I known this story is marked complete, but I did say that I might update more depending on chapter plot bunnies and so on. Plus, I have a 12 page research paper due and I can't bring myself to write it right now and this is my distraction. Enjoy.
Disclaimer: DO NOT OWN
Rating: this chapter is tame, but the story will stay at M.
Warnings: there isn't any that haven't been warned for in past chapters. If you've enjoyed the story so far then you'll be alright. Some of you will be angry just before the end of the chapter, but keep reading I swear it'll be alright. (this makes no sense now, but it will. No Hiccup and Toothless aren't hurt).
Notes: I don't really have anything guys, just enjoy the story. Finals are killing me and my brain is running on empty. I had the odd occurrence of wanting really badly to write this chapter, but having such a hard time getting the words out. So, yeah, probably not as good as past chapters but more Toothless POV so... I actually am really nervous about posting this. As always, the mistakes are mine and please feel free to point them out.
Chapter Six: Only Forever
Father. Mother. Sister. Brother... these words have no meaning to me. Oh, I know of them, I have heard my human call his sire "father" and I have heard other humans about the village use some variations that were similar but they all meant the same thing. But what was a" father" exactly?
Was a father just someone or something that gave half of their genes to the next generation? Was a father just someone that provided food and shelter for their offspring until they were grown to a satisfying point? Or was a father one that protected the offspring until they could make it on their own in the world? What made a father and a sire different?
Words, what are words good for? I know we dragons have our languages and yes, that did have it's place, but what really use were words? Actions mattered, what you did and how you reacted mattered. What good were words when your mate was starving? How did words help a grieving female to leave her nest when she realizes her egg's shells were too frail this clutch and the hatchlings inside had died, never to make it to their hatching day? How could words still a predators claws as they slice into their prey? Humans seem to think that words were necessary and that if you didn't have a spoken language or at least a language they could understand, then you were an animal. What of the language of the body? From looking at an opponent I could know almost their whole life story. The way they held their tail, the way they curled their lips, the way they shifted their weight. All of these small nuances spoke so much more loudly than the loudest of verbal shouts.
My shut eyes opened to slits at the slight sound of my human's movement in the grass. He had been sitting there on and off like that entranced for the last three days. I had told him over and over again that the eggs weren't meant to hatch for another few days, but he was so mesmerized by them. It bothered me that I was so jealous over my own eggs for the attention they were receiving. They were just eggs, honestly, I was much better to look at. I tapped a claw in the dirt out of irritation and stared at the eggs.
I stared at the eggs for an entirely different reason than my human, he was interested in the hatching, in the whole process of how these eggs were going to hatch and continue my bloodline. He was in awe that these eggs were my, and these were his words, " little children".
What a strange and unique concept, one that was as foreign to me as the idea of burrowing beneath the ground was, as I'm sure it would be for any creature of the sky. Being a parent, che, how can a dragon be a parent with the taunting sky above and stay bound to the ground while the hatchlings grew? Even though most dragonets were able to fight and flee as soon as they broke shell, they didn't have the strength -and wouldn't for several months- to sustain a glide of longer than a minute. There was no way a dragonet would be able to keep up with its fully grown parents and though they were small enough to carry right now, they wouldn't be in a year. A female couldn't risk being weighted down so heavily and a dragon that returned to the same place too frequently ran the risk of being hunted down; it was much too risky just for the sake of increasing the survival chances for the dragonets. It was the same reason a female wouldn't stay to "parent" their dragonets, the female had only enough patience to lay her eggs in a week and than the eggs hatch within three or four weeks after being laid. Dragon gestation was not a very long period and for good reasons, because an egg-bound female couldn't fly very high or well and was not very agile. Therefore, she was a target and honestly they usually couldn't be bothered to stay grounded for much longer than that amount of time.
Yet, despite all my whispering to myself that I shouldn't grow attached to these eggs, just as I had told myself in the past, these four eggs... the felt different to me. I had sired dragonets in the past and this was not my first clutch, but for reasons I couldn't understand, these eggs felt more real to me. I can only imagine that it was me that had changed, for the mating had been the same, Vestri was beautiful and above average, but still a Night Fury and nothing incredibly special. Even the clutch size was average, four eggs was a good size for a clutch, not quite as numerous as Terrors, but certainly nothing to snort at. They were even the same average color for a Night Furies, an dusky brown with more speckles of dark brown than what some other breeds had. Their shells were, too my immense satisfaction, harder than average due to the high grade of metal Vestri had consumed. I tilted my head, staring more intensely than before, that could be a good or bad thing. Too hard and the dragonet would die in the shell, unable to find the strength to break free, but too thin meant that they could die from cold more easily and scavengers would make quick work of them if we even turned our backs for an instant.
I had been contemplating these emotions, and oh how I've changed to even feel such things and had decided that I was simply worried, not afraid, thank you. I was conflicted by the resentment the eggs and the emotions the stirred in my gullet caused as well as the blossoming desire to see them hatch and to see them grow.
I tilted my head to the side and caught sight of a different Night Fury, one that I hadn't caught the name of and honestly couldn't be bothered to go over and meet. Narrowing my eyes at the other male, I made it very clear that any further approach would lead to very bad things for the other.
This wasn't unusual, the other Night Furies had come over through out the week, carefully, because Vestri would go for their throat if the moved too close to the nest with me following behind her. They seem rather shocked that I could produce a fine clutch because of my "injury". The claws that I had been tapping clawed at the dirt in sheer irritation, of course I could still sire offspring, my tail was injured not my-
"Toothless! Toothless! One just rocked, I swear it did!" My human's visage popped up in front of my eyes and I started a little at his sudden outburst. Wiping the shameful shock off my face, I didn't even bother to answer him, instead rolling my eyes and butting him gently in a chastising fashion.
"Yeah, yeah, I know. They have time left, but how can you not be excited?"
Well, it was very easy not to be, but the truth would either hurt him or enrage him and the next thing I'd know, we'd be on some mission picking up little dragonets all along the coastline on the way back the village. I gave him my best half-smile, the one that he liked so much and went back to brooding.
I turned said brooding eyes onto my current mate, "Not since the last time you asked,"
She gave me a strange look, because while I generally tried to avoid her except for when I had to interact with her, I wasn't normally so short with her.
"What's wrong, your little p-" she paused as my eyes narrowed at her, "-human... your little human won't pay attention to you? I don't blame him for being so captured by the eggs, these eggs are my best clutch yet, look at the color on those shells! And just look at how hardened they are already, I-"
I turned away and tuned her out, stars above a female could wax on and on about their eggs if you let them, instead focusing at the eggs that were causing such this new unsettling feeling in my gut. I wanted, almost desperately, to behave how I always had. Hunt for food in the sea and forest, guard the nest from predators and keep them warm, have a good romp with the mate, than as soon as the first egg cracks take off to the sky compelled by instinct. I didn't feel any guilt or shame because I didn't feel that it was wrong. It was instinct and my instincts were what had kept me alive all these years. It could be trusted always and under all circumstances needed to be obeyed. Many of my hatch-mates had died over the years, one way or another because they didn't listen. It had been the only life that I'd known, following my instincts, living day to day. That was what you did in the wild, you lived for that day and that day alone, what the future didn't matter, not when the here and now was so demanding. At least, that was how I used to live. The first time I'd ever ignored my instincts was when I writhing in pain in the soil of that cursed forest trapped by painful ropes and I looked up into a scrawny human's eyes. Eyes that were gentle and not a killers, eyes that were afraid, but mostly reserved. As he cut away my bonds, I remember the urge that welled up in me, to kill him, but I couldn't bring myself to. I roared in furious frustration at feeling torn both inside and out and ran away like a coward.
Who could have known how that one act would change my life? That now, instead of tracking time and my life by sunrises and sunsets, I know tracked my life by his good mornings and good nights? That I felt secure and safe enough to plan my future, a future of flying through deep forests and over misty waves with his slight weight on my back. That I even kind of liked that girl-human who frustrated my human. She would have made a terrific dragon and really, it was such a shame she hadn't been born one. That living in that human settlement with the strange name of Berk wasn't as difficult as it once had been and I sort of kind of missed it?
A sudden sound near the nest caused me to raise my head just in time to observe another egg rock subtly near it's companions. One act...just one little act could change so much. What could a small act do here, what could staying a little longer do? Not too much longer, but long enough to see them this time. Really see them though, not just catch a glimpse of slick black hide as I wing away back into the sky.
I couldn't understand the desire, I'd never felt the urge to stay behind, I'd never even really thought about all of the dragonets I'd sired, but now a slight twinge pulled at me. How many could I have saved? I shook myself violently, my head whipping slightly back and forth. Why in the great sky did I even care?
This brought up a new problem though, there were some breeds that just couldn't be near their offspring because after the little ones hatched they suddenly looked more like meals and less like offspring. Would I feel something similar? If I stayed, if I decided to stay and watch them hatch, what would I do if I suddenly wanted to eat them? Which was more cruel, to leave them as they're hatching or to stay and watch them hatch only to snap them up like they were snacks?
I felt disgust shiver through me, like a ghostly mist rolling down the scales of my spine. The disgust confused me too, but I thought about what my human would think. I felt my heart shrivel in fear and a aching cold spread through me. What would he think if succumbed to an instinct like that?
I looked over at the human in question. He was kneeling once again at the edge of the nest, humming to himself and the eggs with a goofy smile on his face. He was probably imaging this hatching being something magical and as special as what a human birth was, that when they hatched I would feel some mystical bond called parental instinct and want to help them. That they would look at me and want my help, would want to follow me. I groaned quietly and slumped more fully on the ground, the cold dirt soothing me. I didn't have the heart or willpower to correct his thinking. That the hatching would be anything but magical, that the hatchlings would be hungry and violent and might even turn on one another before even leaving the meager safety of the nest. That this island would be the home to the young dragonets for the next year before they could muster the energy to leave the island. Some wouldn't even make the flight off the island, some wouldn't make the flight to a different land, too weak to make the journey. In a harsh life in the wild, there were survivors and those that didn't make it to carry on.
There were many good things about the wild though. It wasn't all terrible events and harsh reality. It really depended on how one viewed the world. If one excepted the harshness of life and made it to adulthood, they had a relatively easy life ahead of them. Making it out of adolescence was the hardest part of living in the wild, but once you grew enough to do the chasing rather than being chased, life was pretty good.
I glanced up at the sky through the screen of my paws and the treetops, noting that it was beginning to get dark. Vestri and I would be fine, but my human would need at least a fire. It bothered me that I couldn't provide enough heat, but I was realistic enough to admit I wasn't when I first saw him shivering a few weeks ago. From then on, I'd been sure to hunt for firewood to keep him warmer.
"You need fire."
Vestri looked at me strangely as I spoke, but realized I wasn't talking to her and flicked the humming human with her tail tip. "Human, your mount is speaking to you."
I snorted at her, half tempted to snap but more interested in making sure my human had a comfortable night. His green eyes finally landed on my own, "Is late already?"
"Late enough," I stood up, grumbling slightly from the pain in my arms and the general creakiness I felt. I started to head deeper into the woods after making sure that my lanky human was following behind me.
It was peaceful in the woods, most of the Furies on the island decided they'd prefer to hunt at the other nearby islands so there were very little other dragons in our area. I watched pale hands grab fallen branches before piling them onto my back. I was debating over destroying a leaning half-dead tree when my ears pricked up at the soft voice, "Toothless, we stay for hatchlings?"
I sighed said nothing. I had never stayed for the hatching of my own offspring and couldn't even begin to think of a way to explain it to him. Glancing at him was my another mistake that was just another on the long list of mistakes. He looked like a fiery spirit in the dying light of the sun, one hand rubbing the other in a futile gesture of comfort. The look in his eyes, it was soft and even worse, understanding, and I had the sinking feeling he might have already guessed it.
I watched one his hand leave his arm and rest on my side, it was reassuring and the wonder of how easily he soothed me washed over me. "Toothless, your childs, we stay?"
I knew what he wanted and what he was asking for, and stars I wasn't strong enough for this. I could face down a huge queen...for him. I could face off against two hostile dragons... for him. I could even make believe that my arm would heal on faith along...for him. For him, I'd do anything that was in my power to do, give anything that was within my power to give. But bathed in the unwavering gaze of those almost luminescent eyes, beseeching me to face my doubts and to try to be what his idea of a father should, I wasn't sure I had the ability to say no even though I was sure I couldn't say yes.
The silence stretched between us, like a rope pulled and waiting to snap. What did more did he want from me? What more could I even possible give him? For him, I'd forsaken everything that once made me who I was without him even asking for it. No dragon, save for a very very few breeds would ever contemplate staying for their dragonets, did he understand what he was asking?
Maybe he didn't, not really. I'm sure he didn't think he was asking for anything drastic, he probably didn't know how against my very nature. That the idea of staying and actually raising dragonets was one of the most frightening things I could imagine doing, save for hurting him. No dragon before had tried to be a "parent" not even the breeds that stayed to raise their dragonets called themselves a parent, they brought food and kept predators away. Love didn't exist for us dragons... there wasn't a word for it.
'Maybe create new word,' had been what he said so innocently and how like him to make that small innocuous request. He didn't even realize how much he was re-inventing for the Draconian kind, did he?
In the end, it wasn't really much of a choice after all, how could I have ever told him no?
When I awoke this morning, I realized two things rather quickly. One, my human was not at my side or under my wing. Two, said human was near Vestri whom was asking some of the strangest questions I'd ever heard come from a dragoness's mouth.
"So, you say humans aren't born from an egg? That you give birth to live hatchlings?"
"No hatchling – babies."
"And these babies are able to fend for themselves? They can run and hide?"
My human doubled up laughing, which caused Vestri to hood her wings in both shock and self-conscious embarrassment.
"No, no babies need help. Humans give."
"What do you mean by humans give help?"
"When baby born, parents raise till human is grown."
From the comical confusion on her face, I could tell the Vestri couldn't even imagine what he was talking about. In fact, she turned to me, nearly incredulous, "What is he babbling about? Human's actually rear their young like deer or sheep?"
I huffed, "Not quite like sheep, but they do keep them till they are nearly grown themselves."
She sat down heavily, "But that's YEARS, how do they manage for so long?"
"Because we love our babies."
She looked over at me, puzzled, "What is that word he said? I don't understand it."
"That's because it is not dragonese," I responded before growling something that wasn't translatable, it was too early for this conversation and I was hungry. "We fish?"
The smile that twisted across the youth's face was satisfying, "Let's go buddy, we didn't go flying at all yesterday!"
As we walked past Vestri, who was watching us with a strange contemplating look, I paused briefly, "Have you spent any time near humans?"
I asked it as neutrally as possible, I really was curious, most dragon at least knew that humans raised their young.
The sleek dragoness scratched at the ground in a sheepish fashion, "I have never been close to a human village before. I have seen humans, but I never really tried to study them..."
I blinked, before grunting slightly as I felt my human settle on my back, he'd jumped up while I wasn't paying attention. I wondered briefly how young Vestri was before shrugging, it didn't really matter.
I cleared my mind until it was empty but for the growing sense of elation that I would be flying and not just flying, but spending time with my human in the clear sky. I felt his slim hands tightened on his reigns before I sprang aloft, his whooping as we took flight all the encouragement I needed.
The world spread out like a rolled carpet in front of me, in vivid colors of blues and greens and the last touches of a beautiful dawn. The wind held a nip, but it was an invigorating one that awoke the primal side of my heart. I looked back every so often to see my human with his head tilted back, his russet hair whipping away with the force of the wind. Perfection. His pleasure from flying, the wind caressing the underside of my strong wings...
Perhaps, if I had been more observant, I would have realized that just because Vestri seemed to know what she was doing, that didn't mean she was an expert at it. That just because she'd had a clutch before, didn't mean she'd had many before them. If I had taken just a few more minutes to get to know her better, I'd maybe have found out that this was only her third mating and she really hadn't had too much experience in the way of nesting.
But life has a way of rearing up and biting you when you least expect it.
It really wasn't her fault. It really wasn't anyone's fault. There was enough space on this island that other dragons wouldn't be in range, on purpose to be sure that there would be privacy and space between the couples so there would be minimal fighting.
When we'd winged back down, I was in a rather content mood. Fishing had been good and I'd had several nice sized cods, my human had insisted on bringing back more for Vestri which I would have done anyway... maybe.
It was of course instinct that I could tell something was wrong when I landed on the ground a small distance from the nest. Vestri was no where in sight and that was unusual. No signs of struggling, but yet something had made a brooding dragoness leave her nest. Slight panic began to well up inside me, instinct was beating at the wavering wall of calm I'd been so careful to maintain.
For a moment everything was still, till I heard my human's shill cry, "Toothless, the eggs!"
I turned so slowly, as though I were weighted down with chains once again. Half of me wanted to resist looking, telling me that after finally allowing myself to care, that what I would see would hurt and the other half was the part of me that was still a wild beast.
I compromised by leaping forward without even bothering to look fully, toward where his finger was pointing and saw something green and brown wriggling near the nest. A Water Shade, a cursed-by-Hel water snake. The could range from the size of small dogs to a young water serpent and their jaws held enough power to crush rocks. Full of rage and despair, I leapt viciously at it, knowing already that revenge would be all I'd be accomplishing. My clawed paws trampled down on its neck and back breaking its spine and my jaws took its head off. To my disappointment, I felt no satisfaction as its disgusting blood flooded my throat. I felt a scrabbling on my side and watched as my human dropped off my back, wavering due to his fake foot, before he fell toward the nest, panicking and anxiously looking inside.
I followed his gaze despite knowing what he'd find, feeling a chill in the pit of my stomach and when I heard saw the cracked shells of the eggs I went a numb. The sound of a dragon's sorrowful keen from his human throat was unbearable and much to my own shock, I felt actual grief at the destroyed eggs. I had, despite my wavering emotions, been looking forward to this clutch and only just now realized it-
I couldn't stand it, my human would be safe for now, but I was too wound up to stay, too angry. I had to find Vestri. I took off running blindly into the forest. My instinct was telling me to hunt down my mate and she'd better be dying to abandon her nest at such a critical moment. Dying or dead when there were no threats that she would have to flee from, one snake was nothing to a dragon of her size.
My crashing was not quiet, it was not subtle, it was not how I usually would run. I was blinded by rage, how dare she? How dare she, I was going to kill-
Her... she was lying in such an unnatural position in a patch of broken bracken. Five snakes like the one I'd just killed were lying in bloody ribbons around her. Once again, for the upteenth time since I'd gotten on this island, conflicting emotions warred within me. Guilt, shame, pain, sorrow, and even pity were there and I wanted to roar, I wanted to roar and roar and roar.
Carefully, I walked up to her, cocking my ears to listen for her heartbeat. To my surprise, it was there as I hadn't expected one, I even felt a little relief. As I swept my gaze over her, I wondered how she'd react to the news that our clutch was- was gone. These snakes, one by themselves wasn't so difficult, but together, they'd be enough to take her down.
I felt more shame, but not me. They might've taken her down, but they wouldn't have gotten me. I had fought snakes like these before. The kinds that waited for an opportune moment to strike before they went after eggs. I knew how they worked too, one would stay behind to quickly gulp down eggs while the others of the group would lead the one attending the eggs away.
As I looked Vestri over, and really looked her over, not just looking to see her breeding potential, I realized that her body showed all the signs of recently reaching adolescence and certainly wasn't experienced enough to realize the trap the snakes had set.
I wanted to be angry with her, to blame it all on her, but living with my human, with Hiccup, had taught me better. There was no one that could punish her more than herself. Again, how strange it was that a dragoness would feel such sorrow over dead eggs than sorrow over dead dragonets.
I reached down and gently picked her up. From a brief appraisal I could tell she had a broken wing and a broken forearm, most likely from the crushing strength of a snake's jaws. When she was securely on my shoulders and back, I picked my way carefully back to the beach, to our nest, to my human.
When I made it back, the morbid sight of the nest brought back the sorrow, grief, and regret. Regret that'd I'd never see what it would be like to see these eggs hatch. Regret at not discovering once and for all if a Night Fury could make the transition from just a sire to something like a father.
I deposited her as carefully as I could onto her uninjured side. I was worried about Hiccup, he hadn't turned to me yet, his body hunched over his chest. I didn't hear any sobbing, but I could smell the bitter salty scent of his tears.
I made my way to his side, my muzzle dropping down to rub at the side of his face in a gesture of mutual misery, to my surprise he lifted his head and stared at me with something that looked suspiciously like hope. I stared at him in wonderment as he slowly uncurled the rest of the way nearly falling over in shock as he revealed the two eggs he'd been hunched over.
Two- two eggs, two of my...children. He stared at me solemnly, "You saved two Toothless, there are still two left."
I crouched to his side, nuzzling one egg in disbelief and then the other. Two eggs, I hadn't even thought to check them in my blind rush into the forest. Anything could have come after them, I could have lost all three of them, Hiccup and the two remaining eggs.
I blinked harshly as I noticed a second snake's body lying on the grass, wounds that could only have been made by a sword and felt more shame and guilt swamp me. I had left them alone, a snake could have-
"Toothless, look at my bud," the soft plea in his voice compelled me to look up at him, "I told you that I would protect you just as you protect me. I would never let anything happen to you or to your eggs."
Standing there, in that moment, I could see how far I'd come from just a mindless killer to what I was now all because of him and I could see what a long way I had left to go just to be worthy to sit beside him. I felt humbled by the amount of love that my human, Hiccup, gave me. Humbled by the amount of patience he had, the amount of love he could give, and that even now he was looking at me like I was something that deserved the utmost amount of respect. I had at one time felt that this slip of a human should feel lucky that a dragon of my stature had decided to allow himself to be ridden like a common pack animal. That it was this boy who should feel honored to have me around. I had felt that idea shifting, changing into something different, but even until this last week that idea had been there. A small shadow of itself, but still lurking in the deepest most prideful part of my mind. Now, I knew that I would forever wonder what I had done right that this human wanted me to be his friend. What god, if they existed, did I please to be allowed to remain by his side?
I didn't save those two eggs, I hadn't saved anyone today, he did. He saved my last two eggs from this clutch while I allowed my instinct to lead me deeper into the woods. I felt both proud of him, and miserable about what I'd done.
"Toothless, that's enough." I blinked at the sudden harshness in his voice. When he stood hands on his hips, he still had to look up, but that was because I'd been growing so rapidly. "I will not let you stand there thinking that you're worthless. I may have stopped the snakes but if it hadn't been for you I'd never have lived long enough to be here. If it weren't for you, I'd be dead, my family and friends dead, my home destroyed." Those green eyes softened, "Toothless, please believe me, that even if there hadn't been a Queen dragon, that without you, my life would have been so miserable. You're my friend and I love you and if only you could see how amazing you are and how far you've come, then you'd know that you've done nothing wrong today."
"I not know what I do to deserve you."I whispered, looking down at those two eggs and then back up to his green eyes.
He smiled, "Sometimes good things just happen, isn't it enough that you have such a good heart?"
I smiled a toothless smile at him, but inside I cringed unable to believe him. I hadn't been good, I had been an evil killing machine before him. In fact, had there even been a real life before him? Could just living day to day in such a mindless manner even be considered a life?
I slowly grabbed an egg and gestured for him to grab the other one. The nest was undamaged save for a few scuffs, bits of hard shells were all that was left of the other two eggs. I gently placed the egg down and watched as my human placed the other one down with equal reverence. "You watch them Toothless, I'll help Vestri."
I nodded, nuzzling him one last time before I fired my blue fire at the eggs to warm them. I wrapped my body around the eggs, even if it took another week for them to hatch, short of Hiccup's life in danger, I wasn't moving from this spot.
-Two Days Later-
Vestri would recover, but she wouldn't be leaving the ground for at least another month. She didn't even seem to be bitter about it as she practically fell to the ground in front of me or my human whenever we walked near her.
She had been devastated to learn that she'd fallen for such a simple trap like some common variety dragon, that she'd allowed to eggs to be killed. Hearing that we'd swooped in and save the other two, and I made sure to stress that it had been Hiccup that had saved the other two when I went to find her, her entire attitude had changed. She'd laid meek as a lamb as he set her wings and gave her wild herbs for her pain. She, being ground-bound now, would willingly leave to get firewood for my human so he would be warm, going so far as to even collect the softest grasses and pine needles to create a nest for him to sleep in near the night fire. She'd lay near his feet as he sat beside her eggs staring at him and absorbing all that he told her about his home and our adventures.
I didn't even have it in me to be upset about the amount of attention she was lavishing on him either, I felt that all the dragons in the world could look upon him with adoration and it would still not be that amount that he deserved. Maybe I was biased, maybe I was whipped, maybe I was no better, now, than a hound that sulked near his master's heel, but for the first time in a long time I couldn't care. I know understood what the dog felt when they gazed up on their master, how they felt when even a shred of love was given to them. I coveted each scratch, each pat, each tender word from him like the priceless jewel it was.
The eggs had been steadily moving more and more often and I knew from that itching sensation to fly that it would be soon for their hatching. Vestri had been, at first, confused and nervous about the idea of staying with the two eggs. Despite the guilt over the death of the other two, she had not yet crossed the roads I had being with Hiccup and could not understand what I meant when I said that I would be sure to raise these eggs. She didn't understand yet, but I was sure with the month that we had, for Hiccup wouldn't leave her alone while she was injured, she'd soon come to see things his way, most people eventually did anyway.
Speaking of said human, he was currently sitting propped up against my side as we both stared at the increasingly active eggs. "We must think names,"his face so solemn that I nearly laughed.
I didn't need to apparently as he elbowed me gently, "I serious, names very importance."
This time, I did snort, after all, he'd named me Toothless and he was named Hiccup. Apparently he was getting a headache because he switched back to his language, "We Vikings name our children unappealing names so we aren't snatched away by goblins or demons in the night. So when I reach manhood, my father will tell me my true name, or I will choose one for myself."
I didn't tell Hiccup that out of his friends, Astrid, had a name that was not unpleasant, but perhaps her kin decided that she was strong enough and scary enough to fend off any goblin that tried to eat her.
"However, because you're their father and they are dragons, they should have good strong names, right?" He smiled at me and I didn't resist the urge to smile back.
Vestri crept forward like a giant black feline, her ears tipping forward as she listened with interest. After all, she had never stayed to name any of her eggs before and the conversation seemed interesting enough to her.
My human tapped his chin in thought, "How about if its a boy, we name it Drengi?"
I shrugged, frankly he could name them whatever he wanted, four weeks ago I hadn't even wanted them, that may have changed but that didn't mean I was about to start shouting out names.
"What about Saefaris?"
I blinked in disbelief at Vestri that had just offered a name. My human grinned like it was his birthing day, "What mean?"
"It means sea-farer or one that travels over seas."
His hair flapped comically about his head as he nodded energetically, "That is a great name Vestri, what you think Toothless?"
I shrugged again, even if a little part of me was smiling deep down over the two of them.
"Oh, I like that one! But what if it is a female?"
"Saevor," my human said with such confidence that Vestri blinked before nodding, "I like that name too," she looked shyly at me, "This is kind of fun."
I stared around the camp at the fish that my human had caught and prepared into little chunks without bones so the hatchlings wouldn't choke, again despite me telling him that the bone would be useful and fine.
It was that moment that I felt one of the eggs beneath my side wobble violently. I stood up quickly, my speed alerting my human who looked up in alarm, "Toothless?"
"They are hatching."
It was a strange moment, one that I never expected I would experience and poor Vestri look liked she'd just swallowed a Terror alive and whole. "Now? But we're still here, we shouldn't be here!"
But I ignored her, as did Hiccup, with both of us showing little concern, she lowered herself down to stare at the eggs with morbid curiosity despite her fretting.
I myself was finding it hard to stay where I was. I wanted to bolt, to run away and fly, but I wouldn't leave my human here. I felt his benevolent eyes resting on me, giving me the strength to stand in front of the rocking eggs and face them.
I lifted my head proudly, I was a Night Fury and I was the soul mate to one of the most wonderful beings that would ever walk this plane. If he had the courage to face the unknown and fight battles that any other being would run from in fright, I could face these tiny defenseless hatchlings.
The one on the left didn't rock so much as shudder violently and shell burst everywhere. A little female, wet from egg slime and bawling from hunger. She seem startled as she stared up into my eyes, fear pinning her in place. I felt my human nudge a bit of fish at me and I picked it up gingerly in my claws. "Little female, you have been hatched to me your "father" and," I glanced at Hiccup and Vestri, " your "mother" as well as the other that you and I owe our lives to, "Hiccup. I shall be giving you your name."
She looked up at me terrified, hardly longer than my paw, but I could already see her potential, she would be beautiful and strong. I felt the very slight stirrings of something I never had felt before, was this what human fathers felt when they gazed upon their children for the first time?
To honor my human, I named her what he had suggested, "Your name shall be Saevor. Now eat this fish while I attend to your sibling."
I didn't feel any magical attachment yet, but I had a feeling of calm settle upon me, I had many years to grow attached to her and her sibling, I knew know that I could learn to be what she needed, what Hiccup would want me to be to her. I wanted it for Hiccup and honestly, a little for myself.
I couldn't blame her for being confused. There was no instinct for imprinting, but she was clever enough to realize that I looked like her, that Vestri looked like her, and that I was giving her food. She nearly choked on the first large piece, and I watched my human kneel beside her to kindly feed her.
The other egg was wobbling so hard that I thought it would roll right out of the nest, two large cracks started at the top and I waited patiently for it to break its shell, to see what this other, uh, child of mine would be.
A claw rended the egg down the side and out tumbled a male. He didn't stare at me in fear, but didn't try to challenge me either.
"You little male, are my son. I am-"
"Father, yes, mother there, H-Hiccup there, name?"
I frowned slightly put out by the little male ruining my attempt at a memorable moment before rolling my eyes, "Riki, I name you Riki."
From behind me, I heard Vestri murmur in approval and Hiccup look up from feeding m-my daughter?
"It means clever and mighty."
The little male nodded at me, then looked pleadingly for food, which Vestri carefully brought over. She sliced the pieces smaller and watched in wonder as he ate from each of her claws. A dawning look of understanding was growing and I knew she'd never be the same again, just like I never would be.
As I watched my human feed my children and pet them, I felt a sense of being more complete and fully of joy I'd ever felt. I was no longer just a Night Fury, no longer just a beast. I was a friend, a soul-mate, a regular mate, a- a father. My eyes slowly closed on the scene before me, watching my Hiccup, watching my family, I felt like I'd stumbled into something so much larger than myself, something that I would never have had if it weren't for a mistake and a pair of green eyes.
I wasn't what I had once been and for the life of me, I wouldn't want it any other way.
-end of chapter-
I felt like this chapter was weaker than the others, maybe a bit rushed. But the idea wouldn't leave me alone. So love it? Hate it? If you dislike it, feel free to just ignore this chapter and feel that chapter 5 was the last one. I kind of like this chapter, so as always feel free to let me know what you think? Its nearly 18 pages long, so maybe my lack of sleep and my finals are really a good thing... probably... not...
Also, please forgive any wonky formatting, it is ff. net
Saevor- Sea battle or a battle at sea
Riki- Mighty, distinguished, clever, rich