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Revealed: the novel prophesy starring Scott, Peter, Ralph and Jack

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In a secondhand bookshop, a remarkable discovery has been made. An exercise book, yellow-paged and time-worn, would seem to be an alternative, and abandoned, version of the classic novel Lord of the Flies. 
This one, say those who have read extracts, appears to be set in the early 21st century. Adults have replaced the boys, and in a neat twist, the island is now an inland city on an island continent. The parallels in plot and characters, however, are said to be strikingly similar to the original, which coincidentally was first published in September, albeit more than 60 years ago.
One close to the find has supplied pages of the text. The dialogue at places mirrors the original. 
“You voted me for chief. Now you do what I say.” 
They slowly became quiet, took their seats and listened – for the moment.
Scott was clutching a replica of the mace. He began moving it from one hand to the other. 
“Things are breaking up. I don’t understand why. We began well; we were happy. And then —” 
He cradled the mace and then looked beyond them into the middle distance as if recalling the recent battle, the casualties, the collateral damage, the vanquished –  no not the vanquished. Ghosts belonged with fear – in the past. What’s done is done. As if talking to himself, he murmured:
 “Then people started getting frightened.”
There was a ripple of moaning. 
“We’ll get that straight. So the last part, the bit we can all talk about, is kind of deciding on the fear. So this is a meeting to find out what’s what. Of course we’re frightened sometimes but we put up with being frightened. And as for the fear — you’ll have to put up with that like the rest of us.” 
Scott looked into everyone’s face, one by one, for acknowledgement of his authority. He concluded, trying to adopt a conciliatory manner.
“The thing is — fear can’t hurt you any more than a dream. There aren’t any beasts to be afraid of in this town.”
He knew this was a bluff, but he had to say it. Without order, there was only savagery and anarchy.
In the margins were two paragraphs exactly the same, as if a thought was suspended, waiting for its moment in the plot. 
“I’m scared of him,” said Scott, “and that’s why I know him. If you’re scared of someone you hate him but you can’t stop thinking about him. You kid yourself he’s all right really, an’ then when you see him again; it’s like asthma an’ you can’t breathe . . .” 
But in the second paragraph the name had been changed to Peter. It was as if the author wasn’t sure which way the plot would unfold. On the second page was this:
The officer looked at Scott doubtfully for a moment, then took his hand away from the butt of the revolver. 
“Hullo.”
Squirming a little, Scott answered shyly. “Hullo.” 
“Are you the only adults?”
Scott shook his head. A semicircle of others, their bodies streaked from rage and crying, sharp sticks in their hands, appeared.
“Fun and games,” said the officer. “We saw your smoke. What have you been doing? Having a war or something.”
Scott nodded. The officer inspected the person in front of him. He needed a good deal of ointment. “Nobody killed, I hope? Any dead bodies?”
 “Only two. And they’ve gone.”
And that is it. The remainder of the book is empty. The identity of the officer is a mystery. The figure could be merely a narrative device, as in the original, to show that even when rescue is at hand, it is loaded with a dark menace and foreboding. In the end, whatever the explanation for the deaths, it did not seem now justifiable. Tribes had been at war. Blood had been spilt. Leadership had been maintained. 

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