They cheat at board games. For a while no one caught on to them but they have signals that Smackle caught on to one day while they were playing pictionary.
Riley has put a ban on the two of them being partners for anything anymore because she got tired of losing.
On friday nights they have “Zaya time”.
Once they went to a house party that was put on by someone at another high school. They pretended to be a couple named Ellie and Finn and kept pretending to get insanely offended when people would tell them that they never noticed them at school.
Another time during “Zaya time” they went and sang karaoke. Zay chose “Man I feel like a woman” and Maya chose “Hit me with your best shot.” They both ended up in the finals competition that night where they had to battle eachother. Zay won 100$ and they split the money.
When Zay’s fish died Maya came over to his apartment and they had a funeral service standing over the toilet before flushing him. She brought flowers and Zay read a super melodramatic poem.
A few days later they went to the pet store and got Beta fish. They named them “dumb” and “dumber”.
Their handshake has gotten so long that Lucas usually gets bored and walks away in the middle of it.
One time they were paired up for a project in science class where they had to dissect a frog. Maya got SUPER into it. Zay threw up and was complaining the entire time while Maya was waving different organs in front of him. She never let him live that down.
Maya went with him to a ballet class once because she wanted to prove to him that anyone could dance. Thirty minutes into the dance class she was drenched in sweat and had to sit in the corner. She couldn’t walk the next morning because she was so sore.
Zay was over at Maya’s one time and found her sketch book under her bed where she had been sketching pictures of the group. She found him looking through it and flipped out on him for going through her personal things. They didn’t talk for a week.
The only reason why they started talking again was because Maya had a bologna sandwich at lunch and Zay had a chicken salad one. She wanted to trade, so she started speaking to him again.
They have friendship bracelets that Zay made at summer camp freshman year. It’s not as powerful as ring power, but Zay likes to pretend that it is. Riley gets super annoyed.
Maya usually calls him when she’s drunk. He wont give her a lecture unless it’s one about how he should’ve been invited.
Whenever Lucas is getting on her nerves she makes Zay yell at him.
Zay isn’t at all afraid of Maya. Everyone else is sort of intimidated by her sometimes, but if she’s bossing him around he just throws her over his shoulder and keeps her there until she promises to chill out.
She hates it and makes her body limp so that all of her weight is on him.
Neither of them is the “parent” friend, so when they are drinking without the rest of the group they get into really crazy situations.
One night their junior they shared an entire bottle of vodka in her room and they decided to buy bus tickets to Boston to go see a concert. They rode a greyhound six hours to Boston and didn’t have a place to sleep, so they slept outside the venue on the sidewalk.
Zay is the only person who will tell Maya if her outfit looks bad.
They attempt to have study sessions together but it usually just ends up with them ordering pizza and playing mario kart all night.
When Zay starts dating Smackle Maya is the one to initiate it. She texted Smackle and said “Hey do you like Zay?” Smackle replied that she did and Maya sent back, “Okay well he likes you too so you two should go out. This Friday night. Wear something cute.”
Zay and Riley are the only two people in the world that Maya will allow to watch the Notebook ten hundred times without complaining about it.
They graduate highschool and get accepted into NYU. Zay for dance, Maya for art. They get an apartment with Lucas and Farkle, who also get into schools in the city, and the four of them live together for the entire four years of college.
There’s a lot in the pilot which, in retrospect, SCREAMS “what you think is happening is not what’s really happening and/or is not the ONLY thing happening” in terms of the bigger picture, but I’ll get to all of it in other posts. Right now, I wanna talk about “destiny” in TV romance, GM 1961, and the three “meet-cutes” in the cold open of the pilot.
In the pilot for ‘Friends’ we see Ross talking about the dissolution of his marriage. Just then? Enter Rachel in a wedding dress, having just pulled a runaway bride on Barry. The scene shows us that Ross and Rachel are gonna be a Thing without telling us. They set them up as being “destined” for each other with almost nothing but a visual. It’s mentioned in the pilot, but later on in the series, they show us how bad Ross’s thing for Rachel was back in the day, doubling up on the destiny. (He’s her lobster!) The initial scene in the pilot isn’t a “meet cute” per se, because they already know each other, but they’re kind of meeting again for the first time and it’s the moment that shows us Ross and Rachel are gonna be a romance without explicitly saying so. It’s organic.
Now, the Girl Meets World pilot.
Maya spots a cute boy on the subway. She points him out to Riley, who also looks over. They both smile at him, he smiles back. Maya decides to use him as a “lesson” for Riley. She marches over, and from the second she swings around the grab bar, Lucas is riveted. His eyes are fixed on her from the moment she says “hi.” He tracks her with his head, follows her movements and gives her his undivided attention during their ten second “relationship.” And he keeps looking back at her once she’s gone. He never glances back at the other girl while Maya is talking to him. Maya doesn’t really notice this, because he’s just a boy on the subway and she was on a mission for Riley, not herself. But Lucas? He’s dumbstruck, smiling tremulously, staring, in awe, and then terribly confused (and disappointed?) when she “breaks up” with him and walks away. From “Hi! I’m Maya!” forward, it’s an organic meet-cute which plays out in full, involving just the two of them with no interruptions or looks at other people. It’s the beginning of their story. I wouldn’t be shocked if one or both of them could still quote the whole thing back, tbh.
And then Maya pushes Riley onto Lucas’s lap. Lucas catches her and smiles, but he looks back at Maya as they speak. He doesn’t keep Riley in his lap, he moves her onto the other seat. And then Evelyn Rand (who is not what she seems, but we don’t know that yet) shows up. Lucas offers to get up. Maybe he was gonna go use the grab bar over by the blonde, but maybe he was too scared for that and he’d have just stood up where he was. The point is that he was willing to get up and leave the moment—albeit that’s partly because he’s a Nice Boy™. Either way, this attempt at an orchestrated meet-cute by Maya fails. Riley doesn’t have Lucas’s full attention, and Rand cuts the moment off, sending Riley away.
So Maya tries again. This time, Lucas doesn’t even catch Riley. He doesn’t even try. His body language suggests he may even be actively avoiding it, which is interesting, but maybe he just wasn’t paying attention. She lands on Rand’s lap, and has to be deposited onto Lucas with the line “it’s for you.” (And again, it’s notable that Rand isn’t what she seems, because really, neither is this moment). He grabs Riley’s knee for a second (to steady them?) and then pulls his arm away, curling it into his body. Riley and Lucas just can’t seem to get started here. Maya attempts TWICE to orchestrate a meet-cute for them, but it just doesn’t flow. It’s not organic. It’s not natural. Lucas isn’t riveted by her (although he’s definitely intrigued by both girls, albeit in different ways in terms of reaction). Riley isn’t even being herself even though she’s taken with Lucas’s looks for sure. The second attempt at a Rilucas meet-cute is *literally* forced, on two levels: by Maya’s push and by Evelyn depositing Riley on Lucas’s lap after he makes no move to catch her. She tells us “it’s for you!” but is that really what we were SHOWN? Is that really the bigger picture here?
And before all this goes down, Riley makes a big deal of not being herself and of applying kiwi lip gloss, which we later find out is a call back to Angela, kiwi mango lip gloss, the purse, and “falling for a concept.” In the BMW episode where the whole thing went down, Cory actually tells Shawn that the “purse girl” (“subway boy!”) he’s built up in his head isn’t real. What’s real is him and Topanga, really LOOKING at each other. And we later find out that as much as they loved and cared about each other, Angela and Shawn didn’t make it. But that’s okay! (According to the show, anyway.) They still care about and are there for each other. Just like Riley and Lucas are gonna be. (And of course, Shawn and Angela are NOT sibling-like.)
So that’s the meet-cutes.
Later, we get 1961, which, kind of like the ‘Friends’ prom video, doubles up on the destiny. Lucas and Maya’s great-grandparents clearly had something between them, but they missed out on it. Ditto for Riley & Farkle’s great-grandparents.
So for Lucas and Maya, we have the organic meet-cute, plus the “destiny” element added in 1961. (Even though they punk us a bit in the classroom by having Lucas and Riley react to their great-grandparents meeting with that “whoa” moment, while pretty much glossing over the fact that Farkle and Maya were “there” too. At the time, it kinda made your brain dismiss the chemistry between May/Merlin and Rosie/Ginsberg because the whoa moment makes you go, “oh yeah, it’s SUPPOSED to be Riley and Lucas.” But then they cut to Lucas and Maya instead of CORY after Riley says “she [Rosie] gave my dad his wife.” I see you, show. 👀)
Farkle and Riley have the destiny thing from 1961, not to mention the fact that they are biological legacy characters—all four of their parents are people we knew before (although we don’t find this out until later). But how did Riley and Farkle meet? Well, we’re about to find out in Bay Window. And I just BET YOU ANYTHING it’ll be an organic meet-cute for Riley and Farkle, and a less organic one for Farkle and Maya, a reversal of the pilot if you will. Something like that.
Because it’s becoming VERY clear as of late that Riley’s romance arc actually began long before she met Lucas. He’s ultimately a romantic false lead in the story of Riarkle, even if Riley and Lucas’s mutual crush was genuine (and just as a side note, speaking French/Paris was tied to romantic false leads TWICE in BMW which is probably not a coincidence…but I digress).
The library wasn’t the beginning of the WHOLE story. It was just the beginning of Riley & Lucas’s friendship/slight romance (there’s a reason the librarian said “not that one!” to the romance novel…). Lucas was a detour from Riley’s true romantic destiny: Farkle. I mean, in production/timeline order, after two HEAVY Riarkle episodes (Popular & FC) that didn’t even include Lucas…she literally mounts and rides AWAY from Farkle Nation on her princess fantasy horsey ride with Lucas. So yeah, she took a risk that changed her destiny…but only for a while. The world (life) knows what it’s doing.
In fiction like this: destiny is destiny. You can put it off, you can take a detour, but you can’t escape it. And in the world of “people change people” and “let what we had make you ready for something,” the Rilucas relationship was just a step on the way, a detour to change both Lucas and Riley so they’d be “ready for what’s next.”
And Lucas’s story? Well, so far, his story actually began with Maya and their organic meet-cute. It didn’t begin in the library. It didn’t begin with Riley. And 1961 gives Lucas and Maya a “destiny” sheen as well. And I wouldn’t be surprised if we later on discover that there’s another element of “destiny” to Lucaya that hasn’t been revealed yet, probably tying into the BMW universe somehow…
(And I wouldn’t be shocked if they later ret-conned Farkle and Riley as having really first met as babies, somehow. That’s totally the kind of thing these writers would pull.)
But my point is this: Jacobs often ruminates on what’s “real.” The Lucaya meet-cute was organic and real. The Rilucas meet-cute was inorganic and quite literally forced—and it basically failed. Twice. Because Riley never struck Lucas dumb in either meet-cute. He wasn’t in awe. Nah. He looked back at the first girl, the “blonde beauty” who riveted him and terrified him from the second he met her. And really, he never stopped looking back at her, even after he tried to “get her out of the country” (aka his head) in GM Friendship. Riley and Lucas wasn’t the only thing happening in the pilot. Like Farkle, Lucas liked both girls. As Farkle said, “How could you not?”
But unlike Farkle, Lucas never promised to love them both the same. Also unlike Farkle at the time, he had a real shot. And when he had a chance with one of the girls, he took it (albeit with prodding from Maya).
The thing about crushes is that no matter how real they are, they ain’t nothing if you can’t move past them. Riley and Lucas moved past their crush, but they didn’t move into a relationship. They didn’t even move into a proper holding pattern. Their crush was real, their mutual admiration is real, but instead of growing into a romance, it grew into a strong friendship. They just haven’t fully realized or dealt with this yet because they’ve never properly talked about it in a constructive, conclusive way.
In terms of romance in the Jacobs universe, Riarkle and Lucaya have been “realer” than the Riley/Lucas romance. Which isn’t to say the Rilucas crushes/feelings were FAKE. It’s just to say that that’s where it stops for them romantically, no matter how much Riley and Lucas like each other. They’re friends. That’s what they’ve always been. It’s why they don’t work as a couple, because it’s not who they are and it never really was. Their meet-cutes were forced, inorganic, and not internally motivated…as is also the case with many of their other “couple” milestones.
The “real” meet-cute, with the unbroken eye contact, the oblivious tornado of a girl, and the dumbstruck boy? That happened between Maya and Lucas. They’ve never been (just) friends, “not really.” That was (part of) the bigger picture. Riley and Lucas are a story within a story, not the WHOLE story. And if you only focus on Riley and Lucas in terms of romance because that’s what we were “told” to do, you miss the bigger picture.
Next up: Farkle, the pilot, character tropes…and taking things for granted.
so ive been limited to my family’s desktop for a while, and that wasnt an issue until my dad started using it again. hes upset about literally anything i use it for except browsing the internet, and i have next to no privacy on here. id like to raise money for a laptop as soon as i can. actual commission info under the read more
I need a Riarkle/Lucaya AU where Lucas and Maya used to date but had a bad breakup and because of that haven’t talked in years. and I need them to come together again because Riley and Farkle break up. I need them to conspire to get their best friends back together together, I need them to plot and scheme and slowly fall back in love in the process, I need them to realize why they lovedeach other again, why they still love each other because of their best friends. (I also need Riley and Farkle to know exactly what’s going on the whole time but still end up going along with it, going on the illy disguised dates Lucas and Maya organize, and pretending to be surprised when they end up trapped in a closet together, but still end up coming back together anyways)
I need a Riarkle/Lucaya AU where they’re all teachers. Where Lucas and Farkle make the move from High School teaching to elementary, where Farkle is instantly enchanted by Riley Matthews, the kindergarten teacher with a semi permanent streak of purple paint over the bridge of her pretty nose. I need Farkle to take advantage of every opportunity to be near Riley, to beg and plead with Lucas to come to Riley’s friend’s gallery opening with him ‘because it would be weird to go by himself’. I need Lucas to be completely amused by the whole thing because he’s never seen Farkle like this, because his dorky best friend has finally found a girl who lights up his world and it’s endearing. I need Lucas to be wondering if he’ll ever find the same thing right when he sees Maya and knows he has.
I need a Riarkle/Lucaya AU where they’re all strangers in the same apartment. I need Farkle to be an inventor working from home who never leaves his apartment, who no one in the building has ever really seen. But I need him to have a cat (because his mother insists its not healthy to have no relationships outside of the robots he creates) that hates him and is always escaping out the window to Riley’s place on the floor bellow when Farkle isn’t looking. I need Riley to slowly begin to look forward to the times she opens her door to see the disheveled, tired, scientist seeking his Siamese, I need her to see that cat crawling through her window and instantly start smoothing down her hair and looking for cuter pajamas. I need Lucas and Maya to both be caught in awkward positions when the fire alarm goes off, to be standing shivering outside the building when they meet in nothing but their respective grumpy cat night gown and boxer shorts. I need Maya to tease Lucas about the ducks printed on his shorts and I need Lucas be the gentlemen he is and walk Maya to her door only to realize that they’re neighbors. I need Lucas to come out of his apartment and encounter a pizza guy six times before he puts his foot down and shows up at Maya’s door with a home cooked meal and buckets of charm. I need Farkle to walk by Lucas’ apartment every time he’s on his way to Riley’s (to pick up his cat of course, not just to see her, to hear her charming laugh, to look into her warm brown eyes, because that would be ridiculous) and hear the same unsightly clanking without fail from the Texans apartment. I need Lucas to come home from work one day, tired and sore, only to scream when he finds Farkle sitting in front of his radiator with a full set of tools, screw driver clenched between his teeth (And I need Maya to come rushing into the apartment, baseball bat in hand, ready to protect the Texas boy from the intruder). I need Riley and Maya to meet down in the laundry room because some older woman sees fit to bully Riley out of her washing machine, I need Maya to come to her defense with such fierceness and snark that the two instantly can never forget each other. I need them all to get locked in the buildings basement of all things, I need them to come together in a dark damp room where Farkle falls asleep on Riley’s shoulder, his hateful cat purring between them, and Maya schools Lucas’ ass at go fish. I need them to come together slowly likely magnets unfailingly attracted to one another.
I need a Riarkle/Lucaya Reality Show AUs where it’s literally the Bachelor and Riley and Maya are competing for Lucas’ heart, except not really. Because honestly Maya’s only there for moral support, it’s Riley who’s supposed to be the one after Lucas, supposed to be the one falling in love. And she does. But with the wrong person. I need Riley to fall for the dork behind the camera, to be the only one who asks Farkle how he is when he comes in to shoot cameos and be the one person who will always see passed the clunky equipment and wave at him. I need her to spend most of her time in single shots making faces to make him smile when he’s editing, or speaking in terrible accents just to make him laugh behind the camera. And I need Maya, skeptical, sarcastic Maya, to be the one to get the first impression rose, the one to get the first date and be completely confused by it. I need her to confront Lucas, headstrong and frustrated, and slowly see him for who he really is. I need her to be one of the only ones laughing at his lame jokes on cocktail nights and be the first one he goes to talk to on any group date. I need Lucas to get halfway through the show and call it all off, because he’s found the girl he wants to be with and he finds no point in making everyone else stick around. I want them to decide to date first, to let their relationship grow despite the pressures of the audience because they enjoy being with each other and a ring is not going to make that any more real than it already is.
I need a Riarkle/Lucaya fake relationship AU where Riley and Farkle are getting married and Maya is single. I need her to panic about seeing her ex boyfriend Josh (who’s happily engaged to Jasmine) at the wedding and at the last minute convince Lucas to pose as her date to the event. I need the entire Matthews, Hart, Friar, and Minkus clan to be thrilled that the two are dating, raving about how they never quite thought of the two of them together but now that they see them together, how they work, they couldn’t imagine either of them with anyone else. I need Lucas and Maya to have to awkwardly kiss in front of everyone they know to keep up the act, I want the two to feel something, be completely taken aback by it. I need Riarkle to be going through wedding preparations in the background, Riley dragging Maya to a dress fitting while Farkle drags Lucas to what has to be the hundredth floral appointment. (I need Riley to be a bit of a Bridezilla, to be kind but still stressed, to be cautious of every superstition in the book while Farkle just abides to her wishes with fond amusement) I need Rilaya at Riley’s bachelorette party and Lucas and Farkle and Zay together for Farkle’s bachelor shindig, and I need both parties to take a moment to tell Lucas and Maya how happy they are that the two found each other, how they can see how happy they make each other. I need Lucas and Maya to question everything, to look at each other differently, to be angsty and confused because they think they’re the only ones feeling this way. And I need Riarkle’s wedding to go wrong, I need everything that could go bad to go bad, I need it to rain and for the flowers to get delayed and for the cake to collide with the floor. And I need Riarkle to be separate through all of it, Riley tearfully panicking over her ripped wedding dress with Maya and Farkle pinching the bridge of his bleeding nose with Lucas, I need them both to wonder if this is a sign, for them to question it all too, for them to doubt for just a moment before they see each other. I need them to both meet in the church’s bathroom of all things, both trying to avoid each other to preserve any luck they have left, both completely frazzled and frustrated and worried until they make eye contact and it all goes away. I need Farkle to be overwhelmed with how beautiful Riley is in her ripped dress and I need Riley to gentle kiss the bridge of Farkle’s bruised nose and I need them to both start huffing chuckles of disbelief at how crazy it all got, about how there doves they arranged are flying free through the reception hall and how their officiant apparently mixed their location up with a nearby circus. I need a panicked Lucas and Maya to find the two of them laughing hysterically on the bathroom floor, arms circled around one another and all troubles melted away. I need the two to have their wedding out in the middle of the rain, for their officiant to be a newly certified Cory Matthews, for the two to press rain soaked foreheads together before they kiss, hands interlocked tightly in between them. And I need for Lucas and Maya to come together after the ceremony, for them to argue about who gets to speak first, about who’s announcement to the other is more urgent, and I need Maya to get frustrated half way through, to pull Lucas Friar in by the lapels of his suit and kiss him senseless because actions speak louder than words right. (And I desperately need Riley giggling in her wedding dress as her new husband feeds her ice cream cake in the small Dairy Queen nearby, I need the whole wedding party in suits, ties, and formal dresses ordering blizzards to replace the ruined cake)
I need Riarkle/Lucaya AUs guys, I need the two relationships to be interlaced, I need them to go hand and hand, I need them in different universes and timelines and freaking planets and I really hope I’m not the only one.