In the process of creating my Intro to the Books of Sorrow series, a few bits of old lore kept floating to the surface and made me think of either new Lore Videos or aspects of Destiny’s lore that have since fallen through the cracks. Much of what caught my attention has to do with the some spinfoil theories I have about the Worm Gods and the implications of Dark Corruption, but that’s for another day when I have time to compile proper notes. However, one thing that I was able to keep track of was the role of Taox, the Hive Sisters’ early caretaker, as they made their journey to Godhood, and beyond. This Sterile Mother and Teacher of the Sisters betrayed the Osmium Court and made a path for the Helium Drinkers to invade for the sole purpose of assassinating the Sisters and overthrowing the Osmium Court. In this video, we will take a look at the role that Taox played in the Books of Sorrow, and what the implications are in the current state of the Destiny Universe.
This is Videogame Crosstalk, and I hope you enjoy this Destiny Lore Video
Early Books of Sorrow
The first few entries in Books of Sorrow have Taox as the Mother and Teacher for the young sisters, Aurash, Sathona, and Xi Ro. In Verse 1:2 – The Hateful Verse, Taox explains to the Helium Drinkers that she does not trust the sisters to be sufficient heirs to the Osmium Throne.
Xi Ro can fight, but not lead. Sathona can think, but not fight. Aurash’s curiosity will draw her away from duty.
Implied within this verse is that Taox has been at this job for a long time now, and is confident in her ability to judge a person’s character. Which, by the way, I’m guessing she was pretty spot on in her assessments of the sisters, given what has transpired in the past millennia. Therefore, Taox has spent her life as a servant to the Osmium Court and acts with what she believes to be it’s interests in mind. This verse has a tone of deep regret and desperation, so it is not with joy or pride that she makes the decision to alert the Helium Drinkers to come and invade, thereby overthrowing the current leadership.
While she was successful in the overthrow in general, the Sisters survived and were able to flee while they regrouped.
Keeping Ahead of the Hive Gods
As the Hive Gods grew in strength and dominance, there Taox has been watching them from behind the lines of their current opponents. In this section, I will go through these instances in rapid fire.
Right from the beginning immediately after their transformation, in Verse 2:1 – Conquerors, the Hive Gods set to reclaim their home from the Helium Drinkers. They are pushed back to the Hydrogen Fountain and Taox is with them.
In Verse 2:2 – Out of the Deep, the Hive Gods are warned that the Syzygy has passed and the God-Wave will arrive in two years. While about 2% of the Fundament’s population swears allegiance to the Hive Gods, the surviving refusalists have fled with Taox to the Kaharn Atoll, in hopes to rally the remaining populace against the Hive Gods.
In Verse 2:4 – 52 and One, the Hive Gods are in need of a starfaring ship to expand beyond the limits of Fundament. There is a large ice moon that is home to an advanced species, the Ammonite, that has such technology. And of course, they have granted Taox asylum.
In Verse 2:7 – The Weakness Verse, we learn that Auryx attempted to parley with the Ammonite. Since a move that does not abide by the Sword Logic is clearly against the ways of the Deep, this ends poorly for the Hive Gods. The Leviathan of the Deep, I assume the Worm God Akka, lectures Auryx a bit about how that was a foolish move and the basics of retreating to a Throne World to regain strength. Also, Taox wasn’t on the moon when they took it over.
In Verse 2:9 – Crusaders, the Hive Gods have fully committed to the worship of the Deep and two of the Worm Gods, Eir and Yuul, feast on the corpse of the Leviathan. Akka then reminds the Hive Gods they are oathbound to exterminate Taox, wherever she may be hiding.
In Verse 3:5 – Dictata ir Dakaua, we learn that the Dakaua have salvaged some drifting spacecraft, and upon it was an individual known as Taox. Specific to this entry is an interesting bit of information: For the purpose of documenting this interaction, it is stated that the current date is Radial Year 989 groove 3. The actual year is unimportant, but what is significant is that the Dakaua ran an isotope analysis on the ship that Taox was found aboard and established that the ship was 24,000 years old. 24,000! AND they reference that it was around the same time the Fundament System dropped out of Contact with the Amiable Ecumene. So does that mean that by this current entry, the Fundament system fell 24,000 years ago, and Taox is STILL alive?
In Verse 3:9 – Carved in Ruin, Oryx had just completed war against the Ecumene for 100 years. In demonstrating such an extreme example of War, Xivu Arath was conjured back into existence. Oryx was able to then coordinate a trap with Xivu Arath, and from this display of Trickery Savathun was then conjured back. The Hive Gods then warred for another 40 years and exterminated the Ecumene so completely that they are no longer remembered anywhere except in the Books of Sorrow and the mind of Taox, who was not found after the final battle.
Jumping ahead and completely over Book 4, the next reference to Taox is in Verse 5:1 – End of a Failed Timeline. In this entry, Quria Blade Transform is attempting it’s first simulation of Oryx. It is wrong, of course, since it is Oryx without his worm, wings, transformations, and other aspects. Oryx gloats and mocks, but in doing so references key names and phrases that Quria picks up on and incorporates into the Vex network for more accurate predictive models. One of these information grabs comes from the Ecumene gate, where Quria samples the “Taox Intelligence”. This statement is odd, since these things have not been mentioned earlier. Still, this reference to Taox shows that she still has a presence, even if it is only informational with the Hive.
The final reference to Taox comes from the final entry in the original Books of Sorrow, . This reference is also the most passive, as it is made in the opening lines of the verse, where Oryx reflects on all that he had done and accomplished thus far, and as an aside wonders if Taox still lives. Even after all this time, all this war, all this….Galactic Genocide, he still has no proof that Taox was ever defeated.
Conditions for a Return
What really gripped me about this story is that as I was making the earlier lore videos, the recurring plot point kept coming up: That the Sisters are oath bound to seek out and kill Taox in an act of vengeance. This was attempted, directly or indirectly, several times, and in each instance Taox managed to escape. This means that the sisters still have unfinished business to conduct in order to fulfill their oath to the Worm Gods.
With that in mind, there is another factor at play here that has gone completely undiscussed yet is hiding in plain sight: Just how OLD Taox must be by now! There are substories within the Books of Sorrow that have extended time periods associated with them, and through them all persisted the existence of the Traveler, The Worm Gods, the Sisters themselves, and Taox. Of this group, it is understood, more or less, that the Traveler is from the time of creation. At some point, the Worm Gods came to be, although it is not stated anywhere definitively. That would probably be a pretty interesting origin story, ya think? At some point, Taox came to be. Since Taox was a mother figure to the sisters, albeit a sterile Mother, we can deduce that she had already reached an age of maturity sufficient for such responsibilities. Within the Books of Sorrow we learn that Mothers live for an extended time, but…..this is a bit ridiculous.
Given that she has lived this long, there is no reason to believe that she has died in the time passed since the creation of this book. The only beings that can exist this long are those of divinity or unnatural extension. Sooooooo…..What’s up with Taox? Will she return? And if she does, we know that she tried to end the existence of the Sisters before they became the Hive Gods, so will a common enemy be sufficient for an Allegiance? We seem to be in the process of forming an Allegiance with the Eliksni through Mithrax and the House of Light, so perhaps there’s a Multi-Species Alliance forming to take on the Darkness as a part of an ultimate endgame?
One last thought: In Verse 1:1 – Predators, there is a paragraph that reads as follows:
HELIUM DRINKERS. The currents of the Fundament Ocean bring us near other continents. The Helium Court is near us now. They are of our species, but they are our enemies. Their knights raid us every day. Helium Drinkers have two legs, two arms, and three eyes, just like us. But they are bright/evil. I want to be a knight and fight them!
So if Taox DID come back, would she bring with her an army of Helium Drinkers? And if that is true, will we get to see that the Hive looked like before they became, “The Hive”?
And THAT concludes the video! If you enjoyed this video, please let me know and drop a like. If you would like to support this channel but can’t think of anything to leave as a comment, write the word, “Oath Bound”, in memory of Hive God’s unfulfilled commitment to the Worm Gods and the Darkness. Also remember to subscribe if you want to hear more lore explained in this fashion and keep up to date with my regular podcast, Videogame Crosstalk, the monthly podcast of gamers talking Tech, Science, and whatever else comes to mind. Until then, I’ll see you in the Tower!