Botanists fight dirty.

Her overcoat was stiff with congealed agar and the shattered glass of a dozen Erlenmeyer flasks. She slid her battered arms into the sleeves, and tried to ignore the bullet wound in her leg.  A pair of pipettes were still lodged in the right sleeve of the jacket, as well as some tissue cultures from the family Malvaceae.  The battered gumshoe shook the detritus from her coat sleeve, and reached into her pockets — finding her two best friends right where they belonged.

A pair of ugly Colt revolvers, with worn pearl handles.  Watson and Crick — the only partners she’d ever needed in this dirty job.

It had been quite a dust-up in the back offices of ECO-RICH, the multi-national botany conglomerate. She’d been called in on the case, when a pair of their top researchers had turned to whistleblowers–setting up interviews with dozens of prominent science and home gardening blogs. Then they’d turned up dead. Both researchers had simultaneous heart-attacks during a purported sex romp in a jury-rigged jacuzzi powered by eighteen Bunsen burners.

But then the autopsy reports had come back: Baby carrots.

Baby carrots lodged in their aortas.

A contact on the force, Overstreet, had sent her the tip — and she’d made her way down to the offices of ECO-RICH to do a little snooping.

A brace of white-coat goons had been working late, and before she could spool up an alibi — things had gotten frisky.

An ethno-biologist with arms like a steel trap got the drop on her, grabbing her from behind and pinning her arms to the side. Without hesitation she kicked off hard from the face of an approaching zoologist, propelling  her captor into a nearby Spectrograph. A weasely ginger had pulled a snub-nose out of his pocket protector and gotten a shot off, grazing her leg — while the other researchers tossed Petri dishes and glassware like a tipsy housewife when she finds a collar with the wrong lipstick in the wash.

Crossing through the test tube hailstorm, she’d headbutted the ginger sap — the sound of his nasal cartilage snapping was sweet music, and a pair of electron microscopes ripped off a nearby table helped her finish the symphony on the rest of the jolly green thugs.

The gumshoe reached down, and riffled through the pockets of the closest researcher.  She pulled open their Twitter account, and banged out a warning.

— Just got the chloroform forcibly removed from my cell wall’s chloroplasts by a punitive ass-kicking. #ECO-RICH #MURDER #SCIENCE SLEUTH #WATCHOUT

She tossed the device aside, and walked back out into the late night rain.

She was on the case, and had a very promising beginning to the data field required for the x-axis of her perspective bar graph.

A bar graph of justice, and a chart of pain.

[For Jargon Journalist. Take some time and go fondle her comment section.]