The enchanted ice-encased shrine that the monk found herself trapped within was dedicated to Kostchtchie, the demon lord of cold and giants, and its patron demanded offerings of flesh or blood. The guardians over the place included an elf winter witch named Kesha, a frozen dwarf warrior from Kraggodan named Jobral, and a dozen ice mephits. The site was unnaturally cold due to fiendish influence, but the group managed to overcome the malevolent defenses and it vanished.
Later, the group came upon the tracks of an enormous bear that changed into a large humanoid. While investigating the tracks, the group was waylaid by three elemental myrmidons sent by Kostchtchie as retribution for their attacks against him. The elementals were dismissed and the group discovered that their mysterious quarry had run off up the mountain.
The next afternoon a fierce blizzard caught the group unprepared on the mountainside. Following the lead of the ranger, the group pressed on despite treacherous conditions until they were discovered by Bode, the enormous Ulfen man who was their mysterious quarry the day before. Bode escorted them to his humble cabin where a warm fire, hot food, and good mead refilled their bodies and spirits. Bode imparted what he knew of the frost giants of Skirgaard.
Early in the morning the cabin was alarmingly awakened by a powerful knocking on the door. It was a party of frost giants fleeing Skirgaard, and they stopped by to tell Bode that Gavindra was dead, killed by Skirkatla herself and displayed as a warning for all other would-be traitors to witness. The news hit all equally hard, especially that there was a traitor among the princess' allies.
The next day and a half was spent climbing the peak to the Glacial Rift of the frost giants. The jagged entrance to the frost giants' realm was lightly guarded, despite knowledge that the giants were expecting the outsiders to attack. The group eliminated the sentries and prepared to make their assault against the frost giants and their evil queen, Skirkatla.