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Noble Fugitive

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This is when someone of high status is hunted. He was on the wrong side of a feud — or he was just unlucky — or The Emperor has a really, really, bad temper. Sometimes there's been a bloody regime change and all nobles are targets. Whatever the reason, he is a noble fugitive. Sometimes he flees to the protection of a rival king; sometimes he chooses to live amid the wild barbarian hordes; sometimes he’s gathering an army, and will return and defeat the bad guys and have an Awesome Moment of Crowning — whatever. Right now, though, he is a Noble Fugitive.

Related to Remittance Man, but a Remittance Man is not necessarily being hunted. Someone with a Mysterious Past is likely to have this as his backstory as well.

Contrast Moses in the Bulrushes, who was too young to know of his heritage. Compare Hidden Backup Prince, who is hidden as a child and doesn't know their true heritage. Also see King Incognito and Defector from Decadence. A Princess in Rags may sometimes be one of these.

Heroic Russian Émigré is a subtrope relatively common in 20th-century Western fiction, especially Cold War-era novels: a Russian citizen (often a nobleman) who escaped the Bolsheviks and becomes the West's ally in fighting the Soviet regime.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Prince Lelouch and Princess Nunnally from Code Geass, after they falsify their deaths — not difficult, as a 10-year-old and handicapped 7-year-old abandoned in a war zone — and seek refuge with their mother's supporters, the Ashford family, to avoid being used as pawns again by their father. In R2, Nunnally is restored to her rank and becomes Viceroy of Area 11, to be used as a pawn against Lelouch, just as he had feared. The trope holds doubly true for Lelouch after he becomes the Rebel Leader Zero.
  • The Heroic Legend of Arslan: Prince Arslan and his loyal general Daryun are forced to go on the run after a disastrous battle where the Lusitanian army achieved victory. A good portion of their journey is them trying to find supporters and allies to save Pars while trying to fight off Lusitanian soldiers.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin has Casval and Artesia, the children of Zeon Zum Deikun. After their father died, they were forced to go into hiding on Earth with their family friend, Jimba Ral, when the Zabis tried to take control of them. They were taken in by Don Mass who gave them the names Edward and Sayla. But Edward left Sayla, took the name Char Aznable from the original that he switched identities with when Kycilia Zabi tried to kill him, got enlisted in Zeon's military and later donned the legendary mask which made him recognized as the infamous "Red Comet".
  • Princess Arika and Princess Theodora of Negima! Magister Negi Magi during their time with Ala Rubra, and thanks to later events and revelations revealed after the Ostia Tournament, we could add Arika's son, Negi here as well.
  • One Piece:
    • Cavendish, banished because he was so beautiful that he wrecked the local dating scene for everyone else.
    • Riku Dold and family, framed for raids on local villages.
    • Wapol up and left when his kingdom was besieged by pirates.
  • In PandoraHearts, Gil and Oz become these after the former betrays his old master for the latter and the latter is revealed to be a false heir who is deemed too dangerous to be allowed to live.
  • Carl La Hire in The Pilot's Love Song, lost his parents after the Revolution of the Wind. In order to protect himself, the former prince takes on a new identity- Kal-el Albus.
  • In Porco Rosso, Marco is on the run from the Italian authorities and living on a desolate island in the Adriatic because he refuses to play nice with the fascist government that's currently in power. Or as he says, "Better to be a pig than a fascist."
  • The titular Scrapped Princess, Pacifica, who prophecy says will bring about the destruction of the world. When it is revealed that she was not killed as a baby, she travels with her adoptive siblings, fleeing soldiers of her own kingdom.
  • Anaak Jahad's mother in Tower of God, a former Princess of Jahad who broke the law by getting pregnant and "uncontrolledly spread the power of Jahad" that way.
  • King Van of Fanelia from The Vision of Escaflowne spends most of the series on the run from the Zaibach empire, who need him so they take control of the Escaflowne themselves. While the royalty of countries like Austuria are at least somewhat sympathetic to his plight, they're not entirely willing to risk their asses by truly granting him refuge.
  • World Trigger:
    • Border shelters Yotaro and Ruka, royalty from the allied Neighbor country Aristera whose families were wiped out in a war four years ago.
    • Ratarikov is revealed to be the Fourth Prince of Galopoula, but when Aftokrator annexed them, he hid undercover as a regular soldier in Gatlin's squad.
  • Takechiyo of Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon was once the lord of Mamideira Island until the clan's head elder, Shogen Mamiana, seized power and attempted to kill him with a curse, forcing him to flee and take refuge, working for the corpse dealer Jyubei. though he, Moroha and Hachiemon eventually defeat Shogen, Takechiyo chooses to abdicate his position to his younger brother as he finds the life of a bounty hunter more exciting.
  • Yona of the Dawn features Princess Yona and her bodyguard Hak on the run after her cousin murders her father and assumes the throne.

    Comic Books 
  • In Superman story The Krypton Chronicles, the ancestors of Kal-El and Kara Zor-El had ruled over the continent of Urrika until Hyr-El was chased out of the city of Erkol by his tyrannical brother Vad-El.
  • Wonder Woman: Odyssey: Following the destruction of Themyscira and their queen the surviving Amazons raise their princess Diana as refugees in hiding doing everything they can to hide and protect her from Nemesis.

    Fairy Tales 

    Fan Works 
  • Dungeon Keeper Ami: At the conclusion of the Avatar Islands Arc, Empress Mercury is forced to retreat and abandon her holdings, taking her forces into exile. This has severe political implications, as she is a Keeper with a reputation (possibly the most powerful one on the planet at that point) and the only reason she was forced to retreat is because three Dark Gods teamed up against her.
  • In Loved and Lost, the alicorn princesses Celestia, Luna and Cadance become this for most of the story after their nephew/cousin Prince Jewelius usurps Equestria's throne by turning the public against them.
  • In The Masks we Wear (JiggleWigs), Ursa and her children are forced to live as Earth Nation peasants after an attempted Ruling Family Massacre.
  • The Night Unfurls:
    • A straight example for Michelle, after his disownment. Kyril is tasked to hunt him down because he disgraced the family name once more by ruining the Pantielle estate and nabbing the ancestral sword.
    • Discussed in the remastered version regarding the Hunter. Boris suspects that the Hunter may be a disgraced noble, because of how he speaks in a refined speech. The Hunter, neither a noble nor a fugitive, feels a bit perturbed about some people calling him a lord.
  • The Tainted Grimoire: Sothe and Micaiah were these after they realised that Vaticus Finch was the one who killed their unborn child and was trying to seize power.

    Film — Animation 
  • My Little Pony: A New Generation: The princesses Zipp and Pipp become royal fugitives after fleeing Zephyr Heights when their mother is overthrown. Queen Haven herself also becomes this after escaping from prison, and is still running from her former guards when she meets up with her daughters in Bridlewood.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • The Chronicles of Riddick is a franchise about a Noble Fugitive... in SPACE!
  • Star Wars:
    • Princess Leia spent years in hiding, running away from the Empire. This is a subverted trope in that she was already a member of the Rebellion before she went into hiding and going to them was logical after being captured at the start of A New Hope, possibly even if Alderaan had not gone kablooey. In fact, that may have been where she was headed even before Vader thought it'd be fun to sack the Tantive IV.
    • Revenge of the Sith: Her mother and adoptive father also fit this trope by the end. The Emperor is in control of the Senate, forcing them to go into hiding.

  • In the Belisarius Series, Princess/Empress Shakuntala, after she is rescued from Venandakatra the Vile.
  • In A Brother's Price, Alannon, sort of. He didn't flee on his own accord, but was abducted from the castle when it was under siege. After his family was executed, there was a search for him, but he didn't see a point in revealing his identity, and chose to stay with his kidnappers, who treated him well and catered to his every whim. (They were working for the enemy, but had their own agenda, which was getting a husband. Alannon fit the job description, and might have ended up dead or worse if discovered by their superiors, so they just took him for themselves.)
  • In Dragon Blood, Tisala becomes one of those, and flees to Hurog, where it is known that the Hurogmeten (the hero of the story) is not friendly with the king (who, in this case, is the enemy), and powerful enough to keep enemies out of his country.
  • Paul Atreides and his mother in the original Dune seek refuge among the Fremen after the Harkonnens kill his father the Duke Leto. Whom he rallies into an unstoppable army and uses to claim the Golden Lion Throne. In the prequel novels, the entire House Vernius goes renegade after their world of Ix gets invaded by the Tleilaxu with the secret support from Padishah-Emperor Elrood IX and, later, his son Shaddam IV. All but one end up dead before Rhombur Vernius re-takes the planet with the help of the Atreides and receives his father's title of Earl. To accommodate that Ix wasn't ruled by a noble house by the time of God-Emperor of Dune, the Winds of Dune interquel (set between Dune Messiah and Children of Dune) establishes that the entire ordeal weakened House Vernius' authority, allowing the Ixian technocrats to easily step in and take control when Rhombur's heir, Bronsu Vernius, is killed.
  • Harry Potter: Harry, Ron and Hermione become these in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Initially, Harry is the only one of high status, but the longer they are on the run from Voldemort, the more famous all three of them become.
  • The Hobbit features both Thorin and Bard, whose ancestral kingdoms were laid waste by Smaug.
  • Doremus becomes this at the end of It Can't Happen Here. He returns to America to aid dissidents as part of the resistance against the totalitarian regime. He's constantly on the run because Corpos are hunting him, however.
  • John Carter of Mars:
    • The princess in The Master Mind of Mars. Who is also the heroine, Valla Dia, though she tells her story in the third person.
    • In The Chessman of Mars, U-Thor, after he questioned his jeddak's injusitce, had to fight his way to freedom and then escape.
  • Aragorn in J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. He's descendent of royalty, but spent most of his formative years as a Ranger(/border guard), before reclaiming the throne after the war of the Ring is over.
  • This describes Cassius Mass in Lucifer's Star by C.T. Phipps. The Fire Count of Crius is wanted for war crimes against the Commonwealth of Interplanetary Systems after the end of the war. This despite the fact his home planet was destroyed during the end of the war and being the most honorable of the Crius generals. He ends up being a Broken Ace smuggler who maintains traces of his old honor.
  • In the Hindu epic Mahabharata the Pandava brothers spend a short time on the run after escaping the wax house plot perpetrated by Duryodhan their evil cousin. They pretend to be wandering ascetics having to beg for alms in villages. They stop running after Draupadi marries Arjun and a compromise is reached to grant them the kingdom of Indraprasth. But then, Duryodhan claims their kingdom and their personhood in a dice game and orders them to spend thirteen years in exile and a year incognito. With the stipulation that if they are found out during their year incognito, they have to repeat the ordeal again. The Pandavas live in the forests for thirteen years, then take jobs as a courtier, cook, dance instructor, horse and cow herds.
  • Subverted with Maladict in the Terry Pratchett novel Monstrous Regiment. When Maladict joins the army, the recruiting officers are wary of what would make a gentleman sign up, and Maladict immediately assures them there isn't a price on his head (before they get round to asking).
  • Saukendar (Shoka) in C. J. Cherryh's The Paladin, once teacher and adviser to the boy Emperor, who flees when his friends are framed for treason and lives in exile just beyond the Empire's borders.
  • The Reynard Cycle: The crew of the Quicksilver assumes that Isengrim is one of these. ( He isn't.) In Defender of the Crown, the Princess Larissa becomes one after her mother and brother are murdered.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "Rogues in the House," Murillo thinks of fleeing to exile but doesn't know if it would be allowed.
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel: The de Tournays and the other noble émigrés rescued by the Pimpernel.
  • In Sergey Lukyanenko's Seekers of the Sky duology, Junior Prince Marcus, a bastard son of the Possessor, is hunted by the entire State and, later, by the Russian Khanate as well.
  • The Silmarillion is full of these. Beren is probably the cleanest-cut example; his father's kingdom gets overrun by Morgoth's army, and he lives off the land rather than leave it, first as part of a group of twelve warriors, then alone after the group gets betrayed. There's also Túrin, Elwing, Eärendil, and practically any living Elvish royal come the end of the First age due to their kingdoms being sacked.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire has lots of examples.
    • Viserys and Daenerys Targaryen became fugitives after their father, King Aerys II (aka, the "Mad King"), was overthrown in a rebellion and they escaped to the Free Cities on the continent of Essos.
    • Arya Stark is on the run to escape the Lannisters while her sister Sansa is held hostage at King's Landing. Ser Dontos Hollard, whose life Sansa saved by asking Joffrey to make him the court jester, organizes to have her spirited away by boat right into the arms of Littlefinger, who helps her escape to The Eyrie.
    • When Theon Greyjoy betrays Robb Stark and captures Winterfell in the name of the Iron Islands, he makes Bran proclaim Theon as Winterfell's ruler. When Theon is betrayed by Roose Bolton, Bran, Rickon, Osha, and Hodor escape Bolton's sacking by hiding in the crypts while Theon pretends to kill Bran and Rickon by murdering two other boys who look like them to "set an example". The rest of Westeros believes them to be dead as they are joined by Jojen and Meera Reed to go North and find the Children of the Forest to help Bran with his greendreams and learn to control his warg abilities.
    • Later, Tyrion Lannister, after being accused of killing King Joffrey, kills Tywin Lannister, his father and then runs away to the Free Cities with the help of Varys.
  • In The Sunne in Splendour this is the fate of Francis Lovell, the Best Friend of Richard III after Richard dies at Bosworth. Francis survives to lead a rebellion, but he never manages to topple Henry VII.
  • In Tigana, Alessan is the prince of Tigana who has had to go into hiding after his home was destroyed. He's trying to plot the death of the person who did it, which has the bonus effect of [1] ending the curse that stops anyone not born there from even recognizing his homeland's name.
  • Subverted in Tongues of Fire. The exile, Don Pasquale, is considered by most European governments to be the rightful King of Italy(through arcane and questionably legal justifications) following a socialist revolution which wipes out almost all the nobility. Pasquale was given "refuge" by the Polish government and allowed to set up a court in Warsaw. The only problem is that Don Pasquale is a fish-and-chip shop owner from Glasgow who has never set foot in Italy and whose title is 50 acres of useless land.
  • Vorkosigan Saga:

    Live Action TV 
  • When Gene Hunt accidentally shoots Alex Drake in Ashes to Ashes (2008), he hides in Spain for three months to avoid prosecution, though it's not shown on-screen.
  • Doctor Who: The Doctor was depicted as being on the run from his own people for most of the 1960s, with later eras establishing that the Doctor was a person of some stature in Time Lord society. In the 2015 episode "Hell Bent" he becomes a fugitive again, to an extent, after having become the Lord President by way of a bloodless coup.
  • Downton Abbey: A number of Russian émigrés appear in Series 4 (1922-23). Lady Rose gets involved in a charity to help the émigrés who had been resettled in York, and invites them to Downton to see some of the Tsarist memorabilia Lord Grantham's father, the 6th Earl of Grantham, had brought back from the wedding of Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, and Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna in St. Petersburg in 1874. The émigrés all marvel at the items, except one—Prince Igor Kuragin, who (as it turns out) had been involved in a romantic affair with the Dowager Countess during the wedding and was only prevented from running away with her by her husband's physical intervention. The marvel he's after is the Dowager Countess herself (who has to fight her feelings to turn him down).
  • River and Simon Tam in Firefly are a classic example of "seeking shelter among the barbarians and going native."
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Viserys and Daenerys are the last scions of their deposed dynasty and are served by the exiled lord Jorah Mormont and later by the exiled knight Ser Barristan Selmy. They have been on the run for most of their lives and Daenerys expects to never truly find a home to settle down in after her work is done though it is a wish that is possibly greater than upholding her family's legacy.
    • Later, after escaping his cell with the help of Jaime and Varys, Tyrion Lannister proceeds to flee Westeros after killing Tywin and Shae.
    • Arya Stark is the youngest daughter of Lord Ned Stark and is forced to be on the run after her father crosses the king and winds up getting executed.
    • Bran and Rickon Stark have been on the run since they escaped from Theon and the Ironmen.
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: Halbrand is the descendant of a line of kings from the Southlands who served Morgoth a millennium ago and he is on the run because the Orcs attacked and destroyed his home. When Galadriel tries to convince him to return home and rule his people, he reasons that he has done unforgivable things everyone would find abhorrent and would never accept him for what he did. He does return in the end and is accepted as the king of the Southlands. Is subverted in the end because he is Sauron in disguise, who was killed temporarily by Adar and had to flee.
  • Madam Secretary: Russian Foreign Minister Anton Gorev flees to the UK after he and Secretary McCord attempt to set him up as the successor to the deceased Russian President Pavel Ostrov, but are Out-Gambitted by Maria Ostrova, Ostrov's widow. He dies there courtesy of Ostrova arranging a Bodyguard Betrayal.
  • Arthur, after Morgana's power grab in season 3 of Merlin
    • And again at the end of season 4.
  • Snow White, in Once Upon a Time, due to her past with the Evil Queen in the Fairy World.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Æneas fleeing after the fall of Troy, as told in the Aeneid.
  • Sort of happens to David in The Bible. He was just a shepherd boy, but was anointed as the king of Israel by the prophet Samuel. Unfortunately, Saul was still the king, and was not very excited about this. David eventually ends up on the run from Saul.
  • Jason in Jason and the Golden Fleece.
  • Similarly, Medea after the events of Medea.
  • The Odyssey: Odysseus sort of runs into this situation; though he isn't directly ousted, his prolonged absence causes his realm to be taken over and plundered by his wife's villainous suitors, and when he finally returns from his various voyages, to reclaim his land he needs to disguise himself as a beggar, gather his allies, and fight a battle against a small army of noblemen.
  • Robin Hood, in those stories that make him the Earl of Huntingdon or Robert/Robin of Locksley.
  • Regin in the Völsunga saga.
  • Buddhism: Legends of Huineng, the Sixth Patriarch of Zen Buddhism, state that after being secretly elevated to the position in the middle of the night by the Fifth Patriarch, he spent sixteen years on the run from disciples of Shenxiu (the head monk who everyone had assumed would become the next patriarch).

    Tabletop Games 
  • Rocket Age; On Mars there is a plethora of Silthuri, the Martian royal caste, who are on the run after their city-states were overthrown, invaded,they attempted a coup and failed or they were ousted by one. Most Silthuri player characters are fugitives by default.
  • In the Warhammer 40,000 Gaiden Game Necromunda the crazy hired gun Mad Donna was formally known as D’onne Ulanti, twelfth daughter of the patriarch of House Ulanti. Years after she fled to the Underhive, bounty hunters employed by her family are still after her due to her bloody escape from the Spire. In game terms this means that any gang fighting against an opponent who hired Donna has a 1 in 6 chance of being accompanied by a free Bounty Hunter hired gun.


    Video Games 
  • A DLC quest in Assassin's Creed: Odyssey deals with an blind old beggar who asks for stories about the various sights of Ancient Greece in exchange for his backstory. As it turns out, he's actually Artaxerxes I, the son of Xerxes and former ruler of Persia who was blinded and forced to go into hiding after surviving an assassination attempt. Eventually soldiers from Persia catch up to him and you're given the option of saving him or letting him die.
  • Gorath from Betrayal at Krondor, who turns out to have been Delekhan's rival for the throne (though he refused to compete for it) before his exile.
  • The Princess from A Dance with Rogues is this for the entire game, since she is the last survivor of Betancuria's royal family and thus hunted by the Dhorn Empire's occupying forces.
  • In Dragon Age: Origins, the Player Character of the human noble origin goes rogue. This is actually because he/she is a Grey Warden, rather than because he/she is the last (known) surviving member of the Cousland family.
    • The dwarf noble is in the same situation, having been exiled from the dwarf kingdom for murdering his/her older brother (either having actually done it or having been framed for it by the third sibling, depending on how the player decides to act).
    • In the prequel novel The Stolen Throne, Moira Theirin the Rebel Queen is the rightful ruler of Ferelden, whose father was forcibly removed from his throne by an Orlesian usurper. Since then, she has formed a rebellion against the occupation. After she is assassinated, her young son Maric becomes the King-in-exile. There are also several nobles that join the rebellion.
  • In Fable III the main character is pretty much this right from the get-go.
  • Ramza Beoulve of Final Fantasy Tactics was a member of the noble Beoulve family; as a knight turned mercenary, he eventually defected upon discovering that his brother killed his father and started to orchestrate a rebellion to gain the throne. For the remainder of the game, he remains a fugitive, trying to avoid capture by the kingdom and the Church.
  • Many nobles in the Fire Emblem series become disenfranchised and hunted before either joining or forming a massive army to reclaim their kingdoms, starting from the original Marth, and later reflected by supporting Characters in the Tellius universe in Elincia of Crimea and later Sanaki of Begnion. Other examples are Virion and Say'ri in Awakening (both run out by Walhart's forces) and the Avatar in the Revelation path of Fates after being unable to choose a side to fight on.
    • In Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War, Sigurd's army is forced to seek refuge in Silesse after he is framed as a traitor. Meanwhile, Sigurd's father is also forced to go on the run after being framed for the murder of Prince Kurth. Later on, Sigurd is forced to send his own son, Seliph, to Isaach to keep him safe while he tries to clear up the mess. It turns out to be a smart move, since Sigurd ends up being killed after being tricked into thinking his name had been cleared.
    • Sigurd's nephew Prince Leif, and his friend's sister's daughter Princess Nanna lived almost their entire lives in exile.
    • In Fire Emblem: Three Houses, if Ferdinand is recruited out of the Black Eagles or the player chooses the Black Eagles but sides with the church after the Holy Tomb incident, he goes on the run for five years until reuniting with Byleth at Garreg Mach. In his B support with Byleth on any route besides Crimson Flower, he specifically states that he fled the Empire because he refused to be Edelgard's puppet.
  • Galaxy Angel: Shiva Transbaal is the last heir of the Transbaal Empire after Eonia's fleets bombard Transbaal killing the entire royal family. After the White Moon was sealed by Shatoyan, Shiva was transferred to the Elsior under Luft Weizen where it was to flee to the outer reaches of the empire and prepare for a counterattack.
  • Genshin Impact: Kazuha hails from the Kaedehara clan, a noble samurai clan that recently fell into hard times due to losing their fortune, and he was forced to flee from Inazuma due to possessing a Vision as well as stealing his friend's own deactivated Vision, as an act of defiance and for safekeeping, after he died fighting Baal.
  • Princess Zelda in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is forced to go into hiding as a ninja for seven years after Ganondorf takes over her kingdom.
  • Raphael Sorel of the Soul Series. He first met the little orphan girl Amy when he was on the run and hiding from the authorities. Amy pointed them in the wrong direction since she disliked them. Raphael was so grateful to her that he took her in as a ward and devoted himself to creating a perfect world for her. Then he learned about Soul Edge, believed like every other idiot who ever sought it that it was the answer to his prayers, and things went downhill from there.
  • Princess Sadira of Vanguard Bandits becomes a fugitive of her own Empire after Faulkner usurps it.

  • Prince Alfon in Birthright was sent to another country after his homeland of Shartoa was invaded by the Tosiu. Ten years later he returned to start a populist revolution.
  • In Blindsprings, Tamaura is the only surviving member of the royal family, she spent three hundred years in a magic forest, and after she is "rescued" against her will she is on the run from the government. The conflict is mainly between the "orphic" magic users, and the humans who use man-made magic. Tamaura is one of the orphic ones, who once ruled the country, but are now oppressed by the users of man-made magic.
  • Charby the Vampirate's elven prince was forced to leave the kingdom of Eldenlon in disgrace years ago and his position as heir to the throne was given to his little sister, who is herself being chased after stealing an incredibly important powerful magical artifact and fleeing the kingdom.
  • Prince Ebin of Ebin and May fled to the neighboring kingdom of Sirius with his loyal bodyguards and commoner girlfriend when the Flineous Empire invaded his home.
  • In Erstwhile, the adaptation of the fairytale of All Fur. The heroine runs away from her father, a king, who plans to marry her.
  • In Evon Hero had to leave home after his mother was assassinated by a rival lord and he took his revenge by slaying the bastard and his cronies, without a formal declaration of war. But due to the Pridelands' labyrinthine legal code for nobles he suffered no legal consequences because he ran before anyone could press charges. He could have returned at any time after that, he just didn't want to.
  • Girl Genius: Those loyal to Tarvek, who is one of two who could rightfully inherit the Lightning Throne, have gone into hiding or been slaughtered by Martellus and his faction, whom the Muses do not consider one of those who could rightfully ascend the throne. He is subsequently kidnapped (multiple times) and under the protection of other rulers following Martellus making a public claim to be the new Storm King, though he'd prefer to stick with Agatha and/or Gil.
  • Windswept Questant/White Queen of Homestuck. She driven away from Prospit after Jack Noir attacks and becomes an Exile.
    • Snowman is also later revealed to be the former Black Queen of the Trolls' session, and joined The Felt after Spades Slick (along with the help of the Troll players) ousted her during the game.
  • Kill Six Billion Demons: Prince Kassardis flees because he is legally recognized by all as the rightful heir to the throne - which would mean he has to marry a psychopathic warlord who will use his vast kingdom to raze entire worlds and abuse him every night. He manages to twist his fugitive situation into a weird hybrid of Abdicate the Throne and Marry Them All; every suitor after his hand ends up fighting the other suitors to near death, leaving him in a wrecked but safe eye of the storm where he can tend to them between fights until they grow sick of battle or eventually die from the strain.

    Web Original 
  • Critical Role: Percival Fredrickstein von Musel Klossowski de Rolo the Third (but you can call him Percy) is the assumed Sole Survivor of the massacre of his family, the rulers of Whitestone. He escaped the city, bent on vengeance against the people who killed his loved ones, tortured him, and took over his hometown. In a slight variation, Percy's the one doing the hunting more than his enemies do of him, since they have their own goals to pursue.

    Western Animation 
  • Aang of Avatar: The Last Airbender, as well as Zuko and Iroh later in the series. Of course, as the Avatar, he is of much higher value than the latter two.
  • The Fairly OddParents! has Mark Chang, who became a fugitive of sorts in order to escape marrying Princess Mandie.
  • The central protagonist of Little Wizards is Prince Dexter, the rightful heir to the throne who was forced to flee when the Evil Sorcerer Renvick decided to conquer the kingdom upon the premature death of Dexter's father. Now Dexter studies magic under the benevolent wizard Phineas and alongside the three magical monsters Winkle, Gump and Boo in hopes of gaining the power to defeat Renvick in a Wizards Duel and reclaim the throne.
  • Samurai Jack is this, a Warrior Prince perpetually on the run and/or hunting down the demon overlord that destroyed his kingdom and took over Earth.
  • Sonic, his siblings Sonia and Manic, and their mother Aleena are this in Sonic Underground due to a combination of being the overthrown royal family and a prophecy claiming they will overthrow dictator Robotnik. Sonia is doubly this as she was adopted into a noble family and her adoptive parents were arrested.

    Real Life 
  • Older Than Feudalism: Exile was a common punishment for higher-ranked individuals in Ancient Greece. Often, a disgraced individual would willingly choose exile for a stipulated period of years to wait for the feelings against him to die down and/or rally his own forces for a comeback. Democratic Athens famously institutionalized this with its practice of ostracism, in which once a year, the ecclesia (assembly of free male citizens) could send one person for any reason (or no reason) into exile for ten years. Those exiled tended to be of Athens' aristocratic class (typically being politicians whom public sentiment held had gotten too big for their britches and needed to be cut down to size).
  • Julius Caesar famously endured this, living in the wild after being proscribed by Sulla.
  • Abd al-Rahman I, Sole Survivor of the Ummayad family when it was massacred by the Abbasids in 750, fled in hot pursuit from Syria to Spain where he founded the Caliphate of Cordoba. He was at first accompanied by his brother Yahiya, who was caught by the Abbasids while trying to cross the Euphrates, and beheaded within sight of Abd al-Rahman.
  • Harald Hardrada. He had to flee Norway after his brother, the king, was killed in battle. After some time in Russia, he worked as a mercenary for the Byzantine Emperor, soon becoming a commander. After learning that his nephew had taken control of the country, he used his newfound wealth to raise an army and force his nephew to accept him as co-ruler. A couple years later, the nephew died, leaving him sole ruler.
  • Jalāl al-Dīn Mingburnu, the last ruler (Khwārezm-Shāh) of the Khwarezmian Empire in Iran, who survived the invasion of his homeland by Genghis Khan and his Mongols in 1220, eluding them on the Indus River, across which his horse swam, enabling him to escape to India. Unsuccessful in his attempts to resist the Central Asian conqueror, Jalāl al-Dīn took up the life of a freebooter fighting against the Muslim rulers of Iran, Anatolia, and Syria until he was murdered in Kurdistan in 1231.
  • Robert the Bruce.
  • Henry Tudor (later Henry VII of England) spent almost all of his early life as either a fugitive or a glorified hostage, being the House of Lancaster's one last hope of returning to power after the rest of the line was exterminated.
  • Mary Queen of Scots was abducted by her third husband Lord Bothwell, who held her prisoner until she escaped—to England, where she was seized and held captive until her famous execution by her cousin Elizabeth of England.
  • Bonny Prince Charlie. When he was beaten at the Battle of Culloden, he was on the run from English forces for some time before escaping to France. During his flight a £30,000 bounty, a veritable fortune, was offered for his capture, and though many certainly had the opportunity (as he received aid from a number of supporters while a fugitive), none betrayed him.
    We watched thee in the gloamin hour
    We watched thee in the mornin grey
    Though thirty thousand pounds they gie,
    Oh, there is nane that would betray!
  • Oh heck, the whole Stuart family.
  • Charles XII of Sweden spent 1707-1714 in exile in the Ottoman Empire, where he became known as 'Fixed Asset Charles' due to expenditures on his court being a regular item in the Empire's budget. Originally welcomed by the Turks, his lavish expenditures and tendency to drag the Empire into Sweden's fights with Russia and Poland eventually got him shown the door.
  • A good chunk of the French nobility emigrated during The French Revolution (and those who didn't were even more likely to meet the guillotine). Many of them fought against Revolutionary France, whether in employ of other powers such as Russia and Austria or within the Armée des Princes.
  • 120 or so years later, the Russian Revolution led to large numbers of Russian nobles fleeing all over the world. France (especially Paris) and England (especially London) were common destinations, but these emigres ended up pretty much everywhere in the world that wasn't Russia (for instance, a lot of them ended up in Shanghai). Many of these played a part in politics in the 1930s and 1940's. Many were merely mercenaries or spies, but the most notable of them was Field Marshal Mannerheim (who led Finland in World War II). While not all of these were hunted some were, or had reason to fear that they were.
  • Almost every European head of state in World War II. The Norwegian, Greek, Yugoslav, and Luxembourgish royals fled for Britain, as did the leadership of Poland and Czechoslovakia. The Dutch royal family split up. Queen Wilhelmina and her son-in-law also went to Britain, but princess Juliana and her young daughters went to Canada. Much of the Belgian royal family also decamped to London along with the Belgian government-in-exile, but not King Leopold himself (who remained in Belgium and was denounced as a collaborationist traitor as a result).