Chapter One: Why (Link)

Why? Why did she break the mirror? I just don't understand! Why, Midna, why? You were just by my side a moment ago, and now you are gone. Why didn't I tell you sooner? Why didn't I ever even say a word to you? Yet you understood me all the same. If only you didn't go back the way you came and break the door so you can never again return…

I loved you. How could you have left me? How could I have let you go?

Zelda took my hand as tears filled her eyes, but she did not let them fall. "Why?" she asked me, her voice full of sorrow, though she knew full well that I wasn't going to answer her desperate question.

I looked at Zelda, trying as hard as I could not to let the tears that stung my eyes to pour from them. I gestured towards the exit, and she nodded her head solemnly.

"Link," she said to me before we made for the exit. "You have surely proved your worth, child of destiny, bearer of the Triforce of Courage." She took a deep breath, trying as hard as she could to suppress her grief, and let go of my hand. "I would like to make you a knight of Hyrule, for you are surely much braver and more pure of heart than they. Do you accept?"

At her words, I was breathless. On my journey through Hyrule with Midna, I had noticed that a vast majority of the Hylian guards were lazy, weak, and full of cowardice. I imagined that if I could be among their ranks, I could change all of that. I could make the knights of Hyrule respectable again. But how could I accept Princess Zelda's offer when my heart was so full of sorrow?

"Link, please, in the name of my kingdom of Hyrule, I beg of you to become head of the Hylian Knights." She crossed her arms in front of her as if she had planned to do a curtsey but forgot to lift up the edges of her dress and bowed her head to me.

I reached my hand down to her and pulled her up again. When I knew she was looking at me, I nodded my head to accept her offer, but as I did so, a single silver tear was let loose. It dripped down my face and fell to the ground, just landing at our feet. Before I knew it, tears were streaming down my face. I couldn't bear what Midna had done any longer. But I did not drop myself to the ground or make a sound; I just stood there and let the tears trickle silently down my face.

And soon, Zelda, too, began to cry. She cried the same way I did, holding her head proud as the tears streamed down her soft, delicate face.

When we were done with our tears, she spoke to me again. "May I borrow your sword?" she asked in a voice that rang of utmost authority.

I nodded and handed her the Master Sword. When she grasped it, she dropped her arm a little, as she was not used to wielding a blade as heavy as this one. When she finally had a firm grasp, she told me to get on one knee and bow my head. I did exactly as she told.

Then she raised the sword high over her head and lowered it slowly. "I hereby dub thee, Link of Ordon, a knight of Hyrule. Now, you must remember this vow for as long as you serve this country. Repeat after me," she commanded.

I nodded my head.

"A knight is sword to valor."

"A knight is sworn to valor." This was the first time I had spoken on my journey.

"His heart knows only virtue…His blade defends the helpless."

I repeated her once more.

"His might upholds the weak…His word speaks only truth." She lifted the sword again and raised it over my head as I repeated her for a third time. "His blade undoes the wicked." She rested the blade on my other shoulder as I repeated her once again. "And that, Link, is who you are now and shall forever be!" Her words echoed throughout the halls. She raised the blade again, flipped it around so that she was now holding the blade edge, and handed me the hilt of the sword.

I grasped it, and felt new warmth inside of me. I sheathed my sword and smiled. Though my heart was heavy, at least now I had a duty. And who knew? This could lead me to find the answer…the answer to that very important question that rested deep inside my soul…

Zelda and I left the Arbiter's Grounds and went our separate ways. "Though you are now a knight of Hyrule, I will not hold you to your bonds. You may roam free, and return to your home if you choose to do so, but remember that when my people are in need, you will be called on."

I nodded my head. My eyes were stern, and Zelda seemed to understand my silence just as well as Midna had. Midna… I shook the thought of her away to avoid another unwanted emotional breakdown.

Zelda used a spell she called Farore's Wind to warp away from this place. She seemed to understand without asking that I wanted to take the journey home by horseback and hard work. She understood that I neither wanted nor needed the rest. A knight, well, what a knight should be, is always ready to defend others from danger, and that means that they are always training.

I called Epona with the whistle that Ilia had made me. And then I suddenly remembered that I had promised to return to her. My heart sank. This feeling I have…is shared by both Midna and Ilia.

As Epona rode up to me, I remembered the times when I had become a wolf through Midna's powers and be able to speak to Epona. I got up on Epona and settled myself into the saddle. Midna…

I rode for two days without sleep, without food, and without rest. Epona had slowed to a trot, and I was exhausted as well. My thighs were aching from the motion of horseback riding.

Just as I saw the very edges of Faron Woods, the Postman ran up to me. "Mr. Link!" he shouted. "I have a letter of high priority from Princess Zelda!" He handed me the letter and scurried off into the distance.

"Zelda," I said to myself. I took the letter from him and began to read it. It read:

Sir Link,

Rumors that Ganondorf has not truly been defeated are spreading like wildfire. Though it has only been a short few days since I witnessed with my own two eyes Ganondorf's demise by your own two hands, I can not help but to take these rumors into account. In other news, I believe I have found a way to restore the Twilight Mirror. When you finish with your business wherever you have decided to go after we parted ways, please return to the castle as soon as possible. I have an urgent mission for you, so come back post-haste.

Regards,

Princess Zelda of Hyrule

I folded the letter up and stuffed it into my bag and smiled to myself. "I'm sorry, Ilia, you'll just have to wait for me a little while longer." I took a deep breath and inhaled the autumnal scent that always seemed to travel on the winds of twilight. As the dusk set in, memories of Midna filled my mind. "I promise, Midna, I will find a way to see you again, if not only one last time. So that I can say goodbye."

I reared up on Epona, and she seemed to understand me full well. Energy was renewed within us, and we headed off at full speed towards Hyrule Castle.