In case you somehow missed it in the summary, there are mild spoilers for Skyfall ahead.

I saw Skyfall yesterday thoroughly enjoyed the expansion on the relationship between M and Bond. Judi Dench has always been a favorite of mine. I just wanted to grind out a quick one-shot about her thoughts when Bond appears in her flat after the incidents at the MI6 headquarters. Everything's written from my terrible memory, so I apologize in advance for any errors!

He looked a bloody mess.

Impeccable hair mussed, positively dreadful paisley shirt crumpled, stains not entirely covered by a leather jacket seemingly stripped directly from the poor bovine itself. Blue eyes bloodshot—from lack of sleep or too much drink? She didn't care to think.

She told herself that this relief she was feeling came from the knowledge what 007 was back. MI6's best agent. Nothing more.

So she snaps, "Where the hell have you been?" letting her rightful irritation, anger, and fear lace her words.

"I sent a postcard," he returns in the same vein, "you didn't receive it?"

She doesn't know whether to laugh or rage.

He, understandably, turns the conversation to Turkey and the train and the one decision that began this entire mess.

She can't say the two words that need to be said. That she needs to say. No, she must remain distant, separate from this agent she has seen turn from man to stone. An evolution you had instigated, came the voice in her mind. She can't give voice to any of these thoughts, no matter how they whirl away inside her, burning, accusing.

She can only speak of standard operating protocol. And tell him that he needs a shower.

Then she walks away.

She pauses in the hall and closes her eyes, leaning against the wall and listening to the quiet sigh, the heavy footsteps, ponderous, broken as he shuts the door behind him.

007 was back.

But James Bond had not returned.

I'd really appreciate it if you let me know what you think about this. Cheers!