June 10, 1995 |
When China's runaways and castoffs arrive in Guangzhou, the country's southern boom town, they're happy to see a friendly face at the train station. Seemingly helpful gangsters pluck the young new arrivals out of the crowd, then give them food, clothing--and an addiction to heroin. Once hooked, the youths--all boys--must trade pickpocketed goods for their daily dose; the price is higher for a clean needle. Police do occasional sweeps, locking up the youths for theft and drug use.