The nightmares started not long after; nights of tossing and turning, waking covered in sweat, breathing as if she’d just run a mile.
Eyes blood-red, skin white as snow, the young man stood at the foot of the bed, eyes locked on her pregnant stomach.
Gasping, she scooted back, grabbing for her ax and coming up short. Staring in shock at the empty spot where her weapon normally rested.
He threw back his head and cackled, the ax raised above his head. Astrid looked up at him and screamed as the ax swung down towards her stomach.
She jolted awake, arms tight around her swollen abdomen, fresh tear tracks on her cheeks. Chest heaving, she sat up and surveyed the room, not finding anything, she fell back on the pillows and breathed a sigh of relief before drifting back to sleep into another nightmare….
Her son cried. She could hear him in the dark; the wrenching sobs, sniffling. He was crying.
She started running through the mist, in the direction she heard him. Freezing upon the sight she came upon.
Her son was full-grown now, the tears for his wife who lay cradled in his arms. Her white gown covered in blood and glassy eyes open, staring up into the heavens.
She felt her heart-break for him, not knowing the tragedy that lead to this, but wishing she could wrap her arms around him and protect him for all to be seen.
The fog rolled in and Astrid found herself standing on a ship; surrounded by weapons, food, and luxuries. Unsure of where she was, she took a step forward and froze.
Her son carried a little girl in his arms, dressed in her finery. Tears were streaking down his face, his shoulders were slumped and body hanging heavy as he laid her little body next to that of his wife and Astrid fell to her knees.
The little girl was an exact replica of her mother.
At first, Hiccup didn’t notice the bags under her eyes or the late night disturbances; the jerks that signaled a terrible dream forgotten once the daylight approached. Until one night he stayed up late while she went to rest and the jerks, moans, and cries broke through the bubble encasing him in his inventors world. Walking upstairs to find the noise, he was more than surprised to see it was coming from his wife.
Running across the room, he grabbed her flailing arms and held her tight; disturbing her dream and jolting her awake. Terrified, Astrid gazed up into her husband’s green eyes and broke down in tears.
Hiccup froze where he sat, his arms still around Astrid, who now cried into his chest. His wife-his Astrid-who he’d never seen shed a tear bawled like a baby in his arms where he could see every last tear.
His fearless wife, was absolutely terrified.
What scared him most, was that he didn’t know why.