Vu Doan faces danger from every direction as he tries to escape from Vietnam. Communists patrol the roads and invade homes for unwarranted searches, and there is no way to know who is an informant. Capture would mean a long prison sentence, but the risk is worth it if it means freedom at last. Once on the Gulf of Thailand, he faces thirst, hunger, and the swinging machetes of pirates who do not shy from savagely dismembering the unarmed refugees. For Vu’s girlfriend, Van Tran, the barbarism is even worse. Raped repeatedly by pirates, she would rather die than continue to be their prey. Will Vu be able to heal her once they’re reunited in the refugee camp?