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.
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.
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.