- "I'm gonna dig and dig! Just like Dampé!!"
- — Boy in the Graveyard
The Boy in the Graveyard is a character from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. When Link is a child, the boy can be found playing in Kakariko Graveyard. When Link is an adult, the whereabouts of the boy are unknown. The character is depicted as a young child with red hair, carrying a stick.
The Boy in the Graveyard lives in a house in Kakariko Village with his mother. Every day he goes to the graveyard to play, and every night he goes home to sleep. The boy is fascinated by scary things and wishes he looked more like his idol Dampé, the gravekeeper. Because the boy cannot stay up late enough to go on Dampé's Heart-Pounding Gravedigging Tour, he spends every day making up for it by patrolling the graves, mimicking his hero. The boy plays a part in the Happy Mask Salesman's side quest, as he buys the Spooky Mask from Link in order to fulfill his fantasy of hiding his childish face and becoming more frightening.
The Boy's mother is never seen, but Link can talk to her through the door of her home. During the day, she tells Link that her son is off in the graveyard playing and that he should go there to see him. At night, she tells Link that her child has gone to bed and that he should come back tomorrow.
When Link is an adult, the boy and his mother have vanished from Kakariko Village, and their house has been turned into the Bazaar.
- "Hey! It's a Keaton Mask!! I asked my daddy to get me one, too!"
- — Boy in the Graveyard
It is possible that the father of the Boy in the Graveyard is the Keaton Mask Soldier; after giving the Hyrulean Soldier Zelda's Letter, the soldier asks Link if he can stop by the Happy Mask Shop in Hyrule Castle Town and bring him a Keaton Mask for his son. If Link displays the mask to the Boy in the Graveyard, he responds by saying that he had asked his father for one. This fact and the proximity of the soldier's post to the boy's home make a compelling argument for their possible father-son relationship.
Adult Timeline Fate
Because the whereabouts of the boy during the adult timeline are unknown, fan theories have surfaced to help solve this. The most common theory seems to be that the boy becomes the Ghost Hunter in adulthood. The boy was very interested in ghosts and the paranormal, and the Ghost Hunter makes his living by collecting and selling Poes in the deserted Hyrule Castle Town. Also, the two both carry a stick and wave it in the same motion pattern. The final similarity is that the boy makes no appearance when Link is an adult, and the Ghost Hunter makes no appearance when Link is a child.
There are several counter-arguments for this theory however. The first is that the Ghost Hunter appears old and refers to Link as "young man", while the boy seemed much younger than Link. Another counter-argument is that the boy doesn't seem to like trouble, and when Link attempts to move gravestones, the boy tells him to stop and threatens to tell Dampé. The Ghost Hunter is the opposite and desires to see the world fall into disorder. A final minor counter-argument is that the boy's mother is not accounted for in the adult section of the game. This, however, could be due to anything.
Conversely, another theory holds that the boy, his father the guard, and rest of his family abandoned Kakariko Village for parts unknown after Ganondorf came to power. As their home is remade into the Bazaar in the Adult Timeline and no mention is made of any member of his family thereafter, it is reasonable to assume that the boy's family took the opportunity to accept an offer for their house and have fled beyond the influx of citizens to Kakariko and the changed Hyrule Kingdom, because if the boy's father was the Kakariko guard to Death Mountain, all of Hyrule's guards had either been killed by Ganondorf's wrath or fled Hyrule altogether in exile when Link becomes an adult.