Charged with leading demonstrations for the democratization movement, student activist Kim Gi-young (Moon Sung-keun) is a fugitive from the law. He sneaks into a mining village on the verge of being shut down, with a f...展开ake ID in hand. Feeling frustrated with the current state of activism, which centers around the intelligentsia, he gets a job as a man-of-all-work at a coal factory and meets the motley inhabitants of the mining village. Dae-sik (Yang Jin-yeong) works to support his family in place of his father, who is in prison for instigating a strike. Detective Kang (Lee Su-chan) always keeps a sharp eye on everything that goes on in the village. Then there are strike organizer Cheon Do-seong (Kang Neung-won), fellow worker Jeong (Hwang Hae), Taek's mother (Kim Kyung-ran), and Sun's mother (Jo Ju-mi). Sung-cheol (Park Joong-hoon), whose father is a local bigshot and the owner of the coal factory, lords it over the neighborhood bars and cafes. Angry at his father (Park Kyu-chae) for leaving his mother and marrying another woman, Sung-cheol vents his resentment on the cafe girls and factory workers. Meanwhile, Young-sook (Shim Hye-jin), who works as a prostitute at the local cafe, is becoming fed up with Sung-cheol's violent and demeaning treatment of her. When she meets Gi-young, who is reserved but warm, she begins to have feelings for him and stops selling sexual favors. As the impending miners' strike darkens the horizon, Gi-young and Young-sook fall in love and enjoy each other's company. Then one day, Sung-cheol receives news of his mother's death and wreaks havoc at the cafe. When Young-sook refuses to satisfy his demands, he starts to beat her up. Gi-young tries to stop him, but his intervention brings him to the attention of Detective Kang and he is hauled off to the police station. Gi-young undergoes torture at the hands of the police, but he is eventually cleared of all charges and released. When he finally comes to through Young-sook's devoted care, he tells her that he is a wanted fugitive. His identity is soon exposed and he is forced to run once more. Young-sook decides to leave the village with him, and heads to the cafefor her things. While making her last coffee delivery, Young-sook runs into Sung-cheol, who tries to stop her from leaving. She ends up killing him, and is dragged off by the police as Gi-young waits for her at the train station.