A rare branch of the arcane masters, encountered only among the deepest hill folk or ramshackle cabins, the Saucerer takes his power directly from the consumption of cheap liquor. Only the strongest, rankest, most nauseating of homebrewed alcohol will do, where it is instantly converted into mana available to the caster. Without a minimum level of inebriation, the Saucerer will be unable to cast any spells, as focus inhibits his spellcasting abilities.
The PCs come across a town with a strange curse: Every morning, those who have grown up here wake up with the memories of someone else. They do not find this strange and have no idea it is happening. They calmly wake up and start these new lives as though they have always been that way.
The cause: A wizard who lived there was spurned by a maiden he was infatuated with. His attempt to manipulate her memories into believing they were already together and that she loved him went horribly awry.
A man is arrested for mass murder and found to be insane. Piles of corpses were found on his property, neatly stacked torsos with the skin peeled off and the limbs removed. The man readily admits the work is his, though he claims he was only chopping down trees, removing their branches, debarking them, and then stacking them to season.
The man may have swung the axe but it was a Druid who caused the delusion. This Druid is still on the loose and likely to repeat the crime. In time he may get more creative in his "punishments."
This tome looks like a haphazard collection of random notes on different types of paper stitched together and bound within a wooden cover. The pages describe all of the 300,000 gods of the world, each in the language of the people who worship them. The book is stored high in the mountains, kept safe by an order of monks. Reading the entire book confers a deep understanding on the nature of the cosmos and access to incredible power. This only works, however, if it is read without translation, meaning that the reader must master each language contained within. The various monks know these languages but there is typically only one alive at a time who knows them all. This monk would be an excellent source of information and/or magic. IF the PCs learn about it; IF they can find the monastery; IF they can convince the monks to help them; AND if they can understand the convoluted riddle given as an answer.
A small, enchanted chest, 2 feet on a side. It is of some dark wood with fantastical images graved upon it. Worn leather straps act as hinges and a simple toggle keeps it closed. Anything placed within it, with the lid closed, becomes accessible to anyone with one of the other 5 identical chests. Once it is taken out of any one of the 6, the chest is empty again. Perfect for passing messages or small items between widespread groups, such as ships at sea and their ports of call or generals on the field of battle.
There exists a prestigious academy with a history going back hundreds of years. Graduates are highly skilled and very much sought after for employment. For purely traditional reasons, the academy requires its students to become proficient in a skill or area of knowledge that has no use in the modern world. This could be Ancient Egyptian, an antiquated form of writing such as shorthand, knowledge of building or repairing antique steam engines, programming COBOL, etc. PCs who graduated from this academy must be sure to have this skill in their repertoire.
A fey spirit masks itself as a bee which investigates all who travel within a specific section of the forest. Any the bee finds worthy are allowed to see the hidden opening into the fey kingdom, just off of the trail. Any deemed unworthy see only the bee, buzzing around around them momentarily before moving on.
A man has been committed to an asylum for schizophrenia. The doctors are convinced that he is suffering from delusions and hallucinations. The reality: His soul has been split among three bodies, each in a different dimension, and he occasionally feels and sees what his other "selves" do.
The soul of a mage has been trapped in his own bust for centuries. The bust is a foot in height and made of a dark silvery metal. It is well crafted, perfect in every detail of the mage's features. The frozen expression is one of shock. It was sold off in auction after the mage's unexplained disappearance and has been passed around as a curio ever since. The cause of his entrapment? He practiced in secret; none knew of his hobby. Being self taught, he was unable to tell that the spell he thought was for protection was actually for entrapment...
When the characters approach a clearing in the forest, they will see 4 ogres who are guarding, and preventing from escape, 4 human males, and 3 human females. The ogres will see the party and leap to attack. The females will scream "OUR SAVIORS!!" and run screaming straight across the currently forming battlefield, in between ogres and party members, to hide behind the rearmost party members. They will be safe there. The males will try to skirt the battle to the north side to join the women.
To the south, giants will be hiding in the thick underbrush until the party has engaged the ogres and then attack the most opportune target EXCEPT the ones that the females are next to.
It should be noted that the female commoners are not female commoners at all, nor are the male commoners actually male commoners. The female commoners are the hags, who have polymorphed themselves as the commoners in their stewpot to escape detection. The males skirting the battle are actually MORE ogres, the hags were in the process of polymorphing ALL the ogres into regular humans for ambush purposes. The REAL commoners are already dead, having found their way into the coven's cauldron for dinner.
The hags (the women) will position themselves near to any spellcasters in the rear first, and then near anyone else in the back of the fight. The ogres (the men) will wait until the hags shift form, and then attack first the rear folks, then shift into the melee.
It is possible that the characters, as they approach the ogres, will notice the giants in the bush, and be able to warn the others of the ambush.
GAME NOTES: If you sell the screaming women correctly, they will not even be suspected until it is too late. Therein lay the problem. This encounter is ESPECIALLY deadly to the rear eschelon of the party. It is entirely possible that the hags will finish off half the party before they even realize they have been duped. Caution is required if the game master wishes to avoid a TPK(total party kill).