In Search of Dragon Island
As a young girl, Runa sailed out with two equally young friends named Dagfinn and Rangvald to try to find the Nest, unbeknownst to their parents. They sailed for three days before reaching Helheim's Gate. In order to reach the Dragon Nest, they had to get through this forbidding and dangerous area. Ultimately they were unsuccessful and turned around.
|“|| I issue a warning to all Vikings wishing to travel to Dragon Island to think twice, for they must pass through Helheim’s Gate, the scourge of anyone wishing to pass through. My fellow warriors and I sailed three days from Berk, each one of us armed to the teeth with axes, shields and swords. Like me, they were tired of the constant raids and hungered to rid Berk of dragons once and for all. One night, we snuck out of our parents’ homes and sailed to the center of our troubles: Dragon Island.|
Our plan, I admit, was foolish. We were young and inexperienced, but we were filled with a longing for adventure. Perhaps it was for glory, but we went despite little Dagfinn’s warnings that we should wait for the adults to come with us.
We didn’t even make it to Dragon Island. We had arrived at Helheim’s Gate and tried to sail our way around the sea stacks that seemed to touch the sky. How foolish we were to challenge the will of the gods!
The wind was so strong, it was as if a thousand gods had sneezed in our direction, making it nearly impossible to sail forward or to steer in the direction we desired. As much as we rowed, we could not make it all the way through the passageway. And even so, there was the constant threat of the wind blowing us into the sea stacks and destroying our ships.
After what felt like eternity, Rangvald suggested that we head back. “If Helheim’s Gate doesn’t kill me, my parents will if they wake up and find that I ran off!” he’d said, wringing his hands.
“What are you? Some kind of coward?” I snapped, trying to keep the quivering from my voice, and to stop my hands from shaking.
“Runa,” Dagfinn sighed, “we want to get to Dragon Island as much as you, but we can’t get past Helheim’s Gate. It’s impossible.”
I wanted to object, to declare that we keep trying and push past Helheim’s Gate to Dragon Island. But I wasn’t stupid. Only the smartest and strongest Vikings could get past the maze-like passage. And it seemed like we didn’t belong to that group.
With a frustrated grunt I nodded at Rangvald and Dagfinn, “Fine. We’ll go back.”
As we turned the ship around, I kept my eyes on Helheim’s Gate, which slowly faded into the horizon as we sailed back to our village.
|— From the Diary of Runa Brashbeard|
An Interest in Engineering
Runa Brashbeard is an inquisitive and forward young girl who wonders how her father's arm prosthesis was made. After finding out that the blacksmith Gobber the Belch crafted it, she immediately wants to ask him questions and learn the mechanics of the device, no matter what time of day (or night) it is.
|“|| I watched as my father screwed on his ax. He always did this whenever retelling stories of his glory days on the battlefield. While our days of fighting dragons are long gone, he refuses to let my brother and I forget that he not only participated in the war, but lost his forearm in the process. Unfortunately, my brother had mysteriously disappeared once we had seen Dad reach for his ax.|
“Thor or maybe even Odin must have deemed me worthy,” my father said, “because I escaped every battle whole, except for one.”
I tried not to roll my eyes. The story really was quite interesting, but I’d heard it so much that one more time, and I’d probably pack up and move to Vanaheim. “Dad, please,” I sighed. “I know this story is, like, really cool, but I’ve heard it enough to put the gods to sleep!”
My father bristled. “So, what would you rather hear, if not tales of glory and honor on the battlefield?”
I gestured to the ax he had attached to his arm. “Tell me about your ax. How did you get it? Why does it fit your arm? Does it hurt? How does it work?”
“So many questions!” my father explained, laughing. “I’ll take them one at a time. I got this ax from our local blacksmith, Gobber.”
“How did he make it?” I asked, on the edge of my seat.
Dad shrugged and replied, “I wish I could tell you, but you know I’m not one for studying these types of things. You’ll have to ask the inventor himself.”
I was out of my seat and headed to the door before my father had even finished his sentence. “I’ll go there now!”
“Wait a second, child!” my father called out to me. “It’s probably best if you don’t disturb him in the middle of the night.”
I paused at the door. “Oh. Right,” I said sheepishly.
“Come sit by the fire and you can visit him in the morning.”
I obliged, practically vibrating with excitement at the idea of picking Gobber’s brain. I prayed to the gods that he would see potential in me and perhaps take me on as an apprentice. Or perhaps he could tell me how he made my father’s arm! Either way, tomorrow is sure to be informative!
|— From the Diary of Runa Brashbeard|
Exploring the Archipelago on Dragonback
|“|| As Skyblade and I flew over Eruptodon Island, we could feel the heat radiating off of the volcano. Drops of sweat rolled down my brow and dripped onto my Deadly Nadder’s back. Skyblade gave a growl of disapproval.|
“Sorry,” I said, “but I can’t help it. Odin above, it’s so hot here.” I took a deep breath and ran my arm across my forehead. “Let’s go explore.”
Skyblade soared down with only a small grunt of objection. After a few years of training with me, she had learned that my desire for adventure sometimes came before my own personal safety. What can I say? I want to be a great hero someday, and everyone knows that heroes take risks.
That’s why Skyblade and I had strayed so far from the School of Dragons. There was no quest this time, nor was there a villain to vanquish. I just wanted to explore Eruptodon Island for myself so that I could tell other people that I had journeyed to one of the most dangerous islands in the archipelago. Then, perhaps, they would begin to see the potential in me.
We touched the ground and I hopped off of Skyblade’s back. The two of us made our way up the mountain. I wanted to reach the top so that I could boast to everyone that I had made it to the peak of Eruptodon Island. After some searching, I found one of the four rumored openings to the inside of the volcano. Taking a deep breath, I led Skyblade inside and was taken aback by what I saw. A white-hot river of magma flowed beneath the volcanic surface of the island. The two of us stared, mouths open and eyes wide as we took in the immense power Eruptodon Island had hidden away.
With the heat even more stifling here than it was overhead, I almost suggested that we turn back, but I didn’t even let the words cross my lips. I was Runa Brashbeard, after all! I was a hero, and heroes never turn back!
|— From the Diary of Runa Brashbeard|
School of Dragons Website
The School of Dragons Website offers a Game Guide and other information about people, dragons, and places connected to the game. To illustrate the world within the game and provide a story-like setting, the website contains 'excerpts' from various characters appearing in other parts of the Franchise, as well as exclusive to the Website. Runa Brashbeard is one of the exclusive characters to the game's website, illustrating the game's focus on science and engineering education, as well as explorable locations in the game, such as Helheim's Gate and Eruptodon Island.