The Dragons are a powerful subspecies of Aspect Lords, which natively resided between The Secode and The Barrelplex. These primordial entities are among the most ancient, and are widely believed to keep ancient and powerful knowledge and secrets. Although once prosperous, with infinite numbers among their ranks, they are now extremely endangered, with only a mere 24 left existing in the entire Whateverse.
The exact point in Metatime in which the Dragons came to be, or even if there was a point in metatime to begin with, is unknown. But whatever the case, the Dragons are deeply integrated with The Barrelplex, and so are widely believed to be as nearly as old as it. The Dragons as they are currently perceived by the inhabitants of Whateverse never started out that way. In all actuality, these beings originally weren't anything at all. The Dragons, in their earliest states, did not exist. The Xaspunum from which they were self-conceived had no consciousness nor any information whatsoever, and in itself not even existed as it lingered in the void of the Barrelplex. However, the further "inward" (e.g towards more realized information and attributed within the Barrelplex) the nonexistent Xaspunum drifted, the more of its properties which manifested themselves, being programmed into it by absorbing them from external surroundings. Among the first of these attributes to be was the Xaspunum's self-(semi)existence. Next came the formation of concepts which then were attracted to and bound to the semi-existent Xaspunum - concepts such as Logic, Emotion and so on. The conceptual Xaspunum further developed, self-intricating and self-complicating as the very first inklings of consciousness developed, which were inseparably intertwined with the concepts that had merged with the Xaspunum. Then, further inward, the semi-existent semi-conscious conceptual Xaspunum developed sentience, then self-awareness and finally self-perception. Still, the aspect lords lacked physical being, as they were infinitely beyond physicality. However this was not an issue, as the conceptual aspect lords could still perceive and interact with one another. As one could predict, the concepts which contributed to the earliest stages of the aspect lords' development were integral parts of their ideologies and motives. The consciousnesses thus began adopting values based off the concepts they embodied.
Within the Barrelplex, there were an uncountably infinite amount of these semi-existent conceptual Aspect Lords which inhabited it. Being as incredibly diverse as the concepts they embodied, many different Aspect Lords held many different views and outlooks regarding how they felt about reality. Due to this, the heavily fractured and divided conceptual aspect Lords naturally congregated into many different factions and clans who shared roughly the same ideologies. There also existed duplicates of the same Aspect Lords, as multiple ones embodied the same concepts. These duplicates were only barely aware of each-other however and even more rarely interacted, and none of them had had joined any of the same groups together so as to maintain individuality. One of the aforementioned factions was led by an Aspect Lord who was embodiment of the concept of Leadership, and so was named accordingly. Leadership always put the well-being of its group first, and never made any decisions without consideration for the others. Even though the rest of the aspect lords in Leadership's faction had no free will against their leader, Leadership still always had their best interests in mind.
When the External Hazard began to first appear and infect parts of Whateverse, Leadership, which had been observing these events from afar, saw an opportunity to spread its own political influence as well as its ideals. And so, Leadership and its faction of aspect lords unanimously chose to migrate to the Whateverse. However, it soon became apparent that the only way to properly inhabit Whateverse was by conforming to its physics and laws. Therefore, upon entering, all the Aspect Lords were forced to compress their infinitely expansive consciousnesses, and manifest themselves into metaspatial forms which would be compatible with the properties of Whateverse, as well as able to interact with those properties. For this purpose, they formed constructs from the environment as comprehensible avatars with which to represent themselves. And thus, the Dragons came to be.
After giving themselves form, the Dragons attempted to align themselves with Apex, for the purpose of a mutually beneficial relationship. As proof of their professed loyalty, the Dragons assisted Apex in quelling the threat of the hazard with their Dragon flames, which were effective in incinerating the volatile material that the hazard was composed of. Although Apex was relieved to finally have an effective defense against the Hazard, they were also at the same time concerned by the presence of these beings. The Dragons originated from beyond Whateverse, and therefore were not inherently bound to the rules Apex had established for it, even if the Dragons chose to conform to them. And even more concerning was that the Dragons were Aspect Lords just as Apex, and highly powerful ones at that. To Apex, the Dragons were yet another variable that upset their natural order of things. Luckily, however, the avatar of Leadership, named Mu, agreed with Apex that free will was more trouble than it was worth, and he would do everything he could to ensure that his Dragons would follow the ideals of Apex. As for Mu, Apex gave him the benefit of the doubt and chose not to bind him to their will, as Mu already seemed more than willing to follow Apex's orders on his own.
The Dragons were at their absolute peak at this time. But as with all peaks, a fall was to come next. And the dragons fell incredibly hard.
It all began with Apex becoming increasingly overwhelmed in their efforts to deal with the External Hazard. As the Hazard spread throughout Whateverse, they lost more and more control of it; until eventually, they completely lost their whole influence. It was then that Apex finally came to terms, at least somewhat, with the fact that they could not control and manipulate every single aspect of existence. With this realization, they announced that the Dragons also might as well be freed, since it didn't seem as fair given the current circumstances. Mu was not happy to hear this, as he was quite comfortable with the way he ran things and wasn't intending to change it anymetatime soon. But now that it seemed like an option to the Dragons, one that was presented by a perceived superior of Mu for that matter, the other dragons quickly began to become restless. The wanted out, but now Mu was stuck in a corner. He didn't want to lose control to begin with, but now his worries were compounded by the added fear of a potential mutiny staged against him if he were to grant free will to the dragons. However, at the same time Mu did not want to keep his people unhappy and unsatisfied for the sake of his own interests. And he knew that if he really was the good leader he wanted to think of himself as, he would give them what they wanted.
While Mu initially reluctantly granted substantial freedom to the Dragons, enough to satisfy some of the critics such as Pi, the beginning of a Whateverse-wide war against a being known as The New God who had weaponized the Hazard would require far greater levels of co-ordination amongst the Dragons and the rest of those who still remained loyal to Apex. And so Mu demanded that even with free will, the Dragons were still expected to follow his rules. And if they did not like it, they were more than free to leave since they would likely be banished for staying and violating the rules anyways. And so upon this offer being presented, Pi abruptly left the group begrudgingly. He felt disgraced and humiliated by the lack of loyalty the other dragons had for him, and it was even more awkward that Pi was the only one to leave. But that wasn't his primary reason. Pi cryptically told the others that he was off "in search of answers". He did not reveal much else before disappearing.
Eventually, Pi would return, now called The Aspect Warlord and possessing a horrifying new form. He had joined the New God's army and appeared to have intentionally infected himself with the Hazard, and was determined to use his newly gained abilities to wipe out the Dragons in servitude of his new "master". Warlord considered the other Dragons to be a threat to the Hazard and the New God's plans, as their flames were the greatest obstacle against the spread of the hazard. And so, Warlord proceeded to exterminate many of the Dragons, nearly driving them to complete extinction. Likely, it was the combination of Warlord's resentment towards the other Dragons for disrespecting him as well as heavy delusions brought on by the Hazard which led to Warlord blindly hating and attempting to kill all other Dragons besides him. Warlord continued on his rampage, quickly reducing the total number of the Dragon race down to just 24 in total within the entirety of Whateverse including himself. A figure known as The Knight tried to step into action and fight Warlord, but was quickly defeated.
The chaos and carnage was only stopped when the Dragons named Alpha and Omega chose to sacrifice themselves. They knew that the only way to defeat Warlord and stop him was by one of then sacrificing themselves. But they also knew that one could not bear to live without the other. They knew then what they had to do, and so Alpha and Omega charged towards Warlord, igniting their Dragon sparks and detonating an enormous explosion. Following this, the blood of the two intermixed together, congealing into a strange and powerful substance. The puddle of the two dragons' blood washed over The Knight, reinvigorating and empowering him. With his strength now returned, with even more to spare, the empowered knight fought viciously against the Warlord. The battle finally ended with the knight driving his blade through Warlord's heart. He was not dead, but rather gravely wounded, and thus defeated as he hastily teleported himself away before he could be finished off.
Alpha and Omega were very close to death at this point. However, they were saved by the other Dragons at the last moment. Following this, the rest of the Dragons retreated to a secluded sanctuary somewhere in the Barrelplex, a pocket dimension of sorts. And it is here that they currently take refuge, disconnected from the concerns and troubles of the rest of the altarca. And so, a once proud and prosperous civilization, had been whittled down into one final, small desperate vestige of its former self.
The Dragons, like every Aspect Lord, possess Xaspunic essence; the element Xaspunum composes their life essence, which by default gives them the identity of Aspect Lords. A quality that is unique about them, however, is that a few of the dragons seem to have an element of the material Trosinium partially composed into their anatomy. The reason for this is that the concepts embodied by certain Dragons aligned themselves with the properties of materials in the environment which were most closely matched to them when their avatars were constructed. Therefore, there are Dragons like Alpha who is partially composed of Al, Omega who partially composed of Om, and so on. Contrary to popular belief, the avatars of Dragons are not and never were literal Dragons at all. A dragon is not at all the same thing as a "Dragon". The title of a Dragon within the context of this group was originally just that - a title, and it carried a meaning entirely different from the fire-breathing winged lizards of fairy tales. The only reason that Dragons are depicted as dragons (or similarly to them) is because The Knight, a being who had originated from a universe with a medieval aesthetic, subconsciously associated the beings he saw with dragons that he read about in stories, and thus he perceived the Dragons as such. And when The Knight eventually became the new Interpreter, his perception of Whateverse became everyone's perception of it, and so The Dragons were henceforth perceived as dragons by everyone, as if they had always appeared that way.
Dragons embody and represent concepts which are specific to them. These concepts could be anything, but typically they are related to mathematical and scientific things such as physics and chemistry. For example, there may be a Dragon who represents the concept of gravity. Typically, these concepts are not "realized', until the death of a Dragon. In life, the concept which the Dragon embodies remains suspended in a stagnant state, as the concept it part of the Dragon's conceptual self which is bound to their existent avatar. Only when the Dragon dies, and the bind between the existent avatar and the conceptual self is removed, is the concept able to be released and dissipate, taking root in the hearts and minds of others. At this point, the conceptual self dies along with the avatar, as the two are inseparable intertwined. This is why during the extermination of the Dragons, a rapid development of lower-tier verses and dimensions took place, due to so many concepts and ideas that were released and realized from the deaths of the many dragons. However, since there are a few still-living Dragons such as Mu and Pi, the concepts they embodied had to naturally develop and form on their own within lower-level verse rather than coming from the Dragons' deaths. As such it took a longer time for these properties to emerge.
All Dragons breathe a powerful magical fire, and each individual Dragon has their own unique flame with their own effects, exclusive to that dragon specifically. It is worth noting that Dragon flames are not related in any way to the flames which are produced by trosinic elements (Phire, Omiflames, etc.), otherwise known as trosinic flames. Trosinic flames originate from the trosinic elements themselves, and are probably more likely to just be the plasmatic states of the elements themselves. Thus, Dragon flames and trosinic flames are wholly separate things which should not be confused with each-other. From which the Dragon flames originated is completely unknown, with the only thing known for sure being that they were bound the Dragons in their earliest stages of forming. The use, knowledge and effects of a flame can be "passed on" to a Dragon's student or mentee if the Dragon so chooses, though this isn't always done. Typically, the color of the Dragon's flame is the same as the perceived color of their form, although this criteria is not always a deciding factor. All Dragon flames effectively burn and destroy instances of the External Hazard better than many other methods, and therefore it makes an efficient deterrent and weapon against it. Dragons also possess what is known as a "Dragon's spark". This is essentially a fuse, a circuit within their "essence", and if ignited, it creates a brilliant explosion of the Dragon's respective flame, touching and effecting all within its radius. However, this action is effectively suicide, as igniting the Dragon's spark will mortally wound the Dragon and kill them. Therefore, it is only used as a last resort.
Below are a few of the known flames and their effects:
Black: Allows beings to view events more objectively and "logically" and make more logical decisions - bore by Alpha.
Clear: Infohazardous confusion - bore by Beta
Rainbow: The combination of every dragon flame and their effects - bore by Mu.
Yellow: Mentally enslaving targets, rendering them incapable of resisting the will of the flame's wielder - bore by Pi.
Orange: Metatime distortion/alteration - bore by Rho.
Green: Encouraging and facilitating life, growth and fertility - bore by Theta.
Golden: Making whatever is engulfed by it appear highly attractive and valuable to the point of murderous greed, and in itself is considered highly attractive and valuable for reasons unknown - bore by Phi.
White: Sedates aggressive beings and fills them with compassion and "divine love" - bore by Omega.