Yoshikawa's saga of 17th century Japan continues, following characters through the years just following the disastrous loss of their faction. One decides to commit himself to the Way of the Warrior, the other spends wasted years in dissipation. The women whose lives they have touched are likewise enmeshed in complications that arise from their interactions with the men.
From the grand cities of Kkyoto and Osaka to the windswept mountain temples, japan is in an uneasy state of peace. Masterless - samurai - ronin - wander the land. While a beauitful woman searches for him, and his old friend. Matahachi, steals a new identity and buys a crisis of the soul. Musashi journeys to Kyoto - to issue a challege to the master of the House of Yoshioka. But first he must face a man with a blood score to settle .... In a land whre violent treachery and breathtaking beauty hide behind every turn. Mushai is only beginning to discover what it means to follow the Ways of the Sword - and strange and mysterious realms he must travel alone.