Ages of Shadow
is an Jackie Chan Adventures
fic by Eduard Kassel
, and a part of Project Dark Jade
Official summary: "Years after falling to the darkness, Jade Chan has finally been defeated by the J-Team and their allies; and been banished. In defeat and isolation Jade Chan must face a challenge like nothing she has ever encountered before. What lies in wait for the fallen hero in the millennia that stretch before her? What shall she loose and what will she become, in the Ages of Shadow?"
- After the End: Jade believes this is why the world appears to have regressed to Bronze Age levels of technology. However, it's implied she may have instead stumbled on an Alternate Universe.
- Alternate Universe: It's heavily implied that Jade has stumbled onto one.
- And I Must Scream: Jade is trapped alone in the Shadow Realm for centuries (and that's the minimum estimate), and only seems to be able to cope by sleep, and by going somewhat crazy.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: How the Shadow Walkers settle things, even before Jade reorganizes things.
- Badass Boast: Jade speaks in pretty much nothing but these to the Shadow Walkers and her enemies.
- Barbie Doll Anatomy: Since by the time she meets the Shadow Walkers Jade's clothes have decayed to nothing, she gives herself this so that they aren't too distracted to listen to her. She covers her chest with a piece of silk taken from a dead Walker and fuses it to her body, while her nether regions just sort of... disappear around the point that she gives herself a tail and repurposes her legs into another set of arms. Even she doesn't know where they went.
- Body Horror: Jade restructuring her body almost on a whim into a completely inhuman form.
- The Chosen One: Boaz, the Third Himinion, was specifically chosen and secretly trained personally by Jade for years before taking over the Shadow Walkers.
- King Cheherazad is this for the forces opposed to the Shadow Walkers.
- Con Lang: As one of her many pet projects to pass time in the Shadow Realm, Jade creates a written language she dubs "Channish", which is a combination of English, Chinese, Japanese, and Spanish.
- Crazy Cat Lady: Replace "cats" with "shadow snakes" and that's what Jade becomes during the first age of her imprisonment in the Shadow Realm. She even imagines them speaking to her.
- Dangerously Genre Savvy: Jade made sure that the Book of Ages would be unable to affect her. Unfortunately for her, Tohru managed to get around this by using the quill that goes with the Book.
- Jade suspects that Tohru engineered things so that she wouldn't be able to create potions by making sure nonliving organic material quickly decays in her realm
- She's also aware that the sole surviving member of a conquered kingdom's royal family escaping to safety will come back to bite her. And when he does indeed cause the downfall of the Himinate, she sees it coming and tells her Shadow Walkers to flee in order to rebuild afterwards.
- Darker and Edgier: Pretty much a given for a Project story, but this is one of the few stories rated M.
- Dark Messiah: Boaz was personally trained by his religion's goddess in order to lead his people to greatness. This would sound pretty good, except that it's a Religion of Evil, the goddess in question is an insane Fallen Hero-turned-Eldritch Abomination, and "leading to greatness" means conquering the world.
- The Dark Side Will Make You Forget: Jade originally put on Tarakudo's mask in order to defeat an enemy out to destroy her family, and while her will won over that of the Oni generals, she was unable to resist the corruption of the mask.
- Eldritch Abomination: What Jade has become by the time she's met the Shadow Walkers — insanely old and powerful, sealed in another dimension, and having altered her appearance into a completely inhuman form. She's even referred to by Cheherazad's magical mentors as an "outsider", while Jade herself at one point compares herself to "something that H. P. guy would write".
- The Empire: Starting under Boaz's rule, the Shadow Walkers emerge from hiding to begin conquering in Yade Khan's name, carving out a kingdom in the Middle East known as the "Himinate". It lasts several decades, until being brought down by the Persians and their allies.
- Evil Is Petty: Defied. Jade considers avenging oneself on strangers pointless, and gives up on her ideas of revenge when she realizes that the people who sealed her are likely all long dead.
- Eunuchs Are Evil: The Second Himinion was a eunuch. Jade was neither fond of him, nor impressed with his meager accomplishment.
- Face-Heel Turn: Jade, as usual for Project fics.
- Fallen Hero: Jade fell a long time ago.
- Floating Continent: By the time time she encounters the Shadow Walkers, Jade has expanded her Ominous Floating Castle to the point where she estimates that it's slightly larger than a circular Manhattan.
- A God Am I: After taking control of the Shadow Walkers and taking on the mantle of Yade Khan, Jade starts viewing herself as a goddess.
- Gold Fever: When the Shadow Walkers start offering Jade tribute, this is all that she really cares about, since it's one of the only things that doesn't decay in the Shadow Netherworld.
- Go Mad from the Isolation: Being sealed in the Shadow Realm alone for countless centuries drives Jade insane. She gets somewhat better after she establishes contact with the Shadow Walkers.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Jade put on the mask of Tarakudo in order to defeat an unnamed foe, but lost herself in the process.
- The priests who trained Cheherazad in magic sacrificed their own souls to empower his enchanted sword. Turns out to be a Senseless Sacrifice, as Jade easily shrugs off the sword's attack and disempowers it.
- High Priest: The Himinion is this to Jade, serving as the leader of the Shadow Walkers in her name.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Jade's decision to imprison Cheherazad's soul in his own sword as a final punishment for defying her instead somehow allows it to completely cut off the Shadow Netherworld from Earth, leaving Jade without even the meager comfort of her followers.
- Human Sacrifice: The Shadow Walkers start offering these to Jade. Since she doesn't want to offend them, and since she has no other use for them, she feeds them to her snakes (though she kills them quickly first).
- Killed Off for Real: Jade killed Uncle after escaping.
- Klingon Promotion: The Fourth Himinion rises to power by assassinating Boaz. Since he was Jade's favorite, this gets his killer killed.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: After Cheherazad starts decimating her followers, Jade orders her remaining servants to flee so that they can start anew.
- Meaningful Rename: Upon introducing herself to the Shadow Walkers, Jade rechristens herself "Yade Khan", the former part a tribute to Paco's constant incorrect enunciation of her name, and the latter a tribute to the Shadowkhan. She also renames the Shadow Realm as the Shadow Netherworld after realizing her sealing is similar to the Demon Sorcerers in the Demon Netherworld.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: After Jade's gives herself a tail to match the appearance and mobility of her snakes, she decides her legs are now redundant, and changes them into a second set of arms.
- Nonhumans Lack Attributes: Jade's alterations have given her Barbie Doll Anatomy.
- No Sell: When Jade first encounters the Shadow Walkers, one tries to attack her with a spear. Tries being the key word here.
- Cheherazad's sword, empowered by the magic of all the other Elemental Powers and the willingly sacrificed souls of those who practice them, has absolutely no effect on Jade.
- Official Couple: Jackie and Viper married at some point prior to Jade's banishment.
- Ominous Floating Castle: Jade's Grand Palace of the Shadow Netherworld starts as one of these, but by the time she meets the Shadow Walkers, she's expanded it into a Floating Continent.
- Our Souls Are Different: The Shadow Walkers wager pieces or the entirety of their souls during their magic duels with each other.
- Cheherazad powers his sword through the Heroic Sacrifices of twenty priests, who seal their souls within it. Jade dismisses them, and then traps Cheherazad's inside as punishment for defying her.
- Physical God: Jade sets herself up as one to the Shadow Walkers. Considering she has the powers of all the Oni generals, apparently doesn't need to breathe, doesn't need to eat, and seems to be immortal, she may have a few valid points.
- The Power of Creation: Jade gains the ability to create physical matter out of shadow energy.
- Prehensile Hair: Jade eventually enfuses shadows into her hair to give her hair tendrils.
- Red Baron: After rechristening herself as Yade Khan, Jade gives herself multiple titles, which attentive readers will realize are all references to her accomplishments in canon.
- Religion of Evil: The Shadow Walkers were already a cult of shadow magic users before Jade found them, and then she reorganized them around the worship of her god persona, Yade Khan, at which point they dedicated themselves to conquering the world in her name.
- Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: A minor example — after the Shadow Walkers conquer a kingdom only because the king's brother betrays him, said brother ends up right behind him on the sacrifice list.
- Sanity Slippage: Jade goes a bit crazy due to being sealed away.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Jade is sealed in the Shadow Realm by her family after her Face-Heel Turn.
- She was imprisoned before more mundanely, but escaped.
- The plot is basically a non crossover version of another Dark Jade fic, Her Shadowed Realm.
- Jade's claims of being inevitable are a lot like Dark Danny's claims in "The Ultimate Enemy". Word of God says this was unintentional though.
- Jade herself at one point compares herself to "something that H. P. guy would write".
- Sins of Our Fathers: Subverted. When Jade realizes that she's lived so long that all those who sealed her are more than likely dead, she denies being petty enough to seek revenge on their descendants like Shendu, meaning that she doesn't even have the potential of revenge to look forward to.
- Spiritual Successor: To Her Shadowed Realm.
- Take Over the World: Jade tried to cast the world into shadow, apparently by pulling a rogue planet into permanent orbit, before being stopped.
- And via her Shadow Walkers, she tries to do again the old fashioned way.
- Time Abyss: Since there's no real way to tell the passing of time in the Shadow Netherworld, Jade herself doesn't know how long she's been sealed away. Just that it's been a very long time.
- Time Skip: The story takes great liberties with this, usually through the fact that Jade tends to sleep for years on end.
- Unfortunate Names: The leader of the Shadow Walkers when Jade found them was named "Arses". Is it any wonder that Jade renames him Himinion?
- Villainous BSOD: After Boaz dies, Jade lapses into a five-year depression.
- You Are in Command Now: After killing the Fourth Himinion for assassinating Boaz, Jade randomly selects another Shadow Walker as his replacement.