In which a tragedy occurs.
Morning crept across the island, like an unwanted friend showing up to dinner.
Loudly and unannounced.
Somehow, with the perfected drunken swagger of three people running off of two hours of sleep, the trio broke camp and began the longish journey to casa de Misfits.
The stretch was mostly peaceful, save for sometime near noon when both twins just had to sword fight with one another because god Hiccup these twigs are perfect look at them!
Not the best day ever, what with yesterdays chaos still looming above their heads like a sombre cloud of irritation and mild fear, but it was certainly far from the worst any of them had ever had.
And then, as it must, everything went to hell.
"Odin, am I the only one ready to go pass out for a few hours?" Tammy snickered, skipping her way along the well worn path. "Nope," Hiccup replied softly, mulling over what he had heard the night previous.
"We're around... five minutes from the village, right?" Terry inquires to his sister, pulling on her obnoxious rat-nest hair in an attempt to gain her attention. She shrieks lightly at this, slapping at his hand with more force than was probably necessary.
"More like ten, if you keep being a slow ass." The girl smirks, flicking her twin's nose before darting away.
"Enough with the shenanigans woma- wait."
His tone drops from mild irritation to all out fear. Both twins tense.
And of course Hiccup stands there like a tool wondering what the hell is going on.
"You hear that?" Tammy hisses, crouching low to the ground.
"Uh, guys, what are you talking abou-"
"SHOOSH." Tammy honest to god shrieks at him, and of course the ex Viking shooshes instantly.
Worry sets Hiccups brow now, watching as the twins, his friends, bend low to the ground and listen intently.
"They're up to something." Terry mutters, more to himself than anything.
No prizes for guessing who they are.
"Oh, big time." His counterpart adds, perking up her head. "Sounds like they're moving something. Something massive. Hiccup?"
"What?" The red head says, confused as ever.
"What types of machinery does Berk have? Like, big machines."
"Uh. Gobber was working on something..."
His companions exchange worried glances.
"What kind of something Hiccup?"
A massive whirling, followed by a sharp CRACK off in the distance.
"A catapult kind of something."
Three sets of eyes narrow and then widen within the second of the other. A massive shadow passes over the three, as a literal flaming ball of rock flies over their heads.
The twins are moving. Faster than is humanly possible. Yelling at each other. Rising into the air, bolting towards the threat at supersonic speed.
They're going to try and stop it.
The key word being try.
Hiccup can only watch as the two tiny dots that were his friends flail about around the flaming ball of sure-fire death, screeching like harpies. He can tell it's going too fast for them to stop it in the state they're in, and can see exactly where this is going.
He also can only watch as the flaming hunk of stone careens right into what was certainly the middle of their village. There's a catastrophic boom, loud enough to pop Hiccups ear drums.
Everything goes quiet for the red head, muted. Sounds like someone had turned down the volume of a tv.
And things are starting to sink in.
Tammy's off like a rocket, a purple blur in the sky, while Terry bolts down to Hiccup at half the speed. Without really thinking, Hiccup allows Terry to grab him by the skinny wrists and hoist him into the sky.
Hiccup can't help but look down, and watches as a giant plume of smoke and ash, along with various other debris, washes over the land below. The boys look at each other with wide eyes, not without various degrees of shock.
Terry unsteadily drops them both to the ground, too tired to keep both of them aloft. They break into a sprint as dust settles around them, jumping over toppled trees and stones.
They can hear a screaming on the wind. It's Tammy. Though it seems nigh impossible Terry doubles his speed. The air is thick with smoke and ash, the ground is littered with chunks of wood in an assortment of colours. Hiccup can pick out the purple and greys of the twins home, the green of his own, the red of Zander's.
"You said you had protection for the village!" Hiccup shouts, the amount of damage hitting him in full.
"We did." Terry spits back, "When the magic stopped flowing because of the bracelets, the entire shield short circuited itself."
Tammy's still shrieking in the background, as the boys get closer they begin to make out words.
"FUCK NO YOU DO NOT DIE ON ME, NOT NOW, NOT TODAY, NOT EVER!" Her voice is high and hysterical, bordering on pleading and panicking. Hiccup can only stare, wide eyed, at the ruins of the village as it looms over the horizon.
In an odd state of clarity, he scans the scene.
The first, and most prominent, change is that everything has been leveled. There is nothing left, save the piles of what used to be houses and a fire or... eight.
And of course the massive stone smack in the center of town.
Tammy's on her knees in front of a figure, a tiny dot of purple among the grey. She's grabbing at the persons shoulders, as they lay in the wreckage of midnight blue planks.
Hiccup realises, with a sinking feeling, they're in what used to be Emera's house.
Terry rushes to his twin, and kneels next to her, looking down as well. Hiccup can hear Tammy sobbing now, choking out pleas and prayers. "Oh god, no, no, please no, don't leave me, don't leave us, Emera please, open your eyes, please, Emera oh gods please open your fucking eyes."
Emera's not moving.
Hiccup stumbles over to them, and sits to Terry's left. He can see Emera now, see her scratched face and crushed torso. He can see recently shed tears running down her face, and a hole in her chest revealing a heart that had just stopped beating. Tammy's hands are stained red with blood from where she had tried to stop the bleeding and failed.
Hiccup can't move, can't breathe. Someone's dead. Someone is fucking dead because of him.
Tammy chokes off another sob, and begins to stand, stumbling around in the general direction of the main hall. The boys follow her, in a state of disbelief.
The entire structure's caved in, the roof's completely gone.
Tammy starts calling names, moving rubble out of the way, desperate and hopeless.
"LYLE? ZANDER? REYNA? KATIE? SHIT, GUYS, PLEASE?"
They search for hours.
Terry just... stops, halfway through searching lifting a wooden beam. Hiccup looks at him, expression a mix of fear and sadness.
It's not just someone that's dead. It's everyone.
They're the only ones left.
Tammy claws her way out of the wreckage, tears running down her face. "There were... no survivors, were there?" She asks her brother quietly. He nods, and just silently pulls her into a hug.
She sobs. Like a little girl. It's not pretty, it's not endearing, it's ugly and massive and such a raw release of feelings and hopelessness that breaks your heart into tiny shards.
At some point she soundlessly reaches for Hiccup, snares his arm and forcibly drags him into the borderline clinging hug because god I just need to know you're here and breathing right now and that you're not going anywhere just please don't go anywhere yet.
They stand there, among the dead and the dirt just clinging to each other for minutes.
Tammy eventually stops crying, turning to heavy sniffling instead.
And then pain turns to sorrow.
And then sorrow to anger.
The clinging ends as abruptly as it started, with Tammy suddenly ceasing all noise and stomping over to where the purple monstrosity she had called home used to be with a facial expression of barely held rage.
She's quiet, as the boys follow, her small hands shifting dirt and planks away, searching. "Where is it?" The blonde hisses to herself. With a triumphant shout, she rips one of her swords from the wreckage, stirring dust and dirt and god knows what else in the process.
"And what exactly are we planning to do with that?" Terry asks her gently, watching as she inspects the blade for damage.
"Well I don't know about you," She says casually, taking a practice swing. "But I'm going for a little murder spree, followed by a light lunch."
And with that she saunters into the woods, face passive and calm, dragging the sword behind her.
Hiccup stutters, rushing after her. "You can't just go and kill them all!" He dances around the debris, doing his best not to trip. "There are still some of them who are innocent! You don't need to murder them! What happened to not killing people?" He's hysterical, pleading.
She really can't find a fuck to give at this point.
"That went out the fucking window, when Emera went down, when they all went down." Tammy hisses, never breaking march towards the beach. "And now..." She trails slightly, and turns towards her brother with a deranged smile. "Bitches are going to bleed."
Terry looks as shocked as Hiccup at this point, and joins the chorus of holy-shit-what-the-hell-are-you-thinking as the tree line thins and the lapping of waves can be heard nearby.
Tammy struts out of the woods with a hand full of sword and a brain full of empty. The boys have the mind to stay back, Hiccup especially. Stoic's standing next to the catapult with this shit-eating grin, looking as if he'd just won the war. The twins step mother stood next to him, tall and proud.
Together they turn to Tammy, and the black haired woman honest to god cackles and walks forward as if to hug her stepchild.
She gets two feet away from the teen before shit hits the fan.
Faster than anyone could blink, literally, Tammy slashes her sword haphazardly.
There's a thunk, and the sound of pebbles being displaced as the now headless body of the woman falls to the ground. Tammy's bloodied face cracks into a deranged smile, and she begins laughing.
Hiccup watches in morbid fascination, Terry gaps like a fish beside him.
Stoic takes a step back, as the girl stalks toward him with murder and tears in her eyes.
"You killed them!" She shrieks through the laughter, swinging at the man. He barely manages to deflect her sword with his axe, and the metal comes together with an audible CLANG.
"AND IT'S ALL YOUR FUCKING FAULT!"
"I'LL FUCKING KILL YOU."
The rest of the tribe can only watch in morbid fascination, mirroring Hiccup's own. Tammy's fighting, but not as she usually would. She's not relying on magic, but instead is working towards smashing as many things as she possibly can in the amount of time she's got before rage once again turns to sorrow. It's brutal and nasty and not as (for lack of a better term,) stylized as her usual sparring techniques. She's acting as if she wants to beat Stoik into a bloody pulp, until he's an unrecognizable smear on the ground.
And all the while, the deranged laughter echo's around the beach.
She's not focusing on killing him, but it will inevitably happen.
She damn well would have if Terry hadn't intervened.
As she rears back to take another shot, a hand is suddenly catching her arm, and her twin is by her side. He appears out of thin air, just shaking his head sadly. Her gaze shifts to him, glare softening at the sight of her twin.
The laughter dims.
It morphs into a strangled choking sound, and then to crying once again. Tammy rips her arm from his grasp, and takes a deep breath.
She never gets the chance to exhale.
Before anyone on the beach can comprehend, there's a sword sticking out of Tammy's chest. Terry is shrieking in pain, his own chest stained red through his clothes. Tammy just... stares at the metal protruding from her, purple eyes quickly dimming before both her and her brother flop to the ground gracelessly.
Behind her stands Astrid, emotionless, bloodied, and swordless.
At this point, Hiccup really doesn't care if he gets caught because it's now official that all of his friends are dead isn't that just perfect. So he decides to throw caution to the wind and runs right into the middle of the tribe who hated him, to go see the dead bodies of the only people who ever really cared for him as a person.
Terry's face is screwed up in pain, Tammy's is just... confused is the word to describe it.
Hiccup's given himself over to shock at this point, and just gracelessly falls to his knees next to them.
It's so completely over it's not even funny.
He takes one of their hands in one of his, and just... sits. Stalk still. Ignores everything, and just gives up to the wave of grief pain sorrow hopelessness that's been trying to pull him under for the past few hours.
Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third just gives up on that beach, and accepts the fact that the gods just don't want him to be happy.
He feels a meaty hand on his shoulder, and somewhere far away he hears someone familiar say: "Let's go home, son."
He allows himself to be led away, fight gone, hope gone, happiness gone.
Hiccup's spirit has died along with his friends, and he's learning to accept it.
AND. WHABAM. I have been planning this chapter since this story was a wee baby idea in my head. Have fun. I think... I think I did okay. I hope. Heh.
I'm not even going to try to earn forgiveness for not updating... long story short I am a tool with the attention span of a sparrow when it comes to writing. Enjoy :D
Also, no this isn't the end. There's still at one more, and then an epilogue to look forward to.
When I get to it, at least.
As always, reviews are my crack, any and all feedback is highly appreciated!