Home Ancestries Backgrounds Bestiary Classes Conditions Deities Equipment Feats Spells

Stheno HarpistCreature 1

Source Pathfinder Bestiary 3
Perception +4
Languages Common, Speak With Snakes
Skills Crafting +4, Diplomacy +7, Performance +7, Stealth +5
Str +0, Dex +2, Con +3, Int +1, Wis -1, Cha +4

AC 16; Fort +8; Reflex +7; Will +4;
HP 19
Speed 25 feet

Rapier One Action +7 (+2, -3) to hit (deadly d8, disarm, finesse) 1d6 Piercing
Snake Fangs One Action +7 (+3, -1) to hit (agile, finesse) 1d4 Piercing
Shortbow One Action +7 (+2, -3) to hit (deadly d10, range increment 60, reload 0) 1d6 Piercing

Snake Search

When the stheno harpist Searches or Seeks, their snakes try to help too, rolling a separate Perception check with a modifier of -1 instead of +4.

If the snakes notice something, they try to notify the stheno, though they are no more intelligent than normal snakes and might find different things interesting than the stheno does.

Speak With Snakes

The stheno harpist can communicate with snakes, including the ones in their hair, and can use Diplomacy to Make an Impression on snakes and Request things from snakes.

Occult Spontaneous Spells (DC 17, +9 to hit)

Cantrips (1st Level): Dancing Lights, Detect Magic, Ghost Sound, Inspire Courage, Prestidigitation, Shield
1st Level (2 slots): Phantom Pain, Soothe

With living snakes for hair, sthenos, who are descended from medusas, are a curious and independent ancestry. A newly emergent people, sthenos have existed for just barely over a century. Only a few generations have passed since their genesis, and some adult sthenos remember members of the original generation. Indeed, since sthenos can live about as long as humans, a few of the original sthenos might yet live somewhere. As a people without a traditional homeland, sthenos seek to find societies that welcome them, which can be a challenging endeavor. With more than

a passing resemblance to medusas, given their ophidian hair and striking features, they find most places are wary if not outright hostile to their presence.

All sthenos descend from a single woman of the same name. Stheno rebelled against the poisoned gift of nightmares that the goddess Lamashtu granted her sisters, the powerful medusa matriarchs known as euryales. Stheno prayed to Shelyn, goddess of art and love, for help in overcoming her twisted birthright. Eventually, Lamashtu's power struck Stheno down, but Stheno's remaining faith and will imbued each of the hundred snakes from her hair with a mind and will of its own. Each snake grew into an individual stheno, and a new ancestry was born that day.

Sthenos have been slowly spreading across the land, their numbers growing as they can have children with humans. In these families, children of all genders are born either fully human or fully stheno, seemingly at random. Sthenos with a welcoming community to call home tend toward large families with many children, perhaps from some survival instinct as early members of a new ancestry.

Sthenos, unsurprisingly, have a great love for snakes, and they tend to keep other snakes as pets and companions to their hair. Stheno hair snakes are non-venomous and love to eat insects within their reach. They are semi-autonomous, though their behaviors are colored by the stheno's emotions. An angry stheno might find their snakes lashing out at the subject of their wrath, while an amorous stheno's snakes might just want to snuggle instead.



This rarity indicates that a rules element is very difficult to find in the game world. A rare feat, spell, item or the like is available to players only if the GM decides to include it in the game, typically through discovery during play. Creatures with this trait are rare. They typically can't be summoned. The DC of Recall Knowledge checks related to these creatures is increased by 5.


Humanoid creatures reason and act much like humans. They typically stand upright and have two arms and two legs.