Horseback Riding

A SamusxZelda Oneshot

"I don't know about this Zelda."

The bay mare snorted. Samus took a step back warily.

Zelda was at her side, caressing her hand in hers.

"It's fine, it's only a horse."

"Right…" Samus still was eying the equine with caution.

I suppose it was understandable being the fact the only animals she had encountered in her life-were they even animals?-were the vicious ones. Even so, compared to a Metroid-the thought of a "horse" was very alien to Samus's thinking.

Why was she doing here in the first place, anyway?

"Don't worry Sam," her girlfriend patted Samus's arm soothingly. "You'll enjoy horseback riding, trust me."

Right

Last night at dinner, when Zelda was talking about the ranch and their horses, Samus had let it slip that she'd never heard of these "horses".

You can imagine Zelda's look on her face when she heard that.

Not to mention, Samus had added that she had never ridden anything. Ever.

That was obvious, on account she came from another universe-literally.

All that space and galaxy and ships, you know what I mean. No horses.

So, then there Zelda insisted that she give it a try. Samus didn't see the real point of this, but she couldn't say no to that sweet face. So, here she was.

As she faced the long-faced beast, she was having second thoughts.

She was almost ashamed with herself for considering the fact she was a renowned bounty hunter, fearless of everything; so she shouldn't be worrying over some stupid mammal.

But then again she was in close proximity with it and it was pretty large, its head level to hers. She shifted backwards uncomfortably.

Zelda could sense Samus's nervousness, so she held her hand.

"Don't worry, I'm here to help you," she reassured her.

Samus blushed at this but she was determined not to show it.

"I'm fine really," she replied with no hesitation.

Samus could sense Zelda wasn't buying this, but she decided to play along.

"Mmm…first off, you should get acquainted," Zelda pointed to the mare. "Give her a pat, she likes that."

"A pat?"

"Yes, on the head."

"Okay…" this time, sounding bit unsure.

Samus raised a hand towards the horse's muzzle but paused in mid-air.

"It's okay, she won't bite."

Samus sighed then rubbed its nose, tentatively at first but gradually becoming smoother and relaxed as she stroked its white blaze.

The horse approved.

"See? That wasn't so bad, was it?" Zelda smiled.

"I guess you're right," Samus half-smiled, now petting the horse's thick neck.

"Now, give her a treat," Zelda handed her a shiny red apple.

Samus would have preferred to crunch into the juicy pulp than share it with the horse, but she complied anyway; holding it out near the horse's mouth.

The bay nudged it curiously then gobbled it up.

Samus hastily withdrew her hand when she saw those big choppers with an instinct fear her fingers would be bitten off.

Zelda did her best not to giggle at this; it would only embarrass her more and she didn't want to do that. Her goal was to help Samus enjoy horseback riding, not to make her feel like a fool.

So, she hugged her companion.

"Very good," she praised her.

Samus's cheeks went pink. She was feeling like a kid and Zelda's words, though intentions were good; weren't much of a help.

"Oh," the princess looked up at her, thinking maybe she hadn't used the right choice of words.

"Would you like to go riding now?" Zelda asked, hoping that'd help distract Samus-she didn't want to ask if she'd like to wait before they actually got to it in risk of making her feel more foolish about herself. Her friend had to appreciate that.

Samus then glanced back at the horse.

To tell the truth, she didn't trust getting on the back of something that big.

"Well…" she began but came short when Impa came riding up on her cloudy-gray steed with Link behind on his blood-bay, Epona.

"Is it going well with you?" she asked as her deep-red eyes stared intently down on them.

"Just fine, Impa," Zelda replied then she turned her head to Samus.

"Yeah…" Samus lowered her eyes.

"Don't worry Sam," Link said broadly, slapping his mount gently. "I'm sure with few days you'll be able keep up with us!"

"Link!"

Samus looked up at him. Link was sure being big-mouthed now that he knew he was better at one thing than Samus.

With that, he and the Sheikah rode off, jumping the hedge ahead.

"Show-offs," Samus muttered under her breath.

"Sam, I'm sorry," Zelda apologized. "Link shouldn't had said that, he-"

"Zelda," Samus interrupted her. "I want to go riding."

It was in her hunter nature, she never shied away from a situation. That would include horseback riding.

Plus, she was going to show that air headed elf-boy one thing or two.

What am I doing? This is crazy.

Now in the stable, Samus was sitting on a wooden bench while Zelda hitched up the horses in their stalls.

Why am I getting upset over this for? I agreed to this didn't I?

She didn't know what she was thinking when she said she'd go riding today. She wasn't really prepared for what was coming. Not to mention, she had felt uncomfortable when Zelda tried to give her tips and waved them off, saying she could handle it herself.

That she didn't understand either when, obviously she could've welcomed the princess's guidance. But something held her back.

Somehow

Very confusing.

She put her hands to her forehead, it had started to hurt.

Then Zelda walked in and her conflicting thoughts were blown as by her graceful presence.

"This will be your horse," she said, handing the reins of the old brown mare from before over.

"I thought it would be good if you were at least familiar with your ride," she explained quickly when she saw Samus's beaten look.

Samus sighed.

"Thanks." She took the bridle straps.

Then they went outside into the dirt paddock, leading their horses along.

Samus took a view of Zelda's.

It was a handsome chestnut; its penny copper skin glistened with sheen from Zelda's careful brush grooming. The stallion was like the horse of the gods compared to Samus's pony.

Samus could feel envy glowing inside her but sucked it up.

She was here to ride, not to get jealous over some silly horse that looked better than hers.

They walked over to the wood fences and Zelda mounted her horse with flawless agility; her dress wasn't wrinkled in the process. She then tossed her head back, her sunset hair whipping around her face in the sunlight. Zelda then smiled at Samus, winking.

Wow.

Samus could only gaze at her dreamily until a voice snapped her back to reality.

"Sam? I'll hold her while you get on, okay?"

Right, the horseback riding thing.

As Zelda grasped the halter firmly, Samus took a hesitant glance at the saddle then grabbed the horn, pulling herself up. She was in an awkward position then Zelda told her to swing her right leg over the side and so she did. Soon, she was sitting comfortably in the seat, hands on the horn and feet in the stirrups.

Hmm…this isn't too bad.

Then she looked down.

Whoa

She didn't realize she would be so high up. A fall from that height could be nasty.

For the first time, she felt defenseless and scared.

The Hylian then rode up beside her; Samus wanted to hold her but restrained herself.

"We'll go slow if you wish," she said.

Yes

"No, I'll be fine," Samus said instead.

"Humph," Zelda wasn't going to take this but she understood. "We should start with a walk then we'll move to the trot and so on, so you understand the basics."

"That's good."

"Now, riding a horse is like steering a ship-you pull right, go right and vice versa-pull to stop, just don't pull too hard, they don't like that," Zelda rambled.

"Okay, got that," Samus memorized the advice. "Now, how should I start?"

Zelda giggled.

"Like this-Giddy up!"

She snapped the reins and the horse moved forward so Samus tried the same. At first the horse refused.

I think it knows I'm not ready for this

However, it was glad to take a step after Samus repeatedly snapped the reins-anything to quit the annoying slap of leather against leather.

They followed Zelda around the corral, the new rider was feeling bit sick from the horse's movement as its body moved up and down and back and forth with a rolling motion like being on a boat at the ocean.

"You fine?" Zelda noticed Samus's slightly pale face.

"Y-yeah…I'm fine," she brushed her hair out of her face.

"Don't worry about it; it happens to new riders."

"Really?"

"Well…I think."

"Oh…Great."

"Do you want to move faster?" Zelda asked.

"That'd be good,"

So then they moved quicker, into a trot.

Soon, Samus's past tensions began to melt away-she was enjoying this. Even she was getting over her horseback sickness. And there was Zelda in the front. Samus could stare at her back all day.

Nothing could be better.

Until Link showed up on scene.

"I see you're enjoying yourselves," he smiled at them from behind the fence.

Oh great, I don't need this now

Samus turned her back to him.

Zelda could tell the hunter wanted take this riding alone without any onlookers.

"Oh Link, why don't you return to the ranch?" she told him, hoping it'd rid of him. "Maybe Malon needs some help."

"Yeah right, Malon would have to have a hernia first before she asked me for help," Link rolled his eyes. "Malon just doesn't trust me being around her Cuccos."

Zelda glared at him and he got the message.

"Oh right!" he picked up his reins then called out. "You know, you don't have to be embarrassed Sam; everybody starts new, even me, even you-it's a fact."

"Link!" Zelda warned.

The stupid boy was shooting off his mouth without thinking again!

Link then galloped away.

"Sam, I apologize," Zelda spoke to her softly, hoping that comment of his hadn't bothered her.

That did it.

Samus was starting to get sick of it-being treated like a child just because it was her first time riding on a horse!

She gripped the reins tightly.

Something came over her.

A wild insight, a desire to prove to herself, and to impress Zelda.

"I'll show that Link!" she shouted, kicking her horse into high gear.

"Sam-Wait!"

The horse let out an alarmed whinny and shot off like a bullet across the enclosure.

Samus hadn't anticipated the fact it could move so fast and within moments, she came flying off the saddle as it made its dash.

She fell on her back on the dirt-hard.

Zelda leaped off her horse and ran to Samus whom was now pushing herself to a sitting position.

"Are you okay?" Zelda called in concern, taking Samus's face into her hands. "My…you're crying, Sam."

Samus winced.

"N-no…it just…hurts a lot…" she groaned as she raised a sore arm to wipe her dusty tears. "That was so…stupid…I don't know why I did it…"

"Oh, Samus…" Zelda sighed, stroking her cheek. "Its fine Sam…at least you're okay…"

She then kissed her; wrapping her arms around Samus's body, careful not to squeeze too hard.

Samus welcomed the comfort, returning it.

After a blissful two minutes, they separated but remained close.

"Zelda…I have to confess…" Samus sighed. "All the whole time I was afraid…"

She turned her face away from Zelda in shame, but the princess placed a hand on it and returned them to eye contact.

"Oh Samus..." she exhaled. "Why didn't you tell me?"

"Because I'm a bounty hunter!" Samus shot back, almost yelling. "And bounty hunters aren't supposed to fear things-only destroy the fear!"

She panted then put her hands to her face, shaking her head.

"Oh…I'm such a fool…"

"Oh Sam, you're not a fool," Zelda replied. "You're only human; it's natural to be scared of something every now and then."

She held hands with her.

"Remember Subspace? I was scared once too…" she sighed. "But then you were here and something about you…just calmed me…I'll never forget that."

"Ahh…I remember," Samus smiled. "You were like a lost puppy."

"Aw, you're smiling!" Zelda beamed, kissing her on the cheek briefly.

Samus chuckled in return. "Yeah, I guess...thank you…"

"No problem Sam," Zelda nuzzled her shoulder affectionately.

Then they looked back at the horses, the bay mare having calmed by then and was now grazing few stray grass under the fence.

"Do you want to keep riding?" the princess asked.

"Yes, why not?" Samus nodded, her pain in the spine having completely disappeared by then. "Like that one saying your attendant told me, 'When you fall off a horse's back, get back on.'"

Zelda smiled then helped Samus to her feet.

Within minutes, they were back on and riding about the corral freely, enjoying themselves.

As the sun set on the horizon, turning the sky into a soup of fruit passion; Samus rode up beside Zelda as they totted back to the stable.

"You know, maybe next time-I'll teach you how to ride a bicycle."

They laughed.

And kissed.

The horses rubbed their heads together contently.

Horseback riding had surely been fun.

And she would do all of it over again.