AN: Chapter two already! just to let you all know, this whole thing is based off the song by the same name by Lady Antebellum. Also, chapter three will take a while to be posted, because it is only half written at the moment. I hope you all like this!
Disclaimer: I do not own Toy Story. Pixar does.
Buzz winced as the shot of whiskey slide down his throat, leaving behind a trail of fire in its wake even as it numbed the growing pain within his heart. Shakily pouring himself another glass, he let out a low groan as he slammed the bottle down onto the table, his vision blurring for a moment before stabilizing once again. Glancing at the mirror that hung above his kitchen sink, he couldn't help but chuckle at the sight of his reflection. It was a twisted, messed up, wrecked shadow of the man he had once been, but it was him none the less. Staring back at him, with a week old beard and rings around his eyes that would make a raccoon envious, was the new and improved Buzz Lightyear.
Downing the harsh spirit to drive away those thoughts, Buzz growled as the next glass came up empty, the bottle he had opened that night finally pumped dry of its healing poison. Letting his head fall to the table, he barely flinched as the glass fell to the ground, shattering against the hardwood floor in a crash that instantly had his head pounding. Twisting so his bare feet were safely away from the sharp shards, he vaguely wondered about the possibility of him being sober enough in the morning to remember to avoid getting his feet sliced open before finally deciding that he would deal with it when, if, it ever happened.
At the moment, all he wanted to do was sleep and forget.
Sleep, however, soon proved impossible as the hours droned on, slowly pulling him closer to the end of the week long mandatory vacation his boss had forced on him while the training center was 'being repaired.' Of course, just like anyone who had ever stepped foot into Star Command, much less the ranger who had been living at the station since he was three, knew, the repairs to the station had been completed almost a month ago, leaving the High Commanders' seemingly friendly gift with a perfectly clear, cold message:
'Clear your head, get over her, and get back to fighting the Empire before the week is up. Or don't come back at all.'
Glancing at the clock that sat above his stove, Buzz blinked in surprise as it just turned one, the numbers swimming slightly as he forced himself to focus. Although the Commander was right, he hated the fact that a fat old guy who had never seen battle could tell him how to run his life, could make the most obvious solution to the situation just seem so easy. While 'get over her,' was perfectly good advice, there was no getting over a girl like her. Jessie was a girl like no other, and even after almost a week of doing nothing but drinking and trying to forget, her face was still the only thing that remained on his mind.
Buzz flinched as her name rolled off his tongue, falling from his lips like it was the most natural word in the world for him. Turning towards the door, he couldn't help the half hope that rose within him, that this whole thing had been nothing more than a dream, that she would come dancing in through the doors any moment now to berate him for breaking another glass. Or even better yet, he would wake up soon to see her laying next to him on the couch, her hypnotizing emerald eyes fixed onto the ending of a movie that she had somehow convinced him to watch, despite it being some boring chick flick that Dolly or Bo had lent her. Either one of those would be preferable, even if he would have to spend the next hour collecting all the shard of glass or spend his break at the station watching the last half of the movie, for then at least she would still be there, helping him vacuum or gushing over the non-existent plot in one of her girlier moments.
In both of those situations, their argument had never gotten out of control, he had never spoken those words that had driven her away, and she had never left. But if the throbbing behind his eyes had anything to say about it, all of those things had happened, combining together to become the greatest mistake of his life.
Pushing himself away from the table, Buzz sighed as he shakily made his way to the bedroom, his heart heavy as his mind accepted what the commander had said as true. He was a space ranger, they were in the middle of a war, and he couldn't afford for his attention to be distracted from the bigger picture. He had been training his entire life for this, to fight against the evil Emperor Zurg and free all those he has suppressed during his reign. His training had beat into him those truths, had made them part of who he was, and there was nothing he could do to change that. In fact, his very relationship with her had broken just about every rule he had ever heard of, and probably some he hadn't. The High Commander had let him off easy with a week off duty, and, perhaps, it would be better for all of them if he took the man's advice and did just forget about her.
But lying there in bed, staring at the ceiling above him, it wasn't the regulations or the war that was racing through his alcohol lubricated mind. It was instead focused, with startling clarity, upon the picture of Jessie he had found inside his bedside table the other day, the joy and love that reflected out of her eyes striking a nerve within his heart. Setting down the picture, Buzz ran his hand through his hair as he stood up, his mind finally made up.
Screw the rules. He was getting his girlfriend back.
Racing back to the kitchen, his feet sliding against the slick tile, Buzz fumbled with the phone before pulling it off the hook, his hand shaking slightly as he dialed the number into the phone. Vaguely, he was aware of his cell phone ringing somewhere within the house, an oddity at a quarter after one in the morning, though his curiosity was quickly pushed aside as he was sent to her voicemail.
"Hey howdy hey! Jessie here. Sorry for missing your call and all, but I promise to get right back to ya as soon as I get it. Y'all know what to do!"
Pushing away the lump that has formed within his throat, Buzz forced himself to take a calming breath as the phone beeped, the slight humming informing him that the phone was recording his every moment of silence.
"Hey Jessie. It's me. Buzz."
Shaking his head to clear the sudden fog, Buzz forced himself to go on, his heart hammering a tattoo against his chest as he prepared to make his move.
"Jessie...I'm sorry. I'm sorry for everything. I know you said that you never wanted to see me again, but I need to talk to you. I want to make things right between us, no matter what the consequences. Truthfully, I don't really care anymore. About Star Command, about Zurg, about any of those things. I've finally realized that the thing I really care about is you."
Pausing for a moment, Buzz swallowed thickly before continuing with the message, his voice hoarse as he finished making the greatest gamble of his life.
"I'll be a Rex's Cafe tomorrow afternoon. I understand if you don't show up, but I really want to try and make things better between us. Jess, it took me a week of doing nothing but getting drunk and trying to forget for me to realize just how much you mean to me. For me to realize how much I need you. Like I said, I understand if, after everything I said to you, if you don't come. And after tomorrow, if you don't show up, I'll leave you alone for good. Just, please Jess. I love you."
Returning the phone to its charger, Buzz wondered for a moment whether he should take a look at who it was that had called his cell phone, perhaps give them a call back and explain why he hadn't taken their call. But looking at himself in the mirror and the mess on the floor, Buzz decided that a clean kitchen, shower, and shave ranked much higher on his priorities list. Making his way towards the closet, wobbling slightly as he extracted the broom, he promised himself that he would take a look tomorrow, would call back whoever it had been and explain everything. Yes, tomorrow would be the day to take care of his mess of a life.
After he figured out whether Jessica Pride, the love of his life, still wanted to be in it.