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The Right Thing To Do

by: Ashleigh Anpilova (Send Feedback)

Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 1639
Rating: YTEEN
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Ducky Mallard
Category(ies): Friendship, General
Pairing(s): Gibbs/Ducky
Summary: A sequel to Like Mother Like Son. When he is going through his mother's possessions after her death, Ducky comes across several letters. An established relationship story.

Chapters: 1

12th September 1941

My dearest Albert,

When you walked away from me today, I do not know how I let you go. Indeed, I still do not know how I will be able to bear knowing that I will never see you again. And yet, I know that it was the right thing for you to do; the only thing you could do.

You see, my dearest, I always knew that if the day came when you were forced to choose between your wife and children and me, that you would have to choose your family, irrelevant as to what you really wished to do. You had to leave me, no matter how much you love me, and I, no matter how much I love you, had to let you go. I know, Albert dearest, that I will never love anyone in the way that I love you, and I believe that it is the same for you. Indeed, I know that it is; it is that thought that allows me to go on.

There is something that I wanted to tell you, that I would have told you, had you not brought the devastating news that you had to leave me. I am with child, Albert, I am carrying your child.

I love you, my dearest, and I love our baby, and it because I love our baby that I am going to do what I must do. I want our child to be able to hold his or her head up, not to be teased or derided or taunted, and that is what an illegitimate child would have to bear.

It is not for myself that I am concerned, I could carry the stigma of being an unmarried mother, just as in my heart I had to carry the knowledge that I was your mistress. However, no child should ever have to live with that, not when there is a solution.


There is a man, a kind man, a good man, an upstanding man. A man who loves me, who has often asked me to marry him. A man with whom, as I cannot be with you, I could be content. A man whom I believe will accept your child as his own, who will allow me to give our child the life he or she should have. I will not lie to him, my dear, I shall tell him the truth and throw myself on his mercy, and I believe, nay I know, that his mercy will be sound. Rest assured, my beloved, our child will be cared for, will be loved, will have a home and proper family.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




14th April 1942

My dearest Albert,

We have a son. A beautiful, healthy, son.

He was born exactly one month ago today, 14th March, and already I cannot remember what life without him was like.

We have called him Donald, and my husband, oh, how it hurts to say that word, loves him in a way that even I could not have dared to hope for. He talks about 'my son', and 'my boy' and 'my Donald', and it pleases me, for Donald's sake to hear him.

Donald, I am both sad and happy to say, looks nothing like you, my dearest. Part of me wishes that he did, so that I might have a constant reminder of you around me. Most of me, however, is glad, for Donald's sake, that he does not look like you. And yet, no matter what he looks like, he will always be a constant reminder of you and of our love.

I wish you could see him, my dear, just once. And yet, I do not wish that. It would not be fair to you, to Donald, or to Christopher. That is his name, my beloved, Christopher Mallard, a good man, a loyal man. Believe me, he will look after Donald, he will love him, cherish him, care for him and he will never, of that I am certain, treat him in any way differently from the way he would treat his biological child.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




14th September 1943

My beloved Albert,

Donald said his first words today.

He is a clever boy, and an easy child. He has a sunny disposition and little seems to trouble him. He smiles at me whenever he sees me and watches whatever I do. I believe . . . Oh, I know all mothers think that their own child is exceptional, and that they will be successful, but I truly believe that Donald is and will be. I believe that he is capable of achieving anything to which he sets his mind.

We have decided that he will be educated at Eton, like my father and his father. I know, I know, it is a little soon to be thinking of his education; he is less than two years old, but these things are important.

Donald is special. I am not certain I can explain how I know this, or in what way he is, but he is. He will make us very proud.

He is also the only child I will ever have. The birth was not an easy one and I am unable to have further children. But I am happy with that, Donald was a gift I never hoped to have; he is cherished.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




23rd June 1955

My beloved Albert,

Your son has decided he wishes to become a doctor.

I told you he was special.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




5th September 1977

My beloved Albert,

Donald has a friend. He is nice boy, somewhat younger than Donald is, American, not of our background, but nonetheless a nice boy.

Donald doesn’t know that I know the truth about him, about his friendship with Jethro, and I will never tell him. Nor shall I ever tell his father, he would not understand. But you will; I know that. You will understand because like me, you dared to flout convention for the sake of love.

Donald loves Jethro and Jethro loves our son, but I fear for Donald's happiness. I suppose a mother always does, but I sense that their love, their relationship, will not be free from pain.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




17th March 1982

My beloved Albert,

Jethro is to marry.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




19th November 1984

My beloved Albert,

Jethro's wife, Shannon, gave birth to a daughter, Kelly. Apparently, she is beautiful.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




23rd January 1991

My beloved Albert,

Shannon and Kelly have been killed.

Jethro is staying with us.

Christopher still does not know the truth about Donald and Jethro’s relationship.

Donald feels guilty for so many things concerning Shannon and Kelly. For loving Jethro; for not being strong enough to leave him; for still being alive; for mourning for his lover’s wife and child; and for his wishes now they are dead. He has said nothing to me, my dear, but a mother always knows.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




1st October 1995

My beloved Albert,

Christopher and I are now divorced.

Be at peace, my love. My heart is, and always shall be, yours.

Vanessa




3rd March May 1999

My beloved Albert,

Donald has suggested that I move to America to live with him.

I think it is for the best.

I think it is the right thing to do.

I think . . .





"Duck? Duck? Oh, there you are, I've been looking for you everywhere. Duck? Ducky, what is it?" Jethro squatted down in front of his lover and took Ducky's hand.

"I decided to make a start on going through Mother's things. It had to be done, dearest. I've been putting it off and . . . Oh, Jethro."

"What is it, Duck?"

Ducky held out a bundle of letters. "Read these."

Jethro did.

"Duck? Did you . . . ?"

Ducky shook his head. "No, my dear, I had no idea. Poor Mother. She really was an amazing woman, Jethro."

Jethro tightened the grip he had on Ducky’s hand. “I know she was, my love. And she loved you very much.”

Ducky smiled a little; a sad smile, and squeezed Jethro’s own hand. “Yes, she did. I always knew that, my dear. And finding these letters has strengthened that knowledge.” He sighed softly and said nothing more.

"What are you going to do?" Jethro asked quietly, after a moment or two of just holding Ducky’s hand.

"Do you have your lighter?"

"Of course."

"Then burn these."

"Ducky? But are you sure? Maybe you could . . . Well, you know. Your father might still be alive. Somewhere you’ve got a family; maybe you could get to know them, and . . ." He trailed off.

Ducky looked at him, put one hand on Jethro’s cheek and stroked it. "My family, you and the children, is right here, dearest, and I already know you all very well. But my father is dead."

"You can't know that. You -"

"Yes, Jethro. I can. I buried Christopher Mallard. You were at my side. Now, please, dearest, burn them."

"But why, Duck?"

"Because it is the right thing to do." And with that, Ducky stood up and slowly made his way towards the attic door.

Chapters: 1

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