The pizza was delicious; the coffee was aromatic, and the scenery, magnificent.
After enjoying the breakfast, Li Du, together with Godzilla and Big Quinn, drove to their destination, the King Kong Storage Company.
It was a large storage company, with thousands of storage units which were mainly smaller-sized or mini ones. They were especially popular with tourists.
Unlike the storage company for local residents, the King Kong storage company usually offered its customers short-term contracts covering only about a month.
After all, these customers were mainly tourists and did not stay long in Las Vegas.
As long as the contract had lapsed for three days, the storage units would be considered abandoned. As the storage company could then conduct an auction, it would hold auctions many times throughout the year.
But a large-scale auction like this one was rare. The company had realized the potential profit it could make from this and so decided to hold a cash auction to earn big bucks.
The storage company was located at the edge of the city. As it was surrounded by desert, the air was dry. A wall had been built around a large cluster of huts. Each hut was close to the next like a hive. It looked as though there were thousands of huts.
With the increasing ability of the little bug, Li Du had stopped going into storage companies to check the units. He could remain outside while the little bug flew inside for a look.
But this time, he would have to conserve every ounce of his energy and go into the storage company personally.
After passing over two Ben Franklins, the security officer welcomed him to enter.
This guy was more than obliging. After receiving Li Du's money, he even gave him a bottle of cola. "Happy touring, bro!"
Li Du smiled and said, "Thank you, I'm just looking around. You know, we haven't got such a storage culture back in China, so I'm curious."
"No problem, bro. But don't let the boss spot you. That a*shole ain't too fond of colored people," the security officer said.
Li Du did not take his advice to heart, since he had no intention of visiting the owner of the storage company.
The first of the 145 storage units to be auctioned off was unit number five. It was a mini storage unit of only 20 square meters.
The little bug went in and made one round. There was nothing that attracted its attention. It had seen only children's toys, a barbecue rack, a mountain bike and so on. There was nothing of value in there, so he quickly sent the little bug to the next unit.
The viewing was carried out in a fast but orderly manner. Li Du drank his cola at a leisurely pace as he wandered between the storage units, recording information about the units on his mobile phone.
Instead of using a notebook, he was using a notebook app on his mobile phone. He had a lock screen which could only be accessed via a password. He could also set a password for the notebook app. This would ensure the information was kept secure.
There were 145 storage units but with Li Du's ability to control the little bug, it would be a piece of cake searching through the storage units.
Besides, he was only going to view the first 100 storage units. He would wait until the auction began the next day to view the other 45 units. Otherwise, he would not have enough energy.
Eighty out of the 100 units were mini storage units with a total area of twenty square meters each. The little bug only had to look once or twice to see everything within the unit. It did not take a lot of time.
Within two hours, he had finished viewing these units, so he recovered the little bug and was about to leave the storage company.
At this time, he walked to the central area of the storage company. In the middle of the place was a three-story building with a sign on the door: King Kong Storage Company Office Administration Building.
What was interesting was that this office building was built like storage units and resembled three storage units stacked on top of each other.
Li Du whipped out his mobile phone wanting to take a picture. This was the first time he had seen a storage company with such an interesting office.
In the end, when he walked to the door to take a photo of the building, a car drove up. The door opened and someone got out.
It was a middle-aged white man with blond hair and a big belly. He was holding two large picture frames. He frowned when he saw Li Du holding up his mobile phone and asked, "Hey, what are you doing?"
Li Du smiled. "I saw this building and thought it looked very interesting. I only wanted to snap a photo."
The blond man looked at him suspiciously and said, "What do you do? What are you doing here?"
Li Du could feel his hostility and gave a friendly smile. "I'm a treasure hunter, a storage auction treasure hunter. I'm here to check out the environment ahead of the upcoming auction I'm going to participate in."
His tone was cordial and what he had said seemed legit.
But after he spoke, blond man's face changed.
His expression looked displeased as he frowned and glared at Li Du. He hollered, "Treasure hunter? The auction hasn't even started. Why are you here? How did you get in? F*ck! That d*mn nigger is not doing his job again!"
Li Du had been observing his moves all along. Upon hearing his words, he suddenly recalled what the African-American security guard had reminded him of that the owner of the storage company did not like colored people!
At this point, he knew his answer had been too presumptuous.
There was no doubt that this fellow was the owner of the storage company.
In the storage auction industry, the relationship between the storage company and the treasure hunter was one that was both interdependent and competitive. It couldn't be regarded as being amicable since conflicts had previously arisen between the owners of the storage companies and the treasure hunters.
Generally speaking, such conflicts occurred because the storage company was in a more favorable position, while the treasure hunter's status and social standing would usually be lower than that of the storage company owner.
Under such circumstances, the owner would usually make things difficult for the treasure hunters. Unless they were members of prestigious clubs, the owners might even ignore the treasure hunters.
Was it because Li Du was a treasure hunter or someone of color? How would he be able to get into the good books of an owner who discriminates against colored people?
He should have said that he was a tourist in Las Vegas wanting to rent a storage unit for keeping his stuff. The King Kong storage company was a large outfit. Every day, many customers and staff pass through its doors. As there would be many unfamiliar faces, that identity would be more plausible.
It was already too late. The boss had found out who he was and was blowing his top at that moment.
He threw the picture frames onto the ground, then went up to Li Du to give him a hard shove before bellowing, "I asked you, why did you come here? Why did you come to my company? D*mn, many of you yellow people are thieves. Who knows what you're really here for?"
His words were stinging and Li Du's expression changed.
But one thing the owner said was correct - this was his territory and it was his prerogative if he did not welcome visitors before the storage auction had started.
And so he tried to avoid the blond man's shove and he summoned the little bug to use its time deceleration ability.
In the end, the little bug flew out and instead of awaiting his command, it charged towards the two frames lying on the ground.