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Gerudo Town is certainly bigger since it opened its doors to voe, though this development isn’t without its tradition. From where Bozai set his Mailing Post, an outer wall had secured a perimeter where residential lots and trade districts were established. Voe and vai alike lived within this outer town square. Finally the husbands of Gerudo vai , sent away due to the laws keeping them out of Gerudo Town, were welcome within the newly grown Gerudo City and were able to be with their loved ones, wife and child. And with the end of Ganon’s reign on Hyrule, the city only continued to grow and flood with people, from those who have made their residence permanent to traveling merchants who could still be a man and trade with the Gerudo women.

 

Due to the fast growth of Gerudo City, it’s streets aren’t without crime or debauchery, much like anywhere else, however it is only admittedly exacerbated by men being allowed so close to the Old Gerudo Town. Being a tribe of women only has its faults outside of itself; men still find them an exotic fetish and it’s due to this that many push their luck only to find themselves at the painful end of a sharp spear. And so, it’s only those who were permitted that are allowed access to the Old Gerudo Town, where Riju makes her home with many of the Gerudo elders and women who wish to stay within the original square. It’s here, in this center, where Gerudo children are taught the Gerudo ways - language, combat, and old prayers - and where vai can still enter and seek shelter from rogue voe .

 

It’s also because of this steadfast rule that women new to the presence of men in Old Gerudo Town are constantly surprised by the sight of Link, when he’s not dressed in his more typical vai garb, and Bozai, who would also help teach the Gerudo children about Hylian culture due to the newer integration of it happening outside their walls. Among the two Hylian men are also the Zora Prince, the New Rito Champion, and also few Gorons who will come and go outside of Old Gerudo town. Ss’aht vo’boruu. Permitted Men. (Or, if one had to be literal, The Men, Blessed ).

 

Link and Bozai haven’t much need for the gold bars that showed that they were of this specific group of men, easily recognizable as they are, especially when together, but aside from their frequent returns it’s also well known that Link is as close to Chief Riju as her own personal guard. One could argue that Link was also part of that personal guard, in a way. The Hero’s Sword may be returned to it’s pedestal, but it’s not the sword that makes him. He’d been part of the Knight’s Watch, squired from a young age. And for years of battling monsters, including ones that not even the Gerudo’s finest have faced, only a fool would try to harm the chief with her dear friend by her side.

 

That isn’t to say she couldn’t hold her own herself. She makes herself a fine Gerudo Champion, pushing the limits of her ancestral powers and reaching peaks that would make Urbosa proud. The sky roars for Riju when she calls, and she would make a fearful leader of a sinister nature if she hadn’t made peace with the outside world and, in extension, the reincarnation of her people’s downfall. And this isn’t even in direct reference to Ganondorf of the Gerudo - the Gerudo people still revere him as his own being without the influence of The Great Demise - but also with Zelda.

 

Though there wasn’t truly any ill-will between the two leaders, Zelda still had taken it upon herself to face whatever bitterness had still remained over the century she had been incapacitated. From Riju and her people, Zelda confesses to having taken Chief and Champion, Urbosa, away from them, to which Riju laughs and says that Urbosa gave herself to Zelda. With this comment and a knowing smile, Riju gives to Zelda Urbosa’s Diary and with a weak heart full of unshed tears for her fallen comrades, Zelda stops apologizing to thank Riju instead, telling Riju how much she loved Urbosa and her guidance after the Queen had passed.

 

Zelda is on her way back to Hyrule when she sees Link enter the Old Town, smiling softly and bringing him into a greeting hug. He may be dressed in what he’s more comfortable in when in the desert, but she can easily recognize him. She’s had years of experience in his antics before their Hundred Year Sleep. All she has in reaction to his wear - which is a sweet blue and lavender from veil to sirwal, decorated with silver - is a knowing smile and nostalgic eyes.

 

The moment is interrupted before Link can sign a word of greeting back. She’s in a rush - Impa and Paya accompany her and Paya is politely indicating to Zelda that they need to leave for important work - and so an apology rests in her eyes and she calls back that she will see him in Hyrule next when he returns. He waves at her, grinning in amusement when he sees Zelda hunch over apologetically at a stern-looking Impa who turns back to see Link and gives him a quick, small smile.

 

Link isn’t in town for Riju today. Riju is out scouting for monster bases, and perhaps more shrines or Sheikah artifacts to show Zelda. Usually, if Link is in the area, he would also join her, but he’s been on a two month tour with Sidon and the Zora as he travels the corners of Hyrule on diplomatic visits. The world may be done for the most part with monsters made from Demise but the Yiga still lurk around those corners. It’s uneventful in the way of battle, but the company is good and Link’s memory, formerly a mostly-blank slate regarding his past life, soon fills with flashes of his past self as the centuries-old Zora recall his younger days, even before becoming a squire. It allows him to feel more whole.

 

No, Link isn’t here for Riju. Instead he takes the usual route to the school rooms and, peeking around the corner of a doorframe, he spots who he’s looking for.

 

Being mute has its benefits. He can sneak up behind someone because he can’t speak, or give much verbal indication at all that he’s there. So, with ease, he slides through the tables and chairs to wrap his arms around Bozai’s middle. The man jumps in surprise before settling to look over his shoulder and see Link, grinning impishly.

 

“I thought you’d be a day more until you returned,” Bozai says, turning back to adjust his sheafs of paper - tests, perhaps - that were on the desk. “But this is a pleasant surprise.”

 

And I can make it more pleasant… ’ Link’s hands say, but don’t sign, as they play with the hem of Bozai’s shirt to crawl under and feel his skin. He hasn’t the toned muscle that Link had trained his own body for, but it’s certainly not an unpleasant feeling. Bozai’s body is now more well-adapted to his new desert home, slightly more tan and, no doubt from travel and the occasional training from Buliara - taught only so Bozai could “protect the Gerudo children, should you need to” - he’s more firm. He’s no chiseled man of sharp abdominal edges, but he’s solid and thick and warm and Link can’t help but lick his lips and smile when his fingers tease the edge of Bozai’s pants.

 

Bozai grunts, shuddering, and looks again to Link with a conflicted look.

 

“We’re in a classroom, dear,” he mutters lowly, reaching behind himself to rub his thumb into where he can reach of Link’s bare hip.

 

Link snickers softly and stops, moving away for Bozai to turn, only to wrap his arms around his neck and gently pull him down for a kiss. Despite the want that lingers in his body and the veil separating their lips, it’s still soft and sweet and chaste as can be in their heat. Bozai all too easily indulges the want for affection, his hands resting on Link’s hips and continuing to rub those comforting circles that grounds Link to this moment they share together. When they part, soft breaths between them, Link smiles at Bozai, pink and pretty, and Bozai smiles back and nudges his forehead into Link’s.

 

It’s an intimate moment devoid of the dizzying (and wonderful) sex that rests in wandering fingertips, and it’s sickly sweet that if you were to catch them like this, you’d be sure they were devoted to one another. To tell the truth, however, they are not. Bozai had clear intentions of searching for a wife, and starting a family, and while his life had taken a detour since meeting Link, the way he handles the Gerudo children displays a want for his own children more than anything. And Link is far too busy for monogamy, he tries to excuse. He’s dedicated to righting the world when it falls towards wrong, and aside from that he had missed so much of the world when, behind a visor, all he could see was in front of himself. Now, he can travel and see so much of it. Enjoy life and its pleasures.

 

(Like the pleasures of stability in the arms of a man who wants him there.)

 

They’re not together, but sometimes they wish to be.

 

Bozai has long become used to seeing Link out of vai wear but his attraction doesn’t lessen. Seeing Link in straight, baggy trousers and his boots with a tight shirt that pulls to his body when he grabs the front to wipe the sweat from his forehead? It interests him greatly. Seeing Link naturally has him stir-crazy as he restrains himself from worshipping Link there in the barracks. Bozai isn’t too sure if his attraction is due to his initial assumptions of Link’s gender, or if it’s because he allows himself to view a man that way, but nothing plagues him to embitterment. He is very comfortable with being viewed as Link’s lover, with both of them being men. If anything, it makes him incredibly smug because, dear Hylia, he has the Hylian Champion in his bed some nights.

 

Still, though, he doesn’t mind this: Link dressed pretty - he hopes for the purpose of teasing and attracting him because the thought of Link going out of his way to catch his eye is a fantasy he dreams of owning - and surprising him with his long lashes and blue stare.

 

After a few long kisses more, this time over Link’s veil that has him panting and shuddering in want but not left unsatisfied when they part, they finally leave to share a drink and conversation at the canteen. It’s here that they both relax and get to observe one another without obstruction or tease. It’s been months since their last night together so they each enjoy the return of company and the new look the time brings. For example, Bozai’s hair is a little shorter now, and lighter as well, sunbleached and wiry brown. When Link reaches out to run his hand through it, it’s soft and catches his fingers to tickle them and he snickers lightly while Bozai reaches over to bring him closer by placing a hand on his hip and resting it there. Link, perhaps due to his time asleep, hasn’t changed quite as much. New scars have been added since Bozai had last seen him, some less serious cuts are still healing, but his hair is a little longer than it was. With it tied back, it goes down further than the nape of his neck, and as does the hair that frames his face, dipping passed his collarbone now and brushing the top of his chest. He would pass very well as a Hylian vai now and it’s a quick-flittering thought that has Bozai fondly imagining meeting Link now at this bar to be teased and shot down in the end.

 

His fingers twirl around one blond lock and whatever Link signs stops as he watches Bozai with amusement as the man inspects Link’s face with absolute adoration. It makes Link’s heart skip and his breath falter and all of a sudden whatever adventure he was recounting is gone in favor of being lost in this moment. On the floor-lounge surrounded by decorative cushions and served finger food and Pursuits, something uncomfortable crawls over their skin; a hunger stirs within them and their mouths are tight and dry as they thirst for a sip of something neither are unsure they can afford.

 

The Gerudo women are very used to this behavior between the men. What was a source of amusement is now one of either annoyance or suspense as eyes flit to the two who are so obviously share passions for one another. Since their first interaction it has at least been a year and yet since the expansion of Gerudo City they haven’t shown a sign of asserting their intentions. The women have seen Bozai make only such eyes for Link. The gaze may wander, but the look is never the same. Never so intense, and wanting. And while Link may flirt and flush prettily, especially when he dresses in the sheer silks that flatter him just, he is only ever so pleased when it’s Bozai who murmurs compliments like secret messages meant only for him.

 

Eyes follow the pair as Link leads them out of the canteen and then the gossiping murmurs begin before the conversation passes into ones of work or general interest. Furosa scoffs and returns to cleaning her bar as she hears the younger women giggle. She’s far too old for this. But, she considers, so is Link now.

 

-

 

Link takes Bozai to his temporary home that he has rented in Gerudo City, a single-roomed living space with a kitchenette in the corner and a bathroom. It has quite the view to compensate for the small room, but Bozai is familiar with the space and also understands that as a traveller his beautiful hero doesn’t need for much in regards to accommodation. It has gotten a bit more homelier since Link had first moved in, however, if only due to Link taking most of his time off-duty in the desert instead of elsewhere. While he does have other accommodations, or promises of, in all corners of the world, he finds something close to adventure in the vast desert land. Here, there are parts of it still left unexplored, and monsters that still roam along the outskirts for Link to battle. And also Riju, whom Link has certainly grown to care for like a little sister, no matter how much taller she grows than him.

 

And there’s also Bozai. Bozai, who leads Link into his home and further in to the bed, kissing his head after removing the headpiece of the veil and then the rest, and then his cheek - he scatters kisses playfully, causing laughter to bubble from Link’s throat in puffs of air - and then his shoulders, before seating the man on the edge of the bed. The mattress is thin and firm, Link hardly sinks down, but it’s still provides enough cushion with the thick covers for Link to relax and lose his hands in the material under him. Bozai works down to Link’s chest, following the V of his shirt, and then further down does his lips go, kissing downwards as he undoes each button of Link’s sleeveless tunic. He rests at Link’s hips, kneeling in front of him and moving back slightly to remove his glasses and then to help take off Link’s flat shoes. He kisses one knee, and then the other, and his fingers sneak underneath the top hem of Link’s pants and coaxes the hero to lift himself up slightly to pull the piece of clothing down and off.

 

Of course Link obliges to all these silent requests, a soft smile playing his lips as he watches Bozai kiss up his thighs, tongue flicking to tease the soft skin between thigh and groin, and he shudders under the touch, craving more. Bozai isn’t unused to serving Link in this way, tongue sneaking laps at underneath his sac and at the base of his shaft, but Link doesn’t often let the man try. It’s a mixture of self-consciousness and not wanting to push Bozai into doing something he’s not comfortable with. With Link moaning softly, hips bucking off the edge of the bed when Bozai takes Link’s cockhead into his mouth with a wet suck, he seems very comfortable with this. He hums, pleased, and the sound travels through Link’s cock and up his spine in the best way, and Link whimpers for more. His fingers brush across Bozai’s arms that are flush against Link’s outer thighs - Bozai’s hands grope at Link’s ass and pulling Link closer to the edge of the bed so that Bozai can take more of him into his mouth - and when Link feels himself hitting the harder parts of the back of Bozai’s mouth he’s sure he could finish right then.

 

Bozai doesn’t let him. Link’s climax is postponed and he whines, face a mottled red and drawn into disappointment, and Bozai laughs softly as he softly sucks the underside of Link’s cock.

 

“I’ll be with you in a moment, my dear,” he says, reaching for the short drawer beside Link’s bed. Link can’t see what’s happening but he’s sure he knows, and without much subtlety he shifts just that little bit closer to the bed’s edge and lifts his ass. Bozai grins and tangled in Link’s legs he moves his hands away so he can uncork a small bottle of chu jelly that makes his fingers tingle as he rubs it between them. He moves from between Link’s legs to just the side of them, and then takes Link into his mouth again while his fingers draw a stick wet line from his thighs to his undercarriage, and then a teasing distance away from where Link wants it so badly.

 

Link notices a few things through his haze of pleasure. He notices how fervently Bozai begins to suck him down, as if the act is arousing him more than what either would initially think - and Link loves to taste Bozai on his tongue, flesh and finality. He notices how thick Bozai’s fingers feel after so long without appropriately sized stimulation - Link’s fingers aren’t nearly as thick, but they could be just as satisfying. And, he also notices how hot those fingers feel. He wants to ask which chu jelly bottle Bozai had fished out of his drawer but his hands are otherwise preoccupied with keeping their vice grip on the bed sheets when Bozai takes Link far deep in his mouth to make Link cry out, distracting the man enough with the heat and flash of pleasure to know that another sensation joins all the other.

 

Sparks travel up Link’s spine in bursts that have him trembling, his legs shaking harshly as he falls forward, his chest hitting the back of Bozai’s head as he tries to hold all of himself in.

 

Bozai! ’ A breath leaves Link, his mouth wrapping well around the name but his throat making no effort to say it aloud. It spurs Bozai regardless and his fingers hook upwards, searching for that pleasure button familiar to him that makes Link writhe. If his fingers don’t find it, the chu jelly certainly does. Electricity tickles and presses against the pit of Link’s stomach, as if replicate the stretch of something more as it fills him with a breathtaking pressure. His toes curl and his hand grabs Bozai’s wrist to urge him for more. To fuck him faster, more fingers, more .

 

And he receives all of it. Bozai presses another finger to join the two he had inside of Link already, and he removes himself from Link’s cock so that the man can frantically jerk himself off as Bozai’s fingers pound into him relentlessly, just as Link’s grip on his wrist had made him. Bozai keeps his mouth occupied in other ways now that he’s no longer where’d he’d like to continue being. He doesn’t complain. His teeth latch onto Link’s nipple and tug and he groans hotly against Link’s chest when he sees his eyes roll back. He misses the moment Link’s cock spurts hard and his hand tightens on it to restrain the rest of his climax from following. Link wants it all to build; he wants to let go of it all, and then chase it all over again.

 

He’s so close and he knows that he’ll finish soon. Bozai’s attention on his chest and his neck, sucking love bites into his pale skin as if mapping a night sky; the red marks Bozai gives are plentiful and possessive, push Link closer and closer to the edge but it’s Bozai’s words that have him blubbering as much as a silent man can.

 

“Come for me, Link. I know you can do it. Finish yourself off for me, love. Come for me, my sweet thing.”

 

Bozai’s mutterings against Link’s chest have Link crying and nodding and, soon, coming. His seed spills over his stomach, edging just higher than that, and Bozai cooes appreciation into Link’s skin as he kisses the pools of come and licks Link’s front clean of the mess. It has Link’s cock still twitch in interest, and the fact his sex is still responding reminds him of the full feeling he still has in his ass. Though it doesn’t last long. As Bozai continues to sample Link’s taste, his finger’s slowly withdraw from him and it makes Link whine, still wanting that fullness seated in him where it belongs.

 

His cock isn’t limp just yet, and as fatigued as Link is he is still incredibly horny. It’s all Bozai’s fault, he thinks, weakly dragging Bozai onto the bed and tugging his thick, hard cock out of his trousers. Bozai hasn’t any complaints, but Link can hear him in the back of his head comment on how Link should slow down and rest. Bozai’s cock doesn’t seem to mind Link doing the exact opposite. Especially when Link aligns his wet hole with Bozai’s equally wet cockhead and pushes the tip in, then more, until Link is seated on Bozai’s lap with the man’s cock twitching hard inside of him.

 

A long groan leaves Bozai’s throat and his fingers dimple Link’s hips as he tries to adjust and enjoy the feeling of Link’s heat engulfing him. This stationary moment doesn’t last long. Link raises himself a fraction and then lowers, repeating the action until he finds a rhythm and deepness for Bozai to reach that has him panting in satisfaction. He loops his arms around Bozai’s neck, nose to nose and seeking comfort beside the carnal pleasure he partakes in. Bozai kisses him softly, trying to slow and steady the man’s erratic bounces that become almost painful on his cock if he weren’t already a masochist to Link’s greedy ministrations. Link comes in shaky spurts between them, covering his stomach and Bozai’s, but still he continues to ride him. His muscles don’t hurt yet, and he squeezes on Bozai as if wanting to be filled.

 

And he wants to be. He releases his hold on Bozai for long enough to turn around and ride him this way, his back against Bozai’s chest, holding onto Bozai’s thighs as he moves up and crashes down, again and again and again. Bozai really loves this angle. Link’s bare neck, the dip of his back, the slight flare of his hips, the dimples above his ass, and of course the main attraction itself. In this position, he’s allowed the perfect view of Link’s ass slamming back down against him. If he grabs a mound, he can pull and see his cock slide into Link’s hole with ease. It’s this perverse almost voyeuristic observation that has him grinning wolfishly and has him reacting in the way Link dearly hoped he would.

 

Easily, he contorted himself to the position Bozai wanted to put him in. His ass up, legs spread, and face against the mattress. His tears melted into the covers and his thighs trembled against the harsh thrusts Bozai pounded against him. Link’s eyes roll back again, his mouth hanging open, and he clamps down on Bozai as he comes again, dry and painful and so good . Bozai isn’t finished yet, however, and while he shudders when he feels Link finish again he takes this moment of weakness to turn Link onto his side, lifting his leg above his shoulder, to fuck him deeper. Link almost wants to come again. The pain of overstimulation feels good in itself, but he can’t. His head lolls to the side, his hair covering his face in a sweaty mess as Bozai fucks him, deeper and deeper, then harder, then faster, until he pushes himself in to the hilt and spills inside Link with such a loud moan of appreciation that it makes Link flush with pride as something deep in him feels awkward and weighted from Bozai’s seed.

 

Link is breathless, naked, and pained. Aside from the bareness of body, he is used to the feeling. He pushes through it to get a wet cloth to clean himself with, stepping into his washroom and grabbing a pitcher of water that rests on a barrel in the corner. To one side of the room is a tiled area with a drain in the middle of it. With the pitcher, he tries to stand in the middle of it long enough to tip the water down his backside, reaching over to the basin for the small washcloth there to clean himself on the outside being tossing it aside to clean within with his fingers. Bozai joins him for a moment with a groan, stripping his clothes and taking the pitcher from Link to refill it again and drain the water on the both of them.

 

Scrubbed of the come, and sweat, and grime, Bozai and Link step into some more comfortable sleeping attire before removing the soiled top sheets and pulling clean ones over themselves. Laying in bed, they stifle yawns and talk about anything and everything at each other until Bozai’s eyes pull heavy and he’s unable to see what Link is signing. Link doesn’t mind because his fingers are slack; he’s also tired and and being in Bozai’s arms is uncomfortable in the stickiness of their wash-damp skin but so very comfortable to be just...together. Bozai’s fingers are lost in Link’s long hair, cradling his head closer to his chest, and Link finds a lullaby in Bozai’s heartbeat. His arms rest lightly on Bozai’s lower abdomen, legs tangled in the other’s, and it’s close and warm and present. Their sleep together is restless and easy.

 

Waking up the next morning is troublesome. Yawns are deep and heavy and both want to sleep in longer. The morning heat that grows and grows as the day passes makes them want to stay in bed for longer. Link rolls over to rub his face in Bozai’s chest, whining softly his complaints about having to wake. Bozai shares the sentiment, groaning from the heaviness of an adult man resting on his stomach and lower, his legs lifting so he can sit up in the bed. His hand scrubs over his face and he pinches the bridge of his nose as he yawns again. Nodding to himself as if to say “yes, now I’m going to get up” he reaches for the bedside to put on his glasses. Link leans up from Bozai’s stomach, pouting for a morning peck, and Bozai rolls his eyes fondly and gives Link his attention. Link preens through his fatigue and it’s enough for him to also get up and get ready for the day before the heat really sets in.

 

The room collects a little more heat for the moment that Bozai makes some eggs for breakfast. It doesn’t take long for the smell of food to make its way to Link in such a small living space and it invigorates Link further to be productive this morning. He’s already salivating while making the bed, stomach growling to finally eat. How he has missed Bozai’s cooking while away. He peeks over to see what else it is that’s on the menu, seeing the eggs sitting in a pot to the side. Bozai stirs dutifully at some rice he adds stock to until it’s thick and glutinous porridge. Some hydromelon is cut in cubes in a plate with caramelized berries and topped with dusting sugar.

 

If Link weren't so hungry, perhaps he’d be a bit more aroused, but he’s a man of many extremes and so it doesn’t stop him from stifling a grin behind a bitten lip as he slips behind Bozai and kisses up and down the back of his neck. His hand cups around Bozai’s half-hard thickness below and Bozai chuckles before moving aside and using his hip to bump Link softly out of the way.

 

“As tempting as the offer is, my love, I know what you’d really rather have,” he says, dropping a kiss on Link’s forehead. Link rolls his eyes but the idea doesn’t leave him and while he changes he watches Bozai over his shoulder. Bozai unlatches the table connected to the wall to set it down and then puts the food on the short table. It’s when he makes his way toward the bed to collect some cushions to sit on that Link grabs him and pushes him onto the bed with a wicked grin that has Bozai laughing again.

 

The laughter disappears the second Link pushes Bozai’s underwear down to take him into his mouth and Bozai curses and sighs. He’s quick to get hard and quicker to edge towards his finish and Link wants it . Kneeling in front of the bed, tongue out and making coaxing little licks while Bozai strokes himself the rest of the way to spill in Link’s mouth. Link’s lashes flutter, the bitter taste intoxicating as he moans softly and drinks all of it as well as he can. Bozai groans after a moment of recovery, tucking himself back into his underwear and looking at Link with a weak expression of annoyance. Link looks back innocently, swiping his thumb under the corner of his mouth where some mess still lay on his face, and licking it clean. Bozai groans again, running his hands through his hair before sitting up and leaning forward to press his forehead against Link’s.

 

“You’re an insatiable minx, dear,” Bozai proclaims dramatically, getting up from the bed and helping Link from the floor. Link smiles, taking it as a compliment, placing a kiss on Bozai’s cheek as they return to the floor again by the table to eat. Beneath the table their fingers are laced as they eat, and sometimes feed each other. Bozai is well versed now in Link’s way of speaking so signing with one hand is something he can read and respond to easily now.

 

There is leftover food for Bozai to pack away but not before, after seeing Link’s content smile and watching him give thanks for the food, he takes the hand that he holds and brings it to his lips in a gentlemanly kiss. Link always flushes deep at these more romantic gestures. The ones that would have women swoon delightfully as they are courted. All the other domesticity he is so used to from Bozai but when treated like this his heart pounds loudly and where reciprocated feelings bubble so does this carnal need to satisfy his lover and fully possess him.

 

He always shakes these thoughts away eventually. When prompted, he refuses to admit that he’s in love with Bozai. It took him months to admit aloud to Riju that he cares for the man deeply. Love is something else. Something that simmers in his stomach, a tight coil making his insides warm and uncomfortable.

 

Love is...something else.

 

-

 

There is always something. An explosion resounds in the northern part of the city and, considering Link’s place of residence is in this area, he is first on the scene when he rushes against the tide towards the attack. Or, one of the first at least. Riju, surfing behind Patricia and calling a storm behind her. Her look is fierce, but it’s not a look that inspires confidence in Link. There is rage and worry in equal measure contorting her face in a roar of defiance that shakes the sands. Gerudo warriors, mercenary men, and whoever between that could fight did just that. With the Gerudo Chief at the forefront, these people gathered against the waves of monsters that emerge from afar and below. In the distance, massive structures creep slowly towards them, and while the sand wishes to whip at Link’s eyes to obstruct these things from view he can still see what they are.

 

He wishes he had a voice to scream. To shout what follows. But when he dashes towards Riju, he can tell by her face that she already knows. Her brows furrow, angry, furious . Raising a hand towards the approaching legion of guardians, her eyes shine with a bright green aura that channels into a power she keeps locked behind her fist.

 

That is enough!

 

Her voice is commanding but not her own, and in the distance behind them a beam of red light passes them with an unfamiliar sound. It’s a hum, low and foreboding, and as it thins at the tail it turns to a piercing screech of a whistle before the light lands in the middle of the mechanical horde. Nothing happens for a long enough while for the fight to still continue. Link swings swords until they break, burying spears and broken staves until monsters while he fights and protects and tries to reach the front lines. But then the monsters still and so does everyone else. An explosion, louder than the one that signalled the populace, roars in the distance and engulfs the guardians in its power. With such intense magical (or technological?) energy having decimated the force, no one expected for more to follow like insects over a carcass.

 

There’s only one thing left to do, Link thinks.

 

Calling the power in his hand, he takes the nearest bow and arrow he can find. He directs this high in the sky and, as his power moves across the arrow to it’s tip, he releases and lets the light shoot a beacon into the sky to alert the princess and champions.

 

“Retreat!” Riju calls, her sword beckoning her troops and citizens to return back to the city. With the majority of the line in front of her now, she turns to the incoming intruders of her land and strains against nature as she calls a storm to keep them at bay. No, not call. She demands the winds and sands to do her bidding, muttering under her breath a prayer or a chant - anything to save her people, Gerudo or not.

 

Link meets her at this line she draws, casting a look over his shoulder to see everyone disappearing behind the sandstone walls. He turns back to Riju and takes a breath and closes his eyes, placing a hand over her shoulder. He winces at the electricity in the air that whips him for his contact with their master but still keeps firm, his triforce shining brightly as he calls it to aid her. It doesn’t require much concentration on his part. It’s a power he has learned well and knows how to control, but he can feel Riju’s power pushing against him as if not rejecting him and at the same time something tugs deep at it as if craving it.

 

He opens his eyes to look at Riju, his eyes searching for a reason behind this conflict. They’d never had a problem before, so why now? But he couldn’t find anything immediately telling. She looked fatigued, and it’s no surprise in such thick clothes that cover her twice over. He thinks she must’ve gone further north that anticipated to travel for such weather. But then he sees Patricia move tentatively to Riju’s side, nosing the underside of her clothing bundle. And with a free hand, Riju pets Patricia before resting her hand under her chest, atop a point Link realizes is...her. Not thick cloth. But her .

 

He pulls at Riju’s arm to draw her attention - there are no worries now with her prayer finished and the storm a firm wall between the blighted creatures and Gerudo City - and gestures to her.

 

You’re…’ Link’s fingers tense as they try to sign the words he needs to. ‘ You’re...pregnant?’

 

Riju’s eyes sharpen for a moment and it has Link recoiling at the power of her glare. But then, her eyes soften and the fatigue falls heavy on her and she collapses to her knees, holding her belly.

 

“I am,” she says stiffly. “And I may not be naturally due, but we need to birth my child now.”

 

How-’ Link shakes his head. ‘ You need to rest! You’ve used up so much magical energy! Zelda will be here soon, and more help. Take care of yourself-

 

Riju stops Link short with a hiss and a glare, snatching his hand and placing it on her belly. His hand pulses and he rips it away, gasping at the discomforting tugging he felt the first time he touched her.

 

What-?

 

“We need to birth my son , now .”

 

Link’s face takes a look of understanding but it doesn’t stop the pain he feels to hear that the second coming of Ganon may already be upon them, and with the blood of a dearest friend. He shakes thoughts of a worse tomorrow off, even while his triforce wants to claim dominance over a piece that has been accustomed to playing the enemy of its own bearer, and helps Riju up to her feet. Patricia lets Riju climb atop her and barks worriedly at Link, wanting to know what was wrong. Link pets Patricia before leading them back to the City, and then further in passed the worried Gerudo warriors and city dwellers to Old Gerudo Town.

 

Apparently the Gerudo have made several precautions for such events as this. Preparing for the Red Moon Son, and the following invasion of monsters as they try to claim their master-to-be. Though they weren’t as well prepared this time since Riju had kept her pregnancy secret, not out of spite for ancient traditions but because she hadn’t expected herself to be with child. She had slept with a man out of desire to experience him, an attraction born from curiosity and ended in decent satisfaction. She confesses this through a fatigued slur after taking a potion meant to trigger labor. It’s meant to be dangerous to take in her second trimester since it was made for late pregnancies or pregnancies that threaten the child’s life, but there are many midwives in the birthing room to support the Chief through her labor.

 

“I never thought I would bear a son,” she says tiredly. “So soon after his defeat, and I am to birth the host of Demise.” Tears make a slow path down her cheeks and she shudders as an intense sadness takes her for a moment. “I don’t want Demise to take this son from me, Link. I won’t have the Gerudo tarnished by evil aga--”

 

Her wishes are interrupted by a scream and she knocks a doctor’s bench down as her body wracks with pain. The head of the midwives shoos Link out of the room and he obeys and wishes to leave the women to it but not before giving Riju a soft kiss on her sweat-slick forehead. He isn’t sure if she can properly register his words but still, he signs to her.

 

Just worry about yourself right now, okay? I’ll be back for you soon.

 

Riju nods weakly as contractions take her, making her cry out in pain again. She curses in Gerudo and no one there would ever correct her language now, all sharing the same understanding look, however this understand transforms into wariness as static makes the hairs on the necks stand.

 

“In our history, not many chiefs have been the one to birth the Bearer of the Triforce of Power,” a midwife admits quietly to Link, “And those that have hadn’t lasted long soon after.”

 

This confession earns a glare from Link and the woman immediately looks apologetic.

 

Riju would fight even Death if it were stopping her from looking out for her people, ’ he tells her, declaring his trust in his friend. The woman nods but still doesn’t look convinced.

 

“I will send word for you when she has given birth after the walls are secure,” she says, and Link nods and lets the curtain fall behind him. He winces at the groans and painful cries he hears behind him but he forces himself to walk on and secure the perimeter outside. There is enough trust in the chief that the city hasn’t been cleared out by those wishing to disappear with their belongings. Instead, people board their homes lest the sandstorm travel further down towards them, and others prepare to defend them.

 

It’s the same in Old Gerudo Town as it is in the city. Boarded homes, defensive owners. The Gerudo warriors stationed at the town entrance lets the women and children in while the men stay out during the storm and raid. Most men don’t seem to mind at all, asking the women to protect their wives and children. Some men, outwardly cowardly, are beaten down for trying to intrude and are forced to take arms. The men who have no qualms with this treatment retreat to their homes and simply hide. What joins them all how they pray, be it under tables or in groups of comfort, standing guard or distracting the masses. They all pray to Hylia, and to their respective gods or sages, to save them all.


These long moments of patrol and prayer must’ve attracted all kinds of energies. Behind the storm wall, Link can see monsters trying to force their way through only to return to dust in shreds. Guardian beams try to pierce through but are turned against themselves. So these monsters wait. And so do the militia at the front lines, waiting for the monsters to break through. Buliara stands beside Link, and Teake. Both are in full armor in comparison to their usual Gerudo guard garb, and so is Link. It almost appears ceremonial but Link is sure that this Gerudo armor is meant for the male heir.

 

“You will bless it with the defeat of our enemies today, Link,” Buliara tells him, “And Riju’s son will wear it with pride and honor.”

 

It’s embarrassing but Link flushes with pride at the words and within them he feels the encouragement he needed to feel his triforce thrum inside him as if wishing to protect the Triforce of Power that lay far behind the walls he protects.

 

The storm lightens, the wind slowing. It’s indication enough for those who knew that Riju has probably given birth and is resting. Link hopes it’s simply resting, gritting his teeth as the sand lowers. From winds that would flay flesh from bone, it becomes a powerful gust, and then a breeze. Both sides are at a standstill, waiting for the other to react. From the corner of his eye, Link spots the movement of a Guardian and immediately draws an ancient arrow and shoots straight and true for its head. It’s explosion rings and signals all sides to advance and war cries resound through the desert as they all do so. Metal clashes, arrows fly through the air, and Link tries to cut through monsters to reach the Guardians and dismantle them first. Buliara and Teake also lead small troupes themselves that are for ending the Guardians. The damage they can do when provoked further than their original capabilities is astounding. A single shot can kill a normal person.

 

These normal shots do kill people but there’s no time to mourn. There may be more monsters and Malice than Guardians but the machines are far more dangerous. Link is unsure of how much time has passed, perhaps not even a half hour, but he knows that his arms grow heavy from the energy exerted to defeat the many that he had carved a path through. He’s sure that Buliara and Teake feel the same, trying to scan for them as he withdraws a Guardian Sword and holds it at the ready.

 

He doesn’t need it for long, thankfully. His eyes water in relief as Vah Medoh circles overhead. The shadow alone of this Divine Beast is enough to make the monsters falter. The Guardians still press on as weaker monsters retreat and Vah Medoh follows these monsters to wherever they should lead. On Medoh’s wings, Link can spot the blurry figures of perhaps a few dozen Rito, armed and ready to take the fight to the monster’s base. He would holler at them if he could but instead raises a fist towards them, wishing them victory. As others notice the beast, many do the same but bring voice to his thoughts, and this bolsters many to continue the push back.

 

A squadron of Gorons join the fray, rolling in and knocking monsters down. They aren’t followed by their beast, but the way they fight and work easily through the desert heat they don’t really need to. The only ones unable to join in person are the Zora, but it doesn’t mean they aren’t able to help. Vah Ruta fires beams of light towards the Guardians. It’s the least and all they can do but it goes appreciated as Link falls onto a dismantled arm of a Guardian to rest. Finally, they are winning, but under the heat of the sun and fighting so hard to push back the enemy so far from the city has its physical tolls on the Hylian Hero. He doesn’t think he’s getting too old for this just yet, not so close to hitting his thirtieth year yet, but he’s not as in-practice with battle as he used to be since Ganon’s defeat. He’s grown lax, he thinks bitterly, but he’s fought with this fate since a child. He can only hope the next generation of triforce bearers aren’t sucked into this ungodly cycle of violence as young or younger than himself.

 

He stumbles on his way returning to the city. It’s out of his hands now, thankfully. He’s tired, and worried, and he’s sure he may have heatstroke with how hot his head is and how hard it throbs due to the heat. Nothing he’s too unused to; a potion will help round out the irritation. Hylian troops sent by Zelda, no doubt, pass him after bowing in respect and then leave to be directed by the Gerudo warriors. The shrine closest to Gerudo Town shines bright green before resting back to blue and before Link is an astral projection of Zelda who appears to be in the middle of something. She’s sitting on the ground, legs crossed, and her triforce shines.

 

Link! I’m glad to finally reach you! I saw your signal. I assume things are a bit more resolved? ” she asks, still sitting as if concentrating on something else besides their conversation. Link still nods and answers her.

 

They are tracing the monsters and Malice back to their origins. This may be the last of the strongest waves of blight we’ll face since Ganon’s defeat.

 

What has caused them to resurface? ” Zelda wonders, brow furrowing in concern, “ Have we hit another tap of Malice? I can send a team to further investigate-

 

Link shakes his head, interrupting her.

 

It’s not...that.’ He frowns, looking towards the center of Gerudo Town. ‘ Can you follow me in this form?’

 

I can try.

 

Zelda follows Link to where Riju lay asleep, at rest after a tiring ordeal. Beside her is a crib, which doesn’t surprise Link, but what does is what he sees inside.

 

There’s nothing monstrous or anything to take immediately as an omen. Inside the crib lay two babies. Twins, with their hands curled together as if intended to comfort each other. The twin whose hand lays on top, the back of their hand facing out, glows with the triforce, brighter the closer Link and Zelda step forward.

 

Oh… ” Zelda murmurs, looking at Riju. Link sits beside the Gerudo woman and pets her head softly, nosing it and mouthing words of praise into her skin. Riju stirs, a smile gracing her lips, and her eyes open a crack to see the faded projection of Zelda before her.

 

Sav’aaq, Princess,” Riju croaks, trying to sit up. She looks proudly at her children, as if impressed with herself. “I hope this doesn’t cause any issues between us.” It’s a joke, and Zelda wishes she could take it as such but there’s no way she could.

 

“I should hope not as well,” Zelda mutters, reaching out as if to touch though she can’t. “Oh, Riju…”

 

“I am well aware of what this means, but consider this as well: The Triforce of Power wasn’t taken this day. We defeated the ones who came for him, and we will continue to protect this child for as long as it takes so Demise does not take him.”

 

Riju’s words are form, leaving no room for Zelda to argue, and so the princess takes a deep breath and looks back at the children.

 

“What are the little ones’ names,” she asks Riju with a small smile. Riju smiles back, grateful.

 

“Dorn is the one who bears the Triforce of Power,” she says. “I’d rather not name him what he typically would be named. A self-fulfilling prophecy, no?” Zelda chuckles softly, and Riju smiles again and continues. “The other child, my daughter, will be named Qira.”

 

Beautiful names, ’ Link signs, grinning at the beaming new mother. She directs her smile at him next and takes his hand.

 

“I would like for you to be their godfather, Link,” she tells him, squeezing his hand. “Should I fall in battle, or to illness, or whatever the future holds, I want you to be there for my children. I want you to teach Dorn to not fall to Demise. To teach him to use Power to give it to those weaker than himself, and to pave the way for the future.”

 

Don’t make it sound like you’re going now, Riju, ’ Link replies, reaching to stroke her cheek and pinch it lightly. ‘ You know I’ll be doing that anyway. Myself. Zelda. The other Champions. We’ll be the best extended family your kids can ask for!

 

Riju laughs. “Oh, I know I’m not leaving anytime soon. Mark my words, Hero, I will live to see my son deny Demise in the face!” She cackles before stopping herself short when her children stir. Zelda wrinkles her nose and, as if patting the children, phases her hand through their bodies with her own comforting, non-physical gestures. It seems to do the trick, somehow.

 

“I am just saying,” Riju continues, looking at them both, “That my son is vulnerable. And I am taking his care seriously.” She sighs. “Aside from their health, more than anything, I don’t wish for history to repeat. I don’t want my people isolated, and recruited, for Demise’s and his evil. I am counting on you to help me prevent that.”

 

“Of course, Riju.” Link nods with Zelda.

 

“Good,” she says. “I’ll...take my rest now. Thank you for listening.”

 

“Rest well, Riju. I’ll be in Gerudo Town in a day. And if you are well, we can investigate the monster base together. I wish to know what they had excavated for the Malice to reach so many Guardians.”

 

“Oh, I can explain that one,” Riju says through a yawn. “You should bring all of your equipment, Zelda. There is much for you to see.”

 

-

 

Zelda discovers that there was much to see. On this expedition, Riju, Zelda, Link, Bozai, Purah, and a few guards, travelled further than the desert borders. Buliara would have joined, but Riju asked for her to see to the twins, and Buliara couldn’t deny that request. Like a jealous grandmother, she had refused to have anyone else look after the newborns, and Teake was recovering from battle. So, instead, it’s this party that makes the days-long journey to a large ravine that cuts across between the desert and a ruin. Pillars are scattered across the flat desert surface, and some stone walls still stand with carvings left to inspect. But it’s the large building behind the ravine that catches the attention of them all.

 

White and golden stone is what makes this ruin, but the word ‘ruin’ doesn’t capture how ornately structured it still is in spite of being eroded over time. There are cracks and holes in the surface, yes,  but it still seems whole and resolute.

 

“This is…” Bozai looks at the ruin in awe and when Link approaches it, his hand reaches out as if to touch the gravelly stone surface. It’s familiar to him, somehow.

 

“The Spirit Temple,” Riju nods. “But I wouldn’t approach it now. There’s no way to.”

 

“You can’t just cross the ravine,” Zelda says, her voice a mixture of statement and question. Riju nods again.

 

“Our oral history retells of a time when there were two ways to cross, one for the Gerudo, and the other for the Chosen Hero of The Goddess,” Riju explains. “Chosen Gerudo would be lead by a spirit guide. A trickster. When Poe were not the puppets of Demise, they were ghosts who did as they wished according to their patron. Much like the spirits of the forest.”

 

“The Hero was lead by ‘The Truth’,” Bozai recalls aloud, peeking down at the ravine before stepping back in shock. The husks of Guardians are plenty down there and when Zelda peeks down herself, her eyes light up in wonder.

 

“We haven’t yet discovered what ‘The Truth’ is,” Riju admits. “But I feel deeply that entry into the Spirit Temple is key to understanding Demise’s reincarnation into the Gerudo people. If we can figure that out, perhaps we can save my people from future ruin.”

 

“And your son,” Zelda adds. Riju winks. And Bozai blinks in surprise.

 

“You have a son, Madam Chief?” he asks, looking at her as if inspecting her for any telltale sign that she was ever with child.

 

“And daughter,” she laughs at his flabbergasted look. “I’m surprised Link had not yet told you, considering he is to be their father should I pass!”

 

Which won’t be in the immediate future. ’ Link rolls his eyes. He looks at Bozai who stares at Link strangely.

 

It doesn’t get addressed among the hustle and bustle of Zelda and Purah and their assistants helping to establish a perimeter to inspect to conduct tests on the ravine. Bozai helps them as well, considering his historical expertise on Gerudo-Hylian structures and also knowledge of the Old Language, but Link wonders if he feels out of place in this position of work Link is used to. Especially with a head scientist and a princess asking for his assistance or professional opinion. Bozai seems flushed from the importance placed on him but also very proud to be doing something much greater, especially in front of Link.

 

Normally, Link isn’t one for public displays of affection greater than touching shoulders and hand holding, but against his rationale he takes Bozai’s hand to draw his attention and kisses him softly under his chin.

 

Keep up the good work.

 

Bozai isn’t used to this at all, his face bright red and his eyes wide, but eventually he grins and nods.

 

“Of course!”

 

Link smiles at Bozai and they return to what they were doing, but Link still doesn’t miss the way Zelda, and especially Purah, look at him. Purah looks positively wicked, but Zelda is surprised. She shouldn’t be, Link thinks, since she knows about his dalliance with Bozai. Unknown to Link, she is just surprised at the fact that the two had...progressed. Years have passed since Ganon and Demise’s fall, but she hasn’t felt the heaviness of her duty lessen since. It has weighed on her, making her chest ache as she craves for more like this time she spends outdoors, exploring and discovering. To see Link comfortable between duty and, from what she observes, love? She admits, she’s a little jealous.

 

-

 

Night comes and cools the desert to freezing temperatures. A bit of a distance away from the excavation point is where they make camp beside a rocky face that keeps most of the wind and sand out of their face. They build a fire and set tents and sleeping rolls. Link immediately volunteers for first watch but with the number of guards they have it isn’t at all necessary, so by Zelda and Purah, who also is preparing to rest, he is coaxed into resting and so he retreats into the tent beside Bozai with a yawn and signs his good nights. Bozai stays in the background of most of these interactions, pouring over his books to translate what he can from runes inscribed inside of the ravine that Zelda had copied. Observation of Link is just a side benefit to this solitude, but with Link no longer in the more direct vicinity of the open space in the camp, Riju easily swings an arm around Bozai’s neck and offers him some food.

 

“Come and eat!” she invites, pulling him away from his work. Zelda waves her hands about, noticing Bozai bump his knee on his makeshift desk.

 

“Be careful, Riju! We are all doing important work transcribing and translating the runes here! Don’t make a mess of his notes!” she hisses, kneeling beside Bozai’s work and tidying it since Bozai could not. Riju snorts.

 

“Don’t act like you don’t have questions for the voe ! We’re already acquainted, but admittedly not well enough!” Riju’s nose wrinkles. “And I should be, if I am to allow you to be the husband to the godfather of my children!”

 

“H-husband?!” Bozai splutters, wide-eyed.

 

(Inside the tent, Link’s head is buried in his knees and his ears flutter as he eavesdrops into the conversation. He wants to make a noise indicating he’s still awake but instead he stays silent.)

 

“Well, that’s...what is to proceed between you two, yes?” Zelda asks, fidgeting.

 

“We are a casual affair, honestly!” Bozai confesses, ears downturned as he flushes from his chest up. The women share a look, skeptical.

 

“But you wish for more, do you not?” Riju presses, and there is only one correct answer to this question despite the truth of why Bozai and Link began seeing each other without commitment in the first place.

 

“I-” Bozai interrupts his own spoken thoughts to try and find the words that won’t embarrass him, and won’t kill him. His answer can only fall between those two extremes however he knows he’ll fail to meet either. But not dying is the best course of action. “I..like Link. More than I should say. At first I thought he was a woman with whom I could begin a family with had I swooned her enough to accept me, awkwardness and all.” He laughs, recalling the first moments he had with Link, such a pretty face teasing him with unseen expressions behind a veil. And now he gets to see it all. “Now, I see a beautiful and selfless man searching for freedom away from the expectations of ‘hero’ and ‘champion’.” He looks from Riju to Zelda, eyes earnest as he proclaims, “I want to give that to him! So I...I won’t tie him down with the feelings I have developed. He’s under the impression that I am in search of a wife still, in spite of our time together.”

 

“More like, he’s stopping himself from being happy with you with that excuse,” Riju says, waving aside the couples’ ‘conflict’.

 

“You admit he’s selfless,” Zelda starts, “So wouldn’t it make sense that perhaps he’s also restraining himself from being with you due to these assumptions and his obligations?”

 

Bozai frowns, shrugging.

 

“Would it be any better for us?” Bozai replies. Zelda frowns in return. “I know he wishes to experience more than what I have to offer. And he knows that I wish to settle down. We’re very clear with what we want from each other. Why...risk ruining it?”

 

Riju nudges Zelda and rolls her eyes. “Link isn’t the only one with assumptions.” Zelda nods and leans forward.

 

“Have you ever thought to inquire,” she says, “About the possibility of your... relationship being the next adventure and piece of freedom he is searching for?”

 

Bozai doesn’t reply. He instead looks down at his food as if it’s the most interesting thing in the world right now and then tries to eat as much of it as he can so he wouldn’t have to speak anymore. Riju still continues, not letting the subject go now that she has Bozai in her grasp.

 

“You didn’t answer my question, historian,” Riju says, loosely waving her scimitar as she gestures at him. He feels more threatened by how sharp it is than her, because he knows she means well, but it doesn’t stop him from looking visibly uncomfortable by this happening. “You wish for more?”

 

Obviously !” he says emphatically.

 

(Link, still awake and if anything more awake than ever, blushes deep enough that it’s a wonder that blood had manage to pool south as well. Again, that desire to give Bozai himself, heart and body, surfaces for breath while he remains to drown in the flurry of his emotions. His head throbs and he wishes now he could sleep, so he hopes the conversation can finally dull to small talk so he can be lulled by it.)

 

Riju smirks.

 

“Then I feel comfortable with having you around my children,” she declares with a solid nod. Zelda rolls her eyes at the woman but can’t help her small smile. Bozai’s lip purse into a small, amused smile of his own.

 

“You seem fine with me teaching the other Gerudo children,” he points out. She waves vaguely again.

 

“You are a teacher to them. For my own, you just may be another father,” she tells him, shrugging. “I wanted to be sure that my friend and my children are in good hands.”

 

Bozai laughs, taking the waterskin that Purah passes to him and drinking. “You have a wonderful, strong-willed culture. I think they may be teaching me more than I’ll be teaching them.”

 

“You flatter my people, but there are some things even we cannot teach our own.” Riju takes the next drink, and then Zelda, and then another round is made.

 

“Are you sure?” Bozai muses.

 

“Not really.” Riju barks a laugh. “But at least I know they will learn well of a devoted love as you and Link share.”

 

“Again, really-!” Bozai is sputtering and blushing and it’s only Riju who teases him so much that has her laughing. Zelda tries to share it, but suddenly she’s reserved and pensive. And they join her in her silence. It’s long, but neither tense nor awkward, and with Bozai having his fill of food and drink he excuses himself to his tent with Link.

 

“Keep it down in there!” Riju continues to tease. Bozai rolls his eyes with an awkward smile.

 

“He’s asleep!” he says. She scoffs.

 

“I recall that not being an issue previously,” she mutters behind her drink, but loud enough to make the group flush at the revealing information.

 

Good night !”

 

Finally, Bozai crawls into the tent, lowering the material of the entrance behind him, and kicks off his boots. He looks at Link’s resting body - Link is drifting but not asleep quiet yet, and now the anticipation of Bozai’s touch has him on edge through his fatigue - and he reaches out to rub warmth into where he touches Link’s arm. Link groans softly, turning over and moving Bozai’s hand to his cheek, giving his palm a kiss. Bozai’s heart flutters and he sighs, lying down beside Link and pressing a kiss to his forehead. Link makes another soft noise, happy, and shoves his head into Bozai’s face for more soft kisses against it and Bozai laughs lightly as he collects the man in his arms and kisses him all over his face and neck to hear the airy laughter that only Link can manage.

 

“Sorry for waking you,” Bozai apologizes, tongue running along the shell of Link’s ear and grinning as Link’s ears flutter. Link responds by shaking his head.

 

It’s okay’ is what Bozai reads this gesture as, though Link really means ‘ I wasn’t really asleep ’. It’s better the response taken as the latter anyway, otherwise Link would have to admit that he...heard...Bozai’s confession.

 

Recalling it through his tiredness, Link’s fingers reach to find Bozai’s neck and then take him into a hungry kiss. Hungry for love, and for more. His tongue laps at Bozai’s and the heat and wetness make them both groan as they grope each other under the covers.

 

“Everyone is still up,” Bozai tells Link carefully, and Link whines because he wants Bozai so badly. He wants to show Bozai how much he wants to return the affections he places in him. He’s so disappointed, especially because Bozai’s large hands that rest on his hips create a heat that follows all around his bottom half making him want to grind against him. But he relents, nose wrinkling, before he lets Bozai lay down so that he could take his place on his side. Bozai pulls the covers over them and his thumb rubs along Link’s shoulder as they both settle from their arousal. Link doesn't so much. With his leg tossed over Bozai’s, he can’t help but grind softly into the man’s hip, hoping for stimulation, or perhaps even a helping hand. His shin grazes across Bozai’s front and it’s evident that the man is equally wanting, but Bozai instead groans as he tries to fall asleep, physically in need but not so heated that release is necessary.

 

It’s a mild annoyance and disappointment for Link, but eventually through the irritation he manages to sleep. His hips still meet Bozai’s as his clothed cock slides against the pressure of the sleeping body beside him and also the inside of his underwear, but his restlessness ceases eventually. But during the late night it does return, harder than ever. As if waking from a pleasurable dream, Link’s front is hard and wet and uncomfortable and all he wants is to be released from whatever restrains him from coming.

 

Peering outside for a moment, he squints through the night to see that the fire in the middle has turned to ash and that even the guards are dozing off. It’s not a huge issue, but it’s quiet enough and in extension asleep enough from the outside that he can proceed with taking the pleasure he wants and needs at this very moment.

 

You admit he’s selfless, so wouldn’t it make sense that perhaps he’s also restraining himself from being with you due to these assumptions and his obligations?”

 

He recalls what Zelda said of him and, carefully taking the covers off of Bozai and looking at him with pure want, he wants to challenge the assumption of his character.

 

Link carefully places his knees into the ground above Bozai’s shoulders and leans over nudge Bozai’s clothed, flaccid cock with his nose, denying himself the chance to taste the man for now. He reaches over and cups Bozai, grinding the heel of his palm, fingers teasing his balls, and marvelling at how fast the man is to get hard. Between his legs, he feels Bozai shift and groan, but he doesn’t yet wake, and so Link cheekily continues, groping until Bozai is hard enough for Link to take into his mouth. Link sucks Bozai down easily. A few initial sucks wet Bozai’s cock before Link can really take him to his throat, his hand tight around what he can’t reach. Bozai tastes bitter and salty but his scent is heavy and heady and Link whimpers around Bozai’s cock, using his free hand to toy with his ass.

 

He gropes at his own ass cheek, knowing how Bozai loves to worship it and memorizing the pull and slap the man would give him as he would see his cock enter Link. The thought makes Link’s eyes roll back when he finally pushes two fingers in, working Bozai’s cock with his mouth harder if only to coax him to come in his mouth. Link wants it so badly, wants Bozai to spill inside his mouth, because once Bozai comes then so can Link, and Link wants to finish. He wants to make a mess. Pushing himself to this edge, he wants to break free of those shackles of his ‘obligations’.

 

He wants Bozai.

 

In his head he chants the words he can’t tell the man just yet, fucking himself harder but not hard enough to make much of a sound. The only sounds, aside from his service, is Bozai’s soft moans that Link can feel on his calves that has him shivering, giddy. He takes Bozai out of his mouth to lean further down to lick and suck teasing sensations on Bozai’s sac and Bozai thrusts up in his sleep, whining in complaint as the warmth he had felt take him was no longer there. Link laughs, taking Bozai’s weeping cockhead back in and cleaning it of the pre that had pooled in the slit. He only pauses for a moment to take off his own trousers to not make a mess of those at least - he needs to wear them in the morning - and free from them he can spread his legs further and make his fingers spread his hole more to take another finger in them.

 

Sometimes, he would imagine being taken in front of Bozai, being filled by another while Bozai would either stew in jealousy or look at Link in pride. A fantasy, to be sure, but one that adds fuel to the fire he has for Bozai and his need to impress him. Bozai does much to service Link, from the domestics of household chores to even in bed, so Link feels that it’s the least he can do to satisfy Bozai’s sexual needs. He just wants the man to let loose on him instead of holding back like how Link does. He wants Bozai to indulge himself fully, push him to the limit. Link is used to pain so he will take more if it pleases, because it certainly pleases him.

 

At the very same time, Link is such a contradiction. He wants Bozai to take, and yet Link himself takes much more because he wants it all. He’s a brat in these personal affairs, the only place he can be a little selfish. Without Bozai’s knowledge he is fucking himself and coaxing the man to come in his mouth because he’s so selfish, but he wants Bozai to feel good. Wants him to praise Link for letting him come in his throat. Link trembles at the thought of Bozai petting his head before forcing Link to take more of his cock.

 

He grins behind a bitten lip as the stretch fills him. It’s not quite Bozai’s size but to do this in front of him while he’s asleep is hot enough as it is. This isn’t the first time either has done such a thing with the other but it doesn’t lessen the excitement and soon enough Link can feel the telltale twitch of Bozai’s cock in his mouth that signals his end. Link coaxes it closer toward him, taking him deep into his throat enough to make his eyes water, and maybe that was enough because a few short thrusts up more and Bozai swears quietly through a gasp as he spills into Link’s throat unknowingly. Link hums, pleased, lashes fluttering and eyes focusing from how dizzy in pleasure he feels. Now. Now he can finish himself off, he thinks, taking his own sensitive cock in hand and leaning on Bozai’s thigh as he strokes himself.

 

If he could scream right now he absolutely would, shuddering as he comes undone thanks to Bozai’s tongue lapping at his fingers and hole eagerly. Link removes his fingers so Bozai can bury his tongue further in his ass and Link’s eyes roll back before he shuts them tight and focuses on unwinding the tight coil in his belly. With his hands on Bozai’s abdomen he steadies himself to ride the mans face, short moans leaving him in a weeping staccato because he’s so close . He’s desperately bringing himself to his finish now, fist tight and hot around himself but it’s only when Bozai’s hand reaches around and squeezes his balls, massaging them as Link gasps and shakes. He comes finally on Bozai’s chest and stomach and His thighs are shaking and his cock is definitely sore but he feels like he’s on air, floating and tired and sated.

 

“Finally done now, love?” Bozai says hoarsely, sitting up and helping Link off from his shoulders and chest. Link laughs and nods weakly, wiggling his ass at him. Bozai snorts, tired. “So does this mean we can sleep now yet or would you like some more?” Link shudders at the suggestion, still aroused if a little physically fatigued, and he grins apologetically.

 

He nods. ‘ Again? Please?’

 

Bozai sighs dramatically and smiles, moving Link to be on his back as he shifts between his legs.

 

“We have work to do in the morning, you know?”

 

Link nods again. ‘ I know. I just need you, please.

 

“If only you weren’t mute this time,” Bozai comments, “Then maybe I could keep you quiet with a hand over your mouth.” Link laughs, grinning, and then leads Bozai’s hand to his throat.

 

Do this instead.

 

“Are you sure?” Bozai asks, but he doesn’t truly have a problem with it. Link can feel the evidence against his ass.

 

I will tap you twice when I need you to let me go. ’ Link tells Bozai, tapping his forearm as an example. Bozai nods, giving Link’s throat a test-squeeze and Link shakes wonderfully with this new stimulation. Bozai’s eyes darken in want and Link loves the look, yearning in his own eyes to match. ‘ Please, Bozai. Give it to me.

 

Link had never really asked for this sort of thing before. A few light spanks perhaps, or a tug on his nipples that even Bozai thought may be a bit much, but he had already gathered Link was a glutton for pain and punishment. He enjoys it more than he wants to admit. Making Link cry only to ask for more has his stomach twisting in the best feeling knots. It satisfies an itch at the back of his head that wants to keep Link with him like this, begging for him to break him, and craving his hands to put him together again.

 

Bozai fits himself in Link with a sharp snap of his hips that winds him and then again, and again, finding a pace until Link squeezes his hand on top of Bozai’s silently asking for him to continue the way he wants. Bozai obliges slowly, his hand closing on Link’s throat with enough pressure to feel the way Link’s throat bobs when he swallows down a gasp, and then more at Link’s insistence. Link can feel the way his air is cut off, the way it feels his head with a fuzz that makes him dizzy and high. Bozai can feel how much Link loves it, tightening down on his cock and Link’s own twitching between them. Bozai looks to Link, searching for the bliss in his face he can feel around him and when he sees it - Link’s eyes red-rimmed and sparkling with a smile, his mouth open and wet and asking for more - something seats itself firmly inside of Bozai and makes him squeeze tighter on Link’s throat and thrust harder.

 

Link yelps, coming, but Bozai continues, raising Link’s leg and fucking him deeper with his hand firm against Link’s throat. Link doesn’t tap out yet because he can feel another wave of overstimulation push him towards the edge, and in his mind he’s babbling all sorts of appreciations he wishes Bozai to hear one day. Bozai instead speaks, muttering against Link’s calf as he scatters it with kisses and keeps pushing himself in and out of Link’s tight heat.

 

“So gorgeous, my love. You love this, don’t you? You want to be full of me-”

 

By the Goddesses , yes , Link thinks. ‘ I want you. I want you, oh Bozai, I lo-’

 

The thought alone pushes Link to peak he had never reached before and he tightens on Bozai, reaching to grip his arm and dig his nails in like an anchor into his sandy skin. That heat, and that look, and the satisfaction that reads not only on Link’s face but also in the ripples of his body make Bozai come, harsh thrusts to bury himself deeper so he can fill his sweet up so that Link can taste him in the morning. He releases Link’s leg to lean forward and kiss him, fully and desperately. Link responds in kind, clinging to Bozai like he can regain his breath by being drowning in his kiss. And after the heat dies their kiss is just one of needing to touch more intimately than naked skin and seed between them. Bozai holds Link tenderly, stroking his cheek, and rubbing apologies into the skin of Link’s neck where it still aches.

 

-

 

In the morning, Link aches slightly but it’s something forgotten when he realizes he’s in Bozai’s arms. He laughs softly to himself and turns himself around to wake Bozai with a kiss. The man makes a pleased, if tired, sound and kisses Link back.

 

“We should get properly cleaned up for the morning,” he says, referencing the sweat and remains of the night between them. They had fallen asleep easily after the intensity of their encounter. Link grins, waggling his brows, and Bozai snorts, pushing his face away. “I mean it, Link. I don’t think the Chief or the Princess would much appreciate our tardiness.”

 

Link scoffs, rolling his eyes as he sits up from the bedroll. ‘ I was asleep for a hundred years. Can’t I enjoy a few moments more with you?’ He pouts, lashes fluttering pretty to coax Bozai to stay. Had this relationship between them been younger, while they were still flirting and Link was still teasing, it may have worked. Bozai isn’t entirely immune to Link’s charms but this much he can manage.

 

“Having slept for a hundred years, I’d think you would’ve slept enough,” Bozai says with a charming smile as he moves away from Link to rummage through his pack and collect a cloth. With his personal skin of water he wets it and cleans his front up before dressing and Link watches this with the most childish look before following suit with a groan of complaint.

 

Bozai smiles at him and laughs and Link wants to smile back but he’s far too invested in playing the petulant one right now. He leaves the tent after Bozai and they both see Zelda up first, studying something that Link knows not much of and Bozai has a rough idea about.

 

“Good morning, you two,” she greets through a yawn.

 

“Up early, princess?” Bozai says, taking a seat beside her. Link takes her other side and Bozai looks at him knowingly, to which Link sticks out his tongue.

 

“Early enough,” she replies, nose wrinkling. “I’m excited about this new site, certainly, but I was never much one for the morning. It’s a habit to be up by sunrise, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it.” She smiles. “And you? You seem like an early bird but I know Link to be the same as I in this respect.” Link snorts and Bozai smiles awkwardly as she looks between them in confusion.

 

“Link definitely shares the same sentiment as you for mornings, regardless of how much sleep he has gotten prior,” Bozai muses and Link gives him a sharp look that holds no effect. “I’m usually up early for classes - the Chief may have already told you that I’m a Hylian teacher for the Gerudo children - and aside from that, it’s something I’ve just...grown used to since living more permanently in the desert.”

 

“Do you have family elsewhere?” she asks conversationally, nursing a cup of tea she had made earlier. Link searches for the pot if only to have something warm to hold and also drink.

 

Bozai nods. “My father passed years ago but I have my mother and a brother in Hateno, though I’ve heard they had plans to move back into Hyrule’s City Square since it’s rebuilt.”

 

Link blinks in surprise, glad that he is not facing the two in case the surprise showed. He didn’t know about Bozai’s family. At Bozai’s age, he hadn’t considered it important. But Link supposes that is just a difference in upbringing. Link’s mother had died and his father was a distant man, a commanding officer of Hyrule’s army, so Link was instead raised by the castle cook and, in an odd way, the knights who taught him to fight since his father could not. Or would not. Link, in this body, is at least a good decade Bozai’s junior despite his actual age making him beyond that so Link is sure whatever family, from his father to extended members, are certainly dead. Whoever matters is either close at hand or a call away. Distance never equalled care in his experience.

 

“Condolences for your father, but I am glad that your mother and brother are alright,” Zelda says sincerely. Bozai accepts this with a light blush and smile.

 

“My mother is a seamstress and my brother is a smith. Or, should be,” Bozai laughs. “It’s been a while since I’ve spoken with them; I’ve said I’ll visit but it’s been so...busy. I honestly never expected myself to be decently important to Chief Riju, or even here.”

 

“You’re modest,” Zelda muses. Bozai laughs again.

 

“Just honest, I suppose? I think I owe all this opportunity to Link, really.” (Link flushes and decides he will bring two cups for himself and Bozai, but it doesn’t mean he’ll speak to him…) “If it weren’t for him, I don’t think I would’ve stayed in the desert as long.”

 

“Do you hear that, Link?” Zelda says, a tease in her voice. Link sits beside her and ignores her look in favor of shoving a cup of tea in Bozai’s hand. He takes it with a nod of thanks and Link continues to give him as much of an obvious silent treatment as his mute self can give. She ignores Link’s behavior to lean forward towards Bozai, muttering to him a conversation left for the two of them since Link seems steadfast in not joining.

 

She says to Bozai, “Honestly, I am quite jealous of what Link has with you.” Bozai looks stunned to hear her confession and she giggles at the look before shrugging at herself. “I am not wishing for that to end, to be clear, but I wish I could have a little of what he has gained from his relationship with you. Emotional dependence, and intimacy. There are some things that not even close friends can give. To trust someone so wholeheartedly as he does you, to the point where he’s not even aware of the way he looks at you when you don’t see him-” To this, Bozai flushes and catches Link looking at him for a moment before the man turns away, trying to look preoccupied. This only makes Bozai blush deeper. “-I’m so glad he has that, but how I loathe the fact he got it so soon before me!” She laughs, pinching her cheeks. Bozai laughs with her, rolling the cup between his hands.

 

“You’ve waited a hundred years, princess, so I’m sure what you’re looking for will come soon,” he says,reaching over and giving her shoulder a squeeze. She smiles.

 

“Oh Hylia, I hope so,” she says, flushing. “And then I can repay Link tenfold the joy and annoyance it has given me to see the two of you become as you are.”

 

“We’re still not exactly together, princess.”

 

“I have the Triforce of Wisdom, Bozai,” Zelda points, gesturing loosely to her hand. “I know far better than that.”

 

She leaves her seat to bother Link with comments probably pertaining to Bozai, if Link’s indignant look is anything to go by. Link knows Bozai can more easily translate his signs now so, after casting a cursory glance over his shoulder, Link makes sure his hands are obstructed from Bozai’s view as he rapidly signs to Zelda. Bozai shrugs to himself, sighing, and looks for whatever’s on hand to cook with.

 

With Zelda, Link divulges a bit more information that she’s wanting to hear but deals with it because, if anything, his plight lightens her envious mood. If this pining is what awaits her when it’s her turn she might be able to wait a bit longer. However, the thought of making Link recoil from her own recounts of sexual frustrations and other lustful thoughts amuses her and maybe she can’t wait after all. Because this is what Link complains to her about: how he throws himself at Bozai enough so why doesn’t Bozai reciprocate if the feelings are mutual?

 

Perhaps because you are in company?’ she signs back to him to keep the conversation private. He rolls his eyes.

 

It didn’t stop him from indulging me last night, so why would it have stopped him this morning? ’ A slight smirk meets Link’s lips as he recalls it, his hand tracing his throat before he looks at Zelda with a wicked look.

 

Zelda’s brow pressed and she shakes her head.

 

You did it last night? While we were a tent away?!’

 

It’s nothing you haven’t seen from me before- ’ Link waves the concern aside, ‘ But that isn’t the point here. I can’t speak. So how do I tell him I want him?’

 

Can you finally admit you love him?

 

Link flushes then shakes his head rapidly.

 

No, no- I don’t think that’s...what I want to tell him. Yet. Maybe?’

 

Oh, Hylia, Link!’ Zelda puffs a breath out, irritable. ‘ If you keep on using sex as the basis of your relationship, of course he’s not going to take the possibility of furthering it any credit!’

 

If it’s so obvious to everyone else then why can’t it be to him?!

 

“Because you’re idiots,” Zelda says and signs, jabbing a finger in Link’s chest. Link pouts, feigning hurt and she pinches his cheeks in retaliation before letting go and signing her response. ‘You two are so in love it puts the novels I enjoy to shame! Just go a few nights without having sex! Is it so hard?!’

 

It is. It really is,’ Link signs, nodding affirmatively. ‘ Bozai’s cock is-’

Zelda shuts her eyes and puts her fingers in her ears to push the point across that she doesn’t want to hear or see anything about this topic anymore.

 

“I can’t wait until I find myself a lover, Link,” Zelda calls, “Because just you wait: You will hear of things you never thought possible!”

 

Link rolls his eyes and his hands fall to his side as he spots Bozai cooking. His face contorts in conflict because he wants to keep the silent treatment between them, but at the same time…

 

Whatcha cooking? ’ he asks, leaning over to rest his chin on Bozai’s shoulder, cheeks a little puffed as he reprimands himself for giving in. Bozai smiles and kisses one puffed cheek before turning back to his cooking.

 

“Is fried rice okay?” Bozai phrases his answer as a question. Link nods immediately.

 

All of your cooking is okay.

 

“Just ‘okay’?”

 

...Maybe better than okay.

 

Bozai laughs and Link reluctantly smiles at the sound.

 

“I’m sorry if I disappointed you this morning,” Bozai mutters against Link’s ear, and it makes him shudder but being in public he knows well enough to restrain himself. Otherwise it’s one of Zelda’s arrows in his ass, for sure.

 

Make it up to me later?

 

“Of course.” Bozai kisses Link again. “Tonight, I expect?” Link snorts and nudges Bozai, pausing and considering what Zelda had told him.

 

Let’s finish here, and then, when we get home, we can have days and nights to ourselves.’ Link tilts Bozai’s chin to bring him close to a more full kiss and Bozai smiles against it, and both lose themselves in each other for the moment their lips are connected, before they are interrupted by Riju’s holler.

 

“Not in front of my breakfast, thank you!” She cackles. The men roll their eyes and Bozai returns to cooking while Link joins the women in waiting.

 

“Your meal is ready, Madam Chief and Princess Zelda,” Bozai says, bringing over a clay pot of fried rice towards them. “Purah still isn’t up yet?”

 

“The body of a child, and the sleeping habits of one,” Zelda says with a sigh. “She’ll be up in the afternoon.”

 

“Should I save her food aside-”

 

“I’ll have it!” Riju calls through a mouthful already. Zelda looks at her, unimpressed. Riju swallows down her food. “What? I’m a woman in recovery! And Link did not lie when he said Bozai’s cooking is fantastic! Don’t think I could offer you another position in my staff, Bo?”

 

Bozai snorts, but his sharp ears flutter with pride. “I’ll have to reject the offer, Chief. I’m already employed as a teacher, you see, and I’m already interning as a cook most nights.” He looks at Link who rolls his eyes though the tips of his ears redden.

 

“I hope the pay is worth it,” Riju says, always knowing. Bozai grins.

 

“Oh, I think so.”

 

-

 

Link is hardly around to see Bozai teach. Typically, Link is either out pushing back monsters from Gerudo territory, convening with Riju, sleeping, or not in the desert at all. Bozai’s classes happen both in the early morning and late afternoon so Link only ever catches the tail-end of a class, when the students leave. He doesn’t think much of it because it means that Bozai is alone and Link can have a few moments with the man, but now he wonders if Bozai is anything like this when he teaches the children: quiet, confident, and patient.

 

It’s not unexpected, or disliked, but it surprises and interests Link to see Bozai this way, delegating with polite authority and receiving orders in kind. Even his stance, though casual, appears more sure with his arms crossed and a notebook in hand swinging under his arm. And that isn’t to say a thing about his glasses that he looks over with a pressed brow that makes Link want to distract the man from whatever matters grate on him. Without a doubt, Link is sure he wouldn’t last a second seeing Bozai work in a classroom. He would squirm at the back of the class, a horrible teacher’s assistant, and not pay a second of attention to anyone that isn’t the man at the front of the room.

 

A soft sigh leaves Link, but the fantasy lingers, and walking up to Bozai he drapes and arm around his shoulder to press a light hug into his back before his fingers move to dig gently into points in Bozai’s neck and shoulders. Bozai groans, appreciative, tilting his head from side to side as Link massages him. Link smiles, kisses Bozai’s shoulder, and moves his face next to his so that he can use his hands to speak.

 

“You have my attention,” Bozai muses, eyes closing as he leans back against Link. “Is there something you needed?” Link shook his head.

 

Not really. Would you talk to me, though? About your work? ’ Link noses under Bozai’s ear while the man runs his hands along his upper arms in comforting rubs. ‘ I’m bored, but I don’t want to distract you too much…’

 

“I imagine the princess wouldn’t appreciate that.” Bozai chuckles. Link’s chest shakes with a shared laugh in response and he nods slowly. Bozai nods back and says, “Okay. I’ve been meaning to walk through a translation anyway. I’m stumped.”

 

Happy to help.

 

Bozai talks Link through the basics before referencing what he’s working on immediately. Link knows he can pick it up with ease - the language may be older than he is so it’s recognizable enough to him between the century-old word and the modern day - but it doesn’t process all too well. Bozai’s hair is pushed back, glasses slightly askew, and his eyes shine bright as if teaching another is allowing himself to see something more that he may have not yet realized earlier. It’s so...passionate. Not with the heat of more, the sensuality the two typically share behind closed doors or closed curtains, but with curiosity and a thirst to know more, not to want more. Link is lost in Bozai’s eyes and words and the calm that sits in him while he sits beside Bozai.

 

Link’s head lolls and it’s only in the shock of falling does he realize he drifted too far into comfort. He hopes it isn’t taken as boredom, shifting his head on Bozai’s shoulder and looking up at him through sleep-thick eyes. Bozai is as focused as ever, and Link smiles in relief before moving to retreat to the tent. As he tries to slip away, he realizes another thing: Bozai’s fingers laced between his own. Link’s heart skips and he snickers lightly when Bozai’s fingers squeeze his gently. He tries to remove them slowly, putting Bozai’s hand down onto the desk and kissing his forehead. Only then does Bozai snap out of his studious mode. It’s as if the day had passed him by so suddenly. He’s shocked by how dark it’s become and apologizes to Link for keeping him.

 

I just woke up. I fell off your shoulder.

 

“You can have it back in a moment.” Bozai smiles tiredly. “I’ll just pack this for tonight and we can rest.”

 

Don’t rush. If you’re in the middle of working, I’ll just sleep. I’m not much help here anyway. I just want your attention.

 

“You’ll get plenty of it if you want,” Bozai says, and there’s a hint of more in his voice as he gently tugs Link closer towards him, kissing his hand before leaning forward on his knees to nose Link’s abdomen. Link hums, fingers combing through Bozai’s hair as Bozai kisses along Link’s belly and teases just along the hem of his pants and, Link hopes, lower-

 

Link pulls away, face red and wanting, and he pouts before scrunching his nose and pinching Bozai’s.

 

“Ow- hey!”

 

Wait until we get home. ’ Link tells him, but the way his fingers shake and his thighs rub makes him want Bozai to take him now.

 

“Can you last that long, my sweet?” Bozai asks, leaning back and smiling charmingly at Link the way that makes his heart flutter and his knees and mind weak. Link struggles to nod.

 

‘Good night, Bozai.’

 

Link retreats to the tent, strips down to a loose shirt and his underwear, and then wraps himself up in the covers of the bedrolls he and Bozai pushed together. His hand skims across the swell of his arousal and, needing some sort of friction, he eventually finds himself groping at his bulge coaxing it from being half hard to fully erect and he throbs under his own touch but it’s hardly enough to satisfy him when his lover is a wall of fabric away. So he disappoints himself. His body grows bored of his fondling and he eventually, despite his arousal, falls into a wanting and restless half-sleep. Bozai joins him in the tent eventually but he doesn’t tease and take Link like how he wanted. His arms wraps around Link’s waist to hold him tight in an embrace Link finds mostly awkward but can’t care for in his sleep-deprivation and wherever he touches Link is already burned by an arousal that is all but embers in his belly and has no fuel left for fire.

 

Though there’s a few sparks that shoot through him. Bozai’s fingers, whether unknowingly or with purpose, shift under Link’s shirt to tweak at his nipples. Link rocks back at the pinch, searching for that telltale hardness against his ass but meets nothing while Bozai’s hands shift again to move all over his upper body. Link is so hard though, his underwear wet on the inside from the pre smearing against the cotton, and he wants to come. He wants Bozai to fondle him, grope him, touch him , and he groans when Bozai does touch him, but nothing more. Link’s on the edge - if Bozai just held his cock for a few seconds, he’s sure to burst - so before he can sob at the lack of satisfaction he rolls over and takes the covers with him to make his cocoon. Bozai groans softly as the cold air meets him and Link couldn’t care less, a weak glare being shot at the man.

 

Link thinks that he shouldn’t give in so easily anyway. If he and Bozai have sex all the time, then that’s all there is to their relationship isn’t there? Link...wants to try to have more than that. More than sex. A connection he wants to explore further. It’s a surprise to all and especially himself.

 

He allows himself one thing before he returns to his restless sleep: a firm kiss against Bozai’s cheek that has the man snorting in his sleep and leaving him with a smile as he moves closer to Link. Link rolls his eyes allows himself to be collected into a hug, but the layers of fabric still stay between them.

 

It’s three days more in the distant desert that they continue to stay and aside from transcriptions about histories already known in Great Hyrule, nothing new was to note. The only suspicious thing was perhaps the fact that, word for word, Hylian history is detailed in the ravine runes and a large mural of The All-Seeing Eye used by the Sheikah as their sign for centuries that predates the Guardians. Purah and Bozai discuss theories in the background of Zelda who meditates to the side, a dim glow surrounding her as she tells Impa of her findings via astral projection however even Impa is uncertain of how to pass the ravine to the Temple.

 

Link walks passed the pillars by the ravine again, kicking sand off the edge, sword swinging listlessly by his side. Thankfully day is turning to night but his triforce pulls at him as if in warning. His grip only tightens in case he may face some monsters tonight, or a blood moon appears, but he pays it no heed. His head hurts enough from something digging in the back of his mind. It curls around his gut and throat as if ordering him to listen but he can’t decipher the buzzing that rings in his ears. Looking at the Spirit Temple, he’s sure it has something to do with it. What exactly, is the mystery.

 

At the edge of the ravine, he watches the moon rise behind the Spirit Temple, silver and bright, but the cool air the night brings doesn’t lessen the heat in his head. His eyes flick around, trying to focus on something, but it just agitates him. He closes his eyes, brows pinching, and he almost falls to his knees. His legs buckle but he still stands. When he looks down though, he’s sure that the legs below him aren’t his own.

 

He stumbles back in shock, but those legs follow him. He gasps, and a sound louder than a harsh breath of air from his throat sounds and he holds his throat as if shocked it had anything to say from him. Then he looked at his hands, and then used those unfamiliar hands to touch his face. Not entirely unfamiliar though, he thinks. When he looks ahead of himself again, he sees the temple, grand and golden, but he’s sure that it was night only moments ago. The two pillars he recalls make a fine archway, the Sheikah Eye inscribed in the stone above him. His body isn’t his own now as it moves without him making it, reaching behind himself to grab a mask that matched the symbol above on its face. Using this mask, he can see ahead. A bridge of light that shines brightly having been recognized. His body moves to remove the mask and presses forward, closer and closer towards the ravine--

 

Link!

 

Link turns in his haze and sees Zelda appearing shocked with Bozai, while Riju is cautious as she approaches the Hylian Hero.

 

“Link… How…?” Riju starts, approaching him through the sand and following his steps carefully. Link shrugs, rubbing his eyes and unsure of what is happening. And then he looks down. There’s nothing beneath him but a long fall and he looks back to the group with the same shock as his knees buckle and he suddenly feels heavy.

 

“Don’t panic; just make your way to the other side. You’re more than halfway there, Link…” Riju says, looking down at the path and shutting her eyes tight as she puts her foot down against the air.

 

Riju!

 

She gasps when she feels something solid, shocked, and looks at Link with wide eyes as she slowly makes her way to him. “I swear, Hero, if I die on an invisible bridge…” Link chuckles drily, still trying to breathe as he backs up to the other side of the ravine on hands and knees.

 

Safely, or as safely as impending death can be, they make it, and after the shock passes and their breaths are regained, Riju shouts in triumph.

 

“Are you alright?” Zelda calls. Link is on the ground, still in a haze and trying to process his experience. So Riju answers for them

 

“Better than dead, princess!” Riju laughs, holding her chest. “Link needs to rest. Can you make it across?”

 

Zelda takes the lead of the party consisting of herself, Bozai, Purah, and the guards. She, like Riju, takes the exact steps like the one before her and makes it to the edge of the ravine. Carefully, she takes a step, disregarding in her nerves that the wind is picking up around her.

 

Princess !” both Bozai and Purah call, reaching out for her. They can’t reach her fast enough but one of the guard does, flashing passed the two scholars and collecting Zelda in her arms. Zelda clings to the guard, shocked that she can’t pass, and also a little angry, but that’s forgotten in favor of acknowledging her hero. When she looks up, she’s shocked to see the familiar face above her, gratitude thick on her tongue and falling out just as gracelessly.

 

“Is Zelda okay?” Riju calls, having seen it all, glad that Zelda was caught, but she can’t see more than the Princess being set down slowly after a moment in her savior’s arms.

 

“She’s safe!” Bozai answers. Riju nods, turning to Link and the Temple.

 

“If you can’t cross, we’ll scout ahead in the temple!”

 

“Be careful!” Zelda tells Riju, turning from the guard to the Gerudo Chief and incapacitated Hylian Champion.

 

“Try to reach us inside with your other form if you can!” Riju says finally, taking Link in arm.

 

Link groans and tries his best to walk but it’s to no avail. Riju doesn’t mind so much, relieved to be the one to be with Link through this adventure. The Spirit Temple… Its importance to the Gerudo was legendary before it was lost to them and finally Riju can find the answer to why. And also to find a way to stop Demise from possessing her people, once and for all.

 

-

 

Link wakes to the interior of a building he’s...not too unfamiliar with. It’s like being in a dream where he knows exactly where to go, or at least has a fuzzy recollection of it. Beside him, Riju is sharpening her blade by a fire and when he sits up, her response is immediate. She takes to his side, helping him sit up and giving him water to drink. He wants to make a joke at the expense of her worry but the way her brows are pressed he knows he shouldn’t. So, instead, he tries to help himself to lessen the burden of his care before setting the skin aside and asking her: ‘ What happened?

 

“We made it, for one. To the Spirit Temple,” she said, waving a hand at the large interior. He looks around, properly seeing the place, and hot flashes blind his eyes and his head hurts again as something familiar replays in the back of his mind.

 

What’s happening now? What is this?’ He asks Riju, desperate to know why these memories he doesn’t recall are flooding him painfully. She looks uncertain and with that alone Link knows she can’t tell him. He grits his teeth and rubs at his temples.

 

“You may be recalling a past life, if you want to hear theories instead of truths,” she says, pursing her lips. “And maybe they pain you because...maybe all that’s left at the end of this is pain.” Her expression is grim and Link looks at her in surprise and hurt.

 

What do you mean, Riju? What’s happened in this place? Have you seen it?’

 

“Yes, Link, I have. And I wish I didn’t.” She looks away from him with anguish written on her face, her hands balled into fists in front of her. “This isn’t the temple of worship my people had spoken of when recalling a Golden Age of life for the Gerudo. This place is a temple of desecration. A disgrace.”

 

Something roars in the temple, and whether it’s in furious disagreement or disappointed agreement Link isn’t sure. But it feels like something and Riju pays the temple no mind.

 

“My people deserve to know what happened here...But I don’t know-” She shudders out a sob, drawing her knees in and resting her head on them. “I don’t know what to say, Link.”

 

What is here? ’ Link asks, wrapping an arm around her.

 

“Death, Link. And rebirth. But not the way it should be.” She looks at him for a moment before rising and taking Link’s hand, leading him into the shadows of the Spirit Temple.

 

From the outside, it looks strong and structured. Within, it looks like it would crumble from the inside. Link peers up at the ceiling, concerned, as he follows Riju. He doesn’t miss the bones and tattered fabrics that pass them by. He knows from a single glance that those bodies...are Gerudo. Many Gerudo, all chained together to the wall by gold links that held their wrists. A few steps in, and it wasn’t as shocking as the step before, but then Link has to hold in bile that builds as he passes another row of skeletons. Short, and underdeveloped. The size of a child, no doubt. Link falls to his knees and reaches out to rub the dust off of a bangle. He’s seen this sort of wear in the City. Children who would glue glass to gold and let the adults melt it. The practice can’t be that old, but there haven’t been any missing children or Gerudo from the Town or the City--

 

Riju takes Link roughly by the arm so they can press on. Link can tell she doesn’t like being here. Doesn’t want to stay here longer than necessary. Her nails dig into her palm and draws blood, the red dripping from her fists and laying the path Link must follow. All the way to a large door that is ornate, decorated with jewels. The bodies stop here but Link can only imagine that more most follow inside. When Riju opens the door, however, there is none. Instead, there is a large, black disc that reflects Riju and Link’s image perfectly.

 

“Don’t look too deeply into it, Link,” Riju orders, holding her hand up to it, her fingers glowing with electricity. Link tries not to but he’s...so lost. And this plane is so familiar. He’s reaching out and, to his amazement, it reaches for him too. Calls him by name and coaxes him closer. He can see his mother on the other side. She looks so much like him, it must be her.

 

Mother…

 

His hand sears with pain, light that fills the room pulsing from his fist, and he cries out as his glove burns off of his hand and his flesh stings from the heat. Riju drags Link back away from the disc and glares at it. It does nothing but it feels as if it’s taunting her. The pulsing in Link’s hand stops but he can’t feel his arm at all. It’s as if it’s not his own. He’s not just the host for Courage, but Courage is becoming him, controlling him from the inside like a flight or fight response, except the triforce wants him to fight. Orders him to. Riju is not having that and drags him by the scruff of his neck to the door. She puts his hand on the runes and reads to him what it says, voice tense as she tries not to look at the mirror behind her.

 

“This is how he does it, Link,” she tells him. “How he possesses people. With this corrupted Twilight Mirror.” She recites: “ The beings that walk the world of Light are fickle things. While Dark cannot touch them, there are those who hide in Shadows that can walk in the Light. Let Light shine in the Dark, and let the Shadows keep watch over the Light--”

 

Link’s head burns again: he recalls a woman, tall and grey-skinned that shines almost pale blue in the twilight.

 

What does any of that mean?’ Link asks, panting through the pain that resides in his head and hand.

 

“It means Demise has been influencing this other world to influence us ,” Riju says, sneering in the direction of the mirror covered in Malice. “Shadows that keep watch over the Light? Those shadows have access to us. If Demise has his way, they can spread his wickedness through the land, like the power he has over the Guardians.” Link shakes his head.

 

No, there’s more to this. I know there is.

 

“My people are just experiments to him!” she roars, eyes flaring. She points to the doors with a wild look and Link bows his head knowing that the bodies on the other side…

 

You want to destroy this Twilight Mirror. To cut the ties between these...shadows and us.’

 

“Exactly. We need to. If we can keep Demise at bay, even by this much, then my people will be free. We won’t be his puppets anymore. We can do this--”

 

And what if it frees Demise from this realm instead? ’ Link says, his other life flashing behind his eyes as he refers to Riju. ‘ What if...he wants us to do this. He’s provoking you, Riju--’

 

“Well that’s what happens when you hold my people hostage: I am provoked,” she growls. Link winces, not only under her glare but under the pressure he feels in his hand.

 

This isn’t right…

 

“This never was--”

 

Stop!

 

Zelda’s figure stands between them, broken in pieces, and she looks tired as if forcing herself to project into this room.

 

Zelda ,” Riju says, menacing and out of character. Zelda seems prepared for this, staring Riju down.

 

It seems like I have the heroic timing this time, Link, ” Zelda jokes, holding her hand behind her as if to keep Link there. “ I’m sorry it took so long. I had to borrow some magic to make it here, especially from Town.

 

What?!

 

I have Dorn here with me, Riju. We are safe. I just needed some of his Power to reach you.

 

How dare you--

 

Link, she’s being influenced by the Malice--you need to find the source and destroy it, not the mirror!

 

Link nods affirmatively and struggles to get through the doors passed Riju who growls and chases him down.

 

Try the basement of the Temple, Link. But try not collapse the building. That mirror has to stay intact!”

 

Link nods again, racing passed the bodies in the hall, and then further to where he recognizes waking. He looks around, trying to find a way to enter under the temple. His head burns again and he huffs before accepting the flashback for what it is - a guide. Following the body that isn’t his own, he makes his way behind a statue to make his way into a narrow staircase that leads down. He jumps down, steps at a time, and lands awkwardly on his knees when he makes it to the bottom and he’s surprised to see it. A large eye of Malice, watching the intruder make their way into its domain. The darkness below this eye opens into a wide smile that releases corrupted beings, defeated monsters and Gerudo. Link doesn’t want to kill the corrupted Gerudo corpses despite their taint so with all his mind he calls on his Courage and charges with his eyes closed, letting his past life dictate his movements now in this battle.

 

His eyes open again, a brighter more piercing blue, and with a serious look in his eyes he stares Malice right in the face.

 

Long time no see, Demise .”

 

-

 

Link blinks out of his haze and when he looks down what he sees is the Master Sword buried in the iris of the Malice Eye. Slowly, as if still in a trance, he pulls it out and is soon falling into the black smoke of Malice’s defeat. He lands on something softer than stone and isn’t surprised to see Riju carrying him again, shaking his head and laughing softly before signing to her.

 

‘We did it…

 

You did it, Link,” she corrects, eyes shining with life and tears, so unlike the darkness he recalls running from. It really is Riju. Link smiles at her but that smile is quickly replaced with surprise and pain as she collects him into a tight hug and throws him into the air, causing him to cry out. “Ah, Link, you have saved my people!” She’s whooping, hollering, and Link can only celebrate with her. That sort of happiness and relief is contagious.

 

After leaving the basement chamber, Zelda is waiting in the temple’s vestibule, inclining her head towards the hall to the mirror. Riju looks at her skeptically but what awaits her passed these doors takes her breath away.

 

Gerudo. Spirits that line the walls and applaud the Chief, looking as alive as what they previously were. It’s a sight that has Riju in tears, crying easily, and as she walks the halls the spirits leave their marks on her and her heart as they are finally released from the evil keeping their spirits there. Link passes the child as well and kneels down to greet her.

 

Sarqso, vo’bosha ,’ she tells him, reaching over to kiss his cheek. He smiles at her, and she too passes on to the next life.

 

The mirror room is golden when they enter, and devoid of the ominous feeling that accompanied the two Champions when they entered. That didn’t stop Riju from being the slightest bit wary but Link felt comfortable here now. He approached the mirror, touching it’s surface without restraint, feeling it dip under his touch like silk over water, smooth and soft, so unlike the cold, hard surface that one is initially greeted with.

 

One day, we will need our Twilight brethren in our fight against Demise,” Zelda says, joining Link, reaching out and caressing it’s curved edge with her projected form. “ I would offer to house the mirror in Hyrule, but it’s too susceptible to Man here. It might fall into the wrong hands, not out of neglect but because that’s what Demise would do.”

 

“I...don’t want it here. But, if need be, I will protect it. I won’t let what happened happen again.”

 

Riju… ” Zelda looks at her softly, reaching out to her friend, and Riju can feel her comforting touch even through her incorporeal form. “ It’s an issue for another day. The most we can do for now is to close the temple. I can send soldiers to defend the ravine. And, perhaps, we may need to select new Sages like the legends of old…”

 

Riju chuckles drily, groaning at the thought of such a difficult task ahead of them.

 

“Well, we will do it,” she says, nodding. “We can do it.”

 

You don’t want to do it, ’ Link responds with a smirk, turning and following Riju out of the chamber. She closes it and with her pointer finger the heat of her lightning seals the metal door shut.

 

“Of course I don’t,” she snorts. “I have children to raise.”

 

And here begins the ‘Using My Children As An Excuse To Not Do Anything’ ,” Zelda teases, laughing aloud as she follows them out of the temple. When outside, Riju does the same as the chamber door and seals it shut.

 

“I’m not using them as an excuse. It’s just fact!” Riju reasons, shielding her eyes as she looks up at the bright afternoon sky. How much time had passed?

 

Riju, your children were born and not even a month later you are here with us for the most...difficult week.

 

“You can’t take the adventure out of the Chief, but I can certainly delegate the duties I’d like to avoid,” she snorts. Link rolls his eyes.

 

What if your daughter grew to be a Sage?

 

“Then her dearest Godfather can teach her, couldn’t he?”

 

Link scoffs.

 

Her Godfather’s lover is a knowledgeable man. He can look after her.

 

It is actually Bozai who helped decipher the text that referenced the mirror, ” Zelda chimes in. “ If it weren't for him, I don't think we would've known in time what lay in the temple.

 

Link stops in his tracks and his heart fills with warmth, pride and affection mixing pleasantly to the point where it may just burst inside him. He looks at Zelda with wide eyes betraying his surprise and she smiles.

 

“Y ou yourself recognize he's an intelligent man. Are you surprised to know by how much his intelligence is worth? ” She giggles. “ I may have to steal your teacher from you, Riju.

 

“Consider it a favor repaid, if it was his knowledge that helped you save us.” Riju says. “But just know, his employ comes with baggage.” She smirks, pointing at Link behind his back. Link rolls his eyes and shoves her, but she's a stone wall in her twenties in comparison to her teens. He can't tease her as much anymore.

 

I'm sure I can easily accommodate Bozai’s belongings during his stay in Hyrule, ” Zelda replies with a grin. Now if only he could shove her next, he thinks, but with both women laughing together, a stark difference to Riju’s treatment of Zelda in the temple, and it's this relief that has him holding back from making scathing comments about his sex life that their teasing is daring him to reveal.

 

-

 

Riju and Link return to camp to find that it was already half packed. When Link finally reaches Bozai, he is collected into a hug and brought into a long kiss Link melts into. Link is dirty from sand, sweat, and god-knows-what but that doesn’t stop Bozai from holding the man tight and muttering how relieved he is to see Link. Link smiles at Bozai and those worries continue to fade and, before either could pounce on the other and display just how worried they were, they continue packing their belongings to head out by the cool of nightfall. Few guards stay, along with Purah, stationed to keep the camp alive, waiting for their orders from the princess when they come. Before leaving, goodbyes are exchanged and Purah gives Bozai a friendly peck on the cheek as she tells him to not be a stranger. Bozai nods and tells her he may return before taking Link’s hand and making their way back to the City.

 

-

 

Rather than head straight home, Link and Bozai take to the communal bath to rid themselves of days worth of dirt. Riju leaves for her children immediately, though even she admits that she should bathe. Luckily for her, she has the privacy of her own stall. Link jokes about borrowing it for an hour, a cheeky grin on his face, and she rolls his eyes and shoves him off onto his lover.

“You will not stain my tiles with your grime,” Riju says, wrinkling her nose.

 

She says, assuming I haven’t done just that before, ’ Link teases. He laughs as she chases him off and Bozai looks apologetic and wishes the chief and her children the best. She smiles and accepts the well wishes before waving him off next.

 

“Don’t get caught doing something Link would do!”

 

Bozai laughs.

 

At the baths, Link strips down and sinks into the pool with a pleased sigh, wetting his hair when he dunks his head beneath the water. He knows he should clean himself and, taking a brush from the pack of toiletries he had brought with him from their time in camp, he brushes through the knots of his hair and rubs powdered soap into it. Bozai slides into the pool, taking his place beside Link, and helps him through the soap and tangles of his hair. Link lets him, grabbing the cloth from Bozai’s own pack and using it to rub Bozai’s sunburned shoulders. Bozai hisses in complaint, the burn stinging slightly, but Link is sure he has ointment at home to help with that so he comforts Bozai with apologetic kisses over the raw redness, hoping that will suffice for now.

 

It does, and Bozai moves from Link’s hair after rinsing it to his back and shoulders. Link shudders and groans when Bozai’s knuckles dig deep enough to constitute as a massaging action. When Bozai realizes this, he does it some more, smiling when the tension melts into the water as Link’s head lolls from side to side. Bozai’s touch always leaves him in puddles of relaxation or tense want, and in the water he is an uncomfortable mixture of both, especially when Bozai’s thumbs press into his shoulder blades and the middle of his back, making a moan of appreciation bubble from Link’s lips. If Bozai’s hands just went a little bit lower and to the front…

 

Bozai eventually stops so that he can wash his own hair, and Link is fine with that as well, he supposes, sitting up on the pool’s edge and shifting behind Bozai so he rests between his legs. Bozai doesn’t mind, humming when Link’s fingers massage Bozai’s head. Shampoo froths beneath his fingers and his nails scratch at whatever itch or dirt lay in Bozai’s scalp and then, unceremoniously, Link holds Bozai’s head and dunks him into the water, laughing as he watches Bozai spit and sputter water out, blowing his nose that looks as dark red as the rest of his back.

 

“Oh, you’re going to be sorry for that,” he warns playfully, arms wrapping around Link’s waist and and dragging him into the water. Link coughs and laughs, splashing water in Bozai’s face and flailing wildly when Bozai holds him again. He eventually settles, Bozai’s arms around his waist and his mouth softly working against his own, but something doesn’t settle and Link can feel it against him. He encourages it, moving his hips against Bozai’s and Bozai shudders, softly biting Link’s bottom lip.

 

“We should stop,” he says against his mouth, hands moving to rest on Link’s hips. “You can wait until we get home, can’t you?”

 

Link shakes his head, wrapping his arms around Bozai’s neck and kissing him fully. ‘I want you,

 

“Patience then, love,” Bozai tells him, untangling Link from himself. “I don’t want anyone to walk in on us-”

 

Let them .’ Link’s eyes challenge, and Bozai grunts, pushing Link against the edge of the pool and grinding against him.

 

“I don’t want anyone to see you like this, Link. Only me,” he says, grinding again harshly, and Link moans, trapped between rock and a very hard place.

 

I want to be seen with you though,’ he turns to sign, looking flushed and embarrassed. He looks back to try and read Bozai’s face but Bozai, as bad a liar as he is, has no tells right now and that concerns Link who tries to hurry and explain himself. ‘ I-- I want to be yours. But I want everyone to see that I am so-’ He wrings his fingers, his mouth dry despite it not doing the speaking for him. ‘ Take me here. And then home.’

 

Bozai always gives in, and Link thinks he’s given in again, feeling Bozai fill him for a number of hard and wet thrusts that has Link clawing at the tiles his head rests against as he’s fucked. But it doesn’t last long. Bozai pulls out before Link even feels close to coming and when Link whines at Bozai, Bozai grabs the back of Link’s neck and kisses him. Not rough and wanting, but firm and...romantic. He’s soft yet present and his tongue laps at Link’s lips, permission to drink his moans and more, and Link’s body shakes with wanting sobs.

 

“Will you be mine, Link? Really?” Bozai asks, removing stray locks of hair from Link’s face. Link bites his lip before nodding, afraid to look Bozai in the eye as he confesses. To say it to his face...He’s the bearer of Courage and he wishes it blessed him with a little piece of it now.

 

All yours. Just- Just yours.’ Link takes Bozai’s hand and puts it to his cheek, holding it close as if Bozai might leave the more he tells.

 

“Why? Why do you- I mean, I have nothing to offer you.”

 

And I have nothing to offer you ,’ Link replies, pouting, ‘ And you- you still want to be with me. I heard you. At camp. And I thought that if I could- If I could please you then maybe you would understand me.’

 

“Understand what?” Bozai laughs, resting his forehead against Link’s. “You have offered me more than I ever hoped to gain. What more that I want from you isn’t something you should give based on obligation.”

 

This isn’t an obligation of mine. ’ Link looks at Bozai firmly, pressing close. ‘ I--’

 

Link points to himself, then gestures to his chest in a circle over his left pectoral muscle, and then raps the spot with his knuckles and points from his forehead to Bozai.

 

It’s not a gesture familiar to Bozai, but his heart throbs in understanding and he wishes to know more.

 

“I don’t think I understand those signs, Link,” he murmurs, giddy and only growing more so when Link’s blush darkens redder and redder.

 

I-’

 

He repeats the sentence again. And again, at Bozai’s insistence. And again until Bozai is laughing because for Link it becomes a declaration so as to end the repetition but soon he feels like he hasn’t said it enough. Not with Bozai wrapping Link’s legs around his waist to hold him closer and kiss him deeper. Fucking is too crude a word to use for how Bozai connects with Link now, whole and heated and passionate. Link smiles and moans against Bozai's lips, rolls his hips in hopes to meet Bozai's steady thrusts.

 

When does casual sex - ‘fucking’ - ever become ‘making love’? To Link, nothing feels much different. Bozai still makes him feel so intensely good, pushing all the right buttons that make him cling to the man for dear life. Nothing feels much different at all except the swell in his chest and the wide grin on his face against Bozai’s lips as Bozai spills inside of Link and Link feels happy and fulfilled and finishes in quick succession. And then, they continue kissing. Bozai mutters praise and confessions of love against Link’s skin that keeps the fire in his heart warm and without a sensual touch, Link is moaning and loving all of it.

 

And if someone caught them, tied in knots from limbs to exploring tongues, so be it.

 

But they eventually, after long moments at a time, detangle from each other and rinse whatever mess and suds remain. With heavy bodies they slowly get changed and then return to Link’s apartment. As soon as they enter the door, they throw their respective bags to the far side of the room, kick off their shoes, and collapse into bed. The night is warm so they don’t exactly curl up to each other as they lay half-off the side of the bed. Their fingers intertwine though. Yawning side-by-side, Bozai mumbles plans for the next day while Link drifts off; his legs that were kicking back and forth slow until he is still. Shortly after, Bozai also falls asleep, and not too long following that they manage to fidget their way fully onto the bed and curl up together, arms under each other and legs tangled or sprawled outwards.

 

-

 

Link rises earlier than Bozai who snorts and rolls over in his sleep to make sure he stays in it. Link laughs, kissing his temple before removing himself from his reach and from the bed. He goes to the washroom to clean his face and brush his teeth, a morning routine done too casually that it feels abnormal. When he returns to the room, to Bozai, he knows where that awkward feeling in his stomach originates from and he crosses his arms over his chest as he stares at his lover. His partner, if they can finally call themselves that. He sits on the bed next to Bozai and thinks of their first meeting, and then the meetings after that, and the first time they had sex. A series of heated embarrassments, the lot of those memories, he thinks fondly.

 

It’s this trip down memory lane that has him gasping softly as he remembers something else. He leans over Bozai to check that he’s asleep and, grinning to himself, he sneaks over to the corner of the room where a chest lay behind articles and trophies of quests passed. The chest is the most inconspicuous thing in this corner, dull and wooden with cast iron joints that look, besides dusty, a little rusted. Link hopes it doesn’t creak open as he kneels in front of it to open it up. It does whine softly as the metal grinds against itself, but he’s able to open it and rest the lid of the chest on the wall behind it. Link looks inside with wonder and wistfulness.

 

This chest isn’t untouched - the clothes inside are definitely messy and unfolded from previous rummaging - but it’s been a while since he’s been through it. Since his return from Zora’s Domain, really, when he had packed one pair of vai clothes to keep him company. He sometimes wears it out, enjoys the more flattering comments and the free drinks he would receive. But he’s not looking for the introductory clothes he used to wear to get comfortable with the attire at first - not that it was so hard in the first place; wearing the vai garb was as easy as breathing. Sometimes wearing vai garb made it easier to breathe.

 

In the bottom right-hand corner of the chest he finds it in a crumpled mess and he frowns as he picks it up. It sounds like a windchime, tinkling rather than rustling due to the metal plate that makes up the top. He sets it on the edge of the chest and pulls out the bottom half of the outfit, chest jumping and cheeks flushing in embarrassment as he recalls the time he had tried it on. He was alone, exploring the new city without Riju or anyone else to accompany him, when he was coaxed over by a familiar face. He hadn’t expected to see Greta in the city, but it didn’t surprise him that she had set up shop on the Town’s outskirts to finally sell to voe . He soon discovers it isn’t just voe she services now. In the backmost part of her shop she has more...attire. The only reason this particular set had caught his eye was due to the gold and jewels that had decorated it.

 

Perhaps he had thought of Bozai when he had bought it - Goddesses, it was so expensive, even with the GSC discount - so of course now would be the perfect time to indulge himself and his lover to a show. Link’s heart is racing and he’s already hard from the excitement to put it on. He takes off his shirt and unclips the latch behind the gold collar of the top to put it around his neck, adjusting the gold chains that hold the metal plate that rests on his chest, just above his nipples. More thin gold chains cross under his breastbone from this metal plate, dangling with small rubies and sapphires. The bottom part of the outfit is intended to rest on the hips but Link had opted to get the metal ring holding the white material of the loincloth tightened to fit his waist instead. He had every intention, after all, of seducing if not Bozai then at the very least himself when he wore this outfit.

 

The two-piece veil is sheer as the loincloth and just as decorated as the chestplate. The headband has teeth that comb into his hair to keep it in place, and the front covering hooks over his ears and rests over his nose. The back of the veil holds two hooks that link into the matching golden armbands as if to create a shawl with the long train of fabric. When he looks at himself in the mirror, he blushes at the thought that perhaps, in his own way, he could be Bozai’s bride. Like everything else that excites his mind when he thinks of the man, it’s all just a fantasy however and putting the final pieces of jewelry on he is distracted by the image of himself.

He looks...delectable. Gold and white and red and blue, though the white is almost see-through and gives peek to his ass and cock through muted shades and soft outlines. His skin isn’t as pale as it once was from all his time spent in the desert though he isn’t the dark shade the Gerudo are. The contrast between cloth and skin however, sheer and shimmery white to the tan of his scarred skin, is obvious, much like the contrast between his battleworn body and the delicacy of the clothing. It doesn’t make him any less beautiful. Vai or voe , he is simply someone wanting to feel pretty and wanted and as he stares into the mirror, watches his hands move along his body from his neck to his chest, his eyes are alight and he thinks that he most certainly looks pretty...and wanting.

 

The metal against his chest had his nipples stiff from the cold but even as the metal settles against his own body heat he isn’t any less roused from his attire. His fingers move downwards now, tracing the outline of his cock that shows through the loincloth and he shudders with a small laugh as he continues. Small breathes come out in staccato as he pinches and pulls and grabs. He’s lost in self pleasure for tiny moments at a time, already soiling the front cloth with his arousal. He can only feel a little disappointed but how he could he let it bother him when he feels another pair of hands join the fray of his own to deliver twice the pleasure he gives himself.

 

Bozai… ’ his mouth moves to take shape of the name, and his lover hums in response. His fingers trace each chain, each metal ring and clasp, each jewel. With how thin the lining of the decorations are, Link feels the brush of Bozai’s skin against his but only a tease and never enough.

 

“You look beautiful, my love,” Bozai murmurs, shifting the veil to kiss beneath Link’s ear. Link doesn’t want to stop, doesn’t want to talk, but he does want to coax Bozai into feeding him more sweet words.

 

Do I really?’ Beneath the veil, he smirks, knowing the answer but still wanting to hear it and a hard grind against the back of him has him breathless and laughing.

 

“If you wore this the first time we met, I’d beg you to let me have you,” Bozai says, delivering another hard rut against Link’s ass that has him moaning. “I’d see a Goddess in the desert and pray to let me have even a taste of her sweet nectar to sate my thirst.”

 

Gods!’ Link bucks into Bozai and looks at the man through the mirror with watery eyes. Link is grinning behind the veil, loving the way Bozai waxes poetic about his want for Link. Prettier words feel more meaningful than declarations of an intent to fuck, or maybe Link is just weak to the way Bozai speaks of him in particular. Scholar that he is, he knows his way around words, and lover that he is, he knows his way around Link.

 

“You really do look wonderful, Link,” Bozai says, voice earnest and almost restrained as his fingers dig into Link’s hips as if trying to anchor himself to this reality that Link is here, dressed pretty for him of all people. “Waking up to you playing with yourself in these vai clothes of yours...Goddess, Link, I thought I was still dreaming.”

 

You’re awake now.’ Link grinds back against Bozai, feels how hard he is against him, and Link wonders if a man could be any harder. He salivates at the thought of having Bozai’s thick, hard cock in his mouth, motions hidden under his veil as his tongue laves over the head and he continues to take it deeper into his mouth further to his throat and--

 

He’s panting, backing up against Bozai desperately, and his own cock is achingly hard with only the lightest material to give him a bare fraction of the friction his regular sirwal would give him. Bozai grunts behind him, tries to steady Link to simply rub his clothed cock against the cleft of Link’s ass because if he thrusts against Link now he won’t be able to stop.

 

“I want to do so many things to you, my love,” Bozai says, sighing when Link finally stills for a moment, though he still shakes in anticipation. “I want to...worship you. I want to take my time with this Goddess-given present I have been bestowed with.”

 

I want you now. Don’t take your time. Just take me!’ Link’s knees buckle and he finally does fall, turning quickly to press his nose against Bozai’s front and lick up against his cock through the cloth of his veil and of Bozai’s pants. He can’t taste him, but he can feel the heat easily and the hard twitch that bumps his nose and makes him laugh breathlessly as he reaches up to pull Bozai’s pants down.

 

Bozai takes Link’s hands to stop him and Link whines in complaint.

 

“Let’s get more comfortable in bed, Link. I want to make you feel good first.”

 

Link snorts, rising on shaky knees and stumbling his way to the bed and sitting on the edge.

 

I feel very good already, thanks, ’ he signs sarcastically, the sarcasm displayed by the wrinkle at the bridge of his nose and the roll of his eyes. Bozai laughs and lowers his head to meet Link’s, pressing a kiss under his eye.

 

“I will make you feel better then,” Bozai promises.

 

Link's eyes meet his and the fire he feels is seen reflected in Bozai's own gaze. Link moves up to kiss him, full, of love and of promise and of more. Bozai laps at Link's lips and Link opens obediently with a soft moan. Their tongues slide against each other, testing and tasting and Link smiles as he pushes more onto Bozai and sucks gently on his tongue, making the man groan and push his hips against Link's.

 

Link's mouth moves from Bozai's to his neck, open-mouthed kisses and stinging lovebites that has Bozai chuckling and wincing, knowing exactly why Link is marking him so fervently. He doesn't mind in the slightest, hoping to return the favor himself, but it's getting more difficult to not push Link onto the bed and take . Link's making a slow and teasing descent as Bozai straightens his back so that Link can continue without interruption. Without ceremony, Link pulls Bozai's cock out and swallows him as far as he can and Bozai is winded by the feeling and thrusts deeper into Link’s throat without warning but preceding many apologies.

 

“You know I’ll finish too fast if you do that, Link,” Bozai hisses, holding Link’s head as gently as his desperation can allow and slowly thrusting in and out of Link’s lazily open mouth. Link’s tongue laps against Bozai’s shaft when he wants to, savoring Bozai’s grunts with a smile as he shifts back up against Bozai’s grip to suck the red head of his cock.

 

Link knows full well how soon Bozai can finish, even after the months on end where they would just lay around satisfying each other, Bozai’s endurance hasn’t grown since their first time together. His stamina and refractory period has, however, but it was never an issue when Bozai still would use his mouth to bite at Link’s aching chest and help the man slip a glass cock in his needy ass.

 

Pulling off Bozai’s cock with a loud pop and an almost exaggerated hum of satisfaction, Link’s eyes shine a he shifts further back onto the bed and turns over to show off the tease of skin the bottom of his outfit gives. The loincloth rests softly on his shapely ass like a caress and Bozai sighs at the sight. His hands grope over the cloth, pulling apart Link so that it falls to awkward rest between his cheeks, and then through the cloth is the muted feeling of Bozai’s tongue trying to pry him open. Bozai licks and thrusts his tongue only as far as the cloth will let him and Link whimpers, wanting to feel the real thing. Only parts of Link’s thighs and cheeks are shown through the cloth and to these parts of him Bozai offers wet kisses and only a quick slide of his tongue before he’s unintentionally teasing Link with a need for more.

 

Link’s eyes go wide, blown, before rolling back as he feels to his face onto the bed when Bozai’s tongue penetrates him. Bozai’s tongue is wet and warm and and stretches Link wonderfully; Link rocks against Bozai’s face, reaching behind him to lose his hands in Bozai’s hair and press him deeper in. There isn’t much deeper that Bozai can reach like this physically. He has a number of digits that could do the job, but half of that number is otherwise occupied with stroking  himself in time with Link’s bucking. Bozai groans on an upstroke, feeling his finish getting closer but he wants to leave Link an overstimulated mess in his pretty white and shining jewels. He has a bit of white to add himself, just imagining coming on Link’s red-flushed face.

 

Bozai can’t breath when Link shudders violently and pushes firmly back onto Bozai’s face and the man knows that he’s coming undone right now. Feels the way Link’s hips tremble under Bozai’s touch when he moves from there to his thighs so that he could eat out Link messily and quickly, forcing the man over him to grip his head almost painfully, tugging his hair enough to sting. Bozai’s tongue slips out of Link for a quick moment to lave over the underside of his sac before pushing back into his loose ass and if Link could scream Bozai is sure he’d remember the sound for nights to come as Link falls over the edge of his pleasure and makes the most beautiful mess in his skimpy Gerudo skirt.

 

Link’s ass is still up, thighs trembling, and Bozai kneels on the bed right behind him, taking his cock and slipping easily into Link. Link shudders and sighs, rocking slowly back on Bozai’s cock and Bozai leans over him to spoon him. He shifts them so they can lie on their sides. Link reaches behind him to pet Bozai’s head, a silent and dizzy apology for being so rough, but Bozai doesn’t mind. Again, for everything Link gives, Bozai wants to repay in kind.

 

Bozai lifts Link’s leg to spread him open and Link complies, weakly cleaning himself off as much he can with the front of his loincloth. Bozai then thrusts hard against Link’s ass, the sound of their skin making contact loud and the feeling of it a harsh sting that has Link’s cock throbbing and his muscles tightening around his lover. Bozai continues to spear into Link who pants out, his lips wrapping around Bozai’s name like a prayer, and Bozai murmurs so many sweet, pretty things to Link that it has him wanting to kiss Bozai firmly so those sweet, pretty things fill him and his heart.

 

With almost a yelp at how sudden his end crashes on him Bozai fucks Link quickly and Link chants ‘yes’ in his head as he strokes himself off to another climax. Bozai doesn’t finish inside Link though. He makes sure to near close enough to the edge before pulling out to turn Link and straddle his thighs to take both their cocks in hand and pump them together. He holds their shafts close and Link whines, his palm circling their wet heads.

 

“Gonna- Gonna come-- Link--”

 

Link pushes up, taking Bozai’s mouth and kissing him wetly, whining as Bozai’s hand wraps around them both tighter.

 

Love it- Love you- Bozai--’

 

Inside Link’s head is echoes of Bozai’s pleasure and of his own confessions and after feeling Bozai’s seed splash over his abdomen and chest Link’s core is tight and hot and his back arches as he follows suit, his own finish joining Bozai’s on his body.

 

Bozai rolls over and they lay side by side panting and groaning. Link can only just hear the suggestion of him wearing this sort of thing again, Bozai’s fingers lightly tracing the chains of Link’s metal top, and as Bozai’s fingers rub gentle circles around a nipple Link holds back a groan behind a hard-bitten bottom lip and he looks at Bozai with dark eyes and red cheeks.

 

He pulls Bozai back to him, kissing him and not caring or paying much attention at all to the mess between them. Against Bozai’s lips, he smiles and leads the man’s hand back down under his skirt.

 

Again.

 

--

 

Epilogue (?)

 

Perhaps it’s the age gap that has Link equal parts amused and excited for his husband’s birthday.

 

It’s a playful thought that always comes to him when he looks at himself in the mirror, trying to determine what lines on his own body are that of age or of the wear of his job. And then Bozai’s arms wrap around from behind him and he forgets all about that and instead imagines the lifetime he has left with the man whose kisses still sear him as if it were the first time.

 

Link hasn’t changed much. Hasn’t aged much. Be that from his time in the Shrine of Resurrection, or due to the Triforce’s interference, the most that has changed is the length of his hair, the lines by his eyes, and whatever new scars join the old year by year. But that stands for physical changes. Another much larger change has come into his life like a whirlwind and has held part of his heart captive, a piece stolen away from Bozai’s grasp.

 

Link watches with bright eyes as Bozai takes Arin into his arms and swings her around into a great hug that has her giggling with glee. Link’s stomach stirs and his heart is caught by something strong enough to have him shuddering for breath. A husband. A daughter. A home to return to with pictures of old friends and new family.

 

He’s happy, he can admit. So...happy.

 

Never before had he thought of a life like this. Evil defeated, and a peace he could settle and lose himself in.

 

(And also, silliest of all maybe, he can indulge himself in things that he wouldn’t otherwise due to his status as the Hylian Hero, Champion of Hyrule. All the delicate wear his rupees can buy, or his husband would spoil, and all the heated stares he would win that would make his husband eager with pride and possession.)

 

They both take Arin to Riju who feigns an unimpressed look that melts under the blue-eyed smile of her goddaughter and adoptive niece.

 

“Oh, who could be mad with you around, my dear ki’pressva !” Riju proclaims, kissing Arin’s cheek before turning on the girl’s parents. “I expect to be repaid in kind; one night you’ll take my own brats and suffer the consequences of your…” She looks at Arin with a wrinkled nose, trying to find a polite and innocuous way to word her thoughts. “ Borssa’da.

 

“What’s that mean, Papa?” Arin asks, tugging on Bozai’s trousers. Bozai snorts, softly tugging his daughter’s ear.

 

“Your aunt is just annoyed that your father and I are going out tonight,” Bozai explains easily. Link’s almost impressed by Bozai’s child-friendly answer because he’s sure he would take much longer to come up with something satisfactory.

 

“But they have to go out, va’mere, ” she says with a pout, tugging on Riju’s skirt next. “Father promised Papa something nice to eat for his birthday.”

 

Oh, he’s getting it alright,” Riju mutters under her breath in Gerudo, glaring daggers at the couple whose arms link as they smile innocently at their friend. She sighs, shaking her head, and steps forward to give Bozai a big hug that crushes the wind out of his lungs. When he’s released, he groans and Arin giggles again. “Happy birthday to you, Bozai. I trust you’ll enjoy yourself tonight.”

 

“I’ll certainly try,” he muses, turning his head to nose Link’s temple fondly. Link rolls his eyes and smiles up at him while Bozai continues his yearly dramatics due to his aging: “I’m not as young as the two of you. I’m a old man now, you see. I have a daughter, and a husband, and a house. And those dread taxes!”

 

“Oh Goddess above, you give Ritos a run for their money in their theatrics, Bozai,” Riju deadpans with a smirk. Bozai grins widely and it doesn’t matter to Link if it makes him look younger, or more handsome, or any collection of adjectives to correctly ascribe a husband that has his heart. Forty-three, and Bozai is a little wrinkled and grey, but Link has never found him any less attractive through the years nor grown any less fond.

 

We’ll get her tomorrow in the morning. We can have breakfast together; Zelda and Paya will be visiting.’

 

“Aunt Zelda and Aunt Paya are coming over?!” Arin exclaims. Link laughs and nods, separating from Bozai to kneel down and collect his daughter’s hands into his own and giving them a soft kiss. He lets her go to sign to her slowly.

 

They want to say happy birthday to Papa as well.

 

“Big Dinner?” Arin asks with wide, happy eyes. Bozai snorts, smiling back at the girl.

 

“But isn’t it my birthday, my love?” he says to her, nudging her cheek.

 

“You don’t have to cook! Father can!”

 

“Absolutely not,” Bozai and Riju cut across, one with a look of amusement and the other with horror. Link can’t help but look offended.

 

“You fed us keese eyeballs.”

 

It was an accident!’ Link tries to sign through snickers, not being able to look at their disgusted faces as they recalled his attempt at mushroom stew.

 

“Why do you keep your elixir ingredients and your food ingredients in the same area?! You have a child!” Riju says, shaking her head.

 

I don’t want to hear that from you, Chief Chu Jelly. ’ Link grins. Riju glares.

 

“Okay, it’s been lovely talking but don’t you have a reservation to make?” Riju says loudly, shooing the men out of her home. Bozai snickers, nudging Link and then wrapping an arm around his waist.

 

“We’ll see you tomorrow, Riju!”

 

“Don’t do something I’ll have to hold you on trial you for!” Riju calls back, taking Arin’s hand. She turns to the girl and says, “So, how would you like to see your mer’dash now, ki’pressva ?”

 

-

 

Even at their age, the way they make love is messy and dramatic, a tangle of limbs and mouths anywhere they could reach. House decor is pushed from countertops to make way for a body being slammed onto the surface.

 

Link laughs happily as tightens a sash to the bed, Bozai left relatively immobile. His hips still buck into the air, wanting Link to touch him, but Link will grant that particular wish that later.

 

I love you,’ he tells Bozai, bending down to kiss his lips softly, smiling when they part. Bozai chuckles, his voice deep and mellow and always able to make Link shudder in all kinds of ways.

 

“I love you too, Link,” he tells his husband, leaning up enough to rest his forehead on Link’s chest, his heartbeat pounding against his cheek. With a content sigh, Bozai leans back, rolling his shoulders of tension and subtly testing the give of his restraints. “Now, you promised me a meal, my love?”

 

Link smiles wickedly, his fingers tracing Bozai’s front teasingly before he moves from the bed.

 

Just give me a moment to make it look...presentable…

 

Bozai laughs again, straining and wanting.

 

“God, I really do love you, Link,” Bozai says, watching Link slink off to the washroom. Link peeks behind the door frame, showing off a blushing red face and a pretty smile, and when his hands move from the frame to disappear into the room Bozai thinks that as rousing as it is to see Link it whatever he has prepared, nothing makes his gut turn and his heart swell more than seeing that familiar glint of gold from Link’s finger that hasn’t left since the day he accepted putting it on.