Thomas enters Alby’s room. Alby, who still looks sick, tells the Med-Jacks to leave the two of them alone so that they can talk privately. When they are alone, Alby says that during the Changing he saw Thomas and the girl working with the Creators in the place where they come from. Alby says that he remembers an event called the Flare and that the world outside the Glade is horrible and apocalyptic. Alby says that he now understands that the Creators must have made them forget so that they could live peaceful lives within the Glade.
Since the Changing is a metaphor for puberty, Alby suggests that becoming a teenager means losing the innocence of childhood by becoming aware of the harsh realities of adult life. Alby’s wish to stay in the Glade is a metaphorical wish to remain a child forever so that he won’t have to face the challenges of the adult world.
Alby starts to say something else, but then begins to viciously choke himself. Thomas calls for Newt and together they try to restrain Alby. Alby comes close to killing himself, but he suddenly calms and stops choking himself. Alby says he doesn’t know what just happened and that it felt like someone was controlling his body. As Thomas and Newt leave the room to let Alby sleep, Alby tells Thomas to be careful with girl and that Newt should protect the maps.
Alby’s loss of control continues the metaphor for puberty. Here, an invisible force takes control over Alby’s body. Similarly, in adolescence, for some teenagers hormonal changes can be strong enough to make them feel and do things outside of their control.