It was a beautiful spring day when a man found a treasure buried in the garden. It took less than a minute for the joy of discovery to turn into the fear of being robbed and so, making sure that no one saw him, the man hurried to bury the treasure again, then resuming his chores as if nothing had happened. happened.
The days passed and the man's thoughts were always turned to that treasure which, in a subtle and obscure way, held him bound. He left home unwillingly; visits to the village became more and more rare and short and, each time, the anxiety to go back was stronger than the desire to stop and have a chat with a friend. The nights seemed endless to him. He fell asleep with difficulty and, once he got sleep, dreamed of being robbed. Then he would wake up upset, put on his slippers and go down to the garden to check that the treasure was always in its place. He ended up sleeping outdoors, stuffed into a hammock stretched between two small trees.
That solution lasted until mid-autumn, when the night cold became bitter and the morning mists became too humid. With a thousand precautions, one night the man decided to dig up the treasure to transfer it to the cellar. The new arrangement gave him the advantage of always keeping an eye on the treasure but, on the other hand, it put him in the position of not being able to let anyone into the house. Who could he trust, anyway? In any case, the cellar was not a safe environment either. Couldn't the thieves have gotten this far? In fact, they would find the treasure much easier. Until a few months before, the man's house was full of friends, voices and laughter. Now, if someone rang the doorbell, the man pretended not to be home or said he had a very rare, very contagious skin disease. In short, the bells thinned out until they disappeared completely, and the man was definitively alone.
So it was that, like every year, December arrived, but a December different from all the others: cold, lonely, silent. In order not to attract indiscreet attention, the man had not even prepared the tree and the nativity scene which, once, were his pride. Dreams had changed too: he no longer dreamed of being robbed, but thousands of thin filaments that enveloped and imprisoned him like an immense cobweb and, in the center, in a very dark place and far below - so far away that the man himself he couldn't see it - the man knew the treasure was there, and the treasure was alive, alive and hungry: a giant spider.
But then, you will say, how did it end? It turned out that, as often happens, one night everything changed and, in the case of our man, it was Christmas Eve. For the first time in months he had slept well, without nightmares and night anguish. The first thought upon waking had not been for the treasure, but for a very special quality of the light that invaded the room - it seemed both cold and warm or, to put it better, it had a coldness that warmed the heart.
Not even the second and third thoughts were for the treasure but, respectively, for a hearty breakfast and for those friends whom he had not seen for some time. What would they face seeing him appear in front of him, on Christmas day? Of course, it was necessary to get presents at the least worst possible way: he certainly couldn't show up empty-handed. And that was the fourth thought.
The fifth thought - to be honest - went to the treasure, but it was like a little thought in parenthesis. He knew it was there but, even if it hadn't been there, it would have been the same, indeed. He didn't even go to check. He dressed hastily, put on his boots, and in an instant he was in the snow. How white it was!