Collection of Curiosities: The Garden of Joyful Thorns
In our tour of interesting locations, we find ourselves amid the nodding flowers and prickly thorns of someone’s garden. Or perhaps the garden belongs to nobody. That is your call! Again, these items are left in plain sight, and you can use them as starting points to flesh out some other interesting things if the player characters choose to look around a bit more. If you want to roll randomly for one, use the handy number provided with each entry to figure out your result on a d12. You can also pick the one that works for the area in which your characters currently linger.
- A whip created from braided local vines is half-finished and draped over an extraordinarily large chunk of rose quartz.
- A tinkling melody from a minor key pervades the area, lending a haunting feel to the garden. On a tree trunk, a crystalline music box takes the place of prominence. With each musical phrase, a burst of color suffuses the box with its hue.
- Much could be said about the two pixies fighting in mid-air over a garland woven from dew-touched pink and yellow roses, but perhaps the less said the better. (But, oh my, the language they’re using!)
- As you watch, a bed of red and purple flowers transitions to orange and pink flowers. The focal point of this garden is a glass globe that shimmers in the same hues as the flowers. A hint of motion within the globe, upon further examination, reveals a creature with many iridescent tendrils trailing behind it as it darts around the inside of its prison.
- A floating plant with dark blue flowers has attracted a swarm of purple and pink butterflies. As it drifts along the breeze, a butterfly lands on one of the flowers and is sucked into it.
- Three hummingbird feeders are the focus of what seems to be the aggression of two different tribes of hummingbirds. The green-and-purple hummingbirds have possession of two of the feeders, and the red-and-purple hummingbirds are firmly in command of the third and are seeking to encroach upon the middle feeder. Several unfortunate hummingbirds have already fallen in this battle, but no worries. Nearby cats are dealing with this problem.
- A set of wooden pegs stuck in the trunk of a very thorny tree holds five different black leather leashes. On each leash, the fur and feathers of different creatures indicates what animal is restrained by that particular leash. Strangely, perhaps, the one that might hold a chimera seems too small for such an endeavor. Is someone breeding them into miniature size? Is that even possible?
- A white flower the size of a human nods, but no breeze stirs it. Under it, you can see bits of clothing and what very likely are the remains of a tribe’s worth of crudely crafted small humanoid items.
- A glass oak tree commands the center of a clearing, and the mistletoe that hangs from it is completely normal. Someone or several someones have decorated the glass tree with hanging ribbons in all hues. From each ribbon dangles a coin from nations both past and present, plus a few that remain stubbornly unknown upon first examination.
- The gravel path winds around a fish pond. A sign posted near the pond reads, in Common and also in five other languages, “Do not fish the feed.”
- A stone garden of about 20 ft. by 20 ft. contains blue-green ground covering plants that encircle each of the five stones within it. Each stone has a plaque upon it: Hematite, Rhodochrosite, Turquoise, Peridotite, Mineral of Unknown Origin: Do Not Touch or Approach. This latter rock resembles quartz, but something within it looks to be a bit on the humanoid side. It’s hard to tell without getting closer.
- A group of about twenty hamsters rushes past, crests a rock, and throws itself into a shallow pond, where it splashes around for a few moments before repeating the process. Each hamster has a little hat upon it. You’re not sure how the hats remain on their little hamster heads.