Treasure Hunt Tycoon - novelonlinefull.com
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Mr. Steel Steve's name was Steve Tussenberg, a wealthy young man who lived in the eastern city of Boston.
After they chatted together for a while, Li Du could sense that this young man might not be too healthy, or he lived a restricted or restrained life.
When they conversed about birds and specimen collecting, Steve would frequently express his longing to be like the birds that could fly freely around. Li was able to discern that Steve was not yearning for the actual ability to fly, but rather envious of the fact that the birds could fly freely to anywhere they wanted.
Therefore, Li Du speculated that either he was in poor health and could not move about freely, or he had a special ident.i.ty that did not allow him to move freely around.
Both parties left their addresses and ended the call. Li Du had promised to send him the specimen as soon as possible.
Li Du was about to tell Hans that he was going to Boston. "You heard what Big Caen said just now?" Hans asked energetically before Li could open his mouth.
Li Du was puzzled. "Huh?"
"Big Caen said that a storage unit company in Holbrook will be holding an auction soon," said Hans. "We can go check it out. There's possibly a bunch of mahogany furniture inside."
Mahogany furniture here referred to the use of Siamese rosewood, red sandalwood, and other cla.s.sic mahogany furniture. For the Chinese, it was a collective term used ever since the Ming Dynasty for high-quality, rare, solid wood furniture.
The Chinese were not the only ones who liked this type of rare, high quality furniture. People in other East Asian countries were very fond of it as well. After the Silk Road had been established, mahogany furniture's popularity in Asia spread all over the world among wealthy people.
The love for mahogany furniture was especially prominent in Europe after 1920. Families with higher social status often owned mahogany furniture.
Although the Americans would turn up their noses at Europe, they learned from Europe. Mahogany furniture was therefore popular in the United States as well.
However, the Chinese were still the ones who loved mahogany furniture the most.
Li Du took an immediate interest in this piece of news. "Really? That's so cool. Is the information trustworthy?"
Hans looked at Caen, who had told them the news, and asked, "Hey friend, is that trustworthy?"
Li Du gave a kick at Hans's seat. This rogue didn't even verify the trustworthiness of the news before telling me. Are you kidding me? he thought.
Li was skeptical about the information that the storage unit contained mahogany furniture, as the other party had no reason to tell him about this, especially if the news was true. Wouldn't it be better to keep quiet and bid for the unit without compet.i.tion?
Big Caen swore that the news was genuine. He had heard from his friend who was staying in Holbrook.
His friend had disclosed this to let him earn a fortune, but Caen was a thrift dealer, a second-hand goods treasure hunter—he was inept at partic.i.p.ating in storage auctions.
That was the reason Hans had informed Li the moment he heard about it.
Hans was an expert in this field. After he'd gotten the news from Caen, he searched the Internet on his laptop for more information.
After a while he whispered to Li Du, "The news might be true. We need to make a trip there."
"What did you find?"
Hans placed the laptop on his lap and showed him a piece of news.
The story was dated two years ago. It said:
"Luxury goods store Delon Mahogany Gallery in Holbrook has recently announced that due to the relocation of the head office, about a hundred pieces of mahogany furniture will be put up for clearance sale!
"According to the officer-in-charge, after taking into account the cost of transportation and labor, and the fact that they want to reward their customers for their many years of support, the furniture in the Gallery will not be moved to the new site. The mahogany furniture will be sold below factory prices in an upcoming clearance sale, in the hopes that this act will benefit more mahogany furniture lovers.
"From a trusted source, the prices of the mahogany furniture will not only be lower than the market rate, but it will be below factory prices as well!
"Here are some of the mahogany furniture pieces that will be put on sale:
- Three bedroom sets with king-sized beds (red sandalwood)
- Six living room sofas (red sandalwood) that come with gla.s.s-beaded sofa seat cushions
- Seven dining table sets with elephant head carvings (red sandalwood)
- Five coffee table sets (African rosewood)
- An electromagnetic stove
All these sets of mahogany furniture cost no more than 50,000 dollars in total..."
Li Du looked at the news page and saw the logo, which was that of "Arizona Life." The site was very reliable and hence very popular amongst local citizens, who were also fans of the site.
"There's no problem with the legitimacy of the news," elaborated Hans. "The news site and even the newspapers reported it. There really was a mahogany furniture store that held a clearance sale two years ago."
Li Du nodded and exclaimed, "What are we waiting for? Let's go get them!"
If they could get their hands on the mahogany furniture, it would undeniably be a significant sum of money.
The prices of mahogany furniture began to soar around the world during the 21st century.
In 2001, the wildlife conservation and protection branch of the United Nations issued the "Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora" to restrict the import and export of a variety of raw materials for making mahogany furniture.
In 2004, Brazilian rosewood, Bahia rosewood, Siamese rosewood, Burmese rosewood, Laos rosewood, and Vietnamese rosewood had been explicitly banned from international commercial trade.
And so, due to the shortage of raw materials and various trade restrictions, the price of mahogany furniture kept increasing drastically.
Both Li Du and Hans were already looking forward to the trip. If they could find the quality furniture made of the Siamese rosewood or red sandalwood, they could earn some big bucks.
Even if they got the Amboyna wood, Burmese padauk, or Laos rosewood, which were the newer raw materials used to make the mahogany furniture, that could still be a huge amount of money.
The Iron Knight was cruising along Route 66. Hans opened the window and roared ecstatically, "Yoohoo! Holbrook, the land of vendetta, here we come!"
Just then an SUV drove past them, and a girl also did the same thing but shouted, "Veni! Vidi! Vici!"
Hans had a puzzled look and asked, "What did this beautiful girl say?"
"You don't know this?" replied Li Du. "That's Caesar's famous saying in Latin. It means, 'I came, I saw, I conquered!'"
Hans popped out his head again, and yelled to the girl in his usual flippant manner, "Hey, you want to conquer me? You're welcome, and I'm ready, baby. Come and conquer me! Haha!"
He was shouting when the SUV pulled over in front of them, blocking their way, and three tough-looking young men descended from the car. They stared at Hans with dark faces and roared, "Get down here, *sshole!"
When Hans saw this, he laughed and said with ease, "Someone's looking for excitement?"
Li Du stopped him and said, "Bud, don't. You kinda started this first."
Hans said with displeasure, "So you mean I provoked them? I'm just joking. Li, can you be a man about this? Don't be such a wuss!"
"Only the reckless will provoke and fight. Wise men don't do this!"
Li and Hans were sitting in the back of the Iron Knight. Big Quinn was in the driver's seat, with G.o.dzilla beside him. And as Hans's window was rolled down, the three young men could only see Hans and Li Du.
He was reasoning with Hans when suddenly a young man outside gave a malicious cry, "There's an Asian ch*nk in the car. F*ck you! Rip him out and break his *ss!"
Li Du flew into a rage. "Let's get them!"