During the mine's handover procedures, the original owner of the mine, Muller, kept grumbling, "Buying this d*mn mine is the biggest mistake I have made in the past ten years of my life. The biggest mistake!"
Li Du asked, "You owned this mine for ten years? How much did you buy it for then?"
Since both parties had already signed the agreement, Muller was not afraid of Li Du pulling out of the agreement, so he spoke truthfully, "At that point in time, I spent 250,000. A whole 250,000!"
Li Du smiled and said, "In that case, it was pretty decent. Two hundred and fifty thousand turned into 800,000. That investment is still considered decent."
Muller responded in a displeased manner, "Decent? How is it decent? Ten years ago, one could buy a beautiful seaside villa in Sydney with 250,000. Now? What can 800,000 buy? You can't even buy a villa for 1,000,000!"
Muller's purpose for returning to Sydney this time was to buy an apartment. Having worked day and night in Lightning Ridge for ten years, he was no longer focused on getting rich. He just wanted to go to Sydney and live a simple and relaxing life.
Due to Australia's large landmass and small population, most Australians were mainly gathered in a few large cities. In Lightning Ridge, there were a lot of people who planned on going to Sydney to buy an apartment after mining gemstones.
With the transaction completed, the number 408 mine belonged to Li Du.
After purchasing the mine, Li Du first ran to the riverbank with Lu Guan, Godzilla, and the others to catch small lobsters.
Ah Meow and Crispy Noodles were not fond of getting close to the river, while Ah Ow, who had been hurt before, stayed far away from Li Du and his group after seeing the small lobsters that they had caught. As such, Ali was the only one hopping next to Li Du.
Being herbivores, kangaroos ate various types of plants while some would also eat fungus. Although the type of food that small lobsters ate was complicated, they were also fond of eating plants.
Therefore, the tender seaweed found on the riverbanks was shared between both animals. As Ali had not completely gotten off milk, and its small mouth was very picky, it could only eat extremely tender seaweed.
As such, when Ali reached the riverside, it began hopping around to search for tender seaweed.
Since the small lobsters, who were also fond of eating tender seaweed, were not stupid, Li Du gradually discovered that there were usually a lot of small lobsters living in the areas where Ali searched for seaweed.
This discovery allowed him to have a much easier time catching the small lobsters. Seeing that it was able to help Li Du, Ali was elated.
After carrying a box of small lobsters back, Godzilla and the others began working hard to clean them while Li Du prepared the ingredients.
A Toyota pickup truck drove into Li Du's mine. Having finally found a means to show off her capability, Ah Ow, with her ears straightened, rushed towards the truck and barked at it.
A middle-aged man, who was approximately 40 years old, exited the pickup truck. With a tall burly physique, large sunglasses, a full beard, and a gold chain around his neck, he looked like those gang bosses in gangster films.
Despite that, he kept a very low profile. After getting out of the truck, he extended his hand to Li Du and said, "Hi, mate. I'm Marcos Randy, your neighbor!"
Li Du pointed to a mine in the west and asked, "Is Randy's mine yours?"
In addition to the numbers given to the mines in Lightning Ridge that were approved by the authorities, the mine owners would also give their mines all sorts of nicknames.
Marcos nodded. "Yes, that's mine. Further down west, the mines Randy Two and Randy Three are mine. I have three mines here."
Li Du shook his hand and smiled. "Multimillionaire?"
Marcos gave a self-deprecating laugh and replied, "Ha, do you mean owing millions? Those mines are mostly bought through loans. I am just working for the bank and am nowhere near your level."
His words might not necessarily be false. Even though the value of each mine in Lightning Ridge could very easily reach hundreds of thousands to millions, the owners of the mines were not necessarily wealthy. As most of them bought the mines through loans, they still had to repay the high-interest charges.
Li Du said, "You will have good fortune. Your mine is decent. All the mines in this area are decent. You should have harvested quite a number of gemstones here in the past, right?"
Marcos laughed. "How did you know? That fella, Muller, doesn't know. He has been with me for six years."
Li Du replied, "From your eyes. A person's eyes cannot hide how good their harvest is. Your eyes and Mullers's eyes are completely different."
As one's gemstone harvest was a private matter, Marcos changed the subject and asked, "I am here to discuss some matters with you. As neighbors, we have to coexist in a peaceful and friendly manner, right?"
Li Du nodded and waited for him to elaborate. What is this guy on about?
Marcos continued speaking, "Aubrey Radovich, do you still remember him? He offended you before and was beat up by you and your group."
Li Du replied, "Of course, he's a good fella."
Even though both of them had fought before, Li Du still had a good feeling about Aubrey. Although Aubrey, who was of Eastern European descent, was burly, rugged, and bad-tempered, he was not a bad person.
At that time, when they had just finished fighting, Aubrey went over to warn Li Du that Blanchett was a problematic person after seeing them get close with each other. From this, Li Du had a good feeling about Blanchett and had not taken their previous clash to heart.
Hearing his words, Marcos, who still thought that he would say the opposite, deliberately took a closer look at Li Du's expression before responding, "That rascal, Aubrey, is very bad-tempered and likes to cause trouble after drinking. Despite that, he is indeed a decent fella. What I meant to say was, you guys clashed previously…"
"It's nothing, it's really nothing," Li Du said. "I know what kind of a person he is, a good-hearted, bad-tempered person, just like my subordinates."
Seeing that he meant what he said, Marcos was elated and said, "Right right right, that's the kind of person he is. Aubrey is a rascal like that."
Aubrey was a miner working for Marcos. Aubrey and the others, who Brother Wolf beat up that day, were all miners working for Marcos.
Marcos was also not a good-tempered person. After finding out that his subordinates were beaten up, he wanted to help Aubrey and the others take revenge.
In the end, he heard that Aubrey had been beaten up very badly by Li Du, and that Li Du had money, power, and subordinates who were both great at fighting and capable, and that he was a large shareholder of Harry Winston.
With that, he avoided getting himself involved in the matter. He understood very clearly that Li Du was not someone he could go against. As such, rather than becoming enemies, he would rather be peaceful. Maybe, they might still be able to become friends.
Li Du persuaded Marcos to stay over to have small lobsters. Although Marcos looked like a tough guy, he ended up not being able to eat spicy food and was pretty much tearing up after the spicy meal.
After spending an entire day in the mine, Li Du brought the others around the mine's surroundings to orient them. On the following day, Li Du and his subordinates began work.
Not only was there a gemstone vein in the mine, the quantity of gemstones inside was approximately the same as the number 114 mine.
The previous owner, Muller, was not lucky. Truth be told, the tunnel that he had dug out was very close to the gemstone vein, and he had just needed to dig another dozen meters to find gemstones.
As all of the tunnels that Muller had dug ended up stopping next to the gemstone vein before being backfilled, and this benefitted Li Du.
After Li Du confirmed the location of the gemstone vein, he ordered Godzilla and Brother Wolf to start removing the crushed rocks that were used to backfill the tunnel. Compared to digging a new tunnel, this process was much simpler.
With that, Li Du, who was pleased with himself, squatted next to the tunnel and waited for the gemstones to be dug out.