Honestly, I'm surprised with this story. I never really expected to write for this particular fandom. But, like many others, I loved Toy Story 3. It was a wonderful movie, and ideas just couldn't help but sneak their way into my brain. Besides, I was so upset when I learned what happened to Bo Peep, I just had to write something about it. Yes, I realize this has been done before, but what can I say? I had to do my own take on it. Anyway, enjoy!

Porcelain Heart

In all honesty, Bo Peep wasn't really all that surprised.

Over the years, as she saw Andy and Molly grow older, she knew it was only a matter of time before she was either given away or thrown out. She did her best not to let it bother her, so the others wouldn't see that anything was wrong, but she did worry about it once in a while.

After all, no matter how fond of her Andy had been, she had always belonged to Molly. She was given as a gift when Mom was still pregnant with Molly, but the old house didn't have enough room for a proper nursery. So she, along with some of Molly's other things, had been kept in Andy's room, giving Andy the opportunity to play with her, and her the chance to know Woody and the others. Even after the move and Molly gaining a room of her own, Bo Peep was so involved in Andy's imagination that he continued to play with her...at least, for a while.

She knew it couldn't last, though. Andy was a growing boy, and she was a porcelain figurine. It wasn't long before he felt she was a little too girly for his tastes. He did continue to play with her sometimes, bringing her in when Woody needed someone besides the orphans to save. But she wasn't Andy's toy, and eventually he didn't want to play with her as much.

It was especially bad after Jessie arrived. Not that it was Jessie's fault, of course. She loved Jessie, for the cowgirl made a terrific friend. And she never worried that Jessie would ever replace her as Woody's girl, even in Andy's mind (actually, it seemed Andy also realized how good Jessie and Buzz looked together). But when Jessie arrived, Bo knew that Andy would start playing with the cowgirl more than with her.

Because, being made of porcelain, Bo Peep was very fragile. Andy always had to be careful when handling her, just so he wouldn't accidentally break her. Her movement was also limited, being made of such a stiff and delicate material. As such, her roles were always either an innocent bystander or the damsel in distress.

Jessie, on the other hand, was made of a much softer, more durable material. Her movements were much more flexible, and Andy had more freedom with Jessie to act out bigger and more elaborate scenarios. He could do so much more with the cowgirl than he could ever do with Bo, and soon he stopped playing with her completely.

Even after that, though, it wasn't all that bad. Though she was kept in Molly's room while the kids were home, she could still see Woody and the others when the family wasn't around, especially after Molly started school herself. Around that time, Andy kept his toys mostly in the toy chest and didn't play with them as much either, but things were still all right. The toys were still there, and they all still had each other. They managed.

But Molly...bless her heart, Molly was a great kid, but she lacked the kind of...playfulness that Andy had. While the little girl loved her toys, she had the tendency to stop playing with them after too long, growing bored with them rather quickly (in fact, Andy played with some of Molly's toys more often than she did, which was how Mrs. Potato Head found a permanent place in Andy's room when she had originally been given to Molly). And Molly didn't have her brother's active imagination that made Bo more than just a figurine on a lamp, so she didn't get used as much by Molly as she had with Andy.

More importantly, Molly simply grew up much faster than Andy did. She expected it, though, since girls supposedly matured faster than boys did. But she lost that childhood innocence much sooner, and quickly moved onto bigger and better things. Soon, she didn't need fairy tales or nursery rhymes any more. Bo could see that soon, Molly didn't need her either.

She remembered one day, when Molly brought a friend over from school. As the two girls sat on the bed playing, the friend noticed her lamp and asked why Molly owned something so "babyish". Though Molly explained why Bo Peep was there, she did agree to being too old to have such a thing.

From that day on, Bo always knew that it was only a matter of time before Molly got rid of her. So now, after Mom told Andy and Molly to look for stuff they wouldn't mind selling in today's garage sale, she wasn't really all that surprised when Molly picked up her lamp off the nightstand and placed her in the box.

Yes, she knew it would happen. But that didn't make the thought any less terrifying.

Still, there was nothing she could do about it now as Molly took her small box of stuff and headed down the stairs. She remained in her position as the picturesque shepherdess, perfectly still even as anxiety trembled through her body. The entire trip down seemed to take an eternity, yet before she knew it they were outside, and she could hear the voices of people who wanted to buy something from the Davis' household.

As the box was placed down and Molly walked away, Bo Peep let herself glance up towards Andy's bedroom window, just visible over the walls of the box. Though it was quite a distance away, she could tell that the others weren't at the sill yet, meaning that Andy was either in his room or close enough that they couldn't get out of the toy chest yet. As soon as Andy left, she knew the others would be there, standing at the window and overlooking the sale, trying to see if anyone they knew had been sold. It was harder to do after they lost Lenny, but they still wanted to know which friends had been purchased and gone to new homes.

She gripped her staff tightly in her hand. How long would it be...before they noticed her?

Bo never did tell any of them about the situation. She never told them about the concerns she had, the fear that Molly would soon get rid of her. She never wanted them to worry about her, especially not Woody. He had so much to handle already; dealing with Andy growing up, maintaining things in Andy's room, taking care of the others and helping them cope with the changes going on...She didn't want him to fuss over her problems as well. She knew that if she told him, he would be troubled over it, over her, and all she wanted was to enjoy whatever time she had left with him. Besides, they both knew that things like this happened - toys and things were given away all the time - and she never knew when she would be leaving anyway.

But even though she didn't know when it would happen, maybe she should have told him anyway. If she had, then maybe they would've had a chance to say goodbye.

Her sheep suddenly bleated softly beside her, pulling her out of her thoughts as they tugged on her skirt. She glanced down at them and smiled, kneeling beside them and whispering reassuring words that everything would be all right...that they would be fine. She had to stay strong, and if she was going to get through this - just herself and her sheep - she had to believe that. She couldn't think about the alternatives...how, if the lamp wasn't bought, then it would either be given away somewhere else or simply...thrown out.

She wasn't sure how long she was in that box before a shadow suddenly loomed overhead. She and her sheep froze as a hand reached in, pulling the lamp out of the box. The elderly woman who found her adjusted her glasses as she examined the lamp, turning it over carefully as she looked. Then, with a small smile, the woman called Mom's attention over.

As Mom made her way over, Bo Peep glanced up towards the window again. This time she could see the group lined up along the sill, looking out and around the front yard. And standing in the center of them was Woody, his eyes wide as he immediately caught her gaze.

The distance between them suddenly felt so much farther away than before, and something inside Bo seemed to shatter as they realized that they would never cross back over it again.

He seemed willing to try, though. As Mom and the older lady began discussing the price, and Andy's other toys finally noticed her presence among the rest of the sales stuff, Bo could already see how much he wanted to try to get her back - to keep her home. He didn't seem to hear as the others talked frantically to him, his eyes locked on her. And among his own horror and panic, his eyes were already calculating, desperately thinking of a way to save her.

Even after all this time, even after the playtimes ended for both of them, Woody was still her hero. But this time, she knew she couldn't let him be.

It was a risk, but she prayed the women wouldn't noticed as she looked squarely at Woody, giving her head a small but firm shake. She was relieved to see he noticed it, an uncertain and confused expression appearing on his face that told her so. She simply shook her head again, slower this time, her staff just barely able to motion to the Davis family without drawing attention.

As much as she appreciated his willingness to rescue her, she knew it would do no good. Even if he did, what would happen afterward? Molly had already decided to give her up. If Woody saved her, where would she stay? She couldn't possibly hide from the family forever. And what would happen if someone found her?

No, she knew it was better that someone was actually willing to buy her. And, judging by the pained expression on his face, she knew Woody understood that as well.

As the sheriff worked to calm the others down, Mom and the elderly woman finally came to an agreement about the price. Placing the lamp down, the woman then began digging around in her large purse for the proper payment. Bo took this chance to glance at the window again, catching the saddened looks on all her friends' faces as they looked on, unable to do anything else. She smiled slightly, letting them know she'd be all right.

Then she risked another look at Woody, her courage almost coming undone as she saw the strain on his face, his body shaking as he fought to stay where he was and not go down to her. She briefly placed a hand to her lips, hiding them as they trembled, before blowing him one last kiss. That seemed to help him a little, and he finally managed to master his emotions. She watched as he reached up, nodding to her with a small tip of his hat.

The familiar gesture - one they've exchanged so many times before, during playtime and after - was all they had time for before the elderly woman once again picked her up, carrying her away from the house, from her family, her friends...from him...for good.

And the whole way, she remained in her frozen position, her smile and graceful pose hiding the fear that continued to chip away at her. Her grip on her staff once again tightened as she watched the scenery pass and change, showing her that this was really it. This was the day she had always feared, and they couldn't change what happened. She was still scared - for herself, for Woody - and she wasn't afraid to admit it, but she knew that they would both have to be strong and continue on with their lives. And maybe someday, things would eventually be all right.

They were toys, after all. They were good at pretending.

The End