Hey all. Here is the sequel to How to Protect a Dragon Conqueror, How to Court a Dragon Prince. Hiccup's in enemy territory with the Scots, thought not out of choice. The next few chapters will reveal how he got to this point.

Elmo daHorse- I couldn't agree more, :D. It was an Outcast keel, so it will live.

Stratoc- Yes, Alvin will be back. And Outcasts aren't the only ones who threaten Hiccup. I wanted that emotional reconciliation because I wrote on plenty of Adult Fear.

Doomsday Beam- Thank you! Hope you enjoy this sequel.

johnnylee619- Yes there is. Here it is. :)

live laugh play music- Thank you!

This is sunrise. Farmers prod frozen sheep to dew-kissed pastures and grapple with grass to plans their cabbages. No matter where you sleep, prison cell or a palace, the gods always sling the flaming light across the sky. Its rays scorch your eyes if you look directly and cast shadows over familiar objects. And if you live in a particular place, its presence spurs certain people awaken to steal clothing.

That's what had happened to me, Hiccup, Berk's Dragon Trainer and Stoick the Vast's son. To pass the hours before breakfast, I had peeled off foreign silk garments to work with metal and fire. The castle smithy was a wood-lined basement and a metal trapdoor. My dragon, Toothless, curled next to the coals like a salamander. He rubbed his back and warbled.

Sunlight invaded the strange room. So did three invaders. I looked up and saw tiny hands grasping at the silk. Toothless spat fire at the hands. Their curly-headed owner giggled and dodged. Striped tunics and nightcaps fluttered.

"Toothless, knock it off," I said. "Let them have their fun."

Toothless scanned me from head to toe. His eyes held an obvious question.

"Rules number one of being a blacksmith," I recited, reaching, "is always carry a spare . . ." My voice trailed off. Only air and dust remained where I had hung an extra tunic. "Boys!"

More giggling. I faced the sound.

"Look, once is funny, but I want to make a good impression on your parents. I can't exactly do that if I'm half-naked." I gestured.

That was a mistake. Eyes bulged from their hiding place. Too late, I tried to cover myself. Curse this sunlight!

The boys crawled out. Identical triplets, all with curly hair. Their gazes met at the same coil of bruises around my chest which trailed from shoulders to the back. Silk dropped to the floor.

"Where?" The one on the left asked.

"Not telling," I said bluntly.

"Who?" The middle triplet asked.

"A bad man." Not the one whose slit throat and laugh haunted my nightmares, but bad nevertheless.

"Why?" This was the third triplet.

"Because I'm important." My voice was sarcastic.

We locked eyes. It was like peering into three pairs of emerald mirrors. Not for the first time, I asked myself, Why am I here? How am I safer in a Scottish castle with royal monsters than in the Archipelago?

Breakfast bell. The left triplet pulled open a trapdoor; he and his brothers vanished. Toothless growled at the dust.

I gathered the silk shirts in a wrinkled wad. The bruises throbbed against the silk. Why am I here?