Why weren't they questioning him further? Were they eager for him to go?
After Brock leaves the dome, he questions himself about leaving.
After remembering the fictions he read, he checks the emotional scanner again to see that it reads an unfamiliar sensation, "loneliness."
After Brock leaves, he sees the sun and checks his scanner to see what he is feeling. The scanner says he's hot. he wanted to take off the dry suit but he remembered what he had been told since he could remember, that naked skin would suffer irreparable burning outside the protection of the dome.
The podmaster had said that trees had been extinct for hundreds of years. Brock reached up and pulled off a leaf. It was green and had veins. He put the leaf into his pack to study later.
Brock kept traveling and saw there were actual trees growing on the first hill. Not the great giants of virtual history lessons, more scrubby and bent. But they were trees, he was sure of it.
As Brock continued to explore, he found what had to be a brook, he was taught that such things were poisoned and dried up. Then he heard a noise, upon further noticing, he saw the small dog- the puppy. Brock named the dog Brog and became attached to it.
Brock is brought to the dome with Brog for research. they were going to examine the dog, which meant he might die, they told Brock he could get a cloned robopet of him. Then Brock had an idea to bite Brog's tail to pretend something was wrong with him so he could save Brog. After he bit Brog's tail, Brog bit Brock's nose and everyone went silent and was shocked. Brock said he'd been feeling very weird, he offered to take Brog outside and no one argued.
They escaped from the dome and Brock took off his helmet and suit outside. In the end, Brock and Brog drink from the brook. Also, Brock no longer uses a scanner to tell him what he is feeling.