As the boys approach Castle Rock, they are very nervous about the whole situation, the drop to the sea below them, the fact that the other boys are hiding, etc. Ralph steps forward as the leader and takes the conch and begins to blow on it, as though he is calling the boys to an assembly in the old way.
He tries to tell the boys that he now sees as savages that he is calling an assembly, expecting that perhaps they will respond out of a sense of duty.
Once Jack returns from his hunting trip, however, it becomes apparent that they are not going to be able to resolve their situation. The hunters are not willing to give back the glassesand the conflict leads to Piggy's death.