Novel research by Barbaro et al. (DOI) has revealed an alternative hydrolysis route when the P4 reactivity is tuned by coordination with the organometallic complex CpRu(PPh3)2Cl, a member of the ruthenocene family. The resulting compound is found to react with water to form phosphorous acid H3PO3 and a novel air-stable phosphane complex which itself no longer reacts with water. The researchers hope this finding may lead to new chemical reagents. Hype word-count for this article: 4 (breakthrough, peculiar, spectactularly, surprisingly).