Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
In a small town like Fort Davis, there was usually no professional warehouse company. The land was so cheap that people could build a structure in the backyard and use it as a warehouse.
However, Fort Davis did have warehouses for stargazers, mountaineers, and students, who often came there because the observatory belonged to the University of Texas at Austin.
Li Du knew the University of Texas. It was a world-famous university, and it was very well-known in America, being a member of the Ivy League.
11 warehouses were up for auction, which was a lot for a town of just 2,000 people.
Because the owners of the warehouse were astronomy enthusiasts and mountaineers, the chances of valuable products inside were not low.
In particular, stargazers frequently rented warehouses, and if such a warehouse were to be auctioned off, treasure hunters would often be interested.
Fort Davis was a popular stargazing destination, and fans tended to come and go more than a dozen times a year, often with high frequency, in which case they would keep something in a warehouse for easy access.
Lu Guan found the auction source was very high quality. Li Du went to the warehouse to take a look while he was strolling and what he saw made him excited.
The number of warehouses was not high, and quite a lot of treasure hunters were attracted. Especially after Li Du arrived, the treasure hunters who came later began to look forward to this auction.
One day in late February, at 10 a.m., the auction officially began.
Normally auctions would start at 9 o’clock. It was not in the rules, but it has become a traditional agreement. However, in this leisurely town, the agreement didn’t work.
About forty to fifty treasure hunters came to attend the auction, and they were inevitably upset when the warehouse door did not open on time.
Finally, the owner of the warehouse company arrived. He worked as an auctioneer himself, saving part of the cost.
Seeing him wearing the white gloves, the treasure hunters were indignant. “Hey, man, did you stay up late last night partying? Why are you here only now?”
“Do you have a watch? Look, what time is it?”
“I bet this guy was messing around with the warehouse, check the photo record, I don’t trust him.”
“These Texans are pretty grumpy,” said Li Du to Hans.
Hans said, “Sure, this is Texas, man.”
He was apparently not surprised at all. The treasure hunters sounded very vocal although they were just complaining about a minor thing. Some of them even started scolding the owner pointing at him.
The owner did not care. He opened the door slowly and said, “What’s all the hurry about? Guys, just relax.”
His attitude prompted another round of grumbling from the irascible treasure hunters, but Li Du laughed, “I like this attitude.”
The town had a really slow pace of life, suitable for relaxation.
When the door of the warehouse opened, the boss motioned for the people to line up and get started with the auction.
Instead of urging the treasure hunters to assemble and start the sale as they would do at other auctions, here, where they didn’t have time limits, the treasure hunters could mill around and watch as long as they wanted.
The owner did not hurry the people, so the treasure hunters had to prod each other. Otherwise, the auction would not be able to continue.
Li Du was standing at the back. A treasure hunter didn’t recognize him. He leered at him and muttered, “Who is this bastard swaggering at the back? Is he a rookie? Doesn’t he know what that place means?”
Most people knew Li Du, whose name has become increasingly popular among the treasure hunters. Even as far away as Texas, some people have become acquainted with him through photos and friends.
Upon hearing the treasure hunter’s words, a bystander immediately warned him, “Huster, if I were you, I’d shut up right now and walk away as far as possible. That is Li Du, the leader of Arizona.”
The treasure hunter that was previously mocking was stunned. He carefully glanced at Li Du in fear and put as much distance as possible between them.
Li Du was most famous for two things in the circle of treasure hunters. One was that he almost never failed, and the other is that he would seek revenge if someone provoked him. If someone had the misfortune to cross him, he was sure to get back at them by any means possible.
The treasure hunters had a forum website where colleagues from all over the United States hang out.
There were some posts about Li Du, one of which recounted all the conflicts he has been involved in since his debut.
These conflicts all ended the same. The ones who provoked Li Du would lose, and Li Du was still safe and sound, smiling until the end.
Li Du’s local image as a generous, benevolent figure has become one of an unprovoked cold-blooded treasure hunter in other states.
There was nothing wrong with that, however. It would help him at the auction.
The first warehouse was opened. The owner snapped his fingers and said, “I don’t know what’s inside, but it must be worth something. I have faith in my warehouse. So, five hundred.”
Unlike other auctioneers, who speak in rapid succession, this owner was relaxed and unhurried even when he began to preside over the auction. His pace was very slow.
Li Du snapped his fingers and shouted, “One thousand!”
Hearing his bid, the auctioneer smiled and pointed at him. “Good, this man bid one thousand dollars. What is his number? Hold up your number, good, number 15, so who’s willing to pay more? Eleven hundred?”
Li Du was surprised. There were tents, tables and chairs, a barbecue grill and, more importantly, two carefully wrapped boxes with tarps. Unexpectedly, no one was interested.
One thousand dollars was the final bid, no one bid against him, which made him a little depressed. If he knew this he would not have doubled the price. He had thought that many people would be interested in the warehouse and did not want to get into the bidding seesaw.
After passing two warehouses, he came to the fourth. He bid again, but once more, no one tried to compete with him. After his offer, the treasure hunters shrugged their shoulders and left.
Puzzled by the strange phenomenon, he could not help but ask, “What’s the matter?”
“Very simple. There are two kinds of treasure hunters here, our guys from Arizona and local Texans,” Hans said. “You know our guys won’t bid against you, and the Texans don’t want to mess with you, so people just walk away.”
“They know you have money. They could not win against you. If they tried, it would be just because they would want to give you trouble, but obviously, they did not want to provoke you so they stayed out,” explained Hans.
Understanding the connection, Li Du laughed. “I’m flattered, but aren’t the people of Texas brave and tough? How could they be afraid of me?”
Hans said, “This is an auction. They came here to make a profit, not to fight. If you want to experience the Texan brutality, I suggest you scold them.”