Alright, so this story is going to be a little different than the others, don't worry I will label all warnings, so if this isn't your cup of tea you won't be wasting your time okay?
Plot overview: The villagers of Berk aren't Vikings! They're dragons! Between trying to find enough food for the Queen that constantly asks for more and Vikings that are starting to press closer to their island home; Stoick worries about to deal with his cross-breed son, half-Nightmare and half-Timberjack; who stubbornly insists that they should seek peace with the humans.
Rating: Teen, most of my stories will be suited to the older teens. Especially this one.
Warnings: This story will someday be mildly slashy, hmmkay? It will not be in your face, there probably won't be anything graphic. Also, as dragons, there will be a deal more blood, after all, why would dragons need to cook their food?
Notes: This story can be considered slashy depending on how you look at it. The relationship that Hiccup and Toothless have will be a close one, that can be considered really close best friends or a romantic relationship, but that depends on how you see it.
Disclaimer: I don't own How To Train Your Dragon, it belongs to DreamWorks, the story to Cressida Cowell.
Note: Not everything is going to happen all at once. This is the first chapter of many and I'm going to take my time. (wink) So, don't worry, everything will be revealed. The summary will someday become true. It's just going to be around chapter four that it does, 'kay?
It Take a Village (chapter one, cleaned up version)
Stoick angled his large wings and flew swiftly down toward the chaos beneath him. Humans -Vikings they called themselves- were screaming insanely as the leader's fleet(1) of dragons rained hell fire down upon the useless lot of them.
He balked in the air, his wings beating to keep him level and snatched at the horse that had been left unattended. Making sure of his hold, the giant Nightmare winged back up toward the dark sky, going into a spin to avoid a loosed arrow. He did an easy loop and dropped like a stone. Flying over the human's heads, he released his fire and then again darted away.
Had it been any other raid, Stoick would have been on the ground, devouring the insignificant beings with relish; crunching their bones and sucking out the marrow. Humans tasted nasty at first but you, eventually, could get used to it. Some dragons even had a human type they loved to eat; but for Stoick it was much more personal.
The great orange dragon had loved his mate, Valhallarama, dearly and it had been those hideous humans that had killed her; so now every kill he obtained was a matter of revenge for his departed mate.
Not tonight though, tonight he could not stay and spill their evil blood. There was only one thing more important than Stoick's desire for revenge against the Vikings, one small thing.
A shriek went up to his right and the red-orange beast turned his massive head to look for the source. A small group of young dragons that were circling a few sheep did not notice the humans that were slowly coming towards them. He snorted, pausing in his quest to return to Home Cave. He winged over them, looking down as he passed overhead.
"What are you lot doing? Grab your sheep and get moving; the Vikings will make quick work of fledglings that idle."
The Nadder in the group turned her head sideways to view him, "Yes, Leader."
She opened her wings, gored a sheep through with her horn and leapt up blood, the streaming like a human banner. Behind her a young Nightmare, Gronkol, and two Zipplebacks followed; each clutching a sheep. 'Good,' thought Stoick, 'they will be safe from the Queen's wrath.'
The Queen. No dragon could remember where she came from, or for how many centuries they had all been feeding her. At first it was a helpful symbiotic partnership; she was larger than any dragon had ever been and she protected all of the dragons with a gentle and kind nature; they kept her well-tended and occasionally offered her large kills. Somewhere along the line, she grew too big to leave the Home Cave and called to her subjects for help, the dragons thus agreed to feed her.
It was not so bad then, she didn't eat a quarter at the time of what she ate now and she'd never eaten one of her own back then. It had changed so subtly, one day a Terror had dropped in a mouse and the Queen had been furious. Stoick had been young and watched alongside his own father as she stretched out her body and swallowed it whole. After that it became more common that it was a gamble if she decided to eat you or not. The Queen had grown to such an enormous size that it was impossible not to bend to her power. As if the her sheer bulk was not enough, she invoked an old spell as her right of the Queen of Home Cave to control all those who had pledged to her; that was just about every dragon in the Home Cave, because at the time she had been almost motherly to all of them. Some say that she had gone insane from all the dragons she'd ate, the cannibalism effecting her brain itself.
Now, with thousands of dragons under her command, all dragonets born were forced to swear loyalty or be eaten before they went through their initiation to be considered full grown dragons. Stoick was the proud leader of the dragons under his command. Despite all of the dragons having to bow to the Queen's rule, there were several factions of dragons to keep order; like the one Stoick was currently watching.
Back to the small thing that could make the leader forget his blood lust. It had been a hard decision the large dragon had had to make. At the time, the leader had thought he would have been able to have more hatchlings if anything went wrong with The Plan, but Valhallarama had been slain shortly after they had their first brood.
The choice Stoick had made was to hide away one of his own hatchlings, he could never ask another dragon for their egg as an experiment, far from the Queen's mind range. The male cross-breed had never met the Queen, nor had he ever consciously been to the Home Cave. This was dangerous -both for Stoick and his male offspring- because that meant whenever Stoick had to go meet the Queen, he had to shield his knowledge of having a hatchling; and the hatchling was often all by itself. To cover his tracks, and to be able to meet with his hatchling, Stoick moved his faction from Home Cave, his excuse to the Queen that there was more prey for her there.
The Queen was greedy, the idea of more prey in an area that had had no dragons to populate it sounded like a splendid idea, she still ate one of the dragons from his faction though; just because she could.
Stoick had once loved the Queen the way humans loved their leaders, but now he felt nothing but anger in his broad chest for the huge female. If it weren't for such a pressing need to have find prey to survive, perhaps Valhallarama would not have gone to the lengths of stealing so far into the village. They had surrounded her easily; Stoick could only be grateful to the human that had ended her quickly and without pain. If it wasn't for the evil Queen, he could have his hatchling always by his side, and the male dragonet would at least know he had a father.
Yes, tonight was different though. He had to quickly drop his kill into that cavernous mouth and make haste to where his son's island was. There was trouble coming to the male, humans.
A curious looking mottled red-orange dragon slowly moved toward the lake. It was sure that it was alone, for it smelled nothing except some long since gone deer, and it's nose never lied. The dragon stretched out it's many segmented wings, the spread impressive and the edges of the wings glinted attesting their sharpness; the body… was not so awe-inspiring.
It moved with unhurried patience more and more out of the thickly wooded forest it resided in, anxious and jumping at every diminutive sound. This dragon had been schooled since the moment it hatched how to become invisible, even with its garish coloring(2). It had been taught how to shield its mind and taught that almost everything was dangerous. Not physically, but that everything could be a spy for her.
The dragon didn't know who she was, all he had heard of from the Great Nightmare that visited him was nothing short of horrifying. The dragon did not know why the Great Nightmare insisted he stay here on this secluded island, nor why the great beast came at all. The odd dragon did not wish for the visits to stop, he had no one to talk to and he could remember the Nightmare from his earliest memories.
The male dragon made it to the edge of the water and paused; comfortable that it still heard nothing. It lowered its narrow muzzle to drink the cool water of the lake. A twig broke behind the male, its head coming up in an instant, his wings arched to beat forward and slice whatever it might be.
For a long moment there was nothing but the occasional croak of a frog. The male focused his glowing emerald eyes at the edge of the wood; his sharp vision making out the form of a familiar Nightmare. The dragon folded his wings back neatly and went back to drinking knowing who it was.
The Nightmare made his way over to the smaller dragon and gazed down at it, "How are you doing young one?"
The mottled dragon moved away from the water's edge and stared up at the orange dragon he'd known all his life. "I'm well, thank you. Have you come for a visit?"
"I must speak very seriously, there is danger coming to you."
The thin, smaller dragon rested upon his orange and brown forearms, his incredibly long tail whipping the ground. For a moment, it resembled a rather large tomcat. The younger dragon stretched his longish neck and gazed levelly at the huge Nightmare. He seemed to contemplate the elder's words, "There has always been danger. Everything on this island, as you've said, is dangerous; you wouldn't come all this way just for that I'm sure. What could possibly be more hazardous?"
Growing up here away from any companionship would make most dragons rather primitive, with no one to talk to there would be no reason to truly grasp language. The young dragon reveled in language though, he often spent his time entertaining himself by giving long speeches to no one about nothing.
The Nightmare snorted, "Humans are what's worse."
Eerie green eyes continued to gaze at him unwaveringly… uncomprehendingly; after all, the small dragon had never seen a human. "Humans are nasty creatures, they kill without thought any dragon they can get their hands on." The large male nearly spat fire in his rage.
The mixed-blood looked with mild concern at the small spark that did escape, worried for his forest, but it died out moments later; "You say they are coming here?"
The red-orange dragon shook his head, "They are to settle on the island south of here; you can even view it from the South Beach."
The orange and brown dragon placed his head on the ground and closed his eyes, "Why would they seek me out? No one knows I exist here on this island. I do not hunt their food, nor raid their homes. I do not leave this island." The tone bored and tired.
Stoick sighed as he studied his offspring who had no idea that his only family was standing in front of his very eyes. When Stoick had heard Valhallarama was going to lay eggs he was more than ecstatic. His offspring would be strong and large enough to handle the life of being on their own for long periods of time, while the parents played stupid about having five eggs but only three hatchlings. The idea of someday breaking free from the horrid Queen was so tantalizing, that Stoick could almost taste it on his tongue.
But when she'd laid the eggs, cared and incubated them, sadly only one hatched. No one had ever heard of a Nightmare taking a Timberjack as a mate, Stoick had thought it would be fine, for they were both strong dragons, and it wasn't unusual for breeds to cross. Apparently, genetics thought differently. The dragonet that had hatched had had a tiny body, very much smaller than either parent had thought. Its wings made Valhallarama gasp in pleased delight though; she'd enjoyed telling Stoick that his male offspring had the largest wingspan for any hatchling Timberjack.
Stoick remembered gazing down doubtfully into the nest; the small dragonet curled up slightly on the warm rocks. Its body was long with flexible spikes at equal intervals leading down its neck, spine, and disappeared halfway down the tail. The tail itself was interesting, it was as sharp as the hatchlings wings would someday be; the tip was essentially like a spear. Bright reddish orange base color with speckles of mahogany brown covered him, as though he'd been sprinkled with earth along his spine and back; his wings showed the same mottled color but brightened to a fiery red on his extremities. The new hatchling had a somewhat longish neck, a delicate wedge-shaped head with a narrow, blunt muzzle, and lacked any horns.
The leader supposed the male wasn't of bad conformity -he was proportioned well enough- but he looked sideways to his mate, "Are we still going to risk it?"
The bark brown and forest green Timberjack thought about it. "I will not have my dragonet in her clutches, he will be taken to the island." There was no room in the tone for argument.
"What about when she asks about our hatchlings?"
The female dragoness let loose a melancholy sigh, and rolled one egg gently with her nose. "The truth, none of them hatched and we broke one open to make sure they weren't alive inside. I'll take her the eggs myself so she can see."
So Stoick took the hatchling far away from his birthing nest, to a lonely island far from the Home Cave.
The leader made sure he had almost no contact with any other dragons -they could tell the secret without even thinking about it- and made sure his son never knew where he came from.
Yes, it did hurt. The idea that his offspring had grew up in such an undragon-like manner. Left to his own devices, never properly taught how to breathe flame nor fly. Stoick had many opportunities to teach him, but flames would bring unwelcome guest and flying would just encourage the dragonet to run about. It was a tough call and Stoick had to make it. But the dragonet was still alive and he still had his own mind about him. Stoick knew the sacrifice would someday be worth it; soon as the young dragonet was almost ready to become fully fledged.
The great beast spotted his son making little inane scratches in the sand with a sharp-tipped tail; boredom evident. "Have you come all this way just to warn me of humans?"
Stoick looked at the younger dragon awkwardly, "What else would you want?"
The smaller dragon thought carefully, "Would you tell me, if you can, how I came to be on this island?"
Sadly, the Nightmare shook his head. "The time is not yet right for you to know."
Disappointed the lithe beast curled up tightly, the tip of his tail lashing the ground. "Then… can I have a name?"
Stoick was taken aback, "Where did you hear about that?"
"Surly dragons have a way to distinguish themselves from one another. And all the animals in the forest have something called a name. I want one, I want to be able to say I am someone."
The Nightmare shook his head, "Why would you ask me to give you a name, if you want one so badly you pick one out."
"Shall I take that as a no you won't give me a name?"
Stoick snarled, "Fine, you can be Hiccup."
The newly dubbed dragon blinked, "Hiccup? Why Hiccup?"
"Because you're as annoying as a case of them."
Hiccup harrumphed, but didn't raise a fuss. The dragonet looked up at the dragon, "Thank you, for giving me a name." He said with genuine gratitude.
It was almost too much for Stoick to bear. His son who didn't know him had instinctively sought him out for a name and then thanked the larger dragon so honestly even after Stoick had insulted the young one?
"I must go now, I'll be back in three days. The humans will make landfall the day after tomorrow. Do not engage them."
Hiccup gave him an innocent quizzical look, "Now why would I go and do a crazy thing like that?"
The Nightmare snorted, his offspring had a lot of his Timberjack mother in him, the male didn't have a doubt that the young one would go look; to try and catch a peek.
"Be careful and watch yourself." Without a single backward glance the Nightmare was gone, his wings taking him away.
Hiccup was by himself now, again. He curled up tight, but this time from delight.
A name, a poor name, but a real one. It was almost too much for the dragonet to handle.
_The Next Morning_
The sunlight filtered down just barely through the thick canopy of the forest. The small patches that made it through, were few and far between, making for a rather dark setting. This suited Hiccup just fine. With his mottling, the light was broken up, and it made it easy to become invisible with. Due to the fact he was orange as well as brown, the dragonet found it prudent to only walk when he had to, and only freely during sunrises or sunsets when the color orange was common.
This sunrise found him on the South Beach, observing the large vessels that were carrying humans past him. Humans -from his initial glance- were rather ugly in a way. They had no real distinguishing color patterns, all of them roughly the same size, and not a single scale to be found. But Hiccup had grown up practically by himself, never knowing another of his kind, what kind of judge on aesthetics was he? After a few hours of watching them though, Hiccup decided that humans were rather boring, very funny, but essentially very boring. An interesting and positive note, each one seemed to have bright colors on their heads. Hiccup didn't know that it was hair, but it blew gently whenever the wind passed by staying on; so it must grow from them.
It was all rather fascinating but Hiccup was hungry and the lake was calling to him. Carefully, the crossbreed disappeared into the woods once more.
Okay that's the first chapter. No Toothless yet, he'll be in the next one for sure. Those of you confused. Just keep thinking bee! (no I don't own that movie either) No one is quite sure how the Queen bee controls the rest of the hive (some think it is the frequency and all that) but she does. Now apply that to the dragons, in this case it's taken a step farther, the Queen can emit a frequency that pulls dragons in to her to do her bidding, most likely through persuasion (its sort of like brain washing them). The problem is it only works on those that accept her as Queen. Since Hiccup has never met nor been near her, she has no persuasion over him. The reason why Hiccup is not named is so that he can't be traced back to Stoick, which is a good thing. The leader has many enemies besides the Queen and a few humans. It was better for Hiccup to not know who his father is, nor have a name. Now that he is close to dragon hood, Stoick figures he's at least old enough to figure out who he should trust with the name.
1) fleet- a portion of a faction. A faction can have downwards of 300 dragons, but a faction is perhaps maybe 30 of them at a time hunting.
2) He's bright orange, kind of hard to hide, but Hiccup manages.
I hope you enjoyed the story. I suffer from sever anxiety so I hope you like it!