Saturday, August 28, 2010

Chapter 51: Darkness Within

“Are you sure he went out into the crater?”

As they entered the tunnel leading to the crater, Sheik gently adjusted himself on Malatite’s back, making himself as comfortable as he can be. The Goron doctor didn’t seem to mind as he nodded firmly.

“Absolutely,” he answered. “I saw Link enter Darunia’s room, and this is the only exit. I have no idea what he’s doing in the crater…but then again I suppose he doesn’t either.”

“Yes, I suppose that’s true…what was Navi talking about, anyway…?”

The volcanic heat from the volcano struck them hard as they entered the cavernous crater, but luckily they were both well equipped to handle the temperature. Sheik was still wearing his heat-resistant garments, and Malatite was a Goron. The warmth did cause Sheik’s bite marks to tingle a little, but the Sheikah ignored them as he looked around the crater for any signs of Link or Navi.

“Do you see them anywhere?” he asked Malatite.

“I’m afraid not,” Malatite answered. “I hope they didn’t fall into the lava…”

“Don’t say that,” Sheik interrupted. “I’m sure they’re fine. We just have to find them…try going up that right path. Maybe they went up there.”

Nodding at Sheik’s suggestion, Malatite started moving up the sloped path that spiraled around the crater’s wall, making sure his passenger was comfortable enough not to slip off.

As they climbed the slopes path, Sheik leaned his head down and whispered to the Goron, “By the way…you didn’t tell Link anything about…you know…”

Malatite gently shook his head. “Don’t worry, I haven’t told them anything.”

Sheik nodded. “Thank you…I’m glad you understand how important it is.”

“It’s no trouble at all. I’m actually quite honored to…wait, what was that?”

“What was what?”

Malatite stopped moving and peered and quietly, as he looking for something he had just lost. Sheik followed his lead and took a good look around the area, but all he saw was the spiraling path and the heat wave caused by the volcanic activity.

“Is…something the matter?” Sheik asked.

Malatite looked around for a bit longer before he finally shook his head. “I suppose not. I thought I saw someone walking towards us up ahead, but now I see absolutely nothing.”

“Maybe it was Link or Navi…”

“No, I don’t think so,” Malatite politely disagreed. “The figure looked too small to be Link…and too big to be Navi. But it could’ve just been the heat playing tricks with my eyes. It’s nothing. Let’s not worry about it.”

The Sheikah agreed. “Yeah, I suppose so. Come on, let’s get moving. If we don’t see Link up ahead, then we’ll have to double back…”

“There’s no need for that, my friends.”

Malatite nearly dropped his patient from his back as he jumped startlingly at the sound of a soft voice that seemed to come out of nowhere. Both he and Sheik once again looked around, this time more frantically in search of the owner of the voice.

“Who’s there?” Malatite called out. “Where are you?”

“You seek out the ones called Link and Navi, right?”

Both the Shiekah and the Goron were surprised to discover that the mysterious owner of the voice knew Link and Navi, but it was Sheik who responded first. “Yes,” he called out in a gruff tone. “That’s correct. But how do you know them?”

“I’ve known them longer than you think,” the strange voice replied, still seemingly speaking from nowhere, “but that’s not important right now. What is important is that I know where they are, and I shall escort you to them.”

“You will?” Sheik cried, almost causing himself to fall out of Malatite’s grasp because he couldn’t contain his sudden burst of excitement.

“Of course,” the voice replied. “Shall I take you to them now?”

“Yes, please do!” Sheik answered to nowhere in particular, his eyes darting around in a vain attempt to locate the enigmatic speaker; Malatite, remaining silent, also conducted his own futile search. “Please, tell us where you are!” the Sheikah continued. “Where exactly are you?”

“Look down, my friends.”

Malatite nearly jumped in fright again when he heard the voice coming from just near his feet. He took a couple steps backwards so both he and Sheik could get a good look downward. To their amazement, they saw a strange young boy standing before them, smiling back at them. The boy appeared to be Hylian, but many features on his body suggested he was anything but. He wore no clothes to protect his little body from the intense heat, and yet he didn’t appear to be bothered by it at all.

The boy stared at the dumbfounded due for a long moment before Sheik finally found the courage to speak.

“Um…hello there. Are you…the owner of that voice?”

The boy nodded with a wide grin. “Indeed I am.”

“All right…” Sheik uttered as he tried finding the right words for his next question. “And…what exactly are you doing here in Death Mountain…?”

“By the Three Goddesses…” Malatite mumbled, not hearing Sheik. “I don’t believe it…”

“What?” Sheik inquired, turning his attention to the Goron. “What is it?”

“This boy…he’s a pixie…”


The room at the end of the tunnel was only slightly larger than Link’s old tree home back in Kokiri Village, but oddly it felt incredibly spacious. The same crimped blue light that flowed across the walls and ceiling of the tunnel was present here, washing the walls of the chamber in its brilliance. Strangely enough, there didn’t appear to be any ceiling; there was nothing but darkness overhead. There was another tunnel leading off from one of the side walls – other than that there were no other exits from the room.

Affixed to the wall opposite the tunnel was exactly what the boy had mentioned: a pool, but like everything else this was no ordinary pool. Surrounded by a short barrier of perfectly cut bricks, the pool was filled with an eerie liquid that resembled water but shimmered like moonlight. It again was reminiscent of the blue light waterfalls in the Chamber of Sages, though this stuff was crystal clear. The liquid appeared to drain off into a small pipe centered in the pool’s center, and more of it poured from the mouth of an intricately carved beast that Link didn’t recognize.

Still, it was the liquid itself that mesmerized Link as he stood at the tunnel’s mouth. “Incredible…” he muttered to himself, taking a couple steps inside the chamber.

Navi herself fluttered over the pool rapidly, though to Link’s relief she seemed to have calmed down from her earlier hyper state. He took several steps around the room quietly, taking in the simplicity of the room itself and the beauty of the pool before he finally decided do something other than wait.

Navi…now that we’re here, would you mind explaining a few things?”

“Like what, Link?” the fay asked as she continued gliding over the pool.

“Well, for starters…who exactly is this ‘she’ you kept mentioning earlier? I kept asking you over and over, but you just ignored me and babbled on. I’m interested in what she has to say…but I’d really like to know who I’m meeting…”

“All will be revealed soon, Hero of Time.”

Link turned around just in time to see the little strange boy enter the chamber from the tunnel…followed closely by Malatite carrying an exhausted but awake Sheik.

“Oh, you guys…” Link started before he suddenly realized something. He turned to the boy and stated, “You fetched them rather quickly…”

“That is because this chamber is outside the normal flow of the river of Time, my friend,” the boy uttered as he calmly made his way around the Hylian and towards a position next to the pool. “The blue light you see surrounding this chamber is collected residue from when the world was created, and it has been formed in such a way that anyone or anything standing within it flow along Time’s river at a slower pace.

“In other words, the world outside these walls are flowing through Time faster than we are at the moment.”

Nothing should’ve surprised Link by now, but he still shook his head in amazement anyway. Still, he wasn’t really in the mood for a lesson on how Time operated. He came here looking for answers, and if this little boy was his only lead then by the Three Goddesses he was going to get them.

“Tell me,” Malatite started after the boy had finished speaking. “How is it that a pixie such as yourself…?”

“Were is this ‘she’ that Navi kept blabbering on about?” Link cut in, not even seeming to hear Malatite speak. “I was told that by coming here I was going to get some answers concerning my powers and why they make me go mad. But so far all I see is you…” He pointed a finger at the little pixie. “…standing in front of me. Are you the ‘she’ that Navi was referring to, or do you just work for her, or what?” He then held up the Owl doll that the boy had given him. “And what in the name of Hael did you give me this for?”

The boy looked down and sighed softly, as if not pleased with something. He then raised his head and smiled again, clapping his hands together in front of him. He made sure his eyes were peering directly at the Hero of Time before he spoke again.

“I’ll answer your last question first. That doll that you hold in your hand…it’s a reminder.”

“A reminder? Of what?” Link inquired.

“Well, what does it remind you of, my friend?” the pixie asked.

Link glanced down at the doll and took a good, long hard look at it. While the detail weren’t terribly intricate, the overall features did indeed match the overall description that he remembered – he even expected the eyes to stare blankly at him and its beak to say something concerning its finicky magic…

“It reminds me of someone I once knew,” Link answered, looking back up at the boy. “Someone who helped me when I was much younger. Someone I…now that I think about it, someone I respected quite a bit. But what does this have to do with anything? This is your doll…”

“Indeed it is,” the pixie acknowledged. “That doll has been with me for almost my entire life…which isn’t that long at all, only about five or six years. It was the first thing I used my magic to create, because I didn’t wish to forget anything that it helps me to remember.”

“Helps you to remember? I don’t understand what you’re…”

“Magic is a tricky thing, Link,” the boy continued, politely cutting the Hero of Time off. “Whenever your soul becomes attached to it in, your soul is forever linked to the flow of Time in ways you can only possibly imagine. Most people, after they live out their lives, find their souls melt into the stream of Time so that they may form a new soul from which a new life will be born.

“A being whose soul is linked to magic, however, is unique in that his soul remains intact. His soul will forever remain whole, and with it he shall carry the memories of the life he once lived. These souls will eventually be reborn again and again, and these souls will forever hold the knowledge of all the lives they have and will one day experience.”

They boy’s eyes then fall upon the doll. “Regarding that doll, I made it because my previous life held special meaning for me. It was a relatively short life, and I will admit that changing my diet to field mice and prairie hares was quite a challenge…but it was special nevertheless.”

Link’s eyes widened in slow realization as he started  understand what the boy was saying.

“For you see,” the pixie continued, “during that lifetime I met a young boy from the Lost Woods who was destined to protect the world from a growing evil. A boy who believed he was an ordinary Kokiri but turned out to be the great Hero of Time. And I’m sure I don’t have to tell you who that boy was.”

Link’s mouth gaped open as he raised a hand to cover it. “You mean…you’re…you’re that Owl? You’re…Kaepora Gaebora?”

The pixie smiled widely as he nodded modestly. “I am he. I am Kaepora Gaebora.”

“Kaepora Gaebora?” Sheik blurted out. “You mean you’re the same Owl that saved…Princess Zelda from Ganondorf seven years ago? You’re the same Owl that warned her to escape?”

Kaepora turned to face the Sheikah and again nodded. “I am. And I’m glad to know that the princess made it out alive. My sacrifice wasn’t in vain.”

“Sacrifice…?” Link mimicked. “What sacrifice…?”

“Seven years ago, I had a vision that foretold a terrible outcome. It told me that if I didn’t intervene, then Princess Zelda would die. I hurried as fast as I could to save her – and thankfully I reached her in time – but my journey there had taken its toll. I had been injured by the arrows of poaches and my strength had failed me. I think I died only two days after you removed the Master Sword.”

“You…died?” Link whispered, still unable to believe that he was talking to he old Owl he had known seven years ago.

“Yes…but you don’t have to feel sorry for me,” Kaepora assured. “Before I died, I prayed to the gods that I would be reborn as a creature that could make better use of the magic I had – an Owl was hardly the most suitable body for my magic. And my prayers were answered: I was reborn as a pixie, a servant to the Faria Garuia…and I couldn’t be any happier.”

Link didn’t say a word. Instead he looked down at the Owl doll in his hands, carefully examining it as if it contained some special meaning within its fabric. He remembered Kaepora rather vividly, and how much the Owl had helped him when he was younger and more vulnerable. How he had helped him first master the basic sword techniques. How he had found food for them when they were stranded outside Kakariko Village. How he had carried them to and from Death Mountain.

Not once since his awakening had he thought about Kaepora and what might’ve happened to him, but now that the reincarnated Owl was standing before him, happy as can be…Link didn’t know what to think. Should he smile? Should he cry? Should he hug the little pixie? Should he at least say thank you…?


Looking up, Link threw the doll in Kaepora’s direction with an abrupt yet careful flick of his arm. Surprised, the pixie reached out and caught the doll, and an uncomfortable silence followed until Link finally spoke up, trying his best to sound sincere.

“It…it’s good to see you again, Kaepora, it really is…” the Hylian announced, “but I came here because someone here could tell me about my powers and why I slip into fits of madness. I’m assuming this someone is this Faria Garuia you keep mentioning. So please…where is she? I need to speak with her.”

Link half-expected to see Kaepora look sad, but the pixie only nodded in agreement. “Yes…I understand, Link. You came here looking for answers, and you shall get those answers. It’s time you learned about yourself and what’s happening to you. So please…allow me to introduce you to…the Faria Garuia.”

Kaepora then took a step to the side, did a quarter-turn to face the pool beside him, and knelt down on one knee. He bowed his head and closed his eyes before falling deadly silent. Navi, meanwhile, sensed something was about to happen and quickly fluttered away from the pool and to Link’s shoulder, where she perched and watched anxiously. At the same time, Malatite carefully carried the still weak Sheik a little closer to the pool so they could both get a better view.

A deafening stillness filled the air for a moment, as if there was a buildup to something spectacular. Then, without warning, a loud shriek echoed across the chamber, startling everyone in the room enough to nearly jump in fright. But as they listened, they realized that the shriek really wasn’t a shriek at all. It was a high-pitched, almost squealing kind of laughter

Suddenly, a faint pillar of white light erupted from the center of the pool, right where the water was draining. The white light quickly and silently gathered itself into an egg-shaped cocoon, hovering over the pool’s glistening surface. The cocoon seemed to pulse for a couple moments, as if someone inside were trying to get out, when the egg abruptly burst apart, sending fragments of the shell flying in every direction. The fragments dissolved in the air before they went very far, but everyone held up their arms to protect themselves just the same.

When they looked again, in place of the cocoon remained one of the most beautiful creatures Link had ever seen.

She stood a little taller than Link…well, actually, she wasn’t standing at all. Rather, she was floating over the pool, her arms stretched out in a seemingly religious pose. She wore no clothes at all, but she seemed not to mind…or care, for that matter. Her skin appeared to shine with the essence of light itself, while her radiantly blond hair fluttered delicately in a wind that no one could feel. She glanced down at Link and his companions with a set of pale eyes that had no pupils, but radiating from her smile was a kindness that had no equal.

Link was so awe-inspired by the mere presence of this gorgeous being that he almost wanted to kneel down before her…

“Welcome, Link, Hero of Time,” she said in a voice as pure as untainted love. “I am the Faria Garuia, the Fairy Mother.”

The Faria Garuia’s words were enough to gently snap Link out of his trance. “The…Fairy Mother? But…but I thought…”

“You thought that the Great Deku Tree was the one who created all fairies, right?”

Link gently nodded, his gaze still fixated on the Fairy Mother’s beauty.

“This is true. The Deku Tree was the one who created all fairies long ago in the early days of the world. I had nothing to do with their creation. I am only the Fairy Mother in name only.”

“In…name only?” Link muttered. “I…don’t understand…”

“I am a being born directly from the flow of Time and has remained linked to the river of Time ever since my birth. Because of this, I have a strong connection to creatures and beings who are familiar with life and the various energies associated with it. Pixies are one such creature, but the creatures who fit this definition the closest are fairies. Thus, in the early years of this world’s existence, I was bestowed the name Faria Garuia, the Old Tongue name for Fairy Mother.”

The Fairy Mother smiled softly as she raised a finger and pointed at Link’s shoulder. “Your fairy, Navi, can tell you about our first meeting and the connection she has with me.”

Link jerked his head in Navi’s direction. “Navi…you’ve met her before?”

The guardian fairy seemed to blush a little. “Ummm…yes, I did…but that was seven years ago, when I was separated from you on Death Mountain…”

“However,” the Fairy Mother continued, “now is not the time to speak of such things. Link…I asked Navi to bring you here because I believe it is time for you to discover the truth about the power that dwells within you. I have refrained from revealing this information to you earlier because of the risk of you not developing as destiny required you.”

There was that horrible word again. Destiny…

“But now you stand at a crossroad, and you need guidance to make a decision. However, you alone must decide whether you can accept my help. Will you hear my words, Hero of Time?”

Despite hearing the Fairy Mother mention that word he so much detested, Link still felt the need to understand the still mystifying powers he could manifest. If this Faria Garuia could explain how he could produce something as destructive as Din’s Fire and something as beneficial as Farore’s Wind – not to mention why he flew into unprovoked fits of uncontained rage – then there was no reason for him to refuse.

With a firm nod, Link replied, “I’ll hear your words. Tell me what I need to know.”

“Very well,” the Fairy Mother uttered. “Then listen carefully to my words, Child of Destiny.”

The eyes of everyone in the room – even those of Kaepora, who had raised his head while still kneeling – were on the Faria Garuia as she started to speak.

“By now, you are a little familiar with the powers that you harbor. The power you call Din’s Fire are all the negative thoughts and energies that reside within every being. What you know as Nayru’s Love is a manifestation of the noble thoughts and energies we all strive to develop. And Farore’s Wind is born out of one’s determination and courage.

“These powers awoke from deep within you because of the experiences you underwent through your journeys. Din’s Fire was summoned after the wave of emotions you felt when you thought King Dodongo had killed your friend Navi. You awoke Farore’s Wind because of your strong desire to save Princess Ruto. And Nayru’s Love was kindled during your selfless act of destroying the Barinade.”

“Yes, yes, I know most of this,” Link thought, feeling a little impatient.

“However,” the Fairy Mother carried on, as if sensing Link’s irritation, “the awakening of your powers does not explain why you suddenly lapse into fits of uncontrollable madness and cruelty, nor do you know where these powers come from. The answers to these questions are simple, Hero of Time. The truth of the matter is that you, Link, are a Magi-Con.”

Everyone except Kaepora blinked in confusion. “A Magi-what?” Sheik asked.

“A Mage-Bound,” the pixie humbly answered.

“What’s a Mage-Bound?” Link inquired.

“There are many ways to acquire the ability to use magic,” the Fairy Mother answered. “Some people are born with it naturally, while others dedicate their lives to learning it. Mage-Bounds are those who learn magic on their own as they grow, and they are considered some of the most powerful wielders of magic ever known. Many of history’s greatest mages and wizards were Magi-Con. My friend Kaepora Gaebora was also once a Magi-Con.”

Kaepora looked down at the floor upon hearing that, but Link was not sure if it was because of embarrassment or shame…

“However, there is a serious drawback with being a Mage-Bound. The powers of a Mage-Bound are unique in that they feed off the dark aspects of one’s soul: hate, anger, sadness, loneliness, fear. To awaken from their deep slumber, the powers of a Mage-Bound require an incredible surge of emotions. The more powerful the magic, the more intense the flow of emotions is required. Legends tell of some Magi-Con who possessed powers so great that their awakenings destroyed their very souls.

“It was no coincidence that the first power that awoke within you was Din’s Fire.”

Link felt a chill run down his spine, though he wondered whether it was because of the Fairy Mother’s story or because of the possibility it could’ve happened to him…

“There is another drawback with being a Magi-Con, and this one is far more dangerous than the first: the powers of a Mage-Bound want to be awakened. They want to be used.”

The chill running across Link’s back felt a lot colder now. “Wha…what do you mean they want to be awakened?” he asked almost nervously.

A note of gentle sadness could be heard in the Faria’s voice as she replied. “The powers of a Magi-Con desire nothing more than to feed upon the entire soul they are bound to. To accomplish this, they try to force the being who possesses these powers to change, to convert to the darker aspects of his soul. If the powers haven’t awoken yet, then they do all they can to awaken themselves. I’m sure you, Link, remember back in the Dodongo’s Cavern when you slew those two Lizalfos with such brutality. That was the your powers trying to awaken within you.”

Link felt his lips twist against themselves as he tried his best not to turn pale.

“And once your powers awoke, they took every opportunity they could to convert your soul to what they desired. All of your fits of madness were directly influenced by your magical essence as a Magi-Con, and soon they not only changed your soul but twisted your mind. After you lost your identity as a Kokiri and you were forever separated from the one you know as Saria, the influence of the powers within you increased frighteningly. And with each part of your soul that is devoured by your Mage-Bound magic, your lapses of madness grow more and more uncontrollable.

“And should you be pushed too far, there’s no telling what will come about with the powers you possess or what kind of destruction they will lead to…”

Link didn’t need to hear anymore. “How can I stop it?” he demanded frantically. “How can I stop myself from going mad? I was nearly killed when I last fought Volvagia because of one of those fits. I don’t want that to happen!”

“It took me years of rigid training and meditation before I finally managed to tame my magic,” Kaepora quietly announced as he raised his head again. “And even then I still had moments where I felt threatened. Controlling the dark desires of a Magi-Con’s powers is sadly a terrible burden; one must be in complete control of them if he is to live with such potential.”

“But I don’t have that kind of time!” Link indicated, starting to grow both angry and worried. “I can’t spend that long training myself like that! As the…” Link hesitated a moment as he forced himself to say the next sentence. “As the Hero of Time, I cannot give up my obligations like that. I just can’t.”

The Fairy Mother nodded gently, though the look in her eyes was an upsetting one. “Yes, I know of your need to make good time in your quest to destroy the one called Ganondorf. However, the method that Kaepora has proposed is the safest method for you to master your powers.”

Frustration gripped Link as he clenched his hands into a fist, threatening to hit something nearby. Why did everything have to go against him, even when was doing something he didn’t like the first place…wait a minute. What did she just say…?

“Wait, you just said that Kaepora’s method is the safest method,” he pointed out.

The Faria Garuia nodded slowly. “Yes, that’s right…”

“But it’s not the only method…is it?”

A stunned silence befell the chamber as an awkward look crept into the face of the Fairy Mother, her smile waning as she seemingly ponders over Link’s accusation. Both Sheik and Malatite, who were still shocked to learn about Link’s history of fits, quietly turned their attention to Link, who was glaring at the Faria with an intolerant scowl. Navi, on the other hand, remained still while seated on Link’s shoulder, her pink light flickering softly yet wildly due to the disquiet in the room.

Finally, after what seemed like forever, the Fairy Mother answered Link’s question. “No, it isn’t. There is one other method, and it is faster than the previously suggested method.”

Link’s eyebrows knitted together tightly in resentment at not being told this, but he didn’t say anything. Rather, he tapped his foot impatiently, awaiting an explanation from the Faria Garuia.

“However, the alternative method is very dangerous. It has been used only a handful of times on developing Magi-Con through the ages with only a limited number of successes. Using this method is strongly discouraged because of its potential for disaster.”

Link wasted no time in formulating a response. “But if it’s faster, then we don’t have any choice. What’s so dangerous about this method, anyway?”

The Fairy Mother made sure her eyes were staring directly into Link’s, holding his full attention, before she replied. “This method involves a trained mage taking a Mage-Bound’s mind and sending it into the depths of his soul. Once there, the Mage-Bound will face physical embodiments of his consciousness…including the dark entity of his Mage-Bound magic. The Mage-Bound must confront this manifestation directly and tame it through whatever means necessary. Doing this will result in his mind ‘learning’ how to control his powers at a much faster rate.

“However, as I said before, this method is extremely dangerous. There is very little documentation on what happens when a Mage-Bound confronts his powers in such a manner. The Magi-Con who survived this process rarely spoke of it again, and the others who were less than successful…went mad and ended up destroying themselves.”

Despite Link already making up his mind on going through with this idea, the seriousness in the Faria Garuia’s voice and the gentle yet solemn look in her eyes were enough to almost make him reconsider…

“Listen and listen well, Hero of Time,” the Fairy Mother added. “I strongly advise you not to attempt this method. I have the capability to carry the process out, but I’d much rather not risk such a dangerous procedure. However, it is your decision to make. As I said before, you are standing at a crossroad, and you need guidance to make your decision. I have given you all the guidance I can. Now you must make your decision.”

All eyes were on Link now. The Hero of Time could feel his skin twitch as he felt not only the Fairy Mother and Kaepora’s eyes staring at him, but also those of his friends. He understood that this was a really important decision for him to make, and thankfully he wasn’t being pressured into making one choice or the other. Oh, sure, the Faria Garuia “strongly advised” him not to take the second method…but at least he was being given a choice. For the first time in a long time, he finally was given a genuine, legitimate choice.

And the choice he made would be his…solely his…

His lips smiling knowingly, Link faced the Faria Garuia and gave his answer. “I will choose the second method. I want to face these powers of mine directly.”

Both Navi and Malatite released quick gasps of shock, while Kaepora lowered his head in a troubled sigh. Sheik was the only one to speak.

“Link…are you sure about this? It sounds too dangerous! Please, think about this more carefully…!”

“Your concern is noted, Sheik, but…” The Hylian turned his head to face the Sheikah. “…I already have thought about it carefully.”

“But the risks…”

“…are ones I’m willing to take, thank you.”

The Sheikah had no further responses, so Link once again turned to face the Fairy Mother. “And I’m sure you’re also going to warn me again about the risks. Well, I have made up my mind. Nothing you say will convince me otherwise. It’s my decision, as you pointed out, and I have decided to accept the risks.”

The Faria Garuia stared silently at Link for a long moment before she released a long sigh. “Very well, Hero of Time. I shall respect your decision and allow you to walk the path you have chosen. I shall, however, remind you that you can change your mind before I…”

“Don’t…start with me,” Link interjected sternly, raising an almost accusing finger at the Fairy Mother. “Just get on with it.”

The Fairy Mother, a little taken aback by Link’s firmness, replied, “All right…but do you really wish to start the process now? Would you prefer to rest your body and your mind before you enter your subconscious? It is never clear how long this procedure will take, and being refreshed might give you an edge during your confrontation. The extra time will also give you an opportunity to think your decision through and…”

“No! Do it now!”

Link’s bellow tore through everyone’s eardrums like a thunderclap and silenced the Faria Garuia instantly. He had listened to the Fairy Mother’s suggestions rather objectively at first, but the moment she mentioned the possibility of him changing his decision he quickly decided not to fall for her tactics. He had made his choice, and he was not going to let anyone change it.

When the Fairy Mother didn’t reply to Link’s roar, the Hero of Time stepped forward towards the pool, glared irately at her, and snarled, “Didn’t you hear me? I said do it now. I will not leave this room until you do it, and that is my final word on the matter. Do you understand me?”

As if frightened by Link’s abrupt change of character, the Faria Garuia nodded with a gentle yet noticeable shudder. “Yes…I understand perfectly.” She took several deep breaths to calm herself down before continuing, “I’ll…I’ll do it now. I…I need you to kneel down where you stand.”

Still keeping his incensed gaze fixed on the Faria Garuia’s face, Link slowly and carefully knelt down in front of the pool. The Fairy Mother waited for him to fully kneel before she moved her hands around in small circles; moments later, she began gliding downward, her feet dipping themselves inside the water-like substance in the pool. As she lowered herself, she crossed her legs behind her as if she too were kneeling…except she was still floating in the air. She stopped descending once her chest was level with Link’s eyes, which were still watching the Fairy Mother’s face warily.

“Close your eyes,” the Faria Garuia asked Link as she reached out and placed her hands on Link’s head, cupping his cheeks with her palms. The Kokiri pursed his lips together before he did close his eyes. “Now relax, Hero of Time. I need to prepare your mind for the journey. Just remain absolutely still and relax…”

As she said this, the Fairy Mother closed her own eyes and slowly raised her head, as if being kissed softly on her neck. A soft sigh escaped from her lips as she began delicately tracing her fingertips across Link’s cheeks, and soon her entire body began to shiver as if being pleasured all over.

“What…what’s she doing?” Sheik asked Navi, who had made her way to the Sheikah after Link had stormed his way to the pool.

“She’s guiding Link’s mind into his subconscious,” the fay answered. “But she can’t guide it there until it’s properly conditioned. If Link’s mind isn’t properly conditioned, then entering his soul could destroy it.”

The Sheikah turned back to the Hero of Time with a worried look in his eyes. “Link…”


Despite being angry at the Faria Garuia for trying to subtly convince him to change his decision, Link strangely found it quite easy to relax as soon as he felt her fragile touch against his skin. His frustration melted away as his tense muscles loosened and his heartbeat stabilized. The breathes he drew grew deeper and deeper, and soon he felt so tranquil that he could’ve easily fallen asleep.

But something in his mind refused to let him fall asleep, and he wasn’t sure if that was because of the Fairy Mother or his own doing. At first all he “saw” was the darkness from closing his eyelids, but as he calmed down his mind started to wander a little, retrieving memories from his subconscious to entertain his alert psyche…

Just then, he heard a soft, shrill whistle. He didn’t know where it was coming from, but he dared not open his eyes to find out. The whistling grew louder and louder with each passing second until it was strident enough to threaten deafening him. He winced as he cried out into the darkness in an attempt to cope with the pain, but the harsh sound refused to give him a single moment of comfort.

But what followed next was what really got Link’s attention. Without warning, the shrill whistle “exploded”, sending a soft bang that echoed across the void. As it did, the inky blackness surrounding Link vanished, rapidly being replaced by a white abyss that disappeared behind a materializing horizon. The emptiness that was the ground morphed into a crystallized terrain, stretching as far as the eye could see.

The formation of the new topography took less than a minute to complete, but Link had already familiarized himself with the scenery before it had finished constructing itself. Although it was not a void per se, it was pretty close. The white sky was all colored the same ashen shade, and the crystal soil appeared to be flat from end to end with nary a defect in sight.

“Where…am I…?” Link muttered to himself, his voice surprisingly echoing several times as he spoke. “What is this place…?”


Link abruptly turned around. To his astonishment, he saw someone he never thought he’d ever see again.

Saria…” he murmured. “But how…?”

“Aren’t you coming to play your ocarina for me? I hope you’ve been practicing.”

It took Link several moments to figure it out, but he soon realized with a heavy heart that what he was seeing wasn’t Saria. It was some kind of…projection of her against the colorless hollow sky. He was watching an image of her “play out” against the pale background, almost as if it were…were…

“A memory…” he uttered aloud.

“You didn’t practice? Link, I’m disappointed in you. And I so badly wanted to hear you play…”

Yes, he understood now. This was one of his memories of his childhood, long before he had ever met Navi. Was this an effect of the process the Fairy Mother was using to send him into his consciousness…?

“Really? All Kokiri have fairies?”

A second voice prompted Link to look behind him, allowing him to see another memory play out before his eyes. This one was of Princess Zelda, probably set during the few days he spent at the palace with her.

“You must take me to the Lost Woods when all of this is over, Link. I would really like to meet some of your friends…”

When this is all over. How he longed for that moment…

“Hey, Fairy Boy. What are you thinking about?”

Another memory, again from behind. When Link turned, this time he was staring at an image of Malon.

“You’re going to remove your bandages later today? Are you sure about that? Well…all right, but I’m a little unsure…”

That was her before he removed the bandages covering his burnt hand. The look of concern in her eyes still seemed to haunt Link…

“Just think, Link. After this, we can go home.”

Link turned to see a memory of Navi.

“I just hope that princess doesn’t have anything else for us to do. After all, we got all three Spiritual Stones. What more does she want from us?”

That memory was from his raft journey after he had acquired the Spiritual Stone of Water. As he watched, Link still wondered why these scenes were playing out before him. Was there some purpose behind him seeing them…?

Just then, the pallid sky began to darken a little.


“Hey, Mr. No Fairy!”

When Link turned and saw Mido staring at him, he gaped in disbelief.

“Yeah, I’m talking to you! I’m just here to tell you that Saria doesn’t like you anymore! She told me that she thinks you’re a klutz with the intelligence of a carp.”

A memory of Mido back when he was still a bully. Did that have something to do with the sky darkening…wait, it was growing darker again…

“Get away from there, you little punk!”

Link turned around to come face to face with Ingo.

“I don’t care what that little brat Malon told you. I don’t want you near these horses, do you understand me?”

A memory of Ingo when Talon was still in charge of Lon Lon Ranch. Link realized that as the sky was darkening his memories were “darkening” as well…and the sky was dimming even now. What could his next memory be…?


It wasn’t a voice he heard behind him; it was a giant footstep. Turning around, Link’s face nearly drained itself of blood when he saw himself staring face to face with Gohma, the parasite that had killed the Great Deku Tree.

“What in the world…?” Link yelled as loud as he could.

In response, the memory of Gohma screamed her terrifying scream, the same one she had screamed when Link had slain one of her children. Her single eye growing red with anger, Gohma charged…


A second scream behind him caused Link to turn around again, this time so he could witness King Dodongo release a powerful blast of fire from his mouth as he roared.


A fizzling of electrical current drew Link’s attention to another memory, this one of the Barinade firing several streams of deadly voltage.

“Pray to your dead tree god, boy. You’re about to die.”

Looking upon the decaying face of Phantom Ganon, even in a memory, was enough to send chills down Link’s spine as he watched the specter ride his ghost horse.


Link expected to see Volvagia behind him, and hearing the dragon’s shrill scream only confirmed it as he witnessed the snake-like beast charging towards him, beak open, ready to release a deadly blast of fire…

“What’s going on?” Link screamed in his mind, noticing that the sky was almost pitch black by now. “Why am I being shown this? What is this all for? Why? Why? Why…?”

“You pathetic, little fool.”

Link felt ice run down his spine as he turned around to face the man whom he both loathed and feared at the same time…

“You have no idea who you are dealing with. But soon, you and all the world will know the true power of Ganondorf!”

Even if it was just a memory, Link still froze in horror when he saw Ganondorf’s wicked eyes staring down at him, threatening to kill him with just a single attack. The wicked smile of the Gerudo’s face sneered down at him, laughing at him, mocking him…

“Pathetic, little fool…”

“No…!” Link demanded, taking a step back. “Get away from me!”

“…little fool…”

“No! I said get away! Get away from me!”


“Stop it! Go away! Leave me alone! Leave me alone, curse you!


“Get awaaaaaaaaaay!”

Without thinking, Link took his fist and swung it as hard as he could at the memory. Unexpectedly, his fist “collided” with the horizon…and shattered it. The sound of sprinkled glass ricocheted across the crystallized plain as the shards fell away, taking everything with them: the darkened sky, the memories in the sky…everything except the ground itself.

Within a few moments, the shattering had finished, the shards had dissipated into the void, and there was silence across the nothingness once more. The sky was again pale, and there were no memories to be seen. Still, Link had to take several deep breaths to calm himself down, and even then he still felt incredibly on edge.

“What…was that all about…?” he demanded aloud. “Why was I shown that…wait a minute, what’s this?”

Link cut himself off as his eyes caught sight of something in the distance. He took a few steps forward as he squinted to get a better look, but that didn’t help him any. He was forced to wait for a few minutes before he finally saw what it was heading in his direction.

It was storm clouds. Black, monstrous storm clouds.

“Now what?”

Link didn’t get an answer as he was forced to watch the black thunderclouds slowly and methodically roll their way across the sky above him, covering the ashen sky with their menacing bulks. There was no lightning, but thunder rolled constantly, though it didn’t echo like Link’s voice did. Within several minutes, the sky in all directions as far as the eye could see was blocked by the intimidating clouds, generating a very gloomy mood.

All Link could do was look around in silence, wondering what the clouds meant and why they were here. There were no irregularities within the clouds themselves (other than the lightning-less thunder), and nothing else seemed to accompany them. So why…?

—Did I keep you waiting?—

Link jerked his head around in every direction, trying to see where the voice had come from, but he could see nothing except the clouds.

“Who are you?” he called out. “Where are you?”

—I’m right here. All around you—

“All around me? What game are you playing with me? Show yourself this instant!”

—It’s no game, I can assure you. After all, the reason you came here isn’t game, now is it?—

Link realized that he could hear a subtle note of mockery in the mysterious voice, which in turn made him grow irritated.

“If this isn’t a game, then why don’t you show yourself, you bastard!”

—As I told you before, I’m right here, all around you. How many times do I have to tell you that?—

Link was about to bark at the voice how angry he was getting when a thought occurred to him. Could the mysterious voice be…?

“Wait…so what you’re saying is…you’re the storm clouds?”

—You could say that—

So he was playing games with him. “Cut the garbage, damn it!” Link bellowed. “If you’re not going to be straight with me and tell me who you are, then…”

—So you want me to be straight with you, do you? Very well. Yes, I am the storm clouds…but I’m much more. The clouds are merely how I’m choosing to show myself to you at the moment. In reality I’m all around you – you  just have to search me out…but then again, that’s the reason you came here, so I guess you’ve succeeded—

Although being more direct, Link was still growing tired of the voice’s riddling words. “Will you make sense already? Why in the name of the Three Goddesses would I search you out?”

—Because I’m that which you seek. I’m the power that dwells within you, the one you have come here to confront so you may tame me—

Link felt his heart skip a beat when he heard those words, and it took another heartbeat for them to sink in. If what the voice said was true – that this was the manifestation of his Mage-Bound powers – then that meant Link was now in the depths of his soul. It also meant that the manifestation knew of Link’s desire to challenge and tame it, although he didn’t know if that really gave it an advantage.

Still, the Fairy Mother had done what he had asked by sending his mind into his subconscious. Now it was Link’s turn to do what he needed to do…

“Is that so?” Link called out, trying to sound as brave as possible. “Then come and face me! You know why I’m here, so there’s no point in me explaining why!”

The storm clouds seemed to rumble as if in laughter.

—Indeed. But do you honestly believe you have a chance to defeat me? I’m all around you, don’t forget. I can strike you down with one word and you wouldn’t even be able to evade my attack—

Link wasn’t sure if the manifestation was bluffing or not, but he couldn’t back out from this now. “If you really can…then I dare you to do it! I’m not afraid of you!”

This time Link heard an actual snicker from the mysterious voice.

Heh, heh, heh, heh, heh. You’re very amusing, you know that? But I’m afraid I must decline your challenge, because if I were to kill you where you stand, I would also be killing myself. Destroying your mind would end up destroying your soul, after all—

Link didn’t have a response to that statement, and he didn’t have a chance to think of one.

—No, I will not accept your challenge because the outcome is already decided. Instead, I’m going to do something else with you—

“And what’s that?” Link demanded.

—Reveal to you the truth—

The unexpectedness of that statement was enough to cause Link to gape in disbelief. “Reveal…the truth? What in the name of the Three Goddesses are you talking about?”

—Simple. I’m going to reveal to you, right here and now, all the lies that you’ve been told. All the falsehoods that have been used to make you a pawn in other people’s game—

Link looked around the thunderclouds frantically, his mind unsure of whether to trust what this voice was telling him. “I…I’m not falling for your tricks. You’re just trying to get me to let down my guard…”

—This is no trick. You have been fed lies and deceptions so that you would do things you shouldn’t be doing. You yourself have suspected this before, but I shall reveal to you that your suspicions are sound—

“No!” Link screamed. “I don’t believe you! I’m not going to fall for it! If you want to fight me, stop using such dirty tricks…”

—Maybe you’ll pay better attention if I ask you a simple question: do you believe in destiny?—

Link was ready to deny the voice’s words again, but when he heard the question he felt something grow numb inside.

“Do I…believe in destiny? What do you mean?”

—Exactly what I said. Do you believe that certain beings are destined to do things that they have no control over? Do you believe in a mysterious fate that dictates your every move?—

At first Link was speechless. He had grown to strongly despise hearing anything about destiny or fate, and he even took actions to turn his back on destiny at one point, but he couldn’t recall ever questioning whether he believed in it. What was the owner of this voice up to…?

“I…I don’t know if I believe in it. I don’t like it, but I’m not sure if I can just deny its existence…”

—And why not?—

Link blinked in puzzlement. “Excuse me?”

—If you loathe destiny so much, then what reason do you have to believing in it? Don’t we have to believe in something called fate in order for it to affect our lives? If you don’t like destiny, you don’t need to believe in it—

“That…that’s not true,” Link quickly pointed out. “Even if I didn’t believe in destiny, I would’ve still pulled out the Master Sword, which would’ve still sealed me up for seven years…”

—Are you sure about that? You removed that sword because you decided to believe in the Deku Tree’s “path of destiny”. You walked that path even though you knew nothing about it, and look what happened: you ended up pulling out that stupid blade and sealing yourself up for seven years—

Link could almost swear he felt the voice’s owner smile before it continued.

—And besides, even if you did end up pulling out the sword without walking that supposed “path of destiny”, why allow the sword to control your life afterwards? Sure, there was nothing you could do while you were sealed up, but there was nothing preventing you from denying its “destiny” after you awoke. You owed nothing to anyone because of that seven year imprisonment. Nothing—

As much as he wish he couldn’t, Link couldn’t help but see the logic in the manifestation’s words. But still…

“So what are you saying? I should’ve just ignored everything and everyone?”

—If that was your choice, then yes. You could’ve easily chosen not to do what everyone else wanted you to do. You could’ve remained at home in the Kokiri Forest instead of head out on a quest under the pretension of a “path of destiny”. You could’ve made a new life for yourself rather than “fulfill your destiny” by becoming the Hero of Time, a title you’ve now grown to hate.

—You had the ability to make a choice, but you were deceived into thinking you had to give in to an idea called fate. There’s no way around it. Everyone has lied to you—

Link wrapped his hands around his ears, trying not to hear the voice’s strangely rational explanations. “Stop it…don’t say anything…”

—Your life has been ruined by believing in this garbage called destiny, and you know it. You left your home and never returned because of it. You’ve been fighting other people’s battles as the Hero of Time because of it. And some of your friends used it as an excuse to abandon you—

“My…friends…?” Link whispered with his hands still over his ears, his body beginning to tremble violently.

—I speak of course of Saria and Darunia. You loved Saria with all your heart and you desired to be reunited with her…but because of “destiny” she now remains separated from you forever as a Sage. You wished to renew your friendship with Darunia, one of your few remaining friends in this world…but because of “destiny” he too has separated himself from you forever. Their belief in destiny continued to destroy everything around you—

To Link’s horror, he found himself believing in the words he was hearing. “No!” he pleaded, crouching down on his knees. “I don’t believe you! I don’t believe a thing you’re saying!”

—But you should! If that’s not enough to convince you, then look at the one called Sheik—

Link looked up at the storm clouds, his entire body trembling. “Sh…Sheik…?”

—Sheik has manipulated you ever since he first met you, using your title as the Hero of Time to carry out what he says you need to do. Whenever you questioned him, he refused to give you a say in anything. You turned your back on destiny after you lost Saria to destiny, but what did Sheik do after that? He made you accept it once again. Yes, you strongly hated it, but you still accepted it—

“No…you’re wrong!” Link cried, looking away from the storm clouds again, shaking his head between his hands. “Sheik would never do that to me!”

—Are you sure about that? Whenever you doubted being the Hero of Time, or did something that you weren’t supposed to do, Sheik was right there to force you into how you’re allegedly meant to be. Your recent escapades in the Fire Temple are a perfect example of that—

“No! That’s…that’s not true! I was…I was wrong to act like that! I regret acting like that…”

—Now you’re the one who’s lying—

Link glanced up at the clouds, his eyes wide with confusion and sadness. “Wh…what…?”

—You don’t regret acting like that at all. In fact, I think you enjoyed that feeling. I remember your vow to turn you back on destiny after you lost Saria. After you made that vow, you felt better. Why? Because you made a choice. You still believed in destiny, but you took a step forward by denying part of what fate asked of you—

“No…” Link weakly muttered, but the voice refused to listen.

—Admit it. When you made that vow, you freed part of your soul from the confines of believing in a superstitious entity called destiny. And when you were forced to believe in it again, you felt miserable. Why else do you hate destiny? Why else do you hate being the Hero of Time? Because you’re once again losing the freedom you tasted by making that vow—

“Please…stop…” Link uttered softly.

—But now you have a choice. You have the choice of stepping beyond where you went before. You vowed to walk your own path, but to still fulfill your basic duties as the Hero of Time. You do not even have to do that. You can do much more. So much more—

Link forced himself to stare at the clouds despite an inner desire to turn away. “What…what do you mean?”

—What I mean…is that you can reject your title as the Hero of Time—

Link’s face grew pale when the voice made that suggestion, but not because the suggestion was made. No, Link’s face grew pale when he realized he was close to agreeing with it…

“But…but I can’t do that…”

—Why not?—

“Because…because I have a duty to save the people of Hyrule…”

—You have no such thing! That so-called duty is rolled up in that destiny filth associated with being called the Hero of Time. That duty was forced upon you when you were unwillingly made the Hero of Time. It is not your duty at all—

Incredibly, Link’s curiosity started to take hold of him. “Then…who’s duty is it?”

—It’s the duty of the ones who started this mess! It’s the duty of that wretched Deku Tree who coaxed you to walk your supposed “path of destiny”. It’s the duty of that bastard Sheik who’s fighting a war you have no right to be in. But, above all…it’s the duty of that little bitch Zelda who has refused to show her face because she knows the truth concerning why you’re fighting in her name—

Before, Link would’ve grown angry at anyone calling Princess Zelda a “little bitch”…but as he slowly stood up from his crouch, Link felt nothing in his heart like that. Instead, he felt…assurance…

“So what you’re saying…is that I should abandon my title as the Hero of Time? Just give it up?” he asked with a surprising sense of confidence.

—Not just that, but everything associated with it. Everyone and anything around you that has hurt you…you have no need to keep them around you any longer. You have the choice to abandon them, and since you despise being the Hero of Time so much, there is nothing in your way to stop you—

“But…that would include NaviMalatiteMido…the Sages…what do I with them…?”

“Fuck them.”

The manifestation’s short yet ruthlessly direct statement amazingly had no effect on Link. He didn’t flinch or blink or even pause to think it over. He just…accepted it…accepted it in stony silence.

—Given the chance, they would do anything to convince you to once again believe in destiny and all of its carp-shit. If you truly wish to be free of the stranglehold of destiny, you must get rid of everything that holds you down. This includes those whom you believe are your friends, the ones who have held you back all this time. Do you understand what I’m saying?—

A brief period of silence fell over the plains as Link pondered the manifestation’s ideas. Then, slowly, his lips began to curl upward into a sneering grin.

“I understand…perfectly.”

A victorious chortle resonated across the landscape.

—Wonderful. You really are as smart as I thought you were—

“I know I am,” Link laughed, his eyes looking up at the clouds with a vicious yet compliant gaze. “And now I shall show you just how much I’ve learned…”

Link then threw his head back and sent a cruel, malicious cackle reverberating across the void, his hands raised in triumph towards the thundering sky.

“Ah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ahhh, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha haaaaaaaaaaa…!”



Link’s struggling scream climaxed with a loud bang as he tore his head away from the Fairy Mother’s hands, sending both the Hylian and the Faria Garuia reeling backwards. Link almost landed on his back, but he managed to catch himself; the Fairy Mother, meanwhile, used her ability to float to prevent herself from crashing into the back of the pool.

As both Link and the Faria struggled to catch their breath, cries of worry instantly filled the chamber.

“Link! By Din’s Fire, Link!” Sheik screamed, feeling helpless unable to move from Malatite’s back.

Faria Garuia!” Kaepora Gaebora exclaimed in alarm. “What happened? Are you all right?”

“I…I’m fine, Old One,” the Fairy Mother replied as she slowly righted herself. “It’s just that…Link broke my spell rather unexpectedly. I couldn’t do anything to stop him.”

“Link broke the connection?” the pixie inquired as he turned to face the Hylian, who was still struggling to regain his breath. “And in such a forceful manner? But how could he do something like that…?”

Meanwhile, Navi was already hovering over Link, her light flickering wildly in panic. “Link! Link! Are you all right? Say something to me! Link!”

The Hero of Time, took several more deep breaths before he finally flopped himself forward, resting his upper body on his hands. “I’m…I’m fine. Quit worrying about me.”

“Quit worrying about you?” Navi shrieked as she perched on his shoulder. “All I seem to be doing these days is worry about you! I’ll do what I want, thank you very much!”

“Link…are you sure you’re all right?” Sheik asked quickly as Malatite carried him to the Hylian’s side. “Are you sure…?”

“I already told you, I’m fine, Sheik,” Link answered quietly, looking down to the ground as he spoke.

A sigh of relief could be heard escaping from the Sheikah’s lips. “I…I’m glad. You had me worried there for a second.”

A frail smile seemed to creep across Link’s lips as he stated, “Don’t mention it.”

“Link,” the Fairy Mother quietly interjected as she finished positioning herself properly over her pool again. “I’m glad to see that you’re all right, but…I have to ask you if you accomplished what you set out to do.”

Link’s smile broadened a tiny bit, though he still refused to look up. “What do you mean?” he asked almost with a snicker. “Didn’t you see what happened?”

“I’m afraid not. When I sent your mind into your consciousness, my vision was blocked by a barrage of loose memories. I couldn’t see beyond them or find a way to get past them. It was as if they were set up there to block anyone but you from entering.”

A hissed chuckle left Link’s lips. “Really…so that’s what they were for…”

“But Link…please tell me if you accomplished your task. Did you tame the Mage-Bound powers within your soul?”

“Oh, I did more than that…” Link then finally looked up at the Faria Garuia, his eyes as red as if he had not slept in a week. “You won’t believe what I did down there. You won’t believe it at all.”

“What did you do?” Navi asked curiously.

Link widened his smile as he turned to face his fairy. “I learned the truth about you and everything else, you little pest.”

Then, all at once, Link raised one his hands and used his fingers to flick Navi off his shoulder, sending the fay flying across the chamber. Navi, too surprised to stabilize herself, collided with the wall with a gentle ping before falling to the ground.

The astonishment that developed in the air was thick enough to cut with a sword.

“Link…what are you doing?” Sheik demanded, his eyes wide in disbelief. “You just…”

“I know what I just did, you miserable bastard.”

Sheik couldn’t believe what he had just heart. “Link…what…?”

“What, are you going to tell me that doing that is not proper conduct as the Hero of Time?” Link asked with a sneer as he stood up, turning his head to face his speechless companions. “Are you going to tell me I should behave a certain way?”

His smile then faded, giving way to a look of seriousness mixed with heated fury. “Well, I’m going to tell you something, Sheik. I’m not going to listen to you anymore. I’m not going to be taken in by the garbage you’ve been feeding me all this time. I don’t care what you have to say any longer, you worthless piece of filth. I walk my own path now, not yours.”

Sheik was still shocked by Link’s sudden transformation, so all he could say was, “Link…I don’t understand what you’re saying…”

“Then understand this,” Link scowled as he reached behind his back and removed the Master Sword from its sheath. He held the blade in full view, making sure that Sheik could get a good look at it. “See this sword, Sheik? See it? You said that the Master Sword chose me as its wielder, and that it is my destiny to use this sword to save Hyrule. Well, guess what?”

Without hesitating, Link spat on the blade’s surface and threw it as hard as he could to the ground. The Master Sword made a sickening clang as it struck the floor, almost as if it were crying…

“You and your bloody destiny can all go to Hael.”

Then, without another word, Link turned around and headed down the tunnel that didn’t lead back to the volcanic crater, leaving a stunned group of individuals in his wake…

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