• MUSIC FOCUS: Inspired by the music of Linkin Park.
  • ACTIVITY FOCUS: Write chapter 6 of your story!


What do these album covers have in common? Can you find any connections between them?

What's your favorite LP album artwork and why? : r/LinkinPark

Some thoughts from Reddit on the Linkin Park soldier:

“The cover artwork on Hybrid Theory was also a nod to their sound. Reflecting a mix of genres that would otherwise seem to be incongruous, the album cover depicts a standard bearing soldier with dragonfly wings. The soldier is sturdy and durable. The wings are soft and frail. The band saw this as an accurate reflection of their music, a mix of hard and soft. While their overall sound is “hard” metal, their lyrics are about “soft” topics, like emotional vulnerability and self-doubt.”

“The official story given out was that the Hybrid Theory soldier represented the hard and soft elements of the music, but the real meaning of a ‘winged soldier’ is one who has been nonmortally wounded in war. This soldier has been scarred on the emotional battleground of everyday life, but carries on regardless. This soldier represents strength, compassion and purpose, which was the meaning behind the tattoo on Chester’s left leg, the fire and passion symbolised by the dragon carrying him on his right.”

“Mike Shinoda, the rapper and keyboardist of the band, created the artwork. With a background in graphic design and a passion for hip hop-styled graffiti, he let both sides show on the album cover (arguably a hybrid of his personal artistic styles). The design of the soldier looks like it was spraypainted through a stencil. The wings added onto it are similar to the street art style of combining unlikely objects together in an ironic pairing, a la Banksy.”

r/LinkinPark - Can someone please explain the meaning/story behind this “flag carrier”?


Chapter 6: Empty Spaces

“What are you looking so happy about?” Josh asks me.

I’ve been in the kitchen long enough to pour my cereal, plus I’ve eaten a few mouthfuls, but only now is my brother acknowledging my presence. I look at him as he asks the question but immediately regret doing so. He talks with his mouth full and I can see his chewed-up cornflakes – some of them fly out in my direction.

“What are you looking so happy about?” I counter.

I know there’s no reason. My brother’s brain is full of empty spaces and he always has that goofy expression on his face. For a moment, he looks like he’s about to answer but then his attention is diverted by the television and he forgets about me altogether. Inwardly, I sigh. Only one year until he goes to university. Thank God they let any old doofus in these days.

I get back to the important business of thinking about the Faint December concert. Mum won’t want us going on the train, not if it means coming back late. She’ll drive us, though. I know she will.

As if I’ve wished her into the room, she enters the kitchen. She’s putting her crystal earrings in, the ones Dad gave her for Christmas a few months before he died. Watching Mum fix them into place, I remember the moment so clearly. She’d been so pleased with the gift before even opening it, as if she’d already known that it would be the last Christmas present she’d ever receive from him and that whatever was in the box would go on to have an indescribable significance. Of course, that couldn’t have been the case, but my memory of that moment is so vivid, it’s as if I can still see the tears glistening in her eyes. Mum catches me staring at her.

“What is it?” she wants to know.

The importance of my current mission means all other concerns vanish back into the hiding places they normally inhabit. I bounce over to Mum and put my arms around her middle. I squeeze her tight. She laughs.

“Careful, you’ll crease me.”

But I know she doesn’t mind.

“Mu-u-u-m,” I say, stretching out the central vowel in a way that makes it clear I want something.

She responds with an ambiguous, “Uh huh,” as if already preparing to turn me down flat.

She won’t say no to this, though. She can’t.

“Faint December are going to be playing in London.”

“Ri-i-i-ght,” Mum replies.

This time it’s her turn to stretch out the word’s middle syllable. She isn’t going to commit until she knows all the facts. I reel them out. She stops what she’s doing and pretends to weigh the situation up. I vibrate up and down on my tiptoes. Waiting her for to say something is a bit like that feeling of waiting for a teacher to tell you your exam result. You know you’ve passed. You revised hard and you hadn’t really struggled to answer the questions. Still, you can’t help but be nervous.

“I think we can probably put a plan together,” Mum says at last.

I’m relieved. This is a big moment. Only Josh could think to ruin it.

“Ooh, Faint December,” he says.

I can’t even be bothered to give him a withering look. This is the best morning ever. I finish my breakfast quickly, still standing as I scoop up the last few spoonfuls. I put the bowl and spoon in the dishwasher, run upstairs to grab my bag and then back downstairs. I do not want to be seen sprinting for the bus again.

As I’m leaving, Mum calls out.

“So, what’s the date of the concert?”

And as I say the date – March 24th – out loud, my hopes crumple.

How had I not realised? How could have I been so caught up in my own selfish desires? But, even as I’m asking myself that question, I can’t deny the fact that I still want – more than anything – to be able to go to the concert.

I look at Mum.

I don’t need her to tell me that it won’t be possible.

That’s it’s the anniversary of my father’s death.

That it’s a family day.

That the three of us will visit Dad’s gravestone.

That we’ll see then go to see my grandparents.

That we’ll drive out to Dad’s favourite spots because if we don’t do that, it’s as if the things he liked doing don’t matter anymore.

When Mum hears the date, she doesn’t say anything. She doesn’t need to. She can tell by the look on my face that reality has well and truly dawned. And she also knows that I won’t ask her if there’s some way we can work it out so I can go to the Faint December show. I won’t put her in that position.

“I’m going to be late,” is all I can say and I fling myself out onto the street.

I power-walk towards the bus stop and I’m there before the bus comes into sight.


Come up with a logo or similar that we can associate with your character. Maybe you’ll think of an image/idea that you can put on the front cover of the story you’re writing! Or maybe it’s a symbol that your character likes to draw on the front of all their diaries? Or a sketch that they stencil onto their clothes and bags?

Sound of Pen’s mascot is the Love-Not-Money Bunny! As drawn by the incredibly talented Elin Johnson.

Send your pics and writing in! 

Go back to chapter 1 and follow Daisy’s journey from the beginning.