Start time: January 15, 2007; 10:02 AM, PST
So here it is people. The long-anticipated chapter fifteen of Sensei. Thanks to everyone who stuck with me so far.
I'm working on two chapters at the same time. This, and chapter five for Signed, Sincerely Me. If you have yet to read that, please do. It's my next major story, and I'm putting a whole lot of creative effort into it. You'll know how much if you read it, because there's a lot more than the story itself in there. There are poems and songs and things like that.
Speaking of poems, look at my other latest effort, though the Looking Glass. It's just a quick poem, but I have to say that it's really good, and I personally think it's one of my best achievements.
NOTE: If the tenses of the verbs change from past-tense to present-tense, I apologize. It's because I've been writing Signed, Sincerely Me in present-tense, and I'm used to that format, and it looks awkward since the other chapters of this story are told from past-tense.
Anyway, here's chapter fifteen.
"No, no, no!"
Link looked over to Zelda, who was sitting across from him, pencil in hand, scribbling something on a piece of paper in front of her.
"What is it?" He asked, taking a sip of his coffee.
"This freakin' speech," she muttered. "It's all wrong."
It is now early June, about six months since Zelda was promoted to the twelfth grade, and not a lot has happened in that six month time frame. Link has been busy with teaching, especially in March and April when the students were taking their standardized tests. Zelda has been just as busy, if not more: she has been swamped with homework ever since she started the twelfth grade. She's been working, working, working all day throughout school, and at home, she's studying, studying, studying until the early morning, pretty much having no life outside of school related priorities. Her and Link have not had as much time together as they would want to, and having time to themselves, doing nothing but spending time with each other, was beginning to become more seldom.
Now that it was June, only two weeks before the school year ended, their free time was slowly but surely beginning to increase, despite all of the end of the year activities that Link had to plan with the other teachers, and all of the Senior priorities that Zelda had to complete. She just recently finished her Senior exhibition with an A+ as her reward from all of the panelists that were present. She was accepted into Hyrule University of a scholarship, mainly because she got a perfect score on the JSAPTs in January. She was voted by her peers as the class Valedictorian, finishing off her high school career with a 4.5. Along with graduating first in her class, she was also expected to deliver the class speech, and she was very nervous about the idea.
The two are now at Error's Café. It's a Friday afternoon, one week before the Senior Prom and two weeks before the graduation ceremony that was being held at the HCT Metrodome, and Zelda is busy with her speech. It's been two weeks since she was told that she was to speak in front of the Senior class, the faculty, and the thousands of family members, relatives and friends that were going to be present that Friday morning, and so far, it hasn't been progressing well.
"Link," she looks up to him. "What was your speech like? Maybe I can get some ideas if I look at something."
He sets down his mug and sighs softly, thinking about it. "I don't really remember. I was such a nervous wreck that I passed out right then and there on the podium. Didn't wake up until after the ceremony."
Her eyes widened in terror and almost dropped the mug in her hand onto her paper. "Good Goddesses!"
The young man started laughing hysterically and shook his head. "I'm kidding! I'm kidding!"
She shot him a glaring scowl and slapped him on the arm. "Link, that wasn't funny!"
"Come on, Zel…" He sighs, his laugher dying down. "It's all in good fun, you know? Lighten up a bit."
"How can I lighten up!?" The girl cried out in exasperation, standing up to her feet. "I have to get a speech ready in two weeks and read it in front of nearly ten thousand people, and I haven't even gotten the first sentence down! I still need to get a date for the prom, and I don't even have my dress picked out yet! I have to-"
"Whoa, whoa, whoa!" Link got up and rested his hands on her shoulders soothingly. "Calm down for a second! You still have two weeks, Zelda. That's more than enough time to get all of that done. I'll be with you every step of the way. I'll help you get it all squared away. Count on it."
She sighed in relief and gave him a thankful smile. "Thank you so much, Link."
"No problem," he winked. The two took their seats, and he gave everyone staring at them dirty looks, which caused them to turn away and continue with their business. "I had to deal with the same problems when I was in your position, only I had no help from anyone. The least I can do is helping you pull through."
She giggled and pecked him on the cheek. "Thanks, Link. So what really happened at your graduation? No jokes this time."
Link paused for a second before answering. "I didn't have my speech ready in time. When it came for me to get up in front of everyone, I just said whatever came to mind. I think it came out really well; I got a standing ovation from everyone."
"Yeah, well…" Zelda starts. "I don't think it'll work for me."
"its okay, Zel." He took another sip. "If you don't come up with a speech in time, just think back to your school life. You have a lot to talk about anyway. The JSAPTs, the valedictorian, the whole "I slept with my teacher" thing…"
"Fat chance!" She scoffed loudly. "Like I'm really going to tell ten thousand people about that!"
"Whatever floats your boat, Zel," he replied. "Just throwing ideas out there is all."
"Whatever," the girl shook her head.
A few moments later, Navi came up to them with two plates of food in her hand. "Sorry for the wait," she apologized. "Here's your croissant, Link." She handed him a plate with a croissant, a small stick of butter and a fork and knife on it.
"Thanks Navi," he said.
"No problem," the waitress replied. "Zelda, this is your toast." Navi handed a plate with two pieces of golden toast covered in butter and powdered sugar, along with a fork and knife.
"Thank you," Zelda looked up at her.
"You're welcome. How's that speech coming along?" Navi asked, tucking her pencil behind her ear.
"Not as great as I hoped," the female blonde laments.
"its okay, Zelda," the waitress comforts. "Link's was awesome, and all he did was BS the whole thing!"
"Yes," he nodded triumphantly, his mouth full of food. "Impromptu, people! Bow down to me."
"Eww, Link!" Navi cringed. "Don't talk with your mouth full! That is so rude!" He just rolled his eyes and swallowed what was in his mouth. "Whatever, Navi."
"Whatever yourself," she snapped back playfully, and turned to Zelda. "You bought the tickets, right? Can I get one?"
Zelda dropped the fork in her hand in shock. "Tickets!? I forgot the tickets! Link!"
"Take a chill pill!" He cried out, reaching into his pocket. "I had a feeling you were going to forget them, so I took the liberty of picking them up for you." He pulled out an envelope that read "Zelda Harkinian" on the back. "There are twenty inside."
"Twenty?" Navi raised an eyebrow. "What the hell? We were only given ten!"
"For real," he nodded in agreement. "But whatever. Ours was held at Triforce Amphitheatre, and there's only a limited amount of seats there."
"Where is it being held this year?" The waitress asked.
"The HCT Metrodome," he replied.
"Wow that place?" She raised both eyebrows. "That's cool. Anyway, I have to get back to work. Zelda, if you have spare tickets, make sure you give me one, yeah?"
"Consider it done," Zelda nodded. Navi flashed a grin and walked away into the kitchen.
The two proceeded to eat in silence.
"You ran for Prom Queen, right?" Link finally asks, and Zelda shook her head, causing his eyes to widen in surprise. "Why not? You would have won for sure!"
"Being Prom Queen would have been nice," she started, "but I'm so swamped with school work I wouldn't have time to keep up a decent campaign, even if I had half of the student body helping me. I'm fine with it, though. Scoring one hundred percent on the JSAPT and becoming valedictorian is more than enough."
Link nodded slowly and took the last bite of his croissant.
"…Were you the Prom King in your Senior year?" She asked. The young man swallowed his food and washed it down with coffee.
"Nope. I didn't run."
"Why not?" She raised an eyebrow.
"I don't know. I just didn't. People tried to nominate me, but I told them to withdraw my name."
"Oh…" Zelda pushed her empty plate aside and took her pencil in her hand, and started to write onto her paper, but then she paused. "Do you wanna go?"
Link looked up from his empty plate to meet his eyes with hers. "Huh?"
"To the prom," she said. "Would you like to accompany me?"
"As in a date?" He asked dumbly.
The girl rolled her eyes. "No, Link as my assistant. Of course as a date!"
"I knew that," he snapped, rolling his eye back at her. "Why ask me?"
"Well…" She twirled her pencil between her index and middle finger. "All the Senior guys I know already have dates… I can't take any of my Junior friends… So that leaves you."
He thought about it for a second, and then he answered. "Sure, I'll go."
She beamed widely and got up from her seat and went over to his side of the table and hugged him tightly. "Thanks. Pick me up at six, okay?"
He nodded and kissed her softly on the cheek. "Sure thing."
Link stepped out of his car and slammed the door, locking it with the button on the key. He pushed his sleeve back slightly to check the time on his watch.
He didn't want to look like a freak showing up on time, so he turned around to check himself out in the car window to make sure everything was neat. He looked over to his watch again.
He adjusted his tie and walked over to the door and stopped a few inches in front of it. He took a deep breath before pressing the doorbell.
A few seconds later, the door swung open and before him was Zelda's mom smiling at him.
"Hey, Mrs. Harkinian," he smiles back. She lets him into the house and she closes the door behind him. He sees her father come out of the kitchen with a beer bottle in hand, and the second he catches sight of Link, his eyes glow.
"Link, my boy!" He bellows happily. The two men give each other a slapping handshake. "How've you been, son?"
"I'm fine, sir," Link nods.
"So, Link…" He takes a swig of beer. "You'll going to be taking Zelda to her prom, right? Kind of strange that a teacher and student are going as dates…"
"Oh, no, sir," Link shakes his head. "Zelda and I are going as friends. She had no date to go with, and I'm supposed to chaperone tonight, so it works out for everyone."
The blonde chuckles inwardly at his fabrication. 'It may not have been the exact truth… But at least I didn't lie.'
Zelda's dad laughs and slaps him on the back, almost making Link stumble forward again.
"Daphnes!" Her mom cries out, helping Link regain his composure. "Honestly, you could break something!"
"Nonsense!" Daphnes shook his head. "Link here is a strong young man. I doubt I could injure him."
Link just smiles awkwardly, scratching the back of his head. "its okay, Mrs. Harkinian. Thank you, though."
A few moments later, they hear a soft feminine voice clear its throat from the top of the stairs. The three look up and see Zelda smiling down at them.
Zelda was wearing a white floor length halter gown that hugged her figure. The neckline was a wide V-neck, and exposed ample cleavage and made her breasts look bigger than they really were much to Link's delight. The straps tied around her neck, and the top half was opaque white. At the mid-thigh, the skirt became more flowing, and became translucent white with slits on both sides that went up to the line where the dress transitioned from solid to semi-transparent. In her hair was sleek white headband, and her blonde locks went kind of waved then curled at the tips, with some bangs over her left eye. Golden Triforce earrings hung from her ears, shimmering in the light. On her shoulder was her Chanel bag, and in her hand was her RAZR cell phone.
Zelda observed Link closely. He was wearing a dark blue tuxedo with a matching tie, and underneath was a white dress shirt. His shoes were black and so shiny to the point that they could reflect light. His hair was just as messy as ever, but he pulled it off quite nicely. Not very many guys could get away in formal clothing and bed hair. She was pleased to see that he approved of the dress, in more ways than one when she noticed a bulge in his slacks. She, Malon, Saria, Nabooru, and Ruto worked hard to find all the right accessories for it.
She descended the stairs slowly, trying not to trip on her own skirt or stumble on her four inch heels. She stood in front of Link, almost meeting him at eye level thanks to her heels.
"Hi Link," she waves her fingers.
"Hey," he breathes.
"Oh, my Zelda!" Her mom cries out, almost on the verge of tears.
"Mom!" The girl complains, trying to break free of her bear hug. "I can't breathe!"
"Oops! Sorry, sweetheart," she lets go of her daughter slowly, wiping a tear from her eye.
"Ambi, get the camera!" Daphnes tells her, setting his beer bottle on the dining table. "We have to get a picture of these two!"
Ambi scrambled over to the coffee table where the camera is and turned it on, with Zelda protesting against it.
"Come on, guys!" The girl whined. "We're going to be late!"
"It's okay, Zel." Link assured. "It's not everyday that you get to go to your Senior Prom."
Ambi told the two to stand in front of the stairs and rapidly took pictures before Zelda stood forward and took the camera from her.
"That's enough, mom!" She said through laughter, pressing the off button. "You have enough to fill a photo album already!"
"Fine," Ambi sighed exasperatedly, taking the camera from her daughter and setting it on the dining table.
"Now Link," Daphnes started. "I expect Zelda to be home no later than midnight."
"Yes sir," the young man nodded.
"No romantic business, even if they play slow songs," Daphnes warned and Zelda stomped her foot on the ground.
"Dad! We're just going as friends!"
"Right, sir," Link agreed. "Besides, I have a girlfriend, remember?"
Daphnes' serious expression slowly turned into a smile. "Right. Well, you two have fun, okay?"
Daphnes and Ambi lead Link and Zelda over to the door. The two blondes walk out, waving goodbye to Zelda's parents. Daphnes and Ambi walk outside into the brisk, evening air and watch Link help their daughter into the car, and Link gets inside, starts up the engine, pulled out of the driveway, and drove off into the distance.
"Zelda's all grown up now, isn't she?" Ambi murmured softly, resting her head on her husband's shoulder.
"Yes, she is. She's really lucky to have a friend like Link," Daphnes replied.
"…Do you think we should tell them that we know?" Ambi asked.
"No," he shook his head. "They'll tell us."
"But what if they don't?" She furrowed her brows together.
"Don't worry, Ambi… They will."
HYRULE CASTLE TOWN INTERNATIONAL FORUM- WISDOM HALL
The school's Senior Prom is held at the Hyrule Castle Town International Forum, for simply "The Forum" for short, every year. The Forum is the city's convention center, which is the largest in the world. The prom is held in The Forum's Wisdom Hall, the largest of the many halls in the convention center, with the Power Hall and the Courage Hall rounding up the top three. The expansive room is decorated in navy, gold and white, the school colors, with balloons shaped like Keaton heads tied to many of the weights on the tables and wall decorations. Letter confetti is scattered on the tables, which spell out "CLASS OF 2007" in blue, gold and white, and the entire room was dimly illuminated with the three colors. A DJ was spinning the music, and the dance floor was crowded with kids grinding on each other, two of which were Link and Zelda, despite the formal dress code. However, it was so packed that no one noticed that the pair were student and teacher, and since Link looked so young, no one gave him a second glance.
It's nine-forty, and the night is still young. Link and Zelda were sitting at a table with four other Seniors that they met on the dance floor, and they enjoying themselves very much.
"What are your college plans, Zelda?" A girl with dark skin and golden hair named Tetra asked her.
"I got into Hyrule University," the blonde replied. Tetra and the other two Seniors' eyes widened.
"The most prestigious university in the world, Hyrule University!?" A Goron named Darmani cried out.
"Hey, what do you expect from little Miss JSAPT here?" Tetra chuckles and Zelda glares at her.
"I might just go to a community college for the first two years or something," Darmani shrugs. "And I'll apply for Castle Town State in my Sophomore or Junior year."
The other three give similar plans for their post-high school education.
"Link," Komali speaks up. "What college did you go to?"
"Same as Zelda," he replies. "I was my class Salutatorian."
"Jeez, Link." Laruto smirks. "Aren't we the little bookworm?"
"Hey," he holds up his hands defensively. "Chicks dig guys with brains. At least that's what I've heard from listening into my cousins' conversations. Why'd you think I stress my butt of for those grades?"
Komali and Darmani laugh, the three guys exchanging high fives, while Tetra, Laruto and Zelda roll their eyes.
Darmani, Komali, Laruto and Tetra are back on the dance floor, and Link and Zelda are on their way to the refreshment table, when they are stopped by a photographer.
"You two!" The photographer starts. "You look like a very photogenic pair! You guys wanna take your prom picture together?"
Link almost laughs at the man's uncanny ability to spit out words faster than anyone could understand. The young man looks over to Zelda. "Well, we still have to get your prom picture taken."
"You wanna?" Zelda looks up at him.
"Fabulous!" The photographer claps his hands, and guides the pair towards the backdrop without waiting for either of them to officially decide. Link and Zelda give each other awkward looks as the man fixes them in a pose. He makes Zelda stand so the right side of her face is facing the camera, since he deemed that part of her face "her good side." He makes Link stand so that his left cheek is facing the camera, and makes him put his left hand in his pants pocket, and wraps his right arm around Zelda's waist. He then takes Zelda's right hand and places it on Link's chest and makes her pop her right leg behind her. He directs her to rest her left cheek on his chest as well.
"Alrighty then…" the photographer mutters, standing behind the tripod and looks through the viewfinder on his camera. "Okay! Now give a smile and say "Keaton!"
"Keaton!" The two exclaim in unison and the man takes the snapshot. The man thanks them and just as Zelda was about to pick her bag up from the ground, the man gasps.
The duo almost jumps in surprise and turn to with confused looks.
"I had the most brilliant pose for you two? If you don't mine one more picture? Just one more?" The camera man looks at them with hopeful eyes. The two look at each other for a second.
"One more couldn't hurt…" Zelda starts softly with a weak smile.
"Fabulous!" The photographer claps his hands together, and the two stand to get up in front of the camera. The camera man makes Like stand so that he is facing the camera directly, and sets Zelda next to him so her right cheek is facing the lens again. He tells her to lean back and Link to hold her, so his arm is around her upper back. The camera man lifts Zelda's left leg in the air tells her to position her foot so that her slipper is dangling from it, and tells Link to reach under her raised leg and hold it up a little higher so he can support her in the position she's in. He then directs her to wrap her left arm around his neck, and her right to hold on to his necktie, as if she's going to pull him in for a kiss by the tie. He tells Link to smile lopsidedly with his left eyebrow raised, and Zelda to smile so that her pearly white teeth are showing.
"Perfect! You guys make an excellent pair!" The camera man gushes, peering through the view finder. ""Keaton" on three! One… Two… Three!"
"Keaton!" The two say through their smiles, and the man takes the picture.
Link and Zelda let go of each other, albeit rather reluctantly, and the camera man adjusts his camera for another couple. Zelda gets her back and puts it on her shoulder, and the man gives Link a receipt.
"Okay, on Monday when you guys go back to school," the camera man starts. "Take this receipt to the Finance Office there, and they'll give you your photo packet."
"Thanks," Link nods, and the man gives a copy to Zelda. "I'll just give one to the miss as well, just in case you're not able to make it on Monday."
"Thank you," Zelda smiles at him, stuffing the receipt in her bag.
"No, no, no, thank you." The camera man beams widely at them.
The two blondes walk away, over to the refreshment table, as the camera man prepares another couple for their prom picture.
HCT METRODOME- TICKET BOOTH
"Oh my Goddesses, I'm so nervous!"
Zelda's parents, her two aunties and two uncles, Bipin, Blossom, Aryll, Nabooru, Saria, Malon, Ruto, Navi and Link laugh at the young girl's nervousness.
It was finally graduation day, the day that every teenager looks forward to. The entire Senior class except Zelda was inside the Metrodome, doing one more quick entrance rehearsal, while the family members, relatives and friends were outside of the arena, waiting anxiously for the ceremony to begin. It's eight thirty, and there is still fifteen minutes before they were allowed inside the stadium.
"Zelda, you'll be fine!"
"Just calm down!"
"It's okay, Auntie Zeruda!"
Everyone tried to calm her down, but it didn't help much; the shaking of her body was all too evident.
"Did you finish your speech?" Navi asks, tucking a few strands of hair behind her ear.
"Yeah, barely, though. I finished it last night. It's pretty rough around the edges, though. I might end up BS-ing it on stage."
Link and Navi chuckle softly, and Malon, Saria, Nabooru and Ruto grab hold up her, encircling her. "Zelda, you're graduating!"
"I know! It's so exciting!" The blonde squeals happily as the five girls clasp hands and jump up and down.
"Aww, but that means you won't be with us when we're Seniors next year!" Ruto frowns dismally, and Zelda takes her in for a hug. "It's okay, Ruto! We'll all be best friends forever."
They all group hug, and they hear a van pull up. The group of sixteen turns around to see that it's the news van for Channel Ten. Zelda's eyes widen and she turns to Link.
"What's Channel Ten doing here?" She asks slowly as the news crew unloads their equipment.
"Hello, this is Medli Valoo for your morning news report on Channel Ten. I'm here live at the HCT Metrodome in the Metrodome City district of Downtown Castle Town, with the graduation ceremony for Hyrule High's Class of 2007, which is due to begin roughly around nine o' clock." The anchorwoman speaks into her microphone in front of the rolling camera.
"Oh, didn't I tell you?" Link raised an eyebrow. Her eyes almost bugged out of their sockets. "Tell me what!?"
"Hyrule High's commencement ceremony is always live on Channel Ten," he tells her as if its no big deal. "I guess I forgot to tell you? Heh-Heh…"
Zelda slapped him on the chest. "Link! How could you forget to tell me that!? It's one thing to talk in front of ten thousand people, but to be on national television where millions of people are going to watch me!?"
"Well, actually…" The young man scratched the back of his head. "It's a worldwide broadcast."
Daphnes steps forward and takes his daughter in a tight embrace. "Calm down, Zelda! You'll be fine!"
Everyone else chimes in, trying to comfort her. Zelda pulls away, finally calm. "Okay, I'm calm. I'm relieved." She takes a deep breath with her eyes closed. "I am peaceful."
All of a sudden, there's a booming voice over the stadium's intercom. "Zelda Harkinian, please report into the Metrodome. Zelda Harkinian, please report into the Metrodome."
The young girl smiles to her family and friends. "I guess they need me."
Ambi takes her in a warm hug. "Go get 'em."
"Can do!" Zelda grins. She waves them all goodbye and makes her way to the ticket turnstiles that lead inside the stadium, and the security guards let her through. She soon disappears into the Metrodome, now out of sight.
The entire Senior class marches into the stadium, with the white robes leading the way. The students in white are the honor students, with a GPA of at least a 3.5; everyone else is in the traditional blue robe. The audience roared loudly as they made their way inside The Dome. Zelda, being the valedictorian, is leading the way.
The HCT Metrodome, or the Metrodome, or simply, The Dome, is the largest stadium in Hyrule. It is primarily used for baseball games, though it is a multi-purpose stadium, as it has housed conventions, concerts, and other sporting events. Hyrule High is the only school that can afford to rent out The Dome for its graduation ceremony. It can accommodate 55,000 people initially, and the floor section is changed so that an additional 25,000 people can sit there. Since the arena can seat 80,000 at the current setting, and there are a little under ten thousand people present, the arena looks rather empty, but the crowd is cheering loud enough to compensate for the missing 70,000 people. The crowd is sitting on the decks, while the students are on the floor section. The Dome is an air-supported structure, meaning that the dome is inflatable and deflatable by filling the arena with air pressure. The arena is decorated in the school colors, with banners and tapestries hanging from the upper sections and the dome above them.
Zelda looked out to the audience as she walked, trying to spot her family and friends, and she found them in the front row on the middle section, cheering her name loudly. Link was missing, since he was out on the stage with the other teachers. The Freshmen choir was singing "Pomp and Circumstance," as the Hylian International Orchestra played the accompanying music.
As soon as the choir and the orchestra finished, Rauru stood forward to the podium, greeted the class and the audience. He gave the opening speech, which was short, sweet and to the point. After a few minutes, and one or two interruptions of applauses later, he finished.
"Now," he stated. "It gives me great pleasure to present to you one of the most outstanding students this school has ever seen. She finished the school year with an outstanding 4.5 GPA. She is the youngest in her class, at just seventeen, while the rest of this year's class is eighteen. The reason for this is because she took the Junior-Senior Advanced Promotion Test the past January, and passed, earning an immediate promotion to the twelfth grade. Not only has she passed one the hardest diagnostic test a student can take, but she passed it with a perfect score, making her the first and only student to ever answer every question correctly."
The crowd gave a short applause and Rauru continued. "Please welcome the Class of 2007's valedictorian, Zelda Harkinian."
As the class and audience roared loudly, Zelda stood up from her seat in front of the stage and made her way over to Rauru. He shook her hand warmly, kissing her on the cheek and took his seat next to Link. The two men glared at each other quickly, and turned away from one another, turning their attention to Zelda.
Zelda unfolded the paper that was in her hand and laid it on the podium, waiting for the cheering to die down.
Zelda looked out to the thousands of people in front of her, and the funny thing about it was that she wasn't scared; she was calm. She leaned into the microphone and spoke into it. "Good morning." Unfortunately, she spoke so closely into the mouthpiece that a sharp feedback occurred and she jerked away. "Oh my Goddesses," she murmured into the microphone.
The quiet laugh surged through the crowd, and Link tried his hardest to stifle his laugh. Zelda smiled softly waved her hand. "I'm sorry, let me start over," she said, keeping a normal distance between her mouth and the microphone and said good morning again.
"This one moment…" She looked up the audience. "Classmates… Family members… Friends… Teachers… Today is the day that we have all been longing for. This one moment. For our parents, it is a day to take pride in the accomplishments of their child for making it this far. All of the hardships that they faced with us. All of the pain that they had to deal with us… It is all now overshadowed by this one bright and shining moment. For our teachers, it is a day to watch their students' blossom from the small, adolescent fourteen year-olds that we were into the young adults that we are now. For our classmates and friends, it is a day to finally celebrate the fact that we are now no longer students of the compulsory education system. All of us have been through so much. We have put our parents through grief from our failures and disobediences. We have put our teachers through our lateness to class and our public display of affections with our significant others in the halls. We have put our friends through the trials of betrayal, distrust and so-called "drama."
She paused for a second to scan the crowd.
"Classmates, there have been many times when you felt like giving up, and I am no exception. There have been times when we felt that all hope was lost. There have been people who told us that we should just give up, that we were at the end of our line, that we should have just packed it up and went home. We have transcended that feeling of despondency, and our reward? …This one moment."
Zelda brushed a few strands of hair away from her eyes.
"Parents, there have been many times when you thought that there was no hope left for us, as much as you hate to admit it. Yes, you are our parents, and yes, you feel that you should not think so negatively about us because of that, but I know that you cannot help it. But your unconditional love for us has helped you overcome that, and your reward? …This one moment."
She looked up, trying to spot her parents in front of her, and she saw them, her mother tearing up, wiping her eyes, and her father, a pensive expression of his face.
"Teachers, there have been many times when you considered giving up on us, and I certainly cannot blame you. I understand that many times, we have sent you on a trip to hell and back, pardon my language. There have been moments when you disapproved of us, thinking that there wasn't any hope left for us. However, you saw the good in us and believed in us, and your reward? …This one moment."
Zelda fought back the urge to cry right then and there.
"I know I'm beginning to sound redundant and that this speech is beginning to sound like a broken record, but I simply cannot stress this enough. The people inside this arena are the lucky ones. There have been many of us kids who did give up and went home. There have been parents who did lose all confidence in their child and succumbed into the feeling of failing as a parent. There have been teachers who did fail to see the promise and potential in their students, and left them by the wayside. It pains me to know that had they just held on just a little bit longer, they would we here with us, celebrating this one moment. We held on to our faith in one another. We struggled deeply, but we prayed that we'd somehow make our dreams come true."
She turned around and glanced at Link, who was beaming widely at her, and turned back to the audience.
"After all of our struggles, after all of the negativity, we are finally rewarded. With what?" She scanned the audience one more time before finishing.
"…This one moment."
The entire arena stood up to their feet, applauding her loudly and lively. She smiled back at them. "Thank you."
"Zelda, I loved your speech!"
Zelda made her way through the unrelenting crowd. She tried to find everyone in the midst of the some ten thousand people around her for the last five minutes, but to no avail. She has been showered with compliments about her speech.
"Good job, Zelda!"
"That speech was awesome!"
She waved politely at them, and continued her quest to find her family. She stumbled out of the crowd, finally at an open area. She looked around and finally saw her family and friends on a grassy knoll, taking pictures of each other.
She picked up the bottom of her white down and ran over to them.
"Mom! Dad! Link!"
The fifteen of them turned to see the young girl running towards them, and she mauled Link, taking him in a tight embrace, almost dropping her diploma in the process.
"I'm so proud of you, Zel," Link breathed into your ear. "I loved your speech as well."
Zelda pulled away slowly. "Thank you."
"Oh, Zellie!" Ambi gushed, pulling the girl away from Link and into her own hug. "Congratulations! I love you so much!"
"I love you, too mom," she whispered choking on her own tears. She pulled away and hugged her dad, telling her he loved him and vice-versa. She went around her relatives and friends, showing off her diploma and taking pictures with everyone in every possible combination.
Zelda approached Link and smiled at him. "I think it's time we told my parents about us," she said.
"Are you sure?" He raised an uncertain eyebrow.
"We've been keeping up this charade for well over six months. We put it off any longer, and it'll only hurt us more."
He nodded slowly and they both walked over to her parents, and he tapped her on their shoulders. 'Mom? Dad?"
They both turned around to face them. "Yes, Zelda?"
"Link and I have something to tell you," she started.
Daphnes and Ambi glance at each other. "Oh?"
"Yes, sir," Link says, turning to Daphnes. "I really don't have a girlfriend. When we went to Lake Hylia together, it was only Zelda and I who went… She and I have been together since December… You know, romantically together."
The two blondes brace themselves for the worst, but all they get is Daphnes and Ambi laughing at each other.
"And you thought they'd never tell us!" Daphnes turns to his wife.
Both Link and Zelda are dumbfounded.
Ambi turns to the two. "We saw you two together from out the window when Link came over for Christmas when he was about to leave. We had a suspicion you two were together. I actually knew about it before that. Remember that talk we had in your room that night, Zel? About the cute boy who was so much older than you were? The second I saw Link, he perfectly fit the bill."
"But… You're not mad?" Zelda raises an eyebrow. "Even though we were student and teacher?"
"Of course it took us by surprise," Daphnes shrugged. "But Link here is a fine, responsible young man, and you two seem to really care about each other. That's good enough for your mother and I. We want you to be happy, Zelda. If that meant falling in love with your teacher, then so be it."
"Just don't get used to it," Ambi adds warningly. "Link is a keeper, Zelda. We don't want you to let him get loose."
Daphnes pats Link on the shoulder, only this time, it wasn't hard. "Take care of her, Link."
The young man is speechless for a second, but then he beams widely. "I sure will, sir."
Her parents walk away to talk with Zelda's aunts and uncles, leaving the two blondes dumbfounded.
"Wow," Link mumbles.
"That was a surprise," Zelda chuckles, pecking him on the lips.
It was ten o' clock at night, and Link and Zelda are in his bed after a heated session of making love. While most of Zelda's class was out partying, she preferred this over that by a mile. Her family, Link, the girls and Navi were planning to go out for a celebratory lunch the next day and a party the evening following that afternoon, leaving this intimate moment to the both of them.
"You're no longer my student, Zelda," Link murmurs, sucking softly at her collarbone. "You wanna get married?"
Zelda giggles and runs her hands through his messy hair. "Can I at least finish college first?"
"Whatever you want, my princess… Just don't keep at bay because I won't be waiting very long… I'm old, remember?"
"Give it a rest, Link," she sighs, kissing him of the forehead. "…Link?"
"Remember that quiz I took that I failed…" She started.
"Yeah," he murmured, lifting his head to look at her. "Why?"
"Did you by any chance fix it to make me think I failed?"
His eyes widened at that, taken aback by her question. "…Yes."
The young girl giggled and locked lips with him for a quick moment. "I'm glad you did it. We wouldn't have had those tutoring sessions that brought us closer together."
"How'd you find out?"
She smiled up at him. "You did a messy job with erasing my answers. I could still see the outlines."
"Heh-Heh…" Link shook his head. "I couldn't see them. Fancy that."
"What I want to know is…" She traces circles on his naked chest with her index finger. "Why'd you do it?"
He sighed deeply at that, but he winked at her.
"Of course I felt bad about it, but sometimes… A guy will do some crazy things just for a girl."
Whew! My second complete multi-chaptered story after Under Glass. This chapter is one of my favorite efforts my me.
Thank you to everyone who has been with me 'till the very end of this story. All of the people who favorited this, all the people who reviewed, I appreciate you, I enjoy you, and I love you. Don't forget to review, okay?
Remember to read my current major project, Signed, Sincerely Me. And review it! It's a really good read. Also, don't forget about my poem, Through the Looking Glass. Review that as well.
I make some references to Signed, Sincerely Me in this chapter. For example, when the camera man tells Zelda her best side is her right side. It comes up in chapter two of SSM.
Since trying to describe the way a girl is dressed is harder than it is than when you're doing boys- at least for me, I sketched a drawing of how Zelda is dressed for the prom. Now I'm warning you, it isn't very good; I did it in like five minutes. My scanner is acting all stupid, so I had to take a picture of it, so it's pretty had to make out all the small writing I wrote, but the rest is pretty legible. The url is in my profile, okay? In the bulletin board section.Review, please.
End time: January 16, 2007; 2:05 AM, PST