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Treasure Chest Cavity

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So that's where you hid the family jewels!

Rick: You're gonna have to do me a real solid. When we get to customs, I'm gonna need you to take these seeds into the bathroom, and I'm gonna need you to put them way up inside your butthole, Morty.
Morty: In my butt?
Rick: Put them way up inside there, as far as they can fit!
Morty: Oh, geez, Rick. I really don't want to have to do that.
Rick: Well, somebody's got to do it, Morty! Th-these seeds aren't gonna get through customs unless they're in someone's rectum, Morty! Th-they'll fall right outta mine! I-I've done this too many times, Morty!

This trope is about using a person as a walking safe. Or a dead safe, in some cases. Despite the name, the treasure can be hidden in other body parts, and with or without the person's knowledge. Smugglers may willingly have themselves (or others) surgically altered to hide objects inside of them. In some instances the hidden item may be parked inside the person's Soul or odder "places", as if in a spiritual Hammerspace. Taking the item out may require surgery (hopefully Psychic Surgery to avoid Scars are Forever), or may be simple if they've been surgically given "pouches". Just hope that the "cavity" you're searching for isn't the rectum.

See also Stomach of Holding and Person of Holding. Compare Victoria's Secret Compartment, Trouser Space and contrast Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Nice Hollystone of Baccano! keeps an extra cherry bomb in her empty eye socket.
  • In Bleach, the Hougyoku was hidden inside Rukia's soul, pictured above. The Big Bad had a handy ritual which allowed him to reach in and grab it; Plan A was to vaporize her and get the artifact that way, because said object is indestructible.
    • This happens to Rukia again at the hands of the Fullbringer Riruka. After defeating her she turns Rukia into a Trojan Horse by hiding within her. She exits through a double door that appears Rukia's torso.
  • Inuyasha:
    • Inuyasha had a black pearl that acts as a portal to his father's grave hidden inside the pupil of his eye.
    • In the very first episode, Kagome had the Shikon no Tama torn out of her body. The jewel had attached itself to the soul of Kikyo, Kagome's previous incarnation, after it was burned along with Kikyo's body in an attempt to prevent its powers being used.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Stone Ocean: Ermes has her breasts slightly modified so that she can hide rolled-up money in them. Since she's going to a higher-security prison and knows their search procedures, she needs some way to get money past the guards.
    • Steel Ball Run: If the holder of a piece of the saint's corpse has the potential to be a Stand user, they will absorb that piece of the saint's corpse into the equivalent part of their own body.
  • Played for Laughs in One Piece, where Brook, being a skeleton, can open his skull like a box to store small items in it, such as the Tone Dial he and his former crew recorded. Later played for awesome when he uses that space to hide Poneglyph rubbings from Big Mom. There's also Franky, a Cyborg who can keep many different things in his metal body. This included the Pluton plans the World Government had been seeking until he figured it wasn't worth keeping anymore, burning them.
  • This is the essence of a Mystes from Shakugan no Shana. They are Torches that carry some sort of treasure inside them and as soon as they burn out or die the treasure is relocated to a different Torch. This makes the Mystes main character very sought after by numerous parties due to him carrying a very powerful artifact inside of him.

    Comic Books 
  • Art Ops: When the Statue Of Liberty, having been deformed by the disease Scarlett gave her, is rampaging through the streets, The Body first tries to subdue her with a stun shot fired at her from from his chest. When that doesn't work, he then reveals he can store things inside his chest too, and sucks the Statue Of Liberty into himself. Though, apparently, doing so also took a lot out of him, and left him quite bloated.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Alien: Covenant. David is shown to have smuggled live alien embryos on board the Covenant inside his own body, regurgitating them when needed. As an artificial person he's not in danger of them hatching inside his body.
  • In A Christmas Carol: The Musical, one of Marley's fellow wandering ghosts has a safe in his chest. "I never had a heart..."
  • A variation in Fall. The protagonist is trapped on top of a 2000-foot-high transmission tower which interferes with her cellphone signal, so she can't call for help. She tries throwing a mobile phone clear in a shoe, but it still smashes. She only gets a signal out when she puts another phone inside the dead body of her friend and pushes it off the tower.
  • The Fifth Element. The Stones (the film's MacGuffin) are hidden inside the body of Diva Plavalaguna.
  • James Bond:
    • In Diamonds Are Forever, Bond uses the dead body of diamond smuggler Peter Franks to smuggle diamonds through customs.
    • In No Time to Die, Safin knows in advance of Spectre's plan to kidnap Dr. Obruchev, so he instructs him to download important files from his computer beforehand and swallow the flash drive. Obruchev tries to swallow it again when Bond shows up only to have it knocked out of his mouth before he can do so.
  • Malfunction of this trope is what leads the protagonist of Lucy to acquire her superpowers.
  • In 1990 Peacemaker, thanks to the Healing Factor. The titular Human Alien shows up for the climactic fight with a fresh scar on his stomach and says he lost his gun when he fell off the train. A few moments later he tears the wound open and pulls the gun out of there.
  • In a rather bizarre version, Christopher Walken's character in Pulp Fiction keeps a pocket watch up his arse to give it to the son of the last owner.
  • Used in numerous traps in the Saw franchise, where keys are implanted inside victims, either to force them to perform Self-Surgery or to force others to attack them. The two most particular examples for each reason, respectively, are Michael Marks in Saw II and William Easton in Saw VI (though his case was only relevant for one test).
  • In Underworld (2003) the vampire elder Viktor had one of the components for the key to William's tomb surgically placed in his chest.
  • In Whiteout, the Soviet canisters are concealed inside the body of one of the murder victims, so they will be flown out when the base is evacuated.

  • The Locked Tomb: Gideon the Ninth: How do you hide something from post-cognitives, necromancers and mediums? You hide it inside the body of a murder victim after being examined. Dulcinea / Cytheria hid one of the challenge keys needed to unlock a door within her first murder victim. The combination of a taboo against cutting up a noble lady and doing so after the initial medical examination was almost a foolproof strategy.
  • The Radix: The Radix was hidden inside a mummy's chest. Bonus points: though it didn't resurrect the mummy, while being stored inside it, Radix made its dead tissues regenerate and bleed.
  • Tofu from Super Minion tends to just embed objects inside his body when he's not using them, such as a smartphone, disassembled components from a gun, his mask, and 17 knives.
  • Friday. The title character has a pouch implanted behind her belly button that can hold a small object. She often uses it while acting as a courier. At the beginning of the book she's carrying a vitally important message from the Moon to Earth...but, unbeknownst to her, not actually in her pouch, since her enemies know about it.
  • Magic: The Gathering novels
  • In Without Remorse by Tom Clancy, part of the plot involves gangsters smuggling drugs from Asia into the US in the bodies of dead soldiers being shipped home from Vietnam. This was definitely Truth in Television.
  • In Terminal World, the angel which warns Quillion to flee Spearpoint has the pieces of an advanced weapon surgically embedded inside its body for Quillion to extract after its death.
  • In the After the End Bad Future of the Nightside series, Razor Eddie is held captive by post-apocalyptic mutant insects. As they can't separate him from his signature straight razor and can't risk him using it against them, they implant it inside his body and allow his wound to heal over.
  • The Dresden Files: In Dead Beat, an experienced smuggler tries to sell a Black Magic tome to a dark magician, and attempts to insure himself by hiding the book. Knowing that wizards are Walking Techbanes, he encodes GPS coordinates of the book's location on a flash drive, then puts it in a condom and swallows it, wedging a string into his back teeth to pull it out again. The wizard kills him anyway; Harry and Butters find the drive during autopsy.
  • In The Nekropolis Archives novel Nekropolis, the thief who stole the Sunstone hid it inside a body. The body of one of the Sentinels, flesh golems which serve as the city's police force. Because Sentinels are among the few beings allowed access to the Nightspire, it is able to carry the Sunstone through the tower's protective wards without raising an alarm.
  • In the Chronicles of the Kencyrath, the haunt singer Ashe uses a wound in her chest as a pocket.
  • In Genome one of Kim's many genetic modifications is a fist-sized pouch in her stomach. The novel starts with her hiding there a very valuable stolen device. It's implied that she's been designed a couple decades ago precisely for smuggling this particular crystal, but the pouch has many more uses for a genetically specialized super-spy.
  • In the Doctor Who/Sherlock Holmes crossover All-Consuming Fire, the villain has had part of his manservant's brain surgically removed to create a compartment in his skull that can be used to smuggle small items through security checkpoints.
  • Downplayed in City of Bones by Martha Wells: The bio-engineered krismen have a marsupial pouch, which Khat uses to hide a relic when he's interrogated by Trade Inspectors. However, it only works because the object is tiny and flat, and the insertion of a foreign object into his pouch makes him seriously ill.
  • Aeon 14: The torsos of Genevian mechs contain an armored compartment where a sapient AI's core can be installed. This was never put to use during the Genevian-Nietzschean War because most of Genevia's AIs fled the country over the government's escalating human rights abuses, including the creation of the mech Slave Mooks themselves; they didn't want to likewise be conscripted.

    Live Action TV 
  • In two-part thriller The Bite, a married couple are recruited by the Australian Federal Police to get evidence on a smuggling ring. The wife is told to swallow the drugs, but she can't bring herself to do it, so just pretends to. Unfortunately the smugglers don't know that and try to cut her open when she can't bring them up afterwards.
  • Arrow. To provide for his family, a new inmate is bribed to smuggle Bronze Tiger's Wolverine Claws into prison by hiding the various components under his skin. It's implied that he bleeds to death in the process of removing them.
  • An early episode of The Blacklist has a listee nicknamed "The Courier" does this with multiple items throughout his body, including a handy lock pick set for if he gets captured. He can do this because he has CIPA, so it doesn't bother him. Consequently, he is Covered in Scars.
  • The Coroner: In "Dirty Dancing", the body of a drug mule is stolen from the morgue so the smugglers can retrieve the drugs that are still inside the body.
  • CSI:
    • An episode about stage magicians included an escape-artist character who'd had surgery to sculpt a pocket into the roof of his mouth, in which he could conceal small keys.
    • In another episode, a racing mare was discovered to have had a shipment of drugs concealed in her vagina, which was sewn shut in imitation of a Real Life veterinary procedure (normally used to prevent recurring pelvic infections).
  • Doctor Who: In "Dragonfire", the treasure that the "dragon" is guarding turns out to be actually inside its body.
  • Elementary: In Under My Skin patients are operated on abroad under the guise of cheaper gastric bypass surgery, removing part of their internal organs and replacing them with bags of drugs. They return to US territory none the wiser, with their obvious health problems explaind away as temporary post-op effects, then are killed and the drugs extracted before anyone realises. One of them falls ill earlier, leading Sherlock on the trail.
  • In the Firefly episode "The Message", the crew suspects momentarily that the body of their dead friend may have been used to smuggle some sort of valuable cargo. It was, except he ain't dead, and the cargo are artificial vital organs which have replaced his own.
  • Luther. Criminals attack a married couple in their home and threaten to kill them if they don't produce the diamonds they're smuggling. Unfortunately the wife has already swallowed them in preparation for couriering them overseas, so her husband has to pretend he's stashed them somewhere else to play for time until he can get help, or see her cut open on the spot.
  • In an episode of She Spies, the girls are hunting a thief. As it turns out, what she stole was an experimental artificial heart that she needed to stay alive. An even bigger shocker, her boyfriend was actually a bounty hunter, hired to bring her in and return the heart. At one point, he actually describes it as "an honest-to-God treasure buried in a chest."
  • In the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Who Mourns for Morn?", we learn that Morn took part in a bank heist years ago and has been storing the stolen latinum in one of his stomachs ever since — which is why his hair fell out.
  • In one season of 24 the MacGuffin is a computer chip holding some valuable video, which it turns out was surgically implanted under the skin of one of the terrorists. As he is dying he tells Jack Bauer of its location, and Bauer cuts it out of him.
  • In Westworld, Elsie discovers that one of the robotic Hosts has had a satellite transmitter implanted in his arm, as a means of corporate espionage for smuggling Guest data out of the park.

  • Stephen Lynch's "Three Balloons" recounts this scenario quite humorously, "I've got three balloons of coke in an uncomfortable place..."

  • A 1939 episode of The Shadow involved a criminal doctor smuggling jewels into the USA by sewing them into the arms and legs of unwitting sailors who had medical complaints.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons supplement Deities and Demigods Cyclopedia. The god Druaga was said to store his soul object in a human being. If Druaga's corporeal form is destroyed, the person will die. After the person is buried, the soul object will create a new form for Druaga in the person's grave.
    • Official 5e art of legendary lich Vecna depicts him as storing his magnum opus, The Book of Vile Darkness inside his own ribcage
  • In Shadowrun the 4th edition Augmentation book gives rules and equipment stats for adding one of these into a dead body. Various editions of the game allow a living person to have a small holding space added to their body using the bioware mod "Skin Pocket".
  • One cybernetic implant in the Star Wars: Roleplaying Game puts a hidden compartment somewhere on/in the user's body.
  • In Vampire: The Masquerade:
    • This is one of the most basic uses of the Tzimisce clan's signature discipline of Fleshcrafting.
    • The Samedi can use their clan discipline of Thanatosis to hide or store objects in the folds and wrinkles of their putrid skin. Other vampires can learn this application of the discipline, but without skin that naturally sags and stretches, the results tend to be rather...obvious.

    Video Games 
  • Raul Menendez in Call of Duty: Black Ops II keeps a celerium chip containing a cyberweapon hidden in his fake eye.
  • In The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, the side quest "Rabinna's Inner Beauty" has this. Rabinna, a Khajiit slave, has been forced to swallow a large amount of the drug Moon Sugar in order to smuggle it into a city. You'll be asked to escort her to a specific person within the city, who will immediately kill her to take the drugs. Alternatively, you can choose to take her to the Argonian Mission, where they will get the drugs out of her and help her escape Morrowind.
  • In The Legend of Dragoon, the Moon Gem, sacred treasure of Serdio was sealed inside King Albert's body. It was ultimately extracted by Lloyd through some magic.
  • Luigi's Mansion 3: The elevator button for the 13th floor of the Last Resort is being guarded by Captain Fishhook, who is keeping the button hidden in the socket of his missing left eye, covered up by his Eyepatch of Power.
  • Mother 3 has Duster hide the Hummingbird Egg inside a worn down Clayman.
  • The Neverhood: Klaymen stores and retrieves items within his torso. Pressing the leftmost button on his chest causes a flap to painlessly and seamlessly open and close.
  • In Planescape: Torment, the Nameless One can ask several characters to...remove, or otherwise modify, his body parts, like his eyeball, or even his intestines. This results in items being found, and often a stat increase (though it also inflicts significant damage). One specific case involves a previous incarnation storing useful items inside his ribcage, to be found only after finding the requisite clues. Very early on, if you find the right memory, you can also access some items hidden in a corpse (which became a zombie and has since become a skeleton) in the Mortuary.
  • Saw: Detective Tapp can't get out until he finishes solving the various puzzles within Jigsaw's lair. Anyone else who wants out, however, can get out if they get the key. Unfortunately for Tapp, that key is sewn into his chest in such a way that removing it will require killing him.
  • In Skies of Arcadia, the last piece of the Silver Crystal is hidden within Fina's body. Dragon Ascendant Ramirez eventually takes it back by force.

  • In Ava's Demon, those who enter into a Pact with a demon gain a drawer on their body (usually their torso) and demons can place helpful objects in this drawer to transfer them from their shared Mental World to the physical world.
  • In cool and new web comic, Jhon Ebgret creates one by tearing out his own kidney. He uses it to store a Con Air bunny.
  • Shortpacked!: Robot Girl Ultra-Car has a cabinet in her chest that contains a third arm. In one page, she uses said cabinet to shoplift from a closing bookstore.
  • Unsounded: Starfish smuggles the First Silver by kidnapping people and having them cut open to hide it from authorities as he poses as a slaver. None of the victims thus used survive.

    Web Original 
  • In an episode of Baman Piderman, the discovery that the wish was inside Baman all along turns out to be much more literal than it usually is. Baman has a drawer in his chest, and the wish (taking the form of a magic wand) is inside it.
  • The Hire. In "Ambush" a carload of heavily-armed men pull up alongside The Unnamed Badass Driver played by Clive Owen, and tell him to hand over his passenger, who pleads with The Driver not to do so as he's swallowed the diamonds they're after. After a nail-biting car chase the Driver uses his skills to crash the robber's vehicle. When they arrive at their destination, he asks the Passenger if he really swallowed the diamonds. The Passenger just laughs.
  • Pom Pom from Homestar Runner can store things inside himself, from his cell phone to Strong Bad.
  • Jinn from the Whateley Universe is really just a pile of clothes and fake skin animated by telekinesis, so she stores a backpack of supplies and school books in her chest.

    Western Animation 
  • Bender of Futurama can hide all kinds of stuff inside his robot body - children, robot clowns, Fry...he even proved to have so much space available that a small doomsday device went off inside him and didn't damage him. But when it came to carrying around an entire castle's worth of loot he started to show difficulties.
    Bender: For the first time in my life, I feel like I've stolen enough...
  • On He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983), Orko would often pull things out of his hat.
  • In an episode of Jackie Chan Adventures, Jackie unknowingly had an enchantedly scribed piece of silver placed inside one of his dental fillings by a crooked orthodontist.
  • In a Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century episode based upon "The Five Orange Pips", a dangerous weapon is concealed inside the chamber of a man's artificial heart, and Prof. Moriarty seeks to retrieve it. As it turns out, said weapon is by then quite old and worth more as a museum piece than a tool of destruction.
  • Swindle of Transformers: Animated stores his merchandise (helmets, weapons, etc.) within a drawer-like cavity in his chest. This compartment is linked to his "personal storage dimension" which is seemingly limitless in capacity. This ends up backfiring on him later when the Autobots synchronize their space bridge to it, only knowing that it’s a transwarp field conveniently close to where they need to go, leading to Optimus Prime suddenly climbing out of Swindle’s chest in the middle of a hostage situation.
    • In Transformers: Prime Alpha Trion hid the final Omega Key within one of his bodyguards, Smokescreen.
  • On Xiaolin Showdown, The Yang Yoyo was hidden inside Dojo's Ear.
    Dojo: That's why everything sounded so muffled!

    Real Life 
  • Law professor Roger Fisher suggested that the launch codes to the nation's nuclear missile silos should be implanted inside an underling's chest, who would have to be killed and cut open to retrieve them. As he put it, the President might think twice about launching the big one and killing untold millions if he had to murder one man with his bare hands and see him lying dead at his feet.
  • According to QI, a certain pre-industrial travel guide recommended that travelers prepare for potential theft by making an incision in one arm and hiding a jewel inside the wound, then sewing it up and allowing it to heal. Thus one would have some emergency wealth that robbers wouldn't be able to find.
  • According to folklore, this was how the Regent Diamond was found. The miner who found it hid it in a leg wound on his thigh. Unfortunately, he was killed when he tried to fence it.


Video Example(s):


Fishook button eye

Fishook has the elevator button Luigi needs under his eyepatch.

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