Tag Archives: patrick freivald

Patrick Freivald Kidnaps His Protagonist

I recently wrote a novel called How to Successfully Kidnap Strangers. Some people have used it as a guide, others have used it to balance wobbly dinner tables. It’s about a writer who one day impulsively kidnaps a book reviewer outside of a coffee shop, in front of dozens of witnesses. This is obviously not how one would successfully go about kidnapping a stranger. My novel is more of an anti-guide. Do the opposite of what my characters do, and you might actually have a successful abduction.

But now that I’ve gotten a few kidnappings under my belt, I’ve decided to hold some auditions for those who might be interested in being my partner. Today’s audition features Patrick Freivald. We will be discussing the possibility of kidnapping the protagonist from his novel, Black Tide.


MB: All right, Patrick, before I agree to be your partner, you’re gonna have to answer a few questions. I don’t kidnap strangers with just anybody. Well, not usually. I have a long list of potential partners awaiting my consideration, so let’s make this fast. Who the hell are you, and why should I trust you?

PF: I’m an author, physics and robotics teacher, and beekeeper. I like long walks on the beach and cannibalism jokes. You can trust me because even if I ratted you out, nobody would believe me. Hell, nobody’s going to believe we can even do this.

MB: Provide examples of your criminal past. Any jail time served? Ever jaywalk or swallow your gum even though you knew it would stay in your stomach for years until eventually hatching into a horrifying monster? I need to know this kind of stuff ahead of time.

PF: Back in the day I did a stint in detention for doing someone else’s math homework for them. I’ve been guilty of assault a few times, but never caught. Once I took two cookies off of a plate when the host said, “You can have one.”

MB: Shit, that’s hardcore. Do you have any special talents? What can you bring to the table?

PF: Robots. Science. Engineering skills. Eating people. No, wait, that last one’s just a joke. Haha, amirite?


MB: Oh yeah, you’re totally right. Okay, so if you’re wanting to work with me, you must already have a target in mind. Who are we kidnapping?

PF: Isuji Sakura.

MB: What’s so special about her?

PF: She’s a one-woman killing machine with a history of violence on four continents. Currently working with Matt Rowley, rumor has it she’s regaining the powers she lost when ICAP went belly-up.

MB: What kind of ransom are we looking at? Are we walking away with a few hundred thousand, a million, what? Or something besides cash? What’s in it for me?

PF: At least six different nations want what she can do, and they’re willing to go through any means to get it. I mean, if the CIA, Russia, or China ain’t rich enough for you, I can always find someone else to do this.

MB: Be honest. How dangerous is this Sakura?

PF: Depends on what she’s got back. Regeneration we can deal with, but post-augmentation she was the fastest person in the world and could flip a car with her bare hands. So let’s get this straight: if we don’t catch her while she’s sleeping, we’re both going to die. I wouldn’t have come to you if this were easy.

MB: You’re a very thoughtful person, Patrick. Now what location were you thinking?

PF: For some ungodly reason they’re based out of Tennessee. She’s got an apartment in the boonies outside Nashville, lives alone, and I know a guy who knows the guy who designed the security system.

MB: Okay, we have a target and a location. Now we need to discuss method. There’s many ways to kidnap a person. We could sneak up on her and throw a potato sack over her head. We could shoot her with a tranquilizer. We could order her a pizza and lace it with sleeping pills. The possibilities are endless.

PF: You can’t drug an aug—it clears their system way too fast. Blunt force trauma to the head and then real-quick cinch her up with steel bands before she comes to. Handcuffs won’t cut it, so don’t get smart.

MB: Christ, you couldn’t have targeted someone a little less deadly? So say we actually do succeed, which seems unlikely—who’s going to be coming after her?

PF: If Rowley finds out about it he’ll come down on us like the wrath of God. Only he ain’t going to find out. If we torch the place and cover our tracks he’ll know she’s missing, but won’t know who took her. It’s all good.

MB: How could we convince them we mean business? They’re not getting Sakura back until the ransom has been delivered. Should we cut off some limbs or what? Shave a scalp, maybe? You know, once I filmed a hostage being forced to walk on a floor of legos, then sent the video to the guy’s wife. She paid up, like, immediately. What would work best for Sakura?

PF: No, you don’t mess with Augs. She gets free she’ll break us both in half, and trust me, she’s better at getting free than you are at making her react, even with Legos. We take her, keep her secured, and wait for the buyers.

MB: How do you predict this hypothetical kidnapping ending? Will it all be smooth sailing, or is there a massive gunfight in our future? I don’t mind spilling a little blood here and there, I just need to be prepared.

PF: Look, pal, if it comes to a fight you’re on your own. These people are deadly and aren’t in the habit of giving quarter. Just relax.

MB: I’m 90% sure this job will end with me dead. Let’s give it a shot.

Available Now: QUALIA NOUS

Michael Bailey’s newest anthology, Qualia Nous, is now available on Amazon. Along with stories by Stephen King, William F. Nolan, Gary A. Braunbeck, and many others, it also includes my own short story, “The Neighborhood Has a Barbecue”. Qualia Nous is an anthology blending both science fiction and horror. It’s a 120,000 word tome consisting of 25 short stories, 2 poems, and 4 novelettes.

Buy your copy HERE.


00. The Jaunt – Stephen King [ novelette ]
01. The Vaporization Enthalpy of a Peculiar Pakistani Family – Usman T. Malik
02. The Shaking Man – Gene O’Neill
03. Dyscrasia – Ashlee Scheuerman
04. The Rondelium Girl of Rue Marseilles – Emily B. Cataneo
05. The Angel Chaser – Erik T. Johnson
06. Psychic Shock – Ian Shoebridge
07. Peppermint Tea in Electronic Limbo – D.J. Cockburn
08. Second Chance – John R. Little
09. The Effigies of Tamber Square – Jon Michael Kelley
10. Shades of Naught – Lori Michelle
11. The Price of Faces – James Chambers
12. Simulacrum – Jason V Brock [ novelette ]
13. Shutdown – Marge Simon  [ poem ]
14. Lead Me To Multiplicity – Peter Hagelslag [ novelette ]

15. Cataldo’s Copy – Christian A. Larsen
16. The Neighborhood Has a Barbecue – Max Booth III
17. Tomorrow’s Femme – Marge Simon [ poem ]
18. The Jenny Store – Richard Thomas
19. Night Guard – Erinn L. Kemper
20. A New Man – William F. Nolan
21. Voyeur – John Everson
22. Kilroy Wasn’t There – Pat R. Steiner
23. In the Nothing-Space, I Am What You Made Me – Paul Anderson
24. Dura Mater – Lucy A. Snyder
25. Ruminations – Rena Mason
26. Good and Faithful Servant – Thomas F. Monteleone
27. Twelve Kilos – Patrick Freivald
28. Breathe You In Me – Mason Ian Bundschuh
29. 18P37-C, After Andrea Was Arrested – Elizabeth Massie
30. No fixed Address – Gary A. Braunbeck  [ novelette ]

Also, my new novel, The Mind is a Razorblade, is now available to pre-order. So click HERE to check that out, too.

“A Crippling Case of the Fuckits” by Patrick Freivald


I’ve asked a number of authors I admire to answer the same question–why do criminals fascinate us so much?–and I will be posting each response here on my blog. It’s a question all writers–especially crime writers–should consider every once in a while. In my debut novel, Toxicity, I’ve dug deep into the minds of criminals. I have written about the bad guys. The ones we love but hate at the same time. If you haven’t pre-ordered a copy yet, I highly recommend you doing so for purely selfish reasons.

And now that you’ve done that, we will pass the time hearing what other writers in the industry have to say about the posed question.

Today Patrick Freivald drops by my blog with a crippling case of the fuckits.

Patrick Freivald is an author, high school teacher (physics, robotics, American Sign Language), and beekeeper. He lives in Western New York with his beautiful wife, two birds, three dogs, too many cats, and several million stinging insects. A book reviewer for BuyZombie.com and a member of the HWA and ITW, he’s always had a soft spot for slavering monsters of all kinds.

He is the author of Twice Shy, Special Dead, Blood List (with his twin brother Phil), and the forthcoming Jade Sky, as well as the novella Love Bites, a growing legion of short stories, and an as-yet untitled graphic novella (with Joe McKinney) for Dark Discoveries magazine. There will be more.

What do you have to say today, Patrick?


Why do criminals fascinate us so much?

Let’s approach this not only from the most jaded position in existence, but the most jaded principle possible: that of a high school teacher.

Have you ever actually listened to “Hot for Teacher”? As in, like, actually listened to the lyrics with an ear for understanding where the (ahem) artists are coming from, man? Because if you have, you don’t need a lesson on the fascination of criminal behavior, your apotheosis is already complete.

Novelty feeds the brain seratonin and dopamine—the only two things you’ve ever enjoyed—and nothing is less novel than staying within the lines. Those who do as they should, stay within the law, and comport themselves as upstanding citizens are wonderful and vital to society, but they’re also dull. There’s never been a newsworthy story about a person who effectively managed their time to maximize their efficiency at work, and thus truly earned their paycheck.

And there won’t be.

Criminals buck the system, and as much as we hate to admit it, back-talk and spitballs and flouting your homework is “cool”. Getting thrown out of class is cool. Cherry bombs in the toilet are cool. They’re not cool because you’ll end up an uneducated loser who hates his job and life up until it ends in poverty and misfortune, it’s cool because you’re giving a double-middle-finger to the man. It’s cool because it doesn’t take too much imagination to rob a liquor store or sell meth.

Anybody can do it; but not anybody dares.

Criminality takes a certain combination of chutzpah and stupidity that we can’t help but admire. The phrase, “I’d rather be bad than dumb” comes up a lot in teaching circles, and as a truism it hits the mark rather too well. If you’re not good at something productive, constructive, interesting, and intelligent, you can always be good at being bad. Chick’s will dig it—not all chicks (like maybe not the ones who don’t want to be called “chicks”)—but the ones willing to be bad with you will.

We like criminals even though we go apoplectic when they exercise their criminality on our persons or property, or on our loved ones. (Or on the chairs/tables/lab equipment in our classrooms.) We like them because sometimes we’d like to flip that double-middle-finger. Sometimes we’d like to develop a crippling case of the fuckits and just go do whatever we want and damn the consequences. But most of us don’t, because we have some capacity to think long-term, and long-term we recognize the value of playing by the rules, not just out of self-interest, but because of those emotions and notions all-too-human: duty, honor, respect, loyalty, friendship.

But even so, we always admire those who do what we can’t or won’t. Even when we shouldn’t.