Why now does Equality feel the need to guard his tunnel?

chapter 5

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Equality guards the tunnel to protect his discovery of the glass box from Unmentionable Times, and the fact that he has been able to make it "glow". He wants to safeguard his discovery until he can present it to the World Council of Scholars.

We must wait. We must guard our tunnel as we had never guarded it before. For should any men save the Scholars learn of our secret, they would not understand it, nor would they believe us. They would see nothing, save our crime of working alone, and they would destroy us and our light. We care not about our body, but our light is . . .