Form fits function.
The Nine Dragons of Vale
Nickname "Lizards" (Derogatory)
Status Underground
Professional Status
Occupation Criminal Network
Job Types Varied
Jobs See individual entries below
The Nine Dragons of Vale are the nine leaders of a network of powerful criminal organizations in the kingdom of Vale. The leaders, referred to as Dragon Heads, are the primary antagonists of The Zanipher Philosophy and Monster's Den, and tertiary protagonists of Scales


The Nine Dragons of Vale oversee a large amount of the intricate organized crime system of Vale. They seek alliances with other factions in order to gain more power, and have built a broad and far-reaching range of operations. This, combined with the mystery surrounding their actual identities and skills, has made them major contenders for control of Vale's underground crime society.

The Nine Dragons and their affiliated organizations usually operate independently, but have a general alliance that might be more accurately counted as a nonaggression pact. When necessary, they will support each other, and they will team up if required to deal with a significant threat. Despite being allied with one another and being relatively transparent during communications about their goals, the Dragons are not a single faction but rather a coalition of powerful organizations with bases in Vale who wish to expand their semi-legitimate crime businesses without coming into physical conflict. 

The Nine Dragons are high level black marketers, providing their specialties to anyone who has enough money to contract their services. Some attribute the success of the Dragons to the government's inability to spread their Huntsmen and Huntresses effectively, and also to the oft-unseen darkness that still dwells throughout Remnant, without actually realizing that the darkness lies in the heart of every individual. 

The Dragons underwent a change in leadership a few years ago, shifting the alliance's activities away from traditional violent mob boss dealings and into the white-collar crime sector. This also put an end to their practice of recruiting desperate teenagers as mooks and lackeys, although each Head still operates off a different recruiting basis. They operate on ShadowNet with the handle "DragIX" to send out bounties and communicate with prospective employees, and many Heads have expanded their corporations into other kingdoms.  


Following the dissolution of Beacon Academy, the Dragons found themselves pinned by the outflow of Hunters into the streets and heightened police activity. Dozens of their street gang associates were arrested for engaging in petty crime in broad daylight, having assumed the brief chaos from the Grimm would provide cover for more reckless behavior. It became clear that the network's strength - numbers - was also their greatest weakness, as the alliance had spread to the point where it could not be completely monitored. The Heads moved quickly to cut ties with all low-level, unorganized groups who were vulnerable to infiltration or arrest, retaining relationships only with the well-established factions which were cohesive enough to lie low while still maintaining regular activity. The Heads decided that the core alliance had become well-enough established that the Nine Dragons would be able step back from joint ventures and work independently until the atmosphere returned to how it had been before the Fall.

Note: Although the idea of a criminal governing body seemed inherently contradictory at first, turns out it's actually a thing that's existed in real life.

Dragon Heads

Arcelia de Voire

The most powerful of the Dragons, and executive of Sefyre Incorporated. A mysterious individual who is as versatile as she is deceitful. After her predecessor departed on a private journey, she stepped in to organize the Dragons into a true force to be reckoned with.

Specialty: Information Technology 

Arkos Cannon

Second strongest of the Dragons, Arkos is the most generous and forgiving of the Dragons, and is known to be quite compassionate to his followers. He hates any perceived challenge to his authority, and will react extremely badly to it.

Specialty: Smuggling

Tony Syson

Third strongest of the Dragons, Tony is by far the most charismatic of them, and perhaps the smartest.  After being bullied as a child due to being far smarter than the other students, he used his talents to manipulate students and even teachers into doing what he wanted.  His method of fighting is an underground form of boxing that makes use of several powerful illegal strikes, enhanced by his lightning dust gauntlets.

Specialty: Pulling Strings

Danilus "Dani" Morse

Fourth strongest of the Dragons, Dani is easily the most polite of them all. Dressing in fine suits, this immaculate walrus Faunus takes care to mind his manners.

Specialty: Counterintelligence


Fifth strongest of the Dragons, Gala is a seemingly carefree individual whose jovial attitude hides his twisted sense of entertainment, as his hobbies include forcing other beings to perform demeaning or even suicidal tasks for the pleasure of himself or his clients. He wears a wizard hat that he dubs his "Certified Mafia Boss Wizard Hat".

Specialty: Illicit Entertainment

Ethereal Kaiser

Sixth strongest of the Dragons, Ethereal specializes in white-collar crimes and is the CEO of the Kaiser Conglomerate. She hides a ruthless, cunning mind behind an everpresent motherly smile. She provides the Dragons with weapons, launders their money, and provides them with assets for their smuggling.

Specialty: Money Laundering

Mona Bluthardt

Seventh strongest of the Dragons, and matriarch of the venerated aristocratic Bluthardt Family. A graceful and composed woman whose connections in high society dwarfs even that of the other Heads. Her status extends even to the underworld, where some of the biggest players of organized crime would willingly follow her decisions.

Specialty: Paramilitary Defense

Neil Huong

Eighth strongest of the Dragons, and king of the Vale Dust Runners, Neil appears as an arrogant deceiver who never hesitates to flaunt himself for dramatic purposes. In reality he is almost unparalleled in his thieving ability, and is more multi-faceted than his initial appearance suggests.

Specialty: Larceny

Zanipher "Daybreak" Hei'An

Ninth strongest of the Dragons, and head of the Daybreak Syndicate, Zanipher is cold, businesslike, and proud, preferring to manipulate those around her while retaining a mask of nonchalance. She was raised in a triad family and trained for success.

Specialty: Information Brokerage


Most of the following sketches were heavily based off images by artist Suou

List of references: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Related Members


  • Captain Daniel Lowell: the former leader of the Nine Dragons, who embarked on a mysterious mission to a distant region and has not been seen since, although he instated Arcelia as his heir before departing. An ex-soldier with legendary combat ability.
  • Donovan Barnes: A club owner from the distant region of Atlas, one of the Dragons' first allies in a goal to extend their network beyond Vale's boundaries.
  • FenHong Se Suzhen: A teenage heiress at Beacon whose parents have collaborated with the Dragons in the past in order to boost the profits from their entrepreneuring company. Once she takes over the family's company, she will maintain the same relationship with the Dragon Heads along with her official duties.
  • Team RASB (Zaniphilos only): a Beacon team which is swayed into occasional grudging assistance with the Dragons in exchange for massively improved resource availability. They track down low-level threats and suspicious behavior which helps maintain the secrecy of the Dragons.
  • Mask: a massive soldier who takes on assignments from the Dragons.
  • The Stranger: A spymaster/information broker in the employment of the Nine Dragons.  His true identity is not known even to them, but he works for all of the Dragons.
  • Hector Mettal: "The Merc King", leader of the Mettal Legion, who works alongside the Dragons to provide information on and eliminate threats or targets outside of Vale. Zanipher frequently recruits Hector and his men to protect her investigators when their assignments take them outside of their main kingdom.
  • Spectral Kaiser: Ethereal Kaiser's daughter, who is being groomed to be her successor.

Freelance Employees

  • Obsidios "Sid" Bowler: An oft-hired young spy who refuses to kill but works for the Dragons anyway.
  • Rosso Fiammata: the son of two wealthy lawyers who briefly worked as a low-level lackey for the Dragons before being violently murdered in a gang battle, or so it is believed.
  • Billy Taupe: A mysterious man working under Arkos Cannon as a mercenary, who uses an urban legend as a guise for his criminal activities.
  • Akari Auburn: leader of the Jabberwockys street gang, a girl who really knows how to pack a punch. Convinced into working for the Dragons after a brief altercation.
  • Tana Avery: Main character of Scales, a petty thief who through her quick learning skills and a good deal of luck becomes witness to the rise of the Dragon network.
  • Aiden Vaughn: Secondary character of Scales, an enforcer for the Dragons in the Valean tenderloin.

Allied Factions

  • Nightshade: a private military corporation which caters to wealthy individuals like the Dragons, and excels at performing silent assassinations and infiltration.
  • SeFyre Incorporated: an international business which provides computing software while also monitoring economic activity, allowing the Dragons to decide when and where best to make advances against their competition.
  • Daybreak Syndicate: an extended triad family which operates as a legitimate corporation that specializes in information retrieval and high-level private investigations.
  • Narreau Technologies: A self-sustained research division of the Atlas Military which provides an arms supply, advanced robots, and other technology to the Dragons. In exchange, the Dragons provide insider intelligence on dangerous individuals, business rivals, and unorganized crime.
  • The Kaiser Conglomerate: A pair of two large companies: Kaiser Armaments, which specializes in the development and distribution of weaponry, and Kaiser Industries, which manufactures a wide array of cutting-edge technology for public use.
  • Astraea: a former alternative combat school turned mercenary organization that is armed in part by the Kaiser Conglomerate.
  • The Spectrum: A particularly skilled mercenary organization with a great variety of specialties in covert operations. In exchange for their services in Mistral, the Dragons give them broad range of operation in Vale and access to their resources.
  • Vale Dust Runners: a network of disenfranchised-turned-thieves hailing from Vacuo. The members are close, with organization resembling a family.
  • Bluthardt Corporation: A company owned by an old, powerful, and extremely wealthy family of elites: the Bluthardt Family. They have a direct alliance with the Syndicate, with whom they exchange intelligence.
  • ANGELs: a small but highly skilled faction of vigilantes spread across Remnant whom the Dragons maintain a tenuous non-aggression agreement with. The Dragons sometimes contract individual ANGELs to eliminate their criminal competition.
  • LUCIFER: An organization dedicated to wiping out ANGELs, with more low-key operation and alliances like that of the Dragons. The Dragons have formed a pact with both LUCIFER and the ANGELs, so that if one of these factions turns on them, the other will assist them in fending off the threat.

Other Relationships

  • Team DAMN: a team at Beacon which aims to disrupt the activities of the Dragons. Three of the members have had a prior antagonistic relationship to the Dragons before starting the current school year.
  • Laelia Furfuracea: A young Huntress who defected from Master's Realm and its affiliated criminal activity and now works for Astraea.
  • The Patched: a large gang of mostly thieves based in Mistral, whose discovery by the Dragons prompted a brief violent conflict before the two retreated to their respective spheres of influence.
  • Everglades Fuller and Vayne Fuller: a duo of serial killers who worked as hired killers for the Dragons before breaking off and conducting their own murders and eventually vanishing from the public eye. Executed in secret by the Daybreak Syndicate.
  • James 'Hook' Everest: The former Seventh Dragon, whose faction Master's Realm attempted worldwide genocide before being quashed by the Flagg Institute and The Cardamom Family. The Dragons were quick to remove all ties to the Realm once they realized that Master was no mere business-minded don like the rest of them.
  • Dystopia: An underground faction of terrorists and thieves, whom the Eighth Dragon was once affiliated with. Despite this, the Dragons hold them at arms length due to their aversion for ideology-motivated organizations.

Associated Media

  • Monster's Den: The Manga: The story for which the Nine Dragons were originally conceived. Envisioned as major antagonists for Team DAMN, the discontinuation of the manga meant that the Dragons' characterization in this universe was never completed beyond their initial conception as eclectic mafia dons.
  • The Zanipher Philosophy: An alternate universe fan series which picked up the Dragons as major plot pieces once more. With the rounding out of all nine members, it was planned that the Heads would serve as a shady conspiracy group whose activities would be explored by and subsequently joined by many of the main characters. The story was abandoned in favor of individual RPs, which can be read below.
  • Dragons Report: Intended as an official document which exists in-universe, written by the Ninth Head with the intention of providing a comprehensive description of the Dragons' activities, composition, and policies.
  • Latent Troubles: Torturous Vow: Not long after the Bluthardt family officially joins the network, agent Ichor is sent out to secure a partnership in the red light district. The Seventh Dragon is expanding her reach, and doing so will take a show of force.
  • Scales: Returning to Vale once again, this fan fiction focuses not on the Dragons themselves but on the development of the crime network over a period of seven years. Two disaffected young adults and on-off criminals are recruited as associates, and as they rise through the ranks they bear witness to the unfurling of the Dragons' complete form.


Below lists roleplays which one or more of the Dragons or their associates have participated in or are directly mentioned in. RPs only vicariously related to the factions within the Dragons, without alluding to the network as a whole, have not been included.

  • Observe and Collect - Dragon spy Obsidios Bowler tries to negotiate with cold-hearted teen mercenary Nox to call off his mission targeting Dragon operations. It's a no go, and Nox has a plan himself. (Completed)
  • Amusing Date - A small time crime boss kidnaps Nox's girlfriend Tianee. (Completed)
  • A Monster's Den - Team DAMN receives a mission report from a mole within the network. They're going to crash an underground arena hosted by none other than the Fifth Dragon. (Discontinued)
  • Underworld - Nox is back with Team CIST, ready to rescue their friend from the bar where the old lecher and his engineers are holding her. (Completed)
  • Interrupted Everyday Routine - Future Dragon Spectral Kaiser runs into Thorald from before, this time at the gym. (Completed)
  • Directionless Undercurrents - A Faunus gang hijacks a mall with the objective of robbing the entire building. They're chaotic, but it's revealed they're just being played from behind the scenes by the Dragons. The unexpected BOB coup that ensues drags in individuals from Vale police, Flagg, and the Pilgrims. (Completed)
  • A Certain Civil Interaction - Heiress Fen Suzhen finds herself scouted by an anonymous group. She enlists the help of Cyzarine Bluthardt, but the girls find themselves out of their depth when a Dragon herself appears to claim Fen as one of her own. (Completed)
  • Fun and Games - Barnes' Nightclub comes under attack for their longtime investment in child combat rings. With a motley force composed of Hunters, ANGELs, cultists, vigilantes (you get the idea), things get messy real fast. (Discontinued)
  • Rip Current: Faction War - The coup d'état attempted by Black Order Battalion continues, and the organizations involved in the last incident are joined by the Cardamom Family in order to crush the rebellion. The event serves as a catalyst for Fen's path to becoming a Dragon agent. (Discontinued)
  • A "Perfect" Team - What should have been the routine formation of a team at Beacon rapidly devolves into a total bloodbath. With the emergence of a serial killer duo, the Syndicate and Battalion must intervene before things go completely out of control. (Completed)
  • Going Up Against the Establishment - Four of the Nine Dragons travel to Vacuo to scout out business prospects. If they want to carve out a niche for themselves, they'll first need to approach the Cardamoms, the old crime family who owns half the kingdom. (Discontinued)
  • The Reluctant Dragon - Recounts the first meeting and ambitious back and forth between Neil Huong and Zanipher, who has journeyed to Vacuo to personally recruit the talented thief as a Dragon Head. (Completed)
  • Renegades and White Snakes - On her first official assignment as an agent, Fen finds herself partnered with Kurai, a taciturn teen affiliated with the Realm to investigate the origin of mysterious posters appearing around town, each bearing the sigil of the Nine Dragons. The Jabberwockys are blackmailed into working for the Dragons. (Completed)
  • Invisible Strings - Even as a tentative friendship blooms in the aftermath of Team PRFC, the Bluthardt family is moving to contact the Nine Dragons for the formation of a more solid alliance. (Discontinued)
  • Fading Patchwork - An investigation into unidentified human activity outside of Vale blows into a full-scale conflict as the Dragons and the Patched engage in a deadly power play. Collateral damage much? (Completed)
  • Rogues, Dragons, and Familiar Faces - The posters are back, but this time it's because Kurai wants Fen to bring the Dragons into the upcoming war against the Realm, which is planning a grand genocide. Fen wants nothing to do with it. (Completed)
  • From Grace - After their disastrous confrontation the first time around, Zanipher and Diaboli run into each other again, this time in an unassuming coffee shop. What follows is the kindling of an unexpected relationship, boosted by the involvement of Team RASB's attempt at spying. (Completed)
  • Missing in Action - In their search for Fen in the aftermath of Beacon's fall, Huntresses-in-training Platinum and Automne run into ANGELs Zhu-Li and Tigris, also in pursuit of clues about a missing girl. Little do they know that Fen's been in league with the Daybreak Syndicate for months now. (Completed)
  • Serenity Prayer - Following the reveal of Fen's true loyalties, the Ninth Dragon heads to Mistral to silence her sister's obstinate former partner. Instead, another chance run-in with Diaboli leads to some profound revelations on both ends. (Completed)
  • Black Order - As Zanipher prepares to beat some sense into Platinum, she finds herself contacted by none other than the Seventh Dragon, Mona Bluthardt. (Ongoing)


  • "Dragon Head" is an actual name used to refer to the leaders of Chinese triads. In Chinese mythology, dragons are associated with outstanding power, and the number 9 is auspicious in astrology.
  • Hydra image source:
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  • If you would like your Antagonist or Faction to form an alliance with the Dragons, please leave a comment below with a link.