It wasn't unexpected; he had been gradually winding down for some time. A few weeks ago he decided that he could no longer be bothered to eat anything that wasn't a pumpkin seed or other treat, and consequently became thin and wobbly. As he seemed perfectly happy pottering around his cage, I decided that if this was how he wanted to go, it was probably best to let him get on with it. Last week he even stopped bothering to gnaw toilet roll tubes, though he remained otherwise alert and engaged, and I figured it wouldn't be long.
I got Point and his brother Click in September 2009, from RSPCA Medway. The small-animal lady there said they were a year old; I'd have put them at slightly younger, as they were still quite jumpy. Either way, Point was at least three and a half, probably more like four, which is an impressive score for a derb (Click went more than a year ago).
Point was a constant source of amusement and conversation, he was a small helpless being for me to look after, and when I moved this year he helped make the new flat feel like home. I miss him loads already.