A breed of small dog has the remarkable ability to talk, albeit in the repetitive manner of a parrot.
In one region of a forest, all of the trees are identical, down to the leaves and the twigs. If the PCs carve something into one of the trees, it could mystically propigate until it covered all of the trees, or could vanish since it was not carved into the one true tree.
Purple deer have begun to appear near the ruins of a fallen city, or other place of power. Hunting the deer is absurdly easy, as their coloration makes them easy to see. The heros prepare a feast from a freshly killed deer find out several hours later that the meat of the new purple deer is poisonous. This can range from cramps and vomiting to the truly sinister and lethal.
The Akhal-Teke is a real horse breed that develops a metallic golden coat. A more fantastic version could have a coat the color of pure gold, or silver making the horse appear to be made of the precious metal.
The Hierophant of Greenmarch is a lycanthrope. Rather than seeking a cure, or hiding his condition, he considers it a blessing from the Goddess of the moon, and requires that all of the Druids and loyal Rangers of Greenmarch to share in his gift.
While traversing the tractless deserts of Shezmu, the pc's come across a travelling caravan led by Vual, the Demon-Camel, the Lord of Lust, the Thrice-Humped...Vual is cursed to only be able to assume one form outside the Abyss, that of a rather large, golden-skinned three-humped camel,with a frog-like, black, barbed tongue......
Vual is the demonic manifestation of Lust...his followers, a cult of truly disturbed individuals, engage in bizarre orgies, travelling the desert towns, "entertaining" the desert folk with their perverse antics...
Vual's Rapture is what the cultists call their monthly festival, where they perform perverse rites to honor Vual...ofcourse folk come from great distances to witness the festivals, despite themselves, and the Cult of Vual welcomes all...
Surprisingly for such a hideous creature, Vual has the power to beguile and charm with his magical voice. His voice will always sound to pcs as the voice of the person they most desire...his followers also gain this ability slowly over time...
When the pc's meet with Vual, he tries to seduce them into joining his cult. If for whatever reason the pc's resist..well then... Vual would probably kill them for sport, as a lesson for those who "resist Vual's love"....
A race of people identical in all respects to humans except for the fact that they lay eggs.
Arune Spheres are hollow, blue reflective metallic spheres about 25 cm/ 10" in diameter (though some are larger). They are made of a thickish glass mirrored on the inside. When magical energies are flowed through the sphere, it produces a haunting tone, which can be varied by the type, intensity, and harmonics of energies passed through it. (It sounds like an electronic organ.) If multiple energy flows are generated, multiple sounds can be generated, some of which sound like mundane instruments. Masters of The Craft can replicate almost any sound in their memory with one. Though originally used as a training tools for those with The Power, it has been adapted to be a musical instrument. All it takes is someone with patience, medative training, and a touch of the Power, to use it. (Thus becoming the favorite instrument of anyone who was tested to the first level of the Craft, but failed to advance).
A large forest which is the site of a research monastery dedicated to Silence. In the course of developing new spells, the monks frequently deaden all sound in huge areas of the forest, an extremely eerie experience for anyone passing through.
MoonInk: This alchemical product has 101 uses. The Ink/Paint dries to be totally clear and almost unnoticable. Under moonlight, it comes forth as a silver ink. It was originally used by the Elventi to enhance certain pieces of art. It is used by espionage types to produce secret messages, nobles for hiddle plots, and diabolical cultists to write their spell books (usually in books of holy texts, to throw off people reading it).
While travelling near the edge of a forest the air is filled with the wailing of battle horns. Soon a large group of mounted cavalry will gallop by in a panicked rush. Some will spot the party and shout "Flee! Flee for your very lives!"
Several minutes later, hundreds of running infantrymen will be spotted. A large group of white clad knights fiercely chanting a battle song is in full pursuit. One of the white knights carries a banner of a white horse on a black background. The horse is rearing under a gold crown, indicating the presence of the Paladin Prince. As the horrified infantrymen struggle to flee into the forest, the zealots charge into their midst and cut them down by the tens and hundreds.
The air had grown chill the minute they descended into the strange valley, which was unmarked on any of their maps. It was so strange here, devoid of animal life and completely silent. The horses were nervous the entire journey through the vale. As they set about to collect firewood for the campfire they could hear their own voices as dim echoes through the eerie silence.
The food didn't taste anything that evening and their sleep was cold and troubled by nightmares. While they are clearing camp the next morning, one of them stumbles over a piece of stone jutting out of the ground nearby the horses. On closer inspection there seems to be runes engraved into the polished surface. The symbols true meaning is no more known among mere mortals and if they decide to dig deeper, they will discover that it is an ancient altar buried within the soil.
Any historically oriented party member will recognize the largest symbol to be the insignia of the powerful warlock who ruled this realm several centuries ago. At their departure from the area, something will seem amiss with one of the party members and all will remember the stories of the warlock's thousand curses.
The journey had been a long one and now they had entered the mountains. After an entire day spent on paths cut into the mountainside and through moss covered coniferous woods, they encounter a desperate young mountain tribal. He is searching for his beloved wife and his elder brother, both of whom he got separated from after an unsuccessful attempt to kill a cave bear. The last thing he saw was the cave bear in full pursuit of his wife. He could not help her as he had been knocked to the ground by the raging beast, and was struggling to regain full consciousness. The tribal will be clearly nervous and urges them to look for his wife during their travels. He will stay in his village a couple of miles to the north and pleads for assistance should they recover his wife, whether she be dead or alive.
On the next day of travel, they will journey upon a dim track in the forest and while they are preparing to ascend another path cut into the mountainside, they hear moans of lust from somewhere nearby. Upon closer inspection they will spy a young tribal woman in the heat of the act with an elder tribal male. They are consummating their forbidden love on the cold mountain moss, and beside them lay the skinned and slaughtered carcass of a huge bear.
In the town of Eon, children are born without names. They must earn a name by doing someting great before age twelve or they are banished from Eon
Golden coins that turn to lead within a few hours of being taken from their place of origin, causing a lot of trouble for whoever spends them.
It seemed like a great place to camp. The clearing was good sized and sheltered from the wind. The brook just a few feet away. There is a natural hallow to keep the horses.
Then the night came.
It was like it became a different place. The temperature dropped. The wind, which does not seem to disturb cloth, almost cuts through you like an arctic wind. No one can sleep, as the soft ground has turned hard. The horses are uneasy. The Bats are flying over and stopping in the trees.
And then there is the eyes. There are glowing eyes just inside the tree line watching your group. The mages and clerics can detect nothing, but there is still something there.
(yet there is nothing at all... The Darkness will do nothing unless the players do something to it. And even then it will all seem to be a conincidence.)
Of course, in the morning, it all becomes sweet and light.
The PCs have been traveling for a long time down the same stretch or round with no sign of anything suspicious. As they cross over to the next hill they see a gigantic splater of blood with a bleached dragons scull in the center of it. It the dragon skull's mouth is a tattered backpack with something wiggling inside of it.
What if when a character died and the price to bring him back into the world was to allow an evil or good version to be placed in the world with the sole purpose of killing the character that just got its life back? The copycat character would die apon completeing his mission.....or would he?
An African tribe called the Ik throws their children out of their homes once they turn 3. They are left to fend for themselves with no help from their parents at all, and to survive, form groups with others their age. These groups only last a few years, and every so often the individual will join a completely different group.
Teenagers who run away from home to live in the wilderness may become feral. As they become more and more feral, they gain some supernatural powers (a la Peter Pan - ability to fly, things they imagine come true - possibly quite powerful), but at the expense of their humanity and ability to speak, comprehend complex subjects, etc. Maybe they have a leader: the most feral of them all.
A regression into a fantasy childlike state.
Nine times out of ten, it’s the undead that do the running.
Not strictly animal or vegetable, the Corpse bud is a peculiar individual that shares characteristics from multiple kingdoms and species. In appearance, all corpse buds bear a shape of a large rounded top bud divided into four lateral segments, and a much longer, narrower bottom bud, also divided into four segments. Between the two halves are a set of four radial limbs, rounded on top and flat on the bottom, covered with tiny serrated hooks facing towards the body. In overall size, it’s limbs reach as wide as a spread hand, with the body being as thick as a fist. It is as long as a human hand from top to bottom.
Internally, the top bud of the corpse bud contains a bacteria filled membrane that produces the hydrogen that the corpse bud uses to stay aloft, and a series of fungal gills for the dispersal of spores for reproduction. The lower half of the bud contains a number of fine filaments, as well as a sharp barbed stinger containing a powerful local anaesthesia.
The Corpse Bud mobilizes by inflating its top bud, and steers by rotating its arms rapidly about its body. The corpse bud ordinarily drifts with the wind, orienting towards the scent of recent decay and death. It preys on the recently dead, burrowing the lower bud into the victim, using the anaesthesia in case the victim is dying, and not truly deceased. Once embedded, it releases its filaments into the body, replacing the current nervous system. This gives it full animation of the body, and allows the corpse bud to direct it.
Corpse buds are not a malevolent species, being primarily concerned with breaking down the host body for food, and infecting the reproductive cycle with spores in order to mate with other corpse-bud bodies. To preserve the corpse for this purpose, Corpse buds will seek out dry locations to prevent bacteria from destroying the corpses. This often causes a large number of corpse buds to gather in a single location.
In culture, Corpse buds are used to repair broken spines or degenerative diseases, as the sentient mind will easily overcome the mind of the non-sentient corpse bud. Once infected by a corpse bud, however, removal is usually fatal, and the infected individual cannot reproduce, or risk infecting another. Thus, it is a technique often reserved for the elderly, or a last resort.
Necromancers and other dark sorcerers will often preserve the corpses of their victims magically, and infect them with corpse buds, creating traditional undead as well, so as to seed their lairs with undead both offensive and non, in order to throw their enemies off balance. They will also enslave the rudimentary minds of the corpse buds, and transform the docile things into a plague. There have also been accounts of magically transformed corpse buds with stronger minds and a taste for living flesh, but thus far all accounts are unproven rumors.