Soon, the young girl meets a strange, clicking insect, who transforms into a mute fairy, which in turn guides her to a lost labyrinth, an underground maze, where she is greeted by an ancient faun (played by del Toro’s regular collaborator Doug Jones). The seemingly benign faun introduces himself as the guardian of a gateway to a fantasy world and explains that Ofelia is a reincarnation the daughter of the king of the fairies, an almost-forgotten princess of a world hidden just out of sight of what she knows as reality. Ofelia, who in her heart has always suspected as much, listens intently as the faun gives her a series of tasks to perform, in order to prove herself worthy, open the doors to the lost kingdom and fulfil her destiny. With her mother is confined to bed, suffering from the long journey and the lack of adequate care, Ofelia is taken into the care of the good-hearted, brave housekeeper Mercedes (Maribel Verdú), a sister of the leader of the resistance committed to supplying the rebels with food and medicine from the army supply store. With the woods closing in around her, the lonely young girl is trapped; between childhood and adolescence, war and peace, between her dying mother and her raging adoptive father, between a sinister world of fantasy and a far more dangerous reality.