It is with such grief and torment that I write this to you now. I have loved every moment spent by the pond-side with you, always standing because of the rare condition I have that makes it impossible for me to sit. But this must all end, and you must know the truth. I am not the gentleman from Derbyshire that I have claimed to be. I am a stack of ducklings underneath a large frock coat.
I know it is hard to believe. How is that I can talk or write this letter? Well, I—that is, we—are all siblings, and we share a deep bond that allows for incredible coordination of brainpower and wing movement. We are confident that we could impersonate anything from a horse to a steam engine given time and a rigorous exercise regimen. Enclosed is a sketch (Diagram A) of where each of us is placed in formation while clothed. It might be a little messy, because it is drawn by animals who have wings instead of arms. Diagram B is a closer view of our face formation. Diagram C shows the extremely difficult and often life-threatening maneuvers Ducklings 32–43 undertook every time we kissed.
We never meant for it to get this far. We wanted only to impersonate a gentleman for long enough to buy a great estate with a huge pond and so much bread. Instead we fell madly in love, discovering as we did so how beautiful a living creature can be when it is not covered in water-repellant feathers.
But it can never be. Our kisses would be tainted. Our private lives full of constant obstacles, like how we like to spend 90% of our time in a pond, or like how it is physically impossible for me to become naked. Our children would have to be more ducklings under miniature frock coats.
We have already left. Do not search for us. Please do not pick up any duckling you find and attempt to speak to it as if it were us. That is idiotic. Forget us. Or remember us not as ducklings, but as a single man with bizarrely soft hands, whose every hug left strange feathers all over your beautiful bodice.
With love forever,
Theodore Gimberton III, aka 68 Silver Appleyard Ducklings