Rand removes paralysis from Fraas and makes for the exit. Fraas lightning arcs the two bats and quickly flies down to follow Rand. Korrak, still confused and raging with blood, thwacks herself with her flaming sword. Deagha beast-shapes into a direbat, flies past Thellan’s skeleton to retrieve Thellan’s swords, and books it toward the exit. One of the bats swoops down at Zinn. When its wings unfurl the wingspan is dozens of feet long. It bites Zinn’s sword. They all notice that as it bites the sword its wounds heal; Zinn senses that the sword seems like is now merely a normal weapon. Zinn rushes for the exit. One of the bat starts spellcasting; Fraas & Deagha recognize that it is summoning something. Sentinel grapples Korrak and runs outside. Rand readies to attack the dire bat wielding swords, which shouts back in Deagha’s voice, “Shut the door! It’s summoning something!”
Fraas begins casting a deep slumber spell for Korrak. Sentinel pins her, ties her up, and all of a sudden she’s asleep. Rand heals the group. Zinn suddenly hears Babdan’s voice in her head, “What happened!?” Her swords regains its glow. Zinn takes a couple rounds teleporting the group to their ship.
Rand seeks out Quinnla for some restoration. Back in town he find Bjaritte helping rebuild the bar, Timmy riding on her back, barking orders. Rand asks around town to find Shah and have him meet everyone back at the ship.
Deagha tosses Thellan’s sword to Fraas, who identifies them as a +1 flaming burst scimitar and a +1 scimitar with a baleful polymorph on critical hits.
After a short discussion, the group decides to head out to save the mining slaves, going through the tunnels after a short excursion to Sentinel’s Reach. Rand asks Drury and the Beck to see about commissioning townsfolk to help excavate the sunken top of Griffton tower.
To help coordinate the mission, Fraas sends a message to Zidane: “On our way to save you via tunnels. Can you give us details of those guarding you? We have a frost giant ranger helping us.” Zidane replies immediately, “Hurry. They are taking us faster and faster. We are guarded by only a few frost giants at night when they let us rest in…”
They rest in town for the night, which passes uneventfully.
The next morning Rand makes arrangements with Durri to have Bjaritte on leave from the town guard to assist us. They equip her with Thellan’s flaming burst scimitar.
They gather to teleport in two groups — one ported by Zinn, the other by Fraas — to the further point they reached in the tunnels after the slorath battle. Korrak, Deagha, Bjaritte, & Fraas teleport, but something goes wrong. They apparate in freefall over the boundary of the mote. Fraas immediately casts featherfall and then teleports again, this time they appear in front of the rest of the group, slowly descending to the floor. Bjaritte is hunkering in fetal position. Rand goes over to help her shake it off.
Bjaritte leads the group, carrying Sentinel’s ever-burning torch, further toward the mining tunnels. On the way she stops the group occasionally, when she hears something that no one else can apparently hear; when she steps, she moves with complete silence. After traveling for a day, the group makes camp in a natural offshoot in the tunnels.
During the watch, Fraas suddenly lets out a blood-curdling scream. The column in the middle of their encampment appears to have Fraas in its bite. Fraas looks to be heavily damaged and staggered.
Deagha backed away preparing to cast a protective spell for Fraas. Zinn moves toward the creature, it snaps at her and misses; Zinn attack clanks off the rock like creature’s stony skin. Korrak lights up her sword but it suddenly extinguishes. She still strikes at the beast twice once, missing once. Fraas unleashes a fireball which scorches the creature more than expected, implying a vulnerability to fire. Rand strikes, chipping away more hunks of its rocky flesh. Sentinel flurry of blows but misses the first two, hitting it square on the third swing. The roper tries to attack Fraas, but Rand intercedes, causing the beast to miss and giving Rand a chance to strike back, but he also misses. The roper attacks again, but again Rand defends Fraas, this time he successfully strikes back, lopping off a tentacle. The creature crumbles and dissipates into shadows. It leaves behind the corpse of a previous captor, which yields the group coins, gems, various art objects, a scroll of mending, some splint mail, a wand of ray of enfeeblement and an oil of purify food.
The rest of the night passes uneventfully.
They spend the day making their way further toward the mines. After a whole day’s travel, Bjaritte announced that they are about 10 minutes from the slave’s location. Deagha scouts ahead as a hummingbird. Upon his return he reports there is a large room with a 200 foot deep open cavern, barricades and charge-preventing spears pointing in the direction of the adventurers approach. At the far end, a 20 by 20 foot opening, with a frost giant sitting upon furs, brazier with mostly human body parts, he is eating some and tossing pieces to his winter wolf companion. Post with a bell hanging from it. Further into the hallway, are some scattered baskets and tools, stalactites and stalagmites. They ask Bjaritte about the guarding giant, who she thinks is Thurysk often attended by one of the stronger winter wolves.
Shah and Sentinel creep to the edge of the cavern. Fraas cast greater invisibility on Shah, who starts making his way silently through the barricades. Sentinel bounds over the barricades. Simultaneously, Fraas casts an aqueous orb on the bell and Deagha blocks the giant and wolf’s escape with a Wall of Fire. Everyone else is rushing forward to close the gap. The frost giant and wolf are looking aghast at all the things happening around them. Shah makes his sneak attack twice on the giant with scorching weapons. Fraas unleashes a fireball, blowing the wolf to bits, the giant is afire and terrified. Sentinel lands right next to the giant and lets loose three solid blows. Rand, Zinn & Korrak charge into the cavern. Bjaritte shouts “immolate!” in abyssal and fires an arrow and while its in midflight fires another toward the smoldering giant. The giant just slumps over into a pile of hot corpse. The brazier is tipped over and one can no longer tell what parts are giant, elf, human or wolf within the flames.
Fraas disables the bell mechanism. Deagha hummingbirds further up the passage, seeing lots of piles of tools, baskets placed along the wall. He sees a passage that breaks off from the main tunnel. From that direction he hears giants talking, laughing. Sees the passage goes into a larger room, two giants facing away, one sitting on a lip of a pit, throwing rocks into it directed at several malnourished slaves attempting to sleep. Zidane is among them. Deagha flies into the alternate branch, this time picking up a multitude of voices, then returns back to the cavern where everyone else is.
Shah detects invisibility, while Fraas detects scrying; both see nothing, for now. They make their way down the passage toward the room with slave pit. Deagha stays back at the junction to scout for any oncoming backup forces. As they sneak down the corridor closer to the room, Fraas starts the melee with a mythic fireball. Sentinel rushes in power attacking the bigger giant wielding an axe with two blows. Rand closes in to smaller spear-wielding frost giants, smiting, with his glowing holy great axe. The giant drops its spear, but is barely hanging on to life. Rand takes another swing decapitating the giant, its head rolling into the slave pit. The headless frost giant slumps to the ground. Zinn sends a lightning bolt at the remaining giant, but it ducks out of the way of most of the blast. Korrak charges in, sword aflame, striking once, and again with a critical strike, swinging vertically down into the giant’s head, frost giant blood splattering, raining down into the pit.
Down the corridor, Deagha hears some giant voices moving down the tunnel, attempting to move silently. The rest start moving the slaves out of the pit as fast as possible up the ladders. Shah checks the giants for treasure finding various potions and combat gear as well as a pair of belts of incredible dexterity, amulets of natural armor, and rings of protection, and two sets of boots of the winterlands. On the wolf he finds a ring of retribution, thankfully yet unfired. Zidane and Rand are helping the slaves up. Sentinel is gently tossing some of the slaves out. Fraas heads back toward Deagha, who has since laid thorny traps and an obscuring fog cloud. Fraas readies a fireball, Deagha readies a lightning storm for the moment they breach the fog.
All the slaves that were still alive make it out of the pit. Rand casts an aura of courage and rallies them back toward the cavern entrance. Zidane, Rand and Korrak form a rear guard. Six frost giants come into view of Deagha and Fraas. Deagha springs his spike stones trap, Fraas sends his fireball at them. They start screaming in terror, running the other direction. Someone says, “Captain Smar is an idiot — we needed more guards.” They smolder as they scamper slowly through the spikes. Fraas and Deagha take turns unleashing fire spells and eventually finish them off with magic missile and a coup de grace with Deagha’s spear. Deagha quickly loots the bodies. He finds six sets of combat gear including belts of giant strength +2, cloaks of resistance and rings of protection +1, and myriad potions.
Rand does a mass heal of all the now-freed 50+ slaves. Rand asks if Zidane is sick, he nods silently. Korrak walks over opens his mouth and sees his tongue is missing. Zidane embarrassed, withdraws. No evil auras. About 10 have slight magical aura. Fraas separates them from the rest of the group. Made of plain iron, they all seem to have the same magic, each shackle lets the controller of them more easily target the shackles with scry or teleport and lets the controller know the status of the shackled. After some discussion of things to try, Rand speaking “Qas!” takes his heavy maul from his summoned griffon’s gear holster, using all his skills of accuracy to strike off the manacles, but it does no damage to the item. Rand tries again with a couple power attacks, finally breaking off the manacles. After confirming a lack of evil or magic auras, Rand proceeds to work through the shackles of the remaining nine sets of manacles, successfully breaking them all without hurting nary a one.
The group quickly gathers and distributes gear and finally make their way out of the tunnels.
For the next few days, Zinn and Fraas take turns teleporting groups into town. On the second day, Fraas mishaps and apparates into an unrecognized, bustling town square with humans shopping. The mote is very small with a connecting bridge. In the distance he sees a temple to a familiar deity. When he asks one of the townsfolk where he is, they respond with a furled brow, “INSERT NAME OF ZINN’S ORIGIN TOWN HERE”. On the third day, a small miscalculation leads Fraas slightly off target into a cave system where he overhears some cave trolls speaking giant: “don’t mess with them, we’ve heard about them. The great grinder of meat”. On his penultimate trip on day 5, Fraas mishaps, finding himself in the beach caves. Fraas walks towards the patch of black flowers that give him stronger control of the winds and notices the strange breeze that Bork had seen previously. After collecting a few stems, Fraas moves toward the hidden source of breeze and after touching the wall, suddenly appears on a raised stone circle, hundreds of yards wide. Over the edge, he can feel the wind. Also on the platform is a pile of mechanical bone-like structures, perhaps a deflated mechanical device, each single piece larger than Fraas. It has a similar magical intensity as the overwhelming aura of the heart. Before investigating further, he decides to first head back to the others.
After five days of teleporting everyone has returned to Griffton safely.