LotF Journal - Ralph's POV


Day 1

Today we were on our way home to England, but we crashed on an abandoned island this morning. It's a pretty cool island and all the choir is here, but it's very hot and I fainted earlier, which was rather embarrassing. I'm Simon, by the way. I'm a part of the choir that was on the plane. There are about twelve boys in the choir, and Jack Merridew is the head boy and chapter chorister because he can sing the high C sharp. Hopefully we can get rescued soon, because there are a lot of boys on this island now and I'm not really a fan of people.

After we crashed, the choir wandered around very formally, I feel, because we were going around still in our two lines and we were still dressed in our black gowns and caps. But soon there was a loud call from that sounded like it was from outside the forest, so we followed it. We found a blond-haired boy on the beach on a granite rock with a large shell the fat boy with him called a conch. And then Ralph, the blond boy, was elected chief, which I think is a good idea since without a leader we would all be running rampant, especially the littluns.

Ralph, Jack, and I went and explored the island. It's beautiful, with the lush forest and the pink mountain near the back. There's a trail worn into the ground, which made us think that there are heavier animals here, like pigs. And we were right! We saw a pig and we were going to kill it and bring it back for meat, but we didn't because no one wanted to see the blood. The pig got away, and Jack got angry, which I don't really understand because he was the one that didn't kill it anyway. When we got back there was another assembly, and Ralph elected Jack as leader of the hunters, which is us now. I don't really want to hunt; I'd rather stay and help with building shelters or something like that. But no matter. A little kid with a birthmark on his face said there was a beast in the woods, but no one really believes him except for the other little kids. Typical, since they always seem to play Follow the Leader. I personally don't believe it either.

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Day 5

That very same day we crashed, we ruined the island. We wanted to make a smoke signal fire, but no one would listen to anyone and they kept making the fire bigger and bigger until it was out of control. Then it burned a bunch of the island behind the mountain and reduced it to ashes. Today, we're continuing on building the shelters. We wanted three, and two are essentially finished, but the third one is taking a long time because only Ralph and I are working on it. The first shelter is the best because everyone helped, but now they're all eating and playing and swimming on the beach. No one likes to work, but Ralph said in his speech the other day that his goals are to be rescued and have fun while waiting to be rescued, and to have fun we need to survive first.

Jack and all the other hunters were out trying to get meat while we were building the third shelter, and Jack and Ralph got into an argument about who is doing what and how Jack had been out hunting while we were building shelters and trying to keep the signal fire going. It started to get rather intense, so I slipped away. I'd found a spot deep in the forest, but not to far from the beach so that I couldn't find my way out. Although, if I just knew where the pig trail was I'd be able to use that to find my way out.

The spot I like to go to is very well hidden, and it's small and quiet there. It's a very beautiful place, and I can sit there in the light and smell the flowers and those candle buds that are all over. I can listen to the wildlife and birds and the rushing sea. Sometimes butterflies come into the spot and I can admire the bright colours. No one bothers me here, and I am writing this in the very spot I described. Perhaps I will reveal this to other people in the future…

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Day 17

I am fairly sure we have been here just over a fortnight… I forget to keep track of the days sometimes. I've taken to marking down tallies each night before I go to sleep. We swam today in the tide pool. The water is always warm, which is nice because it feels a bit like a bath. I can sort of wash my hair there and scrub my clothing a little bit. If only we had some soap. The hunters were in charge of keeping up with the fire but they didn't, and when Ralph saw a ship out in the distance everyone was scrambling to get the fire going. We'd thought it was still going a little, but it was completely dead and soon the ship was gone. Ralph was not happy and Jack was trying to defend himself by saying that we needed meat, but I was rather disappointed, myself because I fear that the boys are becoming a dark side of themselves, especially Jack, and I just want to go home.

After the argument, in which Piggy's glasses had been broken on one side, we relit the fire and started to cook the pig meat. I took some and so did Ralph, but Jack held it back from Piggy and when Piggy said he hadn't hunted anymore than me or Ralph, I was rather ashamed of myself. I gave my meat to Piggy but when he took it, Jack threw more to the ground at my feet and got very angry because he was the leader of the hunters that got us all the meat. The hunters described the hunt they went on and were very graphic… I didn't like it. Ralph didn't like it either, because then he called an assembly on the beach and left without another word.

The assembly was not very good. I was one of the first down the mountain because I was eager to escape the chanting and dancing from the other hunters. They talked about the lavatory and fire, and a beast that the littluns saw. Jack was very condescending during this part, and put them down by saying that nightmares can't hurt them and such.

This is true, yes, but it should be put gently to the young children who don't know any better. The beast is to be hunted by the hunters. And yet… I don't think there is a beast, not in the traditional sense anyway. There's nothing to be hunted, at any rate. And I said so that maybe there is a beast but not a thing to be hunted and killed, but everyone thinks I'm batty and queer. I've heard Ralph say so. Everyone started shouting and arguing and I tried to say that maybe the beast is inside of us, but everyone scoffed and made fun of me, and I choked up. I was very embarrassed and I ended up causing a very large argument.

Later on there was an eerie wailing, but it was only Percival, the kid who'd claimed there was a beast from the water. I wanted to go back to my spot in the forest, but I just remained at a shelter instead. I tried to sleep but Samneric woke up in the middle of the night claiming there was a beast out of the air and everyone got worked up into a ruckus. To keep things short, there was a hunt. Jack led, of course, and I walked in front of Ralph. Then suddenly I felt happy because I was a bit accepted… and then I ran into a tree.

Ralph really thinks I'm batty and he said so directly to me today as well. It was an eventful day. I'm not quite sure why he said it; I only said I thought he would make it out okay, that's all. And later, they were playing a game and Robert, one of the hunters, was the butt of the game, playing as the pig as the others on the hunt danced and jabbed at him and chanted, "Kill the pig! Cut his throat! Kill the pig! Bash him in!" It was rather violent. All I wanted to do was go back and sleep at my spot in the forest. So I volunteered to walk back through the woods to get back to Piggy, who had been left behind.

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Day 18

The morning was bright and we all were up early for assembly. Jack and Ralph were arguing again (typical) when I came back from my spot in the woods. This time, Jack called the assembly by blowing the conch and then he and Ralph were quarreling about that too. In the assembly Jack asked everyone who wanted to get rid of Ralph as leader, but he was embarrassed when no one raised their hands. Personally, I think he deserved a little humbling. But then he ran off by himself. I wanted to change the subject and I took the conch and suggested we go up the mountain, but no one takes me seriously here so it wasn't a lot of use. After the assembly I went out to my spot. I wish I was at home. No one bothered me there.

I can see Jack and the rest of the former choir from here. They're obviously hunting, as I can see their spears. Although, they must have just got a pig because the smell is rather awful. It taints the air. The boys' hands are covered in blood and they're moving some stuff over away from the pig. I hear something about a feast as well. Now Jack is holding the head of the sow… yuck. The image will never go away, I don't think. They've jammed it onto a stick and the blood is still coming out from it. A gift for the beast, they said. The flies are unbearable.

The boys are gone now and I think the pig is speaking to me. Maybe it's just too hot, I don't know. Everything's bad business. I'm crazy, it says. Just go back with the others. Maybe it was something I ate that's making me feel weird. Maybe I should go back… The flies have found me too and they're all over. That pile of stuff over there by the rocks is black with flies. The head grins. I have a headache.

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Day 19

Something happened yesterday. I fainted—I remember that for sure. I remember that I knew one of those times was coming soon. I think the pig's head was speaking to me… no, that can't be right. I woke up with a bloody nose. I'm not sure how that happened. The voice said to go back to the others… It got bigger and bigger and then I was swallowed… It was a part of me… It was telling me… the head is the beast. But that can't be right, it was only made yesterday. The flies are still all around. The head is still there. I'm taking a walk.

I've come back and many things have happened. I understand now what is going on inside of Jack, Ralph, the hunters, even me. Everyone here. I know what the beast from the air is. It was only a man with a parachute who had crashed on the rocks. Perhaps he was already dead before he came, perhaps he was not. There is no way to tell. At any rate, I got sick. And now I am going to go tell the others... they deserve to know.

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Day 23

There was a storm after the feast. Jack wanted everyone to join his tribe… Of course, I didn't because I was and still am chief. I'm Ralph, by the way. I found this in a spot in the woods… I suppose it was where Simon was all those times he seemed to disappear. When the storm started Piggy told us we should go back to the shelters, and I agreed. But then Jack commanded everyone to do that dance and the chant. Roger was the pig this time. I got caught up in it and so did Piggy. I wanted to be accepted a little bit, even though I was supposed to be chief. The thunder and lightning made everything a little bit more drama-like. More real than just a bunch of boys dancing in a circle.

But then Roger became one of the hunters and something came out of the forest… we all thought it was the beast. I was on the outside and didn't get all into it but this morning we realized. Simon was there and he was the beast last night. He's gone now, moved out to the sea and the coral reef. The blood on the sand is still there though, dried up and tainting the grains red. Piggy says it's not murder. It was an accident. We were on the outside, me and Piggy were. I only hope no one else will be killed on this island. I think we're turning batty ourselves. Off our rockers. Crackers. Completely barmy. Just like Simon.

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Day 24

I guess I'm keeping up on this. I've read some of this; I guess Simon had some very different experiences than mine. There was a fight last night and Jack stole Piggy's glasses for fire. He can't see at all now and he wasn't protecting them because he was protecting the conch which was what he thought they were going for. The fire was dying when we came to our senses… we couldn't get it going again, which means we really need to get Piggy's glasses back. Honestly… tons of boys and only one pair of glasses. But we have to get those back.

I had so desperately hoped… but to no avail. Another one of us gone by the hands of those painted savages led by Jack Merridew… and this time it's Piggy. Roger had dropped a boulder on him and he'd gone off the cliff. I thought he'd be safe. It's not my fault, but it is. I brought him there and he could have stayed back since he couldn't see. This time it wasn't an accident, not like Simon.

Roger dropped that boulder on purpose. But before that, he'd thrown a rock from up there at Samneric and Sam almost lost his balance too. And when Jack appeared out of the forest I may have snapped and called him a bloody thief. We were getting ready to fight but Piggy reminded me what we'd come for. It all escalated so quickly and suddenly Jack was yelling to tie us up. Then Piggy was yelling and saying that everyone was acting like a bunch of kids and then the rock came down and shattered the conch into a million pieces and knocked Piggy off the cliff. He fell and hit the granite rock and then there was blood. I wanted to say something but nothing came out. And then Jack was manic and screaming and he threw his spear at me, which hit me in the side, and they chased me out and they made Samneric stay. I want to go home. We've become the worst parts of ourselves.

I'm in hiding now but I went back to the huts and grabbed this. I think that even if Simon was rather barmy his computer shouldn't be abandoned with his experiences on it. I've eaten fruit so I'm no longer hungry, but it was a poor substitute for the feast we'd had the other night. I can't sleep well, because the tribe is actively hunting me, but I can write in this when I have a moment. I'm filthy… I wish I had soap. I can hear the tribe chanting… I need to move.

I came across a pig skull on a stick in the middle of the woods. It's not far from where Simon's spot was; I don't know why I didn't notice it before. It was filthy; it must have been something the hunters put up to ward off the beast or something like that. I took the stick and the skull was smashed to pieces. I hate that terrible thing. Later I tried to talk to Samneric and they said they were forced to join the tribe, but they would speak much otherwise because Roger was coming to check on them. They gave me a stick and some meat and told me Roger had sharpened a stick at both ends but I don't know why they told me that. The grass and thick brush give me some place to hide, which is good. But I can hear… they know where I am.

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Day 25

Hardly slept last night. The tribe tried to hunt me last night and they knew where they were in the thicket. They dropped a boulder down too but it missed me. I ran and found a spot where I could hide in the woods, but the savages were everywhere. One even found me, but it was too dark to see me so he didn't know I was there. My stick was sharpened on both ends. Was that what Samneric were trying to tell me? Maybe Roger was planning on putting my head on a stick too, just like that pig.

I was in that spot for a bit but then the trees were flaming and I knew Jack was trying to get me out in the open. I had to run. I ran to the beach and they all saw me and were ready to attack, but when I fell and looked up there was a real live adult looking down at me. He'd seen the smoke from the fire. And suddenly, the savages were once again just schoolboys. I cried. We're getting rescued but not without a cost. Piggy and Simon are gone, and so is the innocence of our childhood. We've lost a part of ourselves, and nothing will ever be the same again.