The Skull Cave is the hideout of The Phantom. The Skull Cave is hidden behind a large waterfall in the Deep Woods of Bangalla. To find the cave, one must go through the waterfall. The area within and around the waterfall is heavily guarded by the pygmy Bandar tribe's warriors who are hidden among the trees and bushes equipped with bow and arrows of poison. Any sign of intruders may immediately be communicated through the drum beats that reverberate in the entire jungle and easily reach the ears of The Phantom. Other than being one of the ancestral home of the Phantom and his family, the cave includes many special rooms.
Situated with a long-extinct volcano in an undisclosed location with the Deep Woods, the fabled Skull Cave may have been many millennia before the first Kit Walker set foot upon the volcanic glass "keystone" that marks the entrance to the hidden subterranean lair. Each generation of Phantom(s) has added to its mystery, mapping undiscovered chambers and maintaining its historic legacy as secret sanctum of 'The Ghost Who Walks'.
The earliest recorded history in regards to the legendary Skull Cave took place over 400 years ago, when it was visited after Christopher 'Kit' Walker (the future 1st Phantom) had helped the Bandar tribe escape from the cruel Wasaka. Fleeing through the jungle, the Bandars took the young man through a waterfall to a location only known by them, and showed him a bizarrely-shaped cave, so strangely carved by nature, that it resembled a large human skull. Hence, the name of this wondrous landmark, giving it its name - the Skull Cave - which eventually became the home of the first Phantom. He eventually carved the outside of this landmark so that it would resemble a skull even more so. Since that time, the Skull Cave became the hideout, base of operations and home of the Walker family and has been the abode of each successive Phantom.
In the 21st Century, the 21st Phantom has also told Diana that the first Phantom built the Skull Cave, as well as the Skull Throne, presumably meaning that he improved its look and made the interior habitable.
Even more amazing than the cave itself are its contents within. The large cavern has many chambers in it. The important ones which are described below:
The Throne RoomEdit
The Throne Room is a vast hall that one enters as soon as one steps into the cave. It has a risen platform in the middle on which stands the Skull Throne flanked on both sides by ornate stands with lit torches on them. This room has been used at times to hold conferences between kings or tribal chiefs. This is also the place where the Phantom meets messengers or visitors.
The Chronicles RoomEdit
The Chronicles Room contains a large number of voluminous books. In these books are captured all the adventures of the Phantoms, written in their own hand. Thus, 400 plus years of events are recorded in the books of the Chronicles Room. Here also lies answers to many unsolved mysteries. For example, the secret of how the Jungle Patrol was formed.
This room is most precious to our 21st Phantom. He spends a lot of his time here reading about his ancestors. Many a time, he has sought help from the Phantom Chronicles in his own adventures.
Upgraded with 21st century connectivity by Heloise Walker, The Phantom's communications hub is physically plugged into the Skull Cave and surrounding mountain, tapping into a network of super-conductive ores that allow broadband signals to reach the transmitting and receiving equipment deep underground. This room also houses technical equipment, such as powerful radio-transmitters, computers with internet connectivity and telephones. The Phantom uses the transmitter within to communicate withe The Jungle Patrol and the outside world. There is a special band or frequency that he uses for this which is called the X-Band at Jungle Patrol.
The Bandar pygmies refer to the radio as the 'Devil's Box', from which comes 'voices from air'.
Next to the Crypt, is another room which has not been named. Unofficially, it is known as the 'costume room'. It is here that the uniform of every Phantom is arrayed within this chamber, a monument and memorial to every man (and woman) who has battled injustice as 'The Ghost Who Walks'. Due to damage sustained in battle, the Phantom must frequently change out his uniforms. This uniforms are often made by The Phantom's good friend Guran.
With enough guns and ammunition to wage a small war - or to defend the secrets of the Skull Cave to the last - this chamber contains weapons spanning four centuries of armed conflict.
The Treasure ChambersEdit
The Skull Cave includes two treasure rooms -- The Minor Treasure Room and The Major Treasure Room. The former contains gold, silver and jewels of every color and carat. This chamber contains a fortune culled from pirate booty, riches uncounted which have long funded The Phantoms' missions. The 21st Phantom gave a substantial portion of gold to his son as a wedding dowry. Young Kit used the wealth to launch and finance The Walkabout Foundation.
Within the chamber of The Major Treasure Room lies treasures of antiquity, priceless fabled artifacts kept safe by the long line of Phantoms. This includes such fabled treasures as:
- Alexander's Diamond Chalice - The cup of Alexander the Great, mankind's greatest conqueror, a military genius whose reach ultimately exceeded his grasp. Legend says that Alexander weapon when there were no more territories to conquer, his tears falling into this drinking vessel. This exquisite cup was carved out from a single diamond. It is also said that to drink from the cup is to know the wisdom of great Alexander himself.
- The Tiny Ark - A miniature replica of Noah's Ark, made from the actual wood of this famous vessel from the Genesis flood narrative mentioned in the Bible, in which God spares Noah, his family, and examples of all the world's animals from a world-engulfing flood.
- Black Poe's Sword - Black Poe's Sword is the rapier sword which once belonged to the notorious pirate Black Poe, active during the times of the 12th Phantom.
- Bottled Ship - The Bottle Ship is a small-scale model ship inside a glass bottle, made by Colonel Ben Oakes of the Jungle Patrol and presented to the 13th Phantom.
- Caesar's Golden Laurel - Known as a Corona Radiata, this simple golden coronet in the shape of a laurel wreath was the crown worn by Gaius Julius Caesar, the famous military general, politician and Dictator of Rome. It was gifted to him by Marc Antony in the Roman market place. According to ancient Roman mythology, such crowns were also given to the gods and deified heroes. They were worn by some emperors as a token of their own divinity.
- Caledfwich - The magical sword in the stone, known more familiarly as Excalibur, pulled free by King Arthur to demonstrate his rightful sovereignty over the whole of Great Britain. Its blade is nigh-unbreakable.
- Carthaginian Scroll - The Carthaginian Scroll is a scroll on which are allegory (a message couched in metaphors) written by a Roman spy about the details of a secret city of the Carthaginian survivors who had escaped the sacking of Carthage in the 2nd century to settle down in Bangalla.
- Charlemagne's Crown - Charlemagne's Crown is the royal crown of Charlemagne, the famous Holy Roman Emperor in the 9th century who united much of western and central Europe during the Early Middle Ages.
- Mummified Asp of Cleopatra - The snake that bit and killed beauteous Cleopatra. Its scales are considered a potent remedy for a panoply of poisons.
- Wedding Ring of Cleopatra - This was the exquisite wedding ring gifted to Cleopatra by her love, Antony Mark Antony for their marriage.
- The Cowboy Hat - The Cowboy Hat is a cowboy hat which once belonged to the 16th Phantom.
- Crown of Joonkar - The royal Crown of Joonkar was the crown of Emperor Joonkar, who gifted it to the 7th Phantom for safekeeping in the major treasure room to avoid the fight over its possession. It was, however, soon looted from the Skull Cave, resulting in the 7th Phantom's death. It wasn't until the 21st Phantom was able to locate it and bought it from Lady Sultana.
- Robinson Crusoe (First Edition) - A first edition of the novel, "The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, Of York, Mariner" by author Daniel Defoe, published in 1719.
- Crystal Skull - The Crystal Skull is one of three skulls supposedly commissioned by King Solomon in order to increase his lifespan by releasing the demon Beelzbub, who had been trapped in a mirrored stone by the wizard of Emir of Kah and entombed in a wall sealed up by magic. Solomon, however, died before he could use them but before dying he hid the skulls under the temple in Jerusalem. The skulls were later scattered all over the globe. The 16th Phantom find one of these skulls in an Aztec temple in Mexico. It was later brought to the Skull Cave by the 21st Phantom.
- Don Quixote (First Edition) - A first edition copy of the Spanish novel, "El Ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quijote de la Manch" by author Miguel de Cervantes. It was more than likely gifted to the 3rd Phantom, who was active during the time this novel was first released in 1605.
- Durandal - The sword of Roland, the nephew and legendary Frankish knight and military leader under King Charlemagne, who became one of the principal figures in the literary cycle known as the Matter of France. In the epic poem La Chanson de Rolan ('The Song of Roland'), Durandal was said to have been given to Charlemagne by an angel of God, who instructed the emperor to give the sword to one of his counts. In other accounts, this sword once belonged to the Trojan Hector, and was given to Roland by the enchanter Malagigi. With this mighty sword, Roland led his uncle's armies in battle and conquered most of Europe.
- The First Dynamite - A single stick of the destructive explosive invented by Alfred Nobel, who devolved his later life to more peaceful pursuits including the prize that bears his name.
- The Golden Fleece - The prize of Jason and his Argonauts' heroic quest, this fabled flayed ram's hide was guarded by a vile dragon. It is believed to heal injuries and grant eternal life.
- Golden Flower - The Golden Flower is a large lotus flower made of solid gold. It was gifted to the 9th Phantom, when in April 1735, he saved the Queen of the Golden People from 'the ceremony of the queen' which would have resulted in her death.
- Golden Rune - The Golden Rune is five engraves stone tables, when put together, reveal a map leading to the lost mines of King Solomon. The map was made by five vikings who found the mine and by mistake released the demon Bail. Each viking kept one part of the Golden Rune. The pieces were placed on a staff carved from golden wood, that later was given by a past Phantom to an ancestor of Old Man Mozz and eventually became the staff of Mozz himself.
- Great Ring of Nebuchadnezzar - A large, exquisite gold ring worn said to contain tremendous mystical powers. It originally belonged to the Babylonian King Nabopolassar, who gave it to his successor, the legendary Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar II, one of the longest-reigning and most powerful monarchs of the ancient Neo-Babylonian Empire in 605 B.C.. His conquest of Judah is described in the Bible's Books of Kings and Book of Jeremiah. The Bible remembers him as the destroyer of Solomon's Temple and the initiator of the Babylonian captivity. The ring gave great power and many victories to Nebuchadnezzar. It eventually passed through the hands of several Pharoahs and then Persian King Cyrus, giving him great power. After Cyrus, the ring vanished from history. It later turned up in Mawitaan, the capital of Bangalla, in 1831 during the times of the 14th Phantom who left it in the temple of Aku where it remained buried in the sands.
- The Jade Dragon - The Jade Dragon is a jade statue of a beautifully carved celestial dragon, which was broken apart into five separate pieces. According to legends, if all five pieces are brought together, the statue can wield tremendous power. These pieces have been collected over several generation, with the current Phantom having all of them safely secured in the major treasure room.
- Juliet's Wig - This item consists of a woman's theatre wig that was used by the 3rd Phantom in 1604, when he played the character Juliet in the opening performance of Shakespeare's play, "Romeo and Juliet" in the famous Globe Theatre in London, England.
- Love Potion of Tristan and Isolde - The Love Potion of Tristan and Isolde is a vial said to contain the love potion which was consumed by Tristan and Isolde which caused them to fall in love with each other.
- Lyre of Homer - Lyre of the famous blind Greek poet Homer, the legendary author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, two epic poems that are the central works of ancient Greek literature.
- Model of the Eastern Dawn - The Model of Eastern Dawn is a small scale model of the actual ship, Eastern Dawn. In 1851 the 16th Phantom helped his future wife Asta Jensen to apprehend insurance fraudster George Trelawny by saving the ship Eastern Dawn. Subsequently they were gifted the model as one of their wedding presents.
- Necklace of Nefertiti - This golden necklace was worn by Nefertiti, the legendary Egyptian queen and Great Royal Wife (chief consort) of the Pharaoh Akhenaten, who during the 14th century B.C. Renowned for her radiant beauty, this royal couple were known for their religious revolution, in which they worship one god only, Aten, the sun god.
- Necklace of Solomon and Sheba - The Necklace of Solomon and Sheba is a master-crafted golden necklace encrusted with diamonds, emeralds and rubies. It is considered the most treasured item of the Wambesi, the greatest tribe in the Bangallan jungle. According to the legends, it was gifted to Queen Sheba by King Solomon. One of the sons of Solomon and Sheba founded the Wambesi tribe bringing the necklace with him. It is believed to bring wealth and riches to the tribe.
- Nostradamus' Copper Container - Nostradamus' Copper Container is a copper tube which contained a rolled up original parchment of one of the prophecies of the famous French physician and seer Michel de Nostredame, more commonly known as Nostradamus
- The Olifant of Roland - The Ivory Horn of Roland (known as an Olifant) was an ivory hunting horn made from elephant's tusks. In The Song of Roland, Roland carried his olifant while serving on the rearguard of Charlemagne's army. When they are attacked at the Battle of Roncevaux, Oliver tells Roland to use it to call for aid, but he refuses. Roland finally relents, but the battle is already lost. He tries to destroy the olifant along with his sword Durendal, lest they fall into enemy hands. In the end, Roland blows the horn, but the force required bursts his temple, resulting in death. Other accounts elaborates that Roland's olifant was a unicorn's horn, hunted in India.
- Script of Hamlet - An original manuscript of the play "Hamlet", written by Shakespeare, along with the original quill pen used to write it.
- Shakespeare's Hamlet (First Draft) - The first draft of the masterpiece of Danish deception, its final act written in Shakespeare's own blood when the Bard ran out of ink in a final flurried spark of literary genius.
- Shakespeare's Pen - Shakespeare's Pen is a quill pen used by the famous playwright Shakespeare with which he used to write the play "Romeo and Juliet". This quill pen was gifted to the 3rd Phantom.
- The Skull - The Skull is the original skull of the pirate that killed Christopher Standish Walker, the father of the 1st Phantom. After the body of the pirate was picked clean, he picked up the skull and swore The Oath of the Skull, becoming the first Phantom. This oath would be taken by every successive Phantom in an unbroken line that stretches down four centuries.
- Skull Necklace - The Skull Necklace is a necklace mad of miniature skulls said to have once belonged to Kali, the Hindu Goddess of Death, who was worshipped by the Thuggees, a cult of assassins with origins in India.
- Song of Roland (Tenth Manuscript) - Amongst the many priceless treasures kept within the major treasure room, there exists an the oldest copy of the "Song of Roland", an epic French poem based on the Pass Battle of Roncevaux Pass in 778, during the reign of Charlemagne. It is the oldest surviving major work of French literature and exists in various manuscript versions, with nine manuscripts known to exist, the oldest being at the University of Oxford. However, the tenth and oldest copy is secured safely within the Skull Cave.
- Star of Sekhmet - The Star of Sekhmet is an Egyptian figurine of the goddess Sekhmet, with a large jewel for its crown. According to legends, the figurine possesses great powers, which if controlled, can give the wielder enormous influence over the world. As narrated to the 5th Phantom by René Descartes in 1650, it passed through the hands of the Romans, Roger Bacon and the infamous Baron Gilles de Rais, and then appeared in Prague and Stockholm. Its jewel, through its refraction capability, is claimed to open passages to other dimensions.
- Sword of Sultan Ibn Narud - The Sword of Sultan Ibn Narud is an ancient scimitar, it's blade broken, with its hilt and pommel inlaid with gold and precious jewels. When the 20th Phantom saved the life of ruler of Zamur, Sultan Narud, the tip of the Sultan's sword was broken in the process. The grateful Sultan gifted the broken sword as a token of gratitude.
- Sword of Toghrul Beg - The Sword of Toghrul Beg is an ancient sword inlaid with gold and precious jewels. The sword was given to the 14th Phantom by Prince Dowlah of Marabar. It is said to have belonged to Toghrul Beg, the Tartar and Turkish founder of the Seljuk Empire, ruling from 1037 to 1063.
- Amund Vuoma's Troll Drum - Amund Vuoma's Troll Drum is a Sami toll drum that was made in Lapland in northern Sweden by the Samai shaman Armund Vuoma who was burnt to death for sorcery and heresy by the fanatical priest Johannes. The drum was said to have caused grave tragedies in Johannes' family and the lives of people who possessed it and was believed to be cursed. It was purchased from Dr. van Schuiten by the 9th Phantom in 1735 during his visit to the Netherlands.
- Venetian Plague Doctor's Mask - The Venetian Plague Doctor's Mask is a facial mask with a beak used by physicians who treated victims of the bubonic plague in the 17th century and was worn with an ankle length overcoat and a unique mask. The mask has glass openings in the yes and a curved beak shaped like that of a bird with straps that hold the beak in front of the doctor's nose. The mask has two small nose holes and acted as a type of respirator which contained aromatic items. The beak could hold dried flowers (including roses and carnations), herbs (including mints), spices, camphor or vinegar sponge. The purpose of the mask was to keep away bad smells, known as miasma, which were thought to be the principal cause of the disease. Doctors believed the herbs would counter the "evil" smells of the plague and prevent them from becoming infected.
- The White Mahout - The White Horseman is a miniature Indian statuette carved from the tusk of an elephant that depicts a Mahout (elephant rider) riding in a royal howdah (a fancy carriage) mounted upon an ornately decorated elephant. This statuette was gifted to the 7th Phantom by a young prince Vemour of Timaan, and was said to have been made by the sorcerer A'kra for his grandfather. Legends say that it possesses great power and can show glimpses of the future.
The Phantom CryptEdit
The Crypt contains the tombs of 20 previous generations of Phantoms. Here is is mentioned that no Phantom has ever seen his own grandfather, with the exception of the 13th Phantom who knew his grandfather (the 11th Phantom), a very rare occurrence.