Reviews for The Dragon and the Bow
A.J.R chapter 40 . 2/24
You my friend you should be proud of your work you and your ideas and imagination mixing two people from different worlds but in truth between Hiccup and Merida they are the same they want to change there fate in doing so to show others being different and changing thing is good and showed there parents the right way of the right path. And that's all I have to say about that.
Min's awesomeness chapter 40 . 2/14
So, I spent the last part of yesterday and today reading your story...I loved it!
I did not expect to be so entranced by a crossover of this movies, however, the story you have writen has kept me glued to my laptop and I can only say...WOW!

I can't wait to start reading more!
Nimbus Llewelyn chapter 40 . 1/11
Interesting... very interesting.

I started reading this story a while ago, stopped, then picked it up again and I'm very glad I did. I like how you melded history, mythology and a whole multitude of canons (as one master of that particular art to another, I tip my cap to you). The syncretic view of the various religions of the world was particularly interesting.

As a long term Asterix fan, I loved the fact that Astrid was a descendant of his - and it's not too much of a stretch to imagine it, from a linguistic point of view.

Though I do wonder where Flynn is in all of this...

Also, on a more critical note, you occasionally mix up 'you're' and 'your', and a few other minor mistakes. You could use a beta - not for anything major, just for another pair of eyes.
Aynessa chapter 6 . 12/30/2014
Have to say, I giggled when Misty Mountains Cold appeared in this chapter. Was just listening to it not even 20 minutes ago.

This story is really excellently done. Fabulous plot and writing style, though I can't see Merida losing in a fight with Astrid quite as spectacularly as she did here, but that could just be from her emotional train wreck from being stranded on Berk.

Happy to see Toothless appear here, though it seems like you're aiming to make him more of Merida's dragon than Hiccup's, which I desperately hope doesn't happen. But we'll see. Really excited to read so many chapters of this excellent tale.
Kate chapter 40 . 12/23/2014
With out a doubt... This is the absolute best How to Train Your Dragon FanFic that I have ever read in my entire life! I am so pumped to read the sequel :)
Toa Aerrow chapter 37 . 12/8/2014
After all everyone's been through this chapter, I have to say that is impressive: Mor'du's last words are f***ing hilarious!
Uh, in relation to all else that has just happened, that is.
Still, good job!
DannyPhantom619 chapter 40 . 12/6/2014
This was one if the best HTTYD&BRAVE crossover EVER!
Quizer chapter 40 . 11/23/2014
so I just finished reading this story in one big go. All told it was a very good, very entertaining story.

I like the addition Merida brought to the story. The early chapters where we saw the changes her presence causes on Berk are very well done. I like the gradual way she warms up to Hiccup and the other vikings, and they to her. I also like how you gave other bit characters a bigger role, such as the young lords and especially Fishlegs. I also liked the twist you've put on the dragon training scenes. Those in particular were well done.

However, there are also a couple of significant flaws (or at least they seemed that way to me):

The perhaps biggest problem is that after Merida and Hiccup reached their rapport, the story hugged the original plotline way, way too closely. You ever heard the term "Stations of the Canon"? That's basically what you have done here, moving from one bit of the canon plot to the next, adding things here and there but ultimately changing far too little. Things frustratingly alternate between Merida adding an interesting twist and causing new and completely different things to happen, and faithfully rehashing the plot we are all familiar with from the movie. In many places, the addition of Merida and the changes her presence brought should have had far bigger effects.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment in this regard is that you did not change the bit where Hiccup's demonstration in the arena failed and Toothless got captured. This is especially grating because the circumstances were so very different this time around. In HTTYD canon, Hiccup was alone in the arena, but here he had help both inside and outside the arena. His demonstration could have had more weight if Fishlegs and Merida followed suit demonstrating that they had tamed Meatlug and Stormfly respectively. Also, they had Elinor on their side. But despite Elinor's mastery of Social-Fu, she was pretty much completely useless in this situation. I know she's not infallible by any means, but she should have been able to make a bigger impact than that.

It's very disappointing that you did not strain your brain more to put a different spin on that scene. You could have led the story to the final battle on Helheim's Gate in any number of ways, including ones where Hiccup and company actually succeed in making their point about the dragons. But you went the path of least resistance and this story is poorer for that.

Hiccup's leg is another such case, but one that is harder to argue against, and one that I find much less issue with. Hiccup's artificial leg slotting into Toothless saddle is too cool a thing to give up.

Your portrayal of Mor'du is another thing. You've twisted him into a pretty effective villain overall, but one complaint I have is that up until the very end, he always seems to be on top of things. Always with the smugness, always with the taunts, you never get the impression that something isn't going according to his plans even when the heroes are getting in his way. I think you would have done well for his composure to be rattled a bit here and there as Hiccup, Merida and company foil his short-term goals, strike a blow or escape his clutches.

The next big flaw are the battle scenes. I'm sorry to have to say this, but the way you write the battles against Mor'du's followers is very repetitive. The way the Vendal don't fight very smart and pretty much just rush in is not a big problem and in fact gives the heroes their chance to prove themselves the more intelligent fighters, but you don't do much with that. You keep using a lot of the same elements and string them together in battles, with very little in the way of innovation.

The Vendal use a lot of non-lethal moves like grappling and chokeholds, which the characters can always escape from or be rescued from. The good guys use way too many kicks to the chest that knock enemies back, and there's a crapton of 'in the nick of time' rescues, where after taking down two or three enemies, the current character has played all their cards, they get grabbed by an enemy and just before the deathblow comes, another character unexpectedly comes to the rescue. It's all very formulaic.

One thing I'm missing from your battles is the good guys using planned teamwork. The rescues mentioned above don't really count, since they all happen incidentally. There should be scenes where combinations of characters work together from the start to bring down enemies through clever combinations or distractions moves. The solo combat scenes where each character is able to show their mettle have their place in the story, but they shouldn't be all that's there.

A small nitpick is that I don't think it was a good idea to give Astrid a different dragon, but still name it Stormfly. The name Stormfly suits the Deadly Nadder that is Astrid's canon mount, and yeah, it makes sense that Merida would name it something different. But the name Stormfly was chosen for the dragon, and Astrid should have named her Timberjack in this story something different as well. I do like the idea of giving her a different dragon breed that didn't get much (or any, really) exposure in the movie.

I liked Gobber's origin story. That was really nicely done. Astrid's as well - I guessed it after the first hint in that direction was dropped. It's a pretty cool idea that fits in the world. Though maybe she should have been Obelix's descendant, since he was the one that got dunked in the magic potion and drank so much of it that the strength it bestowed became a permanent part of him. Asterix had to drink the potion each time just like everyone else - the thing that set him apart was his brains and ingenuity, much like Hiccup.

It might have been fun to see a little more of Merida's wisps. I'm thinking that in the same way Rapunzel has her healing powers and Elsa controls ice, the wisps (and perhaps the stone circle that serves as a nexus as well) are Merida's special trait/ability. I like to imagine that even after the events of 'Brave', she will occasionally see them and perhaps know better now that she can trust them to lead her in the right direction. I don't usually like prophecies and fate as a narrative device, but the wisps never struck me as annoying in the same way. The part at the end of the movie where she is riding to Elinor's rescue and suddenly a line of them shows up and makes her change her direction and avoid riding straight into Mor'du, that bit really shows that whatever power is behind them has her best interests at heart.

I do like how at the end of the movie, she essentially becomes Hilde's successor, inheriting the stone circle (though I'm more ambivalent about the crow familiar...).

Loki and his blessing was also a nice touch. Kinda makes sense that Hiccup the outcast would feel drawn to the outcast god and make a connection there. Should be interesting to see where you take this blessing idea in the promised sequel.

Something that bothered me in the main movie and also in this story is how despite Merida's skill in archery, her shots often prove ineffective. It's noticeable in 'Brave', where Merida shoots at Mor'du a couple of times, and one time the shot just bounces straight off, and the other times it just doesn't hurt him very much. In this story, I can't count the number of times Mor'du blocks Merida's shots with her sword - that could stand to be toned down significantly. Let her get a couple hits in, even if they don't end up bothering Mor'du that much.

You could also have given her swordsmanship a bit more time in the spotlight. The scene at the end of the movie where Merida proves a match in swordsmanship to her father was one of her most impressive and badass moments. It's a bit of a waste that you gave her a nice sword in this story and then hardly did anything with it.

Well, that's all I can think of for now. All in all, this was a good, entertaining story. Keep up the good work!
nr 25 peter chapter 40 . 11/20/2014
I've only got one word to discribe this story...Wow.
At first I was a bit hesitant, because although I liked Brave, I always felt it missed something. And I am a Hiccstrid shipper, but how you handled it in this Story with Merida and Hiccup, I am not so exlusive anymore.
I really love this story, love the characters, characters backround, storyline. Everything.
Well, no, almost everything. You killed Angus...
But for the rest, the people, setting, bad guys, the songs, I loved! the songs you put in. I can go on and on, but, I made my point.
Thank you for writing it! :-)
Eric the Looney chapter 40 . 11/8/2014
And so ends the turning point in the epic saga of Heroes and their shadows. (If you like that arc series title) It was one wild ride, and one with farther reaching implications than you might think, not to mention AU in more ways than one.

Here at the end, I see a shout out to The Princess Bride, and grief, while also mystery, and finally, a story reaching its most natural ending point. The greatest foes of viking and highlander are defeated. The love of Merida and Hiccup is finally nearing its culmination now that a wedding date has been set. The grace of Loki has fallen on Hiccup. The path of shadow is now in danger. I refer to this as the turning point, because even though I haven't read Heaven's Light, I'm guessing that for all the fusions, there wasn't as much there in regards to the return of Shadow. There's even a deeper meaning behind this as a turning point for me because it also marks the beginnings of the new age of magic for the world. The harbinger of that is the taming of the dragons. For now with the dragons under control, the mortals now have ways to do serious damage to the spirits and myths of old.

There was sacrifice, particularly on the Brave side with both Angus and Hilde dying. But also triumph and hope. And besides, the fact that Hiccup and Merida both survive to have 4 kids and both Fergus and Elinor live to tell the story tells us that no matter what might happen in the sequels, those 4 are safe.

There's also this undercurrent of AU here because you started this story before HTTYD 2 came out, revealing the whole "Hiccup's mom ran away with dragons" plot, and with Alvin killing her, it's fundementally altered dragon continuity in that although the story followed its basic premise, incorporating the TV series and the second film is going to require some creativity, or at least a different kind of take from the actual movie/show where Alvin hadn't crossed the moral event horizon, and mom was still alive. (though on a side note, Drago Bludfist would make for a GREAT servant of the shadow, especially since he's like the Anti-Hiccup)

On a final note, I wonder if the wedding went smoothly at all. Seeing as they finally found their love, but the spirit war is coming, I wonder if this is going to be a time for unease when the wedding actually rolls around.

But for now, we bask in the glory of a land at peace, with the best pets in the universe. Dragons!
Eric the Looney chapter 10 . 11/3/2014
Ah, so that's what it takes to restart the spark. Very good. Very good indeed. I just love how Hiccup's devotion has finally paid off, and the path of true love now continues. Come to think of it, this already feels very different as a story, and no doubt, there's a story behind how merida knows rapunzel who's with quasimodo of all people. I...I don't know if I'm interested in reading it, but you somehow realed me into this because of your rise of the guardians crossover. So, we'll see. At the very least, hopefully this begins the slow process of healing in the village.
waveringshadow chapter 40 . 10/11/2014
Okay, this is a review for the entire story, so it will be rather long.
Firstly, I live that you've managed to stay true to the movies, and yet still combined them. I occasionally grumbled when you ommitted something or gave one character's lines to another character, but that was just my personal preference, and I still think you balanced it well.
I also like how you've added so many layers to the story,with the different character's ancestors and such. I guessed that Asterix was Astrid's ancestor!
I laughed pretty hard when you picked up the fact that Gobber and Lord Macintosh have the same voice. Ingenious!
Hilde and her nicknames were really cool.
Astrid and Fishlegs are super cute together!
I'm glad you softened the writing of the Scottish accent, it was really hard to read at the start.
I think your characters interacted really well with each other, and I think you stuck to their character's very well.
I loved how the Red Death spoke, he was a perfect villain.
I also think you did Loki very well.
Also, Angus! Sob, sob.
Overall I think your story is amusing, and very well thought out. There are so many elements! Everything fits so well together, and there aren't any obvious plot holes. It took me a while to finish this, but it was worth it. Can't wait to start reading the sequel!
Ikan chapter 40 . 10/9/2014
Amazing story, but bringing in 'Misty Mountains' and 'I See Fire'? Oh, and there are some really minor spelling mistakes from about Chapter 16 onward.
Elizabeth White chapter 26 . 10/6/2014
I've read stories on this site for a long time . . . your ability to add plot twists incorporating both movies is great! I am also extremely impressed with how you've kept the characters' personalities so similar to who they are in the original works!

The only thing I think could improve is small grammatical stuff . . . and I can tell you that they are few and far between!

You've got real talent! Keep up the writing; and maybe try some original plots while you're at it. I would certainly read them!
Red chapter 40 . 8/28/2014
When I think of Loki, I see Avenger's Loki.
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