Book I, Chapter 25
Night Fury: Strike-class dragon, Class Exemplar
Overview: Nocturnal-optimized strategic bombing and aerial supremacy dragon, capable of multiple mission profiles, with a focus on strategic and tactical raids. Due to the high speed, agility, intelligence, stealth and firepower capacity of this dragon, nations with confirmed members of the breed (see Night Fury Appendix A for listing) are automatically classified at a higher degree of threat by the Office of Draconic Intelligence, as they offer first-strike capacity, even in the face of aerial countermeasures.
Breath Type: Acetylene and oxygen plasma charge
Identification: Medium-to-large adult size. Black scales, single wing pair, four legs, grasping paws capable of minimal degree of fine manual dexterity; supplemental tail fins at end of long dexterous tail; wide, flat and blunt head with fleshy ear projections, eyes of green, yellow, blue, or orange coloration, with pupil slits of variable width based on lighting conditions and mood. No spikes or talons. Retractable teeth. Distinctive sound produced when dive-bombing (see Night Fury Appendix B for audio recording).
Strategic Role: Front-line combat; materiel and industrial bombing strikes; ground support; aerial supremacy; reconnaissance (HA, BF)
Known Weaknesses: The rear tail-fins are required by the dragon in order to maintain flight trim and aerial stability; injury to or removal of these fins will ground the dragon without prosthetics. Sound produced when dive-bombing also allows alert defenders a window for the deployment of countermeasures.
Phenotype Cluster: BØFØS6+S4!S5*MØTØT8-
Populations: Minimal; breeding lines of this dragon are limited, and are mostly descended from Dragonlord Haddock's Toothless (NF-000001a), although rogue family lines are known, and there have been cases of egg theft and abductions over the centuries that have not been recovered, as well as other family lines that have been lost to the Empire due to state secession.
— North Sea Empire, Office of Draconic Intelligence, Dragon Breed Profiles (Declassified), 1822 Edition
Tropes That Appear In This Chapter:
- Bring My Brown Pants: One of Earl Godwin's men, upon hearing Toothless' diving screech, has this reaction.
- Clarke's Third Law: Earl Godwin thinks that both Berk's ability to train dragons and their newly invented bombs are all some fiendish, Satanic magic they have harnessed.Clearly, Lucifer's patronage granted them immunity to the fires of his realm.
- Crazy Enough to Work: While everyone acknowledges Hiccup's idea sounds crazy, they have experienced his crazier plans working in the past and just go with it.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: During the second attack Berk crushes the English fleet.
- MacGyvering: Hiccup turned soapstone cooking pots from the kitchen into bombs after just thinking about it in the middle of an invasion.
- Mook Horror Show: The second battle is told mostly from the perspective of the combined Anglo-Danish fleet trying to reach Berk in order to attack it. Unfortunately, since they backed Hiccup into a corner, he doesn't hold back in defending his home and his people, and the shattered (and much reduced) fleet ends up running for its life, thoroughly traumatized.
- Pyrrhic Victory: The English fleet was able to drive off Berk's forces during the first attack, but it came with a high price. Then the second attack comes and the English fleet experiences an entirely different trope.Less than a dozen of the dragons and their riders were confirmed to have died, in exchange for over two hundred of their own men.
- Take a Third Option: Berk could either fight a hopeless naval battle against an armada, or they could potentially be plucked from the sky by a Rain of Arrows. What does Hiccup do about it? He invents carpet bombing!