Frequently Asked Questions for The Hyrulian Valhalla Saga
Alright, folks, before we get to your regularly scheduled FAQ, I have something important to address.
As of December 2013, The Hyrulian Valhalla Saga will be on HIATUS until further notice.
Q: What!? Hiatus!? But why!?
Well, three reasons:
1) I want to create a reboot that includes A Link Between Worlds and fixes various continuity details. Now that ALBW is out and I've had the chance to play it (and yes, it's fantastic as always), I've decided that the most convenient way for me to sneak that game and Link into the series is to simply retcon him in; however, in the process, I will also be taking the time to correct the inconsistencies regarding LTTP/Oracles/LA by making Light and Duo a single person (he'll still be called Light) and changing around the seniority of the Links a bit (currently Engie is the second youngest, which doesn't work very well if you think about his close proximity to Wind's era). I still plan to exclude the original Four Swords for the reasons I've already given, however. I may tweak various other things as I generate new ideas for it, but those are the primary issues I'll be addressing.
2) I want to focus exclusively on other stories for a while and begin HVS again with fresh ideas. I certainly haven't run out of ideas for fics, believe me, but after nearly two years of writing HVS stories I kind of need a break. :P A Link Between Worlds' release has sparked lots of great ideas for stories about that game, and I also want to dip my toes into the waters of the Fire Emblem fandom as well. Then, when I feel ready to come back to HVS, I'll be able to do it with fresh new eyes.
3) The dreaded Real Life Obligations ™. Surprisingly (read: not really), I have a life outside the internet that takes precedence, and I now have graduate level schoolwork and a job that I didn't have when I started the series (this is the number one reason why updates have slowed down over the past year, fyi). I'm also going through a potential change in living arrangements involving my entire family, so timing my hiatus now lets me finish off strong rather than wait until I lack the time or energy to do so and let the fic simply die off.
Q: So, when will the series be back?
Probably in a few months, barring that I don't change my mind about starting it back up again. Basically, if I feel like I can bring it back as I hope to, I will, and if I don't, you'll have 110 stories you can still enjoy with a nice little ending to wrap things up. The last thing I want to do is abandon the series without a proper send-off, because abandoned fics make readers and authors sad.
So, with that said, I hope you enjoy this one last story before the break, and I hope to be able to restart things nice and fresh in a few months. Keep checking my profile and/or fic blog for non-HVS related stories, and I hope to see you all again soon!
(The original FAQ is located below for your convenience.)
I never thought I'd write something so long-lasting and popular that it would need its own FAQ page, but I suppose there's a first time for everything!
The following is a list of the questions I get most often, some story related and some meta. I try to be as clear as possible in explaining things within the story itself (or the side stories), so many of these questions have answers written into the story somewhere; you just have to read closely. But if I've somehow made things confusing for the reader, then I do apologize and hope that this FAQ will clear things up. Please refer to this page first if you have any questions regarding the series. Any additional inquiries may be directed to me via private messaging – do not use the reviews to ask me questions about the story!
Q: Which nickname corresponds to which Link, and why are they named that?
In order of timeline chronology (assuming that the three alternate timelines occur parallel to each other):
- Skyward Sword Link. Named so because he's the Hero who descended from the sky.
- Minish Cap Link. Named for his working together with the Minish people; it's also a bit of a joke at the expense of his height.
- Ocarina of Time/Majora's Mask Link. Named because... well, he was the Hero of Time. Fairly straightforward. Also, unless otherwise stated, he's usually in his adult form.
- Twilight Princess Link; I also include Crossbow Training in his history. Named for being the savior of the Twilight Realm.
- A Link to the Past/Link's Awakening Link. He was known as the one who brought light to the dark realm in the legends of his era. The meta reason for it is that he has no title and the name of his games don't lend much, so I simply went with what sounded good. Don't confuse him with Twilight!
- Wind Waker/Phantom Hourglass Link. Named for being the Hero of Winds. Again, straightforward. And yes, WW Link and PH Link are the same person.
Green, Red, Blue, and Vio
- Four Swords Adventures Links. Named for and based on their manga counterparts, though the actual events of their adventure are based on the game. So, sorry, no complex relationship with Shadow Link here. Also, the whole persona is also named Green, mostly for consistency's sake.
- Oracle games Link. Named for basically going on two adventures and saving two worlds at once.
- Spirit Tracks Link. Named for his primary occupation in life.
- Legend of Zelda/Adventure of Link. Named for being the only brunette in a sea of blonde Links. And, yes, I know he's portrayed as blonde in some of the first game's official art, but by Zelda 2 he was pretty much cemented as a brunette for both game art and supplemental material, so I'm going with that.
Q: Which canons and sources are you basing the story off of?
My primary sources are the games themselves and Hyrule Historia, with a few minor alterations to suit storytelling purposes. The story follows the Historia timeline, though Four Swords has been omitted (I already had the FSA guys and I didn't need to write another Link with the exact same shtick) and the Link from LTTP/LA/Oracle games have been written as two different Links instead of one (I began writing the fic before the specifics of the timeline had been translated into English).
I do take inspiration from the Akira Himekawa mangas, but only regarding the Links' personalities; the events of each Links' adventures are solely based on the games. The only exception to this rule is the character of the Hero's Spirit (introduced in Chapter 65), who is indeed the Link from the Skyward Sword prequel manga included with Hyrule Historia. I was reluctant to include him at first, but after popular demand and the translation of Eiji Aonuma declaring the prequel manga canon I wrote him in.
The following Zelda-related materials are NOT included within HVS' timeline: the American cartoon series, the CD-i games, the Valiant comics or any comic/manga except the Skyward Sword prequel, the BS Zelda games, the Super Smash Brothers games, and Soul Calibur 2.
Q: How can all the Links exist at once even though they're from different timelines? Shouldn't Light, Duo, and Brown not exist because Time is there? Shouldn't Wind and Twilight be unable to coexist? Do three Times exist because he was in all three splits?
The afterlife exists outside of Hyrule's timestreams, running parallel to them. Everyone from each timeline ends up there when they die; people who exist in Ocarina of Time's era where the split occurred have the collective memories of all three histories they experienced (excluding Time, who's defeat in the downfall timeline was wiped from his memory as an act of mercy by the goddesses). Also, don't think about it too much, it's Zelda for crying out loud.
Q: But Duo was the one in Link's Awakening, not Light! Shouldn't they be the same people?
Again, I began this story before that little detail had been translated from Hyrule Historia, and when it was it was already too late to change things. In my defense, however, making the Link from LTTP, LA, and the Oracle Games the same Link is an all-out retconning the games' events (Why would Zelda look like a completely different person from LTTP to the Oracle games? Why does she need to introduce herself in the latter if she knew him from the former? Why does Impa not know that Link managed to save the world once before? etc.) and I had no way of knowing Nintendo would do that. So, sorry.
Q: Who were the Links married to in life/who were their kids?
I get the first one a lot and the second one a little less frequently. I do have a general idea of which Links married, which didn't, and what kind of children they had if they had any children at all, and these tidbits may be mentioned in passing during the course of the story; for example, Twilight's wedding was mentioned in the first hot springs chapter, Time's two sons were mentioned in a side story, and another side story revealed that Brown remained a bachelor despite wanting a family of his own.
However, the focus of HVS is the interactions between the different Links, and as such I would find the revelation of who the Links married/fell in love with to distract from that. Basically, HVS is shipping neutral and is likely going to stay that way.
Q: Do the Links ever see other characters in their afterlife?
Of course they do! I simply focus on the interactions between Links; they spend time with all of their friends and family members off-screen. And don't worry; with the exception of Fi, if a Link cared about someone, they were able to see them again after death.
Q: Can the Links get sick or injured in the afterlife?
Only temporarily; chronic health problems are completely cured, and it's impossible to contract a disease or be permanently injured. However, they can still feel pain - getting stabbed would still hurt like hell, though it wouldn't leave a wound and the pain would be short lived - and they can suffer from momentary ailments such as headaches, nausea, dizziness, etc. etc. Basically, it's a way for them to still feel human while being pretty much immortal.
Q: Are the Links related to each other by blood in this story?
Only Time and Twilight are, so far. The heroic line isn't a bloodline per se; it's a line of successive reincarnations of the Hero's Spirit. So, while some of the Links could be related, it's not always the case. (Besides, if they were all directly related, how would Light come around in the downfall timeline, or Wind in the adult one?)
Q: I didn't get the joke in this chapter!
Sometimes you may not get a game-specific joke if you never played that particular Zelda game. That's okay! I'll be happy to explain it to you if you ask.
Q: Why is Time's life so tragic? ;_;
Because Nintendo wanted to reach deep into our chests and tear our hearts into tiny little pieces, that's why. ;_;
Q: Will the Dark Links ever feature into anymore stories?
Because I've finished all three of the "Trial" side stories I wanted to write, as of now I have no immediate plans to utilize them. I will likely revisit the Dark Links in the future, however, when I have fresh ideas on how to incorporate them.
Q: Can you do a version for the Zeldas/the sidekicks/the villains?
HVS is a story solely about interactions between Links. I have no intention of including other characters outside of being mentioned by the Links or in flashbacks. I also don't intend on creating any spin-off series.
However, should someone else want to utilize a similar premise for the Zeldas or whoever, they're more than free to do so! I'd be very interested in reading what someone else could do with it.
Q: What will happen in the story when Nintendo releases a new Zelda game with a new Link? Will he be added to the story?
That depends on where the new game fits in the timeline, and whether or not I'm finished with the series by then. If there's no good way to throw him in, I may simply disregard it (as much as I wouldn't want to do so, but at this point a retcon would be a nightmare to attempt, haha). But, we'll see.
Q: Will we see more Wolf Link?
If I can think of a funny situation to put him in, yes.
Q: Write a story about the Sheik debate!
No way. I ain't touching that with a ten-foot pole.
Q: So this is a yaoi fic, right?
No. The main series is a comedy first and foremost. I do occasionally write Link/Link for the less comedic side stories; however, yaoi is a very specific genre utilizing certain character roles and tropes that I want to generally avoid. Not all stories featuring male/male pairings are yaoi.
Basically, if you want any Link/Link stuff, go read the side stories; however, if you're specifically looking for yaoi genre stories, they probably won't fit the bill.
Q: This series and the Tumblr ask blog Ask Time and Twilight (asktimeandtwilight . tumblr . com) are awfully similar; do you write for both of them?
Yes; I run Ask Time and Twilight as a parallel project to HVS. In fact, the blog and the fics are in continuity with each other for the most part, and I often use one to generate ideas for the other. The ask blog also contains a lot of supplemental information that I haven't been able to write into the fics, so if you're interested, go check it out!
Q: Write one where X and Y do Z and then A, B, and C come along and -
Yes, I take suggestions, but keep in mind that I'm not obligated to write anything you suggest to me. I write suggestions when I feel like I'll have fun writing them and I can think I can create a good end product from them. tl;dr: suggest away; if I write it, I write it, and if I don't, don't take it personally.
Q: Can I draw fanart for/illustrate your stories?
YES YES OH GODDESSES YES DRAW FOR ME PLEASE, DRAW ALL THE THINGS AND SHOW THEM TO ME
But seriously, there's nothing more I love than having my fics illustrated. Even if you're not a very good artist (I can't judge since there's a reason I write instead of draw, lol) I'll make sure to favorite it (if it's on DeviantArt) and show it off with pride.
Q: Can I write my own fic set in/based on/similar to HVS?
Since I'm not the only person to write about the spirits of dead Links hanging out, I can't exactly take credit for the concept. If you want to do something similar, go ahead.
If you want to utilize the HVS 'verse specifically, I have no way of stopping you either. However, take note that I'm not obligated to give a seal of approval to your story or to incorporate it into mine (this also goes for artwork).
Q: y u linkcest tho?
Because why not?
Q: but I don't like linkcest
Then don't read the side stories marked with a pairing.
Q: I'm married to Link.
No you're not. I am. On the Astral Plane. /insert trippy New Age music here