“Even for a human?”
Issin flinched. Sighed, and leaned back against Klein, worried and warm. “Kirito’s got a right to be scared,” the bakeneko admitted. “I wake up in the morning and listen to everything. I keep my claws padded when I wash my face. I don’t even think about it anymore. This is me. If I woke up and I wasn’t furry – I think I’d freak out.”
“Yeah,” Klein said quietly. “Okay. But we’re all human here, Issin. We’ve got to remember that.”
The bakeneko looked away. “Humans chased you out of Tinctoria to die, Klein. Or worse.”
“NPCs,” Klein started.
“Snow Springs NPCs came to help,” Issin said firmly. “We’re all players, Klein. We can hang onto that. But right now, for us – the most dangerous monster in this game is a human with a magic weapon who hates youkai.”
Damn. That’s going to be messy when we get back. Klein tried not to growl in frustration. Priorities. First we get back. Then we worry about freaking the mundanes. “Well, I know one sword we don’t have to worry about.” He eyed black hair. “So how do we get him to stick around? Besides playing the I’m a hyperactive kitten, help, card. He’s never going to buy that.”
Issin stifled a snicker. “Oh, he might. But if you want a serious idea… did you see those knives?”
“Kind of a little closer than I wanted to, yeah,” Klein said warily.
“Did you see the green one?”
“Fancy, jade, sure,” Klein shrugged. Though fancy didn’t begin to cover it. It was beautiful. Willow-green, leaf-shaped blade, with a coiled dragon as the hilt. A perfect throwing knife. “It’s a MMORPG. Everybody’s got some bling.”
“Everybody?” Issin glanced pointedly at the Black Swordsman.
Klein opened his mouth… and closed it again. Thought about that. “Damn.”
“So.” Issin gave him a crooked grin. “What’s out there, on levels we plan to run quests in, that you need jade to kill?”