“You have the heart of a chief…and the soul of a dragon.“ – Valka
When I’m not working or sleeping–I’m rewatching all the HTTYD movies/shows in preparation for the new movie and I think I noticed something about Hiccup that’s different from the other dragon riders.
Certainly, we’ve all noticed that “he (Hiccup) has a way with the beasts,” but his way with them isn’t like the others. Like, in Dragon’s: Race to the Edge we see all the riders spend a great amount of time with their dragons, especially since they’re all living on the island alone together, but Hiccup and Toothless are different. What I mean is that they are inseparable by comparison, even to Fishlegs and Meatlug.
When looking at the series, a lot of the dragons sleep outside or have their own space in a different room or on a different floor of their homes–but Toothless and Hiccup sleep in the same room. When the twins are building a watchtower, their dragon is only with them some of the time, but Toothless almost never leaves Hiccup’s side. And looking at all the dragons, one can see that the dragons don’t communicate to their respective owners the same way Toothless and Hiccup do. For example, if Hookfang doesn’t like something, he ignores Snotlout’s orders and sometimes even aggressively pushes him away. Meatlug goes along with Fishlegs, but there isn’t a sense of communication there so much as bending to the will of her nice owner because she likes to appease him. Stormfly takes directions well but is ultimately going to choose Astrid’s safety over her directions. Barf and Belch go along with the twins and enjoy chaos, but will also toss the twins around or fight back if they feel like something is too dangerous. The dragons protect their owners, and sort of trust them, but also treat them like children at times–rolling their eyes at behavior, ignoring their orders, etc. BUT, not to Toothless or Hiccup. Why? The main thought is trust. Hiccup mentions it often–once you earn their trust you have their loyalty forever, but I think it might be more than that.
Valka said that Hiccup has “the heart of a chief…and the soul of a dragon,” and I wonder if that is hinting to something that even she doesn’t fully understand. In HTTYD2, when the Cloudjumper breaks in, we see him destroy the house but stop as if it feels or notices Hiccup’s presence. His eyes go from the narrow attack slits we see when dragons are aggressive to a wide-eyed look. He reaches out to the baby and when he notices Valka, the aggression is back for a moment, his body moving to cover Hiccup and only relaxing when he sees Valka isn’t going to attack. Adding to this idea, Cloudjumper becomes aggressive again the moment Stoic comes back and rushes for Hiccup.
Hiccup has always had a way with them, even before he meets Toothless and learns about them. Valka also has a way with them, but it’s different. She’s learned how to be with them–going so far as to copy their bows to the Bewilderbeast alpha dragon and such, but Hiccup is different. Hiccup doesn’t bow to the Bewilderbeast, he just stands the in awe of it.
Perhaps Hiccup does have the soul of a dragon, or at least a deeper kinship to them to than others and, if so, how will that be shown in the latest installment of the HTTYD animated universe?