A papermaker living during the later days of the Qing Dynasty finds his village under threat following an intense investigation. Liu (Donnie yen) is a simply family man from a small secluded village. He lives a quiet life with his wife Ayu (Tang Wei) and their two young children. But Liu's simple existence begins to unravel following the arrival of Detective Xu (Takeshi Kaneshiro). Dispatched to gather details about a botched robbery in which two bandits were killed, Detective Xu quickly discovers that Liu has been harboring some troubling secrets about his background. Later, as the ghosts of Liu's past begin to manifest, a dark cloud is cast over the entire village.