Kobold Press

Collection of Curiosities: Waiting for Knowledge

"Jiro the Kobold" by Pat LoboykoToday we present to you a quick little table you can use in your game when the player characters are waiting around to see a sage or scholar. These are items that are in plain sight, but you can use them as starting points to flesh out some other interesting things if the player characters choose to poke 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 most suits your scholar’s or sage’s personality.

d12. Item

  1. A glass bauble with no visible means of opening it contains blue sand and white insects that resemble ants but have iridescent wings. When they fly, a pleasant and soothing song emanates from the bauble.
  2. A white ceramic mug has something with an excess of writhing gray tendrils in it. They do not leave the mug.
  3. A framed hanging on the wall contains various locks of hair labeled with names.
  4. A dartboard has a picture of the local regent on it. The eyes currently have darts sticking out of them.
  5. A sketchbook has been opened to a page, and on that page are some quick sketches of various bestial humanoids with call-outs to specific detailed parts of the body.
  6. A collection of quills from a variety of beasts is arranged in a row on a flat surface. Some come from creatures not readily identified.
  7. A row of jars on a shelf contains liquids. The labels on the jars claim that these liquids are different types of oozes and jellies. One is labeled “marmalade of undetermined origin.”
  8. Several pieces of colored glass of varying shapes are arranged on a table, but not organized to fit or make a pattern . . . yet.
  9. A clock has been taken apart and its pieces methodically arranged on a cloth on a flat surface. A tiny golden clockwork imp periodically jumps up and down on the face of the clock and makes a tinny-sounding screeching noise that somehow bounces around in the listener’s head for a few seconds after the imp stops jumping.
  10. A wall is completely covered with star diagrams. In the lower right corner, some scrawled words in silver paint say, “It will come from here to destroy us all.” The arrow at the end of the words points to a specific purple dot.
  11. Five books about language are open on the table. In the margins of each book are notations that call into question the intelligence of the author. The notes use colorfully rude and sometimes disgusting word choices.
  12. Every window in the place has a glitter effect within the glass itself, causing the light coming in to sparkle or, when it’s dark outside, picking up light inside the room and adding a hazy aura of shimmer to the areas around the glass.

4 Replies to "Collection of Curiosities: Waiting for Knowledge"

DMCal

February 4, 2014 at 11:51am

I love these d12 lists. Concise descriptions that give just enough info to make each item interesting for a DM to drop into a game and for players to ponder. I feel sad for the glass bauble with the pretty bugs in it, because adventurers are like chimpanzees. If they can’t figure out it’s nothing to be concerned about, they’re gonna bash it to pieces first to make sure…

Jackdaw

February 5, 2014 at 1:14pm

Excellent. This is the stuff. Thank you kindly Mr Horner. You’re so very right DMCal. If had players obsess over numerous sessions some shiny curiosity that I just tossed in for colour. Usually from one of the excellent lists we find at KQ. Long may that continue. Saves me the hard work.

James Thomas

February 8, 2014 at 5:48pm

I like this list Miranda. :)

Charles Carrier

February 9, 2014 at 1:54pm

I love these lists! Thanks Miranda. :)

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