The fat boy lowered himself over the terrace and sat down carefully, using the edge as a seat.
“I’m sorry I been such a time. Them fruit —-”
He wiped his glasses and adjusted them on his button nose. The frame had made a deep, pink “V” on the bridge. He looked critically at Ralph’s golden body and then down at his own clothes. He laid a hand on the end of a zipper that extended down his chest.
“My auntie —-“
Then he opened the zipper with decision and pulled the whole wind-breaker over his head.
Ralph looked at him side-long and said nothing.
“I expect we will want to know all their names,” said the fat boy, “and make a list. We ought to have a meeting.”
Ralph did not take the hint so the fat boy was forced to continue.
“I don’t care what they call me,” he said confidentially, “so long as they don’t call me what they used to call me at school.”
Ralph was fairly interested.
“What was that?”
The fat boy glanced over his shoulder, then leaned towards Ralph.
“They used to call me ‘Piggy’.”
Ralph shrieked with laughter. He jumped up.
“Ralph – please!”
Piggy clasped his hands in apprehension.
“I said I didn’t want —-“
Ralph danced out into the hot air of the beach and then returned as a fighter-plane, with wings swept back, and machine-gunned Piggy.
He dived in the sand at Piggy’s feet and lay there laughing.
Piggy grinned reluctantly, pleased despite himself at even this much recognition.
“So long as you don’t tell the others —-“
Ralph giggled into the sand. The expression of pain and concentration returned to Piggy’s face.