Sample for a story I'd like to write. You, having been isekai'd into Breath of the Wild's Hyrule, discover a body in your travels.
Trudging through the Hebra mountains was misery.
Even in the two extra layers you had put on and the thick woollen snowjacket over the top of it all, it felt as if the wind whipping past you sapped what little body heat you could muster.
Ah, shit. I think the snow's gotten into my boots.
Now you had to deal with wet feet, on top of it all.
You certainly didn't feel like an adventurer today. The sooner you made it to the stable (and ideally some hot food) the better.
You trudged onward.
It would have been nice to see that dip in the terrain, you thought to yourself after the fact.
But you hadn't, and your next step missed its footing entirely, causing you to topple over into the crater, tumbling down and crashing down face-first in the snow.
I hate everything.
You laid there for a few moments, cursing yourself in your head. But you also needed to breathe, so you slowly pulled yourself from the snow, dragging yourself to your feet.
That was when you noticed the wolves.
You heard a growl reaching your ears, and looking to your left you spotted two of them, about 25 metres away, looking up at you from a hole in the snow they were hunched over.
And now you had shown up - a threat to whatever they had claimed.
They turned and began to stalk toward you. You took a deep breath and pulled the bow from your back, your fingers pinching two of the arrows that hadn't spilled from your quiver on the way past.
The wolves broke into a run.
You nocked the arrows, turning the bow horizontally. You let the arrows fly.
With a yelp, the creatures collapsed to the ground, one arrow each buried in their skull.
A few seconds passed.
You backed away slowly, nocking one more arrow just in case.
You waited ten more seconds for the animals to do something other than spill their blood onto the snow.
With a sigh of relief, you holstered your weapon on your back and, after a glance at the hole the wolves had dug in the snow, began picking up your loose arrows.
Once you had accounted for all (or at least most) of them, you walked over to the wolves, yanking the arrows roughly from their skulls, and continued on to the dug hole.
A glance inside revealed... part of a leg. Or more accurately, a leg in pants that looked like those quite common in Hyrule, you realised. Ah... poor bastard. Died out here in the cold, and was about to be dinner.
You were going to leave it at that, and leave the corpse to its snowy grave, but you started to kick snow back into the hole, something occurred to you. What was this guy doing out here, anyway? I was told the stable would be in plain sight along the main path... which I guess the snow's covered up. I wonder where they were headed.
After a moment's consideration, curiosity got the better of you, and you knelt before the hole, scooping snow out from around the edges and beginning to widen it. You figured, even if you couldn't figure out what they were doing out here, maybe they had something to help you survive out here.
As the hole gradually became bigger and the snowstorm finally started to ease, you uncovered enough of the corpse's legs that it became clear which direction it lay in, and hence, which direction it had come from. The body looked like it should have been warm... so you had to assume the weather wasn't what killed them.
Perhaps something dangerous is out there.
As you started to uncover the body's upper half, it became more obvious what killed them - there was a deep gash, cut through their Snowquill clothing into their right side, a powerful blow that it seemed had crushed a number of his ribs and supposedly pierced his lung. Whatever had struck him like this was nowhere nearby, so it became clear he was able to stumble some distance away before tumbling down this slope and succumbing to his wound, the fierce snow covering him up in a matter of days.
What had done such a thing?
...Did you want to find out?
...You decided you had to at least see if you were in immediate danger.
You rose to your feet, looking toward the crest of the crater where the person must have tumbled. Adrenaline filled your body and the biting cold felt less of an issue right now, as a slight anxiousness filled you. The danger was not over.
You stepped carefully from what was exposed of the body and began to walk up the slope. You stepped carefully, ready to flee if you came face to face with something.
You were two thirds of the way up when something hooked on your ankle and you crashed into the snow once more. You felt a searing pain as whatever it was sliced through your boot and cut sharply, beneath the ankle.
Your curses were muffled by the snow, before you rolled onto your back, your left hand plunging into the snow to dig up whatever it was that was buried while the other pulled the sliced boot from your right leg, in preparation for bandaging. "Probably some sharp rock," you hissed to yourself.
Your fingers struck something, the hook that had grabbed your leg, and you pulled it up out of the snow. It was heavier than you expected.
And as you pulled it from the snow, you stopped yourself. Confusion set in as you looked at the object you had pulled out.
It was a sword. Quite a well-known one, actually. Even for you, as you examined the deep blue hilt, the ornamental curved guard, and the iconic Triforce crest engraved on its blade, you knew that you had just pulled the Master Sword from the snow.
Or a convincing replica, at least.
You let go of its guard and it sank onto the surface of the snow as you turned your attention to your foot, fumbling in your pack for bandages.
It took you a full fifteen seconds, more focused on getting the cut bandaged up, before your hands froze in place.
Your head turned back toward the Master Sword by your side.
Your head then snapped downward, toward the body down the slope.
And suddenly you were rushing back down, leaving your right boot behind as you collapsed to your knees beside the body in the snow once more, digging more of the snow away from them as quickly as you could.
It was the tip of a Hylian's ears, the blue earring pierced near its base that sent your feeling of terror into overdrive.
But it was once you had dug out the body completely and carefully turned its head that your fear became very, very real.
For the face that stared back at you, lifeless and eyes closed, was all too familiar through your history with this world, this version of it.
No. No way. This can't be real.
You pressed your fingers to his neck, just hoping, imagining that by some miracle, what she was seeing was not the truth.
But his skin was frozen cold. Blood had stopped pumping through his veins long ago.
You stood quickly, backing away from the body. You suddenly felt quite ill.
And shortly you were doubled over, vomiting into the snow, your body shaking.
Because you had just discovered the dead body of Link.
Link, the Hero of Hyrule.
Hyrule would not be saved.
After being sick, after crying over his body, you decided that you had to stay with him for a while longer. You sat quietly in the snow next to him.
It didn't feel right to just... leave him here.
But what could you do?
Your original quest forgotten, you sat there, thinking on what would happen to this world now, with its hero gone.
Maybe not much, just yet.
But you remember, from the game's first cutscenes that Zelda - trapped in that castle in the thick of it all - couldn't hold the beast Calamity Ganon forever.
And what would happen then? Once her power was finally exhausted, and the beast overpowered her?
Well, you supposed, that would be that. It's full fury would be unleashed upon what was left of Hyrule. It was probable that remaining life here, and beyond, would be extinguished.
Who could contest them then? Nobody, most likely.
So... now we're all doomed to die.
You sat in silence as the weather continued to ease.
...Heh, I guess we're always doomed to die though, aren't we? Eventually.
As you thought back on what you knew about Breath of the Wild, and Link's journey, something occurred to you.
...Was it ever said that Link had to be the one to do all of these things?
He was obviously 'the Hero', and a lot of what he was doing here was tied back to his past life - aiding the descendants of the Champions, trying to defeat the Calamity and save Hyrule, and trying to remember his past life, the life and events that led him to wake up one hundred years later.
But was there anything that said a dog can't pl-- that someone else couldn't do those things? That someone couldn't finish the job Link started?
Of course, you didn't consider yourself worthy to take on the task, if it was at all possible. But you continued to think and figure out the obstacles.
Let's say someone picked up where he left off. How do they continue?
Well, a lot of his access comes just from holding that Sheikah Slate, right? Assuming it's not too advanced to have some sort of password protection or fingerprint technology... perhaps it was possible?
Okay, but even then. Link was the Hylian Champion for a reason. The Champion Spirits on the remaining Divine Beasts will be expecting him. Would they continue to help, if someone else turned up in his stead?
Well... it's their home too, isn't it?
You looked up. Perhaps then... it wasn't impossible for someone to fight in Link's place.
You looked once again at Link's corpse, and a plan began to form.
Some time later, you had gathered all the items you could find in the area that seemed to belong to the Hero, and laid them out in the snow next to him.
The Master Sword (and its sheath). A Royal Bow. Several each of: standard arrows, fire arrows, ice arrows, shock arrows and bomb arrows (you handled these carefully). A Lynel's shield.
His Sheikah Slate. A Travel Medallion. A folded up Paraglider.
And in a travel pack: two bottles of fairy tonic, various bottled elixirs, some strange-smelling pellets (you realised these must be Korok Seeds), some frozen meat, and some clothing for warmer weather, including his iconic Champion's Tunic.
Thankfully, he had taken the time to label the elixirs with their purposes. You picked up the one with the note 'cold protection' in neat writing, and took a sip. The heat that immediately spread outward through your body, from the liquid touching your lips, proved it to be correct.
You had also taken the liberty of checking his Sheikah Slate (which responded to your touch, thankfully), translating game UI to 'real-world' functionality enough to find his 'adventure log', a list of the tasks he had completed and not completed. From this, you could see that the Divine Beast Vah Medoh that floated about the sky to the south had not been tamed, nor had Vah Ruta, by the Zora's Domain. You had seen that some work had been done with the Zoras, however, and you realised that more than likely, you were going to face some awkward questions when you eventually headed to the area.
After those two things, perhaps then it would be time to tackle the castle directly.
You noticed in your head that you had stopped beating around the bush and decided that you would take on this challenge. You knew you were not a great fighter, but what motivated you in this direction was a simple saying that came to mind:
'All that is required for evil to win is that good people do nothing.'
You didn't believe you were strong enough to defeat that evil, especially one like Ganon, but perhaps, if you started to do something about it, perhaps others, perhaps someone stronger, would step up to help.
So you hoped, anyway.
First, though, you would have to have a very difficult conversation. Looking at the Slate's map, you eyed the labels of two locations: Kakariko Village, and Hateno Village. Your eyes darted between each location, before eventually your fingers zoomed the map in on the warp location for Hateno's Ancient Tech Lab. Purah was the one who came up with, or knows about the Shrine of Resurrection, right? you thought to yourself. Maybe there's a chance we can bring him back to life. Again.
You stood up, lifting the Master Sword in its sheath from the ground. Presenting both it and the Sheikah Slate itself to them, you thought, it should be quite clear what had happened.
You made sure everything was secure on your person and, after a deep breath, tapped the warp icon on the Slate.
Immediately you felt yourself being lifted gently off the ground, a strange noise of rushing wind in your ears as your surroundings disappeared into light blue light.
As you were warped by Sheikah magic to your destination, you thought you heard a voice.