Yeah, I see the masking thing was confusing.

All I need to know is, will a properly developed color negative gain additional density with further development in B&W chemistry, or is that a sign that it was poorly fixed in its color development? So, if you, Gerald, pulled a junk negative from your file and threw it into D76 and it got darker, would that be cause for concern?

Okay, I'm plumb outta ways of phrasing it, if I have to try again I'm in trouble