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  • In Drowtales, a huge civil war between the ruling class, the Val'Sharens and the Nidraa'chal ended in the complete destruction of the Nidraa'chal... Is what is written in history books. In truth, the Nidraa'chal all but took over the Val'Sharen, as three of its founding members are the current leaders of the now Vel'Sharen. They were able to successfully kill their mother, the Val'Sharessnote , while also hiding her death, allowing them to rule from the background through lies and body doubles. Now the Nidraa'chal are all but the most powerful force in the world. Due to this, a few 'villains' end up leading and controlling countless conspiracies and plots to disrupt and manipulate the world to their favour, while very few are in the know of their actions and even less survive long enough for it to matter.
  • The prequel to The Order of the Stick, Start of Darkness, ends with Xykon's victory over Dorukan.
    • And the third book, War and XPs, Xykon kills Roy, wipes out nearly all of the Sapphire Guard, conquers Azure City, and scatters the rest of the Order of the Stick.
    • Later, Tarquin claims that he has ensured this, as he's already accepted that some hero will throw down his empire and kill him, but considers that fair trade for getting to rule like a god for however long it takes that to happen, and for his legend outliving him.
  • Sinfest on this:
    Lil' E: You have something like that?
    video store clerk: Try the documentary section. Or life.
  • Sabrina "Ultragirl" Mancini of Rival Angels joins a successful wrestling promotion (with real competition) and very shortly after qualifies to be in a tournament to crown a new champion. She advances all the way to the finals despite Chloe De Sade (the series' Big Bad) doing her best to ensure that she not only doesn't make it, but that she's injured too badly to ever wrestle again. In the last match, she's up against one of Chloe's Dragons. This Dragon, Kat Smith by name, had seemed like nothing more than a cheater and a Dirty Coward on prior occasions. Sabrina gives it everything she's got, and looks like she might win a number of times. However, Kat turns out to be more of a badass than Sabrina thought; Sabrina is just not able to put her away, and after the two women beat one another for a long time Kat finally gains and keeps the upper hand, hits her Finishing Move, and beats Sabrina to win the title. Up until then Sabrina seemed to be something of an Invincible Hero, so it comes as quite a shock.
  • Homestuck: Doc Scratch's goal is to die and release his master Lord English, having provided numerous means to serve him. English's success does not matter, but Doc Scratch successfully manipulates events that lead to his death and Lord English's rise to power, his farewell is a quite apt: Suckers.
  • Dragon Ball Multiverse: The villains taking part in the tournament are all from universes where they won.
  • Dracula: Ruler of the Night: Dracula does this posthumously. Sure the hunters kill him and his brides and save Mina. But Dracula lived to see that his vampirisim could thrive on foreign soil thanks turning the Westenras (Lucy and her mother, Minerva) which he considers a rousing success when the two become his first non-Transylvania brides, just as devoted to him as his original three. Even better, he manged to turned the wife of Van Helsing, Milly, in the process. By the end, Lucy and Minerva are still on the loose along with several kids that were bitten playing around near Dracula's hideout, ensuring the vampirim will continue into the modern day. And what's more and unbeknownst to the heroes, Quincy revives into a vampire himself when his body is shipped home to Texas for burial. Allowing the curse to be introduce to America as well. It's not a complete Downer Ending since Helsing and the others stay vigilant, record their knowledge for future generations and the vampires are leaderless to deal with easier.

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