Chapter 1 Volga the Dragon Knight briskly made his way down to the torture chamber. He grinned all the way. He had just been informed that Link, the scarfed warrior responsible for several enemy victories, had been captured. Caught sneaking around just outside the fortress, Link and his small squad gave themselves up without a fight. Cia will be pleased, Volga thought. There will be a promotion for me, no doubt. The torture chamber smelled of blood, both old and fresh. The air was thick and sticky with the heat of branding irons and vats of boiling pitch. The horrified screams and pained moans of inmates echoed off the brick walls. Hands on hips, Volga looked over the new captives. Link’s squad was made up of simple Hylian infantrymen, along with a captain and a Goron. There was also a fairy, held prisoner inside a glass jar. Finally, there was Link himself, who stared silently ahead. Volga grinned at this fine specimen of a man. Link was a handsome youth with angled features and blonde hair. He wore the traditional green clothes and armor of the Legendary Hero, a spirit reincarnated dozens of times throughout history. Unlike previous heroes, however, Link wore a long blue scarf. It was finely woven and bore the red and gold crest of the Hyrule Royal Family. Ever since Link had put it on, he had been a menace to Cia’s forces. “Well, let’s get to business!” Volga clapped his hands together and grinned at his prisoners. “Who wants to talk first?” Silence. “No volunteers?” Quiet. “Very well!” Volga grabbed the imprisoned fairy’s jar. He popped off its cork and grabbed the glowing creature inside. “What’s Link planning?” he shouted. “Who is he? Why does he wear the scarf?” The fairy said nothing. Growling, Volga opened a nearby furnace door. The raging fire inside made the chamber’s stifling temperature even more unbearable. “Maybe a bath in hellfire will loosen your lips!” The fairy held her peace. Volga shut the furnace and put the fairy back in her jar. “Pretty loyal for a firefly.” “Perhaps she’s wondering why you’d incinerate her before asking further questions!” said one of the prisoners. Startled, Volga turned back to find that it was Link who had spoken. “So, you do talk!” Volga said. Link nodded with a courteous smile. “Who are you?” asked Volga. “It doesn’t matter who I am. What matters is my quest.” His face grew serious. “No one cared who I was until I put on the scarf.” “If I pull that off, will you die?” Link shrugged. “It would be very painful.” “You’re a big, strong warrior!” “For you.” Volga choked, but quickly regained his composure. “Was getting caught a part of your quest?” Link smiled again. “Of course!” Volga’s heartrate increased. “Well, you did it! You got yourself caught. Now what’s the next step in your ‘Master Quest?’” “Rescuing the Princess—” Link ripped his shackles from the wall and grabbed Volga by the shoulders. “—with no survivors!” Link slammed Volga’s face into the brick wall. The Dragon Knight swung desperately in retaliation, only for Link to catch his arm. Volga screamed in pain as the scarfed warrior snapped his elbow. “What are you?” cried Volga. His eyes widened as Link turned him to a spike wall. It was still sullied by the blood and guts of men, women, and children he had executed here. “I’m Cia’s reckoning.” Link kicked Volga into the spikes. The worn spikes effortlessly pierced the Dragon Knight’s armor and body. His organs spilled out, his intestines trailing along the torture device. His heart remained prominently on a spike tip. It beat for a few seconds more, and then burst into flame. Volga the Dragon Knight was no more. Link freed his squad, and the soldiers immediately broke into the weapons cabinet and redistributed their equipment. Link turned to the fairy, now free from her jar. “Proxi,” he said, “I need you to get the prisoners out of here.” “What about you?” she asked, her voice squeaky as always. “Get the prisoners out,” Link repeated. “And bring back reinforcements. Go.” Reclaiming the Master Sword, Link left to find Zelda. Ever since they had caught each other’s eye in the castle courtyard, she had remained in his thoughts. There was something about her that was familiar, as if he had known and loved her since before the world’s beginning. Alas, the attack of Cia’s army that very day prevented any interaction with the Princess not related to war. Link readied his sword. He was near the castle’s main hall, and there were enemies ahead.