Oh, The Places You'll Go

On a Cloudy Night You Can't See Stars

Notes: Written for Porn Battle--this was both surprising and unexpected. For airinshaw who is the only person I really expected to read it. Post 1x09 A Spy in the House of Love. Prompt--complex.

It's been a strange, strange day, and that's saying a lot; it's not like any day at the Dollhouse can be found under any dictionary definition of normal. Topher doesn't have anything to do right now, but it doesn't stop him doing it. He pokes at buttons and stares at screens and really, really doesn't think about the two Dominics--the soft body 'in the attic' and the hard copy in the archives. They did what they had to do, like they always do and it's not like Topher's not so used to living with shades of gray that he can't see in color any more. Still. Dominic. He shudders.

"Where's Ivy?"

"I sent her home. She was a bit freaked by the whole, you know, thing," says Topher, swiveling around on his chair to face the door. Boyd is leaning against it. He looks different somehow; something in his face sparking off a whole chain of recognition in Topher only he can't quite seem to get it. Emotions aren't his deal, though, so he lets it slide away.

"What can I do for you, manfriend?" he asks instead.

"I wanted to say thank you," says Boyd, taking a couple of steps into the room then stopping, stuffing his hands into his pockets. "For earlier."

"That was all Echo," says Topher, and, wow, that's the second time today he's given credit where it's due, and to a doll. It's possible he's coming down with something.

"No," says Boyd, "not that. For warning me. Of course, I'd've preferred it if you hadn't assumed I was a spy, but that was a courageous thing you did." He smiles. "Dumb, but courageous."

Whoa, and okay, Topher did not see the part where his whole body went into 'aw shucks' mode complete with desperate need for some dirt to toe coming. What the hell is wrong with him? He shrugs, keeping it light. "De nada, Boyd. It was-" And then he stops. Because he was going to say 'nothing' but they both know that's a lie. And he could say 'just a friend doing a solid'' but are they friends, really? So what's the answer? It occurs to Topher that he's behaving like some kind of pathetically short-lived creature in the headlights but he can't seem to do anything about it.

Boyd takes another step towards him and he's got that look on his face, the calm, impassive one he turns on Echo when she's empty. He's got other expressions, Topher's even seen him laugh on a couple of occasions, but there's something about this one. It's like holding onto the security blanket Topher definitely didn't have when he was a kid.

"Everything is going to be all right," says Boyd, moving closer.

"Now that you're here."

"Do you trust me?"

"With my life."

Topher slaps a hand over his mouth, horrified. The worst of it isn't that he is Topher Brink, for fuck's sake, not some mindless doll who dances to his whims and mind-blowing designs. No, the worst of it is that he means it. He actual facts means it and, crap, this is made of bad because he doesn't trust, he never trusts, and on the rare occasions when he has it's because he- And, oh god, he can't even bring himself to think it. Why is he such an asshole?

"I think there might be some hope for you," says Boyd with a wry almost-smile and Topher drops his head into his hands and groans.

"Kill me. Kill me now," he says. "Just do it quick and tell Ivy to keep her hands off my laser tag gear."

Boyd's right in front of him now, Topher can see his feet through the gaps between his fingers. He hears the rustle of clothes as Boyd bends down, and then there are words, warm against his ear.

"I don't want to kill you."

Topher's head snaps up and he stares at Boyd who stares back. And the thing that was off about him to begin with is there again and this whole thing is probably all kinds of wrong but Topher really doesn't get out much and it's not like he's renowned for giving a damn about consequences.

He says, "Okay," and lets Boyd pull him up.

Boyd grasps Topher's shoulders, turning him around and propelling him forward with a hand on his back towards the imprint room. Nice thinking, Topher concedes. Frosted glass and all.

"Take your clothes off," says Boyd.

"Um, what?"

"Take your clothes off, Topher."

"What, no preliminaries? Aren't you going to ask me to prom first?"

Boyd's only answer is the clink of a belt buckle and it's like the sound provokes some kind of Pavlovian response in Topher because his heart starts thumping harder and his pants become statistically significantly more uncomfortable.

He does what the man says.

"What now?" he asks, tucking his hands in his armpits even though the temperature in the Dollhouse is always regulated for perfect comfort. It's that or touch himself and he has a feeling Boyd would not approve.

"Get in the chair."

Topher whirls around and it's a sign of how freaked out he is that he barely notices Boyd's entirely naked body. "Are you kidding me?"

"It's just a chair, Topher. Don't you trust me?"

"With my life," says Topher again without thinking. Is this what it's like to be programmed? He steps backwards, fumbling for the chair. It's still reclined from earlier and Topher has to stop himself scrambling out and away the second his head touches the head rest and he's surrounded by the workings of the machine. They're dark now, but still, he's supposed to be on the outside looking in, not the inside looking out.

"Hook your legs over the arms," says Boyd and Topher stares up into nothing and does as he's told. It's a weird feeling. Not wrong, just...weird.

He hears the chair creak and settle a little and then a hand closes around his dick and there's a warm, wet finger where no finger has a right to be. But there must be some kind of pleasure principle at work here or something because Topher finds that he's rocking down on Boyd's finger as Boyd strokes up, cresting the head of Topher's dick with a thumb. He feels Boyd curl the finger inside him and he rocks again, head jerking and slamming back with force at the spasm of sheer goodness that hits him.

"More?" asks Boyd.

"More," agrees Topher. At least, he thinks he says more, it's possible he's lost higher motor function.

By the time Boyd is positioned over him, dick pressing slowly but inexorably against a hole that isn't entirely on board with Topher's desire to just get fucked already, Topher can barely remember his own name, let alone where he is. If he hadn't known he'd stuck glo-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling on one of his more boring days he would've sworn he'd seen real ones when he'd come, Boyd's fingers buried deep inside him.

In the dim light from the outside office he can see Boyd's face for the first time since he got into the chair. He recognizes the determined set on it and has to stop himself cheerleading, "Come on Boyd, you're the man. If you can't fuck me, no one can," because even Topher knows there's a time and a place.

"Do it," he says, instead and digs his fingers hard into Boyd's shoulders as Boyd pushes into him.

"Are you okay?" asks Boyd.

"Not gonna lie, it hurts like a bitch," says Topher, willing himself to relax. "I think maybe, if you moved?"

Boyd does move, then, just a fraction of an inch in and out and the burn changes to a throbbing ache. The weirdly good kind, like a bruise that you push at just to feel that it's there.

"That's good," Topher says. "You can do that more."

Boyd moves again, slow, slow, incremental movements until the stretch and burn becomes a sheet of cold fire wrapped around Topher's body shooting out sparks across his skin. He relaxes his grip on Boyd's shoulders, sliding his hands down his back to his ass, and, god, that's a whole new thing right there, with the solid curves and the muscles clenching and unclenching under Topher's hands. He rocks up, encouraging.

"Harder," he says, and Boyd obliges. The chair shakes and creaks underneath them; it was never meant for this kind of punishment. If it broke now, Topher isn't entirely sure he would care.

"Fuck me," he chants, as Boyd's strokes lengthen and speed up. "Fuckmefuckmefuckme."

"Am fucking you," pants Boyd between thrusts. "Gonna fuck you. In the chair. Where you. Fuck them all over." He freezes mid-thrust, staring down at Topher in almost panic. Topher's pretty sure he's got the exact same expression on his face.

"Do you hate me?" he blurts out.

Boyd lowers his forehead to Topher's chest. "No," he says. "No, I don't. And that's the problem, really."

Topher's hand comes up and he gingerly pets Boyd's head. "Is it Echo?"

Boyd's head jerks back up and his eyes glitter with the same expression Topher had seen earlier. And now he gets it, finally: it's loss.

"Yes," says Boyd. "And no. And maybe. She was my responsibility."

"And now everyone is."

Boyd nods. "I don't know what to do with that."

Topher is no good at this stuff. It's like an anti-talent. But this is a complex situation, comforting a guy who's halfway through fucking you so he figures he should at least try. "Everything is going to be all right," he says, with a hopeful inflection.

"Now that you're here?" Boyd's not exactly scornful, but he's not exactly not, either. This. This right here is why Topher doesn't do caring.

Except for when he does.

"Look, I should-" says Boyd, making moves to pull out.

Topher shrugs. "If you want to, man. I mean, I'm not going to take it the wrong way if you want to, you know. Finish."

Boyd stares at him for a second and then snorts, his whole upper body swaying with laughter. Topher smiles back reflexively. "What? I'm just being polite."

"You're something," says Boyd and then the smile is gone as quickly as it came. "I can't. I shouldn't have." He moves slowly and carefully but Topher still winces when he pulls out.

"Sorry," says Boyd. "I didn't want to hurt you."

Topher says quickly, "You didn't." He isn't sure either of them really knows what they're talking about.

He stares up at the stars on the ceiling long after Boyd has dressed and gone. He's a little sore and a lot naked but he doesn't want to move; it turns out the chair is a whole lot more comfortable than he'd thought.

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