Rex shuffled from one foot to the other, fiddling with his short arms as he waited to find out what was going on. Ham nudged him, shaking his head. They had heard a scream a while ago, but now everything was quiet. Maybe it was a garage-sale toy? That'd be bad, really bad. They were the ones that freaked out the most. No one liked the idea of being sold by someone they think loved them.
Up on the desk Jessie had her arms around the lump of wood, whispering calmingly to him. The poor guy had woken up in a strange place with three strange toys standing over him; she could understand what he was up against. Woody and Buzz stood to the side, deciding what to do with him.
"He's out of his mind, that's clear. No one has this bad of an adjustment to moving. You don't think he came from someone like Sid, do you?"
"You seem to have forget how I felt when I found out I was a toy. Give him time, he'll calm down and talk to us. I think it's just he doesn't know where he is."
"I just hope it doesn't end up like you. I am not traipsing around the country convincing this guy that he's not real."
"You won't have to worry about that." Woody and Buzz turned as Jessie stepped up behind them, grinning like mad. She had her arm around the wooden shoulders of their newest member, who was hunched over with his eyes (no longer behind goggles) on the ground. "He knows what he is, don't you Billy?"
Billy wasn't sure what he believed or thought. He was in a strange place, on top of a strange desk, only a foot tall and very very alone. He brought up his hands, pulling off a glove to see the jointed wooden fingers they hid. His wrist was a joint now, not skin and bone. Everything was wood and glass. He didn't have to breathe now, he was wood. It felt so strange, because he wanted to swallow the lump that was forming in a throat that didn't exist. He blinked glass eyes only because it was habit, rather than out of need. He didn't trust his voice, so he merely nodded in agreement. Better to just concur with everything said and figure out where you are than to disprove everything and still be lost. At least this way he could get some help.
"Well hey-howdy-hey then partner! What's your name?" Woody knew it, Jessie had said it. But he wanted this new toy to talk. It had to. He knew it could, he had heard it. It was just a matter of getting it to do so again.
"Dr. Horrible." Buzz blinked at the response. That wasn't the name Jessie called him by. "And I need to get back home."
"I don't know if that's possible buddy." Jessie tried to be helpful, but she had to admit it would be pretty hard to do. "If you were sold your person doesn't want you back, and trying to convince Andy that he's got to give up his new toy would be a heart-break."
"I wasn't sold, I was…" what was he? Slipping his glove back on Billy lifted his head, standing upright once again. "I think I was thrown out. And I didn't belong to anyone. That coward threw me out!" That was the only thing he could think of. He wasn't conscious after the ray had hit him, but he knew he was by a bunch of trashcans. Bits and pieces were coming together, but not enough, and not fast enough.
"You had to belong to someone if they threw you out. Come on, let's get you introduced to the rest of the gang, what do you say?" Change the topic, clever Woody. Billy didn't want to deal with this right now. He had to get home, had to get his Stuff Ray and fix it and get him out of this mess! But he wasn't going to get through to these guys, not yet anyway. They didn't know him; they didn't understand what was going on. So he had to play along, get them to trust him…
THEN he could go home! Sighing, Billy nodded his consent. What could be the worst that could happen?
Okay, so in retrospect, maybe looking down from the height of the desk should have been his first omen that things weren't going to go so well. Freaking out because of how high he was from the ground and grabbing onto Buzz was not the smartest idea. Even more so when you thought about how Billy didn't even know their names yet. They knew his, but he didn't know theirs. They were more concerned about trying to get him to realize he had a "new owner" than introductions. So when he grabbed the space toy and tried to get away from the edge, it was inevitable that they would fall. And fall they did. That's when Billy realized that being made of wood had its advantages; like you didn't feel the pain of plummeting to the ground. His mind still stuck on live-or-die the instant he touched the ground he curled into a ball, trying to suck in air that wouldn't come. He couldn't breathe! 'Ohmygodican'tbreathei'mgoingtodie!' Ran through his head over and over again until Buzz pulled him open and stood him up. His mind whipped blank, and Dr. Horrible patted himself down. He was okay, he was alive! A shaky sigh escaped him, only to be yelped back as a green dinosaur stuck his tiny arm in Billy's face.
"Hia! I'm Rex!"
"Well, that was rude. Was it something I said?" Knocking wood could be heard coming from behind Jessie. Oh yeah, it was clear that Billy found her to be safe. Buzz glared at his back, a green streak running through him. He's just scared, he's not trying to take Jessie, he's just scared… bah. His eyes wandered, catching sight of Slink. Perfect. Grabbing the dog the spaceman then took Jessie's arm and switched them, shoving the slinky dog into the puppet's arms.
"AH!" Billy let go, turning and scrambling/tripping over his feet with limbs are lankier than he remembered, racing to get under the desk. The whole room watched as the flash of white faded into the shadow. Then they all looked at Woody.
"Heh." The cowboy scratched under his hat, slumping a bit as he worked out something to explain his behavior. "First day?" He shrugged. They bought it.
"Look, just give him some time. I know you all want to meet him and are excited. But his owner threw him away. He's probably high-strung because of it. Let him get used to Andy and he'll come around. Here, just stand here, give me a moment." Jogging, he waved away Bullseye Jessie and Buzz. He wanted to do this alone. He found Billy curled up tight between the desk leg the bed leg and the wall, deep into the dark.
"Hey, hey, you okay?"
"Where am I?" Woody sat on the ground beside the wooden doll, stretching his legs out in front of him and lacing his fingers in his lap.
"You're in Andy's room."
"But all those, those… things out there!"
"I'm guessing your room only had puppets and dolls, huh?"
"What room? My room is a laboratory!"
"Your owner didn't have any other toys?! Well, that explains a lot."
"You had science stuff, right? So there was no one to talk too. And there was no reason to wake up when your owner left, that'd be why you didn't move until Jessie and Buzz and I moved you."
"No, no, you don't get it." What happened to the "just agree don't worry about it" from on top the desk? Was he just going to throw that out now? On top the desk everything was okay, everything was mostly human and there were only a few of them and he could totally deal with that. But here, on the ground, there were toys that were bigger than he was, there were talking animals and radios and games of all kinds. He wanted to go back to his lab, to sit by the fridge, to try and make dinner before Moist took over to keep the apartment from burning down. This… this was too much.
"I'm not a toy. I mean, yeah, I am. I… look. I know I'm a toy right now. I know I'm made of wood and glass. But I'm not really a toy. I'm human. I'm Doctor Horrible, and I had an invention that my nemesis stole from me and turned me into a doll with. I'm not really a toy, really." Woody gave Billy the strangest look he could muster. Whatever happened to this guy really wonked his head. Billy buried his face in his hands, shoulders sagging. He had just graduated with his second Ph.D.! This was not supposed to be happening!
"Billy, I, I don't know what to say. That's a strange story with a stranger ending. I don't know what happened to you, but you have to realize that we're not going to hurt you. You're a toy, we don't hurt other toys."
"So just play along basically."
"Why would you play along? It's true."
"Yeah, yeah I know."
"Friends?" Woody held out a hand to shake. Billy had no idea what just happened here, but he knew he wasn't going to win this day. So he shook the doll's hand, allowing the old toy to help him up. Hiding slightly behind Woody, Billy followed him out to the light again, letting him introduce everyone to him and him to everyone. He didn't pay attention to the names; he tried not to look at any of them. He didn't want to deal with this. He, he… he just wanted to go back home to his supersized chair and his over-wet henchman friend. When everyone finally left to play games and attend to their nightly life, Billy was left alone by the desk to watch. Jessie and Buzz were arm-in-arm, strolling around the room and chatting. Bo and Woody were sitting by her sheep, doing roughly the same thing. Slink, Ham, Mr. Potato Head, and Bullseye were romping around, playing keep-away from Rex. On the whole, the entire room was full of life and sound and fun. And Billy sat, on the floor, trying hard not to cry tears that would never exist. He was a toy.
Climbing back up onto the desk some time later Billy sat by the lamp, gazing around the room, taking in a pre-teen's domain. There were toys everywhere, books and posters littered the walls. There was a bit of everything here; childhood fantasy and games slowly giving way to school work and girls. Billy wondered if the toys knew that their time in Andy's world was drawing to a close. As he looked about, one poster caught Billy's eye. It was in the fifties style, very drive-in-diner-esk. It was of Captain Hammer. No surprise there, really. Big, tall, with a puffed out chest and perfect hair even in the drawing of him. And in his hand, held by the front of his lab coat, was a pathetic looking Doctor Horrible. Just wonderful. He had his goggles over his eyes. You couldn't even tell if he was getting hit or not, which Billy had to admit was kind of nice.
"Andy's home!" A voice shook Billy out of his musings of the artistic rendering of himself, watching the toys scatter and take up very stiff looking positions around the room. Instint told Billy to do the same. He was drawn to one spot on the desk. He stood there as Woody climbed up and turned off the lamp before racing to Buzz and the bed. Collapsing in a boneless heap, Billy promised himself he'd get out of this wacko town.