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Disclaimer: I do not own anything related to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time or any of the other Zelda games. I only own this story. I wish I owned Dark Link, but I don’t. sigh Ok, just to warn you people, the prologue is for people who have no idea what’s going in this story, and all the Zelda experts out there had best skip it. It explains the basics of Ocarina of Time so that people don’t have to go out and buy the game to get what’s going on. Also, even though the prologue has part of Link’s story in it, this story is about Dark Link (I call him Dark because it’s easier than saying Dark Link Dark Link Dark Link over and over again). So… yeah. Please enjoy! I worked really hard on this. And please post nice, constructive reviews. Flames just make me cry, and when I cry, it scares people.
P.S. This is probably rated PG-13 for violence, at least the first chapter is. It’s not like guts spilling everywhere, just overly-dramaticness (I realize that isn’t a word, but it gets the message across).

A long time ago, in a place that no longer exists, there was a kingdom called Hyrule. It was populated by a wide variety of creatures: There were the Zoras, a race of fish-people, the Gorons, a race of rock-eating giants, and the Kokiri, who were small and child-like.

There were the Gerudos, a barbarous race that dwelt in the deserts of Hyrule, the Sheika, the shadow-people, and the Hylians, a race of elf-like creatures that possessed special powers. Each race made an important contribution to the land of Hyrule, but the Hylians were special, for among them was born the bane of evil: the Hero of Time.

The Hero of Time started off life as a Hylian, but when he was very young, a war broke out in Hyrule, and his mother fled with him to the Kokiri Forest to seek sanctuary. He had arrived unscathed, but his mother suffered from a deadly wound. She went to the Great Deku Tree, the guardian of the forest, and begged him to take care of her young son. The guardian agreed to look after him, and she died.

Link grew up in the Forest, living among the Kokiri, who were native to the area. He was indistinguishable from the rest of the tiny folk, except for one small detail: each of the Kokiri had fairy companions except for him. Because of this single flaw, he was teased mercilessly by Mido, the self-proclaimed leader of the Kokiri, and the rest of them avoided him, not wanting Mido to tease them too. Only one of them was a friend to Link; her name was Saria, and she was a bit of an outcast herself. She was much more mature than the others, and so she kept to herself until Link’s arrival. She enjoyed Link’s company, because he wasn’t blissfully ignorant like the others, and was fond of telling tales of adventures in the world outside of the forest. They played together often, and had become fast friends by the time Link began his journey to save Hyrule.

His journey began with a nightmare, a nightmare he had had frequently that past month. The dream began with Link standing in front of a large castle, in the middle of a storm. The drawbridge to the castle would open, and a rider on a white horse would rush by, clutching a girl in her arms. The girl would look at Link as if trying to tell him something, but was lost from sight before she could say a word. Then another figure would cross the drawbridge on a black horse and look down menacingly at Link. Then Link would wake up. On this particular morning, Link was woken up by a fairy named Navi, who would be a great help to him in the journey ahead. So began a great tale of courage and determination, a tale that would forever be known as The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

It was during this journey that Link met a shadow of himself and vanquished it, or so he thought. This is that shadow’s story.

Chapter 1: The Encounter

Dark sat against his tree on his island, assuming his usual position. His knees were drawn up to his chest, his arms rested on his knees, and his head rested on his arms. His eyes were closed, but he was not asleep. Shadows do not need to sleep. He was searching his mind for memories, memories of birds, of grass, of sunshine. They were not his memories; he had never left his room. No, they were the memories of the one person he was created to look like, and to kill. They were the memories of Link, the Hero of Time.

Dark had few memories of his own, only recollections of days and days of sitting in that cold chamber, waiting for the time when he was to complete his mission, and of the day he was created. He remembered opening his eyes, and the first thing he saw was the cold, grinning face of Ganondorf, who was, at the time, the King of Hyrule. Ganondorf had told him of a man who would dare threaten his rule, a man who called himself the Hero of Time. Ganondorf had instructed Dark to wait in that room until the man came, and to kill him without hesitation. Dark had agreed to complete this mission, not knowing what else to do, and Ganondorf had left. That had been a long time ago, Dark didn’t know how long. It could have been a month ago, or a year ago, or just a minute ago. There was no way to tell time in that unnatural room. But still he waited, examining the memories of someone he had never met, imagining himself out in the world that was never intended for him.

He was imagining the sound of birds when he heard the bars go up on the door behind him. The sound was like a punch in the gut, so different and so sudden was it. Then he heard a very familiar sound, the sound of feet splashing through shallow water. He had heard the sound every day of his life as he paced the floor, restless and bored almost to the point of insanity. The footsteps crossed the room slowly before reaching the door on the other side of the room, and Dark heard another new noise, a sigh of relief. He dared not look up, though was not sure why he feared being seen. Then there was another familiar sound, the rattling of bars on a door, and growls of frustration. There was the sound of steel on leather as a sword was drawn, and a clear voice tinged with annoyance rang out through the room. “Alright, whoever’s there, come out and fight.”

Dark paused a moment, debating whether he should obey or not. Then he stood up slowly. He kept his head bowed and his eyes closed, delaying the moment when he would finally get to see his adversary face-to-face. Then he raised his head and looked, and saw that it was indeed Link, wet and tired from the trials of the Water Temple. They stared at each other for a few minutes, taking in the sight of each other. Dark was astonished to see another person after so much time alone, and one so animated and colorful. Link was astonished to see someone who was his perfect shadow, with the exception of two vibrantly scarlet eyes. After recovering from his initial shock, Link was the first to break the silence. “Who… or what… are you?” he said. It was a question that wasn’t really meant to be answered, but Dark answered anyway.

“I am every angry, senseless thought you have ever had,” Dark began, and his voice was like ice and stone and the venom of snakes. “When Mido used to pick on you, because you did not possess a fairy companion of your own, I was there, even though you were not aware of it. I was in the back of your mind telling you to fight back, to punch him in the face, to push him in the water. When you almost lost your fight with Ghoma, I was the fear that shook you, and I was the voice in your head telling you that you would never see Saria or anyone else again. Every angry curse you have uttered to an enemy, every black thought you’ve ever had, every single thing you have been ashamed of or regretted, that is who I am.” He drew his sword and held it in front of his face, with the keen edge facing outward. “I am Dark Link, and I was summoned by the great Lord Ganondorf to destroy you.”

Link stared at the shadowy youth in horror. He felt fear beginning to overwhelm him, and looked down at his boots, unable to meet the shadow’s gaze. Then he remembered his mission: to save Hyrule, and to save Zelda. He looked up at Dark and said resolutely, “I cannot be steered from my cause.”

“Very well,” Dark replied. He dropped into a defensive stance. “The only way to get through that door is to defeat me. So, what are you waiting for?”

Link took a deep breath, and then charged. Dark charged at the same time, and they met in the middle. Dark easily parried the blows that came his way, knowing Link’s every thought. The clashing of their swords was like a constant peal of thunder as the two engaged in a frenzied duel, each giving and taking an equal amount of blows and neither having any real advantage over the other.

After a while they both began to grow weary from the endless battle, and Link decided on a small change in plans. He back-flipped away from Dark to give himself some room, and then began to charge his sword with energy. The blade turned from blue to red as Dark drew near, and Link released the energy, spinning in a stationary circle from the force of the magic. With a cry of pain, Dark was thrown back by the blast into the dead tree on his island. He sat slumped against the tree, breathing hard, as a large, newly-opened gash in his stomach bled black mist.

Link approached him cautiously, and Dark eyed him with scorn. “What are you frightened of?” he spat. “I am beaten.” Link stopped in his tracks, and then looked around as the bars lifted over the door that led further into the Temple. He turned to go, but Dark called him back. “Wait! Please,” he said weakly, dropping his superior attitude. “Don’t leave me here for Ganondorf to find. When he learns that I have failed, he will do terrible things to me. Please, kill me. Be merciful.”
Link saw a combination of fear and pleading in Dark’s eyes, which replaced the hardness that had been there before. Link sighed, and then walked over to Dark, lifting his sword above his head. Dark lifted his chin so that Link had a clear target, and whispered a quiet, ‘Thank you.” Link felt his stomach lurch, and brought the sword down hard, knowing that if he waited any longer, he would not be able to do it. The steel went right through Dark and thudded into the rotten wood behind him, and Dark heaved as blood rushed up his throat and trickled out of his mouth. Link quickly withdrew his sword, and Dark fell forward and was swallowed up by the water. The room returned to the state it had been in before Ganondorf took over the Temple; the ruins vanished, as did the tree and the island and the inch of water on the floor. The walls came back into sight, replacing the white oblivion stretching into nothingness that had previously surrounded the room. Link stared sickly at the floor where Dark had disappeared, then turned and ran through the door that lead deeper into the Temple, eager to forget what had just happened.

Link went on to defeat Ganondorf, and when he was returned to his own time, all that he had accomplished in an alternate future had remained. All the enemies he had defeated were destroyed, all the races were free, and Ganondorf was sealed inside the Shadow Realm, hopefully forever. Link, having excepted the fact that he was Hylian, went to live at the castle and became a soldier in the Hyrulian Army. He adapted well to palace life, and won the respect of his fellow guards when they saw the talent he had for fighting. All the while, Dark slept in a watery grave beneath the Water Temple, unknown and undisturbed by the Zora priests that frequented the place, setting aright the spells that Ganondorf had warped and driving out the enemies that Link had not yet defeated. Link had aged seven years before Dark woke up again.

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