October 27th-Ransom

Hiccup sat doubled over in his small cell, hands tied behind his back as they had been for a few hours now. He was still throwing up after they'd poisoned him. The poison wasn't meant to kill, just to make him sick enough so he could escape.

Prosthetic leg missing and face red from fever, Hiccup coughed loudly as his ribs throbbed. Two of them were badly broken. His right wrist was broken too. His prosthetic was missing and there were tiny burns from a poker on his stump, another method of making sure he didn't escape.

Krogan was so much worse than Viggo. He was beyond brutal in his attacks. The hurt Hiccup went through wasn't even an interrogation. Krogan just simply wanted to beat the hell out of his prisoner.

"Stop!" Hiccup screamed as he sat up in bed, fresh memories of fire and metal branded into his traumatized mind.

Hiccup's own father hadn't been able to save him for four months even though he knew where his son was. Krogan had the area highly guarded so no one could save the heir to Berk. Stoick was threatened, saying if he tried to save his son, Hiccup would be killed on the spot.

Krogan had a plan. He wanted something that would damage Berk in trade for Hiccup. A lump sum of Gold that would put a huge dent in their supplies, most of Gothi's healing herbs, and a certain group of dragons.

No one wanted to give up any of Berk's dragons, but after three months of failing to save Hiccup, they did what they had to do. Three terrors, six Razorwhips, a cage full of Deadly Nadders, six Monstrous Nightmares young enough to produce enough gel to sell for the years to come, three Rumble Horns, eighteen Zipplebacks, two Speed Stingers-a male and a female-, six Gronkles being three of each gender, and a barrel full of Night Fury scales for their projects. They didn't even try asking for Toothless, knowing that would be the perfect way for the riders to set up a trap at the trade with the strongest dragon they had.

What hurt the most was all of these dragons were species the riders were used to. They were choked up when they saw them sent away, likely to be killed or enslaved in the near future, but everyone shed tears of relief when Hiccup was returned to them.

Of course once Hiccup heard what they had done, he had become upset, feeling like he had burdened all of Berk. They wouldn't have done all of this if he wasn't the only heir the chief had, and this made him feel even more guilty.

Hiccup was hardly able to stay conscious on the flight home though. Burned, bruised, battered body weak from the torture he'd endured. Black eyes, broken wrists, humiliated, guilty; he didn't believe he would ever fully recover.

Toothless was next to his rider, cooing softly in an attempt to sooth the panicking boy. Hiccup forced himself to let his breathing even out, whispering to himself that it was only just a dream.

It wasn't a dream though, it was a memory.

Tears fell from the boy's eyes that he didn't know he was holding back. Toothless licked them away and Hiccup hugged the Night Fury's neck tightly in an attempt to ground himself as the flashbacks tormented his exhausted mind.

"I don't understand what I did wrong bud." Hiccup choked out. "I don't know how they caught me. It was just a regular patrol. Now Berk is burdened and I can't get over what Krogan did."

Toothless hummed in understanding, letting out a sort of cat-meowing noise as he fluttered his wings in an attempt to tell Hiccup he was no burden. If anything, the Night Fury had a burden lifted off of him knowing his rider was safe again.

Hiccup chuckled dryly and whited the tears from his face with his un-bandaged hand. He let go of his dragon and sighed deeply, nodding his head determinedly.

"We'll do everything we can to make it up to them. Sale goods, get the dragons to help main the livestock, Berk will get back on its feet. It's the least we can do bud to apologize for not being careful enough."

Toothless nodded his head, purring in agreement. He lay his large head and neck on the end of Hiccup's bed, forcing Hiccup down with him. The Haddock boy laughed again through the flashbacks and tried to focus on the warmth of his best friend.

They could fix this. Right now though, Hiccup really needed some sleep.