An auction that clocked up a hundred billion worth of investments, and these were only the transactions shown to the public.
This was the driving force of the development sequence!
Everyone just loved throwing money at planets at the front of the development sequence, and investors were all frantically trying to get in.
For those at the tail end of the development sequence, nobody even bothered to give them a second look. People there had to rely on themselves.
Just comparing Baiji's past and present circumstances would do. Baiji base leadership felt the difference the most. Compared to the past, the difference was as vast as heaven and Earth.
Not just audiences and viewers, even Shanta and the other leaders had not expected this. One hundred billion was three times their original estimation.
"Was it ever so crazy before?" a senior Baiji officer asked.
Shanta shook his head. "Before? It has never been this crazy in the past." During the previous planet's auction, he had still been young and had not even been an officer yet. This round's auction forecast and estimations had been made with references to the previous examples, and that was why the results were so shocking.
Of the five planets at the front of the development sequence, there were only three habitable planets, including Baiji. Businessmen had probably seen the huge commercial benefits from the development of the previous planets but had been to slow to get a slice of the pie. Thus, this time, they had paid close attention to planet Baiji.
Of course, there was the matter of Fang Zhao's first lot obtaining a high price, which had had the effect of raising up the prices of the other lots and affecting investors' mentalities.
Shanta had had two reasons for letting Fang Zhao be part of the auction. The first had been to attract the attention of the masses, and the second one had been to help Fang Zhao raise his reputation, as Fang Zhao's discovery of Baiji ore had been the catalyst. This had been meant to mutually benefit both parties.
Shanta's estimation of the first lot had also been 35 million. He had never expected...
Shanta raised his head, and his hawk-like gaze swept across everyone present in the room. "However, who was it that jacked up the bid?"
Currently, every officer here was a trusted aide of his. Even if they had made a move, he should still have been informed.
But every single person in Shanta's field of vision shook their heads. It really hadn't been them.
There were regulations that prohibited the military district from interfering with the auction. Of course, when there was a policy, there would be countermeasures. Even if they did not do it personally, naturally, they would get others to help them do it. But even if they had raised the bids, the plan had been at most 100 million. They would not have jacked the bids this high. They had no prior experience and had been worried that problems would arise if the price was too high. Therefore, a bid of 300 million could not have been from their side.
"Could it be those newcomers?"
"Those newcomers" referred to people dispatched from the various continents' military districts after the terrorist attack.
When this was said, many people nodded their heads in approval.
"That's possible. Doesn't that Hong Lou know Fang Zhao? I heard that Fang Zhao is signed to his wife's entertainment company."
The person with the highest probability of jacking up the bid was Hong Lou's wife, Duan Qianji. However, jacking it up that high, wasn't she afraid of being investigated?
The symbolic boosting of a price could be attributed to a variety of reasons and pushed to a company's operations teams. Everyone knew this and would close their eyes to it. But jacking the price up to 300 million, did Hong Lou not want to stay on planet Baiji?
Now, planet Baiji was under intense scrutiny. If the investigation proved this, the authority Hong Lou had painstakingly sought to achieve would be gone. Was he that foolish? Or perhaps... was his wife, head of an entertainment company, that stupid?
At this moment, Hong Lou was also anxiously making a call to Duan Qianji.
"Wife, did you bid for the first lot?"
"I participated in it."
"The 300 million bid wasn't you, right?"
Hong Lou let out a sigh of relief. "That's good to hear." As their social status was rather high, personally jacking up the price was not a good thing. Whether for themselves or Fang Zhao, the disadvantages outweighed the benefits.
"But if it was not you, then who else could it have been?"
"I am clueless as well. Wait for the announcement to come out in awhile."
This was something that many people wanted to know. People online had been discussing why the items in this auction had fetched such high prices. One of the reasons was that the first lot of the auction had been too high.
There were some people who thought they had deduced the truth.
"That's it! It's a f*cking Baiji military district scheme! They purposely jacked up the bids. This is just unsightly."
"It's a little too early to come to that conclusion. Let's wait for the announcement."
"I don't think it was people from Baiji's military district. If they had jacked up the bids, it would be found out in the audit. They wouldn't do such things that could be held against them."
"Who knows if that bunch of military officers used their brains. Rationality is forgotten when there is greed."
"That senior master Zaro from Leizhou just posted a status. The item that Fan Lin put up was won by him. The one who bid 1 billion was him!"
Netizens flocked over to view his social platform. Indeed, Zaro could not wait and had posted a screenshot of the transaction.
"The f*ck, why did a Leizhou person like him bid for Fan Lin's item? Shouldn't that be done by people from Muzhou?"
"Could it be that senior master Zaro no longer wants to invest in entertainment and film and instead has switched to investing in farming?"
Concurrently, numerous large Muzhou farm owners were pissed and rather regretful.
As the bidding had been anonymous during the auction, they had assumed that other Muzhou farm owners had made that bid. Never in their wildest dreams had they thought it would be from Leizhou!
To make it worse, it was that idiot!
"If I had known that it was that fellow from Leizhou, I would have surely increased the bid!"
"Regretting now. How regrettable!"
"Who knew that a Leizhou person like him who dabbled in the entertainment circles would actually come over and compete with us!"
"How disgraceful! To actually let a Leizhou person snatch it from us!"
All large news organizations and entertainment media outlets also reported on this news. Everyone was guessing whether Zaro was really going to be switching professions this time.
Inside Outpost 23's conference room, Fan Lin had felt secretly pleased with himself when the item he had put up had achieved such a high bid of 1 billion. It was much higher than the initial valuations and past auctions. He even thought to himself, Could it be that Muzhou had abundant harvests this year?
Unexpectedly, reality was like a little stab to his heart.
Watching the displayed news on the screen, Fan Lin's expression was extremely complex, and he did not talk to anyone for a large part of the day. He had to ponder carefully. What exactly was that senior master plotting? What would his reaction be if Zaro came looking for him?
The outpost soldier from Muzhou that had spoken a while back looked dumbstruck.
It was rare for Kevin Lin not to be posting a status update at this time. Noticing Fan Lin's unsightly expression, Kevin Lin instead focused on the interplanetary fund's official auction web page. The auction results would be released anytime now.
Sure enough, a few seconds later, the screen refreshed automatically and displayed the information of all the winning bidders.
Taking a quick look, the winning bidders of the Baiji officers' items were globally renowned companies and investors. The winning bidders of the first few items were also announced. The winning bidder of Fan Lin's lot was indeed Zaro Renault. Other engineers and professors from the Academy of Science had probably had some secret dealings, and the ones who had placed the winning bids were large companies from the same industries. If Zaro had not stepped in, Fan Lin's item should have been won by certain reputable Muzhou farm owners.
It was only natural that the focus of netizens was not on this. Almost immediately after the results were announced, everyone straightaway scrolled to the first lot and wanted to see what sort of person had placed the winning bid for Fang Zhao's creature's tooth inscribed with a song score.
"What sort of outcome is this?"
"This means to say the other party doesn't wish to reveal his identity."
"It's highly probable that it's Baiji military district jacking up the bidding. Since it's anonymous, it is surely them. Hiding the name, anyone can tell they have a guilty conscience!"
"Maybe it is Silver Wing Media, the company that manages Fang Zhao?"
"Cough, spending 300 million to do this, are the people at Silver Wing imbeciles?"
"No, there is still another possibility."
"I have thought about one as well."
"During Fiery Bird's annual gala at the start of the year, someone won the bid for Fang Zhao's team uniform for 50 million. The person's ID was 'Anonymous' too."
"There was such a thing? Let me check."
Some people who did not pay attention to the gaming circles hurriedly went to search for the related information.
"It really is true!"
"Don't tell me it is a fanatical fan of Fang Zhao's?"
"Three hundred million is no small amount."
"With such a high bid, it is possible to get a plot of land or foster a good relationship with Baiji military district leaders? What is this person scheming?"
"Since the interplanetary fund has had such a conclusion, surely they have examined the other party's identity. There shouldn't be any other issues."
"What's the point of being so secretive. Can't he just be straightforward?"
"Perhaps his identity is a sensitive issue? If he can fork out such a large bid, his status can't be low."
"Don't tell me it's an important government figure? Do government employees also chase stars? And to this extent?"
"Are there any regulations stipulating that government employees are not allowed to chase stars? There are so many government employees that chase after celebrities!"
"A government employee throwing 300 million to chase a celebrity? Does he feel that his life is too comfortable? Now anticorruption is an important issue!"
"That person's position is surely very high up. Perhaps he might be a figure that everyone recognizes."
"I guess we can only ask Fang Zhao himself."
"Speaking of which, during the bidding, there were two parties. One was anonymous, but who was the other one?"
"That method of boldly increasing bids... I recall a certain person who gets really lively when it comes to this sort of event."
"I guessed that too."
"I know who you all are talking about. A certain Za..."
Zaro would not be stupid enough to pop out and say something. To him, losing a bid was like a stain in his lifetime. He would never be foolish enough to reveal such a thing.
Kevin Lin was also extremely puzzled when he saw the outcome. He turned to Fang Zhao and asked, "You still have such a fanatical fan? Have you ever seen the real person?"
Fang Zhao shook his head. "Nope."
Fang Zhao had no idea who the other party might be, and he had never been contacted by such a person before, but he felt that the person who had won the creature's tooth this time around and the person who had won his team uniform during Fiery Bird's annual gala were one and the same. He decided that when he saw Shanta next, he would try to sound the general out for some information regarding this.
The Baiji military district leadership let out a collective sigh of relief when they saw this outcome.
"It wasn't our people that raised the bids."
The auction results had been announced after some time, as the interplanetary fund had needed to investigate the identity of the auction winners. That it had already been announced meant that there had been no problems.
The auction was a complete success!
"All right, following this we will be building up our domain!"
Shanta felt that the two most correct things he had done in his lifetime were assuming command of planet Baiji and approving Fang Zhao's military service application.
On the same day, not long after the auction had ended, the Baiji military district publicly released an announcement to account for where the money would be going.
The message of this was: Our practices are also for the benefit of the people. This is the curtain raiser for construction on planet Baiji. In the future, the pace of the work schedule will pick up. After a few years, you people can visit and tour Baiji! We hope that the general public will continue showing support to the Baiji military district in certain voting activities.
Whether or not planet Baiji would really be ready for tourism in a few years, they would paint a beautiful picture first.
For many youngsters that were witnessing such an affair for the first time, the craziness of this auction was unbelievable. They could feel the magic of planet Baiji and the impact power ore could have on a planet's development. Thus, the announcement by the Baiji military district was a focal point for the masses.
Following that, the Baiji military district also released a video that captured the current situation of areas undergoing construction. Information touching on certain military matters and classified information was omitted or censored out, but it told everyone that the residential district for family members of troops had begun construction.
With the level of technology now, building houses was very fast. The most time-consuming process was the planning beforehand. After it was fixed, and funding was allocated, with sufficient manpower, machinery, and energy, they could construct practically one building a day.
A few days before Fang Zhao had gone over to submit the creature's tooth, the construction blueprints for the family residential district had been finalized. Now, in the released video, it showed an already constructed block. Soon, the first batch of family members would be able to move over, allowing the officers and soldiers in the Baiji military district feel a genuine sense of belonging.
Schools, hospitals, and other amenities would appear shortly as well.
Troops and their family members were considered the earliest immigrants. In the future, any children they bore would count toward planet Baiji's population and would received lots of preferential treatment. There was no need to worry about their livelihood and schooling, as everything would be arranged by the military district.
This was to give a message to people who had never really paid attention or understood planet Baiji's people: It is really great to be a soldier! Everyone, come over to Baiji military district. Come to Baiji to undergo your military service! This is a land of dreams! Although there is some risk, opportunity coexist with risk. It is not much different from youngsters chasing their dreams!
Anyone that saw this knew that the number of applicants in this October's military service batch was going to explode.
Just when everyone was discussing planet Baiji's immigration undertaking, Zaro was seeking his father's approval. He had won the bid for Fan Lin's item and had decided to head to planet Baiji to learn to work the land together with Fan Lin.