A/N: Alright, so upon my 100% completion of Breath of the Wild (and, yep, that includes all 900 Korok Seeds) and allowing my excitement for the game to finally settle, I realised that there was still more that I needed from the game, particularly its story. The story isn't bad by any means, but it feels almost incomplete, you know? Anyway, this fic is my first attempt at Zelda fanfiction in a LONG while, so hopefully it's not terrible.
Basically it will be a collection of memories from 100 years ago that weren't in the game, but that I pretty much accept as canon. Some of them are referenced in Zelda's Diary, Zelda's Research Notes, and The King's Journal, and some I just made up. Also, these memories don't exactly take place in chronological order, so I will give some background information as to when each memory takes place before I get into the chapter. If you have any requests for new memories you'd like me to write, or old memories you'd like me to re-write from the point of view of a certain character, feel free to leave a review below.
Each of the extra memories will be labelled with "EX MEMORY", similarly to how the DLC missions in Breath of the Wild are labelled. With that out of the way, here's Goodnight. (I should also probably add that I'm complete Zelink trash…)
EX MEMORY #1: Goodnight
The events of this chapter take place between when Zelda visits the Great Deku Tree in Recovered Memory #18 (The Master Sword) and when we see her go to fight Calamity Ganon all alone in King Rhoam's tale of what happened 100 years ago.
Zelda left the Lost Woods with a melancholic look cast over her features, wishing she had the same faith in herself as the Great Deku Tree seemed to have in her. The wise tree had much optimism in his tone as he had essentially told her that she would most certainly see Link again, that she herself would be able to tell him that she...
Her thoughts were interrupted as, almost as though it felt the need to protect itself once again, the Master Sword returning to its pedestal caused a strange fog to rise around the woods, ensuring that anyone who dared trespass met with a terrible fate. The fog threatened to stir up memories inside Zelda of the first time she'd visited the Master Sword, memories of times with her father that she would rather treasure with him instead of in memorial of him. She needed to find him. She needed to make sure he was okay. She needed to tell him that she was sorry. She had failed him—she had failed all of her friends and her entire kingdom. But there was one thing that Zelda was undeniably sure of: she would not fail Link.
At this point, she could only pray that the Sheikah warriors who had found her shortly after Link collapsed were able to get him to the Shrine of Resurrection before he had been permanently damaged. They had most likely alerted Impa to Link's condition as well, and Zelda knew she needed to talk to her about Link's reawakening, whenever that may be.
Looking to the sky, Zelda watched as the clouds above her burst, bringing forth a downpour that she figured stretched across the entirety of Hyrule, almost as though the weather itself was mourning the loss of her kingdom. Before she got drenched from the essentially damning rain, she reached for the Sheikah Slate, activating it with the tap of her finger. It wasn't long before Zelda felt her body dissolving into streams of blue energy. Closing her eyes, she became one with the rain.
Upon opening her eyes, she saw that all of the white-haired red-eyed people that had obviously been scuttling about prior to her arrival had stopped to stare at her grand entrance to the Shrine of Resurrection for a moment, and made Zelda begin to feel somewhat awkward and out of place. The clearing of a throat behind her, however, was enough to snap them all back to reality, and they began scurrying about the place once more.
Turning around, Zelda allowed herself to breathe a sigh of happiness over who was stepping towards her with a slight shake in her step. "Impa."
The woman named Impa opened her arms to the Princess and she ran into them, hugging her tightly. Zelda had had many mother figures since the death of her mother when she was just six years of age, but none had been as big a part of her life as Impa had.
Impa seemed to shrink with age, Zelda had noticed. When she had met her some ten years ago, she was most certainly taller than she is now. It must be a Sheikah thing, Zelda guessed, growing to a certain point before decreasing in height with age and all that. Small, mostly-inconspicuous spots had also broken out on her face. Impa had also told her that her mother, who had passed away almost eighty years ago now, had named her Impa after the royal guardian of the Princess who had battled alongside the legendary hero against Ganon millenia ago. Impa's daughter also passed away recently, but not before delivering a baby that Impa has sword to protect with her life. Impa has named her Paya, and when Zelda asks why she chose that name, Impa simply smiles and says nothing. Impa also has an older sister, Purah, who resides over in Hateno Village, but Zelda doesn't really see her all that much. She has plans to set up a laboratory in the hopes of examining and understanding the Guardians and the Divine Beasts.
It was then that Zelda quickly pulled out of the hug. "Purah!"
Impa frowned. "What of her?"
"Is she okay? Myself and..." Zelda's voice trailed off as she turned her head toward the main chamber where Link lay as they spoke. "...We were near enough to Hateno Village. Did the Guardians get to her?"
"No, dear," Impa told her softly, a slight rasp in her tone. "Not at all. The soldiers manning the fort at the main entrance to the Hateno region were all able to hold them off. Your powers took care of the rest."
Zelda looked to her right hand then. The strange mark she had seen—what had it been called in her mother's notebook? The Triforce?—had vanished completely.
"I'm so proud of you, Zelda," Impa continued, noticing her self-doubt. "All of us are."
Despite Impa's kind words, Zelda remained filled with a sense of insecurity. "That may be true, but who's to say whether my power will still work when I go to fight Ganon? What if it's a one-time-use sort of thing? What then?"
"Child," Impa soothed. "You are the one who controls your sealing powers. You are the one who determines how much you use them. All you needed was something you truly wanted to fight for. You had been training to awaken your powers out of necessity, out of the pressure put upon you by your royal duties, out of the need other's bestowed on to you to protect your kingdom. But once you wanted this power to protect the thing you wished fight for—the person you wish to fight for, to protect with your life—the power was awoken inside you. Now that you've found that something, you must never forget it."
Zelda opened her mouth then, but was cut off before any words could pass by a tall male Sheikah carrying Link's tunic approaching the two with news. "Your Highness, everything is in order. All that's required to activate the chamber is the Sheikah Slate."
Impa, Zelda, and the man all looked down to the tablet-like mechanical object in her left hand, with Zelda turning her gaze to where Link lay a short few moments later.
Sensing that Zelda needed a moment alone with her knight, Impa cleared her throat once more. "Myself and the Princess would like to thank all of you for your help today. Come. Let us leave the Princess to say goodbye."
As they passed her, each of the Sheikah would mutter something like, "your Highness" or "I'm sorry", and bow their heads, obviously flustered by Zelda's presence.
Once everyone had cleared out, Zelda entered the main chamber of the Shrine and approached where Link lay soundly, leaning over the ancient cradle to survey Link's sleeping form. He looked a lot younger as he slept. Without really thinking, she found the gaze of her eyes falling to his war-torn body. Almost instinctively, she reached out and ran her hand over the many fresh scars that littered his chest, cursing at herself for not being able to protect him the way he had protected her so many times before.
She brought her hand up to his face, brushing a stray blonde hair out of the way of his eyes, Zelda couldn't help the words that passed her mouth. "You always did enjoy sleeping."
She smiled then, continuing to gently caress the side of his face. Link had helped Zelda to forget how hard letting someone go was. She had first experienced loss with the death of her mother when she was younger, and he had been the first person she could open up to about it. She had made a vow to herself to never forget how he had constantly been there for her. It's the same vow that she assumed had awoken her powers in the first place; her need to protect him.
Knowing she needed to stay strong, not only for the good of Link, but for what remained of her kingdom, she brought her head down and placed a kiss on his forehead and whispered words that provoked a strange feeling of déjà vu. "Goodnight, sleepyhead."
Ignoring the feeling altogether, she placed the Sheikah Slate into the pedestal to activate the chamber, causing the walls of the Shrine to fade from blue to orange, signifying the beginning of Link's long slumber. She stepped out of the main room, causing the doors to close, and glanced at what Impa had left for Link upon his reawakening, groaning distastefully at the old shirt and aged trousers.
Wiping a stray tear from her cheek, she began to walk with Impa, who stood at the foot of some stairs that Zelda wasn't sure would last Link's slumber. "Is that the best you can do?" she asked, gesturing to the clothes.
"The best I could do at such short notice, dear," Impa replied with a soft smile that accentuated her age. They reached the mouth of the Shrine and stepped out into the rain, which began to wash the dried mud out of Zelda's hair. "What should we do with this?" Impa asked as she held up Link's blue, still blood-stained tunic. "Should I take it with me or do you want—?"
"No," Zelda cut in sharply, taking Impa by surprise. Collecting herself, she continued. "I mean, no. You should take it. Give it to him once he begins to recall all this." She smiled a humourless smile then. "Maybe it will even jog his memory."
Impa frowned, unconvinced, causing Zelda to sigh. "Fine. I can't... I can't look at that. Not without being reminded of... of how I failed him." Impa opened her mouth to reassure her but Zelda held up a hand. "Impa... don't." She smiled then. "I've got plenty of time to think about what I've done."
Impa's skeptical gaze turned to one of compassion. "As you wish, Princess. Is there anything else you wish for me to do?"
"Yes, actually. If it is possible, please do what you can to prolong Link regaining his memory of what happened yesterday... at least until he has some clear idea of what his life was like before his slumber, of what we were like."
Impa nodded. "I'll do everything I can."
"Thank you, Impa. For everything." Impa waved her hand to brush off the thanks, but Zelda persisted. "Truly, I mean it. Without you, we mightn't have even discovered this Shrine in the first place. Without you... well... my life would be incomplete."
Zelda's words prompted another hug between the two, but a clap of thunder from the sky above forced them out of the embrace earlier than either of them were prepared for.
"What now, Princess?" Impa asked curiously, looking to the sky.
Zelda turned to gaze upon the monstrosity of Malice surrounding her castle, her home. "Now," she told Impa. "I find my father. I know he's out there, and if I have to go through Calamity Ganon to get to him, then so be it."
One final nod was shared between the two before they parted ways, and Zelda made her way towards her home, full of determination to get to her father and to become father and daughter again, rather than ruler and heir.
Little did Zelda know that the spirit of her father stood watching over her from the tower of the now-decayed Temple of Time with a smile of pride and sadness on his face.
Ending Notes: Well? How was it? Hopefully it didn't suck and you're enjoying reading this as much as I'm enjoying writing it.
I will say, there were a few challenges I faced when writing this chapter. For example, when we see Zelda with the Deku Tree, she is still covered in mud, but when she goes to fight Ganon, the mud has been washed out of her hair completely, so I needed to make sure it all lined up with canon. I also had to include all the instructions Zelda left Impa upon Link's reawakening (I'm pretty sure I got them all?), so I'm sorry if those moments felt somewhat forced into the fic. I also needed to account for Zelda getting on and off of the Great Plateau. She got on the Plateau okay, but I'm thinking that there used to be a staircase within the walls around the Plateau that just eroded over the past one hundred years of Link's slumber.
There were also a few plot-holes I noticed in the game's original story while writing this. For example, Impa seemed to have no idea that Link wouldn't remember her when he came to see her one hundred years after she saw him last (unless she was just playing coy, which was very shady of Impa, or she forgot that he would forget), and yet she knew that Zelda left her instructions to show Link the picture of the Blatchery Plain where Link would uncover the final memory. I don't know. Maybe I'm just thinking too far into it.
Anyway, I have ten or eleven more chapters planned out, but if you have any requests as to one you'd like to see, feel free to leave a review or message me. I'll try and have the next chapter up by next week!