Hey guys;

I found this while going back through my hard drive to back things up before reformatting and thought it was worth posting up. There's another installment written by KA (), as well, but I haven't got it on my computer so it'll have to wait until I can get it off of hers.

It's essentially a series of short stories depicting the relationship between Nabooru and Ganondorf, as well as detailing bits and pieces of Ganondorf's "fall." For those of you who've read The Legend of Zelda: The Return, these stories do not take place in that timeline, as I wrote it for fun, although you will recognize several elements (the structure of the Gerudo and Natalia, for example). When we started these we originally intended for them to eventually have a conclusion, but I'm not guaranteeing it'll ever happen. We've both got other projects on the go and this one, unfortunately, has fallen by the wayside, but the few we have already done work well enough as stand-alones and whatever we don't write I'm sure you can fill in with your imaginations. :-)

Thanks guys!

Lady Rose

UPDATE 2004-12-03: The second story in this series, although incomplete and it will likely remain that way, can be found on the forum of my homepage, www . fengs-shui . com / fsconnect (remove the spaces), under the "Drabbles" thread-- what's done of it in any case -- if you are interested. Feel free to post any comments for it there. Thanks!

It Starts

By Rose

Looking back, I'd say it all started with a dare. Most of the life-altering events in my life have in fact. I've been a sucker for a challenge since the day I was born, and this one was a doozy.

I was ten at the time, or around there anyway, and still wearing the Purple. Natalia and I had finished up our duties for the day and were busy being bitter about how we never got to take part in anything important, and all because we were kids. We were only three years off from receiving our Rite of Passage mission, and at the time, three years didn't seem like much. The specific event which had set us off had been a meeting of the Elite and Ganondorf, our King, which, when you're ten years old, seems like the biggest deal on the face of the planet, and you're absolutely convinced that they do all kinds of cool, adult things in there. Now, however, that I've been to a few of those meetings, I've realized that they're actually quite boring and involve nothing but talking and more talking and a little bit of staring out the window wishing you were the kid out there wishing she was the adult in here.

However, as I've said, at the time I was the kid out there.

"So why don't we just sneak in?" I demanded of Natalia, who was staring longingly towards the room where the meeting was being held. "I bet we could make it." She frowned at me darkly.

"Oh yeah, right," she said, "and then we could get caught and put on nursery duty for the next two years."

"That wouldn't happen," I insisted. "Who says we're going to get caught?"

"That's what you said last time," she replied flatly. "And then I suddenly found myself changing diapers for three weeks." I frowned right back at her.

"I never said you had to go along with me, you know," I replied. "You went of your own accord." She narrowed her eyes at me.

"You didn't tell me what we were doing until we were halfway through it, it's not like I could just back out then."

"You're such a baby!" I cried, throwing my hands up in frustration. "Farore! It's not like we'd be doing anything complicated. There's what, two Reds guarding the door? Big whoop. We could so get past them!"

"And then what?" Natalia demanded. "Just stroll on in like we belong there? Great, so we don't get caught by the Red, we get caught by the White and the King instead and then we're really in trouble. It'll never work, Nabooru."

Now at this point, I had thought it through enough to know that she was correct. It was impossible. There was simply no way to get in there. There just wasn't. I should have given up, sat back, and accepted the fact that I'd have to wait until I was older before I could experience whatever it was that went on behind those doors.

However, by this point, it had stopped being about what was going on behind those doors. I had just been told it couldn't be done, and my focus had switched to simply doing it. Natalia frowned, instantly recognizing the look on my face.

"You really think you can do it," she said flatly. "You floor me, you know that?" I glared at her.

"I could too, do it!" I cried. "Easy. Hell, I bet you I could get in as far as the King and touch him if I wanted." Her eyes glinted; a sure sign she was setting a trap.

"You think so?" She asked, setting her bait.

"I know so," I replied, gobbling that bait up like I hadn't eaten in weeks.

"Fine," she said. "Prove it. I dare you." I frowned at her.

"What? Like now?"

"Yeah," she answered. "You get in there, get up to the King, and . . . touch him or something." I stared at her.

"Touch him?!" I cried. "Is that even allowed?!"

"I know sneaking into that room isn't, but you were perfectly willing to do that a second ago. Since when do you care about the rules, anyway?" She demanded. I frowned at her.

"Touch him?" I asked. "Touch the King?"

"I dare you."

"Fine," I replied, wishing I felt as confident as I sounded. "And then you'll eat your words. And you have to make my bed for the next two weeks."

"Done," she replied, then grinned nastily at me. "Maybe they'll execute you for touching him. Assuming you even make it that far."

"Oh, I'll make it," I responded. "You just wait." I turned around and marched towards the exit. "You just wait," I added to myself under my breath, a lot less confidently than the first time.

Like I said . . . always been a sucker for a challenge. Never said I was smart about it.

I left the room we were in, Natalia right on my heels, and headed into the labyrinth hallways of the Fortress. Natalia demanded to know where I was going ("The room is that way.") but I ignored her. I knew what I was doing. I climbed the stairs up to the third level and made my way towards a room I knew was facing out at the room in which the meeting was being held. Natalia shut up the instant she realized what I was planning.

"You're a moron," she hissed at me as we stepped out onto the balcony of the room. Just below us I could see the meeting room, it's high windows offering very little view into the room they contained.

"Shut up," I replied. "I know what I'm doing."

"Committing suicide, that's what," she responded, getting nervous now as I climbed up onto the balcony's rail. "Look . . . Nabooru . . . I didn't really mean it, all right? The dare's off, come on down."

"No," I snapped. "You can't call back a dare. You dared me, and I'm gonna do it."

"Nabooru! What if they do execute you?! You can't just touch the King for no reason, you know! You're breaking so many rules by doing this! You'll never hear the end of it! Never!"

"You're just nervous because if I'm caught, you're in trouble for daring me in the first place too," I responded, gauging the distance between me and the window.

"You'll never make it," she tried, switching tactics. "It's too far, you'll fall."

"No I won't," I replied. "I can do it."

"Nabooru . . . don't . . . get down . . . Nabooru!"

I pushed myself off the balcony rail and into the air, overwhelmed for an instant by the feeling of the freedom of flight.

The problem with the freedom of flight, is that it's not freedom at all, and one is soon reminded that one is chained to the earth.

I heard Natalia cry out behind me as I began my descent, and for a half an instant my heart froze in my chest when my fingers missed the window frame, and I was suddenly, violently reminded of the fact that I was neither invincible, nor immortal, and that jumping from a third story window is a stupid, stupid thing to do.

Luckily for me, right below the window was a flag pole. The instant my fingers touched the smooth wood my fists closed around it and clenched, stopping my fall and wrenching my shoulders. I opened my eyes slowly and let out the breath I'd been holding.

Nabooru, 1: Death, 0.

I hauled myself up with an effort onto the pole, and from there onto the window sill. I took a quick glance down to make sure no one was looking up, then turned around and gave Natalia the biggest grin I could manage, flipped both of my thumbs up, and mouthed the words I fell! as though the event was something to be proud of.

I don't really think she fell for it, but she was too busy making negating gestures at me and frantically signaling for me to give it up and come back. I waved her off and turned back around to peer down through the open window into the room.

However, at the sight of the entire Elite (24 of them at the time I believe) seated at the table, each of them fully armed, and looking every bit as dangerous as their reputations made them out to be, my resolve finally started to crack. I still would have jumped, though, had I not cast a glance directly below me and spotted the King.

Though I couldn't see much of his expression from my vantage point, he looked distinctly unhappy about something. He was on his feet and shouting angrily at one of the Elite (who had gone pale as a sheet) about something she'd just said (his tirade is probably what saved me from being noticed). His voice was deep, and gravelly, even at the young age of 18, and he seemed a lot bigger up close. The veins in his neck were bulging and his face was red as he yelled, and shook his fist.

I was suddenly reminded yet again of the fact that I was not invincible, or immortal, and that touching the King when he didn't specifically tell you that you could touch him was a stupid, stupid thing to do.

My resolve cracked and I turned around to see if I could climb my way back down the wall, but just as I turned my back, he slammed his fist down on the table loudly to emphasize his point. I was already jumpy after my near-fall, and the noise startled me. I jumped, and the move put me off balance, and, to my horror, I was falling backwards . . . into the room . . .

King Ganondorf sat back down, eyes narrowed, chest heaving, face red . . .

. . . and I fell right into his lap.

For a long moment, there was absolutely no sound in the room as everyone, Ganondorf included, could do nothing but stare at me.

It was kind of funny . . . but up close . . . he didn't look so much frightening as frightened . . .

I sucked in my breath and in that instant considered my options.

There was really only one thing to do.

"Boo!" I squeaked, and jabbed him in the forehead with my finger, then scrambled off his lap and threw myself under the table, crawling frantically over the legs of the Elite and dodging their grasping hands as they shouted angrily and tried to catch me.

I wondered what it felt like to be executed …

I scrambled out from under the table and was almost on my feet when one of the Elite managed to get a hold on my pant leg. Attracted by the shouting, the two guards outside the door burst in. It took me two point three seconds to wriggle my way out of my pants and throw myself between the guard's legs and out the door in nothing but my underwear.

I flew through those hallways, painfully aware of the fact that the two guards and probably half a dozen other Reds were chasing me down and that I was so going to eat it for this when they caught me – and at that point there was no doubt in my mind that they'd catch me. You'd be surprised how far self-confidence can fall when they take away your pants – when I saw an open door, just ahead of me.

Praising the Goddesses profusely I threw myself into the room and pushed it shut, leaning up against it and pressing my ear to the wood. A second later I heard shouting and footsteps as those chasing me rushed on past the room. I closed my eyes and exhaled loudly in relief as I turned around to lean against the door. I opened my eyes with a grin, content that I had cheated fate again, but the grin vanished immediately when I met the amber gaze of the King who was staring at me with a puzzled frown on his face. My heart flip-flopped in my chest.

I had the distinct feeling I'd just walked into a trap.

The King reached out for me with his hand and I closed my eyes and winced, waiting for the blow . . .

. . . but instead he simply jabbed my forehead with his finger.

I opened my eyes one at a time and stared up at the huge man with wide, uncomprehending eyes.

His mouth twitched at the corner into a kind of crooked grin.

"Boo," he said.

And that's more or less how it started.