The boys in Lord of the Flies have always been split into two groups, joined in an uneasy alliance. Although Ralph is the overall leader, Jack remains in charge of the choirboys, who form a separate detachment of "hunters" under his command. It is always obvious that Jack is unwilling to accept Ralph's authority and that the choir will follow him when he decides to revolt. This moment comes in chapter 8. At first, it appears that Jack is on his own:
"Who thinks Ralph oughtn't to be chief?"
He looked expectantly at the boys ranged round, who had frozen. Under the palms there was deadly silence.
It is a testament to Ralph's charisma and leadership abilities that no one wants to follow Jack in his open rebellion. When Jack leaves, it appears that he does so alone. The definitive split, however, occurs very soon after this. The reader, along with Ralph and Piggy, only discovers it after it has happened:
Ralph dropped down in the sand.
"We'll have to make a new list of who's to look after the fire."
"If you can find 'em."
He looked round. Then for the first time he saw how few biguns there were and understood why the work had been so hard.
Piggy wiped his glass again. "I expect . . . no, he wouldn't go into the forest by himself, would he?"
Ralph and Piggy quickly realize how many of the group have left to join Jack. Golding could not have described the split directly. The fact that none of Jack's followers were prepared to defy Ralph openly meant that their departure had to be surreptitious. Within a few paragraphs, however, we see Jack addressing his troops, sole leader of his own tribe at last and "looking brilliantly happy."