The battle had been too much. He had lost too much blood. Link collapsed on the floor of Ganon's castle just as the Master Sword inflicted the final blow on the evil that was corrupting Hyrule. His vision was fading. He struggled to move, but it was too hard. That was it. He was going to die. Oh well, as long as Zelda was alive and well.
"Link!" Zelda cried, gently tapping him with her hands. "Link, wake up!"
"Z---Zelda…" Link muttered weakly. He raised his left hand with much difficulty. Zelda immediately grabbed his with hers. Tears were silently streaming down her cheeks.
"Can you get up?"
"N-no." Zelda rummaged for something in a small pouch and brought out a bottle with red liquid. Just as she was about to bring the bottle to his lips, Navi hit her on the side of her head.
"Hey!" She yelled.
"I'll give it to him." Navi said gruffly. She flew over to the bottle, trying to figure out how she was going to do this. Finally, she sighed, meaning she gave up. Zelda waited a few minutes before pouring the liquid down Link's throat. He started coughing.
"Swallow it, Link." She gently rubbed his neck, while he swallowed it. Within a few minutes, Link found himself getting stronger. He got up with little problems, though he was still weak. Zelda put her arm around his shoulders and helped him out of the castle. The sky was losing its darkness, which meant the evil was fading from Hyrule. She gave a sigh of relief and went into the Market Place. The Redeads that were populating the area were all gone, though the place still looked bad. It didn't matter. They could just rebuild the place and make everything just as it was seven years ago. Waiting for them right outside Castle Town, was Malon with Epona by her side.
"Epona!" Link said, going over to stroke the horse, who neighed when he did so.
"Link, are you alright?" Malon cried, her hands clasped together.
"He will be." Zelda said.
"We can go to the ranch and let him rest. Daddy and Mr. Ingo are on better terms now. He lets me sing Epona's song all the time."
"That's sound good." Link said, getting up onto Epona. "Come on." He could barely stand upright, but he was feeling better than before. Before he felt like dying. The pain was so unbearable, he felt like ending his own misery by piercing the Master Sword through his chest. Now, he had suicidal thoughts. He liked it. Zelda and Malon followed Link and Epona to Lon Lon Ranch, where the horses were merrily trotting around. Zelda helped Link off the horse and into the house, where Ingo and Talon, were chatting over a cup of tea. The Cuccos were clucking as they ran.
"Daddy." Malon called out.
"Malon, what's the matter?"
"Can Link rest up in your bedroom?"
"Of course." He pointed up the stairs. "Up there."
"Thank you." Zelda said, helping Link up the stairs and into the bedroom. Malon followed from behind.
"I can handle it." Link said, walking over to the bed and lying down. He was sweating. That potion didn't do much to help. He was still awfully weak. "This sucks, doesn't it?" Zelda smiled sadly and nodded. Link noticed her beautiful blue eyes were filled with tears. "Don't cry, alright, Princess? Everything's going to be fine."
"I hope so." She wiped her tears. "I really do. Just rest a lot."
"I will. Don't
worry." Zelda removed her glove and put a hand on Link's
forehead, which made him blush. He may be the hero of time, but he's
still an emotional teenager.
"You're a tad warm. Malon, can fetch me a cold towel?"
"Yes, Princess." Malon ran out of the room and came back up with a wet towel. She placed it on Link's head.
"Thank you." She took of his hat and stroked his blonde hair. "Link, the Hero of Time, I, Princess Zelda of Hyrule, thank you for everything you have done to rid the evil that was corrupting our kingdom." She lowered her face to his. "Thank… you…" Her lips met his in a short, but passionate kiss. She blushed at her actions and quickly tried to retreat. But, she was too late. Link had removed his gloves and his hands were on her face. He brought her lips back and made the kiss more meaningful. Malon, who felt like crying, merely smiled. She was happy, and sad at the same time.
"Link…" Zelda said when they broke apart. "You will always have a place at Hyrule Castle. Please, visit me sometime."
"What are you talking about?" Link grinned. "I'll always be by your side, Princess, and make sure nothing ever hurts you. Besides, I owe it to you that the kingdom is now safe. You helped a lot on my journey, Sheik."
"What's he talking about?" Malon asked Zelda, who smiled and shook her head.
"It's an inside joke." She replied, holding back a laugh. She got up and headed toward the door. Malon followed. "Get some rest, Link."
"Sure." And with that, she closed the door.
The next day, Link was feeling a lot better. He could get up and even run around. He could practice with his sword and not get tired at all! Zelda watched as he rode Epona around the ranch, laughing loudly when he beat Ingo, who was challenging him to races. There were no bets this time.
"Let's go again!" Ingo yelled.
"You're on!" Link yelled back, going to the starting line. "Let's bet this time! 20 rupees!"
"Alright!" Ingo went to the starting line.
"On your mark, get set…GO!" Malon yelled, jumping up and down. "Go, Epona and Link!" Link laughed as he once again, beat Ingo at the race. Grumbling, he took out a red rupee from his pocket.
"I'm just kidding." Link said, pushing the rupee back at him. "You keep your money." Ingo grinned taking back his money. Link jumped off Epona, stroking her head. "Sorry, girl. I have to go." She neighed, meaning she understood that it was time for him to go. Link smiled and turned to Zelda, who smiled back.
"Goodbye, Link." Malon said, not looking him in the eye. Zelda sighed; she knew Malon liked him, and she felt bad. She was also sure that the Forest Sage, Saria had feeling for him as well. They had been friends for so long. Link held out his hand and she grabbed it.
"Let's go back to the castle, my Princess."
""Yes, let's." They said their goodbyes to Malon, Talon, Ingo, and Epona. It wouldn't be the last time they would see them. They were, after all, friends of the Royal Family now. When she and Link made their way to the Town, they saw that the moat had been repaired. All of the citizens had returned and they were rebuilding all the shops and houses.
"Princess Zelda!" A man yelled, waving rapidly.
"Hello." She replied.
"Oh, look, it's the Hero of Time!" The same man said, referring to Link, who looked bewildered by the attention his was getting.
"Yeah, hey." He said, face turning red.
"Come on, darling." Zelda grabbed his hand and pulled him forward. They went past the guards and into the castle, where all the servants cheered. Link followed Zelda on a platform that had the Triforce symbol. They looked into each others eyes, while holding each other's hands.
"Thank you, Link."
"You don't have to thank me, Princess. It was my job. I would save you anytime." Their lips met in a passionate kiss. Hyrule was saved thanks to Link, the Hero of Time, and now he was with the Princess Zelda.