Categories > Games > Zelda1 Reviews
During a blizzard, Link and Malon are trapped in a barn. What secrets will be revealed? Written in response to the one blanket challenge over at livejournal. Set after Oot
Link had been home for only a few days before it started to snow. The barn had been turned into a mess from our hay fight earlier that morning and now we were spending the entire afternoon cleaning it (rather slowly). Noticing the gentle snow building outside, I turn to my companion.
"It's snowing, Link!" I shout happily in his general direction.
He appears from nowhere moves toward the window and glances out. A smile creeps across his lips as he looks at me. "What if we should get snowed in out here?"
He is joking of course, but I shudder anyway. I had been trapped in the barn once before because of the snow. I spent nearly all night out here and had it not been for Epona's saddle blanket, I surely would've frozen to death. Even if I do have the companionship of someone else, I don't want to think about it.
"Don't even joke, Link," I reply with a shake of my head.
Link backs away from the window's sill and smiles at me. He knows that incident scared me to death, so he says nothing more on the matter, instead choosing to return to his work of cleaning up the straw.
Now that I know it's snowing, I had hoped that our work would pick up speed so that we could get back into the house and the comfort of the fire I'm sure dad was in the process of building now. But that was not to be. Nearly three hours passed before we finally finish. Neither of us had bothered to check the window for the progress of the snow. And now, I wish that we had.
"Uh oh," Link grunts as he pushes against the barn door.
"Uh oh? What do you mean 'uh oh'?" I move toward him and rest my hand on his shoulder.
"This door won't budge," He said, throwing his weight against it. There was a soft thud but the door refused to open. Moving toward the window, I peeked out and gasped in surprised. The snow was only a few feet shy of being level with the window's sill. The sky was still a bright gray color. But at least it had stopped snowing.
"Link..." My voice quivers as I realize we are trapped.
"Don't panic, Malon. We'll be fine. I've been in much worse scrapes than this. Just be thankful nothing is trying to kill us," Link says, pulling me into a gentle embrace.
I know he's only trying to make me feel better, but I haven't been in worse situations than this. I'm a rancher's daughter and the most exciting part of my day is when the horses escape the corral and I have to round them up. Link's arms leave my shoulders and he begins moving through the barn, searching frantically for something.
"What are looking for?" I ask, moving toward the barn's center.
A soft grunt could be heard before Link reappeared with a saddle blanket. "I only found one." He said. It was a deep red color with gold embroidery. Link had purchased it for me (Epona really) from some exotic market in some exotic country. I never used it. As a matter of fact, the price tag was still attached to it. It flittered wildly as Link began unfolding the blanket. One thousand rupees for a saddle blanket? I mentally curse myself for thinking how frivolous Link had been. Now was not the time to be contemplating how much money Link spent.
He drapes the blanket over my shoulders and tells me to find a place to sit. The barn's air was beginning to get an icy feel to it and it pricked at my skin like little needles. And this itchy blanket wasn't making it any easier. I settle against the wall close to Epona's stall and I hear her snort. My panic rises and I fear that she may freeze to death as well. But realization dawns on me that she has thick fur like all the other animals of the ranch. I press my back against the cold wood and draw my legs in so that the blanket can cover them completely.
Link reappears once more and plops down beside me. I try offering him some of the blanket, but he gently refuses. "I'm fine, Red," He says.
I can tell he's lying. His teeth chattered slightly as he spoke. "What are we going to do, Link?" I ask, staring at the barricaded barn door.
I catch his shrug out of the corner of my eye and listened intently as he spoke. "I'm sure your father and Ingo will notice we're missing and come to dig us out. Till then, I reckon we just sit tight." He gives me a gentle smile before staring up at the barn's high ceiling. I couldn't help but doubt his words. My father wasn't exactly the most reliable person in the world, constantly falling asleep at the most inopportune moments.
I don't know how long we've been out here, but I can hear Link's voice murmuring in my ear. "Wake up, Malon."
He sounds so far away and for several moments, I ignore him, thinking he's nothing more than a dream. But that was shattered easily with a quick shake of my shoulders. I am jarred awake and glance over at Link sleepily. I can tell he's sleepy too; his eyes are red. "What's the matter?" I asked, stifling a yawn with my hand.
"It's not a good idea to go to sleep right now," he says, looking over at me.
A draft wafts through the area and Link shivers again. "Here." I say, gathering some of the blanket and placing it on his legs. He accepts graciously and draws his legs in to his chest. I slide closer to him, in hopes that my body heat will help warm him up. "Don't go to sleep," he whispers.
I nod slowly and he drapes his arm around me. I knew why he didn't want me to sleep; I might not wake up, especially with hypothermia as a threat. The silence in the barn is as thick as the icy air. I nudge Link gently with my elbow to check if he's awake or not and he grunts in response. "How long have we been in here?" I ask. I know it's been several hours since we've actually been in the barn. But, I meant since we realized the door wouldn't open and I think Link caught on to that.
"I'd say an hour at least," he replies, a yawn trailing after the sentence.
I look back at the barn door and wondered if I could will it open with my mind. Link's voice breaks my concentration. "Hey, Red," He says, his voice cheerier than before.
"Hmm?" I turned to him, blue eyes blinking.
"Remember when we met?"
What an odd question. But I soon realize he is merely trying to keep us awake. I nod in response, "It's been what? Seven years now?" I say.
"Fourteen," He corrects me.
"Well forgive me," I say with a laugh, "Math isn't my strong suit."
We share a laugh together and it echoes against the high roof of the barn. Link had shared with me the stories of life before Ganondorf had been put into the void, since I did not remember. So to me, it had only been seven years since we met. But to Link...to Link it has been fourteen. Those fantastic stories seemed so unrealistic to me, especially the ones that were actually about me. Link had mentioned something about wanting to date me in the old timeline, but never had the chance to ask me out. When I asked him to elaborate, he simply blushed and told me to forget it. But I couldn't...and I can't now. "Fairy Boy..." I think this nickname for Link is rather confusing, especially since he does not have a fairy. But he insists the 'other me' called him that all the time. My voice quivers again as I continue to speak, "Did this ever happen to you with the other me?" I ask.
Was it silly for me to feel jealous? After all, he had spent all that time with me. And as far as I knew, I was still Malon. He chuckles lightly and pulls me against him. "No. But we did spend a lot of nights out here. It was summertime and sometimes we'd stay up all night, talking in the hayloft."
The jealousy knot in my stomach tightened. Link and I very rarely spent our summer nights out in the barn. Most summer nights, he was never around. As a matter of fact, the only time I ever really saw Link was during the winter. And I simply had to know why. The words refused to form and another silence filled the air. Link shifted under the blanket and I focused on his fingers pressing into my arm. I had finally managed to find my voice again and I look up at Link. "Link..." My voice is much more serious than before and the cold of the barn is forgotten.
"Am I different? Am I different than the other me?"
His brow furrows in confusion and he replies quickly. "No! Of course not."
The next question is hard to ask. And I almost wish I had bitten my tongue instead of asking it. However, it is out of my mouth before I have the chance to reconsider. "Then why won't you stay?"
His head turns away from me and I know I've upset him. I'm not going to apologize, though. I wanted...needed an answer. "I knew you would ask that," he replies finally. He turns back to me and smiles as much as he can make himself.
"I am different, aren't I?" I held my breath as I wait for him to say something. I am afraid of how he will respond. And will this response also be the answer to my first question?
"No, Malon. You are still the vibrant young woman that I..." His voice trails off and I mentally try to end the sentence for him. That he what? Admires? Adores? Hates? My breath catches in my throat as the next word comes to mind. Loves? I need to know.
"That you what?" I ask, sitting up and looking him in the eye.
I know it's hard for him to talk. But I press the matter by asking again. "That I fell in love with." He says at last.
I feel my body stiffen and then the cold of the wood embraces my back again. He loves me? To say the feeling was not mutual would be a lie. Before I even admitted how I felt, I still needed an answer for my first question. "But that doesn't explain why you won't stay."
Link removes his arm for around my shoulders and wraps it around his knees over the blanket. I've suddenly become aware of the cold again. "...Malon, I lied to you."
I look at him questioningly as I wait for him to continue. "I said that I never had the time to ask you out. But that's not true. I did ask you out. And you rejected me."
My heart sank into the bottom of boots and I curl my toes, wishing that would be enough to push it back into my chest. I had rejected him? How? Why? My voice is rather shrill as I speak. "What?"
"You said you didn't want to complicate our relationship. Especially since there was a chance that I might not come back."
I am shocked by his statement. Or rather, my statement. Had I really been that frank? So I was different than the old Malon. Never in my wildest dreams would I ever reject Link. That, I was sure of.
"Well..." My voice is low and soft, filled with emotions ranging from relief to nervousness. "I am different."
I can feel his eyes studying the profile of my face as I stare hard at the barn door. "Link...I love you. And if you asked me out right this minute," My eyes trail the floor before landing on his, "I would say yes."
A genuine smile spread across his lips and his arm returned to my shoulders. And once again, the cold was forgotten. I close my eyes and turn my head toward his. I was almost certain his lips were close to mine. I tilt my head back and much to my surprise, I encounter nothing. Link's arm has left me again and I feel the rush of air as he stands quickly.
My eyes flutter open and the howling of the wind became apparent as the door swung open. Dad and Ingo stood in the entrance, shovels in hand. "We had to dig for nearly two hours to reach the barn." Ingo says.
Relief washes through my system and I stand too, the blanket still around my shoulders. "It'll be a wonder if the two of you don't have pneumonia by tonight." Dad says looking back and forth between me and Link. "Come into the house and sit by the fire. I've prepared some soup and hot chocolate for you." Dad led the way through the tunnel.
I didn't see Link leave the barn and I assume he was in the house already. Then I feel the leather of his gauntlet encircling my hand, his fingers closing in on mine. I turn to see Link smiling at me. "Would you like to go to dinner sometime?" he asks.
I repress the urge to laugh as I close the blanket around my chest with my free hand. "Of course." His smile broadens and he kisses my cheek. He walks pasts me but stops and turns around. Thinking something is wrong, I stupidly ask, "What?"
He moves briskly toward me and wraps his arms around my waist. He kisses me firmly on my lips and before my brain can even register what has happened, he has already disappeared into the warmth of the house. I touch my lips gently and a small smile tugs at the corners of my mouth. "Come on Malon! Before you catch your death!" Dad's voice is commanding and loud. Pulling the blanket tighter around me, I go inside to join Link by the fire.