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While the war of Secession rages in the United States, a group of captive Union soldiers escapes a Confederate camp by means of a balloon. Entailed by a violent hurricane, the balloon fails on an desert island in the middle of the Pacific. While the scientist Smith and the dog « Tob » are missing in action, reporter Spilett, sailor Pencroft, the young boy Herbert Brown and the black slave Nab struggle to insure their survival. They quickly understand that they failed on a desert volcanic island.
The balloon of the escaped is on
the way to fail
Nevertheless strange phenomena lead them to believe that an entity lives beyond a mountainous barrier. Luminous flashes coming from it incite them to more exploration. But they are rapidly stopped in their plan by stiking lightning. The shipwrecked men now know now that they are not alone on this mysterious island and name this area « forbidden territory ».
Some days later, Cyrus Smith and the dog who were thought dead are discovered in a little cave. What Smith does not know is that they avoid drowning thanks to the intervention of strange fish men.
The island is not so uninhabited. During a hunting party, Herbert is continued by strangely dressed men. He finds refuge in a cave before to faint. He makes a strange dream and when he wakes up he is in possession of a mysterious gilded cube. Where is it coming from ? What are these strange flashes in these mountains that act as attacking guardians as we approach too near ?
One day, Pencroft discovers a message in a bottle. It seems to have been launched by Captain Grant since the Tabor island some miles from here. On board a small boat, Spilett, Pencroft and Herbert fly to the rescue of the man. Meanwhile, armed of home-made lightning conductors, Mr Smith and Nab attempt once more to approach the mysterious mountain. The invention functions perfectly and the two explorers penetrate in the forbidden territory but do not learn a lot about the mystery that rules around.
Smith and Nab try to approach the
The shipwrecked man of the Tabor island is not the Captain Grant but Ayrton, a punished and abandoned man on Tabor for piracy. Their return on the mysterious island is much more perilous than the previous trip. Taken in a storm in full night, they will survive only thanks to an unknown fire lighted on the flanks of the island. Once more, they have been saved by the strange people who manifestly don't want to be unmasked.
The day when a ship passes at large, the misfortune wants that it concerns a pirate vessel. The bandits want to use this island as a hiding-place and attack our little groups of wrecked men. Our friends have to withdraw in a cave. Herbert leaves to the forbidden territory to seek assistance beside the strangers...
Spoiler ! the end of the story is revealed below…
The help seems to be effective when the pirate boat explodes and the pirates are exterminated. The collapse of a cave provoked by an overdrawn volcanic irruption disovered a passage that leads them to the Nautilus, the famous submarine of the Captain Nemo. This one, confused that they have found their way to him explains them that he wishes to remain anonyme in order to protect the humanity from his technological discoveries that would, for sure, be badly used. Unfortunately, the collapse of the cave prevents the Nautilus from leaving the island that threatens to be gobbled at any time.
Nemo warns the wreckmen to leave the island as quickly as possible. While the Nautilus flows with his Captain, for our friends from the mysterious island who escape on a fortune raft, the story takes a happy turn with the encounter of a ship that comes to their assistance.