In J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Denethor, the Steward of Gondor, is supposed to rule over the Kingdom of Gondor while the rightful king is away. When he learns that the king has returned and that the city is under attack, Denethor refuses to either fight or hand over his authority. He would rather die and see the city destroyed than lose his power (J. R. R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings, Book 5, “Chapter IV: The Siege of Gondor” (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1954]).