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Dead Man's Party

And now we have the experiment in which we establish that it takes 30 pounds of dry ice to reach a lethal level of CO2 saturation next door. Sara muses, "Carbon dioxide is one-and-a-half times heavier than air. You know, it's conceivable that if Trip and Paula had been sleeping in his bed, they might still be alive." Liam adds, "I think I know why the bodies turned pink...dry ice is cold. Dry ice significantly lowered the temperature in both rooms, and a drastic decrease in temperature can turn a dead body pink. We see it all the time when we pull dead bodies from one of the rivers." Sara compliments him on his beautiful mind. So now the question is, who put the dry ice in the room?

And now David has gotten right on processing Billmeyer's body. Billmeyer is as fresh as a forest glen. "Whoever took him probably sprayed his body with disinfectant to cover up the stench. You got cause of death?" Ecklie asks. Why, yes. David says, "He died of a heavy heart -- heart weighed 500 grams instead of 300. Hypertensive cardiovascular disease." Ecklie seems disappointed to conclude, "So his heart stopped, he keeled over, hit his head on the pavement." We soon establish that Billmeyer knew he had heart problems, and "a heart that size, he was a walking time bomb." We also find out that Billmeyer participated in a postmortem beer bong. David deadpans, "Wouldn't be my postmortem beverage of choice, but to each his own."

Cut to Neil processing the party hat for prints while Hodges processes the cigar. Because Hodges is a multi-tasker, he also takes the opportunity to brownnose Ecklie about it, and Ecklie calls him on it with, "Why, thank you! Why don't you quit blowing smoke about it and tell me about the cigar?" Hodges does: "Low in nicotine, high in furfural. I compared it to other tobacco samples from the exemplar collection. It's consistent with the Perdomo Reserve brand. I took the liberty of calling the cigar society, they referred me to the Vegas distributor, I spoke to him directly. Perdomos are very high-end. He only made one sale this past month -- it was to a guy in Seven Hills." Neil comes in and says cheerily, "It smells like my grandfather." Hodges swivels, outraged that his narrative web of unctuous effort, replete with quivering subtext (I do it all for YOU, Ecklie!), has been blown apart by one doof with fingerprint data. Neil asks, "Am I interrupting?" "Actually, yeah. Conrad was just about to pat me on the back," Hodges says. Ecklie gives him a humorless smirk and a definite smackdown by focusing on Neil instead. Ah, Hodges. Remember that there are only a few inches between a pat on the back and a kick in the ass. Anyway, the prints all match paramedic Preston Hayburn, who would have had access to the morgue. Ecklie compliments Neil on his work while Hodges sputters in outrage. Both men hand over numbers of people they tracked down, and Ecklie politicks it by saying he'll check out Hodges's guy first, then the paramedic. Heh.

And now, it's time for gratuitous violence against plumbing fixtures. Somewhere, the Wild Dada Ducks are crying. What Liam's doing is testing the theory that the killer flushed his or her excess dry ice down the toilet. He explains, "When the ice was flushed, it would have lodged in the drain trap. As the ice sublimated, gas was released. It would have built up, causing the toilet to explode." As the toilet bubbles and squeaks, Sara shares the news that Zach's alibi checks out, so he's officially off the roster. Liam sighs that he had the dorm's credit card records checked; nobody in the dorm bought dry ice on credit, and when he checked retail outlets, nobody had purchased a large quantity of dry ice in the last few weeks.

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