Ket held back her urge to sneeze as dank, dust laden air drifted past her sensitive nose. Sure, she might not have the full on look of a Khajiit, but it didn’t stop her senses from being overactive with the scents, lights and textures of the world. Crypts like the one she and Kaminda were currently raiding were always a trouble, seeing as the old remains of Nords and Draugr tended to crumble away into dust and bone meal after the first few thousand years.
After a moment more of holding her breath, Ket stopped walking and pinched her nose shut. Kaminda nearly ran into the Dagi raht, and she scowled up at her companion when she did not move. “What?”
Ket held up a hand, still holding her nose. The Redguard sighed, then nearly jumped out of her skin as the cat let out an out of place squeak.
“What was that?” Kaminda asked, drawing closer to Ket as she readied her weapons. Though she would never admit it do the Dagi Raht, Kaminda was nearly blind in the dark that hung over the crypt, and she felt safer with Ket’s keen Night Eyes leading the way and pointing out any danger.
Ket rubbed her nose and shook her head vigorously, her Nightingale hood nearly shaking free from her wild hair. “I sneezed.” The Khajiit gave Kaminda an apologetic smile when she caught sight of the Redguard’s bewildered expression. “Sorry.”
Kaminda gave an exasperated sigh and lowered her mace and axe. “It’s alright. Just was expecting something...louder.”
The cat chuckled and pulled her scarf up over her face to filter out some of the dust. “I’ll warn you next time.”
Only fifteen minutes had passed since Ket’s awkward sneeze. Ket was creeping along through a pitch-black corridor, alert for any sign of danger. Assuming that Kaminda was following, Ket didn’t look back for fear of missing a pitfall trap or a pressure plate that would quickly end their adventuring days.
With such a tense mindset, it wasn’t surprising that Ket’s fur decided to stand on end when something grabbed her tail.
Ket slowly turned around and fixed Kaminda with a rare, vehement glare, her tail lashing back and forth as it tried to escape the Redguard’s vice-like grip. Puffed up to three times it’s usual size, Ket supposed it’s current appearance did take some of the fire out of her fierce expression.
“What?” Ket snapped. Despite her attempts to quell it, a low growl was rumbling from deep inside her chest, much like an angry house cat before they yowl at someone to stop touching their stomach.
Kaminda was crouched down, holding on to her friend’s tail like it was her only lifeline. Her head was whipping around, and Ket couldn’t help but notice that she looked rather terrified. “Sorry! I...I can’t see anything.”
Surprised, Ket straightened. Having traveled alone for so long, the cat often forgot that the other races were not as comfortable in the darkness as the Khajiit were. “We can’t light a torch or the Draugr could wake.” She reminded the Redguard, trying to soften her voice to show that she wasn’t as angry anymore. “And my werelight would have the same effect.”
“You can see in this, though. Can’t you?” Ket winced as Kaminda tightened her grip again. “Sorry...”
“Of course I can see in this. I’m Khajiit. We have Night Eyes.” It was true that all Khajiiti, no matter what sub-race, were blessed with the inherent skill of switching their vision from that of a normal night vision to that of a more potant, instinctual sight. Even now, Ket saw everything around her as bathed in a white light, evenly coating every object to banish the shadows that would have clung to their edges had she been using a normal werelight.
Kaminda seemed to relax somewhat. “Will you be my eyes?”
Ket smirked and wiggled her tail. “You know, I do have a belt. And it isn’t attached to my nervous system.” Taking Kaminda’s hand, Ket guided it to the adjustment strap of her quiver. “And yes, I will be your eyes. All you had to do was ask.”
Kaminda smiled her thanks and poked Ket’s back through a chink in her nightingale armor. “Lead on, my faithful steed! Hya!”
“You’re pushing it.”
Packs full of loot and arms laden with weapons to be sold, the unusual duo made their way down the wooded slope towards Windhelm. The sun was shining crisp and clear on the fresh snow, and lent a small amount of welcome warmth to the day.
“That took much longer than we thought.” Ket commented as she slid a few feet in the snow. Despite the fact that she had tinkered with her boots so that they had better grip, the cat knew that her clawed feet would be better for such slippery terrain. She loathed the wet cold that would seep into her fur, however, and chose sliding down mountainsides over frozen toes any day.
Kaminda shifted the bundle of sheathed short swords to a more reliable grip and picked her way carefully in a zigzag pattern. Ket might have been in Skyrim much longer, but the Redguard was becoming adept at navigating the easier path to a goal. “Maybe if you hadn’t tried to pick the lock on every door and chest we found, we could have gotten out a few hours ago.”
Ket grinned. “I have much more loot than you, thanks to that.”
The Redguard was about to respond, but stopped herself and held up a hand. Ket raised an eyebrow, confused, and stepped back.
Out of nowhere, Kamidna sneezed a sneeze that Alduin himself would be hard pressed to replicate. The resulting force drove Kaminda up against a tree, the impact shaking loose a good amount of snow from its upper branches to rain down on the poor Redguard.
Both of Ket’s eyebrows shot up. “Ashkariku, Kaminda.”
The Redguard groaned and shoved a pile of snow out of her lap. “What?”
“Bless you.” Ket translated as she put down her pile of gear and jogged over to her friend, smiling from ear to ear. “Did you just Shout-sneeze?”
Accepting Ket’s hands, Kaminda staggered to her feet with the Khajiit’s help. “It happens sometimes.” Brushing herself off, the warrior began collecting her fallen loot. Ket joined her and they soon had the gear tied to the top of Kaminda’s pack- just incase she sneezed again was Ket’s polite way of justifying it.
Hefting her own load again, Ket couldn’t help but repeat her friend’s words from inside the crypt- “Funny. I expected something...quieter.”
Kaminda scowled after her Khajiit friend as the furred thief scampered down the hill, avoiding the Redguard’s reach as she gave chase.