I am the dragon who calls themselves Dovah, and this, is my hoard.
You... don't look really look like a dragon?
Well, hardly anyone does these days. As times have changed so have we. The scales and wings worked along the dinosaurs. But we quickly learned that wasn't going to fly with you people. Though I do admittedly miss our tails.
You were around all the way back to the dinosaurs?
Well, not me, personally. How old do you think I am?
...There is no safe answer to that, is there?
So... when you say this is your hoard...?
All dragons have one. Some stick to the old gold and jewels thing, but that is somewhat cliché these days. Most of us nowadays like our hoards to be a little bit more sophisticated than 'shiny.'
I have known dragons whom collect snowflakes from the first fall of the year over dozens of centuries. Dragons that collect the petals of flowers left on the graves of loved ones. Dragons that keep and care for soft toys and comfort items, left behind by children as they've grown up. Dragons that guard happy memories and shards of sunlight, kept safe for rainy days.
I myself have found my calling in by nature of the digital age; 1s & 0s. These two primitives let me freely build my hoard out of most anything, at unprecidented density. Music, art, film and writings, and not just the famed works of noted names, but just so those of lesser praise. I catch all that which catches my eye in the digital stream, and I do my best to uphold my sanctuary of information.
Forgive me but, that seems unsafe to slumber on
Military-grade casing is a small price to pay for a safe and self-heating hoard in the winter.
Wow. So all these things... really mean a lot to you, huh?
They are my memories. All the things that have helped shape me into the being who stands here talking to you now. Every last one of them, in some way, is a fragment of my very self.
I see... So, you'd probably be greatly offended by me asking to lend your copy of Monotone Blue then, I'm guessing?
That would perhaps be a safe bet with others of my kin, however, not with me. The very nature of digital media is very much different from that of the physical, as is its relation to the concept of scarcity. In physical space, handing you a book could mean I'd never see it return. But, in digital space, to hand someone something is natively an act of copying. We either conciously do this from act of a user's copy-and-paste, or from the less apparent technical processes computers loading data from storage to memory; all the same, data is replicated, and none is given up. To limit this is to deny the very nature of digital information, a foolish notion which shall always falter, one way or another. The only true scarcity to worry of is that of loss time, something naturally remidied by simply sharing with one another, and each maintaining our own "hoards" of sorts.
Dragons hoard the things they do because they matter to them, because they bring them joy, comfort and happiness. Dragons are protective of their hoards, because they, like people, don't want to lose what matters to them the most. I am much the same; driven to protect of what matters to me. Yet, things "taken" from my hoard, are not taken away from me. For me, every file "taken", every copy made, simply assures me further, that what matters for me won't be lost again.