DISCLAIMER: Link, Sheik, Zelda and anything else associated belongs to Nintendo and Shiggy. I'm not maken' any money off of it, so nyah!
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Right. Well, this story is my first attempt at something a little diverse. Until now, all I've written for Zelda were humor fics, and I very much wanted to write something different! Oh, and in my little universe, Sheik and Zelda are two different people, so don't bug me about that! Also, this story is very AU, and may be a bit strange. It's a kind of quazi-sequel to an old story I wrote called 'questioning fate' but can also be read as a stand alone. Truthfully, I don't really know what this is, mostly I wrote having no idea what I was writing…make sense? So anyway, read on, enjoy, give me feedback!
The blade gleamed dangerously in the darkness. Light reflected off it while there was no source. It cut through the air with a hiss, and through the flesh and bone with a crack. The momentum was slowed down, as the blade made its way through, only to pick up again as it now was gleaming red.
Thrust, twist, remove.
Spin, duck, leap and cut.
The corpse now fell to the ground with a thud, as the blade hovered above it, dripping with victory. The flesh began to rot and singe as it rose up in a green fire, slowly dying out.
The crimson coat of sticky liquid that covered the blade was spread onto the soft grass, wiping it clean, and returning it to it's scabbard.
Eyes squinted against the darkness, and looked down to the burnt patch of grass. The owner of the blade leaned down, brushing fingers against the soil in a sort of penance, then lifted to brush the dirt off against cloth.
A soft sigh escaped from weary lips, and brilliant blue eyes closed. The owner of the blade dropped to his knees, staring down at the hands that wielded it. Strange, were those hands. Only weeks before were they small and chubby with youth, while now they were long, callused, and cut. Closing them into fists, the wielder stared at those hands with a frown. These hands controlled the blade whose edge brought death. Therefore these hands bring death.
Blue eyes narrowed in anger.
Laying down on the ground, the wielder stared up at the darkness. There were no stars, there was no moon, only black. A thick smoke that covered the entire sky, and that trapped all inside, and all outside. However many times the wielder thought he had broken through the gate, he became cast down again. Lowered down to his place, and strapped down to his duty to become the wielder once more. Sometimes, he didn't want his duty, but always he obeyed. A loyal servant.
The wielder lay curled on his side, as his eyes drifted shut once more.
The wielder awoke with a start. Sitting up, he looked about him in alarm as he couldn't remember where he was. He stood, looking around him as he was surrounded by seemingly endless green. A gentle breeze blew across the trees, making them sway. The wieldier stared at the trees, head tilted to the side, following the rustle of each leaf and twig, a small smile playing on his face. He turned away, bending to pick up his pack, starting his trek through the grass.
The sky was blue in every sense of the word. Not a cloud was in sight, while the sun blazed in all it's glory. He had to grin at the pure innocence of the day. Bright and beautiful, while the ostensibly infinite field of green met the blue.
The wielder picked up his pace. He wasn't planning to go anywhere, but felt the need to arrive quickly. A small orb of light flew sluggishly from within his hat. He grinned lopsidedly at the light as it fluttered to rest on his shoulder.
"Morning." The light yawned, "You seem to be in a good mood."
The fairy giggled. "Come on, I know you are. What's the deal?"
The wielder rolled his eyes, and waved in a general direction before walking again.
"Going into town, huh? Any particular reason?"
The wielder shrugged again. The fairy grinned, bobbing above his shoulder with an energy that would be surprising, coming from such a small creature.
"A girl maybe?"
The wielder halted, face turning a bright crimson, then swatted at the fairy in a playful gesture. The fairy giggled some more, narrowly avoiding the oncoming hand.
"Ok, ok! Not a girl! Running low on supplies?"
The wielder nodded.
The fairy sighed dramatically "Always the necessities with you, isn't it?" She received another roll of eyes in response.
The fairy soon grew quiet, resting on the wielder's shoulder in a comfortable silence. She was the wielder's only company, and she had a knowledge of the world that he did not. Though she may be more than annoying at moments, the wielder appreciated her company and friendship.
Soon the wielder and his fairy arrived at the town. The fairy hovered around the wielder's head in excitement, chattering on nonsense into his ear. He had to smile at her carefree attitude. Soon the wielder's eyes drifted to a large crowd surrounding two figures.
It was almost like a dance. Intricate moves with precisely timed kicks and punches, the two fighters twirling, their hands blurs. The wielder's eyes widened. He moved up through the crowd to get a better view.
A large man with muscles carved from rocks towered over the other smaller man. The large one smacked the ground, and the smaller man rolled away just in time. The smaller man was fast, speeding circles around the other one, confusing him. At last, the larger lunged at the smaller man, who leapt over him just in time. The smaller man reached for a whip that hung from his belt, and he soon tripped the larger man's feet from under him. He put a knee to the other's back, bending down to whisper something.
The large man roared in anger, then after some struggling, gave up.
The crowd began cheering, some giving the small man pats on the back as they soon left towards their own businesses. Soon, only the two fighters and the wielder were left.
The smaller man patted the larger one on the back.
"Good fight, Gauer. I swear, you almost beat me that time!"
The muscled man let out a hearty laugh, "Seems as if I brought it on myself, friend! I was the one who challenged you."
"Let that be a lesson, eh?"
The two laughed as only close friends would. The smaller man caught sight of the wielder, and grinned welcomingly. "Greeting stranger! I have not seen you in this town before!"
The fairy bobbed happily "Hi! I'm Navi. We're just travelers."
The smaller man's red eyes widened in surprise. "Oh, a fairy! And I had thought they were but myths! Well, greeting to you Navi! I am Sheik of the Sheika." He turned his red gaze to the other. "And what is your name, friend?"
His blue eyes lowered as he whispered lightly, "The wielder."
Sheik had to lean forward to hear the soft spoken words. He cocked his eyebrow. "Well, that is indeed a strange name, but come! Since you have just arrived, I presume that you are hungry, yes?"
"Well, I don't know about him, but I'm starved!"
Sheik laughed merrily. "Well said, dear fairy. Come, I shall take you to a place where the food is to die for!"
With that, Sheik stood, patting Gauer on the back, and gestured for his two guests to follow. He soon took them to a small eatery, ushering the two inside.
"Ah, Neela! Please, bring your special for our guests.
The middle aged woman smiled charmingly to the wielder. She leaned against the counter, eyeing him favorably. "Well, hello stranger! We normally don't get visitors in our small village. What brings you here?" She then rolled her eyes at herself. "Whoops. Forgot about your food. I'm sure you're starving, and here I am chattering away. I'll be right back."
The wielder turned to Sheik, and he smiled in amusement. "She's always like that. So, what does bring you here?"
Navi hovered off of the wielder's shoulder, landing on the table. "We were just passing through, actually. Stopped for supplies and such."
"I see. And where are you headed?"
"Wherever we end up, I guess."
Sheik creased his eyebrows a tad. He studied the odd young man before him. He was currently staring at his hands that rested on the table, clad entirely in green, a green hat covering his hair; blonde, yet lighter than his own messy locks. He had a solemn expression on his face, and his blue eyes had a far away look. He seemed to be a warrior, having a sword and shield that was now set on the floor. He also seemed to let his fairy do the talking for him.
Sheik slouched back in his chair, cocking his head to the side. "So, where do you hail from, wielder?"
He looked up as Sheik addressed him, folding his hands on his lap. "Far away."
Sheik nodded. "Are you a warrior?"
Sheik noticed a strange look that passed over the young man's face, before he nodded.
The three settled into an uncomfortable silence, and Neela returned with two plates with large helpings of food. She smiled at the two, then left them to their privacy.
Sheik watched as the wielder tore into his food with a ravenous hunger. He mused that the other man must not have eaten properly for some time now. Soon, his plate was clean, and he looked up expectantly at Sheik.
"You can have mine. I'm not hungry."
The statement barely left his lips before the other began piling the food into his mouth. As the young man ate, Sheik sat back and observed. The young man left a small portion of food on his plate, pushing it towards the fairy who settled down on the rim and began to eat her fill.
"Why are you called the wielder?" Sheik suddenly spoke up, and the blue eyed man looked up with a bit of surprise.
After a long pause, he replied. "That is what I am."
Sheik shook his head. "But what is it that you wield?"
Once again, the strange lad looked away, a peculiar expression on his face. For a moment, Sheik wasn't sure if he would answer, but then he reached down and picked up his sword, still in it's scabbard. He set it on the table in front of Sheik.
Sheik looked down to the scabbard, then up to the wielder with a questioning glance. Receiving no answer, he gently lifted the scabbard, pulling the sword free with a metallic shink.
Sheik examined the blade with trained eyes. The blade was smooth and straight, a simple design that went on the inside edge of it. An engraving of the triforce was set near the hilt, which was a deep purple stone, beautifully carved. As he held the sword, the Sheika man could feel a great power emanating from it. Sheik's red eyes narrowed a tad, then widened in a sudden realization. He looked up at the stranger with a poorly suppressed shock.
The bright blue eyes of the stranger sparkled. "It is."
"The legendary master sword…" Sheik's voice whispered in awe. "You are the wielder…"
The wielder simply nodded. He lifted the sword from Sheik's hands, replacing it in it's scabbard, then standing. "Thank you for your kindness." He smiled softly, then bent to retrieve his shield, silently walking out of the door. Navi hovered above the plate for a moment or so, then turned to address Sheik.
"You know, he hardly says a word to anyone. You must be the first person he's said more than two words to." The fairy pursed her lips in a thoughtful gesture, though Sheik couldn't see that. "Well, thank you!" She flew around Sheik's head, then sped off behind her friend.
Sheik leaned back in his chair, the shock not wearing off yet. He had just met the wielder of the master sword. He had just spoken to-
"The hero of time."
Sheik laughed at the strangeness of it all. By this time, Neela had made her way back to the table, picking up the dirty dishes. She eyed Sheik with a questioning glance, then looked up to the door where the stranger had been moments before.
"He sure is an odd lad. What do you reckon his business is?"
Sheik ran a hand through his hair, leaning forward on the table. He smiled wanly up at Neela, then let out a soft sigh.
"His business is his own."
Neela shrugged, then smiled. "Well he likes my food, so I've no problem with him."
Sheik shook his head, then stood to leave. He set some rupees down on the table. Neela glared at him "Now you know I don't charge friends. You just keep that money young man."
Sheik only rolled his eyes, leaving the store, and hearing Neela's fading obscenities. She truly was a wonderful woman, and she was like family to him. His own parents having died when he was young, the townspeople had taken him in and cared for the Sheika boy. He had grown up with these people. But of all the strangers that visited his small town, no one had ever been so intriguing as the man he met today.
So wrapped up in his thoughts, Sheik didn't even notice passing by his best friend until the large man had planted himself in his direct path, causing Sheik to crash right into him.
"Friend, you seem occupied?" Gauer stated with a wry grin. Sheik was absently rubbing his nose, staring daggers at the larger man.
"Couldn't you have just called out?"
Gauer cocked an eyebrow. "What's troubling you, comrade?
Sheik sighed, "Not troubling exactly. I was just thinking."
"About the strange lad?"
Sheik's eyebrows rose. "How did you know?"
Gauer let out a hearty laugh. "How can I not know? The entire town is talking about him."
Gauer shook his head. "You seem to miss a lot of things, eh? It's quite obvious. The boy talks to no one, has weapons like a warrior, has a fairy hovering about him, and has a look on his face that's like he's not even there. This town loves gossip, remember."
Sheik made an understanding 'hmm' noise.
"So he's staying at the inn?"
Gauer nodded. He then cocked an eyebrow. "You're going to try and talk to him? He doesn't talk."
"Well he did to me. Not much, but he did."
"Why would that be?"
Sheik shrugged. "Maybe I remind him of someone?"
Navi stared at the green clad wielder with a weary sadness. He had always been a strange boy, even before he had been given his role as the wielder, back when he was known by another name. He sat now on the edge of the bed, trailing his finger down the edge of the blade of the legendary master sword. He looked at it with a tiredness that was far beyond his years. He hadn't said another word since his conversation with the Sheika, returning to the mute role that he always played.
Sighing silently, the fairy rose from her perch on the window sill, turning to hover above it, looking out. Navi's eyes widened a tad by seeing the same Sheika man outside, walking towards the inn. She glanced back at her companion, knitting her tiny eyebrows, then whizzed through the crack at the bottom of the door, down towards the check in desk where the young man currently stood, asking the whereabouts of her comrade.
He caught sight of the fairy, then looked up at her with a large smile.
"Ah, fair Navi, so we meet again? Where is your friend then?"
Navi pursed her lips, then replied. "Well, he's upstairs at the moment. We better talk first though."
Sheik's smiled faded, but he nodded, following the fairy to a table. She sat down on the table top, then waited for Sheik to take his seat. Once he did, she began a hushed tone that had none of her usual mirth and energy.
"It seems like you're the only one he talks to." She looked up at him with sad eyes. "He even quit talking to me."
"But why doesn't he talk? Surely it can't all be because of shyness?"
"No, it's something deeper than that, I think." The fairy paused, trying to find the right words. "He's been through a lot you know. It's hard for him to be normal."
"He does have quite a responsibility, being the wielder." Sheik replied.
"That he does. It's a lot more complicated than you think it is to be a hero. Killing is a hard thing to do."
The Sheika man nodded
"Especially for one so young. He may look seventeen, but he's still ten inside. He grew up too fast."
Sheik cocked an eyebrow, but the fairy hovered in an equivalent to a nervous pace.
He looked up wide blue eyes filled with fear yet a bravery as well. Looking to his side, the young boy's fairy bobbed up and down in encouragement.
"You can do it Link! Just be brave!"
The boy rolled his eyes. "Easier said than done" he muttered, then gathering his courage he entered the darkness of the gaping mouth. As he entered, Link could smell the rotting decay of the Deku Tree, misty and damp. Link shuddered lightly, then pressed forward.
"Link! Watch out!"
A Deku Baba had sprung up before him, the purple veins running over its leathery plant face, blue lips curling into a sneer that revealed jagged teeth. It snapped forward, slamming into the boy, launching him back with a terrible gash across his chest.
Tears of pain ran a track down his face, yet he stood, removing his small sword from behind his back. The Deku Baba snapped forward again, yet this time Link was able to leap out of the way, slashing the head of the plant in two, a black sticky liquid spreading from within the fleshy folds of skin, soon catching on fire and burning up in a fantastic green flame.
Link sunk to his knees, placing a timid hand on his burning chest, removing it to come back covered with his own crimson blood. Clenching his teeth from the pain, he fisted his small hand and rose again, trudging forward within the recesses of his dying protector.
Flames scorched his side as the large dinosaur-like Dodongo attacked. His skin was burnt and blistered, but still his fought on, the scaly green demon eyeing him with a hunger. Dashing around the outcropping of rock, Link slammed his sword into it's tail. It let out a roar of pain, yet turned around to track the young hero.
The large ameba looking virus spun around at a dizzying speed, it's electric tentacles lashing out everywhere, grazing Link and burning him to the core.
The young hero, now having aged seven years into the body of a man stared in horror as the very man he had been searching to destroy sat perched on a midnight black steed, laughing demonically, then reaching around to tear at the skin on his face, pulling it away to reveal the grotesque skull beneath which flamed with a fire from hell.
The blazing dragon rose up from within the stone ground, screaming it's anger, tossing back it's mane of flames.
Link stared at himself with putrid fear, his entire form a black inferno, his red eyes glowing with delight.
The watery creature swelled up from within the pool of liquid, it's core pulsing with a life that was created from death.
He lurched forward, being thrown off balance as he discovered that he was standing on a giant drum, played by large monstrous hands that tried to crush him to death.
Two witches of fire and ice both froze and burned him on a sacrificial platform inside a temple in the sweltering heat.
Link stared into the eyes of his enemy, hovering above him with his blood red cape swirling about him, then again as he drove the master sword deep within his chest, his mouth filling with blood, his body convulsing as the last traces of life slipped away. He looked into the demon's face as he was sent to the void between dimensions by the same woman who had cursed Link to the life he was forced to live.
Sheik looked away as the fairy finished the last of her tale, her voice croaking and hoarse. He wasn't sure how to respond to her admission, if to respond at all. Come to think of it, he wasn't quite sure what he was doing here in the first place. Why he thought he could get the strange young man to talk and be normal.
"What do you want me to do?" He said eventually, after a long silence had stretched between them.
The fairy let out a low bitter chuckle that was so out of character, it scared him.
"How should I know?"
Sheik frowned. He stood after a moment or two, then started towards the room the clerk had told him the stranger was staying. He paused, turning to look back to see if the fairy was following him. She wasn't, still sitting on the table, her bright glow dimming a bit.
Sheik had a feeling that this was unusual for a fairy. His frown increased, and he turned back towards the stairs, climbing them to arrive at a closed door.
Clearing his throat, the Sheika rapped on the door, and after receiving no answer, timidly pushed open the door.
The stranger leaned against the window, staring out at the now setting sun, a peculiar expression of pain on his face. Sheik cleared his throat again, and the stranger turned to look at him.
"Well, I better think of something to say before this gets even more awkward than it already is" Sheik put on his friendliest smile. "Well, greetings once more stranger. I thought I might find you up here."
His expression changed to one of an amused curiosity.
"Er, it was just that I was wondering if you're enjoying your stay here." Sheik inwardly cringed. "Very smooth, Sheika."
"Uh yea. I mean, that is good." Sheik sputtered, then rolled his eyes with a huff. "You know, you're not the easiest person to talk to." He smiled to show it was only said in jest.
"So I've heard."
The Sheika raised his eyebrows. Was that a joke? The corners of the strangers mouth lifted in a tiny smile.
Realizing that he was still standing at the entrance, Sheik walked further into the room, standing next to the wielder, glancing out the window.
"Nice sunset, eh?"
His response was a nod. The wielder opened his mouth as if to say something, then quickly shut it again. Sheik tilted his head.
"What is it?"
The wielder shook his head.
"No, tell me. I want to know what you were going to say."
The wielder sighed. "Sometimes during our travels, Navi and I would sit and watch the sun rise and set. It's very beautiful in some of the places that we've been."
Sheik's eyes widened a tad. That had to be the most he's said all at once. "You're very close to your fairy?"
The wielder nodded. "She is my only companion."
Sheik bit his lip, trying to figure out how to approach the next topic. "Uh, if you don't mind me asking…why do you call yourself the wielder? I mean, is your name not Link?"
Instantly, the wielder's eyes hardened, and Sheik was afraid he'd said the wrong thing.
"That person is long gone. I am all that is left."
Sheik paused, searching for the correct response. Looking into the stranger's face, he frowned. "I doubt that. I bet he's still there, in you."
The wielder turned to look at Sheik, his blue eyes intense. "How did you know his name?"
The moment of anger passed so quickly, Sheik wasn't even sure he saw it.
"It doesn't matter. I'm not him anymore. I stopped being him the moment I held the Master Sword in my hands. Even when I battled those creatures in the temples when I was a child, I still had some innocence within me."
He lifted the Master Sword from the wall where it had been set, clutching the hilt with a tight grip. A gleam of light caught the edge of the blade, and to Sheik, he was truly the Hero of Time.
"As soon as I held this sword, as soon hundreds of horrid monsters were slain by it's edge, my fate was sealed. I used this to kill a horrible man, whose only goal was to conquer and destroy all that he could grasp.
A foolish girl's mistake lead me to become who I am, and to live the life I've lived. I can never be him again. I can only be the wielder, for the one who holds the Master Sword and is ruled by it to obey it's commands has no name. I am only a puppet, strings being pulled to dance for the amusement of others.
I am nothing, for I killed Link long ago."
Then he fell silent, lips pressed in a firm lined, face hard, looking like he was doing all he could to stop feeling the pain anymore. Sheik looked away, not being able to say a word.
"I don't think that is true" the Sheika whispered after some time. The wielder who had turned his attention to the window once gain, turned his head to stare at Sheik.
"I don't believe that you killed him." The Sheika returned the stare. "I believe that you are afraid to hurt anymore, so you close yourself off, talk to no one."
The wielder looked away.
" I also believe that the worst of your journey passed, and you endured it, coming out victorious. Don't be afraid to trust, Link."
Sheik said no more, and both young men stared as the sun disappeared, deep in their own thoughts. As the darkness of the night spread wider, the moon glowed with pride, and each individual star burned bright, moon light shining in though the window.
Eventually, the wielder spoke in a soft tone.
"Why do you talk to me?"
Sheik smirked. "I could ask you the same thing."
The wielder shook his head. "Truthfully, I don't know why I talk to you. I guess you remind me of her."
Sheik leaned forward. "Her? I remind you of a woman? I'm not sure if that is considered an insult or not."
The wielder cracked a tiny smile. "You can take that whatever way you want." Then he said no more on the subject.
Sheik sighed silently to himself. "Are you not hungry?"
The wielder shrugged.
"You don't know if you're hungry or not?" That earned him a roll of eyes.
The wielder turned away from the window, heading towards the door. He paused, looking back at Sheik. "Coming?"
The Sheika nodded after a thoughtful pause, then followed the stranger out the door, down to the main lobby.
Navi was sitting where Sheik had left her, and upon seeing a small smile on her comrade's face, whizzed up, swirling around the both of them. Leaning close to Sheik's ear, she whispered. "Thank you." then louder, complained to the wielder about taking forever to come down. He shook his head in exasperation.
"Come on, I'm hungry. You can yell at him later." Sheik announced, then lead the way to dinner.
Sheik looked up at the night sky with a frown. He turned his attention to the wielder, who was staring up in the same fashion.
"I still don't understand why you find the sky so damn interesting."
"Too hard to explain."
Sheik rolled his eyes, then his mood turned somber. "So where are you headed next?"
The wielder shrugged. "Wherever I'm lead."
With those simple words, no goodbyes or anything , he turned and walked. Sheik tried to find some words to say to him, or to call him back, but realized that it wouldn't do any good.
The hero of time walked leisurely, strolled was a more appropriate term, with his fairy shining his face in a soft glow. Sheik wondered what would happen to him. Had anything changed? Would the young man still shun the world for it's cruelty to him.
He had to admit, Sheik had never met a man quite like him.
As he disappeared into the darkness, Sheik sighed tiredly, rubbing his forehead from the swirling thoughts that battered his skull. He turned, walking back into his life, the normality of it soothing, yet some part of him would never be the same.