((I know I've been MIA for quite awhile…but I back and promise to be better than ever. I'm currently working on a new Zelda fic to blow all my others out of the water (See my profile for more details). Here's a little funny one-shot to add something new. Idea came to me when I was playing Wind Waker and thinking about Link's hat….)

That hat….

Honestly, it isn't that attractive. I don't know why he is so attached to it. But he is…so much so that we can't even stroll around the grounds of the castle unless he has the damn thing on.

"Zelda, you don't understand," Link pleaded with me that one day he had made us incredibly late to the Temple. "I just needed it…."

"Needed it?" I snapped, losing patience quickly. "You needed it? It's a hat, Link. A stupid, floppy, green hat. Why in the gods' name would need it when you're going to be indoors anyway?"

He dropped his head and murmured an apology. And of course, it's impossible to stay mad at him because he has the most adorable puppy-dog look when he's scared I'm mad at him.

Because of the nuisance in the form of that hat, I decided to take matters into my own hands and see just how loyal Link was to that hat.

It started, naturally, with him knocking on my door early in the morning. "Yes?" I answered, keeping a very good straight face. He opened the door and came in, sleep still in his eyes, his hair all messy, wearing nothing but his trousers. Did I mention that he was rubbing his eyes, like a cute little kid?

"Link? What is it?" I turned to look at him, still brushing my hair. He shook his head, probably trying to clear it. I, myself, was quite surprised to see him up at this hour. Link was a surprisingly late riser when he had nothing to do that day.

"Zelda…." I waited for it…and waited for it. Apparently, on his days off, Link can be a bit on the slow side.

"Have you seen my hat?"

I closed my eyes and counted silently to five. Link must have thought I was trying not to blow up at him, when really I was trying not to laugh. "Why…would you ask me that Link?"

"I dunno…," he mumbled. "I just thought you might've seen it."

I turned back around to my mirror and started pulling my hair back. "Nope, haven't seen it…I just got up after all."

He muttered something incoherent and left, closing my door softly behind him. After I was sure he was gone, I burst in to laughter. My plan was working like clockwork.

Link came down for breakfast a bit later than I did. And he was hatless.

I suppressed a snicker and politely asked him if he was hungry. He sat down wordlessly and, to my surprise, glared at me. "Is something wrong?" I asked, innocently.

"You know what's wrong," he said in a low voice. I just blinked at him.

"Link…my boy, have you done something to your hair?" Impa asked. She knows everything…but she can be blind sometimes.

I watched with great amusement as Link answered through gritted teeth, "No, Impa. I haven't done anything to my hair. I just lost my hat."

"Well, surely you have another one? As many times as you wear it."

"No…I don't have another one."

I snorted, busying myself with the jam and butter on my toast. Link shot me another death glare and began shoveling down his breakfast.

The day wore on, and Link remained hatless. He spent a great deal of time in his room though, probably ashamed. I was expecting him to do something besides mope around his room. After all, it was just a hat. Finally, remorse began to set in. I felt bad for humiliating him, so I took him some tea.

"Link?" I called, unable to knock on the door because of the tray in my hands. "Link? Are you in there? I brought you some tea."

The door opened, and there stood Link, looking worn and still hatless. "Thanks," he muttered, opening the door wider to allow me in. I set the tray on his dresser and then turned to face him.

"Link…you can't let this hat thing get you down. It's a wonderful day! Why don't we go practice some archery or something? Or take a walk?" I smiled, encouragingly, but my suggestions had obviously fallen on deaf ears. He sat on his bed and put his face in his hands.

My patience broke. "For gods' sake, man, it's a hat! A stupid, floppy, green, not-worth-moping-over hat!" I was panting slightly from my outburst, and he still had this forlorn look on his face.

"Zelda, you don't understa—"

"I don't understand! You continue to say that but you won't make me understand!"

"Because you won't let me!" He had risen and was now yelling back at me.

"Is it because you think you have ugly hair? I think your hair is quite nice, actually, despite what Impa may have said…."

"It's not about my hair, okay? Just…never mind…you wouldn't understand." He turned back around and started dipping the tea bag in the water to give his hands something to do. I could see his face had gone scarlet and couldn't help but wonder why.

But his "you wouldn't understand" had hurt me. Why wouldn't I understand? Didn't I understand Link better than anyone at this castle? He had told me that. I really wanted to yell back or maybe to hit him for saying such a thing. But I decided that neither was appropriate. So, I said, "Well, if I wouldn't understand, then I'll leave. Enjoy your tea."

I retreated up to my room to think of a new battle tactic. I sat deep in thought on my bed when I heard rustling and banging coming from the floor below me. "What in the world…?"

I headed downstairs and found Link tearing apart the room, quite obviously looking for something. Wonder what? "Link, what are you doing?" I asked, sharply.

"What do you think I'm doing? Looking for my hat!" He pulled out a drawer and emptied its contents on the floor.

"You're pathetic."

"Don't start with me," he snapped. "I know you took it, so where did you hide it?"

"Me? I didn't take it," I said, touching my chest like he had greatly offended me. Besides, I didn't take it…technically. He shouldn't have just left it lying on the end of his bed.

"I know you took it! Where is it?" He was across the room in three strides and standing right in front of me. I suddenly had great appreciation for how large Link is. "Where did you put it?"

"Tell me why it's so damn important to you."

He stopped. I could tell he was torn between yelling that he was right and actually answering. "It's important to me…because…it sort of represents everything I've done…and still have to do."

I tilted my head, completely confused. "It represents…what?"

"Think about it, Zelda. The goddesses gave me these clothes when they said, 'Save Hyrule'. And from then on…well…you get the idea. I don't know…it gives me a little more confidence because I was meant to wear it."

I still didn't understand, but I could tell that it really meant a lot to Link. Which meant that it was time for me to start feeling bad. "Oh…fooey," I grumbled. "I did take it…I'm sorry. I just thought you were being kind of a prat over it. So…I wanted to get back at you."

"Oh well…then where is it?"

I frowned and couldn't meet his eyes. I had hidden the hat in a completely fool-proof place where I knew he wouldn't look. But, I had been hoping that I could return it without him just staring at me like that.

"You didn't do anything to it, did you Zelda?" He actually sounded very frightened, and I was suddenly tempted to keep him hanging for a while. But, I figured that it would only backfire…again.


"Then where is it? Just tell me…."

"Fine." I reached into my dress-front and pulled the hat out of my corset. I wished I could've re-wound the moment to see his jaw drop like that again. I handed it to him and said, "Here."

"Zelda…you…you kept it in your corset?"

"Well…I didn't want you to find it." I thought it was a pretty good hiding place. Guaranteed to be Link-proof.

"Zelda…I can't wear this now."

"Why?" After all that trouble and he won't even wear it now?

"Because…," he stammered, his face turning scarlet. "You…because you put it…in your…in your corset!"

I sighed. Was he really that prude? "I took a bath this morning. Don't be such a baby."

"Why in the gods' name did you put it there?"

I sighed again. "Because I knew you wouldn't be sticking your hand in there anytime soon…so…." I trailed off in horror at what I'd said. I opened my mouth to correct myself but the damage was done.

"Anytime soon, eh?" Link mused, his eyebrows raised.

"I…I meant…never," I stated, turning around to head back out the door. "I meant never will you stick your hand…there."

Link laughed, placing his hat on his head. "Sure…."

The next time the hat came into play…Link and I were well….

We were kissing, quite passionately, in my room.

"Oops…sorry," I muttered against his lips. As I had run my fingers through his hair, the hat had slipped off.

"Don't worry about it…it's not that important anyway."