Dragons, variously called serpents and wurms and are one of the most feared, respected and mythologised creatures on Zenth. They are long-lived, limbless serpentine creatures that can be found in any terrain that lets them burrow or swim: sand, the ocean, snowdrifts and even the soil of farmlands and forests. Dragons are ferociously territorial arch predators that will attack anything that crosses their path, but the more intelligent ones are capable of restraining this aggression. Covered with iron-hard scales on their backs, their flanks and bellies possess setae, articulated claws which help the dragon grip and pull itself through its environment. Broad, pointed skulls house multiple rows of fangs and huge venom glands.

Elves have the bitterest hatred of and most experience with dragons, for their frequent encounters with sand and sea dragons in the north have lead to the loss of countless ships. The dryads of the Evergreen Court hunt ice dragons for sport and prestige, while orcs attempt to domesticate them, or exterminate the ones that mulch up their field and devour their livestock.

Dragons lay eggs in clusters of up to a hundred, usually in a secluded spot and abandoning them immediately. When the eggs crack, a feeding frenzy begins as the hatchlings devour each other until only one remains. As hatchlings, they are the size of a Chalnfens black anaconda, and their minds are no better. But dragons can grow with out limit so long as there is food enough to sate their ravenous appetites, and over the course of years they shed their skins, growing larger and fiercer each time. Each cycle of shedding is called an instar. The discarded skins are prized as a material for fashioning into superior armours and goods. At rare occasions, a dragon also undergoes a process of mind-moulting; it retreats into hibernation for a time, sloughing off its old thoughts in the same way it would discard scales that are too small for it, emerging months later with greater intelligence and cunning. After several mind-moults a dragon may be as intelligent as a race of the Wheel; after several more, they can be geniuses, more calculating and manipulative by far, and wielding strange and terrible magics. This ascending intellect also reveals to dragons the secret of their own mortality: the more they mind-moult, the longer they hibernate, and eventually they will fall into a slumber so profound they will never awaken. This paradox of seeking greater power and wisdom but knowing that it will doom them frustrates elder dragons and drives them into a frenzy of activity, seeking to make the best use of their dwindling time.

  • Sand Dragons: Yellow-brown and as craggy in profile as desert rocks, sand dragons slither through the dunes listening for pitter-patter of elven feet or the rasp of their sandships cruising across the surface. Their fangs ooze with a pyrophoric toxin that causes fever and spontaneous combustion in those they bite.
  • Sea Dragons: Beautiful and sinuous, with tightly meshed bronze, silver, azure and sea-green scales, sea dragons have broad paddle-like tails and flukes along their length. Sea dragons are responsible for as many of sun-bleached hulks lining the Carrion Coast as the wreckers that lure vessels aground. Their venom is powerfully saline, causing dehydration and dessication in living tissue.
  • Wood Dragons: Their numbers kept in check by the orcs and dryads of the Great Basin, the horned and green-scaled wood dragons weave through tree trunks and dive through the soil of the plains. Wood dragons have a coat of thorny spines amongst their scales, and with a shudder of their coils can launch them at threatening creatures.
  • Ice Dragons: Grey-White and adorned with shaggy manes, ice dragons plague Calerath and the tundrafields of the Evergreen Court. Pits on their snouts allow them to sense the heat of living beings in the cold environment. Their venom is a strange alchemical substance that drains heat from their victims, inducing numbness, frostbite and even freezing them solid.
  • Deep Dragons: Blind, bony-helmeted things that tunnel through solid stone with their caustic saliva. Dwarves find their passages useful for exploring the depths of the mountains.

The races of Zenth have many legends about particularly large dragons that are said to slumber deep beneath the waves or earth, and are often blamed for natural disasters.

  • Gundmarjal: Reputed to coil at the bottom of the largest of the Five Lakes, blamed for droughts caused by him swallowing the rains.
  • Hal'Ashan, the Typhoon Waker: A sea serpent of prodigious size, rumoured to be the cause of the tsunami that devastated the Mangrove Court and the seasonal waterspouts of the Bay of Corsairs.
  • Suunduul, Who Shakes the Earth Upon His Back: A deep dragon said to dwell deep beneath the Daaland mountains, creating earthquakes when he dreams.