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Nymph

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Nymph
(Creature)
Type Fey
CR 7
Environment Temperate forests
Alignment

Source: Bestiary, pg(s). 217

Nymphs are fey guardians of places of outstanding natural beauty.[1]

Appearance

Nymphs appear as beautiful young humanoid women with elf-like ears, large almond eyes, and skin and hair matching the colour of local humans. They stand slightly shorter than humans and weigh around 100 pounds. Most humanoids view them as the epitome of physical beauty, particularly humans, who consider them idealised versions of themselves. Their beauty can potentially blind intelligent creatures who look directly upon them, and a sideways glance is enough to stun them, so most nymphs never wear clothes.[1][2]

Ecology

All nymphs are female and must take male lovers to reproduce. They prefer humans and elves as lovers, and other fey to a lesser degree. When the time comes to do so, they form elaborate schemes to lure men into their wards, but most would-be suitors simply blindly stumble away, and only the most worthy get to mate with the nymph. The relationship is always passionate but never lasts long, as nymphs are too fickle and wild for marriage.[2]

As soon as they can walk, nymph children are taught the ways of the wild and how to harness their charms. At the age of 50, nymphs mature and leave their mothers to take wards for themselves, usually one located near their mother's. They live for between 300 and 500 years on the Material Plane, or for millennia on the First World.[2]

Nymphs eat whatever can be found in their wards, and abstain from meat or parts of plants that they cannot survive without.[2]

Heroes who protect sites of natural beauty or perform a great service for a region's fey might receive a nymph's boon, which enhances their physical attractiveness in a way reflecting the her appearance. A nymph's bane, which haunts the victim with her loveliness, is most often inflicted upon those who rudely disrespect her beauty, but she might also inadvertently subject her lovers to it in the throes of passion without realising, leading to the rumours that mating with a nymph is to invite insanity.[3]

Habitat

Nymphs can be found everywhere natural beauty untouched by civilisation is found, usually near breaches between the Material Plane and the First World. Their wards are always places of incredible beauty hidden out of prying eyes, with many ways for the nymph to access the nearby land. Wards located near settlements are very rare and can only be seen in isolated forest or newly-settled areas. Nymphs see their wards as temporary places of residence instead of permanent homes, and usually enhance their beauty and defences with magic.[2]

By their nature, nymphs are solitary creatures as they stand guard over isolated places. However, they are not asocial, and usually stay in contact with relatives whose wards are located nearby.[2]

Society

Nymphs appreciate those who treat them fairly and with respect, but can be dangerous opponents of those who seek to defile their wards. Interlopers who accidentally stumble upon their wards are kindly ushered away; kind souls who seek their wards for peaceful reasons are treated with hospitality and offered help if necessary; and many exploitative trespassers have been blinded forever, if not slain outright, as punishment for their greed.[1][2]

Nymphs are friendly with other good fey and can often be found in their company. They appreciate the lighthearted fauns, sometimes share their wards with dryads, and often allow sprites to protect their wards as well unless if they are rude to them or their visitors. Nymphs do not tolerate evil fey and especially despise nuckelavees, often working with adventurers or other good fey to destroy them. Compared to other fey, nymphs are generous with their tokens and often give them to kindly travellers, lovers or patsies.[2]

Most other races respect nymphs and do not go out of their way to disturb them. The exception are a few foolhardy souls, tempted by the vision of perfection, who often find themselves blindly stumbling out of the woods, the image of the nymph imprinted into their destroyed eyes.[2]

Many nymphs become druids to express their close relationship with nature, and often assume authority over nearby nymphs when necessary.[2]

Religion

Some nymphs work as emissaries between the First World's non-evil Eldest. The Lantern King counts the largest number of nymph servants, followed by Ng and the Lost Prince. These nymphs often take on qualities of their patron, and become oracles or sorcerers.[2]

Abilities

Nymphs have druidic powers, and sometimes act as muses for other intelligent creatures by inspiring artistic achievement.[1]

On Golarion

Nymphs can be found across the entire Inner Sea region, from the tundras of the Crown of the World to the jungles of the Mwangi Expanse, most commonly in Andoran, Kyonin, Varisia, the River Kingdoms and the Mwangi Expanse. In Kyonin, they live relatively close to elves and frequently trade with them.[2]

Notable inhabitants

See also: Category:Nymph/Inhabitants

References

Paizo Inc. published a major chapter about nymphs in Fey Revisited.