Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
The police were confident that they had succeeded and looked at Li Du and the miners
In the end, after conducting a thorough search on Li Du, the policemen did not find
anything but some daily necessities and tools. There were no diamonds!
The police also searched the rest of his group and their bags, but still found nothing.
Sophie was the last who had not gone through a body check. The young man named
Scotty stretched out his hands in her direction, smiling sinisterly. With a kick, Brother
Wolf threw Scotty down to the ground and shoved the gun muzzle into his mouth.
The policemen were enraged, but Li Du was even angrier. He pointed at them and
yelled, “Whoever dares to try, go ahead! I goddamn swear that I will throw you all in jail!
And your family! Your children, too! My men will definitely treat them very well!”
The atmosphere tensed up. The tall policeman wore a ferocious look as he glared at Li
Du. Li Du refused to budge and glared back at him with an equally murderous stare.
After a few seconds, the tall cop took a step back and hollered, “Recruits retreat, let’s
Seeing the police leave, the natives by Buick’s side cheered, “All hail the Gibra God!”
Smiling, Buick started in Li Du’s direction. He was just about to say something when Li
Du cut him off. “Pack your things, we have to hurry! Let’s leave this place before we talk
He was worried that the policemen would return to stir up trouble again.
After Buick gave his command, everyone followed his directions. Pushing the
wheelbarrows and carrying the sacks and their wallets, the diamond-seekers began to
leave the abandoned mine.
As they were walking away, Buick said to Li Du, “You have done us a huge favor, Mr. Li.
Please give our tribe the honor of being our guest. We want to thank you.”
Li Du asked, “You guys are a tribe?”
Buick smiled. “That’s right, we are the Gibra tribe. The word Gibra means ‘snake’ in
After some hesitation, Li Du acceded the invitation. He wanted to find someone who
could help him learn more about the situation of the crater in that region, and he thought
Buick and his tribe might be able to help him.
It was no wonder that Buick held so much authority among these natives. They all
belonged to one tribe and Buick was the chief. The rest of them were his people.
When the police first appeared, the people of Gibra tribe had gathered behind Buick to
confront the cops. Those who had escaped to the other riverbank were not from Gibra
They had suffered a great loss this time. Their loot of a few months had been snatched
At this point, Buick thanked Li Du again, and Li Du waved his hand. “This is nothing, I
just happened to be around to help. How is it that the policemen are so unscrupulous?”
Buick sighed. “They just are. Every once in a while, they would come to the mining site
and extort us. We have no way to fight them. We can only pray to the Gibra God to
protect us from bumping into them.”
He explained further to Li Du that such situations were common.
After the diamond mine had gone bankrupt and was abandoned, the poor people from
neighboring villages and tribes would often head there to try their luck.
The chances of finding diamonds were low. Often, they had to put in a lot of effort and
would only find a small diamond after a month or two. Then, they would sell the
diamonds to support their families.
After the police found out about these people’s hard-earned profits, they started to
engage in a lawless act. Every once in a while, the cops would go over to conduct raids
and come up with a random reason to drive the diamond-hunters away, making them
leave their diamonds behind.
At times, like this time, the police warned them about potential landslides after a heavy
rain. Those words sounded good and reasonable, but in fact, they only wanted an
excuse to drive the people away and take the diamonds for themselves.
As the number of raids increased, fewer people went there to search for diamonds.
However, there were always some who needed cash and came to try their luck. The
police targeted those people and took advantage of their hard work.
The police called this “Wheat Harvest”, meaning that after slashing a stalk of wheat,
another one would grow.
Li Du nodded in understanding. “Is there any method to the police raids? Like, for
example, how often do they come?”
Buick said, “There are no consistent patterns in that. They would send people over to
spy on us. The spies would pretend to search for diamonds, while really looking if we
had found anything. Then they would inform the police when they saw that we have
accumulated a good amount of diamonds.”
“So when you first saw us, you thought we were spies?”
Buick smiled awkwardly. “Yes, we are always guarded and cautious around strangers.”
This was no surprise. They had found a nice stash of diamonds and were afraid that the
police might raid the camp any day.
Besides, there obviously were spies among them, since Li Du and his group were
clearly not spies.
The Gibra tribe lived not far from the mining site, at a distance of just over twenty
Those people were accustomed to hiking over mountain terrain. Even though they were
pushing the wheelbarrows, they walked quickly. In less than three hours, they were
back at the tribe’s settlement.
The home of the Gibra tribe was different from other tribes that Li Du had seen
previously. It was more like a village.
The houses of the tribal people stood close together. They were surrounded by fences
built from wooden planks with vines growing all over them.
Cars and motorcycles drove to and fro, and the people dressed in a more modern
fashion. They were not wearing grass skirts or animal skins.
That was just like the South African tribes. The different tribes were now civilized and
people no longer kept to the old ways of drinking blood or wearing animal skins.
Instead, they have become more modernized and interacted with the society outside.
Nearing the village, Li Du wanted to get closer to take pictures. However, as he stepped
over to the fence, he saw two patterned green snakes sliding up and down the vines.
Hastily, he said, “There are snakes on the fence, everyone be careful!”
He regained his composure quickly, however. Buick had mentioned before that ‘Gibra’
meant ‘Snake’ in English. Snakes could be their totem.
He related his guess to Buick, and Buick smiled as he said, “No, snakes are not our
totem, they are our source of food and income.”
After entering the village, Li Du first saw a flat, grand plaza. A few women and children
were drying some white, curved objects in the sun.
Those were peeled snakes. Buick said that sun-dried snake meat would be sent to
hotels in the city. As for the snake skins, they would sell those to handicrafts stores.
“The most valuable would be serum of a poisonous snake. That is expensive.
Previously, it used to be as expensive as diamonds. However, it is difficult and
dangerous to extract. In addition, there are people who have started to breed the
poisonous snakes, causing the price of serum to fall. We can no longer profit from it,”
Buick said as he shook his head.
The Gibra tribe had two sources of income: one was the traditional method of catching
and trading snakes, and the other was searching for melee diamonds.
Back at the village where it was safe, Li Du took out the diamonds from his backpack
and handed them to Buick.
Buick handed out the diamonds back to their owners, based on the markings made on
the small bag, and cheers rang out again.
Once that was done, Buick said curiously, “Mr. Li, where did you hide the diamonds just
now? I thought that the cops would definitely find the diamonds when they searched
Li Du pointed to a hidden compartment in his backpack. “They were here. Luckily, the
cops were careless. Otherwise, our loss would be huge.”