Fan Fiction

Nagori, Saimon and Senkyoku - A Wind Waker Tale

By achitka
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Chapter 20: Chapter 19: The Captain and the Bird Lady

A/N: This chapter is actually one of my favorites...When I originally wrote had little to do with the actual story, but that changed somewhere in chapter 23...and...well...I just couldn't resist making it longer than it needed to be, one sentence led to another and ... oh my...

So onward with:

Chapter 19: The Captain and the Bird Lady

Aryll sat on the rail of the pirate ship and scanned the skies. She knew they were too far out from shore for there to be any gulls flying about, but then, Jasper and Jake never behaved the way anyone thought regular seagulls should. They may look like any other seagull, but they were just, different, especially with how they reacted to her.

After her mother died, and even though she was still very young, she lost interest in everything. Everyone on the island tried very hard to pull her out of that funk, but she was lost in her sadness and stubbornly refused to rejoin the living. She wanted her mother back. It wasn't fair that the Goddesses had taken her and Aryll was angry with everyone who continued to live while her mother did not.

She remembered the first time that pair of gulls landed on the beach, they sat and stared at her for a very long time and she studiously ignored them both. When she got up to go home, they followed her and only stopped when she reached the porch of her home. She knew her mother would not want her to be impolite, so Aryll turned, bowed and thanked them. The pair squawked as they flew off and Aryll didn't see them again for almost a week.

When they returned, they always found her on the beach alone. Again, they followed her as far as her porch, where she'd thank them and the pair would fly away. This went on for several weeks and after a while; Aryll found herself hoping the pair would come and sit with her on the beach. She'd even given them names, Jake and Jasper and little by little, they pulled her back from the loneliness she'd made of her grief and gave her back her happiness.

When her father died in a shipwreck, she almost fell back into that dark place, but this time it was her big brother who helped her keep her light. Link promised he'd never leave her and no matter where she went, he would always be able to find her, no matter what. Big words for an eleven-year-old boy, but Aryll always knew her big brother was someone extra special.

One year later, the Helmaroc King kidnapped her. Aryll shivered when she remembered the piercing cry and force of the wind created by the giant birds wings. The feeling of its claws as it snatched her from the bridge that led to the Fairy Wood. But even as it carried off from her home she saw Jake and Jasper followed in the wake of the great bird. Somehow, she knew it was them that kept her safe even as she sat imprisoned in the Forsaken Fortress. Aryll was never sure why, but the moblins that guarded all the kidnapped girls, seemed very leery of the gulls and stayed clear of her cell. That, in turn, gave her the strength she needed to hold on.

She knew Link would come and just like he promised; he did. But when the Helmaroc King captured Link, she almost lost hope. It was also the first time Aryll clearly understood what the gulls were saying to her. She never questioned it, since most everyone who lived on Outset could understand the squawky, garish language of the gulls that inhabited the island. Aryll discovered then, that she'd an unusual aptitude for it. She'd always been able to pick out a few things here and there, but from then on she understood them as clearly as if they were speaking common.

Her thoughts wandered back to the ocean as she wondered again about Jasper. For quite a while now the gull had been missing and Aryll was starting to worry. It wasn't like her to be gone for this long. Jake still dutifully watched over the chicks, but she could tell he was beside himself with worry, well for a seagull.

Gonzo told her everything he knew of what happened to them and while she was a relieved to know Jasper had been with the pirates, the gull wasn't now and Aryll couldn't shake the sense that Jasper needed her help. That feeling continued to nag at her and she almost wished she had her telescope, but Link probably needed it more than she did.

That got her thinking of her Grandma, even if Link was the Legenday hero, nothing about this mess seemed to surprise her. Aryll was just two days short of her seventeenth birthday but she was a little irked when her grandma showed no concern that she was leaving the island with a band of pirates. Of course they were Tetra's pirates, and her Grandma knew she'd come to no harm on that ship. Still when Aryll learned about Nagori, all the stories and legends, her Grandma told her since she was small; started to take on new meaning.

The Tower of the Gods; that was where her Grandma thought Tetra was headed and maybe Link too. She wondered how her brother and Al were doing and worried they may be in over their heads. Aryll recalled the stories Link told her of his adventures there and she sighed. He thought the place fascinating but it seemed a sinister place to her. Gonzo said the pirates had never been there but one of the parchments in Tetra's cabin showed it's most likely location.

Nudge, who was up in the crow's nest pulled her from her thoughts. He waved and shouted something then pointed off toward something in the sky to the northeast. Gonzo climbed the ladder, being careful of a missing rung, and at the top pulled out a telescope and looked in the direction Nudge indicated.

His mouth dropped open, he shouted to Senza and the others on deck, "Man that catapult! We have incoming kargarok!"

Aryll looked in the direction Nudge pointed and thought she heard a familiar sound amidst the shouting pirates. They scrambled to take up their positions and several went below and returned carrying some rather large rocks. After setting them on the deck near the catapult they returned below to fetch more. Gonzo came down the ladder and crossed the deck. He paused as he passed by her and noticed her standing next to a coil of rope.

"Aryll you should go below."

"No, I'll be alright and I won't get in the way, I swear."

"I promised your Grandma I wouldn't let any harm come to you," he said and gently pushed her in the direction of the door. "Please, I would really feel better if you went below."

Aryll sighed, then nodded and headed for the door. Gonzo was visibly relieved and turned toward the catapult. She reached for the doorknob and she thought she heard that familiar sound again so turned back. What she saw made her heart freeze; there, barely visible in front of the obnoxious birds was a small white shape. Flying as fast as its wings would carry it. Aryll squinted and realized it was a seagull being chased. Going below was forgotten as she ran over to Gonzo and took the telescope out of his hands.

"Hey! I thought you were going below."

Aryll looked through the telescope and focused on the seagull. It was Jasper! And she was hurt! "Gonzo, I mean, Captain, you can't fire that thing yet."


"Jasper's in front of them and she's hurt, please she trying to make it to us."

"How can you tell it Jasper?"

"I recognized her call."

Gonzo gave her an appraising look for a moment then shook his head and said to the pirates manning the catapult, "Okay people listen up. Hold your fire until the seagull makes it this far, after that fire at will."

"What seagull?" one of the crew asked, "I don't see any seagull!"

"Just put a lid on it and get ready to fire!" he roared at them. They grumbled but returned to their duties.

"We'll be cutting it close," Senza said looking at Aryll.

"Maybe, but I know you can handle it."

Senza grunted and turned back to the catapult. He calmly directed the others, and when the catapult was ready to fire he signaled Gonzo.

"You're sure about this?" Gonzo asked Aryll with a worried look. She nodded and returned her attention to the erratic flight of the smaller bird. They watched as it flew this way and that in its attempts to out run the three kargarok following it. As it neared the ship the seagull fell into a dive, Aryll could tell there was no way she would be able to pull up in time.

"No!" Aryll cried and covered her eyes as the seagull dropped into the water next to the ship. Almost at once, the catapult began firing and she ran to the side of the ship and looked for signs of the bird. There were a few feathers on the water, and without a second thought, she jumped in after her friend. The water was freezing and she struggled as she swam down a ways, salt water stinging her eyes as she searched for her friend. She popped up to the surface, took a gulp of air and dove again.

Aryll spotted something shiny nearby and swam toward it. It was Jasper. She grabbed the bird and surfaced again. The pirates had taken care of two of the kargarok, but the third was still out there and when it noticed her in the water, it shrieked and dove straight for her. She dove under the water again, though it was much more difficult holding the seagull, the kargarok pulled up just above the surface and ran its razor sharp talons just under the surface in an attempt to catch her. She exhaled some of the air when it's claw caught the side of her leg. The bird flew up for another pass so she used the opportunity to take another gulp of air and drop below the surface again.

The bird lined itself up for another run at her when, from the ship, a large rock sailed up and smacked into it. Unable to stay below any longer Aryll came back up to the surface. She watched in relief and the kargarok spun wildly out of control and hit the water with a huge splash. There were two other splashes nearby and a rope ladder was lowered. The pirates helped her on board and as she came over the rail, Nudge came over and threw a blanket over her shoulders. She was shaking and her teeth were chattering like mad, but as she sat on the deck, she checked the bird in her lap. Jasper's heart was still beating, Thank the goddesses she thought. Gonzo appeared in front of her and he looked angrier than she's ever seen him.

"Don't you ever do anything like that again, you understand?" he shouted at her. "Next time your told to go below, you go! What were you thinking?" When she made no reply he sighed in frustration and pulled the bandana off his head. He still looked mad but when he spoke again his tone softened and he said, "Why don't you head to Miss Tetra's cabin and dry off."

"Alright." Was all she could think to say and she got up and started limping toward the door. She was surprised when Senza stopped her and pulled back the blanket. He looked concerned when he saw a five-inch long gash on her leg just below her knee. She looked down at the deck and realized there was a small pool of blood where she'd been sitting.

"Nudge? Come have a look," Senza said as he knelt on one knee for a closer inspection of her wound. "We may have a sewing job for you."

Nudge approached her and Aryll tried to stay as still as possible during the examination, but flinched a few times while he looked at the slice. Gonzo watched from a few feet away and frowned.

"Just wrap it tight," Gonzo said, "We're near enough Southern Fairy Island that it won't delay us to stop there."

"We could just use one of the fairies I collected on Outset." Senza said.

"No, we can't. I don't know how to use a fairy, do you?" Senza shook his head. "Anyway, I have a feeling were gonna need all the fairies we can get before this is over. Senza nodded and shouted to the helmsman on duty to change their course. Nudge looked at her with kind smile and lifted her off the deck.

"Come along then Miss, you really shouldn't be walking on that," he said and carried her to Tetra's cabin. He settled her on the chair, cleaned up the wound and wrapped up her leg tight with some clean linen. She thanked him and he smiled and left her to change out of her wet things. After a moment, she realized she was still holding an unmoving Jasper, so limping a little Aryll set the bird on the bed and set about giving her a thorough examination. Jasper was missing some of her flight and tail feathers but seemed otherwise sound. When Aryll noticed the glint of something shiny wrapped around the seagull's foot, she untangled it and discovered a small crystal pendant.

Aryll held it up and looked at it in the lamplight, her eyes widened when she noticed it held a funny pink glow inside. Whatever this was, Jasper almost gave her life to bring it to her. Aryll put it around her neck and changed into some dry clothes. She was still shivering a little and lay down on Tetra's bed, thinking a nap would be good and promptly fell asleep, seagull neatly tucked under her arm.

She awoke later to discover that a blanket had been thrown over her and Jasper was up and walked around on the edge of the bed. "Yeah I know how you feel," she said as she sat up. Aryll hissed, from the now burning pain in her leg. She moved it around and it eased a little. She set her feet lightly on the wooden floor and set Jasper there as well. Looking at the desk, she noticed that someone changed the dressing on her leg, but left the pile of bloody linen on the floor. She gathered up the pieces and rinsed them out in the clean water she poured into the basin. Once done, she emptied it into a nearby pail. Picking up the pail, Aryll decided she was hungry, so went down to the galley to look for something to eat.

It was full dark and most everyone who wasn't on watch, was asleep. Aryll knew her way around, she'd stayed on this ship once before. That was actually the only pleasant experience after her kidnapping. Once Link managed to set her free of the Forsaken Fortress, Tetra showed up and ordered Gonzo to take her back to her ship. Aryll smiled whe she remembered the argument the Link and Tetra had about that and how imposing Gonzo was to her then, he was so big. Of course she was only ten at the time and Gonzo at least seventeen but his often angsty nature made her think of him as a rather goofy sort. Still he was a handsome sort of goof. Of all the pirates, Gonzo was Link's best friend and he would often write to Link or her about this and that.

She was pulled out of her reverie when she came through the door of the small dining area. Aryll hesitated when she saw Gonzo there by himself, sea charts spread across the table as he drank a cup of tea. He was deep in thought and when a frown crossed his face; Aryll felt responsible for it and in her embarrassment almost turned back.

Jasper, however, had other plans and gave her an angry squawk as she marched into the room. Gonzo looked up from his charts and noticed her in the doorway. Aryll smiled weakly, and limped slowly the rest of the way into the room. She was even more mortified when he got up, took the pail, then helped her to a nearby bench. All the while telling her she shouldn't be carrying pails of water about the ship with an injured leg.

"Are you hungry?" Gonzo asked.

She nodded and looked down at the table. She helped Jasper up on the bench and looked wearily at her when she squawked a question. After Gonzo disappeared through the galley door she said to the bird, "Will you stop? You don't know that." Both quieted when he came back with a plate of cheese and some biscuits in one hand and a bowl of cut up hoi pear in the other. Jasper made her way onto the table and began to eat. Gonzo got out another mug and poured Aryll some hot tea. She thanked him and he returned to his charts.

During the uncomfortable silence that followed, Aryll picked at her food for a bit, but lost her appetite. Jasper finished her meal, walked over to Gonzo and sat squarely in the middle of his papers. The Captain smiled as he stroked the bird's head. Satisfied the seagull walked in front of Aryll and started into a lengthy series of squawks that set her teeth on edge. Aryll looked at her feathered friend and rolled her eyes. Jasper's head bobbed as she continued her furious squawking. Aryll made the mistake of interrupting the seagull only once when she said, "No, you're exaggerating, I did not..." This sent the gull's head to shaking furiously as she continued with her bird rant. Aryll sighed and hung her head, her attention returned to the Captain when he said, "Can you really understand what she's saying?"

Aryll blushed when she realized he'd been watching her and said, "Well, sort of..."

"Sort of?" Gonzo asked taking another sip of his tea.

Jasper let out a funny sound as Aryll glared at the bird and amended, "Yes I understand her and right now she's giving me the what for, for jumping into the water after her."


"Yeah," Aryll narrowed her eyes at the bird and chided, "something about the water's too cold and I'm lucky I didn't drown."

Aryll paused when she noticed Gonzo's frown return. "You know you put everyone in danger by doing that. You really need to think about that in the future."

She fell silent and thankfully so did Jasper. While she was half expecting another lecture from the Captain she was more relieved when it didn't come and she said, "I apologize Captain I know what I did was foolish, but I couldn't just leave her there. Truly, you had every right to yell at me, Tetra probably would have added galley duty or worse." He shook his head and she bowed hers.

"I thought about that," Gonzo said with a small smile. "But about the yelling, I'm sorry...."

"No, you're the Captain now. I should have gone below when you asked me to."

"That wasn't really what I meant, you see..." he stopped cleared his throat and she noticed he looked more nervous than she'd ever seen him. He pulled off his bandana and mopped his face. "You scared the daylights out of me and well," he said as he fumbled for the words he was looking for. "You know I care about you.... and your whole family," he added quickly, "a lot, and...Aryll...."

Jasper picked that moment to clap her beak and distracted her from what Gonzo was saying. Jasper said something that made the already mortified Aryll look over at the Captain in surprise. As it finally dawned on her just what he was trying to tell her, she blushed and smiled as he trailed off. Aryll reached across the table took his hand and said, "Me too Captain, me too."


Comments on this chapter

Master Link says:

Great job Achitka!