The land around a hill giant steading is littered with the signs of giantish habitation. Hill giants are not subtle—or intelligent—and make no attempt to hide their presence.
Use the table below, to generate minor points of interest in a steading’s vicinity:
- A vaguely triangular pile of rocks looms over the trail, casting a long, deep shadow across the ground. The huge skull of some kind of fantastical beast—perhaps a wyvern—leers down from atop the pile.
- Deep, booted footprints mar the ground, in a confused jumble. Most, however, lead in the direction of the steading.
- A tall, slender column of stones stands atop a small rise overlooking the surrounding terrain. A small pile of skulls is heaped atop it.
- A half-dozen burial cairns of tumbled, moss-covered stones dot the hill side. All are large; it is likely a giant is interred within each. Ragged, weatherworn banners flutter in the breeze over several of the cairns.
- A thick tree trunk has been driven deep into the ground. The mouldering corpse of a muscular, black-haired humanoid hangs crucified from the trunk. Investigation reveals the crucified individual was an orc; he has been here for at least a month.
- The smashed, broken and rotting remains of a mountain goat lie partially crushed beneath a large boulder. Scavengers have worried the bits of the corpse not crushed beneath the boulder.
- A hill giant has snuck away from his fellows to enjoy three flasks of wine. Drunk, he staggers over a nearby rise singing lustily. Unless the PCs are particularly obvious, he doesn’t notice them and goes on his way.
- A heap of throwing boulders is stacked on a low ridge overlooking the trail. Investigation reveals many giant footprints and a few discarded wine flasks, animal bones and the like. This is clearly a sentry post, but no giant is currently in attendance.
- Bones, rubbish and detritus fill a narrow, deep chasm piercing the very bedrock of the hills. The narrow chasm is entirely natural; the hill giants are using it as a rubbish dump. The smell wafting from its depths betrays its presence from some distance away—particularly if the PCs are downwind.
- Claw marks mar the stone here. Nearby lurk several large piles of excrement. A PC wise in the ways of the wild can identify the piles as wolf excrement.
This article appears in 20 Things #14: Hill Giant Steading.
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