Author: Poncey of the Lions PM
OoT AU. "Let's just say that we are a city full of rats, and he is our Pied Piper, come to lure us away from our peace and happiness." Link Royale is about to stage a coup, and who better to stop him than Mistress Saria? LinkSaria.Rated: Fiction T - English - Mystery/Romance - Link & Saria - Words: 1,420 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 1 - Published: 01-01-11 - id: 6613605
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
AN: Because I've got writer's block with the last story I posted. The inner vortex of my flashdrive holds some surprising secrets, like this little ditty that I took and expanded. It's fun to realize how much my writing style has changed over a year. This chapter might be confusing, but I'll be sure to explain everything later. Enjoy!
Disclaimers: Is there really a point to posting disclaimers? I own nothing.
Tendrils of ivy and dew curled against the window and pressed into the foggy pane with all the force they could muster. She watched them with an intense longing, wishing she could have been standing in the open air and wondering if they were even aware of the disgust that lay behind the glass.
From the corner of her eye, she watched a chair skid across the floor. The screams of pain it left behind as it scraped against the stone floor made her ears ring. The adjacent table wobbled, and a spare mug toppled over its edge. She winced at the sickening crash, but its owner seemed to take no heed. An obese man slapped a meager coin on the counter and stumbled towards the door, his face lined with thick wrinkles and glazed over with too much alcohol and too little sleep. He gave a thin hiccup as he pulled the door open. Somewhere behind him, buried in shadow, a voice called out, "Hope you come back to the Kokiri Pub soon!"
The girl gave a sigh and unwound her squinting eyelids, having finally adjusted to the gloom. The murky lamplight that spilled over the bar counter did nothing for her vision except highlight the fact that she was standing right in front of a puddle of broken glass and beer. She made a mental note to avoid that when she left. If she ever did. And at the moment, it looked like she was never going to get out of here.
The hour ticked by slowly, distant and dizzy. People grumbled and snored and found constant means to push her away from the open chairs and into the walls. The mess of late-night, overly-drunken bodies slumped against frayed tables had blocked her in such a long time ago that her legs screamed from the effort of standing. It left her no choice in the matter: it was either loss of sanity or leaning against a wall coated in grime. She slumped against the wall in revulsion and pulled her hat down over her eyes.
She peered up at the clock and noted that the time was twenty after eleven. Her face fell at the edges. She heaved a melodramatic sigh, twiddled her thumbs, shuffled her feet, and eyed the cracks in the worn ceiling for about the thousandth time that evening. She had an insatiable desire to pace, one that made her brows furrow and her fingers twitch.
She checked the time again and again.
Half past eleven.
Forty past eleven.
Ten 'till twelve.
How much longer was she going to have to wait? Would she be left standing here until she died? Would her corpse continue to stand, until at last all the flesh would rot off of her bones, and then would he finally appear?
The very thought of such a notion made her stomach churn.
She straightened herself, knees popping and cracking with the effort. She had wasted enough time. She took a tentative step in the direction of the exit.
That was when the door burst open. She stared up at the traveler and put her foot back in place.
The figure was buried beneath a mound of dripping water and dark cloak that sagged in folds around him. He shook the traces of storm from himself as best as he could, and rain sprayed everywhere. He stamped his boots against the door as his hood fell to reveal a patch of yellow hair and a sneer so deep it looked permanent.
The man shoved his way across the floor, moving bodies roughly aside without a care. He ignored the mumbles of protest, pointing his nose toward the rafters. He strode right into the back corner of the bar, and, spying who he was looking for, pulled her hat right from her head. She flinched at the contact and pressed herself farther against the wall. Plaster cut marks into her bare arms but by a test of willpower she managed to remain still.
"I take it you got my note then, Miss Saria?" the intruder inquired.
The girl dug through the pouch that she carried and removed a small scrap of clumsily folded, ink-stained parchment. She nodded softly, eyes downcast.
"You just said to meet you here at half past ten, sire," she replied as she shoved the note back into the bag on her belt. She cautiously reached to retrieve her hat. He twitched it back, away from her grasp. Then he shoved it back at her before she had time to react.
"I take it then," he laughed. "that you also read that I have a tendency to be late. No? Well now you can keep that in mind for future reference. 'Cos I pride myself in being late to almost everything."
That's not exactly the greatest of qualities to pride oneself in, Saria pondered. "What is it that you want from me, sire?"
"Please." He absentmindedly laid a hand on her shoulder. Realizing she could not back up any farther, she drew sideways, struggling to hide the fact that with every second she backed farther away from his touch. "Skip the formalities."
He gave a harried, lopsided bow, and introduced himself to her feet. "My name is Midorian Orient, but you can call me Mido. Heck, you could even call me 'king' if you want. Because I know that someday, that is what I shall be." He grinned in a mouthful of rotting teeth and winked. "But that's not why I'm here, now is it?"
When she didn't reply, he frowned but continued.
"I have brought it upon myself to speak with you, which you should find a great and wonderful privilege."
On the inside, Saria imitated Mido's sneer. On the outside she breathed in as deeply as she could and asked "What is it that you want from me?"
He reached into the leather pouch that hung by his waist and drew out a crumpled poster. He shook it slightly to try and erase the water damage, and then unfolded it.
A face peered back at her, slight smile gracing the edges of his lips. The headline above the sketch of his face read 'Wanted' in oversized, curling letters and the name below his picture read 'Link Royale.' The sum stood at a hundred thousand rupees.
Quite a sum, Saria mused to herself.
The list of reasons as to why he should be apprehended was threadbare. Only one, single reason glinted in the weak light.
Treason against the king.
"Know anything about this man?" Mido's voice rose and fell in menacing waves.
Saria shook her head, and declared, "I've never seen this man or heard of him."
Mido gave her a sharp glare. "You don't seem interested. Reward not high enough for you?"
She tried to look away from the chill that pervaded his eyes, but she found that she couldn't. "It's just… had there been someone who had attempted treason, wouldn't the town know about it?"
"Logical one, I see. But they may not know if the mutiny has yet to happen." He tapped his fingers together, rubbing his palms miserly. "Let's just say that we are a city full of rats, and he is our Pied Piper, come to lure us away from our peace and happiness. You yourself are just as ratty as I am. You owe the city a debt my dear, just as everyone else does. Think of this as your penance."
He pushed the poster at her, and spun on his heels. He draped his hood back over his head, and what was left of him became consumed by the shadows that the cloak cast. "You may begin looking for him at any time you choose, but you ought to start now. He was last seen in the market square, over in the capital. I suggest you start there."
"And… if I wish to refuse?"
"Then we'll send the cats after you."