After escaping Jack’s retaliation, Ralph finds himself lost in thoughts. He mourns over Piggy and Simon and realises that order and civil nature has been lost on the island. He then comes across the pig’s head, now a skull. He remarks on the colour of it, not unlike the conch shell.
He smashes the skull and takes the spike, intending to use it against Jack. That same night, Jack sneaks to Castle Rock and finds Sam and Eric guarding the camp. They give him food but nothing else. They do tell him, however, that Jack intends to send his whole tribe after him the next day. Ralph decides to rest in a thicket nearby.
Come the morning, Ralph awakens to the sounds of one of the twins being tortured for information about Ralph’s whereabouts. After finding out, the tribe fall upon the thicket, initially using boulders and such before attacking head-on. After this fails, Jack sets the jungle on fire to draw him out.
Ralph manages to escape their grasp by fighting past a few men and he thunders through the vegetation, his hunters not far behind. He finally reaches the beach, where all meetings were held, and he collapses. Gaining some awareness, he realises that, standing before him, is a naval officer.
He informs Ralph that they were attracted by the inferno of the forest. Jack and his hunters emerge and the officer assumes they are playing games but he is aghast when he learns what horrors have been committed, commenting on how quick civilisation deteriorated. All boys begin to sob, now realising snarky became of them, finally brought back to reality. They are able to see what monsters, what beasts, they have all turned into.
Lord Of The Flies
First published in 1954, William Golding’s debut novel, now a classic, is a stark story of survival, probing the depths of human nature, and what happens when civilisation collapses. As dystopian stories like The Hunger Games and Battle Royale surge in popularity, this haunting tale of a group of young boys stranded on a desert island still captivates schoolchildren around the world, raising timeless and profound questions about how easily society can slip into chaos and savagery when rules and order have been abandoned.