While the rest of you were so preoccupied with whatever all that was about, Willis and Isaac had made quite a bit more progress than you might have thought. Wherever a stray chunk of library still clung to definition, they had done their best to tidy things up and they usually did so more or less correctly. They even dispatched a ravenous paper shredder with relative ease, and took down a poster that urged children to never read anything ever again, which probably wasn't desirable to the Librarian no matter how cool and hip its neon fonts or its explosive graphics.

Every time they corrected some little fragment of disorder, the library regained another lost little fragment of self, and it was far, far more important than Willis could have known. Unfortunately, he was still analagous to only a child, and his patience was beginning to wear thin. Everywhere the two had found that disorder, they had also found the tell-tale muddy stains and chew-marks of the unseen saboteur Willis knew was still at large, still cancelling out their hard work. It felt almost pointless. It was definitely not feeling all that fun, the more he considered it.

"...This is almost worse than waiting for Fern was!!!" he exclaimed finally. He was even beginning to feel roped into a series of chores, which was precisely the sort of thing he hadn't wanted to happen. He was a little too young to articulate it and a little too proud to admit it, but what he had really wanted was a distraction from worry, and his library mission was suddenly becoming the opposite, especially since he felt no closer at all to what he originally came here for, when he remembered it anyway, or any closer to finding Cheryl's doog-creature, which was what now occupied more of his mind.

She had told him, over the course of his lengthy and persistent questioning, that they were looking for a small grey-zoner covered in curly, dark fuzz, with an "idiotic" mouth that was always drooling and a "horrible" black nose that was always wet and "disgusting" black eyes that were always sticky and crusty, so he had a pretty good idea of what to look for.

...But he not only hadn't seen, fazzed or smelled anything that might have been the dugg, he hadn't even caught whiff of grey-zone blood in any direction for quite a few layers. In the darkest corners of his mind, a terrible notion stirred. He tried to force it down, but it only redoubled its efforts out of petty spite, hurling itself to the forefront of his thoughts to wallow smugly in his consciousness.

What if a derg didn't HAVE any blood.

He stopped in his tracks, nearly tripping Isaac, and his eye-like artery holes widened with horror as that terrible notion presented its first most obvious problem.

If doug didn't have blood, then even if he found it...there wouldn't be any little treat he could sneak to reward himself for his good job. Not even a drop.


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