Freeze frame from video shot by Linden Hudson. (amateur photographer, cheap cameras, photo fluorescent lights, just having fun)

Who is Linden Hudson?

CLASSICBANDS DOT COM said: “According to former roadie David Blayney in his book SHARP DRESSED MEN: sound engineer Linden Hudson co-wrote much of the material on the ZZ Top ELIMINATOR album.” (end quote)

(ZZ Top never opted to give Linden credit, which would have been THE decent thing to do. It would have helped Linden’s career as well. The band and management worked ruthlessly to take FULL credit for the hugely successful album which Linden had spent a good deal of time working on. Linden works daily to tell this story. Also, the band did not opt to pay Linden, they worked to keep all the money and they treated Linden like dirt. It was abuse. Linden launched a limited lawsuit, brought about using his limited resources which brought limited results and took years. No one should treat the co-writer of their most successful album like this. It’s just deeply fucked up.)
(see full story at Linden’s website: www.linden-hudson.com/birth-of-the-zz-top-eliminator-album )
Hear the original ZZ Top ELIMINATOR writing/rehearsal tapes made by Linden Hudson and Billy Gibbons at: www.flickr.com/photos/152350852@N02/35711891332/in/photol…
LICKLIBRARY DOT COM (2013 interview) ZZ TOP’S BILLY GIBBONS SAID: “the Eliminator sessions in 1983 were guided largely by another one of our associates, Linden Hudson, a gifted engineer, during the development of those compositions.” (end quote) (Gibbons admits this after 30 years, but offers Linden no apology or reparations for lack of credit/royalties)
MUSICRADAR DOT COM (2013 interview with ZZ Top’s guitarist Billy Gibbons broke 30 years of silence about Linden Hudson introducing synthesizers into ZZ Top’s sound.) Gibbons said: “This was a really interesting turning point. We had befriended somebody who would become an influential associate, a guy named Linden Hudson. He was a gifted songwriter and had production skills that were leading the pack at times. He brought some elements to the forefront that helped reshape what ZZ Top were doing, starting in the studio and eventually to the live stage. Linden had no fear and was eager to experiment in ways that would frighten most bands. But we followed suit, and the synthesizers started to show up on record.” (once again, there was no apology from ZZ Top or Billy Gibbons after this revelation).
TEXAS MONTHLY MAGAZINE (Dec 1996, By Joe Nick Patoski): "Linden Hudson floated the notion that the ideal dance music had 124 beats per minute; then he and Gibbons conceived, wrote, and recorded what amounted to a rough draft of an album before the band had set foot inside Ardent Studios."
FROM THE BOOK: SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP (By David Blayney) : "Probably the most dramatic development in ZZ Top recording approaches came about as Eliminator was constructed. What had gone on before evolutionary; this change was revolutionary. ZZ Top got what amounted to a new bandsman (Linden) for the album, unknown to the world at large and at first even to Dusty and Frank."
CNET DOT COM: (question posed to ZZ Top): Sound engineer Linden Hudson was described as a high-tech music teacher on your highly successful "Eliminator" album. How much did the band experiment with electronic instruments prior to that album?
THE HOUSTON CHRONICLE, MARCH 2018: "Eliminator" had a tremendous impact on us and the people who listen to us," says ZZ Top’s bass player. Common band lore points to production engineer Linden Hudson suggesting that 120 beats per minute was the perfect rock tempo, or "the people’s tempo" as it came to be known.
FROM THE BOOK: SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP by David Blayney: (page 227): "…the song LEGS Linden Hudson introduced the pumping synthesizer effect."
(Search Linden Hudson in the various ZZ Top Wikipedia pages which are related to the ELIMINATOR album and you will find bits about Linden. Also the main ZZ Top Wikipedia page mentions Linden. He’s mentioned in at least 7 ZZ Top related Wikipedia pages.)
FROM THE BOOK: SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP By David Blayney: "Linden found himself in the position of being Billy’s (Billy Gibbons, ZZ Top guitarist) closest collaborator on Eliminator. In fact, he wound up spending more time on the album than anybody except Billy. While the two of them spent day after day in the studio, they were mostly alone with the equipment and the ideas."
FROM THE BOOK: BEER DRINKERS & HELL RAISERS: A ZZ TOP GUIDE (By Neil Daniels, released 2014): "Hudson reportedly had a significant role to play during the planning stages of the release (ELIMINATOR)."
FROM THE BOOK: ZZ TOP – BAD AND WORLDWIDE (ROLLING STONE PRESS, WRITTEN BY DEBORAH FROST): "Linden was always doing computer studies. It was something that fascinated him, like studio technology. He thought he might understand the components of popular songs better if he fed certain data into his computer. It might help him understand what hits (song releases) of any given period share. He first found out about speed; all the songs he studied deviated no more than one beat from 120 beats per minute. Billy immediately started to write some songs with 120 beats per minute. Linden helped out with a couple, like UNDER PRESSURE and SHARP DRESSED MAN. Someone had to help Billy out. Dusty and Frank didn’t even like to rehearse much. Their studio absence wasn’t really a problem though. The bass and drum parts were easily played with a synthesizer or Linn drum machine." (end quote)
FROM THE BOOK: "SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP" BY DAVID BLAYNEY: "After his quantitative revelations, Linden informally but instantly became ZZ Top’s rehearsal hall theoretician, producer, and engineer." (end quote)
FROM THE BOOK: "ZZ TOP – BAD AND WORLDWIDE" (ROLLING STONE PRESS, BY DEBORAH FROST): "With the release of their ninth album, ELIMINATOR, in 1983, these hairy, unlikely rock heroes had become a pop phenomenon. This had something to do with the discoveries of a young preproduction engineer (Linden Hudson) whose contributions, like those of many associated with the band over the years, were never acknowledged."
FROM THE BOOK: ​SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP (By DAVID BLAYNEY) : "The integral position Linden occupied in the process of building El​iminator was demonstrated eloquently in the case of song Under Pressure. Billy and Linden, the studio wizards, did the whole song all in one afternoon without either the bass player or drummer even knowing it had been written and recorded on a demo tape. Linden synthesized the bass and drums and helped write the lyrics; Billy did the guitars and vocals."
FROM THE BOOK: "TRES HOMBRES – THE STORY OF ZZ TOP" BY DAVID SINCLAIR (Writer for the Times Of London): "Linden Hudson, the engineer/producer who lived at Beard’s house (ZZ’s drummer) had drawn their attention to the possibilities of the new recording technology and specifically to the charms of the straight drumming pattern, as used on a programmed drum machine. On ELIMINATOR ZZ Top unveiled a simple new musical combination that cracked open a vast worldwide market.
FROM THE BOOK: "SHARP DRESS MEN – ZZ TOP" BY DAVID BLAYNEY: "ELIMINATOR went on to become a multi-platinum album, just as Linden had predicted when he and Billy were setting up the 124-beat tempos and arranging all the material. Rolling Stone eventually picked the album as number 39 out of the top 100 of the 80’s. Linden Hudson in a fair world shoud have had his name all over ELIMINATOR and gotten the just compensation he deserved. Instead he got ostracized."
FROM THE BOOK: ​SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP by DAVID BLAYNEY: "He (Linden) went back with the boys to 1970 when he was working as a radio disc jocky aliased Jack Smack. He was emcee for a show ZZ did around that time, and even sang an encore tune with the band, perhaps the only person ever to have that honor." (side note: this was ZZ Top’s very first show).
FROM THE BOOK: "SHARP DRESSED MEN – ZZ TOP" BY DAVID BLAYNEY: "Linden remained at Frank’s (ZZ Top drummer) place as ZZ’s live-in engineer throughout the whole period of ELIMINATOR rehearsals, and was like one of the family… as he (Linden) worked at the controls day after day, watching the album (ELIMINATOR) take shape, his hopes for a big step forward in his production career undoubtably soared. ELIMINATOR marked the first time that ZZ Top was able to rehearse an entire album with the recording studio gadgetry that Billy so loved. With Linden Hudson around all the time, it also was the first time the band could write, rehearse, and record with someone who knew the men and the machines. ZZ Top was free to go musically crazy, but also musically crazy like a fox. Linden made that possible too."
FROM THE BOOK "ZZ TOP – BAD AND WORLDWIDE" (ROLLING STONE PRESS, BY DEBORAH FROST, WRITER FOR ROLLING STONE MAGAZINE): "… SHARP DRESSED MAN which employed Hudson’s 120 beat-per-minute theory. The feel, the enthusiasm, the snappy beat and crisp clean sound propelled ELIMINATOR into the ears and hearts of 5 million people who previously could have cared less about the boogie band of RIO GRANDE MUD."
ULTIMATECLASSICROCK DOT COM: "This new melding of styles was encouraged by Hudson, who served as a kind of pre-producer for ​EL LOCO … … Hudson helped construct ZZ Top drummer Frank Beard’s home studio, and had lived with him for a time. That led to these initial sessions, and then a closer collaboration on 1983’s ​ELIMINATOR.
FIREDOGLAKE DOT COM: "I like Billy Gibbons’ guitar tone quite a lot, but I lost all respect for them after reading how badly they fucked over Linden Hudson (the guy who was the brains behind their move to include synthesizers and co-wrote most of their career-defining Eliminator record)."
EMAIL FROM A ZZ TOP FAN TO LINDEN (One Of Many): "I write you today about broken hearts, one is mine and one is for you. I have been a ZZ Top fan since I was 6 years old. I purchased ELIMINATOR vinyl from Caldors in Connecticut with the $20 my grandma gave me for my birthday. I will spare the #1 fan epic saga of tee shirts, harassing Noreen at the fan club via phone weekly for years, over 40 shows attended. Posters, non stop conversation about the time I have spent idolizing this band, but more Billy G, as he has seemed to break free of the Lone Wolf shackles and it became more clear this was his baby. In baseball I was Don Mattingly’s #1 fan, Hershel Walker in football, Billy Gibbons in music. What do these individuals have in common? They were role models. Not a DUI, not a spousal abuse, not a drug overdose, not a cheater. Until I read your web page. I read Blayney’s book around 1992 or so, I was in middle school and I was familiar with your name for a long time. I didn’t realize you suffered so greatly or that your involvement was so significant. It pains me to learn my idol not only cheated but did something so wrong to another being. I now know this is where tall tales and fun loving bullshit and poor morals and ethics are distinguished and where I would no longer consider myself to look up to Billy. I love to joke and I love credit but I have always prided myself on ethics and principles… I hold them dear. I wanted to say, the snippet of UNDER PRESSURE you played sounded very new wave and I may like it more than the finished product. Well that’s all. You have reached ZZ Top’s biggest fan and I can let others know. Bummer. Cheers and good luck. James."​

Posted by lindenhud1 on 2018-02-27 23:44:59

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So i’ve been writing a little bit again. I’m not sure how much free time you may have, but unless you’re a fast reader, don’t begin this story (unfinished btw) unless you have enough time! 😀
My inspiration comes from Peter Pan. Only because I love that movie to BITS. (:


Okay, so I wasn’t long into my run home when my iPod fell out of my pocket and the town Pretty-boy picked it up. Well, thank god he did because I wouldn’t have noticed, and probably died without it.
Pretty-boy chased after me for a while, shouting my name. But I ignored him, knowing he was an obnoxious guy who was suuuuper vain. “Dawn!!” He shouted continuously, making a fool of himself and dragging attention from the sidewalks. “I’ve got your iPod!” Pretty-boy shouted louder, which got my attention. I slid my legs along the ground, which cause me to slide to a stop.
I stood, without brushing the dust off my legs from the ground, and walked towards Pretty-boy. He held it out for me and I snatched it out of his hands. “Thanks.” I mumbled and began to walk away.
“Hey!” Pretty-boy said, grabbing my hand. “Do you want to go out sometime? You know, like…” His white-blonde hair swished across his face, as he said this, “Up to the lookout?” He made his brown eyes sparkle.
“No.” I said and walked away again.
Pretty-boy still had a firm grasp on my hand, so I didn’t get very far. “Do you even know what I asked? Or were you too pre-occupied by my sheer beautifulness?” He asked grinning. His teeth flashed white and girls on the sidewalk swooned.
“I know what you said. And I do not want to go to the look out with you.” I yanked my hand from in his grasp and started to walk away, but before he was out of earshot, I turned my torso around half-way and said, “Ever.” then continued down the dusty road in a light jog.
As soon as I got home, I was greeted warming with a sweet hug from Evangeline, my best friend who is completely gorgeous with nothing to compare. Her long, flowing blonde hair falls lightly around her shoulders and her pale skin is wrapped around a slim, delicate body. She has very little blemishes and always has a drop dead stunning smile when she’s around me. “Dawn!” Her honey-sweet voice said with extreme happiness. “I have been waiting for you to get home! I want to go through the mirror already!” She said in the sweetest little voice, but with a small tinge of impatience.
I hugged Evangeline tight and nodded. “I’m so ready-”
“Why do you smell like…” Evangeline smelt my shoulder, inhaling my scent. “Jared?” Evangeline’s senses were heightened so much, that you can’t get away with smoking, she’d smell it even a week later. Everyone’s senses are there waiting to be heightened, but no body actually realises. Evangeline and I are the only two that we know of in this village that have heightened their senses. I don’t usually notice things when I have my mind set on something though, so that’s why I didn’t notice when I dropped my iPod.
“I dropped my iPod accidentally, and he picked it up…” I paused. “Then he asked to take me up the look out with him.”
Evangeline’s face wrinkled up. “You said no, of course?”
I nodded. “Can we please go to Evercrest now?” I begged.
Evangeline nodded and took my hand, skipping down the long hall in our oversized house towards the dumbwaiter. We both crawled into the small space, luckily we were both small enough to fit into it together. I closed the door tightly and pressed the up button. With a few clicks and a rusty, broken sounding thud, the tiny lift began to move upwards slowly. “I hate that I can’t go to see Darius when you’re at work.” Evangeline complained, fixing her hair in the limited space that we had.
I sighed. She always complained about this. “You know what I’m going to say.” She nudged me softly on my arm.
“I can’t go because I’m not capable of walking to the castle myself. I can’t help if some guy decides to kidnap me.” She teased with a grin. The dumbwaiter rumbled to a stop at the attic.
When we’d first moved here, the dumbwaiter was plastered over, but once, as children, we’d been running around the house as aeroplanes. Evangeline’s fingernail caught on a piece of wallpaper and ripped it clean off. Since our parents had left Katie, our older sister, in charge for a week as they went on holiday (and unfortunately never came back), we didn’t get in trouble for ripping the wall paper. Also, since the plaster was so soft, we were curious what the hollow sound behind it was. So, as the curious children we were, we got a fork each and dug in the wall. We hadn’t gone in the dumbwaiter at first. Katie said it might break. But when she’d tested it with bricks, she found out it was safe. Evangeline and I explored the attic for quite some time.
I opened the small door and squeezed myself out onto the landing. Evangeline followed, but more graciously. I smiled up at her when she put her hand out to help me up. I took her hand carefully and she lifted me up. “Thanks.” I mumbled and walked across the cold, familiar wooden floor towards the great big mirror that stood against the far wall. The faded old sheet that had covered it lay in a heap on the floor next to it. I looked back to find Evangeline close at my heels, waiting for me to start my short run. You’d expect the mirror to crack and smash all over the floor, cutting my skin deep, creating stains on my clothes. But instead, when I run through the mirror, it simply absorbs me and takes me to the island of Evercrest.
Evercrest has been visited by many other people, other than Evangeline and myself. We’ve met them in the Castle village. There are all sorts of creatures living on the colossal island. Including in the darkest part of the island, Neverlies. The demons who were once warriors of Evercrest that have turned to Hades (apparently, he’d changed his name from Harrison to Hades, to make himself sound more evil). Neverlies is a dark forest to the north of Evercrest and has a dark scar running through the earth, where somewhere in that scar, or abyss, is Hades castle. Evercrest has a main castle, and a couple of other small camps around the island where the travellers stay during night. Evangeline and I have only travelled to one other camp, and explored almost every inch of the castle village. The prison is somewhere we don’t particularly want to visit.

As the glittery specks at the side of my vision faded, I found myself standing in a large pile of clothes in the middle of Cameron’s bedroom. Cameron is our Mirror keeper. He’s kept it for so long, longer than anyone’s lifespan. You see, Evercrest is also a place where anything can happen. Meaning, Cameron has chosen to never grow up. So he’s still a young, 14 year old child who lives at the inn on the outside of the castle. He works on the farm next door to the inn and pays the innkeeper forty Kamas a week to stay (which he’s said is 20 Kamas over the normal price). I quickly jumped out of the smell heap and onto the only spot of floor I could see. Cameron was sitting quietly at his desk reading a book on pirates.
“Sorry about the mess. I’ll clean it tomorrow.” He said without taking his attention from the messy words.
I frowned. “You’ve got to be kidding! You said that yesterday!”
Cameron tore his bright blue eyes from the pages and glared at me. “Don’t push me, child.” He said in his grown up voice. (He was actually 308 years old). “I’ll tidy it when I’m ready.”
“Aw! Poo!” Evangeline said when stood in a bowl of mouldy rice. “That’s disgusting!”
Cameron stood up and pulled a paper towel from the dispenser he’d built. “That’s my latest work on booby traps.” He grinned.
“That’s too bad you don’t act your real age.” I mumbled and helped Evangeline remove mould from her shoe. “I thought you’d think up something good, like a bucket of slim-”
“Don’t give him ideas!” Evangeline said slapping her hand over my mouth.
I smiled at Cameron. “Well, we’re going to go to the castle. Be back by sunrise. Don’t lock your window, please.” I said, making my way to the window.
“Do I ever lock it?” He said sniffing the paper towel that Evangeline handed back to him. Evangeline scrunched up her face and followed me to the window, which we then climbed out of and landed softly on the roof. We stepped lightly along the slanted roof and stepped out over the small gap to the tree.
Landing lightly on the ground behind me, Evangeline noticed the boy before me. “Hell, Dawn. That kid’s watching you.” She whispered in my ear.
I looked around the street until I met eyes with the cutest boy I’d ever seen. The boys hair was sandy blonde and sat in messy, rough curls that hung down in his eyes, but not hiding the blue that sparkled. His skin was tanned, and he had very few freckles placed across his nose and under his eyes. When he waved at me, I could feel my cheeks go pink. I decided it’d be polite to wave back, so I did. Then, what surprised me the most. He disappeared.
Evangeline put her hand on my shoulder. “Gosh, where do you think he went?”
I shrugged, both to say I don’t know and to get her hand off my shoulder. “Let’s go find Darius and Erik.” I linked my arm with hers and started to skip down the busy market street towards the castle gates.
“Ello girlies!” An old man said holding out a dark, gross looking water bottle to us. “Like to buy some frog spit? Good for your teeth you know!” Evangeline cringed away from his grubby fingers and we continued down the street. We stopped at the east gates, smiling at the guards.
“Name.” The large officer said looking up to the huge elephant, of which her name is Lela. Elephants have incredible memory, just like on earth, so they use her as a sort of computer to register our names and tell if we’re safe to let inside the castle gates or not. It took us the total of three days for them to allow us in the gates. Cameron helped us, of course, by putting in a few good words to the guards.
“Evangeline and Dawn Corris, Sir.” Evangeline stated, loud enough for Lela to hear her.
Lela stomped her foot twice, which we’d figured was her way of saying that it was safe to let us in. The officer nodded at the guards and the opened the small door at the base of the gates for us. We wandered through, to the colourful streets of Evercrest Castle Village.
Immediately, Darius came bounding up to Evangeline like an oversized puppy and gave her a huge, surprise hug. “Oh Eva, I missed you! Did you get in the gates okay?” He said in a deep, husky voice that was so sexy, it was impossible for me to get over.
“Darius, I’m not an idiot, I’m not going to get kidnapped again, okay? Honestly.” Evangeline said, gripping tightly around her mountain sized man. Darius is indeed, Evangeline’s boyfriend, but I prefer to call him her man, because one; it annoys her, and two; it sounds so much more possessive, which gives the other girls a clue that he’s taken. Yes, he was super attractive, probably one of the most gorgeous warriors of Evercrest. His incredibly cute face consisted of two beautiful brown eyes, one manly nose and luscious lips. When Darius kissed Evangeline, she ended up dazed slightly, and Darius always caught her in his large arms. Darius’ hair was dark brown, with an adorable super-man curl that hung down from his forehead.
Erik walked slowly toward us with a large grin on his face. Obviously, he’d been with Summer. His girlfriend. Erik was also one of the hunkiest warriors. But, of course, Summer had already got her paws on him. I didn’t mind so much. I never believe in love. It’s simply lust. Anyway, Erik looked also, mountain-like. He stood tall over me and his light brown arms were as thick as my waist (which was quite easy to do, I’m not big on eating). Erik could pick me up with one arm and Evangeline in the other arm. His eyes were like… well. Like no other. I’d gotten lost once, on our last adventure to the darker streets of the castle village. Not a good idea, so I stopped looking at his eyes all together. His hair, was always as soft as a cloud (which apparently, you could also touch if you were a Neverlies witch), brown and curly, hanging down below his ears, which made him all that more cute.
Erik hugged me quickly and I was momentarily crushed between branches. “Hey there Blanca.” (apparently he knew Mexican-Spanish) He said with a grin that made girls swoon. I’d gotten used to it, and now that I think of Erik like a brother, I don’t think about how cute he is (usually).
“Erik.” I whispered, trying to catch my breath. Erik released his grip on me and I fell limp. “Thanks,” I said gasping for air. “Do you try to suffocate Summer too?” I teased.
He gasped dramatically, “Oh gosh no! I wouldn’t dream of… well. Okay maybe that one time I accidentally dreamt of it…” he joked. “You know, I only want to say hello by giving you a hug. And sometimes my happy-hugs can be a little too much for mere mortals, such as yourself.” Erik laughed, much like Darius’ laugh, it was deep and made it seem although the ground was shaking.
“Hey! Erik!” Evangeline said reaching out for him with one hand (the other holding Darius’ tight. Evangeline’s hand looked like an infants hand compared to Darius’ hand. Erik hugged Evangeline and picked her up in his breath-taking bear-hug. Evangeline, of course, was used to it thanks to Darius.
“Oh! Is that fresh bread I smell? I’m so hungry!” Darius said digging into his little satchel strapped to his side, next to his sword sheath. I heard a few Kamas move about in his pocket, and he grinned. “Hey, Eva. Does fresh bread sound good for dinner?” He asked taking her hand again and pulling her towards the bakery stand down the street. (Darius had taught her the whole ‘heighten your senses’ thing)
I watched them run down the long brick-paved street and then looked up at Erik when they disappeared. “Shall we?” I asked holding my right-angle arm out for him to link with and skip down the street after Evangeline and Darius.
“We shall!” He said and linked his arm with mine. We didn’t actually skip, we simply walked and enjoyed the stalls covered in beautiful jewellery and dresses. “Is something bothering you?” Erik asked, obviously he’s been in my mind. That’s one of his ‘anything can happen’ choices. He can read peoples minds when they let him. I keep my feelings open, but my thoughts closed for him. His reading minds thing is great for battle strategies. Erik can also project his thoughts to other minds around him.
I contemplated telling him about the boy who stared at me, then disappeared and decided to open that thought to him. “Hold on.” I said concentrating on allowing that thought into my ‘Erik only’ barrier. Other people had chosen reading minds also, and most had gone mad from not training their gift right. I showed the image of the boy, the cute boy, standing across the road from Evangeline and I to Erik, who gasped in return. “What?” I asked. “What is it? Who is he?” I panicked.
“Well. He’s Hades archer.” Erik said glumly. Other towns people frowned around us when he said ‘Hades’. “His name is Skylar. His ‘anything’ is to never miss his mark, when arching, and also teleportation. I think that he’s also chosen to never grow old. Much like everyone else in Evercrest.” He explained, I felt him taking another look at the small video clip I played in my mind. “Yep. That’s Skylar.” He confirmed.
“I wonder what he wants.” I said out loud.
Erik laughed. “Well, obviously by the way he was watching you, he wants you.” I felt extremely uncomfortable with him saying that. I didn’t exactly want Skylar to want me. Erik figured that out without me having to say. “I’m sorry. Perhaps you should stay at the Warriors Hut. We can take care of you if you help the staff to take care of us. Skylar wont get you there. Evangeline can stay too.”
“That sounds lovely, but who’s to feed Holmes and Watson?” I asked, worrying about our cats on earth, rather than an evil archer that wants me for only God knows what.
Erik laughed again. “I shall accompany you to the mirror every day, morning and night, to feed your much loved felines.” He said slowing his pace as we arrived at the bakery stall, where Evangeline hung of Darius’ arm in the long line. “So you’ll stay with us then?” Practically begging.
I nodded and half-smiled. I was still worried. No way I wanted to be shot with an arrow -ever- or taken away by this boy.
Erik squeezed my arm. “It’ll be okay.” We’d found a seat just past the Bakery stall and sat at it, spreading out as much as we could to save two more seats. “How is work going for you?” He asked, changing the subject, realising it still made me uncomfortable.
“It’s dreadful. I come home smelling like cheese.” I frowned.
Erik smiled, sweetly. “I could get you a much more pleasant job here in Evercrest village.” He was always like this. Nice to everyone he met. Not just, sexy, strong and funny. But also popular and loveable too. Everyone liked Erik, even the other men who’s girlfriends or wives thought he was absolutely gorgeous. “Any time you need one, I’ll get you one. It’ll probably be close to the warriors, we can’t have travellers being kidnapped again.” He smirked, and as soon as Evangeline was in his sight, he pretty much wiped it off his face in half a second.
“Ham and cheese for you, Dawn. Beef for Erik.” Darius said placing my bread roll down softly on the table and tossing the other roll at Erik. “You owe me two Kamas.” He said to Erik, and not me.
“Thanks Chico.” Erik said unwrapping the roll slowly, hoping not to drop even the smallest piece of meat. It’s true that the meat here is incredibly divine, so it’s a super waste if you drop some on the ground. “Evangeline. How would you feel about staying here in Evercrest village for a while, at the Warriors Hut. We’ve got problems with Hades, which is not very safe for you to be wandering back and forth between the mirror and us alone.” Erik spoke to Darius for the last part of his sentence, rather than Evangeline. I had the feeling he was throwing his thoughts on Skylar to Darius’ mind, only because Darius looked at me for a split second, then back to Erik.
Evangeline smiled wide. “Oh that would be lovely!” She said with so much enthusiasm, it made me quite sick. No, I’m not always a positive person and don’t usually make a big deal out of things. I’m more… a dark person with a mind like a labyrinth. Difficult to get to and always getting lost in my own mind. You could call me a conundrum, or a mysterious person. But that just makes me sound weird.
“That would indeed, be a very smart idea, since Hades is up to no good again. We’ll have to keep a close eye on you two, perhaps even take you out on the job. Like you’re our consent.” Darius smiled down at Evangeline, who kissed him on the chin.
“Well, I guess that settles it. You’re staying at the Hut.” Erik said finishing off his roll in one last, stuff-it-all-in-your-mouth bite.
I realised I hadn’t touched my roll, of course, I didn’t expect him to buy me one. I wasn’t very hungry in the first place. Erik had already started eyeing it. I nodded and pushed it toward him.
“Make that four Kamas, Erik.” Darius frowned. “Why don’t you ever eat anything, Dawn?” I knew they worried for me, but I never had a big stomach and hardly ate anything. I usually would only drink water.
“Not hungry.” I shrugged, skipping the full explanation.
Evangeline sighed. “She’s a mission. Even Carey couldn’t get her to eat much.” Carey is our older sister, who left us last year to marry a farmer in the town over. She always knew we could make it on our own.
Erik finished my roll quickly and smiled. “Doesn’t matter, she eats a little, at least. Which means that she wont die anytime soon.”
Unless I get shot by that Skylar kid. I thought out loud, so that Erik could hear.
He glared at me. “That wont happen.” He mouthed and then stood up. “We’ll sort out where these two are going to sleep.” Erik told Darius.
Evangeline giggled and nuzzled herself closer into Darius’ chest. “I know where I’m going to sleep.”
I smiled. “No silly business, right?”
Both, Evangeline and Darius said nothing. But I knew Evangeline wasn’t a slut, and we’d promised each other that we wouldn’t lose our virginity until we were married to the most incredible person.
Erik chuckled beside me. I looked up at him and saw that he was watching a few kids who were playing in the street. One boy wore a pirates hat and handled a wooden sword like it was a snake. The other boy was battling him, dressed in a crown and had a plastic, more civilised sword.
“We should go. The bats will be out soon.” Darius said, laughing along with Erik also. I stood, looking like a midget next to Erik. Darius had already helped Evangeline up and was twenty metres down the street, hand in hand.
Erik began to walk in big strides after them, and made me hand to walk really fast to keep up. “Slow down! I’m not as fast as you.” I said reaching out for his arm.
Erik stopped quickly, turned and picked me up in his arms, then threw me around him so that I would hang on his back. I felt slightly like a rag doll. “How’s this?” He asked, with an obvious smile to his voice. Erik started running, and knowing he was a Warrior, I knew what was coming next. He gained speed easily, and then jumped up, onto the rooves of the stalls, bouncing along each one, until he had to jump up, to the house rooves.
The Warriors Hut is protected, which meant you had to get there the hard way sometimes. What Darius was doing, I have no idea. But Erik and I would definitely beat them to the Hut. Erik jumped, out over the street, aiming for the houses across from us. Of course, he made it, with me gripping on tight. I’m going to die. I thought out loud. Erik reached up to take hold of my hand and held it tight.
The run to the Hut was short, and soon we were standing on the large platform outside of the Hut. You see, the Hut was conveniently built on the side of the inner castle walls, around half way up (which was roughly two-hundred metres off ground level). It stuck out of the large brick like a Lego piece put on the wall wrong. The platform was there for the warriors to land on when they came home to rest. There were many more Huts placed around the walls, and there were many, many more Warriors. The Huts exterior was incredibly beautiful. Most of the hut was made off Maple tree, as Darius had told me. There were lanterns placed evenly around the edges of the wooden platform, and a few vines growing around the safety fence with beautiful blue flowers growing off the vines.
Erik opened the huge, heavy wooden door with ‘Oscar’ Scrawled onto it (for the kinetic alphabet). The inside of the Hut smelt like men and was filled with laughter, talking and other hunky Warriors the size of mountains. A few other Warriors greeted Erik by taking his forearm (like a handshake, but instead of gripping their hand, you grip their forearm and shake). Other Warriors looked at me, winked and carried on with their business.
“Hey, Erik. Who’s this?” A young girl said, dressed in a large flower-like dress. Her long, wavy dirt coloured hair was braided in several spots, and flowers were spread out through it. Her face had tattoos that swirled and grew along her face, around the edges of her eyes and down her jaw line, disappearing around her neck and down her back. Her grass-green eyes watched me with curiosity.
Erik put his arm around my shoulders. “This is Dawn. She’s a traveller and we think that Hades is after her.” I was frustrated that Erik didn’t tell me who she was, and I suppose he got the hint. “Dawn, this is Aphrodite. She’s a pixie who cooks for us. While you’ll be staying, you’ll be well acquainted with her.”
I nodded at the pixie. “Nice to meet you.” I said quietly. Aren’t pixies supposed to be thumb-sized? I thought.
Aphrodite has chosen as an ‘anything’ to be able to morph. It’s very useful. Erik threw his thoughts to my mind and smiled down at Aphrodite.
“How do you know for sure, Hades is after her?” Aphrodite asked, ignoring my polite gesture.
Erik sighed and continued walking toward his room. “Well, Skylar was watching her.” He said moving out of the way of another large Warrior. “And you know what happens when Skylar’s seen in the village.”
“But this was outside the village.” I stated, getting an evil stare from Aphrodite.
“He was still in Evercrest. He belongs in Neverlies.” Aphrodite grew taller, and opened the door that had Erik’s name on it. She then shrunk again and walked through into the small room that consisted of a bed, desk and set of draws. The Warriors bedrooms were simple and not very private. Anything they wanted kept secret, was locked in the cupboard that was hidden behind their walls (Erik had told me this last time we had come to the Hut).
Erik dived onto his bed. “Well, I heard that he belongs here, in Evercrest. He was one of us…”
I sat on the chair, at the desk and folded my legs. “So he might just be back to visit his home town…” I suggested hopefully.
Aphrodite shook her head. “No, he’s evil. He would only come back to Evercrest to kill someone Hades asked him to…” she paused, looking glum. “Or to watch someone Hades wanted until he could take that person to Hades, in which case that person is you.”
I swallowed down the new information. I was either going to die, or be taken away by a cute archer. “I need sleep.” I said searching the room for anything that could take my attention away from the Skylar problem.
Erik leaned over the side of his bed and reached under it, pulling out a hammock, which he threw up into the air. It came to life and stretched either end of itself out to the walls, attaching without hooks. It simply clung to the walls. “You wont need a blanket. It’s a living item. You’ve heard of them?”
Yes. I have heard of them. I hadn’t seen one before. They we supposed to be rare. Living items are inanimate objects come to life by the first wizard. Only he knew the spell. He never passed it onto loved ones. The first wizard didn’t trust anyone. “Thank you.” I said, taking a step towards it. The living hammock grew a short ladder from its side and I climbed it carefully, trying to not break it….

Posted by EpicEffie on 2010-11-05 23:20:08

Tagged: , Peter , Pan , Peter Pan , Tink , Tinker , Bell , Tinker Bell , fairy , boy , dirty , story , long , wow , i never realised how many pages there was , make believe