Where will we be one day, and what will we believe? How will we consider the world around us, and the people? How will we treat the known and the unknown, and possibly other intelligent lifeforms?
Whether close or distant future, something will be similar, and something… is very likely to be different.
A casual remark by one of the party about something met on a previous adventure leads to a summons to and grilling by the Mages' Guild (or equivalent), probably resulting in an expedition back to that area to recover the things for 'study' by the Guild. The party's presence will be 'requested' for this expedition.