, 20 tweets, 8 min read
in this series of profiles, young women aged 15-21 at the frontlines of the #hongkongprotests talk about relationships with family, unsolicited messages from male protesters, and the fight for justice and democracy – highly recommend

Little Dark, 16, just started Form 5: The closest she came to being arrested was when a riot police officer ran after her – all they had to do was to reach out their hand and shove her to the ground; but suddenly, they stopped. Her group is down from 20 to 3.

“For every day that they fail to arrest us, it is another day we will not stop.

A 10 year jail sentence is only 10 years of our youth; if we don’t keep fighting, Hong Kong will be finished––and it’ll be game over for us."

– Little Dark, 15

The police often attribute their escalation of force to protesters’ mounting tactics, including lighting fires.

Little Dark said that the frontline protesters never want to hurt anyone. “Our only aim is to push the police back.”

She said that everyone thinks that Molotov cocktails are a show of strength; but if you have ever been on the ground, you will know that they are simply a tactic to delay the police. Many frontliners are ‘green' – they often make mistakes and are laughed at.

Little Dark says she understands that some people cannot condone violence.

“One time, the police raised an orange flag, and within 30 seconds, fired 8 bullets. One of the first-aiders near me was shot by a sponge bullet, and had to be carried away."

Little Dark: "Another night, a police officer ground his foot on my friend's hand. She had already been arrested – and they still stepped on her hand. Is that violence?"

Since July, Little Dark has not eaten a single meal at home; her father died and her mother is deep blue.

“She keeps saying it’s the protesters’ fault. So I don’t like going home. I go out w/ my friends instead. Things happen every day; and I’m there to help.”

Since her mother found out she was participating in the protests, she hasn't given her an allowance. Little Dark has relied on donations from outside ‘parents’.

She only returns home after 1am every night, after her family is asleep.

The reporter asked Little Dark if she ever thought of trying to mend her relationship with her mother. Little Dark couldn’t hold back anymore, and burst into tears.

Little Dark recalled one night, when she saw her mother crying in a corner.

“I haven’t cried yet; who are you to be crying? The government ignores us. The police beat us up. Those being beaten up aren’t crying yet.”

YY, 15, who grew up in the Mainland: Since July, YY has extinguished countless tear gas canisters.

She had a brush with death when she was hit by a canister. “They raised the black flag. I retreated. Suddenly, something hit my neck."


YY: "My face-cloth was burnt, and the back of neck felt like it was on fire. I saw something fall on the ground: I realized it was a tear gas canister. If it was a rubber bullet, it would be all over for me."

YY only wears a teargas mask and googles, and does not have a helmet. She said that the helmet is too difficult to hide, and is easily spotted by police.

Between being arrested and being shot in the head, the girl has chosen the latter.

What kind of a government and administration would force these young teenagers to give up their lives to starve themselves on the street, to fight? To pursue their idea of justice, without fear of death?

The only reason YY has been able to participate in protests is because her parents spent the summer in the Mainland. “They are not blue; they are red. They do not know I am out there, they have already been brainwashed by the CCP, it can’t be reversed.”

Originally, she had planned to go to the Mainland to visit her family, go to Disneyland, and attend concerts; but all of those plans fell through.

She spends all of her allowance on tear gas mask filters, protective goggles, and gloves.

“I think this summer has been more meaningful than others, because standing up for Hong Kong, is every Hongkonger’s responsibility. Like Edward Leung said, the fight for democracy must be won with blood and sweat.

"If I have chosen Hong Kong to be the place I want to live for the rest of my life, then I do not want it to become just another city in China, this is not the Hong Kong I know.”

YY was born in Hong Kong, moved to the Mainland when she was 4 years old, and moved back to the city for secondary school.

She sees Hong Kong as her home, and those fighting against tyranny on the streets as her comrades.

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