The Gray Mouser moved in with his permanent valets this morning. Thus ends a major part of his story which started when we first heard him meowing outside almost exactly four months ago.
It appears that we (I and his new valets) scared him when it was time to go. He hid under the bed, and we finally gently nudged him out with a broom. He wasn't that scared though, or he didn't know that his claws could hold him firmly in place on a wall-to-wall carpet no matter what a human did. Anyway, we pried him out, and he went stoically in the carrier. But no purring (from a cat that will purr for any trivial reason at all), so he wasn't very happy.
We expect he'll be fine.