Ryutaro Otomo stars as Yajuro Inaba, a samurai who has just left his clan because of his lord's corrupt practices. Inaba happens upon a village where bandit is tormenting a woman with intent to rape her. After Inaba kills the assailant, the villagers shun him in horror instead of thanking him. The reviled town prositute, Nana, explains to Inaba that they fear the retribution that will befall them when the bandits find that one of their number has been killed. Inaba confronts the village over their cowardice and exhorts them to fight instead of letting the thugs steal their harvests and assault their women. After much debate, the peasants half-heartedly agree to let Inaba train them in defense.