Book I, Chapter 6
In Berk's immediate vicinity in the Alban Isles, there were not many major dominant powers. Eire was politically fragmented into dozens of warring petty kings, and had not been unified since the death of High King Brian Boru at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014. Alba, in the north, was under the rule of the Red King, Mac Bethad mac Findlaích, but he was new to his title at the time, and, despite his later activities, was not by any means a major power. Wales was politically splintered into five squabbling kingdoms that would not reunify for years. Around the Eirish Sea and Hebrides were other warlords and petty kings, many of whom belonged to related dynasties and feuded endlessly with one another.
The single greatest powers in the immediate vicinity were England, which was ruled by the tyrannical King Harthacnut, and the politically decentralized Frankish kingdom to the south, ruled by King Henry of the Capets. Neither power had the population, or the initial incentives, to pursue conflicts with Berk. Henry was dealing with conflicts with and between his nobility, while Harthacnut was imposing his will on a restive populace. In particular, the autocratic methods that Harthacnut had used to rule over Denmark for the previous several years were backfiring on him tremendously and setting the stage for...
— Corpus Historiae Berkiae, 1396
Tropes That Appear In This Chapter:
- Adaptational Nice Guy: While Hiccup is normally a nice guy, the Dragons: Riders of Berk episode "Thawfest" proves that Hiccup can be a seriously sore winner when he outdoes Snotlout in the dragon-based contests. Here, he takes his victories much more in-stride, no doubt due to the fact that he is working together with Astrid to deflate Snotlout's ego through their combined wins. It also does not help that he had to deal with freshly incarcerated prisoners shortly there-after.
- Did Not Think This Through: Captain Ragnell was ordered by Adalwin to bring back dragons from Berk, so he wounds Fishlegs and attempts to steal Meatlug. Fishlegs did not die from the attempt and told Berk about what happened, so Ragnell now has all of Berk's dragons swarming around his ship with no effective means of stopping it.
- Honor Before Reason: Bladewit claims that Fishlegs displayed cowardice because when he was ambushed and his dragon was taken, he ran for his life and found Stoick and Hiccup instead of fending them off himself like a viking. Stoick claims that he showed wisdom, considering he was out-numbered eight to one.
- Took a Third Option: After the failed attempt at stealing dragons, the Ingermans want the thieves executed for attempting to kill Fishlegs, while the Jorgensons wanted to do the same as to not appear weak. Hiccup has another idea: send the crew and ship back, but have the crew tied up and the ship literally dropped in King Adalwin's courtyard as a show of what they are capable of should he try to do it again.
- Wrong Name Outburst: Ragnell confuses Meatlug's name for being "Fishlegs."