TITLE: Flying Through Mud
CHAPTER: Chapter Forty
WORDS: 5,500 words
DISCLAIMER: I do not own How to Train Your Dragon or any of its franchise.
BEFOREWORD: Man I am really slacking… sorry guys! I only a few windows throughout the week to work on this story and I always seem to miss them because of other stuff. It's so frustrating.
Anyway, this chapter is kind of awkward. I mean that not only in its content but also how I wrote it. It was meant to be two chapters but for some inexplicable reason I was unable to do that so it wound up being one chapter. And it's longer than usual which only means that the awkwardness is prolonged… yeah, I wasn't really thinking. I personally enjoyed writing this chapter though. Mainly because I got to make Astrid all paranoid and hyperactive and insecure, you know, to have something to check off my 'make-characters-out-of-character' list of things to do.
Also, I can't remember if I've officially thanked you guys or not... but either way... thanks to all my reviewers for 600+ reviews!
Astrid felt a tug towards waking, but she fought against it, trying to cling to the remnants of her dream. Someone was playing with her hair. But who?
Her eyes opened slightly when she realized that it was not in the dream.
She sat straight up, staring down at him. His hand dropped to his side.
He seemed asleep.
He opened one eye to look at her.
"You're awake," he said.
"Yes—how long have you been?"
"A few minutes," he said, shifting as he tried to sit up. He froze as he did so, looking uncertain suddenly.
"Hiccup," Astrid began.
She moved back a little when Hiccup suddenly threw the blankets open, looking down the length of his body. After a few moments he leaned back, resting his head on the headboard as he looked at the canopy.
"Hiccup," she repeated, "Are you—are you okay?"
He did not respond.
She reached out to take his hand but hesitated. Should she leave?
"I'm not surprised," he said finally.
She did not say anything. She only sat there. "Hiccup," she began, quietly.
"Are you just going to say my name again and again?" he asked, still not looking at her. His eyes were transfixed by the overhanging fabric.
She let out a little breath. "No," she said. "I just don't know what to say."
"Neither do I," he said.
She reached out and took his hand. His hand moved slightly, before stilling. "Hiccup," she said, "I… I'm sorry about your leg."
He did not say anything. He continued to stare up at the canopy for what seemed like minutes; long, slow minutes that only reminded her of the fact that Hiccup was missing a foot. What must be going through his mind? How is he making sense of this?
She wanted to say something, but did not know what to say, so she stayed quiet.
Her hand began to ache but she refused to let go of Hiccup's. But did he want her to hold onto his hand? He did move away a little when she reached for him. Perhaps he did not even want her to be here. Did he want time alone?
Should she just leave? But she did not want to leave him alone. She glanced down at his missing foot, and then quickly back to his face.
He was still staring upwards.
She wanted to say something. Anything. And her hand was itching to move.
But she would not let go of his.
She bit her lip. The mood of the room was visibly plummeting and she was not sure what to do for it to not hit rock bottom. "If you lose a hand you'll match Gobber," she tried pleasantly.
He looked at her then, his eyebrows twitching as he regarded her, his expression somewhat unbelieving, as if he did not think he quite heard her.
She let go of his hand and rubbed her temple. "I didn't mean that," she said, "I just… I should go," she stood up and moved towards the door.
"Astrid," he said, "Don't go."
She stopped and turned.
"Humor was never really your thing," he said, "But I appreciate the effort."
She smiled and sat back down.
"Besides," he said, "I could use the company."
She took his hand again. "So could I," she said softly.
He snorted slightly, "Why do you need the company?"
She drew her hand away slightly, before returning it to its position on top of his. "Because I'm your fiancé, and I love you, and when you're in pain I'm in pain," she said, feeling stung.
He glanced at her, looking a little apologetic. "Sorry," he said.
"It's alright," she said, "It's understandable."
"It's just…" he leaned back again, "I can't believe…."
"Then don't think about it," she said.
He did not say anything. She wondered if perhaps she said the wrong thing.
"Hiccup," she said, "I love you."
He glanced at her. "I could do without the fighting," he said.
She pursed her lips. This was harder than she thought it would be. "I could do without the fighting as well." And then, when he did not respond, "We do seem to fight a lot, don't we?"
"Yeah," he said, a wry smile on his face now, "I blame you."
She forced herself to not get irritated. "I suppose it is my fault most of the time."
"That or I'm just easy to fight with," he said.
"That too," she said.
They sat in silence for a while, and Astrid began to wish that she had brought her embroidery with her. But then she would have to let go of his hand. At least it would give her something to do.
"Well," she said, looking around, "At least I got to see your room."
He looked at her, surprised, "What?"
"Your room, at least I get to see where you sleep each night," she said.
"Oh yeah," he said, "I forgot that you were in here."
She raised an eyebrow.
"I mean I forgot that we were both in my bedroom," he said. "Although I don't quite like this room very much. I prefer my own room—back at Wyndcliffe."
"Oh," he glanced at her again, "Our permanent home. In the north. Where we train dragons."
"Oh," she said, "I suppose I'll have to visit Wyndcliffe some time."
"We'll be living there, so yes," Hiccup said.
She smiled. "When we travel back to Ervenshire I'll show you my room," she said.
He glanced at her, raising an eyebrow. "Before we're married?" he asked.
"No one has to know," she said, "Besides, I'm in here," she glanced around the room again. "Aren't you curious about the room I grew up in?"
"Very," he said, smiling at her. "I…" he trailed off, his face looking troubled.
"What's the matter?" she asked, worried.
"Nothing I just… forgot for a moment." He moved his left leg and winced.
"Does it still hurt?" she asked.
He gave her a lidded look. "No," he said slowly, as if speaking to a child, "Getting your foot chopped off feels as wonderful and dandy as a bag of sweets."
She sighed, returning his look. "I was just curious," she said, "You did forget about it."
"Just because I forgot about it doesn't mean it's not still painful," he said. "I just forgot it was missing."
She glanced down to his legs. It looked swollen. Suddenly Hiccup threw the blankets back over himself. Startled she looked back to him. He was not looking at her.
"It's not…" she began.
"I remember how you looked at Gobber," he said.
She let out another sigh. "I don't mind," she said, "Really. It doesn't bother me."
He gave her a look.
"It's true," she said. "I'm just happy you're alive. Mr. Whyte could have done worse than ruin your foot."
"I suppose that's true," he said. "I could've won, you know. If he didn't…" he trailed off.
She squeezed his hand hard, "Promise me you'll not pursue anything," she said, "Just drop it. Besides, Mr. Whyte is pretty badly injured. By Toothless."
Hiccup grinned, "Good boy."
"See?" she said, "It's going to be okay."
"I know that," he said. He adjusted his hand so he could squeeze hers. "I'm just glad you're here."
"I'm glad I'm here as well. Your father was here yesterday. He almost didn't let me see you," she added.
"Ah, yes," he said, "I can imagine."
"When do you think he'll warm up to me?" she asked, trying not to sound too invested in the question.
"Well, you did…" Hiccup trailed off. "Well," he continued, "You can at least imagine why he's isn't that fond of you."
"I suppose I could," she said drily, "But I don't see how he thinks it's all my fault. What's happened. When we broke up, I mean." There was no point in pretending that the recent events were not her fault.
"You can't blame him for being biased. But don't worry, he'll warm up to you. He'll have to," he added, "It's not like I'm going to marry someone else."
"I should hope not," she chuckled.
"Besides, he wants grandchildren so he'll probably forget everything that's happened after we start giving him some."
Astrid smiled at him, glad that Hiccup was finally taking his mind off his foot. "And we will," she said, "Probably lots. Since that seems to run in your generation of your family."
"And I doubt Camicazi and Somerset will stop anytime soon," he said.
She chuckled again, "I doubt it too. Maybe I'll bring Elizabeth in here. She always cheers me up whenever I see her. I can't stay upset when I hold a baby in my arms."
"Me either," he said.
She glanced down at her hands. When would she bring Elizabeth… she would have to find the time and…
Her eyebrows furrowed.
Toothless would probably have the safe effect that an infant would. And Toothless must be so worried about Hiccup as well. After all, he can't possibly know that Hiccup is okay. They took him away too quickly.
"Toothless," Astrid said, "He must be so worried!"
"That's true," Hiccup said.
Astrid let go of Hiccup's hand, standing up.
"What are you doing?"
"To get Toothless," she said.
"You can't bring him in here," Hiccup said, "Somerset doesn't allow dragons inside the manor, except for little ones."
"Well you can't exactly walk out of here and let him know you're okay," she said, crossing her arms.
He looked as if she slapped him.
"I'm sorry," she gushed, rushing forward, "I didn't mean it like that."
"It's okay," he said, sounding beaten.
"I'll be back. With Toothless. I'll find a way to get him in here somehow."
The windows were too small, she thought as she left the room and headed towards an exit to the building. She would have to sneak him in. But how? A servant would definitely notice. No, that was it! She would sneak Toothless through the back, and somehow make it to the guest wing. Hopefully without Lord Somerset noticing.
It took her a few minutes to get outside and to the stables. She quickly walked over to Toothless's stall, stopping once to give Stormfly a quick pat.
"Toothless," she called, opening the gate to his stall.
The dragon perked up at her voice, turning and eagerly approaching her. He nudged her middle, and she gave him a soft rub on his jaw. "Do you want to see Hiccup?" she asked.
He gave a sad little whine and shifted slightly so she could see his back leg.
It was chained.
"Oh dear," she said. This was going to be harder than she thought. Who would have the key? Lord Haddock? No… Lord Somerset. "I'll be back," she said, "I have to find the key. Then we'll go see Hiccup."
He nudged her middle again and she smiled, giving him another rub. "I'll be back," she said, turning and closing the stall gate. She had to find Lord Somerset.
It was not hard to find him. He was conversing with Lord Haddock in their seemingly favorite parlor. "Lord Somerset," she curtsied.
Both he and Lord Haddock rose and bowed, and she gave them a smile, hoping she did not sound too urgent. "I was wondering if I could—"
"Is Hiccup awake?" Lord Haddock asked, still standing.
She looked at him, "Why—yes…" she said slowly.
"Good," Lord Haddock said, taking a step towards the door, "I'll visit him, if you don't mind, Henry."
"Actually," Astrid said, stepping in-between Lord Haddock and the door, "He doesn't want to see anyone."
Lord Haddock raised an eyebrow at her.
"He told me," she said. "That's why I left."
"Well, someone should bring him breakfast, at least. Don't want the boy to starve," Lord Somerset said.
"Indeed," Lord Haddock said, still looking intently at her. She fought to not waver. She wondered if he could read her bluff. But why would she lie about something like this? "Then I will wait a few hours."
"Good," Astrid said, trying not to make it obvious that she was exhaling softly in relief. Lord Haddock sat back down.
"Astrid, will you be a good gal and tell the kitchens to prepare breakfast for him?" Lord Somerset asked.
"Of course," Astrid said, "But I have something important to ask you—"
"More important than your fiancé's health?" Lord Somerset asked, and this time it was he who raised an eyebrow.
She bit her lip as she looked at him. "Very well," she said, "I'll go tell the kitchens and then be back."
"I look forward to hearing what you have to say," Lord Somerset said pleasantly as she turned and stiffly walked out of the room.
She ran to the kitchens, gaining stares from the servants. "I—" she looked around. It was not her first time in the kitchens. She often came down to get food for either herself or the children. Some of them, particularly Granville, were banned from the kitchens and she would have to go herself. That is, if a servant was not around to go for her. "Mr. Haddock will be needing breakfast," she said, "Served to his room. As soon as possible," she added.
"What does he want?" a young man asked who was standing closest to her.
"Oh, that's—" She took a deep breath, trying to regain a calm appearance, when she realized she had no idea what Hiccup would want. She had no idea what kind of food he liked. "Just… something regular," she said, "Really, I'm much too busy to decide," she then turned and hurried out, running back to the parlor. She stopped short of the door, taking in deep breaths, straightening her dress, which she just now realized was the same dress she wore yesterday, and walked in.
Lord Haddock and Lord Somerset looked at her in surprise.
"Back already?" Lord Somerset asked. "My, that was quick."
"What did you order for him?" Lord Haddock asked.
"I don't know," she said, "I did not stay that long."
Lord Haddock cocked his eyebrow again, "Just as long as it is not porridge. He hates porridge."
Astrid gazed at him for a few moments before nodding, turning, and heading out of the room once again in pursuit of the kitchens.
"No porridge," she told the manservant when she reached her destination.
"No porridge?" he asked.
"No porridge!" she exclaimed. "He hates it! You would think I would know that—I'm his fiancé… but I don't… so no porridge!"
The man stared at her. "No porridge then," he said.
She let out a breath. "Thank you," she said quietly, before leaving the kitchens and heading back towards the parlor.
When she arrived she found that only one person was in the room. And that person was neither Lord Haddock nor Lord Somerset.
"Where are they?" she asked the servant, her voice higher pitched than she anticipated. "Where is Lord Somerset?"
The maid turned and curtsied. "I think they went hunting, Miss Hofferson," she said.
"Hunting?" Hunting? Astrid turned and walked out of the parlor, panic and then anger rising in her. Why would they go hunting when they knew she needed to speak to them? Of course, it was just like Lord Somerset to forget about it… but Lord Haddock? He did this on purpose.
But how would she find them?
By air, she thought determinately. She headed for the stables. When she arrived she walked over to Toothless's stall. "I'll be right back," she told him. Then she headed for Stormfly. "No time for a saddle," she told her, opening the stall and waiting for the dragon to walk out. The dragon gave her a loving nuzzle and Astrid smiled. "It's been a long time," she said, climbing onto her back, trying not to think about the fact that in her regular dress it rode up and exposed her legs. They walked out into the open air and Astrid nudged her into flight.
Once in the air she looked around desperately, trying to cover as much ground as possible. She could not see them anywhere. Their favorite prey was fowl… and for that they would most likely need to be in the fields.
This was the only place she could search for them by air, she thought, since she can't see below the trees.
After approximately ten minutes of searching, she found them. She swooped down and made a quick landing in front of them.
"Why Astrid," Lord Somerset exclaimed when she dismounted Stormfly and walked over to her, "What if we had thought you a bird and shot you down?"
She did not know what to say to that. She had not considered the possibility. "I… I need to speak to you," she said, "I need the key. To Toothless."
Lord Somerset looked at her, still looking startled, "To Toothless? Why… whatever for?"
"Hiccup asked me to ride him, since he can't," she said.
"He asked you this?" Lord Haddock asked, giving her a cool look.
"Yes," she said through gritted teeth, "Right before I left him."
"Well, if all you needed was the key then," Lord Somerset reached into his breast pocket and took out the key. "I was just holding onto it for Camicazi. She usually deals with the dragons. But that dragon was being so feisty yesterday I had to chain him—otherwise he might have rampaged through the manor. Or off hunting Whyte. But if you want to take him for a ride—that would get his mind off his rider. You should have just asked from the beginning," he told her as he handed her the key.
She resisted glaring at him as she snatched the key away from him. "Apparently so," she said tartly, "Well, I need to be off. Toothless really needs a ride." She climbed back onto Stormfly and the dragon took off into the air, heading back to the stables.
When she arrived she could feel her panic rising in her again.
How long has it been since she left Hiccup?
Would he think she abandoned him?
What if… What if he was losing faith in her?
She had to get Toothless to him as soon as possible.
She leapt off Stormfly and pushed the girl back into her stall. "Stay here," she said, closing the gate. She hurried over to Toothless's stall, opening the gate and walking in. "Hi boy," she said, "I got the key." She knelt down and quickly turned the lock. Toothless gave an appreciative noise when the shackle fell off his leg. He bounded out of the stall so quickly that she fell backwards and into the stall wall.
Stunned for a moment by the pain of knocking her head, she slowly stood back up. Toothless appeared at the gate, giving her an urgent look.
"Right, right," she said, hurrying forward. She climbed onto his back, noting for a moment the last time she rode him. That was the first time she ever rode a dragon. But he was in motion now and she barely had any time to grab onto him to keep herself from falling off.
"This way!" she called, trying to steer him towards the back of the manor. But he was heading full throttle towards the front. She realized now the insanity of riding him without a saddle. She had no way of controlling him, and she did not have the bond Hiccup had with Toothless.
"This way!" she called again, leaning towards the left. Too far to the left.
She let out a shriek as she slipped off and onto the ground.
She rolled for a little bit, spitting out grass and dirt as she stopped moving. After a few moments she could feel something nudging her softly. She opened her eyes to see Toothless standing above her. "This way," she said, pointing to the servant's entrance.
She sat up, rubbing her nose. It stung. She looked down at her hand to see that there was blood on it. Great, she thought. She stood up, feeling sore. Her dress was torn and there were green smudge marks everywhere. It was ruined.
"Come on," she said, "We're wasting time." She did not get back on him. At this rate she would just walk.
When they reached the entrance she opened the door, peeking in to make sure that there was no one that would see that she was entering with a dragon. "All clear," she told Toothless, walking in. Toothless was not far behind.
She was glad now that Lord Haddock and Lord Somerset were out hunting. It took away the pressure of them seeing her with Toothless inside the manor.
They reached the hallway and Astrid quickly led Toothless down it.
She heard the something crash to the floor, and, spinning around, saw it was a vase. "Toothless!" she exclaimed, "You have to be careful," she said, bending down to pick up the broken pieces. There were too many for her to pick up. "I'll just leave it," she said. "Servants come by here all the time."
She began walking again, Toothless huddled behind her. "This way," she said, directing him to the right. They were almost to the stairs. And…
She heard a scream and a crash, and turned.
A maid was staring at them, her mouth open, dumbstruck.
"Ah," Astrid began, "This is—on your way!" she instructed, "Go! Shoo! Just…" she waved her hand in front of her face, "Go back to work! Nothing to see here."
The maid did not move.
Astrid walked over to her and took her by the shoulders, "He's not going to hurt you, just leave, now."
The maid nodded slowly and turned, walking down the hallway stiffly.
"There," Astrid told Toothless. He gave her a long look. "Right," she said, turning back, "And please don't tell—" the maid was gone. Astrid scowled. There was no time to go look for the maid and ensure that she would not tell anyone what she saw.
"Let's go," she said, motioning for Toothless to follow her. They were nearly to the stairs and—
She spun around, pushing Toothless towards a door. She opened it and Toothless tried to enter—but he was too wide. His wings would not fit in. "This way," she said in a loud whisper, leading him down the hall and around the corner. She shushed him and waited as the footsteps grew louder and louder.
A man, in servant's gear, walked by. She flattened herself against the wall. Not that it did much good, she thought, Toothless took up most of the hall.
The man, thankfully, walked right by without noticing a girl and a dragon in the adjacent hall.
She let out a long breath of air that she did not realize she had been holding in. "Come on," she said. They finally made it to the stairs. "Up here," she told him, and he dutifully followed her up the stairs. They were not far from the guest wing now. It was only a matter of time until they reached Hiccup's room.
"This way," Astrid said, down the hallway. They reached the guest wing. Astrid was breathing easier now. They were almost there. Hiccup and Toothless would be reunited. She finally did something right.
She knocked on the door.
She heard someone say enter.
Opening the door, she saw Hiccup sitting up in the bed, a try of food on his lap.
"Astrid," he said, shocked, "What happ—"
"Look who I brought," she said, cheerfully walking into the room, "Come in Toothless."
She waited a moment before turning. Toothless had not yet come in. He was looking bothered by something. "Come in Toothless," she said.
"I don't think he can fit," Hiccup said, "The door frame is too narrow."
"What?" Astrid asked sharply, "No… no that is impossible!" She rushed over, grabbing Toothless's head and trying to pull the dragon through the door. He inched forwards but then stopped moving.
Hiccup was right. He would not fit through the door frame.
She had anticipated that he would not fit through the window. She had not even considered that he may not fit through the door.
"That's fine. That's fine," she said, "We'll just make the door bigger, that's all. Come on Toothless," she said, grabbing the frame and pulling on it, "Let's just rip a few of these pieces out—come on Toothless!"
"Astrid," Hiccup said.
"No, I can do this," she pulled harder, "I just need Toothless to rip away at the walls and we'll definitely get him in here."
"Astrid," Hiccup said again, "Stop—"
"No," she pulled even harder, "I know I can do this. Toothless," she looked at the dragon as she put her full weight into pulling at the frame, "Use your claws to—"
She let out a yell as she suddenly let go, hitting the other side of the doorframe. After a few seconds she returned to grappling at the frame.
"Astrid, he's not going to—"
"I need to get him in there. I just need to—"
His yell echoed around the room and stopped her movements. She backed away from frame and sat down hard on the ground, leaning against the wall. Toothless poked his head through the door and looked between Hiccup and Astrid.
"Astrid, why is this so important to you?" Hiccup asked.
She covered her face with her hands.
She mumbled something that she knew he would not hear.
"I can't hear you," he said.
"I'm always…" she trailed off. She did not know if she could speak. Even thinking about it made her feel like she would cry. "This is all my fault," she said, quietly, "And I thought that maybe... maybe I could do something right. But I can't! I just can't do anything but mess everything up."
She heard the blankets move. She heard him shift, wince, mutter something and move. She heard him place the tray of food on the chair. She did not look up.
"Astrid," he said, "Please come over here."
She shook her head.
"Astrid," he said, sounding a little less patient, "Do you mind coming over here so I don't have to get out of bed on one foot?"
She winced this time. She pushed herself into a standing position and glumly walked over to where he was sitting. He had moved himself so his legs were hanging over the side of the bed.
"Sit," he said.
She sat next to him.
"Astrid, you're acting like a child," he said.
She bit her lip, willing herself not to cry.
"It's not all your fault," he said.
"Yes it is," she said, looking at him. "If I hadn't made up that stupid game with Mr. Whyte you wouldn't have had to fight him, and then you wouldn't have lost a foot."
"Well, you were mad at me for breaking up with you."
"Which was arguably my fault," she said.
He did not say anything for a few moments. "You know?" he said softly, "I'm tired of playing the blame game."
She felt him put an arm around her. She froze when he slowly kissed her temple.
"What was that for?" she asked, looking at him.
"For making me realize," he said, "How unimportant my foot is."
"What do you mean?" she asked, confused.
"Astrid," he said, "There's only one thing in this world I can't live without. And that's you."
She stared at him for a moment.
He opened his mouth to speak but she grabbed his face and pulled him into a kiss, moving closer towards him as she deepened it. She felt him place a hand on the small of her back, bringing her flush against him. His other hand seemed to move seamlessly from her hair to her neck to her waist and back up to her neck.
"Totally cliché," she said, out of breath, when they separated.
He shrugged, "Worth it."
She smiled at him.
"I'm so tired," he said, lying on his back. He pulled her down with him, taking the opportunity to lift his legs back onto the bed.
She snuggled up close to him, feeling the heat of his body and wishing they could just stay like this forever. "I hope Lord Somerset and your father don't visit anytime soon," she said.
"Can't agree more," he replied.
They lay in silence until Hiccup said, "What about Toothless?"
"Well, of course you can't live without Toothless," she said, "That's obvious."
"What?" she could feel him moving his head to look at her, "No, I mean—what are we going to do about Toothless?"
"Oh. Oh!" she propped herself up, looking at the door. Toothless was still standing there, watching them with an almost sheepish look on his face. "I forgot about him! I should probably get him back to the stables before Lord Somerset comes back."
Hiccup groaned, "I don't want you to leave again."
"Now who's acting like a child?" she asked playfully, flicking his nose.
He smiled at her, "Promise me you won't get hurt this time?"
"Hurt? Oh," Astrid touched her own nose, "I forgot about that. I fell off Toothless."
"You tried to ride him?"
"Yeah," she said, "I forget how hard it is to ride a dragon you haven't bonded with." Astrid rolled over to the other side of the bed and stood up, walking around the bed to Hiccup's side. She bent over and kissed his temple. "I'll be right back."
She said "I'll be back" or something similar a lot during this chapter.
I feel like that is a really awkward moment to end the chapter… but if I didn't stop somewhere I'd just keep rambling on and on forever. I'm horrible at writing romantic moments. It's probably why this story is sorely lacking in them. Also, I don't know when the term 'cliché' started to be used in a non printing press context. Whatever. I've broken enough laws of history with this fanfiction that a few more won't hurt.
After writing this chapter I realized I totally made an inadvertent homage to Brave. I considered having the children appear to help her through the mansion unseen (just like the triplets) but I didn't know what to do with them once they reached Hiccup's room, so I cut it out.
Also, Hiccup hasn't made a complete turnaround. He's still going to have to come to terms with losing a foot. This chapter was mainly for Astrid's benefit. So she would stop acting like a scolded child. Because that's always attractive in an adult.
Anyone else notice that all the characters in this story are OOC? Good. That's what I love about Alternate universe/story/time period/whathaveyou… I can make them as OOC as I want. Because, let's face it, this Astrid is almost completely different from movie Astrid. They share a name… that's about it.
I don't really have a question of the week since this chapter didn't really end with a cliff hanger. Besides, there won't be much drama (I'm going to go through withdrawal) in the next few chapters because the plot is really going to slow down. And it'll mainly focus on Hiccup recovering and Hiccup and Astrid growing closer together. Mushy stuff that I'm horrible at writing. So basically… it'll be pretty bad lol Hopefully not as badly written as this chapter was though…
Anyway, thanks for reading!