Zero's face is sunken and droopy. Stanley admits his canteen is empty and says he tried to bring the water truck. He insists they need to go back to camp, but Zero refuses and invites Stanley into the hole for "sploosh." Stanley squeezes through the hole, marveling at the fact that he can fit. He notices Zero's stolen shovel as Zero attempts to get a lid off of a glass jar. Zero explains there were sixteen jars buried under the boat and uses the shovel to break the top off. Zero offers the broken jar to Stanley. Stanley is afraid of the broken glass and whatever the sploosh is, as he thinks it's probably 100 years old and could be seriously contaminated.
Just as Sam's boat appears to be helping Zero, the jars, which are likely Miss Katherine's spiced peaches, are also helping Stanley and Zero along on their journey. This reinforces that the boys will somehow help make up for Sam's murder as they go along. With this, the novel suggests that destiny is circular in that the boys are going to at least attempt the same things that Elya, Miss Katherine, and Sam did.
Stanley wonders if Zero knows what bacteria are as he takes a sip. The liquid is sweet and peachy and the boys drink the entire jar. Zero then admits it was the last jar, and Stanley insists that they need to return to camp. He suggests that they'll probably send Zero to the hospital, like Barf Bag. Zero admits that Barf Bag stepped on a rattlesnake on purpose.
The revelation that Barf Bag hurt himself on purpose to get out of Camp Green Lake illustrates that the camp is capable of pushing the inmates to drastic measures to escape the toxicity—but also, that in that regard, the natural world is a friend, not a foe.
Zero asks what "Mar-ya Luh-oh-oo" is, and leads Stanley back aboveground to point at the boat. Stanley explains that Y can act as both a vowel and a consonant. Suddenly, Zero groans, grabs his stomach, and falls to the ground. Stanley feels helpless. When Zero's episode passes, the boys again argue about whether to go back to camp. Zero says he'd rather die in the desert than go back. Stanley stares at the mountains for a minute and then asks Zero to tell him if the fist-like mountain looks like anything. Slowly, Zero forms his hand into a fist and puts his thumb up.
Zero's question shows that he's taking his education very seriously, which implies that he understands that he'll gain a great deal of power just by being able to read and better understand the world around him. When Zero agrees that God's Thumb looks like a thumbs-up, it shows that nature isn't just out to help Stanley; essentially, he's not special.