Many ships ply the waves near the island but most keep their distance from the strong currents, unusual tides, uncharted reefs and unmarked shoals. The ships known lost in the waters are greatly out numbered by the ships that sailed into the Cannibal Coast and never returned. Most ships lost are with all hands but one had a survivor. Fished out of the sea by Malay fishermen he told a strange story before he died. He spoke of his ship making passage into a hidden bay on one of the many uncharted islands in the archipelago. They were met by a group of red robed men who supervised the unloading of the ship's cargo. Once unloaded the Captain ordered the crew back aboard and quickly headed back out to sea. Once past the breakers and with the island growing smaller behind them A strange shrill screaming noise was heard. Looking back toward the island he saw a silver airship of some kind. It flew over the ship barely clearing the top of the masts. All the crew rushed up to see the flying machine as it stayed low to the water and banked back around coming toward the ship. He saw the flashes and knew it was shooting at them. The man hid as the silver airship made strafing run after strafing run until the boilers blew and he was thrown over board. When he regained consciousness the sun had gone down but he could see lights and hear rifle fire, a powerboat full of the Red robed men had a searchlight and were shooting any survivor they could find. Better to take his chances with the sea so he let the current carry him further out to sea. He didn't know how long he floated but in his delirium he did remember one fact and that was the coordinates of the island. The Malay Captain knew this information was worth money and headed back into port. There he searched out an information broker who paid well for the coordinates.
In little time this information made it to the International Man of Mystery Prospector Bob. Reaching out, Bob contacted Freddy Roosevelt and asked if he could investigate the strange island. Ready for anything, Freddy rounded up a detachment of his Roughriders and chartered a tramp steamer to head into the Cannibal Coast.
Unknown to Prospector Bob, the same information also made it to Major Von Kraken currently advisor to Chinese Warlord, General Cho. The Major quickly organized a detachment of troops and placed it in the capable hands of Lieutenant Xing. Commandeering a junk they also headed into the unknown Cannibal Coast.
The Warlord's Troops land and are lead into the hinterland of the Island by Lieutenant Xing.