|Reviews for Lightning and Death Itself|
| cdchromebook chapter 177 . 8/22
It’s been a year is everything okay? You implied that this isn’t completely over. I’m extremely excited for more, as I’m sure the rest of you audience is also.
| cdchromebook chapter 178 . 8/8
Lovely work. Now, it’s been a few years, what are the dragons going to do about Rome?
| cdchromebook chapter 135 . 8/7
AWW! You made me cry!
In all seriousness though, that was moving and beautiful. I shed quite a few tears.
| cdchromebook chapter 112 . 8/7
Rangi smirked, “Booyah”
A character whose name starts with R and says Booyah? That’s a Kim Possible reference if I ever saw one. Thank you for that sudden laugh of humorous nostalgia.
| cdchromebook chapter 98 . 8/7
Thank you for the teen betrothal angst! Varinn's words LEGIT made me LOL the italics were used to MUCH effectiveness!
That was FUNNY.
| cdchromebook chapter 48 . 8/6
AWESOME! NO OTHER WORDS COULD PROPERLY DESCRIBE THE EPIC-NESS OF THIS STORY!
| cdchromebook chapter 24 . 8/6
I love that ending!
| Dat Random Fur chapter 178 . 5/28
| Guest chapter 14 . 3/8
TT rip green Nadder who follows new night fury around. poor thing was only a hatchling when she had died. oh, the poor little thing fly free up in the Valhalla version of dragon heaven little one. you'll be dearly missed by your mama and your friend New Night Fury.
| Guest chapter 8 . 3/8
yay Toothless has his missing tailfin back thank you dragon hiccup for giving his tailfin back to him.
| galahsrock chapter 178 . 3/7
Just binged this entire story in a few days, and I gotta say, it’s great!
Your writing style is awesome, and I love your characterizations. The thrown in references from other franchises are a lot of fun, and the kind of Easter eggs that make fanfiction so awesome.
As a biology-ish student with a focus on animal biology and behavior, though, I gotta critique the developmental/biological timelines of the dragons.
Although I understand that you made the maturity process very quick to allow for a fast repopulation of the night fury species, introduce new characters, etc., it’s really unrealistic. (And I know it’s fantasy, so saying anything is unrealistic is kinda silly, but I just personally enjoy fantasy/sci-fi that uses at least vaguely plausible biological stuff.
The biggest factors that generally affect how quickly animals mature are size, endothermy, and believe it or not, intelligence. There’s not really any completely universal rules in biology, but there are trends. Larger animals take a lot longer to grow and mature than smaller animals, simply because they have more mass. Even if they feed at an immense rate, there are limits to how quickly cells can divide.
Endothermy (cold blooded vs warm blooded) also tends to have a massive effect on growth rates, because cold blooded creatures are very limited by their environment for their basal metabolic rate, so they can’t maintain temperate and growth factor like warm blooded creatures can.
Finally, intelligence. There are reasons why humans take so long to mature. A lot of that is our brains. They require a lot to grow, develop, and be maintained. If you look across the animal kingdom, there is usually correlation between intelligence and slower maturity (and longer lifespan). Basically, the more neurons something has, the longer it takes to mature, and the longer it will live.
Now, taking in all those factors, if I look at the dragons, and speculate on where they would fit in the tree of life, I’m inclined to say they are a branch of archosaurs. Archosaurs are a group of reptiles that include crocodilians, the extinct dinosaurs, and modern birds. (Yes, phylogenically speaking birds are a subset of reptiles. That’s another discussion entirely) so these are the animals that I will use as a base of reference. Luckily, it includes both large, carnivorous reptiles, and warm blooded flying creatures, some of which are known for their intelligence.
Now, dragons are warm-blooded, generally quite large, and definitely intelligent, especially the night furies. For the sake of comparison, however, let’s focus on a smaller dragon first. The terrible terror.
Presumably terrors weigh well under 30, and probably around or under 20lbs. They’re not (particularly) smart. They’re also generally scavengers, so that makes me think a good comparison would be a species of vulture, like the turkey vulture, which weigh about a quarter as much as the terror would, but is around the same size. They take around 4 years to reach sexual maturity. So is that how long terrors take? I’m inclined to say no. Although this is a good starting point, we also have to keep in mind that vultures’ metabolic rates, and therefore growth, tend to be MUCH lower than most similar birds because they spend so much time gliding, which takes very little energy expenditure. Additionally, dragons are going to be a lot more dense in their body mass-size ratio than birds, although they will likely still have hollow bones and be a lot less dense than animals that don’t fly. Nonetheless, let’s consider how long a denser reptile (alligators) take to grow to about 20 lbs. 12-18 months. Okay. That’s a reasonable growth rate. But growth does not equal sexual maturity. I’m not gonna go nuts with numbers here, but let’s say a terror takes about a year to reach its adult size, and then another 1-2 years before it’s ready to breed. They’re probably independent by 6 months, leaving the parents free to reproduce on a yearly basis. They probably have much shorter lifespans than other dragons, just from being killed or dying stupid deaths if not dying from old age. So let’s say a terror probably won’t live past 50, average lifespan is 20, reaches maturity at 2-3 years, breeds annually, and probably has 3-6 eggs a clutch, with a 40% chance of each offspring also reaching maturity. I’m sure I could spend all day trying to find more good number supports and estimates but let’s just say that sounds about right for the kind of reproduction trend needed to keep a population stable.
Okay. Now for something bigger. Gronkles. According to the wiki they weigh nearly 3 tons. That of course means incredible density. Just due to how long it takes to accumulate that much pure mass, gronkles probably don’t reach their full size for at least 7 years. I had to reference a mammal for this size, (the white rhino) because the largest reptile alive, the saltwater crocodile, doesn’t exceed 3 tons. Sexual maturity probably won’t come for longer, however, as most birds reach their almost-full-size quickly enough but then may take several more years to mature as their growth slows to an almost imperceptible rate. Overall, let’s say it probably takes around 8-10 years for a gronkle to reach sexual maturity.
Nadders are probably around 12 years. At only 2600 lbs, they probably reach their near-adult size fairly quickly, maybe by 4 or 5 years of age, but we’ve seen that the sharp class dragons are generally a fair bit smarter than the others. That means extra neurons, which probably means a much later maturity.
Nightmares may be around 11-15 years. Although they weigh only slightly less than gronkles, they probably have significantly higher metabolisms, and are a bit smarter.
So what about night furies? They’re smaller, less than 900lbs. They could potentially reach full size in only 2 or 3 years, presumably. But that’s assuming a growth rate like that of gronkles, or mammalian ungulates. We have to factor in the night fury’s incredible intelligence. Their brain is going to slow down the growth of the rest of their bodies. The most ambitious estimate I can imagine is to say that they reach a near-adult size around 10 years of age, but would keep growing (albeit very slowly) until reaching full physical and sexual maturity around 15-20. I don’t think they’d reach sexual maturity before reaching full size, though, because as far as I know, birds don’t do that. Pretty much all of them reach full physical maturity before or at the same time as they reach reproductive capacity. Many of them, especially the smart ones, may reach a seemingly adult size and coloration years before sexual maturity kicks in. Crocodiles aren’t as useful as a comparison here because they don’t exactly stop growing ever.
Because of this smaller growth, night furies would probably also only clutch every 2-5 years.
TL;DR: night furies wouldn’t reach maturity at 2 years old and clutch every year
| Marce7411 chapter 178 . 9/24/2022
Romans are mentioned in start of "Great Cave" arc, then Vikings know at least something about them.
I Just realized that thes scouts are called advanced, creating rifles far better than standard is possible, but in very small amount, this is explanation why they can have few of them, but this weapon shouldn't be accesible to most of romans, only to these most rich.
If they have any rifles, they also can have canons, and this literały mean to Vikings fleets are doomed, only dragons can fight on the sea, aerial bombs can be invention capable to save archipelago from destruction.
This is also possible to Hiccup surrender if romans are open to concept of inteligent dragons, and he is fuly capable to prove this to them, after all, roman invasion have many possible outcoms, and surrender can be real option if demands are acceptable, night fury's don't fight with someone, who they can't beat... But again, aerial bomb invention can give Victory to dragons.
| Ground beef tornado chapter 178 . 9/16/2022
I have already read your story multiple times, I just wanted to compliment your story planningthe arc structure, which guarantees that the story isn't cut off without any sort of conclusion if you ever get bored of it or run out of ideas.
Still gonna be waiting for a new arc though. Also: Might I suggest throwing a wrench in hiccup's and astrid's relationship to shift some light on them again in a future arc?
| ImMoku chapter 18 . 8/6/2022
Damn he still lost his leg?
| Drunken Hamster chapter 178 . 7/22/2022
Well that was an unexpectedly sudden ending. I guess it *is* kinda a prologue to the next big arc, though. And you can't exactly call the arc "The New Nest" if it goes on to become about the Roman Invasion, can you?
Either way, I enjoyed reading it, and I'm glad that Cave-Flyer has gotten past her hang-up *despite* how the reasoning was just a bit cliche.
I calmly await the next arc, my friend.