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About Literature / Hobbyist Cymantha PaigeFemale/Canada Group :iconghiralinkfanaticyaoi: GhiralinkFanaticYaoi
 
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  • Listening to: Remixes of Touhou OST
  • Reading: The Perfect Girl
  • Watching: Ajin
  • Playing: Rise of the Tomb Raider
  • Eating: Candy
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Ah, it's been fun :)

I've been on this site since 2012, and man, what a journey it's been. This is where it all began. This is where I decided that I wanted to honestly take a stab at being a writer. I opened myself up to this site, I made mistakes, I made friends, I grew. You guys have supported me through thick and thin, and I don't think I could have made it as far as I did if it weren't for you guys. You guys are the people that made me feel like I had a voice worth being heard, that I can actually maybe DO THIS, that it doesn't have to stay a dream, but can maybe become something more, and for that I am eternally grateful. 

I won't be deactivating my account. I'll still pop in every once in a while so I can go through my messages and maybe PM people :) 

Thanks again ~

Until next time!

Skychild15
GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape

Chapter Fifteen: The Promise


Link let out a low breath, watching as it formed a little cloud before drifting off in the night sky. He couldn’t sleep, Again. His nightmares had gotten the better of him. They were more frequent now, more vivid. Some of them were about Demise hunting him in the dark fortress, sometimes they were revisits to his most brutal torture sessions. Sometimes he dreamt that Demise had somehow made it onto Skyloft, a bloody smile on his lips as he dragged the demon lord’s lifeless body behind him. Sometimes they were nice; Ghirahim came back for him, just like he said he would. But when Link woke up, and realized he was alone, he, too, considered those nightmares.

Sleep was a fleeting thing for the boy, so rare, that when he managed to catch an hour or two during the night, it was considered a treat. Often he would wake up in a mad panic, coated in sweat, his lungs heaving. There were always those terrifying handful of seconds that passed too slowly, when the sky child waited for his eyes to adjust, praying that he wasn’t still in the dungeon. And then he would feel the warm bed underneath him, see his belongings scattered on the ground, and realize that he was safe in his home, far from harm’s reach.

He was always on edge. He couldn’t walk around the island without expecting to see Demise hiding behind every corner, ready to catch him.

The only source of comfort for Link was when, during his sleepless nights, he could escape the suffocating confines of his house and climb the Light Tower in the plaza. The chilly night air reminded him that he was alive, piercing his body, biting his lungs. He was alive, and he was safe. His mind knew that. His heart wasn’t so easily convinced, however.

Link had the pleasure of telling Headmaster Gaepora that he had failed to rescue Zelda, that she had died at the hands of the enemy. He told the grieving father that it was a quick, painless death, but in truth, the boy didn’t know that at all. Knowing Ghirahim, it probably wasn’t. The headmaster didn’t leave his quarters for days, stricken with a heartache so painful, Link was certain he would die from a broken heart.

It was a different story for the islanders; they didn’t have time to mourn. The blood had barely dried on the ground when the people picked themselves up and sprang into action. The dead demon pigs were pushed over the ledge (Link tried to convince them of the savagery behind this action, but no one listened; despite all that had happened, the surface was suddenly a myth all over again, and the Bokoblins were going to do nothing more than float through space for all eternity), and the dead that belonged to the island were buried in the cemetery, along with a communal vigil to provide closure. Next came the rebuilding. Slowly, brick by brick, Skyloft grew. Just like in battle with the demon pigs, the islanders banded together, working side by side as one, until their home was restored to its former glory. The Academy and residential areas were the first to rise from the ash. Then it was the Bazaar, Beedle’s Shop, and the Goddess Statue. Whatever had been tainted by blood, fire, and war, was made anew.

Weeks passed, months. Time moved forward, spurring Skyloft along.

Just like nothing had ever happened.    

People laughed, chatted about idle things, pretending they couldn’t see the blood-stained cobblestone underneath their feet.

Life had carried on in Skyloft, leaving the boy far behind with his nightmares and paranoia.

Though, Link had to admit, some things had changed, but even then, he wasn't entirely sure he was happy about it. The moment the Academy was back on its feet – granted, it was still quite wobbly; the fire had done a number on the kitchen and classrooms – Headmaster Gaepora held a celebration in Link's name, honoring him with the title of Knight. On account of his heroic bravery, the boy was deemed ready for knighthood. School was no longer a requirement, since he experienced more than the instructors could ever teach him. The sky child's official graduation was to take place the same day as the annual Winged Ceremony. According to Gaepora, it was to be quite a spectacle, one that would go down in the history of Skyloft. Link politely declined, but the look on Gaepora's face quickly told him that he wasn't in any position to do so. And so, with a forced smile and very little words, the sky child moved out of the Academy, donned a stunning midnight blue tunic, and took to the skies, destined to patrol and protect for the rest of his life. In truth, the boy enjoyed school; it helped keep his mind off things. Things seemed simpler when he was in school, innocent. Now that he was a knight, every day when he stared at himself in the mirror, at the blue tunic, at the goggles stuck to his forehead, it was all just a reminder that he was no longer a child. His innocence had long since been tainted, marred, sullied. Things could never go back to the way they were.

Link let out another sigh, rolling his head to the side, gazing out into the star-saturated night. He had grown to hate that endless horizon, those wispy clouds. What once gave him a sense of peace now filled him with burning frustration, reminding him of what lay beneath the clouds, just out of reach, what he had left behind. No, that was wrong. It was the other way around. The demon lord left him. It felt like an infinity ago, and yet it still sent a sharp pain to the boy's heart. Link let out a groan and placed a hand gently over his heart, trying to dull the ache that spread through his chest. His eyes drifted along the sea of clouds. How many times had he searched the horizon during his patrols, looking for signs of life beneath the blanket of clouds, for signs of his Ghirahim? How many times had he leapt from Red's back, hoping, praying that the clouds would suddenly split open, sending him straight back into the heart of the surface, the very place he had been trying to escape from what seemed like lifetimes ago?

The island was too small for the boy. Having had a taste of the surface, Link found himself craving the freedom of being able to run without suddenly meeting a free-fall. He missed the tiny, odd-looking birds, the Kikwi's rummaging for food, the trees that towered over his head with ease. He missed the sturdiness of the ground beneath his feet, how it didn't sway and tip with an especially turbulent breeze. He missed being able to look up and see the clouds high above him, stretching for miles and miles. He missed the adventure of it all, exploring, discovering new things. Skyloft offered normal, stability, consistency, and while the islanders thrived in such conditions, Link was quick to grow bored.  

In that sense, the sky child had to agree with the others; life had indeed slipped back into its old, stale rhythm, and it left a bitter taste in his mouth.

He hated it all.

So badly he just wanted to disappear.

Suddenly, a brilliant flash of green light flared in the sky, bursting through the clouds and spiraling upwards, higher and higher, until the boy could no longer see the top. Link stared at the beacon of light, his expression unchanging, his mouth in a tight line. His heart wallowed against his ribcage, barely beating. The green light was right where the old portal to Faron Woods used to be. It pulsated like a living organism, pulling at the sky child’s fragile heartstrings, beckoning him. With a groan, Link turned his head away from the beacon, closing his eyes, shutting out the light. He hated nights like this the most. He was low on energy, having gotten no sleep for the past handful of days, and his eyes were playing tricks on him. Seeing the portal come to life before him happened more often than he cared to admit, but he wasn’t about to tell anyone about his hallucinations; he’d lose his position on the patrol team for sure. Link smirked. ‘On second thought, maybe I should tell someone. Perhaps they would think I’ve gone mad and strip me of my title. What a shame.’

Holding his breath, the boy counted to ten, exhaled, and turned his face back to the horizon. ‘It’ll be gone,’ he reasoned, ‘as it always is.’

The beacon was still there.

Link shot up, his nerves rigid. Goosebumps trailed along his arms, biting at his skin. The scars riddling his body began to burn, aching with each frantic heartbeat. His eyes, wide and unblinking, wandered up and down the glowing beacon, a pool of nausea in his belly. “It’s official,” he moaned, squeezing his eyes shut and rubbing them vigorously with his knuckles, “I’m insane.”

He cracked his eyes open slowly, peeking through his gloved fingers.

The beacon, in all its green glory, was still there.

The boy bit his lip, his mind racing in circles, screaming, screaming, screaming.

‘Go inspect it.’

‘No! Don’t go inspect it; night flying is illegal.’

‘Idiot, you’re a Knight now. You can fly anytime you want!’

‘No, it’s too dangerous. What if it isn’t there?’

‘Oh, but what if it is?’

By the time Link realized what he was doing, he had already thrown himself off of the Skyloft Light Tower and was sailing through the sky, his heart in his throat and laughter on his tongue. His whistle for Red was a shrill thing, piercing the silent air like an arrow. In an instant, the crimson Loftwing was drifting underneath the sky child, crowing eagerly, his amber eyes flicking back to Link. The boy landed softly on the bird’s back, his fingers sliding through the plush feathers as he searched for the reins. His feet were barely in the stirrups when Red screeched mightily and barreled forward, blasting into the night sky. Link lurched in the saddle, his arms flailing as he fought to keep his balance. As he pinned his legs tightly against the bird’s sides, the boy could feel the stirrings of laughter in his belly, bubbling up his throat and squeaking out his tightly clamped mouth. God, it felt good to laugh. It felt good to smile. Genuinely smile. He had faked one for so long, he had nearly forgotten what an actual one felt like. He let out a giggle, quietly at first, but it was so infectious, so intoxicating, that soon he was roaring with laughter. The sky child was feeling better than he had in days, weeks, even months. He felt lighter, as thin as the air.

There was still the risk that Link was well past the point of being crazy. But he couldn’t turn back. He was beyond the point of logic now. Rationality wouldn't save him. The sparks in his veins drove him forward, the wild breath in his lungs, the crazed scream in his throat. Like a moth to a flame, Link raced for the beacon. He didn't need to tell Red where he wanted to go, the Loftwing could sense it, feel it surging from his pores. "I'm coming, Ghirahim," the boy whispered, his words lost in the wind, "I'm coming!"

When the pair finally reached the portal, the sky child wasted no time. Wordlessly and without ceremony, Link leapt from Red's back and dove into the beacon, tucking himself into a tight ball in hopes of cutting through the air faster. It was only when he passed the ring of clouds separating myth from reality that Link realized his fatal mistake: he didn't have a sailing cloth, and therefore had nothing to slow him down. With a yelp, the boy started swinging his arms and legs frantically, as though the action would slow him down. He called for Red once more, praying that his Loftwing could still hear him through the barrier of clouds. A skipped heartbeat later, and Red tore through the portal's opening, his eyes wide with confusion. He squawked nervously at the sky child, a growl rumbling in his belly as he picked up his owner. Link let out a relieved breath, burying his face into the bird's neck. "Thank Hylia for you, Red!"

It took a couple minutes of coaxing Red to land, and Link knew that, despite all their training, Loftwing's remained wild at heart, and couldn't always be domesticated to the point of blindly listening to their masters. Red was different; the boy knew the bond he had with the Crimson Loftwing was not to be taken lightly. It was as though their relationship transcended time, that they had been friends, partners, in another life. Link hopped off the bird's back, scratching his feathery neck with praise. "Job well done, Red," he murmured, and the bird chirped in response. "I can always count on you."

The Loftwing playful nipped at the sky child's tunic, and with a ruffle of his feathers, the mighty bird took off, shooting into the sky with a cry.

Link watched Red drift into the night before dropping his gaze and wearily scanning the woods. His eyes were slow to adjust to the night that drenched the surface. The moon didn't make it passed the clouds tonight, leaving the boy in darkness. As he felt around his surroundings, Link suddenly wished he had been more prepared. A lantern would have been nice. Weaponry, too. He had killed a lot of Bokoblins up on Skyloft, and even with the divine hope that Ghirahim had held up his end of the bargain, it was doubtful that all evil could possibly be eradicated from one place. The boy flicked his wrists, trying to shake off his nerves. He prayed that he wouldn’t walk into a nest of sleeping Deku Shrubs. They were always grumpy when they first woke up.

The boy wandered through the woods, using his heart as his guide. It pulled him in many directions, and after nearly falling into the same pond a third time, he was about to give up altogether, opting to search for the demon lord when daylight was on his side.    

And that’s when he saw him.

Ghirahim, standing next to a horribly cracked bird statue.

He was leaning against the pillar with his arms crossed against his chest, surrounded by an air of nonchalance that Link saw right through.

The demon lord’s wobbly smile went crooked, and he pushed himself off the statue, cocking his head to the side. His entire body was shaking. He let out a low, shuddering breath, and then spoke:
“Hello, my foolish boy, my sky child, my Link.”

The boy contemplated closing his eyes, holding his breath, and counting to ten. He wanted to be sure that he wasn’t crazy, that his brain wasn’t making this up as another form of torture.

But then the demon lord reached out and touched him. It was tentative, hesitant, fingers brushing against his cheek. Cold, perfect fingers.

“Is this a dream?” Link whispered, his heart in his throat. It was suddenly hard to breathe. “Have I truly lost my mind?”

He was afraid of what the answer was.

Ghirahim smiled adoringly at the boy, brushing his hair out of his face. He bent down, resting his forehead against Link’s. “Oh no, sky child. This is very, very, real.”

A sob burst from the boy’s throat, and he crumbled into the demon lord’s arms. “Ghirahim!” He cried, overwrought with every emotion he had held back, had buried deep, the past months.

Every tear he had refused to shed was now drenching the demon lord’s chest.

Every shred of pain and anger was now ripping the boy’s throat raw.

Every wave of sadness was now rolling off Link, pelting everything in his immediate radius without mercy.

Ghirahim held onto Link as though his life depended on it, and for a moment, Link wondered if he, too, had often dreamt of holding the boy in his arms, only to wake up and find himself alone, tricked by his desperate mind and anxious heart. The thought made him feel sick. ‘Never again,’ he vowed, ‘never again will I let those dreams become a reality.’

But, just in case, the sky child sank even further into the demon lord’s arms, nuzzling his face into his chest. He inhaled deeply. Mint and honey. Perfection.

Ghirahim let out a chuckle as beautiful as wind chimes. “You foolish boy,” he scolded, yet his voice was light and whimsical, “why didn’t you wait for me like I had asked? I promised you that I would come back for you.” He let out a little huff of air, pouting. “You certainly took the wind out of my sails by finding me first.” He jutted out his lower lip. “I feel a bit emasculated, in fact.”

“I know you said you’d find me in this life or the next, but Ghirahim, I didn’t know if I’d be able to wait that long! When I saw the beacon, well, I simply couldn't wait!”

The demon lord chuckled again, and it was music to Link’s ears. He’d never grow tired of that sound. “You are a stubborn one.” He pulled away from Link, tilting his face upwards. With a gentle hum, he nuzzled his nose against the boy’s. “No wonder why I like you so much.”

Link blinked, causing several tears to tumble down his cheeks. “But how?” He whispered, reaching up and cupping the sides of Ghirahim’s face with such care, as though the demon lord were the most precious, fragile thing he had ever touched. Like he was smoke ready to dissolve in the wind. “How did you get the portal to work?”

Ghirahim’s cheeks warmed underneath the sky child’s touch, and he bit his lip, sheepish. “Well, when I returned to the surface, I immediately got to work in destroying the portals. I tracked down each and every one, smashing them to smithereens, making it impossible for Demise to use them.” He frowned. “I’m afraid that I was a bit too efficient at my job. It was bloody difficult rebuilding one of those stupid stone birds from just a pile of rubble. All of the pieces looked the same!” The demon lord slowly pulled his hands out from behind his back, giving Link a good look at the oozing cuts, broken callouses, and blisters marking the palms, days upon days of hard work etched into his skin. “I finally found the final piece tonight.” He winced. “I’m sorry it took me so long.”

Link shook his head vehemently. “Don’t apologize.” He commanded, his voice firm. His legs were trembling underneath him, but the boy ignored their threats to crumple and stood up on the tips of his toes. He brushed his lips against Ghirahim’s, a whisper of a kiss. “I feared I’d never see you again.” He murmured gently.

Ghirahim smiled softly against the sky child. “My darling,” he moaned, “how many times must I tell you? We belong together. Nothing, not even death, not even a stupid bird statue, will keep us apart. Our love with withstand all obstacles, without fail.” He sank into the kiss, savoring the feeling of Link’s lips on his.

Since the fall of Demise’s empire, Link had felt nothing but numbness; he had become hollow, a shell. But now, as Ghirahim pressed into him, sliding his torn hands onto the sky child’s back, slipping deeper into the kiss, he had never felt so alive. A plethora of feelings assaulted his sluggish brain, and Link tried in vain to memorize everything. Everything he was feeling, everything that was happening. From start to finish, he wanted to be able to replay it, over and over, until it was ingrained into his memory.

The way his heart sped up when the demon lord paid extra attention to his bottom lip.

The way Ghirahim’s back arched at his touch, his silk skin cool against Link’s fingers.

The feeling of Ghirahim’s body on his, pressed so tightly together, there was no guessing where human ended and demon started; they were simply one.

The way he reciprocated, his long fingers working their way up the boy’s back, scratching at his
tunic, desperate to feel the skin underneath the layers of fabric.

The way his lungs only allowed shallow breaths when Ghirahim paused to kiss away his tears.

He had to remember it all. Ever second.

When the demon lord pulled away, Link had to bite back the whine of disappointment. His body
ached for more, longing for more than just a taste. Ghirahim’s onyx eyes danced along the boy’s face, and he chortled, tugging Link into a tight hug. “We have the rest of our lives to play, sky child. Let’s just enjoy being together, in this very moment.” He pressed his lips onto the crown if the boy’s head. “Let’s not spoil it, shall we?”

Link’s heart thrummed happily at the demon lord’s words, how they felt like honey coating his
body, sending a pleasant, sweet warmth flitting through him.  Unable to help it, he let out a little snort. “What odd words for a demon to say.”

“I know. What on earth is wrong with me?”

With extraordinary care, Link picked up and demon lord’s hands and brought them to his lips, tenderly kissing the wounds. “Your poor hands.” He whispered, flicking his eyes up to Ghirahim.

The demon lord sucked in a breath, melting under the boy’s sizzling gaze. “They don’t hurt that bad, really. Finally seeing you again makes it worth it.”

“Can you heal them?”

Ghirahim frowned, his back stiffening. “Unfortunately, I cannot.” His mouth quirked to the side, and he arched an eyebrow. “You never asked me about Demise.”

Link pulled his lips away from the demon lord’s hands, his eyebrows raised. It was his turn to feel sheepish, and suddenly his body felt like it was on fire. “I sort of assumed he was dead by your hand.”

The demon lord rolled his eyes, placing his hands gingerly on his hips. “Demons can’t die. Honestly, sky child, do you listen to anything that I tell you?”

“Yes!” The boy argued. He shrank away from Ghirahim’s dark stare, and dropped his gaze to the ground. “Sometimes I forget.” He finally mumbled.

The demon lord smirked. “Doesn’t honesty feel better than lying?”

“It wasn’t a lie—”

“Demise has been sealed away,” Ghirahim announced, his proclamation cutting through Link’s sentence. He eyed the boy carefully. “Have I gotten all of your attention now?”

The sky child, upon seeing that Ghirahim was waiting for a response, quickly nodded, his lips tightly clamped together, his eyes wide with shock. He wasn’t sure he was able to form words at the moment, anyways.

Ghirahim waited a moment more before continuing. “You see, though he would never admit to it, Demise had used up a lot of his strength in the mere planning stages. I didn’t notice it at first; I simply assumed he was more irritable than normal due to stress. It hadn’t occurred to me until much later that he was losing energy from strategizing and building his army.” He shrugged his shoulders. “And when he shut down all flow of magic within the fortress in a half-crazed effort to track us down, well, that was that.” The demon lord suddenly grinned, his eyes glimmering with a hatred for the Demon King. “The fool was never good at controlling his power, and in the end, it cost him. For the first time in my life, we were matched for power.” His shoulders shook as a vicious laughter rippled through him. “What a battle it was. In the end, I was able to overthrow him and seal him away in the Sacred Grounds. Of course, I received some help from his horde of Bokoblins.”

“Demise’s Bokoblins?” Link asked, breaking his stunned silence.  

Ghirahim didn’t seem to mind his interruption. “Obviously. There is no way I’d be able to carry his fat body all the way over to the Sacred Grounds by myself.” He shook his head. “They carried him, while I carved out his soul, separating it from his body. That was tiring; left me exhausted for days.”

“How did you get them all to help you?”

“Oh please,” the demon lord scoffed, flicking his wrist playfully, “those pigs have such tiny brains. It takes very little effort to convince them to do anything, even if it means turning on their creator.”

Link clenched his fists together, his fingernails biting into the palms of his hands. "So that's it then? It's over?"

Ghirahim nodded a bit too quickly. "It's over."

The boy peered into his demon lord's eyes, frowning, suspicion creeping up his spine. Ghirahim began to shift from foot to foot, his eyes darting from Link's to the ground. His frown deepened. "There is something you aren't telling me." He tried to meet the demon lord's eyes again but couldn't. "There is fear hiding behind that fleeting gaze of yours."

Ghirahim bit his lip, the tendons in his neck stiff and jutting out. He let out a strained breath. "I suppose I haven't been entirely truthful." He closed his eyes, a groan on his tongue. He took another deep, shaky breath; Link rubbed his arm reassuringly. "Yes, I sealed Demise away, and yes, I am currently stronger than him." His pale, porcelain face grew impossibly paler, his eyes dripping with fear. "But he is still strong, and even within the confines of his prison, he is fighting to get out." The demon lord placed a hand over his heart. "Even now, as we speak, he fights. It wasn't hard to combat his attacks at first; I'd simply replace the seal and send him even deeper into his eternal damnation. But every day he grows stronger, finding new ways to battle my soul, and I am running out of seals; if I slip up even once and use the same seal twice, it's over. He will break through the barrier as though mere paper is blocking his path. He is waiting for me to weaken, to make a mistake. He is counting on it." He let out a sad little sigh. "I fear that one of these days he will attack, and I will not be strong enough to fight back."

Link felt his heart swell with an emotion he had grown uncomfortably familiar with: fear. It laced its way up his spine, sending shivers racing underneath his skin. He shuddered, the hairs on his arms standing on end, the nerves hiding just below the surface taut, its frayed edges on the brink of snapping. He felt cheated; he had but a taste of happiness, and then it was abruptly ripped out of his arms, out of reach. The sky child cursed under his breath, kicking at the ground, sending a spray of dirt everywhere. “It’s not over,” he grumbled, “why would we have the luxury of it being over? It would never be that easy. Not for us.”

The demon lord didn’t reply. Anger began to bubble within the boy, igniting his heart, burning the blood in his veins. He bared his teeth at Ghirahim. “You tell me that honesty is important, and yet you lie to me? You told me not to spoil the moment. And look what you’ve done.” He threw his hands into the air, exasperated. “I give up. Honestly, I just give up trying to have anything good happen to me.”

Ghirahim rested a hand on the boy’s shoulder and gave it a gentle squeeze. Link slowly lifted his gaze till it landed on Ghirahim’s, and he faltered, his anger quickly replaced with confusion. The demon lord’s eyes were desperately wide, pleading as they raked over the boy. Link took a small step back. “What?”

Ghirahim let out another groan, dropping his face into his hands. “That’s only half of the story,” he mumbled through his hands.

Link rolled his eyes. “Of course it is.”

“Sky child,” the demon lord slowly picked his head up from his hands, his gaze sharp, “this is serious. The second half of the story involves you.”

The boy pinched his lips together, fighting off another rush of shivers.

He felt incredibly cheated.

Ghirahim stood tall once more. “The seals I put on Demise are only a temporary fix; they won’t last long, and if he manages to escape, we will be right back to where we started.” He sighed, severing eye contact with Link. “That’s where you come in. I’m not strong enough to fight off Demise, but you are.” His mouth slipped up into a half-smile. “Well, at least you will be by the time your journey comes to an end.”

Link’s heart skipped a beat, his stomach dropping into his bowels. “Journey?!”

“Correct.” The demon lord reached behind the bird statue, and with a grunt, he pulled out two heavy looking objects.

The boy’s sword and shield.

Link inhaled sharply, surprising himself when tears sprang to his eyes. With trembling hands, he reached out, taking the sword and shield carefully out the demon lord’s hands.

In his clutches, they felt at home, and he felt whole, restored. He didn’t realize how much he had missed his weapons.

At his touch, the sword immediately began to glow, pulsating with an excited energy. The boy felt warmth flood his system as the energy flitted through him, sparking in his veins, setting fire to his heart. The sword hummed in his grasp, sending tendrils of vibrations down his arm, tickling his hairs. He smiled, inspecting the blade carefully. ‘I’ve missed you too, Fi.’

Ghirahim smiled warmly as he watched his sky child fall in love with his weapons all over again. It was a love he never had with Demise, despite being his trusted weapon for years upon years. And yet, as Link began to playfully swing his sword around, jabbing and slicing at the air, the demon lord was reminded of something:

Link was different, special, an entirely different breed of human.

‘Perhaps, one day, when this is all done, he can wield me with as much love,’ the demon lord prayed.

“Ghirahim?” The boy’s voice snapped the demon lord out of his thoughts, and he quickly shook his head, blinking rapidly, causing his eyes to sting.

Link had halted his mini practice session and was staring at him hesitantly. “Are you alright?”

Ghirahim waved a hand in the air, a light chuckle breezing past his lips. “Oh, don’t worry about me! Just lost in my thoughts.”

The boy eyed his demon lord up for a moment more before sending his sword back in its sheath. “You mentioned a journey.” His face hardened with determination, and he stepped forward, his hands gently clasping around Ghirahim’s elbows. “What sort of journey?”

The demon lord forced a smile, and he winked playfully. “Oh, you’ll like this one. It is a grand adventure, the chance of a lifetime. You must travel through the uncharted lands of the surface, unlocking the secrets to strengthening the bond between you and your sword, thus ensuring it is ready for battle.” He winced. “Or, in our case, a seal breaking.”

Link bit his lip, reluctant to take part in the enthusiasm that Ghirahim was thrusting at him. “But Zelda is gone. She was the entire reason for my journey. Without her forging the path and me following her footsteps, how am I supposed to know where to go?” The boy let out a sigh, swallowing the bitterness that reared its ugly head in his throat.

Ghirahim offered a crooked grin and patted Link's cheek. “You aren't, sky child. That’s the beauty of it! This adventure belongs to only you now; revel in that fact. Forge your own path. Discover new territories. Live a little!”

“I don't suppose you could come with me.”

“No, I don't suppose I can.” The demon lord let out a sigh, running his hands through his hair, wincing as several strands snagged into his cuts. “Someone needs to stay here and make sure the seal doesn't break, and that little old lady in the Sealed Grounds looks like she is going to drop dead at any given moment.” He offered the boy a grin. “I'm looking at it as my punishment for serving such a vile king.”

Link shook his head, smirking grimly. “I think serving such a vile king is punishment enough.”
Silence enveloped the pair, but it was cold and unfriendly. When the boy spoke again, it was a quiet, sad thing. “I wish I didn’t have to do this alone.” He wiped his eyes hurriedly with the back of his hand, ashamed of the hot, selfish tears blurring his vision.

The demon lord hooked a finger under the sky child’s chin, turning his gaze upwards. He offered a reassuring smile. “You won’t be alone. The little blue bird trapped in that sword of yours will always be around for company.” He shrugged, crossing his arms against his chest. “And I’ll be here, you know, if you need me. You can always come and visit. I mean, it’s not like I’m going anywhere. And I may not be able to help you in the line of duty, but I’d like to think that I give rather good advice. You saw the size of my library, so you know that I’m quite advanced with knowledge.”

“Ghirahim.” Link interjected, a smile pulling at the ends of his lips.

The demon lord continued to ramble. “And demons have terrific memories. Did I ever tell you that? I can remember books I read when I was but a youngling. I can remember every dream I’ve ever had, every nightmare.” He shuddered. “I’d prefer not to remember those, however. There are some ghastly ones locked away in here,” he tapped a finger against the side of his head. His eyes suddenly brightened. “You know, I’ve often thought about writing a book of my own! What an idea. Maybe I’ll work on that while you’re gone. Besides maintaining the seal, I’m going to have a lot of spare time on my hands. And something tells me that old lady is a bit dry in the personality area.”

“Ghirahim!”

“I mean, have you met her—”

The boy pressed his lips forcefully against the demon lord’s, sending his rant into a crashing halt. Ghirahim let out a happy groan, tugging Link into a fierce hug. “That was nice,” he said when they finally pulled away. He bent his head, rest it in the crook of the boy’s neck. “A bit out of nowhere, but nice just the same.”

“Well,” Link scoffed, “you wouldn’t shut up!”

The pair remained together for the rest of the rapidly fading night, resting at the foot of the bird statue. The sky child sat with his back against the stone, while the demon lord lay beside him, his head cradled on Link’s legs. As daylight threatened to break, they danced around the subject of goodbye, talking about everything else, and sometimes nothing else. It was perfectly loving and perfectly frustrating all at once.

The boy was the first to speak, reluctantly breaking the unspoken rule. “I suppose I should get going,” He said quietly. “I imagine the rest of the Knights are getting antsy, wondering where I am, why I’ve missed my patrol.”

“And if they knew that you were in the company of a demon all night, what a scandal.”

The boy smirked, but its mirth was fleeting. He ran his fingers through the demon lord’s hair, watching as the sky filled with pinks and oranges. “I’ll come back.” He promised. “Every chance I get, I’ll come back to see you.”

Ghirahim pinched his lips together, his face pointed to the horizon, his pale skin glowing with hues of the morning sky. “I know you will,” he mumbled.

Link watched as a thin trail of tears escape from the corner of the demon lord’s eye, sliding over the bridge of his nose before dripping off onto his pantleg. Ghirahim slowly closed his eyes, letting out an irritated moan. “I hate goodbyes.”

“This isn’t goodbye,” the sky child insisted. He bent forward, gently sliding his lips along the demon lord’s forehead. “This isn’t forever.”

“I know.” The demon lord said again, his voice heavy, threatening to crack. He slowly sat up, reaching for the sky child’s hand. The tears were coming down harder, and while he tried to wipe them away, there were simply too many to catch.

Link scooted forward so that he was sitting next to the demon lord. “Hey,” he crooned, brushing his finger along Ghirahim’s cheek, “I need you to do something for me, alright?”

The demon lord let out a hiccup that caused his shoulders to shake, and after wiping his eyes several more times, he bit his lip and nodded weakly. “Anything.”

The sky child smiled. “I need you to be strong and know that, no matter what happens out there, you will always wait for me. If you lose me in this lifetime, promise me that you’ll wait for me in the next.” He caressed the demon lord’s cheek, running his fingers along his jawline. “Care for that little red string for me, and I’ll always find my way back to you.”

Ghirahim’s lip began to wobble again. “It’s harder when you’re the one getting left behind, you know.”

‘Tell me about it.’ The boy nodded encouragingly, his heart squeezing tightly within him. “Please, Ghirahim,” he begged, “say you’ll promise.”

The demon lord let out a growl, shaking his head fiercely. “It’s not fair,” he cried. “I’m supposed to be the strong one! I’m supposed to be the protector! And yet here I am, stuck in one spot, while you’re the one having to do all the dirty work.” He sniffled, rubbing his nose. “You have no idea what it feels like to be left behind while your other half is putting their life at risk every day.”

Link let out a sigh, a sad smile on his lips. “No, Ghirahim, I do understand. I understand completely.” He reached forward, his fingers lightly grazing the demon lord’s neck, his shoulders, his collarbone. “When I watched you leave for the surface, and I was left alone on Skyloft, my heart hurt so much, I could hardly bear it. I didn’t know when I was going to see you again. I had no way of knowing if you were still alive. I didn’t know how I could possibly go on, move forward.” A swell of emotions crept up his throat, but he pushed them back down. “I do know what it feels like. I lived through it for three months.” The boy bit his lip, holding it still. “Please, darling, just promise me. Please?”

The demon lord finally managed to dry his eyes, and he gave Link a shaky smile, nodding his head. “With all my heart, I promise to always wait for you, my dear sky child.”

Link felt his blood sing with an overwhelming amount of love for Ghirahim, and tears blemished his sight once more. He blinked them away, his smile cracking slightly. If he broke now, the boy wasn’t certain he’d ever be able to leave the demon lord’s side. “That’s all I ask.” The words felt repetitive on the boy’s tongue, like he and the demon lord had walked down this road before.

The sparkle in his endless black eyes told Link that the demon lord felt the same way. “Well then,” Ghirahim joked lightly, “until our next meeting, lets seal it with a kiss, shall we?” He winked at the boy. “For old time’s sake.”  

And as the sun broke over the mountains, splashing them with its radiant light, the pair sealed their vow with a kiss. This kiss, drowning in thousands of goodbyes, worries, and uncertainties, was kept afloat by the single promise of hello, and in that instant, the kiss became more than just a vow. For Link and Ghirahim, it became what they always wanted; finally, within reach, they felt it caress the blood in their veins and tickle their hearts, felt it fill their lungs full of song. It was there, and they reached for it wholeheartedly.

The perfect moment.

The End.
GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape --Chapter 15--
HERE. IT. IS.

THE FINAL CHAPTER!! What a bittersweet feeling Heart ~

Oh my word, what a journey it's been! I've loved writing this piece. I feel like I've grown as a writer, and I'm so excited to continue pursuing this passion of mine. I honestly couldn't have written this story without everyone's wonderful support. I hope you all enjoyed it! 

As always, I love hearing from you guys! Comments, critiques, feedback...I love it all!

Skyward Sword, SS Characters (c) Nintendo
Original Storyline (c) Me :happybounce: 
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GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape

Chapter Fourteen: Come Back


The air was rich with the scent of blood and fear. It was the first thing Link noticed when he and Ghirahim landed on the plush back of his Loftwing and began sailing towards Skyloft.

The second thing he noticed were the flames that engulfed his home island. They swallowed Skyloft whole, cackling and snapping at the stars as the flames grew taller, and taller, stretching into the sky. The heat rolled off the fire in waves, and instantly, Link was saturated in sweat, in desperate need of water.  

The third thing he noticed were the screams piercing the air.

The hope blossoming within him carried deception, the petals of safety turning into sharp thorns.

“Link, look!” Ghirahim cried out, horror claiming his features. He wrapped his arms tighter around the boy’s waist, his breath coming out heavy and fast against Link’s neck.

“I know!” The sky child barked, fury over whelming his senses. Bending low over his bird’s neck, he brushed his fingers through the crimson feathers. “I need to ask you for more,” he whispered; his Loftwing chirped in response, his amber eyes flicking to Link. “Please go faster, Red!”

The crimson Loftwing let out a screech that vibrated deep within his belly, and began pumping his wings harder, drifting higher and higher into the cloud-filled sky. And just as the air began to grow uncomfortably thinner, and they were on the verge of clearing the clouds, Red let out a hoarse cry and tilted downward, tucking his wings in tightly to his body and dive-bombing towards the burning island. Ghirahim let out a frantic yelp, his nails digging into Link’s skin as he burrowed his head into the boy’s back. A grim smile flitted across the sky child’s lips, the butterflies in his stomach taking flight. His fingers gripped the reins tighter, and as goosebumps riddled his skin, he had to fight the urge to crow alongside his Loftwing. How he missed flying; he swore he’d never tire of it, never take it for granted again.

They were getting closer. The air became thick with smoke and hot with the memory of fire. Link shot the demon lord a look over his shoulder. “I don’t have my sailing cloth with me, so this might be a bit of a bumpy landing.”

“What? What do you mean bumpy landing? Whatever happening to that sailing cloth!?”

“You took it from me.”

“…Oh…”

Link pinched his lips together, fighting the bitterness that nipped at his heart. Red’s wings shot open, swiftly ending their diving and smoothly transitioning to a gentle glide over Skyloft. The boy’s eyes danced over his island, his heart beating furiously within him. The smell of blood and burning flesh was nearly overpowering now, the screams deafening. He squinted, leaning over his Loftwing to get a better look. Amidst the flames, the sky child could see the shapes of the island people running around in all directions, in the throes of chaos. He watched as one raced for the edge of the plaza, hellbent on leaping off to escape the flame’s clutches. Link recognized the person running. It was Fledge, a friend from the Academy. Their dorms were right next to one another. Fledge was not known for his strength or bravery, but he excelled when it came to survival and fleeing danger. But just as Fledge was about to jump off, his fingers in his mouth, ready to signal his Loftwing, a fat little shadow darted up to him and blocked his path. The shadow’s hand thrust forward, and Fledge came to an abrupt halt. A second later, he doubled over, clutching his belly and crumbling to his knees. The fat shadow withdrew his hand and waddled away from Fledge, leaving him hunched over on the edge of the plaza. The shadow made it a couple steps before he swiftly turned around and kicked Fledge in the back, sending him flying over the edge.

“No!” Link cried out, his voice ringing. “Fledge!”
 
The limp body disappeared into the sea of clouds below, and with all the panicked sounds filling the air, he couldn’t be sure if Fledge managed to call his Loftwing or not. Bile shot to his throat, and he coughed it down, shivers coursing through him. “Who would do that to him?” He wrung his hands together, his eyes still searching the clouds. “Why would they turn on each other like that?”

“Link,” Ghirahim piped up from behind the boy, laying a cold hand on his bare shoulder, “I don’t think it’s a matter of humans turning on each other. I think it’s far worse than that.” He pointed a hand at the fat shadow still hanging around the edge of the plaza. “What do you see?”

The boy gritted his teeth together and focused on the shadow, his gaze scorching. The shadow swayed back and forth, shuffling to where a pile of large wooden crates burned. The flames licked at him, and suddenly he was no longer a figure cloaked in shadow.

A bloodied spear.

Tusks.

A fat pig belly.

Link gasped, his insides igniting with rage. “Bokoblins!”

The demon lord bared his teeth and hissed. “Correct.”

“But how?” The boy howled. “How did this happen?”  

Ghirahim growled. “My guess is that Demise figured that we would offer some resistance, so he went ahead and send a horde of Bokoblins up to Skyloft to get the ball rolling.” He spat. “Who knows how long they’ve been here, how many they’ve killed. It makes me sick.”

The sky child’s stomach churned. Hot tears slid along his eyelids, only to get swiped off by the wind. His blood boiled in his veins, feeding his predatory heart. Link let the anger build within him, fester, until it consumed him completely and all he could see was red. The blood of his enemies. They would all burn. “I’ll make them pay,” he seethed. “I’ll kill each and every one of them!”

Ghirahim pressed his grim smile into Link’s shoulder, his shoulders rippling with near hysterical laughter. He, too, was hungry for a fight.

This would all end tonight.

Something nagged at the boy’s gut, but he couldn’t quite place his finger on it, so he buried it deep within the confines of his mind, opting to look at it later.  Link laid against Red’s neck once more; the Loftwing peered up at the boy, crooning happily. “Red, when we jump off, you need to fly as far away from here as you can.”

The Loftwing squawked in protest, but the boy shook his head. “Only come back if I or Ghirahim calls you, alright? It’s too dangerous to stay close by. I can’t lose you, alright? You are far too important to me.”

Red let out a heavy sigh, turning his attention back to narrowing in on Skyloft. Link felt his stomach tangle into knots as his sapphire eyes raked over the island, his home. The boy blinked hard, the plaza coming into focus once more. That was when he saw that most of Skyloft’s inhabitants were now there, huddled together as Bokoblins circled them, corralling them like livestock. With a growl, Link shifted in the saddle, sending the Loftwing veering left. “We can’t land in the plaza. If we do, we will be falling right into their greasy little hands.” He searched the island, his eyes falling on the Academy. “Take us to the school, Red!” He urged. “It looks the least…on fire.”

With a crow, the Loftwing surged forward, aiming for the Academy. They flew over the bazaar. The Bokoblins must have torched it first, because all that was left were broken structures, flaps of tent fabric, and a sea of ash. Beedle’s shop lay on its side amidst the rubble, still hearty with flames. Link squeezed his eyes shut, feeling sick to his stomach. He prayed that everyone made it out alive.

The crimson Loftwing chirped lightly, snapping the boy out of his thoughts. They were hovering just above the main entrance. He patted the bird’s neck lovingly. “This is good, Red. Set us down!”

The bird flitted to the ground, and the pair hopped off. Ghirahim glanced around and shrugged his shoulders. “Well that wasn’t so bumpy.”

Link rolled his eyes and whistled at his bird. “Off with you! Stay safe!”

The Loftwing screeched, and with a powerful thrust of his wings, the bird took off, soaring into the night sky, away from the dangers that lingered.

Link watched for his Loftwing a moment more before glancing at the demon lord and cocking his head towards the door. “I just need to find a change of clothes. I won’t be long.” The fleeting feeling pressed up against his subconscious once more, just out of reach. Puzzled, the boy pushed the confusing thoughts away, focusing on the task at hand. ‘I’ll figure out what’s bugging me later.’

As the boy snuck to the door, a large snapping and cracking sound tore through the air before disappearing in the surrounding flames. Link glanced around wildly, searching for the source of the noise, his hairs standing on end as alarm raced through him. Ghirahim pointed up, his onyx eyes latched onto something. “Link, the bell!”

The boy looked up, his mouth agape with shock, his face paling. The Academy bell resting just above the main door was on the verge of snapping from its rung on the wooden support beam. Flames snaked up the beam, eating away at it, cackling and sparking as the fire grew. Another crack, and the bell tipped to the side, twisting in the air before falling off the rung completely as the beam snapped in two. The bell clanged mightily, its final battle cry, before tumbling to the ground, destined to crush whatever lay in its path. With a shriek, the demon lord lunged forward and grabbed Link, pulling him barely out of harm’s reach just as the brass bell collapsed into the door, smashing it into nothing but splinters. The boy stared at the broken door, and now the bell that blocked his path, and he tried not to think about how he was standing there only moments ago. He looked up at the demon lord, who was also staring at the shattered door and broken bell, his shoulders heaving for breath as he fought to remain calm. Link shuddered and sank into Ghirahim’s embrace. “It’s ok,” he whispered, “I’m ok. Thank you.”

A moment passed, then another. The demon lord refused to let go of the sky child, despite Link’s writhing to escape. “Ghirahim,” the boy irked, his voice muffled in the demon lord’s chest, “we waste time.”

“How accident prone are you?” Ghirahim growled. “You almost let a bell kill you. A bell! An inanimate object!”

Link scoffed, though it, too, was lost in the demon lord’s chest. “That was a freak accident. How was I supposed to know it was about to fall?”

“Because the building was on fire! The entire thing is made of wood!”

“Alright, enough enough.” Link huffed, straining against the demon lord’s hug. “I don’t have time to sit around while you scold me.” His eyes landed on the Sparring Hall tucked away in a corner, a level lower than the Academy. It was surprisingly not on fire. “There,” he jerked his head to the building, “we should be able to find clothes and supplies in there.”

The demon lord fumed silently for a moment more before letting the boy out of his prison embrace. “Alright,” he pouted, “let’s go. But I’m leading the way.”

The Sparring Hall was empty save for piles of wood that the students used to practice on. Everything else about it was abandoned, bare, picked clean by the Bokoblins. Greedy bastards. However, luck was on Link’s side; in the back room, hiding in one of the old crates, were a change of clothes and a practice sword tucked into the sheath. Head Knight Eagus always left crates like this hanging around in case disasters occurred during lessons. Once, Groose accidentally caught on fire, which was quite a talent, considering the lesson didn’t even involve fire. The big oaf had to swap clothes, but the crates carried nothing in his size. When Groose had to walk around in clothes several sizes too small for him, Eagus just said with his usual lopsided grin that it was punishment for nearly burning his building to the ground.

The boy’s heart flopped. He hoped Eagus was ok. Groose too.

With a disgruntled sigh, Link threw on the cream-colored shirt and green pants. The brown boots were a bit tight, but tight or not, they felt like soft clouds against the sky child’s rough and calloused feet. The clothes scratched against his skin, but the boy savored the feeling, and he vowed to never be naked for longer than a couple minutes. Grabbing the sword and sheath, the boy turned to the door, pausing when his hand gripped the brass doorknob. There it was again, that little inkling of a feeling, flitting just out of reach but being ever so persistent to get his attention. With an annoyed growl, Link opened the door, and at the same time, his subconscious let down its guard, pelting him with the elusive yet nagging feelings. And they swallowed him whole.  

Link’s steps wavered, and he stumbled to a halt, his hands frozen around his waist where he was tying a deep red cloth around himself. “Ghirahim,” he breathed, his face tight with horror.

The demon lord turned from studying the posters demonstrating proper fighting stance on the wall, his arms crossed against his chest. His eyes danced along the boy’s clad body, and he offered a crooked smile. “My my, don’t you clean up well.”

The boy thawed, giving his head a quick shake as he tried to refocus. Hurriedly he wrapped the wine-colored cloth around his waist and threw a dusty sheath over his shoulder, scanning the ground for a shield. There was an old wooden one with a large Loftwing foot painted on the front leaning against the wall. Link grimaced but picked it up, locking it against the sheath on his back. While wood and fire didn’t mix, it was better than nothing. But, just the same, Link wasn’t surprised that the Bokoblins left it behind.

The boy strode towards the demon lord, his steps quick. “Ghirahim,” he tried again, “if we used the portal to get to Skyloft, what’s stopping Demise from doing the same?”

The demon lord stared at the boy, the smile slowly morphing into an angry frown. His hands dropped from his chest, and he turned back to the wall. A curse word on his tongue, Ghirahim lashed out, striking the wall with his fist. Link flinched away, his heart in his throat. “We shouldn’t have run away,” he whispered, wringing his hands together, his eyes wide with fear. “We should have stayed on the surface! By coming here, we’ve put all these people in great danger!”

Ghirahim whirled around to face the boy, his face pinched with anger. He let out a growl, running his hands through his hair. “These people were already well into danger before we came back here, Link.”

“But—”

The demon lord shook his head. He tried to soften his expression, but his face merely shifted into a grimace. “No buts, darling. Demise planned this to happen long before we decided to escape to Skyloft. If we had stayed on the surface, these people still would be suffering, and we would have died a lot sooner.” He turned to the wall, punching it several more times. The plaster began to crack. “By coming here, we’ve simply prolonged the inevitable.” His fist broke through, and he wrenched it out of the hole in the wall, inspecting the bloodied cuts and pieces of plaster stuck to him. He sighed, letting his hand drop listlessly to his side. “I was a fool to not consider the portals; what was I thinking?”

“Maybe it’s not so bad,” the boy reasoned, fear clouding his mind. “Maybe Demise won’t be able to get here. He doesn’t have a Loftwing.”

Ghirahim grabbed Link’s shoulders. “Neither do these Bokoblins, sky child, and yet here they all are, wreaking havoc on the innocent! Think! How can the great Demon King get all of his minions here?”

Link bit his wobbling lip, his eyes leaving the demon lord to stare at the floorboards. Ghirahim gave him a little shake. “Black magic, Link! It runs in his blood, and he’s well versed in it. As long as those portals are in place, he will have no problem figuring out a way to get himself to this island to finish what his demon pigs started.” His eyes filled with tears. “We cannot give him the opportunity; I refuse to back down now! Those portals must be destroyed.”

The boy stiffened, his resolve firm as stone. “I’ll do it.”

Ghirahim immediately shook his head. “No,” he argued, “that is completely out of the question.”

“I’m strong enough to do it.”

“I’m not saying you aren’t.” Ghirahim placed a hand on his hip and rubbed his neck with the other, searching the room for answers. “You are one of the strongest people I’ve had the pleasure of knowing.”

“Then why?” Link spat out, his anger bubbling dangerously close to the surface. “Why won’t you let me help?”

“Because Skyloft currently needs you and your strength, Link!” Ghirahim shouted.

Link stilled, his resolved wavering. “But,” he tried again, his stubbornness cracking, “but I want to help. I can help.”

The demon lord let out a low breath and crouched so he was eye level with the boy. “You can help by staying here.” He brushed Link’s hair out of his face, pausing to cup his cheek. “I’ll goad Demise, distract him, lead him far away from here. I’ll destroy the portals, make it impossible for him find you. But you must do your part and stay hidden up here, alright? Promise me you’ll stay up here.”

The boy blinked rapidly, fending off tears. “But Ghirahim, if you break the portals….” His voice cracked, and he drifted into silence.

Ghirahim kept his face even, but his eyes glistened with sadness. “I know.” He whispered.

Both were too afraid to say it out loud. Saying it out loud would make it real. With a moan, the demon lord reached forward and grabbed the boy, pulling him into a tight embrace. Link slipped in without hesitation, a sob stuck in his throat as he buried his head into Ghirahim’s neck, wetting his velvet skin with his tears. The demon lord cradled the boy’s head, running his hands gently through his tangled hair, whispering words of love and encouragement only for Link.

When silence finally captured the room, and the boy’s tears lost their momentum, he pulled away from Ghirahim, his face stoic. “You told me to promise you I’d stay,” he said, rubbing his sniffling nose, “but I can’t.”

The demon lord frowned, cocking his head to the side. “What?”

“I’m coming with you.”

“No, you aren’t.”

The boy glared at his demon lord. “Yes, I am!”

Ghirahim threw his hands in the air. “Why must you be so difficult! Why can’t you just listen to me for once in your life!”

The tears started afresh. “I don’t want to lose you!”

The demon lord growled, his hands clenching into fists. “You won’t lose me!”

“But,” a sob claimed Link’s throat, and after letting it run its course, he tried again, hating how pathetic he sounded. “But I’ll never see you again.”

“Link,” the fire was gone from Ghirahim’s voice, but not his eyes, “I came back for you once before, didn’t I? You have to trust me when I say I’ll come for you again.”

“But how?” The boy cried, his body wrought with shivers. “How can you be so sure?”

Ghirahim offered the boy a sad smile, hooking a finger under his chin, stealing his attention. “Trust in fate, darling. We are destined to be together. Surely you know that.”

Heart in his throat, the sky child nodded. He did know; he knew with every fiber of his being. Oh, how he wanted to proclaim it to the world.

The demon lord’s thumb caressed Link’s cheek. “A red string of fate ties us together, and no matter how far apart we drift, that string will keep us connected.” He bent down, resting his forehead against the boy’s. “I’ll find you,” he breathed, “whether it’s in this life or the next, I’ll come back for you, my foolish boy, my sky child, my Link.”  

The boy choked back a groan. “Ghirahim!” He cried, pushing up on his toes and kissing his demon lord, fire on his tongue and passion coiling in his heart.

The demon lord enveloped Link into his arms once more, returning the kiss with fervor. This kiss was vastly different than anything the pair had experienced. It was desperate, animalistic, yet cautious and tender. It held no beginning, nor no end. It was hello, and it was goodbye. It was as beautiful as it was painful.

When the pair finally broke apart, Link guided the demon lord to the nearest dock, holding his hand the entire way. The portal to Faron woods glowed a deep green in the distance. The boy decided he hated that portal. His mind tried to reason with him. ‘If the portal didn’t exist, you wouldn’t have met Ghirahim in the first place.’

With a growl, Link shut off his mind and the thoughts filtering through it. The voice of reason was his enemy, as dangerous as Demise and the Bokoblins, and he didn’t care to listen to it.

The demon lord stared at the green glow on the horizon, his face hardened with thoughts. The boy bit his lip, tightening his grip on Ghirahim’s hand. “Are you afraid?”

Ghirahim chuckled, his eyes not leaving the distant portal. “Terrified.” Slowly he cast his gaze down to the sky child, a small smile on his pillowy lips. “But the thought of losing you scares me more than anything else in this world.” His thin brows dipped low over his eyes. “As long as you are alive, Demise will stop at nothing to make sure that you aren’t. He will fight and fight to kill you. But we have one trick up our sleeves, don’t we?” The demon lord’s grin became cut-throat. “Me. If he wants to get to you, he’ll have to get through me first. I’ll put up the most brilliant fight that stupid demon’s ever seen. I’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”

Link put a finger to Ghirahim’s lips, silencing him. He forced a smile. “Just come back.” The smile crumpled. “Come back to me.”

The demon lord melted at the sky child’s touch. He planted a delicate kiss on the boy’s finger, closing his eyes and inhaling his scent, memorizing it. “With pleasure,” he whispered.    

And then, without another word, another kiss, another moment of doubt, Ghirahim stepped off the cliff.

The shriek of Ghirahim whistling for Link’s bird pierced the air, but the boy couldn’t hear it over the cries wrenching from his throat.


**


Link was in pain, and so, he wanted to inflict pain on others. He wanted to feel Bokoblin blood on his hands, wanted to hear them squeal for mercy as he slit their throats and stabbed their bellies. He wanted to show them just how bad he was hurting, how much pain and suffering they were causing him.

He would make them all pay.

It wasn’t hard sneaking down to the plaza, especially when the only company he passed were the company of the dead. Sometimes it was the odd Bokoblin strewn on the path, but mostly it was human. Or at least parts of humans. Sometimes they were burnt, sometimes they were so mangled and bloodied it was hard to decipher where the wound was. And with each dead body he passed, Link’s anger grew, eating away at him, melting into his pain and growing into a hybrid emotion. By the time he reached the plaza, he was burning with such a hatred, he could barely contain himself. He was overflowing with rage. There was fire in his eyes, on his breath, in his hands.

His eyes landed on a nearby unsuspecting Bokoblin, and it was all over.

The demon pig was squatting in the grass, lazily pissing everywhere.

Link walked up behind him, unsheathed his sword, and slit his throat.

The Bokoblin’s eyes stretched wide as blood spurted from the fresh wound. He dropped to his knees, landing in his own pool of piss as he rolled back and forth, his hands grabbing at the wound in a futile attempt to stop the bleeding. His mouth was open, but no squeals came out. Link stood over him, watching with such indifference it made his insides cringe. Eventually the Bokoblin’s eyes glazed over, and his movements stiffened, until there was no movement at all.

The boy bent down, coating his fingers in the warm blood, feeling the sticky texture, how it slipped under his fingernails. His heart surged excitedly. ‘Kill. Kill them all.’

Link turned on his heel and stepped out into the open.

There had to have been fifty, no, sixty Bokoblins scouring the area, taunting the villagers with their spears, joking around in their native tongue. He was clearly outnumbered.

The boy kept walking.

The captured humans clung to each other, their sobs catching in Link’s ear.

Each and every Bokoblin turned and stared at Link, their beady eyes sharp, their spears even sharper.

Link twirled his sword playfully, tossing it from hand to hand without breaking stride, and smiled.

The first Bokoblin that crossed his path didn’t even have time to raise his spear in the air; Link thrust his blade forward, straight into the demon pig’s gut. The Bokoblin grunted, falling to the ground as he fought to keep his innards in place. Link wiped his blade on the back of his pant leg and continued forward.

Another Bokoblin darted forward, swinging his spear wildly in the air. Link nimbly spun on his toes, deftly missing a poorly aimed swipe aimed for his chest. He lunged forward, his sword slicing into the demon pig’s neck and passing through to the other side. The Bokoblin teetered to the ground, his hands clawing at the air, and Link kept walking.

By the time the third and fourth Bokoblin crumbled to the ground, long dead before they hit the cobblestone, Link could see something change within the demon pigs.

This wasn’t a joke.

Link wasn’t just a straggler they missed when searching Skyloft. He wasn’t some nobody asking for a death wish.

Link was delivering the death wish.

The Bokoblin’s glanced at each other, muttering in their demon tongue. They began to scurry around, hopping into formation, sinking low into fighting stances, gripping their spears as though their lives depended on it.

Because they did. Link would see to that.

The islanders were no longer crying, praying and begging for mercy. They were whispering.

A group of three Bokoblins charged at the boy, spears in the air and battle cries on their tongues, but with a swift dodge, kick, and parry, they were all incapacitated. A second later and a mighty horizontal slash of his blade, and they were all dead, their blood seeping into the ground, rivers flowing at Link’s feet.

Four more Bokoblins crept towards the sky child, their movements holding caution as their confidence slipped through their wobbly smiles and slobbery tusks. One by one they fell, as though they posed no threat to the boy. Like they were nothing but a nuisance, a chore.

The humans were no longer whispering. They were shouting, screaming Link’s name and cheering him on.

The boy let the cries of the people wash over him, feeling their hope race through him, giving him energy, driving him forward. With every hack and swipe and thrust of his blade, Link felt himself grow stronger. Like a man possessed he attacked, the sword becoming an extension of his body. It was like a dance, and the sky child knew all the moves.

The Bokoblins were quick to break out of formation, frantic chaos rippling through the horde, scattering them. Handfuls of the demon pigs attacked the boy, while others held back, stomping their feet as their nerves became taut with fear. There was no order, only confusion and anarchy.

A spear sailed by Link’s head, and he whipped his neck to the side, barely missing the sharp blade. He flicked his cold eyes at the demon pig in front of him, his face wiped clean of all emotion. The Bokoblin stilled mid-attack, his arms remaining outstretched, the spear still frozen near the boy’s head. Wordlessly, Link grabbed the shaft of the spear and wrenched it, sending the Bokoblin stumbling forward. Right onto the boy’s hungry blade.

The crowd cheered, their cries deafening.

As Link yanked his sword free from the demon pig’s obese belly, a sudden burst of white-hot pain flared in his head, stabbing down his neck, and he let out a surprised grunt, staggering forward, trying to regain the footing he lost to dizziness. His vision swam with stars and swirling colors, threatening to launch his stomach into his throat.

He slipped, his foot sliding through a puddle of blood. The boy groaned as he skidded onto the scorched cobblestone, and when he rolled onto his back, he was met with an angry looking spear pointed to his face. His eyes slowly drifted up the spear, over the bloodied handle –the culprit to his splitting headache – and the demon pig holding the weapon. The Bokoblin was shaking, his face contorted in a mixture of a snarl and grin. He was excited to kill the boy.

With a sigh, Link relaxed into stone floor, a small smile drifting onto his lips. ‘Can’t say I blame you. I’m excited to die.’

The sky child closed his eyes, the smile remaining on his lips as he stayed stone still, sprawled out onto the pavement, waiting for the sharp embrace of death.

Five seconds passed. Ten. The smile flitted into a confused frown. Link cracked an eye open, then the other. The demon pig was still looming over him, but his expression had changed. His eyes were glazed over, overwhelmed with shock. And his mouth was gaping open. Something was inside it.

A shard of glass, surrounded by a pool of blood.

Link lifted his head off the ground, craning his neck upwards, inspecting the glass wedged in the Bokoblin’s mouth. The demon pig suddenly twitched several times, then collapsed on his side. A woman was standing in his place, her trembling hand bloodied as it clutched a chunk of broken glass, her eyes wide with horror as she gazed at the dead Bokoblin and the mortal wound she had caused. Her eyes slowly made their way to Link’s, and she swallowed hard, her expression turning grim with ill-intent. She pushed her cocoa braids over her shoulders, streaking her white petticoat with crimson. “We will fight with you, hero!” She declared, raising the make-shift glass blade in the air.

There was a roar behind her, and at first, the boy thought it was thunder clapping over his head, it was so loud. But then the sound continued, growing louder and louder, accompanied by the pounding of footsteps, and Link realized that it was the crowd, the people of Skyloft, rising to fight, to reclaim their homeland.

The boy slowly sat up, his head protesting with an angry throb following his angry heartbeat. He slowly looked around, taking in the sight before him.

It was beautiful.

The humans were fighting the Bokoblins, savage sounds on their tongues and sneers on their lips. They were using whatever means necessary to win. Some were clobbering the demon pigs with burning pieces of wood, others merely using their fists. Some of the islanders had even taken flight, using their Loftwings to pluck the Bokoblins from the ground and toss them over the plaza edge, whooping and crowing along with their birds with each kill.  

As a team, the people worked together, united in the fierce will to live. They would not be stopped.

People with nothing to lose often made the deadliest enemies. Link knew this well.

The sky child gently got to his feet, calmly dusting off the clumps of blood and ash.

And then he raised his sword high into the air, and howled, more beast than man: “for Skyloft!”

The people screamed, echoing his war cries with their own before continuing with their attacks with endless frenzied fervor.

This was their land, their birthright. The blood on the ground didn’t deserve to be theirs.  

By the time the last of the Bokoblins were slaughtered, the sun was well into the sky, carrying on with its daily ritual as though life wasn’t shattering around it. Time waited for no one, not even the mourners.

The fires were finally dying down, having found no more fuel to feed on, but the air was still drenched with the scent of smoke, blood, and death. The boy was convinced that he was saturated with the smell, and that he would never smell anything else ever again.

Link pulled his sword out of the back of a Bokoblin. It took a couple tries; the adrenaline he had been so heavily relying on was finally bled dry, leaving him weak, broken, sad. The clothes he had only just recently borrowed were torn to shreds, and he was having a hard time figuring out if the blood coating them was his or that of his enemies. The boy glanced at his blood-soaked hands and the sword he held in a death grip. He was shaking, quivering from head to toe. Realization was setting in.

Link had just committed murder. Several times, in fact. And he LIKED it.

Ghirahim was gone.

Ghirahim was gone.

Ghirahim was gone.

The blade slipped from the sky child’s grip, and he fell to his knees, his back arching as his stomach heaved. He had nothing left to vomit up, but that didn’t stop his body from trying. He didn’t know he could hurt this badly; all the physical wounds he had ever received were but a whisper of the torment his heart was going through. He wished he could carve it out, put it in a box, and lock it away, as far away from him as possible. He would rather feel nothing than the agony that swept through him with every dull heartbeat. He would rather die.

“The hero is down!” A voice cried.

Footsteps pounded towards him, and Link looked up wearily, his vision blurry as he tried to make out the fuzzy faces reaching for him and pulling him up.

“There you go, hero; easy does it!” A different voice, lightly accented, male. Jakamar.

“I’ll grab the sword!” The first voice again, high-pitched and squeaky, also male. Strich.

“I don’t need the sword.” Link bit out roughly, jerking away from Jakamar. “I’m done fighting. I’ve had enough fun with bloodshed.” He threw a glare over his shoulder at the lanky blond-haired teen. “Keep it. Throw it away. Burn it. I don’t care. I don’t want it.”

Strich stared at the bloodied blade in his hands before letting it tumble back onto the burnt earth. He shrugged his shoulders, his bulbous nose twitching, his eyes filled with awe as he gazed at the sky child. A young boy raced forward, snatching the sword before it had time to settle on the ground. “It’s mine!” He claimed, laughing excitedly, his grin showing off the spaces of his missing teeth. He darted towards Link, thrusting the sword upwards. “Can you sign it for me? Please? PLEASE?”

Link faltered, stumbling away from the eager child. “No, I—”

The boy pouted, his arms sagging. “But I want to be able to brag to my friends that the Skyloft hero saved us with this very sword!”

Link swallowed. “Please stop—”

Someone else drifted into the sky child’s view. His snow-white hair was pinned back, his white robes smudged and torn. Professor Owlan. He clasped Link’s shoulder. “Job well done, Link! We are forever in your debt. In all the years that you were in my class, I never doubted you for a second. Your daydreaming didn’t bug me one bit! Tell me,” he crouched low, his grip on the boy growing tighter, “did you see any interesting looking plants in your travels?”

Link shrugged out of the professor’s grasp. “Please—”

“What a stupid question, Owlan!” Another voice interjected. Professor Horwell drifted into view, his brown hair all over the place, the pin tangled in a strand. He walked up to Link and grabbed his hands. “Forget plants. Animals! Surely you saw some rare breed of animal down there!”

A girl around Link’s age pushed forward, a coy smile on her lips and blush riddling her freckled cheeks. She reached forward, hooking her finger into the collar of his shirt, playing with her copper pigtail with the other. “I’ve always thought you were such a gentleman, Link. And quite handsome!” She crept forward, pressing her body against his, gazing up into his wide eyes, her emerald orbs sparkling. “We’d make a cute couple, don’t you think?”

Link let out an anxious gasp, his back growing rigid. He tried to inch away from the girl, but only could take a couple stuttering steps back before bumping into someone else. “Karane, I—”

The young boy grabbed at the sky child’s shirt. “Can I have that autograph now? Please? PLEASE?”

The bodies seemed to multiply, and suddenly, Link felt like he was under attack all over again. But it was an attack of a different breed. Smiling faces with tear-soaked cheeks swarmed him, cheering for him and screaming his name. Hands grabbed at him, wanting to touch him, to see what the hero felt like. The boy swallowed an anxious moan, his eyes darting from face to face. There was no way out, no chance of escape. The bodies pushed closer into him, suffocating him. Covering his face with his hands, the boy sank to the ground, curling up into a tight ball. “Go away,” he groaned through the cracks of his fingers, “go away. Go away!”  

“Alright, alright, give the poor dear some space!” A gruff voice barked.

A woman with chestnut hair pulled back in a frazzled bun pushed through the crowd until she was standing before Link with her hands on her hips. Her dress and petticoat were splattered in blood, her face blotched with ash and soot. But Link recognized her immediately, and relief swept through him. “You’re the potion lady from the Bazaar.” He blurted.

The woman’s mouth quirked to the side. “That’s Luv to you, boy.” She glared at the still ever-present crowd. “Are you all deaf? I said give him some space! Have you never seen a panic attack before?”

The swarming people immediately took several steps back in unison. Link took a deep breath, the fear of suffocating pulsing away as his heartbeat slowed to a normal rhythm. “Thank you,” he mumbled. He looked up at Luv, his expression pensive. “Is your husband alright? Your baby?”

Luv crossed her arms over her abundantly large chest and nodded curtly. “Yes yes, they are fine.” She nodded her head in the direction of the waterfall. “A lot of the women and children hid away in the caves when the pigs dropped in to pay a visit and fires and panic ensued.”

The boy smiled briefly. “The women and children? But not you?”

Luv let out a sharp laugh. “No, dear. I’m a fighter to the bitter end!”

“Somehow it doesn’t surprise me that you sent your husband in there with your child while you stayed here to fight.”

The robust woman snorted, glancing down at her torn dress. “Yes, well, not all hero’s wear pants and carry swords. Sometimes they wear dresses and make potions.”

Unable to help it, the boy growled. “Don’t call me that!” He snapped.

Luv raised her stubby eyebrows at the sky child, and a wave of shame rolled through him,
squeezing his heart along the way. “I’m no hero,” the boy whispered, staring down at his clasped hands. Hot tears burned his eyes, and soon his vision was blurry again.

Luv scoffed, waving her hand in the air dismissively. “And what makes you say that? You fought off the pigs. You saved our lives. You’re a hero.”

Link shook his head, not really listening to Luv. “I was so mad. Mad at the Bokoblins, at myself, at….” He shook his head. “I wanted to kill them.”

“You saved us.” Luv insisted. “It doesn’t matter what was going on in your head while you were doing it. It doesn’t matter that you enjoyed it. What matters now is that we are alive, and we are all ok.”

On impulse, the boy looked out into the sea of clouds, where the glowing green portal should have been. Sometime during the battle, it had flickered out, but Link didn’t notice it. His heart sank into the pit of his stomach, his hands clenching tightly together. “I hope we are all ok.” He whispered, his eyes distant as they searched the clouds with longing.

Luv chuckled softly, patting the boy on the head. “Well, in due time, we will be. Wounds will mend, and hearts will heal. We will pick ourselves up, and move on. We will build, and we will grow. We humans are resilient creatures, and we are also very stubborn; it might take us a few tries to learn from our mistakes, but we’ll get there.” She patted Link’s head once more. “We’ll get there together.” She flashed the boy a toothy grin. “The minute the Bazaar is back in business, I want you to come to see me. Your potions are free from here on out.”

Link mustered up a small smile in thanks. As Luv turned to leave, the boy was already back to gazing at the vast horizon, searching for a sign, for answers, for something that would tell him that Ghirahim was alive, that he was safe. He slowly stood, stepping over the Bokoblin bodies as he neared the edge of the plaza.

No signs appeared before him. But just as the threat of tears began to throb behind Link’s eyes, the demon lord’s voice whispered through his subconscious: “You have to trust me when I say that I’ll come for you again.”

The rush of panic stilled, and the tears ceased their next onslaught. Surprisingly, a tendril of calm wrapped around the boy’s heart, blanketing him in warmth. He let out a sigh, slowly pulling his gaze from the sea of clouds. “I hope we are all ok,” Link said again, hoping that his little prayer would reach Ghirahim, whether he was in this life, or patiently waiting for him in the next.
GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape --Chapter 14--
Hooray! I really enjoyed writing this chapter. It has a little bit of everything: romance, humor, violence. Gah, love it! I'm trying to strengthen my fighting/action sequences, so I hope I made them violent/thrilling enough! Also bonus to those that can figure out the characters I mentioned but didn't name drop. You deserve ALL the gold stars if you can ;)

Also, apologies if there are grammatical errors and/or things that don't look/sound right. I hurriedly edited this piece in order to slap it on here. I don't recall seeing any, but if you notice anything, please let me know! 

As always, I love hearing from you guys! I always appreciate feedback! It helps me growwwwww
More to come! Actually, I'm hoping to post the final chapter tonight :O I hope I can! I'm soooo close to finishing it!

Skyward Sword, CC characters (c) Nintendo
Original Storyline (c) Me!
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GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape

Chapter Thirteen: Out of the Frying Pan


The stranger, cloaked in the artificial darkness, clutched Link's shoulders so tightly the boy was worried his bones would shatter. The hands felt bodiless, like they belonged to the no one. To black magic. To evil. They gave him a little shake, snapping him back to life.

No.

This was all wrong.

Ghirahim would want him to fight.

The boy fought for over two weeks to stay alive, what was a couple more minutes? Link's eyes shot open. He searched for traces of his assailant through the blackness, but was met with nothing. Demise must have smothered his hair so that the flames didn't give him away. Clever. With a growl, the sky child began to thrash and kick, animal sounds tumbling out of his mouth with his hot breath. He didn't sound human. He didn't feel human. He felt wild, primal, dangerous. His fists met air most of the time, but every once in a while he'd connect with somewhere on his enemy, earning a pained grunt that sent a surge of victory through the boy's veins. He wanted to deliver pain. He wanted to feel blood on his hands. It was owed to him, after all that he'd been through. "I can't beat you," he seethed, "but I'll be damned if I don't hurt you even just a little."

The hands left his shoulders and grabbed his hands, stifling their raging movements. Link let out a frustrated cry and pulled away, but his assailant was much too strong. 'I'm sorry, Ghirahim,' he moaned inwardly, 'I tried.'

There was a growl. The hands gripped his, pinching him. And then, the strangest thing happened. Demise spoke, his voice calm, gentle, yet commanding. "Enough, sky child!"

And he didn't sound like Demise at all.

Link knew that velveteen voice anywhere.

Ghirahim.

The boy stilled, gasping lightly. The hands on his loosened, and suddenly Link could feel the silk of the demon lord's gloves, the caress of his fingers against his skin. His heart warbled hesitantly in his chest, heat rushing to his cheeks. Suddenly it was hard to breathe. His lungs hurt, desperate for oxygen. Sweat lined his forehead, and a shiver ran up his spine.

This wasn't right.

It was a trap.

"No!" He barked, panicking. He began to wriggle again, trying to free himself. His hands lashed out once more with newfound energy, transitioning from fists to claws eager to break skin. He was sick of demons and their black magic playing mind games with him. "You can't be Ghirahim! You can't!"

He was wrong, lying. This couldn't be his demon lord, his Ghirahim. His Ghirahim snuck away in the trash shoot, running away from the confines of the fortress. His Ghirahim should be nearly out of Faron woods by now. His Ghirahim should be free.

His Ghirahim was never a very good listener.

"Link!" The floating voice tried again. It was urgent, scared, desperate. "Darling, it's me!"

The boy finally stilled from his writhing, but he wasn't sure if it was from exhaustion or from rationality settling in. With trembling hands, he reached out, afraid of what he might find. But also afraid of what he might not find.

His fingers brushed skin. A cheek, cold, silky smooth.

There was a shuddering sigh in the black, and then pressure on the boy's palm. Lips, soft and smooth, pressing into Link's hand.

The lump in the sky child's throat grew to an impossible size, and tears sidled along his eyelids. "It's you," he choked, "it’s you!"

"Link," Ghirahim breathed the boy's name before reaching forward and pulling him into his arms.

"It's you!" Link continued to cry, nearly hysteric. He convulsed in the demon lord's arms, fighting for each breath, his heart like a raging drum.

Ghirahim hummed softly as he cradled the sky child's shaking body against his chest, clutching his back tightly with one hand and petting Link's head with the other. "There, there, foolish boy. Everything will be alright." He crooned.

The boy took a heaving breath and willed for his muscles to cease their frantic spasming. "But how?" He croaked. "I watched you leave through the trash shoot."

Ghirahim shook his head. "No, you didn't. When I heard your distress, well, I tried to get back into the kitchen, but that cursed shoot was too small for me to maneuver in.” He bit his lip, furrowing his eyebrows. “I had to crawl all the way out in order to properly turn myself around. It was terribly tedious and troublesome.” He grimaced, his lips wobbling just slightly. “And when I came back and heard nothing but silence,” a shudder jerked through him, and he let out a torn gasp, “oh god, I thought the worst!” The demon lord's onyx eyes swam with tears. He caressed Link's face with a trembling hand. “I was so sure that I lost you.” He moaned. “The smell of blood was potent, consuming my senses, and in my panic, I couldn't be sure if it was demon blood or human's.” Ghirahim offered a small smile. “Looking at you know, it is clear that not all of that blood belonged to you. Job well done, darling!”

Link shrugged, his cheeks growing warm at the praise. “I got him with a dirty old knife.”

The demon lord winced. “How positively barbaric of you.”

The boy felt like he was going to melt. He shook his head and reached up. A moment later, the demon lord's hand slid into his. "I can't believe you came back for me." He whispered, his heart humming happily.

Ghirahim chuckled. "I'd never leave my sky child behind."

There was a sliver of silence, and then the boy spoke up once more. "So what do we do now? Go back to the kitchen?"

"No no," the demon lord sighed. "That's what he expects us to do." He bared his teeth into the black magic night, glaring down the hall. "I can sense his presence lingering around there. If we try the kitchen again, we're both dead. Literally for you, metaphorically for me."

The boy cocked his head to the side. “Can he…not sense you? I mean, you know where he is. Shouldn’t he know where you are as well?”

Ghirahim stiffened. “No, he cannot sense me,” he brooded. “It turns out I’m much more in tune with him than he is with me.”

Link's stomach clenched into a tight ball. "So, we are done for. With the kitchen no longer an option, we are trapped, merely dead men walking." He winced, shrugging his shoulders. “Dead demon walking.” He corrected himself.

Ghirahim clicked his tongue. "Now sky child, I will not tolerate such a negative attitude, not when we have other means to escape."

Link sat up straight, immediately at attention. "Come again?"

The demon lord smiled despite knowing it wouldn't reach the boy. "Well, when you mentioned the trash shoot hidden away in the kitchen, it struck a memory within me. I recall doing something similar in the pool room; there is a small tunnel tucked away in the deep end that leads to the pond on our fortress grounds. I had it put there centuries ago for occasions such as these." He frowned, a ball of nausea wedging itself in his throat, threatening to choke him. "I never thought I'd see the day when I'd have to use it."

There were hints of sadness in Ghirahim’s voice, laced with longing. Link squeezed his demon lord's hand. "Demise never questioned you on it?"

Ghirahim laughed quietly. "Heavens no! He was far too busy to help with the finer details of this place. When he created me, designing the fortress was my first job. Just a young demon and a bunch of brainless Bokoblins trying to piece this place together. Can you imagine?" He plastered on a bright smile. "No matter. We shan't be staying here for very much longer." He stood, gently pulling on Link's arm. "Come along now, while Demise and his big, stupid brain still suspects nothing!"

The pair took off, dashing through the fortress. This time, Link didn't falter. Not once did he stumble, nor did his knees give. With Ghirahim holding his hand, the sky child felt strong, unbreakable. He was renewed, and suddenly his life was worth fighting for again. With his demon lord by his side, Link no longer felt the burn of death's flame. Once more, his heart sang with hope, and he let it breathe life into him.

Suddenly they stopped, sending the boy pummeling into the demon lord

"What is it?" Link whispered, glancing around, on edge. He wished he had that rusty knife again, but decided that knowing it was still potentially wedged into Demise's shoulder was ok too.

Ghirahim glanced over his shoulder at the boy. "What? Oh, nothing. We're here, that's all."

Link deflated slightly, stepping out of his guarded stance. "Oh. Well that didn't take long."

The demon lord shook his head. "No. You nearly got here on your own, but ended up turning down that hallway,” he nodded his head to the corridor to his left, “when you should have gone right.” He shrugged. “Not that you would have known that in this soul-crushing darkness. It’s very hard to navigate this fortress, and damn near impossible in the dark."

Link frowned. "Seems a bit anti-climactic."

"Quite." Ghirahim shrugged his shoulders again and tugged on Link's arm. "Shall we go for a swim?”

The boy's heart skipped a beat. "Ghirahim,” he closed his eyes, letting his head sink to his chest. “I can’t swim, remember? What if I…” the sky child’s sentence faded into silence, and he left it there, too afraid to speak life into the word.

The demon lord smiled gently, bending down and hooking a finger under Link’s chin, tilting his head up once more. Leaving a tender kiss on the boy’s lips, Ghirahim nuzzled his nose against Link’s. “I’ll help you.” He promised, his heart in his voice. “On my life, I swear that I won’t let you drown. I’ll guide you.” The demon lord wrapped his arms protectively around his sky child. “I lost you once, I won’t lose you again.”

The pair walked hand in hand to the edge of the pool, peering into the blackened water sloshing below. Link swallowed hard, fear spiking through him and planting barbs through his veins. He could hear the water splash against the cold stone walls, feel the water lick at his toes, and yet his eyes still denied him sight. The windows surrounding the walls did little to help; night had fallen long ago, and the moon was being selfish with its light. The boy sighed, frustration nipping at his heart, and the demon lord gave his hand a reassuring squeeze. “Soon, my darling,” he whispered, “soon you will be free from the confines of this dark magic. Soon you will be able to see again.”

Link nodded, and he sucked in a harsh breath as a shudder snaked up his back. “I’m scared,” he admitted quietly, more to himself than the demon lord.

Ghirahim sighed. “I know. Me too.” He turned and gripped the boy’s shoulders. His face hardened, lines dancing along his forehead, concentration lurking beneath.  “Now, sky child. I want you to listen to me,” he said firmly. “On my count, we will jump in together. Once we’re in the pool, I want you to kick, Link. Kick as hard as you can, because your very life depends on it. And it would be in your best interest to take a deep breath; we will be under for quite some time.” The demon lord smiled softly. “I’ll be holding your hand the entire time, alright?”

The boy grimaced. Fear continued to strangle his heart, but he forced himself to nod. “You won’t let go?”

“I won’t let go.”

Link let out a shuddering breath. “Well, let’s get to it.” He snapped.

Ghirahim let out a quiet chuckle. “Your bark is so much worse than your bite, sky child.”

The boy grunted in response, but it was cut short when the demon lord dipped down and planted a kiss on his lips. “For luck,” he said lightly, his voice like chimes, before taking Link’s hand and giving it a little shake. “Ready?”

Knowing his voice would fail him, Link nodded. His entire body was vibrating, a collection of frail nerves bunched together, chaotically firing off in all directions. His heart felt tight in his chest, his lungs taking up too much room as they fought for breath.

Ghirahim began to count. “One.”

Link let out a groan, his legs coiling beneath him, ready to jump.

“Two.”

His heart was going to give out, he just knew it. The boy took in a deep breath, filling his lungs with as much as they would let him.

“Three!”

The pair leapt into the pool.

The water bit at the boy, sinking its ice-cold teeth into his naked skin, chilling him till there was nothing left but a deep and agonizing ache. All of his logical thoughts pointed upwards, begging him to climb out of the frigid fluid. But his heart willed him to lose all logic, to trust only in his instinct, and sink deeper and deeper, until he was far below the surface. ‘Kick your legs, you fool,’ Link reminded himself as he forced his legs to work. Slowly his legs jerked into action, stiff from the cold but sloppily slicing through the water with uneven kicks.

Ghirahim was strong, carving through the water with ease, but the boy could feel the strain in his grip, the pull of his tense muscles as they fought to hold on to Link, the exhaustion behind his propelling legs. He was dead weight, nothing more than a hindrance. ‘No,’ the boy surged forward, determination flooding his system, flaring his adrenaline, ‘I will not be worthless!’ A whisper of victory flitted through his overworked heart as the tension between his and Ghirahim’s arms lessened, creating the smallest amount of slack. It wasn’t anything remarkable, but it was enough for the demon lord to glance over his shoulder at the struggling boy, giving him a proud smile.

There was a whoosh of bubbles, and the pair coursed forward, a swift current propelling them through the tunnel. A tendril of hope swirled through Link, stifling the sweltering pain in his heart. ‘We must be getting close.’

The pipe tunnel was narrow, barely large enough to fit the pair. The water within it seemed to vortex around them, pushing them forward with like they were weightless, and Link was glad for the extra little boost. But it wasn’t long before Link’s lungs began to burn. He willed his legs to kick harder, faster. He opened his eyes, and a wave of despair smothered him when all he could see was un-ending darkness with no promise of an end. Was he going to drown? Would Ghirahim let him? Could Ghirahim see the tunnel’s exit with his demon eyes? A glimmer of hope soothed the panic welling up within him. Oh, how he wished he could ask him. How he wished he could simply breath.

The demon lord let out a groan muffled by the water. Though Link couldn’t see him, he could tell that Ghirahim was struggling; his pace had slowed, his movements growing sloppy as his legs tangled together. His grip on the boy’s hand became like iron, and the panic returned like a punch in his gut. They were going to die, and while the thought of perishing alongside the demon lord was comforting, it did little to still his screaming mind.

Dots began to cloud Link’s nonexistent vision. His heart worked furiously against his ribcage, making his chest ache. His lungs pulsed and heaved. His mind became muddled and fuzzy, feeding on his fear and letting it swallow him whole. ‘I’m going to drown.’

Just when the boy was certain he was going to faint, his body screaming for oxygen, the pair burst through the tunnel’s exit in a flurry of bubbles, tumbling and somersaulting in the current. Wasting no time, the pair shot upward, their desperate need for air giving them one last push of power. With the last of their energy, Link and Ghirahim broke through the surface, ugly gasps tearing at their throats. The desire to get out of water and onto solid ground was excruciating, and the boy spurred his body forward, splashing and kicking with Ghirahim in tow. Everything felt like it was on fire, and yet Link pushed forward until he was collapsed on the lip of the pond. ‘Good enough,’ he groaned inwardly, sinking into the muddy earth.

Faron Woods was cloaked in darkness, and for a moment, panic ate away at Link’s frail heart, feeding his fears and stifling the hope blooming inside of him. His shoulders sagged, and with a growl, the boy pounded the ground with a clenched fist, frustration scorching his soul. Ghirahim crawled out of the pond and flopped beside the boy, his chest heaving with exertion. His legs were twitching, spasms racing through the exhausted muscles. “Let your eyes adjust,” he panted out between gasping breaths. “You’re too impatient.”

Biting his lip, Link slowly pushed himself off the soggy ground. His legs were wobbly beneath him, protesting as he forced his knees to lock into place. Bit by bit, the world revealed itself to him; the moon stretched out from behind a plethora of clouds, acting as a beacon in the dead of night. It wasn’t much, just outlines of trees and scurrying shadows, but it was enough for the boy to cry out with joy. He gazed around in awe, as though he was seeing life for the first time. In the thick of the night, Link knew he couldn’t see anything but dull grey, but to him, the colors were as vibrant as though it were day. The trees, dancing in a gentle breeze, burned with colors of fall, all reds and oranges and yellows. The stream connected to the pond shimmered with hues of aqua and blue, the fish darting within it flashing splashes of purple and green. And the sounds, god, the sounds were glorious. Far off in the distance, the boy could hear a family of Kikwi’s squeaking happily. Crickets chirruped from within their nests in the abundant gardens surrounding the pair. The night sky burned with stars poking through the clouds, and the air buzzed as hundreds of fireflies joined them. Everything was so alive, alive, alive.

Link inhaled deeply, filling his lungs with the crisp, night air. The oxygen slipped into his lungs smoothly, and much like a drug, the fresh, cleanliness of it left him craving more. He was greedy, gulping mouthfuls of air, trying to rid his body of the toxins he had inhaled for over twelve days, the smells of death and rot and sex coating his lungs, weighing them down like anchors.

There was a moan behind him. Link glanced over his shoulder at the demon lord struggling to stand. His legs gave out, and Ghirahim tumbled back to the ground, nearly slipping into the pond’s hungry mouth and ugly clutches. A wave of guilt swept through the boy, and he swiveled around quickly, grabbing his demon lord’s arms and heaving him out of the water, only stopping when they got to a patch of dry, plush grass. Ghirahim forced a smile, but it was clear that he was riddled in pain and trying to hide it. “Thank you, sky child.” He managed to whisper. “That little excursion proved to be a bit more difficult than I anticipated.” He winced. “I’m afraid I’m well spent.”

Link frowned as worry pierced his heart. He gently pushed the sopping strings of hair out of the demon lord’s face, his thumb catching drops of water mixed with sweat. “I’m so sorry.”

Without opening his eyes, Ghirahim frowned, rolling his head in Link’s direction. “Whatever for?”

The boy swallowed. “I’m afraid I’ve been selfish, relying heavily on you to keep me safe, and I have yet to return the favor.” He sighed, his fingers still working on Ghirahim’s face, though there was no more hair to push away. “I’m sick of feeling useless and weak, unable to give back when you’ve gone through great lengths to protect me, even if it means putting your own life at risk.”

The demon lord clucked his tongue. “Don’t be silly.”

“I’m not being silly.” Determination blazed in Link’s eyes. “It’s my turn to take care of you now.”

The demon lord smiled and cracked his eyes open into slits. With a limp wrist, Ghirahim reached up and patted the sky child’s cheek. “I’m just tired, Link; it’s not like I’m dying. I merely need rest.”

Link shook his head, wincing apologetically. “I fear we haven’t the luxury of rest.”

The surrounding forest had suddenly grown deathly quiet.

Ghirahim sighed, jutting out his bottom lip. “I know,” he moaned, dragging out the words. With a grunt, the demon lord sat up, Link bracing his back to help keep him balanced. “By now, Demise must have noticed that you aren’t trying to get back into the kitchen; he’s grown bored and suspicious, and is now scouring the fortress, looking for you. As far as I know, he isn’t aware of the pool tunnel, but now that he knows of the trash shoot, he’s probably realized that there are possibly more secret exits, so it won’t be long before he finds it.” He bit his lip, his fingers digging into the dirt, the tendons in his arms taut. “He’s getting closer; I can feel his presence growing stronger with each fleeting second.” He glared at his legs, cursing under his breath. “I’m afraid I’m too weak to stand, let alone run away.” He whispered mournfully. “Nor can I teleport us; my reserves are completely dried up.”

The boy shuddered. “Please, no more teleporting. My stomach couldn’t bear it.” He glanced at the pond, half expecting Demise to emerge from the ominously still water. A shot of bile crept up his throat, but he swallowed it down. “I told you that it’s my turn to take care of you now.”

“Sky child—”

“No!” Link leapt to his feet and slipped his hands in the crooks of Ghriahim’s armpits, clumsily hoisting him up. His body attempted to remind him of his blood loss, his exhaustion, his pain, but the boy discarded the thoughts quickly, thinking only of the demon lord. “Don’t even think about telling me to leave you behind!”

The sky child bared his teeth, grunting with effort as Ghirahim fought to gain footing; the demon lord sank back to the grassy floor several times before his legs decided to cooperate. Link slung Ghirahim’s arm over his shoulders, sidling their bodies together and clinging to him at the waist. “I’m not leaving you here, not now, not after all we’ve been through.” He cinched his arm even tighter around Ghirahim. “We are meant to be together. You hear me?”

The demon lord let out a whine as his head rolled to the side, slipping onto Link’s shoulder. The boy placed an encouraging kiss on his messy hairline. “You’ve been strong for so long, darling. You need to be strong for but a moment longer.”

Ghirahim said nothing, but nodded his head against Link’s shoulder. With a huff, the boy adjusted himself, taking more of the demon lord’s weight as he leaned against him. “Come now,” he urged, “before he tears the fortress down and realizes we aren’t there.”

The pair hobbled through the forest, limping and staggering and tripping over tree roots and mounds of grass, narrowing missing Octorok attacks and clumsily dodging slimy Chuchu’s. Ghirahim guided the boy through the ancient heart of Faron Woods until things slowly began to stimulate Link’s memory: A crumbling viewing platform, a massive mushroom emitting peculiar smells, a lazy stream that carved around a towering tree. The seed of hope planted within the sky child’s heart began to fester, the pain coursing through him dulling for a moment. “We’re nearly there, Ghirahim,” he encouraged, picking up the pace. “Just a little farther to a bird statue, and then we can warp out of here.”

The demon lord jostled beside him, groaning as his feet sluggishly fought to keep up. “Teleporting?”

The boy glanced sidelong at Ghirahim, a smile playing on his lips. He almost felt giddy. For the first time since his capture, victory felt like an option within his grasp. “No, Ghirahim, this isn’t like your version of teleporting. This is far, far smoother. No vomiting, no dizzy spells.”

“Thank god.”

It was a bit more difficult remembering where the statues hid without the aid of a map or light, but after walking in circles, Link sheepishly remembered that there was one standing on the old viewing platform near the entrance to the Deep Woods; they had passed it several times before the memory jerked awake within him. Thankfully, the demon lord’s level of alertness was wavering, and he didn’t seem to notice the countless retracing of steps. The pair stumbled up the steps until they reached the top. The bird statue loomed near the edge, and as they slowly made their way to it, Ghirahim cocked his head to the side and winked at the boy. “You might want to consider finding a change of clothes when we get to Skyloft.” His gaze lingered on the boy’s naked body. “I don’t mind your nakedness, but others might find it…surprising.”

Link smirked. “I’m glad to hear that your sense of humor has remained strong and healthy throughout all of this.”

Ghirahim’s smile widened, but as he opened his mouth to reply, the sky child tapped on the statue, bringing it to life in a flurry of colors. There was a gentle hum as magic vibrated through it, and the bird almost seemed to come alive before the pair. The boy’s heart surged. “To the sky,” he commanded, the dormant hero within him suddenly very, very awake. ‘I’m going home.’

As a beacon of glowing orange light enveloped the pair, the boy’s grip tightened around the demon lord, an excited smile on his lips. How long had he dreamt of this moment? It felt like a lifetime ago, even longer than that. “Hold on tight!” He yelled as Hylia’s magic flowed around them, shooting them upwards into the night sky like a canon.

What Link didn’t know, however, was that he was merely jumping out of the frying pan. The fire he was about to land in was much, much worse.
GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape --Chapter 13--
I'm on a rolllllll! This will be my last post for the day, but in the next couple days I'll have the last chapters up here. It's so surreal to know that I'm nearly done! Crazy!

I'm always happy to hear from you guys. I hope you enjoy this chapter! Any comments or pieces of feedback are always greatly appreciated! In the art of writing, I love learning and improving!

Skyward Sword, SS Characters (c) Nintendo
Original Storyline (c) Me!
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GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape

Chapter Twelve: Puppet


The silence was deafening, roaring in Link's ears like the fluttering of a thousand butterfly wings. He let out a soft groan, his head rolling to the side, nestling into something hard and cold. The scent of mint, honey, and blood...mostly blood...especially blood...filled his nostrils, and he cringed away from the overpowering metallic smell, his nose burning. The boy tried to open his eyes, but his eyelids were sluggish and heavy. Everything about him felt heavy. Like someone had cut him open, stuffed his innards full of rocks, and sewed him back up like nothing happened.

Even with his eyes closed, he could tell that he was completely naked, his feverish body trembling against cool stone and plush rug. His legs and hands felt sticky against the ground, coated in something warm and viscous.

Link ached, everything about him tight with the memory of pain and anxiety. It hurt to move. It hurt to even think about moving.

Every frazzled nerve stood at attention. His mind, even in its fuzzy, lethargic state, screamed at him to wake up from his stupor. But the pull of sleep was too strong, and he was much too tired to fight it. The velvety blackness of his unconscious still clutched at him, pulling him farther, deeper, until it was hard to decipher what was real and what wasn't.

Were these 12 days just one devastating nightmare?

Was Zelda still alive, waiting for him to rescue her?

Was Ghirahim just a beautiful, forbidden figment of his imagination?

A gloved hand rested gently on his matted hair, and Link remembered. He remembered everything.

Ghirahim taking him to Demise.

Demise touching him, violating him, hurting him.

Ghirahim forced to watch.

Ghirahim betrayed, pained, suffering.

Ghirahim angry, wild, dangerous. An entirely different breed of demon.

Ghirahim's arms clutching at Link with a ferocious need to protect, pulling him away from the Demon King.

“He's mine,” the demon lord's voice sharp, his words even sharper, full of venom, etching into Link's skin, ingraining into his memory.

And then, silence.

Link slowly cracked his eyes open; they burned as his eyelashes roughly untangled themselves, dried sweat causing them to stick together. His vision was blurry, seeing only swirls of colors. He blinked several times, but the blurriness remained. Fear speared his heart, and he lifted a shaking hand into the air, grasping at nothing. “Ghirahim?” He croaked, his voice coarse and gritted, worn.

Several seconds passed, several frantic heartbeats, until finally a hand reached out and gripped his tightly. Warmth flitted through him at the feel Ghirahim's gloved fingers interlacing with his. They fit perfectly together.

The demon lord's hand was shaking.

Something shifted behind him, and the boy felt a sliver of chagrin when he realized that the hard wall he was resting against was his Ghirahim – the honey and mint scents should have given it away – but the feeling was short-lived when he was flooded with relief. He let out a shaky sigh and relaxed into the demon lord, turning his face into his chest.

Ghirahim remained tense.

A voice shattered the silence, and the sky child flinched at the jarring sound. “Claiming ownership on something that does not belong to you is quite bold. And stupid. I suppose I should have expected nothing less from you, Ghirahim.”

Demise.

He sounded angry, the way his voice boomed through the quiet, erasing it.

Ghirahim grew stiff, his body like stone as he continued to cradle Link, crouched low over him, guarding him. The demon lord's chest began to vibrate, and the boy realized he was holding back a fierce growl. With a soft groan, Link rubbed his eyes, willing them to clear. They stung, but he ignored the pain and forced them open.

Shapes formed slowly, blobs of color sharpening.

Faces, carved by rage.

He stared up at Ghirahim, his heart blooming, his eyes filling with tears. The demon lord was a deadly beauty. Death burned in his eyes as he glared at the Demon King atop his throne, his mouth full of knives as he gnashed his teeth together. His muscles protruded from his pale skin, poised to pounce, to fight, to kill. His hands contorted into claws, hell-bent on tearing skin from muscle, muscle from bone. He was a wild animal, yearning for death, deliriously mad for blood-lust and pain.

He was breathtaking, and when the boy gazed at him, he felt no fear.

Only love.

Link lifted a hand, running a finger along the demon lord's jawline. “Ghirahim,” he moaned again.

“Hush, sky child,” the demon lord warned under his breath, his eyes remaining dead fast on Demise. His grip on the boy tightened.

That was when the boy realized that he had gotten it all wrong.

Ghirahim wasn't angry. He was afraid.

Demise could sense his fear. He closed his fire-red eyes and inhaled deeply, letting his neck go slack, his head flopping back roughly as he took in the demon lord's emotions, relished them, breathed them in and tasted them. “How quickly your heart beats, little rabbit,” the Demon King scorned, an ugly smile on his scarred lips. “How you tremble. How badly you want to run away.” His smile deepened, and he snapped his head back, focusing in on the pair. “You fear me. And so you should. You should be very, very afraid.”

Ghirahim's face twisted into a sneer, a brief surge of adrenaline bursting through him, feeding his anxious heart. He silently cursed himself for being so easy to read.

The Demon King spoke again, slowly standing from his throne, towering over the pair.  
“The boy has brainwashed you. He's tricked you, manipulated you, and now you are nothing but a foolish puppet for him.”

Ghirahim's mouth twitched upwards, a humorless smirk playing on his lips. A cool chuckle slipped out, and he closed his eyes and lowered his head, resting gently against the top of Link's hair.  Demise narrowed his eyes into slits, watching the demon lord closely, his head tilted to the side. He clenched his fists, his hair sparkling with flashes of ember, the promise of flames nearby. “What?” He spat out. “What could possibly be so funny at a time like this? Or have you really lost your mind?”

When Ghirahim spoke, his voice was quiet, muffled by Link's hair. But the Demon King heard every single word. “Oh, I haven't lost my mind. For the first time in my long, miserable life, I'm seeing clearly, thinking clearly.” The demon lord slowly lifted his head, bringing his gaze back up to Demise.

The Demon King faltered, taking a step back.

Ghirahim's eyes were different. The onyx pupil nearly swallowed all of the sclera; no white remained.

The boy's blood ran cold, chilling him to the bone. Now the demon lord was mad.

Furious. Outraged. Sick with anger.

The demon lord's smile vanished, replaced with a snarl. “I was never Link's puppet, Demise, I was yours.” He stood, clutching the boy in his arms. “No longer will I slave at your side, bending for your every want and need. No longer will I sacrifice myself for you...my happiness, my health, my heart.” He spat on the floor. “I'm through with you. You are not fit to call yourself 'king'; you are certainly no king to me, and I'd rather die than continue to serve you.” The demon lord clicked his heels together and nodded his head curtly in a bow. “Your majesty,” he finished in a mocking voice.

The Demon King stilled atop the steps, his mouth agape in shock, his eyes even wider, stunned into a stupor.

And then he let out a mighty roar.

“You fool!” Demise bellowed, pounding his chest, scratching at his skin until blood seeped through the scales. His hair caught, and flames danced upon his head. “You wretched fool! How dare you defy me! You think you can win against me? Do you?!” He let out a battle cry. “Go ahead and try. It'll be the last thing you ever do!”

The Demon King leapt from the stairs, a howl caught between his dagger teeth, his claws ready to taste blood.

Link let out a quiet gasp and turned his face into the demon lord's chest, gritting his teeth as he prepared for his quickly approaching death. If Demise's fall on top of them didn't end his life, his talons held the potential to finish the job. And the sky child had a feeling that the Demon King wouldn't be quick about it. He swallowed hard, his heart lurching into his throat, his lungs gasping for more air.

With an anxious grunt, Ghirahim snapped his fingers, and the pair disintegrate into a flurry of colorful diamond shards, teleporting out of the throne room and out of danger's grasp. Though the action was strictly on impulse, and was simply second nature to the demon lord, and while no time had been spared, if they had waited but a moment longer, Demise would have crashed onto them, and it would have all been over.  

They were safe.

For now.

The pair materialized in the library. The fire had long gone out, and the room was dark and cold. It was quiet as a tomb. As a shower of diamond shards evaporated into wisps of vibrant smoke above them, Ghirahim crumpled to the floor in a heap, dragging Link down with him. They both were quite the sight. The boy's stomach was surging, a storm of nausea rolling within him, and unable to help it, he leaned over and emptied his stomach of its limited contents, until he was left coughing and dry-heaving. A thick cloud of dizziness sloshed within his brain, making his vision double, triple, askew. Books swayed in the shelves, the vines danced against the windows, the pillows shuffled back and forth along the chairs. His entire body felt disjointed, abnormal, taken apart and put back together haphazardly, carelessly. The pain he was experiencing before was but a whisper of what he was feeling now; Link was certain he had died in the process of teleportation, and Ghirahim had yanked him back to life. “Good god,” he sputtered, weakly clutching at his throbbing head, clenching his eyes shut, “is it always like that?”

The demon lord sat with his head bobbing between his knees, a low groan on his lips. He was covered in sweat, and his skin was dull and sickly. “Well excuse me,” he snapped. “I'm sorry that our emergency landing, not to mention our narrow escape from death, was a little bumpy for you.”  

The sky child winced. “Thank you?”

Ghirahim shrugged his shoulders, a pout on his lips. “Well it's too late now; I know it's not genuine.”

Link attempted to roll his eyes, but the action gave him such a severe dose of vertigo that it sent him vomiting all over again. Ghirahim wiped his clammy forehead with a shaking hand, swallowing the bile that shot up his throat. “It's not normally like that,” he said in a small voice. “I mean, yes it does make me dizzy, and often saps me of my strength, but this?” He shook his head slowly. “Maybe it's because I did it in a hurry, or because I brought you along. I've never teleported with two people before.” He gave the sky child a side-long glance. “You're lucky I'm so fond of you.” He joked lightly.

Despite how utterly like garbage he was feeling, Link smiled, his heart bursting with such adoration for the demon lord that it was almost embarrassing. He opened his mouth to respond, when suddenly they were surrounded in darkness.

It wasn't an ordinary darkness, not the sort that came with the end of the day, or when all lights were snuffed out. It was the sort that only lived in the bowels of black magic. The darkest of darks, blacker than death itself. It was enough to drive one insane. A great evil, lurking in the crevices and shadows.

Link let out a whimper and sidled closer to the demon lord, feeling his way through the dark until he bumped into him. “What's happening?” He whispered, not trusting the strength in his voice.

Ghirahim reached out and gripped the boy's hands, his thumb rubbing along Link's soothingly. “It's Demise,” he moaned. “He's trying to trap us here in the fortress, making it damn near impossible to get anywhere without the risk of raising alarm.” With a grimace, he held his fingers together and gave a reluctant snap.

Nothing happened.

The demon lord let out a sigh, unsure whether to feel relieved or disappointed. “And not only that, Demise has also shut down the passages of magic within the fortress, making it only accessible to him, the selfish bastard. He never was very good at sharing.” He frowned. “I'm afraid teleporting is no longer an option. We will have to continue on foot.”

Ghirahim let out a low breath and stood, his knees threatening to buckle. Once he caught his balance, he turned and looked at Link, still collapsed on the floor. He offered the boy a hand. “Can you stand?”

Link bit his lip, uncertainty polluting his mind. He fumbled in the air for the demon lord's hand, trying not to think about how utterly blind he was. When his fingers laced with Ghirahim's, the boy let out a sharp breath, sent a silent prayer to the Goddess for strength, and willed his legs to unfold from underneath him. He fell once, twice, three times before his body decided to cooperate. The boy let out a strained groan, leaning heavily against the demon lord as he caught his breath. He shook from exertion, wheezing and coughing and not all that confident that he was through with vomiting yet. “Weak...” he panted out, “too much blood loss....”

Ghirahim let out an anxious whine and gripped his sky child tightly. “I'd heal you, Link; you know I would in a heartbeat. But that with that blasted barricade on the magic, there's no way....” He adjusted his hold on the boy, a frustrated frown deforming his pale lips. “It looks like the bleeding has slow, at least.” A pause, then: “I can try to carry you,” the demon lord offered, though there was very little confidence in his voice; he was amazed that his legs hadn't tried giving out on him yet. Knowing him, they would give out at a completely inopportune moment.

“No no,” Link shook his head quickly. “I'm alright.” He took a deep breath, steadying his nerves, his frantic heartbeat. “I'm alright,” he repeated, the words coming out stronger. To solidify his point and put the demon lord at ease, the boy pushed away from Ghirahim, pulling full weight on his feet. He swayed slightly, but remained upright. Pain tore through him infiltrating his senses, but he was still standing. He waited for a wave of discomfort to pass before speaking up again, holding back a heavy groan. “He probably has the doors locked, but what about a barrier? Do you think he set one of those up too?”

Ghirahim furrowed his eyebrows, then shook his head vehemently. “No, he wouldn't think to do that. He's far too stupid.”

Link nodded, determination sharpening his features. “Then we still have a shot at escaping.” He looked at the demon lord with a grim expression. “Can you see well in the dark?”

Ghirahim scoffed and swatted at the boy. “Oh please! Sky child, you mock me.”

The boy tried to roll his eyes again, pleased when only a small dizzy spell flitted through his system. “Great. Take us to the kitchen.”

There was silence, hesitation. Even in the dark, even though he couldn't see him, Link could tell that the demon lord wanted to question his motives. He gave Ghirahim's hand a squeeze. “We are losing time, and Demise is gaining ground. It won't be long before he finds us. Please, Ghirahim, just trust me.”

Another second of silence, and then the demon lord nodded, his face tight with worry. “Alright. Whatever you do, don't make a sound, and don't let go of my hand.”

The pair raced through the fortress as fast as Link's legs would allow it. A couple times the boy's legs threatened to give out from underneath him, and more often than not, they made good on their promise. But every time he fell to the floor, with the help of the demon lord, Link scrambled back up, desperate to keep moving. The fear of being found by Demise far surpassed whatever pain he was feeling. The adrenaline surging through him help numb it all a bit, as well.

It was ominously quiet. “Where are the Bokoblins?” Link asked, glancing around, even though he saw nothing but black.

Ghirahim frowned. “I don't know, though I assume Demise has them all sandwiched together, ready for battle.” He threw a look over his shoulder at the boy and winked, though he knew the action was lost to the darkness. “I suppose we have a single saving grace!”

The demon lord and Link raced through the fortress, down the twisted corridors. They were careful to keep quiet, barely even breathing, and not once did the boy untangle his hand from Ghirahim's. Time was a concept that no longer applied. Was it mere seconds that passed, or minutes? Hours? How long were they blinding dashing through the fortress, stealing seconds of their lives away from the greedy clutches of Demise?

The air was thick with harnessed energy, with magic that was not Ghirahim's to steal. He gripped Link's hand tighter, anger bubbling up his throat. But the demon lord didn't allow the emotion to fester; he admonished it the moment it tried to rear its ugly head.

Anger would not help him now. A tremor vibrated in his heart, a whisper of warning buzzing in his ear. Demise was close. He gave the boy's arm a gentle tug, a silent plea to speed up. "Hurry along now, sky child." Another arm tug. "This way."

Suddenly, he came to an abrupt halt; Link crashed into him with a groan laced with pain.

Ghirahim frowned, turned on his heel, and backtracked until another hallway popped into view. He nodded, recognition sending his heart aflutter. "Sorry, no. It's this way."

"I thought you said you could see in the dark!"

The demon lord let out an annoyed sigh. "Just because I can see in the dark doesn't mean I necessarily know where I'm going."

Link stumbled behind him, his grip on Ghirahim's hand loosening. The demon lord slowed his pace, grabbing his sky child's hand with vigor. "This fortress is big, you know," he defended, "and trust me, I know where the kitchen is. There are many ways to get there!" He shrugged his shoulders. "I think."

The boy let out a thin growl. "That's hardly confidence boosting."

But, sure enough, after several more long hallways (and a couple more reclaiming of footsteps), the kitchen burst into view in all its dank, dingy glory. Never had the pair felt so relieved. Without wasting time, they dove in, sealing the door shut behind them and placing chairs and shelves in front of it for good measure.

“Right," the demon lord nodded, puffing out a sharp breath as he placed a hand delicately on his hip, "now what?"

Link furrowed his eyebrows low over his eyes, his lips set in a grim line. "The sink. Just underneath it should be a trash shoot tucked deep into the cupboard. It might be our only chance of escape."

Unable to help it, Ghirahim raised an eyebrow. "Now how is it that you know of this trash shoot and I don't?" He huffed, pouting. "This is MY home; I'm supposed to know everything about it, not you."

The boy gave the demon lord's hand a rough squeeze. "There is hardly the time to argue, Ghirahim!"

"Right right, sorry."

With great care, the demon lord led the boy to the sought-after cupboard, sinking in unison into the creaking floor boards. Ghirahim cracked open the door and peeked inside. He let out an incredulous laugh. "There it is!"

Link finally let go of his demon lord's hand, giving his cramped fingers a little shake before pushing Ghirahim forward slightly, towards the shoot. "Go on," he urged, "we haven't much time."

The demon lord peered over his shoulder at the boy, worry etched into his features, making his wrinkles a bit deeper, his skin a bit paler, his mouth a bit thinner. "No," he shook his head, his voice hardened with resolve.

Link narrowed his eyes in the dark, staring in the direction of Ghirahim's voice but not certain of where to look. "I'll be right behind you." He reassured gently.

The demon lord shook his head again. "No, Link." His voice lost its edge. It was softer now, pleading.

The boy reached forward, pushing Ghirahim towards the mouth of the cupboard. "You are the only one who can see right now, Ghirahim. I need someone to guide me." He hunched forward slightly. "Please?" His hands turned gentle on the demon lord's shoulders. "I promise I'll be right behind you."

Ghirahim remain quiet for a strained moment longer before sighing. "Alright," he agreed. "But stay close! With a hand around my ankle at all times!"

Link nodded quickly, waves of panic churning in his gut. "Go!"

Ghirahim pushed forward when Link suddenly pulled him back, giving him a deep, lingering kiss. It was sloppy, starting out on the demon lord's chin – useless human eyes – but it was a quick fix that left no one complaining. "For luck," the boy breathed when he reluctantly pulled away, sending Ghirahim on his way into the darkness.

The demon lord fought off a shiver as he crept forward in his hands and knees, slithering into the cupboard and towards the trash shoot. He groaned, clenching his eyes shut and pinching his nose. The smell was horrendous, god-awful; decades worth of dead animals and rotting food littered the sides.

"It's the only way!" Link called out from behind him.

The demon lord let out a disgruntled whimper and pushed forward, inch by inch, until he was in the trash shoot. The walls bit at his shoulders and hugged his hips; it was a tight fit, but he could still move. Barely. "It's a bit of a tight squeeze," he bit out, scooting forward, "but you shouldn't have a problem."

Link breathed a sigh of relief, his lungs protesting when he realized that he had been holding his breath hostage. He started crawling forward, clumsy and bumping into everything that lingered close by. He let out a quiet groan and rubbed his head after striking it on the ceiling of the cupboard. Ghirahim made it look so easy. He inched forward carefully, and only when the wall of stench hit him did Link grow confident that he entered the right cupboard. He could hear the demon lord just a couple paces ahead of him. Soon they would be free. Free from the fortress. Free from Demise.

A hand ensnared the sky child's ankle.

With sharp, vicious yanks, Link was wrenched from the trash shoot. He let out a cry of alarm, screaming for the demon lord as he was ripped from the cupboard. Splinters ripped through his back as he writhed back and forth on the floor, trying to free himself from his captor's clutches. Ghirahim howled from within the trash shoot, wailing Link's name over and over again. The boy could hear the shoot shift and groan as the demon lord hurriedly attempted to clamber out of it. He could hear his heartbeat rage against his ribcage, threatening to break through. He could hear his lungs pull air into them, fighting for each breath. But Link's mind was playing tricks on him. He knew that these sounds were close, a whisper away, and yet they sounded trapped underwater, muffled and dull.

The only thing that held his attention were the beady crimson eyes right over top of him. The blazing hair and sparks cascading onto thick black scales, like a deceptive halo. The claws digging into his naked ankle, slicing through his skin with ease.

Link stared at Demise, and Demise stared back at him.

The Demon King's grip on the sky child's ankle grew suffocatingly tight. Leaning farther over top of Link, he gave a wicked grin full of poison and decay. “Your time is all but up, boy,” he growled.

The boy grew rigid, a shiver racing up his spine. He shrank back, fear lacing his blood like a toxin. 'I'm going to die,' Link realized. Blood roared in his ears, sending little static vibrations coursing through him, just under his skin. His head felt suddenly heavy, full with that one single thought: 'I'm going to die I’m going to die I’m going to die.'

“Link! Fight him, Link!” Ghirahim's voice pierced the darkness, rose above the water. What was once muffled and dull was now sharp as stone, ringing in the boy's ears and bringing him back to life.

With a hoarse cry, the boy began to squirm and kick, lashing out at Demise with everything he had. The Demon King managed to narrowly dodge several of Link's attacks, his face dripping with annoyance, as though the boy was nothing more than an inconvenience.

A bug needing to be squashed.

Demise twisted left and right, always just out of reach. Again and again, the sky child's foot met with nothing but air. Link gritted his teeth together, forcing his aching muscles to work harder, faster, stronger. He got close, his toes feeling the heat from the Demon King's hair as the flames licked at his skin. Demise let out a snarl and raised a hand to his face, guarding. With a growl, Link arched his back and flung his leg to the side, missing Demise's hand and pelting him on the side of the face with his bony foot. The Demon King let out a bark of rage as his neck snapped back, pain written over his fierce features. His hair grew in size, the heat nearly unbearable.

His grip on Link's ankle loosened.

With a whine, the boy shook free and rolled onto his belly, scurrying forward into the shadows. There was a thunderous roar behind him, and then an explosion of pain tearing through his ribs. A yelp slipped off Link's tongue as Demise sank his claws into his sides, shredding his skin, losing more precious blood. The Demon King slowly began to reel him back at an agonizing pace, savoring the sky child's near hysteria. A dagger-filled grin was pasted on Demise's lips, a wicked glimmer in his eye. He oozed with ill-intent, the epitome of death. He was enjoying this, all of it.

A soft anxiety-riddled whimper snuck through the boy's clamped lips, and he thrust his arms out in hopes of grabbing something, anything that would help slow him down.

His fingers brushed against something cold. Steel. Sharp.

A knife, forgotten on the floor.

With a gasp, Link gripped the hilt until his fingers burned, pulling it close to his chest.

Demise wrestled him back a bit more, a cruel laughter dripping off his tongue.

The sky child willed himself to stay still, to wait for the perfect moment. He would only have one shot at this.

The Demon King dug his fingers deeper into Link's sides, wiggling them slightly, watching with glee as the boy flinched away from his touch. He yanked him closer.

Link could feel Demise's breath on his back, could smell the stench of tooth rot, blood, and decay.

Now.

With a howl, Link twisted his back, rolling his shoulder and flailing his arm backwards, the knife fiercely in his grasp. The blade smiled, eager for the taste of flesh.

THUNK.

The knife buried itself into the Demon King's bicep.

There was silence.

And then there was a blood-curdling howl.

The Demon King's hands vanished from Link's sides. With a ragged breath, the boy scrambled to his feet, clumsily pushing past the chairs and shelves and ripping the door open. He dared one last glance at Demise. The Demon King had one hand curled against the hilt of the knife, the other hanging listlessly at his side. Blood was dripping from the wound, pooling on the ground, reflections of his fiery hair dancing in the crimson pond. He was hissing and spewing curses, reefing on the blade with no luck; it was stuck, wedged deep into his scales.

Link's eyes darted to the cupboard where the trash shoot lay hidden. Ghirahim had been quiet since his first little outburst. The boy's heart fluttered with hope. 'Perhaps he escaped.' A wobbly smile found its way to the sky child's lips, and his eyes filled with heavy tears. “Run, my Ghirahim, and don't look back.” He whispered into the room, before turning and bolting down the hall as fast as his legs could carry him.

Link tried to rely on his other senses to guide him. How plush carpets melted into cobblestone. How the air smelt less like stale food, more crisp, like water and flowers. Was he close to the pool? The library? Ghirahim's room? The boy quickened his pace, optimism feeding his heart and fueling his lungs. But the more Link searched, the more he began to question himself. The smells abruptly faded, and he was back on carpet. This happened several more times before Link slowed down his steps, dread flitting through him. It wasn't long before there were two things that Link was absolutely certain of:

1) Demise was still in the fortress, and now he was furious AND wounded. A deadly combination for a demon.

2) Link was hopelessly lost.

Fear made him clumsy, clouding his mind, sifting through his veins, suffocating him. And as much as he didn't want to admit it, any sort of bearings he had before disappeared the moment he left the kitchen. The corridors blended together, dead ends became prominent. If the fortress didn't claim his life, the Demon King would eventually find him and do the honors himself.  And even if Demise left the kitchen, there was no way Link would be able to find it again in order to access the trash shoot. He was stuck, trapped within the throes of the black magic night. A shudder twisted up the boy's spine, and he folded his arms across his chest, fending off a chill. Demise was right, his time was all but up.

The boy padded down the hall, fighting to keep his breathing under control, the sobs at bay. 'Now is not the time for tears,' he admonished, wiping his cheeks dry and pushing forward, his mouth dry and throat raw. He knew he should be running, but Link couldn't force his legs to move faster; hopelessness weighed them down, filling them with lead. The sky child bowed his head. A few more rogue tears raced down his face, but he didn't have the strength to swat them away. “How am I supposed to run if I can't even see where I'm running to?” He scoffed, his shoulders rippling tensely. “It's pointless.” Unable to help it, the boy sniffled, the lump in his throat growing larger. “All of this is pointless.” He clutched at his arms tighter, hunching over slightly as a wave of shivers pummeled through him. “I wish Ghirahim was here.” He moaned into the quiet.

The selfish words tasted bitter on his tongue, like acid on his brain, eating away at his logical thoughts. The tears gained momentum, flooding his cheeks and making his eyes burn. The boy's feet stumbled to a halt, frozen to the floor. Everything hurt. He was so tired. So tired of running, of hiding, of being painful, hungry, fearful. Tired of being a victim. Link's knees suddenly gave, and he tumbled to the floor. Clutching his face with his hands, the sky child let out the sobs he had been keeping pent up in the confines of his throat. Let Demise find him, he didn't care. He was as good as dead, anyways. Skyloft was gone, Ghirahim was gone, and soon, Link would be gone too. And yet, the boy wept, aching with such an intense agony that his insides felt like they were rotting. He let out a hoarse wail, a lone cry into the black. “I don't want to die alone!”

Suddenly, hands lashed out, gripping Link tightly.

This time, the boy didn't fight back.
GhirahimxLink: Be My Escape --Chapter 12--
Hellllooooo! I'm on an editing rampage! 

A couple Author's Note thingies: 

1) I hope you like this chapter! I was trying hard to work on building up tension and making certain parts thrilling. I hope I did! But also I wanted to break up the serious moments with a bit of lightheartedness. I'm really happy with how this chapter turned out :) 

2) If people are reading this chapter and want to know what happened to my chapter 10, you can thank a Devbot for removing it from the site. I'm technically not allowed to re-post it, but if someone knows of a loophole on how to get around that tedious little rule, and they want to read it, I'm more than happy to be a rebel ;)

3) Ugh....a fortnight....is 14 days....not 12....*CRINGE*

As always, I really hope you enjoy this chapter! I'm always happy to hear from you, whether its a comment or critique. I always am eager to hear on how I can improve! More to come, and the end is near!!

Skyward Sword, SS Characters (c) Nintendo
Original Storyline (c) Me!
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  • Listening to: Remixes of Touhou OST
  • Reading: The Perfect Girl
  • Watching: Ajin
  • Playing: Rise of the Tomb Raider
  • Eating: Candy
  • Drinking: Water
Ah, it's been fun :)

I've been on this site since 2012, and man, what a journey it's been. This is where it all began. This is where I decided that I wanted to honestly take a stab at being a writer. I opened myself up to this site, I made mistakes, I made friends, I grew. You guys have supported me through thick and thin, and I don't think I could have made it as far as I did if it weren't for you guys. You guys are the people that made me feel like I had a voice worth being heard, that I can actually maybe DO THIS, that it doesn't have to stay a dream, but can maybe become something more, and for that I am eternally grateful. 

I won't be deactivating my account. I'll still pop in every once in a while so I can go through my messages and maybe PM people :) 

Thanks again ~

Until next time!

Skychild15

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skychild15
Cymantha Paige
Artist | Hobbyist | Literature
Canada
Life is good! Nearly done my RN degree, going to be able to start making money soon, and I still have time to have a somewhat social life on the side!
I love writing, however I have the habit of never finishing what I start. Hopefully that will end this year. 2012 is THE year to get shizz done baby!
I'm just figuring out now that I love drawing! I'm not very good, but it makes me really calm and at peace. Anyone else get that?
Anyways, carry on, fellow skychildren (man I love Skyward Sword!) :D
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:icondragonslayer188:
DragonSlayer188 Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
How do you write stories on DA?
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LokiLaufeyson515 Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday :)
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Deep-Nerd Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy birthday!
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skychild15 Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks!
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You're welcome!
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AxLu97 Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2014
Happy Birthday ^.^
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skychild15 Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you!
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Mer-Wolf Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
IT'S ALMOST YOUR BIRTHDAY! :iconbirthdaycakeplz:

Since I will be out of the country next week, happy birthday! Hope it's amazing!
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skychild15 Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
YOU are amazing :)
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TixieLix Featured By Owner Feb 22, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for another fave! :D
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