If Link went back in time (which he does eventually), and if Link creates a timeline split when he does so (which he does), when did he leave the Master Sword in the Adult timeline? He hands off the Ocarina to Zelda; he does no such thing with the sword, so we can reasonably say that it doesn't happen in that scene, since he's still carrying it when he is carried away by the portal. Any answer to that question that makes logical sense will do.
The answer is that Link's spirit was sent to the past to inhabit his young body. Since he wasn't physically sent back, there's no reason that anything in his possession would be physically sent back either.
1) What happened to his future body?
2) Why does TWW reference him entering the flows of time and leaving the land of Hyrule (as though literally) if this wasn't the case?
If we really want his future body to disappear like everybody seems to assume it does, then we can go ahead and assume it does since his future body has no real importance. It's also possible that the body went into a coma like it did the first time it was without its spirit. Having it disappear is cleaner, but as far as the story's concerned it doesn't matter what happens to the body. As for him "entering the flows of time," does that statement really require that Link's body was sent back in time and regressed 7 years (leaving the future with no Link, Master Sword, or Triforce of Courage while the child timeline gets two) or is it possible that Link's body simply didn't enter the flows of time and leave Hyrule? As far as I can tell, whether or not Link's body goes with the rest of him doesn't change whether or not the statement about him entering the flows of time is true.
Believe it or not, I don't know whether you're arguing with me or not. But you've got the same basic premise as me. I think.
Yeah, our views seem mostly shared, but not completely.
Zelda wants Link to put the Master Sword in place. She says it explicitly. Therefore, to send Link back in time without it would be beyond stupid. Thus, Link should have the Master Sword when he goes back in time. I do believe that that sounds like your most recent post.
Right, where we differ is that I believe the Master Sword was already in past Link's hands at the point in time Zelda sent him, meaning she doesn't need to send back the future Master Sword. Well, I'll get into that in just a second.
This, however, does not sound like the post before that. I am trying to dispute the statement that "there was already a Master Sword in the child timeline." If you stand by that statement, I want to know WHERE it was. Perhaps a graphic will explain this better than I can:
If I knew how to get hosting for graphics I'd create my own version of that, but it'd be very close so I guess it'll do to just say where it differs. Basically, the red line splits just after "Child Link pulls the Master Sword." The adult timeline Master Sword goes to "Seven years in the future" as shown and remains in the adult timeline past "Zelda sends Link back through time," while the child timeline Master Sword goes to "Link puts back the Master Sword." I'd explain it further right now, but you ask in just a second so I'll explain there.
There is that momentary lapse of red (where you see black) just after Link went to the future the first time... and when the actual split happened by Link getting sent back from the future. This amount of time (represented by the black) can be as long as needed, instantaneous if you even wish it so, but still... the sword was pulled, and the sword should be sent back.
During that momentary lapse of red the Master Sword was always with Link wherever he was, that momentary lapse of red is just where Link is in the Sacred Realm. Thing is, moving from the Sacred Realm to the Light World doesn't seem to be much of a challenge, considering Link does so every time he earns a Sage Medallion. To me the fact that Link's body is in the Temple of Time is proof that he and the Master Sword were taken back out of the Sacred Realm when his spirit returned from the future. The other options are that he was sent back to a point before he was in the Sacred Realm (which would have been before he pulled the Master Sword, making that a bad theory) or Link first awoke in the Sacred Realm and we just weren't shown that part (this one also doesn't make sense, especially considering how easy it should be to pull him out of the Sacred Realm the moment his spirit returns.)
Am I in line with you? If so, where is the sword for Wind Waker? If not, what did I draw that's wrong?
The Master Sword in Wind Waker is actually something I consider to be very strong evidence for this interpretation of time travel, since this interpretation leaves the Master Sword in the future when Zelda sends Link's spirit into the past.