Gorthaur notices one of the elite guards pull Augustus Augusto aside, and he and his entourage quickly pack up and leave the College, heading back to the inn. They take the prototype device with them, concealed in a metallic bag of holding strapped to the Archduke’s belt. Gorthaur uses his animated corpses to fake a drunken stupor and rushes back to the Hotel Kilazio, beating the Archduke and company by about a minute.
Meanwhile, the rest of the party hurries to clean the blood off of Calderón and Mira and to formulate a backup plan. Getting reasonably clean via magic, they are just discussing additional options when Gorthaur rushes in, alerting them that Augustus is nearly back. The group quickly tries to get something organized, but they suddenly hear a loud booming voice from outside (clearly amplified by magic).
The Archduke (in a southern drawl) offers them a deal: if they let their hostages (Fred, Jed, Zed, Ed, Led, Ged, Med, Tedd, and Ded) leave without harm, he in turn will allow the party to walk off unscathed, adding that he will not involve the city guard unless he needs to. He gives them two and a half minutes to discuss and agree. This is somewhat problematic, as the individuals in question are very much dead. Gorthaur leaves the inn, convincing the Archduke and his men that he is an innocent bystander; he ducks into a nearby alleyway to watch what happens.
With seconds to spare, Mira takes action, using her trusty crowbar to pry open the window behind the Kilazio’s magical elevator. The party jumps outside, as does Clark, but one of the elite guards bursts in the front door and spots them leaving, while a standard guard rounds the backside of the inn and catches sight of them as well. Stacy and Bethany remain inside the Kilazio. Stacy loses her nerve and shouts that the “hostages” are dead, enraging Augustus, who orders that the party be apprehended. A chase begins.
Gorthaur emerges and battles one of the standard guards, letting his skeletons surround the poor sap and do most of the work. Meanwhile, the rest of the party attempts to run away, but they are occasionally forced into minor skirmishes. Highlights reel: Calderón casts stinking cloud on the bulk of the fighters, incapacitating them. Gorthaur then fireballs the clouded area twice; the net sum is that two more standard guards are killed, Stacy is killed, ten loitering peasants are killed, Bethany escapes, Grognak gets hit, and the elite guards and Augustus take some minor damage.
The final two standard guards are killed by Grognak and Mira (with help from Calderón and Arvi), but an elite guard brings Arvi down to near-unconsciousness; only a well-rolled bluff to pretend to be dead saves her. Another elite guard also wrecks havoc on Grognak, nearly dropping him. He enacts a daring plan, jumping back into the inn (with an elite following him), then riding the elevator up to the second story. The elite hits the elevator, popping Grognak up to the third story before Grognak finally loops back to the first story. He jumps out the window and lets Arvi pull one of her healing arrows from his own leg (she had accidentally shot him earlier). The two escape back to the the hideout, as does Gorthaur.
Meanwhile, Calderón manages to cast hold person on Augustus and snatches his metallic bag of holding. He and Mira take off running, though two of the elites and a freed Archduke are hard on their tail. They take a couple lightning bolts to the face, but manage to kill one of the elites, Krudge (this took a crapton of work over the entire course of the fight). Also noteworthy is that this is the first time Calderón uses his glaive’s magical power. Killing Krudge earns Calderón and Mira a brief reprieve as the Archduke and other elites are shocked that their colleague was felled. This gives the two just enough time to slip away back to the hideout, metallic bag of holding in tow.