of all possible dangerous life-forms in the universe, why dragons? why space dragons? how is that possible?
(right: close encounter with a space dragon)
We don't really know how these creatures came into existence. due to the fact that they have wings, coupled with their massive body size, they likely originated in a planet with a thick atmosphere, perhaps even a gas giant! their wings seem to be able to use protons, much like solar sails, to push themselves in any direction. what is weird is that they seem to teleport, moving from star system to star system almost instantly, only using their wings near a star or a planet with atmosphere. their fiery breath is likely there because it could burn gasses in it's home planet, killing and cooking nearby creatures which it could then eat without trouble. it has a long tail, likely for stabilization in atmosphere. it has feet, too, allowing it to land on planets and deal more damage. their tough hide makes them hard to kill, even with spacecraft.
deep in the core of the milky way, a dead space dragon was found orbiting the black hole. a probe recovered the beast, and some ships were built with armor made out of its scales. however, this prompted questions on what is was and where it came from. eventually, one was found again, this time in Venus. only this time, it was alive! the research probe was burnt, but functional, and reported its findings back to earth. since then multiple sightings have been reported. but none confirmed. some say the dead dragon and the Venus dragon were myths themselves. however, as empires expand, sightings increase, and there seems to be areas with more sightings then others.
they look a lot like the mythical European dragons, although with some differences. their wings are smaller, as less air is needed to push them around in gas giants or Venus-like planets. their "fire breath" only spews out flammable gasses, which can then be ignited outside the mouth. this is likely because although their tough hides protect them from their own flames, their mouth is unprotected and can burn. the claws on their feet can heat up enough to catch fire, and then ignite the gasses. the dragon can then put out the fire to prevent injury. their tail has a large, heavy ball at the end, once again to help with stability in atmosphere.
much like their medieval counterparts, these dragons have only been recorded in rare sightings. several scientific expeditions have been conducted to find them, but if they are real they must know not to show themselves to the research ships they are most often sighted around Jupiter and other gas giants, as well as a few various Venus-like worlds