The price increased steadily, quickly approaching the original price of 100 dollars.
Although the auctioneer had emphasized that the authenticity of the small box was unknown, the small box was still attractive and it had excellent craftsmanship. Sitting in the front row was a bunch of wealthy people, and they had the taste to appreciate artwork.
But the starting price of the box was a bit low; they assumed that it was made with artificial emerald. They thought the material was cheap, thats why it was being auctioned for cheap.
As the price reached 80 dollars, Li Du was staring at his phone; he suddenly raised his hand, shouting, "100 dollars!"
Sophie looked at him in surprise. "You dont have to bid," she laughed. "Dont mind what Marate saidhe was being childish."
Marate was bidding as well, and he was, of course, doing it for the sake of Sophie.
Therefore, when Li Du made the offer of 100 dollars, he immediately said, "110 dollars."
Li Du said, "200 dollars!"
He doubled the price, and the crowd applauded. But the rest of the bidders gave up the auction; they thought that buying a second-hand jewelry box for the price of 200 dollars was too much.
Marate wasnt giving up. He shouted, "250 dollars."
Li Du calmly said, "300 dollars."
Sophie pulled on his sleeve and whispered, "A new box only costs 100 dollars, whats the point in spending so much money? Li Du, dont bother with him. Youre being childish like him."
Li Du patted her hand, "I know what Im doing, Ill show you a trick later."
It looked as though both of them were being intimate, and Marate became very jealous. He yelled, "400 dollars."
Li Du raised his hand. "Five hundred dollars."
The crowd was not applauding, but laughing: it was friendly laughter, however, as they saw this as a competition between two young men to win Sophies heart. They were entertained.
Mrs. Martin gave Li Du a word of advice: "Thats enough, son. The price is high enough to put Sophies jewelry box under the spotlight."
The laughing crowd made Marate upset. He had thought the crowd would applaud when he bidthis was his home turf. He hadnt expected the crowd to laugh like this.
He felt embarrassed; this hurt his ego.
He made one final bid: "600 dollars."
Li Du knew his plans. He had participated in many auctions at this point and had met with some cunning treasure hunters. It was his job to analyze their psychological states.
Therefore, he knew that this was Marates final bid; he said slowly, "610 dollars."
Marate smirked coldly in the face of the laughing crowd. He stopped bidding and sat in his seat angrily.
The auctioneer waved his hand toward him. "Six hundred ten dollars, first call! Six hundred ten dollars, second call. If no one is bidding, then I shall say: 610 dollars, final call! The jewelry box is yours, Li Du!"
Li Du stood up and bowed. The crowd was applauding and laughing.
After he bowed, he didnt sit, but moved to leave his seat and walk toward the stage.
Everyone was surprised. The volunteer who was in charge with the activity said immediately, "Sir, youll pay after the auction is finished. You dont have to come to the stage now."
Marate took the opportunity to mock Li Du: "I thought you were a treasure hunter, dont you know the rules? I suppose youve never participated in a proper auction, what a joke."
The crowd was laughing loudly; this time they were not laughing out of friendly intentions. It was obvious that the rest of them were thinking the same thing.
Sophie pulled his sleeve before he walked away and whispered, "Li Du, you should pay later."
Li Du held her arm and smiled. "Do you remember what I said just now? Ill show you a magic trickcome on, lets go up on stage. "
He turned his head and whispered something into a volunteers ears. The volunteer seemed surprised and allowed them to walk past him.
Li Du brought Sophie on stage and the doctor blushed. She stumbled along after him, with a blank look on her face and mystified look in her eyes: she was confused.
What were they in right now? A church. She thought about how a man and a woman walk toward the altar when they are about to get married.
Now, a man was grabbing her hand and pulling her toward the altar. Her parents, friends, and other church members were sitting in the audience facing them. It looked like they were about to get married.
Someone noticed it too. He laughed, "Hey, boy, are you going to propose to Sophie?"
"This is not a good place. This is a place to get married but not to propose."
"Sophie, dont say yes. This guy is fooling around."
The doctor was very confused and she blushed. She couldnt think properly, let alone listen to the crowd.
Li Du heard them. He didnt mind what they were saying. He went onto the stage and talked to Lewis: "Let me host the auction, man. Ill bring some heat to the auction."
The auctioneer laughed, "Alright, get over here, just dont spoil everything."
Li Du nodded and took the jewelry box from the tray. He cleared his throat before confronting the crowd.
Everyone stared at him, looking just as confused as Sophie did.
Li Du said, "Everyone, I bought the jewelry box. But Im giving it back to its rightful owner."
"All the fuss for the sake of giving it back to Sophie? Thats too much."
"This is not romantic at all, man. Not a smart thing to do."
"Get down from the stage, Sophie is embarrassed."
Marate shouted, "Youre making a fool of yourself, just like a clown. Youre making a fool of Sophie, toowhat a shame!"
Li Du laughed, "Everyone has misunderstood my intentions. I bought the jewelry box. But it is unfair to everyone because you dont know the truth about this box.
"The auctioneer said the material of the box is unknown. But I can assure you that its made of emerald. The little stones on top are real sapphire, turquoise, and ruby."
The loud crowd became quiet after they heard him. They look stunned.
LI Du smiled, "The design reflects the characteristics of the emerald bird in Eastern myth."
"According to Eastern myth, the emerald bird lives in the south. It has bright, colorful feathers, which consist of red, blue and green.
"In most cases, the male bird is red and called fei. The female bird is green in color and called cui. Their eggs are blue. It is a spiritual type of bird.
"Theres a famous poet from the Tang dynasty called Chen Zi-Ang. He wrote a poem to describe this precious bird"
Before he continued, he switched to Mandarin, following a rhythm: "The emerald bird lives in the south. The male and female bird live in the forest. Their feathers are very beautiful and can be made into beautiful jewelry."
As he recited the poem, the crowd applauded. The more he recited, the louder the applause was, and it grew as loud as thunder.