Hi, people! It's been a while since I've posted a story, hasn't it? Yikes. I've been writing a lot, just not posting squat. I need to work on that. . .

Anyway, the main OC in this fic is a character that I made for a role play that has gotten to be very successful, and I hope this story will go the same way. The other OCs, who will appear in later chapters, are from that role play, as well. They're mine, though. I made all three of them for the role play. MINE!

Disclaimer: The only things I own here are my OCs and the plot. That's it. I wish I owned Link, but I don't. It is quite depressing. . .

The rating is T for the time being, but it may go up in later chapters. Having a lot of violence in a fic will do that. There will probably be some swearing at some point, but I don't do that very often. If I feel risky enough, I might throw in a bit of shonen-ai later on. I haven't decided yet.

So, on to chapter one!

Chapter One

It was late. The sky was completely black save for the few stars whose light managed to peek through the cover of thin clouds. There was no moon out, which only served to make the land even darker than it normally was at night.

Someone was riding a black stallion at a relaxed walk across Hyrule Field. A gentle breeze caused the rider's dark cloak to stir eerily in the darkness. A breath of air that was almost a sigh came from the rider's lips as he saw the towering wall surrounding Hyrule Castle and its town looming in the distance. The drawbridge was up, as was usual at night. The monsters that lurk the field after dark would be all too willing to raid the town while the villagers slept if the path was open to them.

The man nudged his horse into a steady trot. He was in no hurry. As long as the sun was nowhere to be seen, he had time to reach the village. Once the sun was rising, though, he would need to find shelter. The light was agonizing to him.

A low cracking sound met the man's ears as a pair of Stalchildren pulled themselves out of the ground in front of him. The horse whinnied nervously and halted, his nostrils flared and his eyes wild with fear of the skeletal monsters.

"Relax," the rider breathed, stroking the side of the stallion's neck to calm him. The horse settled a little, but was still taking small, nervous steps as he moved around.

The rider dismounted and drew his all-black katana, pointing the tip at the nearest Stalchild. "Leave immediately or I will destroy you," he said plainly. His voice was kind and pleasing to the ears, which didn't support his harsh statement in the least. Judging by voice alone, it was apparent that he was young. Older than a teenager, though he couldn't possibly be older than his mid-twenties.

The Stalchildren ignored the threat and came at him, their red eyes glowing in anticipation. The one nearest the man raised a clawed arm, preparing to strike.

It never got the chance to. In one quick movement, the man sliced the arm off the monster and struck again to remove the Stalchild's head. He spun once before slicing the creature's spine in two, and it fell to the ground in pieces before vanishing in blue flames. He repeated this process with the other Stalchild before mounting his horse again and kicking the beast onwards.

That was a waste of a precious minute of nighttime. He could have run, he supposed, but that wouldn't have been as fun. He didn't like having to kill things, but if they were intent on attacking him, then he had little other choice than to defend himself.

He reached the raised drawbridge and halted his horse. "Is there anyone there?" he called. He glanced around the field behind him for any signs of more Stalchildren as he waited for a reply.

The face of a soldier appeared in a small window in the wall. "Who goes there?" the soldier asked, his voice tired. He had obviously been up there standing guard for a while.

"No one of much importance," the rider replied, "though I would appreciate it if you would lower the drawbridge and let me enter."

"What business do you have here that you need to enter at such a late hour, rider?" the soldier inquired.

"A fair question," was the rider's response, "though I'm afraid I have no valid answer for this. I can assure you that I mean no one any harm within these walls, so please let me enter."

"Fine, fine," the soldier acquiesced, yawning loudly. He signaled to one of his fellow guards, and a few moments later, the sound of clanging chains filled the air as the drawbridge was lowered. "I'll hold you to your word. Don't cause any trouble."

"I wouldn't dream of it, and thank you." The rider spurred his horse to cross the bridge and enter the town. The loud clanking returned as the drawbridge was lifted again. He followed the road into the main square of the town, all the while searching for an inn. There was one that looked satisfactory, and he tethered his horse in the stables behind the building before entering and approaching the lady at the front desk.

"Rather late, isn't it, sir?" the lade remarked. "What can I do for you?"

"I require a room," the man answered. "Only for what remains of this night and tomorrow." He pulled some foreign coins from his pocket and placed them on the desk. "I hope this method of payment will suffice. I am afraid I don't own any of Hyrule's currency, and it is very important that I have a place to stay tomorrow."

The lady eyed the coins skeptically. They were nothing like the rupees that Hyrule used. They were small and perfectly round, and odd markings decorated the front and backs of them. They were all the same size, though some were made of different metals than the others.

"This will do for tonight," she stated, "but not for all day tomorrow."

The rider's frown was unseen, hidden by the shadow his cloak's hood cast on his face. "That will not do," he said, shaking his head. "How does this suit you: I stay out for the rest of the night, and I can have the room for tomorrow?"

The lady gave him a quizzical look. "You're a strange one," she remarked. "Fine. You can have the room tomorrow, but you have to stay out tonight." She seemed confused by his offer, but she figured that he knew what he was doing. She took the money and gave him a paper for claiming his room the following morning. "Don't lose this," she said. "Have a nice night."

"Thank you," he said, inclining his head. He stashed the paper away in his cloak and left the inn. It was still very dark out. The sun couldn't be coming up for another few hours, so he had time to wander around the town and try to enjoy himself. He was trying to convince himself that this wasn't a complete waste of time, but he was failing miserably.

He wandered aimlessly along the dark alleyways, not paying any attention to where he was going. His mind snapped to the present only when a large, dangerous-looking thug stepped into his path. "Good evening," he said softly as he tried to maneuver around the man.

The man moved to block his path again. "Whatcha doin' out at this time o' night, mister?" he asked in a gruff voice.

"Nothing that concerns you. Now, would you kindly step aside?"

He got a laugh in response. "I think yer new 'ere, mister," the thug speculated. "No one comes wanderin' into this part o' town at night."

The rider considered the man for a moment before replying, "That is a real shame. You seem like a reasonable enough character. I will be sure to recommend people to 'wander' here more often if you agree to move aside. Does that sound satisfactory to you?" He, of course, had no intention of telling people to come here. It didn't take a genius to see that this thug meant business. He was probably intending to mug him.

Another laugh sounded from the burly man. "Yer a smooth talker, aren't cha? Think ya can talk yer way outta this? Nah. Get 'im, boys." He raised a hand and several men appeared from behind various items in the alley to surround the rider, cracking their knuckles and pulling out knives.

Violet eyes narrowed under the cover of the rider's hood. He had given this man a chance, but now a fight seemed unavoidable. The fools probably thought him to be unarmed. His cloak hid his katana very well, after all. He drew the black blade, expecting his attackers to back off.

They didn't. "Well, well," the leader said, grinning gleefully. "This one's got guts. Are ya gonna fight all o' us, mister? Are ya gonna kill us?"

"It would be beneficial to us all if you simply let me pass," the rider stated, his voice eerily calm. "This is your last chance. Either let me be, or I will have no choice but to defend myself and possibly kill all of you." He could escape this situation easily, but he did not wish to broadcast his presence here. Drawing attention to himself was the worst thing he could possibly do.

"There're too many o' us for ya, mister," the leader pointed out with another bark of laughter. "There's nothin' to yer threat. Do it, boys."

"What's going on over there?" someone called from the end of the alley. Even in the darkness, the figure of a boy in his late teens was visible. Though the colors of his clothing were deeply shaded due to the darkness, his tunic and hat appeared to be green, and the long-sleeved undershirt and long pants under the tunic were white. He wore brown boots that went up to right below his knees, and the leather gloves on his hands extended up most of his forearm. A sword with an oddly-shaped blue hilt was held in his left hand, and a triangle-like symbol on the back of his left glove seemed to glow eerily through the darkness.

The thugs had started to rush at the rider, but they scrambled away as soon as this boy appeared. They obviously knew him. Even the leader was backing away, shaking his head in disbelief.

"N-Nothin' is happenin' 'ere, Mr. Hero of Time sir!" the man practically squeaked. "Jus' mindin' our own business, ya know!" His expression changed a little before he added, "This one 'ere was givin' us some trouble, though! Ya should do somethin' about 'im!"

The rider gave the man an irritated look. "I did nothing of the sort, and you know it," he stated, a touch of his irritation leaking into his voice.

The boy strode over to them, and the man scrambled into the shadows in fear. "I honestly don't know what to do about that group," the boy commented with a sigh. "They're always causing trouble around here at night. It's a good thing I got here when I did. Things could have gotten pretty rough for you."

"Not at rough as you would think," the rider corrected, "though thank you for your help, regardless."

The boy shrugged. "It's what I do. There's no need to thank me." He gave the rider a curious look. "Are you new here? What's your name? I'm Link."

The rider gave Link a respectful bow before replying, "This is my first time in Hyrule, yes. I am merely passing through, so I will not be here for long." He didn't tell Link his name, but asked instead, "That man called you the 'Hero of Time'. I am not familiar with that designation. Can you explain it to me?"

Link almost laughed at this. "You don't know? Well, I guess if you're not from around here, you wouldn't know. The Hero of Time is pretty much the ultimate defender of Hyrule, you see. This sword," he held up the blade for the rider to see, "can only be wielded by the Hero of Time. The sword picked me, and I've been the Hero of Time ever since." He paused for a moment. "You didn't tell me your name," he pointed out.

"I would prefer to remain anonymous," he replied.

"Why? You running from someone?" Link asked jokingly.

"Yes, in fact," the rider responded seriously. "I am being pursued by someone who I would rather not be found by, and I have already told you too much. Good evening, Hero of Time." He gave the teen a single nod before starting to walk away.

Link jogged to get in front of him. "Wait just a second, sir," he urged. "Maybe I can do something to help you if you tell me why you're being chased."

"That is a generous offer, but I am afraid there is little you can do. Please move aside."

"Please tell me what's going on," Link returned, refusing to move. "I really want to help you. It's my duty to do so."

The rider considered this offer carefully. This teen seemed like an honorable enough person to keep to his word, and being the Hero of Time certainly worked in his favor. Still, the rider had kept his identity and goal a secret for several months. Could he really tell this boy what was going on?

"That is fine," he said at last. "Can we move to a more private area to discuss this?"

"Sure," Link replied, smiling at the rider. "Follow me."

If you have any questions or comments, review and ask/comment them. Please. I beg you. I die without reviews. I mean it. PLEASE!

Hehehe. Really, though. Please review. I'll answer any questions when I update next, which should be sometime in the near future. I already have chapter two written. I just need some feedback before I post it. Don't flame, but you can critique all you want.

Until next time!