Lesson 1: The dungeon worm
I am glad to welcome the students of the dungeon-lore and give you insight into the fascinating world of the dungeon worm. You have never seen the dungeon worm ? Well, you probably never will.
The dungeon worm is one of the species which existence is hard to explain and still harder to believe. The only real manifestation and the evidence of his existence are the numerous dungeons found in the wild. You may naturally object that many of this objects are the work of Dwarves, Men, even Orks and many others. This is surely true, but the great sage and adventurer Goblinkill Everdrunk personally researched numerous underground locations in the Darken Woods and found that many dungeons could not originate from ANY known source.
Lacking another explanation, Goblinkill consulted many innkeepers and heroes to finally find an answer for this 'natural' dungeons:
The dungeon worm is never seen in the world as we know it, in his original enviroment an immaterial creature, rock being his ocean and air. How much does the fish care for anything existing outside of water? Very little, I guess.
But sometimes comes this playful creature near to the surface, near to our world, and finds a small crack which, as any dwarf can agree, may run yards deep in the stone. What does it think as it finds this bizzare element of air in its stony world? While pondering the news, sometimes it is joined by another member of its species, and they decide to explore. Adapting to a new enviroment, they materialize and begin to grow. Afraid of the world outside, they shape a lair of well-known proportions. As they eat their way through stone, they grow to their final size estimated at about 10'x10' sqare foreside, length at least 20' , though other sizes and shapes have been reported.
And so is the dungeon born, with many tunnels size of their creators, and many rooms inbetween. Given the excellent architecture, exact to the point it can be easily drawn on paper, one might consider the hypotesis of creating the dungeon as a part of a mating ritual. I leave this to you.
But be the dungeon smaller or greater, the fear of Outside becomes weaker, and there comes the day, when a way out is found and opened. (It is worth noting only one outlet/exit is consistent with the stonework of any natural dungeon, others are of another origin.)
The question remains, what happens to the dungeon worm once it leaves the dungeon? Does it adapt again and become some kind of air spirit, or maybe some monster? Or is the sky and the sun simply too much, and it returns back to life in stone? If you ever find out, or have other hypothesis, tell me.
So much to the dungeon worm. In the next lessons we will talk about the mysterious Call of the Dungeon, and which creatures are especially susceptible to it. We will also explore the frail ecosystem which ensues from the various creatures called. And when finally stability emerges, the Call changes and humanoids with special qualities are drawn towards the dungeon. For a lack of a better term, we call them simply 'adventurers'.