Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
While Brother Wolf and Godzilla worked on removing the wallpaper, Li Du and Hans were trying to estimate the value of the artwork.
“How much can this graffiti fetch?”
Hans looked it up online and said, “There are many graffiti works by Banksy in the market. However, most of those are damaged. So one of those in a good condition will definitely be valuable.”
Li Du nodded. That is for sure.
Street artists treated their art like a pop star treated female fans, the more the merrier. In fact, they would be happiest if they could leave their graffiti on every corner of every street in the world.
Banksy had created a lot of graffiti work. In the beginning, he liked to defy tradition and enjoyed creating graffiti at art galleries and museums. Hence, he was always arrested by the police.
At that point, his work was not considered art. Hence, the galleries and museums did not preserve it. Most of his graffiti had been painted over or destroyed.
It was the same for his street work. The graffiti Banksy had painted in his early days were almost all destroyed.
Even now, as his works were mostly out in the streets, they were easily damaged.
For example, Banksy had created Art Hobbyist in 2010. The graffiti featured a girl staring up at an empty pedestal.
However, not long after its completion, the graffiti was damaged. Someone had added a male private organ on top of the pedestal.
Since Banksy’s work was rare, intact pieces could fetch a very high price.
The graffiti that Li Du and his group had laid hands on had appeared previously in Banksy’s collection. However, it had appeared there as a photograph. It was one of Banksy’s mature works.
After Li Du and Hans discussed at length the estimated value of Banksy’s art, they finally agreed that the graffiti they had in their possession was worth at least forty to fifty thousand dollars.
With the graffiti and a bunch of trash in tow, they started the car to leave.
The beady-eyed black man was flaring up at the rubbish in his warehouse. Seeing that Li Du and his companions were leaving, he shouted after them angrily, “F*ck you! Sissies! I will find out who you are, you whoresons! You wait for it, I will drive you up a wall!”
Treasure hunters had their own circles. They maintained a close-knitted community, maintained by frequent exchanges online.
Once he had finished cursing, the beady-eyed man whipped out his phone to find out more about Li Du, Hans, Godzilla, and the rest by describing their appearances to other treasure hunters in his online circle. He asked whether anyone knew these people.
Li Du’s Chinese appearance was an easy identifier, as there were few Chinese in the treasure hunting industry.
Shortly after the frustrated beady-eyed man sent his query, someone posted a photo and asked, “Are you referring to these people?”
The beady-eyed man looked at the photo and responded instantly, “Yes, it is them. What’s their background? I want to make these sons of a b*tch suffer.”
A few people quickly replied:
“Ha, do you? That is the strongest Arizona pair of the past two years, miracle China boy Li and Hans Fox.”
“Just letting you know that some people had tried to do the same before. They all ended up in jail and have not been released yet.”
“Frank Boll and Charlie York, members of the Million Dollar Club.”
“Maybe you don’t know them. But Golden-eye George Anthony, you know him? His son provokedLi and got a lesson from him. They nearly had to send him to the hospital.
Seeing that piece of news, the beady-eyed man was speechless. After a long time, he asked suspiciously, “Is this real or fake? You guys are making a fool of me, right?”
“You can go and try.”
“Let me show you this news article.”
“Remember to buy insurance before provoking him.”
A bunch of people with ill intentions, however, encouraged him.
The beady-eyed man recalled how Brother Wolf had broken a thick wooden plank with one leg and felt that this advice was probably trustworthy. Hence, he held his phone dejectedly as he gave up on the hope of revenge.
Li Du and his group had not given their luckless opponent a second thought. Back at their villa, Li Du checked out the flights while Hans thought of ways to sell off the graffiti.
Not long after Li Du booked the flight, Hans said animatedly, “Let’s meet a guy tomorrow. He is interested in Banksy’s art.”
Li Du was surprised. “You found a buyer so fast?”
Hans said proudly, “Now you see what Big Fox can do!”
Li Du asked in disbelief, “Can he be trusted? I just booked the flight, now I would have to change it.”
Hans nodded. “There shouldn’t be a problem. I have done my search on his background. His name is Jefferson and he is a second-generation rich fellow. Street art is his passion, and he is a loyal fan of Banksy. Since he is rich and he loves Banksy, there shouldn’t be a problem with the deal.”
Then, he looked over at Godzilla and shouted, “Don’t throw away all the trash. Leave it as it is and put some worn-out clothes inside. Also, throw in some lousy old furniture. There will be use for it.”
Li Du asked, “What is that for?”
Hans narrowed his eyes and said, “You will know tomorrow.”
Their business had moved fast this time around. They just found the graffiti and now they have already found a buyer for it.
Hans had detailed information on Jefferson, and after Peter learned about it, he helped them get more information from his friends in Miami. Indeed, that man was trustworthy. He came from a rich family and loved street art.
Hence, Li Du refunded his flight tickets. The next day, they rented a pickup and drove off to meet Jefferson.
Jefferson resided a highly affluent neighborhood beside Lincoln Shopping Mall, an area where many tourists flocked to. Traffic was heavy in that area and queues were long.
Hans rang up Jefferson. However, just like it was with Peter, the call did not go through.
“D*amit, have we been played?” Li Du asked, suspicious.
It was Hans’ turn to pacify him. “Perhaps this guy is having a party too. The people in Miami seem to do nothing but party.”
As there was a mall right by the neighborhood, they swung in to shop. Li Du bought a couple of small interesting items. In a post office, he bought a set of postcards featuring the landscape in Miami. He was going to mail them to Sophie.
In the meantime, Hans dialed a few more times, and still, no one answered. That made him lose his confidence.
After lunch, they decided to call one last time and go home if no one picked up.
In the end, Jefferson called them back. A lazy voice rang out from the speaker, “Sorry, buddy, I just woke up. My phone was in silent mode, I didn’t manage to pick up your call”
Li Du looked up at the sky. Dammit, it’s already lunchtime and you just woke up? The life of a second generation in a rich family must be good.
It was easy to make plans now that they managed to connect on the phone. As Jefferson had not eaten, Li Du and Hans set the meeting at the restaurant where they were sitting.
The two of them relaxed and were positive that they would be able to discuss business soon.
Half an hour later, however, Jefferson called again. “I’m setting out now. Where exactly is this restaurant where you guys are?”
Hans could not stop himself and said angrily, “You are only leaving now? You went back to sleep?”
Jefferson said, “Of course not! I took a shower, applied a mask and arranged my hair.”
Li Du and Hands were speechless.