King Dromand Hyrule – Hyrule Castle Town Square – Dawn 7
The king watched from the window of his carriage as the prisoners were led, chains and heavy iron manacles binding their wrists and ankles, to the edge of the fountain in Castle Town Square. Constable Esken led the way; a furled piece of parchment grasped in his fat little fingers.
Just two days earlier an armored wagon had rolled through this very square and up the winding road to the castle gates bearing the familiar figures who were now being led to their end. The lupine shaman from the north, the young thief girl, the feline-eared swordsman, the Mogma, and the Hylian youth with his bow and his knives. That last hadn’t been one of the fugitives, but such was Impa’s zeal to perform her duty that he was thrown in with them and, to his misfortune, destined for a dark end.
They shuffle-stepped, seemingly in a daze, to the edge of the fountain. Esken took his place to its southern edge, stepping up onto it, tottering as his thick middle made balancing difficult.
The headsman followed after, his long-handled axe held crosswise in both fists, his face concealed beneath the black hood.
A pair of Hylian men strode around the king’s carriage, talking between themselves as they went down to observe the executions.
“… hear the Zora ambassador up and disappeared the night after Tiburon sent that force to attack the ranch,” one of them was saying as they passed within earshot of the king. “The king sent soldiers to detain them once everything was finished out in the field but they were nowhere to be found.”
“Got out two steps ahead of the headsman, as they say,” the other replied with a chuckle. Dromand’s expression grew dark at the mention of the Zora emissaries.
As Esken began to unfurl the parchment before the gathering crowd, the headsman pushed each of the prisoners down to their knees and laid their heads over the edge of the fountain.
“Citizens of Hyrule!” Esken intoned, his chin quivering as his voice boomed through the square. “Before you this morning are the fugitives, murders and thieves who fled Good King Dromand’s justice a handful of days ago! They have traversed the realm in that time, sewing chaos and unrest in a time when war already looms, and by the courage and the skill of Hyrule’s soldiers, they have been recaptured and returned to face the consequences of their actions!
“Only one criminal stands to face more swift justice than these here, and she will be brought to heel in time! But this morning rejoice and know that your king will never allow thieves, murderers, and traitors free reign within his borders!” A chorus of cheers arose from many within the crowd, even as others looked on showing a myriad of emotions on their faces. “These five have endeavored so greatly to weaken the kingdom of Hyrule that, per King Dromand’s royal decree they have been denied their last words! Their voices shall speak no more poisonous rhetoric in Hyrule!”
More cheers rang out, but a ripple of confusion ran also through the throng. King Dromand, watching from his wagon near the steps of the cathedral, could sense the people did not understand. It was common practice for men and women at the block to have their say ere the end came. Not to allow it was tantamount to a condemnation of their very souls, reserved for the very worst sort of criminals.
Of course, they didn’t understand why it was necessary. Dromand couldn’t allow them to speak publicly, couldn’t allow them to put the lie to it all. They had to be stripped of their voices and put down before they could tell the truth of it.
“Let the executions commence!” Esken commanded, and in that moment the axe fell hard.
The blade passed through the neck of the kneeling shaman, swathed in his wolfos-fur cloak. It sheared through the muscle, bone, and sinew in one pass, the head plunking into the fountains waters and the spray of blood staining the crystal waters crimson.
And on down the line it went. The girl archer was next, and her severed head soon bobbed in the darkened waters beside the other. Next was the mogma, then the swordsman. The wild-eyed youth was last, but the axe fell just the same and before long it was done. Five bodies slumped over the edge of the fountain, five bloody heads floated in the now deeply vermillion pool, as a crowd of pallid-faced Hylians looked on.
King Dromand’s expression didn’t change. There were no more cheers amongst the crowd, only a dizzy resolve and resignation that justice had been served, however gruesome. Shrill cries instead sounded from above as a formation of Skyloft Knights soared over the square on their mighty loftwings.
Dromand sat back on the cushioned bench and exhaled in a long sigh. A moment later Impa climbed into the carriage with him, emerging seemingly from nowhere with a burlap sack clutched in her fist.
“It is done,” Impa said as she slid onto seat across from him. “We should return to the castle. There is work yet to be done.”
And return they did, passing through the outer gate and then rolling across the drawbridge spanning the castle moat. The carriage finally rolled to a stop in the stone-paved courtyard. The coachman, dressed in the livery of Hyrule’s royal family, slid down from the wagon bench and opened the door.
Dromand disembarked and immediately strode inside, with Impa as always right on his heels. But unlike most mornings he did not go to the throne room to sit for audiences, but turned instead down a side corridor and made his way into the castle dungeons.
In the dim, torchlit subterranean maze there was still broken stonework that had not yet been fixed, evidence of the release of Dromand’s security system, the Sentinel Moldorm. That beast had been forced back down into its hibernation chamber beneath the lowest sublevels of the dungeons, and would remain there until he could insure that the spellwork placed upon it was properly fixed.
Neither he nor Impa spoke to one another as they wound their way down through the dungeons into sections of the underground prison where the cells had not been occupied in decades, if ever. Everything was filthy and cold so deep beneath the castle, but Dromand bore it without complaint. It was the smallest price to pay for deeds done and those still to come.
They stopped before a heavy iron door without the barred window that most had. It was a cell meant for total sensory deprivation, with no interaction between within and without. Impa produced the key and pushed it open; they both went inside.
The cell was lit by torches lining the walls and a steel brazier on the floor to provide warmth. Normally this cell would have been plunged it total darkness, but these were hardly normal times, as evidenced by the faced that looked at the king as he entered.
Faces that he had just seen floating lifeless in the waters of the fountain. He held out a hand and took from Impa the sack, now dripping dark red through the seam. Face scrunching with distaste, he turned it over and dumped the five severed heads out onto the floor of the dungeon cell for all to see. For a moment the fugitives looked upon their own faces, bloody and pale reflections of themselves.
Then Impa passed a hand over the symbol tattooed on her face and the mark gleamed violet. There was a shimmer around the heads like air rising off paving stones on a hot summer noon, and then it was gone and the illusion with it. The true faces were revealed, five Zoras bearing the markings of King Tiburon’s emissaries.
“The deed is done,” Dromand said, voice grave and his expression bleak. “Hyrule believes you five to be dead. Now we return to the original question, that which I posed to you the morning two days ago, after your capture. You have each had time to consider the proposition.”
Impa stepped forward and drew from inside her form-fitting garb a small handheld stamp bearing the same symbol that encircled her eye, the Eye of Truth.
“You did well before, serving King Dromand and recovering the Trust Keys from the Zoras and the Gorons. Now you have the chance to serve further, if you so choose, but this time there will be no manhunt. You are no longer fugitives, for you do not in the minds of the people exist. You are dead men, phantoms.”
“Choose wisely,” Dromand said, looking from one face to the next, considering the tools before him. “You have proven yourselves equal to the task so far, but the road ahead is littered with difficulties like nothing you have yet faced.”
“If you agree, then you will be marked as I am with the Eye of Truth,” Impa declared, drawing another step closer as she raised the stamp. “You will be Sheikah, and you will serve as I do: from the shadows.”
~The Library of Lunar Solace, Dawn of the Seventh~
Bernard Kotaro, The Lonely Zora Soul
My name is Bernard Kotaro. I am in Purgatory.
I died during The Battle of Disharmony, and my soul was trapped inside the enchanted notebook of the mad scientist, Sirius Fulmaren. Now I am no more than his research jockey.
His notebook is special, it’s represented as a library, a library that has no clear beginning nor end. It contains every memory of his life, every experience, every emotion. It records data, and before I came into the picture, it was often very difficult for Sirius to access information quickly.
Now I do his bidding, he asks for information, and I give it. But the notebook, it feels like it’s alive. Sometimes it takes over me, makes me say things I don’t mean to say. Give warnings, statistics, facts. It feels pretty stupid sometimes if you ask me, I just want to...I just want to leave.
But I can’t leave, not yet at least. But I know a secret that might let me go someday. You see, Sirius, as I mentioned, is a mad scientist. He’s pretty full of himself, and likes to play god a little bit. He made a clone of my uncle, Kaimu Kotaro, another Zora. That clone only lived three days and was a terrifying amalgamation of Zora, Man, and Dragon. Sirius brought him to life, and then let him die in agony and fear.
I hate Sirius.
I mentioned a secret that might let me leave someday. I think Sirius can clone my body, and put my original soul back in. He doesn’t know that I can hide things like that from him. I know what he knows.
But he doesn't know what I know.
~Hyrule Castle Town, Dawn of the Seventh~
Dead. Dead. Dead. Dead. Dead.
Sirius watched as familiar faces, and unrecognizable ones fell one by one. His journey from Snowpeak to Castle town had been completed barely an hour prior, bringing him to the town square just in time to witness the execution.
His knowledge of why was limited, but his knowledge of who was not. Taden he recognized, the others he knew to be travelling with the late shaman. Leif, Tarah, and Kourtz were all faces he recognized from the faded memories he had extracted from the dying mind of AvaKai, the cloned Zora who had fought the group in Kakariko Village several nights earlier.
It didn’t feel right. The group was hardly legendary, but quite powerful in their own right, and Taden bore weaponry and cunning that surely could not be matched by a mere royal execution. The others he could not assess so easily, but any companion of Taden’s was no weakling by any measure.
He touched the notebook at his side. Bernard had been silent for some time now, without explanation. Perhaps being trapped in a notebook was even less pleasant than he had thought. He shrugged, smirked, and began to walk around town. He was somewhat directionless, his only acquaintances now seemingly dead, or missing. Majin and Polaris remained somewhere, but Zora’s Domain was the last place Sirius dared to go, with Kaimu Kotaro likely already there plotting against him.
After a few moments of his own plotting, Sirius decided his best bet was to follow the King’s carriage, and use any means necessary to get into the castle. He was too well versed in deceit for the strangeness before him to go unnoticed.
“I hope you’re awake in there Bernard, we have our work cut out for us.”
Kamen Viento/Hyrule Castle Town Square/Dawn 7
Kamen observed the early morning execution of the supposed thieves, "hm... this smells fishy."
"Well hanging out with Zora all the time will do that you," Richter was quick to joke, but Kamen played the comment little heed.
There was too much about this that didn't make sense. He knew they had the Champions Sword which could cut open a cell door. They also had Shinsou with them and she was nowhere to be found. Not to mention he'd recently learned the hag and finished her key, and since Shinsou had the Angel it must be with one of the three they encountered. "They should have escaped."
"What?" Richter questions but Kamen ignored him and started walking through the crowed, "hey where are you going?"
"Goron Village, I suppose it would be best if I continue the Paladin's plan. I might not have been able to speak with the Zora but the Goron's should be much less hostile. Are you coming?" Kamen didn't wait for a response simply assuming the man would follow. Even if he didn't he was far too worried about this execution; because Richter was right, something something did smell like Zora. The King of Hyrule had to be up to something and he didn't know what. More importantly he didn't know how it would affect his own plans.
Mark/Castle Town/ Dawn 7
He couldn’t believe his eyes as Xiaber’s head rolled to a stop on the floor. He didn’t make it in time. If only he had woken up sooner…
Lon Lon Ranch/ Day 6
The excruciating pain in his neck made it hard for him to come fully to his senses as he got up off of the ground. He was confused by his surroundings, he was confused by the blood on the ground, he was confused by the immense pain, and he was especially confused when he didn’t recognize his body. “What-?” he stopped, shocked at his new voice. “What the hell!?”
The next minute consisted of him examining every part of his new body he could. It was similar in age to Xiaber’s, but a bit wider and more buff. It didn’t seem like it could be quite as nimble as Xiaber’s. His mind was in thought of how this would affect his fighting capability until he remembered something important was missing. “Where’s Xiab?”
He started to search for Xiab throughout the ranch. A cabinet next to him in the first room had a supply of potions, which he quickly drank several of until his neck didn’t hurt anymore. He was pleased that he still had a good sense of balance in his new body, but changed his mind about that when he failed to jump from one haystack to another. At least he had more strength with being more muscular.
While not finding Xiaber anywhere, he did find a room with files on all the people from the ranch. He recognized a drawing of his new body thanks to looking at himself in a mirror earlier. “Mark,” he muttered to himself as he absentmindedly looked at the name. “Kind of a strange name, but it will have to do.”
Castle Town/Morning 7
The crowd dispersed from the scene, but he stayed, watching as the heads were picked up and put into a bag. “What were you doing? You were supposed to come here.” Mark had never really been one for being sad, but his usual smile just wouldn’t appear on his face. “Why did you waltz into a battle!?” A few of the people passing by him gave him strange looks, but he ignored them.
After leaving the ranch, Mark first went to Xiaber’s hiding spot, where he would keep rupees and anything else he found interesting while exploring. After not finding him there, he took what he felt were enough rupees and headed to Castle Town. While finding a place to spend the night, he had heard of there being executions the next morning. He never would have expected to find his old body as a part of the performance.
They’ll pay for this dearly. A smile finally appeared on Mark’s face at that thought. It wasn’t like he had a life of any kind to look forward to. All he had was Xiaber, Xiaber’s dream of becoming a hero, and his own subsequent dream. But what are dreams to destroying Hyrule Castle and the royal family with it? A fire was bellowing up from inside of him. It felt wonderful.
Mark raced up to the drawbridge to the castle, but stopped when he saw a man talking to the guards. “I believe that the King has been fooled. Today’s executions were a mistake, he did not execute the right individuals.” The man’s words only irked him more. Not only was Xiaber with the wrong group at the wrong time, the group was apparently the wrong group at the wrong time. As much as he would love to charge in right there, Mark knew he couldn’t be too hasty. When the man attacked the guards, Mark retreated behind a pillar and watched the strangeness that was going on. When a younger guy came and was declared a manipulative wizard, Mark could barely keep himself from laughing at the antics of the man. Hopefully that man would eventually cause a big enough distraction for him to slip by everyone.
Treene|Hyrule Castle Town|Day 7
It had been a very stressful couple of days for the young fairy that was now pacing the roof of a building, which overlooked the town square. Treene continued to take her short strides along the shingles while she pondered the facts again. Just a few days ago she left the Kokiri Forest in order to seek out information of what was occurring outside the forest. It wasn’t long before she found herself being captured in a bottle, set free, and then into battle. In that fleeting duration of time she had also met new people and creatures; not in the most preferred of situations, but it happened nevertheless. Through the experience she had grown attached to a mogma, Kourtz, and what she assumed was a yeti-man, whose only name she could identify him as was the savior. There were others that they were affiliated with them, and all were placed into custody; all, that is, except for herself for she was too small even to be noticed. From the battle she followed the fugitives back to Hyrule Castle Town, and since then she’s been trying to find a way to get into the dungeon to hopefully rescue them. For the first day in town she rested and scanned around the castle itself. The previous day was spent infiltrating the castle, but there were only so many places for her to hide up to a certain point. Getting into the dungeon was a far more challenging task than she had anticipated. Spinning on her heel she turned around and continued pacing down the way she came. The fae’s pacing ceased when she noticed an abundance of people gathering in the square.
Out of curiosity she sat on the rooftop to observe the gathering beneath her. This seemed to be some sort of social event, but she was unfamiliar of it. Treene’s perspective led her to believe that it might have been some sort of meeting, although the atmosphere from the audience was grim. Her thoughts of it being some sort of civilized meeting were chased away with the arrival of the prisoners. It was an execution of the ones she had spent the last couple of days trying to save. The fae’s hands took a place at her mouth to subdue the sharp inhale she made when she saw all of their faces.
“Oh no… no no no no no no no no.”
There must have been a mistake. Her own fear was creating the image of their faces. Treene’s hands then fumbled around her waist pulling her spyglass up to her pupil.
She was silent for a moment and uttered out a soft question of “what?”
Lowering the spyglass then raising it and repeating the process twice more, she became positive that trickery was at hand. As she placed her spyglass away her mind came up with possible explanations to the situation at hand. It was reassuring to the fairy that her friends, if that was even the right term for them, were safe. However, it still made her stomach clench when the Zoras became decapitated and she forced herself to look away. Ever since she left the forest all she could witness was death. From the ranch to the city, nothing had changed. It wasn’t a wonder anymore why the Kokiri Forest fairies stayed in the trees. Hanging her head she made a blessing for those Zoras, as well as for the deceased at the ranch. Granted some the ones that perished at the ranch were trying to kill her and others, death was a serious matter that fairies did not take lightly. If they had then there wouldn’t be as many of them devoted to healing weary travelers around the world. The thought brought back a familiar grief to Treene. She was set on visiting a fair fountain before her return to the forest and learn the powers of healing. Now wasn’t the time though.
With her senses returning to her current surroundings, the fae made the assumption that the real prisoners must still be alive, and hopefully at the castle. After spending the last few days infiltrating and observing the castle it was time for her to fly and locate the only few decent people she had outside the forest.
Cirdan/ Hyrule Dungeon/ Dawn 7
Large, strong hands grabbed the bars of one of the cells as a scraggly bearded face appeared from the darkness. His tired eyes looked to the King whom stood there in the dim light of the dungeon corridor. He scowled.
"Oi, wha' abou' me? I've been rottin' in 'ere fo' at least a week, and ye ain't foun' out tha' the guy you killed 'en was a phony! I ough' to get a little credit, considerin' how smart your men are!" He spat indignantly at the king, but dared not say more.
His cover was blown, and he expected the worst. Without his amulet, he unfortunately lacked a Plan B, much to his chagrin. But the king...This may be his only chance.
Tarah Vass / Castle Dungeons / Dawn 7
Time passed slowly in the depths of the castle dungeons. With little contact from the outside of the cell, Tarah had no idea how long they had been locked up. At this moment the cell was silent, Taden sat upright with his eyes closed on one bench beside the newcomer, who had introduced himself as Xiaber. On the other bench, Leif sprawled out, deep in slumber, with Kourtz curled in a ball at his feet. They were all fairly well rested under the warmth of the brazier in the center of the room.
Tarah was not so rested. She sat bolt upright in the corner of the cell clutching the Scythe of Shadows in both hands and staring directly into the flames of the brazier, concentrating the shadows around her to cast away the light of the flame. This practise had lead her to become confident in her ability to wield the power of the Scythe, and allowed her to conceal Shinsou from the eyes of the guards. Tarah’s efforts to protect Shinsou had caused her to become weary, she had barely eaten during her time in the cell as she gave most of her food to Shinsou, and barely slept as she watched over the girl.
The peaceful silence within the cell was suddenly broken by the door swinging open, causing Leif to jolt upright and Kourtz to slowly uncurl. As the king entered the room, only Tarah’s eyes moved in greeting, her body remained motionless as she concentrated the shadows on hiding her young companion. These eyes turned worried however, when Impa followed and glanced towards the corner. Tarah was sure that Impa knew what she was hiding, and yet the Sheikah woman said nothing of it. For this, she was thankful.
They stood silently for a moment, before emptying a sack on the stone floor. Disgusted by what she saw, Tarah moved the shadows over her face to hide the terrified look that now covered it. She stared down at her own severed head which now lay before her, knowing that it was simply an illusion, but disturbed by it nonetheless. Thankfully, Impa removed the spell quickly and Tarah’s mind was at peace once again. A decapitated Zora would have made her nauseous if presented to her a week earlier but after all she had seen it no longer affected her.
“The deed is done,” Dromand said, voice grave and his expression bleak. “Hyrule believes you five to be dead. Now we return to the original question, that which I posed to you the morning two days ago, after your capture. You have each had time to consider the proposition.”
“You did well before, serving King Dromand and recovering the Trust Keys from the Zoras and the Gorons. Now you have the chance to serve further, if you so choose, but this time there will be no manhunt. You are no longer fugitives, for you do not in the minds of the people exist. You are dead men, phantoms.”
This circumstance worked in Tarah’s favour. The proposition however, did not. The idea of living in the shadows as a walking corpse appealed to the thief, it would certainly make things easier. This benefit however, came with a catch. She assumed that Dromand would not take no for an answer, yet had no intention of continuing to serve under Hyrule.
“Choose wisely,” Dromand said, looking at each prisoner with a thoughtful gaze. “You have proven yourselves equal to the task so far, but the road ahead is littered with difficulties like nothing you have yet faced.”
“If you agree, then you will be marked as I am with the Eye of Truth,” Impa declared, drawing another step closer as she raised the stamp. “You will be Sheikah, and you will serve as I do: from the shadows.”
There was a brief moment of silence as the prisoners collected their thoughts. A silence broken by Tarah’s voice, speaking what she believed to be not only on her mind, but on the minds of her allies.
“And what if we refuse?” She said, in a serious tone. “Do we still walk away as dead men, or will that title become more literal?”
IC: Taden Horwendil / Castle Dungeons / Morning 7
"Father, I present to you, Kaimu Kotaro."
The low, garbled voice of the fishman clouded his mind like an Octorok's ink, eclipsing for a moment all his senses. You could always tell it was a Zora when they spoke above water--but this one's highborn tone took Taden immediately back to the charred and frozen landscape of the Battle of Disharmony, and a bitter standoff with King Tiburon's son. The gash in Taden's thigh throbbed. How far removed from the boastful roar when he handles his spear was the voice of Lieutenant Mako before his father's throne.
Sure enough, he heard the sclerotic old monarch close by. "Welcome Lord Kotaro!" it croaked.
He came back to his wits when he saw his own head roll between his feet, its chin caught on his ankle bracelets to leave the dead eyes glaring up at him, lidless and swollen. As he stared back at the black eyes, he saw it gradually give way to a Zora's visage, like a shadow slipping from a wall. Dromand had slain the emissaries, and no one knew but them.
In another flash, the sound of King Tiburon's voice thundered through his head. Impa was starting to say something, but he lost track of her words.
"...shall journey together to the Water Dragon..."
Keeping his eyes shut, he did not look up at either Impa or Dromand as the voices continued to dance around his head.
"...decimate them with ice and fire..."
Behind the Zora, he began to hear the echoes of fire churning in the distance, and a young girl's inhuman screams. He remembered that scream from the Battle that landed them here, and the bloodthirsty warcry of the half-crazed Deku, now shrieking in the unmistakable roar of flame.
"...a wasteland of bloodshed..."
Taden opened his eyes just as Tarah began to speak. The sound of screams and flames receded in his mind, and he heard the new coldness in the young thief's voice, now settled on her as though she had been hiding it all along.
"And what if we refuse? Do we still walk away as dead men, or will that title become more literal?"
For a moment, he let the question hang there, while the King considered his response. Taden had some idea how the war would turn if the King lost his spies and assassins; the recent battle had been a mere prelude to it. He drew a breath slowly, and as he exhaled, the temperature fell in their little dungeon. When he stood up, the red coals in the brazier burned blue, and a jet of sapphire flame hovered just above the iron grate.
His eyes carried the blue torchlight as he watched Impa and the King, looking from face to face. If what he heard in the Zora's voices were true, then Dromand was in a race against time. He doubted Impa would be convinced to share her black arts unless the King's need were exigent; but how much so, and how much Dromand were willing to sacrifice for it, Taden still had to test. As Tarah questioned the King, he turned his gaze on Impa.
"And if we accept? I presume it will take more than a little cold water to purge the Eye of Truth from one's flesh?"
Death Mountain - Day 7
Kourtz the Mogma
On the slopes of the craggy, lifeless volcano the humans called Death Mountain there climbed a small creature covered in fur and claws. Slowly prying his way through the fierce wind and the ash clouds which greeted him Kourtz pressed on. The treasure hunter turned thief had only one goal in mind; collect what remained of his meager belongings before leaving the country for good. Hoping over a rock and sliding down a ledge Kourtz approached the burrow he called home.
There before him stood two figures in the darkened dust clouds. One was a man with his long red hair flowing windswept over the black fur which spotted his eyes. The other was a women, brown feminine hair and immaculate sapphire jewelry highlighting her Mogma silhouette. "Mom, Dad!!? I don’t believe it, it really is you guys. Thanks the Goddesses! You can’t believe how much I’ve wanted to see you again. I’ve got so much I want to…" Kourtz paused. The two Mogma’s turned solemnly to face the young man. A look of disgust and shame brimmed from their faces. Kourtz noticed in his mother’s paw stood a piece of paper with is face plastered on it. It was the wanted poster which listed the crimes he was accused of committing.
"Of all the people on Din’s great earth, you were the last I would have ever thought capable of this" remarked his father in a slow, deep tone. "Theft, treason, murder? I would have thought we raised you better than that son." Kourtz froze in place, too shocked and too scared to respond. Struggling to hold the tears back from her eyes his mother looked directly at him with a fiery glare. "What could possibly have possessed you to do this Kourtz? You aren’t like this; you’ve never tried to hurt anyone before. How could you betray yourself like this; how could you betray us?"
"You don’t understand. I’m nothing like that. I would never betray you or anything I stand for. What that says about me is wrong! Please, just hear me out." Though still visibly upset, the two elder Mogmas weren’t beyond listing to their only child. "Go on then Kourtz" said his father Sulfa, "Tell us why you did this"."It all started seven days ago when I got arrested by the castle guards. I wasn’t imprisoned for killing, or stealing, or any evil crime like that. I got locked up simply for selling a small timeshift stone to one of my close friends. I swear on Hylia’s name I didn’t know what that crystal could do; I didn’t know having it endangered the kingdom. Had I known what trouble those things could cause I would have thrown it in the trash."
Kourtz’ mother Amber seemed confused by what he was saying. "But I don’t understand. The wanted poster said you stole the Zora’s Trust Key. It says this whole was started just because of you!" "The King of Hyrule himself ordered me to do that" "And you listened to him? You’re not Hylian! How could you simply obey such a crazy order when you had nothing to gain?" said Sulfa. "I had no choice. They would have imprisoned me if I didn’t help them. I could have been executed!" Amber started to cry at these words. "We loved you Kourtz, we never would have let them hurt you. Why couldn’t you have refused there offer? Now because of you people are…there…"
"People are dead because of you" decried Sulfa. "The Zora never did anything against you and yet you killed them anyway." "What do you know" said Kourtz in an angry defensive tone. "You weren’t there when I was nearly killed by their guards. You don’t know what it’s like being afraid that every day you wake up will be you last. And those Zora’s you seem to care so much about, there not innocent! King Tiburon is a xenophobic wackjob. He wanted this war to happen. He can’t be trusted with those stupid keys. If anything I’m saving this land from him!”
For a moment the two stood there in silence. "If only things were that simple" said his mother. "Kourtz, you’ve been played for a fool. Impa was never out for this kingdoms safety, she’s out for its alcohol". "Alcohol?" A look of puzzlement came over his face. "What does that have to do with anything?" "Everything" said Impa, stealthily sneaking up from behind. Kourtz looked over his shoulder to see Impa curtsy in her newly acquired maids dress. Behind her back she pulled out a silver plater lined with roes of small beverages. "Any one up for some cocktails?" "...This dosen't make any sense" said Kourtz out loud."Come to think of it, none of this makes any sense. How do my parents know Impa, and how did I get outta jail in the first place?" Then in a flash the reality of the situation hit him.
Kourtz/Hyrule Castle Dungeon/Day 7
Kourtz felt the cold of the rock floor beneath him. Slightly cracking open is eyes he saw Leif's smelly boot dangling of his face. He had woken up in the same cell he had spent the last two days. His parents were as far away as they ever were. "Great."mumbled the Mogma under his breath. The creek of the door caused him to uncurl from his slumber. The following sight of his own severed head caused him to jolt up in horror. He rapidly began rubbing his eyes, unsure if he was still stuck in a nightmare. Though Impa dispersing the spell meant he better understood the situation, her proposition of them becoming Shekah did little to put his mind at ease.
"And if we accept? I presume it will take more than a little cold water to purge the Eye of Truth from one's flesh?" "Or fur as my case might be. Besides, we already retrieved the alco... trust key you asked us to recover. What more could there be for us to do?"
Chamdar Taliesin – Hyrule Castle Dungeons – Morning 7
It never ceased to amaze him how the land had changed. Certainly, many centuries had passed. He’d learned that soon enough, and consultation with the Triune had confirmed it. Still, as he walked the streets of towns and even cities of Hylians living on the surface without fear of demonkind, Chamdar was amazed.
It was a pleasant distraction from the hate festering beneath his breast.
The guards in their gleaming plate stiffened as he strode past them in the halls of Hyrule Castle. They might as well not have been there at all, after the stern words their master had had with them. Still their eyes shot daggers at the mysterious young man who’d appeared a mere two days earlier and had so swiftly earned their liege lord’s confidence.
He spoke not a word to anyone as he passed through the threshold into the castle dungeons and traversed the long, dark corridors deep into the subterrain. Torchlight came rarely and far between beneath the surface, but he had no fear of the dark.
Down through several levels, along a number of dank cell blocks filled with criminals and malcontents he delved, until he reached the depths of the castle that even the worst offenders never saw. All was quiet, so much so that as he approached the cell he heard the torrent of questions.
He threw the door open and entered.
“If you refuse then you leave Hyrule forever. What is happening here is bigger than you know,” he replied as he stepped into the deprivation cell, far from any eager ears that might hear their conference.
The king, Dromand Hyrule, met his entrance with an appreciative nod before turning back to the others. “That’s right. I have done only what I must, what fate and history dictate. I am not a slaver; if you wish to take your leave then each of you may do so. However, what is happening in Hyrule is of the utmost importance. If you will not aid me, then at least you cannot stand in my path.
“As for if you accept… well the Eye of Truth is shadow magic, the art of deceit and illusion. By its very nature it confers the ability to conceal or reveal reality, and so if it needs to be hidden…”
Impa, on cue, swept her hand over the tattoo on her face as Chamdar looked on. It shimmer violet, then faded from view.
“It can be made so,” she finished.
Chamdar’s eye turned at last to the Mogma.
“There is much more to do than you know. I have leaped a thousand years to be here today, and I have lost much because of it. What you have henceforth done is but the beginning; there is a long stretch of road yet to travel.”
He stood before the dead men and woman, hands crossed behind his back, expression peremptory. The firelight played brilliantly across the pristine white of his cassock and the elegant silver of his armor.
“Excuse me,” the rough-dressed man in his wolfos cloak cut in after a moment. “But who in the name of the Giants are you?”
“This, Horwendil, is Chamdar Taliesin. This, friends and doubters, is the Living Scion.”
“Yes,” the king said, “and perhaps if your mistrust of me or your distaste for my methods is too great to sway you, then might the hand of the Goddesses not change your minds?
“You each have served me greatly, and you have done so on faith and fear alone. But this phase of the journey will be different. There is much that you must know and we will give you the full and honest truth.”
Chamdar smiled, though it was forced as were all his positive emotions of late. He had a task to complete, and then perhaps he could get back to his own time… back to her. But he could not do so unless he helped the king convince this rabble to aid him.
“What do you want to know?”
The Gli & Stewart Adventures
Stewart/ Stewart's House (Hyrule Castle Town)/ Dawn 7
The elderly man frowned quizzically at the fleshy book he held in his hands, considering the possibilities of how his slave managed to find such a thing within such a small amount of time. He stared at the horrible contents of its pages, their implications alone making his skin crawl. He shivered in revulsion before disrespectfully dropping it on his floor. Rising to his feet after a last sip of his morning tea, he looked down the hall which led to his basement. Soon after, his eyes found themselves looking to the fireplace to his right. The wood within burned brightly, filling the room with its orange radiance. Stewart sighed sadly, pinching the bridge of his nose as he looked back to the book.
He looked at it long and hard, considering his options. He absent-mindedly snapped his fingers, which was answered by a maid, whom held a platter. The platter's contents included a bowl of cold water, which was being used to soak a white towel. She wringed the towel, letting excess moisture fall back into the bowl before handing the towel to Stewart. He rested it on his head and sighed once more as his temples were cooled by the towel. The maid obediently bowed her head before stepping to the side at attention. The two of them stood there for some time, listening to the crackling fire. Stewart eventually broke the silence as he pulled the towel from his head.
"...She's beyond help..."
Dropping the towel into the water, he shooed the maid away as he turned to the basement. He felt himself start to walk forth, and soon, his hand was upon the basement door's knob.
"...I have no use for a rabid animal."
The door creaked as he pushed it open, revealing the cage that rested still on the wet ground. The creature within the cage was shivering like a leave. Stewart shook his head as he slowly made his way down the stairs. He stood before the cage, rubbing his chin as he looked down at its contents. He sighed once more as he leaned forward to grab the cage, and made for the stair again.
Gli Lambe'/ Stewart's House (Hyrule Castle Town)/ Dawn 7
Every breath she drew was ragged and painful as the sorely dehydrated Deku Girl. She shivered uselessly in her bonds as she felt the burning light flash into her eyes. She could almost hear the voice of another elderly man as she watched her master grab the handle of her uncomfortably tiny prison, and began to haul her away. The voices screamed at her to struggle and snarl, but she lacked to strength to even grunt. She laid there pathetically in her cage with one eye open, looking to the direction of where they were going. The warmth of Stewart's house washed over her, proving to be her only form of comfort as she heard the basement close. She could not see Stewart from how she lied inside her cage, but she knew something was wrong. Her master always hesitated when he was about to do something he didn't like. However, he hadn't done so about anything that included her before...Not even when she destroyed an heirloom in a fit of frustration.
Finally, her master continued forth, and she could only watch. She watched as the hall expanded into the reading room; She closed her eyes painfully, missing that Stewart had also walked past his favorite chair, and towards the fireplace. She did not open her eyes, but she knew she was close to the fire. An enormous amount of warmth licked her face, as she opened her eyes. She looked to see that her cage had been rested in front of the fireplace, and Stewart had returned to his chair, staring at her with disappointment in his eyes. Gli's entire being ached, as tears began to well up in her eyes, blinding her from her master's gaze.
She heard him groan.
"I have no use for a wild animal..."
Gli grit her teeth at his words. They stung, like a lash to the back.
"...But firewood.' Gli's eyes snapped open to her master's words. '...I am running short."
Gli's mind raced, as she struggled to look for the words she had uttered just three days ago. Her mind and the voices shouted for a solution, all the while the amulet around her neck lit up with the intensity of the sun, instantly burning the skin upon her chest. She gasped loudly and excruciatingly from the heat of the amulet, which was immediately followed by the heat of fire, which engulfed her as Stewart kicked her in. Gli's screams echoed through the walls of Stewart's house.
Stewart/ Stewart's Home/ Day 7
Turned away from the flames, Stewart could only hear the crackling flames behind him. His eyes closed tightly as he rested his head in his palm, trying to drown out the horrid screaming. The piercing sound of his slave's pain made his head throb. Though despite the pain he was suffering, he felt little else. No regret or concern struck him as he listened on to his daughter's final moments in the fire that raged hungrily. He merely sat there and waited for silence. As he waited, he pondered on his own actions from the past few days. His bitterness and anger had blinded him more than it had in years in little more than three days...And he felt no remorse for anything he had done to Gli prior to this very moment.
Somehow, this very fact struck him harder than anything he had ever done among everything his parenthood wrought.
He suddenly found himself having profound thoughts on the matter; Thoughts that would most likely befuddle him for the rest of his days...He found himself considering that maybe...Just maybe...He hadn't cared enough for the wretched child when he still had the chance in his grasp. He was far from a bad father in his eyes, for he had given her lessons he valued above all else. His approach was meant to burrow humility, respect and tolerance into her head. He wished to grow the pitiful plant into a woman whom was trained for the hard and unfair world outside the walls of luxury, but all he got in return was a hateful monster as reward for his efforts. He merely wanted an heir of some form to continue his legacy; He had no use for a rabid animal. Stewart sighed tiredly, realizing his own age was starting to catch up with him. His squandered opportunity with Gli left him with no one to pass his wealth to, and it made him shudder to think that all of it was to be lost to the clutches of someone else...especially so if that someone was the King.
"I shouldn't have even let her go last night...She wouldn't have found the stones to defect if she was threatened with carrying a barrel or two..."
This somehow led him to begin reminiscing about his earlier years, which heavily involved the Kokiri Forest, but he stopped himself with another shudder. It was too late to feel bad about the situation. Far too late. He was stuck with no heir and no plan B. This was the most pressing matter; far greater than trivial memories of arguably happier times. Wallowing wasn't going to replace him.
Still, he found himself glancing back to the fireplace. His face slowly creased from the frown that formed; one of loss of direction, certainty and hope...Followed by that of terror.
Gli Lambe/ Stewart's Fireplace/ Day 7
The white hot flames of death had engulfed her entire body, which writhed uselessly against the binding chain. Her mouth opened to let a throat shredding scream, but she could no longer do so; Her insides were beginning to burn as well, leaving her unable to speak. Everything was hot...hotter than even the amulet on her chest, which was shining like the sun against her blackened skin.
As she began to lose consciousness due to lack of oxygen, her slowly drying eyes rolled to the back of her head. Finally, her movements ceased, leaving a horrible look on her frozen face, which had turned to her master, so he would see the pain of her final moments. Though her eyes were wide and lidless, blackness swallowed her sight, leaving only the crackling of the flame and her own flesh ringing in her ears.
Her mind continued to race madly; Desperately, trying to outrun the darkness and comparatively cold embrace of death. Her subconscious could feel the embrace closing in, literally nipping at her heels, which bled which each frigid bite. Despite these events taking place in a plane of imagination, her chest heaved with effort as Gli's futile sprint refused to end. Her legs, though imaginary, ached and burned from exertion. Her heels stung and throbbed and her brow glistened in cold sweat. None of it was truly happening, but it was unmistakably real. The voices; They shouted evermore, but unlike before, their cries were that of agony, desperation and sorrow. Gli tried to ponder this phenomenon, but the voices disallowed her to hear even herself.
However, the voices she grew familiar to were the least of her trouble, as they all were startlingly overpowered by that of a voice of a single man. Despite not truly being there, Gli's ribcage trembled from the extreme loudness from the booming voice. Unlike the others, however, this voice was deliberate in its purpose and tone. This voice had the presence of that of an angry parent, whom was preparing to scold their child for a great misdeed. Gli clutched her head and yelped in surprise, simultaneously losing balance and strength. The darkness within the blackness scooped her up before she even hit the cold hard nothingness. Gli dared not open her eyes, but she was still forced to see her captor regardless. Within the blackness that embraced her, she felt...light. She couldn't see it, but the sensation was unmistakable. It was no loving light, however; It's glow was indifferent, if not cold even...Colder than even the frigid, unforgiving darkness that surrounded it.
Silence surrounded Gli...Damning, maddening silence. The Deku girl opened her mouth, but her throat merely burned. No sounds became of her presence, and yet the glow responded still. Up close, its shout was deafening, but once again, unlike the voices before, this message was intelligent and deliberate in tone.
"DEKU CHILD; GLI CAMILLE LAMBE'. YOUR MANY SCREAMS AND CRIES ARE INCESSANT AND FOUL; UNINTELLIGIBLE AND MADDENING IN INDECISIVENESS. DAMNED BE WE TO BE TORTURED BY THE YELL OF A MERE CHILD WHO CAN BARELY BEND A MERE MORTAL MELDED CHAIN; A PITIFUL DISPLAY FROM THE HEIR OF THE INFERNAL BEARER. YOUR FRAGILE FORM IS BARELY FIT FOR EVEN A MOMENT OF MY ETERNAL PRESENCE..."
Gli's mouth and body gestured in desperate protest and bargain in the endless silence beyond the voice.
"...THIS I KNOW WELL. YOUR END HAS ALREADY COME AND YOU ARE OF NO FURTHER USE TO EVEN THE WEAKEST OF US."
Gli frowned at the blackness angrily.
Gli's mouth shaped the word 'home'.
She waited apprehensively.
"YOU WILL RETURN US TO OUR ORIGINAL BEARER. REMEMBER CHILD, THOU ARE BUT A CORPSE WHOM WILL BEAR THE SINGLE PURPOSE AS THE DELIVERER AND NOTHING MORE."
Gli smiled warmly, unable to sob.
"...THE CONDITION HOWEVER, IS YOU HAVE BUT ONE CHANCE. THE LIFE WE GRANT YOU WILL BE GIFTED BUT ONCE. IF THE EMBRACE OF YOUR END DRAWS NEAR AGAIN, YOU WILL BE NO MORE."
Gli frowned, nodding in determination.
"NOW GO. RETURN TO THE MORTAL REALM AND FULFILL YOUR INFERNAL PROMISE...AND BY NECESSITY, OUR STRENGTH IS GRUDGINGLY YOURS AS LONG AS YOUR FLESH IS LICKED BY THE FLAMES THAT PROVED YOUR END."
Gli's very being was violently pushed, as if punched by a fist mightier than any mortal being could muster. The blackness enveloped her as she disappeared, to the mortal plane once more.
"YOU ARE ALLOWED BUT ONE MORTAL WEEK TO FIND A HOST WORTHY. TREAD QUICKLY, LITTLE ONE; OUR PATIENCE IS ALREADY STRETCHED THIN."
Gli/ Stewart's Fireplace/ Day 7
Nothing else registered in her mind as her blackened form glowed a blood red, fiery aura. Her skin hardened to almost that of rock, ceasing the fire's burning embrace, yet failing to extinguish its raging dance. Her mouth opened once more as her newly moistened eyes began to wildly dart about. Her freshly restored tears endlessly and uncontrollably poured from her eyes, burning them in their bitterness. Her first breath was excruciating, but blissful as her lungs filled with life-giving air. She used this air to scream into the tunnel that was the chimney's stack. This single scream was that of unbearable pain, unstoppable rage, unimaginable hunger, and sorrowful loss. The amulet that glowed powerfully glowed as it seared itself into her chest, gluing itself to her ribs and effectively fusing with her being. Its aura and power coursed through Gli's every fiber, filling her with the will and power to exist forth.
Her scream was of such magnitude and pitch, everything that was glass in the immediate room had shattered, and had Stewart clutching his ears painfully. Before the elderly man could react further, Gli's newfound magically grant strength allowed her to move once again. With a grunt of mighty effort, Gli shattered the scorched and rusted chains. Upon gaining her freedom of movement, the Deku child contort and shifted herself like a wild animal within the cage, before her newly talon-like and slender fingers gripped the links of the cage wall.
Like cardboard, the thin metal crumpled as she ripped through the cage, bursting from the fireplace in a clumsy dive, bringing the fragments of the cage wall with her in a heap. Her burning body was no longer clothed beyond her now blackened leather breastplate and boots, which had both cracked and weakened in the flame. Smoke endlessly drifted skyward from her features that no longer burning brightly as she slowly rose to her feet, creepily letting her head hang, looking at the ash-covered floor below her feet.
Stewart, trembling against the wall, had no time to react to the blood that slowly dripped from his ears as he clutched the poker he had picked up to tend the fire not moments ago. Instinct took hold as he swung the poker down upon Gli's head as she approached. It impacted her head hard, causing her to crumple to her knees. Feeling more confident, Stewart reared back to swing again with the pointy side down. His confidence faded as he watched his wrist get caught in the grasp of Gli's blackened hand. He watched in horror as he found himself unable to break free from her grasp as she rose to her feet once more. This time, her head rose as their eyes met. Stewart cringed upon looking at Gli's face, which was black and rough, unlike her usual green and soft features. Her golden eyes were even more pronounced in their bright color compared to the dark tone of her flesh. With the angle Stewart had when it came to lighting, it almost seemed as if every other feature in Gli's face disappeared within the blackened burned color, like a ghastly mask.
"Unhand me, demon!" He cried in panic as he futilely fought against her.
A horrible smile appeared on Gli's face, making horribly audible sounds of hardened skin breaking and tearing in order to allow muscle movement. This single action sounded comparable to that of a tree cracking under great weight. Stewart's heart sank as he realized his poorly chosen words, but could do little else before he found himself flattened on the floor from a extremely forcible pull by the small girl. The violent nature of this action pulled his arm out of socket, causing the elderly man to scream in shock; More unfortunate, his pain only excited the demonically charged Deku Girl more. Gli stood proudly atop Stewart's back, tightly gripping his arm out straight behind him, her clawed fingers digging in enough to draw blood. She gripped his arm tightly with her arms, and tugged violently.
Stewart's agony grew worse as his arm was pulled more out of place, but Gli frowned. Reaching further down the length of his arm, Gli gripped his bicep tightly whilst forcing a boot upon the top of his head. She jerked upward again. A slight tear sound was heard as Stewart screamed ever louder, begging her to desist. Gli's ears were deaf to mercy, and her mouth watering for sustenance. However, she heard shocked gasps in various places in the room. The Deku Girl looked up to see that every entrance to that room had a person standing there, each standing back in shock, too afraid to approach. Gli was able to recognize them all; To her left, stood the maid whom had tended her wounds when Stewart was away...To her right, was the maid whom had bathed her each night she was there...And in front of her, next the fireplace was the butler, whom would give clean clothes to her each Friday. Her eyes looked into the butler's whom merely frowned and shook his head.
"You're better than this, dear...' the butler whispered sadly. 'Don't let our master's anger destroy you."
Gli's arms glowed red with power as she kept her grip on the struggling old man, with her eyes glued to the butler.
"...It already did." the Deku Child responded softly.
The amulet in her chest shimmered brilliantly as she jolted her arms upward. A horrible crack of broken bone and torn sinew was barely audible above her master's screams. Blood splashed messily on her boots and blackened legs as she tossed her prize over her shoulder. She jumped to the table to her right, snatching the Libram once more, and before anyone could react, Gli was on the window sill. She looked to her master once more, whom was looking at her with a look of shock and agony whilst gripping his chest. He seemed to be gasping for air, which amused her. She gestured her bloody prize from him with a smile, before putting it in her mouth to hold as she slipped the Libram inside her breastplate.
"Thank you, Master." She snarled through her teeth, before dropping from view to the ground below.
She hit the bricked ground hard and fast, before breaking into an animalistic run towards the castle. It was the closest source of water she knew, and she needed release from the fire the raged uselessly on her flesh. The Town Square was moments away, and she already could smell the water. She could also smell the blood in the veins of everyone whom was presently there. Focus was almost impossible, but she kept running, praying the soldiers wouldn't stop her. For if they did, she wouldn't be able to stop herself.
Gli/ Castle Town Square/ Day 7
Her body though small, felt both heavier than stone and lighter than air simultaneously as she strode forth in a silent fit of madness and euphoria. Her golden eyes were locked on the moat, which was guarded by several soldiers. She barely noticed them as she shambled swiftly forth with the intent to replicate the momentum and magnitude of a Goron despite her size. Her nails dragged through the dirt as she occasionally shifted from upright to a primal stance, unable to fully control her stride and gait in her haste and madness. Gli was upon the soldiers before she could even realize how fast she had approached, barely stopping herself when she noticed the spears trained at her neck. The charging Deku girl stopped dead in her tracks as she looked up to the soldiers that had gathered to concentrate their efforts to stop her. She stepped back, rubbing her neck with concern as she took the chance to get a better look at her current situation.
Three Hylian guards were standing ready against the fiery beast. The guard that stood front and center was prepared to warn Gli for her antagonistic action and shoo her away, but he noticed the disembodied arm that she had slung over her shoulder. He changed his tone, lowering to a more offensive pose and reestablished his grip on the spear as he put on his best brave face.
"Back, monster!! One more step and we will be forced to utilize lethal means to repel you!!!"
Gli froze at the threat, blinking back to her senses. The guard's words sent a chill through her, despite her smoking and burning flesh. She faltered in her own stance, preferring retreat before violence. She had no reason nor benefit to find in battle, she already had her meal. Her face was that of bitter defiance, but she rose slowly upright, sliding back slowly from the business ends of the three spears. After a moment, she finally turned back. Moments more, she began to grudgingly walk away, hanging her head. She refused to look back as she walked on, but stopped when she heard a encouraging sound.
The guards collectively sighed in relief, thanking their respective Gods for the easy avoidance of violence. But Gli still needed the water. She needed to extinguish, and she was going to grant the wish of everyone involved in this situation. Stopping, Gli smirked as she began to glow blood red on both her flesh and aura. Red misty smoke drifted from her legs as they seemed to magically strengthen and tighten. She could feel strength greater than her physical form was allowed course through her veins.
"Din's Tits, it flies?!" a guard cried in exasperation as the fiery beast sailed over their heads in a leap far beyond physical possibility.
A splash was heard, along with the sound of the sizzle of hot becoming cold in a rapid manner. This startling sound was followed by a soft sigh of absolute bliss. Gli's eyes flickered closed as she carelessly sank to the bottom, as she was enveloped by the blackness of the deep. The water around her was stained red and black, blinding her of her surroundings, but she didn't care. She finally felt better than she had in days. Despite the horrible mess that was the rest of her life, she was happy...For at least a moment.
She woke up, soaked and sputtering breathlessly on the other end of the moat. She opened her eyes and looked up as high as she could while she coughed up water and blood. She was before the Castle gates, but found herself surrounded by guards. Spears once again surrounded her. Gli's head hung in defeat, at least this time.
"Trying to sneak into the Castle? Certainly you'll enjoy the cell we have ready for filthy spies like you."
Deception in the Castle
Hylian Guard Alauth/Morning 7/Hyrule Castle
It had been an interesting few days for Alauth, posing as a member of the Hylian Royal Guard. While he had performed shift-work around the Castle, and the remnants of the ravaged dungeons, Alauth collected information and made plans. Impa had to be avoided. The first time they had been together he had been lucky. She was distracted talking to King Dromand, and paid no mind to the guardsmen around the courtyard. Alauth's attention, of course, was on the pair. And he saw the marking on her face, under her eye. It remembered...
FLASHBACK! The Ancient Past
"She is already one of my greatest assets, alongside The Second Scion and the General. But unlike Us, she is mundane, mortal. After what I have done to empower Chamdar, I dare not reach further for her sake. You, however... I can ask you. Consider it a way to prove your sincerity."
'"And what would you have me do? I am no font of endless power. I am not a deity, like you Three."'
"Our Three," countered Hylia.
'"The Three,"' Malauth countered back, affecting a frown on the face it presented to the Goddess. '"My point stands: I cannot simply 'grant' power, as They have to you and the other. If you wish a boon for this Impa of yours, then it must be named, and it must take a shape and form."'
Hylian pursed her lips, and the dimples of the expression accentuated her unnatural beauty. "Form and shape... What a choice of words, to come from something like you. Very well.
"Chamdar is the sword. Eridanus is the shield. Impa is my armor. While they actively fight for me, she protects me without interference. If this gift is to prove your sincerity, then I think it would be to protect from you. Impa guards from the shadows, where you thrive. She seeks the truth in all actions, where you deceive all around you. Though you may deceive even me, her eyes should pierce the darkness and lies. The boon I ask of you, to empower her, is this: That my sheikah might have an eye to see the truth of things, and know your real form in all ways."
Malauth's construct flared in brilliant anger. '"You ask thta I give her the eyes of a Ma! You impetuous woman!"'
"I do not ask that you give her the eyes of a demon, only the sight to know one when seen! Prove your trustworthiness, or begone! My charge is too great to leave it in the hands of one of my enemy's blood without confidence!"
'"Fine! Bring her forward, and I will give her the Sight you desire. But do not blame me if her mind cannot handle that which it percieves."'
Hylia nodded to the woman kneeling at her side, and Impa stood, approaching Malauth. The construct began to grow appendages, which left wispy trails of light as they waved through the air. '"I can design the Lens, but she will need to provide the Vision, and the Eye."'
The wisps of light coagulated in front of the construct, dimly at first, then brighter. A stylized eye, with a drop of blood or a tear, began to form in the air. '"This will show Truth, but it cannot see. Such power must be provided by the one who bears it."'
The Eye shrunk, and in a jerking motion slammed itself, with physical force, into Impa's face. She choked back a cry of pain, not wanting to show any weakness, and merely grunted while clasping her palms to her face. When her hands moved, the mark had appeared around her left eye. '"Your own magic, the strength of the Goddesses, will be consumed to use this Sight. There is nothing that can change that; it is still foreign to you. But I warn you: Do not, in turn, let this gift consume you. It is tempting to know the true form of things, but they are not meant to be seen, not by mortals. Even the Goddesses have secrets."'
Impa touched the teardrop now permanently hanging from her eye, and she looked upon Malauth in shock and dismay.
That tattoo. That design. In ancient times, Malauth had created it. To see it still in use, by the Hylian sheikah, was shocking. It would pierce through to the trueness of all it saw, including Alauth's constructs. Were it to turn on this guardsman, he would be seen as no more a Hylian than the statuary in the courtyard. Yes, the King's Impa needed to be avoided. And he was seldom without her warding gaze, proving to stymy Alauth's attempts to gather intelligence on Dromand's intentions with the prisoners. However, the Eye proved to help in one regard.
Alauth was easily able to recognize that the prisoners paraded to town square for public and brutal execution were not the Trust Thieves. They were inconsequential Zora. Well, if Dromand wanted the populace to believe the traitors dead, so be it. He'd have a hard time trying to chase down dead men who had escaped his dungeon. And with that ruse, it seemed the time was nigh for Alauth to make its move and approach the prisoners. Only, that was where the King and the insufferable Impa were headed.
Such complications annoyed Alauth. Perhaps the steps would have to come out of order, then. A nondescript, nameless Royal Guard made his way to the Castle's vaults and armory. There were a few items that needed relocating.
Royal Guard Alauth/Hyrule Castle/Morning 7
The nameless guard approached the castle vaults. Alauth had made sure to remember this location on that first day, when the guards had stored all the weaponry and items from the Lon Lon prisoners. The two guardsmen on duty in the hallway only remarked his presence when he stopped and faced them.
"The deed is done," he informed them. "Those traitors won't be causing troubles for the kingdom anymore. Their confiscated possessions are being relocated. Can one of you help, those asses up in higher command didn't send anyone else with me."
One guard shook his head. "Posting requires two guards minimum at all times."
Alauth's nameless construct uttered a frustrated curse. "That figures."
With a shrug, the unnamed guard entered the vault. "Just be ready to see me about ten more times, then!" He looked around the rather large room. It was obviously planned for the collection inside to be expanded. What was there currently left the place feeling very cavernous. But, off to the side, he found the items he had come to steal. He walked over, picking up the various items, doing what he could to hold them all at once.
Bow, quiver of arrows, a myriad of swords... These were placed in what was essentially a treasure chest with straps. Things were getting heavy, and the form of a mere Hylian Royal Guard would not suit the task at hand. Things were about to get hectic. Again.
As the guard reached for the deadly axe he had helped carry from the battle at Lon Lon, his skin began to dry and crack. He grew, bending over to grasp the weapon in his large, rocky hands. Then, the newly formed Goron lifted the axe from the ground, raising it above his head to test its heft. It was heavy and dangerous, unwieldy even for this stronger construct. No doubt there was some manner of enchantment or curse upon the thing. But it would no doubt cave skulls and shatter bones. Then he threw the treasure chest-come-backpack over his shoulders and turned to the door.
The guards outside were about to have a very bad day.
Castle Town Daily Brawl
Zerin Savassi - Hyrule Field (Near Castle Town) - Day 7
Zerin heard his past instructor’s stern voice echo through his head as he once again met face-to-face with the dirt below him. He groaned and picked himself back up, retracting the hooks from the two adjacent trees in front of him.
“What the hell is the point of trying again if this damn piece of junk ain’t gonna work?” He muttered to himself, punching his left sheath.
Reluctantly Zerin paced back a few steps and gripped the hits of his swords, trigger fingers ready. Dust and grass flung into the air beneath his boots as he began running forward. He jumped and pulled the triggers shooting two swirling steel anchors into the scarred bark of the tree. The sound of grinding steel and rushing wind filled Zerin’s eardrums as he was reeled forward at high speeds until being gracefully catapulted into the air resulting in a flurry of unintentional, yet appropriately stylish, acrobatics.
“Hey, this hunk a’ metal actually worked!” Zerin yelled over the sound of winding wire, scrambling around mid-air trying to find a possible grapple point.
A lone tree stood in the vast field below, as if asking to be a target. Zerin positioned himself correctly and fired a single anchor towards the leafless, lifeless tree. Once metal pierced bark he was pulled forward, circling around before getting planted into the dirt.
Zerin groaned. “Eesh, not gonna try that again...” The anchors winded back into place. “...but, at least I figured this thing out! Practice makes... well, whatever
that counts as.”
The castle walls towered over him, casting an ominous shadow onto the green fields. Tension could be felt lingering in the air, seeping through the walls of the town. With his stomach aching and head pounding, Zerin decided to return into town to restock on food and supplies before searching for a purpose.
Castle Town - Day 7
Upon arriving in the town Zerin headed immediately towards the market, wallet full and stomach empty. The crowd was surprisingly smaller in the marketplace than usual, but he kept it no mind as he stepped up to the varying baskets and bagged multiple bread rolls. He tossed a red rupee onto the counter and went on his way, ignoring the eerie silence surrounding him.
The sound of splashing water and whispers was the only audible thing in Castle Town. A large crowd which at first surrounded the plaza, which explained the inactivity throughout the town, began dispersing all around the city slowly bringing back the energy and positive commotion that was present the day before, except everybody was avoiding the middle of town. Zerin approached the now empty plaza to see what was causing all the strange activity.
~Castle Drawbridge, The Seventh Morning~
“I would like an audience with the king please.” The guard at the drawbridge entrance said nothing in response to Sirius’ inquiry. He cleared his throat and tried again. “I believe that the King has been fooled. Today’s executions were a mistake, he did not execute the right individuals.” Still nothing from the guard, though Sirius could now sense some agitation. These men were trained to be unwavering, but none loyal to their King liked his highness to be questioned.
Sirius flipped open his notebook. He was shy around none, but given his desire to see the king, playing himself off as crazy was the last thing he wanted - until the time was right. For that reason, he avoided calling on Bernard. Magic and science were no stranger to Hyrule, but a madman talking to his notebook would be seen as just that, a madman. Talking. To his notebook.
He scanned through it and pulled up a crude drawing of the timestone vault, or at least what he believed it to look like based on the murals in the hall of elemental history. Sirius flipped to another page and scribbled on it. Taden had held at least one key, and judging by the Battle of Disharmony, someone had taken another from Zora’s domain, almost certainly the same group Taden had been with at Kakariko, though he couldn't be sure. Sirius had lived for 740 years as a mad scientist, deciphering mysteries was, to put it one way, his thing.
He flipped back to the page with the time stone vault drawing.
“You see this?” The guard did not react. “Your King is hiding something about this place. At least two of the keys to this place are in the castle, and I’m betting...” Sirius paused and shut the notebook hard. “I’m betting that’s not the only thing of value in there. Now, I’m typically an ask questions first, then act kind of guy, and you know, violence has its place, and it often closes more doors than it opens...” He slammed the notebook hard into the guard’s face, knocking him off his feet, and firing a bolt of moonlight into the air, briefly illuminating the morning sky with silvery light.
“Arrest me! I am insane! I need to be arrested!” Sirius began shouting. He hooked the notebook to his belt and tapped it three times. “Bernard you have been fused, this notebook ain’t going nowhere! Now, everyone else that works for the King! Arrest me! ARREST ME!” The guard began to rise to his feet, and drew his sword. He seemed ready to draw blood. Sirius smiled and kicked him down. “You draw my blood, and I draw your heart! And trust me, that doesn't mean what you think it does... Now either arrest me, or meet your maker...though stick around long enough and it will be me.” He laughed maniacally. “Let’s go over this ONE. MORE. TIME. ARREST ME! PUT ME IN THAT DUNGEON!”
Castle Town Plaza - Day 7
A bolt of unnatural looking lightning struck the ground before the castle drawbridge causing the sky to light up briefly a strange silver shade. Although the crowd dispersed quickly in the center of town nobody else had seemed to notice this. Zerin decided that figuring out what the whole fiasco was about in the plaza would be a secondary objective, and made his way to the drawbridge, until of course he unintentionally discovered what did happen.
As he nonchalantly made his brief trek to the drawbridge Zerin noticed blood stains strewn about the cobblestone flooring around the fountain. It took little time to realize that there must’ve been an execution. Of who, he was not aware, but it must have been of some importance if nearly the whole town was watching. Uncaring of the situation, he continued.
Zerin’s walk did not stay uninterrupted for long as the faint yelling of what sounded to be a madman echoed down the path to the drawbridge. Cautious of what could possibly be ahead he unsheathed one of his blades and slowed down his walk into a more cautionary position.
“Let’s go over this ONE. MORE. TIME. ARREST ME! PUT ME IN THAT DUNGEON!” An unfamiliar man screamed to a downed guard, his foot pushing down on the guard’s chest.
“Enh, this could turn out rough...” Zerin said to himself, drawing his second sword from his sheath, trigger fingers placed accordingly. He approached the insane man, now waiting for any sort of response from the guard, physical or not.
“Er, you might not want to do that.”
Castle Drawbridge Gates- Dawn 7
Sirius Sirius, his foot planted firmly on the guard’s chest, kicked the guard hard in the head, knocking him unconscious. He heard shouting in the distance, no doubt a nearby lookout had spotted the incident.
“Well. Aren’t you just a fun spoiler.” Sirius said, looking the young man straight in the eye. He paused for a few moments to consider his upcoming words. Sirius wasn’t particularly thrilled with those that tried to provide him warnings about his actions. He knew exactly what he was doing, and this fellow was just going to make things more complicated, unless Sirius found a way to turn the tides to his favor.
He took out his notebook and began scribbling, just as two more guards ran up, swords drawn. Sirius decided to turn the tides a little. Before they got too close, he began to shout again.
“Please, please take me to the dungeons! I have lost my mind because of this wizard!” Sirius began pointing at the young man. “I committed a horrible act and knocked this guard unconscious, I am losing control of myself. You must stop this boy from affecting my mind further! He is evil! He is evil!” Sirius put out his best panicked voice, giving the most realistic impression he could that he had lost control. He flicked his eyes back and forth from the man to the guards, and began to shake in place for added effect.
“He has paralyzed me!”
Castle Town Plaza - Day 7
Confused at the man’s words and the guards’ seemingly agreeing with what he was saying, Zerin sheathed his two swords but remained still and stood his ground, showing no loss of confidence.
“I’m not the one shooting lightning out of nowhere, big guy,” Zerin glanced down at the small notebook in the man’s hand. “and I’d really like to know what you’ve been scribbling in that thing.”
The man still continued his acts of insanity shaking in place, not showing any signs of giving up this admittedly well thought out performance. The guards’ faces were covered in confusion unaware of who to believe. Zerin knew his act couldn’t go on forever, but he also knew the guards wouldn’t be choosing who the maniac is here forever either. Releasing a faint sigh, he changed glances to the bewildered guards and raised his hands slightly in the air to ensure hostility was not his intent.
“Do you really believe this whole fiasco to be true? Surely what this man is claiming I’m doing isn’t true, just look at me!” Zerin paused. “Do I really look like magical wizard to you?”
The guards looked at each other briefly, exchanged whispers, then nodded towards each other.
“Neither of your words can be taken as fact, I’m afraid, an-”
“Well I’m afraid you have no choice unless you’d like to take this man on,” He pointed towards the still shaking maniac. “which might I add took down the single guard here without as much as a scratch. And, what if I’m his ally? Neither of you could possibly stand a chance. Just leave this little affair to me and we can catch up in ten, yeah?”
Apparently one of the guards didn’t appreciate the attitude as the one on the left gripped his sword tightly and went from an expression of agreement to the exact opposite.
“Where do get off saying such things to a castle guard, with such an attitude no less?” His grip tightened, eyes burning ever more wildly. He seemed to not take kindly to disrespectful youth.
“Yeah, well maybe-” Zerin stopped and examined the internally steaming guard. “...I think I know you from somewhere. If you are who I think you are, this’ll be realllllly awkward.”
The guard’s expression faltered for a moment, then returned to sternness. “Speak your name!”
“Savassi. Does that help?” He said sarcastically.
A relaxed smile crept onto the guard’s face. “Of course. This used to be where your father was stationed after all.”
Zerin shifted his eyes across the area. “Er, yeah. That’s true.” He tried to avoid the subject of his now deceased father due to touchiness.
“If you wish to be left alone with this maniac of a man I won’t argue, but the final decision is yours.” The guard said. He was uneasy about what he was saying, but wanted Zerin to believe otherwise. He found it funny that this guard he once knew as a child is attempting to act as a father figure towards him even though they’re both grown men. Lost in thought
Zerin completely forgot where he was. His eyes shot upwards then glanced at the man above the unconscious guard waiting for another outburst of insanity.
~Castle Drawbridge, Dawn of the Seventh~
Sirius was bewildered. This boy was more clever than he had expected. But he had made a mistake. Sirius notebook suddenly opened on its own, and the pages whirled until stopping about a quarter of the way into the endless book. Bernard’s distinct voice began emanating from the text.
“Savassi. Name recorded. Image recorded. Based on observed dialogue, assumed to be of relation to an ex-guard, either retired or deceased, details pending.”
“Thank you Bernard, that will make a lovely clone later.” Sirius smirked. It was pointless to continue this charade. He had hoped to get quickly arrested, but this boy showing up had managed to make the guard’s hesitant. Given the somewhat heightened state of tension in the castle town area, it wasn’t too surprising. All powerful wizards and warriors seemed to be the constant undoing of castle guards, both now and in Sirius’ original era.
“Okay, you got me! I’m not insane!” Sirius paused and put a hand on his chin. “Okay, you know what? I’m not that type of insane, but I suppose the word itself can be subjective. My name is Sirius Fulmaren, and whether that means anything to you or not is less important than what it will mean.” His continued emphasis on individual words amused even himself. Self-importance was intoxicating to him, and kept his drive at elevated levels.
“I am certain, very certain in fact, that Taden Horwendil and his band of manipulated thieves are in that castle. I am no fool, and neither is any man or woman of half a brain in this word. I was at the Battle of Disharmony, nobody as smart as Dromand disposes of the powerful so quickly, nobody. If you must know, I knocked out this guard as an act of desperation, to be arrested. But surely by now we can all agree, that detaining me is not an act so easily committed when I begin resisting.” Sirius reached into his jacket in a flash and pulled out his whip rod, extending it and jamming it into both guard’s stomachs in quick succession, bringing them to their knees.
He then turned to Savassi and jabbed towards him, but the young man was quicker on his feet than the guards, jumping away and almost immediately giving Sirius the revelation that he was no normal Hylian. He had the air of a future legend about him, and that meant it was even more important that he keep Bernard recording the details of the situation they now found themselves in.
“You clearly wanted a fight, to defend some kind of honor that you see in these guards.” Sirius pulled on the whip-rod and it loosed into a whip, which he snapped at each guard, knocking them down like the first. “So before I forced my way into this castle, let’s see what exactly your principles are. And if you understand who you have chosen to fight.”
Castle Drawbridge - Day 7
The sudden change of Sirius’ behavior couldn’t help but make Zerin smirk. This man went from acting like a paralyzed madman to a... not paralyzed madman.
“So all you needed to break was a little push after all.” Zerin began unsheathing his swords once again. “Although I’ll admit, I didn’t expect this much of an attitude change, not that I’m complaining. Now before this continues, I’d like to address my full name to you.”
He paused for a moment, hoping he could make this sound more important than it really is. “Zerin Savassi.”
Without further interruption he spun his swords around in-hand and placed his fingers accordingly once more, only now he anticipated to use what he had quite literally at his fingertips. He backed up multiple paces.
“This isn’t exactly the best time to experiment with this thing, but...” Zerin thought to himself. At this point he realized it was foolhardy to test things out with his clawshots against a foe so seemingly powerful, but he decided to take the risk.
Clenching the hilts of his blades he fired both clawshots in opposite directions, side-by-side with Sirius in the middle. Zerin was pulled forward slower than anticipated due to his feet dragging on the ground, so he jumped into the air and began to spin himself forward,swords outward as he gained continuous speed until his blades became a blurred disc heading directly towards Sirius.
It had been a few days now since Sirius’ last good fight, at the Battle of Disharmony, and much of that had been spent confusingly defending Taden, which he still wasn’t entirely sure of his reasoning for doing.
Zerin came spinning, his body churning into a blurred mess of blades. Sirius heard Bernard speaking as Zerin came throttling forward.
“Weapons categorized to closest match - clawshots, similar to failed prototype in lab. Evidently this Zerin Savassi has acquired a working model, range assumed to be between 35 to 50 feet, exact range unknown.”
Sirius turned around to put his back to Zerin, flicked his wrist and wrapped his whip around the chains as they soared past him. He dropped to the ground, tightened the whip into a rod and pulled as hard as he could. Zerin went soaring over his head, as Sirius slid in the opposite direction. Zerin landed on his feet, and Sirius released the tension in the whip, bringing it back to his side. Zerin pivoted, facing Sirius again. Bernard continued to narrate.
“No visible damage to either party. Sirius, this target has a numerical weapon advantage over you, I recommend you not fight like a moron.”
Sirius smirked at Bernard’s sarcasm, and his deliberate lack of subtlety. The Zora spirit was taking after him already. He rushed towards Zerin, who did the same, refraining from immediately firing his clawshots again, though Sirius knew they would likely be used at any time.
Zerin rushed back, and the two met in the middle, Sirius’ moonrod clashing against Zerin’s dual steel longswords. Sparks shot out, some from the steel, some lunar magic, and the two traded blows for several moments before simultaneously pushing one another away. Zerin fired both clawshots, but Sirius knocked them towards the ground, embedding them briefly into the dirt. He attempted to rush Zerin, but the Hylian was ready, kicking him away and slashing back.
“You are well trained for someone so young.” Sirius remarked. He put a few steps between himself and Zerin, assessing the situation, considering possible ways to bring the boy down without killing him by accident. “If only we could have met on different terms.”
Castle Drawbridge - Day 7
Zerin wiped a drop of sweat from his forehead. His opponent was better in a fight than he had anticipated.
“Yeah, it’s quite the shame, isn’t it?” Zerin said, observing the newly formed scratches on his swords. “Although I doubt we’d get along no matter the circumstance.”
Before Sirius could pull of an attack Zerin fired a clawshot next to Sirius, effectively dragging him at high speeds angled at his lower half, hoping for a possible trip. Sirius easily dodged the attack and entangled the clawshot once again, sending Zerin into a brief tumble before pushing himself upwards into a backflip and landing on his feet. Zerin could feel blood trickle down his cheek.
“Alright...maybe third time really isn’t the charm.” Zerin thought to himself as he wiped the blood off, unaware of Sirius’ approaching rod. Zerin quickly pulled his sword up to block the blow, only for his sword to be struck out of his hand into the other direction, however the initial distance the sword would have travelled was cut short by the attaching tube to the actual clawshot mechanism around Zerin’s waist.
Sirius continued swinging and Zerin continued blocking with his single sword sending the sound of metallic clashing into the nearby air. Zerin’s left sword continued to drag and toss in the dirt beside him as his left hand switched between supporting his right sword’s consistent blows and attempting to pull in the other sword by the tube. Eventually getting tired of Sirius’ constant torrent of attacks Zerin grabbed his sword mid-strike with both hands and swung with all of his strength, knocking Sirius back. Zerin spun his body around launching his right clawshot at his dropped sword effectively retrieving it with no other required dirty work. Attempting new things with the clawshots and it consistently working out gave him a new idea.
“Maybe it wasn’t such a great idea pickin’ a fight with this guy after all...” Zerin thought to himself while he caught his breath.
With both swords now in hand Zerin reluctantly attempted to assault Sirius from the air once again. Zerin flung himself up into the air once again using the walls to his sides like a slingshot. Once he reached the pinnacle of his height, he retracted the clawshots, then fired them again above Sirius’ reach, knowing if he were to make the same mistake of shooting the clawshots in his range he would crash and burn again. The momentum of the fall and pull of the clawshots fired Zerin into a vertical spinning blur of blades once again directly towards Sirius.
Castle Drawbridge - Day 7
Sirius tightened his whip around a nearby piece of the bridge and pulled himself out of Zerin’s strike zone. The young warrior abandoned his attack and landed cleanly on his feet. Zerin was skilled, but also somewhat overly aggressive. His continued use of the vertical strike move made Sirius think he was trying to prove something, but to who?
Several dozen guards had now emerged, split evenly on either side of the drawbridge, where Zerin and Sirius’ fight had gravitated to.
“Maybe I should explain to you exactly what kind of power and knowledge I’m packing over here. Bernard, project records of the laboratory for this young fool, show him what we can do.”
“Snowpeak laboratory records are currently locked per your request.”
Sirius scrunched his face up at Bernard’s words. He had no memory of making such a request.
“Bernard, you whiny brat. Show them what we have done at snowpeak, bring up images of AvaKai or something!”
“I’m sorry Sirius, but I can’t do that.” Bernard’s ghostly image filled the air, revealing the Zora spirit to Zerin and all of the guards. “It is imperative you disengage from these requests and return to your task at hand, or I will be forced to protect you.”
“Protect me from what? You have no control over me, Zoran ass!”
“So be it. Grade 1 poison secretion active per your order.”
“What is-?” Sirius paused mid sentence as he saw a purple liquid oozing from his notebook. Then he remembered. Years before when concocting a special poison, as one of his many experiments, he had imbued it into his notebooks pages, to see if it could be stored inside runes instead of vials. It had worked, but only for weak variants of the poison, only enough to knock everyone in a radius unconscious.
“A warning to all the Hylian guards and to Zerin Savassi. If you remain within twenty feet of Sirius you will likely fall unconscious.”
“Bettersh lissssten toooo hiiiim...” Sirius stumbled around as a gas released from the oozing liquid, immediately sending him towards a deep slumber. In the distance he saw more guards rushing in, as several of those already in the poisons radius began to stumble and pass out as well. “Nighty night...” Sirius passed out, landing on the ground with a thud. His notebook made a loud thunk sound as it fused to his side. There would be no way to remove it short of killing him and severing it from his skin.
Mark/Castle Drawbridge/Day 7
“I am certain, very certain in fact, that Taden Horwendil and his band of manipulated thieves are in that castle. I am no fool, and neither is any man or woman of half a brain in this word.” Those words acted like a slap to the face for Mark. If that Sirius person was right, then Xiaber was still alive, and even better, right here in the castle. This changed everything, yet also nothing. He still had to get into the castle, but going on a rampage wouldn’t help him get anywhere close to where they could be.
Another thing Sirius said caught his attention. He didn’t call them manipulative thieves, but manipulated. Could Taden be the reason that Xiaber got in this mess? Mark shook his head in frustration. He should be thinking of how to rescue Xiaber, not where to put the blame. If anything, Taden was being manipulated as well.
The fight between the two on the drawbridge drew many guards to the area to the dismay of Mark. He was shocked, though, when a ghostly Zora appeared in front of Sirius. Even more shock came when Sirius and several guards who drew in on him fell unconscious. Sirius would soon get his wish of being arrested. Mark had to make a quick decision.
“So sorry about that,” Mark said loud and clearly for anyone still conscious to hear as he quickly stepped through a hole in the line of guards and headed for Sirius. No one stopped him, still being confused on what just happened. “My friend here is prone to losing his mind at the worst of times.” Zerin raised his weapons in anticipation of another fight, but Mark simply strode right passed him and stood before the unconscious Sirius. “I’ll understand completely if you arrest him, but where he goes, I also go. It’s a strange predicament that I’d rather not explain.”
No one moved but just stared at him. Mark sighed at the sight. Why was it suddenly so hard to get arrested? Xiaber seemed to do it easily enough. “What, do I have to act all crazy and fight you, too?” The lack of a reply was in itself, good enough of a reply to him. “Very well,” He said as he unsheathed his sword. He muttered in addition, “Man, is this going to hurt.”
Mark rushed at Zerin, who quickly deflected his first attack. After a few more exchanges of attacks from the two, Mark feinted an attack, which ended with him hitting his head with his own hilt, knocking him unconscious. He hoped that Sirius would be able to lead him to Xiaber. Otherwise, he just made a big mistake.
Zerin Savassi - Castle Drawbridge - Day 7
Zerin stared at the now unconscious self-proclaimed ally of Sirius in confusion. He wasn’t exactly sure why Sirius wanted to get arrested in the first place but he assumed it to be the same reason this man seemingly deliberately knocked himself out, unless he was just a massive klutz. Zerin sheathed his swords, completely forgetting about the cloud of poisonous gas spreading throughout the area.
“You know, I’m starting to think this wasn’t a good ideaaa...” Zerin tripped and stumbled over himself until faceplanting into the dirt below him. The muffled sounds of guards yelling and collapsing surrounded his now half-conscious body as he drifted into sleep.
AD-1199 (One Year Ago) - Castle Town
The town’s booming activity had once again come to a close as the sun set behind the castle walls. The atmosphere changed quickly as per usual once the sun set to a calm, but uneasy night. Avoiding the alleyways after dusk was ideal, and nearly everybody followed this unspoken rule of sorts, Zerin included. After leaving the field later than anticipated where he continued his training to become a soldier like his father, he decided to skip his usual route through the alley and take the long way home, until he heard a familiar voice coming from the alleyway.
Zerin ran down the pitch-black pathway where he found five men, four of them violently beating on the fifth. The fifth man was Zerin’s father now helpless on the ground, most likely from an ambush.
“C’mon now Sebastian, what’s the matter? Can’t take a little rough play?” One of them said as he kicked him in the ribs, groaning in pain.
Zerin seethed with rage as he charged at the unaware ambushers, unsheathing his sword. The steel of his blade plunged into the back of his first target spurting blood across the walls. The three other attackers turned their attention to Zerin who grabbed one of them by the arm and tripped them, their face planting against the concrete wall. Zerin stomped on the back of his head, pushing the bone in his nose into his brain. One of the thugs grabbed Zerin’s arm while the other one unsheathed their sword and swung for his head. Instinctively he ducked under the blade and pushed the thug that was holding onto him into his comrade’s blade, slicing his neck open and dropping him to the ground.
“H-Hey, wait a second, k-kid…” The remaining attacker stuttered, pacing back a few steps. “I’ll leave this poor guy alone, don’t worry! Just l-let me leave!”
Zerin still wasn’t calm. His breaths were still heavy and full of rage at his father’s attackers. Blindly he began charging at his final foe with nothing but hatred flowing through him. The thug panicked, frantically looking around to find a way of escape, or at least a way to avoid death. He looked down at his feet and saw the now half-conscious body of Sebastian. Without hesitation he quickly grabbed his body and held it in front of him hoping it could buy him enough time to get out of the alley. Zerin felt his blade pierce skin followed by a scream. He opened his eyes and saw his sword sticking out of his father’s back, blood dripping from the tip of the blade.
The thug smirked and dropped Sebastian’s body letting him lay limp on the blade. “Sucks for him, huh? Well, I’ll be going now.” He jogged out of the alley clearly not worrying about punishment.
Zerin dropped to his knees. “This… This can’t be…” He punched the bloodied ground beneath him. “How could I have… let this happen…”