The days after were quiet.
Surgi and Hughes could not escape the punishment of the law and were also unable to keep their mouths shut against the police.
Besides getting caught red-handed, the police also found the tools used to carry out the crime and obtained their fingerprints from the machines. Facing such irrefutable evidence, both of them could only be honest and admit their guilt.
With such conclusive evidence, no lawyer would be able to help them.
The police officers led by Rose continued putting in the effort and found out about the other accomplices from both of them. In one fell swoop, they managed to catch everyone who was involved.
The police were swift and driven. Those people didn't have time to escape and were all pretty much caught in the national park.
In the meantime, Li Du did not do any work and drove around the park to watch the police catch the culprits.
The other gem hunters felt unsafe and left the national park one after another. As such, the national park didn't have many gem hunters for a period of time after, which also meant that Li Du didn't have much competition.
Of course, he had never considered other gem hunters as competitors since the differences in their capabilities were too huge.
It was just that with fewer gem hunters, it was much cleaner on his side.
Regardless, as the local gem hunters were closer to each other, they would huddle together and were always judgemental toward Li Du. With them no longer here, Li Du naturally felt more at ease.
A few days later, some gem hunters wanted to go back to work. In the end, the number of police cars in the park suddenly increased and the local police constantly wandered around the premises of the park.
The gem hunters didn't know what was going on and feared that the police would find trouble with them. As such, they left not long after arriving.
Li Du knew the reason behind the police's return. He was certain they had discovered that the fire opals taken from Surgi and the others were fakes and came back here to look for the genuine fire opals.
However, the genuine fire opals had already been placed inside a bank by him. How could the police possibly find them?
There was one thing he could not figure out: why the local gem hunters were avoiding the police? Whenever he had worked as a storage unit treasure hunter, he hadn't seen any treasure hunters avoid the police before.
Nonetheless, this problem had nothing to do with him. He bustled about in the national park and found piece after piece of gemstone before amassing them and taking them away.
After working for half a month, he amassed a bunch of gemstones and was ready to return to Flagstaff.
This period of high-intensity work made him very exhausted. Having worked continuously for over two weeks, he needed rest. Another reason for returning this time around was that there was a phone call: "The experts authenticating the Van Gogh paintings have arrived."
They returned to Flagstaff, travel-worn. He didn't bother going back to the cabin and went to the hospital first to see Sophie.
Even though he had video chats with Sophie every day, it could not lessen the yearning between the two lovers. Instead, seeing but not being able to touch each other made them miss each other more.
Li Du wanted to surprise Sophie with his return. He drove straight to the hospital without telling her.
When he arrived at the hospital, it was just after work ended. He parked the muddy pickup truck at the entrance of the hospital and waited a few minutes before seeing Sophie walk out in a slow and graceful manner.
As it was a little chilly in Flagstaff during late November, the female doctor wore a thin white wool sweater that was complemented with a flame red coat, which made her look exceptionally lively.
After walking out of the hospital, a cold wind blew past. The female doctor hurriedly pulled up the collar of her coat before vigorously rubbing her hands together and exhaling a warm breath of air from her mouth into her hands. She then hastily walked to the side of the road and waited for the public transport.
Li Du drove over, stepped on the brakes, and prepared to pick her up.
In the end, a white Bentley drove past him at this moment and was the first to stop in front of the bus stop. Subsequently, a tall youngster with gold hair walked out and smiled at Sophie. "Hey, Doctor Martin, let me give you a ride?"
As the Bentley had driven out from the hospital's parking lot, it was evident that the youngster was a doctor from the hospital.
The income of a doctor in America was very high. Along with lawyers, accountants, and IT specialists, they were known as the big four gold-collar professions. There were a lot of doctors driving luxury cars such as Bentleys.
Despite that, the man, who looked only 27 years old, was still considered very capable and cool to be able to drive this type of luxury car at such a young age.
Sophie also let out a smile and looked very happy. "Doctor Graz, hi. Thanks for your offer but I'm going to take the public bus. There's a bus service that stops right in front of my house."
The man smiled. "You can take the bus again tomorrow. Since I was fortunate enough to meet you, let me bring you home. Listenmy car is saying, 'Pretty lady, please get in the car. Am I fortunate enough to drive you?'"
To mimic the car, he used a voice similar to the voiceovers in anime movies. The voice was very interesting and, together with his dashing looks, made him look like a very fun person overall.
Sophie smiled even wider. She replied in a high pitch voice as well, "Sorry, adorable car. I like you a lot but I have a date with a tall and burly man."
Li Du reversed his truck and drove past the Bentley before stopping. After which, he reached over to the passenger seat and opened the truck's door. He poked his head outs and said, "Who has a date with me? Hey sweetheart, quickly get in for the date."
The "tall and burly man" Sophie had spoken of was the bus. However, as Li Du drove a Ford F450, which was over six feet tall, it was also considered a "tall and burly man" compared to the Bentley.
As such, Li Du appeared very suitable for the occasion.
Seeing him poke his head out, Sophie looked surprised. Despite that, her expression quickly changed and she scorned, "You? Still not tall and burly enough!"
Li Du chuckled. "If you walk over to my front, you will discover that I am very tall. Come on, babyburly man bring you for a ride."
After seeing him grinning cheekily, the good-looking young man, who drove a Bentley, wore an unpleasant look.
Li Du had unkempt hair, wore dirty clothes, and drove a muddy pickup truck, which made him look like a low-class, unrefined person, a completely different class from the young man.
As Sophie's words earlier felt a little similar to rejecting Li Du, the youngster misunderstood and told Li Du, "Mate, the sky is still very bright. If you think you can act outrageously and hit on a lady, you are gravely mistaken."
It was apparent that he didn't understand how they were related to each other. This was a good opportunity to pull a prank.
However, Li Du was not interested in doing so and smiled. "I'm not hitting on her. I'm asking my girlfriend to come home for dinner."
Hearing his words, Sophie wrinkled her nose. "You still remember you have a girlfriend?"
Li Du smiled. "I remember it in my heart all the time. Look, I brought her a present." He opened up a box that was seated on the passenger seat. Inside, was a rock the size of a Chinese drinking bowl. The rock was elliptical and greyish-green overall, with some white lines on the top. The lines formed an image that closely-resembled a lady sitting in front of a piano.
This was a piece of natural agate rock. It was picked up by a gem hunter and bought over by Li Du, who was very pleasantly surprised by it and thought that it looked like Sophie playing the piano.
Sophie was thrilled when she saw the image. Just like what Li Du initially thought, Sophie was also reminded of herself when she saw the image of the lady playing the piano.
With that, she jumped into the truck while tightly hugging her bag. "Wow, what a great present. Alright then, this present reminded me that I have a boyfriend who drives a pickup truck."