Antoine Leblond has announced that he is leaving Microsoft after working there for nearly a quarter of a century.
Leblond was a close chum of Windows chief Steven Sinofsky who cleaned out his desk after Windows 8 was released. However, he stayed even though CEO Steve Ballmer announced his "One Microsoft" strategy which left many of Sinofsky's close colleagues with unclear roles in the Microsoft Volehill.
Soon after announcing his cunning plan, Ballmer also quit and was replaced by Satya Nadella who was promoted to CEO in February.
Everything seemed to calm down a bit so Leblond's announcement came as a surprise – although it is more of a surprise that it did not come sooner. He was one of the last of Sinofsky's chums still in Redmond and it looks like that faction has gone the way of the Starks in Game of Thrones.
Leblond spent most of his Vole years working closely with Sinofsky and for the first 20 years that was on Microsoft Office and recently worked on building the Windows Store and cloud services for Windows 8.
According to an email to staff, Leblond has started to wonder if there is life outside the Volehill and plans to burrow his way to the top and see the sunlight for the first time. Then he might join with a water rat and a frog and have many new adventures and mess about in boats.
"After almost 25 years, I've decided it's time for me to go out and see what the non-Microsoft world has to offer. Every single day I have had here has been amazing in its own way, and I will never look back on all of these years with anything but fondness, pride in what we've accomplished together, and a real appreciation for having been lucky enough to be part of so many awesome things," he said.