Art by Rollin Kunz
Adventure Calendar is a series of 25 winter-themed random tables that mesh together to build an evolving setting and campaign for your favourite fantasy RPG, whatever that might be. You can learn more about the project and find the full list of published tables here.
Doomsaying is an ancient and often disrespected art in the northern territories where down-on-their-luck sages ingest dangerous amounts of hallucinogenic drugs blessed by a priest from one of a variety of religions and attempt to attune their minds to a higher state of consciousness, peering into the machinations of the cosmos and unveiling the secrets of the universe. It doesn’t often work for a number of obvious reasons, but of late the number of doomsayers has increased (it’s a buyer’s market at present when it comes to prophecies) and many of them are saying broadly similar things.
If questioned, Doomsayers won’t know much about what they’re saying (although they’ll attempt to pass themselves off as clued-in with some apocalyptic ad-lib) – they’re more of a receiver than a scholar, picking up messages from the heavens and relaying them as best they can through their inferior, whacked-out mortal mouths.
1: “THE DREAMING DEEP! The wretched fire beneath the earth, trapped and struggling like a stuck pig! The maddening pulse! The dawn unending!”
2: “The mountain is going to give birth to twelve terrible horses and they will trample us all to death.”
3: “Have you heard the whispers of the muttering godsworn dwarves? Have you listened beneath your floorboards in the dead of night as they shuffle and scheme beneath our feet? Can you hear the click-clack of their metal teeth, plotting our doom? They will come!”
4: “They pulled out the pin! They damned us all! They spilled this eternal winter from a gaping heart-wound!”
5: “The great wolf has tasted the blood of the gods and knows their words – she alone can spin solace from endings!”
6: “Old Mother Absolution’s blood is ready! The dying soil begs lifeless and cold for her nourishment! Slit her, slay her, flense her, bleed her dry!”
7: “Take off your shoes! Your feet are the roots of the soul and you are spitting in the faces of the gods by sheathing them. Let your feet unadorned and glorious scratch and chafe upon this perfect world; let your blood mingle with the earth’s!”
8: “I alone have seen the truth! I alone have been touched by the finger of destiny! I have clenched the skeins of fate in my hands and I alone control the future! Come into my house! Everyone! Inside! Before it’s too late! Take off your clothes and get into my back room!”
9: “The azure crest across the ink-black sky! Heavy and insidious despair, hollowing and all-consuming, a blight on the mind! Close your eyes – hide away from it – look not upon the sky when it comes!”
10: “The First and Final God awakens from eons of wretched dreaming slumber! It brings a great and terrible winter upon the world – a winter that will last forever more!”
11: “The Brimstone Church welcomes all! Only there can you be cleansed of the sin that perverts the world! Eat deep of our fiery blessings and be purified with fragrant light! Kids under five eat free, please take this menu – uh, I mean, scripture.”
12: “The Spiteful Ones hold the key! Watch for their signs – lettering on window panes, flickers in mirrors, a whisper as you sleep! These vicious abortlings will be the architects of our salvation!”