Stanley discovers that X-Ray was right about the third hole being the hardest. Then the fourth hole is the hardest, and each subsequent hole after that. Stanley becomes thinner and his hands get tougher. He has lost track of how many holes he has dug.
He uncovers a small gold tube with the initials KB engraved inside of a heart. He reluctantly gives it to X-Ray and suggests that XRay wait until the next day to report it so that X-Ray can get the whole day off. When the water truck arrives, X-Ray moves Stanley up one place in line, ahead of Zero.
Notes: Though Stanley considers keeping his find, he decides it is best not to cross X-Ray, and to avoid the as yet unseen Warden. His new place in line symbolizes his advancement in the seemingly arbitrary hierarchy of the boys in Group D.
Stanley feels sorry for himself. The one time he is lucky (finding the gold tube) he will not get credit. At breakfast he asks X-Ray if he has “it.” X-Ray rudely replies that he doesn’t know what Stanley is talking about.
While digging Stanley wonders why X-Ray snapped at him. When the water truck comes X-Ray does not mention the tube. Then, at the last instant, before Mr. Pendanski leaves, X-Ray shouts from his hole that he has found something. Mr. Pendanski says that the Warden will be pleased and leaves.
Shortly, Mr. Pendanski returns with the Warden, a red-haired, freckled woman in a black cowboy hat and turquoise studded boots. She gives X-Ray the day off and tells Mr. Pendanski to fill the other boys’ canteens. She is angered when he replies that he has just filled them. She calls Caveman over to show Mr. Pendanski that there is room for more water in the canteen. Stanley wonders how she knows his nickname. The Warden admonishes Mr. Pendanski for questioning her and threatens to make him dig holes.
Notes: The Warden and X-Ray use the same approach to maintain authority - rewards and threats. She rewarded X-Ray with the day off the same way X-Ray rewarded Stanley with advancement in the line. Like X-Ray, she achieves loyalty because others fear her.