Categories > Games > Zelda > Gatecrash0 Reviews
Chapter 8: Side Quest
"By the goddesses, where in the world did you learn to cook like that? They do eat where you come from, don't they?"
"Sure, but the food comes pre-cooked."
"Pre-cooked? How does that work."
"Well, it's a... it's complicated," Mega Man stopped himself before he launched into another long speech that Link wouldn't understand.
"Sounds like people have it a lot easier there. All your food is pre-made, your homes are constructed better."
"Yes, it is," Mega Man said, as he looked at the sun rising over Kakariko Pond. The orange hues creeping over the trees of the Lost Woods danced along the lake's surface like a million diamonds rolling on a blue plate of glass. A jumping trout broke the surface in the middle of the water, grasping for a fly hovering above. His return to the lake created an ever-resonating flow of beautiful ripples. "But we don't have this."
The duo continued down south. Their previous location and the expanse of Hyrule meant they were essentially going from one end of the land to the other. The journey was long and arduous, but the area they trekked through was one of the more peaceful regions - few monsters or creatures lurking in between the thinly spaced oak trees.
The conversations were still sparse though. Both were still unsure of each other, both were still sizing each other up. Mega Man knew that Link had a distaste for him and didn't want the robot anywhere near him. That sort of sensation was understandable, but it didn't make the walk pleasant. Link had no idea who this Mega Man was and the sorcery surrounding him was like nothing he had ever seen or heard of. His initial cautiousness had not been assuaged in anyway. Plus his foreign manners were constantly getting them in trouble and getting in his way. He was a stranger forced along his journey.
No, Link had no reason to trust him, and didn't see why he should. He had done nothing for him. Nothing related to the prophecy, nothing helpful. He was just a burden he had to shoulder for some reason the powers that be deemed necessary.
The landscape began to slope upwards into a gentle hill. Upon reaching the peak, they spied a small isolated house down below in the valley.
"Odd place for a house," Link stated.
"Unusual? Couldn't it be a farm?"
"Everywhere's a farm... unless you live in the village. Come on, let's go in." Link started sliding down the hill at a brisk pace, letting gravity do the work for him.
"Whoa, wait, do you know these people?" Mega Man followed him down, holding his arms out to keep balance.
"No, no idea," Link said as he reached the bottom of the hill. "Why? Is this another foreign custom?"
"No, it's called common decency and right to privacy. Where every human has the right keep any information they want secluded and protected and..."
Link just shrugged his shoulders. "Well, here, every house is essentially open for others. Most don't mind too much, they're glad of the company. Besides, the people are pretty friendly to me, given that I saved their lives."
Link stepped up to the door and opened it without a second thought as Mega Man came up behind him. Mega Man stopped himself from protesting further, reminding himself that he was in a foreign country - a VERY foreign country - and customs were different here. Meanwhile, he noticed the house's front lawn was covered by bushes in a very erratic pattern, scattered out here and there instead of nice simple rows. He doubted this was a farm, but the purpose of its location he couldn't discern. He turned back to Link, but he was already through the door. The robot quickly followed.
Link approached a woman standing in the house next to the dining table. "Oh, thank the Triforce, someone's here. Can you help me? My lawn has an infestation of buzzblobs out there. I need someone to get rid of them for me. If you do it, I'll give you something good."
"No problem, ma'am." Link passed Mega Man and exited the house. Mega Man looked between the two and followed him outside.
"Well, that was an unusual exchange," Mega Man commented.
"Eh, that's how things get done around here. People do things for other people and they reward you. It's a pretty sweet deal if you ask me, as long as it's not too tough." Link gazed out from the steps of the house, analyzing the landscape. "So where are these buzzblobs the lady was talking about?"
"I don't even know what a buzzblob is."
"Little green critters you see around. They look cute but they pack a mean wallop." Link stepped down and started walking through the lawn.
Mega Man looked around one more time. "All I see are bushes. Perhaps the lady's eyesight isn't all that good."
"Yeah, she must be senile or something." Link theorized that she was mistaking the bushes for buzzblobs. They were about the same color and Mega Man was probably right about her eye acuity. He withdrew his sword from the scabbard, gleaming white in the sunlight, and padded up to a bush. "I'll just cut these bushes down so I can get that reward." Link swung his sword against the shrub.
Link stiffened up as he was enveloped in a yellow electrical aura. Spikes of hair stung out from under his cap as he gritted his teeth in surprise and pain. The bush's leaves fell away, revealing a tall green blobby looking thing with two small footpods and large black eyes, making contact with the sword. Its two single eyes were furrowed in anger.
The electrical current stopped and Link fell back, smoke tufting out from his head, his eyes spiraling around in confusion. "I... found one," he said weakly.
"They must be hiding in the bushes," Mega Man commented.
"Yes... I figured... that out," Link said as he slumped back in exhaustion.
The buzzblob began wiggling around the yard, its jelly-like body wobbling back and forth as it shuffled its little footpods around the grass, perambulating without destination. Mega Man approached the creature guardedly while Link recovered and brushed himself off. "It must dole out some kind of electrical current when threatened, like an electrical eel. But how does-" Mega Man reached out his hand towards the buzzblob. It did not shy away, so he touched it on its head.
Electricity began flowing through Mega Man's systems. He arched his back in pain as all he could see was bright white surrounding him. "RRRRRAAAAGHHHHH!"
Link came to his senses as he heard the scream. He saw the blue solider flashing in a brighter white than he had seen, electrical arcs running up and down his body. "No!" he shouted. He reached into his pack and pulled out his hookshot. As soon as he attached it to his arm he aimed for the buzzblob and fired the trigger. The spring-loaded grappling spear shot forward and hit the green monster, pushing him back.
Mega Man swayed back and forth, dizzy and barely conscious. Sparse tendrils of lightning still skimmed over his form.
Link approached him. "Wow, are you okay? Usually it's just a big shock. He must've-"
"My system." Mega Man grunted and slowly held up his right forearm. Link could see some sort of small gauge - a bar that was half-yellow, half-black. "That... that... thanks." Link looked up at Mega Man's face. "If you hadn't done that, it would've killed me."
Link paused, a little stunned. "No problem."
Mega Man held up his indicator to Link. "This is my power level, it goes down every time I take energy damage. If it goes to zero, I die. I can usually recharge it with energy capsules I find from other robots. But I don't expect I'll find any here."
"So you have to be careful, because there's no way to recharge."
"All right, we'll have to be careful about that then. I guess you'll have to sit this mission out."
Mega Man looked over to a nearby tree with an unusual base branch jutting out. "Perhaps not." Mega Man walked over to the tree and broke off the bough, wielding it like an oversized sword.
"You set 'em up, I'll knock 'em down?" Link said as he held up his hookshot.
"Sounds like a plan," Mega Man agreed.
Link fired the trigger, and the hookshot's end latched onto the bush, uprooting it swiftly. Two buzzblobs wiggled away like frightened slow-moving rabbits. Mega Man slung his makeshift bludgeoner over to maneuver the little monsters away from the yard, using the soft leafy end to coax them away. They continued in this pattern for the rest of the day.
Zelda stood at the open door and knocked on it. Horace looked up from his table where he was sorting miscellaneous paperwork by candlelight. "What? Oh, Princess Zelda."
"Captain, I need the key to the royal documents vault."
"Oh." Horace's mouth upturned in a grimace of slight annoyance as he set his work down and fished into his pocket for his ring of keys. "Shouldn't you have access everywhere in the castle. Don't you have a key already?"
"Well, yes, but I seem to have misplaced it."
"Ah," he snickered. "What do you need it for?"
"I need to access information on Vizier Noktwor."
"Ah, have you found more evidence against him?"
"Perhaps. You know about the thread I found on the tile hole?"
"Well, it was purple."
"And the vizier wears a purple robe."
"So does the chairman. So does the attendant. So does the cook. So do I when I have my dress uniform."
Zelda opened her mouth to protest, but then shut it and looked down at the floor. Horace stood up and approached her.
"Look, detective work isn't an instantaneous thing. It takes a lot of patience and the work is dirty and boring. Maybe you'd be happier doing something else, and leaving this to us?"
"Don't presume to tell me what I can and can't do, thank you very much. I am going to help solve this."
"But we already have people working on it. Link is even out there right now, doing field investigation."
"I said I am completely capable of doing my own investigation," she claimed as she swiped the keys out of his hand.
Horace sighed disgruntledly and threw up his arms. "Fine, enjoy."
Zelda took the keys and headed off without another word. She was doing just fine on this. She had already discovered the method that the pendants were taken out of the castle. She had discovered a possible link to the suspect. Everything was going swimmingly, she thought. She certainly wasn't having difficulty and she wasn't bored or dirty. She was going to show everyone that she could do this, that she wasn't just another helpless girl, subservient to everyone's will. She was an independent thinker. She was just the same as everyone else. How dare they try to condescend her just because she was royalty.
Zelda gingerly stepped down the stairs leading to the document vault in the castle basement, a significantly dirtier section of the castle. The wooden door was the only security here, but who would want to steal payroll logs?
Zelda inserted the key in and opened the door. Looking inside, she saw the vizier himself sitting at a desk, looking at a stack of yellow papers. He looked up suddenly with a surprised gasp on his droll little mouth.
"Princess Zelda? What are you doing down here?"
"I... what are you doing down here?" she quickly retorted.
"I was going over some records of law. There's a dispute over some land near Lake Hylia."
"Oh..." she responded sheepishly, although still suspicious whether it was a conjured excuse. "I'm checking some employment records," she said after quick, careful thought, excluding important details.
"Oh, very well then. I'll just leave you alone then." Noktwor took his pile of papers and headed out of the room.
Zelda eyed him suspiciously. His leaving so suddenly seemed so unusual and his reaction was no redeeming factor either. If only she had some hard evidence that he was the thief, she could put him in the dungeon in an instant. She moved to the personnel records and looked up the vizier's name.
"Go on. Shoo! Get!" Mega Man uttered as he brushed off the last two blobby creatures. The lawn was now completely clear of buzzblobs, as well as bushes. Their gravesites were marked by small stumps and collections of leaves.
Link replaced his hookshot in his bag and sauntered over to Mega Man. "Well, that looks to be all of them," he said, overlooking the yard. "Come on."
Link didn't see the wandering chicken that had come out to the front yard. He turned around and set his foot down on the tubby bird, making a loud "BWAGACK!"
"AHH!" Link screeched and zoomed past Mega Man and ran behind a large oak tree.
Mega Man's eyes scrunched in extreme curiosity. "What? It's a chicken."
"It's a cucco!"
Mega Man watched the frightened chicken hop away to a distant corner of the grass. "It's running away. Kinda like you."
"You don't know what those things can do if you get them angry, man. They've got powers or something. They all know where the others are. You mess with one of them, they all get on you. They're mad."
Mega Man was thinking someone else was mad, but held his tongue. "Well, it's gone way over there, so I think you're safe."
Link stepped out from behind the tree, his eyes wide and darting around. "You sure?"
"I'm looking at it right now. It's way over there."
"Okay, let's go."
Link cautiously moved towards the house, stepping on his tiptoes. "Be careful, don't make a sound."
Once again, the customs of this land confused him, but he did as he was told and made his way up the steps and walked through the door. Once inside and safe, Link approached the old woman. "We've done as you asked. The buzzblobs are gone." As well as your greenery, thought Link, but them's the breaks.
"Splendid. I'll give you a special reward for this." She pulled out a medium-sized canvas bag behind her.
Link beamed with delight as he held up the bag with one hand like a trophy. "I got bombs! I can use these to damage enemies and knock holes in some walls."
Link stopped as he saw Mega Man glared at him inquisitively.
"Why do you do that?" the robot asked.
"Er... I don't know, it's just my thing."
Link placed the bag in his knapsack sheepishly and the two walked out the door. "Back on the quest," Link commented. The landscape here continued gently sloping downward as they continued south.
Behind them, a small buzzblob poked its head out from the horizon of the hill, its large black eyes peering at the pair. It began to shuffle down after them.
Next Chapter: Swordfish