Outside Dueling Peaks Stable
She was going to do it. For years, Traysi had traveled the world and become reknown in Rumor Mill, and what she saw . . . but there was so much more she wanted. Higher pay for one. Her name known as the resource that wasn’t afraid of anything. The brave new world now didn’t work the same anymore. While she had traveled, more areas were coming together. People here and there were starting to connect easier. Even the sales of things like Goron Spice was being communicated to even Lakeside stable. When Hyrule had got itself together again, and there was no more Ganon. When the Princess’ Knight woke up and she finished off Ganon, it was the end of her.
People were starting to get better news than her. Much better. The ones around Hyrule especially, surveying and asking around areas that so many stayed out of due to the ancient guardians that had been there. There were no bounds around the kingdoms or areas anymore. News on how pretty something had been, or unique stars in the sky falling . . .
She was going to do it. Absolutely. This was her chance. The Queen Zelda would be caught off-guard today. Heh. Queen. She kept herself firm as she approached. Since the catastrophe of Ganon, the world was so complacent. So open. She would be an easy target. I will be ridiculed publicly but have endless opportunities for the good stuff! I will go down in history as the toughest journalist.
She knew rumors. She knew when something stank. Zelda, she stank. She staaaank. There was something there. Although her knight hadn’t remember her, she hadn’t tried to stay around to help with any memories. Hardly saw him at all. Tip one. Guy goes to save girl, girl leaves. Nuh uh, stank. Tip two, Traysi had followed her trails more than once. Talked to some Hylians and Zoras and found out she was visiting the goddess springs during any downtime she had instead of resting up. She spent like all day inside of them, naked according to one guard, praying constantly for hours. Oh yes, she stank like Staminoka Fish with Keese eye balls and field greens. She had a secret that she was trying to hide.
Traysi was going to find out what it had been, today.
Today was Zelda’s eighteenth . . . well, 118th birthday party. It was almost one year ago today that she had defeated the almighty Calamity Ganon with Link. Zelda did not want to celebrate the day, but many towns wanted her to. That day was now a day of celebration instead of accursed misery. Still, she continued to answer questions of those who wished or needed to speak to her. Some were humbled to meet her. Some thought she was nice. Others thought her regal, while others thought her not regal enough. As her father had once said- No, Zelda. She would not go there. The past would not stir her today.
It would be a good day. She watched as some Gorons came, introduced themselves and placed some plans in front of her. She looked at it. “Quite adequate.” She stamped them with approval. “You’ve no need of any Hylians to help?”
“No, Ma’am!” The Goron on the left said. “We just wanted to make sure it was okay with you. We haven’t had . . . well, just thanks!”
Yes. She smiled politely, knowing what he wanted to say. “Thank you. Our plans are doing well too.” It had been a year and still so much of their world was left shattered in pieces. Most of the monsters had been taken out, some were still claimed to be hiding somewhere, but with no more blood moon from Ganon, the monsters had stopped coming. People were free to roam the world, trade was being better established, and each day she had a crew of Hylians and associated members of other domains help. The ancients were being taken out of the ground they had been rotting in for so long. They were being demolished and their resources melted or recycled into other resources. While they all agreed to leave an area of ancients for future generations, to show how weary one should be of the ancient technology being only supreme, they didn’t need reminders everywhere anymore.
The same with the ruins. Each day over the past year, they had been taken down too. Subtle reminders is what they needed, but the world wouldn’t be marked with them all over either. One day, new building and new places would be established over them. Hylians could prosper again.
“Nutcake!” A woman of her twenties perhaps offered to Zelda. “Tabantha wheat, goat butter, sugar cane, and an acorn made this terrific treat for your birthday.”
The way people spoke too. Zelda had been focused on using resources on the lands to change abilities, but the whole world had gone that way after the Kingdom was gone. There just wasn’t any big shops anymore. Not enough people. Not enough trade. “Thank you very much for the Nutcake.” Gracious and kind. “I am busy right now, but I will look at it later, I promise. Thank you very much for your generous time and attention.”
“Oh, I don’t need any thanks, I just wanted to ask you something.”
“Did you live and endure inside of Ganon for a hundred years, or did you just wake up before the end?”
What? Zelda blinked.
“Do you feel like you turned 18 or do you feel 118?” The woman continued. There was no sorrow in her eyes or voice, she was just staring. Examining her. “Do you feel any more confident of running this torn down Kingdom? People did fine for a hundred years, can you do anything else for us?”
“If you were joined, like a part of Ganon, were you a part of the Malice or were you incorporeal? Could you feel his power? Did it scare you or excite you?”
“No one trusts you. You are a figment, an icon of something that gives hope, but that’s all you are. Even in the past, you could do nothing. You let everyone down. Did you witness your father dying?”
“That’s enough!” Forget regal politeness. “You will remove yourself from my sight!”
“Why? Because you think you are better than me? You’re a hundred years too late, Princess. Sorry. If you had succeeded your name would have been Queen Zelda. Since your weakness couldn’t beat Calamity Ganon, you’re just a relic. You haven’t answered a single question. Are you going to push me? Are you going to do anything? Hey!”
“You need to stop being so mean to Zelda!” One of the Gorons held her hand. “It’s best to go away. Gorons have a lot of strength and I don’t want to hurt you.”
“So scared to answer a single question, you sick a Goron on me?” Yes, that was going into Traysi’s paper. Sure, she didn’t get a single answer but the silence still gave her so much to work with. “You shouldn’t be running this kingdom, you never did anything but hold back something you couldn’t stop, and I know you are hiding something! Ow!”
“Sorry,” The Goron apologized who squeezed too tight. “You were not moving, you won’t move, move! I’d hate to hurt you again.” He looked toward the other Goron. “What do we do? Risk breaking an arm to get her to move?”
Zelda walked away not wanting them to break the Nutcake woman’s arm. The woman struggled to follow, but Zelda continued to walk away.
She continued to follow again? Unheard of. Zelda turned around. “What is wrong with you, woman?”
She smiled creepily. “Legend said it always took two to stop Calamity Ganon. The blood of the Princess and her Knight. Forget all the tech, it was you two. You didn’t keep your end of the deal”
Rambling and she spoke of nothing new. Zelda turned away so fast her hair whipped in front of her. She had a thousand other things to do. A day of celebration, not this. Not regret.
“It’s logical! It’s always been logical, but the royalty thought they were above everyone. Even in this time, you think you are above everyone. Well you aren’t, you are hiding something! I know it and I am going to find out what it is.”
“I do not look down upon others,” Zelda insisted but she couldn’t go much more. She knew she should be walking away and not dealing with her. Her father would have had guards pull her away by now. People like the Nutcake woman, they never brought good things. Often Zelda had been told not to speak to those like that woman, unless her father agreed to it. She was just bothering her so much, saying such terrible things. Zelda wouldn’t lose it though. Snark all she wanted, she wasn’t getting Zelda’s secret.
Inside Dueling Peaks Stable
“It makes sense that it be this one,” A Hylian representative from Fort Hateno said to Zelda. “This was the place of the last stand.”
“I know it was the place of the last stand,” Zelda said a little more standoffishly than she meant. Her peaceful day was fading away fast. “I was there.”
“Then this should be it,” the representative insisted. “Reconstruction should be halted in here. Fort Hateno already has a reputation with what happened, it would only make sense future generations see it there.”
Fort Hateno’s ancient graveyard. “We will talk more of this. There is more than I that will decide.” Oh please, someone else come with a better problem. She gestured for another person to come toward her. She looked like a presentable nice woman, however appearances were still deceiving. Especially from the Yiga Clan. To get this far, she would have been well tested though, and The Gorons were still hanging around. Besides, she’d dealt with one Yiga and this was not a place to pull anything off with her. “Hello? How may I help you?”
“I need these.” She gave a drawing of a pair of glasses to Zelda. “My son has very bad vision. He won’t be able to support his future family if he can’t even aim a bow.”
Oh. Glasses. Such a small thing it used to be. Such a small token in the Kingdom. Father would have been able to snap his fingers and someone would bring a lovely pair. How things used to be. “I will do what I can to see if I can help find some glasses. How hard is it to see?” How thick would they need to be? Oh, she couldn’t answer. She only knew it was blurry but in that time, she had nothing else to compare it too. Assume the worst. “How old is he?”
“And was he born with bad vision?”
“No, of course not. He lost his eye while running from a monster.”
“Lost his eye?” Oh dear. “Then his other eye?”
“Oh. Glasses may help, but that might be too much to ask of them,” Zelda admitted. Hunting with one eye could be dangerous if he wasn’t well trained already.
“The glasses would make him see, right?”
“It may help one eye, but if the other is gone, it might still be hard to hunt.” What to do? “If he has problems with his family in the future, he is invited to come see me.” That didn’t seem to appease her. “I’m sorry.”
“Then can you do anything for him?” The woman asked. “You have magical powers, can you restore his vision? The gods have blessed you.”
Oh. “I don’t think so,” she said. It wasn’t a magical wand she waved around to restore everything. After the battle of a hundred years, it felt like most of it was gone. She had used the last against Ganon. “I’m sorry.” The woman turned and walked away. She didn’t leave even her name with Zelda. Still. Glasses, she would see if she could find a pair of glasses.
She heard movement behind her and turned.