Author's Note: Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I hope you all are having a good one despite circumstances happening. I decided to upload a new chapter of the story a day early because of the day. To those who are cooking I hope you will find time to read it as I'm cooking as well today. And to those who are waiting for food, you have this to help pass the time. Either way I hope you all enjoy this.
Chapter 3: Alone
Hiccup's eyes were glued upon the Outcast that laid dead on the floor, the sigh tendering him speechless. The life gone from the eyes as the blood seeped from the stab wound…the same blood that now covered his knife. A whirlwind of emotions and thoughts flooded the teen's mind as he was temporarily brought back to when he had his first kill. Seeing himself jumping on the man's back and bringing his knife down over and over again, stabbing him all over. All that blood splattered all over him, causing uncomfortable shudders through his body as the sickening wetness stained his body.
Thankfully, he managed to snap back into reality, with a loud gasp, almost as if he was holding his breath, as the situation cemented itself in his mind. Here he was, in the middle of the forest, alone, and having had killed once more. The mere sight of the body made some bile rise up Hiccup's throat, but he managed to keep it down, as he tried controlling his breathing. He couldn't panic, not now, not after all he went through. Despite having killed previously, the sight of him doing it only brought the nauseous feelings and panic back again. Still, as much as he wanted freak out, he tried to placate the feelings he had, fully knowing this was unavoidable.
"I…I had to do it…I had to do it," Hiccup said to himself, closing his eyes and taking a few deep breaths. "I…I would have been caught if I hadn't…it was the only way."
Which is true, as if Hiccup hadn't killed the Outcast he would have been discovered and thus captured. That's something he couldn't allow to happen, not now of all times. The village had been attacked, so the enemy had to be dealt with by any means necessary…by Viking standards…and despite not being an ordinary Viking Hiccup knew that extended to him as well. Yet, Hiccup didn't like killing, the feeling of guilt he felt, and the sickening feelings that came with it horrified the teen. Yet it was part of a Viking's life, and he knew he would have to do it later on in life, but it seems like Odin has a way of keeping his life interesting.
"Stay focused Hiccup," he told himself as he tried to push the swirling emotions to the side as he had no time to lose, so he tried focusing on the current matter at hand. He didn't get discovered because something drew them away. The reason that horn was blown has some significance, but it didn't mean it would keep them away forever. They will be back and chances are he might not be as lucky as he was now. Hiccup needed to move right now if he wanted to make it to the cove, he just hoped that someone else would be there waiting for him. Yet, there is one problem right now.
What does he do with the body?
He couldn't just leave it here, as it'll get discovered, and the last thing he needed is to leave a trace of where he had been. That and show that he can kill, which will make traversing the forest hard for him, as chances are the Berserkers and Outcasts might hunt in grounds….and maybe treat him as a threat, something he had to prolonge. Yet, the body is large in height, and weight, so the chances of Hiccup being able to move it is really steep, especially as it's nothing but dead weight, no pun intended. He looked around yet there was no place the hide the body even if he could move the body, all there is are trees, rocks, even thickly bushed branches that fell to the ground and-
Wait that's it!
Hiccup thought of something he could do, but first he needed to take care of something. Taking a deep gulp, he looked back at the body one last time, feeling the nausea coming to him once more, but was able to stomach it. "You had to do it, you had to do it," Hiccup kept saying to himself as he got back to his feet, thankfully his rolled ankle felt better, so he could apply weight to it. Once up he took a few uneasy steps towards the corpse and kneeled down by it, his shaky hands reaching and wrapping around the hilt of his knife. Once gripped properly a grunt escaped his throat as he pulled on the weapon, the blade not budge, nor moving, at first. The teen had to wiggle the weapon some, slowly dislodging it and seeing it rise, the shiny metal now coated with a dark crimson.
"Gyah!" Hiccup cried out as the blade came out with a sickening squish. The momentum of the pull causing the teen to fall on his back, a small stream of red following in its place, and landing on him. He remained in that position for a bit, hands still clutching the knife with trembling hands, as he could feel it on him. He took a few deep breaths to try and calm down, but his mind screamed at him to get back up, and thankfully his body responded. Sitting up he then cleaned the blade on the grass, wiping away any evidence of the kill, except for some reddish streaks that now dirtied the metal. Once it was cleaned to the best of his ability, he placed it back on his belt, then went to grab as many fallen branches as possible.
Using them he started to cover the body up, making sure every part of him wasn't left exposed. It was also a good thing the body is right next to the fallen tree as it would hide it better. Hiccup spent a couple of minutes doing it as he wanted to be absolutely sure it was covered up. Once he grabbed all the branches he could, he took a look of the body, and couldn't really see the body. A small sigh of relief left his mouth as he knew it's ok, well for now, as it wasn't clear how long the body will go undiscovered, but it would have to do for now, and it'll buy him some time.
Deciding to move on Hiccup then hopped over the down tree trunk, trying his best to forget about the body and tried to focus on his current location. He needed to get to the cove right now, just like his dad told him, hopefully someone would be waiting there for him, as he didn't want to be alone right now. Taking a moment to remember where he is Hiccup then took off in one direction, being careful and keeping his ears out in case there were some stragglers left in the forest.
A bit later of careful traversing through the forest Hiccup sighed in relief as he came to the edge of the Cove. He made his way down on the usual path he always had taken, getting to the bottom of the hideaway Hiccup had come to call his sanctuary. Basking in the small sense of security that came, as he climbed down the rock path, a small thump being heard as his feet hit the ground. He walked out into the open area, eyes scanning the darken area, but to his dismay all he found is an empty area, as well as silence. His eyes did another sweep, hoping to find at least one person here, but no one seemed to be present.
"Hello?" Hiccup called out, knowing it was a risk as it could get him spotted, but if someone was here, he needed them to hear that he's there. He tried again, but once more there was no response. Hiccup then took the chance to walk around the long open space, yet there isn't much cover aside from some rocks and the large tree roots, so the check wasn't that long. A bit of concern swelled up within him as he called out again, just wanting to be sure, yet it yielded the same response. "N-No one is here…I'm the only one that made it here?"
No, no that couldn't be the case, he must just be the first one there, yeah that had to be it. Chances are the fighting delayed everyone else, and they should be here at any moment. That's what Hiccup had to tell himself as he didn't want to think of the alternative, because that would be too much for him to bear. A small chilly breeze blew past the teen, causing him to fold his arms across his body, shivering and rubbing his arms. Why did the weather always have to be bad in these dire circumstances? Deciding to get out of the wind he walked towards the spot where the tree roots hung down, a place where Toothless would usually sleep upside down. Despite this place being hard to find it's still pretty exposed from above, the roots should keep him hidden.
Hiccup settled down, sitting with his back against the rock wall, body huddled up some to gather some warmth. His eyes scanned around the area and he found some loose twigs scattered around. He was about to get up and collect them but refrained as a thought came to mind. "N-No…I can't build a fire, the smoke and light will give me away," the idea of a fire would be greatly welcoming to the teen, but as he has no idea where any of the Outcasts or Berserkers are at, it would greatly improve their chances if the fire alerted them. As much as he didn't want to, he would have to suck up being cold right now.
Remaining where he is Hiccup decided to wait some more, praying to Odin that someone familiar comes by, as he really didn't want to be alone right now. For a while already Hiccup didn't like being alone with his thoughts, as it all strived from before. Both eyes closed for a moment, and his body tensed up as he could see the faces of the six men he killed…yet now there was an added face making it seven. Both his eyes opened right up as his body trembled, once again being reminded of what he did.
"I had to do it…I had to do it," Hiccup kept on saying to himself, trying ease the guilt that came with his actions. His mind trying to go back and remember the advice his father told him. How killing was apart of the Viking way of life, and how it should be done when it can't be avoided…well almost being discovered by the enemy definitely counted as one of those situations. Still, why isn't that making him feel better? He then tried breathing to calm himself and think of something else, or at least take his mind off of it.
A small yawn left his mouth as a bit of fatigue snuck its way into the teen's body. All the excitement so far has taken a small toll on his body and is making him tired. Hiccup's head jerked as he tried to keep his eyes open, he can't fall asleep, not now as it would leave him defenseless. Yet, as the adrenaline wore off it only made the small bit of fatigue grow, slowly consuming him. Sadly, he realized that he couldn't stay awake, not any longer. Slowly but surely both eyes closed, and he is out.
Back in Berk the situation is not all that better. Many torches now lit within the whole town, illuminating every dark corner, and revealing a large number of Berserkers and Outcasts walking about. Nothing but smug looks upon their faces as they had managed to conquer the whole village, all of them rejoicing in the victory they managed to claim. Any one of Berk's Vikings could not be seen except for a straggler or two being escorted to where the others were…who were now prisoner to their enemies. Right now, they were locking the village down and checking for anymore of the town folk that were hiding. That is until the horn was blown.
Savage happened to be the one who blew it, he did so under the order of the current leader of the raid. In the town center Dagur stood, his intimidating appearance sending chills down his troops spines upon seeing him. This young leader may not look experienced but what he lacked in leadership he made up for cruelty. No one dared go against or challenge him in fear of what would happen to them if they tried to usurp him. His eyes narrowed as he found most of his men lining up in the ground, a small chilling smile appearing on his face as he raised a fist into the air.
"Berk is ours!" A small cheer rang out as his me let loose their cries of victory. Once his fist went down all chatter stopped as eyes locked on with their leader. "Have all of Berk's Vikings been rounded up?"
Savage spoke up from behind, "Aye, they were taken to the Great Hall, all under close watch."
"Good, good," the teen smiled as another thought came to mind. "What about Stoick?"
Almost on cue the jangling of chains could be heard, causing all eyes to turn. Stoick could be seen, being escorted by six Berserkers, chains wrapped around his arms with his hands behind his back. An irritated expression on the chief's face as he can't believe this is happening. He never meant to be caught, it just happened as he tried his best to save his people…but in the end it wasn't enough. The mere sight of Dagur caused him to growl with irritation.
"Stoick, Stoick, I hope my men weren't too rough on you," Dagur sarcastically said upon walking closer to the larger man. Glee thickly laced within his voice.
"Not as rough as I was with them," Stoick responded back with malice. The Beserkers that were guarding him unconsciously rubbed spots on their bodies, which ached from the struggle the chief gave them.
"Doesn't matter, at least I'm not the one chained up," Dagur smugly rubbed his victory in the chief's face. "You knew this was coming, you would eventually fall, and I would reign supreme. Although I am curious…usually you would have your precious dragons aiding you in battle but…where were they? Where was your secret weapon? Your precious dragon riders off the island perhaps?" He laughed at the situation, knowing that without the aid of the dragons it made their sneak attack easy pickings.
Both of Stoick's eyes rose as he started to understand, but no there was no way Dagur would be that crafty enough to plan this. Despite being a leader, the teen wasn't considered that strategic, "It was you…wasn't it?"
"I don't know what you mean," Dagur smirked but they were interrupted by muffled roars.
Both men looked and were shocked to see Toothless, the Night Furry chained up as well. His legs were tied but is being forced to walk, wings tied down and a large muzzle on his mouth. The Outcasts that were handling him were having trouble as the dragon wasn't making it easier for them, which required many more hands to help out. Stoick's heart fell upon seeing his son's dragon, fearing the worst, "Hiccup," he said silently.
"Hiccup's Night Fury…." Dagur questioned with intrigue as he looked back at Stoick. "Hiccup is still here?"
One of the Outcasts responded back as they tried holding the dragon down. "Yes sir, he ran off into the woods."
A small scowl appeared on Dagur's face, hands clenched into fists as mostly everyone around saw this and gulped, knowing what is going on. "Then…why are you all here, instead of out there FINDING HIM!"
"Uh…b-because you called for us to come here?" one Berserker responded, reminding him of the horn. Everyone cringed after hearing that, and seeing their leader's eyes were on him, his heart beating fast as Daugr stomped closer to him. And without warning, punched him into his gut. "OOF!"
Dagur watched the subordinate crumble to the ground in agony, "Are you questioning my orders?"
"N-No…" he wheezed, holding his belly.
Stoick had to sigh in relief upon hearing the news, part of him is relieved that his son managed to escape, but now the worry started to sink in. Hiccup is all alone now, without anyone to help him…Then realized that he must be at the cover, expecting him to come with any one he could save. Sadly, that wasn't going to happen.
"Then go out there and find Hiccup! I want him brought to me AILVE!" Dagur bellowed out, nearly everyone before him in the group scrambled out, heading for the woods. "The rest of you guard this village and the prisoners, we don't move forward until Hiccup is caught!"
"So…does that mean the dragon stays alive?" Savage asked, a bit confused at this turn of events. "You're not even going to kill him."
"Oh no, not yet" Dagur responded coyly.
"But…sir, you've always said how you wanted to kill this dragon, it's been an obsession of yours," Savage responded back with shock. The Night Fury being his leader's obsession every since he set eyes on it, and he heard all the ways that Dagur would kill the thing, so hearing him not doing it is shocking.
"Oh, that will still happen," the teen responded upon looking at Savage. "But I want Hiccup to witness his dragon's death…his slow and painful death…the look on his face will be priceless and forever remembered."
"Uh…Understood sir," Savage nodded, knowing that look on Dagur's face and it was best not to go against his plan, as it would end up very bad for him. "What do we do about these two?" he asked, referring to Stoick and Toothless.
"Keep the dragon close by, I'm keeping my eye on him," Dagur said first before looking at the chief. "Keep Stoick away from the others, best keep him isolated away from anyone, as his presence can cause any unwanted inspiring. Take him to the cells and keep him under watch."
The Berserkers then push on Stoick to move him along, but the chief resisted as he looked at the Berserker leader with narrowed eyes. "This isn't over Dagur, like all your other attempts this will fail."
"I've won Stoick, once I have Hiccup then it'll all be over, it's just a matter of time," the teen waved his hand off as he watched the chief being taken away. Smiling he then walked over to Toothless, kneeling down before him with a gleeful smile. "Just you wait, because I'm going to enjoy the look on Hiccup's face as I kill you."
Toothless' slitted eyes glared at Dagur as he tried lunging at him, but is held back, "I would maul you if I could!"
The sight only caused Dagur to laugh, "Not so tough now? Just you wait," Dagur gave the dragon one last smirk before standing up, watching the Night Fury being moved off. Things were going well the Beserkers and Outcasts as it seemed like the night is theirs.
The snapping of a twig pulled Hiccup out of his sleep; his senses alerted as his head jerked up and looked towards the origin of the sound… Only for his heart to sink, "There he is!"
Many Outcasts and Berserkers happen to flood the cove, cornering Hiccup so fast and without warning. The teen could barely rise to his feet when he was grabbed. Many strong hands gripped at his arms and shoulders, as he struggled the best he could but it was virtually impossible at this point. Hiccup is then roughly shoved down to the ground, on his belly, as all the wind was knocked out of him. He could feel his arms being forced behind his back as rope is being tied onto him.
Hiccup couldn't believe it; he had let his guard down to sleep and now was caught. His heart sank upon realizing that it's over now and there was no way he could escape from them. Failure filled him as now he had no idea what was going to happen…oh why did he have to fall asleep? Heavy footsteps are heard, prompting Hiccup to look up, yet his eyes widened, "N-No…H-How can it be!?"
The Outcast, the same Outcast he had killed stood before him…clearly much alive, yet not entirely. He stood at full height, yet his eyes still held that look of death, the life completely gone from them…most importantly the wound between his eyes were still fresh as blood continued to seep out of it. The man looked down at Hiccup with much distain and hatred on his face, yet he opened his mouth and spoke, sending a huge chill down Hiccup's back, "You killed me…"
"No, no, no!" Hiccup struggled averting his eyes from the man, shaking and thrashing about in the strong hold.
"Now it's your turn," the outcast kneeled down, and reached to grab the knife off of Hiccup's belt, and without hesitation brought it up and thrust down towards the teen's head.
"AHHHH!" Hiccup cried out as his eyes fluttered open and head jerked up. His heart racing and breathing shallow as he looked around as a cold sweat overcame him. A hand went to his heart as the fear is at an all-time high as he scanned the area…and to his surprise he found himself alone. He had to let out a huge sigh of relief upon realizing it wasn't real. "J-Just a nightmare…only a nightmare."
He bowed his head into his hands as he tried to get his head on straight. He had to take another look around just to be sure he is still alone, then up at the cove's edge to see if anyone was up there. Thankfully there was none, allowing him to blow another sigh of relief and relax a bit. Taking a couple of minutes to calm down yet Hiccup couldn't help but think back to the nightmare he had. A small shudder shot through his body as the Outcast's face came back to mind, those dead eyes locking onto him…his voice chilling to the bone. Usually when he had a nightmare like this, it wasn't as intense as it was before. He would be afraid of course, and wake up with a shout but…this was different. He hasn't had a nightmare like this since…since…he shook his head not wanting to think about it. His body is still trembling from the fright and heart is pounding away as a result.
"Another face to go with the ones I already see…just perfect," Hiccup breathed out softly as he stood up, now knowing sleep was out of the question. He looked up and found the darken sky in his face, judging by the moon's positioning he maybe was asleep for an hour or two, just perfect. Either way part of him didn't care of the amount of sleep he got as he didn't want to get caught off guard like in the dream. It's best if he stayed awake for the time being, until he found a safe place to be in. Moving forward he took another look around the cove and to his disappointment he found it still empty, being the only one there. Disbelief and worry started to fill him once more, "W-Was I the only one that made it?"
This couldn't be, he couldn't be the only one that escaped the village, right? Yet if he wasn't then they would have been here by now…but what if they are hiding? He didn't know. From what he remembered from the attack the Berserkers and Outcast surprised them, and it looked like they couldn't make a run for it…especially with those bottles they were using. Hiccup tried to push the thought from his mind, not wanting to believe it, but is slowly coming to the conclusion. He went over to the small lake and drank a bit of the water, feeling a bit thirsty from the ordeal. The refreshing liquid helped him a bit as he kept drinking, not realizing how thirsty he was. Feeling a bit refreshed he then started to pace around the cove, thinking about the situation at hand.
"Ok…most likely since no one else is here the Beserkers and Outcasts managed to take over the village…I might be the only one left free, Toothless is captured and my friends are off the island…for at least a couple days at most…just perfect, what bad timing for all this to happen." One thought came to mind for him to go and find a dragon on the island to help him…but then remembered the bottles they used to knock out the dragons. Who knows how long they have been on Berk for, chances are they rounded up most of the dragons on the island so it would be hard to find one…that and there could be patrols all over the place…looking for him. "M-Maybe I can hide out until the others come back…yet I don't think that's possible, but is it?"
He honestly had no idea what to do, he couldn't stay here that long as the enemy could find him soon enough. He'll need food eventually, meaning he would need a fire, but also, he would need other supplies…and lets not forget about the person he had to kill. Another shudder went through his body just thinking about it. He's not sure if they'll find the body still, but his best guess it was only a matter of time before a patrol finds it and…oh Gods he just hoped that Dagur wasn't one of them looking for him, if that deranged guy found him it would be over. There's no way he could outrun him. Besides it would be better if he was away from the village as who knows what he's doing over there. He could be turning the homes upside down, looking for anything useful to-
Both of Hiccup's eyes widened as a realization smacked him in the face, "No…the Book of Dragons…and Bork's notes…Dagur could find them!" Hiccup has both items in his room, but they were hidden under the floorboard…but he wouldn't put it passed Dagur to dismantling the home and finding it. Either way there's no way he can afford to lose either one as they were important to Berk, and who knows what Dagur would do with them if found. But…how could he get them? But would they be safe where they are? No, he couldn't take that risk at all, but the idea he had is risky…too risky. Yet it's dark out still and it should give him plenty of cover. Yet can he actually pull it off? Should he? So many mixed feelings, especially with the killing clouding his judgement the most. In the end Hiccup through it through, and knew he had no other choice.
He needed to go back to the village, now.
A/N: Hope you like, a strange turn of events for Hiccup and all of Berk right? Everyone is captured, leaving Hiccup alone. He has no one to help him and has to endure the mental stress from his kill by himself. Not to those who says that the Book of Dragons and Bork's notes are safe under the floorboard, I needed a reason for Hiccup to go back to the village and this was the idea I came up with. Still I hope you all find it enjoyable. I want to say much more but I can't as it'll be considered a spoiler. Please let me know what you think of the story so far. Till next time.