Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
One of the ivory hunters smiled. “Ha, then they are really too good. Nobody knows how many ivory tusks there are in this area, nor where they are hidden…”
The owner said in all seriousness, “But they have a way. Buddy, I know these guys. They brought along a new type of equipment. It is able to sense ivory underground.”
Surrounding them, a few ivory hunters shook their heads. “Where would they get such a machine? That’s not possible.”
The owner said, “It is called a nuclear magnetic penetration and feedback analysis machine. I’m not sure about its exact mechanics either. In any case, it can shoot some sort of particles to the ground. The particles can be marked beforehand, with measurements like density, hardness, and other relevant criteria. When the particles meet with ivory buried in the ground, the machine will promptly send feedback, so one can easily find it.”
Seeing that he seemed to know what he was talking about, the ivory hunters around the counter were all surprised. “Is that true? There’s really such a thing?”
“The Americans invented it,” The owner shrugged his shoulders and went on, “I’ve heard that it’s still in the beta testing stage. The main function of the machine is not really meant for locating ivory. It had been developed for scientific uses.”
Some people were still unconvinced. “If there’s really such an advanced machine, why haven’t I heard of it?”
This time around, the owner smiled. “What could you have heard of? Do you know who these buddies of mine are? You guys can go and ask around. They have great influence in America. They own the labs that designed the nuclear magnetic penetration and feedback analyzers.”
Nearby, a big-sized man nodded and said, “Sapog is right. These b*stards are big shots. My boss has done a search on them. There are some Fords amongst them, from the Ford family that manufactures cars.”
“Wow, they are so important?” The men were all shocked.
“They are so rich already. Why are they here to take our livelihood?” Someone else asked.
Sapog shrugged his shoulders and said, “They are here to look for one scumbag. While they are at it, they are testing the usage of that machine.”
“Black Snake Bryant, they are here for him. That much I know,” the big-sized man who spoke earlier answered.
One of the ivory hunters asked, “Oh, I know who they are now. You Flint gang people had a conflict with them, right? Heard that your good old boss, Flint, embarrassed himself.”
The man from the Flint gang raised his voice, saying, “Don’t know where you got your information. That’s a lie.”
“A lie?” Someone started laughing. “I saw it myself. I was having my lunch at the Antler restaurant and I saw everything from the window. That dude Flint took off his pants in front of everyone, right?”
The big-sized man from Flint’s gang was angered and said, “Don’t create rumors. My boss did not remove his pants in front of people. His pants merely dropped off!”
“Hahaha,” lively laughter broke out. The big-sized man from the Flint gang also started laughing after a while. The entire matter was too hilarious.
They did not take Sapog’s words to their heart. Excavating mammoth ivories was dependent on experience and luck. What advanced machine could there be to replace it? They did not believe in that.
The next day, the SUVs returned again, with ivory atop the cars once more. This time around, there were four mammoth tusks.
Some ivory businessmen went forth to negotiate the price. After inspecting the quality of the ivory, they quoted a decent price and the four tusks were sold for 150,000 US dollars.
On the third day, when the SUV returned, there was yet more ivory atop the cars. There were two tusks this time around and they were of average quality. The two tusks were sold for 50,000 dollars.
The mammoth ivory hunters were all shocked. They had never met anyone who could find and excavate ivory at such a speed.
After the movement of tectonic plates, the remaining ivory left behind was all buried deep in the ground. It was extremely difficult to locate them and typically, a gang of ivory hunters would not get lucky over once a month.
Most of the smaller teams were made up of five to six people. It took a lot of effort for them to look for the ivory. It considered a success if they were able to find one ivory tusk in one to two months.
Often, the ivory hunters would stay in the wild, working hard for over a month. Even so, they were not always able to find where the mammoths had been buried. Most of such small teams typically would only find two ivory tusks in six months.
Li Du and his group’s success was fantastic. They were able to find two or even four tusks in one day. The speed at which they found the ivory was astonishing.
The mammoth ivory hunters wondered if they had bought their ivory from someone else before bringing it over. However, they could not explain why Li Du and his group would do that.
Besides, some people had gotten near the ivory to inspect it. They were all experts and could t easily tell that the tusks were all fresh out of the mud. They had not been out of the ground for a long time.
Sapog was very sure of that. He was the one who had been helping Li Du and his people to deal with the ivory. The tusks they had excavated were all sent to the bar and he was the one to contact the buyers.
The hunters had come to Golden Ivory bar to drink. They slurred as they asked, “Buddy, do they really have that machine?”
“There’s actually such a fantastic machine in the world?”
“D*mnit, that’s really hard to believe!”
Sapog said, “I told you, but you guys didn’t believe me. These people really have the ability to dig up all the ivory in the surrounding areas.”
The hunters started to get anxious and someone slammed the table and said, “Then what will we live on?”
They did not have too many options to make a living. For them, living out there in the wilderness, the only source of income was the mammoth ivory beneath the ground.
Speaking of that, the ivory hunters led a pretty decent life. Even if a team of five people could only discover the carcass of one mammoth after a two-month search, they would still have discovered two tusks in one shot. Those could be sold for fifty to sixty thousand dollars. Split equally among the men, it meant each of them would be able to earn five to six thousand US dollars monthly.
For a regular worker in Siberia, it would be hard to earn even five to six thousand rubles. Based on current exchange rates, one US dollar was worth more than fifty Russian rubles!
On the fourth day, Li Du’s group set off early and some of the ivory hunters followed behind. They were keen to find out how Li Du’s group operated.
One pickup truck was waiting in the wilderness. The truck had been modified and the back of it resembled a spacious room. There were many small wires and machines attached to the truck from outside. There was also something that looked like a radar on the roof of the truck. Behind, there was a scanner-like machine emitting signals that penetrated the ground.
The pickup truck remained stationary at a stop. When the SUV arrived, the men started to busy themselves by digging. When someone made a successful excavation, the truck would leave and continue to drive around the tundra.
An ivory hunter pointed to the truck and asked, “That nuclear machine or something, it’s on that truck, right?”
Nobody could answer him, but obviously, that was what they all had seen.
After more excavating, some fossils were dug up. A hunter said as he peered at them through his binoculars, “From what I see, those fossils do not look like something that came from a mammoth.”
Cheers rang out from the excavation site. Brother Wolf climbed up from below and he pulled up some animal fossils. There were two wide, flat, curved knife-like things attached to the skull.
These were definitely not mammoth tusks, which were very round and at least two to three meters long. However, those wide, knife-like things were shorter and looked too flat to be mammoth tusks.
Someone recognized the things and said in surprise, “God, that’s the skeleton of a woolly rhinoceros!”