Disclaimer: No profit is made from this work. Its purpose is to promote the show through exploration of the characters/settings/situations.
AN: The constant promos for Toy Story 3 have finally dug themselves so deep in my brain that I had to write something. This takes place before any of the movies and as such some toys are missing because they haven't been bought yet.
"Andy! Get down here, mister!"
Andy let out a sigh, dropping his head nearly to his knees. He set Woody beside his pillow without looking and dragged himself up, moving as slowly as possible out the door and down to the party.
Woody couldn't blame him. Already the new baby had invaded what had once been Andy's room. Now it was Andy-and-the-baby's room, the bed shoved in the corner to make room for the crib. And there would be more furniture, Woody was sure. Not that he could admit it.
He wanted to warn the others that they'd be moved soon but that would open a can of worms he wasn't ready for. Moving the shelves and the toy box would lead to worry that some of them wouldn't survive the shift, small as it was. Which was probably true. Mom wouldn't want Andy's less child-safe toys around when the baby came. With the baby shower here already he'd have to step up his efforts to hide the choking hazards without them noticing.
"Woody!" Rex called and Woody sighed, pulling himself up with much the same attitude that his owner had risen earlier. Time to get to work.
"Hey, guys!" he said, sliding down the side of the comforter.
"A bit lazy, aren't we?" Potato Head asked.
Woody ignored his bad mood. "I had a busy morning," he said, stretching his arms out and feigning a yawn. "I had to save those stranded motorists and get Slink untangled."
Potato Head rolled his eyes.
"Fine," Woody sighed before the spud could start in on him. "Sarge! I want you to lead a recon team and report back before they start cutting the cake."
"Yes, sir!" Sarge said and moments later he and a handful of army men leapt out of their tub and headed for the door. Luckily, Andy had been too annoyed at having to go downstairs to actually close his door all the way.
Potato Head huffed but could think of nothing else to critique Woody on. Woody took the moment of silence as an opportunity to escape.
He really did like Potato Head, he thought as he climbed the low bookcase. When he agreed with Woody, he was a good ally to have. But when he disagreed - which, admittedly, was most of the time - he was a pain in the pull string.
Woody pulled himself up to the top shelf and surveyed the room. Already Mom was making Andy clean up, leaving the usually cluttered floor eerily empty.
"It's like a ghost town down there," he muttered absently. And it really would be if he didn't get those choking hazards hidden, he reminded himself with a shake of his head.
He couldn't hide the army men, as much as he'd like to their tub would stand out no matter where it was. He'd just have to count on Mom not to get rid of such a classic, stereotypically boy toy when the room was being invaded by so much girliness. None of the others would be so lucky. The nesting eggs would have to keep together, they bigger they looked they safer they were. Potato Head would have to go to the bottom of the toy chest - that would be a fun conversation - along with all his parts or Mom might see one and search him out. He should ask Slink to start gathering pieces, he could do it discreetly enough.
The next half hour was spent brainstorming ways to hide the others away and when Sarge returned Woody had plans for nearly everyone.
"Well? Tell us what you saw!" Potato Head was demanding when Woody finally reached the floor.
"Sir!" Sarge said, saluting Woody.
"At ease. So what's up? Anything we should be worried about?"
"Doubtful, sir. It was mostly supplies and anything that could be deemed an 'older' toy was strictly for girls."
Woody raised an eyebrow in Potato Head's direction.
"Hey!" Slinky snapped. "You feel that?"
The room went quiet for several seconds but no one heard anything.
"You're hearing thi-" Potato Head began but was cut off by Mom calling, "I'll be fine! You girls just set up the next game!"
"She's coming!" Rex cried.
The room dissolved into chaos as everyone ran for their places. Woody tripped over the smallest of the nesting eggs and got spun around when Slink ran past. There was no time to run for the bed, let alone climb up it, so he just dropped down to the floor as the door swung open.
Mom walked right over him and hefted the boxes and bags she carried over the crib's railing with an, "Ugh." She stood a moment, eyes closed, one hand at the small of her back, and simply breathed.
"Two more months," she whispered. "How can it be two more months?"
She rolled her shoulders back, trying to find comfort in a body that offered very little these days, and picked up one of the bags she'd dropped. She dug around in it while crossing the room once more, this time heading for the bookcase. From his angle Woody couldn't see what came out, but he saw the tag on the bag when Mom dropped it carelessly to the floor beside him.
"From Mom Grandma," it said and "Mom" was crossed out.
"There you go," Mom said lovingly. "Oh, you're just as pretty as ever. I can't believe Mom's kept you up in the attic all these years." She let out a contented sigh and turned to go. "Oh! What am I going to do with that boy?" she said and bent slowly down to pick up Woody and the bag. She adjusted Woody's hat and carried him over to the bookshelf. "Woody?" she asked with a teasing smile. "I'd like you to meet my favorite toy from childhood. And unlike you, she is more than just a toy."
Woody held back a snort. More than just a toy? What did that mean? Was this new girl educational in some way? Who wanted that? They were toys. They didn't need to be anything except fun.
As Mom set him down on the top of the bookcase, he wondered what this new girl would be like. Probably stuck-up and pretentious. Most girls' toys were in his experience. And since she was a family toy she'd probably want to take over.
Well! That would be fine if the new baby ever got her own room, but Woody was a family toy too. From Dad's side. And this was still Andy's room and Woody was still the favorite.
Instead of laying him down Mom had propped him up against something. He could see the entire room - except the new girl, who he assumed was behind him on the top shelf - and so knew the moment the door closed behind Mom.
He spun around to face the new girl and found himself facing something big and white. He climbed to his feet, backing up as he did, and saw that it was a lamp. A lamp? That was better than "just a toy"? Mom's hormones were clearly impairing her judgment.
Woody adjusted his vest and stepped around the lamp. He opened his mouth to welcome the newcomer but was cut off by a faint "baa!"
"Hush now!" someone said, her voice delicate like fine china but still stern. "We're all happy to be out but that's no excuse for bad manners."
Woody leaned around the lamp and saw her. Wide skirts, shepherd's hook, pale pink bonnet covering a bun of blonde hair and hooding bright blue eyes. She ran thin fingers over her skirt, wiping away imaginary dust.
"Time to make a good impression," she said bravely and Woody had only a moment to realize she came with sheep before she turned and saw him. "Oh!" she gasped. "Hello."
"H-h-hi," Woody stuttered.
She ducked her head under his intent gaze and he belatedly realized he should remove his hat in the presence of a lady. He pulled it off and held it to his chest, if only to give his fingers something to do.
"I'm Woody, the sheriff 'round these parts."
She giggled and he cursed himself. How dumb did that sound?
"I'm Bo Peep," she said. "It's very nice to meet you."
"Yeah," Woody sighed and Bo blushed.
"Woody!" Rex called. "Where are you?"
Woody shrugged at Bo as he crept to the edge of the shelf. "Up here!"
"Is the new toy with you?" Slink asked.
"Are they nice?" Rex asked.
Woody looked over his shoulder and saw that Bo was trying to keep her sheep from chewing on a coloring book at the other end of the shelf.
"Do you uh …?"
"We'll be down in a minute," Bo said. "I can handle these three." She tugged at her hook and the sheep stopped angling for the paper.
"Are you sure? It's a long way down from the top of the shelf."
She rested her free hand on her hip. "I'm a lamp," she said. "I'm always on top."
"Of shelves," she added, though it was clear this was only an afterthought.
Reluctantly he left her to her herding and hurried to the floor. He was immediately assaulted by questions from every side.
"Is it really girly?"
"Does it have moving parts?"
"Does it talk?"
"Like really girly?"
"Does it look like it would be fun?"
To this last Woody could only sigh, "Oh, yeah."
The others gasped.
"Really?" Rex asked, comically trying to cover his mouth with his hands in shock.
"Oh," Woody said, realizing his mistake. "No, no. She's nothing to worry about."
"But you just said -"
"She's a girls' toy, guys," Woody said, trying his best to be casual. "Not even worth our time. I mean, I've gotta show her the ropes because, you know, someone has to. But the rest of you might as well just go back to your … whatever," he finished lamely.
Potato Head gave him a long look before leaning close to Slink. "Did Mom knock his head against the shelf when she put him up there?"
Slink only shrugged. Great, now the guys thought he was going crazy.
"Oof. Well," Bo said primly from behind him, "that wasn't so bad."
Woody whirled and saw her lifting her hook off the edge of the second shelf from the bottom. She smiled over her shoulder at him. "I once had to get up and down from a tiny shelf near the ceiling and the closest thing to me was the ceiling fan in the center of the room. That," she pointed up with her hook, "is a piece of cake."
She set the hook aside and opened her arms with a curt nod up. A moment later she caught the falling sheep in her arms with ease. Once the sheep were on the ground they scampered off but she kept an eye on them. "Oddly enough," she said, sauntering over to stand in the midst of Woody and the guys, "it's easier getting them up than down."
She smiled at all of them and turned to Woody, waiting patiently for him to be the gentleman here.
"This is Bo Peep," he said weakly.
Slink and Potato Head looked between Woody and Bo several times before both toys sighed, "Oooooooh," knowingly. They chuckled, elbowing each other jovially.
"What?" Rex asked.
"You sly dog," Slink said, turning and heading under the bed.
Potato Head followed him, muttering, "I didn't think the guy had it in him."
Rex looked after them, then back to Woody and Bo, his whole body swinging with the motion. Finally he seemed to decided that whatever was going on had more to do with Slink and Potato Head, and ran after. "Guys! What's going on?"
"Uh," Woody said, rubbing the back of his neck self-consciously, "they're … characters."
"I can see that," Bo said and suddenly she seemed to be standing much closer to him than before, her skirts brushing against his legs.
He tried not to gulp too loudly.
"You said something about showing me around?" she asked.
Instinct made Woody freeze.
"Someone has to after all," she added.
"You heard that, huh?"
"That's all right, sheriff," she said, stepping around to face him with a smile. He felt her hook hovering just over his shoulder but didn't see it, his gaze focused wholly on those big, blue eyes. "I like a man who knows what he wants."
The hook slid lower, touching the back of his neck and drawing him forward. His gaze slipped to her mouth. His slow-moving brain had just reached panic mode (he was an heirloom but he'd never kissed another toy before, what if he did it wrong?) when she whirled around and walked to the center of the room.
"What's first?" she asked, spinning to take it all in before facing him once more.
Even disappointment couldn't wipe the smile off Woody's face. He hurried forward and offered her his arm.
"Whatever you like, ma'am," he said, emphasizing his accent. As her thin hand slid through his cloth arm he thought maybe girls' toys weren't so bad after all.
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