The Days to Remember

'So what now?' Astrid asked aloud breaking the silence that had now befallen upon them. It seemed a moment had passed though it could have felt like weeks for some. Nonetheless, only the crackling of fire filled the air as each of them tried to find the words in which to start anew. Perhaps they need not, the ambient tone spilled warm subduing feelings of comfort and relaxation that calmed both the mind and body. Outside the patter of rain continued in its torrential downpour soaking the isle of wet rocks ever further, as if they weren't drenched enough.

Stoick shifted in his seat to ease the tightening of muscles. 'Well, I'd say that's up to you. I mean you've made it clear regarding your intentions,' he was cut short.

'I think she means like, right now, at this moment in time,' Hiccup translated earning a blank but brief stare in return before he comprehended the meaning.

'Oh, of course. Well um, we could ahh, hmm. Well normally I would be working out and about in the village, settling disputes, tending to Skullcrusher,' his bushy eyebrows rose in realisation. 'Oh I hope he's made his way to the stables.'

Hiccup gestured a hand in reassurance. 'I'm sure he got through the catacombs fine.'

'Mm, true,' Stoick agreed stroking his beard.

Astrid couldn't help but snigger at the antics between the two. 'You two, no matter what you say,' she turned to Hiccup before returning to Stoick. 'I mean you'll never admit it but, you are more alike than you realise. That's where you get your thought stutters from.'

Hiccup returned a satirist tone. 'I do not stutter my… wait what? Thought stutters? I… is that even a thing?' he was half laughing at the ridiculousness of the thought.

'She has a point son,' Stoick joined in once again picking a side.

It was a quick glance between, but enough to make sense of. 'Oh no, not this again,' he chuckled with a mischievous grin. 'You may be scared to face miss cheeky here but I know your weakness.'

'What your incredible raw Viking-ness?' she teased, though not complaining at all.

When his expression remained unchanging only then did she realise his statement to be complete true. 'Oh no Hiccup,' her speech was sporadic between the fits of laughter as his fingers worked their magic on her ribs. 'Wait… Hiccup, not…. in front, your Dad, your… Dad is right there… oooh you're toast later!' she continued to squirm and her cheeks burned with an intensity under the embarrassing display of her vulnerability.

If her glare could set things on fire, Hiccup would have ignited in a spectacular inferno. 'Ahh, you remind me of your mother and I Hiccup, the playfulness of our youth,' Stoick interjected whipping both heads in his direction.

The awkward wash of surprise hit Hiccup. 'Really? Oh err, ok?' He shifted back onto the bench more as if to await a lecture of some sorts followed by a short slug from Astrid. 'Hey.'

The mention of his mother was a rare occurrence though always posed when in deep pride or in reminiscent of his behaviour. So why Stoick would bring her up now on the cusp of his tickling assault on Astrid, to which she was flushed and struggling to be annoyed. He held his silence wondering what his father meant; he had heard few stories from their past, many of them happy of course but some were drizzled with pain, more so lately than usual.

'What was she like?' Astrid asked to Hiccup's surprise, though his own curiosity was not to be misplaced.

Stoick's eyes cast downwards for a moment as the sting of memories returned. Nearly twenty years had passed now and still he felt the burn of pain as if it were only yesterday that she was taken from him. He wished not to relive those feelings, to bury them deep and take solace with whom he still had in life. He still had his son and now the potential of a future daughter in law; yet, still they lingered in his heart.

'She was,' he couldn't help but loose himself to the memories, the image of a slender woman with draping red braids tied behind her back. 'Fierce and fearless, but stubborn as anything of course,' he chuckled on the last part before falling into a silent muse.

The light filtered between the branches illuminating the small clearing with an amber haze that bounced of the few stray follicles of hair. She was leading him into the unknown glancing back for but a moment, the shine of her eyes like glass bearing joy and wonder. It must have been something upon his own face for she broadened her grin and with one hand, reached out to him. Feeling the gentleness of her fingers between his own, Stoick reeled her in with a twirl holding her close in an embrace. Whilst together they shared the warmth between themselves, the energy which felt to emanate from Valka was overpowering. She broke free tugging Stoick into the clearing before spreading her arms wide like the wings of a dragon and running through the grass. She closed her eyes to the rays of light drinking them in, her undeniable beauty striking Stoick with overwhelming emotion. She was his one and only.

'Can you feel it? The sun light? It's so warm Stoick, I wish it was like this all the time,' she said feeling at one with her senses.

Stoick walked into the sun and felt how the soft heat tingled his skin as he passed through but his eyes were fixated on the young woman twirling slowly. 'So do I,' it was more to himself than her.

Valka once again extended her hand this time pulling him closer. She grabbed his other hand and clasped them both between them before swaying her shoulders side to side with small steps. Stoick felt the slight movement and followed her movements into a gentle sway. They continued the movement broadening into larger twirls, fast steps with exaggerated kicks before coming to a complete close resting their heads on each other's shoulder. Valka stroked the single braid of his flaming beard before leaning up and planting a kiss on his lips. For that moment, all their worries were forgotten, the raids and village struggles left in a place of their subconscious.

'I love you,' she whispered resting her forehead on his.

'I love you too, my dear,' he returned.

In the present moment, Hiccup and Astrid sat idly by watching the distant expression dissolve as the memories washed through. 'Perhaps it's best to give him a moment,' Hiccup commented with a solemn smile.

Years Later…

Something about the blazing red hair reflecting the sunlight that brought home memories from a life that felt seemingly separate. He could watch as it flowed in the wind and trailed down her back like a reflection of a sacred image deep in his mind. Another head bright and snowy bobbed away chasing in glee and laughter as adventure called his name. There was a lone needle of pain that was slowly driving its way into his chest, he could feel it against his heart. But it wasn't such that would cause tears to fall in grief alone, but with happiness too despite the silence which filled the air. Some might call it fate, but everyone knew it as the turning of the era, the ending of a generation and the longest period of sadness to ever wash across Berk.

The time of the dragons was over; their passage from the Archipelago to the Hidden World left a hole in the hearts of everyone, but none so much as their benevolent chief. Those closest shared a pain ever so similar, and though it took time, the people of Berk grew anew with a horizon above the clouds. What followed was the dawn of new spirits, the very boost the people needed to bring on the next day with invigorated strength; there was no replacing what was gone but with whom there always was, a willing acceptance to grow.

The wedding of an era. A union that would last through the history for the eternity of New Berk. For whom should be praised with such eternal fame and gratitude, none other than their great chief and general. The celebration of Hiccup and Astrid. For what an event had brought to the many people of the archipelago and with the war against Drago and Grimmel over, so too began the longest peace to ever fall upon the savage seas. Love was what they needed.

A new age, a new direction but the return of some old traditions. Even so, that didn't stop their great leaders from continuing their work for the better, it just meant the heavy lifting was once again returned to the people alone. Still, New Berk prospered, it's people were happy again and life moved forward into the next chapter. Though the dragons had left, the stories remained with the people in song, spoken word and text. Memorials were built to commemorate the revered among them and in the centre of town, Hiccup's father watch over them.

Hiccup again returned to the present, his gaze falling upon his children. Small flakes of snow had floated their way down sticking lightly to their hair. Two pairs of eyes gleamed up towards him, shining with the joy, excitement and wonder even though five winters had passed. The pride he felt made his heart ache terribly watching as his daughter and son frolicked through the soft layers of snow. They were his perfect gift, most precious treasure and irreplaceable. One day, he would show them; sail to the great waterfall at the edge of the world where dragons guarded like sentinels, the entrance to the Hidden World.

He knew he would be safe and thriving as the king of his own kind; his own love, the Light Fury to rule alongside him. How her discovery became the catalyst that changed everything; wild and ferocious as she was, she encompassed his best friends' heart. He knew the feeling all too well. Love, it was love that conquered all, an incredible surge of emotional energy causing people and dragons alike to go incredible lengths for those dearest to them. They left their ancestral home of seven generations to a place that didn't exist; defeated an enemy, devious and frightening beyond their greatest wits and discovered a haven that was too pure for human eyes. That's how it came to be, the King of dragons and the Chief of Berk making a decision for all to disappear, for their safety, for their protection and to live a free life.

Coarse but gentle fingers intertwined with his own catching his attention. The years since had been kind to them, the celebration of their marriage and when they truly believed the world to be free of tyranny, their daughter was brought into the world. Hiccup still remembered upon hearing the news the overwhelming waves of mixed emotions, a burning in his heart of pride and excitement whilst cold fear lacerated him from head to toe. Astrid told him he looked as though he had frozen completely, as if his mind had entirely left his body to float off the cliffs among the clouds. That was until a warming smile broke free enveloping them both in an embrace neither wished to break. Where it was not long afterwards, their son soon joined them, a company and the first of the new generation of Berk.

Hiccup glanced into her eyes, the deep azure blue that spoke volumes where words need not. He simply wrapped her arm around her shoulders letting her rest her head against his shoulder. Zephyr still amused with the falling snow continued to tumble through it in fits of giggles, her head popping up for a few short moments before falling back into the winter. Nuffink never left his sisters side diving head-first into the wintery heaps. Whilst they were a reflection of themselves, Hiccup couldn't help but notice how much they behaved like Toothless; the curious eyes investigating the smallest details; the pouts when they became irritated, always needing constant attention and the playful manner. While their resemblance marked features of both parents, Nuffink had the adventurous spirits of Astrid, where Zephyr mirrored her father's curiosity and mannerisms.

Hiccup took a moment to gaze upon his home; the many terraces of colourful houses reminiscent of their scaly companions winded down the island slopes towards the impossible cliffs. This was New Berk, the best kept secret in all the world, a legend that inspired hope and a forerunner against the storms of villainy. A place of peace yet always ready for the threat of war, for over four hundred years the hard skinned Vikings had countered everything that had the power and intent to smite them from existence, but in the last twelve years alone they had achieved feats thought never to be accomplished. See, with love came loss; that was the intangible deal, but love was still the greatest gift of all.

THE END of How To Tell Your Dad


Saraj8ne - thank you thank you very much!

Funtasticme - bows with a tip of a top hat.

LexieFanatic - well, I'm glad you enjoyed this collection.

Devufairy - Thank you kindly

Icy-rain499 - No problemo

Ruby - Awesome, glad you do.

SoMeOnEnEw8 - What a name and many thanks, this was fun in both writing and revision.

SixUnderOneXSix – A thank you thank you very much!

AlphaStorm73 – My dude, you left a review that's why you get a shoutout :D

The 4 Guest reviewers. Still amazed by the one who read chapter 5 in like three minutes :)

And of course, everyone else who joined in this mini journey.

Stay classy Dragonites :D

How To Train Your Dragon ©DreamWorks Animation, Cressida Cowell