The Order of the Jade Fist takes its origins in many parts of the World, but first took root in China, among a group of Enlightened dedicated to honing their skills, whether they be martial or magical.
The first masters created the Order in 251 B.C. Immediately, they started traveling the world, expanding their culture and philosophy and gathering knowledge and fighting techniques. From this network of martial artists throughout the world, the Order discovered other ways to fight - among the Crusaders, the Zulu Empire and Indian commanders and Mongolian raiders. Everywhere that men wanted to hone their skills, the Jade Fist went.
After opposing the Gods more openly than other Secret Societies, the Order was hunted down as rebels by generations of Godborn, fighting a losing battle, until in the 16th century the Order was split into multiple isolated factions. Today, the Order of the Jade Fist is regaining power due to the ease of communications and the lack of involvement from the Gods in the World, but remain more careful than they were in ages past.
In recent times, the Order of the Jade Fist is a disseminated but powerful organization that cultivates secrecy and information control. They are disguised as triads, dojos, paramilitary organization, militias or even NGOs.
The Order of the Jade Fist is a lethal mixture of tradition and modernity, and that is reflected in their organization. As a decentralized body, the Jade Fist knows two main categories of cells. One is the Elder Orders, ancient organizations which have proven their resilience over the centuries. They tend to be influential but removed, far-reaching but with a light touch, wise but careful. Meanwhile, the other category is the New Orders, infiltrating the criminal Underworld to acquire power and influence quickly and efficiently under the nose of the Gods. The distinction between the two is very new, and not a formal affair, and every cell is different - some Elder Orders are directly involved on the ground while some New Orders are involved in banking or gambling and stay behind the scenes. Overall, however, the Order tends to agree that the Elder Orders are the Soul while the New Orders are the Body: they need each other to survive.
Prominent Elder Orders
- Sōhei: Native of Japan, the Sōhei are both deeply religious, and gifted warriors. Shunning the use of magic, they rely on Enech, Epic Physiology and The Middle Way to ensure victory. They are the generals and drill sergeants of the Jade Fist, but tend to be quite strong-willed and stubborn due to the intense focus they need to display and maintain in all aspects of their lives.
- Yamabushi: The humble Japanese Yamabushi are ascetics, deeply gifted in supernatural abilities, and in particular masters of using The Middle Way to ensure age, time and enemies are unable to find and affect them. This has explained their old age and their deep wisdom. Their mastery over the mystical arts is tempered by their lack of political or economic power in the modern age.
- Shaolin: Even more than the Sōhei, the Chinese Shaolin are entirely dedicated to their mastery of mind and body. Living in isolated communities where one specific discipline is endlessly honed and perfected, the Shaolin shun the outside world. However, prominent figures from the World seek their aid and counsel, and the Shaolin have contacts throughout the gyms and sports teams of the world.
- Cuauhtlocelotl: The Aztec Empire's destruction by the Conquistadors has not destroyed everything about their culture and rites. The Eagle and Jaguar warriors are still there, now hiding underground and in the jungle, expert scouts and guerrilla fighters, the generals and advisors to modern militias and rebel groups, furthering the agenda of the Jade Fist wherever they can see to it. Wild, and much closer to the Gods - especially the Teotl - than the rest of the Jade Fist, they are seen with suspicion and kept at arms' length.
- Templars: Rich and influential, the Templars are the economic backbone of the Jade Fist. Almost destroyed by their Illuminati rivals in ages past, the Templars are only just regaining their teeth. This gives them the paradoxical quality of being an Elder Order with deep interest in gaining fast influence in the World, making them the Elder Order linked with the most New Order cells, funding and backing their operations.
- Teutonic Knights: Rich and old, the Teutonic Order is one of the few Elder Orders still operating officially, their doors wide open. Though no longer officially a military order, they secretly are the most high-tech Elder Order of the Jade Fist, adapting with the times. They provide spies, assassins, and snipers for the Jade Fist, adding subtlety in an Order often lacking it.
Prominent New Orders
- The Seven Triads: The criminal underworld of South-East Asia is never settled forever. The Gods, Titans and Mythborn all see it as the route towards power. So does the Jade Fist. Over the last century, the Jade Fist has formed groups which have taken over seven influential Triads. Now controlling over half of the criminal enterprises in the region, the Seven Triads nevertheless suffer from endless in-fighting due to the ever-present cellular nature of the Jade Fist.
- Yakuza: The Jade Fist controls much of the Japanese criminal world as well, thanks in no small part to the Amatsukami generally being wary of these activities due to its dishonorable ways, not fitting Amaterasu's vision for Japan. Not a problem for the Jade Fist, which uses these activities for powerful influence in the World, with a martial, centralized, and prudent group.
- Dzheyd Bratstvo: The Russian branch of the Jade Fist is particularly influential due to the relative non-intervention of the Bogi Muzhchin (and, some say, to the help of Veles). Particularly gifted in Invokation due to a drive to ambition unrestrained by Buddhist philosophy, the Dzheyd Bratstvo is on track to becoming the strongest New Order. Their lack of political influence is their major weakness, especially with the Illuminati controlling most of the powerful Russian oligarchs, but they have been working towards changing that since the end of the Cold War.
- Sicilian Mafia: The Theoi respect daring audacity and ambition, and as such have not been as merciless with criminal Enlightened organizations than other Pantheons. It has allowed the local mafia branches loyal to the Jade Fist to flourish, with a relatively peaceful relationship with the Gods, whom they respect and fear. Young, hungry, clever, they tend to find new solutions to old problems.
- The Tecuani: Some of the rebel fighters throughout South America are under control by the Tecuani, a group of Jade Fist operatives close to the local Kamis and Mythborn. Powerful druids and shamans, the Tecuani use their environment to their advantage. Toppling or blackmailing governments, they have extended influence throughout the continent.
- The One-And-Many, Voice of the Mistwalkers.