What would have happened if I hadn't lost you all those years ago?

Would we still be happily married? There are days when it's an emphatic yes and then there are the days when I look at my three failed marriages. Okay the one was a psycho but the other two still make me wonder what exactly went wrong…well, Diane didn't love anything except for herself and money and yet…Stephanie tried so hard to keep us together. We were happy if only for a brief time. You and I built that house together, we raised Kelly together yet…I still lost you...I still failed you.

What about Kelly? Hopefully she'd still want to call me her old man and bring her boyfriends home so that I could threaten them with dire consequences if they didn't treat her right. Or just to be able to finish watching her grow up, from a little girl to the fine young woman she could have been. Someone just like her mother and knowing you, you'd have started teaching her the rules. Like was it one or three: never date a lumberjack?

What about the rules? Since I've been part of NIS and now NCIS those rules have gone from a dozen all the way up to 51…you told me we needed something to live by…you laughed when I started showing you the ones I was coming up with, yet you never backed down. Of course never date a lumberjack went out the window when we got married.

As for the Corps, I'd probably still be in it if only in an advisory capacity. I haven't lost my ability to be a good sniper, and could train others to do it as well as I can. I might have never met Mike Franks just because I would have had no reason to. Losing you though, I had no desire to even think of rejoining the Corps. Not even as an advisor.

Oh Shannon what am I doing? Sitting here, getting drunk on yet another Saturday night, writing yet another letter that no one will ever see. Why do I do this to myself?

Gibbs lays the pen down and crossing his arms, lays his head down on them and falls asleep. That's how the team finds him two hours later. Tony and Tim gently carry him into the living room and lay him on the sofa. Ziva covers him up with an afghan and Ducky tucks a pillow under his head.

They then gather in the kitchen and Tony gives a sad smile as he reads the letter sitting there. Passing the letter to the others, he starts to speak but they shake their heads. Gibbs doesn't need to know his team saw the letter, his heart exposed for all to see. They quietly leave the letter where it had been and softly closing the door they leave the house and its sleeping occupant behind them.

A/N: Our challenge was to write a story of less than 500 words and it had to feature Gibbs in it somewhere.