Eventually they dug all the way through to the other side where they found that they were lost in the Underdark and outside of the magic bubble created by the runic pillar. Starting to work their way out they made it the rest of the day, running into giant rats and dividing oozes along the way. But who knows what else awaits them in the depths of the Underdark before they find their way out? Who knows when the magical bracers will reactivate and how long it will take the Red Wizards to find them once they do reactivate?
Turns out, that the bracers reactivated rather quickly, a few days at most.
While working to find their way out the gang ended up in a small lair full of kobolds. Which turned out to be followers of a small blue dragon, which Mercurious rushed in to visit with while the kobold fight was still ongoing. Turned out that this was a dead end, but after a very difficult fight the party was at least rewarded with a small pile of loot.
Headed back in what they thought was the right direction, the party then ended up walking into an enclave of dwarves and dragonborn "item recovery experts". Everything came out friendly, the party agreed to go rescue a group of their companions who were recently captured by drow and goblins. Part of the agreement was that the party would aim the dwarves and dragonborn in the direction of the magic-bubble pillar to use as a base of operations where Thay won't be able to spy them out and the dwarves would aim the party in the direction that they think will get them out of the underdark.
For their part, the gang of escaped slaves headed off to intercept the dwarf and dragonborn slaves, where they found that the drow were leaving to “a different part of the city” and that the goblins needed to bring the new slaves to the pens. That’s when the party struck, killing the goblins and hobgoblins and freeing the clearly drugged out slaves.
On their way to return the dwarves and dragonborn to their kin the party was ambushed by a small squad of devils who were lying in wait for them. Fighting through this obstacle the party managed to get the rescued slaves back to their people and were rewarded with information about a magical anvil of dragonborn-make that they think might be somewhere in Thay with some other dragonborn artifacts. The dwarves and dragonborn, for their part exchanged information about the direction to get out of the Underdark and the party told them out to get to the magical obelisk, which they think might be a dragonborn artifact.
As they traveled along they found a young male drow under attack from fire creatures. They attempted to rescue him and were nearly overwhelmed when an odd orc wearing animal skins and carrying a spear came charging in with a large bear companion tearing through the fire creatures. It then started tearing into the party until the two dwarves fled and at the end he was convinced to let them go through some desperate pleading.
The party recovered and healed from their wounds and went along their way, leaving the orc’s tunnels as requested. It wasn’t too far, however, that they ran into a small band of orc warriors wearing Thayan slave garb who attacked on sight and which the party defeated quickly. Upon their success they were greeted by two men wearing attire clearly associated with the Red Wizards, but these two were obviously not wizards. They seemed to be there to claim the party and bring them back into the slavery that they had escaped.
It was a hard fought battle and there were many close calls, but eventually the pair were defeated. Unfortunately the party’s healers were unable to get to Mercurious in time and the righteous tiefling’s life was lost. However, a half-elf, who had likewise been captured by the slave catchers was found chained up in a nearby tunnel. Despite being highly unimpressed with the groups social skills, this Aglarondan man choose to join them long enough to get everyone out of the dangers of Thay and safely beyond the borders of the Red Wizards’ reach.
After resting for a time the group headed off through the tunnels, making good progress. After stopping for lunch, however, they were approached by a drow woman who materialized out of the shadows. She gave them an offer. A map detailing passage out of the Underdark in exchange for them killing a young drow man who was an up and coming villain in their society, but that she could not risk striking against herself. Reluctantly the party decided to help the woman, killed the boy in the Misty Maze, a series of tunnels filled with thick hot steam, and also slew his small pet drakes.
Upon returning to where they were told to meet the woman they found a map placed into the center of the chamber and following it they hoped they might finally find a way out of the tunnels and into the long-missed daylight.