The Scorching is an early period of time in Pyrrhia when the dragon tribes warred and overthrew the Scavengers, who were the dominant life form at that time. It is mentioned several times throughout the Wings of Fire series, in The Dragonet Prophecy, as well as in Moon Rising and Darkstalker. Dragons also use it as a method of measuring time, since they refer to the current year as 5,012 years since the Scorching (5012 AS). Moonwatcher says this to Darkstalker in Moon Rising.
Dragon tribes were formed afterwards based on abilities and habitats, including deserts, mountains, the sea, the arctic, swamps, and rainforests. Each tribe chose their own queen, as this allows dragons to get help when they needed it, making it extremely tough for a scavenger to kill even one dragon.
Nearly five thousand years later, a scavenger managed to kill Queen Oasis, proving that scavengers could very well still kill dragons. This hints to a possible future where the scavengers unite to overthrow the dragon tribes.
Webs mentioned in Moon Rising that there are many versions of the history of the Scorching and also said it happened about 5,000 years ago. Some versions have been described as "legends" and "fairy tales".
- Clay once accidentally called the Scorching "The Scalding" in his dream while Starflight was dreamvisiting him, much to Starflight's annoyance.
- Dragons in the present use the events of the Scorching to keep track of time. (For example, 5012 years After Scorching or A.S. for short)
- The Scorching occurred 5,012 years before the events in Moon Rising, according to Moonwatcher. This would make The Dragonet Prophecy happen roughly 5,011 years after the Scorching.
- It is said by young Darkstalker's talking scroll that after the Scorching, Pyrrhia was in a state of almost constant warfare.
- It is revealed by Webs in Darkness of Dragons that for 5000 years transformation and resettlement occurred after the events of the Scorching. However, Webs was interrupted by Thrush, and never got to finish the details.
- It is possible the scavengers will overthrow the dragons and claim the spot as the dominant life form in Pyrrhia once more, although this is unknown and most likely won’t be happening anytime soon.
- Tui would like to make a Legends book about the Scorching.
- The Scorching may be what happens to future Earth and humans, a form of Doomsday, in the book's version of the future.