Secret Chemical X-9 from the Amazon

for my family, who are the only people who will get this joke

Dr. Blume has isolated the active chemical in the psychoactive leaves that were brought back from the jungle.

She pontificates. “It was a fortuitous accident, my learned colleagues. Every common chemical and distillate I tried on these leaves either had no effect whatsoever or destroyed the chemical in the process of extraction. It was due to my own clumsiness –” (she blushes becomingly) “– in handling extract Beauregarde-17, that proved…”

She is interrupted by Dr. Ozpetek. “What is Beauregarde-17?”

She discurses. “Beauregarde-17 is the extract of the roots discovered by the explorer Dr. Herrick. It is pleasantly aromatic, sweet to the taste, mildly intoxicating, and otherwise quite useless. It has some interesting and unique esters, but research into those has revealed nothing interesting whatsoever. There was some talk a few years ago about marketing Beauregarde-17 as a soft drink or cool and refreshing beverage, but we were leery of releasing something to the public without more detailed observations of its chemical structure, and its interaction with human biology.”

There is laughter from the gallery. It is not directed at her, but rather at the assembled scientists themselves. Dr. Ozpetek is new; Beauregarde-17 is a byword at the Institute, a stimulating and unexplored homebrew.

She is continuing with her report when the door crashes in and people dressed in urban camoflauge sweep into the room.

“Everyone freeze!” bawls the leader. “This is a raid!”

“It’s Buzzo Cola! They’ve found us!” shrieks Dr. Bellairs, right before they hit him with the tazer.

She never does get to make her report.