It's the end of the world, Claire tells herself so she doesn't have to feel guilty about what she's doing. She's pushed him away for so long. Avoided him. Hated him. But the world's ending and she lets herself slip.

And fall.

She thinks she used to hate him but now she's not so sure because it feels so good when Topher's fingers slip beneath her panties. She can't remember why she hates him anymore; and for some reason it doesn't matter. The showers in the Dollhouse stopped working long ago, so they're both covered in dirt and her hair is matted. She can't believe that he still wants her.

But then again, she suspects that he'd always wanted her. Sometimes, she used to look up and see him watching her, his eyes filled with longing and desire. When they'd pass each other he'd brush against her. But back then, she had always shied away from him in disgust. Now she couldn't get close enough to him.

"Claire," he breathes, his voice thick with desire. She closes her eyes tight and refuses to look at him, worried that if she does, her lost hatred will return. That can't happen because she needs this. She needs this here and now.

They're in the server room, where Topher used to sleep. The machinery that lines the walls no longer whirs, and almost every surface is covered in dust, yet his old cot still remains. The world is ending and here they are in the server room where this whole nightmare began. This endless dance. This precarious balance between hatred and need.

"Topher," she moans, and quickly swallows the rest of her plea. She's desperate and she needs him but she still refuses to let him know that. She doesn't know if she wants this to be over already or if she wants this moment to last forever.

He pulls his jeans down over his legs and throws them on the floor, before sliding the hem of her dress up over her thighs with shaking hands. He's going too slow and she sighs, frustrated, and roughly tugs her panties down to her ankles before removing his boxers in the same way. His face hovers inches above hers as he supports himself on his forearms and she can feel his ragged breaths against her skin.

She looks into his eyes as he slowly pushes into her and it steals her breath away. She clenches her jaw and digs her nails into his back leaving crescent shaped cuts. She can still remember so long ago in this very same server room. She realizes that while that night was the beginning, this night may well be the end.

They were both so messed up and the chaos of their relationship has only broken them further. She'd had gentle relationships, like her one with Boyd. The mild kisses were tender but never fulfilling. What she has with Topher isn't gentle or tender but it makes her feel more alive than she ever has. Makes her feel like she's real, not just a broken doll.

Although they're joined together intimately, Topher still looks at her like he's thinking of someone else, and she wonders if he's thinking of Bennett or maybe the person she once was, before she was Claire, before she was even Whiskey. She has always suspected he knew her before she came to the Dollhouse, but she's never asked. She's Claire now and she doesn't want to know about the person she once was. She just doesn't want to know.

They move together. Their bodies meshing perfectly. Their breaths coming in short desperate gasps. She rakes her nails down his back and she's not sure whether she's really trying to hurt him or not. He moans none the less and arches against her, crying out her name.

She feels a wave of disgust wash over her and rise in her throat like bile. It hurts and she can't breathe. She forces the revulsion down and is immediately overwhelmed by desire, pleasure and need. She's so conflicted, that for a moment she thinks she might burst into tears. After all, not all the pain she's feeling is physical.

Afterwards, she turns away from him while she dresses. He's seen all of her body already but it doesn't seem to make a difference. She can hear the noise of the others down on the main floor and Adelle's commanding tones make her flinch. She knows that no matter how hard she tries to hide it, Adelle will immediately see right through her and will know exactly what happened between her and Topher.

The last few hours felt so good, which is partly why she now feels even more revolted at the very thought of what she's done. What they've done.

"Claire," Topher murmurs and lays a hand softly on her shoulder. She jerks away from his touch, unable to stand his proximity; but she still feels guilty when she hears his miserable sigh. She turns to face him again, all too aware of the tears streaking down her cheeks. He looks at her, his concern for her evident, but she has no patience left for his pity.

"No one can know," she whispers as she turns to leave.

She knows the end is here.