Fifteen years after the emperor’s death, his killers prepare to journey back to Rokugan. As the years have gone by, most of Rokugan has fallen to shadowland monsters or barbarians from The Burning Sands. The Jade Champion has decided that the time is now for the so-called Dark Jade Order to return. The must travel to a stronghold in Mantis territory, and report to a Lord Hakana.
Nuro Byushi and Akodo Takeshi are joined by a monk, Togashi Uji. Byushi and Uji work on recruiting others to join their cause. Uji recruits several monks, and Byushi convinces several Scorpion samurai to join. Takeshi sits on the dock and mopes, but even that inspires some samurai to join the Dark Jade’s mission.
The ship sets out for Rokugan. On the way, it is ambushed by a large sea creature. Takeshi shoots arrows at various eyestalks that rise above the water. Everyone else watches helplessly. Then, a large mouth begins to engulf the ship. Byushi and Uji begin to hack at the monster. The other men cower in fear. Nothing seems to help. Takeshi yells at the other men, “At least die like samurai!” This shames a few people into helping. When the ship is almost entirely engulfed, the monster decides this meal bites back too much, and slinks off.
The ship lands, and the Dark Jade Order disembarks. They begin heading inland to the Mantis stronghold. On the way, they walk into a village. Fires are lit in the houses, but no one is around. Upon further investigation, it appears that the village is populated by invisible people. The Dark Jade Order decides to leave this haunted village well enough alone, but Uji is troubled by an invisible weight. As the Order moves further and further from the village, this weight grows heavier and heavier, and begins to affect the monk physically.
Finally, Togashi admits that he cannot go on. The party returns to the haunted village. After some investigation, they discover a secret underground passage. It leads to a cave underneath the town well. Looking up, the adventurers can see the well water. It is held in place by an invisible forcefield, except for a spot where it slowly drips into a cup. The cup is on a pedestal in the center of the room.
The party cautiously enters the room. While inspecting the cup, they accidentally knock it over. Black goo spills out of the cup, and forms a duplicate of Byushi. This shadow duplicate attacks the party. Soon, a duplicate of Takeshi spills from the cup, and deals Byushi a deadly wound. Takeshi reaches out and stands the cup back up. Without the threat of new duplicates, the party is able to defeat their shadow counterparts. Then, they destroy the goo inside the cup with fire. With this evil defeated, the invisible inhabitants of the town become visible. (Much like the dufflepuds in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.)
The now visible Mantis samurai join up with the party and they all head to Lord Hakana’s keep. Once there, The Dark Jade Order is given a new mission. Infiltrate a nearby enemy fortress, and slay the leader. The leader is a tactical genius, and without him, his army would pose little threat.
The four members of The Dark Jade arrive at the fortress. Takeshi and Uji make a fire. While they are doing this, Byushi sneaks inside. She is terrified at the sight of the monstrous oni, and sneaks back out to rejoin her companions. Takeshi and Uji set part of the fortress on fire, hoping to cause a distraction. Then, they enter the fortress to seek out the oni lord.
Conveniently, the oni lord is right by the front gate, with a woman standing next to him. After a bit of trash talking, the fight begins. Fortunately, the woman turns out to be an ally of The Dark Jade. She heals the warriors, especially Takeshi, who the oni lord throws around like a ragdoll. When the oni lord falls, the party cuts off his nipples (with rings!) as proof of their deed, since the oni lord’s head is much too large.
The oni lord’s army is enraged by their leader’s death, and pursues the heroes down the mountain. The heroes manage to outrun the enemy, and a great battle begins for the Mantis keep. In the end, the forces of good are triumphant.