In the opening of the story, Ralph and Piggy are the first two boys to be introduced. It is just the two of them on the beach after the crash. Piggy, the first to speak, wants to be friends. Ralph just seems to glory in being alive and on the beach. Ralph makes fun of Piggy's size, giving him the only name by which he's known in the story, and of Piggy's asthma. This doesn't seem like the beginning of a good friendship, but it is. Many times, Ralph appears frustrated with Piggy because Piggy continually is that nagging voice of reason and common sense. He often reminds Ralph of the need for basic necessities and of the need for order. Part of Ralph would like to ignore Piggy and be an irresponsible kid, but a greater part of him realizes, that the time for irresponsibility is over and he must take charge. Through this back and forth the friendship grows. By the beginning of chapter 10, the bond between Ralph and Piggy is strong as they sit in shock and despair over Simon's death. By the end of the story, Ralph is weeping over who he now realizes was his "true, wise friend".
At the beginning of the book, Ralph sees only Piggy's flaws. He sees him as an overwieght, asthmatic annnoyance. As the story progresses, Ralph realizes that being a leader is more than just being able to swim or having a dad in the navy. He begins to see that Piggy is wise, intelligent, and loyal, despite his physical flaws and lack of social skills.