-1Author's Note: I did not originally intend to have this story take place in New York. But as they started leaving the hotel, I realized it was the only interesting city that I'm familiar with (I work there). I've been to a number of large cities, but I don't know them as well. I'm familiar with Minneapolis, but that's not an interesting city. XD Short chapter is short, but I figured I should indicate that I'm still working on this.
Ganondorf glanced around the atrium. On one side was a blank wall, on another a row of shops. On opposite ends he found rows of glass doors leading out. He picked one at random. The other two otherworlders followed as Andy fussed. "Guys, the guards know we're here…it's just a matter of time…"
He tugged at Zelda's sleeve as she examined the tall buildings, the crowds of people, the lopsided streets and the fluttering pile of pigeons. "We gotta move…"
"Silence," Ganondorf barked. "Unless you have something useful to say." He picked a person at random, an elderly man wearing a dark suit that looked far too hot for the fair weather. Grasping the startled stranger by the collar, he demanded, "Which way to the river?"
The elderly man, not used to such forceful requests for directions, managed to stammer a question. "The East River or the Hudson?"
"Hudson," Zelda clarified.
The man pointed wordlessly to their right. Ganondorf let him go and he sank to the ground, then scrambled up and sprinted off as fast as he could in the other direction.
They approached a building of older architecture, an enormous flag stretched across its pillars. Link took note of the collection of soldiers milling around its entrance, fencing snaking around its front. "This looks a little conspicuous. Maybe we can take a back alley or something?" he turned down a side street, occupied only by a man with a dog. Andy stiffened when he saw it.
Zelda identified the man as a soldier and steered clear of him. As Link walked by, the man ignored him, preoccupied with his radio. But the dog sniffed the air and growled at Link.
Link stretched out his hand. "Shh, good dog." Andy debated whether or not he should run.
The dog, a black Lab, pulled Link's had from his head. "No! Bad dog!" Link snatched it back.
The commotion finally caught his attention and he turned from his radio to see Link tugging at the hat in the dog's mouth. "Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to hand that over for a moment, please."
Link, ever the polite adventurer, let the dog have it. Andy started creeping back the way he came. Zelda turned toward the dog in concern and Ganondorf snorted in impatience.
The soldier took the hat and reached into it, pulling out a boomerang, a bottle with a fairy in it, an enormous steel ball and chain, and a series of other things that logically should not fit inside even a magician's hat, his eyes getting wider with each item.
"I should warn you," Link said, trying to be helpful. "If you don't want it to go off, you shouldn't pull out the…"
The soldier pulled out a bomb, jumping in surprise as the fuse lit itself.
"Um, here…" Link held out his hands for it. "I'll take care of…"
Wild-eyed, the soldier snatched it away, holding it from arm's length, clearly panicked and unsure what to do. Ganondorf leaped forward and snatched it out of his hands, throwing the bomb straight up into empty air. It exploded with a resounding BOOM that echoed off the walls of the buildings, filling the immediate area with smoke.
Pandemonium erupted in the streets. People ran wildly in all directions amid panicked screams. "So much for sneaking around," Ganondorf snapped as Link scrambled to stuff everything back in his hat. "Let's go, before we bring the whole place down upon us!"
"Where's Andy?" Zelda demanded amid the chaos. Link spotted him ducking back into the crowd. He used his shield to press into the throng, then snatched the transporter device from his pocket without Andy even noticing. Link turned and followed the other two as they fled up the alleyway.
As the crowd ran in a radial pattern from the source of the panic, the people they encountered turned and fled as well, most not even looking back. A wall of people pressed westward in front of the three otherworlders, overturning hot dog stands and street vendors' tables in their wake. They passed a church, and turned down a corridor with a high chain-link wall on one side. Zelda could see an enormous hole on the other side of the fence, stretching for several blocks.
Finally some of the crowd began slowing and glancing back, once they realized there was no immediate danger. Zelda glanced to her left to see Link climbing the chain-link fence. "What are you doing?" she demanded, as he gingerly avoided the barbed wire at the top.
"Trying to get a better look around," he answered. "I can't see anything, the buildings are too tall."
As the crowd rushed away, a few people ran toward the bomb site, mostly the blue-clad "soldiers". Zelda covered her ears as loud, mechanical screaming rent the air. The crowd parted to let one of the wheeled machines through, an enormous red contraption with flashing lights, crammed with men in matching uniforms. An inscription in front read:
DEFENDING LIBERTY street
"Freeze! I said freeze!" Link and Zelda turned to see Ganondorf riding toward them on a horse, the first one they had seen since arriving in this strange world. He held another horse's reins. The shouts came from two police officers who until just then had been mounted upon the horses, and both held their guns pointed at him. He turned toward them with irritation, then made an almost imperceptible gesture. The two officers disappeared.
"Stop that!" Zelda snapped. "Don't use magic here! You'll disrupt the delicate balance of…"
"I ran out of ideas, all right?" he yelled back in frustration. "All I did was put them somewhere else. Would you rather I threw them into that pit?"
Link climbed down the chain-link fence. "Every minute we're here causes more disruption. If we can find a quiet place for a few minutes, maybe we can figure out how to work the transporter device." He mounted the horse and Zelda pulled herself up behind him. He nudged the horse forward, and they galloped off away from the increasing commotion.