Establishing Hyrule

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((Finally back!))

 

Skyloft was quiet as a graveyard now, as every citizen had been evacuated except for those essential to their mission. The final party consisted of Caoilainn, Fintan, Melania, Leoni, Zelda, Link, Zurin, and Batreaux; Sault hoped this would be enough magical energy to bring this floating continent down softly. "Once we enter the center of the island is when everything should go haywire." he told his friends. "According to what Majora told me we have about a minute till landfall after it starts." 

 

Fintan begins directing everyone and preparing for meditation, which will shape the currents of energy the demons and Zelda will release. Everyone will focus on channeling the energy through themselves and into the chambers of the island's core. He stresses that the island will continue to slowly descend for about a minute, so we all need to be ready for an exhausting ordeal. After the briefing, it was time for the operation to begin. If Sault had a stomach, it would probably be twisted up from anxiety right now.

 

The group's teleportation into the center of Skyloft, where they'd visited so long ago to finish the Blade of Duplicity, was met with a very sudden lurch. Fintan began shouting orders to form up and begin meditation as the island clearly began to pick up speed toward the earth. Sault gave Caoilainn words of assurance to help her remain calm, though she was clearly the more serene of the couple already, and soon everyone followed suit. It was then that everyone had a horrible revelation; not only was Skyloft beginning to falter, but every last island in the sky was plummeting as they focused. Everyone meditating had to extend their attention to all the islands in the sky while the others increased their magical energy output significantly.

 

"No... it's no good!" Melania shouted aloud. "We have enough energy to hold all the islands, but not enough meditators!" It was true; the strain of channeling all that power from Zelda and the demons was too much for only 3 Sheikah and a mildly experienced Hylian. The island began to pick up speed again as their wills eroded and concentrations were broken, leaving only Fintan completely focused. "Someone, anyone," he called out to the world through his mind, "we need your power!"

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(( Nice to have you back :) Andrew, you haven't posted in like a week, is everything okay? ))

 

A lull follows my plea. I cling onto every last trace of power that I can, but it's diminishing as quickly as the rocky outcropping hurtles to the earth. I'm putting every last trace of my energy into this, but it's not enough.

And that's when I feel a sudden, overwhelming surge of power radiating from all around us. Three points below, one above. A colourful light radiates from each point - blue from Faron woods, red from Eldin Volcano, yellow from Lanayru dessert, white from the Sky. A pyramid begins to form as the four power sources link up, and I feel the weight lifted from me. The dragons of the surface and the sky spirit ease the strain on our meditation, their power creating a perfect balance.

"Yes!" Caoilainn yells, overjoyed.

With their perfect pyramid of power and our combined channelling of Zelda's magic into the core of the island, the islands descent begins to slow. I focus everything I've got on channelling that power, bringing Skyloft down safely into the clear land. The power is so intense that it's painful. I grit my teeth and clench my fists, determined to make it through.

A soft thud sounds out, the gentle rumble reverberating through me as Skyloft touches down into the ground. I feel the power pyramid slowly fade away, now that Skyloft is securely settled on the ground. We channelled it to the only empty region of the surface - the point where the woods, the dessert and the volcano meet in the middle of the surface.

I collapse against the rocky wall of the small cave, sweat slick on my skin. My breath leaves me in ragged gasps as I slip down onto the floor, absolutely exhausted. Black spots dance in my vision as I rest my head in my hands.

But we did it - we really did it!

Edited by NayruGoddessOfWisdom (see edit history)

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((Yeah, I'm sorry I've been really busy for the last week...))

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I let out a deep sigh, leaning back against the wall of the cave. A fine layer of sweat coats my body, but I pay it no mind as a satisfied smile breaks out across my face.

"Well done," Sault says, and I fold my hands around my waist, laughing a little though I'm exhausted. 

"Thank you..." I reply. "Without you, I probably wouldn't have managed..."

Sault continues to thank everyone and I pass the message on as we make our way back onto the island's surface. Once we're standing in the fresh air, we all let out a sigh simultaneously, dropping to the ground in unison, laughing breathlessly.

"We did it," Fintan repeats, ecstatic. "I can't believe we pulled it off!"

I shake my head in wonder, unable to believe it either. 

"Most of the homes are still intact, too," Melaina says. "Thank goodness!"

"That certainly was tiring," Zelda says, sounding completely worn out. "But we've saved Skyloft, and your Sheikah too!"

I enjoy our group's moment of triumph, but now, more than ever, I want to see those expressions of joy. The need to be healed is almost desperate for me, and I gently tap Fintan on the shoulder.

"Is everything okay?" he asks. 

"I really need to see again," I say. "I don't mean to interrupt any of this, but I have to be healed as soon as it's possible. I have to see those smiles again."

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The first thing that really hits me after the exhausting process of lowering the island is that Skyloft is on the ground. It's so strange to look out over the edge and see forest instead of clear sky. Another thing to get used to, I think, sighing aloud from exhaustion. I can see Caoilainn and Fintan talking off to the side, and I don't even need to go over to figure out what the conversation is about. I can tell from Caoilainn's anxious aura that she wants nothing more than to see again.

And no matter how much she has wronged you or brushed you off in the past, you will support her through it all, I think. I smile at the thought of Caoilainn seeing again, and for the first time in a long time, I feel as though all is right with the world.

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I smile at Caoilainn words, pulling her in for a tight hug. "I'm really happy you've decided that," I say. "But I wouldn't even know where to begin to-"

"Perhaps I can help?" comes a timid voice from behind us. We all turn, to find Batreaux stood over us, a nervous smile on his face. "I don't mean to eavesdrop," he says. "But I do believe I know how your eye sight can be restored, Caoilainn."

She grins from ear to ear. "How?" she asks.

"Gratitude crystals," he says. "Gratitude crystals were how I managed to transform into a human... I understand that you're already part human, but they may be the key to restoring your eyes."

Discussion ensues Batreaux's revelation, about exactly what gratitude crystals are and just how we're supposed to get our hands on them. Link tells us about how he encountered gratitude crystals while on his mission, how he received them when he did something particularly kind for someone.

"It's a kind of involuntary reaction I suppose..." he mutters. "Though I only ever received them from Hylians, there must be something different about us that means we secrete these gems when we're happy..."

"So... I need to get gratitude crystals from other people?" Caoilainn asks. She lets out a heavy huff. "But that means being nice to people..." she whines, jokingly.

"Come on," Leo says, rubbing his hands together. "I might have an idea where you can start to look..." He helps Caoilainn to her feet, and the two of them take off through Skyloft, though I can't help but wander if the name shoulder be changed now that it's down on the Surface. Come to think of it... maybe it's time we gave a new name to the Surface too? I push the thought to the back of my mind for the time being.

When I draw my attention back to the present, I find that most of the group have gotten to their feet and are following Leo and Caoilainn to the supposed location of the gratitude crystals. I push myself up to my feet and follow the group. Now that the island has settled down here... it seems clear to me that this was the way that it was supposed to be all along. The climate in this particular area is perfectly balanced, the ideal place for the Hylians to grow and thrive amongst the surface dwellers, especially given it's advantageous location right in the middle of the three provinces.

As we walk, I find Melaina lingering at the back of the group. I slow my pace, dropping back to walk in step with her. I slip my hand into hers, but she doesn't give it a gentle squeeze like she normally does. I sigh, pressing my lips together, before I look up.

"Did I do something wrong?" I ask. "Things haven't been quite the same with us for a few days..."

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Leoni and I walk for a while in relative silence, the only sounds being our footsteps pattering along, our my thanking him for pointing out cracks or roots of trees. After a few moments I hear voices that don't belong to our group, and I hear Sault's voice.

"Ah, I see what he has in mind," Sault says. His voice is a little fainter than before, and I have to really focus in order to hear it. "He's going to bring you all to the Hylians you've helped. There's bound to be gratitude crystals as a result of all your efforts."

"That makes sense," I say in response, as the voices grow a little louder. 

"What?" Leoni asks, and I shake my head. 

"It's Sault," I remind him, tapping the side of my head. 

"Oh, Leoni!" a woman's voice calls. "And Zelda, and Link and...! You're all safe, thank goodness."

Our group comes to a stop where the Hylians are gathered, and I offer them a brief smile. 

"These are the Sheikah who helped us," Leoni says, introducing us in turn. "We're just glad all of you are safe!"

"Oh no, no," the woman says, "we're just so indebted to you!"

It's at the word 'indebted' that a strange sound fills the air and I hear tiny little clinks as something falls to the ground. 

"What's that?" I ask hesitantly.

"Gratitude Crystals!" one of the other strangers says. "And a lot of them, too!"

A smile breaks out across my face at that. With all of these people feeling this grateful, then there's probably enough to help my sight! 

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It's an impressive sight, watching all the Hylians step forward to express their gratitude to Caoilainn in a shower of crystals. Each of them travelled through the air and hovered about them until there must have been hundreds. "All of this, for me?" Caoliainn says in wonder as Sault allowed her to borrow his sight, to which everyone nods with a smile. "For defeating Majora, for saving these people... this is what you deserve." Fintan assured her. "You're a true hero like the rest of us, you know."

 

A hero. It was the first time any of them had been called that, after their little journey. Perhaps they were all heroes, even if Sault didn't care about being remembered that much. But for Caoilainn, who'd endured more than any of them, it was the ultimate relief to see her wrongdoings forgotten in favor of her compassion.

 

As the gratitude crystals ceased to accumulate, they began to saturate Caoilainn's body with magical energy. Her skin glows in a soothing coat of orange light for a moment, and then there are shouts of joy from all directions at the wondrous result. The awful wounds on her face are gone, replaced by those lovely brown eyes Sault missed so much. They were filled with tears of course, but it was definitely something he was very grateful to witness.

 

But he couldn't be there forever. Sault already felt Majora getting impatient at his lingering now that Skyloft was taken care of, and he'd made a promise to return. "Caoilainn," he spoke into her mind one last time. "I am so happy for you. You've given me love and a memory I'll never forget, but... I have to leave now... for good this time..."

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(( Sorry I vanished! My laptop broke :( ))

 

Everything for a moment seems so wonderful, so perfect, but Caoilainn suddenly lets out a pained cry. She buries her head in her hands, closing her newly restored eyes, as if to hide herself from the world that she's only just rediscovered.

I run over to her, wrapping my hands around her arms and stooping down a little to her height. "Caoilainn," I say. "Caoilainn!"

"No!" she pushes my arms away from her and turns around. She listens intently, presumably to something Sault's saying. I glance nervously at my friends, but they all look as anxious as I feel.

"What's going on?" Leo whispers.

"I don't know... I whisper in reply.

"Don't do this to me!" Caoilainn yells. A few moments of silence pass, all of us watching her in confusion, before she turns back to face us.

"He's gone..." she whispers.

She breaks down into tears then. I open my arms to her, and she falls into them, openly weeping into my chest. And all I can do is hug her, because I don't want to think about how awful it must be to be in her position.

I glance over to Melaina, but she won't look me in the eye.

Edited by NayruGoddessOfWisdom (see edit history)

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I cling to Fintan as if for life, muffling my sobs and trying to hold onto the remnants of Sault's warm presence, leaving a cold emptiness in his place. 

"No, no, no," I repeat, over and over. "Fintan, p-please..."

He hugs me a little tighter, and I dissolve; the only thing keeping me upright is his arms, but it's not enough. My heart has sunk to a whole new low, and it bears down on me like deadweight.

I don't open my eyes, I don't dare to. Because it's one thing to imagine Sault in my head, imagining him standing nearby. But when I open my eyes again, he won't be there. He's gone this time, and he's gone for good. And I'll never hear his voice again, or see his smile, and it's all I can do not to scream.

I don't know just how long Fintan holds me in place for, but after a while I'm reduced to dry sobs that rack my body, nearing convulsions. 

"I-I'm sorry," I say softly. "Sorry, Fintan, I'm s-so sorry..."

"It's alright," he says in return. "It's alright..."

I shake my head at that, and finally step back, and I open my eyes and look at this new world. A world without Sault in it.

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If there's one thing to be gleaned from all that is going on, it is that now is not the time to try to comfort Caoilainn. After everything that has happened, even a lovestruck fool like me can still figure out when it's a bad time. I wander around the parts of Skyloft that are still intact, looking at what once were familiar places in front of a backdrop of blue sky. Everything looks a bit out of place down on the ground, but I suppose we'll get used to it. I wander some more, trying to come up with a good name for the new town we've inadvertently created on the Surface. I can't think of anything, so I just walk in silence, wandering onto what was once the Isle of the Goddess. I stare up at the large statue, completely unscathed from its descent from the sky. I sit underneath the statue's watchful gaze, and I meditate clearing my mind as best as I can. I sit for hours, just focusing on the auras around me. I can sense the Hylians, and the Sheikah, and I can pick out a few auras in particular. I can sense Link, Zelda, Fintan, Melaina, and Caoilainn, but I feel as though there is something missing. I know that it's the void created by Sault's death, but I have no idea how to fill it or if it can even be filled.

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((I'm so so so sorry for my lack of replies, I've been super busy and I can't promise I'll reply more in the future... Sorry guys, summer is really busy for me ))

 

I wipe my tears away with my sleeve. Everyone is dealing with the loss of Sault in their own ways. Leoni has left a few minutes ago, walking around in Skyloft. Caoilainn is devastated, competely ruined. I don't know if she'll ever be able to process his death... Fintan tried to comfort her, but she went to sit alone, a little further. Fintan's sitting alone now too.

We need to talk, but just not now, it's not the right time. Now is the time to mourn.

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It's almost too painful, leaving all of his friends (and especially Caoilainn) like that, but it had to be done. Majora was stamping about as he returned from the world of the living, and was all too eager to begin its eternal sleep. "You've got a lot of energy, you know mister?" it said after calming down. "I bet you'll make an awesome mask for me."

 

"As long as this isn't too painful I don't care." Sault replied, and Majora shook its head to assure him. The child began some form of incantation, and Sault could feel his spiritual form become weary and numb. It was time to pass on for good, but suddenly he had one last idea. Reaching out mentally to Caoilainn once more, he gazed with is mind at the scene of her alone, still crying.

 

"Don't cry," he spoke gently into her mind, causing her to look about. "I'm going into a sleep I don't think I can wake up from any time soon, but please don't be sad. Even if I can't move, or say anything, I'll always be able to watch you now." It was a true blessing to see Caoilainn's eyes turn to the heavens, even if they were stained with tears. "Sault! But... how will I know you're here?" She called. "Believe in me, I guess." He replied. "I want to be able to watch you, so I will. I want it more than anything, to see you live enough for the both of us, to watch you be a hero. I'll always be with you, even if we can't talk anymore, so don't cry anymore, okay?"

 

Sault's last image was of her smiling and nodding, resolved to move on, before he finally got so tired he couldn't sense anything anymore. His awareness of Caoilainn remained through it all, in the form of feelings she was relaying to him naturally; her sadness at his passing, her acceptance to move forward, all of the goodness that Sault replied to with feelings of love and affection. For then and ever after, Sault wasn't worrying about where he came from or anything else; he was truly content.

 

((aaaaand that's a wrap for Sault! As of right now I don't plan to write any more entries for him, my next plans are to make an RP of my own. Stay tuned and expect something in the next few weeks! :D ))

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Bob the Cadaver was still Bob the Cadaver

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This time, when Sault leaves, it doesn't result in my feeling cold or empty. His warm presence lingers a little longer, and I'm reassured at the comfort it brings to me. I exhale, leaning back against the tree I sit under. 

After the wave of emotions had passed through me, I'm left with a strange sort of contentment that I didn't expect. I feel more alive at hearing Sault's words, at knowing it's okay for me to stop crying, to stop becoming lost the way I had been. 

Fintan passes by me, looking dead ahead, and I stand up, taking him by the arm out of habit. 

"Caoilainn?" he asks. "Are you okay?"

"I heard him one last time," I explain. I relay Sault's word to Fintan, who listens with a small smile on his face.

"I'm glad you're feeling better," he says. "And that Sault is alright with passing on."

He gives me a hug, but I pull away from him with a little frown. "Fintan... I think it's about time you talked to Melaina. It's not exactly a secret that she's feeling a little less than chipper as of late."

"I suppose you're right," Fintan agrees. "You'll be okay?"

"I'm fine," I tell him. "I'll be good. I'm Caoilainn; I'm strong!"

For the first time in a while, the two of us break out in genuine smiles, before Fintan takes off in search of Melaina and I decide to take a look around Skyloft, thinking about Sault and our brief time together. Brief, but magical. 

 

((I'm sorry to see Sault go, but he was absolutely excellent from start to finish!!  :n_n: ))

Edited by ButterflyBabyBlue (see edit history)

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