Zelda soared through the open window into the pitch-black darkness of the tower, immediately readying her kodachi as she landed in a crouching position on a stairway. She looked up, tracing the path towards a massive door where the faint sounds of an organ could be heard. Yes, that had to be it. Ganondorf was just beyond it, waiting for her.
Without hesitation, Zelda leaped up the steps and shoved the door open. It slammed against the wall as she entered a massive, circular throne room. It was dimly lit, save for torches scattered about, and a large stained glass window depicting the Triforce. The throne itself was empty, but Zelda was able to follow the source of the music to a large organ in the corner of the room.
And there he stood, Ganondorf, the King of Evil. He slowly turned to face her, bringing his playing to an abrupt end. His golden eyes narrowed as he glared at her.
“The Princess of Destiny called out to the people of Hyrule,” he spoke in a deep, rumbling voice, “and now a Sheikah stands before me.”
Though his voice was full of venom, it still sounded as if he was mildly amused. His face was partially hidden in the shadows, his golden eyes glowing eerily in the darkness. Zelda took a step forward, her hand instinctively going to the hilt of her sword.
“Hyrule is a land of darkness and ruin,” she said, her voice trembling. “You are nothing but a king of destruction.”
Ganondorf chuckled, a cold, mirthless sound. “Ah yes…the Sheikah know much about darkness and ruin, don’t they?”
Zelda hesitated, looking down at the ground. Yet, when she looked up again, her expression was resolute. “I will not let you destroy Hyrule!”
“And how do you plan to stop me this time, little princess?” Ganondorf asked, his voice dripping with mockery. “Your little disguise fools no one!”
He shot his hand forward, magic crackling around his fingers, as a ray of light shot towards Zelda. It hit her in the chest, and she was knocked backward, landing hard on the ground. She scrambled to her feet, noticing her clothes seemed much different than before. Looking down, she was once again wearing her regalia. She reached for her sword only to find it had vanished.
“I will commend you,” Ganondorf said, his voice full of false praise. “You have managed to survive this long. Even Koume and Kotake were no match for you, but no one will come to your rescue like before. It is time for you to meet your end.”
The throne room began to transform, the torches roaring to life and becoming pillars of fire. The floor trembled as the throne and organ vanished, and Zelda found herself backing away, her heart pounding in her chest. This was it. This would be the end.
Ganondorf raised his hand again, and a ball of dark energy formed in his palm. Zelda raised her hand in response, and a shield of light appeared just in time to deflect Ganondorf’s attack. The force of the impact sent her sliding back across the floor.
Ganondorf slowly walked towards her, his steps measured and deliberate. “You are strong, princess, stronger than I anticipated, but all of your strength will be for nothing. You still cannot defeat me.”
He raised his hand once more, and Zelda reinforced her shield. He shot another blast of dark energy at her, but she deflected it just like the other.
“This will go quite differently this time,” Zelda closed her eyes, calling upon the power of the Sages. Her entire body was soon covered in light as her Sheikah disguise returned. “If you can hold a sword, now would be the time to find it.”
Ganondorf chuckled again, this time with genuine amusement. “Very well.”
He stretched out his hand, and a large sword materialized in it, its color black with a wicked-looking blade. He swung it through the air a few times to test its weight before returning his attention to Zelda.
“Let us see how quickly you fall,” he charged at her, his sword raised high.
Zelda leaped to the side, narrowly avoiding Ganondorf’s attack. She quickly drew her kodachi and turned to face him. He was already swinging his sword at her again, and she barely had time to block it. The force of the impact sent her flying backward, and she hit the wall hard. Ganondorf was upon her in an instant, his sword raised for a finishing blow.
Zelda rolled to the side just in time, and Ganondorf’s sword embedded itself in the wall. He yanked it out with a growl of frustration and turned to face her again.
This time, Zelda was ready for him. She dodged his first few attacks with ease, her kodachi a blur as she parried his sword. Ganondorf’s annoyance grew with each strike that didn’t connect, and Zelda took advantage of his anger. She leaped forward and drove her kodachi into his shoulder, and he roared in pain before stumbling backward, clutching at his wound.
“Ha!” he raised his hand and shot a blast of dark energy at her, but it merely dissipated against the invisible, magical shield she still had in effect.
“Magic has always been your ally,” Zelda said, her voice full of contempt, “but it cannot save you now.”
Ganondorf snarled and charged at her again, but Zelda dodged his attacks and struck back with her kodachi. She kept up her offensive, never giving him a chance to recover or rest. She kept this up until she finally saw her opportunity. Ganondorf stumbled and fell to one knee, and Zelda sprang forward, prepared to deliver the final blow. Her mother’s face flashed in her mind, how she used to kiss her on the forehead, how her face grew rigid when she wanted to protect Zelda from the truth.
“My darling, destiny can be broken. You are so much more than that.”
The Gerudo, once Ganondorf’s subjects, now fought the hordes below, the death of Nabooru weighing heavily on their shoulders. Zelda’s eyes became wet with tears, but she did not falter even as the horrible scene in the Spirit Temple unfolded in her mind once again. Nabooru dropping her arms in defeat. The silver gauntlets sizzling and crackling as smoke rose into the air. Her screams as the shadow brought its blade down on her.
“She knew…She always knew he was nothing but a wicked soul…and I believed her…”
Ganondorf’s hate-filled eyes met hers, and at that moment, Zelda knew he understood what was about to happen. He would be brought down, not by the Hero of Time, but by the Princess of Destiny. He would never again plague the world with his darkness.
Yet, it all happened so quickly. One moment, she noticed Ganondorf’s shadow bend at an unnatural angle before rising from the floor. It took on the form of a man before plunging a dark sword into his back. Ganondorf roared in pain as the shadow withdrew its blade and vanished into the darkness.
Zelda stared in disbelief at the scene before her, reaching out her hand as if to stop it from happening. Ganondorf’s body fell to the ground with a thud, his sword clattering beside him. His body then dissolved into a pool of black liquid, which quickly evaporated, leaving only his sword behind.
“And I saw the Sacred Realm open before me.”
The shadow appeared from the darkness, once again in the form of Dark Link. His red eyes met Zelda’s, and she took a step backward in surprise. She had to get away. She had to alert the Sages!
“Six wise beings sat in peace, faith, and temperance,” Dark Link continued, his hollow voice echoing through the room. “And yet the goddesses allowed them to be struck down, chastened, erased…”
He drew his black sword and pointed it at her. “And so they were, by six of your wisest.”
At his words, five other shadows appeared in the room, each seeming to struggle to maintain their forms.
“We come to give relief to you, spawn of Hylia,” Dark Link waved his hand, and the shadows became whole, each with long, white hair, silver eyes, and long, dark robes with the red Sheikah emblem. Their frames were slender, and their expressions were merciless, overflowing with rage and hatred. They joined hands with each other and began performing the same chant Zelda had heard in the Shadow Temple.
“You who are afflicted with the burden of mortality,” Dark Link’s words seemed to be enhanced by the chanting, rippling across Zelda’s skin like tainted water. “At last, the Sacred Realm will open once again. You have done well to assemble your kingdoms as we asked. Now, we repay your diligence by casting you into our kingdom of torment. I name myself Adelora!”
The other figures began calling out their names, each voice varying in its timbre, but all with the same unmistakable bloodlust in their piercing, silver eyes.
“And behold, in this time, we restore ourselves!” Dark Link proclaimed as the other Sheikari converged on him, merging with his shadow. “We are the Sheikari.”