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There will be spoilers from the book here.

In the "Interlude", after chapter 12, we see

Bilquis (the Queen of Sheba)

as she stands on the sidewalk of Sunset Boulevard. She is picked up a passing limo, which belongs to the Technical Boy.

She and Technical Boy don't come to an agreement, so she jumps out of the limo and is then run over by it, several times, until her remains are no longer recognisable, and even they will be washed away by the rain.

Question is, why kill her at all? The beginning of the interlude indicates that a "cold war" was in progress by then, with a few seemingly unrelated and accidental deaths. Well, those were at least reported by the media.

Why kill her and leave no trace, and no message to the old gods?

And why kill her, of all gods, given she was largely unknown (no one mentions her in the novel) and mostly powerless?

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It was part of a pattern of murders of minor old gods by the new gods.

The beginning of the interlude indicates that a "cold war" was in progress by then, with a few seemingly unrelated and accidental deaths.

"seemingly" is the key word here. There are too many deaths described to be coincidence. What it sounds like is the new gods moving against the old gods, slowly, subtly, but steadily picking them off one by one. It's a "cold war" only in the sense that it hasn't moved to all-out large-scale war. Individual murders, like minor terrorist attacks, are perfectly within the scale of things. In fact, the very first sentence of the chapter is:

The war had begun and nobody saw it. [...] This war was smaller than those, and huger, and more selective, but it was as real as any.

Several mysterious unsolved murders are described - some of them made to look like accidents, some not - before the death of Bilquis is covered in all its gory detail.

You say they didn't come to an agreement, but neither of them even tried to make an agreement. As soon as she realised he knew who she was, all she wanted to do was escape. The only reason he stopped the car, in such a remote location, was presumably to allow her to get out so that he could murder her gruesomely. He was only there to kill her, and nothing else. It was just one of the many murders of old gods by new gods happening in this period.

As for why her and not somebody more notorious and powerful ... well, it's still a cold war after all. Save the deaths of stronger, more powerful gods, like Wednesday or Easter or Czernobog, for when the real all-out war starts.

  • But no one even noticed her death! What would be the point if no one noticed it, e.g. if there's no body and no one will not her absence? – Gallifreyan Jun 1 '17 at 11:25
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    @Gallifreyan 1) Once she's dead, she can't fight alongside the old gods. 2) Perhaps they will notice her absence, if Wednesday goes looking for her to recruit her. 3) Perhaps the death of a god is an event that other gods can sense. 4) Perhaps a new god killing her makes them more powerful, even if they don't explicitly say "I dedicate this death to Whoever". – Rand al'Thor Jun 1 '17 at 11:29
  • Those parts look like they could fit in your answer :) Looks like the new gods we simply not taking any chances. – Gallifreyan Jun 1 '17 at 11:35

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