Life wasn‘t as good as it used to be.
Her people were gone; murdered by Ganondorf. Her love still pined for the hopefully rotting corpse of the woman who had caused this. And she herself was being hunted like a wild animal. Such indignity.
Ruto‘s life had taken a dramatic turn for the worse in the past ten years. But, as was her duty as a sage, she tried to bear it all without complaint.
When Link had managed to escape Ganondorf‘s grasp and told her that his wife was dead, she had felt a mixture of joy and hope. Ganondorf‘s puppet got what she deserved, and now Link was hers to claim! But her plan didn‘t turn out the way she wanted. The Link that returned from imprisonment was not the Link she knew. There was no earnest smile anymore, just grief and cold determination.
He spoke of his wife alot, and every word said about her was like a rusted dagger to Ruto‘s heart. How Link spoke so fondly of this woman that had doomed Hyrule. And to her! The woman who truly loved him and would never hurt him like Rebecca did!
He had stopped talking about her after the Zora were eradicated. Ruto hoped that it was because he had realized what kind of monster his wife had been. But then and again, she caught him staring at the ring on his finger with longing in his eyes.
He refused to stop loving this monster.
She tried to comfort him, but every word she said seemed to have the opposite effect. She told him not to be sad, and that she would give him any kind of comfort he desired. Maybe her tone had been too suggestive, because he had just given her a disgusted glare.
Ruto would have never openly admitted it, but she knew that her social skills weren‘t exactly stellar. And the more she tried to make Link understand that she just wanted him to be happy, the more he distanced himself from her, and the more he was looking at that damn ring!
Did he not see how much he hurt her with this? This woman was responsible for the death of all of her people, after all! And he was acting like she was just an innocent victim of Ganonodorf!
More often than not, Ruto found herself weeping to herself whenever she was alone. This just wasn‘t fair!
Link should love her! He had promised himself to her when he accepted the Zora Sapphire! She was princess! And yet he preferred a dirty, treacherous peasant over her? The audacity!
With the encounters with Link becoming so unbearable, she found herself watching him only from a distance more often than not. The lean body moving under his tunic, the blonde hair and the once so lively blue eyes.
She got lost in daydreams fairly often. Dreaming of him holding her, calling her his love, his world, telling her that he always loved her and that the other woman had only been a placeholder and that he would have cast her aside at some point anyway. What lovely thoughts to occupy her lonely hours.
At least she wouldn‘t have to see him with her again. Because Rebecca was dead! Dead and rotting! Or so she thought…
She had volunteered to scout out the area around Lake Hylia with Impa, as she often did, to make sure that no monsters would discover their safehouse. It started out as uneventful as ever; Ruto just had to dispose of a few blue tektites.
But then she saw the woman walking towards Hyrule Field, and everything within her froze, her head just screaming ‚NO! NO! NO!‘.
But there she was, the woman that had caused her so much suffering. The wench that had given Ganondorf opportunity to eradicate the Zora and conquer Hyrule.
Ruto found herself approaching the other woman, her body tense with hatred. Rebecca had her back turned to her. How easy it would be to just snap her neck or stab her and hide her corpse, so nobody would ever know that she had still been alive in the first place. But Impa was nearby and would surely notice… so she just approached the other woman, grabbing her arm.
Rebecca turned around, startled, and just exclaimed:„Princess Ruto?!“
Ruto grit her teeth. How dare this peasant address her with her first name? „Give me one good reason not to cut you down where you stand, traitor.“ By the Goddesses, she meant what she said. She would have loved to make her suffer for what she did.
But fate, as it was so often the case, had other plans, and thus, she and Impa brought Rebecca to the safehouse.
Once Ruto retreated from the council they held over Rebecca‘s innocence, she found tears streaming down her face. Was she the only person who saw that woman for what she truly was? A monster, dead-set on destroying them all?
Even Link! He had approached her, and then held her in his arms. And his words… oh Goddesses, his words.
„And yet I love her“, Ruto imitated his voice, tasting bile as she did so. Ah yes, he loved that filthy peasant, he loved her oh so much. She could set the world on fire and he would still be her loving and doting husband. No matter how many people she hurt. No matter how badly she hurt him!
She had been ready to give up, to just remain a sage and let Link live his life with the woman he chose. But that was before all of this happened!
Ruto lowered her head, trying to contain the sobs that shook her entire body. She felt cast aside, dismissed in favor of someone else. A feeling she wasn‘t used to… and certainly didn‘t enjoy. But in the end, there was nothing she could do. Nothing to get Link back, nothing to convince him that Rebecca wasn‘t worth his love.
All she could do was suffer in silence.