"Grey and Chief Hroar Speak" is a series of EU flashforward oneshots written on January 30th - February 4th, 2015.
Full Text Edit
Part 1 Edit
Twenty-five year old Grey surveyed the silent battlefield as her Night Fury, Shadow followed her. It had been a long battle…and actually the first battle she had been in since the Grounded Dungeon Rebellion a few years ago. It was good to be back where the action was again. Unfortunately, that was the case right now. She walked around searching among the dead and injured soldiers and dragons but she couldn’t find him anywhere. Chief Hroar was looking around as well, so she was praying to all deities that he would have some luck if she didn’t.
"Dad!" she shouted out listening as her voice echoed throughout the battlefield. She bit her lip in worry straining her ears to hear his voice, but nothing came. "Dad! Dad, where are you?!"
No answer came again. Tears formed in Grey’s brown eyes. She tried with all her might not to cry. She couldn’t. She was a soldier…Soldiers never cried. She was able to put on a brave face whenever she needed to during that rebellion four years ago, and she could do it again. She just needed to find her father!
She was finally jolted out of her thoughts when she felt Shadow nudge her back. She turned around to face the Night Fury, who crooned sadly at her and gestured her head in a certain direction. Grey widened her eyes when she realized what her dragon was telling her. “Lead the way, girl,” she said.
With that, the girl and the dragon took off with Shadow leading the way. Soon enough, they came to a familiar form lying on the field…not moving. Grey gasped when she recognized who it was. “DAD!” she shouted as she ran over and knelt down to him. She gasped when she saw a gash on his side. “Dad! Dad, are you okay? Come on, you got to wake up!” No answer came from Sven Bergman’s body…but even as tears streamed down her face, Grey refused to give up and shook him by the shoulders as Shadow nudged his head gently crooning in his ear. “Dad! Please, this isn’t funny! Come on, Daddy! Please wake up!” He was still not responding… “DADDY!”
No…this had to be some kind of sick joke…He couldn’t be…gone…He just couldn’t be… They were supposed to fly home to Mom, Greg, Warren, and Asha together… He wasn’t supposed to die…Neither of them were supposed to… She let out a sob and tried again. “Daddy…please…wake up…please…” She sniffled. “Don’t leave me…” No answer came. She sniffled again as she laid her head on his still, cold chest as Shadow nuzzled her. “Daddy…” She sniffled again and hugged her father’s body. “I love you, Daddy…”
Part 2 Edit
"Absolutely not!" Grey’s mother, Ingrid, said to Chief Hroar. "You are not telling her now!"
"Ingrid, your husband and I agreed to tell her when we returned from this war," Hroar said holding his hands up to calm the healer. "Grey needs to know."
"Have you forgotten that that was before she lost her father in battle?" she asked. "The girl is devastated! This is the last thing she needs right now!"
"If this is not the right time, then when is the right time?!" Hroar shouted. After a few moments of silence as the Chief and the healer stared at each other, they both finally let out a sigh secretly thankful that Grey wasn’t even home at the moment and was spending time with Greg, Warren, Asha, and little Siri, Asha’s daughter. "I’m sorry, my friend. I did not mean to shout, but if we don’t tell Grey now, then we might never tell her."
Ingrid sighed again realizing that he was right. When was the right time to tell her daughter…that she was to become the next Chief? But how were they supposed to explain that they expected her to take her place as Chief when she still grieving? It had been a week since they lost Grey’s father, Sven, and the pain still hadn’t left, especially for Grey. There was a part of Ingrid that believed that her daughter blamed herself for her father’s death. Perhaps, there was an easier way to tell her. That gave the healer an idea.
"You say you plan to retire once Grey is named Chief, right?" she suddenly asked.
"Yes, that is what Sven and I agreed to," Hroar replied. "Why?"
"Well, I say we tell her now," Ingrid suggested, "and then we let her decide when she will take her place. It will be entirely up to her to decide when she’s ready."
Chief Hroar smiled. “That I can accept,” he said. “I will talk to her tomorrow morning.”
The next day, 25-year-old Grey walked down the stairs of her house. Greg, Warren, Asha, and Siri were still asleep, but of course, Shadow had to wake her up early for a morning flight. So, she ran down the stairs with the Night Fury right behind. However, she stopped short when she reached the bottom and saw her mother and Chief Hroar sitting at the table in what appeared to be a serious conversation.
"Mom?" she said getting Ingrid’s attention. "Chief?"
"Oh, good morning, dear," Ingrid said. "Shadow woke you up early again?"
"Yeah, she did," Grey said raising an eyebrow at the Night Fury, who gave her an innocent toothless smile. "Anyway, what’s going on?"
"Well, Grey," Hroar said standing up, "I was hoping I could talk to you in private."
Grey widened her eyes. “Oh,” she said. “W-What about, sir?”
"Don’t worry, sweetie," Ingrid said coming up to her daughter. "It’s actually a good thing, and I really think you need to hear this. It’s really important."
"Umm…o-okay, then," the young woman said.
"Come, Grey," Hroar said gesturing for her to follow him. "We can take a walk."
Part 3 Edit
Grey and the Chief walked through the village and went into the forest. None of them spoke as they walked through the evergreen forest. Grey was too nervous about what the Chief could possibly want to talk to her about. Sure, he and her late father were practically brothers, but he was still an authority figure. It still intimidated her whenever the Chief needed to speak with her privately. Then again, her mother said there was nothing to worry about, but…then again, she did say that it was important… What could possibly be so important?
"How are you doing, Grey?" Hroar suddenly asked the young woman.
"Well…I’ve been getting by, I guess," she replied. "I mean spending some time with my friends and Mom helps, but…it still hurts, you know?"
Hroar smiled gently and placed a hand on the girl’s shoulder pad. “I know,” he said. “The pain will never really go away, but the important thing to do now is to always remember him. You know that, don’t you?”
She nodded. “I do, sir,” she said, “but with all due respect and not that I don’t appreciate the concern, I have a feeling that you didn’t bring me out here to talk to me about missing Dad.”
Hroar chuckled as he patted her head. “You’re far too curious and suspicious for your own good, Grey,” he said, “but yes, there is something I would like to talk to you about. It’s about an agreement I made with your father when you were very young.”
Grey’s face fell at the mention of her father, but her curiosity prevented her from getting upset. “What kind of agreement?”
"Well, when you were born, I didn’t have any children of my own, so I had no heir to take my place as this village’s Chief."
Grey stared at Hroar in confusion. She knew that the Chief never had the chance to find a wife and to have children, but…what did this have to do with her? “That’s an…interesting story, sir,” she said, “but what does it have to do with the agreement between you and Dad?”
"Well…you see, Grey, since I don’t have my own children, I don’t have someone to inherit the right to be Chief, and because your father and I have been like brothers, you’re the closest thing I have to a daughter."
Grey widened her brown eyes. “Chief…w-what are you saying?”
"Grey," he said placing a hand on her shoulder, "your father and I agreed that if I was to never have my own children…then you would be the one to take my place…as Chief."
Grey felt as if she was about to pass out. She couldn’t breathe. Her heart pounded. “M-Me…as…Chief…? S-Sir…I…I don’t know what to say… I mean…”
"I know it’s a shock, but your parents and I knew from the day you were born that you would make a great leader. And the fact that you survived that epidemic when you were three proved that you were destined for great things. All you have to say now is whether or not you accept. You don’t have to become chief right away…only when you’re ready."
Grey furrowed her eyebrows together in thought trying to process everything Chief Hroar just said. He and her father wanted her…her to become the next Chief. She wasn’t sure what to think. It was truly an honor that they thought she could do this, but she didn’t know much on how to lead a village. It was one thing to lead a mission to find smuggled weapons, but this…this was leading a whole village, something she had never done before. Then again…if she was able to fight in a rebellion without much experience and live to tell the tale, perhaps…she might surprise herself. She smiled and looked up at the man before her.
"Chief Hroar, I accept your offer…to take my place as your successor," she said.