Escape from Death Labyrinth

by Illuvitar

      A wall of flames formed a prison around the young princess inside. "I do not know how I got stuck in here," she thought to herself. Despite her well-mannered exterior behavior that she had shown at banquets and the like, Zelda was actually a very dedicated adventurer underneath. She would rather perish than be the quarry of that fiend, Ganon. "Let us see... This wall of flames has gaps in it. It flickers, just like any normal flame. If I slip through the gaps between the tongues of flame, I can get out without being incinerated. I may be singed, but not burned badly," she thought measuring the heat of the fire and noticing that it was not so intense that it would kill her if she simply got close to it.

Turning herself sideways, she slipped quickly through a gap in the flames. Of course, there was more than just a wall of fire that she was trapped in; there was a regular stone chamber as well. Zelda began to silently walk around the chamber, between the inner prison and the wall, to see what she could find. The bow, scimitar, compass, map of Hyrule, and quiver that she carried in her adventuring life were leaning up against one corner of the room. She picked them up, and further around on the south side there was a door. The door had a locking device on it, but it was not a complicated one; Zelda could figure it out with ease. Evidently she was supposed not to escape from the flames. Opening the door would mean that whatever was on the other side of the door would come after her, however. She pressed her ear up against the door and listened.

"What? Some lad beat you off!?" snarled Ganon on the other side. "I sent you after a little old lady! And some teenaged brat saved her?" There was a pause and then the moblin in charge of the search party (what was left of it) then replied that this "lad" was still quite a swordsman. "Well you will end up in his trophy room or on a pike outside the palace if you don't find that kid and bring me proof that he will never be a threat again."

As Ganon bellowed more threats to his minions, Zelda wondered if the little old lady had been Impa, whom she had sent in search of a hero. If so, it looked as though she had found one-in fact, just the one that the girl had hoped that Impa would find. "Even if Link now is aware of this situation, the odds of him finding the eight fragments of the Triforce and then getting here are slim at best. Of course, my chances of getting out and doing the same are not much better, but at least there could be two of us," thought Zelda. She began to pry at the lock on the door, and removed it with no difficulty whatsoever. Now that the lock had been removed, Zelda peered through the keyhole to see what was on the other side of the door.

"Carock!" Ganon called. The Great Wizzarobe appeared in the throne room.

"You called, master?" said Carock respectfully.

"Have you figured out how to reunite the Triforce fragments?" asked Ganon.

"No, master. I have not. I estimate, however, that within the year we will have learned. Does the princess still refuse to tell you anything?"

"She still refuses, and she effectively resists any magical attempt to read her mind. I cannot get it by torture, I cannot get it from her by threatening to kill her. I cannot get it out even if I threaten to do both!"

"Is there anything else, master?" asked Carock. Ganon dismissed him, and the wizzarobe returned whence he had come. Now only Ganon was in the room.

"I am going to need some pretty powerful magic to vanquish with this guy," thought Zelda. "Magic of the sort that I do not have. If I shoot him, it will wound him, and distract him from casting any spells on me while I flee, but it will not incapacitate him for more than a few seconds." Zelda began to crack the shutters that held the door closed open, just enough to shoot an arrow through.

"I have a feeling that I am being watched. I wonder if that girl has some clairvoyance abil-Ouch!" said Ganon as an arrow hit him from the side. At this point, the shutters that had been holding the prison behind him flew open, and the prisoner sprinted across the throneroom floor faster than Ganon had ever seen a person run before. "How the @%#$ did YOU get out?!" he roared. Zelda was out the south door before Ganon could compose himself enough to pitch a lightning bolt at her, much less cast a magic net or something-precisely Zelda's idea. "I'm going to have to sound the alarm," snorted Ganon.

A flight of Petra guarded the next room to the south. These creatures were still acting under orders to attack any intruders. The potent venom that covered the creatures could pass through cloth and skin alike. Zelda made several quick dashes to try to dodge the monsters, before going into a roll to escape via the door on the east side of the room. Ganon, meanwhile, called a meeting of every wizzarobe in the palace.

"Our quarry has escaped. If she got outside the palace, she would be even worse than Link because unlike him she already knows where all of the Triforce fragments are. If possible," said Ganon, "I want her captured, and brought back to me. If you cannot capture her, and have no other choice but to let her escape, you are authorized to kill her instead. We already have one hero to worry about. We don't need two. Dismissed!"

Zelda flattened herself against a stone wall, having just seen a wizzarobe around the corner. The wall offered the girl nothing save concealment; the wizards could phase through it. "I may be more intelligent than Ganon himself, but he certainly has me out-numbered and out-classed in magic," she thought, wondering how she would get through this set of passages. The slightest mistake could quickly bring her to an extremely painful end, and she had to be careful not to let that happen. Looking around the corner, she saw that the wizard was not looking in her direction, and she fitted an arrow to her bow, hoping that she could hit the guard before he turned around, saw her, and cast any number of perfectly deadly spells.

As in the normal game itself, where the player plays the role of Link, so is the fate of Zelda ambiguous. She could escape to freedom and help Link save Hyrule, or she could be caught and killed before she leaves Death Mountain. One thing is for certain, however. If simply captured again, she will just figure out a way to escape the new trap. Either she wins her freedom, or she loses her life. As for which, let the reader decide!

The End

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