappeared from this world. Even when destiny itself stood against him and Hyrule would cease to exist, he would still be Link.
He told himself when he got up: “Hope dies last. We will see each other again, Zelda. I will fight, and the last spark of hope will be my companion.”
Pulsating blue light embraced him and his soul was carried to a place far away. Deep into the maelstrom of oblivion, where his memories were sealed away. Into another world, existing somewhere far away from Hyrule, somewhere between nowhere and truth.
Every being of this dying world, every Kokiri, Goron, Zora, Hylian, Gerudo and Shiekah-survivors left its body behind to let its soul travel into a new world. The forces of evil however were forever trapped in a place, existing nowhere but still being there. Imprisoned in a world where no sun would rise, no moon or stars would shine from the night sky. Hyrule was now ultimately enslaved by the void.
But the spirits of those beings, who once lived here, and loved their home, would one day be reborn into a world without magic, a future without evil that needs to be feared. Only in their dreams will they remember their old home, not knowing, that they were more than mere pictures of the night. Then, when they would wander through the plains, running over the lush grass of the dream-created lands, they would feel the long forgotten world, full of fantasy and belief, a world that would always be loved on first sight.
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