|First appearance||"Two Tigers Subdue Dragons"|
|Portrayed by||Lance Nichols|
The River King is an importer and exporter of goods and cogs up and down the rivers through the Badlands. He is also a smuggler, for the right price, he can get you out of the Badlands.
He is considered a neutral party and is respected by all Barons. Barons always deal with him directly, as they need his blessing to move anything up or down the rivers. If they don't get this, the baron's merchandise doesn't get to where it needs to go.
In order to get an audience with the River King, you need a token.
Nothing is known about the River King's early life.
The River King hands Sunny a wanted poster with M.K.'s face on it, saying that this boy has cost him money and respect. If Sunny finds, clips and then brings back his head, the River King will consider this payment to guarantee Sunny and his companions safe passage out of the Badlands and to a place that no one will ever find them.
The River King sits at a desk, in his steamboat, when Sunny walks in with a bloody sack in hand. Sunny drops the sack onto the desk, stating that it's his payment in full. The River King pulls out a severed head and studies it. Reaching over he grabs one of the wanted posters to compare.
The River King questions Sunny about the head's missing ear, and if Sunny is sure it's the same boy that the killed his cogs. Sunny nods and says that the boy confessed before he clipped him. The River King smiles.
Sunny then urgently says that he and his companions need to leave that night. The River King says that he didn't realize that Sunny was the one dictating the terms. Sunny states that they had a deal. The River King says he's not backing out of the deal, the ship will leave at midnight and that Sunny better not be late. Time and tide wait for no man.
Later that night, having grabbed Sunny when he was beaten unconscious by the Abbots, the River King has Sunny chained up in the lower deck of his boat. When Sunny wakes up, the River King stands in front of him and throws down the severed head, a look of anger on his face. He knows that Sunny lied to him and gave him the wrong head.
The River King tells Sunny that no one double crosses him not even the best Clipper in the Badlands and while he's not a killer, he is a trader. A man with talent like Sunny's is a very valuable commodity. He tells Sunny got his wish to leave the Badlands, planning to trade him in the Outlying Territories.
- In the 16th-century Chinese novel Journey to the West by Wu Cheng’en, bodies of water are governed by dragons, the most notable ones being the Four Dragon Kings responsible for the East Sea, South Sea, West Sea and North Sea respectively. Rivers and wells are given to their relatives, who also hold the title of king and are often notorious for causing trouble. The Dragon Kings are worshipped by common people for rain, but they cannot act on their own behalves and must follow the orders of Heaven. Dragons can take human form.
- More specifically based on the Tuolong (鼉龍; literally “Water Lizard Dragon”) is located in Black River (黑水河) in Hengyang Valley (衡陽峪). He is actually the ninth son of the Dragon King of the Jing River (涇河龍王), and was placed there by Guanyin to serve as an obstacle for the protagonists. The Tuolong is armed with a Bamboo Linked Bronze Club (竹節鋼鞭). He disguises himself as a boatman, pretends to ferry the protagonists across the river, and captures Tang Sanzang when they are unaware. The Tuolong is eventually subdued and taken away by Crown Prince Mo'ang (摩昂太子), the eldest son of the Dragon King of the West Sea.