Forcing the IssueEdit
Isaac Kinslayer, Kakariko Village, Evening ThreeEdit
It was still some time before full dark as Isaac strode, concealed within some Twili illusion magic that made him appear his once-normal Hylian self, into the village nestled at the base of Death Mountain. Along with him came a pair of agents of the Twili, intelligence operatives also magicked in shadow to appear as Hylian refugees, hard-worn and travel stained. Unlike the hidden village to the north, a remnant of a remnant, Kakariko Village was not overrun. Still, more than a few clusters of refugees fleeing the bloodshed cluttered its broad, dusty street. The slow-setting sun cast slanted golden rays across patched tents and filthy, bloodied faces, and set the motes of dust and dirt afire in the air.
"Keep a keen eye for anything that appears out of place," he instructed the two others under his breath as they walked deeper into the heart of the one-street town.
"Two eyes, preferably," the one named Coel quipped.
"You're sure he's here?"
The answer was delayed as they passed a Goron lumbering past them in the opposite direction, bearing an armload of spare supplies toward a small group of Hylians struggling to erect a tent in the shadow of one of the taller wooden buildings.
"Best intelligence reports we've got suggest he's here. We lost track of him a long time ago, though." That was Bryn, the other one. Coel's sister, he thought, though in all honest he neither remembered nor cared overmuch.
He didn't respond. He was scanning the surroundings. This village had never been particularly bustling, but there did seem to be more activity than he'd seen in recent memory here. The Gorons were a significant presence everywhere he looked. Guards, he realized. The Hylian forces were all further north, so the Gorons had descended in some force from Death Mountain to protect Kakariko Village. Strange, that.
"Why wouldn't they simply abandon this village? Goron City and their mines are secure and more than spacious enough to house them all. That'd be a far more defensible a location than here, with little more than a pair of rickety gates to hold back the hordes should they march here." He wasn't really speaking to the other two. Merely musing out loud. They seemed to realize the fact and remained silent as he scrutinized their surroundings.
There were a lot of Gorons. It was impossible to miss, now that he was looking. Rolling to and fro, going about their various business. Not that there was much business to conduct.
"Yes... Kinslayer?" There was always such a distinct unease when they spoke his name.
"Kill someone. Do it out in the open." He turned his eyes around on her, and for a moment the flames in them flared through the illusion. "I want to see what they do."
"They'll kill me if I do that, Kinslayer."
"And if you don't, I'll kill you, and you'll find that a lot less pleasant."
For his part, Coel remained silent. Either he wasn't truly Bryn's brother, or the Twili had much less compunction about sacrificing their kin. That silence was deafening, and it left the young Twili spy with little choice. Setting her jaw, she nodded, reaching down to draw the short sword at her hip. While she moved out into the street toward a cluster of refugees, Isaac and the other sank back into the shadows in an alley between tall buildings, mostly out of sight, and waited. The reaction would tell him everything he needed to know.
And then Isaac would kill another King.
Isaac Kinslayer, Kakariko Village, Evening ThreeEdit
The Twili operative, glamoured to appear as a Hylian girl of two dozen years in a riding dress, looked utterly in place striding out into the middle of the dusty street, but for the furtive looks she cast in either direction.
"You should have sent me, m'lord," Coel uttered from behind him. "Bryn's an expert infiltrator, but her hand tends to slip when it comes to knifework."
Isaac snorted. "Lord?"
"... Kinslayer. But my sister's no assassin."
"That's about to change," Isaac replied. For just long enough to give me a window.
A pair of Gorons, covered in iron pauldrons and wristguards and open-faced helms but bearing their thick, stony front and backs--but for a single band of riveted iron across the chest--came stomping down the main thoroughfare, heavy hammers gripped in their fists swinging back and forward with every stride. Bryn had moved out far enough into the middle of the street that they were moving straight toward her. She was evidently uneasy, but judging by the looks on the faces of every refugee Isaac had seen thus far that was no entirely unexpected. The enormous sentries would have to split to bypass her. Isaac peered, watching closely, waiting for her twili dagger to flash in the light of the setting sun. He saw her hand drift to the back of her belt.
The Gorons moved around her as slow-flowing lava around a jut of stone on a mountainside and fell back into step and continued on, and the Twili agent's blade remained in its sheath.
"I told you, ah, Kinslayer. She's not much for getting bloody."
"No, but she has a keen eye," Isaac replied, for as he continued to watch her from his shaded alleyway, he could see her take a few steps in the direction of a clutch of travel-worn Hylians huddled around a tall figure in flowing robes of orange with a sash of crimson looping over the left shoulder across the chest and stomach and looping all the way to the hem of the robes beneath, embroidered in gold with the emblems of the Hylian faith of the Golden Triune. The cleric stood at the edge of a wooden porch. Flanking him stood a pair of Hylian guardsmen in breastplates and visored helms, bearing spears and shields with the golden triangles and the crimson phoenix on them on a field of blue, with capes hanging down their backs just past their sword belts. But where one appeared newly equipped, the other's steel was dull, dented and scratched, his cape moth-eaten, his bearing stooped and weary.
"... the faithful are ever tested, my friends. Threats in every hue of black have besieged Hyrule since time immemorial, when demonkind first squirmed out of the dark places, full of hate for the Light and Order of the new world that our ladies had together wrought, seeking to overturn it."
The assembled mass sat in the dirt, gazing up at him as his words washed over them.
"These Twili are but the last in a long history of interlopers inciting war against the Goddesses, and I admit that the vastness of their horde and the intensity of their animus toward us shook my faith and left me hollow. And as I sought desperately for a sign of the Goddesses' protection, every good turn took an ill one shortly after. They sent us champions and then they took them from us! They tore down the castle of Hylian Kings and filled our fair city with the dead! They devastated the south with magic, blighting our forests, and they sent an unnatural ice through our waterways and froze our rivers and lakes solid."
The words of this sermon seemed to have taken root in the crowd, and they hung on every word this priest spoke in his booming intonation. Bryn edged closer, Isaac saw, drawn in by the passionate speech.
"Come, let us go get your sister before she converts," Isaac growled, clasping his hands behind his back and stepping from the shadows back into the street.
The sermon had drawn more eyes, and other groups of refugees abandoned setting up their little tents or striking flint and steel into their bundles of twigs and dry leaves to draw nearer. Whoever this aged priest was, he spoke with an inelegant passion that enraptured those all around.
"The enemy, these Twili, now feel assured of their victory, and true to their name they have plunged Hyrule in the depthless black of night. The hour of the wolf is upon us, when the enemy's strength is at its greatest and it seems that no deliverance should come, but this hour is short and the twilight shall ever give way before the break of day. This I promise you."
As he strode closer, even Isaac felt taken in by the words. The nameless priest cast a peremptory look across the assembled crowd, standing a little straighter so that the roundness of his belly jutted outward, the thread of gold symbols on his crimson sash flashing in the sun's last, vestigial rays. Such a presence had this man, such a power to his words.
This could only be one man. Isaac was assured in that moment that he was looking upon the King of Hyrule, posing as a priest to give heart to his people and lend strength to their arms when the hammer stroke at last fell. Why else would a priest be guarded by armed men?
Safe within his illusion, he reached to his belt to carefully check his dagger in its sheath. The blade was clear and drew out an inch in total silence. His hand brushed the Sun Shard tucked into the back of his belt at the same time.
"Potent words, priest," he spoke loudly as he approached, beginning to push his way through the assembled onlookers. Few seemed to hear him or take note at all, so ensnared by the man's words, so ensorcelled by his elocution. Even Bryn gave way without a word or even a glance in his direction as he shoved her aside. "But I fear that your faith will go unrewarded."
"But of course, friend," the priest said, looking down at him with dull eyes, ones that seemed so unremarkable for one whose tongue was so silvered and potent. "Doubt lies heavy on the land, as ever it has in times such as these. But we have seen such times come and pass, and though the toll is ever high, we have gone on."
Of course they have, Isaac found himself thinking in agreement. Hyrule has faced the Ma, it has faced the dread lord of the desert reaches, it has faced the full fury of its elements, and it has faced its own worst impulses. The Lights have always risen as champions, bitter, broken champions though they may be.
He shook his head. No. These were not his thoughts. Not truly. Hyrule could be broken. It would be broken.
Why was there such a fog over his mind? The priest's words echoed like the chime of a bell reverberating endlessly.
"There will be... no snatching away victory this time."
The stooped guardsman shambled forward, straightening his back, straining to reach up and whisper into the priest's ear. The robed man nodded at whatever the hunched man said and fixed Isaac again with those dull eyes.
"Perhaps not, Kinslayer," the priest said, and Isaac felt something shatter in the air all about. His name seemed to hang in the stillness between them. "Perhaps you are right this time."
Suddenly eyes were looking to him from all around. Eyes were blinking in dirt-streaked faces as the Hylian onlookers turned their gazes to him and made to rise from their cross-legged crouches. Isaac realized only too late as he watched them climb to their feet all around that they were seeing him. Him. Not the glamour, but Isaac Kinslayer in all his glory.
"Faithful of Hyrule, this monster has come to kill me," the priest intoned deeply in that voice that bore such regal authority. "Take him!"
From all sides, hands snapped out to seize him.
Isaac Kinslayer, Subterranean Cells, Evening ThreeEdit
When he came back to himself sometime later it was a struggle to lift the pebble-scaled lids of his eyes, so heavy were they. Still he worked his pained jaw into a scowl as he became aware of the cold stone against his back, and forced his eyes wide. For a moment, the fiery flare of his gaze illuminated the dark cell in which he lay, just long enough for him to get a sketchy view of the rough-cut dome of a ceiling, so low that he wouldn't even be able to stand upright beneath its apex. There were no other comforts, save for a wooden bucket whose purpose he needn't guess by the smell of it. He felt no pain, only an immense weight in his leaden limbs and a sluggishness to his thoughts and recollections.
It felt, frankly, like he was waking from a psychic hypnosis of sorts. An enforced sleep. He had only momentary flashes of being taken. He'd been surrounded on all sides by refugees, most of them not even armed save for the odd cudgel or hunting knife they might have fled their homes with. He should have butchered them all, should have left Kakariko a smoking ruin.
And yet he hadn't. He'd fought, but his motions had been slow, his senses dull. For the first time in a long time, he'd been utterly and entirely subdued.
Gradually his forced himself off of his back, turning over as he rose and coming to his knees, not rising any further lest he knock his head against the low stone ceiling of his present accommodations. Instead he made a halfhearted hand-wave in front of him and loosed a thin stream of flame, bright orange but for the vague violet cast to its undefined edges, and let it coalesce into an orb that he set to a slow circuit around the outermost edges of his cell. It was bare stone, save for the bars of Goron forged steel. He'd always been able to tell their works from that of Hylian smiths, for their metals were crafted to withstand the harsh temperatures in which the stone folk dwelt. He could burn his way free, but it would take time. Depending on how deep below the surface they'd dragged him, it might be easier to melt his way through the stone walls than to attempt it.
Still snarling, he settled down into a cross-legged position and waited. Waited for the fog to clear from his mind, for the pressure to lift from his limbs.
A droplet of water, condensation or the moisture of some stream dribbling down between the minute fissures in the rock, fell from the ceiling and turned to a puff of steam against the glaring serpent undulating upon his bare chest. He'd been robbed of his arsenal after his capture. His grey jacket was gone, as was his dagger, and the Blue Ring he'd worn on his right hand, and the Sun Shard he'd kept tucked safely inside his belt. They'd left him his trousers and drakeskin boots, but naught else. And so, naked from the waist up in the relative darkness, he waited patiently for a light.
It came not much later.
Down the corridor beyond the bars of his cell, he heard the gentle pad of soft-soled boots on hard stone. Closer it drew, the thud of heel and slap of toes growing imperceptibly louder in his ears until the three figures came to a halt before the bars. The first was, as before, robed in orange with a crimson sash slung across his shoulders and falling all the way to the hem of his robes. The others, his perpetual guard, were girded in Hylian arms, one tall and dignified within his steel, the other stooped and wretched.
"Well Kinslayer, you've made yourself a fine mess this time," the robed man mused idly, reaching a hand up to stroke his clean-shaven face, with its perfect high cheek bones and square jaw. His jade eyes seemed to gleam in the light of his fireball lamp as he regarded his prisoner. "To think you actually managed to kill me once, not so long ago."
Isaac quirked an eyebrow at that, still sitting with his legs crossed, looking up into the man's shadowed face through the bars.
"I'm sorry, I've killed a lot of people over the years but only one king that I know of."
To his surprise, the words elicited only an amused chuckle.
"Indeed," the King mused.
"But," said another voice, rasping through the visor of his helmet, "neither is this man a ruler."
Isaac looked to the tall guardsmen at the King's left. Or, perhaps not the King?
"You want to back it up and run that by me again?"
Arms in gauntlets of padded leather inlaid with steel reached up and took hold of the helm, lifting it slowly away. The face that stared back at him, now revealed in the rotating light of his fireball, was regal, the gaze peremptory. It stunned him in that moment that he'd even considered that this other man could be the ruler of Hyrule for even an instant, resplendent though he was in his own right.
"Your Majesty," Isaac said in acknowledgement of the false-guard's true identity. It was a clever enough ruse.
He looked away from the King then, and back to the man who stood front and center before him, garbed in fine robes fit for any lord or monarch.
"So who the fuck are y--"
It dawned on him an instant later. The lordly demeanor, the force and power of his words. The face he looked upon now was different than the one he'd worn before, but Isaac recognized the imperious eyes set within it all the same. Most importantly, though, was was the wretched thing clad in pocked and rusted steel standing to his right, hunched and feeble. It all made sense. The whispered words on the wooden porch steps. The simple words spoken that had shattered his glamour. The words that had lain a thick bank of fog upon his mind.
"The Pariah..." he mouthed softly in wonder, looking from one then to the other. "And the Plenipotentiary."
"The very same, Kinslayer."
"What in the black hell are you doing here Eyes? Voice?" He asked as in that moment another droplet fell from the ceiling, hissing away against his chest in a puff of steam. In that moment he was none-too-pleased to find himself staring at the old man's puppets through the bars of a cell. "I thought I killed you both."
The Plenipotentiary stood, if possible, even straighter and taller, and took another step toward the bars. He took hold of one, grasping long fingers around it as he leaned in.
"You did," he replied jovially. "And yet here I am. You didn't honestly think that the Scion of Order would leave a thing like you untended, did you? You've been making an awful mess of things lately, after all, as you Primordials are wont to do. The Scion sent us to enact this guise in the hopes that you might make a mistake. And so you have."
He smirked. "We're constructs, Kinslayer, spelled together by the Scion himself. You didn't honestly believe a little knife work would be the end of it?"
Isaac snorted. "I suppose not. But do you really think you'll keep me here?"
"Probably not for long," this time it was the King who spoke, though for as kingly his bearing his words lacked the same power. "But maybe for just long enough."
"Get comfortable, Kinslayer." The syllables struck him like a hammer, and suddenly he felt a strong compulsion in him to lie back down on his back. "There are pressing matters to attend to, but we'll be back before long. The King has urgent questions and you'll be providing us answers, willing or no."
Umbra, Depths of the Lake, Night 3Edit
Slow. Slow, slow. Boring and slow! Stupid metal. Stupid dragon. Stupid lumber. Stupid, stupid, stupid. Can't trust others, can you dear? No. What's the point of multitasking if the taskers don't task?
Well, at least the metal was moving. Slowly, stupidly. But almost there. And the water was settled, the mud was stuck and drying. "Time to move."
Dragon first. Poor wings clipped. Sure, sure, the thing was able to handle itself, but so little time. Time, time, always the enemy. Those fools, just because she owned it, they thought they could use it all to their advantage! Wouldn't accept any help, would they, dear? No.
Well, so be it. It worked against them this time, isn't that ironic? So much ownership, yet so little control. The little seconds, slipping through a tight-held grip. Oh, how easy it would be to just let it all fall away... How easy, how simple, and how so very undesirable. No, no, that wouldn't do at all. "Time to move."
And then, the lake was empty.
Subterranean Cells - Night Three
In the depths, he lay. Dim, flickering light lit the edges of the catacomb, matching the flames which stuttered within him. Unwatched, he was, for the need to watch was gone with the words laid heavy upon his beaten brow. Shallow breath, after hours of shouting and snarling in rage, unable to hold back the words which bellowed forth. But that rage was quenched now, only the embers of his vast inferno warmed his soul.
A whisper, a voice out of memory. Its breath teased through him; the flames guttered.
"Poor dear. My dragon egg. Isn't it time you hatched?"
Softly, providing sustenance, the voice murmured a wordless entreaty. The inferno growled softly in recognition. Sustenance, yes. Power. Fuel! The small, dismal fire which lit his prison grew, flaring suddenly in power and intensity. Rims of an unholy purple, just on the edge of vision, flashed around the bright orange edges of each lapping tongue, the inner white intensity tearing at the stones around him.
And in that blinding light, a depth of shadow. A shape, like a body, but cut out from the world, crouched beside him.
"No time for laying down, love. You've work to do, don't you?"
Umbra smiled at her most promising investment as a smirk bloomed over his expression.
Ayala, Forest, Morning 3Edit
The trio made to the edge of forest in short time. Unfortunately doing so meant flying high and fast which is quiet uncomfortable for the inexperienced flyer in the group, something Ayala failed to take into account. Things would only get worse for Ella when Oberon noticed Kokage below them. Ayala tried to warn her new friend of the impending dive but failed to realize the high speed wind made her impossible to be heard and before Elle could say “what,” they entered a high speed plunge only pulling up to at the last possible second need to keep their organs from liquefying.
“Well, look whose back. Did you enjoy your night in the nice cots back at base?” Crim remarked upon seeing his lieutenant return.
Ayala just nodded paying meeting Crim’s sarcasm with her typical earnest cheerfulness, “Yup, I got my armor fix. See.”
Crim let out an exasperated sigh causing Len Ront to snicker. That fact that he could never tell is Ayala was seriously missing the point or just messing with him always vexed him, and Crim’s suffering always amused Len.
Ayala continued, “Actually I’m surprised to see you guys here, with Kokage. No wait, I guess I mean I’m surprised to see him here with you. I figured he’d bail once I left.”
“Continuing to helping them gets them out of the forest quicker. That’s the only reason.” Kokage responded bluntly as ever.
“Ah, don’t act you don’t care,” she teased knowingly.
“Anyway Lieutenant,” Capt D’Ren boomed having grown tired of the sudden distraction, “Do you have any news or orders from base?”
“Oh right, yah-” Ayala proceeded to explain the current situation include the impending final attack on Kakariko, the need for the Blessing of Ordon, and the possibility thatGrem was being strengthened by everyone killed during the war.
Upon hearing the explanation Kokage suddenly turned and started walking towards Ordon, “If Ordon is your goal that means part of the forest is a target of your enemies. With the time spent helping all of you it has been left unguarded for far too long.”
“That’s his way of saying he’s going to help. I have to go.” Ayala said before chasing after the Elemental.
“There goes our Squad Leader, running off again.” Crim sighed.
“You’re going with her, and take Pvt Rick with you.” D’ren ordered
“Tsk, damn it,” Crim mutter before grabbing the private and running to catch up the others.
Ella Huntley, Forest, Morning 3Edit
As the others talked Ella kept a close eye on the forest around them. Back in the good old days she trained here with her father learning the skills and trade of a bounty hunter. She thought back to the first time she ever caught a bounty, ambushing the wanted man from the shadows. Ella slowly prowled around ignoring most of the conversation. When her companions finished talking she closed her eyes as the faint sound of snapping tree branches reached her ears.
“Shhh! Did you hear that?”
Before the others could respond Ella ran off into the dense woods like an animal on the hunt. She vaulted over roots and ducked under branches, finally coming face to face with a lone Twili. As the red eyed man caught sight of her she let loose a throwing star with such speed even Ella wondered how she achieved it. Though caught off guard the Twili held up a metal gauntlet and froze the throwing star in midair.
With the power gloves Magnesis properties activated the Twili snapped his fingers and let the frozen projectile fall.
“Stop! There’s no need to…” Before the Twili could speak Ella threw another throwing star. Though stopping it as easily as last time, Ella quickly leaped up into the tree tops and stalked her pray from above. The Twili in turn spotted her and pulled the largest boomerang Ella had ever seen out from behind his back. It had to at least be the size of a longsword, yet it flew effortlessly into the air.
Quite harmlessly as it went nowhere near Ella. Before she could comment on his poor aim, her adversary magnetically latched on to the boomerang and started guiding it through the tree tops like a buzz saw. Ella leapt from tree to tree narrowly avoiding the whirling weapon. In a vain attempt at communication the long bearded Twili shouted out to her.
“I’ll knock you out if I have to, but I’m not your enemy. Stop this at once!”
As he guided the boomerang to return to him, the Twili looked up to see Ella, staff drawn, jumping down at him. The killing blow was stopped at the last second by a staff far more ancient and elegant then the one Ella had in hand. She look up to see the disgraced Zora warrior she had dealt with just day ago.
“You again” said both Stella and Ella in uniform surprise. Just then the rest of Ella’s party finally caught up with her and all drew their weapons.
“Wait! I know this looks bad, but we’re allies not enemies. As much as it pains me to say this, the Twili and I are both on Hyrule’s side.”
“Ha” scoffed Ella. “Days ago you were foaming at the mouth with the chance to destroy Hyrule. Now you want to be its savior? As if! For all I know you’re just playing a long game to screw us over in the end.”
“I suppose I deserve your skepticism. If so, then perhaps a more trustworthy source will suffice.”
From out behind the trees another Zora female appeared. Though meeker than Stella she strode with an air of confidence and royalty that gave off a larger appearance that her short stature. Immediately everyone in Ayala’s group who recognized her sheathed their weapons and bowed before the Zora. Ella looked in confusion.
“Who’s this” asked Ella to Ayala. “Someone you know?”
“Not personally” replied the petite looking Zora. “I am Princess Orsina, second to that name, and heir to the Zora throne. I apologize if our intrusion caused alarm. It seems we have crossed paths by mere happenstance. …Or perhaps it was destined for us to be here. In time like these one can never tell.”
Hailing from the lowest class of Castle Town’s slums Ella was shocked to be in the presence of royalty, much less talking to a princess. If only her father could see her now. Embarrassed she knelt down in an awkward looking bow. Never having the need to learn formalities, Ella was at a loss for how to talk to Orsina.
“Your royal princess… I mean, your majesty, I formally wish to inform you…”
“Its O.K” said Orsina with compassion, “We’re at war now. You can speak openly and bluntly with me.”
“Thanks” replied Ella rising to stand. “If you didn’t mean to find us, what are you doing here with these… servants I presume?” Stella and the Twili both shot Ella a dirty look.
“We’re here for one reason only. Zora’s Domain is collapsing. There is only one way we can stop that...”
Stella Delphinus, Zora’s Domain, Flashback Night 2Edit
“Oh god, no” said Stella aghast at the sight of seeing Zora’s Domain reduced to an arctic tundra. The whole city was unnaturally quiet in this frozen state, mostly decrypt and abandoned. The few citizens remaining clung around a smoldering excuse of a fire. The look of cold and starvation hung equally over them all as small crumbs of bread were passed out. Though a pitiful meal for even a cockroach the frail Zora all devoured it like a 4 course meal.
Below her feet Stella caught sight of several Zora frozen beneath the water. They must have been unfortunate victims who were below water when the region began to freeze. Worst of all no one, not even the children paid any attention to the frozen bodies that lined the pathways. The fragrance of rotting corpses filled the air with an overwhelming stench of death.
“Isn’t anyone going to come and give these people a proper burial?”
“I’m afraid most people here don’t have the strength or the will to do that anymore. Since I’m the most able bodied left I’ll take care of it” said Orsina solemnly. “Besides I can’t afford to exert our men any more then they have to.”
Stella was about to correct her in saying these people were civilians, when a horrible realization dawned upon her. The elderly, the women, the children. They were all armed with the trademark Zora spears. Zora’s Domain had taken to conscripting these people out of desperation.
Stella fell on her knees in despair “But, it can’t be. How? How could this happen?”
“The suffering you see before you is all the work of a Twili curse” said the princess. “Though we don’t know the means they used to cast it, the entire Zora River system has been completely frozen by some cursed form of dark magic. For six months our domain has stood like this, plunging our entire species into a state of sickness and famine.”
“Everything we’ve done to remove this ice has failed. Even with Hyrules greatest fire mages, the ice keeps creeping back faster than we can melt it. Thanks to them half of Zora’s Domain has either fled the country, or died as a result. I don’t think I need to emphasize how desperate the situation is now that you’ve seen it with your own eyes.”
“Faced with the possibility of extinction my father, King Realto, has chosen to do the unthinkable. Tomorrow evening, he’s going to renounce his claim to the throne and surrender to the Twili. In exchange the Twili will lift the curse, and give aid to our people. With the poor state of our army we can’t put up more than a token resistance. Yet to bow to the Twili will be a fate worse than death in my opinion.”
“When Zora’s Domain falls the Twili will have the opportunity to swing north, and take out Hidden Kakariko on two fronts. Given that the northern pass is weekly defended, that could be a war winning masterstroke right there. Make no mistake Twili mean to forcibly convert everyone into their demon worshiping faith. If they are allowed to succeed here, the Zora may live, but Hyrule will die. That is where you come in.”
“Your majesty, though I don’t deserve it, my life is committed to serving you to the dyeing breath. What is it that you request of me?”
“I chose you because I need someone who has inside knowledge of the Twili. We have uncovered that the Twili have developed some kind of thermal bomb, capable of melting even the thickest of ice caps. It is that weapon that the used to turn the tide at Lake Hylia. Reports say there is a backup stored at the Twili fortress in Ordon under the protection of its developer, Zephyra Ryssdal.”
“Zephyra” questioned Stella. “I know her; she’s the one who tricked me into believing the Zora were still at war with Hyrule! If it’s her you want then allow me to pay her a visit. I have some unsettled business to take care of.”
“We must be careful. We don’t have the strength to launch a full out attack on their fortress, so we’ll have to go the infiltration route. Accompanying us will be a Twili named Darwin Marrus. He claims to have fermented a rebellion against the Twili Kingdom years ago and maintains knowledge about their tactics. He also has a history with the Ryssdal family, so he’ll be sure to help us.”
Ella Huntley, Forest, Morning 3Edit
“And that’s why we’re here” Princess Orsina finished explaining to the others. “The fortress Zephyra resides in was constructed overlooking Ordon spring. If you’re headed there, perhaps we could be of use to each other. You help us enter the fortress, and we’ll get you into the spirits spring.”
“Alright that does seem logical. We’ll help you if we can” said Ella to the princess. Ella then turned to look at Stella. “Look I still don’t trust you, and I sure as hell haven’t forgiven you for all the crap you’ve put me through! But right now we could use all the help we can get. You know the whole enemy of my enemy thing.”
“Thank you Ella. I know you won’t accept my apology, but I was wrong about you and the other Hylian’s. You’re a good person who was right the whole time. I shouldn’t have been so quick to turn against you back in that dungeon.”
“Yeah? No shit” said Ella walking away. As she passed Ayala she grabbed her on the shoulder. “Stella, if you really want to apologize then make sure this girl survives the coming battle. She might be our only way to return back to the past.”
“You’ve found a way back in time” shouted Stella with excitement.
“I don’t know. Maybe. Just shut up and do as you’re told alright?”
Sword Assembly Unit Omega PostsEdit
Mirra Lemeris, Ordon Spring, Night 3Edit
The stormwinds nearly knocked Mirra over when they appeared, whistling and ripping through the dense trees all around them. They couldn’t see a thing in the pitch black, save for a pale gleam in a distant clearing. She had no sign of Hathor or Roc, but she made ahead.
“To me!” she called to the others. “I can see light just ahead!”
Mirra dashed ahead of the rest, emitting a white aura making her easier to see, and reached the high edge of a wide ravine that overlooked a wading pool. Jaden was first to catch up to her, followed by Polaris, Darrel, and Lia behind.
“Taden’s forces are corrupting the area,” Polaris announced, his voice whipping across to the others on the frigid wind. “But the Hated himself is long gone.”
“Then this should be easy,” Darrel crowed, not hesitating to draw his sword and leap into the cursed fray. His boots cracked down on jagged shards of ice, laced with veins of Blue Fire that hissed and lashed out at his feet. The Sunrise Knight kept moving to avoid the blasts, even as the cold weighed down on his muscles and mind.
“Behind you!” Mirra shouted through the snows, loosing a Light Arrow into the pelt of a giant spider that lunged from Darrel’s flank. The arrow struck it out of midair just as Darrel turned around, and he waved a cheerful salute to Mirra through the haze before bounding ahead. Jaden leapt from the high ledge they stood on and ran wide of Darrel’s path to cover his back.
Polaris clasped his fist to form a long Red Ice spear and took one step forward, but Mirra stopped him. “Wait,” she asked, then turned to grab Lia’s hand. “I need both of you up here.”
While Polaris stood guard, Mirra faced Lia and spread her palms out towards her. “Put your hands here,” she said to the girl, acting too swiftly to explain. Lia stretched out her fingers and let her hands hover a few inches from Mirra’s. The two locked eyes, until Mirra slowly closed hers, and Lia did the same.
’It’s alright,’ Lia’s voice suddenly entered Mirra’s mind. ’I know a mind meld when I see one.’
Slowly, the white light framing Mirra’s body from head to toe began to condense into an incandescence behind her eyes. She opened them slightly, and thin rays seemed to flicker and flash from beneath her lids.
Polaris spun on his heel to bring his Red Ice spear down on a spider that lurched into their circle, then unleashed three shards the length of lances into the column of arachnids crawling up the ledge.
Lia’s eyes flew wide and emitted white rays of light as Mirra’s energy coursed through them both, until a brilliant ring of white radiated from the ground around them and burst into the skies above in a majestic pillar, piercing the veil of storms and pushing the fell winds to the peak of the starry dome.
“Now!” she cried, and with the airs cleared, Polaris brought columns of Red Ice crashing down on the spiders that pursued Jaden and Darrel. The two of them reached the lip of the Ordon Spring fountain as the other three were instantly teleported to it from the ledge by Lia. The sudden warp had decoupled the spiritual link Mirra used to bond their power and banish the storms, and the pale light now left both their eyes.
“What black magick is this?” Darrel wondered aloud. A field of Blue Fire danced just over the surface of the shimmering wading pool, and when Darrel swung his sword close it not only lashed out and repelled his blade, but fused the pool below into a black sheen of solid ice.
The fusion rippled out until the entire pool was an obsidian black disc, with a layer of Blue Fire billowing inches above in coarse and tumbling waves.
“There’s more to the Hated’s curses than beasts and blizzards,” Polaris intoned, drawing close. He brandished Winter’s Tide, and the red glow seemed to hasten at the proximity to its opposite pole, until the five gathered at Spring of Ordon were bathed in its crimson hue. “Allow me.”
Polaris took one step onto the dark ice, and it withdrew at his advance, evaporating in blue plumes of flame as he approached. He burned a path through the center of the ice until he reached the center, then raised Winter’s Tide up with both hands on the hilt, let out a war cry, and plunged the blade into the fountain’s heart.
A maelstrom of red light and blue flame suddenly engulfed them all, and Jaden was barely able to knock the group down to their stomachs as Lia prepared a telekinetic shield at their front, sending the brunt of the blast overhead.
“Alright, now who knows how to draw this bloody goat god out of his hole?” the General griped, sheathing his blade as he rejoined the others at the fountain’s edge.
“I can,” Mirra answered, stepping forward into the water. “But I need all of you to join hands.”
’Not this again,’ Lia griped in her mind, loud enough for the others to hear. ’Do all of your spells involve holding hands?’ Jaden cocked an eyebrow and gave her a sideways glance, but didn’t let go of Lia’s hand.
Mirra stooped low in the waters until she was waist deep, then tossed her cloak and visor to the dry bank, drew a deep breath, and plunged underneath. The others bowed their heads for a moment, until a point of light began to glisten in the pond’s center. A faint ringing, like a birdsong or falling rain, seemed to ripple from the shimmering surface of the pool and fill their ears.
Mirra emerged from the pool in a splash and spread her arms wide, her eyes shut, her wet hair clinging to the curve in the plate of armor at her back as she tilted her head back.
“Awake, Ordona, awake! Now is the hour of our need, and thy grace the only remedy,” she prayed in solemn tones.
In a flash, the point of light before them erupted into a gargantuan being of the woodland, a Light Spirit resembling the herd animals of Ordon. The creature brought its massive, glowing eyes to bear on the troupe, then gradually shrank until it was barely the size of the goats it mimicked.
Without saying a sword, the creature knelt down to sip the waters of its fountain gently, then glanched up at Mirra and the others without raising its head. When it had drunk its fill, the beast suddenly scraped its hooves over the waters, and neighed in a gruff, almost threatening tone. It charged forward at Mirra but she did not flinch, and when it crashed into her she stood firm as the conjured avatar crashed into her breastplate, bursting into a blinding sphere of Light.
When the brilliance subsided, Mirra found a crystalline glass bottle floating above her outstretched hands, empty except for a mote of light dancing rhythmically within. She brought it close to her ears, and could hear the same mix of birdsong and falling rain twinkling within.
“The final ingredient for the Daybreak Sword, at long last,” Darrel said aloud, no small amount of awe in his voice. He stepped forward and held his hand out, receiving the Bottled Blessing from Mirra. “We are ready to return to Gigagoron in Death Mountain.”
“I can only hope we are not too late,” Jaden grimaced. “We wouldn’t have made it this far into occupied territory unless the Interlopers were on the march.”
“They will not have reached Upper Eldin yet,” Darrel surmised. He turned to Lia. “And even if they’re at Eldin’s gate, we have a way of getting around that.”
’I guess it’s my turn now,’ she whispered to the lot. “Everyone join hands.”
Lia, Ordon Spring, Pre-Dawn 4Edit
Lia called for everyone to join hands in preparation for teleportation. It wasn’t necessary for the mind link itself, at least not her own, but it did have a calming effect on the group. Considering the urgency and harshness of the previous few teleport, it was important to pace the next one out more carefully.
(“Focus on our destination, let it replace all other thoughts in your mind. See yourself there.”) Lia sent the thought to the group. With a gentle whoosh of the air in the space left behind, the group blinked out of Ordon and their essences rushed off to Death Mountain.
Lynn, Unknown Location, Pre-Dawn 4Edit
It was a strange emptiness. I lack of being within and without. A disconnect from not only the world, but from herself. The core of her being felt missing. She didn't know who she was, let alone where she should be.
But then something tugged at her. Not even a thought or a feeling, it just was. Almost like a voice, but without words or intonation. And when it happened again, minutes later, she clung to it, and found herself knowing she was moving, without experiencing any change.
A woman's voice. She couldn't place it, but it was familiar. It was anchored to the tattered remains of her very being, somehow. She could trace that tiny influence, feel its hook upon her, and where it was attached was a part of herself she hadn't known was left intact.
A thought, that was all, a single idea, summed in two words. pulling her along to the inevitable destination.
And, in a split second that should not have even been remarked, everything changed. A flash, of perception, not light, blinded them all.
And when The brave Light Warriors traveling from Ordon fell once more into the normal plane of existence, they found themselves not in the heat of Death Mountain, but among the canyons of Kakariko Village. And they found themselves counting one more in number than when they had left.