Chapter Sixteen: Family

The Legend of Zelda: Real Courage

Lila knew how to see Zale.

She knew how to see and talk to Zale, but she couldn't. It wasn't safe, for him or herself. On the one hand, she had to speak with Zale because Lady Ganondra demanded it. On the other hand, she wanted to talk to Zale because she liked him. On the first hand, talking to Zale meant exposing his secrets. On the second hand, talking to Zale meant exposing hers.

For a brief moment, Lila wondered if that would be so bad.

"You're crying."

Lila blinked, then closed her eyes tight. She stopped in the middle of the staircase and sat. Not knowing what else to do, she pulled her knees to her chest.

Mori hovered in the air, feeling useless. Lila wasn't physically hurt. She wasn't hurt at all, as far as Mori could tell. She was confused in a way he didn't know how to help her.

"Mori, what do I do? What's wrong with me?"

He didn't answer because he didn't know what to say. Instead, he told her, "We need to go."

Lila bit her cheek. She opened her eyes and took a deep breath. She couldn't let... this... paralyze her. She was strong and chosen to take on these tasks.

"Let's go."

They continued on in silence. Neither of them said a word all the way until they were outside the sewer. Lila was too lost in thought, and Mori couldn't find a way to break the tension. Once the sounds of busy town life were all around, she couldn't brood any longer.

"So," Lila said with false cheer, "other than Gauntlets of Strength, is there anything I will need in the desert?"

"Water..." Mori answered cautiously.

"Ah, yes. The source of all life. Perhaps..." she chose the first store she saw, "Malo Mart will offer a refreshment."

"Malo Mart?"

"Absolutely. Come, dear keese. Let us buy ourselves some water."

Bewildered, Mori followed Lila as she walked – brisk but stiff – into a large store labeled "Malo Mart."

Like the city itself, Malo Mart wasn't as filled in as its Kakariko counterpart, but there were still quite a few patrons. Lila browsed through the shelves. There were arrows, but she didn't see any bows. She found bombs, but they were a lot more expensive. Then she looked behind the counter. That's where she found the good stuff... or where the good stuff should be.

"You only have slingshots?" Lila complained to the tall man behind the counter. He had a pointed chin, perpetually raised eyebrows, and a mouth that looked like he was lemons.

"Did you not see the rest of our wares?"

"I mean, you don't have any bows?"

"Ah, yes, we are awaiting a shipment."

She crossed her arms, peeved that she would have to wait. "How soon?"

"Next week."

Lila slapped the counter. "Come on! I can't stay in Castle Town that long!"

The man's face became a little sourer. "I cannot get it any faster. Is there anything else you would like to buy?"

Lila sighed and looked through her purse. She had lots of money to burn. "Fine, I'll get a slingshot and... twenty Deku seeds. Plus a bottle of oil."

The man's eyes lit up as he added the total. "That will be two hundred rupees. If you buy just ten bombs, I'll give you a second bottle at half price."

"No way, your bombs are overpriced."

"Free! I'll give you the bottle free." He looked desperate.

Lila thought it over. Ten bombs cost half the price of a bottle, so it was a really good deal. "You have a deal."

"Thank you! That brings your total to two-hundred eighty rupees."

"Hey! You said the bottle was free!"

"Did I forget to tell you it's free with twenty bombs?"

Lila jiggled her purse. "Whatever. I don't need any of this stuff." She turned to leave.

"Don't go! Two-hundred forty. Your total is two hundred forty!"

"What does that price include?" she asked carefully.

"Everything." His shoulders slumped in defeat. "The slingshot, twenty Deku seeds, a bottle of oil, an empty bottle, and ten bombs."

"Perfect. Here are your two-hundred forty rupees," she said, satisfied. "Lower the price of your bombs, and you won't have this problem anymore. They're only ten for ten in Kakariko."

"I knew it," the shopkeeper mumbled.

"What was that?" Lila asked angrily.

"Sorry for your trouble?" His eyebrows went even higher.

"Uh-huh, sure. Just give me my stuff."

Reluctantly, he handed over Lila's purchases. She checked and double-checked to make sure everything was there.

"Remember, the bows will come in six days!"

"I doubt I'll be here," Lila said under her breath as she left. Outside Malo Mart, she complained to Mori, "Wow, what a swindler!"

"I'm surprised you even bought the Deku seeds. You can find those or any other ammo on the ground."

"I know, but it was convenient."

"To most people, so are the bombs."

"Who would need them in Castle Town?"



"They make way for new buildings."

Lila looked at him like he was crazy.

"It's true. Someone has to do it."

"You're so weird, Mori."

"Yet you still hang around me."

"Shut it. I'm going to the desert. Coming with?"

"Do you realize the sun is setting?"


"We ought to sleep for the night before going on an adventure."

Lila thought for a moment. "We'll sleep in the castle."

Mori wobbled up and down. "Are you crazy?"

She rolled her eyes. "Our castle, silly."


They left Castle Town by the entrance they used. Of all things to happen, Zale was waiting for them.

Lila moaned. "I thought he was in the castle," she whispered to Mori.

"You spent a lot of time in Malo Mart," Mori said.

"I guess." Lila sauntered forward. She called to Zale, "Are you stalking me?" She felt herself glaring. "What do you want?" Lila demanded, crossing her arms.

Zale held up his hands in a gesture of innocence. "I thought we might talk.”

"Yeah?" Lila said, coming a little closer. "About what? About the awful way you treated me in Kakariko Village?"

A frown replaced Zale's smile. "Did I do something wrong?"

Lila was right in his face. "You only made me look like a fool!"

Zale looked confused. "From my side, you seemed to be the one attacking me. If anything, you should be apologizing."

"Me? Apologize?"

"Well, I did pay for the food..."

"Ugh!" she shouted, storming off a way. "Why are you so difficult?"

"I could say the same of you." Zale shook his head. "But, I don't want to. I just want you to get past that, and we can start over. Think you can handle that?"

Keeping her back to him but not moving away, Lila chewed her lip in frustration. Was there really use in arguing? She found she didn't have much else to say. "Well, I guess so." She turned around, and his smile was huge. For a moment she saw his true feelings. That smile made all of her anger melt away. Only to be replaced with the ache of betrayal.

"Is something wrong?"

Lila took control of her emotions... or at least tried to. "No, nothing. I'm sorry for the trouble I caused."

"What trouble?" Zale said with a cheeky smile. "We're starting over, remember?"

It took a moment, but Lila finally smiled. "Oh, right. Well, if we're starting over, is there anything you need to tell me?"

Zale thought it over. "Hm... How about, I like to read?"

Lila laughed. It was an easy laugh she wasn't used to. "Nice. I like to fence."

"My favorite food is an egg salad sandwich."

"My favorite color is green."

"I travel a lot."

"So do I." Lila couldn't help herself anymore. She burst out laughing like a child. "This is..."

"Fun!" Zale finished, also laughing.

"Yeah." Her mirth faded as she realized she wasn't able to name the feeling. The last time she had fun was... "What's your family like?"

"My family?"

"If you don't mind me asking. Mine is horrible."

Zale sobered. "Is that why you travel?"

"Something like that."

When Lila didn't offer anymore, Zale said, "My family is a little weird, too. My dad was upset that I was a boy, and my mom—"

"He was upset about that?" Lila asked, amazed at the coincidence.

"Yeah. Women are traditionally more honored in my family. My dad went through the same hardship."

"I see. What about your mother?"

"She died before I was old enough to know her."

That made Lila wonder about the girl Zelda, but didn't think now was the time to bring her up. She said slowly instead, "We have a lot in common."

"How so?"

"I was expected to be a boy.”

Zale paused, seeming to take it in. "I see."

She shook her head. "It doesn't matter. I gotta go, anyway. I still have to travel for a while." The sun was behind the mountains already.

"Where are you going?" Zale asked.

"Ho – Gerudo Valley." Lila worried he heard her slip up. He looked a little suspicious. Maybe.

"Well, I'm sorry to have kept you so late. I guess... I'll see you around?"

A small, sad smile forced its way onto Lila's face. "Yeah, maybe."

Zale nodded. "It's decided. I'll see you again."

Lila was confused but... happy. "Okay."

"And, Lila."


"Have courage.

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culoapaperella #1
oooh a loz work,, gonna be amazing to ti read !!