Please help, copied files incorrectly and can't access them

Hi, I purchased a Passport Essential a couple of years ago to back up files from my ancient laptop (windows xp at least 5 yrs old).  I never loaded the WD software just copied files and folders using Windows Explorer to maximize drive space.  I recently deleted files from my laptop harddrive thinking they were on my passport.  Tonight when I selected any of those  files from my passport  I kept getting the same error message, “Windows cannot find E: Recycler/5563c441f599EA475381BAD38A30c8c.exe.  Make sure you typed the name correctly and then try again…”.  After staring at my passport folder, I just realized the files not opening are listed as a shortcut file type instead of file folder type.  I’ve been copying the files using shortcut ctrl c.  I thought about trying to load the copy application software to see if I can view files but I am not sure if that will help.  Is there anyway to retrieve those files from either my passport or laptop?  Unfortunately they are not in my laptop recycle bin either.    Any help will be much appreciated. 

Nope… If all you did was create a shortcut, then there’s nothing you can do if the original files are gone, too…

Thread moved to WD External Drives: My Passport for PC.