13. Link

The next day I was expecting my father to call for me, but dreading it. I still hadn't told Impa, and I wasn't exactly looking forward to it. I was, however, very much looking forward to telling the king. I might even shock him into a heart attack and ascend to the throne that very day!

But having that thought stopped me. Did I really want my father to die? Of course not. But...I wouldn't mind not seeing him much. I didn't anyway; he was always too busy for me. We had been close when I was small, but as I got older he started to see me as less of a daughter and more of a commodity. That was the way it often worked in noble families. It was sad.

As I was thinking all this, I was changing my clothes, having just come back from riding. Lost in thought, I almost didn't hear the gasp from my window; but I definitely heard the thud of a body hitting the ground.

I threw on my dress and rushed to the window, to find a figure lying flat on the ground.

A male figure. Dressed in a green tunic and hat, with honey-blond hair peeking from under it.

"Link?" I asked, hardly daring to believe it.

Link looked up, a nervous expression on his face.

He was beautiful. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, even better than I had remembered. Those eyes, that hair, those broad shoulders and strong arms that I just wanted to wrap around me. I wondered if he knew he was a sex god.

Link got to his feet and bushed himself off. "Um, hi, uh, your Highness." He bowed a little. I glared.

"Don't you dare," I growled, "don't you dare ever call me that. People I've known since I was a baby and people I've never even met call me that. Don't you dare treat me like I'm a title."

Link blinked, then grinned. "Sorry Zel, but I thought a certain amount of ceremony was more than appropriate, given the circumstances."

I blinked too, then burst out laughing. That was what I had said to him, back when I had first met him as Sheik. "I can't believe you remembered that! After all these years…" Then I remembered how many years it had been and glared at him again. "Where the hell have you been!" I exclaimed.

"That's kind of a long story," he grinned sheepishly (he was so cute!), "but believe me, I was trying to get back to you the whole time."

"You better have been!" I stepped back from the window. "Now get in here."

"What, through the window?" He stared in surprise.

"I've waited a grand total of fifteen years for you; now get in here before I drag you in!"

"Yes Ma'am!"

I grabbed him almost before he was completely through the window, pulling him close and kissing him as if I wanted to eat him up.

Of course, what I wanted was completely different.

Link apparently wanted it too, because he shrugged off his pack and sword and wrapped his big muscley arms around me. His hands were just as strong as I'd imagined, and his touch even more gentle.

He was such a good kisser. I don't know if it was a natural talent, something he'd learned, or what, but I didn't particularly care. They say someone is a good kisser if you can feel it in your knees, well I felt Link all the way to the soles of my feet.

I pulled him to my bed, all thoughts but one wiped from my mind. From the way Link was kissing me, I knew we were thinking the same thing.

Then Impa's voice intruded on our pre-coital happiness. "Your Highness?"

I swore. Link scrambled off me and I got up and fixed my dress as best I could. "Is my hair messed up?" I asked him.

"A little. Here." He came over and smoothed it down for me. I stared up into those deep green eyes and willed Impa away...

"Your Highness?" Impa called again.

Guiltily we jumped away from each other. This wasn't exactly the reunion I'd planned, but I hadn't taken into account 'The Princess Factor.' I didn't really have time to devote to him.

"Come on," I grabbed Link's hand and pulled him through the door, into the antechamber. I sat him down in a chair on one side of the table, and sat down on the other side.

"Your Highness!" Impa's voice was insistent now, and it was a good thing we were ready.

"Come in," I called, and Impa did, doing the slightest of double-takes upon seeing Link.

"Your father is waiting for your decision Princess," she said to me, deliberately ignoring the boy in my room. "Are you ready?"

"Completely," I got to her feet and swept toward the door. This was going to be fun. "Wait for me here, will you Link? This shouldn't take but a moment."

Link was probably confused out of his little mind, and I didn't envy him the encounter with Impa that I was sure was coming, but I knew he was a good guy and would handle it.

I, on the other hand, was not nearly as good as everyone thought, and I had my doubts about my abilities. I just hoped my father didn't notice.

I swept into his chambers with barely concealed smugness, all of which was an act. "Father," I greeted him imperiously.

"Have you made your decision?" he asked.

Right to the point as always, eh Pop? I thought. Aloud I said, "I have."

"Which young man have you chosen?"

"Um, none. None young man."

"What!" my father glared at me. "What do you mean? I specifically told you-"

"You told me to pick the best ruler for the country. I did. I picked me. I'm smarter than any of those sheltered peacocks, whether you believe me or not."

"But-"

"See you later, Daddy." I swept from the room and away before he could stop me.

That hadn't been half bad.

I returned triumphantly to my room. "All done!" I announced.

Impa stared at me, shocked. She was standing fairly close to Link, probably just finished threatening him. "Already? If you've made the decision I think you have, your father should have argued."

"Oh, he did," I grinned. "But I left before he finished. He's not going to change my mind, so why should I have to listen to him try?"

Link grinned broadly. He looked like a puppy, who doesn't know what's going on but is happy anyway.

"But your Highness!" Impa exclaimed. "This boy is-"

"Not a part of what I told my father."

"Wait, what about me?" Link interrupted. "I just got here like ten minutes ago, what do I have to do with anything?"

"Nothing Link," I sat down in the chair opposite him. "I told my father I don't want to get married. Not ever. I'm the one that's going to rule Hyrule, not my husband."

Link grinned that adorable grin.

"But what about…" Impa pointed at him.

"Link?" I looked at him. "You don't want to be king, do you Link?"

"Hell no," he said firmly.

"If he married me, he would have to be. I love him to much to do that to him."

Link reached across the table and grabbed my hand. We smiled at each other, and I knew everything would be all right.

Impa shook her head. "Teenagers," she sighed. "Look, if this relationship goes south, you," she pointed at Link, "will never speak of it, and you," she pointed at me, "will not take it out on the country. Got it?"

We both ignored her. There were more important things.

As soon as Impa left Link turned to me and started to say something. I put a finger on his lips. "Now..." I said with a purposeful grin, "where were we?"

Later...

Last night I had a dream. It started simply enough, a dream of a memory of a conversation I'd had with Link when we were back to being kids.

"The problem is, it's just too obvious," Link said. "I thought of it mere seconds after I heard his name, but I could never bring myself to use it."

"It's so immature too," I agreed. "I mean, 'Ganondork' just doesn't have the same ring as, 'You son of a bitch.'"

"Right!"

Then the dream changed, and I heard Ganon's last words to us.

"Someday, when this when this seal is broken, I will exterminate your descendants! As long as the Triforce of Power is on my hand…"

Our descendants...

I woke up this morning with tears on my cheeks and my hands on my belly. I suppose every new mother worries about her child like this, but most new mothers haven't lived the kind of life I have.

I didn't tell Link about the dream. He has enough to worry about with courtly manners and the way the pageboys look at him. I don't know how, but the rumor is going around that Link was the Hero of Time. I honestly don't know who started it, or how they found out, but Link has never wanted fame and worship. The only reason he agreed to take the title of Prince Consort is because I asked him.

I hate to end this story on an unhappy note, but believe me when I say I am happy. I have Link, I have my country, which is flourishing by the way, and soon I will have a son. Link is still holding out hope that the baby will be a girl, because I plan to name it Daphnes Nohansen Hyrule if it's a boy, but I've had too many dreams of a son to think otherwise.

One last thing. There's another rumor going around, though this one doesn't have a basis in reality. Supposedly Link has been cheating on me, with a young Sheikah man.

Guess we should have been more careful on our last getaway.