"A hero is a person who sacrifices his own sanity to save others. A hero is someone who sees horrible parts of human nature, who doesn't shrink in the face of adversity, someone who has fear but has the strength to overcome it. That's why, I think, everyone admires the hero but no one has the strength to be him."
The girl found it painful to breathe. Her brown hair was on the floor, soaked in the puddle of her own blood; and yet no one, no one in the school said a word. If they said something, he would hear it. He was practically the king of the school.
No one said anything for fear of the consequences- not even the teachers. It was left to the king himself to say or do anything.
The only person who would say something was this girl. This girl of green eyes, who the king himself had fallen for- and yet, she was always against his ways of bullying others… And that's why she was facing punishment now. He wanted her to love him, he wanted her to obey… And yet she would not.
"Ganon…" The girl of seventeen muttered. Her dress of purple was matted with blood, and blood was leaking from her perfect lips. "One day, someone will be strong enough to free this Hyrule from your grasp… A hero will come."
And that's when the Gerudo boy simply chuckled. No person existed- not in this school, not in this world. No one would be able to stand up to him; no one would be able to win. And that's when he smirked. If no such hero existed, Ganon would be happy. He would have the Student Body President (and Homecoming Princess) all to himself. She would stop trying to change the school, lose hope, and just be obedient.
In Hyrule Boarding School, there were only a couple of people who could stand up to him: but they were far from united and his minions always watched over them. His word was rule: if he did something, others would too; if he said how something should be, it was. The world seemed to revolve around him, and that's the way he liked it.
That's when he picked up the girl's body by the neck and rammed her into the wall: the classes still continued, fearful that if they spoke, they would get worse punishment. Everyone who had come against Ganon had lost. Everyone inside and outside the school. The halls were far from merry as they once were. Now, they were choked to silence: choked to obedience like zombies. They didn't even seem living anymore: it just seemed as if they were undead. Alive- but not living.
He took apart her braids, and yet it didn't stop her glare. No matter what he had done to her, no matter what she went through… She always had that look in her eyes. The look of defiance- how he hated it. He wanted to kiss her, make her miserable- because that was practically what she was asking him to do. He wanted to wipe that look out of her eyes and would stop at nothing to do it. She didn't even shiver. She didn't look away. She wasn't embarrassed. She truly had a royal glare.
And she would stop at nothing to try to stop him.
"My girl," He said, as his finger went up her cheek, and the girl fought the shivers of his cold voice, "A hero will not save you. A hero does not exist in this world."
And that's when a deafening crack was heard as his hand connected to her face. She slid down the wall, already passed out from the exhaustion of another beating. It had been happening more and more as the first semester of the new year went on. He found it curious that no matter how much he beat her, she seemed to have no endurance, no stamina. And she always passed out. When would she learn that that particular act was weakness? But ah, such is a girl's body.
He looked at her, eyes closed, and saw perfection. She was the epitome of beauty: long hair, beautiful eyes, beautiful body… But she was just so feisty. He would beat that out of her soon enough.
And as he had for many occasions, he unzipped his jeans, and his hands went to her dress…
And the classes continued: no one exited the halls, no matter the grunts they heard.
"Link," the man addressed the boy.
The boy was still running around on his horse, Epona- gathering the sheep into the barn. He loved riding that horse- he had her since they were both small. He would call her with a song, a song that no one else knew how to play, but knew when they heard it. Riding Epona was usually the best part of his day… That boy loved nature, and he loved to practice sword fighting. But, ah, the only thing wrong with the perfect son was that he couldn't speak.
Except for grunts here and there, he did not speak at all.
"Link!" the man called again. Well, he wasn't actually his son. He was more of a mentee. He lived alone, and Rusl had just… Just taken a liking to him. He hadn't had a son yet, and when he did it was much later- so he spent around ten separate years with Link, before his son Colin even existed.
The boy had just turned seventeen, and it became apparent that not only was he the most capable man in all the village, but he needed an education.
He had not sent Colin to school yet, and he was already seven. Link had wanted a brother, and so he took a great liking to Colin. However, even with his wife pregnant with another child, he couldn't help but, well, father Link. Colin liked Link very much and thought of him as a brother, and they had a pretty good relationship, but it was "time" as his wife said, to send him to school.
Link, even as an avid reader and sportsman, couldn't gain all the knowledge by himself. So, he needed to go to school.
But how could he afford such a lavish thing? The answer came with a scholarship, and another letter about how his mother, who had passed away when Link was a babe, had given her whole estate (minus the fees to the government) to Link.
So, money and more money were given for him to go to his mother's alma mater, Hyrule Boarding School.
It had just come down to telling the boy.
Rusl had researched the school, by using one of the old Dell computers in the library of the village, and had read up on how great the campus was, how many clubs there were, and how great the students were. Rusl was convinced that they would welcome Link- not only because he was mute, (and it gave diversity to the school) but because the students were very good-natured. Hyrule was famous for that kind of people. It was where people went and were educated- later to become great people in the future. Rusl wanted exactly that for Link.
And yet, he was still a tad nervous to tell him.
As Link hopped off Epona, he could tell something was off. Rusl could see it in Link's eyes- the burning question of "why" was on his lips even if he couldn't voice it.
So Rusl took a deep breath and told Link, "Link, we're sending you off to school."
Link said nothing. Rusl almost kicked himself for expecting words out of Link. Even now, he was still expecting him to wake up one day and speak.
But the only thing Link did was blink. There was confusion in his eyes, like he was trying to register what had just been spoken.
He cocked his head to the side, and mouthed, "What?"
Just because Link couldn't voice his words, it didn't mean that he would stop thinking them. He would often mouth words when the need of communicating was high, but otherwise he was a silent hero, through and through.
"It is to pursue whatever career you want- it has the clubs for you, Link…"
Link did not look too convinced, and his eyebrows furrowed, as if thinking. Even though he was silent, his blue eyes shone with wonder.
"I mean, it was your mother's school, and they sent you a scholarship…."
Link cocked his head to the side as if to say, "Really?"
"And, you know the reputation of the school… You can become a great master at whatever you choose!"
Link still seemed to be searching for the real reason they were sending him off. Could it be they were too busy for him now? Was he no longer wanted?
"Link… we just want you to grow and learn to your full potential."
At that, Link brightened. So, that's it. They want him to grow, to mature, even if it wasn't under their supervision. Link was determined not to disappoint his mentor and his village.
He nodded, even before his mentor asked, and walked away, determined to have one last ride with Epona, before he had to pack up and leave.
Rusl simply sighed, and knew that Link had accepted. He could not ride a horse there, it was a city, not the countryside. Rusl would have to call for a taxi. Or maybe, he could get the boy a car.
But that would be his birthday present, Rusl smiled to himself.
He had to get home and tell his wife, and start helping Link move out of his one-room apartment, or tree-house.
He would let Link say good-bye to the countryside he loved so much.
Link and Epona had a special bond. Even though other horsemen talked to their horses, Link and Epona had a mutual understanding. Both were the silent type, even if Epona was a girl.
She was very considerate of him, and would only "speak" when she was scared. That, she and Link had in common.
She would often nudge him with her head, and he would silently pet her as they walked.
He often felt inadequate, but he didn't speak of it. Not like he could, but he tried not to think about it. He knew how much everyone wanted him to speak, but he couldn't. He didn't seem to have a voice.
He couldn't communicate as well as others. As much as he tried not to worry Rusl about playing with smaller children, he often was just the tiniest bit envious that they could share such an intimate form of communication that he never would.
The sound of a voice was melodious. It was like a different type of song. He could easily distinguish different types of voices, and how they mirrored personalities. Kids tried to fool him, but even if their voices were disguised, under the layer still stood the foundations of their personality, their way of speaking.
It's not like he could help it. Sure, he was smart, sure he was athletic, but he just couldn't speak. He remembered how he read that the people who don't have something know how to appreciate it- like how deaf people would often be jealous that people could do something so magical, and hear the melody. Or how blind people dreamt of the light, or how people who were paralyzed thought about running.
And that's how Link always brought himself back down to what he did have. He could run, he could hear, he could see, smell, and taste- he could have had it worse. He was always grateful for what he did have.
A family… Sure, Rusl wasn't his birth father, but he felt like it. And his mother… Link never did like to think of her. It always brought him to a place he'd rather not go- he'd rather stay in the light than go to the twilight.
As he walked Epona to one of the many fairy fountains in the village, he often wondered. What would it be like to speak, for one day? What would I say? Who would I say it to?
He always had a different answer- there was so much to say to so many people.
So he just watched Epona drink from the fountain and decided that they'd head back after she finished.
After saying mental goodbyes to Epona and hugging her head, he set out to unpack his apartment- or rather, the tree house.
He didn't really have much- sheets, some posters on the wall, some movies, clothes, an I-pod and earphones… But in front of his door, after he climbed the ladder of course, was a box.
It was addressed to him, with no return address. He raised an eyebrow in curiosity, opened the door, and took it inside.
He put it on the floor, and sat Indian-style next to it. What could it possibly be? Doubt spread through his veins. Who had sent him this? Where had it come from?
All of a sudden, a feeling of dread creeped into his heart. He suddenly felt very, very cold. Whatever was in this box was not going to be light and happy. It was going to be important. He always knew to trust his instincts- they were usually right. If it's bad, might as well rip the band-aid off.
He took the sword from his belt and cut it open.
A flood of papers popped from the box. Many of them began in the same way.
My dear son,
Are you doing well?
How are you?
Are you living well?
He knew what they were.
Link closed his eyes, blocking the image of the papers. Letters… All addressed to him.
At this moment, the strongest man in the village didn't have the strength to breathe. All he could do is shiver. The thoughts punched his brain.
He licked his dry lips and swallowed with great difficulty, forcing himself to inhale. Holding it in for a few seconds, he released it.
His body was stiff and alert. The letters had put him on edge, and even though his mother had died long ago, there were enough letters for his whole life.
Had she known?
Link shook his head, causing his blonde locks to hit him in the face. His hands, now ice, held his head, and the palm was on his forehead.
Was this a sort of bad omen? Was this a message from the gods? Did it have to do with Hyrule Boarding?
Gritting his teeth and forcing himself to get up and gather the letters (when all he really wanted to do is lie on the floor and just be), he couldn't shake the feeling of raw. He felt so naked, so exposed, so… He looked around. No one was here.
He pondered crying, maybe to ease the weight on his heart.
But he scrapped the idea. He had to pack; he had to leave the village. He was going soon. And he would not cry. It wasn't anything worth crying about.
It isn't anything worth crying about, the mantra he had so often rehearsed with himself had become a reality. Anything relating to his real family wasn't anything worth crying about.
He just smothered his feelings, choked them, and closed his eyes for a brief second. He would erase the bad, replace it with good.
So what if he couldn't talk to his mother about his father; so what if she had died when he was a baby, and no one knew who his dad was; so what if he couldn't ask her questions about growing up… He had Rusl and his family. They were more than welcoming to him.
But nothing could ever erase the deeper bond that Rusl had with Colin. He was his son. He would never miss out on his growth. He'd be there always.
Not like Link's. His dad was either dead, or just living somewhere. He had chosen to leave his mother and him.
How lonely must that have been?
He could only imagine.
No, no. Erase the bad thoughts. You are going to Hyrule, where dad and mom met. Maybe you'll see pictures. You'll have many opportunities to be what you want. You have the future that Rusl dreamed for you.
With that last thought, some of the weight had been lifted. He got up, gathered the letters, and forced himself not to look at them. He wasn't ready to face that part yet.
He wasn't ready to face the past. He wasn't strong enough. He could only imagine what it would do to him. Would it break him? Would he have a mental breakdown?
Stop. He told himself. It was better not to think back, but think towards the future. If he just kept going, if he kept busy, he wouldn't think of the dark ghosts in the review mirror. He wouldn't think about the shadows that lurked in the past. He wouldn't let them breathe in the present, or much worse, his future. He had to let them go.
Stay in the past.
He sealed them in the manila folder that was in the box, and before he realized it, all the letters were sealed away.
It had seemed mechanical, his actions. Pick it up, put it in, go to the next one. Pick it up, put it in, go to the next one. When they were all gone, he felt as if he could breathe easier. His thoughts were clearer. It was like he had stayed inside all day, only to step outside after.
On accident, he kicked the box over, and in a crumple, fell out some green clothes. And attached to them was a short letter.
Link: these were your father's. They are "Hero's Clothes." I understand, since you don't attend Hyrule yet, that these have no significance. But they are given to people, or rather, one person who has gotten badges from each club in each building. It happens very rarely in the school, and your father got them. You should be very proud. And if you still don't understand, It'll all make sense when you get there.
It was the first, and last, letter he would read from his mother. Hyrule seemed like a distant land, with these "badges" and such. It didn't make sense.
And then he remembered the books that he read. Each was a different universe that played by its own rules- it seemed Hyrule was the same.
Out of curiosity, he looked at the clothes. A green hood, a green vest, with long white sleeves coming out of it, a belt, white pants, and brown boots.
It also came with a shield. The shield was very detailed, with wings coming out of a big yellow three part triangle. On the edges, it was metal, and it had a blue background.
He tried putting it on, and realized it fit perfectly. Dad must have had the same build…
In a weird sort of compromise, he decided to wear the "hero's clothes" when he got there. And that's when he felt his left ear (his ears were a little more pointy than people in this village) and touched the blue piercings. His mother had his ears pierced when he was a baby. "Blue is the color of loyalty, and that is strongly tied with courage." He remembered that was one of the only things he remembered that his mom had said.
The piercings, and the clothes were a connection to the past he couldn't help but feel.
One of the only connections he had left with his birth parents.
A hand pushed the middle of Zelda's back, and she staggered toward the window. She knew that type of push- the rough, animal-like way his palm forced itself upon her skin- it was Ganon again.
She was hoping she wouldn't have to see him today. She sometimes had days like that- she would be all alert, scanning the hallways, but he would never come again. Sometimes she dreamed he found a way to her bedroom and would come and rape her.
Her shivers would keep her awake all night, and she wasn't eating- not like her family would notice, she was at a boarding school.
It took all her willpower not to crumble at his hands, or cry at the sight of his body, or rub her hands over the bruises, or even… It took so much to glare back at him, to not accept that this wasn't right, but it wasn't like she had anyone to talk to. His minions were at every corner, every word was heard…
It seemed more like a muted world than a festival.
It always seemed easier to just give up, to just fall at his fingers. But she had too much pride to do that. Too much pride to stop resisting. Every time it became more painful- in her bag was always cover-up, a first-aid kit, and pain pills.
Not to mention birth control.
If there was even the slightest chance of getting that man's baby, she wanted to wipe it out. Her mother didn't know. She would never know. How embarrassing was it that she was raped on a continual basis and could do nothing to stop it? She wasn't as strong, and every time she tried to fight back, he would just thrust harder.
Her will was crumbling.
Her self-esteem was crumbling.
So she had asked certain people to smuggle in the BC pills. No one would ever know.
What could it be this time?
She looked behind her, already dreading his reason for his brusque force. Instead of slurring something, or trying to be seductive, he simply took her chin and forced it in the direction of the window.
"Look, Princess." He commanded, making even the word "princess" demeaning.
She observed as a boy got out, in green clothes. He seemed to be of good build.
She observed closer, only to realize that was the Hero Clothes! She could barely contain a smile. One had not been given out for years… Not like Ganon would know anything about the school history… But, a flicker of hope started burning in her chest.
He was the one.
The hero to save this school, I know it!
But Ganon wasn't looking at her, he was studying his subject-to-be.
"Go welcome him, princess."
It was said bluntly, but very commanding.
"W-what?" Zelda could have hit herself. She should never ask Ganon of all people, a question. She was already disobeying him. Punishment would be given out later.
But he didn't seem to be focused on her. He seemed to barely hear her answer. He was grimacing. "Welcome the little mute boy. Tell him how great our school is…"
Mute? Zelda questioned. How fitting. In a world where we can't speak, the hero is mute.
Zelda shook her head. No, no one could save this school. Not by himself.
And yet the candlelight of hope didn't seem to dim.
As she simply watched him carry his one bag out of the taxi and wave it away, Ganon swiped his head over to her. "Did I stutter, princess? Do your job. Welcome the little mute boy to hell."
She quickly backed up as she saw a fist forming, and her heels clacked down the hall, and down the stairs.
Okay, how do you like it? Did I expand on my characters well? Did I make references well? Review! Thanks to everyone who follows me, and I own nothing but my plot!