A/N Caution: Some parts of this story may be pretty cheesy! I wanted to mix my own modern-day style writing with the old-fashioned Woody's Round-Up, thus some pretty ridiculous happenings! (You all have no idea how many times I watched that part of Toy Story 2, just to make sure I could include all the components of the show that were shown in the movie.) A/N
The clouds rumbled up above while the stormy winds rustled branches. The streets were deserted. If one would listen carefully, all they would hear was the creaking of the pub doors. If one had incredibly good hearing, they might be able to hear the mumbling voices emitting from the pub or maybe the schoolhouse up on the hill. There was indeed an afternoon storm approaching, but for the most part the town that the sheriff called home was rather quiet.
Woody sat in the sheriff's office, humming a tune while he read the weekly newspaper. On his desk was a cup of coffee that had gone cold, some legal paperwork, and various pictures of his friends and family. If someone was clever enough to look inside his desk drawers, they would find a stash of secret snacks, hidden away for long nights of work.
In the distance, a loud bell rang. The sheriff instantly knew it was three in the afternoon, for that was when school let out. And sure enough, a few moments later he heard the stomping feet of running children through his open door. He didn't dare take a peek outside, for the dust that was disturbed from the running children did no good for his year-round allergies. So everyday the sheriff would sit inside his office while the rowdy children ran by, and sometimes he even wondered what it would be like to have children of his own.
After the noise and dust clouds subsided, Woody went outside and began strolling leisurely through the streets, waving at the various townspeople that needed his help every now and again. This time of the day was usually when people would call upon him so Woody always kept an eye out for any sign of danger.
Suddenly, a group of animals (this group consisting of squirrels, badgers, foxes, and the like), ran up and stopped in front of Woody. The squeaked in various pitches and tones, which would've been completely incoherent to any bystander, but to Woody the noises were as normal as everyday words. In fact, to him, they did sound like words.
"Bullseye's been missing all day?" Woody asked, disbelieving. One of the badgers nodded. "Jessie must be having a heart attack."
Jessie had been the one who had taught Woody to truly listen to the forest animals, thus getting information from them. At first the sheriff had been a little reluctant (it was a bit childish after all), but the cowgirl insisted the animals knew all the town gossip. Woody eventually gave in, after considering that with the animal's information, he could come to the rescue quicker.
After thanking his furry friends, Woody ran towards the town's one and only stable. Bullseye was usually the only horse kept in the stable; because the town was so small, most people had no need for horses.
"Jessie?" Woody called out, opening the aged wooden door, which squeaked even from his most gentlest touch. His boots made small crunches as he stepped on the hay, and towards the cowgirl who was crouching in one of the two stalls.
"Well, he left willingly." Jessie thought aloud, pointing at the hoof shaped indentations in the straw. "If he was taken against his own will, he would never have trotted out happily."
One would wonder how the cowgirl knew the distance apart from each mark meant the horse had trotted out of the barn. But the truth was, Jessie knew Bullseye in and out. If there was even one hair missing from his head, the cowgirl would know. She had observed him as a child, wishing that one day she would be able to ride him through the fields, and this is how she knew so much about him.
"Where do you think he went?" Woody asked, expecting a straight answer from her.
"I don't know!" Jessie exclaimed helplessly, "I checked at his favorite spot to drink from the river, and he wasn't there. I checked at the gold mine, but he wasn't with the Prospector. I even checked the streets and the field, but he wasn't wandering either!"
"Was he hungry? Maybe he went to go look for a snack." Woody suggested.
"No, I fed him just an hour ago. That's definitely not it." Jessie stood up and stroked her chin in thought.
Woody stood there silently, allowing Jessie some peace and quiet in order to think. The sheriff had no clue where the horse could be if he wasn't in any of the places that Jessie listed. And it wasn't possible that he ran away; he was always so happy. That meant that the horse had to be inside somewhere...
"Which buildings do you think Bullseye wouldn't fit in?" Jessie asked, obviously having the same thought Woody had just pondered.
"They would never let him inside the town hall, nor the school house. He's not in the police station, or the newspaper office, because I passed those on the way here." Woody listed.
"Bullseye wouldn't go into the pub; he hates the smell of beer." Jessie added.
"That leaves the general store." Woody said. Jessie quickly grabbed him by the arm and dragged him out of the stable. They ran all the way down main street (which was really only one of three short dirt roads in the town), and on the corner Jessie and Woody tumbled into the general store.
"Have you seen Bullseye?" Jessie asked hurriedly to the five shoppers and the storekeeper that were inside. All of them shook their heads slowly. Jessie frowned and plopped on the wooden step outside of the store sadly. Woody sat down beside her a moment later.
"We'll find him." he said comfortingly, and laid a hand on Jessie's arm.
"There's no where else he could be." the cowgirl said sadly.
"Don't give up just yet." Woody said with a slight smile.
Suddenly there was a loud crash, which sounded like it had come from underneath the ground. Jessie and Woody hopped up, both ready to deal with whatever action was about to head their way. The general store owner walked out onto the wooden porch, wiping his brow with a dirty rag. He was a tall and slender man with a black, bushy mustache.
"Good Lord! What was that?" the man yelled.
"Do you have a cellar of sorts?" Woody asked peering around the edge of the building.
"I have my own cheese cellar." the store keeper said slowly, and pointed towards the side opposite that Woody had been looking at. "You don't think something's stealing my cheese?"
"Well something's down there. And I don't think it's as small as a rat." Woody said slowly as he walked around the edge of the building. "Let's go check it out."
The sheriff's shoulders drooped in disappointment when he found the cellar to be locked securely.
"I'm glad you're taking precautions, but do you think you could unlock this for me?" Woody asked the storekeeper. The man nodded, more beads of sweat forming on his forehead, and slowly reached into his pocket.
"I-I can't find the key." he stuttered, digging through his pockets more nervously by the second.
"Great." Woody mumbled as he scrutinized the lock. Nope, this was definitely not a door he could kick down. Maybe if he had a hammer, he could break the lock...
"Outta the way!" the Prospector yelled from about twenty feet down the road. He began running, much faster than anyone had ever seen him run, and he came at the cheese cellar door at full speed. Giant dust clouds surrounded the Prospector, as if they were a force field protecting him. Using much force, he pulled back the pick ax in his hand, and with one great motion, swung down on the lock. The door gave a groan, and the lock plunked to the ground with a delightful plunk.
"That's how you open a lock." the aged man said with a nod.
"Thanks, Prospector!" Jessie exclaimed. Woody gave his thanks too, and opened the door carefully.
As the sheriff opened the door, there was this silence. Everyone was ready to jump back and run away at any sign of a vicious beast. But what was inside the cellar was neither vicious, nor was it a beast. (Well, maybe to the cheese it was a vicious beast.) All four of them frowned in confusion. It took Jessie and Woody a moment to understand the situation, but when they finally realized what had happened, the two started laughing. The Prospector soon joined in, while the storekeeper stood with his arms crossed and a frown upon his face.
"Bullseye!" Jessie yelled. She entered the cellar with Woody close behind. The cowgirl threw an arm over the horse's neck.
There Bullseye sat with rosy, guilty cheeks. These cheeks were puffed out, for they were filled with cheese. Small crumbs were scattered across Bulleye's mouth, and his eyes were upright as though he were smiling widely. (Bullseye actually was trying to smile, but the cheese did not allow him to do so completely.)
"But what about my cheese?" the storekeeper asked angrily.
"You don't want him to give it back, do you?" Jessie asked.
A/N Woo-Hoo! I just realized this is my tenth story! *puts on a sparkly party hat* Who ever reviews gets a slice of tenth story celebration cake! And yes, I will take any suggestions you all have. :) I'd love to hear from you all! A/N