|“||I'll be free soon... free... and I'll be coming for all my enemies... think about that while you try to fall asleep... what I'm going to do to your friends when I get my claws on them... how messy and thrilling it's going to be..."||„|
|~ Queen Scarlet|
Queen Scarlet is a major antagonist in the Wings of Fire book series, appearing as the main antagonist of the book The Dragonet Prophecy, and later reappears in The Hidden Kingdom. She was the vicious Queen of the SkyWings, having put the dragonets in arena matches to fight to the death for her amusement. She was also the mother of Vermillion and Ruby.
She was killed in traditional one-on-one combat for the throne by her daughter, Princess Ruby.
Scarlet had dark orange scales and sharp yellow eyes, with huge orange wings. A row of tiny rubies were embedded between the scales over each of her eyes.
She was described as slightly smaller than average in size. Her head was usually wreathed in smoke that emitted from her nose. She also has a deep slithering voice.
A fine coat of golden chain mail adorned her, hung with rubies and amber drops, as well as a circlet made of gold and diamonds, medallions around her neck, and rings on her claws. Occasionally, she would also wear a diamond-studded vest with small black chain links.
After being severely damaged by Glory's venom and then being imprisoned by Burn, all earlier ornaments were gone except for the embedded rubies. The other side of her shimmering orange face was melted into a hideous dark mess that misshaped her snout and even revealed a glimpse of her jawbone underneath. One eye was pulled down and out of proportion with the rest of her face.
Scarlet was impetuously violent and both physically and emotionally manipulative and abusive. She was also incredibly sadistic, enjoying the brutality of arena fights without any sort of remorse for the dragons dying.
Scarlet declared that the twenty-year war her kingdom was engaged in made things better for her, since it was 'fun', the arena became stuffed with prisoners of war, and it distracted her daughters from challenging her for the throne. She seemed to have no remorse for her subjects or the terrible conditions she put them under. She stated that fear keeps dragons in line better than anything.
Scarlet enjoyed killing to a fault, often murdering dragons that were useful in sudden spurs of anger. For instance, she once killed an member of her palace for 'annoying her.'
However, after her face was melted and disfigured by Glory's venom, and she was then imprisoned by her former ally Burn, Scarlet underwent a change in character. A bit of fear began to show in her actions, and a brief epilogue from her point of view revealed that she had nightmares of RainWings and their venom. However, she hides it well and kills any dragon that brings it up.
Scarlet was one of the longest-lived SkyWing queens, surviving fourteen challenges to the throne. She was also one of the most beautiful and powerful queens in all of Pyrrhia. No one had even tried to challenge her in almost nine years prior to her disappearance from the kingdom. At various times during her rule, fourteen of Scarlet's daughters tried to challenge her for the throne, and all fourteen died brutally in traditional combat. Later on, Scarlet had another daughter, Tourmaline.
When the War of SandWing Succesion began, Burn forged an alliance with Queen Scarlet, bonding over their mutual love of gore and violence. It is also theorized that Burn offered something in exchange for the SkyWings' help - like the Great Five-Tail River, which borders both kingdoms and had been a point of conflict between the tribes for millenia. However, it's also possible Scarlet just joined for fun.
Scarlet would place prisoners of war against each other in the SkyWing Arena, claiming that if they won enough fights, they would go free. However, no one ever won, since Peril was matched against them after a few wins, and no one survived her.
Twelve years into the war, Kestrel, one of her most loyal soldiers, entered the breeding program and yielded one large egg with twin dragonets. Because one of the dragonets was born with too much fire, and the other too little, Scarlet ordered Kestrel to kill the dragonets and stay out of the program for the rest of her life, as per SkyWing tradition.
Despite this, Kestrel tried to flee with her dragonets. Scarlet, along with a wing of guards, caught them and then changed her command; if Kestrel killed one of the dragonets, she would be allowed to go free with the other. Kestrel "killed" the one with too little fire, her son, an act which haunted her for the rest of her life. Scarlet, however, revealed she had lied and ordered her guards to take Kestrel back for trial and kill the other dragonet. Kestrel tried to flee with the dragonet with too much fire, Peril, but was burned upon contact with her firescales, leaving scars. She was forced to flee alone, leaving her only daughter with Scarlet.
Scarlet named the dragonet Peril, and, due to her invulnerability and blazing hot claws that were shown to be able to melt through metal, she trained Peril as a killer and to be the champion of the SkyWing arena. She made Peril burn most of the eggs that would be due to hatch on the brightest night, ending the Dragonet Prophecy. To ensure Peril's complete and utmost loyalty, she told her that Peril had killed her twin by burning him before they hatched and her mother attempted to kill her, but was thwarted by Scarlet. She also told Peril she needed to eat black rocks to survive, which was a lie to keep Peril under her control.
At some point, Scarlet's daughter Ruby captures an IceWing prince named Hailstorm. Scarlet puts an enchanted necklace on him that transformed him into a SkyWing named Pyrite, with no memories of his previous life and complete obedience to the SkyWings.
Six years later, Scarlet's treasury was raided by a human named Mushroom. Scarlet chased the human across the forest by herself, where she by chance met Clay and Tsunami, who had been escaping from their cave home in the mountain with the Talons of Peace. She told them they should come with her to the SkyWing palace so she could know more about them, but when they declined, she ordered them to. To escape, Tsunami impaled her tail into the ground with the scavenger's sword, infuriating her. Scarlet followed them back tot heir hideout. She captured the dragonets of destiny, along with Kestrel, who it had turned out was one of their guardians.
Scarlet placed the MudWing, SeaWing and NightWing of the prophecy into the arena, using the RainWing as living art and the SandWing as a gift for Princess Burn during her visit. Scarlet held a dramatic trial the following day when Kestrel was sentenced to death, and Peril learned who her mother truly was.
After Burn arrived, Scarlet imprisoned the three dragonets that were in the arena in Peril's room for causing a protest among the prisoners. After Peril helped them escape, she betrayed them by telling the queen where they were, to keep Clay with her in the Sky Kingdom.
The next day, Scarlet declared that for her hatching day, she had arranged a magnficient games with the dragonets of destiny. First, Tsunami was pitted against an insane SeaWing later revealed to be her own father. Next, Starflight and Tsunami had to fight against humans, after they refused to fight each other. They defeated two of the scavengers before Queen Scarlet decided to pit Starflight against a group of IceWings, a tribe that loathed NightWings. Before she could do so, Morrowseer came to Starflight's rescue, killing all the IceWings in the process.
Scarlet then pitted Peril against Clay. During the battle, Scarlet told Clay to use his venom, not knowing that it was Glory who possessed that ability. Ironically, upon asking him to do so, Glory reared up, easily broke her chain, and spat a stream of venom at Burn, who pushed Scarlet in front of her as a shield. As the venom took effect, Scarlet screamed in pain as her face began to melt. She was then presumed to have been killed during the chaos, with her daughter, Ruby, succeeding her as the dragonets escaped the kingdom.
Ex-Queen Scarlet was kidnapped by Burn during the panic throughout the palace. She was brought back to the SandWing Palace and kept in Burn's weirdling tower, which had collections of deformed dragons, mutant lizards and humans with weirdly pale skin. This had a damaging effect on Scarlet's mental health, as it was supposed to.
In a rage, Scarlet disembowelled a stuffed dragon next to her, discover that it held a magical artifact inside of it called a dreamvisitor, which allowed her to enter the dreams of any dragon and communicate with them. She used this every night, messaging her son Vermillion multiple times, as well as Ruby, giving them both instructions to rescue her. She also tried various SkyWings, but none of them listened to her, and Ruby openly threatened her if she returned. She also visited Peril, but it took several nights of arguments to convice Peril to rescue her, which she eventually agreed to.
Once, Scarlet used it on the dragonet of destiny who melted her face, Glory. When Glory asks where she is, Scarlet says that she will tell her if Glory promised to rescue her. Glory refused to do so, and this caused the former queen to become angry, believing that Glory owed her for damaging her in the first place. She promised bloody death for all the dragonets, and left.
Later, one of the dragonets of destiny was captured by Burn's brother, Smolder and delivered to be imprisoned in the weirdling tower with Scarlet, who was going slightly insane, screeching and roaring and destroying anything she could get her claws on. The following day, an attack was waged on Burn's palace by the organization of criminals known as Outclaws, who were attempting to retrieve the dragonet of destiny. They succeeded, however, during that time Peril arrived and freed Scarlet.
The night in the mountains, around a campfire, Scarlet and Peril were discussing what happened next. Scarlet told Peril to return to the Sky Kingdom with her and resume being her champion after Scarlet killed her daughter Ruby. Peril refused, having had a change of heart after meeting Clay. Scarlet tried to convince her, but when it didn't work, she abandoned Peril.
Scarlet met with one of her still-loyal dragons - a secret worker called Chameleon, who to Scarlet's knowledge had some form of weakened animus power. They plotted to regain the throne. After discovering that the dragonets of destiny had opened a peace school after ending the war, Scarlet brokered a deal with one of the IceWing students. The particular IceWing, Icicle, had lost her brother to Scarlet, who promised to return him if Icicle killed the dragonets of destiny.
The IceWing attempted to, however she was stopped by the protagonists of the second series, including her own brother. Icicle told him the deal she had made with Scarlet before fleeing to the rainforest to assassinate Glory. The group followed her and stopped her again, leaving her in the custody of the RainWings. However, Icicle's brother Winter told her that when she next slept, she was to tell Scarlet that if she had proof their captured brother was alive, Winter would kill Glory himself.
A day later, Scarlet dreamvisits Winter when he and the rest of the winglet go and try to find her secret base. She tells him that she knows he isn't really going to kill Glory and threatens to kill his brother in agonizingly painful ways as punishment. After terminating the dream, Scarlet orders Chameleon to bring Pyrite to her so she can kill her, therefore killing Hailstorm as well.
However, the dragonets thwart Chameleon (who shapeshifted into a giant NightWing) and blind him, capturing Pyrite and removing her necklace. She transforms back into Hailstorm, much to their surprise. The group travels to a small town called Possibility, where Winter decides to abandon his classmates and take Hailstorm back to the Ice Kingdom to remember his past fully.
Enraged, Scarlet ordered Chameleon to create a decapitated head of Glory, and she flew all the way to the peace school, where she threw it at the feet of the dragonets (and Queen Ruby, who was there to retrieve the body of a dead SkyWing) and declared that they would all be next. She fled before anyone could capture her, and long before they realised it was a fake head.
However, Peril (who was attending the school) sees that Scarlet is still dangerous and decides to capture and kill her, in order to make everyone safe. She travels with a SeaWing called Turtle, and they make it to Possibility. However, it is here that Peril meets Chameleon, shapeshifted into a SkyWing called Soar. Soar reveals that he is Peril's father. After some disbelief, Peril grudgingly accepts it but harbors resentment towards him for not being there all her life.
Soar brings her to meet Scarlet. Peril becomes undecided about whether to kill her when Scarlet begins to convince her that no one would ever love her for who she is except the queen. She also reveals Chameleon's true self and powers. Peril is still undecided until Chameleon gives her a necklace that removes her deadly firescales. Peril puts it on and is overjoyed to find it works. However, at Scarlet's command, Chameleon had actually imbued the necklace with several other enchantments, including loyalty to Scarlet and being unable to remember Clay, the dragon who changed her and who she was in love with. Peril happily agrees to Scarlet's coup and they all travel to the Palace of the Sky together.
Once there, Scarlet kidnaps her grandson, Ruby's baby dragonet, Prince Cliff. Scarlet then uses Cliff as a hostage when Ruby returns, demanding she hands over the crown in return for her son's life. Ruby is infuriated but agrees resentfully, having her guards imprison her. Peril and Chameleon take Cliff to a watchtower to guard him, under the pretense that he can't yet fly. However, Cliff had lied to them, and flew into the palace and into the cell with his mother.
Ruby bursts through the cell door, which wasn't even locked, and has a standoff with Scarlet. Scarlet orders Peril to kill them both, however Peril realises the spell she is under and removes the necklace, much to Scarlet and Chameleon's horror. Peril lunges to kill Scarlet, but Ruby intervenes and states that she would like to win the throne herself.
On the roofs of the palace, Ruby and Scarlet begin the traditional one-on-one combat for the throne, with the survivor becoming queen. Peril watches with Chameleon, who accidentally drops a hint that Ruby is under a spell. Peril threatens him, and he relents, telling her that Ruby is in fact not a real dragon, and is a weaker, more compliant version of Scarlet's actual daugher Tourmaline, who everyone believed had died in the war. In addition, the spell makes it impossible for Ruby to beat Scarlet in a fight.
Peril streaks into the battle and crushes Ruby's enchanted earring, breaking the spell. Ruby transforms into Tourmaline, who is much physically stronger. Tourmaline begins to win the fight, and succeeds quickly, shredding Scarlet's wings, pinning her down, and breaking her neck.
Scarlet took Peril in when Peril was very little. She manipulated her to become her champion and made her so that she didn't feel any guilt when she killed. When Clay came along, Scarlet tried to make her stay away from him so she wouldn't try to escape. She also tricked her into eating the black rocks. In Escaping Peril, she had Chameleon enchant Peril to be loyal to her. Scarlet tricked the firescales in every way. It backfired eventually when Peril broke free from the spell.
Upon discovering Chameleon disguising as Soar, Scarlet offered him to work as her spy in exchange for treasure. Their relationship was mutual due to the offer, as Chameleon was greedy for treasure and was willing to work for such. She trusted Chameleon with multiple spying missions, such as using a Cirrus mask to infiltrate the Talons of Peace.
Scarlet does not see her son as a threat because he cannot inherit the throne. As such, she seems to be on good terms with him, letting him announce arena battles as well as argue for persecution.
As a dragonet of destiny, Scarlet toyed with him during his imprisonment. She is aware of his friendship with Peril and focused on destroying it. As with the other dragonets, she wanted him dead.
Scarlet initially saw Glory as a useless and lazy RainWing, turning her into a piece of art. After getting injured by her venom, Scarlet loathes the RainWing for ruining her looks. She wants Glory dead more than the other dragonets, as hinted when Icicle goes for her to make up for her failed murders. Scarlet says that Glory gave her a sickening feeling, which she wouldn't call fear.
Scarlet allied with Burn for the War of SandWing Succession, and found the war a useful source for fighters in her arena. Later, after being wounded by Glory, Burn locked her up in her stronghold, and this changed the relationship between them drastically.
Ruby is Scarlet's daughter, making her eligible for taking the throne. She was formerly Tourmaline, whom Scarlet enchanted to be a softer, more obedient dragon in order to maintain her power. Despite wanting to keep the throne, Scarlet kept her alive in order to have at least one live heir, though they did not have a strong relationship. She was ultimately killed by her daughter during the challenge.
- "Now really, this is getting insulting. You're in my territory. Apparently you're living under my mountain. I am only the most important dragon for hundreds of miles. How dare you not recognize me?"
- ― to the dragonets of destiny (The Dragonet Prophecy, page 110)
- "The dragonets of destiny, yes, very thrilling. I understand you've been underground for the last six years, so perhaps you haven't heard: not everyone wants the war to end."
- ― to the dragonets of destiny (The Dragonet Prophecy, page 149)
- "Oh, that's my new toy. Pretty, isn't she? I bet I'm the only queen with my very own RainWing."
- ― to Burn, about Glory (The Dragonet Prophecy, page 216)
- "You think Burn is what you have to worry about right now. She's not. I am. I'll be free soon... free... and I'll be coming for all my enemies... think about that while you try to fall asleep... what I'm going to do to your friends when I get my claws on them... how messy and thrilling it's going to be..."
- ― to Sunny (The Brightest Night, page 113)
- "Oh, you mean me? Is that your clever plan? Find the most deadly queen in Pyrrhia, kill her, and take back your brother? Even if you could kill me, you would never find your lost IceWing. Never. The prison I've got him in is far too clever for that."
- ― to Winter, about Hailstorm (Winter Turning, page 170)
- "What use are diamonds to me? If I want something, I don't pay for it; I take it. And right now, groveling prince, I only want two things: my throne back - and vengeance."
- ― to Winter (Winter Turning, page 171)
- "So you're his only hope. Or at least, you were. It's all over now, though. I can see that you're far too useless to kill anyone for me. My only remaining pleasure is watching your face as I tell you your brother will be dead by morning."
- ― to Winter, about executing Hailstorm (Winter Turning, page 172)
- "Does it look like I have the most fabulously dangerous new toy? Because that's exactly what this is."
- ― to Ruby, about Peril (Escaping Peril, prologue)
- "Oh, really? You think you've changed so much? I know you. You like killing dragons. You've always liked it. It's one of the things I can stand about you - none of the simpering, moaning guilt another dragon might have. You were born to burn your enemies. And mine. Mostly mine."
- ― to Peril (Escaping Peril, page 22)
- "I destroy anyone who opposes me! I will have my vengeance and I will get my throne back! This is just one of the dragons I'll kill—and you'll all be next!"
- ― to Ruby's soldiers (Escaping Peril, page 27)
- "You can't do that. Not until I have the throne back. No one can know that you're powerless now—I need the threat of you, which should be as effective as the actual fire of you, after the last seven years. Once we've secured the throne and I've killed Ruby, then you can be as dippy and cuddly and stupid as you want."
- ― to Peril (Escaping Peril, page 168)
- "Get back. Do you hear me? I'm your queen, remember? You are my champion. You do what I tell you to do."
- ― to Peril (Escaping Peril, page 223)
- "When you win? How thrillingly hilarious. After all the challengers I've killed, you think you stand any chance at all? My mousy daughter who can barely speak in a room with more than two other dragons in it?"
- ― to Ruby (Escaping Peril, page 224)