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This Great Protector has honored us with its presence for four decades. [src]
  — Throk  

The Great Protector was a female Eruptodon, a Boulder Class dragon species. Great Protector lived inside a volcano on Caldera Cay and prevented said volcano from erupting, for which it is worshiped by the Defenders of the Wing. However, Great Protector was captured by the Dragon Hunters when Queen Mala was interrogating Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III and the rest of the Dragon Riders. She was eventually rescued and had an offspring of her own before spending her final days on Vanaheim.

Biography

Becoming the "Great Protector"

Great Protector lived on the island, Caldera Cay. At some unknown time, Great Protector became the guardian of the human tribe that inhabited Caldera Cay, the Defenders of the Wing. Sometime in her younger years, a great earthquake shook the Cay, and the lava stopped flowing. She almost starved, but after much prayer by the Defenders, the lava started flowing again and her life was spared. For forty years, she protected the Defenders of the Wing by preventing the volcano on the island from erupting, which would destroy their village if it did. She did this by eating the lava.

Kidnapping

Mala: "The Protector is gone!"
Hiccup: "Could he just be on a different part of the island?"
Mala: "No, he never strays far from his food source."[src]
  — Mala and Hiccup discover the ruse  
One day, in the episode "Defenders of the Wing, Part 1", after being led by a supposed truce with the Dragon Hunters, the Dragon Riders arrived on Caldera Cay. When they got there, the riders saw a village, but were kidnapped by the Defenders of the Wing. The Defenders of the Wing believed the riders to be Dragon Hunter spies, but eventually Hiccup was able to convince their queen, Mala of the truth. However, the truce was all a ruse by Viggo Grimborn to lead the riders to Caldera Cay for use as a distraction, while they themselves went into the volcano and knocked out the Great Protector with Dragon Root arrows and kidnapped it. When Mala and Hiccup noticed that the volcano had excess lava spilling out, they walked to it and discovered the ordeal.

Returning Home

Wait a minute, that's it! We're not gonna kill your dragon, Mala. We're going to feed it. [src]
  — Hiccup formulates an idea to divert the Great Protector away from the Edge's volcano  

The Great Protector made its first physical appearance in "Defenders of the Wing, Part 2" when Viggo and Ryker were visiting the Eruptodon in its cell bay on their Dragon Hunter ship. After Viggo's armada arrived at the Edge, they released the dragon to the dormant volcano of Dragon's Edge. The Great Protector went into a feeding frenzy, eating its way through the volcano's crust, during which Hiccup and the Dragon Riders, along with Mala, arrived at the Edge, only to encounter the Dragon Hunters' counter-defenses. Eventually, they overpowered the Hunters and reached the Great Protector, who was still in the feeding frenzy. Hiccup then came up with an idea to feed the starving dragon, but as Meatlug had run out of lava, she had to summon the wild Gronckles living on the Edge to create a lava trail for the Eruptodon to follow back to Caldera Cay.

The Eruptodon made a brief appearance in "Saving Shattermaster" when Snotlout had to pass three trials to become king. In the first trial, Throk signaled the Protecter to fire lava blasts in order to make the rocks for Snotlout to walk on.

In "Out of the Frying Pan", the Protecter laid an egg for its offspring to train it to become the next Great Protector. However, the Eruptodon was too weak to fly the egg to the lava chamber for the ritual of birth. So Mala, Hiccup, and Fishlegs flew on Meatlug into the lava chamber and, with the help of the Fire Terrors, the ritual ended to be a success. The Protector later gained enough strength to save Throk from the lava.

In "Shell Shocked, Part 1", When Ryker and the Shellfire attacked the island the Eruptodon gave the riders permission to take her offspring away from the Hunters, to keep it safe.

Going to Vanaheim

This is a well-earned rest for the Great Protector. We should all be so lucky to have lived such a meaningful life. [src]
  — Mala  

In "A Matter of Perspective", when the Great Protector became too old to protect Caldera Cay, Mala admitted that it was time for her to go to Vanaheim, a place where old or injured dragons live their last days. In secret, Ruffnut and Tuffnut followed her. When the riders came looking for them, the twins were watching the Eruptodon. Later, when the riders were trying to escape, she helped them, distracting the Sentinels, before entering a cave where she presumably died.

Physical Appearance

The Great Protector is a typical Eruptodon with rocky-gray skin. Her belly, legs and chin are a darker shade of gray, as well as the edges of her wings. Underneath her scales, she has red, orange and yellow skin, reminiscent to the color of lava. Her spines and claws are black. Like most Eruptodons, she has a very round body with large wings and a relatively short tail.

Appearances

Trivia

  • The symbol on the Defenders of the Wing boat sails is of the Great Protector.

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