Previous installments under the skyrim-conversations
Farkas and Terra's relationship runs into some difficulties over The Frostbite Spider Incident.
Contains minor spoilers for the Companions quests.
It's Loredas night. Aela, Farkas, and I are down in Ysgramor's Tomb, and we run into some frostbite spiders.
So far, so routine. Except that Farkas has fallen to his knees and is shouting, "Get it off me! Get it off me!"
Easily enough done. The hardest part is making sure to hit only the big hairy spider and not the big hairy Nord. When it's dead, I kick the thing into the corner, and Farkas gets up. I give him a questioning look, but he just shakes his head, and says, "Let's keep moving."
The next room is covered, floor to ceiling, in spider webs. Farkas turns pale. "I'm sorry, shield-sister. This is as far as I go."
"What?" It's a subject of some idle debate amongst the Companions whether Farkas is actually smart enough to be afraid of anything. While I've always staunchly maintained that he is, and while I'm pleased that I'll be collecting on that bet I made with Athis, I'm confused about why it's an issue just now.
Farkas looks embarrassed. "Ever since Dustman's Cairn, the creepy crawlies are just too much for me."
"Dustman's Cairn?" I was with Farkas at Dustman's Cairn. That was where I learned that he's a werewolf. I remember a tough fight with some Silver Hand guys, and a chamber where we fought draugr until we could stack their bodies up like firewood. And I guess I remember some spiders, but I don't remember it being a big deal at the time. I mean, if your buddy is experiencing severe arachnid-related psychological trauma, your buddy would say something, right?
Unless your buddy is my stupid shield-brother, Farkas.
"Come on, Farkas," I say. "This is Ysgramor's Tomb. Songs will be written about this night. Do you really want the bards to go around singing, 'The warrior Farkas/In Ysgramor's Tomb/Declared that nothing could fright him/Then along came spider/And sat down beside him/And you could hear him scream all over Skyrim'?"
Farkas looks at the floor. "I don't want to talk about it anymore. Give my regards to Ysgramor." And he turns and shuffles off, head down. I feel like I've just kicked a puppy.
I look at Aela, who has been pretending to examine her bow string while this little drama has played out. "That's one of the things I admire about you, shield-sister. You have such a gift for coddling the male ego."
I sigh. "I didn't mean to be harsh, but...spiders? We've faced skeletons, draugr, ghosts, bandits, necromancers, and dragons, and he can't cope with the spiders?"
"I'll make it up to him somehow," I say, more to convince myself than to convince Aela. "Now, let's go kill some spiders."
Aela grins. "Now you're talking, shield-sister!"