"Seven years... is a long time to keep someone waiting, Link."

Link's eyes widened as he recognized the voice. Saria.

He looked down to see the same eleven year old girl smiling down at him. She... hadn't changed?

"You've grown quite a lot, haven't you? You're so lucky... you can leave, and see what is beyond our little forest. I knew you weren't one of us, Link. It was the only explanation... why you didn't get a fairy until you did. But I kept that inside my heart, I wanted to believe that you truly belonged here. You belong here, Link. With me." she extended her hand out to him, "So could you at least... play our song on the ocarina, one last time? Before you go off, and save the world."

He wanted to. So badly. To just sit back, and let time stop as he and Saria played together. But something was ringing at the back of his mind that restricted him from doing so. Zelda. Ganon. Triforce. Sages. Ruin.

But of course, Navi spoke for him. "I'm sorry Saria, but we have a big task ahead of us! We don't have time to play the ocarina; we need to find the forest sage! I'm sure that you and Link can play together some other time, okay?"

"No!" Saria cried out, "No! I'm not letting you go again Link! What if you get killed out there? What if I can never see you again, after this? Please, please! I can't... I couldn't bear not seeing you again! You promised, you promised that you would come back! Link..." she ran up, and hugged him. "I love you."

At that moment, Link's mind froze. What was he supposed to do? Throw her off? Return her feelings? ...No. He didn't feel that way towards her. She was his childhood friend, yes, and maybe he ought to have feelings for her, but something was preventing it. All the while, the same words seemed to cycle endlessly in his mind. Zelda. Ganon. Triforce. Sages. Ruin.

As gently as he could, he pushed her off of her, and shook his head.

"Oh... I see. Is there someone else?" she looked down, with a sad expression on her face. "I bet she's beautiful... and can age with you. Well then, hero-boy, you should go. You've got a lot of work to do, saving hyrule and all that. I... guess I'll see you later, Link." She ran past him, not looking back. Link went to go grab her, but she was long gone before he realized.

"I feel so bad for her... Saria. But we'll talk to her later. Link, use your hookshot to get into the forest temple..."

For once, Link wasn't listening to Navi's instruction. The only thing on his mind was the fact that he... had hurt her. He hurt Saria. So then... why didn't he care?


A/N: I don't know, honestly. I guess this is an AU of Link going to the forest temple; instead of Sheik being there, it's Saria. And yes. He doesn't return Saria's feelings because he's in love with Zelda. He just doesn't realize it yet ;) Well, I hoped you liked this, and make sure to review!