The campaign had started with the Edinburgh club having 15 points taken from them, causing such stress to supporters that they added them on to their ages, but the ageing process has since been stymied by the application of the cream of Tynecastle's youth teams.
Many of the squad do not yet seem old enough to handle a razor but they have cut their teeth in the top flight this term; their latest outing coming in the Highlands against Ross County this afternoon. Hearts still lie on the floor of the league table but they have picked themselves up with a series of performances informed by such maturity that it was a small wonder why 17-year-old Jordan McGhee did not wander into Tynecastle yesterday looking more like Benjamin Button at his age.
The defender had been charged with media duties ahead of the match with County and he performed amicably, even refusing to shy away from the sense of injustice which pervades his team. There is some mercy in that this relates to games of football rather than the traditional off-field problems - Hearts having felt unduly punished by contentious penalty decisions. Jamie Hamill was sent off for handball incorrectly on their last trip to the Highlands, before the midfielder was adjudged to have committed the same crime last week against Celtic.
McGhee maintained it was harsh but kept his composure. "Decisions go against you in games and you just have to get on with it," said McGhee. "You need to keep bouncing back. It's out of our hands, the decisions referees give. It happened again in the under-20 derby this week. We felt both penalty decisions against us were really harsh. When things like that happen in a game, you just have to get on with it."
It is that quiet acceptance and the willingness to carry on which has impressed Derek Adams most. His County side have seemed leaden with anxious performances this season and he believes that Hearts have been able to avoid similar discomfort due to administration.
"Their financial situation has taken pressure off their young players," said Adams, who is without Orhan Mustafi due to a broken toe. "I've been in a similar situation in my own career, not in terms of being docked points but after experiencing administration with Motherwell. You feel like you've got nothing to lose and you just go out and play. It's quite liberating. You have the freedom to take chances where you need to."