Chapter 4: Well, If the Tiara Fits...
Where were we? Our heroine just woke up and found out that she was in charge of Hyrule, right?
I started getting into my royal attire. Which takes a really long time. You would be surprised. Or maybe you wouldn't be.
Impa was pounding on Zelda's bedroom door. She had locked it, and we could hear her muttering to herself.
"Zelda! Hurry! We have to leave!" The door didn't open.
"Hey, Impa, do you think she should change into my clothes or something?" I said as I tried to blink out my contacts. Stupid things.
"No, no, there isn't time. ZELDA! GET OUT HERE!"
The door opened. "Sorry. I'm coming. What should I pack?"
"PACK? ARE YOU INSANE? We have to get out of here!"
Zelda was looking around the room nervously. She wasn't being as stupid as Impa thought. She was stalling. Which made no sense to me, but then, I still didn't know what was going on.
"Here, take my stuff." I bundled up all my clothes (and my contacts. I didn't want them) and shoved them into Zelda's hands. "Get going. It will be okay. I'll see you soon."
"Exactly what I've been trying to tell you. Hurry up!" Impa pulled Zelda out the door and slammed it shut. Leaving me alone. But not for long.
"Princess, something terrible has happened. You are needed at once." A random guard walked into my room. I tried to look outraged.
"What are you doing in here? Didn't anyone teach you to knock?"
"Well, Princess, given the present emergency..."
"What? What's the matter?" Yes! Some answers. Finally.
"Well, the King, your father, it seems, has been poisoned."
"Poisoned? Is he..."
"He is still alive, but he is asleep. We can't wake him..." Oh well. As long as he was alive. If he was dead, that made me queen. And that would be very bad indeed.
"Take me to him. How do you know he was poisoned?"
"Well, we aren't sure, but the castle healer says that his condition is an effect of a certain magical potion that she is familiar with..."
"Then call every magician in the kingdom here. And don't allow anyone to leave this castle." No, that wouldn't work. "Except for Impa and her niece. They are on a very important mission for me and must not be detained. And find out who has left already." I stopped to be amazed at myself. Where was I getting all this from? I have trouble deciding what to eat for breakfast, for Din's sake!
"Yes, Princess." The guard bowed and left. To do my bidding. Wow. I'm freaking out.
The king looked pretty bad. He wasn't breathing well, and he was pale. I walked into his room, and was swamped by advisors. Telling me to do the things I had just done. Good. I wasn't a total failure. I was about to smile when I collapsed. It wasn't that I was tired or frightened. I was standing one minute and on the ground the next. Someone helped me up.
"I realize this is very hard on you, Princess. Why don't you just stay here, and we'll sort all of this out for you." It was Percival, the guard who had asked me about the cows. Remember him? I yanked my hand back.
"No, Thank you. I am perfectly all right." I replied coldly. Yay! I can reply coldly! This will be fun.
I personally talked to every guard, servant, and cook in the place. Which took a lot of time. No one had seen anything, but they all say that. And I couldn't fire all of them. I hired food testers for the king. Very trusting guy, the king. He didn't have any.
I had had a major head ache since my fall that morning, so I was really looking forward to sitting down when some guy crashes into my room. A guy in black armor. Whoop-Di-do.
I knew who it was. Ganondorf. The very guy that was trying to take over the world. We had never met, because Impa had been afraid that he would guess what was going on. I was scared stiff. This was not going to go well.
"Sir, I really must ask you to leave. If you have a concern, you can schedule an appointment with my secretary on your way out..." Did I have a secretary? I should.
He cut me off. How rude. "What? But you were just... I just... How could?" Then he recovered and gave me an insincere smile. Git. "Forgive me, but I thought that I saw you and your attendant...I tried to catch you, but..." Good. They got away. Neener neener neener.
"Impa is indeed on a mission for me. She will return shortly." I smiled. It hurt. "And now, if you don't mind, I must leave. I have much to do today."
"Of course. I realize how hard this must be for you. But if you need any help at all with the coronation ceremony, please, don't hesitate to ask me."
"You must be mistaken. There will be no coronation." I have enough to handle. Plus, don't coronations involve singing? I refuse to sing.
"Yes, there will be. Your father is no longer able to rule. I am sure he will not be recovering."
What makes him so sure? Not that I ever cared one way or the other about the king, but things had changed. "No. My father is merely ill. During that time, I will rule, but only in his stead."
"You have no real authority until you have been made queen."
"I am sure that, real or not, my authority will not be challenged." Why was he pushing this?
"You must accept the throne!"
This could go on forever. "Ganondorf, I appreciate your concern, but my father is neither dead nor dying. Good day." I left the room. I've always wanted to say that. But I was worried about his strange insistence that I be crowned queen. What's in it for him?
For six months, I was in charge of the fate of Hyrule. The King remained in the same condition. Nobody could find a remedy for the poison. There were no attempts to kill either the King or me. There were no rebellions or uprisings. And there was no sign of Impa or Zelda.
I accomplished something. I made it illegal to poach in the Lost Woods. And I didn't throw the kingdom into chaos. Point for me.
In the seventh month of my reign, I started to feel ill constantly. I would space out in the middle of conversations. I was running a small fever. But I didn't tell anyone. No, I don't know why.
On the last morning of my time as a princess, I felt a violent need to go to the Temple of Time in Castle Town. I grabbed my handy dandy Kokiri hat, which I kept looped around my belt like a bag, and my knives. I never go anywhere without them. They're the most stable item in my life. Which is sad, if you think about it. But I don't like to.
When I got there, I had a rather bad shock. I may not have been to the Temple for a few months, but I was fairly certain that those jewels had not been there. And where did the block on the alter go? I was about to investigate, but a boy about my age came running into the Temple. He was dressed in Castle livery, and breathing hard.
"I'm sorry to disturb you, Princess." He bowed. I still hate it when people call me princess. "The King has been murdered."
"What? Who murdered him?" Wait, let me guess. I wish the guards were a little more vigilant.
"Ganondorf. He got tired of waiting for the poison to work. But he's taking over, right now, and you need to leave. They're coming after you." I had to trust him, didn't I? I started for the door.
"Wait, Anope! I have to go back for my horse!" I need my horse. She's my best friend.
"It's okay, 'Tala. I brought her with me. But you need to go." Thank Farore! I blinked. Tala? Tala was so six months ago."How do you know my name?"
"Well, umm, I'm Kosan, and, er, I work in the stables, and, well, you talk to Anope sometimes."
"You spy on me? Does any one else know? Have you told anyone?"
"No, of course not. And I wasn't exactly spying, I just overheard what you were saying! Well, maybe I was spying a little..." Kosan blushed. He was kind of cute. He had brown hair and really cute green eyes. But you don't care. You want to find out what happened to me. Right?
Well, we got away. A few of the townspeople were evacuating too. We just blended in.
When we were reasonably safe, Kosan asked me, "Where are you going to go? He'll be looking for you for a while, so you need a place to hide."
Place to hide? With the Gorons? No, that would put them in danger. The Kokiri? They aren't very good at keeping secrets. Lonlon? No, I couldn't put anyone I loved in danger. Kakariko? Ha ha. I was beginning to develop a deep mistrust of humans. I could leave the kingdom, but I felt like killing myself the instant I thought of that. I could go with the Er...Ah... Hmm. Deja vu. I laughed. I wonder what Link did when he found out that the "erah" didn't exist.
"I hate to interrupt your thought process, but we do need to find somewhere you can stay." My extremely cute rescuer urged.
"But I don't trust anyone. Isn't there a place that no one goes where I can live alone or something?"
"Now that you mention it, yes. At the source of the river, there's a waterfall. There's this huge gate blocking the entrance, and no one tries to go up there anyway. And the water drowns out noise, so you can sing all you want." He was teasing me. So why hadn't I killed him yet?
"Sounds like the perfect place for me. Let's go."
There. Not exactly a cliffie. I'm getting better. :-)