With the mercenaries and their priestly masters defeated, the companions, helped by Hobb and his men, set about freeing the captives in the wagons. They turned out to be about 80 peasants and workers from villages and farms throughout southern Freymont.
While the prisoners were being freed, Konrad used a few spells to try and help Rib, although he could do nothing for the halfling’s arm. Rib regained consciousness, but was still in pain.
It was agreed that Hobb and his men would take the prisoners back to the forest, leaving the adventurers to continue their journey alone, since they were now only a day or so from their destination. They spent the night in a reasonably sheltered spot away from the camp, in case the mercenaries returned. The night passed without incident, and the next morning they pushed onwards.
Towards evening of that day, they arrived at Creely, having crossed the border into Casterland. Vanator searched for tracks, and found what he thought to be signs of a large number of people marching out of the village, and the mines that it protected. Disturbed by this, and with night drawing on, the companions decided to spend the night outside and enter the mines the next day.
They found a suitable place to camp in a fissure between two rocky outcrops. However, they had only been here a short time when they found themselves surrounded by the ant-like hound creatures of the high elves. Thinking quickly, Rib pulled out the jar of foul smelling liquid that he’d taken from the high elves below Redpool so long before.
The adventurers smeared this on themselves even as the ant-hounds advanced, and immediately the creatures lost interest, turning away and going back the way they came.
With immense relief, the companions settled down for the night.