In a far country on the dark side of Coombe, Queen Optera rose before dawn in her lavishly appointed chamber. She could smell the fresh air as her kingdom’s flag —a red dragon flying home to Valhalla fluttered in the breeze atop her hill.
“Are you awake my Queen?” whispered her armor-bearer, and closest ally, Invicta.
“It is time.”
Queen Optera stood in her chain mail undergarments deep in thought while her ruddy complexioned ally, Invicta readied her for battle.
The armor, made by a thousand anvil antennae over thirty years weighed more than the Queen. Its crafting began on the day she was born, to be worn on this dreaded day—a day her terrestrial colony hoped would never come. But, come it had.
Queen Optera had trained all her life to bear her armor’s weight with ease. She was ready to lead her people on the lawn of battle.
A small voice called from outside her chamber, “Are you ready, my Queen? Permission to enter?” asked Antimony, the Queen’s Captain At Arms and Wing Commander.
“Enter!” replied Optera, now in full armor, hoisting herself on her throne, its shield—a replica of her kingdom’s red dragon.
“What is it, Captain?”
“They are already here! Advance scouts have reported that from the thunder of their hooves, the marauders appear to be less than one hour away from our position. What are your orders?”
“I thought we had more time!”
“Yes, my Queen. So did I.”
“How soon until our allies join us?”
“Three hours, my Queen. They are traveling on foot.”
“They will not get here in time. We have no choice but to make our stand on the hill.”
“Assemble all the Captains and Wing Commanders, immediately. I wish to speak with them.”
“Yes, my Queen.”
As the Captains and Wing Commanders encircled her throne, The Queen stood. She spoke—uttering the greatest speech of her life:
“My fellow warriors, the enemy is advancing fast. We shall thwart them with our stings. Clog their chariots’ wheels with packed earth from our hill. We shall shower them with its dust, and stall their engines. Those marauding lawnmowers will not destroy this anthill. And, by your valiant efforts today, our cherished home will live on in the annals of anthill history forever! Assemble your legions. Onwards, to victory!”