Once every couple minutes, when I try to open an inventory or loot something, the entire game freezes. The inventory won't open, it will stay there for several seconds, then get the "(not responding)" response upon which point it will prompt a close. This happens far, far too often for the game to be even remotely playable now.
The game has run smoothly for several hours, through the opening tutorial, a few dungeons and a couple quests, and getting into the Thieves Guild, before starting up pretty much out of nowhere. I've begun the Order of the Virtuous Blood quest, and am on the way out of the Imperial City to check out the supposed vampire's hideout. I've also recently completed the unexpected voyage quest, picked up the lead bandit's sword, and - before either of these - disabled the Vanilla Combat Enhanced because it made it bloody impossible to ever win a melee fight. Only during the last part, after leaving the "vampire"'s house at the temple district, did the problem begin.
Reactivating the mod didn't work. The game froze again literally the second time I opened my inventory.
Also, for the record, I'm currently near Fatback Cave, a region where a lot of crashes have always happened to me - but this began to happen even within the Imperial City.
The hell's causing this now?