The characters are wasps from the devastated nest of Ys’drktha. The other survivors from the cataclysm are being held and tortured in the pits of the neighbouring Ak’thaan nest, being slowly dismembered and eaten by drone wasps or fed to the writhing masses of larvae.
Purple deer have begun to appear near the ruins of a fallen city, or other place of power. Hunting the deer is absurdly easy, as their coloration makes them easy to see. The heros prepare a feast from a freshly killed deer find out several hours later that the meat of the new purple deer is poisonous. This can range from cramps and vomiting to the truly sinister and lethal.