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Becca C.
11-09-2014, 11:54 PM
In my NaNo book, a teenage girl poisons her much-older husband and kills him. It takes a while, so slow-acting is okay. They're part of an isolated religious sect so this girl isn't very well-educated, not likely to know a ton about poisons, but her father is a dentist (in this draft. If someone thinks of a profession with a better access to potential poisons, I'm open) and they live in northern Arizona, so maybe a desert plant?

Also, because of the isolated religious sect part, no autopsy or elaborate investigation is likely to be done, so she does get away with it. A certain degree of obvious symptoms are okay.

Help! :P

Chris P
11-09-2014, 11:56 PM
Arsenic takes a while and the victims suffer a slow decline. I don think it's very hard to get either.

Becca C.
11-10-2014, 12:10 AM
After doing some quick googling, yeah, I think arsenic would do the trick. It's just a question of how the character could obtain it...

ETA: Oooh, Arizona has one of the highest concentration in the US of arsenic in its soil and ground water! Hmmmm...

Drachen Jager
11-10-2014, 12:11 AM
Antifreeze (ethylyne glycol) works. It's sweet, so you can easily conceal it in cooking (in fact, in China they add it to wine to make fake 'Ice Wine').

And of course, very easy to obtain legally.

Craig McNeil
11-10-2014, 12:22 AM
Father could be a chemistry teacher?

Re Arsenic - supposedly that's what killed Napoleon. If I remember correctly, arsenic was used in a lot of every day items back then such as wall paper, metal cutlery and suchlike and he absorbed so much of it that finally it killed him.

MaryMumsy
11-10-2014, 12:32 AM
Depending on where in AZ, have her add oleander leaves to tea.

I couldn't find a map that shows the range, but I know it grows like a weed around Phoenix and anywhere south of here. Many people use it as an ornamental and for hedges. I've never understood its appeal. The plant is dirty, stinky (opionions vary) and *poisonous*.

MM

King Neptune
11-10-2014, 12:37 AM
Make her daddy an Anesthesiologist. They are professionals at getting people next to death and bringing them back. She probably would have picked up a few things from just being around him. Arsenic is good, but it would take months, and I think that you would bprefer something that took a day or two.

Cyanide would be faster and the poison could be introduced in the food. It wouldn't taste right, but a slight taste of cyanide is not unusual.
"I noticed the tags on trees from the Prunus genus (cherries, peaches, plums, apricots, almonds) carried the warning that the leaves and other parts of the plant can be toxic if ingested." http://chemistry.about.com/b/2008/04/12/cyanide-poisoning-from-apples-peaches-cherries-plums-etc.htm

The seeds of apricots, plums, and some others look like almonds. A handful of the seeds of those plants can kill, and less than a cup of appleseeds will kill.
"Oh! No! It was a mistake. I was sure they were almonds."

Cyia
11-10-2014, 12:43 AM
Dad's a dentist? Fluoride poisoning.

Foxglove is also a good one, especially with an older victim. It's natural digitalis.

Have her "attempt" to make him poke salad, and skip a few steps. That one can, and does, kill accidentally, so it might not even be suspected as murder.

Wild tobacco is toxic. Jimsonweed, oleander, hemlock -- plenty of natural toxins out there. If they've got a garden, the nicotine in the the weed killer would do it. I *think* peyote is lethal in high doses, and as a hallucinogen, she could make long-term poisoning look like the onset of dementia.

If they're into folk medicine, she might be able to get cyanide from apple seeds, but it would take a lot of them. Arsenic's actually better because it's a base element and doesn't break down, but it's not hard to detect if anyone suspects foul play.

The same would go for heavy metals. They're toxic, even lethal, but not hard to trace if someone's looking.

Becca C.
11-10-2014, 12:52 AM
Thank you guys! Someone on the NaNo forums suggested the dad be a gardener, and that's actually a fantastic idea. I'm glad there are so many options.

waylander
11-10-2014, 01:03 AM
Does Aconite grow there?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hampshire-29949698

mccardey
11-10-2014, 01:07 AM
I think this thread should be stickied. :evil

Chris P
11-10-2014, 01:19 AM
I think this thread should be stickied. :evil

I remember a year or so ago someone here was a bit horrified by how much we collectively know about doing people in.

Stickying might scare folks off.

Helix
11-10-2014, 01:34 AM
Nightshades and their relatives (Solanaceae) are everywhere, so maybe solanine. The Natural History Museum's Solanaceae Source (http://solanaceaesource.org/) has quite a lot of info, but there's plenty more about Solanum on the web.

mirandashell
11-10-2014, 01:47 AM
Datura is another good natural poison. Slow acting so can look like an illness

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=datura&oq=datura&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i60j69i65l3j69i61.4338j0j7&sourceid=chrome&es_sm=93&ie=UTF-8

Maxx B
11-10-2014, 02:39 AM
I thought I was going to be clever and suggest Foxglove (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002878.htm), but I see it has been suggested. The advantage of this poisonous plant is that it grows almost anywhere, especially in areas left to go a bit wild. It would be easy to get hold of without any special back story.

King Neptune
11-10-2014, 03:46 AM
I remember a year or so ago someone here was a bit horrified by how much we collectively know about doing people in.

Stickying might scare folks off.

Or it might attract people who are looking for a good method.

King Neptune
11-10-2014, 03:47 AM
Nightshades and their relatives (Solanaceae) are everywhere, so maybe solanine. The Natural History Museum's Solanaceae Source (http://solanaceaesource.org/) has quite a lot of info, but there's plenty more about Solanum on the web.

In an old TV show there was the unforgettable line, "But they looked like tomatoes."

nikkidj
11-10-2014, 04:05 AM
If the character's father is a gardener, then she would have easy access to organophosphate pesticides. They kill quickly, and have a very specific symptom profile. They're difficult to treat, even if the medical team knows what the poison is.

Plot Device
11-10-2014, 07:34 AM
lead poisoning -- slow over time, messes with cognition, leads to blindness, paralysis and death