All grey skies have a silver lining
Disclaimer: All characters belong to the Bond franchise.
Summary: After M's death, Bond doesn't know how he will be able to go on without the woman who had always been by his side, but a letter addressed to him may prove a way forward, helping him overcome his grief and move on.
All grey skies have a silver lining
Standing on the roof he overlooked the city, the grey clouds rolling in the skies above. How did it get to this? He couldn't save her. He had failed to save her. Now here he was reminiscing on all the times they had spent together. No matter how many years had passed he could still remember in detail every moment that they shared together.
"You don't like me Bond, you don't like my methods."
He gave a smile he was in awe of her. She was the only woman who he knew that would call him a sexist misogynist dinosaur.
In that moment he knew there was no going back, he was like a moth and she was the flame. And now that flame that had burned bright was now extinguished and it wouldn't be re-lit, much like the feel of his heart which was now dull and empty.
He felt the first drop of rainfall, before the heavens opened up soaking him to the bone. He didn't care. There was nothing left for him here. Her last words kept replaying over his mind.
"At least I got one thing right. "
She had moulded him, made him the agent he was today. If it weren't for her faith in him, he wouldn't have got as far in this job as he had done without her. She had helped him through the loss of Vesper, he even remembered their conversation as he sat on the boat in Venice.
"You don't trust anyone do you James?"
He knew it was a lie, there was one woman he did trust, had always trusted, but his stubborn attitude refused him to voice it. She had even asked him if he needed time, and now thinking about it. It was M's way of telling him that she was there should he need her and he had just shook her off. Maybe, if he had listened to her, and spoke to her then the Quantum mess, would have been wrapped up sooner.
He turned to the voice seeing Mallory's new assistant standing a few feet away from him, umbrella in one hand and a black box in the other.
"Her will was read today. She left you this."
He took the box from her, and carefully opened it seeing the bulldog resting inside and couldn't help give a sad smile.
"I think, it's her way of encouraging you to take a desk job."
"Quite the opposite."
He replaced the lid on the box and gave her a nod in thanks watching as she made her way from the roof leaving him alone once again. He took a deep breath and looked back out towards the London skyline. He felt the first shiver go through him and made his way from the roof, box in hand. He would continue the job for her sake, she had always been the one who kept him going, and she still was.
Entering his office he set the box on his desk, and removed his soaked jacket and scarf and hung them up behind his chair. He looked towards the box again seeing the name in bold black letters and couldn't stop himself from chuckling. He had always known her name ever since he had hacked into her file.
"I thought M was a randomly assigned initial. I had no idea it stood for…"
"Utter one more syllable and I'll have you killed."
He knew she was serious, and he didn't blame her. He did find it ironic that her last name was Mansfield considering her line of work. It was quite apt he had to admit. He reopened the box once again and removed the figurine looking at it in disgust. He had always hated the thing. The way he would walk into her office and it would just stare at him. However, now it was the only physical thing that he had left of her. Placing it on his desk, he was on the verge of closing the lid when he saw something white peeking through the navy tissue paper that the figurine had sat in.
Removing the paper, he noticed it was an envelope, his heart beating in his chest when he saw M's elegant handwriting on the front with his name. He tried to stop his hands from shaking as he opened it, and removed the piece of paper from within.
If you're reading this, it means I'm no longer with you. I'm hoping it was from natural causes, but given our line of work I know it was highly unlikely. I know that we never saw eye to eye on many things, but I knew you would never let me down regardless of your ability to not follow orders.
I've known you for many years James, no doubt you feel responsible for whatever happened. I'll tell you right now that it wasn't your fault. Death is what we can't avoid no matter how much we try. I'm just glad to have worked along side you and to have seen the agent you've now become. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm proud of you, and you need to move on with your life, don't hold onto the past.
You have no doubt received the bulldog. I know that you hate it, I hate it myself, the only reason I kept it was because I knew it annoyed you, so it was payback for all the times you annoyed me with your egotistical attitude. Nonetheless, ever since it was in my possession, I found some comfort from it. I hope it can do the same thing for you and help you move on.
Any thoughts you've had about quitting, forget them. This agency needs you, now more than ever. I just hope my successor realises that and if they don't, you give them hell until they do. God knows you've done it to me often enough through the years.
There is perhaps one more thing, something I refused to admit to myself until recently. I love you James. I have done for some quite sometime. I know it means nothing now, but you need to know.
Take care of yourself James.
James fell back in his chair in a daze re reading her words over again. He always knew there was something else there between them. God knows she stuck her neck out for him often enough. She loved him, and he didn't get a chance to tell her he loved her as well. He always had done, but he never said anything knowing she wouldn't have got involved with one of her agents. He felt regret wash over him, he wished he could have said those words to her at least once, but the chance was now gone.
Folding the letter over, he put it in the top drawer of his desk. Standing up, he fixed his suit and made his way from the office. He would go on with this job for her sake even after her death she still gave him the strength to carry on. She may be gone, but he could still feel her presence and it made his heart feel slightly lighter. Walking through the corridor to Mallory's office, he saw his assistant sitting behind her desk.
"You know, we've never been formally introduced."
She gave him a smile, "Its Eve. Eve Moneypenny."
"Well, I look forward to our time together Miss Moneypenny."
He gave her a charming smile.
Hearing the adjoining door open, he saw Tanner walk out holding a few files under his arm.
"He'll see you now."
James could tell Tanner was still as upset as he was over M's death. He had worked with her on a daily basis and no doubt was close to her.
Bond gives him a nod and walks into Mallory, no M's office closing the door behind him. This office was dull looking nothing like M's whose office was modern and always looked bright due to the cream walls. He pushed back the pang of hurt he felt and put on his Bond persona.
"How's the arm sir?"
He walked towards Mallory's desk standing in front of it, seeing the man in question standing behind his desk, arm still in a sling.
"It's fine. It'll get better. All pretty shocking for someone not used to field work."
Bond gave a smile; he owed the man some gratitude for saving M at the hearing.
"So, 007 lots to be done. "
Mallory dropped the file onto the desk in front of him. Bond noticing it was addressed to him and only him. He recalled M's earlier words from the letter and gave a small smile. It was time to show his new boss that he was more than ready and it was all thanks to M, no Olivia that he could go on. And he intended to do just that. He had to hold back a smile that wanted to break free at recalling those words from her letter.
'Give them hell.'
He may have disobeyed Olivia's orders on more than one occasion in the past, but this one he intended to follow without question. His next words out his mouth he didn't know whose benefit they were for, but he couldn't deny they fitted the situation.
"With pleasure M, with pleasure."