BIONICLE: Escape from the Underworld

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"Skull Grinder lies defeated, the skull scorpions and skull spiders have scattered, and Ekimu and the Protectors prepare to embark upon the next chapter of their quest to defeat Makuta. But before they can begin the Quest for Unity, the Protectors most investigate a strange disappearance in a nearby village. A disappearance that will lead them far underground to face a new kind of danger . . ."
— Back Cover

Escape from the Underworld
Series LEGO BIONICLE Chapter Books
Author Ryder Windham
Publisher Scholastic
ISBN 978-0545925402

Escape from the Underworld is a BIONICLE chapter book, the third and final book of BIONICLE's second generation. It was written by Ryder Windham and released on June 28, 2016, taking place before the events of BIONICLE: The Journey to One.


Kulta, the Skull Grinder, awakes in the dungeon beneath Ekimu's forge, contemplating on how he and the Skull Army failed in defeating the Toa and Ekimu. Kulta is overheard by the Mask Maker as he pleads for help from his Master, Makuta. Ekimu mocks Kulta before leaving the dungeon. Elsewhere, the Toa are helping to rebuild the City of the Mask Makers, as they get rid of two Skull Scorpios in the city's graveyard and are repairing Ekimu's tomb, when Vizuna approaches them and Ekimu with a party of five villagers from the Region of Stone who lost two boys while making their way to the city. Leaving Vizuna and the other Protectors to safeguard the city, the group of seven heads out to rescue the youngsters, unaware that a Skull Spider is infiltrating the city.

The heroes make their way to a large chasm created by the events of Makuta's Betrayal, where Ekimu recounts his old adventures aboard his Airship and discusses how strange it is to find Okoto so changed, as he misses doing his old adventures. Onua suggests to Ekimu that he could build a new Airship to relive his old days. While exploring, Lewa is captured by a Skull Spider-controlled hawk that kidnapped the boys and loses his Golden Mask, and Pohatu's attempt to rescue him is quickly thwarted. Ekimu scolds at Pohatu for it, but Onua tells Ekimu that Pohatu was trying to help, so Ekimu apologizes.

Back at the city, the Skull Spider recovers Kulta's mask and delivers it to the Skull Grinder's cell, and after recovering it, Kulta is turned from thoughts of vengeance with the news of the whereabouts of Ekimu and the Toa. He then sets out with the Skull Spider while Skull Basher is left behind, while the Toa follow the hawk to a mountain where they confront it and are able to free it from the Skull Spider that had been controlling it. The hawk then flees while the Toa and Ekimu travel further into the caverns beneath the mountain, only to be caught in a trap. They find themselves even further below ground and are then confronted by a menace from Ekimu's past: the Skull Raiders, whose ancestors Ekimu, Makuta, and the ancient Protectors once fought and drove into the mountains. Unfortunately, they have survived thousands of years of confinement and now hold Lewa and the two children prisoner.

The Skull Raiders relieve the heroes of their weapons before leading them to their underground city, in a great coliseum, unaware that their leader Kulta is making his way back to their underground city. Kulta notices the hawk and complains that the heroes must have freed it. Meanwhile, the heroes and Ekimu then learn the full history of the raiders: following their defeat at the hands of Ekimu, Makuta, and the Protectors, they were approached by Makuta and offered the chance to join him when he took over Okoto using the Mask of Ultimate Power. However, his battle with Ekimu and the resulting changes to Okoto left the raiders trapped until Kulta discovered a passage out, and Kulta and his people came to blame Ekimu for their imprisonment. The heroes are then faced with the task of fighting the Skull Raiders at the behest of their commander, Axato, or Lewa and the children will be destroyed by a lava pit if the heroes do not fighting the raiders. Axato is quickly surprised when Gali challenges him to the first battle. She then reveals to the others - but not to the Skull Raiders, who speak a different language - that her intention is to distract the villains while her comrades escape and rescue Lewa and the children.

After tricking Axato, Gali quickly gains the upper hand in their battle, but Kulta arrives during the fight and attacks Ekimu before being struck by Onua. Battle then breaks out as Kulta orders his people to destroy the Toa and Ekimu, who fight back with their reclaimed weapons while rescuing Lewa and the children. Eventually, Kulta forces the heroes to stop, but Ekimu challenges him to single combat with the promise that he will not employ his Hammer of Power and that the Toa will not use their weapons against Kulta. However, the Skull Grinder is soon treated to a crushing loophole in the agreement as Ekimu borrows Onua's Earthquake Hammer and uses it to send Kulta flying into the city's ceiling, which begins to collapse. The Toa and Ekimu flee with the youngsters and then seal the exit to the city, insuring that the Skull Raiders will not be returning anytime soon. Ekimu states that he did not cheat in the fight against Kulta, and he had bent the rules by borrowing one of the Toa's weapons. Ekimu proclaims that he will build his new Airship when he and his friends get back home.

Returning to the City of the Mask Makers, the heroes reunite the two boys with their family and are themselves reunited with Vizuna, who warns Ekimu about Kulta escaping from the city, but Ekimu tells him that he and Toa know that. Meanwhile, Kulta awakens in the rubble of his city, with him and the other Raiders being unable to move out of there, and begs Makuta to aid him once again, but with no apparent result.



  • Despite Lewa appearing in his 2016 "Uniter" toy form on the front cover and Terak appearing on the back cover, the narrative features the Toa in their 2015 "Master" set forms and does not feature the Elemental Creatures.
  • The back cover has two errors.
    • It says that Ekimu and the Protectors go on a quest far underground. However, the description is inaccurate, as the Toa were there, not the Protectors.
    • When the back cover says "the Protectors most investigate a strange disappearance in a nearby village," it made a grammical error, as it should say "must", not "most".
  • Melea, a female Stone villager introduced in the book, is at one point mistakenly referred to as an Earth tribe member.

See also