Movies and books set a laughable precedent, so my father taught me. They teach you that treasure is hidden in beaches, or in a cave, or sunken. All this methods are foolish, he said. Sand can be dug up. Caves are explored, and not even the Titanic is invulnerable to machines that explore the depths of the ocean. Only inexperienced people do these things. It’s even more laughable if they add the big red X. As if that helps.
Rule number one to treasure hiding: have a guardian. Dragons would be a great advantage, should they ever exist. But they don’t, and you must seek another. A trusted friend will do for secrets and scandals, but beware: human guardians will always come with risks of betrayal, for with their intelligence comes will, and with will comes desire. Should you ever come between them and their desire, prepare for your treasure to be found.
He told me, should I ever need a guardian for my treasure, I should find a tree. The best place to hide my treasures will always be right beneath the roots of a tree. For other guardians may rise to seek another task or to reveal the whereabouts of that so precious to you, but a tree you can trust. It will never walk away, nor will it have any interest to betray you. It will keep constant vigil over your possesions, and its roots will grow over it, protecting and hiding it. You cannot burn the tree down without burning the treasure as well, for they will be one. A good guardian dies protecting the treasure, the best guardian protects it from even beyond death.
I used to scoff at the notion of burying your treasures. Why would you hide something so dear? Isn’t there a sense of pride, of happiness, in owning something so valuable? Wouldn’t the natural thing to do be to revel in its beauty, value and worth? Shield it from danger if you must, but to hide it beneath root, soil and pebble was ridiculous.
That is, until you showed up, darling.
You were so tiny when you came to me, barely bigger than my outstretched palm. And yet, minuscule as they were, I knew your fingers were gripping onto mine with all the strength you can muster. And I hoped you knew that save for that fact that I might accidentally crush you with fatal results, I would’ve done the same.
Turns out the universe didn’t need me to deliver those results, love.
The family wanted a cemetery. Something simple and sweet. You’d be surrounded by other angels, because you’ve become one yourself. It’s the right thing to do, the right place.
But it didn’t feel right. These other angels are cold and still. They won’t keep you company. I can keep you company, but who will continue to do so when I’m gone? A thousand and one humans would be watching over you, but their eyes will pass over you without recognition, and those who do will only offer you pity for a few seconds before moving onto their own treasures.
So I entrusted you to a tree. The biggest and oldest I could find. One who is mature enough to understand how precious you are to me, and will keep you close to them. They will keep you company whilst revelling in your beauty and worth, even long after I will be gone. They will give you what I couldn’t: a second chance in life, when your first had been so unfairly cut short.
And thus my dearest of treasures, my heart, was buried underneath the roots of a tree, for it to grow over, to cherish and protect, to become one.