1. A handful of Purple Dragons and a few war wizards battling orcs and an ogre magi. Swords paused mid-swing; spells unleashed, yet fixed in place and unmoving; blood suspended in the air; cries of agony and roars of rage stilled by a force unseen. Who among the PCs will be first to walk into the midst of a battle frozen in place?
2. Every time one of the PCs enters a settlement after a short time away, or finds him or herself in a new location teeming with humanoid NPCs, that PC is always approached within the first ten days by cutthroats and criminals, and the PC is a perpetual magnet for cats of all kinds (including Tressym; see [I]Storm King’s Thunder[/I], page 242). These hangers on try to start a conversation (the cats are just friendly), but they don’t cause trouble unless accosted, and seem genuinely disappointed if the PC leaves the location or ignores them. Offers to join in on the latest criminal activity are frequent.
3. A merchant mage hawking wares in Arabel. Among the items is a tuning fork that when struck against the metal of any weapon and then placed close to one’s ear will whisper the name of the last being to be slain by that weapon. The tuning fork vibrates, but makes no discernible noise, when struck against anything else. The merchant offers to demonstrate its properties to the PCs, if they will just allow her to strike the fork against one of their weapons. The tuning fork costs a paltry 10gp. Double the price of the PCs want to know the origin story of the tuning fork. Alternately, the PCs may have the fork for free if they will trade to the merchant any item they own on which they have bled copiously. (The origin story still costs 10gp, however).
4. [B][URL=”http://archive.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/wn/20030129a”%5DFelgolos the Flying Misfortune[/URL][/B] happens to the PCs. What else do you need?
5. A pair of rooms below ground that are not so much hidden away as rarely ever used, somewhere in southern Cormyr that render into infants anyone who enters the first room, and into elderly old men or women anyone who enters into the second room. The effect is instant, and cannot be prevented by any known magical means (including, [I]Wish[/I] spells and similar, as well as antimagic effects). The strange property of the two rooms may be reversed simply by exiting either chamber. Rumor claims any being with at least one Obarskyr ancestor is immune to the effect of the chambers. Still other rumor claims the rooms are leftover remnants of early attempts (read: failures) by the legendary Sword Heralds to create extradimensional spaces. Regardless, the family living above ground have never experienced the effect, though they’ve all been in the pair of old rooms, and the other chambers and hallways that stretch away from them.
6. A blind young boy, scion of lesser nobility, who can only see when he touches one of the five large scrying spheres found in the cellars below Wizard’s Run (see [B][URL=”http://www.dmsguild.com/product/189026/Cormyr-In-The-Year-Of-The-Ageless-One?term=ageless&test_epoch=0″%5DTHIS%5B/URL%5D%5B/B%5D sourcebook). The boy is slowly learning to command the scattered remnants of once animated objects that litter the keep and surrounding lands. He has taken to spying on the residents of nearby farms via a floating gauntlet, through which he can see and hear. Each night the boy searches for more pieces of armor, and hopes to someday have a full suit gathered together. These plans are set aside when his flying gauntlet comes upon a group of adventurers camping for the night (the PCs), whom the boy intends to spy on to learn of their exploits.
7. One thousand gnomes. Maybe they’re angry, maybe not. Either way, they’re all moving in the same direction and the PCs are in the way. You are the DM; take it from here.
8. Ten thousand hobgoblins march on the Stonelands under Bane’s banner. The Hobgoblins make no claim on Cormyr proper, but promise to make war on any force that challenges their claim to the Stonelands in its entirety. Cormyr’s ruler offers noble titles to anyone who gives battle to the host and manages to stay their advance long enough for the forces of the Purple Dragon to rally together and march north to defend Cormyr’s territory.
9. A small town or village is afflicted with extreme cold, no matter the time of year. The settlement’s children appear to do the lion’s share of the daily work, while the adults remain indoors until nightfall, when they can be seen milling about their homes. That all the adults in the settlement were slain simultaneously by fell magic is not a secret to the Crown of Cormyr, nor is the presence of a goodly vampire archmage whose skill at Art kept the terrible spell from consuming the lives of everyone in the settlement. That same vampire buried all of the dead and placed a magical token in each of the burial plots that allows willing spirits to materialize in and near their homes, and to speak. The children are very much alive and seem immune to the cold wrought by the presence of so many spectral dead, and they are getting on as best they can. Some[i]thing[/i] lingers outside the village, and it very much wants the children, but it cannot enter thanks to the Vampire’s warding magic. Vampire and unknown entity wage a quiet battle while Crown War Wizards search fruitlessly for the entity. Enter PCs stage left, who are drawn in as pawns on one or both sides of the conflict.
10. Another rumored Sword Herald failure: An unassuming cellar room within a nigh-ancient farmhouse north of Marsember. Within the room gravity is reversed, and for the duration of one’s stay in the room they do not age. In point of fact the Wizards of War have determined that the room makes living creatures younger; a day inside becomes a day younger, a month for a month, and so on. The farmhouse is occupied and its residents know to avoid the cellar room, but they are unprepared for the arrival of the PCs, whose most recent teleport spell sent them to the cellar room instead. Likewise for the arrival of cuthroats at the command of a nefarious Thentian slaver–the later having been given to believe that the teleport ring he just employed would send him and his force into the midst of an unsuspecting minor noble family from whom the slaver hoped to capture and ransom several of its members. More unusual arrivals will follow.
Thanks for reading.