I'd actually like to see a few dragon-class beasts populating these worlds.

That is, these creatures are not dragons, but those who know of them speak about them in much the same tones.

My personal suggestion is Thunderbirds. Massive toothed avians who command the elemental powers of storms. Good or Neutral aligned, capable of traveling as fast as lightning when moving long distances, and often the messengers of the gods.

One magical item you might like is Eagle Stones. These mystical stones can restore life to any creature (within a time limit - the body can't have decayed too much). They are found in the brains of Thunderbirds.

So, to get an item that can revive anyone who just died, you have to kill a thunderbird.