Such a bloodied claymore has history way back through lines of father and son. In fact only one place near the handle still holds a metal tone, because of a magical barrier, and it has ingraved in it words that forever speak out to the swords bearer. Those words, like a guilty memory, can never be forgot.
“Thou who shall kill a sons father, shall then be killed by a fathers son.”
The Great White Dragon is rarely seen. Nobody knows where he slumbers, but they do know his cave is on one of the highest peaks in the world. Only few stories have made it to be Known about across the lands. Few ever made it back to there home villages to tell the story.
A king so vile and treacherous was cursed many centuries ago to forever roam the earth. He is now a serf of earths will and shall be anywhere needed to stop the destruction of earths its bueatiful landscapes and creatures.
A little way up the narrow valley, before they reach the woods, the PCs notice the squat, tumbledown buildings by the riverside. They are hardly big enough for a human to stand in, and the complex cogs and shafts that occupy the central cavity of one of the buildings are perplexing. What were these buildings? And how safe are they to explore?
Alternatively a desolate place is the perfect setting for a derelict chapel or croft. There needn't be any actual physical encounter involved, but it adds atmosphere to a place to see its dead history. For instance, in the Outer Hebrides there are whole deserted villages which were razed to the ground by the English during the Clearances. Such stories give a setting authenticity and character.