Link rolled to one side as a massive twin-headed axe crashed into the stone floor of the Temple of Spirit where he’d just been standing. The hulking colossus of bronze and iron that held the axe recovered it slowly, turning to face him, readying itself for another impossibly heavy blow.
Link grimaced, pulling out the greatsword he’d received from the Great Goron. He wasn’t sure the Master Sword would be heavy enough to get through the thick plates of metal, so he’d have to deal with fighting shieldless for now.
For once, he was glad to not be wearing any sort of armor to this fight. As he spun and ducked and rolled and dodged across the rectangular room, he had to acknowledge that this game of evasion would be a lot harder. And it wasn’t like any armor would do much good against the crushing weight of the axe anyway. This way, he was light enough to avoid the powerful blows and make probing strikes with his greatsword.
The dance continued for around five minutes more. Then Link caught an opportunity to end the fight when the giant’s grip on its axe slipped a little and it stumbled. He didn’t hesitate to spring at his enemy and swing hard with the sword at its neck.
The helm of the construct fell away, rolling off to the side and revealing...a red ponytail?
Piece by piece, the enormous suit of armor came apart, and each piece that fell revealed yet another part of someone’s body. There was someone inside it, Link realized, and by knocking off the helm, he’d probably freed her - he was sure it was a she, a Gerudo, given the long red ponytail and copper skin of her arms. She swayed as her free legs had to support the massive cuirass, then, as she fell to her hands and knees, the cuirass split and fell away.
Link wasn’t all that surprised to see Nabooru kneeling there, panting, wide-eyed in shock and confusion. He supposed this was what had become of her when those two witches had pulled her into their portal.
Nabooru took some time getting back her sense of the world around her, it seemed, before she finally looked up to see him standing there in front of her. “Huh...what happened?” she panted. “Where am I? Link? That’s you, right? Gosh, you’ve grown...How long have I been out?”
“Seven years,” Link replied calmly. “You were inside a big suit of armor. I had to fight it to get you out.”
Hearing that, Nabooru looked around her at the pieces of plate armor scattered around her. “Looks like I was in an Iron Knuckle suit,” she observed. “That doesn’t explain why I wasn’t in control of myself - our shock troops normally wear this armor. I guess it must’ve been those witches and their sorcery. Dang, it’s good to be awake again!”
Link smiled as she finally got back on her feet. Then he removed the metal gauntlets he’d been wearing and held them out to her. “I managed to find these,” he said. “I had to use them to get to you, but you said you wanted them, right?”
Nabooru looked stunned at first, then she shook her head with a smirk. “Keep ‘em,” she replied. “You’ll need them more than me. My role in this whole mess with Ganondorf is different than I expected. Turns out I’m the new Sage of Spirit, so I have to hang back, galling as it is for me to have to do that.” Her mild complaint drew a grimace from Link, before she thought of something else: “Out of curiosity...you said it’s been seven years, right?...Do I...look any older than I was?”
Link shook his head. “Blame it on the magic, I guess,” he answered, “It must’ve brought your life to a standstill, so I suppose you’re still…”
“Eighteen,” Nabooru finished his statement. “I was eighteen when we met.”
“You still are, if my suspicion is correct,” Link commented.
There was a short huff from Nabooru that might have been laughter, then she asked, “How’d you get through the Fortress anyway? My people aren’t exactly keen on outsiders passing through.”
Link chuckled. “Funny story, actually,” he explained, “they captured me several times and I kept escaping. Eventually I duelled someone high up, I guess, and they were impressed enough to give me this.” He pulled out a sheet of papyrus and showed it to her.
Nabooru whistled. “That’s a genuine writ of inclusion there,” she said, “You must be one heck of a fighter for Avosa to have given you that. We don’t give those to just anyone, y’know.” Then her expression went from surprised to sly. “I’ll bet that wasn’t the only reason she gave that to you,” she added, “Tell you what, these last seven years may’ve been kind to me, but they’ve been really kind to you. ‘Cause boy, are you a looker!” And so saying, she took a step towards the young Hylian, who, blushing heavily now, began stepping back, the gauntlets and greatsword slipping from his hands in the process.
Nabooru looked briefly over his shoulder. He was backing straight towards one of the thick columns that lined the left side of the room. Then her eyes returned to him, seeing the reddening of his face.
This was too good an opportunity to pass up.
“Now that I think about it,” she went on, continuing her slow advance towards Link (and him continuing his slow retreat), “I did promise to give you something nice when you got those gauntlets. I don’t need ‘em anymore, but you still offered them to me anyway. And besides, you did just free me from whatever bind those two witches had me in. I think that calls for something... extra nice, don’t you think?”
Link kept backing up, his face getting warmer by the second, perplexed by the sudden change in Nabooru’s tone, and noticing for the first time how absolutely gorgeous she was. Then he was stopped abruptly. He looked back quickly, seeing he had backed up against a pillar.
Nabooru moved with the blinding speed of an experienced warrior. In the blink of an eye, Link found his hands pinned to the column on either side of him as the Gerudo pressed herself up against him. He was wide-eyed as he looked up into her face; her eyes were half-lidded as she gazed down into his. “Don’t worry,” she whispered as if to soothe him, “I promise, you’ll enjoy this.”
Moments later, a tingle went down Link’s spine as Nabooru pressed her lips to the side of his neck, right where he never realized he was sensitive. Then again, just a little bit higher up, then a little higher, and Link felt his face heat up as it never had before. She was right about one thing, though - as overwhelming as this was, he was indeed enjoying it.
Nabooru’s kisses went up his neck and across his cheek for about two minutes, before he suddenly felt her lips closing over his own, and his own lips puckering up to receive them. The kisses started small, but with each one, Nabooru’s mouth was opening more and more, and his was opening reflexively to match until their lips eventually locked over each other. He received another shock when her tongue flicked briefly over his lips before her mouth closed again. Then their lips locked again, and it slipped right in. Link remembered someone in Kakariko mentioning once that this was how the Gerudo liked to kiss their boyfriends. Even so, he pulled away for a moment in disbelief. “That’s actually something you do?” he asked breathlessly. “I thought it was made-up.”
Nabooru grinned. “Nope,” she replied, still in a whisper. “For once, the stories about us are right. Fun, isn’t it?” Link’s flushed face was all the answer she needed as she moved Link’s hands to her spine and raised her own to his face. Then, noting with approval how Link wrapped his arms around her, she leaned her face back in.
This long Gerudo-style kiss was new to Link, but still he found himself eagerly receiving and joining in it, having finally grasped that this was Nabooru’s way of asking him to be her boyfriend. As he began to imitate her, he knew what his response was.
Ten minutes later, their mouths separated and they simply stood in each other’s arms. “I’m just gonna guess you’re okay with us being a thing,” Nabooru ventured, and Link nodded in response. She smiled. “I have to return to the Fortress now,” she explained. “I need to meditate in order to stand with the other Sages when the time comes. And you still have your part to play. But when we’re all done, and Ganondorf is gone, I want you to come by the Fortress and visit me. Will you do that?”
Link nodded again. So she pressed her lips to his once more in a simpler, gentler kiss than the one they’d just shared. She held it for several seconds before pulling away. “Until we meet again, Link,” she whispered into his ear.
And in a few moments, Link was alone in the room, face still as red as ever. Then he shook his head violently. He’d have to spend several minutes clearing his mind before facing the Twinrova sisters, he realized.