The sun started to rise over the land of Hyrule. The horses needed feeding so the young boy from Kakariko went out to feed them their breakfast. He always wondered why it was that they needed to eat before he did, but that never bothered him. In fact part of him liked the pattern, it made whatever meal he'd end up eating more enjoyable, and gave him something to look forward to just after waking up.
"Lad, come here!" The boy's father shouted. Running over with his bag of feed the boy looked up at the man. "Today, some very important customers are coming and I need you to swear to me that you'll be on your best behavior. None of this running around and getting yourself into trouble you hear?"
"Yes Pa." The boy nodded his head. "I need to finish feeding the horses." He held up the feed bag.
"Yes, do that then go to your room and put on your best clothes." The man wrung his hands nervously.
"Pa, what's going on?" The boy cocked his head to the side.
"If I tell you, you have to swear to me you'll be good." The man stuck a meaty finger in the boy's face causing him to take a step back and nod. "The King is going to be coming today along with his Captain of the Guard.
The boy's eyes widened at the thought. "Really? You mean it?"
"Yes lad, now hurry up and get to work then clean yourself up." The man urged his son along. "We don't have much time to prepare, they'll be here before lunch."
Rushing to finish his chores the boy moved from horse stall to horse stall depositing the proper amount of food into each trough.
After finishing up he ran back to the house and went into his room. He searched through his clothes to find whatever his father would think was the best, but wasn't sure what that would be exactly.
Without anything that looked remarkable he reached into the chest and pulled out a green tunic and put it on, cinching the belt into place.
"Lad, get down here, the first of the guards are riding in." Came the shout from down the stairs.
Without hesitation the boy ran to the window to look outside and watch in wonder as nearly forty fully armed soldiers and guards rode into their small ranch followed by a large carriage. The entire thing was covered in gold and purple. The royal crest emblazoned on the gold itself.
The boy had never seen such finery in his entire life. There was no way that it was real gold, even a king can't afford something like that. "Lad! Now!" Came another scream causing the child to jump in place before running down the stairs to meet his father at the front door.
A large man with long red hair stepped off of his horse first and approached the boy and his father. "Are you the Stablemaster known as Arn?" The soldier asked. He towered over the boy and even his father.
"I, I am." The man stuttered. "And you are?"
The soldier didn't say anything and instead turned. "Arn, I would like to introduce to you King Daphnes." He held his hand out as the door to the carriage opened and a man of nearly 6 decades stepped out. "And accompanying him this day, the Princess Zelda." A young girl stepped out behind him. Her blonde hair neatly put into a bun on her head.
"No need to be so formal." Daphnes announced stepping towards Arn. "Is this your lad?" He asked looking down at the boy.
"Yes." Arn nodded his head. "He's nearly eleven this autumn."
"You don't say?" Daphnes asked with a smirk. "My own Zelda is very nearly the same age." He stood up straight and looked to his guard. "Isn't your boy the same age as these two?"
"Aye sire." The guard nodded his head in agreement.
"Hmph." The king chuckled to himself, his big mustache twitching as a fly flew past him. "So I've been told you have a prized mare that might interest me."
"Yes Sire, if you'd please follow me this way." Arn gestured to the stables beside the house. "I'm sure you'll be more than pleased with her."
"I'll be the judge of that." Daphnes huffed as all of his guards followed behind. Except for a few who posted themselves at the exits of the ranch.
The boy smiled watching all the men on horses before he felt a tug on his sleeve. "Come with me." Princess Zelda whispered. "Hurry, before someone spots us."
"Where are we going?" The boy asked following after the Princess as the two made their way to the nearby river.
"On an adventure." She smiled back to him. "Just look at you." She stopped next to a tree pointing to the boy's outfit. "You're dressed just like the heroes."
"I am?" The young man tugged at the worn green fabric he was wearing. "I didn't try to…"
"And if you're the hero that makes me the Princess." She held her fist in the air. "Which would also mean the bad guy should be here any minute."
"A bad guy?" The young boy cocked his head to the side.
"Yes, a bad guy." She smiled brightly. "What's your name?" She asked taking his hand.
Her hand was so soft and warm, there was something about it that made the boy not want to let go. "I'm Link." He replied quickly nodding his head.
"Well Link, let's go on an adventure!" Zelda replied turning on her heel and running along the brook still holding Link's hand in hers.
Even though he knew he was going to get in a lot of trouble, the boy couldn't wipe the smile off of his face no matter how hard he tried. There was something so special about this, he was actually playing with someone his own age. None of his father's friends had any children, so whenever they'd be in playing their grown up card games Link would be stuck with the horses.
"Stop!" A larger boy in a suit of fitted armor shouted from on top of a hill. "Princess, you have to come back with me."
"Link, it's the villain, you have to protect me!" Zelda shrieked before reaching to the ground and picking up a stick. "Here, use the blade of evil's bane and defeat this villain." She forced the stick into his hand.
As Link turned he saw that the boy in front of him wasn't just a little bit larger, he was far larger. His broad shoulders were the clear sign of a warrior, and his red hair marking him as most likely the son of the guard his father talked with earlier. "Princess, I insist that you come with me."
"Back Villain!" Zelda shrieked. "Get him Link, strike him down and I'll give the hero a kiss."
"A kiss?" Link asked wide eyed before he turned to look at the confused boy in front of him.
With a swing of the sword Link gawked at the sound of the shaft breaking against the boy's face. "Gah!" The larger boy shouted holding his chin where a drop of blood was starting to come out. Before Link could swing the broken stick again the boy caught it and glared down at him. "You shouldn't have done that Farm Boy."
Before Link could say anything a massive fist caught him in the side of the face knocking him to the ground. "Ganon stop!" Zelda shrieked. "I didn't think he'd actually do it, it's not his fault." She shouted stepping between the two of them.
"Princess, he struck a member of the Royal Guard, you and I both know that's a hangable offense." Ganon spat down at the boy.
"And we both know that you are not a member of the Royal Guard yet." She narrowed her eyes. "Are you going to stop?"
Link tried to get to his feet before a hand was in his face. Looking up Ganon had outstretched his arm to help the boy up. "I'll stop for you Princess." He said pulling Link back to his feet. "You ok?" He asked looking to make sure he hadn't beaten the poor boy dumb.
"I'm fine." Link nodded his head. "You?" He looked up before Ganon checked his chin, almost as if he had forgotten it even happened.
"Don't worry about it." He drew a sword out before holding it between himself and Link. "If you ever need to swing a sword like that again, make sure that you keep your arm firm." He demonstrated a few swings slowly so that Link could have an example to work with. "If you don't you'll just end up breaking your wrist on whatever you hit. Not everything is as soft as skin or fragile as a stick." He returned the sword to its sheathe. "You got that?"
Link nodded his head before Zelda smiled. "My hero." She cooed looking at Link. "A deal is a deal." She leaned forward and planted a small peck on the boy's cheek.
Ganon coughed looking away as Link blushed and went wide eyed. "Princess, you didn't have to."
"Princess!" One of the nearby soldiers shouted.
"She's here!" Ganon yelled back. "I escorted her to the river." He projected almost like a real soldier.
King Daphnes and Arn came over the hill to see their children standing beside one another before the King burst into tears laughing. "Young man, please come over here." He waved for Link to approach. The young boy slowly walked up the hill before standing directly in front of the king. "Lad, did you wear that on purpose?" He cocked an eyebrow up at the child. "Now don't lie to me, I'll know if you are."
"Did I wear my clothes on purpose?" He cocked his head to the side confused.
The King narrowed his eyes at the boy, the entire field seemed to fall silent all at once before the King laughed a huge belly laughed and leaned against Arn. "Arn, at first I wasn't sure if I wanted to make a deal, but your boy dressed like that, and not even knowing it, it's perfect!" He belted out in laughter. "You there," He pointed to Ganon. "see to it that Arn here gets paid." He turned his attention back to the Rancher. "I have another proposition for you if you're willing to hear it."
"Of course your Majesty." The man said as the King led him back up the hill. "Zelda, come along now."
Zelda nodded to her father before passing Link. "It was nice meeting you Link." She blushed at the boy as Ganon walked past gritting his teeth.
"Of course Princess." Link said bending his body to bow as deeply as he could while still on his feet.
"Don't do that." Zelda laughed lightly smacking the boy on the back of the head. "Hurry, up so you can see me off." She giggled before running after her father.
That night at dinner Arn looked over at Link who was eagerly eating his food. "You wanna tell me what happened today?"
"What do you mean?" Link blanked. Had his father seen the kiss?
"That mark on your face boy." The man said hotly. Link put his hands down at his sides. "It's nothing."
"It's not nothing." Arn replied. "Did that other boy hit you?" He asked tilting Link's face where he saw the welt swollen already.
"Oh, that." Link relaxed realizing it was only the incident with Ganon. "Yeah, we got into a bit of a scrape."
"Did you at least get a hit in?" Arn asked cutting into his meat.
"I did." Link nodded his head in agreement.
"That's my boy." Arn said with a smile.
A few miles away in Hyrule Castle Zelda sat in her bedroom looking out over Hyrule field. In the distance she could see the small Ranch where she had met the little boy earlier in the day. "You can't be serious?" The white haired woman who leaned against the wall said with a scoff. "He was wearing a green tunic and everything?"
"He really was." Zelda almost sighed touching the glass window before pulling her hand away and wincing at the handprint.
"Princess, if I may be so bold, are you smitten with this boy?" She gave a mischievous wink to the young Princess.
"Impa!" Zelda whined. "It's not like that, I swear!" She smacked the bottom of her pillow with her fist. "He was just a lot of fun. It felt nice that he was willing to play with me."
Impa sighed and walked over to look out the window. "Well I suppose you're in luck Princess."
"I am?" The young girl asked looking up in confusion.
"Your father has hired on the boy's father to be the royal stablemaster." Impa smirked. "That may just mean you and this boy may be seeing a whole lot more of one another."
"Really?" Zelda asked standing to her feet. "You wouldn't lie to me now would you Impa?" She pointed a small finger at the tall, muscular woman in front of her.
"Hand to Hylia." Impa held one of her hands up before the young girl wrapped her in a bear hug. "There, there Zelda. I know you're excited, but you must remember he is just a peasant boy."
"So?" Zelda asked with a shrug. "The Hero is always a peasant boy." She giggled at the idea before throwing herself onto her bed.
"Goodnight Princess, enjoy your dreams of your very own hero." Impa walked to the door expertly snatching a thrown pillow out of the air before gently tossing it back to the flustered Princess.