As soon as Bonnie retuned into her room after the road trip, she opened up her backpack, and took out all of her toys.
But she was surprised as soon as she was done. Where was her cowboy doll? She looked everywhere in her backpack. She was getting worried now. She stood up, and ran out of the room.
"Mom!" She called. "I think I left my cowboy doll in the RV!" She shut the door behind her. The toys all then came back to life.
"Oh, no!" Jessie observed. "She's looking for Woody!"
"And Woody's back at the carnival with Bo." Rex added. "What are we going to do? We can't go back, and get Woody, can we?"
"Of course not." Mr. Potato Head spoke to him. "We're toys. We just came back from the carnival, it'll take us forever to get back there on foot. Plus, we don't know where it is."
"But we made it to Al's Toy Barn."
"That was with Etch's help." Slinky reminded him.
"That's right." Mr. Potato Head added. "And he's no longer with us. Haven't been for a long time. So what do you think we can do?" Rex thought about this, and shrugged. "That's right, nothing! So, let it go."
"Guys, relax." Buzz assured his friends. "Bonnie will be alright. She'll be sad at first, sure, but she'll be alright." Mr. Potato Head looked at him.
"Did your 'inner voice' say that, space boy?"
"No, I just know." Forky was ashamed of himself.
"It's all my fault." He said in melancholy. All of the toys looked at him, confused.
"What are you talking about?" Buzz wanted to know. The spork looked at the space ranger.
"I took all of Bonnie's attention away from him."
"Don't say that. It wasn't your fault. Bonnie just has a different taste in toys that's all. She all loves us equally. Just because she doesn't play with a toy every day doesn't mean she doesn't love them. She has a lot of them. She can't play with us every single day. It'll be nice, but it's just not possible."
"But it is my fault. I'm not a real toy, despite what Woody said. I'm not even a fork, I'm a spork with googely eyes, a mouth, and pipe cleaners. Poor Woody, I should've threw myself away in the trash can."
"No, space cadet, you're not trash. You were made for a reason, to be Bon..."
"I know. Woody told me, but he wouldn't have left if it weren't for me."
"That's not true!" He sighed. "Look, when I first became Andy's toy, Woody was jealous of me." Forky looked up in surprise.
"Yup! So much so that he accidentally had me knocked out of a window."
"He did? Woody told me that you thought you were a real space ranger, but not this. Tell me more." Mr. Potato Head groaned. Hamm rolled his eyes.
"Oh boy!" He said. "Here we go!"
"Oh boy!" Mrs. Potato Head cheered. "I never heard this story. I can tell it's going to get juicy!" Her husband groaned again. How had they not told this story before?
"I never heard the story either." Jessie chimed in. "Let's listen, Bullseye!" nodded in agreement.
"Okay," Buzz began. "So it's all started when..." They then heard faint voices from outside. Bonnie was coming back, accompanied by her mom.
"I'll tell you all later." Buzz said to Forky and everyone else. Bonnie and her mom came in, and all the toys froze, and became mindless once again. Bonnie was crying.
"But I promised that guy I'd take good care of him." Bonnie told her mom though tears. "And I let him down. He'll hate me forever."
"Oh, honey, don't say that." Bonnie's mom assured her. "I'm sure he'll understand. You did the best you could."
"No, I didn't. I played with all of them at first, but then I didn't. I made Forky, and focused all of my attention on him. I'm a promise breaker."
"Don't be so hard on yourself, sweetie." Bonnie's dad then entered the room. Both child and mother looked at him.
"What's going on here?" He asked. He noticed Bonnie crying, and frowned. "Bonnie, why are you crying? Don't tell me you lost Forky, and/or one of your other toys again."
"I did, Daddy." His young daughter told him. "I lost Woody." Mr. Anderson was confused.
"Her cowboy doll." Mrs. Anderson explained to her husband. "One of the toys Andy gave her before going off to college. Bonnie's sad because she thinks she broke her promise to Andy, and thinks he'll hate her forever."
"Oh." Mr. Anderson realized. "Oh!" He looked at her sad daughter again. "Don't cry, honey. I'm sure Andy will understand."
"That's what Mommy said." Bonnie told him.
"Well, your mom's right. Hey, at least you still have Forky and your other toys."
"Yeah, but Woody was his favorite Can we find him, Daddy?"
"We can surely try." He looked at his wife next. "Can I talk with you?" The parents stood up. Mrs. Anderson patted her daughter's head. "It's alright sweetie. Play with your toys, that'll make you feel better." And with that, they both left the room.
But Bonnie didn't feel like playing with her toys. She was just too sad. The little girl walked out of her room, still sniffing back tears.
"I hate to see our little girl sad." Dolly observed. Jessie looked at Forky.
"You should go and comfort her." Forky looked at her, puzzled.
"What?" The spork questioned. "Why me?"
"Because you are her favorite. I was there for Emily, my kid before Andy when she was sad."
"And we were there for Andy when he was sad as well." Buzz put in. "Whenever he starts playing with us, he cheers up right away, and is no longer sad. That's what being a toy is all about, being there for your owner though thick and thin."
"But, but what will I do?" Forky wanted to know. "I never done this before. What if I mess up?"
"You won't mess up." Trixie assured him. "Just do what your gut says, and listen to it."
"Gut? What's that?" Buzz shrugged.
"Beats me." He said. "I just learned what my consience was. Just go, and be there for her."
"Okay." Forky looked at the opened door, and gulped. "Here I go." He waddled out of the door.
Once out, he looked back at his friends. The rest of the toys urged him to go on, so he did.
He waddled to a still crying Bonne on the stairwell, listening to her parents. Forky gave her a tap. She looked, and saw that Forky was on the floor, pretending to be a mindless toy. She didn't know who tapped her, so she just grabbed Forky, and continued listening to her parents.
"I just don't know what to do." Her dad said to her mom. "I know Bonnie loves each of her toys, but she keeps losing them. We can't look for them every time. She has to learn that she's responsible for her own stuff."
"I know she's five, so it's time she starts learning. She won't be a kid forever."
"I know, but it still breaks my heart to see her so upset."
"I know. It breaks my heart too. She'll get through this. She'll realize her Woody doll is just a toy, and move on."
A huge sob erupted in Bonnie's throat, and she cried harder. Her father was wrong. Woody wasn't just a toy, not to her, and not to Andy. He and all her other toys were all special. She wished her father, and possibly her mom, and all the adults she knew, and possibly the world, could see that. She put her head in her lap. Forky watched the whole thing in front of him, and felt sorry. He felt foolish for wanting to throw himself away. He just might be a spork, but he's Bonnie's spork. Bonnie made him special, and he was made with love, and with a purpose. He needed to be there for Bonnie no matter what. He wished he could talk to her, tell her that everything was going to be okay. But for some reason he couldn't let humans know he was alive. Probably for the best as not to scare them, but he still wishes at times like these.
Bonnie then stood up, ran into her room, and slammed her door. Her parents heard from downstairs, and came up to comfort her once again.
Bo saw Woody sitting by his lonesome in the corner of the carnival booth, and went over to him, concerned.
"Woody?" She asked. "You okay?"
"How could I have done that?" He asked himself.
"Woody?" The cowboy doll threw up his hands in disgust.
"Ugh, I'm such an idiot!" She placed a comforting hand on his shoulder.
"Woody! It's alright. Now tell me, what's bothering you." Woody looked at the porcelain doll.
"I'm sorry, Bo. Bonnie is my owner. Andy trusted her with me, and I let him down. I let them both down by coming here, and ditching my friends. I should have gone back with Buzz and the others."
"But you're doing good by allowing toys to be played with by kids. We all are. Aren't you happy with that?"
"Yes, but Bonnie made a promise to Andy. Now she's going to feel really bad that I'm gone. She's going to think it's her fault when it's mine. I also promised Buzz that we'll all be together always. Oh, Bo, what have I done?"
"Woody, you can't hang on to a kid forever. There are some promises that you can't keep. You can't hold onto the past forever. You have to move forewards." Woody sighed.
"I just don't know, Bo. True, Andy didn't play with us very much as he grew older, but we still stayed with Andy."
"And does Bonnie play with you?"
"She did, but she plays more with Forky now."
"That's no life for a toy. If Bonnie doesn't play with you, then why stay? Wouldn't you rather be doing stuff then rotting away, waiting for something that may never happen?"
"Bonnie's not Andy, Woody."
"I know. I can still talk to my friends though."
"I still think I made the biggest mistake of my life. I should go back." Bo sighed.
"If you want to go back, go back tomorrow. You can sleep on it. We'll be sad, but we'll understand. It's your choice. But remember what Buzz said. Bonnie will be alright, and I trust him. You two had grown so much ever since he arrived. Now, I'm going to bed. You should too." She then left. Woody stayed inside, thinking of what Bo had told him. He trusted Buzz as well, but should he stay? He was torn.
"Are you alright, bro?" Ducky wanted to know, coming to him. "Bunny and I saw you talking with Bo, and we were worried. You didn't look too good."
"I'll be fine."
"Are you going to go to bed?" Woody turned to the duckling plush.
"Yes." He stood up, and walked to where he and the other toys were going to sleep. "Let's all go to bed. We need some sleep if you and the others are going to make kids and toys happy." Ducky walked with him.
"What about you? You're going to be with us, right?"
"I don't know." This confused the plush.
"You don't know? What are you..."
"So, are you okay?" Bunny wanted to know as the toys came closer.
"He'll be fine." Ducky told him. "But, I think he's having second thoughts about this." This time, Bunny was confused.
"What?! But we'll doing good here. We sold every toy in the whole carnival. We'll on a roll. You can't back out, and leave." Woody waved his hands in defense.
"Guys," He began. "That's not what I said." Bunny called to Duke.
"Yo, Duke! Woody's having second thoughts. He might be leaving us." Woody facepalmed himself.
"But we're on a roll!" Duke responded. "He can't back out, and leave."
"That's what I said!"
"Leave Woody be, guys." Bo told the toys. "He's going to think of it. Let's get to sleep, and let him to it."
"But we can't sleep knowing one of our key players is going to leave the team."
"Yeah." Ducky agreed. "We'll be a wreck. Can't we know now? The suspense is killing us!"
"I promise I'll have an answer by tomorrow, guys." Woody assured them. As soon as Woody said that, he wanted to take it back. There he goes again, promising things he might not keep. Ducky looked at him.
"You better, cowboy. We may have just met, but it seems like we known you much longer."
"Let's just let Woody be." Bunny told him. "He has a lot of thing to think about." The two plushes said their 'good nights', and left. Woody did too, and went off to bed himself.
As Woody was sleeping, he had flashbacks to all the times he had with his friends. From the time Andy got Woody as a present from his father, to the time Andy donated him and his friends to Bonnie. He also remembered meeting Jessie and Bullseye. He remembered watching Andy grow before his eyes. He wished he could go back to Andy's childhood, and relive all of those happy times he spent with him and all of his friends. But like Bo said, he had to let go of the past, and move forwards. It was fun while it lasted.
In the morning, he still hasn't made a decision. He told Bo, and his new friends all of this.
"What?!" Ducky questioned, not believing this. "But we're going somewhere else where we can help out toys go to loving and deserving kids. And then after that we're going to move to the next spot and the next. These our are jobs now. When are you going to decide, when it's the end of the world, and it's too late?"
"Guys, I will decide." Woody assured them. "It will be hard and is going to be torture, but believe me, I am. In the meantime, I'm going to stay, and continue on what we're doing here." The toys all cheered. Bo smiled.
"I'm proud of you, Woody." She told him. "And if you ever choose to leave, and go back with your friends and Bonnie, we'll support you all the way." Woody smiled as well.
"I know you will guys, and like Bonnie, and my friends, they'll all be alright with or without me."