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Her eyes dry and cheeks pinched from a night of tears, Idella gathered the last reagents in her bag, stood in the doorway, and swept her eyes across her shop for the last time.

Every bottle, scroll, and book was perfectly set in its place. A note for the landlord and a bag of gold waited on the counter top. A carefully folded set of letters lay beside it, each postmarked to a different recipient. Boots pawed at them with curiosity, giving a mechanical purr. Smiling, Idella drew to the counter and patted it. The metal, gear, and cog creature gave an appreciative mew, mimicking a cat’s behavior quite convincingly. When the young witch was struck with the notion that she should leave out food and water, she caught herself. Giggling, her voice hoarse from a night of grieving, she patted the metal cat again then lingered a hand on the stack of letters. There were several, their envelopes still left unsealed. Biting her lip, Idella drew each one out of their envelope and reread them one by one:

Miss Bixink,

You are the most exemplary witch and gnome I’ve ever met. Thank you for staying with me and holding my hand. You are a true friend. As close as we are, I also want to be honest. I took the gauntlet you brought to my shop and I have to use it. I can’t tell you why. Please understand that I’m not doing this to sacrifice our friendship, but in the hope that maybe at some point, you can find it in you to forgive me. I wish we had far more afternoons of tea and studying. They were some of my favorite days. I left you one of my favorite tomes at my shop, Boots will let you know where it is. Unlike other cats, he’s very good at cataloging!

Love,

Idella

 

—-

 

Kage,

I miss the days when we studied together under Miss Rann. I wish I could have continued arcane studies together, but I know we were destined for different paths. I wanted to thank you for the meticulous notes you’ve shared with me, over the years. I have to apologize, but I might have scrawled in the margins a little bit on those last set of notes you gave me. But I think you’d understand — no matter what time does, our shared love for books and our crafts never faded! May you keep studying and one day be an archmage like Miss Rann herself! Hopefully my notes can help.

Love,

Idella

 

—-

 

Drakku,

You were always so kind. Thank you for checking up on Ryo and me so much, even in the heart of the Broken Isles. And for your healing! You did it all despite your reservations about Ryo, and that’s why I want to thank you all the more. You made me re-think about the Light and its virtues. I picked up a book on the Three Virtues for the first time since I was a little girl. I liked it. I wish I had time to ask you if the Draenei had the same views. Tell Ryo for me. I think he’d like the story, too.

Love,

Idella

 

—-

 

Zetera,

I’m going to fix it. I’m sorry it took me so long.

– Idella

 

—-

 

Kanta,

Thank you for keeping watch over me when I was out on the town in Booty Bay. I normally don’t drink so much, I promise. It was just that one time. Okay, maybe two but you weren’t there the other time. Since you don’t drink, I hope I made it up to you by making a homemade tea blend at my shop. It’s in a jar on the counter, Boots will pick it out for you. 

– Idella

 

—-

 

Victor,

I’m sorry we didn’t have another cup of tea. I always loved our conversations! My shop always gets rare items, so I thought I’d let you know I hid a rare Gilnean whiskey vintage in my medicinal herb cabinet, second drawer. Boots can fish it out for you, if you like. I hope it’s a good parting gift since we didn’t have tea.

– Idella

 

—-

 

Zen,

I’m so sorry. I could have stopped it but I got too scared. I’m not scared anymore. I’ll fix it, I promise. You were my first friend and why I got as far as I did. I’m glad I could do this for you. 

Love,

Idella

 

—-

 

A tear dropped on the edge of the final letter. Sealing each into their envelop, Idella tapped Boots on the nose and relayed instructions. The mechanical creature nodded sagely, very unlike a cat. Turning, the young witch locked the shop door, took one final look around, then walking into the room’s darkest corner, abruptly disappeared.

((Related event next Tuesday, May 30th!))

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