Whumptober2020: Prompt 14 Is Something Burning?

Disclaimer: Apparently I failed to post this on the first chapter. I've never owned a dragon, no matter how many times I've dreamed of it.


Astrid came to check on the pair, and Hiccup accidentally woke Toothless on his way down the stairs. The dragon bounded past Hiccup, still ignoring him. The dragon was far away by the time the two made it outside.

"He still won't let me near him," Hiccup grumbled as the two Vikings walked through the town, Hiccup having told Astrid what happened. "It's all, 'Hiccup's there, let's bound away! Oh, Hiccup's walking through town? I'll head to the forest!" His eyes went to the edge of the forest, where Toothless was at the moment disappearing, and Hiccup's mouth turned down in a sulk.

"Well, maybe you should apologise," said Astrid.

"Apologise? For what? What have I done?" Astrid looked at him. "Fine, what have I done recently that would get him so worked up?"

"Umm, you remember flying him into a tree? At the start of all this?"

"That was days ago, and he probably...probably doesn't remember! And besides, I've saved his life since then!"

"From a drowning you caused. I'd probably have hit you."

Hiccup glanced at her and smiled a bit. "Yeah, but then it would have been over with, and I could have grumbled about it." He sighed. "I'll talk to him."


"I'd probably better let him cool down first. I don't think he liked our remedy." And so for the next hour Hiccup and Astrid worked in the training ring, Hiccup with the young dragons, and Astrid on drills with Stormfly.

Hiccup made it home, only to find Toothless still gone.

The Boy still did not find me to apologise. Sometimes he is stupider than the two light-haired loud ones.

Toothless settled back down to his nap.

Hiccup walked into his room and sniffed the air. "Dad must have lit a fire, to dry all the water," he thought, dismissing the scent. He sat back down at his desk with a sigh, pulling his drawing closer. Before long he was lost to the world, inadvertently proving Toothless correct. When the smoke began crowding out the light, he merely moved closer to the fire, unconsciously attributing it to night coming on. When the flames grabbed the papers nearest to the hearth, Hiccup assumed a torch had been lit, and moved his papers back. It was not till the smoke was thick enough he began coughing that he looked up.

Toothless got up and stretched, staring at the sun. It had perhaps two hours before being fully set, and Toothless was hungry. If the Boy fed him—and apologised—they could go riding tonight. But it would have to be both, since he'd taken so long about it. Or a wrestling match. Toothless liked those. He got to lick the Boy's clothes and hear him make disgusted noises from the dragon slime. It was funny.

Toothless began ambling through the village.

The smoke was so thick Hiccup couldn't see the door. But he knew where it was, and he stumbled towards it, tripping as his metal leg caught on some of the mess on his floor. He fell, coughing again, but the air was clearer on the floor. He blinked, water falling from his eyes, and began crawling towards the door he could now see.

But he paused. Vikings—all the ones who lived when they fought dragons—are very familiar with fire, and Hiccup realised with a cough and growing fear that papers lines the floor between him and the door. He would not be fast enough to get over them before the fire took them—and he would be walking on a wooden leg. He looked towards the wall. Could he kick it out?

Toothless, nearly home, lifted his head and sniffed. Something was burning.

Something big.

And the Boy was always in trouble. Toothless began bounding over the carts, the people, towards the first of the human shouts.

Surely the Boy wouldn't be in trouble again. But if he was, Toothless would be there.

Hiccup crawled towards the wall under the eaves, knowing it was his only chance. He was coughing non-stop, the smoke getting much thicker. He didn't think Gobber could make him metal-and-wood lungs as well as a leg, though the Viking might enjoy trying.

Their home was on fire. When Toothless caught the dragon who set it on fire, that dragon would pay.

Where was the Boy?

The Large one who lived with them was throwing water, calling the Boy. He saw Toothless and hurried over. "Where's Hiccup?" Toothless twisted, looking for the quick blonde one, only to see her running, alone.

"Hiccup!" The Boy was not with her.

Toothless looked back at the house, straining his ears. Coughing. He heard coughing, dry coughing, from their room. He ducked under the Large one's reaching hands and bounced upwards, to the roof. The coughing was below him. Toothless swore to himself, if the Boy was on fire, he was dumping him back in the water. The dragon let out a short burst of flames, burning through the roof, and with a roll of his eyes let himself crash down through it, landing in the flames.

Ow. The coughing grew fainter as Toothless jumped for a clear spot, and the dragon began running around, looking for the tiny body. There. By the wall, outside the fire. Toothless jumped over, nudging the Boy with his nose.

"Toothless," the boy coughed. "Great...great timing, buddy." Toothless whined, they had no time for this, and dropped his head to the floor near the Boy's arm.

One small part of him regretted letting the boy ride again before apologising, but there was no time for grudges either. As the Boy slid his arm around Toothless's neck, the dragon lurched upward, sliding the Boy's body onto his back, and crouching. He let one short burst of flame touch the wall, and dove through the hole. Out through the flames, too quick for them to burn, and into the air! He spread his wings, gliding down, and landed with a wobble in the marketplace.

"Hiccup!" And now the noise would begin.

The Large one, the blonde quick one, and lots of others came rushing over and began cheering. The Boy sat up on Hiccup's back, claiming they were fine, they were fine, and the Large one dragged him off into an arm-swallow. The blonde quick one hit him, and Toothless smiled in approval.

But then he thought about the fire upstairs. It had started in the fireplace, and Toothless knew one of his flames had gone that way. And if the Boy shouldn't have left old tree bark near it, they were both to blame, and Toothless had let the Boy ride again. Perhaps he shouldn't be angry anymore. Making up his mind, Toothless lunged forward, licking the Boy's shirt from waist to hair, and then sat back, smiling.

"Ugh, Toothless!" The Boy tried to wipe the saliva away. Ha!

But the Large one came and stroked Toothless's head with one large hand. "Thank you for saving my son," he said to the dragon.