"dig randomly picked one of the root server responses, in this case f.root-servers.net., and asked it for the next part of the domain name in question, info. The info section of the hierarchy is run by a company that operates their own set of servers. dig asks one of these servers for the NS records for bugsplat.info and then finally asks one of those servers for the A record for empoknor.bugsplat.info.."
but in actuality every server in the hierarchy is queried for the full name; "empoknor.bugsplat.info". Technically even the root servers may be authoritative for that name, there's no way to know in advance where the zone-cuts are.