Muerante Chapter 4

By Ness

He walked through the threshold, and immediately entered a different atmosphere that the one outside. It was cool, and the air was crisp. In front of him stood a giant fountain. The walls were of rock, with water cascading down, tinkling the whole way, making their own sweet music. The fountain was of pure clear water sprinkling down each level to sound faintly of beautiful laughter. Link suddenly felt calm, and ceased much of his worrying.

He stepped up to the fountain, upon the symbol of the Royal Family of Hyrule, and played a song only known to members of the Royal Family. One that was used by Impa, Zelda's Sheika guardian as a lullaby when Zelda couldn't sleep. It was almost a crime for Link to know of the song, let alone know how to play it.

As Link played, the water upon the fountain went faster, landing with more force, making the faint laughing sound grow louder and louder, and more lifelike until as the song ended Link saw the source of the laughter spring from the source of the fountain. As the Great Faerie appeared, she continued the laughing he had heard from the fountain.

The Great Faerie was giant. Well, she reached to almost the top of the cavern, which was at least thirty-feet high, it was hard to tell. The Great Faerie was beautiful, but not in a normal sense. There was just something about her. She stopped laughing and looked down at Link.

"What brings you here Hero of Time? It cannot be that you simply came for healing. Those wounds were obviously caused during your journey here," chuckled the Great Faerie, always seeming to laugh when she spoke.

Link started to speak, but the Great Faerie stopped him. "Let me tend to your wounds first, there will be plenty of time for talking." she interrupted.

The Faerie instructed Link to close his eyes and he complied. She brought up her hands and a warm, comforting glow surrounded Link. He instantly relaxed, tense muscles easing. Cuts in his skin knit themselves back together with a warm comforting tingle. The big cut on Link's back came together with more of a shudder than a tingle. The bandage fell off, and the tears in Link's tunic and breeches sewed themselves back together as almost a bonus. Then as suddenly as the healing started, it had ended.

Link opened his eyes again to see the Faerie waiting expectantly. He realized she was waiting for him to tell her of what had seemed so urgent a moment before. She gestured for him to speak and he did. He told her of the forest and the tower with more clarity and attention to detail than he thought he had. He held nothing back, his feelings of unease, and sense of not being wanted were spoken with clearer words than he thought possible. When he came to the door at the top of the Tower, the Faerie's expression changed greatly. This doesn't look good, thought Link. He then told her of the book and the evil he felt. When he finished his tale the Faerie's look was not reassuring.

The Faerie thought for a while, mulling over what Link had discovered. She readied herself for what she'd have to say, and did.

"From what you have said, I have only one conclusion to make. Navi was correct. The book is what she had believed it to be. It is a book of great power, of evil power. It is called simply "Muerante," in the ancient Hylian tongue, which means "Book of Darkness." It is exactly what it sounds like. There was no one book of this name, it was just what they were called." explained the Faerie. The relaxed feeling Link had from the healing fled immediately.

"You mean there was more than one of these books?" queried Link.

"No, it's just that there can only be one a time, but there were many different ones over the course of history. They were created as centers for all of the evil in the universe, pinpoints for darkness. Only one with a heart devoid of any light can make one." answered the Faerie.

"So what purpose was gained from creating these books?" Link asked.

"These books were the ultimate fail-safe for any dark practitioner of magic arts. They acted as anchors, a center for all evil, but also a center for the book's creator. Even if the creator of the book is utterly destroyed, all he or she needs to return to the land of the living is a host. All they need is someone to read the book. When the first word is read, the hapless reader begins to change places with the book's creator. The change can only become complete when the reader has read every word cover to cover. The book's length varies with the power of the sorcerer who created the book, and with what the book was constructed. The more power in the author of the book, the longer the book is."

"Well, what should I do?" asked Link. "Do you know where I can find this "Muerante"?"

"Yes, but it will be a long journey, to unknown lands. And you will have to make this journey alone." sighed the Faerie. "You will have to leave immediately. I hope you know how to pilot a ship."

"Excuse me?! Sailing? Sailing from where? There are no seas in Hyrule!" Link was getting slightly frantic at the prospect of leaving his homeland alone to whatever dangers may rear their ugly heads in his absence.

"Really?" chuckled the Faerie. "Then where is the source of the waterfall near Gerudo valley?" Link had no answer that made sense, so he kept silent. The Great Faerie nodded, and began speaking again.

"I will give you the means of reaching the island with the book, but getting there is your responsibility. I will give you a ship that can be piloted by you, without needing a crew. I will also show you the way of reaching the ship, and after completing your quest, the way to return home. I will take care of Navi for you, and she will tell all concerned parties of your absence. If you hold still I will instruct you on how to control a ship made for many, with only one." as the Great Faerie spoke Link became more and more worried.

"If I must go now then I must, and will, but.... Will you get on with it!!!" Link was very anxious to leave, do what he must with the book, and return home, to Malon, to Zelda, to Ruto, to Darunia, to King Zora, to everyone, to Hyrule.

"Well then I would like to give you your instruction now, if you will." was the Great Faerie being sarcastic? Link didn't have time to decide. The Great Faerie placed her hands on Link's head and all thought vanished.

As suddenly as his thought vanished, new thoughts appeared. Flashes of intuition flowed from the Great Faerie to Link. Images of sails rising, tillers rotating just so, and rudders going this way and that flooded Link's mind. Barely perceptible images flowed behind the images of all sorts of sailing, seeming swallowed up by his sub-conscious before he could comprehend them. The flow ended abruptly, as if a wall were placed between him and the wealth of information that was the Great Faerie. He opened his eyes.

"That.. was.... amazing..." Was all Link could say, the aftermath of the images that flooded through him slowly fading.

"You must leave quickly." said the Faerie, reminding Link of where he was. "This is how you will reach your ship. The Faerie's hands blurred for a second and they reappeared with an exact copy of his ocarina. This is the Ballad of the Sea."

The Faerie readied herself and began playing a slow, sad melody that almost screamed the sea. Without even realizing it, Link joined in and began playing too. He knew that he would never forget this sad melody.

As if reading his thoughts the Great Faerie said, "Never forget this melody, whenever you play it you will be transported to your ship, from anywhere. You must leave now."

"Thank you, for everything, I will forever be in your debt." Link prepared for his upcoming journey. "Good-bye Navi, I will return as soon as I can."

"Good-bye Link, and I have a going away present." announced Navi.

"Well what is it?" asked Link, once again anxious to be off.

Navi smiled brightly, and gave him a small round object. "It's a compass, not unlike the ones you kept on finding in the dungeons. This one is special though, it will always point towards what you are looking for. Use it in good health. Good-bye again Link."

"Good-bye Navi, thank you."

Link steeled himself for his journey, raised the Ocarina of Time to his lips, and played the sad melody he had learned only a few minutes ago. He started to fade, and disappeared from the Great Faerie's fountain.

"Will he return?" asked Navi, this being the only time she was away from Link since she joined him at the Deku Tree's request.

"By the Fire of Din, the Wind of Farore, and the Love of Nayru he will."


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