On the morning of his twelfth birthday, Simon wakes to the realisation that he must visit the Tobol cubicle at the local shops. It’s an activity forbidden for children under sixteen, but he can’t back down. He has boasted to his friends, lied to his parents and stolen his father’s ID card. This simple, suburban defiance becomes the trigger in a sequence of events that escalate into a global catastrophe.
In this re-imagined recent past, Tobol cubicles have become ubiquitous – appliances which many adults use to seek solace from their problems. An automated combination of confessional and therapist. They seem innocuous yet prove to conceal an unimagined potential for harm.
When Simon arrives at school after his clandestine visit to the Tobol cubicle he feels triumphant. Disappointingly, Georgina is unimpressed. Simon is infatuated with Georgina. Her mother has disappeared, rumoured to have been murdered by her father, Joe. Her father’s political group, the Aman Harkat, had been under suspicion for involvement in the Sydney Hilton Bombing. He is mistrusted and alienated by their community, fuelling Simon’s fascination.
Reacquainted with Georgina in a chance meeting years later, Simon is drawn into her and Joe’s world of loss, rebellion, fear and hope while they fight to learn the truth of Georgina’s mother’s disappearance in a world blinded by its addiction to religion and the easy access to Tobol's quick relief from their problems.
Simon’s need to impress Georgina leads him to take a step which brings the true nature of Tobol to public attention. This is the trigger that results in mass murder and chaos. It’s a disaster Simon personally feels he and his friends precipitated and one that may destroy any chance of discovering what really happened to Georgina’s mother.
Simon’s four year journey of self-discovery is shadowed by the development of Tobol from an accepted part of life into the means for a psychopath to commit mass murder. Simon’s loss of innocence is mirrored by society’s realisation that faith without evidence is dangerous. But will this lesson truly be learned?