A/N: Alright. I have just finished Twilight Princess thanks to my brother's Wii that he brought back with him from college. (I have a 360…lolz) Anyways… as I played, it came to my attention that Link could talk to all of the forest animals when he was in his Wolf form…and then I thought of Epona. Why whenever you talk to Epona…all she says is "Return to your true self." Anyone ever find that disappointing? I mean, they've been with each other for quite some time…and there is obviously an unspoken level of trust between them…then why does she not have anything more than two lines in the entire game? So I thought I would write out this little short story to do the steadfast mare some justice. Anyways, I am pretty sure someone else has done this before…but oh well, here is my take on how it would play out. It has some things that are a little more serious…and then it has a little bit of funny…but not the random stupid kind of funny…I'm talking about the funny that people of all ages can…well…almost all ages can enjoy. Although its nothing lewd or anything. :P Enjoy as I put a lot of work into this!
**UPDATE** Hey, I found the two problems that I had been searching for and I finally fixed them! Yay! If you find another problem with the grammar, then please message me so I can fix it. Then I can perfect the story. :P
**UPDATE THE SECOND** Hey! I found more problems and fixed them! :P
Title: Link: The Horse Whisperer
Genre: Whatever. Its light comedy with a hint of other stuff….maybe not so much comedy as some speaking….whatever. :P
Words: 2, 487
Fandom: Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess
Disclaimer: I Don't Own Anything but the Plot. If I Did I Wouldn't Have Allowed Midna to Destroy the Twilight Mirror. So There. I Own Only the Plot of this Story.
It was a sound that reminded Link of rolling thunder. The sound of hooves trampling dirt always brought the thoughts of rainstorms to the forefront of his mind. It was strange, and it made Link wonder why he had even called Epona out to him. The horse grass lay unused around him; the wolf simply howled the tune and his equine compatriot responded swiftly, arriving just minutes after his call. The Hylian turned Divine Wolf just sat in awe as the horse skidded to a halt in front of him, the larger animal's expression showing uncertainty as it gazed at the lupine before it. After a couple of cursory sniffs of the air, the Hero's noble steed cocked its head to the side and let out a soft whinny.
'Even though you change your form, I still know it's you, Master.'
Link's eyebrows furrowed in slight puzzlement, how did she know so quickly? He could understand her knowing his scent, but she didn't sniff the air until after she had arrived on the scene; a little too calm for the Hero's tastes. Midna frowned and cocked her head, tapping Link on the back of his head, "We don't have time for games, Link. We need to get into Renaldo's basement and warp that cannon to Lake Hylia!"
The Hero of Twilight looked back at her with an awkward expression and a slight growl. 'I would like to do this because I might not have another chance. When all of this is over, I might never get the opportunity to know how those around me feel.'
Link's words were set in stone, and Midna knew it to be true. Their journey had been going on now for the better part of two months, and so far the end of the world hadn't begun thanks to the dynamic duo's efforts. However, the Twilight Princess knew that while every second wasted Zant grew more powerful, rest was essential; so far she had been running the Hylian ragged, and he deserved a little downtime, even if only a couple of minutes to talk with his horse. Although, Midna really didn't see the point in talking to a horse; it was just a mode of transportation after all. "Fine, take your time, Hero. I will take a quick bath in the hot spring while you settle your business."
Link would have frowned if he could, sensing a slight air hostility from the Twili Imp; could she be jealous that the former farm hand wanted to rest all just to talk to a horse? The Hero shook that thought from his mind as he lowered himself to the ground and looked up at the large mare, 'Please, rest your legs, no need to stand on my account.'
'Master… would you change back to your true form?'
Link felt puzzled as he looked at Epona, 'What? Why would I change back? I can't talk to you as a human!'
'It does not matter to me whether or not you can understand what I say when you speak to me.' The horse replied steadily, her voice charming yet level while she looked down on the Divine Beast; it sent shivers down his spine to hear Epona's voice for the first time. To the Hylian she did not sound as if truly revered him as her master, nor did she speak down to him despite her larger stature: she spoke to him as if he were her equal; a partner…and a friend.
'Have you ever thought if it mattered to me? You and I have been together for the better part of five years, and I always tried my best to treat you well…and made sure that you got the care you needed. I-I…I always wanted to know whether I succeeded or not. As a both a friend and a partner…'
'I am here, Master, what more proof do you need?'
'I know that much…but I want to hear it straight from the horse's mouth…if you will pardon the expression.'
The horse shook its head in what looked to be a slight fit of anger and two hooves hit the ground once, the equine letting off a snort as its mane whipped from one side of the neck to her other. Oh, then she began to trot in place, Link knew that she was a little upset. 'Do you doubt my words, Master? Do you truly believe that I must come out and say what you already know is fact?'
'No! No. No…I just wanted to hear it from you. I don't know…just a little reassurance…it would be nice. People need to be reassured too…'
'Yes…yes…I remember you telling me that so many years ago.' The mare said, her annoyance flitting away from her like a butterfly as he remembered their first meeting in Ordon. 'You said to me that you would do your best for me…and that you would always comfort me when I needed to be comforted and reassure me when not even I believed I could do something. Then you told me that while you would remain strong, there would be a time that even you would need some support.'
The Hylian's wolf ears perked up as she spoke, 'You remembered that from so long ago?!'
'Of course, one worthy of such commitment and caring deserves to have their words remembered and warnings heeded. What will it take to set my master's mind at ease?' Epona whispered softly, slowly walking forward to the now sitting wolf as she lowered her muzzle and nibbled at the fur on the top of his head. 'You did everything correctly. I do not remember a day in which you did not care for me, even when you were sick…I do not remember a day when you did not train me as if you were training yourself…nor do I remember a day when you did not care for me as if I were of your own flesh and blood.'
'You treated me like family. You always took care of me, and you should hear the cries of the jealous mares and stallions whenever you stable me. They cry 'oh there is a human who truly appreciates his steed! Where art thou amongst the land of men?' They all wanted you, Master…and on more than one occasion I had to defend your honor from some hot-headed stallion or stand as a barrier between you and some doe-eyed, shimmering coated mare.'
Link sat dumbstruck. His jaw was hanging open and everything. 'Defend my honor? Protect me from a doe-eyed mare…?! That was you!?'
'Yes, it was me. I will not dishonor our relationship with a lie. I was the one who knocked over that stall and caused the commotion back in Castle Town. However, I did it with good reason…she…she was trying to poach you from me!'
'Yes. I could not allow her to steal away the one constant I had in my life. I would not stand for it! It would be a cold day in the underworld before I allowed that sparkle-coated hussy to rain on my parade!'
Even from her perch high up in the hot springs, Link could clearly hear Midna giggle; had she heard the exchange? Still, it floored Link to know about this turn of events! Just under eight months ago Link had taken Epona to Castle Town to get her annual examination, and in the process of getting her seen, a man who had been eyeing Epona for the longest time had pulled Link aside and offered a trade. This man was squat and rotund, and very unpleasant to be around; various smells pervaded Link's senses as well as the fact that he looked like he had been beaten with a stick every day since he was a child. The trade would be simple: A healthy horse for a healthy horse.
While the un-labeled Hero of Twilight had no intention of giving Epona up, he decided for the sake of politeness he would humor the man while it he waited for his steed's appointment. While still within Epona's sight inside the stable, the unattractive (even Link had to admit that was putting it nicely) man led him to a horse that even the younger Hylian had to admit was a stunning jewel. When brought out of her stable Link could sense something about the horse, as if it were trying to impress him. The mare's steps were short and taunt, her mane refused to stay in one place, and she was overly affectionate to such a complete stranger. However, it wasn't until Link got into the direct sunlight that saw what he truly dealing with.
The mare was absolutely gorgeous. The horse was obviously the subject of the finest of breeds Hylian High Society had to offer as her frame was excellently proportioned and her body well-muscled. Her midnight black coat absolutely shimmered in the sunlight, and her mane flowed like a silken waterfall; there wasn't even the faintest trace of horse sweat upon her body. Had she been human, she would have been subject to numerous wolf whistles and frequent stares. This mount was truly the Marylyn Monroe horses, and she didn't seem too modest about it either; the mare frequently circling him and nuzzling him affectionately. He felt that something was off about her, but was about to decline when he heard a ruckus from the stable and the Chosen Hero was dashing in immediately when he heard Epona whinny.
'You should have heard all of the terrible things she said to me as the three of you walked out of the stable to examine her! She said that I would end up as some ignorant rich sod's personal chauffer! Besides…' The initially stoic horse turned a little unsure, insecurities flashing into her soothing voice as the jealousy and anger subsided. 'I didn't want to get replaced…so while you were out…I started a fight with one of the stallions that made even the slightest of crude remarks…I needed an excuse to draw your attention without making seem as if I intentionally caused any trouble…'
Link sat there in silence for moment as he contemplated what he had just heard. At the onset of their meeting Epona seemed like an infallible steed and friend…but as time drew on and their conversation got deeper, he realized that she experienced the same things humans felt: jealousy, anger, insecurity, and fondness for those you cherish. It was still pretty hilarious, Link had never expected the word 'hussy' to come from Epona, especially when she worked so hard to build up an air of a calm and collected companion. 'So let me get this straight… you cost me twenty-five rupees for a two rupee check-up just because you were a little bit jealous?'
'Does your memory fail you, Master?! Do you not remember how gorgeous and easy to command she was!? She was bred to be perfect, and I did not want to lose you-'
'After all this time, do I really need to say that I would never, ever replace you?' Link asked, a small smirk on his muzzle as the tables had been turned. 'Do you doubt my words, Epona? Do you truly believe that I must come out and say what you already know is fact?'
The horse let out an undignified whinny as her own words were turned against her, but for a moment the two just spent a couple of minutes in silence as they looked at one another.
Epona looked at him, the horse also a little put-off by the awkward quiet. 'So…could you turn back into your true form?'
Link didn't really respond as Midna dropped onto his head, "We need to be leaving Link. Either that or we make camp here for the night."
"We can stay at the Inn Link…I am tired of sleeping out in the open." With a tap of the Dark Crystal Link soon was standing on two legs and Midna was disappearing into his non-existent shadow. Epona shook her head slightly and pressed her nose against his forehead, lips reaching out to snag at his bangs and nibble on them.
"Come on girl, I think I have heard all I needed to hear." The Hylian murmured as he climbed into Epona's saddle, and he could feel tremors of excitement race all over her body as she was mounted for the first time in nearly two weeks; those two weeks were spent navigating two cavernous dungeons while searching for the first two pieces of the Twilight Mirror. Link smiled and patted her neck as he leaned down to give the horse's head a light kiss, "Come on girl lets go to the Inn and catch some shut-eye."
A/N: Eh? Eh? So what did you think? I started writing this at 12:55 am and I have it finished at…3:51 am. Not bad….not bad… but now I sleeeeeeppppppyyyy… Anyways. I am not sure if the center portion about Epona, the stunning mare, and the stable was relevant to the story…so tell me if you liked it or not. I tried to add some comedy without ruining the cute little dialogue between the two, but I managed to get all of the endearing stuff out of the way before the funny stuff kicked in…so I think I did pretty well. :D
Please review! PLEASE REVIEW! If I had a review for every time someone looked at this story, then I could have the strength of ten men! Not really…it just annoys me to now end when look at story stats and find out that 30k people read my story…and only ten bothered to review. Don't be lazy! So the author your appreciation for a hopefully good story!