Assassin Games | Chapter 1

By: D. L. Karabin

Looking at the three old men wearing Roman togas, you’d think they were just some old Betas—those fun-loving, toga party frat boys that never grew up. They weren’t. They were dead serious. They were the world’s most-wanted killers still on the run, even now, when they can barely walk. A band of deadly brothers in the wind for so many years that their native countries and INTERPOL® practically gave up on ever finding them. Practically being the key word.

Their arrogant, diabolical brand was ripped from the blood-stained pages of Rome’s history, more specifically one of history’s most famous assassination—Julius Caesar’s.

Meet The Triumvirate: Lucas “Cassius” DeSpiro, Max “Brutus” Gruen and John “Cato” Darnell of Spain, Germany and England, respectively.

They were responsible for the murders of 84 people and a take of nearly a billion dollars. Now, on the brink of death, each longed for one last hit. Since the youngest was 83, they had to be quick and creative. They could no longer climb on rooftops to take out targets with a sniper shot or crawl under cars to rig bombs. Instead, what they came up with was a challenge of sorts for the youngest generation of assassins schooled on xBox® violence and high-tech treachery—the Millennials whose cell phones were their enablers. They were almost born with them in their hands.

The Triumvirate named this challenge the Annual Assassin Honors or AAH, the last sound a dead man makes. An Olympic-type competition, these games were held globally and were currently in their last heat—the final lap in a rigorous life or death struggle. The two finalists were just contacted via Skype® and both contestants were both eager to come to Paris for the last lap.

They were 28-year-old French citizen Jacqueline Carlos-Chambourg, granddaughter of a legendary assassin known as The Jackal; and relative newcomer to the profession, American Micheal Archangelo, age 32. Each had heard of the other only through the news coverage of their kills. They never met. But it didn’t matter: There was a kinship among killers and, although neither knew the other, they were looking forward to the match like two dear friends. There was one thing about Micheal that no one knew:  he was an undercover INTERPOL agent, embedded in the assassin community for the last seven years.

INTERPOL had been staging his assassinations—fake kills. They had catapulted him to the top of his game.

It was not your great aunt’s INTERPOL.

INTERPOL was born in France and today is headquartered in Lyon. Founded in 1923 as the International Criminal Police Commission [ICPC], the name INTERPOL served as the agency’s telegraphic address in 1946 and was kept that way ever since. It has 194 member countries.  Its Mission:  To provide investigative support, expertise and training to combat three major areas (1) terrorism, (2) cybercrime and (3) organized crime.

Working under its purview, Micheal created a team to go after the decades-old global assassin ring masterminded by The Triumvirate. INTERPOL itself did not have actual “agents” of its own until his unit was created. This was new territory for the 90+ old agency and many insiders were not okay with allocating so much money to one single operation. Those in favor of it, notably its current President Madame Evie Moreau, were eager to go for it—to stage these elaborate faux assassinations that got Micheal inside the Assassin Games as a finalist.

You can follow D. L. Karabin here on Long Overdue Books and also on her Facebook page at Thriller She Wrote (@SkinnyStories). Stay tuned for more chapters and to follow D. L. Karabin directly, email

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