"Hiccup! Hurry it up! Get the signs to the temple, now!" shouted Gobber as he, Sandy, and Gothi headed towards Drago.
"But how am I supposed to set them up?" Hiccup shouted back.
"Your girlfriend was on the right track!"
"She is not my girlfriend!"
"Seriously? Now is not the time to be arguing your relationship status!" exclaimed Astrid. But Hiccup had already turned to Merida, wondering about the more important issue at hand.
"What right track?" Merida glanced at him quizzically, but her eyes widened in realization.
"There has to be people holding the signs!"
"Yeah, but which people?" asked Eret.
"Well, Hiccup's one," replied Merida.
Hiccup gasped, "I know. Merida, Astrid, Eret, Ruffnut, MacIntosh, you're with me! Snotlout, Fishlegs, Tuffnut, Dingwall, and McGuffin, I need you to cover us! We're going to have to make this quick!"
"Right!" came the unanimous reply. The teens split up, Snotlout's group steered their dragons towards Drago's army, while Hiccup's group went in low towards the temple.
"Stop them!" shouted Drago. Several of his men aimed for Hiccup's group, but Snotlout's group swooped in and engaged them in battle. "No! Stop them, you fools! Stop them! Ah!" Drago and his dragon were sent flying by one of Gothi's dragon's fireballs.
"Give it up, Drago, the prophecy states that we shall win," announced Gobber.
"Never! The Alpha shall awaken, and all dragons will belong to me!"
"Nope, not gonna happen," stated Gobber before he, Sandy, and Gothi re-engaged Drago in battle, primarily to keep him from getting to the temple. Meanwhile, Hiccup's group was making their way to the center of the temple. Hiccup's face was grim as he opened a pouch on his belt and handed out the six signs.
"Hiccup?" asked Merida.
"We, we have to stand around the stone and the tree with the signs." He glanced at each one with sorrow, "I don't know if we'll even make it out alive. If I could do this by myself, I would, but, I need your help."
"You know we're here for you, right?" asked Eret, placing a reassuring hand on Hiccup's shoulder.
"We're in this together, Hiccup, for good or bad," remarked Merida.
"But, if we don't make it . . ."
"If we do make it, Merida officially becomes your girlfriend, you go out with her, no excuses, got it?" blurted Ruffnut.
MacIntosh eyed her, "You wanna help me make sure of that?"
"I like that idea."
"Ugh, let's just make it a triple date and be done with it! We've got to save the world first!"
"Astrid's right, and according to the poem, Fire stands between Earth and Lightning, Air is in between Lightning and Water, and Ice is in between Water and Earth." As he spoke, he situated each person in a place around the tree and the stone before taking his place between Merida and Eret.
"Uh, isn't something supposed to happen?" asked Ruffnut.
"Uh, yeah, I don't know what's wrong, I know I have everyone positioned correctly, Ice, Earth, and Fire are supposed to be in front of the stone, and Air, Water, and Lightning are in front of the tree. Maybe we're too far back? Everyone, take a step forward." Everyone did, and waited a bit longer, the temple trembling with the rising alpha. "OK, another step."
"Uh, Hiccup, I don't . . . ah!"
"Merida!" Merida was engulfed in flames, but before Hiccup could take a step towards her, each of the other five was quickly enveloped in their elements. "H-hold on, just a bit longer!" shouted Hiccup, though he wasn't sure if anyone heard him. He had to think fast, the elements weren't going to harm them, at least, not yet, not while they held the signs. He closed his eyes and calmed himself down, there was a way, there had to be, something was nagging at his brain, begging him to remember. His eyes snapped open, that was it! He glanced down at his hand, it was outstretched, aiming the sign up, in the wrong direction! Hiccup held the sign firmly but gently and moved his hand to make the sign face the stone, the wall of earth moving with it, encircling his hand rather than his whole body. "Everybody, aim your sign towards the tree and the stone!" One by one, the signs were adjusted, and everyone aimed their signs towards the stone and the tree. The rumbling continued, but this time, the tree grew while the stone shrunk.
"I-I think it's working!" exclaimed MacIntosh.
"You bet it is!" grinned Eret. Hiccup let out a laugh, a laugh that ended in a yelp as the sign flew from his hand. The other signs soon followed, disappearing into the tree. The six stood there for a few minutes before realizing that the rumbling had stopped.
"We, we did it," began Astrid.
"We did, we did it! We won!" exclaimed Merida as she jumped for joy. There were handshakes, high fives, and hugs all around. When Hiccup got to Merida, he picked her up and spun around. When he put her down, he leaned in, only to be interrupted by someone clearing his throat. The six looked towards the entrance of the temple, there stood Gobber, the witches, and their friends. Gothi picked up her cane and pointed at something. Hiccup looked at the tree, there hung a lone dragon fruit. Hiccup went and plucked it before turning around and walking towards the Dragon Masters to give it to Gothi. Sandy took it from him, and cut it into seven pieces with a pocket knife. She and Gothi handed out six of the pieces to the six holders before Gobber took the last piece and squeezed it over the stone. After the six holders ate the dragon fruit, the three ushered the teens out of the temple and towards the doorway.
"Wait, we're leaving, now?" Hiccup asked incredulously. "We just got here! What about Drago? And there's so much I want to know, there's . . ." Gothi stopped him and beckoned him to kneel. Hiccup knelt, and she dipped her finger in a bottle before placing a sign on Hiccup's forehead with the thick liquid.
"What's that?" asked Snotlout.
Gobber explained, "Gothi has marked Hiccup with the sign of the dragon master, it's official now, he's one of us. And, if he ever wants to visit, he'll know how to find us. But, you guys do need to go now, the portal between our worlds can only stay open for so long."
"I thought you controlled the portals?" asked Eret.
"Not all of them, especially now that we've put the Alpha back to sleep, it's taken a lot of magic to do it. We've already sent Drago and his men through, now it's your turn."
"And when exactly were you planning on telling us this?" asked Hiccup as he rose.
"Uh, just now."
Hiccup rolled his eyes, "Of course."
"Otherwise, it would be harder for you to say goodbye," remarked Sandy. The teens glanced at them in surprise before glancing towards the dragons.
"Yeah, that it would," muttered Eret sadly. They approached the dragons they had bonded with in a few days, and tearfully said their goodbyes before being rushed towards the portal by the Dragon Masters.
"What about you?" asked Hiccup.
"We need to stay here and get things back under control. Don't worry, we'll get back when we need to," remarked Sandy as she and Gothi began pushing them through.
"But can't I help?" asked Hiccup as he fought their pushing.
"Not this time. You may be an official Dragon Master, but there's still a lot you have to learn," replied Sandy as she and Gothi finally got him through.
"Remember, we'll contact Hiccup if we need your help, so stay close to him!" shouted Gobber as the portal closed between them. The teens just stood there for several minutes, staring at what used to be a doorway to another world, but now, there was nothing but trees. The wind blew through their hair, the rustling of the trees seemingly shaking them out of their stupor.
"It's, it's over, it's finally over," muttered Eret.
"Then why do I wish it wasn't?" Fishlegs mumbled as he glanced down. The others glanced down, all seemingly feeling the same. It was Hiccup who broke them out of it fully.
Turning to face them, Hiccup spoke, "It is over, for now, only for now. You heard what Gobber said, when they need us again, they'll contact me."
"If they need us again," pointed out Astrid.
'Which could mean never again," grumbled Ruffnut.
"Yeah," agreed Tuffnut.
"How do we know that? They weren't sure either. Why else would they need a way to contact us?"
"Hiccup's got a point there," stated Fishlegs.
"But what now? Things will never be the same," remarked Eret.
"No, it won't, but our world hasn't changed, just us. Come on, there's still a lot we can do."
"And a triple date to look forward to," winked Ruffnut. They laughed as Hiccup and Merida turned beet red.
"Guess some things don't change after all," snickered Snotlout.
MacIntosh wrapped his arm around Ruffnut, "Well, then, let's go plan that date, shall we?" They walked off, followed not long after by the others, Hiccup and Merida hung back for a little while.
Hiccup let out a sigh, "It's going to be harder for me than the rest of you, I'm one of them, but I want to be with you too."
Merida smiled as she took his hand, "Then be with me, here, for now, if they call, know I'm answering that call with you."
Hiccup pecked her cheek, "Thanks, Mer, that means a lot. Come on, let's go make sure they don't pick something stupid to do." Merida laughed as they walked after their friends, their hands intertwined, finally.