Title: You Push, Pull, And Struggle With The Knot
Pairing: Matt/Julie & Tim/Julie friendship
Summary: Matt doesn't like the friendship that blooms between Tim and Julie while he's living with the Taylors.
Notes: Thanks to my lovely and talented bets fleurlb. Okay I'm a diehard Tulie shipper and this my first time writing in Matt's POV so please bare with me.
He knows he shouldn't care as much as he does, he knows they are broken up and she can do whatever she wants. Besides he's with Carlotta now and he's happy or at least that's what he tells himself. He's getting laid on a regular basis. Not even he is pious enough to complain, but all the things he knows goes out the window soon enough when he hears through Landry who heard through Tyra that Tim is staying with the Taylors.
He's not even sure anything is or will ever happen between Tim and Julie, but he doesn't want it too. Mainly because well, he's Tim and he sleeps with thirty year olds and she's Julie and he's pretty sure he still loves her. Carlotta or no Carlotta.
"Matt your grandmother wants to know if you want to play Go Fish with us?" Carlotta says, the wispy way she speaks always makes him smile. "Yeah be right there." He tosses the football he's holding to the floor and decides he really should stop thinking so much.
He shuffles his cards around and wait for his grandma to make her play. Thoughts of Julie still tug at him. It's like she's suddenly a mind reader."You'll never guess what I heard from Martha Digby at the market yesterday."
"What's that?" he replies.
"Do you have any eights? The Taylors took in that Riggins boy isn't that nice? The boy needs a little guidance it'll be good for him. How's Miss Julie? I miss that girl." She rambles on. Matt had been wondering if she knew about him and Carlotta and with her not so innocent, seemingly innocent question he knows she disapproves and as Carlotta looks on uncomfortably awaiting his answer, he wonders not for the fist time what the fuck he's doing.
"She's fine I guess, don't really keep up with her. She's dating a life guard or something." he hands over his eight of hearts to distract her from her line of thought.
Tim's with the Taylors a week when the rumors start moving along like a bad game of telephone. Matt's personal favorite is that Gracie Belle is actually Tim's child. His least favorite is less rumor and more fact in that Tim and Julie are a little more than friendly.
The first time he sees it for himself is at lunch. Julie walks by their lunch table, filled to the brim with football players. She grabs Tim's hair loosely pulling his head back to catch his eye.
"Mom wants me to remind you to do your French home work…" He grunts a response.
"And wash your hair…. That's from me not her." Julie's grin takes the sting from the words.
"Kiss my ass Taylor." he smirks. "Only in your dreams, Tim." she smiles, walking away.
"If you only knew." Tim calls after her with a chuckle that makes Matt's gut turn. He doesn't like this, not at all, but what can he do?
The things that bother him most are things that are really insignificant but totally not. The way Tim lopes carelessly down the hall, arm looped casually around Julie's shoulders as they the thing that made him feel stupid, immature and just plain pissed off.
He's at the gas station about to pull in and fill up Landry's station wagon. Julie is standing against Tim's truck, watching the dial on the gas pump move. "
Taylor." Tim calls. She turns as he sends a bag of peanut butter M&Ms flying through the air to her. She nips them out of the air easily, gifting Tim with a smile. Matt fights the urge to childishly growl.
"You remembered," she says, rolls his eyes, the expression making him seem young for once. "
If I can remember football plays, I can remember your favorite candy." He's not supposed to know cute little personal details about Julie and Matt is most certainly not supposed to think they look good together from a strictly artist's point of view. Disgusted with the whole thing, he leaves without filling up Landry's car
To distract himself from things, he takes Carlotta on a date to the Panther Pit and promptly decides god hates him as the two people he's trying to forget sit in the front window. Shyly smiling at one another, obviously comfortable in each other's presence. He watches as Tim tilts his head at her and Julie worries the pink straw in her drink, hair tipping into her eyes. Longing hits him keenly before he can think it over, Carlotta pulls him into a kiss . There's a whole awkward introduction and Julie scurries off looking uncomfortable and hurt. Tim's hand on the small of her back as they exit makes him want to punch him in face. He realizes in that moment that he's probably with Carlotta for the wrong reasons and that being with someone because you are grateful for their help isn't good enough.
The rumor mill is going at full speed when he hears from Julie's overly chatty friend Lois that supposedly Tim got kicked out by Coach Taylor for sleeping with Julie. He rolls his eyes and shrugs. "Aren't you breaking some weird friend code by talking to me?"
"Probably. Oh well just thought you should know." and off the odd girl flounces.
He tries to ignore the locker room talk about Julie and Tim, but it seriously irks him to hear the guys talk about Julie as though she were some slutty rally girl. Tim remains stonily silent, not even bothering to defend Julie's he sees them talking to each other, Julie leaning on the fence and he sees red. He strides over to them.
"You know Julie I never took you for a stupid girl, until now that is." She looks at as though he'd slapped her.
"Excuse me?" she fairly shrieks. "The whole school is saying you slept with him."
"And it's your business why?" Tim says in an entirely to calm way with his jaw working and Matt's pretty sure he's about to get his ass kicked, but he can't seem to make himself care.
"Because I love her and you're you."
"Tim just…" Julie pleads but he waves her off with a shake of his head.
"That's pretty rich coming from you, Seven," the way he says it is biting and cold. "Mister I sleep with nurse gauttie hottie."
"Excuse me?" is all the comeback that Matt can manage.
" I'm to tell you this once, Seven, and then you will leave it alone." Somehow they where suddenly standing nose to nose and Tim continued in a low voice. "I helped her out of a tight spot and that's it and I won't regret it just cause it ruffles your feathers."
"Like you helped Lyla?" He steps forward easily and shoves him on to his ass. Julie jumps over the fence landing, lightly on her feet rushes between them, shoving Tim backward.
"Come on, Tim it's not worth it…let it go please?" he lets her pull him away.
She looks back over her shoulder at Matt, her gaze a mix of recrimination and something he can't place.
Landry walks over to him. "What the hell was that?" He can only shake his head. Sometimes he feels like he's pushing and pulling his way through his relationship with Julie and he can't ever get it really right. "I just don't like whatever that is," he tells Landry, nodding his head toward Tim and Julie.
Coach is looking on, seeming as frustrated as Matt feels. He's sure he'll run wind sprints tomorrow for starting a fight, but he can't find the energy to give a shit. He hurries to the showers. After all, Grandma is waiting to hear about his day. Maybe if he tells her how crappy it was, she will share her Snackwells, he thinks with a sad tired smile.