Translator:Nyoi-Bo StudioEditor:Nyoi-Bo Studio
As Li Du had thought, Hans was deliberately teasing him, deliberately not talking about the photos. Hans did not believe that Li Du was not in a hurry to hear about the photos, but at this point, it really was the truth. Li Du knew that sooner or later Hans would tell him what he wanted to know. However, he had play the part Hans wanted him to and act more anxious than he actually was. Sure enough, after Li Du repeatedly led the topic back to the photos and black opal, Hans gradually became happy and told Li Du everything.
Hans had taken the photos and found the gems. Before Li Du put down the phone, he told Hans about the location of several black gold abalones around Seagull Island, and asked him to take the sea woman to go harvest the black gold abalones there.
With Li Du’s guidance plus the sea woman’s powerful diving ability, they could harvest a large number of black gold abalones from Seagull Island every day. However, Hans had nothing to do with the fishing process. After all, Li Du provided the location, the sea woman did the actual harvesting, and Big Quinn sold the abalones, so most of the time, they didn’t need Hans.
Over time, Hans got bored. To alleviate his boredom, he studied underwater photography and bought a diving camera. He then often went into the water to take photos in the middle of the day when it was warm.
The concentration of black gold abalone around the island indicated that there was volcanic and geothermal energy. Although it was already autumn, the surrounding waters were not cold.
Hans took a lot of photos. The photo of the black opal had been taken by accident. Hans could not confirm the identity of the gem, so he sent the photo to Li Du so he could take a look. However, Li Du paid little attention to the matter, which made Hans very angry. What made him even angrier was that he took the initiative to call, but Li Du always hung up without giving him the opportunity to tell him about the photo and the possible gem vein.
With that, he began to complain again.
What could Li Du say? He could only listen in silence.
Judging from the photos, the gem was supposed to be black opal, but too little of the gem could be seen in the photos, and there was a problem with the lighting, so Li Du wasn’t sure. In this case, he would have to go to the island to see if there were any gems in the water. If he found another gem vein in the sea, he might make another fortune.
While attending the luxury showcase, he had seen people who were truly rich. He realized that he was still nowhere near that level, and that he needed to fight on.
He had stayed long enough at Lightning Ridge. The local mine owners and miners had pushed him out further, and when they found out that Li Du had become the owner of the surrounding mines, they were even more convinced that Li Du had sent Blanchett and the others to prison.
There was nothing wrong with sending those people to jail. Mine owners were fearful because they were not any cleaner than the miners who had ended up behind bars.
Li Du said it was a disaster, and that he was not that intent on revenge, but who would listen? What’s more, why should he have to explain it to anyone?
Exactly ten days later, Big Ivan overhauled the Mi-8 helicopter. The helicopter’s main components — engine, transmission system, fuel system — were intact. Ivan had replaced and repaired some of the aging parts, reassembled the rotor and tail, and had successfully flown the helicopter.
When the helicopter first appeared over Lightning Ridge, many people were stunned to find that it had taken off from town, meaning it had been there all along. The owner of the machinery rental company next door to the mine was the most surprised. The helicopter was loud, and the wind from the rotor was strong.
The boss ran out to see what was going on, then watched a big iron bird fly away from right next door. He recognized the helicopter, which had been used several times by his neighbor, a real estate tycoon.
Soon the town figured out why Li Du had taken an interest in the mine; there was a helicopter in it. The price of the helicopter was not comparable to that of a mine, and there were regrets and questions about how he found it. According to Australian law, land seized by the state was off limits, and the public was not allowed to trespass. They suspected that Li Du must have climbed into the mine and seen the helicopter. Hence, the mine owners and the miners had another reason to dislike him. They thought that Li Du had no morals and had secretly broken into the closed mine. That kind of thing was considered to be despicable.
Li Du would not explain the matter and did not want to bother patching up his relations with the people in the town. Everyone despised his disdain, and he did not care. He flew the helicopter for a day, and when he was sure it was all right, he flew to Seagull Island.
Godzilla and Lu Guan stayed back, and they continued to dig for the stones. Li Du told Godzilla about the direction of the vein and asked him to do the work according to his plan.
After the successful rebuild, the Mi-8 was even bigger and bigger. Together with the tail fin, it was over 25 meters long and five meters high. Before boarding the helicopter, Li Du repeatedly asked Brother Wolf, “Is this thing all right to fly?”
“Absolutely. Ivan is a helicopter expert, and I have confidence in him,” said Brother Wolf.
After having seen Big Ivan in action for a while, Li Du had some confidence in him. The guy was rigorous. While he was a bit careless now and then, he was also reliable.
Big Ivan and Brother Wolf went into the cockpit. Li Du took Sophie, the four little ones, and Ivana into the cabin. Ah Ow laid down in the window, looking down and wagging her tail, looking very pleased with herself. She was not afraid of heights at all.
The helicopter briefly adjusted its position in the air before speeding southeast.
The Mi-8 could fly to an altitude of 4,500 meters, and Big Ivan piloted the chopper as high as he could. In case of emergency, there were parachutes for everyone on board. With a parachute, there was no risk of life. It would not be not dangerous to jump at that height.
The helicopter could easily fly from Lightning Ridge to the island. However, for safety reasons, the trip was divided into four sections, and they landed three times to replenish oil and supplies. Even with the time it took for the helicopter to take off and land, they left in the morning and arrived on the island in the afternoon.
There was no helipad, highway, or hand-picked flat land on the island. Big Ivan landed on the sand, and though the wind from the rotor blades kicked up a lot of sand, the helicopter came down steadily for a perfect landing.