She has inexplicably tidy handwriting - inexplicably has handwriting at all; inexplicably can spell fifteen words in twenty instead of zero - which she uses, rather a lot. She makes a list of things that are food and magnetizes it to the fridge for reference, adding to it when she locates more things that are food, and when she is trying to tackle complex books she takes notes on who all the characters are so she doesn't have to page backward to remind herself, and she discovers journaling, even though she doesn't have that many events to record.
One day, the event she has to record is: Chris says to morrow she wil go to the DMV and shud not have us ther becas it may take six ours. We wil be baybe sat. If I hav ben baybe sat be for I do not remembre it.
She is curious about the imminent babysitter, and is up bright and early on the day when same may be expected.
"There might be, but until we find out about the blood, I'm not sure what."
"Okay." Pause. "I'm not empty."
"Even people with blood have plenty of other things in them too," says Chris. "Bones and muscles and organs, for example."
"Do I have those?"
"Harder to check. There's a way to look at someone's bones without doing any gross or harmful things, but it needs expensive equipment I don't have."
"This sounds complicated. How do you know everybody else has blood?"
"I haven't personally checked. But I've never heard of anyone else who didn't. And it would be hard not to notice, and if someone did notice and didn't decide to hide it, a lot of people would get very excited and we'd hear about it almost for sure."
"Is it a secret that I don't thump and might not have blood?"
"It should probably be a secret. Otherwise a lot of people will get very excited about you, and some of them might not be nice."
"Lizbeth and Gina know."
"Lizbeth and Gina are both sensible people and I don't think they'll be telling anyone."
Katie hugs her.
"Euagh!" is Katie's reaction to the alcohol-soaked wipes they obtained with the lancets.
"...Euagh?" says Chris, pausing in the act of removing the wipe from its little square packet.
"Do I have to touch it? I don't want to touch it."
"The purpose of the euagh is to make your skin clean so that when I poke a hole in it, nothing gets in that could make you sick. So yes, you have to touch it. But not for very long."
"Can't I just wash my hands?"
"I'm pretty sure the euagh is better at getting things the right kind of clean than washing your hands is. But if you really don't want to touch it, yes, you can just wash your hands."
"I really don't want to touch it. It's not for touching." Katie gets up and goes to the bathroom and washes her hands and comes out again. She looks suspiciously at the euagh.
The euagh has been returned to its packet and partly folded up, and what little of it remains visible is looking very nonthreatening.
Katie holds out her hand, satisfied that she won't have to touch a thing that is not for touching.
Chris gets out a lancet and carefully pokes Katie's finger.
From her fingertip wells a drop of pale, clear liquid.
"That," she says, "is not blood."