Fan Fiction

The Legend Of Zelda: Blood Of The Holders

By coasty30
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Chapter 20: High Councilor Of The North

High Councilor of the North

Celebrations had started by midday in Hyrule City, and the air around town was filled with the smells of good food and the sounds of song and games. The celebrations were a feast to the goddesses and many were attracted to the Temple of Time seeking blessing; farmers, ranchers, merchants, and couples who planned to say their vows on the solstice. Though crowded, Hyrule Palace did not have the same atmosphere celebration that the city streets that surrounded it had.

The main hall was packed with the elite of the kingdom and the ceremony for the princess was moments from commencing. Fear was what Zelda felt, as she stood alone waiting for her time. The king and three clerics had already stepped out into the main hall and after the clerics gave the invocation, her father would address the guests then it would be time for Zelda to enter the hall. Her hands were damp with perspiration; today she would assume the royal post of High Councilor and sit on the council in Nautalin. She and other councilors would oversee treaties, trade, taxes, and commerce throughout the land. She started feeling the enormity of her duties; her actions would affect all the people of Hyrule. Suddenly, for Zelda, the world she knew was moments from ending and entirely new world one filled with the greatest of tasks. Zelda tightly clutched a lace cloth to dry the dampness in her palms. Only moments before she had handed Aria to the steward who would give it back to her during the ceremony and then she would present it to Link. Thoughts of presenting the sword to Link allowed her to feel some anticipation for the coming ceremony; Aria was a spectacular blade and from Renell’s account of how it was made the sword could possibly have magical properties. When Zelda first held the blade in her study, it had been light and well balanced and she could feel its song in her heart, but when she held it before handing it to the steward, the blade was heavier, silent and quite cold to the touch. A low, deep toned voice came from the main hall; it was the cleric giving his invocation. Zelda peered into the hall and that the three clerics stood before the gathered crowds.

“Grant wealth and wisdom to all who witness this day. Farore of the sacred woods, bestow upon us the courage to do what is right.” She heard the bearded cleric in the green robe say, the colors of his robe signified that his order was Farorian.

“They have quite enough wealth old man it wisdom that many of them lack.” Zelda whispered as she waited for her time. The dark haired Dinian cleric was next to speak he was younger than his Farorian brother.

“Great mother Din, stoke the fires of our passion, and give us the power to achieve in all endeavors.” He spoke with youthful vibrancy before the cleric of the Nayruian order came forward, a gray haired priestess.

“With love and compassion, we move forward in this world. Nayru, grant ease in our hearts and contentment to our souls, as well as wisdom to guide our judgment.” She said raising her hands and letting the sleeves of her blue robe hang down. Zelda signed after her father spoke he would call for her and then she would walk down the center isle alone and stand before her father. Zelda suddenly realized that this ceremony was different from similar proceedings that she had witnessed over the years and her anger flared when she remembered when she had seen a similar ceremony.

“Mother!” She spat through clenched teeth. The ceremony had been planned by Queen Rimeena Zelda remembered that the wedding of her cousin the year before had also been planned by the queen and now she was seeing many similarities between the two ceremonies. Hearing her father’s booming voice eased her anger somewhat and at the moment, Zelda was thankful for the heavy make-up she wore, for she was certain her anger showed. Deep breaths calmed her further as she waited for to be called by the king. “It is too late now, Mother.” She whispered, standing before the double doors.

“Centuries ago, when our land was a shattered realm under the rule of tyrants seeking wealth and power, war was waged and the soil sewn with blood.” Davos, clad in his glimmering armor and a crown of gold and jewels on his head, spoke in his most regal voice. “From that devastation, our kingdom was born, and with the blessings of the goddesses we prospered and learned from the mistakes of our foolish ancestors.” The King paused and Zelda saw him slowly look about the hall, meeting eyes with several of those gathered. “The formation of the Council of Lords was a vision realized, for the first time the fate of the kingdom did not rest solely on the responsibility of its king.” He paused again and Zelda closed her eyes and held her breath. “The council is incomplete; a voice has gone silent, to the one who shall fill the void, come forth.” He called and two armed guards simultaneously opened the doors. Zelda opened her eyes and breathed deep and started her slow walk to stand before her father, the king, at the end of the hall. Hundreds of eyes followed her as she walked the line of polished marble of the main hall her footfalls echoing throughout the cavernous main hall. Despite the layers of embroidered fabric that covered her body, Zelda felt naked and alone; how many of the gathered wanted to see her fail. Every slow step brought her closer and closer to the uncertain future that would be her tenure on the council. Thoughts of what her life would be like in Nautalin filled her with anticipation, but also with fear; her new responsibilities weighed heavily on her mind as she passed the gathered guests. Halfway passed she caught her father’s eyes, his look of confidence eased her fears some. But Zelda still had to fight the desire to flee. Sighing quietly as she walked, Zelda silently repeated what she would have to say, and then what she would say to Link when he entered the hall; she longed for this to be over. Zelda was now only a few feet from her father and soon the ceremony would be over and the celebrations could begin. She stopped before her father and looked up into his eyes.

“Who are you?” The king asked in a stern and regal voice that brought a shiver to her spine; he used that voice when he reprimanded her.

“I am Zelda Alieena Marison Davos the XXXVIIth, Crown Princess of Hyrule.” She answered, taking a moment to find her voice.

“Why have you come?” His voice was softer this time and Zelda calmed herself.

“I come to complete that which has been fractured, to speak in the voice that was once silent.” Her answer was quicker this time with more confidence. There was silence as Zelda waited for the next part of the ceremony when her father would ask for a judgment from the clerics.

“Your voice is heard. Does it speak true?” His voice boomed through the hall and the three clerics stepped in front of Zelda, their hard stares gazing at her. The red-robed Dinian cleric bent down and put his hand on her head.

“Fire can cleanse as well as destroy, its light can guide or blind you.” The black-haired cleric said loudly, and the green-clad Farorian came forward; Zelda had seen him many times before and his smile offered some reassurance to her as he put his hand on her right shoulder.

“Give guidance as it is given to you, just as the wind leads and follows. Know the direction you go, when to lead and when to follow.” The old man left his hand on her shoulder just as his brother cleric still had his hand on her head and now the blue robes of the Nayruian filled her vision; the woman’s look was stern and unwavering as her hand came to Zelda’s right shoulder.

“Let love for your fellow countrymen be your inspiration. May you share in their joy and ease their sorrows, for their lives are your task.” Her monotone voice was cold and her grip on Zelda’s shoulder tightened. Zelda could hear quiet muttering from the Farorian cleric the other two kept their prayers silent.

“What say you of this woman?” She heard the proud voice of her father call out; from behind the clerics and the three clerics of the goddesses removed their hands at the same moment and stepped back Zelda could once again see her father.

“We find her worthy.” The young Dinian called, speaking for the other two and Zelda saw a smile of approval from the Farorian. However, the Nayrunian cleric’s stare was still cold and unemotional, as if she did not approve.

“Step forward.” The king said to her and Zelda breathed deep before moving. She took several slow steps and stood before her father. “From this moment forward, you complete that which was broken, you speak in the voice that was once silent.” King Davos called out and the three clerics took places immediately behind Zelda, who now felt slightly closed in. “You are the Lady Zelda Alieena Marison Davos the XXXVIIth, Crown Princess of Hyrule, High Councilor of the North.” The clerics raised their hands. “In the eyes of the goddesses, may it be so!” He called out. “May it be so.” Echoed the masses of people gathered in the hall. The few seconds passed in silence and Zelda heard the shuffling of the clerics robes as they lowered their hands. They would remain silent until the clerics left and Zelda once again met eyes with her father. He raised his eyebrows. She smiled suppressing a laugh; her father’s simple gesture spoke volumes and Zelda felt calmer, realizing that the king felt the tediousness of the ritual as she did. After the clerics left and only Zelda and the king standing before the gathered crowd. “There are those who will try to silence the voice and insure the council remains incomplete.” Davos raised his right arm, gesturing to his side. Zelda closed her eyes and took a place next to him, then turned to face the crowd. She opened her eyes to the faces of the hundreds gathered and Zelda could feel nervous perspiration down to her bleached leather shoes. Breathing deeply, Zelda struggled to find her voice as hundreds of eyes stared at her.

“Whose hand shall protect the voice so that it never falls silent?” The tone of her voice surprised her it held confidence she did not feel. “Who shall wield the sword that will keep the Council of Lords whole?” Out of the corner of her left eye, Zelda saw a steward come and stand next to the king; cradled in his arm was the sheathed sword Aria.

“Majesty.” The steward said with a bow and he nodded his approval. The steward passed in front Zelda and offered Aria’s hilt to her. She moved her arm slowly as if it was weighed down with iron and grasped the dyed leather of the hilt. The sword rang like a temple chime as she drew it from the scabbard that caused hushed muttering from the guest watching and the blade gleamed from the sun as Zelda held it in front of her face. On the polished steel, Zelda could see the pale face of her reflection; it resembled the seamless porcelain of a statue. “Whom shall accept the task?” Immediately, the sounds of footsteps from the left side of the main hall just out of Zelda’s vision and grew increasingly louder. In moments, Link stood on the same spot Zelda had after the king had called her. Zelda was still becoming accustomed to seeing Link and she could tell he was somewhat uncomfortable in his new armor.

“Who are you?” She asked loudly as her left eye locked onto Link’s own, her right being covered by Aria.

“I am Link…of the Lost Wood.” He answered stumbling over the awkward title and Zelda tried to hide her smile behind Aria.

“Do you answer my call?” She asked.

“I do.” He answered.

“Step forward.” Link did as he was told and moved to stand before Zelda. “Know this, your task will be difficult as there are those seek to silence the voice of truth, and let chaos and injustice reign in our land.” For the first time since entering the hall, Zelda did not feel the hundreds of eyes on her and she was speaking only to Link. “Will you devote your life to keeping the Council of Lords whole? To insure the voice never goes silent as long as you draw breath?” Zelda asked and according to tradition she had to give him the opportunity to decline the calling. “You may leave this place now with no shame or dishonor, for this task is unlike any other and will require a great deal of your body and soul.” It was a tradition to give an opportunity to decline just as objections at a wedding. “Do you accept?” Zelda asked, still holding Aria.

“I accept.” He answered and Zelda nodded her acknowledgement, Link went down to one knee. Zelda placed the tip of Aria on his left shoulder; she could almost feel to the very tip of the blade.

“Let wisdom guide you.” She said and moved the sword to his right shoulder; the feelings were stronger now. “Let courage be the force that drives you.” She then moved the blade to the top of his head and Zelda was certain she was feeling Link’s soul though the blade. “Do not misuse the power you are granted.” She raised the sword again and quick fluid movement spun the flat face of the blade along her arm and offered Aria’s hilt to him. Link slowly grasped the hilt and Zelda was certain she was now feeling Link’s heart beat and the feeling lingered for several seconds after she had released the blade. “Rise, Sir Link of the Lost Wood.” He did so and then accepted Aria’s scabbard from the steward and then sheathed the sword. Zelda then stepped forward and stood just in front of and to the right of Link and they now both faced King Davos.

“Go now to Nautalin, Lady Princess; the council awaits.” He said and Zelda answered with a low curtsey. He then looked to Link. “Keep the council whole and never let the voice fall silent.” Link bowed his response. “Goddesses smile on you both and let them speed your way safely.” Davos finished a wide smile on his face and Zelda and Link took the same positions, this time facing the crowds. “SO MAY IT BE!” He cried loudly in his deep voice. “So may it be.” They echoed this was followed by loud thunderous applause and Zelda was glad for the heavy make-up she was wearing for she certain that her face would be as red as ripe apples. She exhaled and put left foot forward and made her way down the center isle with Link in tow.

“I hope to not have to do that again.” She heard Link mutter quietly despite the loud applause.

“Indeed, my friend. I feel the same.” She mumbled an agreement barely moving her lips trying to maintain her statue still gaze. Zelda longed for simple solitude to calm her senses, but now her new responsibility would make such a moment even more rare. Behind her, Link kept the slow pace to the end of the hall and as they approached the large carved wood doors the applause started to die. She stepped beyond the threshold and Link followed into the corridor. According to plan, they were to return to the Maiden’s Hollow and remain there until the guests had made their way to banquet hall and then Zelda would be formally introduced with the royal court with Link following her. Zelda quickened her pace and in a moment, she and Link were in the small room. Zelda had at first found the room awkward but now she saw it as a sanctuary from hundreds of eyes that stared at her. The maids had prepared the room for her return; there was a small table with a silver tray of bread, cheese, and fruit and two silver jugs, one of them had wine. Zelda thanked the goddesses when she saw the condensation on the other jug, which contained cold water. She quickly filled and then drained a goblet.

“Quite thirsty, I see.” Link said, earning him an affectionate smile of relief. “At least it is over.” He added and Zelda refilled her goblet and then handed the water jug to Link.”

“Not yet, Link.” Her words got a confused look from Link as he filled his own goblet. “We must get through tonight.” Zelda drained another goblet of the cool water and then sat in a cushioned chair. Maids would soon come to see to her needs and she would take full advantage of the short respite.

Comments on this chapter

aquawolf says:

The desription of Zelda's nervousness almost had me nervous too! You write extraordinarily well, and I love this story!

Dins_Daughter says:

I think my heart beat quickened durring that