Sins of the Past Chapter 1
By Patron Angel Tabris
Are you sure were planning this at the right time?
Zagita looked up from the maps and writings to stare at the shorthaired woman who dared to ask such a question. The same woman who always had to question authority or express her worrying opinion about everything. Her baleful stare was enough to quickly put the woman back in her place. They had come too far now to have someone having second thoughts.
Zaniia, if I ever hear you say that again, I promise you, you will be force-fed your own tongue, Zagita displayed her curved blade to prove her point. This resulted in a wide-eyed glance and gulp from the woman. Everything has been planned for this night for a very long time now. Tonight the others are in position to strike, and the majority of the Sheikah are off guard because no foreigners have been sighted entering Hyrule, and we are supposed to be having our ceremonies. It couldnt be at a better time. Zagita leaned closer to her right-hand womans face, enough for her to smell the tobacco in her master's breath. See it on her teeth, too. And even if we forgot about those aspects, lets remember how impatient our team has been growing. Why, theyre even more anxious then we are.
The two women went back to their work in front of them. Both of them were Gerudos, and ones of high position by noticing the size and quality of the jewels on their head ornaments. They were alone in this room where they held all of the plans they had been storing for years now. Actually, they were some of the only souls to be found for several miles. Their small headquarters was neatly placed in a pit of sand in the desert, added with certain camouflage that would seem completely invisible anyone from any real distance. Not that anyone would want to get that close anyway, for the area they were in was littered with quick sand, and only an expert of the area would be able to navigate it successfully without being swallowed up by the scenery. And then thered be the trick of seeing the thing. Fortunately for the both of them, they were two of the three best experts, and they obviously knew where it was.
What they were working with and preparing for was something that only their group of thirty-one knew about, and these two were the ringleaders. Zaniia was in charge of relaying all the orders throughout the group, gathering and organizing the materials needed (usually through the art of thievery), and assembling the team to be in position. Though she was a brilliant tactician and respected among the others, her only superior knew that underneath she was sniveling, doubting, and dubious. She was only chosen to be her right-hand because of her brains and experience in the craft.
Zagita was the real mastermind behind everything. She knew all that went on in Hyrule everyday, whether it be a civil riot or a stolen chicken. She planned everything from the start, including the time of this operation. This ceremony that she spoke of was the Gerudo's Night of the Sacred Marriage, when the first Gerudo king and queen were wed at the Desert Colossus. Every Gerudo attended this ritualistic night to give thanks to them who were revered as gods and goddesses, and celebrated the anniversary of the present reigning king and queen, if he had chosen one yet. For this was always the night that he should wed his chosen soul mate. The current king was there, of course, but he still had yet to pick someone. Though he was only at his midlife, his wife would have to be much, much younger, for another male heir was not due for another fifty-two years. Until then, he would have to simply mate with the other women simply for the sake of procreation. No real love for someone was involved yet.
The Sheikah would let their guard down tonight because the Gerudo were the only considered threat in Hyrule. Their reputation of being thieves had greatly diminished since the king swore allegiance to the Royal Family and an act of theft was extremely rare these days; however, since they did once spawn a certain Gerudo king And if all of them were out in the middle of the desert jubilating, why should they really worry about them? Well, unfortunately for them, there was a small group in the Gerudo that was not participating in the festivities. Nobody seemed to notice, thats all.
Zagita grinned at that thought. Theyd never know what hit them. She took another puff from her long pipe and added more smoke to the dense fog she had created above. For a moment, she sat there and simply listened to the sounds of the desert night outside, hearing the Haunted Wasteland's strong winds blowing against the outer walls. Not that she could hear it extremely well, she was an old woman. Some of her teeth were missing, and those that were still there were either crooked, dirty, or stained yellow from her smoking. She still had long, red hair, but many patches of it were graying. She was always seen wearing a long, black shroud-like cloak. She could never move too fast because she had bad knees and she wasnt in her prime anymore, but she usually preferred to stay out of the brawls these days. When it became unavoidable to fight, she stuck to weapons. But her dark red eyes had excellent vision, and she now looked across the table at Zaniia. The sight made her a bit sick, the woman who still had her youth, her healthy red hair, her quick reflexes and agility. And those forest-green eyes ugh.
Now Zaniia began to notice that her superior was staring at her again. This made her very nervous. The look that woman gave her made her feel vulnerable, like for some unknown reason she wanted to tear her face off. Then she spoke:
Zaniia, fetch me my son.
The second-in-command quickly got to her feet to leave the room to retrieve the other bit of the operation that Zagita was in charge of. The only other person who was an expert in this part of the desert, and the key factor in the task to be done tonight. Her son: Jereth.
Meanwhile, in another room of the secluded building, a young man of eighteen was sitting in the middle of the room, apparently meditating. The room was empty save for him, the red and gold rug that he sat upon, a black obsidian block the size of a large dog, and what seemed to be an altar with several candles adorning it and its golden shield with ancient Gerudo markings on it. If one didnt know better, theyd come in and see him facing the altar, and probably guess that he was praying to some Gerudo deity, the block being his offering. But instead, he was working on putting himself in a trance for the work to be done tonight.
He was a lad of great build, and apparently a Gerudo due to his dark tanned skin and very long red hair tied in a ponytail and trailing down his back, partially lying on the floor. His size was easily a head higher than most men, and he had almost no fat on his body. A lean physique accompanied his ripping muscles across his body, and a look from any other person would believe he was an incredible warrior to be reckoned with. Theyd only be half-correct though, for the only fights he had ever really fought to the death were involved with hunting. All other fights were training spars. There were also the tattoos that decorated his back and upper arms, the ones that looked like the ancient symbols engraved in the shield on the altar.
The clothing he wore at the moment only consisted of a pair of long, tan pants made from the hide of a hairy desert animal, a criss-cross strap across his chest for sheathing a pair of weapons, and a head ornament with a large cobalt colored jewel. It looked very much like the ones the women in the other room wore, except for the fact that theirs were blood red. To his right, he had a pair of tough animal skin boots and a thin black vest-tunic that had an inner lining of a silver chain mail. All were the proper garments of a great hunter. And finally, to his left, were his weapons of choice: a pair of reddish-colored cutlasses forged from an alloy of steel and the powerful rock from a specific desert cleft, making them virtually unbreakable and sharp enough to easily slice through other swords with a quick swath.
What he was focusing on right now was placing him in a battle trance that would allow him to channel his ability at the maximum and tune out any pain, tire, or exhaustion. And whatever his target was before him before he was placed in this state, he would be able to focus only on it without even trying. During a fight, he found these techniques invaluable. And while he could hardly remember anything that happened while he was in this trance, others had told him that he seemed to be an unbeatable killer while he fought in it. The reason he was focusing on this at the moment was that hed been told that tonights activities would require a fighting spirit ready to kill.
He could feel himself losing some connection with the world around him. He was feeling in tune with the fierce aura that resided within him. He began to lose whatever emotion existed in him. And now his senses increased threefold for a brief moment: he felt every inch of his body tense, he smelled all the aromas and odors that drifted from this room and the others, he could hear even the faintest noises around him, especially his heart beating like a loud drum.
He opened his clear blue eyes, saw the obsidian block-
-and in the next instant, he found himself standing above the block cleanly cut into four separate pieces, horizontally and vertically, his cutlasses gripped tightly in his hands. His breathing had not risen, nor had his heart rate.
Good, he thought, now Ill be ready to induce myself at anytime tonight. Once he had prepared himself and been induced once, hed be able to return to the trance anytime later for several hours without spending a lengthily amount of time to channel himself as he had just done. His muscles were still involuntarily flexed and his senses were working overtime now. Even if he didnt put himself in a trance later, his current status alone would be enough to easily take on another opponent. He casually sheathed his swords behind him to the straps on his chest, avoiding it catching his hair now reaching to the small of his back.
He closed his eyes, took a deep breath. And he smiled. Whatever was in store for tonight, hed be more than ready.
Dont remove the key. Dont release him.
He jumped at the sound, his senses suddenly alert, his swords redrawn. He searched the room for any intruder. Nothing. Then what was that he had heard? It sounded like it spoke in his head, very faint and as if it were the wind were speaking. And it was a warning
He turned towards the doorway, saw Zaniia standing there. Was she the one that spoke? No, it wasnt her voice. He lowered his blades, and could feel his heart. It was pounding now, and he was sweating. Something like that rarely happened.
Are you all right? You look as if youve seen a ghost.
No, Im fine. Thought I heard something, thats all. Thats all it was. His imagination was playing with him. Did you need something? he asked, now composed.
Your mother summons you.
Oh? We are ready then? She looked at him now as she did with others, with an air of command about her.
We will strike tonight as scheduled. Everyone is in position, and the enemys guard is down. What about you? Are you prepared for the mission? Jereth snorted at this.
Of course. Its what Ive been working on for the past half-hour. Whatever it is, I am ready.
I hope so. Then come with me.
He nodded and bent down to grab his boots and vest. Now standing up, he put his swords back in their sheathes. Then he quickly followed her out the door.
Dont remove the key. Dont release him. Indeed.
Madam. The boy is here.
The old woman looked up from her work and smiled; though inwardly she felt irritated that her underling would speak of her son with such a rude tone. No matter. Now they would get down to business. Bring him in, Zaniia.
The woman nodded and turned to allow the young man inside. He walked past his mothers attendant and stood before his mother, still sitting at her desk. You needed something?
His mother took a puff of her pipe, then spoke while blowing out the smoke. Yes, Jereth. You are aware that tonight we have planned a mission. Do you know how important it is?
Only that which you told me. It will require precise timing and we are to be prepared for the unexpected. And lives will be at stake. He paused for a moment. What kind of mission is it?
A mission that will determine our future, thats what. Both eyes turned to Zaniia, who had been standing behind Jereth silently until now. Zagita did not take this interruption between she and her son too lightly.
When I want your input over briefing on matters I can handle, Zaniia, I will ask for it, she growled in a low tone, Until then, will you please keep silent! The girl quickly shut her mouth. She didnt need to be on her superiors bad side any more than she already was. Now, Jereth, yes it is a mission that could determine our future. What we are planning tonight is a raid on the Sheikah.
Jereth stood silent for a brief moment, then spoke. And why do we need to raid the Sheikah? What do they have that is so important? Furthermore, will someone please tell me who in the name of Nayru the Sheikah are? All Ive heard so far is that theyre a clan that protects the Royal Family.
The Sheikah do more than that, my son. They are a powerful clan that could rival our own, and they protect a treasure that was passed down through the Royal Family for generations. That is what we are going to steal tonight.
Hmm, now this sounds interesting, he thought, a treasure to steal from a challenge. Finally, something that might be worthy of a fight. And what might this treasure be, mother? She grinned but did not speak immediately. Instead, she pulled out a scroll from her piles of papers and showed him the painting of a blue whistle. He frowned at this. Whats this?
This, my son, is the Ocarina of Time. This is the purpose of our mission.
You mean were risking our lives over an instrument?! When no response came to his question, he sighed in frustration. Damn it, mother, this is a waste of time! We could be raiding the castles treasury filled with gold and ruppees, and you chose to go after a whistle! The guards at the palace are a joke, why dont we go after something of more value?!
Zaniia was about to rebuke the boy for speaking so disrespectfully, but a sharp glance from the old woman stopped her before she could. Zagita instead spoke in surprisingly calm tones. My boy, there could be nothing of more value than this. Though it may seem worthless to you, I assure you it will be well worth the fight. And even if it wasnt, why go after something like gold where theres no challenge at all? You know you could easily steal from the palace. This offers you a better chance to test your skill.
Jereth stayed silent at this, but was visibly annoyed. He hated to have such things pointed out to him like this. He then motioned for his mother to continue. As I said, it is an artifact of incredible value to us. But there is something you should know about it. It is only carried by one of the Sheikah, and we currently do not have a clue which one that is. But we do know that the one carrying it is the princess, and she will guard it with her life. She stopped for a moment, taking another puff of her pipe and allowing him to let this sink in, and then continued. The trick to this mission is this: the princess must not be killed to take the Ocarina from her. And since we do not know which one the princess is, that means all females must not be killed until we know for certain if they are not the target. But all male members are expendable.
She took yet another puff of her pipe, and spoke in less pleasant tones while the smoke blew out her mouth. And these Sheikah, like the princess, will defend the Ocarina with their own lives as well, but since they are a thorn in our side, I dont want you to even think twice about killing them. If you can simply bring them to the ground, fine then. But if it comes to it, then shed their blood.
Jereth stood there pondering these objectives, more than a bit baffled. Why did it matter if the princess lived or died? And Since when have the Sheikah been a real problem for us? True, they were an obstacle in the mission, but a thorn in our side?
Zagita sat back in her chair, watching as her sons expressions changed, then spoke. So now you know the terms, Jereth. The target is the princess and her Ocarina, we dont know whom she is so dont fight to the death unless you absolutely know for sure, and most importantly, dont hesitate to kill those who are not. Any questions?
About a thousand of them. Why does the matter of life and death matter? Whats so important about the princess? How do we plan on doing this? He would have gone on, but his mother stopped him.
The details of how we will strike will come in good time. And dont concern yourself with some of our reasons. The question is, are you ready for it?
There was a long pause. Then an almost inaudible yes.
Zagita cackled. Her hoarse throat resounded throughout the room. Excellent. Then it is time. Zaniia, assemble the group for the strike. The moon is high, and our future beckons us!
Outside the walls of Hyrule Town, the grass of the field blew softly in the nights wind. Faint sounds of the evening echoed from the forests around, and the pleasant sound of water flowing from the moat nearby added to the soothing melody. The guards atop the watchtowers stationed along the wall could hardly keep their attention on their task because of the beautiful evening. To anyone who watched, this couldnt be a better night.
But for those who knew better, its pleasantries were about to end very abruptly.
Nearby, in a few large patches of grass by the moat, two groups of Gerudos dressed in black were closing in on the outer walls. No one but those in each group knew they were out there.
Jereth and his mother were in the group of eleven other members closest to the town, while Zaniia stayed behind them with another group of eleven. Jereth asked earlier where the other six were, and his mother told him they were already in a different position ready to strike on their command. It took them a surprisingly short amount of time to reach this point all the way from the Haunted Wasteland because Zaniia had rode in the day before and cast of Farore's Wind in the nearby woods, a spell that would transport someone any distance in no time at all. All that was required was casting it again and they were at the warp point instantly. They didn't want to approach the castle on horseback because not only would it take too long, but also because of the simple fact that horses made a lot of noise, and if no one spotted them on sight, they would certainly hear them.
Before anyone else made a further move, Zagita stopped everyone and told them to wait a moment. She needed to speak to her son again.
"Are you prepared to seize your future, my boy?"
Jereth looked at her queerly, wondering why she just asked that. But to be safe, he cautiously nodded his head. She smiled again, her tobacco smelling breath wafting in his face, making him a bit sick. His senses were still working past their peak, and he didn't need that. In fact, he was trying to control himself because he could hear, smell, and feel everything around him over a very wide range. The bugs chirping, the trees rustling, even the guards in the tower breathing and yawning, all sounded loud and clear to him. If they didn't get on with this soon, it was going to drive him crazy!
"Then before we begin, I want you to have this."
She handed him a gold necklace with a medallion on the chain. He turned it to examine it. It held the engraving of three triangles put together to form another larger one. Only the one on top was actually made from a perfectly cut ruby. He had no idea what this was supposed to be, but it looked very nice.
"Take good care of it. It will bring you luck." He quietly thanked her for the gift, but he still didn't know what she meant by all this.
She finally motioned for Zaniia to signal the others, and the girl made a noise that sounded like a large guay. She waited two seconds, and then chirped twice more. Three more seconds, then she chirped again.
Then the noise of two Deku nuts resounded off the walls.
"We now have twenty minutes until the others make their move," Zagita told the groups, "so now is the time to make ours. Zaniia, lead us in."
Everyone complied with the command and followed her toward the castle walls where they would sneak in. The night's mission had begun.
Legend of Zelda Fanfic