As of now, Trials of the Heart: Divinus Minae has over 120000 words, 11 chapters including this, and the prologue, 18000+ hits, 66 reviews, 49 favorites, and 60 alerts. I cannot tell all of you how happy I am with those numbers considering that I've barely scratched the surface of this story. I owe it to everyone who's read and enjoyed this story that I've stuck with it for this long, and especially the reviewers. I may not respond to everyone but make note that I DO look at all the reviews and I dare say that I'm always pleased when I find a new one. Here's to all of you.
We aren't done yet though. Indeed, there is a lot more to come for this story. Sometimes one might comment on the 'beginning of the end', well I say this is merely the 'end of the beginning'. So again, thank you all for your continued support in helping me make this story all that it has become and all it shall continue to be.
ShiningwingX: This is it! The bridge to connect parts one and two of Trials of the Heart: Divinus Minae! I'm very excited about this, as part two is going to be where the story is really fleshed out and I'm quite anxious to get that started. I'm very proud of how far this story has come along and I don't see it ending anytime soon.
Of course, I couldn't have gotten this far without the loyal support I've received from my readers and reviewers over the past year or so. I'd like to give some special mention to a few reviewers in particular who really helped me out.
Sir Vrolok: Someone who's been with the story from the beginning, his reviews have been really inspiring and helpful. I do hope you continue to enjoy the story, Vrolok and I wish you the best of luck with The Breed.
The Pilot: A helpful reviewer who has been with the story for a bit. His reviews are always quite detailed and very well written. Thanks for being such a big help, and I cannot help but love the Missileboat shenanigans you like to do xD.
Animedarkfairy:A relatively new reviewer, but she seems to really want to help, having taken the time to say something regarding each chapter. Thanks for the support, and I hope you enjoy part two as well.
These are only a few of the many helpful reviewers I've gotten for this story. If you don't see your name, don't think your words are any less valid. I look at, and consider every review fairly. These are simply a few people who have gone above and beyond. I'll likely give some more 'honorable mentions' in the future :).
One more thing; For the last few weeks I have been the proud owner of both The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. I have already found alot of inspiration from these games which I'm eager to see if I can implement into this story. I'll spare you all the details though for the sake of those who don't like spoilers. I'd ask that everyone else do the same.
Now then, enough rambling. Let's get on with it. This chapter won't be as long as the others, but I hope it serves as a good closer to the first part regardless.
Eternal Sonata: A Faint Light Grasped in the Hand
Bladiator, GreyLightning: Zelda: Link's Awakening – Symphonic Ballade
Final Fantasy X – Tidus and Yuna's Theme (Sky Theme)
Final Fantasy IX: Footsteps of Desire
I remembered black skies, the lightning all around me.
I remembered each flash as time began to blur,
Like a startling sign that fate had finally found me
And your voice was all I heard,
Did I get what I deserve?
So give me reason,
To prove me wrong
To wash this memory clean
Let the floods cross the distance in your eyes
Give me reason,
To fill this hole,
Connect the space between
Let it be enough to reach the truth that lies
Across this new divide!
Linkin Park – New Divide
Part One Bridge Chapter: Until Next We Meet
'So this is it.' I think to myself as I stand alone in this great chamber of stone, song, and sunlight. 'This is the day.'
A number of months have passed since I had learned of the Gerudo's plight, a revelation which had shaken me to my very core and still I find myself no closer to discovering anything that might bring some reason to the turmoil within the hearts of both myself, and the princess. The knowledge of King Gustav's approval of the proposal to annex the desert nation of Ahm'Veshta into the Hyrulian Kingdom had also done little to quell my mind of the implications that it was I who had driven them to make such a decision. The spring months have slowly worn away into the warmth of summer, and I've had much time to think over my options and to come to a decision regarding them. It is for that reason, that I am here now, awaiting the one person who shares my memories, to inform her of the conclusion I have come to.
'Zelda… I pray that you can understand…'
The Temple of Time… how fitting that this very place would mark both the beginning, and the end of that time of darkness, the memory of which remains vivid in my mind even now. It is here that I had requested to meet the princess; in the very chamber that had served as my gateway between past and present so many times before. The white walls of the temple are as exquisite as I remember, each stone lined with the great care and precision befitting a place of worship for that most powerful of deities, Verthandi. The golden framed windows of the clerestory above easily allowed the light of Malia and Yira to shine through, inviting the sister's rays to bathe the temple with their brilliance.
The familiar stone altar sits before me, and for but a moment my mind flashes back to the day I had first laid eyes upon it, after retrieving the three Jewels now known as the Spiritual Stones. The altar's immaculate base is made largely of the purest marble, its white surface reflecting the greater part of the temple itself while the face is formed of a gleaming black material like to obsidian, but far less brittle, flecked with small filaments of a silvery hue. The altar's surface is possessed of three small depressions, which I now know are meant to house three of the Elemental Jewels, as well as an inscription to guide the one who holds them. This inscription is etched upon a small rise behind the empty recesses, and at its apex lies the structure's altarpiece; a statuette of gold, silver, and onyx depicting a detailed image of the Goddess of Time. Behind the altar lies the great stone slab that is the Door of Time, its surface emblazoned with the image of a sun and moon as a single body.
This is a good place to meet, for the Temple, while elegant in appearance is not a place for congregations of worshipers to gather. To most, the Temple of Time is merely a shrine to Verthandi herself and worshipers instead tend to gather in the Celestial Cathedral to offer praise and exaltations to the Divines. Few realize that this place, in fact, holds much more significance than as a simple conduit for one hoping to commune with a divine, for it is here that the Blade of Evil's Bane, the Master Sword sleeps. Fewer still know that it is that very sword that serves as the final key for one who seeks to enter the Sacred Realm spoken of in the legends which have been passed down since time immemorial. Therefore, Verthandi's Temple is often devoid of any mortal presence, but for the occasional pilgrim seeking to test their strength of faith.
Bowing humbly to the shrine before me, I allow the soothing, divine melody of the Temple's unseen choir to fill my ears. Somehow, the song seems to ease my mind, filling me with a welcome sense of calmness. Closing my eyes, I offer my silent thanks and respects to the Goddess before me.
It is not long before another sound reaches my ears, harmonizing with the music filling the shrine. Immediately recognizing it as the accent of footfalls echoing within the vast temple, I cease my meditations and turn to regard whoever has joined me. My eyes immediately fall upon a figure, veiled from head to toe in a large manteau of shadowy black. The garment is largely unadorned and therefore it would be impossible for me to know the identity of the wearer, had I not already possessed that knowledge from the beginning. I stand in silence, waiting as the veiled presence slowly approaches me.
A pair of arms covered in white, silken gloves emerge from the cloak as the figure comes to a halt before me, and slowly move to pull back the hood of the thick shroud. The dark cloth slowly falls away, revealing the face of the beautiful young princess whom I had awaited. She wears none of her usual jewelry, and for a moment I cannot help but reflect on how different she appears without her tiara, or hairclips. The lack of these accessories does nothing to detract from her natural beauty however, as her golden locks fall unhindered over her forehead, covering her eyes only slightly. Her normally bright, clear blue irises are decidedly darker this day, and her expression is that of solemnity.
For once… I find myself regretting that I know the reason for this.
"I assume you have… come to a decision then?" It is hardly a question. I surmise she must have come to her own conclusions before arriving.
"Zelda… I am deeply sorry." I say, genuine regret filling my words. "But I… I feel this is something that I must do. If I cannot find the means to quell this torrent within my heart, then I shall never find peace with this new life. Would that there was a simpler way, and one that was less painful, but alas it seems that there is not." I sigh deeply, dreading the words that follow. "I have decided… to leave Hyrule for a time. I shall embark on this journey as a means to temper my spirit, and perhaps to find that enlightenment which seems to elude us both."
"I knew this day would eventually come." The princess says mournfully. "Though… I find it so difficult to accept. Perhaps given more time, we may find a solution so that you will not have to depart from Hyrule. Then maybe…"
"I do not believe we will find such a solution, Zelda." I say honestly, though regretfully. "Over these last months we have both been fervently searching for answers… anything to offer some comfort to our spirits after the hardships we've faced. We've found nothing however… and so this is something I must do. If the solution cannot be found within Hyrule, then I feel it must be found without. And I mean to find it… for both of us." I turn my eyes to hers, showing her my deepest sincerity. "I do not wish to see you struggle any longer, Zelda. You've undergone enough hardship, and if I can find the means to ease your burdens as well as my own then by my honor, I will."
"Please… do not burden yourself further for my sake." Zelda says meekly. "You do not need to do this for me, Link."
"But I must. For both you and for myself." I insist. "I will not allow for these doubts to consume us any longer. I shall find a way to conquer them, and then I will return so that I might aid you as well, Zelda. I promise you that."
Instead of responding vocally, the princess steps quickly forward, wrapping her arms around me in a tight embrace. The curves of her body press against my own through her cloak as she holds me against herself, as if her life depended on it. I gasp in brief surprise at the action, but quickly respond, wrapping my own arms around her waist gently. Her head buries into my shoulder, and she begins to sob silently, her body trembling each time as a flow of tears begins to dampen the sleeve of my tunic, likely turning it a few shades darker than normal. I press my cheek against the side of her head, doing my best to comfort her.
"Zelda…" I say in a hushed, soothing tone, my grip tightening around her waist slightly.
"I… I do not want you to go." She says through her tears. "Please… what if something horrible happens to you while you're away? I would not have you endure such a fate, Link… I could never subject you to such misfortune. I would bare anything, even these unquiet feelings; if only to be assured that you are safe. Please… will you not stay?"
Her words strike me like the axe blow of an Iron Knuckle, and I feel my own tears beginning to form within my eyes. The fact that the young royal cares so much for me… that she fears so strongly for my well being makes my decision all the more painful. How I wish I could stay with her, but to do nothing would be to sentence us both to lives of uncertainty and doubt. I do not wish that for either of us, and least of all for her. This is the only way that may hold the key to forging our lives anew.
…Even if it means that, for a time, I will be forced to leave her.
"Zelda… please forgive me." I say regretfully. "And please understand I do this not out of my own selfish desires, but because I know that we will never be able to move forward if we cannot find the path ahead of us. I so wish that I did not have to leave, especially when I see you in this state, but I am sure that in all your wisdom you must know that this is the only way that we might find peace. Please trust me."
"I do trust you Link…" She says timidly, raising her tear-stained face to regard me. "And I know that you are right… but I find it so difficult to accept what I know in my heart to be the truth. I only wish there was another way… or that I might somehow be able to go with you, if only so that I might be reassured of your well being." She pauses, sniffing slightly to fight back another bout of tears. "Yet… I know that is beyond possibility, for as Hyrule's princess I do not possess the freedom to leave her borders. Another reason that I curse my fate of being born to royalty…"
"I understand Zelda." I say gently. "But one day, I shall return and when I do, I will share all that I have learned with you."
"Do you promise?" The question was asked so innocently and yet as I gaze into her beautiful, ocean blue eyes I can see that the answer means the world to her. "I want you to promise me that you will return unharmed. I care not if you find the solution to our plight or not, but promise me that I will be able to greet you when you return safely."
I smile down at her comfortingly. "I do promise, Zelda. I swear it to the Gods themselves that I will return safely. And Divines willing, with the answers to our dilemma as well."
"Then… I have but one request for you." She states, returning a weak smile of her own.
"Name it." I reply simply.
"Take the Ocarina with you, and remember well the song of the Temple." She says gently. "It is the hymn of Verthandi, the Goddess of Time; eldest of the pantheon of Gods. If you ever find yourself in danger, or at a loss to what you must do, play her song upon the Ocarina. Should you pray for her guidance in times of peril, she will guide your steps."
"Very well." I say sincerely. "I shall remember your words, Zelda should I ever find myself in need of her assistance. Until then, I shall hold the Ocarina close to my heart, as a reminder of my promise to you."
"In the mean time… I shall pray as well." She says, gazing toward the image of the great deity before us. "I shall pray that your journey may see you safely to its end, and that you might return soon with news of your success… and that not only Verthandi, but all Gods might smile upon you, and see you well."
I smile briefly at that, grateful that her mind has been eased at least to some degree. I can certainly understand her desire for me to stay. I too wish there was another way; a path which would not lead me so far from her, but it is necessary for the sake of us both. The realization is a bittersweet comfort at best however, as the promise of potential enlightenment is shrouded by the necessity of leaving her alone for a time. My expression falls slightly as I myself come to realize the weight my decision bears. This may well be our final few moments together. I know not when I will return, nor when I will be able to stand in her presence once more, and I wish to make the most of every precious second.
We had not yet separated from our previous embrace, though our grasps upon one another had slackened somewhat over time. Overcome with the weight of my decision, I reinitiate the embrace, my arms tightening once more around Zelda's slender waist. The princess gasps slightly, but after a moment I feel her own grip begin to contract once more around me. Her head comes to rest upon my chest and I close my eyes, savoring the closeness for what may well be the last time for a long while.
"It may be a long time before we may see one another again, Zelda… and there is no guarantee we will be able to communicate, even through ranged telepathy, should I leave the kingdom." I say softly. "I cannot say how long it will be before I return. It may be days, weeks, or even months or years before my path leads me back to Hyrule."
"Then… let us enjoy these last few moments together." Zelda says gently, raising her head to look to me as her body nuzzles comfortably against mine. "Until the day we meet again."
I cannot be certain how much time passed within the Temple of Time before the two of us finally exited from its hallowed halls but I eventually find myself and the princess standing outside the walls of the great shrine. It is now time to offer our final farewells to one another, before I would embark into the unknown, this new quest before me. Epona had waited patiently for me to return from her position near the row of gossip stones which stand a number of meters from the temple walls, idly rapping her hoof against the cobblestone road, creating a rhythm of tapping sounds. Faint, indiscernible whispers reach my ears from the strange, white constructs as I approach the filly, but even had I cared to hear the words they spoke, I have not the means to make the voices any clearer. Instead, I ignore them as Zelda steps forward to join me at Epona's side. The Hylian princess had once again donned her cloak, her appearance concealed once more beneath the veil of dark cloth.
The street upon which the temple is located have become heavily crowded at this time as devout worshipers began to congregate within the small subdistrict which houses both the Temple of Time and the Celestial Cathedral. Bodies of people I had never seen before slowly pass us by along the road leading away from the Temple of Time and toward the city's main venue of worship. The chapel goers offer us little more than passing glances as they make their way along the roads toward their destination. It is nearly the twelfth hour of morning, and the Worship of Day is to begin shortly. Many more of the citizens would soon flock to the Cathedral Subdistrict, while those who could not make the trip would find their way to their respective districts' Worship Squares for prayer leaving only the occasional freethinker to walk the roads. Traffic upon the streets leading from the city would therefore be light, making this the perfect time to depart. I silently appeal to the Gods' for forgiveness for my own lack of praise, making an unspoken oath to make up for my impudence when next I had the opportunity to do so.
I take a moment to confirm that I had not forgotten anything. I had chosen to travel relatively light, feeling no need for many traveling 'necessities'. A slingshot and a few steel pellets for hunting, a new stone of flint and box of tender for cooking purposes, and a few medicinal supplies as well as a bottle of Red Potion are the only items I deemed necessary to bring. I found no need for anything to erect a tent or other such shelter, having become quite accustomed to going without during my quest to bring salvation to Hyrule, and in the hot summer months, there would be little need for such. A small pouch, filled with a decent amount of rupees, strapped to my belt would ensure that I would have the ability to procure anything else I may need at a later time, but for now this is enough.
My short bladed Kokiri Sword is held securely to my back by its leather strap while the shield I had acquired some months prior hangs from the scabbard. I smile for a moment noting the irony as I remember how Captain Aloria had referred to it as the 'Hero's Shield' before passing it along to me, along with a letter from her superior, a man named Vanus Illisarian who had suggested that I may find a use for it. If only they knew just how relevant the shield's name would have been for me at one time.
Satisfied that I had not forgotten anything, I turn toward the princess. She moves her arms to the hood of her cloak once more, pulling it back just enough to reveal her face to me. The sad, regretful look has regained its position there, within her beautiful visage, but she seems to force an encouraging smile in spite of what I know she must be feeling. I smile back, attempting to remain composed in light of the situation, though it does nothing to improve the bittersweet atmosphere between the two of us. Her eyes follow mine as I carefully hoist myself onto Epona's back, gripping the reigns within my hands and regarding her once more. Her gaze does not leave mine, and for a moment I feel as if I can see into the depths of her soul through the window of those beautiful blue orbs.
"I will continue to pray that your journey shall be a safe one, Link." The princess says softly, her eyes glistening somewhat from emotion. "And I know in my heart the day will come when I shall meet you again. Until that day comes, please… be well."
"Of course, Zelda… and until next we meet, I shall keep you within my prayers as well." I say in a voice soft enough that only she could hear it clearly. "So long… Princess."
With those words, I remove my left hand from the reigns for but a moment, placing it upon my chest and lowering my head slightly in a bow. Upon taking them once more I shift Epona to the left, turning her in the direction of the Market District, and away from the girl who held my heart. I nudge Epona into a steady gait as we distance ourselves from the Temple of Time, and the flock of devotees who continued to pass by the great structure toward their own place of worship. After a moment, I finally succumb to the urge to glance back toward the princess one final time. My eyes fall upon her cloaked form as she enters the throng of temple goers, presumably to join them in prayer.
'farewell, my love.' I think to myself as I watch her approach the brilliant archways of the cathedral in the distance. I regard her for a time until the last folds of her shroud finally disappear amidst the rapidly growing crowd. When I am no longer able to see her, my focus returns to the road ahead, and I give Epona a gentle signal to move once more. I must go quickly, lest my will break and I find myself unable to stay away. As the relative bustle of the Cathedral Subdistrict slowly fades away to the uncharacteristic quiet of the Market, I quicken my pace, proceeding steadily along the streets and avenues toward the gates of the city and the expanse of green beyond.
All the while, Zelda's words echo within my mind.
'I promise you, Zelda… I will return one day. And when I do, I shall bring with me a new dawn.'
Like the rest of the city, the Great Palace of Hyrule too was in the process of preparing for the Worship of Day; the first of two periods in each day that was set aside for prayer and worship to the Gods. Within the walls, servants rushed about, busily toiling in an effort to complete their tasks that they would not need to leave them unfinished until the tolling of the next bell. In fact, perhaps the only area of the castle which did not possess copious levels of activity was the throne room, where King Gustav, scepter in hand, sat upon his raised, ornate throne. He had dismissed his royal guards moments before, allowing them to join the rest inside the castle in preparation for the Worship. The Hyrulean monarch himself had no need to busy himself with tasks in preparation however, as he had finished his own duties some time before… all save one.
The beginning days of the month of Sun's Reach had come, and the Mid-Year Festival was fast approaching. The King's patience was wearing thin. It had been months since he had last consulted with anyone from the Academy of Nalistrim, or the Palace's own wizards and arcanists. Not since that strange boy named Link had appeared alongside his eldest daughter. He'd planned to contact the Archmagister should no new developments arise, and now was the perfect time to follow through. Concentrating, he raised his hand before him, his fingers pressed together with the thumb bent slightly inward.
"Vai den liorasané cier, tu nal ei une…" The king incanted. "Edathreom Liora."
As King Gustav uttered the final two words, thereby completing the spell, the affects were instantly made manifest. The very fabric of space seemed to rupture before the monarch, as the area before him began to twist and distort, a visible rip forming in the air before him. Slowly, the rupture grew larger and larger, contorting his surroundings even more. The pillars and walls which surrounded him bent and shifted fluidly about as the opening slowly formed itself into a perfect ovular shape. A frame of pure, white light began to form out of the opening, as the empty space within filled itself with an anomalous substance, opaque, and silver in hue.
Fully formed, the surface of the preternatural mirror began to ripple like water. Furling his brow, the king focused his thoughts causing the flowing screen to become more and more transparent in response to his mind's manipulations. After but a few seconds, an image slowly began to form within; the image of an elderly Hylian man, aged beyond his Grey years and well into his White who sat behind a wooden desk, the surface of which was nearly indiscernible among the large amount of parchment and scrolls which littered it. Despite his advanced age, he seemed quite strong, especially for one of the Old Ones. A full head of snowy hair and thick, well groomed beard framed his face in brilliant white. Clothed he was in a simple robe of dark blue fabric, solid in color without any extravagant embroidery or careful threadwork but for a single crest depicting a hand, stylized with complex runic symbols. He had not yet noticed Gustav as the monarch peered through the rippling surface of the phantasmal mirror, hard at work scrawling notes into the wrinkled stationary with his quill.
"Archmagister of the Academy of Nalistrim, Halandor the Blue." Gustav said formally to the figure ebbing within the mirror.
The old man glanced up from his work and, upon seeing the image of the King staring back at him, promptly set his quill aside.
"My liege. I suspected that you might contact me soon." The old wizard said respectfully, his deep voice producing a slight echo from behind the speculum.
"Indeed." Gustav agreed rigidly. "Concerning the matter we discussed some months ago, I trust you have been hard at work in your research?"
"Study has been difficult at best, your majesty." Halandor replied simply. "The subject is constantly moving and our scryers have had a trying time in discovering the full workings of it. It is very complicated research and is made even more so with such a strange phenomena… especially when said subject moves so erratically."
"So you have found nothing?" The Hylian ruler queried, his face shifting into an expression which may have made a lesser man shrink.
"I said nothing of the sort, Your Majesty." The archmagister replied flatly. "I merely said progress has been difficult. I did not say that none has been made."
"Then speak, sorcerer. What have you uncovered?" The king asked, his irritation abating somewhat.
"The seals upon it seem to respond to magical channeling true enough, but they are rather complicated in nature. I've seen no magic the likes of this before…" The white bearded man replied. "They work… differently than most."
"I care not for the ramifications, Halandor." The monarch declared. "I need only know what you have discovered."
"How I wish you held more interest in the workings of magic rather than merely the results of it, sire." The wizard sighed. "Very well, I shall be brief. As you know, simple seals can normally be undone with the proper application of dispelling magics, but more complex ones normally react only to one with a similar elemental signature to the seal itself. These seals are different entirely in that rather than requiring a similar signature, they seem instead to require an opposing one."
"Opposing?" The King inquired.
"I've only read accounts of such a complex ward, but I've never seen it first-hand until now. It is obvious to me that whoever or whatever placed these seals intended for them to remain for a very long time, and therefore erected them in such a way that not even they themselves could remove them. Only those baring elemental signatures of equal, but opposing strength might breach these seals." The venerable old man explained further. "I've no idea what may lie beyond that gate that the erectors wished to keep locked away, but it must be quite powerful indeed to require such a complex locking mechanism."
"Hmm…" The king mumbled, scratching his beard of graying brown thoughtfully.
"And there is one other thing." Halandor continued. "We've already identified one of the seals, and know of the one who holds the proper signature to release it."
This piqued the king's interest, and his expression shifted into one of uncharacteristic curiosity. "Who then, would that be?"
"Someone quite close to you in fact, Your Majesty." The wizard said cryptically before continuing. "Your daughter."
"Zelda?" The king queried.
"No." Simple though the response was the Hylian ruler knew what it meant.
"Precisely." Halandor replied. "She possesses the exact signature necessary to neutralize one of the seals. However, she alone will do little to dispel the entire barrier. We will require much more time to research the rest of the seals in order to discover what must be done to open them. I would advise that you not tell her of this for the time being."
"Very good, Halador." The king replied, pleased. "I shall await news of any further progress you make regarding this situation."
The king raised his hand, preparing to dispel the magic sustaining the mirror, but was stopped when Halandor spoke once more. "Sire, one last thing."
"Speak." The monarch replied simply, lowering his hand.
"Despite the progress we have made, I have a rather sinking feeling about continuing with our research of this matter." The blue garbed wizard said honestly. "I feel we may be meddling in affairs that are not ours to tamper with. If you might be persuaded, I would advise against any future research into this. Whatever is sealed behind that barrier, it is obviously something that those who created it did not wish unleashed into this world. While it may indeed hold some connection to your desires, sire, I am beginning to wonder if it is truly worth the risk."
"What lies beyond that gate is the key to this kingdom's lasting prosperity." The king said fervidly. "Whatever else lies beyond is of no consequence. I am quite sure your battlemages will be able to contain it."
"But sire!" Halandor protested.
"Is there a problem, Archmagister?" Gustav asked, lifting a brow.
"I fear that whatever lies within the barrier may well be more powerful than anything we've ever known." The white haired sorcerer explained. "The faces of the scryers and even the battlemages sent with them have been tense – even fearful as of late, and it is always after they return from studying the seals on that accursed barrier." The wizard sighed, his voice lowering in trepidation. "I, too, have begun to fear what may lie within, My Liege. I feel it may be better for us all to seek out another way."
"Very well then, should you find it necessary, have some of your sorcerers or apprentices seek out an alternate method… as you continue your research on the seals." The king said haughtily, "Should you find something, I will be more than pleased to consider it. However, until then I ask that you continue your work with the barrier. I want that thrice-damned gate opened."
Halandor lowered his eyes somberly, knowing there would be no way to convince the resolute monarch. "Yes… Your Majesty."
The wizard fell silent, and the king raised his hand once more, touching the surface of the mirror with his palm. The image of Halandor the Blue faded quickly from the surface of the mirror, which promptly returned to its solid, silvery form. The brilliant speculum pulsed and rippled for but a second before it's entire form shattered into countless particles of mystical light, which dissipated quickly in the air of the throne room.
Gustav, satisfied with what he'd learned, crossed his arms thoughtfully as he leaned back in his throne. Liene, his youngest daughter, was one of the keys required to break the seals placed upon that infernal gate. Knowing this, the Hyrulean king could not help but wonder as to the identities of the other keys. Regardless, this was indeed a momentous day for him, and he felt strangely pleased at the progress that had been made thus far.
After a few moments, the monarch decided that it was time that he too joined the coming Worship. Proud he may have been, but even he would not have the gall to blaspheme the divines by denying them his own fealty. His eyes turned up to the immaculately crafted relief etched within the wall above golden doors of the throne room, which depicted the elegant images of the Golden Trinity. His eyes focused upon the figure depicted in the center; Din, his patron Goddess with her blazing arms stretched out before her. Bringing his scepter before him the Hylian king closed his walnut eyes and bowed his head in reverence, silently praying for the continued support of the powerful deity as ambitions gradually drew closer to fruition.
No excuses this time. While the first month after my return from Florida was a bit hectic, the fact of the matter is simply that Chapter X was hell to write. It's one of those annoying chapters where no real story development takes place apart from reestablishing everything, but it has to be done for continuity's sake. That doesn't mean I think it's a bad chapter. In hindsight, I actually love the way the finished product looks, but the process of writing it was a little off-putting. That's why this chapter took so long to release.
In any case, so ends the first part of Trials of the Heart: Divinus Minae. Now, the story will truly begin to shine as future events begin to play out. I'm quite excited for the avenues the story can follow now that these initial chapters have ended. Finally it is time to get to the meat and bones of this tale. I'm very happy with how successful this has been so far.
Also, I do not intend to detail out the events of Majora's Mask in this story. If I do that at ALL it will likely be a story of its own. So no, this isn't going to become a Majora's Mask fic, but it was necessary to flesh out the elements leading to that game. Even if I do not plan to go into great, first person detail on Link's Terminian adventure in this story, I wanted to show that it DOES have a purpose.
1. It always irked me that the Temple of Time, despite being such a significant location in the game, was always empty so I decided to explain it.
2. There are two worship periods in each day, called the Worship of Day, and the Worship of Night. Both take place on the twelfth hour of either day or night respectively. They are largely similar in practice but there are some slight differences.
3. "What did Gustav say?" It's Hylian. I plan to include a number of languages in this story. Translations to words and phrases will be added to the site as they appear.
4. Halandor the Blue is the headmaster and Archmagister of the Academy of Nalistrim; the foremost Mage's Guild in Hyrule and one of the most esteemed in all of Ismirra. He is a very renowned, powerful sorcerer.
5. Gustav's ambitions just got a lot darker didn't they? Poor Liene has no idea how important she is.
I hope you all enjoyed the first part! In the next chapter, we shall see the results of Link's journey in Termina.
Also, don't forget to check the site: http:/trialsoftheheartdm(dot)webs(dot)com/
Reviews. I like them, so please share your thoughts!
Post Edit: A few early readers might have noticed a few inconsistencies with the Temple of Time between this chapter and the prologue. I've taken the liberty of fixing those, and touching up the wording of it as well to better fit the Temple's role in the world. You can look back on it if you wish, but it isn't terribly necessary unless you're confused.