Hey all! Triumphant Fury here! Decided to try my hand at a modern Hiccstrid story, since I am having so much fun writing the 'Dance of Power' Trilogy. For fans of that series, don't worry, I'm not taking a break from it. Updates on TWoB will still be timely. This is more of a side project that has been nagging at me for a few weeks. I got the idea for this story from the song 'Kiss Kiss by Madeline Merlo' and that idea just started growing on its own. So, here you go...

*Story is rated M for strong language, and later lemons* ;)

_

Astrid Hofferson's life was perfect. If you asked pretty much anyone else, they would say the same thing. Astrid had it all. Looks, brains, and money. A huge group of supportive friends from the 'right' crowd and a steady boyfriend. Her parents were upper middle-class. Not rich by any means, but definitely more than just comfortable. With a mother that was a nurse and a father that was a dentist, she certainly never went without. Living the dream life of every teenager.

Astrid had been head cheerleader and homecoming queen of Berk High. Dating the quarterback and following all the rules. The good girl with her priorities sorted and her life on track. Graduating with honours, Astrid had been accepted at Berk University straight out of school. Her boyfriend, Scott (Snotlout) Jorgenson, even receiving a football scholarship to the same University. Her best friends Heather Berserker and Rachel (Ruffnut) Thorston had also managed to wrangle spots at Berk U, and Heather's rich parents had even helped the three girls to rent their own apartment just off campus rather than condemning them to the crowded dorms. What more could a girl ever want?

Astrid's life sounded perfect, didn't it. Well, it had been. For the last 4 years that is. During freshman and sophomore year, she had maintained that perfect image carried over from high school and everything fit exactly where it should. Unfortunately, life actually sucks. Just when you think you have everything all figured out, the world comes along and throws mud in your face.

It was the last week of summer holidays before junior year. She should be out enjoying the final weekend of freedom before term started back up on Monday. She should not be holed up in her room at the apartment watching sappy rom-coms and eating cookie dough ice cream by the tub. Burning through boxes of Kleenex like it was going out of style as the waste bin beside her desk gradually overflowed with used snot-rags. That was where she was though, and it was where she had been since Tuesday night. Now it was Friday, and the most productive thing that she had done all week was to clean her parakeet Stormfly's cage once.

Thinking back to Tuesday evening, Astrid felt a rush of anger flood through her. Everything had seemed fine. Scott had picked her up and taken her out for a quiet dinner at one of the nicest restaurants in town. That should have tipped her off right there! Scott never took her out to nice places, and they rarely ever went out anywhere as just the two of them. It was usually pizza with the gang, or take-out Chinese food grabbed on the way to his and Tyler (Tuffnut) Thorston's tiny apartment on the opposite side of campus. Still, Astrid had fooled herself into believing that he was simply being romantic for once. Boy, had she been wrong.

It wasn't a romantic dinner. It was an apology dinner. A goodbye dinner. When Scott had walked her back to the door of her apartment, she had thought they might spend the night together. Instead, Scott had taken her by the hands and sat her down on the couch with him. Looking impressively somber and remorseful, and Astrid immediately felt her heart leap into her throat. When he had told her that he wanted to take a break, she hadn't been sure what he meant.

"I just really need to focus on football this year," he had claimed. "After Derrick left, you know, the team needs a new captain now. Coach has been hinting that it might be me, and that's going to take a lot of extra effort on my part. You know that I care about you Astrid, but you deserve a boyfriend that can devote his time to you. I just can't be that guy right now." As she had continued to stare at him blankly, he had brought one hand up to cup her cheek as he added, "it's not forever Astrid. We can pick up right where we left off next summer. Think of it as a chance to focus on your own studies as well."

That had been the point that his words finally sunk in. Pulling her hand out of his and pushing him away, she had bit back furiously on the urge to cry as she ordered him to get out. "I'm sorry Astrid," he started again. Holding his hands out like he was warding off an attack. "I know this is not ideal, but it's not you..."

"It's not me, it's you right," she sneered at him. "Like I haven't heard that one before. You came over tonight with the whole plan of breaking up with me, didn't you? That's why you took me out to dinner. Did you think it would make it easier on me if you buttered me up first before dropping your bullshit excuses on me? Why did you even bother coming over in the first place? You could have just phoned me and saved yourself the money!"

"It's not like that," Scott insisted. "It's only a short break. I still want to be with you Astrid. I just need to do this for me. For us. For our future." At that, she had shoved him towards the door. When he didn't go fast enough, she threw a pillow at him. Something more solid would have been better, but sadly a pillow was all she had within reach. "I'll see you at school," he offered from the hallway. Taking a stab at his usual bravado in a attempt to soften the blow and only making her more angry.

"Fuck you Scott," Astrid growled. Then she slammed the door in his face. Listening to his footsteps fade away down the hallway for a few moments before finally dissolving into tears. Turning her back to the door and sliding down it until she was nothing more than a blubbering mess on the cold tile floor. How dare he! She had been so sure that he was the one, but now... Astrid Hofferson was not the type of girl you put on hold. She was all or nothing. Or at least, she had been. Now she was just nothing.

Astrid was still lost in her depressing flashback when she heard the sound of her friends making their noisy way back into the apartment. Ignoring them, Astrid simply turned up the volume on the TV. Clearly not taking the hint, Heather and Rachel both burst into Astrid's room barely a minute later. "Are you seriously still moping over that asshole," Rachel started without any preemptive greeting. Then she scrunched up her nose as she gazed around at the spilling over waste basket and dirty clothes strewn over the floor. "Dear gods, it smells like rock bottom in here. Has anyone ever told you about Febreze?.."

"Go away," Astrid grumbled at them. Trying to turn up the TV even more, when Heather suddenly strode over and snatched the remote out of her hand.

"Not a chance girl," Heather stated bluntly. "You are our best friend and we are not letting you stay in this pathetic rut forever. When was the last time you even showered?!" Astrid tried to think up a snarky reply, but came up blank. Honestly, she couldn't even remember when the last time she had showered was either. "Exactly," Heather added with an eye roll. "You're starting to smell, and your hair is at real risk from spontaneous combustion due to all the grease in it. It's time to clean yourself up and get yourself out of this room for a while!"

"Yep," Rachel chimed in. "There is a house party on the east end of campus tonight. Tuff told me about it, and he made me promise to go. Which means that all three of us are going."

"I'm not going to some awful campus house party," Astrid started to protest. "Especially if it's someone that your brother knows. The whole football team will be there, which means that Scott will probably be there too. Isn't having to see him on Monday going to be torture enough already?! Can't I just stay here and wallow for a few more days..."

"You cannot let that idiot ruin your life," Heather cut across her. "So what if he's there. Dress up, drink a little, and have some fun. Show him exactly what he walked away from. Dagur said that he is probably going to show up there too," Heather added nonchalantly. "If it would make you feel better, I could have him beat-up Snotface for you."

Astrid choked out a laugh at that as she wiped at her puffy eyes again. "That actually would make me feel better. Thanks," she told Heather with a chuckle.

Heather grinned at her for a moment. Then her and Rachel came over to sit on the bed on either side of Astrid. "In all seriousness, if it's too tough, we will leave and come right back here," Heather added.

"Yeah. You just say the word and we'll leave," Ruff agreed. "You need to give yourself a chance though girl. We've let you wallow in your moody despair all week, but your mope time is up."

Glaring at both of her friends, Astrid finally huffed out a sigh. "I can't believe I'm letting you guys bully me into this." At that, a huge grin split Heather's face as Rachel pumped a fist into the air. "If it all ends up horrible, I will never forgive you two," she added threateningly.

"If it ends poorly, I will buy you a dozen of the biggest cartons of cookie dough ice cream that I can find," Heather teased.

"Yeah, but if it works, then you have to cook dinner all week," Ruff quipped.

"I knew this was going to suck either way," Astrid grumbled then. Scowling at her friends once more before throwing off her quilt and pushing to her feet. As she headed towards the ensuite bathroom, she ran a hand through her grimy hair. Heather was right. Her blonde locks were becoming a serious fire hazard. Astrid promptly resolved to take an extra long shower. Maybe she would even shave. Not like she had anyone to impress, but if she was going to risk seeing Scott, she might as well put in the effort to make herself feel sexy. Maybe even make that jerk realize just what he was missing.

A couple of hours later, it was already getting dark outside the window of her room and Astrid was just putting the final touches on her make-up. An understated smokey eye and light pink cheeks. A nude gloss to add a bit of plumpness to her lips. Her long blonde hair was already braided up into a stylish knot. She had her favourite royal blue halter dress on. The stretchy material hugging her athletic frame perfectly. The short hem of it leaving a fair amount of leg showing. Looking herself over in the full length mirror once more, Astrid headed over to the closet to pick out her shoes. Reaching instinctively for the silver flats that were a go-to on date nights with Scott.

At 5'6", he was already shorter than her by a few inches, and as such he had not liked it overly much when she wore heels. Claiming that it made him feel emasculated to have to look up at her all the time. She wasn't with Scott anymore though. She could wear whatever goddamn shoes she wanted. Digging through the layers of laundry right to the back, Astrid pulled out the blue sandals that matched her dress. Sliding on the 3" heels before checking her reflection in the mirror again. Although she would never admit it to Heather and Rachel, just taking the effort to dress up and look pretty again had already started boosting her spirits. Now if she could just get through this stupid party without crying over Scott, she might actually be on the road to recovery.

Meeting the other two girls in the living room, Astrid was pleased to see that she wasn't overdressed at least. Both of the girls had their long hair braided back much like Astrid's. Heather was wearing a silver bodycon dress with geometric cutouts on the sides. A combination of green satin heels and purple eyeshadow serving to make her bright green eyes pop. Rachel, on the other hand, was wearing acid wash skinny jeans with tasteful tears all over them. On her feet were her favourite strappy black heels and she had a black and silver tank top under her cropped black leather jacket. A much darker smokey eye and bright red lipstick completing the 'classy badass' look.

Rachel made them all pose for the customary round of selfies then. Astrid and Heather grumbling half-heartedly the whole time. Then they all grabbed up their purses and headed out the door arm-in-arm with Astrid in the middle. Rachel and Heather holding tight to Astrid as if they thought she was going to try to escape back to the apartment the moment they turned their backs. They weren't wrong, but it was funny all the same. Thankfully, the other two had agreed to let Astrid drive, since she had wanted to be able to escape the party at a moments notice.

Climbing into Astrid's beloved 1940's bottle blue Volkswagen Beetle, Heather set her Spotify to a girly rock song as they pulled out of the underground parking garage. Astrid cranking up the volume on the aftermarket stereo as the three of them belted out the lyrics at the top of their lungs. Out of tune and not even caring. Astrid was just starting to think that perhaps this was a good idea. That is until she saw the sheer amount of people and cars around the place. They were late, and parking was already scarce. Pulling up to the curb roughly a block away from the party house, Astrid started to have a serious change of heart.

It was clear from the thumping bass notes and shouting voices that the party was already in full swing. Astrid could already see a bunch of the guys from the football team milling around outside. Red solo cups in hand. "I can't believe I'm doing this," Astrid muttered as she stared out the windshield. "This is such a bad idea..."

"It's a great idea," Rachel said from the back seat. "You'll see." With one more grumbled sigh, Astrid climbed out of the car. Pressing the lock button until she heard the chirp and tossing her keys into her purse as she followed the other two down the sidewalk. Likely towards her doom.

*

Hayden Haddock, known by his friends as Hiccup in his youth, had a pretty damn good life. Not counting recent events, that is. As a child genius, he had been accepted to a fancy private school at the age of 12. Completing University courses at night and regular classes during the day, he had graduated at the age of 16. Majoring in mechanical engineering. His father Stoick Haddock, owner and CEO of Haddock Enterprises, had been so sure that his son was going to finally take his place in the family business. Unfortunately, Hayden had always been more at home with a wrench in his hand than behind a desk.

After graduating, Hiccup had followed his own passion instead. His skills as a mechanic and his love of fast cars and bikes had gotten him in with the many racing circuits in Europe. When one of the seasoned F1 drivers had retired, the owner of the car had approached Hayden to race for him. Hayden still preferred the mechanical side of things and tended to only race for fun, but he had tentatively agreed to fill the position anyways. Until someone better came along. Standing 6'3" with untidy auburn hair, ruggedly handsome features, and bright green eyes, even Hayden had to admit that he did look the part of the wealthy playboy. Thanks to his parents, he was also already familiar with the lifestyle. Before he knew it, Hayden was winning races and attending posh parties. Rubbing shoulders with the rich and the famous without his father's looming shadow hanging over him.

That was how he had met Victoria. She was a British beauty with long chestnut hair, warm brown eyes, and a figure that would put most models to shame. Fresh out of debutante training and starting a job as a journalist for an upscale fashion magazine, she was everything Hayden thought he wanted. They had been going steady for 2 years, and life was good. They had a swanky house in a swanky district and spent their nights surrounded by swanky 'friends'. Still, it had never felt completely right to Hayden. Victoria had been working longer and longer hours, and the racing was taking up more and more of Hayden's time. Then he received a phone call and a temporary job offer from one of his father's old friends.

Craving a change of pace, Hayden had jumped on the opportunity to return to his roots for a while instead. To return to a simpler life away from all of this. He had talked it over with Victoria, and she had been fine with it at the time. Stating that it sounded like a fun adventure, and that she could do with a break from work as well. For the last few weeks, Hayden had been preparing everything for their move back to the bustling city of Archipelia. The city of his youth. His father and mother had been overjoyed at the idea of him coming home and had offered space in their house, but Hayden couldn't stand the thought of living with his parents again after living on his own for so long.

Purchasing a penthouse condo instead, Hayden had allowed his mother to decorate the place for him. Well, his mother's interior designer most likely. His mother did know him well enough to know what he would and wouldn't like though. Upon arrival, he had seen that he was right to entrust this to her. The place was exactly right for him. The red, black, and silver colour scheme was somehow both utilitarian and stylish, and it matched his personality perfectly. Victoria would have hated it. Perhaps it was just a mother's intuition, or maybe it was because Valka Haddock had never been overly found of Victoria, but she had not inquired about Victoria's preferences at all. Designing the condo for Hayden alone. Well, Hayden and his huge black wolf-cross Toothless.

This had turned out to be a good thing. A few nights before they were set to move, Victoria had decided to drop a bomb on everything. After claiming that she loved him, she had then proceeded to state that she had been doing a lot of 'soul-searching' lately. Whatever the fuck that was. Then she had broken down into very convincing tears as she began to explain that she simply couldn't move away with him. That she was hoping for a promotion at work, and her whole family and all of her friends were here. That he could understand, and he had half-heartedly suggested trying a long-distance relationship for a year. Even though he knew full well that those rarely worked out all that well.

Instead, Victoria suggested that they simply take a break. Claiming that she would be right here waiting for him when he got back, before leaving to spend the night at her parents' house. Like an idiot he had believed her. Had mourned the loss of a good thing. Even second guessing his own decision to move. Wondering if it was too late to fix things if he called her up right now and told her that he was staying. That had lasted for a total of one day.

Then he had received a text from one of his racing buddies. A text containing one simple picture that was like a splash of ice water to the face. In it, there was a picture of Victoria sitting at a fancy restaurant with another man. Their hands clasped on the table and one of her shoes laying on the floor beside her purse. Her foot conspicuously missing and a coy smile twisting her lips. Hayden knew from experience that she was definitely rubbing that foot over the man's crotch under the tablecloth.

After seeing that, Hayden had gathered up Victoria's shit and dropped it off at her parents' place. Getting in touch with a realtor buddy and putting his house on the market the very next afternoon. Arranging to have his cars, tools, and a few other prized possessions shipped to his new place in Berk over the next few weeks. Everything else could be sold for charity for all the fucks he gave. Now he was sitting by himself in his huge condo turned bachelor pad. Toothless curled up beside him with his head on Hayden's lap, as Hayden stared at that fateful picture for the upteenth time.

He just couldn't figure out how he hadn't seen the signs. All those times she had said she was working late. Clearly she had just been working some other guys junk. No wonder she was always so tired when she got home. Of course, as soon as she realized that she had been caught, Victoria had tried to beg for forgiveness. Begging Hayden to take her back. It had already been much too late for that though. Hayden left town the next day and never looked back.

Grumbling in disgust at himself for being so stupid, Hayden barely resisted the urge to fling his phone across the room. Really, if he had any sense he would just delete the photo. He just couldn't seem to stop coming back to it though. It was like a car accident that you know you shouldn't look at, but you can't stop yourself from gaping at the horrific sight anyways. Even if you know it is going to give you nightmares, it just keeps pulling you back in.

He was still staring at the repulsive thing as the sky gradually darkened outside the floor to ceiling picture windows. The bright lights of the city sparking to life all around. The sidewalks below lit up like Christmas in August. Finally, the obnoxious buzzing of the security system pulled him out of his moping. Shoving his phone back in his pocket, he made his way over to the screen on the wall and accepted the call.

There were the grinning faces of Dagur and Eret leaning out the window of Dagur's giant truck. Dagur and Hayden's parents were close friends. As such, the two boys had virtually grown up together. Becoming almost like brothers, even though Dagur was a few years older. Dagur even getting accepted to the same private school as Hayden, which was where the two of them met Eret.

Eret had been a football prodigy. Drafted onto a professional team straight out of school, the ink had barely dried on his contract when a nasty tackle had destroyed his knee. Taking his hopes of stardom with it. After 3 surgeries and nearly a year and a half of recovery and rehab, Eret was back to normal. He would never play again though. Thankfully, Berk University had a promising varsity team and a great Head Coach that knew a golden opportunity when he saw one.

Gordon (Gobber) Belchley had gotten Eret signed on as Assistant Coach to the Berk Uni Dragons. Eret had promptly gotten Dagur a job as an Assistant Coach on the basketball team as well. The two of them had been a good part of why Hayden had jumped at the opportunity to come back here. He had missed his friends. They had also been trying to get him out of his rut for the past few days, to no avail. Clearly they weren't giving up on him yet. "Whatever you're selling, I'm not buying," Hiccup grumbled jokingly into the mic.

"Stuff the attitude and open the gate Haddock," Eret countered. Giving Hayden the stink-eye through the camera lens.

"Yeah! We know you're just sitting up there brooding," Dagur yelled out from beside Eret. Flipping his middle finger at the two of them with a chuckle, Hayden allowed them access to the private garage and elevator. Then he went to pour himself a strong drink from the bar. A few moments later, he heard the elevator doors down the hall slide open. This was followed by his friends' loud voices as Toothless jumped up from the couch and ran to greet them.

Stomping into the kitchen and sounding like a herd of elephants, Dagur came straight over and grabbed the glass out of Hayden's hand. "Thanks bro," he said with a laugh before downing it. Hayden just arched a brow at him in response. "Oh don't look at me like that," Dagur smirked. "Go get changed Haddock. We're going to a party."

"No," Hayden stated firmly.

"Yes," Eret countered as he came over to lean against the centre island. "It's the last weekend before term starts. We are going to a party and you are coming with us. I want to scout the football players in their natural habitat. You know, before they turn up on the field and on their best behaviour. There will be drunk college girls there," he added slyly. Hayden was just about to argue, when Eret held up a hand to stop him. "Before you say anything, no, you are not too old for them. You are only 21-years-old. They will all be 19 to 21, so that argument is moot. Dagur's sister Heather is even going to be there."

"Conflict of interest," Hayden offered half-heartedly. Already thinking that a night out might be just what he needed right now.

"Screw that," Dagur laughed. "The only conflict of interest here is the fact that you would rather sit at home and stew over that stupid picture of your cheating whore of an ex than chance hooking up with a sexy sophomore. Just not my sister, or I will have to kill you."

"Heather is like a little sister to me too. That would be exceptionally uncomfortable for everyone involved. Besides, I am not hooking up with a sophomore," Hayden stated with an eye roll. "Sexy or not. Still, I think I do need to get out of this house. As long as I get to drive myself there," he added with a grin.

"Shotgun!" Eret promptly yelled, and Dagur scowled at him as he made a rude gesture in return. "I was really hoping you'd say that," Eret offered when Hayden chuckled at the exchange. Reaching out to fist bump him. Then Eret grabbed a glass and poured himself a drink as Dagur refilled the stolen glass again. "Thanks for buying us the good stuff Hiccup," they both chorused as they swirled the scotch with ice before downing it.

"Don't call me Hiccup, and that is NOT how you drink scotch. You heathens," Hayden drawled. Shaking his head at them both before heading to his room. After a quick shower, he threw on his super soft faded jeans, a white t-shirt, and a well-worn brown jacket made from the finest Italian leather. At first glance, he would look just like any other student. No one would ever know that this outfit cost several thousand dollars. Though his car might give it away. Perhaps he would just park further down the street from the party...

Heading back to the kitchen, he whistled for the guys to follow him. Grabbing his keys off the wall rack and dropping some milkbones on the floor for Toothless as he stuffed his phone in his jeans pocket. Downing the last of their drinks and tossing the ice in the sink, Eret and Dagur placed their glasses into the dishwasher before grabbing up their jackets. The three of them laughing the whole way down to the private garage in the elevator.

"Man I love this car," Dagur moaned as they approached the sleek machine parked between the elevator and Dagur's massively lifted and chrome covered full-sized Dodge Ram. Reaching out to run a tender hand through the air over the custom black and red chameleon paint with a look of ecstasy on his face.

"I mean, it's not quite The Compensator," Hayden teased as he gestured towards Dagur's behemoth of a truck. "It still drops panties pretty well though. Beats having to use a tall vehicle just to get a peak under a skirt at least," he added with a grin.

"The Compensator is not only for getting a peak under the skirts of beautiful ladies," Dagur countered brightly. "That is just a happy perk."

"You're a dog," Hayden chuckled. Pressing the button on the fob to open up the butterfly doors on his car now. He wasn't really kidding when he called his car a panty-dropper. It wasn't practical by any stretch, but his Hennessey Venom GT was the current pride and joy of his fleet. Pre-ordered from a very limited run, it was stupid fast and stupid sexy. With a price tag to match. As with all nice cars though, it was now 3-years old. Which meant he would be replacing it with the upgraded Venom F5 as soon as they finished production of them sometime next year.

"I've never claimed otherwise man," Dagur grinned back. "Speaking of dropping panties though, how about you just give me this sex machine as soon as they ship you your new one. Then we can take them to the track and race them, and watch the panties drop for miles around."

"You wish," Eret scoffed as he punched Dagur in the shoulder. "If anyone gets Venom, it's gonna be me. You have too many cars already."

"There's no such thing as too many cars man," Hayden pointed out with a laugh as he folded his lanky frame behind the steering wheel. "Now come on losers. I didn't put nice clothes on just to come down here and watch you two fight over my car like a couple of divorced wives. We can do that any old day."

"Touché man," Dagur saluted with a laugh of his own. Heading around to his truck and climbing into the drivers side as Eret settled his broad frame into the passenger seat of Hayden's car. Triggering the garage door, Hayden followed Dagur out onto the road and through the crowded streets of downtown Berk. The two of them making sure to stop side-by-side at every red light and rev their engines like a couple of young idiots. Laughing and waving when groups of scantily clad young women turned to stare at them.

Hayden had always felt too old, too sophisticated, and too publicly scrutinized for this type of behaviour. As a Haddock, he was expected to uphold the family name. That and Victoria had always made sure to remind him how immature such things were, but she wasn't here to nag him. She never would be again. That thought alone made him want to let go and act his age for a change.

Thankfully, the campus was only about a 20 minute drive from his condo. Hayden was also pleased to see that Dagur clearly hoped to lay relatively low at the party as well. Arriving in the right neighbourhood, both of them rolled up to the curb well over a block away. Parking on either side of an adorably vintage Volkswagen Beetle. The pristine paint, sparkling clean interior, and bottle blue colour immediately tipping Hayden off to the fact that this car belonged to a girl.

The mechanic in Hayden made him stop to give it an appreciative once over. New cars were nice and all, but there was just something special about a classic vehicle. He owned quite a few himself, and he could tell at a glance that whoever owned this car really loved it and took care of it. A girl who appreciated vintage cars was a rare find, and Hayden spared barely a moment to wonder who she was. Then he chirped the locks on his GT before stuffing the keys in his pocket and following Dagur and Eret towards the house with the thumping music and the drunken assholes already stumbling around the yard.

_

The scene is set! Yay! I must say, it is nice to have the setting in the modern world for a change...lol

As I said, this is a side project. Updates will certainly not be as frequent as TWoB, but I will still make sure to keep it active. It makes a nice break for my brain.