A/N- The last chapter. Thanks to everybody who put this on alert and waited ages for me to upload each new chapter ^^; I must have been a real pain sometimes, but now that it's finished, I hope you all enjoyed it. Thanks for reading!
When he wakes up, Hiccup's vision is blurry. The only blotches he can see are brown, red and black. As everything becomes clearer, he recognizes his Monstrous Nightmare, sitting beside him, and Toothless, resting on a supporting beam right above his bed. His bright yellow eyes happily look at him.
"Hey, Toothless. And… you," Hiccup mumbles, softly patting the Nightmare's nose. "I haven't named you yet. Let's see… err… " It takes him a while to set his mind straight. "How about Flarewing? Sounds nice?" Flarewing grumbles contently and pushes him with her head. The force knocks him out of his bed. She immediately bends over to apologize. Hiccup snickers and looks around. His laughing stops as he realizes where he is.
"I am in my house," he says slowly and he looks at the two dragons. "Err, you're in my house." Flarewing excitedly flings her tail around, knocking over several objects in the room. She's almost too big to be inside. Toothless growls at her, threatening to attack. Flarewing responds with an agitated snarl. "No! no, Guys! Come on, don't -" Hiccup wanted to stand up, but he can't feel his left foot. In fact, his knee is very sore, but everything beneath that seems absent. His legs are still covered by the blanket. He carefully lifts it up, to see that his left leg is replaced by a wooden pole.
The dragons can feel the tense atmosphere and they regard the young Viking curiously. Toothless jumps off the beam to take a closer look at the peg leg. OK, so I lost a leg. That's... manageable, Hiccup thinks, trying to stay calm. Gobber can still walk with that, so I should be able to do so too. He grabs the head end of his bed and lifts himself up. He first tries resting part of his weight on the peg leg. Gradually, he takes a few steps, practicing how to balance on the thing. When he trips, Flarewing quickly moves her wing in the way, so he lands softly.
"Thanks Flarewing," Hiccup mumbles dully. This is going to be harder than I thought. With his hand on the Nightmare's neck, he limbs over to the front door. He pulls it open, only to be surprised even more; the entire village is run over by dragons. On every rooftop, every road and all over the sky, there are dragons. The large torches have been broken down to serve as feeding bowls and filled with fish. Large beams extend from the buildings to serve as extra perching spots.
"Hello son," Stoick says. He pats Hiccup on his shoulder. "Good to see you back with the living. So, what do you think?" he asks while gesturing at the village. Hiccup doesn't know what to say.
"Look, it's Hiccup!" one of the villagers yells. Then all of them run towards him enthusiastically, greeting him and asking how he feels. Hiccup is a little overwhelmed with all this attention.
"Dad, this is… amazing!" Hiccup gasps. "Since when…"
Flarewing butts in with a loud roar as she pushes her face against Hiccup again, this time a little more reserved. Hiccup pets her while the other Vikings laugh.
"Turns out all we needed was a little more of… well, of this," Stoick says, gesturing at his son. "You've done well, son."
"W- But it wasn't just me. It was Astrid who started all this. Where is she, anyway?" Hiccup asks. The tribe surrenders to an uncomfortable silence. Everybody looks at each other or at the ground. Stoick himself clears his throat and mumbles: "She didn't make it. The Night Fury only managed to save you." Hiccup stares at his father with disbelief, before looking at the black dragon. Toothless, who has been standing in the door opening until now, closes his eyes and walks away, dragging his half-torn tail behind him.
That afternoon, Hiccup spends all his time with Toothless, sitting on one of the highest hills in the village. Flarewing soon got bored of doing nothing and is now hunting for fish in the ocean. It's just the Night Fury and the boy who grounded him. Hiccup is sure that Toothless is thinking about Astrid too. He absentmindedly watches the other dragons soar through the air.
"I'm sorry, Toothless," Hiccup says after a while. "I could fix the flying gear, but I won't be able to fly it with this." He lifts his wooden leg and twists it a little. Toothless looks down at it too. "And I don't think you'll allow anybody else on your back, would you?" Toothless grumbles affirmatively before staring at the other dragons again.
The silence continues for almost an hour. Toothless lies down and rests his head on his front paws.Hiccup sighs multiple times as he recalls the weeks he spent with Astrid. How she had shown him the Night Fury, how he had called her crazy at the start. How he had struggled with Toothless until they understood and respected each other. How they improved, both in dragon training and in perfecting the flying gear. How they were frustrated together, how they laughed together, how they learned about dragons together and how they learned from and about each other. It's thanks to her that this is all possible, Hiccup thinks. She changed all of our lives, both dragons and humans. She single-handedly solved our war…
Suddenly the Night Fury moans in a heart-rending manner. Hiccup tries to swallow his tears away, but without any success.
"I miss her too…"