In early 19th century Hokkaido, after the Russo-Japanese War, Saichi Sugimoto is tirelessly searching for gold. Nicknamed “Sugimoto, the Immortal” for his deadly deeds in battle, the former soldier seeks his fortune to make good on a promise he made to his best friend before his death: to support his family, especially his widow, who must be treated abroad for her failing eyesight.
One day, a drunken companion tells Sugimoto the story of a man who killed a group of Ainus and stole a fortune in gold. Before being arrested by the police, he hid the gold somewhere in Hokkaido. The only clue to the treasure’s location is the coded map he tattooed on the bodies of his cellmates in exchange for part of the treasure if they manage to escape and find it.
Sugimoto doesn’t think much of the story until he discovers the body of a drunken man with the same tattoos as described in the story. But before he can think clearly, a grizzly bear – the cause of the man’s death – approaches Sugimoto and is determined to finish his meal. He is saved by a young Ainu girl named Asirpa, whose father happens to be one of the murdered Ainu. With Asirpa’s hunting skills and Sugimoto’s survival instincts, the two decide to team up and find the hidden treasure – one to retrieve what rightfully belongs to their people, and the other to fulfill his friend’s last wish.