The era of exploring Undermountain with the aid of Halastair’s Horned Ring nearly came to an end in the last session.
Things began in the midst of the action. The party had locked themselves in the armory of the fire giants and had been looting it when they heard the sound of the armored giant strike force returning to their colony. Grim advocated a frontal assault on more than a dozen fully armed fire giants, their dragon, and hell hounds. Before Leeroy Genkins could commit the party to suicide, Glauben noticed a camouflaged face creeping amongst the giants ankles. Then there was a gentle knock on the door to the armory. A team of dwarvish tunnel runners had infiltrated the giant colony to assist the gnomes in rescuing the dwarvish slaves.
The tunnel runners had created diversions at the known entrances to the fire giant colony with steam-driven automated war machines that were set to self-destruct, so the colony was clear of giants and most guards. The party was able to move through the colony, through the main mess hall, past the kitchens, and into the servants section without even seeing a single giant.
When they did find one, the party blundered around a corner into a fire giant guard. But Grim was able to bluff the guard into walking into an ambush. The gnomes and dwarves didn’t even come up to the giant’s knees, so they took the opportunity to shorten his legs for him. And then applied a hair cut that may have been a bit extreme. A fifth dwarf tunnel runner linked up with the party and the party found the dwarf slaves that the fire giants had been keeping. With the help of teleportation, the slaves and their slain family members were safely delivered to Dun Glordel.
King Faldar informed the party that a team had been sent to the surface to plug the exit that had been used by the Bloody Hand, along with two squads of soldiers to help keep the village of Tern’s Roost safe from any assassins or vampires that might start trouble. Reminded by the King that there were still loos ends to run down, the party returned to the surface and Durnan’s Inn. The inn was packed with townsfolk seeking refuge from the remnants of the assassin’s guild which had erupted upon the surface. After scanning the crowd with the goggles of lifesight and talking with the men of the village the party learned of a dozen or so missing persons. The party armed the villagers with spoils from the fire giants and set out to search the village for the missing people.
Through the square and across the creek the party encountered a beautiful young woman in a dark cloak that they did not recognize. She was screaming that a vampire had attacked her husband. The party followed her into a dark alley only to be fired on by a hidden gang of slavers using poison.
Later the members of the party awoke in individual stone cells with iron bars and no windows, completely stripped of all their equipment. Some harsh words were exchanged between the gnomes and the guard. About three minutes later the entire slave prison was in a full blown riot. The party had a difficult battle against gargoyle guards and then broke free of the slave prison. In the yard of the stronghold the party determined that they were underground in a modified natural cavern. They used the crowd of revolting slaves as cover to run for the central ziggurat where the Eye was said to reside. All around the slaves were being shot by guards, and disintegrated by undead beholders. Having seen what beholders can do the party hid against the center of the ziggurat and considered their options. Eventually the party decided on a smash and grab in front of the Eye itself to reclaim Halastair’s Ring. Grim and Glauben got separated from the party and went on an involuntary tour of various dangerous locations until they were deposited in the room of the bone throne near Dun Glordel.