A party of adventurers walk along late on an open plain, on a moonless night. Abruptly, War screams, the clanging of metal and death-cries are heard. It is an open plain, and nothing is seen, but the sound of a huge battle is all about them. The sounds continue for a half hour before stopping as suddenly as they started. What was it? Perhaps the ghouls of a long-gone battle, reliving their unfortunate last memories...
The ancient Empire of the Golden Crystal fell so long ago that little is known of them besides their legendary magical power. Supposedly, in the Golden Age of the Crystal Empire, cities were filled with enchantment, spells far beyong the ability of modern magi.
A tomb robber has returned to civilization with something never seen before: Ceramic vials of reddish dust that supposedly enhance a magician's power tremendously when the dust is sprinkled upon the floor of his workroom. The rogue selling the vials claims that they were recovered from a ruin of the Crystal Empire, but can he be believed?