POSTED: Fri Aug 31, 2012 1:48 am

[html]<div class="levbaff">
<div class="tagline">the baffled king composing</div>

<p class="ooc">Levent leaves Cercatori d'Arte. Dated about midnight, August 28th heading into August 29th.</p>
<p class="wordcount">686 words</p>

It was painful, and Levent had stopped to choke back a sob several times, his claws digging into the wooden post of the bed or the top of the desk. He pushed on, however, his teeth clenched together and his movements barely coordinated, picking up various things in the house and shoving them away in the satchel.
There was pitifully little he wanted to keep, and everything he’d once treasured looked disgusting, meaningless. He picked up a mirror and threw it across the room, shattering it. He picked up a wad of necklaces, their intricate gold leaf chains tangled beyond repair, and hurled them at another corner. He recoiled from all the beautiful, glittering, pointless things and simply dumped them among the other treasures rendered meaningless: a stuffed elephant, a soft blanket, a squeaky ball.
Grief choked his throat, and he reached for the bedpost again. He heard an inquisitive mew behind him and muttered without looking, <b title="Leave me alone, Wilson.">“Beni yalnız bırak, Wilson.”</b> Regaining his composure with some difficulty, he grabbed at something on top of the pile of personal belongings and opened it. Cream fingers moved reverently over the lines of scripture, the coiled symbols of Arabic, and he closed the holy book before placing it in the satchel with all the other items. Perhaps religion was what he needed to return to if he were to grow strong again; perhaps this was why the demon had gotten close to him, why her curse had taken his children’s lives from him. He had abandoned his god, had abandoned his devotions, and this surely must be punishment.
There was little else left—only the satchel and the pile of abandoned treasures that would no doubt find new purpose in the trading pack. He had done all he could do, and all that was left was something he owed Cercatori d’Arte for taking him in, for making his existence meaningful for all of a short-lived summer.
He grabbed garlic paper and ink, lit a candle, leaned over his bed, and began the letter. His handwriting was a nearly illegible scrawl, a fact not helped by his trembling hand and the awkward soft surface of the mattress underneath. Even the words were nearly unintelligible, but they told what needed to be told—conveyed the thanks and the warmth he felt toward the pack. He left them all the items in his home, the never-played-with toys to be given to Jace and Skye for their puppies, the valuables doled out to anyone who saw fit to own or trade them.
The ink smeared as he wrote of his children’s deaths, of the fact that he needed to leave, and of the possibility that he may return. He rewrote the first two points but left the third smeared almost beyond recognition, because it sounded too much like a promise, and he didn’t know if he would ever be strong enough to come back.
<i>Allahaısmarladık,</i> he signed it, <i>goodbye.</i>
And <i>Hotaru, I love you, and I’m sorry.</i>
Levent left the letter there, praying that there would be someone to read it, and looked down at the small white cat, at the dilated pupils reflecting the candlelight. He smiled softly and shouldered the satchel, bending down to the tom’s level and scratching him gently behind the ears. <b>“Just you and me now, <alt title="friend">arkadaş,”</b> he whispered. <b>“Probably like it should have been.”</b> He straightened and stepped outside, but the rain had stopped falling and the night was more or less clear.
He went to the stables, bringing out Mai and saddling the paint mare up. She was peaceful enough as he distributed his goods on her back, lofting Wilson up onto her back, but her ears flattened as he stuck a foot in the stirrup. Something told her that this wasn’t the time for petty protests, however, and she suffered silently as he kicked his heels into her flanks and sent her cantering toward the border, the cat nestled between his arms as he gripped the horse’s reins.
<i title="Goodbye">Allahaısmarladık,</i> Levent Kartal whispered again, and left the lands where his children were sleeping in the earth.



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