Santiago waits at the marketplace until nightfall for the young man to return. When the young Spaniard does not return, Santiago begins to cry. He realizes he's been robbed. He laments all of his lost material possessions, and those that he has left. Santiago checks his remaining posessions: book, jacket, and the stones given to him by Melchizedek. He considers selling the stones to pay for a trip back home. He is afraid and alone in a land he doesn't know. He reaches into his pocket, asking the stones (Urim and Thummim) if he will find his treasure, but quickly realizes they too are gone. The stones have fallen through a hole in his pocket. Soon, he finds them on the ground. They were gone only temporarily. He holds them tight and remembers them for their symbolic value, rather than monetary value. As he collects them, he remembers his promise. He will make his own decisions, and he continues his journey. His commitment to his quest is renewed.
The robbery presents the idea that Santiago still has growing to do. Santiago trusted the young man (the theif) because he spoke Spanish and was similar to himself. He judged the bar keeper (who was actually trustworthy) because he spoke Arabic. Santiago must readjust his perspective and judgements of his surroundings. The reader is presented with the continuing journey of growth that Santiago is on.