The Tales of Exandria: The Bright Queen #1

The Tales of Exandria: The Bright Queen #1
The cover, featuring Leylas Kryn and Quana Kryn.
SeriesCritical Role: The Tales of Exandria
Issue number1
Creative team
Writers
ArtistCoupleOfKooks[1]
LettererAriana Maher[2]
ColoristCris Peter[2]
Cover artistHelen Mask[1]
Publication information
PublisherDark Horse Comics
Publication dateOctober 20, 2021
Page count
  • 32 (physical)[2]
  • 24 (digital)[3]
UPC76156800788600111
Chronology
TimelineCirca 855 PD
Followed byThe Tales of Exandria: The Bright Queen #2

Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria: The Bright Queen #1 is the first issue of the comic miniseries The Tales of Exandria: The Bright Queen. Set around 19 years after the end of Campaign 2 in about 855 PD,[4] the miniseries focuses on Leylas Kryn as she and Quana Kryn try to collect a sixth beacon for the Kryn Dynasty.

The comic was written by Darcy Van Poelgeest and Matthew Mercer with art by CoupleOfKooks and cover art by Helen Mask. A variant cover featuring art by David Mack was available from Things From Another World by pre-order.[5] After an initial delay, the issue was published by Dark Horse Comics on October 20, 2021.

Publisher's summary[edit | edit source]

Leylas Kryn, the Bright Queen of the Kryn Dynasty, has spent multiple lives in pursuit of assembling the Luxon. With her eternal lover Quana at her side, she will stop at nothing to use its otherworldly power to bring a Golden Age to the peoples under her rule. So, when what might be the final piece of the Luxon appears nearby, Leylas sends Quana to collect it...with consequences that may threaten the entire Dynasty!

Critical Role Game Master Matthew Mercer joins Eisner Award-winning writer Darcy Van Poelgeest (Little Bird)!

— Publisher's summary[1]

Plot summary[edit | edit source]

An adolescent drow tells Abrianna Mirimm[6] that they feel lost. Abrianna assures them they are "as you've always been, the essence of our story" and relays the history of Exandria.

The Luxon brought life to Exandria, then scattered across the world as the Luxon beacons. Other gods, curious of what happened, followed. Seeing potential in the planet, they created the first peoples. They gave these people magic to fight the elemental titans and imprison the Betrayer Gods who sided with them. From their prisons, Betrayer Gods corrupted the people, leading to a great war. Thus, the remaining gods left Exandria. The Luxon felt it was now necessary to learn, and so its followers entered a cycle of rebirth, consecution. The Kryn Dynasty seeks to reunite the beacons to make the Luxon whole, so that they may answer the question the Luxon first posed: "who are we, and what is our purpose?"

The adolescent asks if they should remember this and is told knowing the Luxon's power and significance will clarify their place within it. When the adolescent says they do not remember deciding to come, Abrianna says it was an impulse similar to that which brought the Luxon to Exandria. She urges the adolescent be patient with memories they do not feel theirs.

At the Lucid Bastion, Quana Kryn arrives late to Leylas Kryn's summons. Quana feels Leylas will forgive her, for the Aurora Watch confirmed a sixth beacon in a gnomish settlement in the Ghostlands. She is leaving immediately. When Leylas observes Quana has been sad recently, Quana admits she feels nothing when they recover beacons, even though it is their greatest successes. She is concerned that pursuing the beacons consumed them and worries they overlooked something. Leylas dismisses her apology. The Luxon contacted Leylas in a dream, and she shows Quana a new soul within a beacon, "not returned to this realm by the light, but conceived by it". Quana, awed, remarks it has been so long. Leylas believes that this child special, "the light incarnate, dependent on our union", and that their love is essential to the Dynasty's future.

Quana and the Aurora Watch depart. In overlapping narration, Abrianna says Leylas foresaw the child, a surge in dunamis, the Dynasty's new era, and an inexplicable presence. With Leylas watching through a magical mirror, Quana meets their contact in the Ghostlands, Dryca. She and the Aurora Watch are betrayed and attacked by a group of draegloths. As the Aurora Watch is killed and Quana abducted, the elder described previously banished dark powers returning. Using dunamancy, Leylas arrives in the Ghostlands in time to grab Quana, but Leylas cannot hold on. Quana says that she has "seen it" and is dragged away.

The adolescent tells Abrianna to stop and give them time. However, she says even dunamancy cannot give that to them. She compares the process of anamnesis to love: both come at a cost. Leylas fights the remaining draegloths with her sword.

Featured characters[edit | edit source]

Returning[edit | edit source]

New[edit | edit source]

Development[edit | edit source]

The comic was originally scheduled for publication by Dark Horse Comics on March 17, 2021.[1] Due to the 2021 global supply chain crisis and unidentified circumstances with creative teams, all Critical Role titles were delayed,[7] and the issue was published on October 20, 2021.[8]

Media[edit | edit source]

Editions[edit | edit source]

UPC Released Publisher Format Price Ref.
76156800788600111 October 20, 2021 Dark Horse Comics Comic book $3.99 [2][9]
October 20, 2021 Dark Horse Comics Digital $3.99 [2][9]

Cover gallery[edit | edit source]

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

Art:

  1. Physical and digital cover, by Helen Mask (source). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.
  2. Things from Another World variant cover, by David Mack (source). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.

External links[edit | edit source]