Gasping, desperate, Sophie flung herself into the corner of the dark room. Crouching down, every breath was enormous and sounded too loud to be real – cartoon breathing for a fictitious girl. But she was no character, she was alive and had been running for what felt like hours. Tucked into the crevice within the black, she finally felt safe. As she willed her breathing to quieten down, the wall next to her felt cool against her cheek and she began to consider her next move.

With a snap, light engulfed her. Sophie realised – far too late – that she was not in a room at all but rather a glass box. Below her she could see wires, motorbikes, discarded tutus and lions in the midst of a makeshift auditorium. It looked neglected, and in the piercing light, there was dust hovering in the air.

There was a creak as the glass box started to rise, floating higher and higher and higher. Flabbergasted and frozen with alarm, Sophie found the wall of glass, once so refreshing, now squeaked as her sweaty body rubbed against it.

“I warned you. You cannot flee from this,” a voice boomed out.

Sophie turned every which way to seek out the figure addressing her, but could see nobody. The glass box was still rising and there seemed to be no roof to stop it. Propelled by a strength as yet unknown even to her, Sophie began banging against the walls and running from side to side. It started to swing gently to and fro and Sophie found it hard to stop sliding across the slippery surface. A lion below – though tiny now, a mere pussycat – roared. Stubbornly Sophie sat down, in the centre, her legs crossed like a child. Petulantly she glowered out at the universe, hating everyone and everything.

“I did warn you!” bellowed the voice again, “It’s Destiny!”