Nearly two months later, and chapter three is finally here. Actually, I only wrote half of it, and then I realised it was a chapter on its own.
I actually shocked by the number of favs and follows, and I just like to say thank you to all you awesome people. However, I would really like some constructive criticism. Half the reason this chapter took so long is that I am not confident in the quality of the content.
A shout-out to Fanreader26 who left a review. I am following his fic A Fury's Journey and look forward to each new chapter.
Also, I've gone back and tidied the previous chapters a little and appended an A/N to the previous one.
'A direct quote from the current character's thoughts'
Running blindly through the village was probably one of the stupidest things I had ever done. I don't know how I hadn't run straight into a house or off a cliff. When I'd tripped, I'd honestly considered that I might not live and had done nothing to stop my potential demise. When I had finally stopped rolling down the hill, I had instinctively curled against the rock that had stopped me and allowed myself to cry.
Unfortunately, fate would determine this was, in fact, a much stupider moment than risking running blindly off a cliff. I cried until I ran out of tears, my eyes dry and puffy and my throat sore while pain bounced around my body like lightning. I noticed that the rock was warm. I brushed it off, the sunlight had probably warmed it up. But then it had huffed, and I tried to open my eyes, but they were sore and still blocked by my recent tears. Finally, the rock moved, and a pained moan came from behind me.
It sounded like a dragon, and I moved away faster than I thought was possible. Once I was confident that the large slab behind me was actually a rock, I attempted to clear my vision. I heard the dragon croon question like and then something that sounded like laughter. Could dragons laugh?
When I finally saw the beast that I had cried against I gasped in sheer terror. My body froze in place as my brain sent conflicting messages. Should I run or stay still? Has it seen me? I checked. Nope, it was definitely watching me. I didn't know what to do, and my body just plain refused to move.
I could only watch as he raised itself to stand. I flinched as it fell, and my mind unfroze as I realised that it was still tangled in the bolas that I had launched. It was my fault. I had downed the mighty Night Fury.
"I did this." I barely heard myself speak. I saw it look at me, disbelief in its emerald eyes. I pulled out the dagger that I keep in my belt and carefully walked toward the beast. It seemed distracted, and I kept the blade ahead of me, fearful of a surprise attack.
I saw its eye flick toward my blade before it recoiled in fear, its body straining against the ropes. I thought that it would try to kill me, but instead, it lowered its head, accepting death.
It wasn't like the thought hadn't crossed my mind. I could kill it and present it to my father and become the greatest of Vikings. But I no longer desired his approval. How could I want the approval of somebody that used me to send fellow Vikings to their doom?
I couldn't comprehend what I was doing, I watched horrified as my body moved without my conscious control. I heard the snap of each rope as the blade of my dagger sawed through. I didn't want to kill this dragon, and yet my subconscious willingly risked my own life to free it. I was terrifyingly aware that it might kill me at any moment.
When it finally came, I let the dagger fall from my hands and fought to escape its claws. The air was squeezed from my lungs as my back hit the ground. I clawed the dirt as my muscles screamed for air and my eyes widened as I heard it draw in air, sure that I was about to be vaporised. My world darkened, and in my mind, I thought I heard the faintest of roars.
When I came to the Night Fury was nowhere to be seen. I was kind of glad I wasn't dead, being squished by a thousand-pound lizard hadn't been part of my plans for today. I sat up and looked around. The sun was setting, and my father would be wondering where I was. I tried to find my dagger, but it was impossible to see in the fading light. I decided to leave it and stood to walk home, it was at this moment that I realised that I did not know where I was.
I climbed to the top of the hill I had fallen down and picked the direction I believe the village was in. I won't go into the details, but I think we both know that I was hopelessly lost.
I had hoped that when I finally walked through the door of my home, I would see my father asleep in his chair or not at all. Fate, as always, had other plans. My father was sat in his chair, his massive form hunched over the fireplace while he prodded the burning charcoal with a large stick. I tried to close the door quietly and creep up the stairs. I was halfway up when I heard him utter my name, I would not be able to escape this conversation.
"Dad. Uh, um..." I said awkwardly as he stood and turned toward me. What should I say? "I have to talk with you, Dad."
He clapped his meaty hands together. "I need to speak with you too, son."
There was a short, challenging silence as we formulated our next sentences. We both spoke at the same time, our voices overlapped, and we both paused. I had started to say I didn't want to fight dragons, and he had said something about it being time for me to learn to fight them.
I knew he was about to force me into another of our deals, so I politely insisted that he speak first. I would just have to swallow whatever impossibility the deal contained and get on with my life.
"I've spoken with Gobber." He said. "You've got your wish, dragon training. You start in the morning."
Gobber was going to get an earful from me tomorrow. "Dad, I can't kill dragons."
"But you will kill dragons!" He insisted, gesturing with his arms as he picked up an axe.
"Let me rephrase that." I pleaded, hoping that he would understand what I was about to say. "I don't want to kill dragons!"
"Of course, you do!" He replied. "Every Viking wants to kill dragons!"
"Then maybe I'm not a Viking!" I countered, mentally flinching at the truth behind the words.
"It's time Hiccup." He said, pausing as he thrust the axe into my arms. "This is serious, son. When you carry this axe, you carry all of us with you."
He repositioned the axe in my hands before continuing, gesturing dramatically with his arms. "Which means you walk like us, you talk like us and think like us. No more of this."
"You just gestured to all of me," I stated factually.
"Deal?" He demanded, frustration evident on his face. I knew there was only one option.
"Deal." I quietly agreed.
"Good." He said calmly as he put on his helmet. Was he leaving? "Train hard. I'll be back, probably."
"And I'll be here…" I said as he opened the door. "Maybe."
I watched as he vanished into the night, the docks busy with movement in the cold air of the night. When I awoke the next morning, they were already gone, their sails distant specks on the horizon.
I started my day with breakfast before setting off to find Gobber, he had some explaining to do. Unfortunately, by the time I located him, he was already leading the other teens to the kill ring, our little chat would have to wait.
There was a definite group dynamic as the teens followed Gobber. Astrid was in the lead and dressed to kill with a thick tunic, round shoulder guards and studded armour skirt. The axe I had crafted for her some years ago, Valkyrie, was strapped to her back. Snotlout tripped along behind her with his terrible flirting attempts.
The twins, Ruffnut and Tuffnut, followed not far behind and like always, dressed identically; tunics, fur vests, pants, boots, even their hairstyle and helmets matched. They were a dynamic in themselves, pushing and shoving each other just because they could.
Fishlegs trailed behind, reading a small book and explaining the contents to nobody in particular. Some might call him fat, but he was just husky and probably the closest to in stature to how Vikings were expected to look, tall and bulky.
Knowing Gobber's preferred teaching methods, I hung back as we entered the arena. Regrettably, Gobber noticed my reluctance and decided to give me some sage advice as he dragged me toward the others.
"You need to stop worrying." He stated as he made me stand up. "Be confident, stand tall and stare down your opponents."
I wanted to question what he meant, but he had already put me next to Fishlegs and begun to introduce us all to dragon training. The best student would get to kill the Monstrous Nightmare in front of the entire village, and Snotlout automatically asked if I was disqualified by already having killed a Night Fury, laughter followed. Gobber simply took the opportunity to approach the giant metal doors that kept the dragons in their pens.
The group noticed that Gobber was introducing the dragons when Fishlegs began rattling off numbers, something to do with statistics and dragon classifications. I cautiously observed, sure that Gobber was about to release an angry dragon upon the unsuspecting teens. I might have started shaking my head, and I guess he noticed before he reached the final dragon because I nodded, and his hand caught the controls. I take full responsibility for encouraging his teaching methods.
"Wait, aren't you going to teach us first?!" Snotlout had noticed, the panic in his voice only adding to my enjoyment of the situation.
"I believe in learning on the job." Said Gobber, sharing a glance with me as I quoted him quietly. The Gronckle burst out the doors and buzzed past us. Gobber had unlocked the doors while everyone was looking at Snotlout.
I stood still as everyone panicked around me. The Gronckle was using the time to eat some of the rocks that were strewn around the arena.
Gobber decided a pop quiz might be helpful. "What's the first thing you're going to need?"
"A healer?" I muttered, my words just dripping with sarcasm.
"Plus five speed?" Fishlegs offered.
Astrid, ever the warrior, gave the correct answer. "A shield!"
"A shield, go!" Gobber reaffirmed. "If you must make a choice between a sword and a shield, take the shield."
The other teens scrambled to follow the advice while I stood still and watched the Gronckle. We had been staring at each other for the last few seconds. I could hear the twins arguing over a shield and spotted them at the edge of my view. I glanced back to the Gronckle and tilted my head in their direction questioningly, surely the Gronckle would want to kill us all?
I saw its eyes twitch and I swear it grinned slightly as it turned, an orange glow flickering from within its jaws. The fireball struck the shield, and the twins were out. I shook my head at their dazed, confused looks and turned to check on the other teens. Gobber seemed to be enjoying himself as they followed his every word, slapping weapon and shield together to disrupt the Gronckle's aim. Everything seemed to be going fine until Gobber tested their concentration.
"How many shots does a Gronckle have?" He queried. The teens' reactions were mixed. Snotlout stumbled, guessing the answer and Astrid ignored the question.
"No, six!" Fish legs corrected as he stopped with his shield raised, celebrating the usefulness of his dragon trivia.
"Correct! That's one for each of you." Gobber stated as a fireball took Fishlegs' shield. "Fishlegs out."
I slunk away from the fight and stood near the weapon rack. Gobber's math seemed off. I groaned quietly as Snotlout tried to flirt with Astrid. His arrogance nearly killed them as his attempts drew the attention of the Gronckle. His shield took the impact as Astrid rolled away.
She regained her footing and charged the Gronckle with a war cry. Wood splintered as the next fireball struck her shield and sent her to the floor. The other teens ran to help her, but another fireball stopped their advance. Astrid was trapped, and the Gronckle still had a shot left.
The Gronckle stood over her with a low, angry growl as it prepared its final shot. As the only person able to reach her, I broke from cover. I don't know how I reached them in time. My legs and lungs burned as I slammed into the Gronckle. Shards of shattered rock clattered around us as the fireball impacted on the arena wall.
My friend and beta reader recently pointed out that he is skimming/skipping over the Hiccup PoV as it follows the film script a lot? Is this an issue for you guys? And what do you recommend doing to correct it?