An evil ruler got the idea of mixing a trampoline and a gallows together. As long as the one to be hanged bounces on the rubber trapdoor it won't open, but bouncing gets very tiring after a while.
A rumour of the knights of some powerful king that sleep until danger threatens the kingdom.
The truth is that they were rebels, trying to split the kingdom. Once captured they were put into an enchanted sleep, protected from age and harm, until their aims have been carried out by others in which case they will awaken.
There is a loophole in the spell in that trying to take one of their weapons will also awaken them.
A world where there is a finite amount of magic present in the world, and it's almost used up. With the winds of magic being weak and unstable, how will nations built on the heavy use of magic survive?
A dragon who demands to be told stories, if the person cannot comply, he or she becomes a meal for the dragon.
A land where virgins are immune to magic (although they cannot cast it.)
A world where, instead of aging in years, the people age in knowledge. So, instead of dying once a general age was reached, they die once they achieve a certain amount of knowledge. A man could live forever if he never learned anything, or could die after reading a few choice books. Of course, the knowledge of the land would be regulated, like medical drugs.
A typical iron ore mine, the Irongate was closed some years ago and the entrance was closed off with a heavy gate of oak and thick iron bands, the Irongate. The mine itself was abandoned because it was a breeding ground for dire rats and many of the miners suffered from giant rodent bites as well as diseases from said bites. The mines are haunted by the ghosts of the men who died in dire rat swarms, adding to the mine's unpleasant character.
A loose and ragged band of berzerkers, barbarians, criminals and vagabonds, the Blood Wolves have all come together to a dual purpose. Each of the Wolves are beholden and worship the same patron Little God, the Crimson Slashing Jaw. They are also a semi-cohesive mercenary force for hire. Their rates are low, and their morals are non-existant.
A military organization, the Stalkers are a hunting/mining militia that are known for wearing full body shrouds that easily hide them in snow and other slushy terrain. The lightly armored warriors are known for the speed, stealth, and the vicious wounds inflicted by their hunting hatchets. Many of the Stalkers keep crop-eared warhounds with them, both for hunting, companionship, and in war.
Most large mammals, such as elephants, rhinos, and their modern ilk are ill-suited for domestication, but that doesnt exclude their use as engines of war. Rather than raise and train the Mammoth from birth, Mammoth Handlers instead capture the wild Mammoths at a young to juvenile age and train them for war. These animals are draped in armor and are unleashed as living war machines against the foes of the Mammoth Tribe.
Gnomes are famous for their festive springtime celebrations. Farm villages will often dye their hens eggs bright colors; with gnomish magic, the chicks that hatch from the eggs have the very same colors. The chickens eventually lose their hues, but the stronger the magic, the longer the color stays. In a gnomish village, one can easily spot the village shaman by his flock of gaily colored fowl.
In the far reaches of a long-lost wilderness, there stands a forgotten town inhabited only by children. Though they appear normal enough, their eyes burn with madness, and they speak in a foreign, archaic tongue. Nearly a millenia ago, a powerful spell had gone awry, or maybe it had succeeded - in any case, it ended up blessing, or cursing, an entire generation of children with agelessness. However, as the centuries passed, the children's parents grew old and died, the buildings of the town crumbled to earth, and even the civilization itself faded into history, becoming lost to time. All that remained were the children, driven mad by the psychological toll of living for hundreds of years beyond their age. In time, most children died, killed off by fighting amongst themselves, while many others were driven to suicide. Only a small handful remain, and they are a strange people indeed.
On a certain continent, nearly all kingdoms worship under the same pantheon. However, in the southern reaches the peoples take a much more...liberal stance on their Gods. Statues are nude, and very anatomically correct, and icons are often startlingly brazen. For instance, the icon of (insert name), the goddess of love, is an image of two nude twins embracing in a passionate kiss, signifying the love of both family and partner. This is a source of unending outrage and offense for the Northern churches, whose traditional and modest take on religion is constantly at odds with the near-blasphemous ideals of the Southerners. While this is not enough to provoke outright conflict, there is more than enough simmering discontent and long-held grudges between the two hemispheres.
In a long-lost age, a party of adventurers are frozen into stone by the stare of some gorgon-like creature. An unscrupulous rogue, coming across the frozen party several centuries later, decides to haul off two of the statues to decorate his den. Upon his death, an artisan friend of his claims a statue and sells it to a rich merchant, passing it off as his own work. Years later, the merchant gilds the statue in bronze and re-sells it at a much higher price. After passing through the art markets for many decades, the statue ends up in the hallways of a mage academy. Imagine the chaos and confusion when a young mage's spell happens to break the curse of stone, returning the adventurer to life several centuries after his petrification! Is he interrogated by historians? Driven mad by the change of times? Or does he set off on a quest to find and liberate his other frozen party-members?
A sword that stores the identity of the wielder. To transfuse the soul to the blade, one must first stab himself through the heart. The person will not die, but lose the freedom of the soul upon real death.
The PC's stumble upon a village strangely devoid of life and activity, but they get the feeling they're being watched.
What is a king to do? A prophesy indicates that a certain person is involved with the death of the king, but the prophesy was unclear as to what role - do they cause it or prevent it.
A noble claims that a stranger did not enter the town by any normal means, but trough his mirror. The man in question is ravening mad and mutters on about vast halls connecting all the mirrors in the world.
A certain type of toads, only found in the bleak swamps of Mournmist start falling on the city where the PC's are, like rain. Why?
The spirit of a creature trapped in amber cannot escape to it’s afterlife / next incarnation / whatever.
Such trapped spirits can be contacted by those who know the right rituals and magical power derived from them – typically the power to control one individual of that species.
Can by quite powerful if the creature is a colony insect (ant, bee, wasp, etc) – simply control the queen and you command the whole colony.
If it was a castle, it was the strangest one he had ever seen.
He of course saw the main tower - taller than anything he had seen outside of Stoneholt, the spire looked fragile and was topped by a glassed-in chamber.
The outer wall was so gently sloped that it would have only stopped a horde of hobbling old men, an able-bodied soldier could stride up to its crest with little effort. Within one saw a huge, nearly perfect bowl-shaped area with the base of the tower in the centre, covered in hundreds of mirrors.
This structure is a massive solar collector designed by the Wizard-King Aardwal in centuries past. He used the concentrated light in his investigations into the magic of light, and in the fashioning of flash crystals.