Having successfully navigated the Temple of Skund, The Told Ones (and their new ally Cohen the Barbarian) listen in on a strange ritual taking place in a secret room. A group of hooded figures stand around a book, with four glowing trees surrounding them. Red energy shoots from one of the trees, and a demonic creature identifying himself as Lord Mephistopheles, Ruler of Hell, arises, paying "homage" to his father, the leader of the group.
Just then, Dialyn smashes into the backs of her friends, causing them all to tumble into the room and exposing their location. The mysterious cult leader grabs the book and hides, commanding his followers to dispose of the heroes, telling Lord M to focus his attentions on Dialyn. A major battle ensues, as the clock begins to strike midnight.
Right before the final chime, Lord M sends Cohen into a hellish void and turns his sights on the rest of the team. Before he can wipe them all out, another hooded figure appears (yes, there's a pattern) in a cloud of smoke, riding a white horse. The room is shrouded in darkness, and a grim-looking reaper-man takes out the remaining cultists, turning his attention to The Told Ones and telling them that they must return the Eternal Hourglass of A'Tuin, which has just started losing sand for the first time in history. Dialyn, thinking quickly, challenges the specter to a game of chance, and despite his attempts at cheating, Death is foiled.
He allows the heroes to keep the hourglass, and (after some debate) slows the sands. As he turns his back rather conspicuously to let them group escape, he tells them that they must seek out sacred sands in order to delay the death of A'Tuin, and that they may success "by the Grace of the Gods". Taking the cue, The Told Ones run off and decide to seek out the Gods themselves up on the fabled mountain Cori Celesti.
After a debate with the now severely de-powered (but still cocky AF) Lord M, the group seals him away in his book, the Tome of Flames, and stumbles across an ambush of another group of druids. Negotiating peace, the druids bring them to their leader, Salencia, deep in the forest, where the Druidic Supercomputer is kept. Putting the Eternal Hourglass into the computer, the druids discover that A'Tuin has been shifted off course to collide with the Red Comet, which passes harmlessly by Discworld every 50 years, the same time at which the barriers between various world is at its weakest. However, by interrupting the evil druids' ritual before midnight on Hogswatchnight (the most magical night of the year), The Told Ones managed to delay A'Tuin's collision for a few months.
Following Cohen's direction, the group then sets out for Cori Celesti by the "scenic route", traveling through the towns of Pseudopolis and Quirm. They first pass a group of Duergars (deep mountain dwarves), who ask for their help defending their mines against the Troll invasion. Sticking true to their alignments, the group ignores both groups' pleas for help and moves on to Pseudopolis, where a berserker horde is attacking the villagers. A battle ensues, and the group manages to save the town and put out the fires set by the barbarians.
Mayor Dumbleweed comes out to thank the heroes and gives them a tour of his capitol building, which doubles as a museum. However, the group presses the mayor and his archeologist employee Nevada Smith, who eventually reveal that the reason the horde is invading is because the mayor stole their legendary sword Kring. This sets a wildly uncoordinated plan into motion, in which Deck turns the town against their mayor, as Sen'dai and Beau distract the city guards in battle, as Loki and Dialyn invisibly sneak into the museum to abscond with the sword. Mob law triumphs, and Loki manages to get the overly-talkative sword out of town on a horse and over to the Octarine Plains, where the barbarians make camp. The rest of the team eventually follows, but not before ousting Mayor Dumbleweed and installing the head of the police, Captain Donkeyteeth, to power. Things will definitely work out great from here.
Cohen diffuses the tension between The Told Ones and Hrun the Barbarian's Silver Horde (a group of aged, or "experienced", barbarians who used to follow Cohen but have since taken up with Hrun). Kring is returned, and the group makes Hrun sign a "no attacking village" contract, which the barbarians will definitely stick to. Oh, and Deck randomly pulls an eye out of a newt's head. Adventuring!
Finally, the group departs for Quirm, a lively city full of exciting street performers and delicious aromas…except for the sausages being peddled by Whack-Meself-Off Dibbler, who welcomes them to the city and points out a couple of arguing men over by a collapsed tower…but who are these men, and what are they fighting about? I guess it's up to the group to figure it out!
But still, the clock is ticking…