Prologue: Queen Xydoraq? High Queen Xydoraq !
The Quall nations were in chaos. First their collective will had been compromised by the menace Holys. Now the only queen protected from Holys mind control, Queen Ayx was missing in action. She had been taken prisoner by unknown attackers during a Neliff battle in the Cloud Slaver Mountains.
But the movement that Queen Ayx had started to depose High Queen Qu’oa had grown steam. With Ayx missing, and in some sort of stasis cutting off her connection to the Hivemind, it was her five HiveLords who decided to raise the aged Queen Xydoraq to the role of High Queen.
It all took place in the flying Grand Obsidian Memorial Palace. The twenty story tall flying fortress was made of smooth volcanic glass, and was topped by an open air courtyard. The courtyard was adorned by large couches made of layered flayer skin, and stuffed with k’iou hair.
On the couches lounged the visiting dignitaries of all Quall Hives considered part of the High Queen’s Council and those ruled by them. One massive Quall Hivelord, nearly twelve tall, with a rack of horns that gleamed in the light of the sky.
He said, speaking and transmitting through the Hivemind connection at the same time, “Greetings Heroes of the Quall Hives, Queens honored by all, and the most trusted of the Cult of the Horned Dog who serve us.
Some of you know me as Grane the Pillager, others know me as Granex HiveLord, all of you know my Queen Ayx. She is protected as is all her children.
Here we are in the Memorial Palace, the last proof that a Quall Progenitor Queen once joined us and ruled us. I bring up the Progenitor Queen, because legend tells us she was beyond all outside control. Right now we need a High Queen that could be trusted.
That Queen will be Queen Xydoraq.”
“What about High Queen Qu’oa?” asked Queen Etieme from where she rested on a couch and supped from a stone cup full of binber wine.
Hivelord Granex said respectfully, “Your Highness, Queen Qu’oa is behind the kidnapping of Ayx. I was there when she was kidnapped, and I can share with you what I saw.”
They saw the large Burrower burst from the ground in Granex’s memories. They saw the stasis net fire from the open door, and in that memory they could see members of Qu’oa’s Human and Brethren servants reeling in the body of Queen Ayx and escaping with it.
Queen Le-a who was very familiar with IR Brethren soldiers said, “That is an Hourglass model of Brethren. They were just put into mass production, but at the time of this attack the only Hive that had access to an Hourglass was Queen Qu’oa.”
At this moment Queen Xydoraq arose, “My sister Queens and our children. Do not lament. I do not think Queen Qu’oa did this on purpose. She is probably just under the control of Holys. But we cannot allow one Queen’s servants to hunt other Queens. At minimum her lands are forfeit, but we must decide sisters if she is to be declared a Rogue Queen.
But I also have fantastic news, my Hive has received herds of Quall N’Haram from the Oleifera species. These N’Haram will be breeding stock so that my Hive no longer needs to raid anyone. If we succeed in controlling the herds of the N’Haram I will distribute herds to those who serve me honorably in my new role as High Queen.”
As the Quall Queens learned of a new breeding stock they grew greedy and covetous and the majority voted to raise Xydoraq to the High Queen.