Soli Deo gloria

DISCLAIMER: I do NOT own HTTYD. Hey guys, it's the day after Christmas and I decided to make an HTTYD story, you know, to help bury the sadness! (Not a holiday themed story though, more like a completely random one.) FYI, acne sucks.

Ruffnut woke up in her bed and groaned. It was cloudy outside and she could hear her mother in the kitchen. This was bad. The morning had just started, and it was set to be a perfectly nice and quiet day.

Ruffnut hated quiet days.

With a groan, she sat up and stretched her arms and reached over to retrieve her helmet that was sitting on the post of her bed. She pulled on her boots and looked over to her left to see Tuffnut sleeping haphazardly on his bed. He was on his stomach and his arms were flailed out in all different directions, and he was snoring. Most unpleasant.

Even in the weird position he was in, however, he looked sort of calm, and peaceful. Ruffnut smirked as she stood up. How long was that going to last?

Without a word, she landed a punch on his back, making him instantly stiffen and squeal. Like a girl, Ruffnut proudly noted.

"Mornin', dragon breath!" she told her twin cheerfully as she raced down the wooden staircase that was attached to their loft. She smiled when she heard him groan miserably as he tried to find his helmet, which she had so cleverly hidden last night under his mattress. How could he not notice that?

Pounding down the rough staircase, she spotted her large mom standing over the fire, and a basket of rolls on the table. Ruffnut noted that her mom's back was to her. Dad was not up yet (something both Tuffnuts did, they slept in) and with that in mind, she went tiptoe and tried to sneak to the table.

She was about to grab a roll when she heard Mrs. Thorston say calmly in her accented voice, "Do't even try that. Goo and wash yer hands first, lassie."

Ruffnut slumped and sighed. She muttered gibberish under her breath as she trudged, back bent, over to the bucket of fresh water her mom supplied by the cupboards. Vikings were a dirty people, what was the point to wash one's hands when they're going to get dirty really, really quickly? Ruffnut thought as she tossed back her braids that were gathering in front of her shirt.

I mean, how much dirt could you collect when all you've done in the last nine hours was sleep on a wooden platform with a pillow and blanket? Ruffnut never really got the idea of keeping oneself clean. She wouldn't have done it if she didn't have to, but she of all people knew not to disobey Mrs. Thorston.

So with another exaggerated groan so that her mom could hear her, Ruffnut splashed the water all over her hands and lower arms. Once wet, she turned to the small table covered in rugs and rags and such that had a yellow jar sitting amongst the cloth. She wrinkled her nose when she noticed the flies circling the top of the open jar. Yay, she just loved scrubbing her hands down with animal fat.

With another sigh, she scooped a soft mound and rubbed it all over her hands, occasionally dipping them into the water to make bubbles. No one knew that she secretly found bubbles to be most fun.

Finally finished rinsing, she grabbed a random rag from the pile and dried her hands. Peering into the now sudsy water, she smiled at her reflection. Even though she just got out of bed, her braids wouldn't have to be re-made. Good. They took forever to braid.

While her hair was fine, there was something else on her face that made Ruffnut peer closer into the murky depths. Her face screwed into several different expressions as she looked closer. There was several little, pink bumps all along the edges of her forehead. Upon pushing her hair back more, there was more along the edges of her cheeks.

What the heck?

Ruffnut thought them to be freckles for a moment, something that practically every Viking in Berk had. They spent a lot of time outside, especially Hiccup. That would probably explain why he was practically brown, but freckles were BROWN, not PINK! Ruffnut groaned. Why pink? Pink was the most un-Viking like color ever! Why couldn't she had black bumps all over her face, or green?

She stood up straighter and touched her face with her fingers. A new question came to mind: WHY did she have little, pink bumps all over her face?

Ruffnut turned and said in a most worried voice, "Mom?"

Mrs. Thorston didn't even look up from her fire as she called back, "Yes?"

"What's this bumpy stuff I have all over my face?" Ruffnut asked.

Mrs. Thorston stood up straighter and turned to face Ruffnut. "Come here and let me look."

Ruffnut obeyed and Mrs. Thorston squinted as Ruffnut held her braids out of the way.

"Ach, I knew what that is," Mrs. Thorston said, turning back to stir the porridge.

Ruffnut stiffened and asked, "What is it?"

"It's called pinky bumps. Do't werry, it's normal for you ta get 'em," Mrs. Thorston explained in a nonchalant voice.

Ruffnut's eyes went wide. Her fingers hastily went back to examining her face as she asked hurriedly, "How did I get them?"

"Well, Ruffnut, it starts with hormones," Mrs. Thorston started.

Ruffnut immediately shrieked and pulled down her braids, trying to cover her ears and block out her mom's voice. A couple of years back, her mom and dad had taken her and Tuffnut aside separately and told them all about stuff like hormones. Needless to say, Ruffnut had gone green and Tuffnut was slightly more than sick. The last thing she needed to hear at the moment was hormones. "I can't hear you!"

At that moment, Tuffnut came clambering down the stairs, helmet bent on one side. He stretched his arms and finally stopped to see his mom cooking breakfast and his sister in the middle of a panic attack. "What happened now?" he said, sounding almost bored.

Now, the last thing Tuffnut needed to know was that she had pinky bumps. Before she calmed down enough to make things appear that everything was normal, however, her mom spoke up, "Your sister has pinky bumps."

Ruffnut stopped tugging on her braids and sank into a chair by the table, her arms folded, and promptly buried her face in them. Her teenage life from here on out was ruined. All the horror would come soon enough. Tuffnut would tease her mercilessly and once the other teens would find out...

Snotlout would be barely breathing from his laughter. Fishlegs would get all weird and stuff, asking questions about it. Did it hurt? When did it appear? Hiccup would stifle a smile, making her want to punch the smirk off his face and Astrid would go all girly mood, trying to make her feel better with not-so-comforting thoughts. Astrid tried, Ruffnut gave her that, but she wasn't the best motivational speaker.

She groaned even more. Why couldn't they just go from childhood to full blown Viking adults and not deal with this sort of humiliating, un-Viking like stuff? The world was so cruel.

Tuffnut, to her annoyance, sprang to life at her mom's announcement and shrieked, "You mean that lump braid has pink bumps all over her face?" He instantly smirked and took a seat next to her. "How humiliating."

Ruffnut looked up, her face now redder with anger, "Shut up, insect!"

She instantly regretted that, for Tuffnut shouted, "Wow, you do! You have them everywhere!"

Ruffnut planted her face back into her arms.

It had become sort of a habit for all the gang to go flying together in the late afternoon after everyone was done with their chores and Hiccup was done in the forge. Tuffnut went out to go get Barf and Belch, their Zippleback, while Ruffnut sat in a chair in the house. She had managed to brush and mangle her hair into a different hairstyle so that a braid now swept across her forehead. To her chagrin, it kept getting in her eyes.

All that morning and afternoon, she would go from brooding in the chair to the wash bucket where she would get a rag all wet and scrub her face with it. Her scrubbing only grew even more hurried when her mother said that the healer had nothing for pinky bumps. Of all the things to not have a cure for!

So, now she sat in the chair, arms folded, and brooded. She was trying to think of a clever way to get out of going flying. If she refused to go, the others would come and wonder WHY she hadn't come, and of course, secret revealed.

She certainly did want to go flying, for flying was one of her favorite things to do, to get away from the mundane everyday life that was the usual around Berk, but those winds were begging to shove her hair away and reveal her pinky bumps.

So she sat and brooded, having hidden herself all day in the house. She hoped if she stayed in the house long enough, the bumps would eventually go away, and if they didn't, everyone will have forgotten about the pinky bump ridden Ruffnut Thorston. She would just be a member of the family that Tuffnut would sometimes mention as being a recluse in their childhood home.

Adolescence sucks.

She heard a clambering on the front steps and Tuffnut burst in, immediately turning to his twin.

"Come on, pinky face, you have to come riding!" he ordered hurriedly.

She scowled at him and turned away.

"Come on, I can't control two heads at once!" he told her. Good, he would be as miserable as she was.

When she didn't answer, Tuffnut finally sighed and grabbed her arm and pulled her into a standing position. She instantly started protesting and tried to pry his hand off as he pulled her to the front door. With one hand trying to make him let go, she used the other to try to grab a part of the house to hold on to.

Her efforts were for naught, for he was able to get the door open and now tugged on her arm with both of his hands, giving him the advantage to pull her out of the house. She shrieked as he continued to pull her down the steps.

Some of their Viking neighbors were still about doing chores, and when they heard the two Thorston twins, they couldn't help but turn their heads and watch them. Fishlegs, Snotlout, Astrid and Hiccup were all gathered in the green grass, saddling up their dragons, and they too stared at them, confused expressions on their faces.

Normally Ruffnut didn't care what people thought, about her or anything else, but she couldn't help but growl quietly, "Tuffnut, you meathead, people are watching!"

"Maybe if you came on your own, I wouldn't have to do this!" Tuffnut pointed out, managing to get her down the second-to-last stone step.

"Maybe if you let go, I would come!" Ruffnut retorted, anxiously covering the front of her face with her helmet.

Tuffnut said in his monotonous voice, "Fine," and let go of her arm and let his hands fall to his sides. Ruffnut teetered for a moment before catching her balance. With a scowl, she leaned into his face, silently declaring a staring contest.

The two stood there for a moment, both pairs of eyes on each other, never looking away. Ruffnut had to squint in order for the water building up in her eyes to not leak out. Tuffnut, on the other hand, was just looking at her like he could go without blinking for ten minutes.

The water built up in Ruffnut's eyes and she finally turned away with a small cry of annoyance of being defeated. Tuffnut smirked and went down the hill on which their house was situated on. Ruffnut, with her hand holding her helmet on protectively, followed.

All the other teens were already saddled and ready to go on their dragons. Hiccup was saying something to Astrid before he turned to watch the twins board their Zippleback.

"Hey, Ruffnut, why didn't you want to come out?" the fishbone wondered as she boarded the head known as Barf with a scowl on her face.

"She woke up on the wrong side of the bed, duh," Tuffnut responded in a voice that sounded like he was surprised that Hiccup didn't know that. Ruffnut looked at her twin and for the first time that day, smiled. Sometimes he was nice, like this time when he doesn't go and blurt to the world his sister has pinky bumps.

Ruffnut leaned over Barf's head, her hands clasping the rope around his neck tightly. She watched as Hiccup crouched and shot into the air with Toothless, making everyone copy. Maybe she might enjoy this ride.

The six teens floated into the cool air, rising through the clouds. Seeing how it was still late afternoon, the sun was just barely starting to descend. They still had an hour of light left. Ruffnut hoped that the light wouldn't show her pinky bumps.

The group flew through the cool mist, their dragons' wings pounding furiously. Since Ruff was on a head, hers was a more interesting ride than the others'. Whilst everyone else (except Tuffnut) was seated on the comfort of a dragon's back, she was perched somewhat precariously on a head that seemed to twist and turn much more than Tuffnut's did. She held on all the tighter as they dove down, hoping that her helmet wouldn't fall off, for both hands were currently keeping her from flailing around.

They swooped back up again as one unit and then went down again. It was at that point where Ruffnut decided to throw caution out the window. She slowly let her hands release the rope and they went up, the wind pushing them higher as they flew down fast. She shrieked from the thrill, her hair flying about and her helmet shaking. She closed her eyes and trusted Tuffnut to guide the Zippleback as she soaked in all the daredevil feel that she was addicted to.

Thing is, she couldn't see Astrid and Hiccup quickly taking a look around at the other Vikings, and they both stopped to stare at her. Her blonde hair was blown up, revealing her forehead, now the top of her face nearly covered in pinky bumps. Boyfriend and girlfriend exchanged one quick look before looking back to steer their dragons.

The dive was done when five of the teens steered their dragons slightly up, making them almost glide as they skimmed the ocean's surface. Ruffnut sighed happily and opened her eyes. Only then did she notice her hair blown out. One hand on the reins, she hastily brushed her hair to cover her forehead. Once done, she looked around to see if any of the other teens had seen that. Upon noticing that they were all staring on ahead, she let out a little breath and focused on controlling Barf.

They made it back to Berk by the time the pink and orange light of the sunset was showing. Ruffnut had to admit, even though Berk wasn't exactly pretty at all, they had some amazing sunsets.

They swooped down and made their landings, as clean and smooth as could be. Ruffnut untied herself and jumped down from Barf's head, only to look up to see Astrid quickly approaching her. The other teen girl immediately pointed a finger at her forehead and asked, "What's that your face?"

Ruffnut scowled and backed away, trying not to have Astrid in her face. Astrid didn't always have pretty breath. The Thorston, her eyes still on Astrid, hastily pushed her helmet back toward her forehead as she said, "There's nothing on my face."

Astrid sighed and said in a slightly softer voice, "Yes, there is. Under your helmet. What is it, Ruffnut?"

Ruffnut looked behind Astrid, causing Astrid to look back to see the four boys staring at them. Ruffnut cringed and yanked her helmet, her only protection and friend at this point, and said, "I can't tell you!"

"Why not?" Astrid wondered. Now, of course, the four boys joined them and looked from both girl to girl. Ruffnut gave them a really? look. She thought that boys weren't interested in this kind of stuff.

But, of course, these were the boys she grew up with. They weren't exactly 'normal'.

Groaning, she yanked off her helmet with one hand and smoothed back her rough hair to reveal her pinky bumps. To her horror, all five leaned forward to get a better look. She expected something, anything. These were the kids she knew to be an awful teasing crowd, at least Tuffnut and Snotlout were.

They weren't speaking; maybe they were having pity on her.

She sighed and smoothed her hair back as she replaced her helmet. Here would come the gauntlet.

To her absolute surprise, Snotlout shrugged and walked on back to his house, beckoning Hookfang to follow him. Fishlegs cocked his head to the side to get a better look but then shrugged as well as he said in his Fishlegs voice, "Interesting. You need to wash your face more."

Ruffnut scowled. Just because she WAS a Viking didn't mean she didn't have personal hygiene. Oi, one moment she doesn't care what she looked like as long as she looked like a Viking, and now her care and keeping of herself is getting questioned and she was feeling insulted.

Fishlegs has some nerve.

Her face darkened, causing Fishlegs to cringe and walk away, pattering away on the street and not even lifting his legs. Hiccup shrugged and he and Toothless and Meatlug went on in the direction Fishlegs had gone.

Tuffnut looked from them to his sister and turned to take care of their dragon. After all, what was more interesting, interacting with his favorite animal, or watching people leave? Honestly? He left Astrid with one arm around Stormfly's neck, and her other wrapped around Ruffnut's shoulder, pulling her into a friendly hug.

Ruffnut scowled and ducked out of her grip. Astrid smiled at her and said, "You know, it really doesn't look that bad."

Ruffnut had been looking at her with an annoyed look, but now her face melted into a tiny smile and she said, "Really?"

"Yeah," Astrid said, "I mean, you can barely see it." Ruffnut let out a breath. Astrid continued, "You were worried about what they were going to say, weren't you?"

Ruffnut scoffed, half-smiling, "A bit."

"Hey, does it really matter what they or anyone else thinks? Pinky bumps are normal, Ruffnut," Astrid smiled. Her smile disappeared, however, when she leaned over toward Ruffnut and whispered, "Can you keep a secret?"

Ruffnut, slightly confused, nodded. Astrid never had secrets! When they were younger and away from all the weird boys they now hung out with, Ruffnut would tell Astrid so many different secrets (which were, as she now realized, mostly rumors and exaggerated truths), but Astrid never had any. She wore everything out on her sleeves. Astrid Hofferson was not a mysterious person, or so Ruffnut thought.

Astrid let her arm on Stormfly slip, and she quickly looked all about before she took a breath and tugged her hairband off. Once her bangs had fallen all over her face, she smoothed them back, revealing a dark mark above her eyebrow. Ruffnut squinted as she stated, "It's a scar."

"I know," Astrid said.

Ruffnut straightened and grinned. "You never told me you had a scar before!"

"That's because I'm not proud of how I got it," Astrid explained.

"How did you get it?" Ruffnut wondered.

Astrid sighed to herself as she let her hair fall back. "When I was littler, I decided that my bangs needed cutting, so I tried to trim them with a knife from the house but, as you can see, I missed."

Ruffnut's face screwed into that of confusion. "Why are you telling me this?"

"Because, Ruffnut, sometimes people have stuff they don't want other people to see, like your pinky bumps and my stupid scar. A while back, I decided that it was stupid for me to cover something about me up, and so I showed Hiccup my scar and told him how I got it."

"How did he react?" Ruffnut asked.

"He said it looked cute. Of course, he was just being Hiccup, but letting someone know made me feel better about it," Astrid explained, as if it was the simplest thing in the world.

Ruffnut nodded slowly. Astrid was making a bit of sense here. There was one question she wanted an answer to, though.

"If you don't want to hide it, why do you still wear your hairband?"

Astrid grinned. "Because I'm used to wearing it, and if I suddenly just take it off, people will want to know why and I can't just say, 'Oh, because I want to show off my scar,'" Astrid laughed, giving Ruffnut a playful punch in the shoulder. She then grew serious and said, "Believe me, Ruff, if you just try to not draw attention to it, people will ignore your pinky bumps."

Ruffnut smiled a little smile. Hopefully, Astrid would be right about that. She could hardly stand living in the house all live long day the rest of her life.

"Why don't you think the boys weren't teasing me about it?" Ruffnut asked as the three started back into the village.

"I think it was because they knew that it could happen to them too, at any time," Astrid smiled. She leaned toward Ruffnut again as she whispered, "I think Snotlout might have some on his chin!"

"Really? No way!" Ruffnut said, bordering on sarcastic humor as she once again donned her Ruffnut Thorston, Tuffnut's twin sister and mischief achiever persona.

"Yes way!" Astrid squealed, and the two walked together closely, exchanging giggles only excited teenage girls could do, as the sun set behind them. Ruffnut decided that right then and there, anyone who insulted her pinky bumps would get what was coming to him. Astrid agreed wholeheartedly.

Wow. I got a recent bout of the stuff last month and I loath it with a burning passion. Just sayin'. I decided that Vikings would never have named acne acne, so I made up a phrase for them to use. And . . . it's a few minutes after the 26th, but that's okay! Please leave a review? :3